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Character Spotlight and Excerpt: Smoked

Learn about a character and read an excerpt from Mari Mancusi’s Smoked, the final book in the Scorched trilogy. Plus: a giveaway!

Character Spotlight and Excerpt: Smoked

Mari Mancusi’s Scorched trilogy, which involves dragons, time travel and more, is coming to an end next month with Smoked, the final adventure of the series.

Warning: Some spoilers for the series included below.

Here's the official word:

Once upon a time the world burned.
Until a girl and her dragon smothered the flame.
But the spark that ignited the apocalypse never went out.
And the Scorch is about to begin.

When Team Dragon rescues Emmy from the government lab, they think the future is finally safe. But they soon discover that Emmy has a secret—a secret so dangerous it could trigger the very apocalypse Connor and Caleb were sent back in time to prevent.

As a dragon hunter, Connor has committed his life to saving the world. There’s nothing he wouldn’t do to complete his mission… even if it meant betraying his brother and losing Trinity’s heart. Even if it meant doing the unthinkable. But a desperate choice meant to prevent The Scorch, may become the spark that sets the world aflame once more.

I reviewed the first book in the series in 2013 (you can read my review here) and will be posting my review of the second and third books later this week. But I’m here today to introduce you to one of the series’ main characters, and give you a snippet of what’s to come in Smoked.

Meet Trinity:

Full Name: Trinity Foxx
Nickname (if applicable): Trin, Fire Kissed
Height: 5’5”
Hair Color: Black
Eye Color: Black
Age: 16 (turns 17 in Smoked)
Originally from: Old Oak Grove, TX

Describe yourself in 200 words or less:

I used to consider myself a normal Texas teen who lived with her grandfather and helped run his failing dinosaur museum. Until, that is, a dragon egg showed up at the museum and the government swept in to steal it. Now I’m told I’m the Fire Kissed, the girl destined to save the world. (Or burn it to the ground, depending on who you talk to …) But thankfully, I don’t have to face this apocalyptic destiny on my own—I’ve got two boys from the future and a dragon on my side.

What matters most to you?

My family and my dragon. And, you know, the fate of the world as we know it. That keeps me up at night at times…

When not trying to save the world, how do you spend your time?

Playing videogames! Especially my favorite game, Fields of Fantasy. I also like to hang out with my boyfriend Connor and binge watch BBC shows with my dragon.

If money was no object and you had 3 weeks of vacation from being on the run, what would you do with your time?

I would go back home and hang out with my best friend Caitlin, watching horror movies and playing video games, just like old times.

Check out an excerpt from Smoked:

“Okay, Fire Kissed,” he said. “It’s showtime.”

Together they jumped out of the truck, slamming the doors behind them. Connor ran around the back, rolling up the door and pulling out a huge box. Trinity helped him heave it onto the loading dock.

“Are you okay in there?” she whispered to the box. “Perfect,” Nate assured her from inside. “You guys go on ahead. I should be close enough now to hack into their security cameras and get them offline.” He paused then added, “Good luck. Just don’t forget about me once you have your dragon.”

“Never,” Trinity assured him, patting the box. Then she rose to her feet and approached Connor. “Ready?”

“As I’ll ever be.”

With confident, casual steps, they strode up to the guard, who was propped in a chair by the elevator, his feet up, nose in a book, completely ignoring the chaos around him. Guess deliveries weren’t in his job description. Connor gave him a small smile. “We need the elevator,” he informed him.

“Yeah, well, I need my ex-wife to get off my back,” the guard said lazily, snapping his gum. “We’ve all got problems.” Connor’s eyes zeroed in on him. “I don’t think you understand,” he said. “We need the elevator. We need to get upstairs. You need to let us in.”

Trinity drew in a breath, watching him work. She had to admit, Connor looked particularly hot when he was working to manipulate people’s minds. It was like he got this look in his eyes—those blue, glowing eyes of his—like he was some kind of Jedi Master or something. Truth be told, it kind of made her want to jump his bones. Not that this was the time or the place.

Pushing the inappropriate thought down, she turned back to his victim. Sure enough, the man’s face had gone slack, and he was staring up at Connor with vacant eyes. “You need the elevator,” he droned. “You need to get upstairs. You need me to let you in.”

Then, to Trinity’s excitement, he slowly rose to his feet, walked over to the elevator in question, and inserted his key. Just like that. A moment later, the doors yawned open. The guard looked at them expectantly.

Trin flashed Connor an approving look. You didn’t even need my help for that one, she teased.

Yeah, well, it’s all you from here on out, he shot back, but he looked pleased by the compliment all the same.

About the Author:

Mari Mancusi is a two-time Emmy award-winning television producer and author of novels for adults and teens. A graduate of Boston University, she now lives in Austin, Texas with her husband and young daughter. When not writing or producing she enjoys traveling, snowboarding, reading fantasy novels, and her favorite guilty pleasure: video games.

Want to win a copy of Scorched, the first book in the series? Leave a comment below answering one of Trinity’s questions for yourself: If money was no object and you had 3 weeks of vacation, what would you do with your time? We’ll randomly choose a winner Sept. 7. Per the publisher: U.S. and Canada only. The giveaway is now closed.

Smoked will be available Sept. 1.

Mandy Curtis's photo About the Author: Mandy is a small town girl living in a nerdy world, or—if you want to get literal—an editor/writer living in Austin, TX. In addition to yearning for YA books—the more dystopian or fantastical, the better—she can also be found swooning over superheroes, dreaming of The Doctor and grinning at GIFs.