Published by Entangled Teen
To Be Released on May 1st, 2017
Genre: YA Fantasy
With a book in her bag and a switchblade in her pocket, Rebel’s been thieving her way through life while hoping for a cure to fix her defective heart.
But when the bejeweled vase she just tried to hawk turns out to be a jinni’s vessel, Rebel gets lost to her world and dragged within another. Now every magical mobster in the city wants the vase for himself.
Thrust into a game of cat and mouse in a world she never knew existed, Rebel must use her uncanny skills to find a way to free Anjeline the Wishmaker.
But wishes have consequences. And contracts. Anjeline’s freedom could unravel a love like Rebel has never known, or it could come at the cost of Rebel’s heart…
About the Author:
J.C. WELKER is a YA Fantasy author who’s been, among other things, a fashion designer, a graphic designer, a filmmaker and a kickboxer (seriously).
She’s best known for writing and producing the documentary short films focusing on homeless Iraq vets and LGBTQ+ issues in the military, which was selected by the North Texas Film Festival and featured on CURRENT TV. Her recent novel placed first in the paranormal category of the 2016 YARWA Rosemary Awards, and she continues to work towards giving a voice to stories that are needed, while facing magic and monsters along the way.
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Read below for an excerpt from the book:
Whatever natural tendency toward hope Anjeline once possessed had manifested itself into something harder on her face. Her eyes were far away, like she had thoughts on bigger things than just freedom. “This isn’t like your books,” she said as though Rebel were naive. “They’re stories that know nothing about life. People are thornier than what those things tell you. Good doesn’t always win. Light doesn’t always burn away the darkness.”
Rebel pressed her lips into a hard line. “Maybe it’s you who knows nothing about people. Darkness exists because light casts a shadow. That’s life…painful and beautiful all at the same time.” Books might have not told her everything about magic, but they taught her how to see it in all things.
Anjeline’s lips twitched. “Painful but beautiful. Sounds more like human love.”
“Now that, I wouldn’t know,” she said sarcastically, but she meant it. She took a cold breath, feeling for her pendant resting on her chest. There was a black void in her heart, where the love of a parent, the love of anyone, had never occupied.
Golden eyes met hers, Anjeline contemplating her with that look. “You’ve always been without kin?” Rebel nodded, turning aside from the fascinated gaze roaming over her. “So, you’ve never been loved?”
The question wasn’t just about family. Rebel shrunk from those words, unable to stop from gravitating toward the ones living in the back of her mind. Believing herself, maybe, to not be worthy of it, or anything good. That black void had yawned so wide she used to think gathering stolen treasures could fill it. She used to put rocks under her pillow, wishing for them to turn into diamonds. But she was a book no one wanted to open. A riddle no one dared to answer. A lost girl no one desired to find.
Her heart was tired of not being useful to anyone— especially herself.
She was tired of being a captive to her own flesh. With a shake of her head, she didn’t reply. But as Anjeline gazed at her with that look, as though something tied them together, her chest hummed with…what, exactly? She tried willing it away but it spread deeper. She rubbed at her bruises, as if calming the ones within. Her numb hands shook, and she rummaged in the satchel for her pills. Anjeline persisted to stare, unbothered by the cold. Lucky her. “Stop staring at me,” she said.
Anjeline clicked her tongue. “You could just ask me.”
Rebel glanced up in both sheepishness and stubbornness. Taking that for an invitation, Anjeline moved closer. “I’m fine…”
“I can hear your teeth rattling.”
Anjeline put a finger against Rebel’s lips. “Shh. If you’re frozen, neither of us will get our wish.” The light in her palm danced, and she placed a hand atop Rebel’s.
The air throbbed between them. It crackled and purred, and Rebel startled as her blood hummed at the touch. Wisps of sultry light danced across her arms, snaking around her legs and torso in a shroud of warmth.
Can you tell us about your book, The Wishing Heart, in 45 words or less?
A seventeen-year-old wishing for a cure to her ailing heart, soon finds herself caught up in a game of cat and mouse with every magical being in the city amongst a world she never knew existed.
What was your favorite scene to write?
It’s a tie between two scenes. First would have to be when Rebel is caught by the police-turned-werewolf, and is chased into the metro tunnels. Action scenes are some of my favorite to write. Second to that would have to be the kiss scene, because in many ways all the slow-burn scenes prior to it were all working towards getting the two characters to that moment. I’ll just leave it at that as not to divulge spoilers.
What was the hardest scene to edit out?
Luckily there weren’t any scenes edited out that I felt compelled to keep. However, there was one chapter where I cut out half of it due to the main characters doing nothing but flirting. But the banter and chemistry was so good I tried finding ways to work it in elsewhere.
What theme song would you give to the Wishing Heart?
I don’t know if there is one particular song I would choose for a theme. But while editing I listened to True Colors by Zedd/Kesha on repeat.
Did your main characters give you any trouble?
Most of them have a gift for trouble. However, I think because I hold a special bond with Rebel it was easier for me to find her voice than it was with the other characters.
What else are you currently working on?
I’ve been toying with a MG fantasy idea, and hopefully will begin putting words to it soon.
What is the best book you’ve read recently?
The Hate You Give by Angie Thomas. It is raw and beautiful, and if you haven’t read it please do, everyone really needs to.
What is currently in your TBR pile?
Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
One Shadow on the Wall by Leah Henderson
Mask of Shadows by Linsey Miller