Garden of Thorns by Amber Mitchell (Blog Tour Guest Post)

Living in this story-book world can be quite perilous, so Rose
(the heroine of the story) is sharing some survival tips below...

Garden of Thorns
by Amber Mitchell
YA Fantasy, Action/Adventure
Paperback & ebook, 362 Pages
March 6th 2017 by Entangled Teen


After seven grueling years of captivity in the Garden—a burlesque troupe of slave girls—sixteen-year-old Rose finds an opportunity to escape during a performance for the emperor. But the hostage she randomly chose from the crowd to aid her isn’t one of the emperor’s men—not anymore. He’s the former heir to the throne, who is now leading a rebellion against it.

Rayce is a wanted man and dangerously charismatic, the worst person for Rose to get involved with, no matter what his smile promises. But he assumes Rose’s attempt to take him hostage is part of a plot to crush the rebellion, so he takes her as his hostage. Now Rose must prove where her loyalties lie, and she offers Rayce a deal—if he helps her rescue the other girls, she’ll tell him all the Garden’s secrets.

Except the one secret she’s kept for seven years that she’ll to take to her grave if she must.

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Guest Post: Rose's Survival Tips

Learning fast is the only way to survive in the Garden, especially when a single toe out of line could mean someone else’s pain. I know, it’s scary. It always is for the newcomers. It is for us veterans too, but, at least we’ve had enough time to get through all the special little “firsts” the Garden has to offer…like the first time the Gardener has your Wilted beaten for a mistake in your performance, the first time you realize her very life is in your hands, and the first time you realize that your sanity rests in hers.

Welcome to life as a dancing Flower. Keep up, learn quick, and save your Wilted the pains I afforded mine because I didn’t catch on until bruises covered her body thanks to my traitorous mouth. Here are a few tips to endure your new life as a Flower:

1. Love your Wilted: Loyalty and love are hard to come by between the cracks of our wooden cages. But your Wilted is always with you. She is an extension of you, the girl who does your hair before performances, the one who rubs your back when you’re trembling in a pile of dirty hay, the girl who knows all your secrets, your best friend. Know that you are responsible for every bruise, scrape and cut on her body the way she is responsible for your perfect appearance each performance. Trust her, lean on each other, and always watch her back.

2. Keep your eyes down: The Gardener demands complete submission in his presence. Whenever his shadow appears in your field of vision, avert your eyes unless you want to see the manifestation of your disobedience in the form of a bruise on your Wilted.

3. Practice makes perfect: Know your dance routine like the very breath that comes from your lungs. Practice your steps any chance you get. Not for the audience, not for the Gardener and his lackeys, but for your Wilted’s sake. Miss a step and it will come out of her skin.

4. Beware Shears: Though the Gardener is the man making money off your sweat, Shears is the one keeping you here. Never lose sight of him, never let him sneak up on you, and never come face-to-face with those wicked pair of gardening shears he keeps tucked in his back pocket. The Gardener is greedy but Shears is cruel.

5. Don’t speak unless spoken to: Though it may seem harsh, this is one of the only rules you can use to your advantage. Unless the Gardener asks you a direct question, keep your mouth closed. He has no need to know of the whispers you overhear tucked away in your wooden cage about a rebellion brewing against the emperor and he definitely doesn’t need to know about the new lackey handing out extra rations of bread.

6. Never lose hope: The Gardener and his lackeys can threaten you, they can beat the only girl in the world who cares for you, they can call you names and force you to dance night after night for the entertainment of others, but they can never rob you of your hope. Keep your head down, your mouth shut, and never let them know about the seed of hope sprouting in your chest. Because you will escape one day and then they will have to face your fury.

Stick close to me. The Gardener doesn’t usually look at me because…well, anyway, I’ve been here a long time. I know what I’m doing. You will get through this and you will blossom. After all, that is what Flowers do with a little bit of sunlight. And even they can’t rob us of that.

About the Author

Amber Mitchell graduated from the University of South Florida with a BA in Creative Writing. She likes crazy hair styles, reading, D&D, k-dramas, good puns and great food. When she isn’t putting words on paper, she is using cardstock to craft 3D artwork or exploring new places with her husband Brian. They live a small town in Florida with their four cats where she is still waiting for a madman in a blue box to show up on her doorstep. Garden of Thorns is her debut novel from Entangled Teen.

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