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Saturday, September 19, 2015

Blog Tour- THIS MONSTROUS THING by Mackenzi Lee a Guest Post and a Giveaway!

This Monstrous Thing
by Mackenzi Lee
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Release Date: September 22nd 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Horror, Steampunk, Retelling, Historical, Science Fiction, Paranormal, Fantasy


In 1818 Geneva, men built with clockwork parts live hidden away from society, cared for only by illegal mechanics called Shadow Boys. Two years ago, Shadow Boy Alasdair Finch’s life shattered to bits.

His brother, Oliver—dead.

His sweetheart, Mary—gone.

His chance to break free of Geneva—lost.

Heart-broken and desperate, Alasdair does the unthinkable: He brings Oliver back from the dead.

But putting back together a broken life is more difficult than mending bones and adding clockwork pieces. Oliver returns more monster than man, and Alasdair’s horror further damages the already troubled relationship.

Then comes the publication of Frankenstein and the city intensifies its search for Shadow Boys, aiming to discover the real life doctor and his monster. Alasdair finds refuge with his idol, the brilliant Dr. Geisler, who may offer him a way to escape the dangerous present and his guilt-ridden past, but at a horrible price only Oliver can pay…

This is not a deleted scene or a rewritten scene, per say, so much as it is a missing scene from the book. And also from someone else’s point of view.
So here are the facts:
1.       This scene takes place after chapter 13 of This Monstrous Thing. Which is about halfway through the book. So mild spoilers. Obvs. 
2.     This scene is written from Oliver’s point of view. Don’t get confused.
3.     Enjoy! 

I have not been outside since I died.
If there were not men who’d like to see me die again chasing us, perhaps I would be enjoying the reunion a bit more.
We don’t have to run far to lose them. The snow has frozen and crusted over with a thin, icy layer since the blizzard, and breaking it takes a heavy step. The officers tire fast. I hear them fall behind, their shouts tapering into faint trills like birdcalls. Then they fade entirely. We keep running, even after they quiet, down the slope of the foothills and toward the faint glow, down through the pines toward the lakeshore.
It’s not me who stops—it’s the girl, this mechanical wonder of a girl whose name I still don’t know. She collapses backward very suddenly against the base of a black tree, one hand pressed to her chest. A metallic wheezing sound threads its fingers with her breathing, so the hissing sound that leaves her is part human, part machine.
I stop too and stand over her, waiting. My own breath meets the air in a thick white cloud. I’m not wheezing or leaking. I am better made than she.
I can feel the burn of the cold in the flesh and bone parts of me, like borderlines drawn upon maps, lines that separate the human parts of me from those that are less than. In that moment, I am feeling made mostly of the less than. I did just kill a man, after all. Perhaps two—I didn’t hang about long enough to see. I am not sure if that makes me more human or monstrous.
“Did they hurt you?”
I look down. The girl has caught her breath and is looking up at me now. She’s a small, spindly creature, and that daft, several-sizes-to-big coat makes her look more so. Her white hair is a spill of moonlight through the darkness.
“I’m not hurt,” I say, though from her silhouette, I can see the side of her face is starting to swell. “You are.”
She picks up a handful of snow and presses it against her cheek with a mumbled curse. I watch her for a moment, then scoop a fistful up with my mechanical fingers, just as she did. It sits, sludgy and unchanging in the frozen metal, and I transfer it to my flesh-and-blood hand. It’s so cold it burns, but after a few seconds, begins to melt and thin tracks drizzle down my arm. My fingers start to throb, but I don’t let go.
“Sit down, why don’t you?” she says suddenly, making a fist into the snow beside her. “Might as well be comfortable while we plot.”
That we is an arresting word. I have not been part of a we in a long time— whatever Ally and I have been for the past two years, it’s certainly not a we—and it tugs at my insides like a hook. I slide down into the snow beside her, all my joints squeaking in their frozen, metallic glory. I wince without meaning to. Sometimes I am still caught off guard by my own repulsive body.
We sit in silence for a while, because I don’t know what to say to her. I have not been required to make polite conversation in all of my little life and after several excruciating moments, it’s clear that’s not a skill that’s going to return easily. Or perhaps there simply is no appropriate small talk to be made after a murder and a flight.
“Your hair is rather arresting,” I say at last.
She takes a handful of it and sweeps it out of the collar of her coat. It nearly thwacks me in the face. “It was black, before my accident, if you’d believe it,” she says. “Dark, like yours. But since the moment I woke on Geisler’s laboratory table, it’s never grown anything but white.”
“Because of Geisler?” I ask.
“Because sometimes bodies carry pain around in strange ways.”
She lets the slushy remains of her handful of snow fall back to the ground, then slides one hand to her breastbone, a two-fingered touch under her coat, like she is pressing something into place. I am trying not to stare at her chest, because we’ve only known each other for what equates to maybe an hour at best, but it’s hard not to when I can see that gleam of metal poking out beneath the collar.
“May I see it?” I ask.
She looks over at me, mouth twirling into a smirk. “We’ve only just met and already you’re undressing me.”
“I’ve been locked in a castle for two years. I don’t understand social norms.”
She laughs as she unfastens the buttons of her coat so that the neck falls open, then pulls up her shirt with a shiver so I can see the silver paneling beneath. She fits her fingers into the seam, same way Ally’s done for me dozens of times, and swings it open.
And we are almost the same, she and I, like two garments cut from the same cloth. Bellows and cogs in place of lungs, bolts and pins holding them in place. A body that could not function without the foreign, metal parts assisting it. She is Geisler’s thing, same as I am Alasdair’s.
I reach out a single finger of my mechanical hand and run it softly along the bolts that line her lungs. “Easy on the goods there, darling,” she says quietly, a thin smile teasing her lips, though I have a sense it’s only there to conceal the pain.
I drop my hand. She knocks the panel closed with a knuckle and does up the buttons of her coat again, her head tipped backward against the pine tree.
“Were you ever dead?” I ask her.
“Not nearly as dead as you were, if your brother is to be believed.”
My metal fingers creak when I fist it. “I’m going to rip him apart.”
“Now don’t do that. He did the best he could with a tricky situation.”
“That doesn’t make it right.”
“Maybe not.” She ties a strand of her hair into a knot between her fingers, then looks over at me. “I’ve never met anyone like me before.”
“I’ve never met…anyone,” I say.
Her eyebrows crease. I think for a moment she is looking at me with that same sick pity Ally wears, but when the moonlight falls on her face, it isn’t pity. It’s something else entirely, something unfamiliar and fragile. Then she reaches out and very softly touches the tip of one finger to a scar near my ear so that her palm rests upon my cheek. “We are beautiful monsters, aren’t we?” she says.
A soft dollop of snow falls from one of the branches and splays upon the ground beside us. The wind ruffles the pines. An owl flies across the moon. The stars are very, very bright, handfuls of salt across a velvet sky.
She keeps her hand there, upon my cheek, and for a time, we breathe together. Man-made, mechanical things.

If you want to read more, check out the tour schedule and search for the next blog hosting a deleted scene to continue the story!

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Follow the This Monstrous Thing by Mackenzi Lee Blog Tour and don't miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.

Mackenzi Lee holds a BA in history and an MFA from Simmons College in writing for children and young adults. She loves Diet Coke, sweater weather, and Star Wars. On a perfect day, she can be found enjoying all three. She currently lives in Boston, where she works as a bookseller and almost never reanimates corpses. Almost.

Blog Tour Prize Pack (US ONLY):

One winner will receive...

A hardcover copy of THIS MONSTROUS THING 
A pair of Frankenstein socks
A copy of the Color Your Own Graphic Novel Frankenstein
THIS MONSTROUS THING postcards, bookmarks, and buttons


  1. This book is perfect for my daughter to read--she loves the suspense and thriller novels. The cover alone would make me take it off the shelf.

  2. I am very intrigued by this book. A very interesting premise. I would love to read it! Thanks for the giveaway.


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