Friday, December 2, 2016

Blog Tour: Escape from the Past Trilogy by Annette Oppenlander with Giveaway

Escape from the Past: The Duke's Wrath

by Annette Oppenlander

Genre: YA Historical Fiction, Time-Travel

Release Date: July 31st 2015

Summary from Goodreads:

When fifteen-year-old nerd and gamer Max Anderson thinks he's sneaking a preview of an unpublished video game, he doesn't realize that 1) He's been chosen as a beta, an experimental test player. 2) He’s playing the ultimate history game, transporting him into the actual past: anywhere and anytime. And 3) Survival is optional: to return home he must decipher the game's rules and complete its missions—if he lives long enough. To fail means to stay in the past—forever.

Now Max is trapped in medieval Germany, unprepared and clueless. It is 1471 and he quickly learns that being an outcast may cost him his head. Especially after rescuing a beautiful peasant girl from a deadly infection and thus provoking sinister wannabe Duke Ott. Overnight he is dragged into a hornets' nest of feuding lords who will stop at nothing to bring down the conjuring stranger in their midst.

Now only $0.99!
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Escape from the past: The Kid (Escape from the Past #2)

by Annette Oppenlander

Genre: YA Historical Fiction, Time-Travel

Release Date: February 26th 2016

Summary from Goodreads:

Time-traveling gamer, Max, embarks on a harrowing journey through the Wild West of 1881! After a huge fight with his parents, Max tries to return to his love and his best friend, Bero, in medieval Germany. Instead he lands in 1881 New Mexico. Struggling to get his bearings and coming to terms with Dr. Stuler s evil computer game misleading him, he runs into Billy the Kid. To his amazement Billy isn t at all the ruthless killer history made him out to be. Trouble brews when a dying Warm Springs Apache gives Max a huge gold nugget to help his sister, Ela, escape from Fort Sumner. Shopping for supplies Max attracts the attention of ruthless bandits. Before Max can ask the Kid s help, he and Ela are forced to embark on a journey to find his imaginary goldmine. This is book 2 in the Escape from the Past trilogy."

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Escape from the Past: At Witches' End (Escape from the Past #3)

by Annette Oppenlander

Genre: YA Historical Fiction, Time-Travel, Action/Adventure

Release Date: November 25th 2016

Summary from Goodreads:

When Max learns that Karl helped spring him from Schwarzburg’s dungeon during the first game, he feels obligated to return the favor. Not only because it’s the right thing to do, but supposedly Max is the one who rescued Karl from Hanstein in 1473 and helped him return home.
With Karl’s programming help Max reluctantly agrees to enter the game a third time. At least he can visit his old friends and get cozy with Juliana while he’s at it. But two years is a long time in the Middle Ages. Something foul is in the air. Lord Werner is mysteriously absent and the new guards refuse Max entrance. Even Bero’s mother is terrified to see him. With no place to stay, Max soon finds himself on the run from Schwarzburg who hasn’t forgotten Max’s miraculous escape two years earlier.
When at last Max finagles a way into the castle, Bero is less than pleased to see him, Lady Clara is near death and Juliana is not meeting his eyes. Can Max sway his friends, help Karl and stay out of Schwarzburg’s clutches? And will he ultimately stop Dr. Stuler’s evil computer game?
This is the final book in the Escape from the Past trilogy.

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Book One: ESCAPE FROM THE PAST: The Duke’s Wrath
I leaned forward because all of a sudden my chest was killing me. I was stuck in a truck-sized vise, my ribs squeezing together, body compressing. My lungs throbbed and I couldn’t breathe, not even a little. My arms and legs felt numb. Do something, I thought. I pushed myself to stand. Something is wrong with the game, stop the game, my mind urged. But I couldn’t. Lights exploded behind my eyelids and I had to pay every shred of attention to the task of breathing.
It occurred to me that I was having a heart attack.
My mother’s face flashed by. I wanted to shout for her, but my lungs had quit for good, my tongue a rigid piece of meat. She’d find me in the morning dead on the carpet. My sight turned foggy then black. I was passing out. I sucked frantically and drew in a bit of air. Slowly with each breath the crushing heaviness disappeared.
Blinking away the haze, I wiped my sweaty forehead. I should make an appointment with the family doctor. Something moved ahead. There at the edge of a clearing cowered the man in rags holding his right elbow. He trembled and now that I was closer, I saw blood dripping from his wrist. The three riders had surrounded him, their blades pointing toward the man’s neck. One rider dismounted, his face shadowed by a half helmet and curled brownish beard, his hands covered by steel gauntlets like lizard scales. The other two sat motionless, waiting. I tried to get a better view of what the horsemen were doing when I looked down.
And froze.
I stood on the root of an oak tree. Surely I imagined things. But those were definitely my Nikes I’d forgotten to take off when I returned home. I moved my foot. Leaves crackled. A twig snapped. Something terrible had happened, something I couldn’t wrap my mind around. I blinked and looked to my right. Trees and undergrowth were losing themselves in the gloom. I remembered the mouse in my right hand, but when I lifted my arm, my fingers came up empty—except for the smear of something sticky on my palm. I was bleeding.
The bush next to me was covered in blood. Not mine, I realized with relief. Disgusted I wiped my shaking hands with a fistful of leaves and turned to look behind me. The woods stretched into darkness—shadows within shadows nearly black.
My room was gone.

The voice was deep and cold as the wind. Something hard and unyielding dug into my back. Maybe it was one of Werner’s men or had I run into Schwarzburg’s guards? But something felt wrong, something I couldn’t put my finger on. Before I knew what to do, the ground shifted as several shadows rose around me.
“Wade, what is it?”
“Found us an intruder,” Wade said. “Showed up like a stray coyote.” For emphasis he shoved at my ribs. I suppressed a yelp as the pain spread to my stomach.
“You sleeping, Wade? Let someone walk in here like that.”
This voice was scratchy as a cheese grater with an Irish-sounding twang.
A sudden light stung my eyes. One of the shadows had lit a match not five inches from my nose.
“Look at that. What is that?” the man with the Irish voice said.
“It’s a kid.”
I caught a glimpse of a reddish beard, a grimy bandana on the neck below and a leather vest. Definitely not Duke Schwarzburg or Werner.
Wait a minute.
I gulped as new panic sucked away my air and turned my stomach. Though they spoke a weird dialect, these men spoke English. I understood them clearly.
I was nowhere near Hanstein.
I shook my head. It had to be the game. I’d been able to communicate with Bero and Juliana even though they spoke some kind of medieval German. What if they were speaking some other language entirely and it was all an illusion? What had
Jimmy’s father done?

Karl showed up around nine a.m. to install a bunch of code on my computer. I’d been up early watching my mom get ready for work, putting up a show about enjoying my fall break. Secretly, I’d craved her hug, but was afraid I’d fall apart.
“I can stay,” Karl said after he explained what he’d done and I comprehended nothing. “Until…”
“I’d rather be alone,” I said, my mouth dry again.
As soon as the door closed behind Karl, I began to sweat.
Then shiver. I was having a panic attack. If Karl had made a mistake I’d go to the wrong place, having to complete impossible missions. I wasn’t strong enough to survive battles and diseases and who knew what else. Not this time.
I paced through the living room into the kitchen and back.
Minutes ticked by. An hour. Then another. Unable to eat, I gulped down a Coke. What are you waiting for? You’ve got to do this today. You said you would.
I don’t remember how I ended up in front of my computer, how I turned on the game. It was like some out-of-body experience, watching myself go through the motions, my forehead burning as if I had a fever.
The screen buzzed, showing the familiar stone gate. Somewhere crickets and birds chirped. As the stone gate fell away, the outline of a castle appeared in the distance. Just like the first time. I expected to see Lord Werner and his brother, Lame Hans, in the woods but the dirt path in front of me was empty.
The button flashed. Upgrade to master level?
With a sigh I took mental inventory of my outfit, the items I’d prepped and stuck into my pants. You may not return this time. Just because I saved Karl didn’t mean I’d be able to get back.
You’re nuts.
It was like the chicken and the egg. Which came first, Karl being there and being rescued by me or me going because I’d rescue Karl. The time-travel thing was weird because you returned the exact moment you left. And since Karl had played the game a long time ago, he’d also returned a long time ago.
According to him, I’d been the one to save him.
My forefinger’s hover turned into a tremble. In fact my entire body wobbled. The game had taught me respect for historical environments. Modern guys like me just didn’t fit in. How many times could I be lucky?
If I wanted to survive I’d have to make my own luck. What if it wasn’t enough? Still, all I’d do is postpone the inevitable. I was going to play so why not now. Get it over with.
I clicked.

About the Author

Annette Oppenlander writes historical fiction for young adults and anyone who loves stories set in the past. When she isn’t in front of her computer, she loves indulging her dog, Mocha, and traveling around the U.S. and Europe to discover amazing histories.

"Nearly every place holds some kind of secret, something that makes history come alive. When we scrutinize people and places closely, history is no longer a number, it turns into a story."

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