Dance of the Pink Mist by K.D. Van Brunt

Heat Level 1
SKU 978-1-77233-239-1

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The Cracked Chronicles, 2

In the sequel to Win the Rings, Gray is now a prisoner at Cracked, forced to undergo combat training under the supervision of his nemesis, Jace. He soon learns first hand why all the other kids at Cracked are scared to death of her, but he also finds a chink in her armor and they both realize they have an eerie connection to one another. 

Gradually, Gray is drawn into Jace’s dangerous world of Special Ops missions, where death waits like a shadow in every corner. 

For Jace, Gray poses a new kind of threat. Although she’s proficient in all types of combat, Jace’s training hasn’t prepared her for him, and she is forced to confront feelings she has never experienced before.

14+ due to violence and adult situations



I give three raps on Jace’s door, precariously balancing an armload of her clothes in one hand and her newly pressed uniform jacket in the other.  I’ve been Jace’s personal valet and general all-around slave for over six weeks now, bustling from one task to another, while trying not to incur her prickly wrath.  And even though much of what she makes me do is demeaning, curiously I find myself stealing looks at her when she’s not paying attention to me. 

“Come in,” Jace says through the closed door.

I try to stick my thumb on the bio-sensor pad next to her door, but the action causes me to lose my balance just enough to send the pile of clothes cascading to the floor.  There are no outside doorknobs here, just these small rectangular pads beside every door, which read your thumbprint and release the lock.

“Shit!” I curse. 

I drop to my knees to salvage what I can and refold the rest.  The door opens behind me causing me to flinch.  I look up at Jace wondering if she’s going to give me a swift kick to the ribs for this, but she just stands in the doorway tapping her foot impatiently on the floor.  She has her arms folded across her chest looking peeved, and I see she’s dressed in old sweats and a loose-fitting camo tank top.  She doesn’t have a bra on.  For some reason I blush at this, as if I walked in on her while she was dressing. 

“I should make you re-wash all of this, Gray, but I’m feeling generous tonight.”

“Excuse me.  Did you say Gray, sir?”  This would be the first time she’s used my first name since I got here.  Until now it’s been rookie, rook, newbie, new meat—among others terms of endearment.

She shrugs.  “I suppose you’ve earned the right to be called by your first name.  Don’t let it go to your head.”

“Thank you.”

“Whatever,” she says with a sigh.  “Now listen up.  My bathroom needs cleaning.  So get this mess picked up and get to work on it.”

Five minutes later, I’m standing in front of her dresser putting away her newly refolded clothes.  I’ve memorized by now the layout of her drawers—underwear and socks in the top drawer, shirts and pajamas in the second, pants, etc., in the third.  There’s a fourth and fifth drawer, but I’m not supposed to open those, so I don’t know what she’s hiding in there.  Finishing, I glance over at Jace, who’s sitting cross-legged on her bed flipping through a magazine—Jane’s Intelligence Review.  Gee, that looks like a fun read.   Her blonde hair is so fine and soft I feel this irrational urge to run my hands through it, even though she’d probably kick me in the groin if I tried.  She’s leaning forward to study the magazine and my eyes lock onto her tank top, which is gapping enough to almost flash her entire, braless chest at me.   I gawk for a moment, but then feeling like a perv, I advert my gaze. 

“Don’t stare at me, Gray.  Get to work.  The cleaning supplies are under the sink.” 

I nod, but I think I detect a subtle, knowing smirk on her face. 

Every room in the dorm is laid out the same—a main living area and a small bathroom off one end of the room.  The best that can be said about the bathrooms here is they’re functional: toilet, sink and commode, and a shower.  No bathtubs.   Sighing, I pull out a bristle brush and get to work on the stainless steel toilet bowl.

“You ever been to Alaska, Gray?” Jace asks after a few minutes, when I’ve moved on to scrub the shower stall.

I hesitate, puzzled by the question.  “Once.  Anchorage, sir.”

I hear her sigh loudly.  “You can call me Jace from now on.  What was it like?”

I hesitate, briefly surprised by the realization I don’t have to call her ‘sir’ anymore, but at this point it’s been so deeply drilled into me I’m not sure I’m capable of calling her anything else.


Product Reviews

Score: 5 out of 5 (based on 2 ratings)
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Like dystopian and action teen novels? You'll love this.
Written by Brenda Beem on 19th Feb 2016

If you're crazy about novels like Maze Runner, Insurgent, and read dystopian and action teen novels, you'll love the Cracked Chronicles. And Book two, Dance of the Pink Mist is just as intriguing as Book One, Win the Rings. K.D. Van Brunt's teen characters are fun, determined, and real as they learn to deal with their growing abilities. There is a perfect amount of romance between the nonstop action as Jace and Gray do what they must to survive the Cracked and find a way to disconnect the kill switch in their heads. Can't wait for book Three.

All her life Jace has been treated like a soldier
Written by undefined on 19th Feb 2016

This is the second book in Mr. Van Brunt's Cracked Chronicles. Jace and Gray are now both at Cracked, but Jace is one of Gray's instructors. All her life Jace has been treated like a soldier, not as a human being, let alone a girl. She and Gray are now the property of Cracked. What does Gay bring to Cracked and Jace? Cracked wants Gray for his powers, but for Jace, he brings feelings she has never felt. As a Cracked agent she is taught to suppress any emotions and here comes Gray, making her FEEL. As you know, I am very careful not to post spoilers. So here goes, it may be difficult. Mr. Van Brunt shows us again that he is a wonderfully talented story teller. He knows how to put just the right amount of technical information without bogging the story down. He does an excellent job with Jace and her evolution. She is first and foremost a hardened soldier, but her emotional immaturity is brought out in a very convincing manner. You never doubt that she is confused by the feelings that Gray evokes. But she always falls back to her comfort zone: her military training. But then there is Gray. Gray has lived on the run with his sister. He knows about feelings, he and his sister are very close. But Jace brings uncertainty to Gray. Mr. Van Brunt seems to be very conscious about what is age appropriate for Jace and Gray. That is something that you don't see in most YA stories. These days the writers want to make teenagers more like adults; especially when it comes to sex and "playing house". But Jace and Gray's naivete is kind of cute. It actually made them a little more endeared towards them. There is so much to like about Dance of the Pink Mist and Mr. Van Brunt. The story is far from simple. Mr. Van Brunt is able to weave all of the different aspects flawlessly: the complexities of the military aspect, the complexity of each character, and the complexity of how each character interacts with each other as well as the story line. He creates a complex world that you don't want to leave. You are taken on an emotional roller coaster ride with each character, even the secondary characters. This ability, in my opinion, is the hallmark of a great writer. I eagerly await the next installment of the Cracked Chronicles. But I also hope he brings me new worlds to explore. This is a MUST READ series. You won't be disappointed!