Uncovering Cobbogoth by Hannah L. Clark
Norah Lukens needs to uncover the truth about the fabled lost city of Cobbogoth. After her archaeologist uncle’s murder, Norah is asked to translate his old research journal for evidence and discovers that his murder was a cover-up for something far more sinister.
When she turns to neighbor and only friend James Riley for help, she realizes that not only is their bitter-sweet past haunting her every step, but James is keeping dangerous secrets. Can Norah discover what they are before its too late to share her own.
Praise for Uncovering Cobbogoth
“With a fascinating protagonist in Norah Lukens, a fully realized, never before seen fantasy world, and a fast paced, compelling story, Uncovering Cobbogoth establishes Hannah L. Clark as a major new voice in American fiction. The richness of the story and the scope of the world she’s created screams for a film adaptation. This is a fantasy novel for everyone, even readers not usually drawn to the genre. Highly, highly recommended!”
-Bryce Clark, author of Red Shirt Kids
“This book takes you on a wonderful ride, bringing myth and legend to life. The characters are full and flawed, with a sweet romance woven through the adventure.”
– Annette K. Larsen, author of Just Ella
“Uncovering Cobbogoth is an Icelandic tale that will appeal to many Harry Potter series fans […] For those who’ve missed the Harry Potter world, here’s a pretty good alternative!”
– Sharon Haddock, For the Deseret News
“This isn’t a typical YA fantasy/scifi/para story like the multitude of vampire or witch or werewolf or mermaid themes that fill bookshelves in stores currently. When after a couple of chapters it became apparent that this wasn’t yet another entry into the aforementioned themes, I was downright giddy. And then to find out there wasn’t a standard issue love triangle? I wanted to find the author and buy her dinner.”
-Radar626, Amazon reviewer
“A friend of mine recommended this book […] I checked it out and I was so pleased! I love this book. I can’t wait to read the next one […] and I am encouraging my daughter to read it as well. If you like fantasy with a little mix of science this book is perfect. I had such a hard time putting this book down just so I could deal with real life and working on promoting my own book. I thoroughly enjoyed every moment of this book.”
-Pamela Hall, author
After nine months of being away, Norah returns to her home in Belmont, MA. She is welcomed home by James Riley. James was once Norah’s only friend—perhaps even something more—but has become estranged from her since his Gram’s death. Almost the moment she steps off the bus that brings her home, Norah is bombarded with memories of their past. The following excerpt is the first of many.
“You ready?” James asked.
We stood side by side in the driveway of his house. There was a car parked there. It belonged to the hospice nurse who came last summer, Tuesday through Thursday, to help Gram. James wanted to care for his grandmother by himself, but Gram insisted on hiring help to give him a few nights off each week.
James motioned for me to go ahead of him up the winding drive to my own house. I was wearing my hair long and straight that night—something I’d started doing since James mentioned he liked it that way. Subconsciously—or perhaps consciously—I hoped he’d find a chance to run his fingers through it like he had once before.
James stayed behind me for the first leg of the path. I was still in the beginning stages of discovering my feelings for him and consequently felt shy.
From the side, I saw a pensive smile hitch up the corners of his mouth, exposing my favorite dimple.
We were by the hydrangeas, on the way up to my porch when I felt something tug at my head. I turned. James was there, holding up a strand of my hair. He shrugged. “You got snagged on some flowers.”
My face felt hot, and I fumbled for something to say. “Y-you know, you didn’t need to walk me home,” I said. “I’m sure there’re a million things you’d like to do tonight.” We were just reaching the top of the stairs leading to the porch.
“A million things? Like what?”
“I don’t know. Hang out with your friends, go see a Sox game, go play a game . . . ,” I offered.
James just shrugged, fiddling with his baseball cap; we were at my door now. “I could do all of those things, sure, but I’d rather be with you.”
“Y-you would?” I was facing the door, my hands trembling to get the key in the lock. But I could see the reflection of his face above mine in the window. He was still smiling. Why hadn’t I noticed the effect he had on me until recently?
James reached up and placed his hand on my shoulder, turning me to face him. I was so terrified, yet excited at the same time. None of it made sense to me.
“Didn’t you know that, Nor?”
I shook my head. His hand was still on my shoulder, and he took a step closer to me.
“How could I not, when you’re the only person who’s ever made me feel this way?”
I gripped the doorknob. “Um, what—what way’s that?”
James chuckled, completely bewildered. “You’re the only girl I’ve ever liked and not known what to do about it.”
I leaned back against the door. “Don’t know what to do? What do you mean?”
He took another step closer, letting his hand slide down my arm till it gripped my hand. “I know what I want to do, but I’m not sure if I should.”
I swallowed. “Oh?”
“And yet . . .” James leaned forward.
But then the door gave way.
I stumbled back, my only anchor being James, who tightened his grip on my hand. Then I spun around.
Uncle Jack stood in the doorway, a smile that didn’t reach his eyes plastered on his face.
“Nilla. James.” He let his gaze slide from one of us to the other until it lingered on our joined hands.
Mortified, I quickly dropped James’s hand and moved past Uncle Jack into the house. “I’ll see you later, James,” I called just before darting up the stairs.
Hannah L. Clark lives with her husband and their son in the Rocky Mountains. She has always known she would be a storyteller. In 2006 she graduated from Utah Valley University with a bachelor’s degree in English and immediately began writing Uncovering Cobbogoth, the first book in a seven book series based on Clark’s mythological brain-child, the Icelandic Legend of the Cobbogothians.
Clark loves her family, running, mythology, laughing, soulful bluegrass music, road-trips, studying alternative medicine, retro hairdos, and growing things. Like her heroine Norah, she also kind of believes trees have souls, but must clarify (for her parents’ sakes) that she was not raised by hippies. 😉
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