From the USA TODAY bestselling The Academy: Ghost Bird series, comes a different look at the very beginning. Read Introductions with a whole new perspective–the boys’.
Kota Lee has been trying for weeks to get the girl up the street to notice him. She’s beautiful and intriguing, but seems incredibly shy. Too shy. Every time he tries to get close, she dodges him, like a skittish little bird, flittering away out of his reach.
Troubled by her haunted looks, he’s tried to give her some space, respect her need for solitude. Still, he can’t forget those eyes that are haunted and–he thinks–maybe hiding secrets.
One dark night as thunderclouds are rolling in, he’s driving home late and spots her standing in the road. It’s too late for her to be out for a walk and the pack on her back tells him what she’s doing: she’s about to run away.
She could get hurt, or worse, disappear forever. He can’t let her go; he’d never forgive himself if he did.
Victor Morgan hides from the public whenever he can. It’s not that he’s a recluse; he hides to avoid rumors and throngs of teen girls throwing themselves at him because of his fame. When his team of friends is assigned a job at a new school, it’s his one chance to finally be just Victor; not a local celebrity, or that guy whose parents have a huge house and lots of money. He wants to be normal, to be able to blend in and not worry about what everyone else is thinking or what they may want from him.
Things change when he meets Sang Sorenson. She’s beautiful and clever, though she hides her intelligence behind a veil of shyness and insecurity. But with just a look, she makes him say the stupidest things.
Only things are wrong in her world. She’s hiding something dark and terrible, the evidence of it in her haunted eyes. He barely knows her, but he’d give everything to help and protect her. Whatever it takes to keep her safe, he’s in.
Silas Korba’s days are filled with working for the Academy and dealing with the realities of bringing his family from Greece to America. Only today is a little different; he meets a girl—a mysterious girl—who needs his help and maybe the help of the Academy.
He doesn’t know her, but he wants to. There’s something different and special about her and he has a feeling she’s going to change his life forever.
Nathan Griffin’s entire life has been about protecting himself. After his mother ran away to save herself, his father turned his attentions to Nathan. His critical, booze-fueled attentions. That kind of abusive attention was the last thing Nathan needed.
When he joined the Academy, it changed his life. Now he’s finally settled in a place where he can be himself, not be wary and afraid all the time, and sometimes even feel completely normal.
One day he discovers Sang Sorenson. She’s stuck in a fallen tree and he’s instantly drawn to help her. She’s not only sweet and adorable, but she’s brave and daring, traits Nathan absolutely admires.
The more he hangs out with her, the more comfortable he gets around her. The more he wants to know her and let her know him. There’s a growing sense of familiarity he’s only gotten from his friends, other boys who have been abused and broken. Could she be like him? There’s something off with her and he worries about her background and her past.
If she’d only tell him what it is, he’d fix it. He knows he could. He’d do anything if she’d just give him the chance.
Despite having eight great friends thanks to The Academy, what Gabriel Coleman really wants is a connection with someone special. However, he’s never had much luck with girls. He doesn’t have the sleek looks, wealth, or charm like his friends. The Academy has helped him a lot since his family died in tragic accidents, and he’ll always be grateful for what they’ve done for him, but he can’t help wanting more.
When his friends talk about the new girl they’ve met, Sang Sorenson, he’s shocked to learn about the horrible things that are happening to her. He hasn’t even met her yet so there’s no way he could have guessed how sweet, considerate, and inquisitive she is. How could anyone think to do anything horrible to her? But he knows, if only by her haunted expression, there’s more to her than the sweet girl his friends are half in love with already. Of course, he’s all in to help her.
From the moment Gabriel and Sang meet, there’s an immediate connection. She’s a girl who asks him questions, and seems genuinely interested in his answers. Seems genuinely interested in him. Gabriel wants to do the right thing by helping his friends keep an eye on her, but he can’t shake the feeling that there’s something more between him and Sang. He can only hope she sees it too.