Well, I’ve been slogging away at Paradigm for quite some time now and it seems like this might be an opportune moment to give you a sneak peek at this doorstop of a book. As you know, it’s a departure for me, in that it’s aimed at teens rather than middle-grade readers. So if you’re expecting Spellbinder, this isn’t it. I should also warn that there is some profanity in it.
As I mentioned in an earlier post, it is set in a future in which everything has happened. Everything that earlier generations were warned about, yet chose to ignore. Continents are isolated, global communication non-existent, poverty and disease rampant. America has become a country of powerful city states, separated by the barren Wilds, where people struggle to survive.
Sam Cooper’s parents took him to the Wilds when he was five, now he’s seventeen and alone, driving the empty roads, scraping by. But something has been watching and waiting. Waiting for the moment when Sam would leave the Wilds and visit a city state. Sam will need everything he learned in the Wilds if he hopes to survive, and he’ll need something else too: the beautiful, scary Maori warrior, Alma.
Let me know your thoughts!
BTW, I’ve been told that publishers don’t like YA books with male leads because “boys don’t read after the age of 12.” Seriously. I’m not making this up. I did get a little of that right at the beginning with Spellbinder, when I asked why Steve wasn’t on the cover. I thought just putting Belladonna on the cover would put boys off. My UK publisher told me, “Boys won’t read it anyway.” Of course, this ignored the character of Steve and basically dismissed an entire gender. Whattheheck? When I go into schools and read sections to the kids, the boys are all over it. What’s not to like? Steve has a plastic ruler that turns into whatever weapon he needs to fight whatever magical creature they’ve encountered. Plus he has a seriously smart mouth.
Well, this seems to be more of the same. Yes, the story is told from the POV of Sam, but then there’s Alma — a young girl already experienced in the arts of war. She’s the last Maori warrior, fearsome, magnificent and mysterious. The idea that boys will only read books written from a male POV and girls books from a female POV is just silly. “Boys don’t read” –well, they won’t if you don’t publish anything for them. Sheesh!
So…rant over. Here it is: Paradigm.