RED RISING - The Best Book I've Read In Years





Red Rising (Red Rising Trilogy, #1)
Yes.  I just made that declaration.  This book was THAT good.  I haven't written a review on a book in years, but I couldn't NOT write one for this book.

It's difficult for me to describe my I loved this book so much without just saying it was bloodydarn brilliant.  But I'll attempt to sort it out into more specifics.

Transformation:  There are three distinct parts to this book.  Being a slave, transforming into a gold, and being a part of the Institute.  And they all felt. So. Different.  In the most amazing way.  I felt the oppression when he was a Red, or basically a slave.  The emotion when this event I can't spoil happened was raw and real and I felt dead inside too.  And then he starts his physical transformation and I was like WOW.  WOW.  WOW.  This is so bloody cool.  This is everything Captain America could have been and failed to achieve.  And then there's the time at the Institute when Darrow becomes brilliant and flawed and amazing.  Each part was so gripping in its own way.

Characters:  Holy crap does Brown know how to write characters.  Now, there are a LOT of characters in this book and it is really hard to keep track of them all.  But the stars shine brilliantly.  Darrow goes through some amazing development and he's a character you want to cheer for.  We all want to be Mustang, and we all want Pax on our team.  And can I say Servo?!  I think this may be my favorite side character EVER.  So loyal and smart.  He's weird, and slightly demented, and fan.freaking.tastic.  I want a Servo.

Normally when I love a book I devour it in two days.  You can't do that with this book.  Surprisingly, it took me about a week to read this one.  Because the way it is written, you have to pay such close attention to each and every word or you will get lost.  But I did not mind that it took me extra time to read it.  It just gave me more time to experience the awesomeness.
Golden Son (Red Rising Trilogy, #2)
I've never thought to make a top 5 favorite books, but I knew as soon as I read this one, it made that list.  I've read a LOT of books, and this is one of my favorites.  EVER.  10 out of 5 stars.

I may die waiting for book two, Golden Son.  January 13, 2015 is SO far away.  But read RED RISING.  Now.

A Very Special WHAT I DIDN'T SAY Project


About a month ago, my husband and I were on the ferry, headed home.  We were talking about my book, WHAT I DIDN'T SAY.  I don't remember exactly what we were talking about at that point, but my husband said something along the lines of "What if we did a new cover for it and sold it exclusively on the island?"


I thought "What a great idea!  Hey, what if we got some island kids to model for it?"

Hubby said "What if we made all the proceeds from the sale of that edition go to a scholarship fund for Orcas teens?"

Thus the WHAT I DIDN'T SAY: ORCAS ISLAND EXCLUSIVE EDITION was born.

If you'll remember, Orcas Island is where the book takes place.  It's a huge part of the book because it is such a unique place to live.  Orcas is one of the thousands of islands off the coast of Washington, and one of four that gets ferry service.  It's about an hour long ferry ride from the mainland, aka America, to Orcas.

It's also where I live.

So, I grabbed my camera one day, put my kids in the car, and we started driving around and snapping pictures from different places in the book.  And then the next day my good friend and photographer/author came over from our neighboring island of San Juan, and we went out with two very special people.

Our family has known Roo for a few years.  I won't go too deep into it all, but I'll tell you this: Roo is an amazing guy and very much like Jake.  When we came up with this idea I knew there was no one else I wanted to be the model for Jake.  Roo was it.

Finding someone for Samantha was harder.  I don't know many of the high school girls here and I couldn't think of someone who would fit the look and feel of Sam.  So we asked Roo if he knew someone who might word.  He suggested Carra.  And Carra is perfect for Sam.

We got some amazing pictures.  They're adorable, and they fit SO well.  We had a really great, very awkward (making two people snuggle up, hold hands, stare into each others eyes...), time.

I've put together two video's for you.  The first is all the location/scenery pictures from around the island.  There are two important shots that are missing, you will notice.  The bridge, from the lake scene.  It's quite a walk out to the bridge, and like I said, I had my little kids with me when I went out for pics.  So that didn't happen.  The other is the site of Jake's accident.  I kept thinking of going out there, because there is an actual place in my head where it happens.  But every time I thought of going out, I got these tight knots in my stomach.  I just couldn't do it emotionally.  So you'll have to just use your imagination.

The second video is the amazing shots we got with Roo and Carra as Jake and Sam.  I love them.  I hope you do too.





Now, on to this edition that we made.  It has pictures throughout it.  So when I'm talking about a specific place on the island, there's probably a picture of it, right there in the middle of the page.  And here is the cover for it (the normal edition of the book will still have the old cover, this is the cover for only this edition):


And here is the full spread:


And like I said, all the money made from the sale of this edition will go to a scholarship fund for teens on Orcas.  Those of you who have already read the book will understand why this is so special to me.  I don't want to be giving things away, but think of Sam.  And everything these two went through toward the end of the book.

So, if you want to support the scholarship and if you're dying to have such an exclusive edition of the book, you CAN get a copy.  Like I said, it is sold EXCLUSIVELY on Orcas, but if that trip is out of the question ;) you can call the bookstore here on the island and they will ship signed copies.  

Darvill's Bookstore
(360)376-2135

Thank you so much for your support of this book.  It is one that is so close to my heart and I am honored that it means so much to others too.

Update: What is Keary doing these days?

Hey everybody!

I feel like I never blog anymore, so I thought I'd do a quick update on what I've been up to lately.

Mostly, I've been working on the next book in THE MCCAIN SAGA, EVER AFTER DRAKE.  For those of you who have read MOMENTS OF JULIAN, you know that Drake is the oldest of the McCain siblings, so with this book we are stepping back in time about six years.

Here's the cover:


Here's how I imagine Drake:


And here is how I imagine Kaylee, who's POV the book is told from:


Aren't they adorable?!

So right now EVER AFTER DRAKE is with beta readers.  This is the point where I get all nervous and start wondering if my book is total crap.  And then I tell myself to calm down for two seconds and work on something else.

So the something else I'm working on this week is a very special project related to WHAT I DIDN'T SAY.  I don't want to say too much about it right at this moment, you'll get all the incredible details later, but I will say, this is very dear to my heart.  I think it's going to turn out beautifully.

What do I have planned in the near future?  EVER AFTER DRAKE does come out the middle of next month after all, and I do tend to do things at breakneck speed.

I'm planing to keep moving along with THE MCCAIN SAGA.  Next will come Lake's story.  I'm a bit nervous for that one, I'll admit.  I'm going to have to do lots of research on marines, since he is one.  And he and the woman he's about to get involved with have some really hard to handle issues.  But I already love them, and I haven't even written their story yet.

Wanna see Lake?

And his/their story is a bit like this:
Not my image or saying, taken from Pintrest.

And then you guessed it: last but not least comes Kale.  And I am DYING to write his story.  Though I don't think it's going to be quite what you are expecting.  But it is going to be...awesomely unpredictable.

You know you want to see him.  He is a model, after all....

As Sage puts it in MOMENTS OF JULIAN: "My parents couldnt keep clothes on him until he was about twelve, and even then he preferred to be half naked.  As you can see, he still does.  Im surprised he hasnt flexed for you yet.


 There will be lots of scenes like this...


So, are you excited for the rest of THE MCCAIN SAGA YET?


MOMENTS OF JULIAN - Available NOW!

I am so excited to be able to finally share my newest book with you!  Moments of Julian is a book that happened when I just plain wrote something the way I wanted to write it, with nothing else in mind.  It's a book that shattered my writing speed records (11 writing days to get out the first draft, 41 days from first word written to a finished manuscript) and completely consumed me.  And now you can read it!

Get it for your e-reader, or in paperback!

AMAZON
US | UK
Available Worldwide

IBOOKSTORE
Available Worldwide

BARNES & NOBLE



It was just a work party, filled with kissing the well-dressed rear ends of clients and fake smiles. Until my boss accused me of something I didn’t do. Until I got pissed and then there was this guy who was hot and flirting with me, and then there were his hands and the backseat of my car and a night of everything but you know what. 

I never expected to see him again. But suddenly Julian Dohring is everywhere. And I can’t get over the endless tattoos that cover his arms, how he’s apparently a recovering video game addict, and dresses like he’s ready to walk down the red carpet at any moment. 

Ten years ago I made a pledge to stay away from alcohol and sex, and to never get too personal with anyone. It’s gotten me this far. I’m twenty-seven, I have a career I’ve worked my heart and soul into, and more money than I could ever blow on shoes and the finer things in life. My attitude and pride have always been enough to keep any man from getting too interested. Until Julian…who claims I can’t dance, and has the nerve to call me a “peach.” 

I’m Sage McCain, and needless to say, Julian has my attention.

So grab your copy new and prepare to meet sassy, classy, almost always intimidating Sage, and swoon worthy, inked Julian!

BUT WAIT!  THERE'S MORE!

Did I tell you that this is going to be a series???

Yep.  In MOMENTS OF JULIAN, Sage McCain has three brothers.  And those brothers kept telling me all these crazy stories about how they met their significant others.  What's an author do but write them their own books?!

So, we've got Drake who is the oldest and is a high school history teacher.  Next in the McCain sibling line is Sage, and we've got her covered now.  Then falls Lake, who's a Marine with some deep issues.  And last is Kale, a model who is well aware of the effect he has on women when he takes his shirt off...  Sound like a plan?

So, coming next is EVER AFTER DRAKE, the story of Sage's older brother.  We're stepping back in time a few years from where MoJ is, to when he met this other brand new teacher who was sweet and beautiful and always believed in fairy tale endings.

And it's available for pre-order through iBooks NOW!

COMING JULY 22, 2013

Two high school history teachers with perfect chemistry.  A shotgun, fairy tale romance.  And one huge dose of reality that will threaten to tear it all apart.

Before Sage met Julian, her older brother Drake fell in love with ray-of-sunshine Kaylee.  But happily ever after won't come without a few broken hearts.

Loving a McCain never has and never will be easy.

*official synopsis coming soon*

Pre-order through iBooks (all other e-book retailers coming soon)

Pre-order MOMENTS OF JULIAN

For the first time EVER you can pre-order one of my books!  MOMENTS OF JULIAN is now available for pre-order through iBooks and Barnes & Noble!  You will also be able to get it through Kobo any moment now (they're still processing it).

Grab it today and be the first to read it!




It was just a work party, filled with kissing the well-dressed rear ends of clients and fake smiles. Until my boss accused me of something I didn’t do. Until I got pissed and then there was this guy who was hot and flirting with me, and then there were his hands and the backseat of my car and a night of everything but you know what. 

I never expected to see him again. But suddenly Julian Dohring is everywhere. And I can’t get over the endless tattoos that cover his arms, how he’s apparently a recovering video game addict, and dresses like he’s ready to walk down the red carpet at any moment. 

Ten years ago I made a pledge to stay away from alcohol and sex, and to never get too personal with anyone. It’s gotten me this far. I’m twenty-seven, I have a career I’ve worked my heart and soul into, and more money than I could ever blow on shoes and the finer things in life. My attitude and pride have always been enough to keep any man from getting too interested. Until Julian…who claims I can’t dance, and has the nerve to call me a “peach.” 

I’m Sage McCain, and needless to say, Julian has my attention.

MOMENTS OF JULIAN - Coming May 6th!

I thought it was about time that I finally share some info with all of you about my new project!  So here it is!

Title: Moments of Julian
Release Date: May 6, 2014
Genre: Adult Romance
Synopsis: 
It was just a work party, filled with kissing the well-dressed rear ends of clients and fake smiles. Until my boss accused me of something I didn’t do. Until I got pissed, and just then there was this guy who was hot and flirting with me. Then there were his hands and the backseat of my car and a night of everything but you know what. 

I never expected to see him again. But suddenly Julian Dohring is everywhere. And I can’t get over the endless tattoos that cover his arms, how he’s apparently a recovering video game addict, and dresses like he’s ready to walk down the red carpet at any moment. 

Ten years ago I made a pledge to stay away from alcohol and sex, and to never get too personal with anyone. It’s gotten me this far. I’m twenty-seven, I have a career I’ve worked my heart and soul into, and more money than I could ever blow on shoes and the finer things in life. My attitude and pride have always been enough to keep any man from getting too interested. Until Julian…who claims I can’t dance, and has the nerve to call me a “peach.” 

I’m Sage McCain, and needless to say, Julian has my attention.

*NOTE: While this is an adult romance, it DOES NOT have sex and excessive language in it.  It is plenty steamy, but this is NOT erotica.

Want to be a part of the cover reveal?  Hurry and sign up with Xpresso Book Tours, cause this reveal is happening Thursday!  It was scheduled for later this month, but due to some amazing pre-order stuff, we had to hurry up and get this thing done!  So yes, there will be pre-order options with this book and I will post the links as soon as they become available.


So, are you excited about this new release?  Cause I sure am!

A thank you to the real Dr. (Mr.) Beeson

Many of you have read The Eden Trilogy and are very familiar with the character of Dr. Beeson.  He's a brilliant scientist who kinda-sorta helped bring about the end of the world with TorBane.

What you might not know is that Dr. Erik Beeson got his name from a real person.

Mr. Sam Beeson.

Mr. Beeson was probably my favorite teacher at American Fork High School, home of the Cavemen (yes, I know this is an awful mascot...).  I had him for English my junior year.  See, my sophomore year I took Honors English and I did just fine in it.  I think I managed an A- average.  But the teacher who taught Honors for the juniors scared me to death.  Seriously.  I knew there was no way I would make it through her class, and frankly, I just didn't really like her.

So I enrolled in what was dubbed as "the drop-out Honors class."

It was one of the best decisions of my high school career.

Because this weird, cooky guy named Mr. Beeson was the teacher.

On the first day of class, he told us how he was glad that we were all drop-outs, because that meant he got to interact with us kids that were smart and knew stuff, but we weren't so stiff and uptight.  Or something to that effect.  I just remember after he said that thinking he was going to be a freaking awesome teacher.

And he was.

Something he required in our class was that we write every day.  Even weekends.  It sucked at first, and it was hard and sometimes I only wrote a sentence or two, but it got me into some good habits I still use today.  I understand now why he told us to do that.  But this isn't a post on the importance of writing every day.

He is the person who got me to write my first "scary" story.  There was this scary writing challenge that the public library did every Halloween and Mr. Beeson informed us that he had won the contest every year for the last few years.  So he gave us the assignment to write a scary story and if we wanted to, enter it into the contest.

I wrote a scary story.  It was about a boy that went to school and was suddenly being ignored.  He noticed his parents were depressed and they too were acting like he wasn't even there.  And then he goes to brush his teeth that night, looks in the mirror, and has no reflection.

I don't know if he was just humoring me or being a good, encouraging teacher, but he told me that mine was the one story that he thought would beat his.  No other teacher had made me feel this good about myself and something I'd done.  Sadly, at the time I had no money at all to pay for the entry fee, and so I'll never know if my story was scarier than his.  I doubt it.

Another thing he assigned us was to give our most prized possession away to someone we love.  He told us how he'd gotten in trouble with parents in the past because of this assignment, but he continued to do it anyway.  Mr. Beeson could be a rebel.

I thought about this for a few days, trying to decide what my most prized possession was.

In the end, I decided my most prized thing I had was a story I wrote with my best friend.  We'd started writing it when we were 13 or 14 and worked on this thing off and on for a few years.  In the end I finished it myself and took our handwritten version and typed it all up on the computer.  It was an epic Harry Potter fan-fiction.  This thing was over 200 pages long.  So I put it on an old school floppy and gave it to one of my sisters.

I didn't think much of it at the time other than I really, really hoped she wouldn't change anything in my story.  I wrote my paper and life moved on.  But fast forward a few years.  I no longer had the computer I typed it all up on and that was before I knew any better to back things up, so I thought it was lost forever.

And then one day my sister whom I had given the floppy to, gives me an awesome gift back: Two printed out copies of my friend and I's story.  How's that for coming full circle?  I still have one copy, and gave the other to my co-author.

There were many weird and different assignments Mr. Beeson gave.  Like when he asked us to write about a controversial topic we felt strongly about.  It was short, a one page handwritten essay.  And then the next class, he told us we had to write another paper on the same topic, arguing in the other direction.  My topic at the time was abortion.

I can honestly say that no one had a bigger influence on my writing life than he did.  He made me think differently, made me question why I wrote things the way I did.

Dr. Beeson and Mr. Beeson really don't have anything in common.  I knew when I started my writing career that I'd immortalize him somehow.  The time came that Dr. Beeson needed a name and that was what I picked despite all their dissimilarities.

But I just have to say thank you.  He'll probably never see this, and heck, I'm sure he doesn't remember me after ten years, but still.  Thank you Sam Beeson.  You helped inspire me to look at things and think a little differently.


Now, I just have to share this video.  This is actually Sam Beeson.  He's the creator of this thing called Grammar Punk.  I never did this, he created it after I graduated, but here he is talking about it.  And if I am not mistaken, this is in the same classroom I was in.


He's published a few zany children's books. book himself.  And true to his wacky personality, one is about a young girl that hates Valentine's Day very much.  It's pretty cute.  Check his books out here.