Title: EXQUISITE SENSES
Genre: YA Speculative/Thriller
Word Count: 88,000
16-year-old Leila is in love with Dane. But - gah. She can’t admit that because – excruciating and so not cool to fall for your best friend. Dane, also 16, dreads rejection, but he just wants to tell Leila already that he loves her and would treat her better than the douche who just humiliated her. What theywill tell each other - and not anyone else - is this: Leila creates random music out of thin air when she’s upset, and Dane hears what other people aren’t saying. (#Freakingweird) Then Dane’s mother, Tara, is brutally kidnapped - an attack they barely escape themselves – and they become targets in a frightening intrigue of murder, tragedy, edgy science, bad pharmaceuticals, & long-buried family secrets. To save their lives, they must shelve the angst and master the freaking weird.
My completed YA novel EXQUISITE SENSES(88,000 words)is narrated by both Leila and Dane. Their search for Tara leads them from a snowy Minnesota farmhouse - where they discover the experimental science behind their talent - to Peru’s ancient spaces. This is where they learn they have only 48 hours to derail the twisted conspiracy behind Tara’s abduction before hundreds of desperate people die. But first they have to escape from underground Peru – and use Walt Whitman’s poetry to keep someone’s heart beating.
I was a television news reporter for 15 years, then a mayoral press secretary. I am now a stay-at-home mother to 2 small children who love for me to spin endless tales. This is my first novel.
I stared numbly at the books in my locker, trying to remember where I was supposed to go next. My brain was in deep freeze, like I had become the sub-zero day outside.
“Leila, move it, we’re going to be late! You look terrible, by the way.” Linnea Larson was suddenly right there, rushing as always.
“Thanks. Go on – I’m right behind you.”
“Seriously, hurry. You’ve been late every day this week. Mr. Bjork’s getting dagger eyes.”
Ah. English. Now I was tracking.
“Yah, I’m coming, I promise.”
Shooting me a concerned glance over her shoulder, Linnea blew off in a flurry of trailing scarf ends.She was waiting for me to talk about it, but I just wasn’t ready to discuss my Humiliation (but not Heartbreak) at the Hands of the Hose bag, Antonio. Alliterative agony. I’d been avoiding her, and she knew it. The nice thing about best friends is, they let you do that.
I closed my eyes, trying to find the will to go to class. And then felt someone else approach. Oh, please, NO. I screamed silently.
Pleasepleaseplease. The hall had emptied and I had no cover.
I sighed heavily and turned to face him.
And there it was again – the song. Shocking, loud, filling all the space around and between us. The same song that blasted me when I was crying in the shower this morning. The one about fire and burning and tears.