The marvelous Elana Johnson came up with the idea to do this Spreading the Awesome Blogfest featuring 60 of our favorite, amazing authors. I knew I had to take part because, let's face it, Elana's a genius and I am pretty fond of basking in her general brilliance. :)
I decided right away that I really wanted to do a debut author because supporting debut authors just oozes the awesome. With that criteria (and the idea of oozing) in mind, I immediately thought of Dan Wells. His book, "I Am Not A Serial Killer," is one of my all time favorites. It's described as a "sickly-disturbing, darkly-comic thriller." His protagonist, John Cleaver, is fifteen, a mortician, and a sociopath--but he is NOT a serial killer...at least not yet.
Here are a couple of my favorite lines from the book to give you a little flavor.
"This was it. This was what I'd never felt before - an emotional connection to another human being. I'd tried kindness, I'd tried love, I'd tried friendship; I'd tried talking and sharing and watching - and nothing had ever worked. Until now. Until fear. I felt her fear in every inch of my body like an electric hum, and I was alive for the first time, and I needed more right then or the craving would eat me alive."
"I felt like one of Max's video games, fumbling with unfamiliar controls and watching as my character on the screen ran helplessly in circles."
" 'You're weird, man,' said Max, taking another bite of his sandwich. 'That's all there is to say. Someday you're going to kill a whole bunch of people - probably more than ten, because you're such an over-achiever - and then they're going to have me on TV and ask if I saw this coming , and I'm going to say 'Hell, yes! That guy was seriously screwed up'.' "
John knows he's a sociopath and feels like fate wants him to become a serial killer, but he doesn't want to succumb. He spends much of the story trying to avoid what he considers to be his destiny by making a set of rules to keep him from the wrong path. When he's good, it's because he chooses to be good, and he's bad because he chooses to be bad. He takes on that massive responsibility, and I love that.
One of my favorite things about this book is that I've never seen a better juxtaposition of good vs. evil. There are times when reading it that you're not really certain whether the protagonist or the antagonist is actually the bad guy. It is dark and intense, but I heartily recommend it.
On top of all this awesomeness, Dan is part of the podcast Writing Excuses, along with Brandon Sanderson and Howard Tayler. If you are a writer and you haven't checked this out--I am saddened on your behalf. Do it.... well, not now, but after you've finished this wonderful blogfest. ;)
SO... I'm doing a giveaway! Yay! I am giving away a signed copy of "I Am Not A Serial Killer" that comes complete with a unique story about the signature. :) I will post that little anecdote when I announce the winner. The contest is open until Friday, May 7th at Midnight EST, and I'll announce the winners on Monday, May 10th. Anyone is welcome to enter, and there are three ways to earn entries.
1 - Follow me or already be a follower (here or on twitter, both count).
2 - Tweet about the contest or link to it in a blog post (again, both count).
3 - Comment on this post (this one is required for any entries to count because in spite of what rumors you may have heard, I am not psychic--or really all that organized--and I need you to update me on your entries.)
Hooray for Spreading the Awesome! The next stop on your blog tour is Stephanie Thornton. She's going to be highlighting author Kate Quinn. :) Let the fun continue.
Okay, and we're closed to entries. I'll be posting the winner on Monday! :D Yay! Good luck everyone.