As if juvenile diabetes isn’t enough, he’s forced to live with his tyrannical grandmother in a snow-bound house. He spends his days doing chores and the nights listening to the forest rumble.
But when he discovers the first leather-bound journal, the family secrets begin to surface. The mystery of his great-grandfather’s voyage to the North Pole is revealed. That’s when the snowman appears.
Magical and mysterious, the snowman will save Oliver more than once. But when the time comes for Oliver to discover the truth, will he have the courage? When Flury needs him, will he have the strength? When believing isn’t enough, will he save the snowman from melting away?
Because sometimes even magic needs a little help.
INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR
Where did you come up with the idea of writing science fiction for holiday characters?
My nephew mentioned the “secret Santa ninja elves” that visit his school during Christmas, and this spawned the idea of writing a semi-serious sci-fi version of Santa. How the ideas flesh out is a long process. I started keep track of how the story arc of my latest novel evolves, just to remember where it began. It’s all over the place. I love the challenge of bringing a story to light, letting the characters get in my head and telling me where to go. Flury: Journey of a Snowman is the third book in the Claus series. It was originally Frosty the Snowman, but Frosty is copyrighted. It didn’t matter, really. The character was better suited to be something other than Frosty. Flury is a bit more serious.
Are you getting any backlash for rewriting these Christmas legends?
Not at all. In fact, a lot of readers have connected to all the unanswered questions surround them, especially Santa Claus. How does he go around the world in a night? Why is he fat? Why does he live on the North Pole? How do reindeer fly? How does he carry all those presents? All of them answered with the magic wand of science fiction… I mean, the science wand of science fiction. The stories still have the fantasy element, of course. Some leaps of imagination. And also the romance angle. Why? Because all stories have love.
What is your favorite character from the books that you have written?
Socket Greeny is one of my favorites. That science fiction trilogy was my first story. I wrote it in first person and really connected with him. However, Jack Frost is in Claus (Legend of the Fat Man) and Jack (The Tale of Frost) and has become my all-time fave. He’s childish, irreverent and dangerous, but at the same time lovable.
What order should readers purchase the Claus books?
Claus: Legend of the Fat Man is the best start. After that, any order works. They all can be read as standalone novels.
Perfection has arrived.
Synthetic stem cells mean no more organ failure, no more pharmaceuticals. No cancer. The human race is stronger, smarter and prettier. Is it better?
Cali Richards is a nanobiometric engineer who has been her younger brother’s guardian since their parents died. She’s lost too many people in her life to lose another. When the government declares the Halfskin Laws will shut down anyone with too many synthetics, she decides to hide him. But even brilliance can succumb to the pressure of suffering. And synthetics can’t cure insanity.
Follow their twisting, slippery grip on reality as they strive to find happiness in a world that has everything it could possibly want.
REVIEWS FOR HALFSKIN
“This, quite frankly, is one of the best books I’ve read.” –John Gregory Hancock, Reviewer
“WOW.” –Amanda Taylor, Reviewer
“I was not expecting the twists…” – Reviewer
“Hated finishing this book… many hours of enjoyment.” –Eleanor Wendlberger, Reviewer
“Halfskin is one of the best science fiction stories I’ve read this year.” –ACFlory, Reviewer
“Twisty turny, unexpectedness!!!!!! LOVED THE BOOK!” –Aisha-Kimberly Hashmi, Reviewer
“One of the best stories i[sic] have read in a long time!” Brian, Reviewer
“I was absolutely hooked from page 1!” – Reviewer
Underground Reviews 2015 Top Pick Award
John Lively was a mouth-breather that no one cared about. He was an over-sized sixth grader destined to be incarcerated. God wasted a body on him.
Harold was a curious loner that sat in the back. Unlike John's family, Harold's parents loved him. They just didn't have time for him. They spent days in the basement working on something that would change the world. Sometimes it was weeks. Harold was tired of being forgotten and pushed around. He pushed back.
That day would change the world.
That day would change him into the man he was destined to become. His curiosity would lead him to Foreverland.
INTERVIEW WITH THE AUTHOR
HOW IMPORTANT ARE NAMES TO YOU IN THIS BOOK. DID YOU CHOOSE THEM BASED ON SOUND OR MEANING?
Almost all of my books have names with special meaning, some foreshadowing a big twist. In The Annihilation of Foreverland, Reed’s name was symbolic of his ability to tolerate suffering, bending in the face of gale forces but never breaking.
WHERE DOES YOUR TOMORROW SPRING FROM? IN OTHER WORDS, HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH THE CRAZY WORLD?
Sometimes, I can’t remember how the story started by the time I get to the end. The Annihilation of Foreverland started with the premise of identity. I wanted to write it as a YA book in the science fiction dystopia genre in a way that slowly unfolded as well as questioned who we are and explore our fear of death, and what we’re willing to do to avoid it. Like all of my stories, it does have a romantic angle mixed into the action. Because it should.
GIVE YOUR BOOK THE BECHDEL TEST. IT HAS TO HAVE AT LEAST TWO (NAMED) WOMEN IN IT WHO TALK TO EACH OTHER ABOUT SOMETHING BESIDES A MAN.
I failed because there’s only one female in The Annihilation of Foreverland. However, the young adult sequel (Foreverland is Dead) passes with flying colors since its mostly female characters that rarely talk about men.
WHAT SORT OF BODY COUNT ARE WE TALKING HERE?
The bodies die, but not necessarily the characters. Chew on that a second.
DO YOU WANT YOUR TOMORROW TO MAKE IT BIG, AS IN JK ROWLINGS-BIG? WHY OR WHY NOT?
Believe it or not, no. Don’t get me wrong, I’d like to make enough cash to pay off this house and send my kids to college, but I’ll pass on fame and fortune. Anonymity is a blessing.
YOU CAST YOUR CHARACTERS FOR A MOVIE. WHO MAKES IT?
In The Annihilation of Foreverland, I only casted two characters in my head while I was writing it. The Director is Jeff Bridges and Mr. Jones is Anthony Hopkins. It was like watching a movie as I wrote.
HAVE YOU WRITTEN IN ANY OTHER GENRES BESIDES YA DYSTOPIAN? WHAT DREW YOU TO YOU THIS GENRE?
I’ve been fascinated by consciousness, identity and what this all means since I was young. I would read my grandfather’s science fiction books with elements of artificial intelligence and alternate realities and wonder what happened when they died? I suppose that’s why all of my writing deals with the big mysteries of life in one way or another. In a way, I write for my own exploration, in a sort of thought experiment approach, pulling apart our identities, exploring what makes us who we are. If I lost my memories, would I still be me? If I had my body parts replaced with synthetic replications, at what point would I not be me? Do I even need a body?
What am I?
A few years ago, I figured I’d write a romance novel. Since all of my books have a romantic element, I thought it would be fun. Halfway through the novel, I found myself thinking more and more about the next project—a dystopian idea. So 40,000 words in, I scrapped the romance novel and got back to what I love. Science fiction.