Julia and Charley may come from two completely different worlds, but they’ve been called the same names all their lives. Psycho. Liar. Witch. It’s the price of being a supernaturally gifted female in sexist, narrow-minded 1971. Until they’re invited to join the Stanford Research Institute. There, a team of scientists are conducting experiments on people like them – people with the ability to tell the future, read minds, move objects without lifting a finger. At first, the institute seems like a safe haven. For the first time, Julia and Charley are not alone. Surrounded by others with powers like theirs, they finally make real friends.But as the experiments become darker and more dangerous, and the test subjects’ lives are increasingly at risk, the two girls must work together to unveil the truth behind the scientists’ experiments – and the extraordinary lies they’ve been told to keep them in the dark.
A teenager still lives inside author Jennifer Alsever. She spent two decades as a professional journalist, contributing to such publications as Fortune Magazine, the New York Times, Inc Magazine and the Wall Street Journal, before letting her imagination run wild in 2016. The result is Ember’s story told in the three-book Trinity Forest Series, her first published fiction work.
When not absorbed in writing, Alsever enjoys a good hike, doing some yoga, hanging with her boys, some moguls on skis, a rigorous mountain bike ride or indulging in the simple pleasures of life. Her favorites: untouched snow, frozen chocolate chips, savasina on a yoga mat and yes, bowls of pan fried brussels sprouts. She is currently working on her fifth novel titled Déjà vu.
Moira Todd is a Washington, DC-based actor. She originally hales from Mt. Hood, Oregon where the trees are always green, the mountain is always pointy, and the weather is usually rainy. It was there that she learned the secret arts of alpine skiing and whistling at the same time as you hum. While neither has proved useful in her theatre career, she remains hopeful. These days she spends most of her free time swimming, baking bread, and watching whale documentaries.
Today’s social issues, which affect us in real life, are often addressed in fiction. But reading about a social issue in the morning paper or seeing it on the evening news is different than reading about it in a fiction novel. Usually, the social issue is not the main plot of the story and is brought up in such a way that it is not overwhelming. Yet, the author is able to get across how serious the issue is and leaves the reader something to think about.
Social issues often tackled by fiction authors include drug addiction, alcohol abuse, spousal abuse, political corruption, poverty, racial discrimination, bullying, unemployment, economic deprivation, immigration, and prostitution/sex trafficking.
In my YA paranormal, Not Myself Today, I address the social issue of sex trafficking, which is not just a problem in the United States, but is a worldwide problem. My protagonist, Lindsey Anderson, is an 18-year-old high school soccer star who kicks the winning goal for the state championship, drops dead on the field, and wakes up in the body of a 14-year-old sex trafficking victim.
I didn’t know anything about sex trafficking victims other than what I read in the Atlanta newspaper and saw on network news. I remembered reading stories in the AJC about 20 years ago written by investigative reporter Jane O. Hansen. I did a Google search and found her January 2001 series, “Selling Atlanta’s Children,” which documented child prostitution in Atlanta. I reread her series and found the facts as disturbing as I remembered.
One incident Hansen described involved a 10-year-old girl being escorted into the courtroom with shackles around her ankles. The young girl—dressed in flipflops and a jail-issued jumpsuit—had been in and out of an Atlanta jail for months. She quietly told the judge she wanted to go home and began to cry. I was horrified that a sex trafficking victim could be that young.
The average age of children who first become sex trafficking victims in the United States is 11-14 years old. Sex trafficking is not a social issue dominated by young Asian women brought to the United States and forced to pay back their transportation fees through sexual slavery. It is a homegrown problem where young American-born girls are forced to work the streets as prostitutes–controlled by men who house, feed, and clothe them, and then sell them to other men for sex.
Which girls are at risk of becoming a child sex trafficking victim? Runaways. Girls having issues and problems at home. Maybe their parents or guardians seem too strict or they are abusive. Or maybe the girls lack love and attention. Annabeth Shepard, the sex trafficking victim in Not Myself Today, runs away from her South Georgia home after her step-father abuses her. She is later found starving and begging in Atlanta by a drug-dealing pimp.
Today, social media is a common recruitment tool used by child sex traffickers. Here young girls can connect with men online. Men who convince them that they will love them and take care of them. Once a sex trafficker lures a girl away from home or “rescues” a runaway, she can be forced to become a sex slave.
Over the past twenty years, the sexual exploitation of children in the State of Georgia has only become worse. Statistics show that 3,600 kids become victims of sex trafficking each year. That’s enough children to fill 72 school buses. Not Myself Today is written with a dark, humorous bite, but child sex trafficking is a serious national problem. Make that a serious worldwide problem.
High school soccer star Lindsey Anderson was at the top of her game with graduation approaching and a full-ride soccer scholarship offer in her hand. Then she dropped dead on the soccer field, only to wake up in the body of a teenage sex-trafficking victim. No one believes who she really is. Not even her dad. Chased by her new body’s drug-dealing pimp and rabid parapsychologists out to dissect her, Lindsey searches to get her body and her life back before graduation day. Can her BFF and the high school nerdy boy she detests help save her life?
Born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, Muriel Ellis Pritchett graduated from the University of Georgia and began her journalism career while living in Japan and Germany. Her journalism career included playwriting, editing and writing for magazines and newspapers, and working in public relations, university relations, and media relations.
After retiring, Muriel’s family doctor recommended she get a hobby. So, she began writing fun fiction about feisty older women who had been wronged and had to pull themselves up out of the muck. But her award-winning fourth book, Not Myself Today, is a change in genres—a YA paranormal thriller. It is scheduled for release September 24, 2020. Her first three “fruity” books, fun romance for older women, are Making Lemonade, Like Peaches and Pickles, and Rotten Bananasand the Emerald Dream. She is currently working on another “fruity” book, titled Sour Grapes and Balmy Knight.
When not writing, Muriel loves cruising all over the world, eating good Belgian chocolate, and spending time in any Disney park. Her favorite Disney attractions are SOARING at Disney World’s EPCOT in Florida, Alice’s Curious Labyrinth at Disneyland Paris, Journey to the Center of the Earth at DisneySeas in Tokyo, and Indiana Jones Adventure at Disneyland in California.
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Camilla Chance has always been a writer. She was born in 1940 and lived in London, where, when she was 18, her first novel was accepted by a then-large publishing company for publication. Although her father forced her to withdraw from this contract as she was still legally his “property” until she was 21, the writing bug never left her. Her family moved to Australia and she graduated in Arts from Melbourne University. When she was 22, she became a member of the Baha’i faith, and its spiritualism and acceptance have influenced her subsequent writing as well.
Camilla has had many interesting and varied occupations. She’s been a
lyricist for an international performing group The Kuban Cossacks, a high
school teacher, and an editor for Faber & Faber Publishers in London.
Upon returning to Australia, she wrote book reviews for two prestigious
Australian newspapers – The Age and The Australian. And she also
married and became a mother as well.
Camilla has also been an advocate for Australia’s indigenous peoples,
in part because of her Baha’i faith’s belief in unity and also
because of her extraordinary 27 year friendship with Banjo Clark. Banjo
Clarke’s life and teaching were the crux of her best-selling
Australian book, Wisdom Man. Camilla took the highlights of her friendship
with Banjo and created a book that was an instant best seller in Australia,
and in its second edition won American USABookNews.com Award for best
multicultural work. It also gained Honorable Mention at the London Book
Festival. Camilla was also the first non-Aboriginal to receive the
prestigious Unsung Hero Award from Aboriginal people for her dedicated
friendship and work for them “behind the scenes.”
Melissa and Kasho, 2018 and is a young adult novel set in the transition
period of 1959. It’s a fantasy, love story, with a heavy dose of rock
and roll, taking place in Florence Italy.
Currently, Camilla is at work on her autobiography, a companion piece to
the Australian Bestselling Wisdom Man, called WARRUMYEA: THE LEFT-HANDED WOMAN.
Seventeen-year-old spirit witch Ava López is the self-appointed guardian of the witches and humans of Darkhaven, an idyllic village nestled between the forest and the sea. Her watch: vicious and bloodthirsty vampires.
Ava is a novice in the eyes of her coven. If she expects to protect them and the secrecy of their powers, she must gain better control of her own. When a full moon ritual goes awry, control may be lost forever, and Ava is exiled from her coven. Forced to seek refuge among the beings she had always sworn herself to hunt, she vows revenge on those who have upended her life.
But the more time Ava spends away from her coven, the more she discovers a startling truth: the witches haven’t been honest with her. Ava’s quest to strip the truth from everything she’s ever known begins with the toughest realization of all—coming to terms with who she has become.
Meet the Author
Dubbed a “triple threat” by readers, Danielle Rose dabbles in many genres, including urban fantasy, suspense, and romance. The USA Today bestselling author holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from the University of Southern Maine.
Danielle is a self-professed sufferer of ’philes and an Oxford comma enthusiast. She prefers solitude to crowds, animals to people, four seasons to hellfire, nature to cities, and traveling as often as she breathes.