I first met Parker when he was still a bit rough around the edges--his author, J.R. "Jenn" Johansson was in my writer's group and I had the pleasure of critiquing INSOMNIA before she got her agent. I was so amazed at her talent, I told her she was going to be published very, very soon. Once again, I have proven my prophetic prowess.
'Cause it's all about ME.
Parker is one of those heroes who could also turn out to be the villain in his own story. As such, I sat down with him recently and had a little heart-to-heart. He had some 'splainin to do....
Me: So, Parker, you know stalking is a crime, right?
Parker: You're kidding, I hadn't heard... aren't you supposed to read me my rights or give me a phone call or something?
Me: No, this is just a friendly conversation: you're not in custody, and you can leave at any time. Do you WANT to be arrested? Is there some reason you SHOULD be arrested?
Parker: No reason that I know of. I can handle friendly, as long as it stays that way.
Me: Good, good. So tell me about this girl you... like.
Parker: Girl? What girl?
Me: The girl you're stalking, Parker. The girl who tells me you're always just around every corner, waiting for her. Ring a bell?
Parker: I walk around a lot of corners. Daily really...I kind of thought everyone did.
Me: Sure, sure. What's more unusual is when the same person is waiting behind each. And. Every. One of them.
Parker: This is feeling less friendly...
Me: I'm guessing she feels the same way about you, Parker. Just what exactly is she supposed to think when you keep popping up?
Parker: That we go to the same school? Live in the same town? Look...I don't want to hurt her and I never would.
Me: Really? Then why are you sending her threatening emails?
Parker: I wasn't. I wouldn't...do that.
Me: Uh-huh. So these emails from your email address aren't from you. Really.
Parker: My email? They can't be from my email...
Me: Fine, deny it. The evidence speaks for itself. Just do yourself a favor and stay away from her, okay?
Parker: I'll do my best.
Me: Somehow I'm not struck with a real strong confidence after that reply. Is doing your "best" the same as staying away from her?
Parker: Sure, like I said. I don't want to hurt her.
Me: So she's not going to be running into you anymore?
Parker: We go to school together, I can't avoid her completely. But I'll try to bother her as little as possible. Are you satisfied?
Me: And you'll stay away from her after school?
Parker: I think I already answered these questions. My mom's probably worried. I should get going...since this is just a friendly chat and all.
Me: Does your mom know about your interest in Mia?
Parker: I don't know, maybe we'll have a chat about it when we get home. A friendly one... like this one.
Me: You know, I think that's a good idea. In fact, I think it'd be even better if I came along. Just in case she had any questions.
Parker: Nope. That's fine. I'm sure I can handle this conversation without your help.
Me: Fine, but just remember, I'll be watching you.
Parker: Seems fitting. Thanks for the chat. Have a nice day.
Okay, so Parker's a bit squirrely. You might have to read the book to find out what he's up to. On second thought, you DEFINITELY want to read the book to find out what he's up to.
Here's the cover description:
After four years of sleeplessness, high school junior Parker Chipp can’t take much more. Every night, instead of sleeping, he enters the dreams of the last person he’s made eye contact with. If he doesn't sleep soon, Parker will die.
Then he meets Mia. Her dreams, calm and beautifully uncomplicated, allow him blissful rest that’s utterly addictive. But what starts out as a chance meeting turns into an obsession; Parker’s furious desire for what he needs pushes him to extremes he never thought he’d go. And when someone begins terrorizing Mia with twisted death threats, Parker’s memory blackouts leave him doubting his own innocence.
Awesome, no? Here's what other awesome authors are saying about it:
“The perfect blend of everything I love in a story. I hope a sequel comes soon!” –James Dashner, New York Times bestselling author of THE MAZE RUNNER
“Completely unputdownable. I’ve decided to nickname Johansson: Scary McScarypants, because she spooked me in all the best ways.” –Carrie Harris, author of BAD TASTE IN BOYS
“Cleverly written and dangerously dark, Insomnia will take you to the brink of insanity. A must-read for thriller and romance fans alike.”—Elana Johnson, author of POSSESSION
“A riveting story of terror and despair that will keep you up long past your bedtime.”—Jennifer Bosworth, author of STRUCK
You ready to win? Excellent. Just follow the widget:a Rafflecopter giveaway
I've been in Jenn's critique group (have I mentioned that?) so I can tell you--you WANT her to look at your story. She's amazing.
Now get to know her. Stalking is encouraged. It's only fair....
J.R. JOHANSSON is a young adult thriller author published with Flux & FSG/Macmillan. Her debut, INSOMNIA is coming June 2013. She has a B.S. degree in public relations and a background in marketing. She credits her abnormal psychology minor with inspiring many of her characters. When she's not writing, she loves reading, playing board games, and sitting in her hot tub. Her dream is that someday she can do all three at the same time. She has two young sons and a wonderful husband. In fact, other than her cat, Cleo, she's nearly drowning in testosterone.
In case you were wondering (and I know you were) INSOMNIA is available now:
Are you excited? Scared? Excited to be scared?