The Prophet: A New Thriller

On Tuesday of this week, I decided to release my latest book, The Prophet to the book-buying public. It’s a literary thriller about a fundamentalist cult and a young woman trying desperately to get out. The full synopsis is below:

Twelve year-old Callie Rich wouldn’t know what a normal childhood looks like. She and her family have been a part of the Lambs of Zion church their entire lives, existing in a well-guarded pocket of the American southwest where modernity and independence are shunned. When their leader, the Prophet, excommunicates her father—one of his closest advisors—and takes Callie to be his next bride, it has to be a mistake.

One town over, private detective Max Barker is well aware of the polygamist cult on the Arizona-Utah border, but he keeps his distance like everyone else until Callie’s father shows up on his doorstep begging for help. His family is in danger and he has the proof that could bring the whole organization—and its leader—crashing to the ground. Max, hoping to make good on a promise he’d kept to a former Lamb, decides to help.

Unaware of her father’s plan, Callie joins up with a group of other wives looking to escape, but someone inside the church knows what they’re up to. While Max and Callie’s father work to infiltrate the church for evidence, Callie and the other women of the LoZ must hurry and leave before the Prophet takes drastic action to keep his church, his family, and his legacy intact.

You can buy it for Kindle and other eReaders today over at Gumroad and Kobo. It should be up on Apple’s iBooks store soon.

If you do end up purchasing, it would mean a lot if you left a review afterwards. Reviews help boost visibility and let others know whether they might like it, too.

The Richness of Small-Town Bookstores

A great article by Kea Wilson for strongtowns.org about the value added to a town by the presence of an independent bookstore. I found this particular bit of information very enlightening:

Independent bookstores often employ relatively large staffs, at least in comparison to their chain and no-box counterparts. The Institute for Local Self Reliance reports that for every $10 million in sales, local bookstores create 47 jobs. Contrast that with Amazon, which creates just 19, and you might realize that quirky girl hand-selling you a book of poetry is a representative of a powerful economic engine. (And before you ask: the bookstores in my region, at least, pay a living wage, and many offer strong employee benefits, from paid health insurance premiums to a monthly book credit and all the advanced reader copies you could want. I’m still working my way through my free book stash.)

My dream still is and always will be to start my own independent bookstore. Sometimes I research open retail space in nearby towns. I still haven’t found the right spot and I have no idea what I’d do if I ever did. I still have thousands in student loans outstanding, as well as a family to feed.

But the dream lives on. Maybe one day.