“Frederic & Cassandra Book I, The Sinister House” is a rewarding and fun read that starts out strong and doesn’t let up. It’s a mysterious and engaging novel for all ages, which will take you by the hand and immerse you in a thrilling adventure inside the Sinister House.
When two lifelong friends who are out exploring get snatched and held against their will, the whole town is in search. It is Al, Ollie, Ricky, and the rest of their close-knit group of friends who come to their rescue. However, all is not over, as menace and danger still lurk in Cary, Virginia, threatening to change the town they know and love forever.
Frederic, Cassandra, Al, and the rest of their friends are relatable and entertaining in different ways. As they set out to find who is behind the alarming and strange events occurring in their town, you will not be unable to put the book down. “The Sinister House is a heart-warming novel loaded with intrigue, comedy, and wit that will fill you with a true sense of adventure and fun. It is sure to quickly become a favorite.
Targeted Age Group:: 13 and older
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
My family and I were city dwellers living and working in the Pacific NW for over 35 years. One year not too long ago, my husband gave me a wonderful book for Christmas. It was a story about a family living in a big old bed and breakfast set in small-town South Carolina. I was enthralled by it. The book sparked both our interests in Southern culture and old houses. So, the following year, we found a large Victorian house in a tiny North Carolina town and purchased it. In the summer of 2011, my youngest son and I moved to our new home in North Carolina, leaving my husband behind to hold the fort.
As my son and I faced being in a new environment and out of our comfort zone, I looked for ways to spend more time with him. But being in his teens, he grew up quickly and became more independent–the last of my three children to leave the nest. I used the extra time on my hands to start writing a story about two teenage kids who grew up together near the mountains in a small town in Virginia. I created it with the warm atmosphere found in most small towns. It is a story with southern heart, wit, mystery, danger, and with characters as big as life as I could make them. Many of these characters were based on my son's friends or people I knew.
Besides entertaining readers, I hope the story inspires them with a sense of right and wrong, mutual respect for one another, love, and courage. A sequel to this novel, "Frederic and Cassandra Book I," is in the works.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
The characters had to be entertaining, and they are all that. Individuals I knew personally, living in the South, were the inspiration. And from there, I embroidered. There is a list of the main characters in the front of the book for reference. Each one has distinct characteristics, with a few eccentricities to make the story rich and entertaining.
Although many kids play their parts in the book, Frederic and his closest friends are the focus. Frederic is a leader, bright and thoughtful, and realizes that his lifelong pal, Cassandra, is becoming more than that. Cass's world revolves around Frederic, but as she goes through their adventures together, Cass becomes more aware of the realities of life. Al is dynamic, likes to take charge, and does so. Ollie is a newcomer to town and school, who Al takes under his wing. Ricky is a wrestler, bold and competitive, as is his counterpart, Joe. George is a year younger than the rest of the group but keeps up just the same. He can be unpredictable and sometimes talks too much, yet he will do what it takes when needed. His older brother Charlie is reliable, supportive. Addie, the group's final member, is an upcoming ivy leaguer, a good speaker who knows what he wants and how to get there.
The children and parents are not perfect, but at the same time, their flaws are not the center of the story. Flaws are in the background and only there to give depth to their overall love, care, and strength, which are the main points in the story.
"Suddenly, Cass felt someone grab her from behind, and she regretted ever coming out here again. All the terror came back, and her body tensed up with adrenalin. She tried to scream but was paralyzed with fear, and nothing came out. A hand covered her mouth, and she could hardly breathe, let alone make a sound. All she could see was a black hoodie. Petrified, she instinctively went limp, hoping the killer would loosen his grip. It worked, and as she turned around, she stared wide-eyed and astonished."
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