Guest Post by Author Courtney Vail

Get my debut YA novel Kings & Queens at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, iTunes, Kobo.

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Kings & Queens Synopsis

Seventeen-year-old Majesty Alistair wants police to look further into her father’s fatal car wreck, hopes the baseball team she manages can reclaim the state crown, aches for Derek…or, no…maybe Alec…maybe. And she mostly wishes to retract the hateful words she said to her dad right before slamming the door in his face, only to never see him again.

All her desires get sidelined, though, when she overhears two fellow students planning a church massacre. She doubts cops will follow up on her tip since they’re sick of her coming around with notions of possible crimes-in-the-works. And it’s not like she cries wolf. Not really. They’d be freaked too, but they’re not the ones suffering from bloody dreams that hint at disaster like some crazy, street guy forecasting the Apocalypse.

So, she does what any habitual winner with zero cred would do…try to I.D. the nutjobs before they act. But, when their agenda turns out to be far bigger than she ever assumed, and even friends start looking suspect, the truth and her actions threaten to haunt her forever, especially since she’s left with blood on her hands, the blood of someone she loves.

Would you have the guts to do what Majesty did and try and find the two kids that are going to do the church killing?

The protagonist, Majesty Alistair, can’t see them clearly or hear everything that’s said, but while running in the woods one day, she overhears two fellow students planning a church massacre and hides where they can’t see her. As it’s revealed at the beginning of my book, her credibility with police is already shot because she’s been hounding them about her father’s car accident–that she doesn’t totally believe was an accident– and also all the strange happenings in her neighborhood. So she runs to her best friend, Derek, for advice. She tells him what she heard and explains her cry-wolf situation, and he convinces her to leave an anonymous tip. She agrees that’s the best plan and calls the cops from a payphone the next day, giving them the bits she overheard. But the conspirators call her at the payphone, clearly showing her that not only do they know who she is, but they’re already tracking her. They threaten to kill someone she loves if she talks to the police again or tries to stop them. That threat binds her hands and closes off the avenues she can pursue.

I probably would have approached it differently and gone to the cops right from the start, mainly because I am not a resourceful person at all. I’m no techie. I don’t know anything about solving crime or law. As it was, I had to interview a Richmond cop with all my procedure questions. I don’t buy the latest gadgets or smartphones, I only have an LG 800G through Tracfone. I’m kind of a wimp and don’t rise up to battles well. And, as Preston says in the book, “I even suck at clue.” I do. I almost never figure out the mystery on shows or in books. Majesty has far more guts, knowhow and perseverance than me. Considering all she went through, I would’ve crumbled. I would love to be strong like that. But I’m so not.

However, if circumstances were exactly the same for me in that kind of scenario, with my path to the police blocked, with my avenues of getting the word out closed off, with threats hanging over my head, there’s no way I could sit by and let people die either. I’d do whatever I could to try and thwart it. Or at least I hope I would. Who could really live with that knowledge after the fact? To let, countless people die? Yeah, no matter how wimpy or clueless I am, I still couldn’t do it. My love for life will always push me to do the right thing.


COURTNEY VAIL writes totally twisted YA and adult suspense. She enjoys braiding mystery, suspense & romance with some kind of weirdness. Her addictions to crazy coffee concoctions, Funny Bones, Ben & Jerry’s, and bacon keep her running and writing. She currently lives in New England with a comedian stud and a wild gang of kidlets.

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