Everyone Dies in the End:

Sherman Andrews is going places. At seventeen, he’s been accepted in the Missouri Scholars Academy, a summer college program for the academically-oriented. He is determined to become an award-winning investigative journalist. Sherman has had a ten-year plan since he was eight, and is determined to make something of his life, unlike his low-brow plumber father or his absent mother.

While doing some research, Sherman comes across a photograph of four men, dated 1935. When a little digging reveals that three of the men were murdered shortly after the picture was taken, Sherman’s interest is piqued. He soon uncovers Depression-era records of deaths, disappearances, and cover-ups on an almost unbelievable scale. Too late, Sherman realizes that the organization responsible is still around, and they do not appreciate outside interest. They’re prepared to take drastic measures to keep him quiet, even if it means shutting him up permanently.

After narrowly escaping from a well-planned assassination attempt, Sherman must decide if he wants to flee for his life, or risk everything to become the reporter he’s always wanted to be. There are only two people he can trust to help him. One is Charlie, the cute, chubby student librarian at the historical society, who might have her eye on Sherman for another reason. The other is Denton, a wild-eyed conspiracy theorist. He claims that the organization is led by a shadowy man who died in 1966…and 1935…and 1864. The fact that Denton has been forcibly committed to the local mental hospital is just an unfortunate misunderstanding.

As the trio continues their investigation, they uncover things that have been buried for eighty years–often literally. They begin to suspect that something evil is about to reappear. And Sherman, with his dictaphone, his ironed socks, and his ten-page resume, may be the only one who can prevent a tragedy.

Interspersed with flashbacks to the original 1935 adventurers, Everyone Dies is a light-hearted coming of age story about love, growing up, and what it’s like to be buried alive.

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Everyone Dies in the End, Dark Continents Publishing (March, 2014)

Almost Perfect: Logan Whitherspoon recently discovered that his girlfriend of three years cheated on him. Since then–much to his friends’ dismay–he has been despressed, pessimistic, and obessed with this ex, Brenda.

But things start to look up for Logan when a new student breezes through the halls of his small-town high school. Tall, unconventionally pretty, and a bit awkward, Sage Hendricks somehow appeals to Logan even at a time when he trusts no one. As Logan learns more about Sage, he realizes that she needs a friend as much as he does, if not more. She has been homeschooled for several years, and her parents have forbidden her to date, but she won’t tell Logan why. The mystery of Sage’s past and the oddities of her personality intrigue Logan, and one day, he acts on his growing attraction and kisses her. Moments later, however, he wishes he hadn’t. Sage finally discloses her big secret: she’s actually a boy. Read More… Buy

Winner of the 2011 Stonewall Children’s and Young Adult Literature Award

Almost Perfect made the American Library Association’s  2010 list of Best Books for Young Adults.

Almost Perfect, Delecorte Press for Young Readers (October, 2009) ISBN: 978-0385736640

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Playing With Matches: Some guys are born handsome, but seventeen-year-old Leon Sanders has a mug that looks like it should be hanging in a post office with the caption “wanted for shoplifting and credit card fraud”. Thanks to his twisted sense of humor, he’s managed to go from nerdy to unknown. Leon’s new locker neighbor is Melody Hennon, an unfortunate girl whose face was horribly disfigured from a childhood accident. When Leon takes a chance and makes her laugh, he discovers that underneath the scarred skin, Melody is a funny, smart, and interesting person. Leon never predicted that he and Melody would become good friends…and maybe more.

Although Leon second-guesses his own growing feelings for Melody and worries about what people will think of the two of them dating, he’s happy to have someone in his life who treats him like he’s special. But when Amy Green, cheerleader and Leon’s long-time crush, asks him out, his devotion to Melody hangs in the balance. Leon tries to find a way out of this dilemma without hurting anyone, but soon realizes–a little too late–that playing with someone’s heart is as dangerous as playing with matches. Read More… Buy Now

Playing With Matches made the American Library Association’s  2009 list of Best Books for Young Adults.

Winner of the 2010-2011 North Carolina Young Adult Book Award

Playing With Matches, Delacorte Press For Young Readers (July, 2008) ISBN: 978-0385735445