This book contains no dragons. Within its pages, you will find defective technology, a dog who wants cuddles, and a different writing style for each character—but no mythical creatures. It is not the sort of book Willow Ayers would enjoy; he prefers fantasy novels with consistent styles and happy endings.
The Satellites Willow created to eliminate cyber-crime are malfunctioning, and what seemed an innocent glitch in technology might prove to be something infinitely more dangerous. But Willow believes people can overcome such things, even though it seems as unlikely as a book that starts in five different writing styles, but ends in just one.
Name: Willow Ayers
Appearance: He’s a little shorter than average, and slightly chubby—a very huggable man, I think. He has curly, blonde hair (though it’s not super curly. Or super blonde.), blue eyes, and is rather pale, though not sickly. He has a few scars from a car accident. Don’t ask him about his scars, though. He doesn’t like to talk about it.
Occupation: Scientist. Specifically, the lead scientist behind the Unitime project—the satellite system to unite all technological systems.
Writing Style: (Click here if confused) Third Person, Past Tense. He gets the easy one This is the style most books use. Example: “Olivia took a nap in her hammock and found it exceptionally pleasant.”
What does he want? Truly, Willow would like nothing more that to escape into one of the fantasy novels he reads. Total bookworm, and a real sucker for anything with lots of magic and creatures and good triumphing over evil.
Song: Waiting on the World to Change – John Mayer
Name: Zabby (short for ‘Elizabeth’) Reynolds
Appearance: She is thin, blonde, blue-eyed, pretty, and doesn’t appreciate all of the stereotypes that come along with these things.
Occupation: Waitress at the small-town Diner. It’s not a ‘forever’ job, though.
Writing Style: (Click here if confused) First Person, Present tense. It’s a really fast-paced and personal kind of style. Example: “I see the rows of fresh, beautiful office supplies, and suddenly I become a girl of very little will power.”
What does she want? Zabby wants to get out of Chagrin Heights (the tiny small town where the book is set.) Her goal is to save enough money to pack up and leave Idaho forever. And it’s not just because she’s bored. It’s much worse than that.
Song: Nobody Knows Me at All – The Weepsies
Name: Harold Snowiks – I mostly refer to him by his last name
Appearance: He’s approaching retirement when the book opens (and he’s not at all excited about the prospect of being put out to pasture, by the way.) His hair is mostly gray, but was dark brown once. He’s tall, has smoky-brown eyes, and a focused expression that frequently comes off as ‘stern.’
Occupation: Police Chief. He loves the job (or rather, he loves what the job was supposed to be) but he feels like he wasted his career by never getting out of his small hometown in Idaho.
Writing Style: (Click Here if confused) First Person, Past Tense. This is the usual style for first person books, although present tense is getting more popular these days. Example: “I finished my cup of tea and stared mournfully into the empty mug.”
What does he want? He wants to feel like he did something significant with his life. Although, with the impending retirement, he’s pretty sure that he’s out of time for anything like that.
Song: 21 Guns – Green Day
Name: Bethany Gardner
Appearance: She is a heavy-set, middle-aged woman. She wouldn’t have much to say about her appearance that could be construed as positive, but that has more to do with her attitude than her looks. She has thick, dark hair (which she dyes to keep the grays away), kind eyes, and a soft voice perfectly suited for reading bedtime stories.
Occupation: Receptionist at a Science Lab. She is not overly fond of the job, but it pays well and is steady, so she can’t justify leaving it.
Writing Style (Click Here if confused): Second Person, Present Tense. If you follow my blog, you probably already know that I have a singular fondness for this writing style (Exhibit A). I thought it was particularly appropriate for Bethany because it implies a distancing from one’s own emotions, which is something she struggles with. Example: “You wake up to a blaring alarm clock, only to discover that it is the weekend and you missed a perfectly good opportunity to sleep in.”
What does she want? More than anything, Bethany wants to have a baby. She and her husband, Ralph, have been trying for years and haven’t had any success.
Song: Ne Me Quitte Pas (“Don’t Leave Me”) – Regina Spektor
Appearance: He has amber-brown hair, dark brown eyes, a permanent smile, two left feet… Oh, did I mention yet that he’s a dog? He’s a mixed breed, a little smaller than a golden retriever and a little more energetic than a tornado.
Occupation: Loving on his humans and playing fetch (as well as other games. Cider is very good at these games. Just ask him.)
Writing Style (Click Here if confused): Third Person, Present Tense. Because, frankly, there is no way to describe the mind of this creature without using right-here, right-now kinds of words. Example: “Olivia hears the tea-kettle whistling and smiles because it is now her very favorite part of the morning.”
What does he want? Treats, or cuddles, or both. But cuddles are always better.
Song: My Best Friend – Weezer