Tuesday, November 10, 2015


TITLE: Nick Stevens, Chef of Destiny
GENRE: YA Urban Fantasy

When Las Vegas teenager Nick Stevens gets a job at a hotel that caters to creatures from other dimensions, he must learn in a hurry how to cook, how to fight -- and how to handle a girlfriend who might not be entirely human.  

I wish I could say that on the morning I first faced a creature from another world, I was up early calibrating my repulsor cannon, or working on my badass krav maga skills, or any of the other stuff guys who later wind up saving a major American city are doing when the story opens. Things would probably make more sense that way – if I was The Chosen One.

Spoiler alert: There's no such thing.

Instead, I left our house in the Las Vegas suburbs half an hour late, dropped my painstakingly assembled egg sandwich in the gutter when my bike hit a speed bump and sprinted into Mr. Freeman's junior Literature class just as the bell was ringing.

With most teachers, you could sneak in a few seconds late and not be too worried about it, especially on the last day of school. Unfortunately, Mr. Freeman hunted tardy students the way rich guys hunt quail, and after 38 years at De la Paz High, the man's aim was flawless.

"Nicholas Stevens," he intoned as I lunged past him and slammed my butt into my seat a split second before the last echo of the bell faded. "You may delay, but time -- and this class -- do not."

"Sorry," I said. And I guess even Mr. Freeman was feeling a little summery. He just glared at me and began talking about the final we'd taken yesterday. Which was fine, because I knew I'd done pretty well on it. I don't get straight As or anything, but my dad always bought me books for Christmas, even when I asked for video games.