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Today we are spotlighting Samantha Cross's
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from Samantha Cross!
Photographer, animal lover, and unfortunately for the summer, the new girl in town, Cora Nash considers herself a simple girl. Renovating and living at her grandmother's house seemed like a good idea, until events took a turn for the bizarre. Garbage cans viciously torn into, howls from the woods, wild animals behaving erratically, and an ominous warning from the good looking bad boy to, "Stay out of the forest."
This seemingly normal town hides a mysterious and violent secret. When one of the townsfolk up and disappears in the forest, leaving nothing but a pair of shoes behind, Cora is the only person willing to investigate. The answer, however, is nothing she could have ever anticipated, when under a full moon she finds herself face to face with... a werewolf.
If werewolves exist, where did it come from? And more importantly...who could it be?
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Q & A with Samantha Cross about Lunar Rampage!
It’s a whodunnit involving werewolves. Somebody from the town is the wolf but nobody knows who, and you, the reader, have to figure it out. But it’s not just a mystery, it’s a fusion of comedy, romance and horror. I’m not one to stick to any singular genre, I like to blend them to make a more fun, layered reading experience. Romance lovers, in particular, have really praised the love story in my book.
What initially inspired you to write Lunar Rampage?
Back in 2008 I had a dream about a girl in a woodsy, small town stumbling onto a horde of werewolves sleeping. I liked the setting and the vibe, and I wrote it all down at 4am after abruptly waking up. My two leads, Cora and Max, were the only characters actually in the dream, and then another character was saved for the sequel.
Tell us little about the characters in Lunar Rampage.
Our protagonist is Cora Nash, and she’s one of my favorites. She’s a complete dork and everyone around her likes to remind her of that on a daily basis. But she’s also sweet, friendly and nonjudgmental. She’s willing to be anyone’s friend. Initially some of her quirkiness annoys people, but they always warm up to her and end up finding all these quirks endearing. I find her headspace to be a really hilarious place to be.
The rest of the cast is quite big so I’ll do a quick run down. You have Max, the sexy, brooding, loner who is oddly drawn to Cora. Priscilla, the sarcastic, gothic cashier who knows everybody’s business. Owen and Molly, siblings with a dark, sad past. Cora’s grandma, who is eccentric to say the least, and gets confused just on her way to get the mail. And many more. And one of them IS the werewolf.
The really cool thing about the reception I got, is that every reader had a different favorite character. That’s exactly what I wanted to hear, so I’m happy.
What was the hardest part of writing this book?
This book was actually one of the easier ones for me. I wrote it over a summer. I think any difficulties I had apply to writing in general, which is me struggling to stay focused. It’s very easy to get distracted while on your computer haha.
What was your favorite chapter (or part) to write and why?
Definitely the finale portion. A lot of colorful characters forced into a dating auction, with romantic tension, comedy and several werewolves lurking outside waiting to break in. Every bit of it was fun to write.
What are your future project(s)?
I’ve gotten so much positive feedback for the romance aspect of Lunar Rampage, that I want to write a full blown romance novel. I also have a post-apocalyptic “epic” of sorts that has been on the back burner for years. Long term, I’d like to dabble in every genre and see what I can come up with.
Is there anything else you would like to tell the readers about this book/series?
Lunar Rampage has a sequel called Lunar City, which I wrote just for the fans. There was a high demand for a follow up to Lunar Rampage, which I was pleasantly surprised by, and while the first book felt like a mystery/horror, the second book feels a little more romance/action.
Now an exciting excerpt from Lunar Rampage!
“What are you doing out here?” I asked him, this time less accusatory and more curiously.
“I thought this was an open invitation.”
“Yeah, but you said you weren’t coming.”
“I changed my mind.”
He grinned and his eyes warmed. “You really are on edge tonight.”
“Have you seen the moon? Shouldn’t you be on edge as well?”
“There have been more full moons than I can count since I’ve lived here, and I’m still in one piece, am I not?” I could feel the space between us getting smaller and smaller as he eased his way toward me, seemingly gliding.
“This is different and you know it.”
“It’s only different because we know about it.” Still, he continued to loom in toward me. My eyes fluttered as my personal space decreased.
“What are you doing out here, though? How long have you been here?”
“How long is a while?”
“Enough to see you up there on stage.”
I raised my eyebrow. “You saw that? You watched me make an idiot of myself and you didn’t think to throw a charity dollar my way?”
“What would be the point of me laying low if I did that?”
“What is this, espionage now?”
He smirked. “No. I just wanted to see what all the fuss was about and didn’t feel like being conversational. It looked like Owen took care of it, anyway.”
“So, you saw that, too, then?”
“Yeah,” he replied, sounding almost disappointed. He halted his progression toward me and leaned against the side railing of the porch and folded his arms. “He really has a thing for you, you know that?”
“He was being a good friend by helping me out back there. Something that you could have at least thought about.” I couldn’t believe Max had been slinking around in the crowd and I didn’t notice. Come to think of it, I was pretty damn nervous, so most of the faces I saw in the audience were a complete blur.
“You wanted me to buy you?” he asked and then propelled himself off of the ledge and toward me. He had to go and twist my words like that and make me a blushing mess. “You wanted me to swing by your grandma’s place and take you to a nice restaurant?” He was mocking me now.
“That’s not quite what I meant,” I said and looked to the pieces of wood that made the porch beneath my feet. “I’m just saying I was almost paired off with Father Time and Owen was the only thing that saved me.”
“So, he’s like your knight in shining armor.”
“If you want to get theatrical about it.”
“Let’s,” he said and approached me progressively. “What if Owen and I had both bid on you? Who would you have chosen?”
My skin betrayed me and flushed like crazy. Thank God for the moonlight covering it. “What kind of question is that?”
“One that begs for an answer. Who would you choose?”
“Why do I feel like this is some kind of trick?” I asked awkwardly, but Max didn’t utter a word and beamed holes through me with those beguiling eyes of his. “There is no right answer to this question.”
“This isn’t Sophie’s Choice, all right? Just say who you’d pick.”
Samantha Cross is the author of the international best-selling Lunar Rampage series. She currently resides in a small town in Michigan with her two cats, laptop, and vivid imagination.