REVIEW/GIVEAWAY of B.C. Johnson’s ‘DEAD GIRL’


Review by Cassie Hoffman

REVIEW OF ‘DEAD GIRL’ BY B.C. JOHNSON

Going on you very first day with the boy of your dreams shouldn’t end with you being killed. Right?!?

Lucy Day a fifteen-year-old sophomore at Atlanta High school and is your average teenager. She has a massive crush on a boy name Zack and has two best friends, Morgan and Wanda.

Lucy is finally going on her first date EVER and with her dream boy, Zack. Her date should have ended the textbook way. Boy walks you to your door, and gives you a goodnight kiss that makes you have butterflies in your tummy. Well that didn’t happen with Lucy.

Her first date she ended up being killed, or did she?

Getting separated from her friends, Lucy finds herself being chased by three-four guys and gets stuck at a dead-end of an alley. Lucy will not go down without a fight and that is what she gives him. With his friends looking on Lucy does her best to protect herself, but when he pulls out a revolver there is only so much you can do. Trying to wrestle her way from him, the gun goes off with a deafening sound.

Waking up the next day, YES waking up after being shot, Lucy has no scratch on her and is reeling from the night before. She will never be the same girl she was, a lot has changed in the last twenty-four hours. Noticing new things in the next few days as not having an appetite, to being freezing cold and not being tired. What is going on with her? Is she dead?

On top of everything Lucy is trying to figure out, there is a car that she keeps seeing and when she feels it, she gets a sense of something wrong and hides or runs. Who is in that car and what do they want with her. Lucy soon finds out who’s been following her. It is her own Grim Reaper coming to right the error that happen the night in the alley, and his name is Abraham.
Lucy learns there is a price of coming back from the dead, what is this price? Being forced to make one of the hardest decisions of her young life; a decision that could save the ones Lucy loves or could kill them.

What will Lucy choose? What will happen to Lucy? Will Abraham do what he is here for? Can Lucy go back to who she was before that faithful night? All those questions will be answered in Dead Girl.

I loved this book; Dead Girl is such a great read. At first it’s kinds of confusing, but soon you will get sucked into Lucy’s crazy world of the living on a thin line of being alive and dead. You will fall in love with Lucy; her character is a really snarky, comical girl. There are a lot of other characters in Dead Girl that helps make the book. The author keeps you guessing of what will happen next and have you asking, “What is going on”. This is definitely a book I would re-read again. It is such a great read and you will not be let down. Just give it a chance, because like I said in the beginning you will be a bit confused, but soon you will be saying “Ah ha”! I think you will be pleasantly surprised to read in the ending that the author is a man. I was. I just seen a man writing about a 15-year-old girl and he did a great job venturing into the world of us girls. I give ‘Dead Girl’ 4 stars and it’s such a great debut novel, BRAVO!!!

QUOTES FROM THE BOOK:

“You couldn’t go one week without becoming another Unsolved Mystery?”-Morgan

“I just walk around with a red cup filled with soda and act drunk.”-Lucy

“I can’t help it. That high you felt the last time I kissed you wasn’t just my incredible technique. I could hurt…I could make you forget everything you’ve ever…just, no, okay? Not until I figure it out?”-Lucy

“Takes all kinds, Lucy, you think you’re the only freak out there? I’ll tell you what I am. I’m your friend. Now let’s go upstairs and see if we can’t get a pillow fight started.”-Daphne

1

Dead Girl (Kindle)
Dead Girl (Paperback)

THE GIVEAWAY
B.C. Johnson has been kind enough to offer a paperback (USA only) and a digital (International) copy of Dead Girl for giveaway. To enter this giveaway you MUST like B.C. Johnson’s Facebook page and leave a comment on this blog post with a question for him. Remember to click follow replies so that you can see the answer to your questions. Giveaway ends Dec 22, 2012 at 8 am CST.
http://www.facebook.com/pages/BC-Johnson/350421414990138

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Posted on December 19, 2012, in BOOK REVIEWS, GIVEAWAYS and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 13 Comments.

  1. Thanks for the giveaway. When did you decide to be a writer and who if anyone inspires you? Followed FB page.
    Merry Christmas!!

    • Gale: I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was a wee lad. I used to love writing stories for my friends, entering them in contests, that kind of thing. Other than “vampire hunter,” it’s the only thing I’ve ever wanted to do.

      My biggest inspiration is Stephen King, for sure. He’s a master of character and tone, and manages to be literary while disguising that he’s being literary. It’s a good trick.

      Thanks for entering!

  2. Thank you for the review Cassie. This sounds like something that I’d love to read & that cover – wow, love it! 🙂 I am also sometimes amazed by an author’s talent to write in the opposite sex perspective. I have read many books that are wrote by a man, where the narrative is a female, and the book comes out surprisingly amazing and well developed!

    As for my question to Mr. Johnson: How long did it take to write “Dead Girl” and was hard to write in a teenage girl’s perspective?

    Thank you for giving us the opportunity to win “Dead Girl”!!! This one sounds great – adding to my TBR pile now!

    Happy holidays,

    Monica G.
    Mgutierrez254 [at] yahoo [dot] com

    • Monica: I started writing the first draft of Deadgirl in November 2008 (for National Novel Writing Month, or NaNo for those poor souls who’ve been involved). It took me around a year to finish the book completely, all three drafts.

      The rest of the time between then and now has been finding an agent, getting an agent, finding a publisher, doing drafts with editors, marketing, getting published, blah blah blah business. Very exciting stuff.

      As for the teenage perspective – it was difficult to “find,” but once I found the voice it was remarkably easy to write for. My fiance actually helped me immensely in finding a teenage girl’s voice – she let me borrow and read her meticulously kept diaries from high school. She blocked out certain parts and certain books: “You can read from page ten to 40. Skip 41 and 42. Continue after.” Still, it was completely helpful in getting in that mindset and really understanding the explosive maelstrom of emotions a teenager has to suffer under.

      Once I could “hear” Lucy Day, it became easy. The thing about girls and guys, I think, is this: we’re all people. We all have the same fears and hopes and dreams. Girls are just more honest about it. It’s sort of freeing to write for, really.

      Thanks for checking out the book and the giveaway!

  3. Looks like a really good book. What made you write this book? Where did you get your ideas?

    • Tina: Howdy! I came up with the idea of “what Lucy becomes” first, a long time ago, while trying to come up with a new supernatural being. I liked the idea, but I never really knew what to do with it, so it simmered on my brain’s backburner.

      My first book, the one I wrote before Deadgirl and will never get published (because it sucks), had NO women in it. Or at least, no main characters. When I went to write another book, I decided I wanted to challenge myself and not only have the main character be female, but have most of the main cast be female as well.

      Making them teenage girls seemed harder still, so I went with that. The supernatural idea I came up with earlier sort of popped in my head. After that, I thought of the ending, then I just wrote toward it.

      As for ideas, I think they mostly come from asking “what if?” “What if you died on your first date?” What would that feel like? How angry would you be? How completely and utterly pissed and cheated.

      I liked “what ifs.” Sometimes I read a news story and think: “What if the pandas aren’t breeding because they’re the only thing that can stop the apocalypse, and they’re being poisoned by a vast government conspiracy intent on bringing about the end of the world?”

      Or, you know. Not crazy stuff.

      Thanks for checking out the giveaway! Merry Christmas!

  4. OMG the book sounds great!!! Thanks for the giveaway!!!
    What was you inspiration in writing the book?
    Is your main character based off someone in your life?
    Did you have any input on the cover? I love it it is beautiful!!

    • Merisha: My biggest inspiration was probably “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.” The show, not the movie. Ugh, the movie. Buffy was always my favorite TV show, and I kind of wanted to give back. Put all that “juice” into something funny and scary, with a strong female lead. That’s basically why I wrote Deadgirl.

      Lucy Day isn’t based off any one person, but she definitely has a few traits I’ve stolen from people in my life. She has my fiance Gina’s strength and take-no-crap attitude, my self-deprecating humor, my brother Bill’s zest for life.

      As for the cover: I did, actually. Cool Well Press (the publishers) asked me what kind of things I’d want on the cover, and what kind of things (more importantly) I WOULDN’T want on the cover. I suggested a girl on a beach, just because there is a sort of Grey limbo that figures prominently in the story, and it looks like a beach. I also specified that I didn’t want to see Lucy’s face: I think people like imagining their own version of the main character, and I didn’t want to force them to see one particular vision.

      When they showed me this cover, I loved it.

      Thanks for digging it, and for entering the contest! Good luck!

  5. Most of the questions I would have asked have been asked already. But I do have to ask? Do you have a family and how do you find the time to write? I am asking for a bit of inspiration in my own life. I have a dream to write someday. I am dying to get my hands on your paperback. Sounds very intriguing. 🙂

    • Natalie: I’m engaged and living with my fiance (wife in April!), but I don’t have kids if that’s what you’re asking. Lately I’ve actually become a full-time writer, so now I have more time than I know what to do with. Heh.

      That’s actually a fairly new development, though – prior to the last six months, I was working a 40-70 hour-a-week job, and it was extremely difficult to find the time. Being exhausted and worn out is a hard place to be creative from – I remember most nights I just wanted to sit and zone out and watch “How I Met Your Mother” when I got home.

      I found the best time to write is whenever you can fit it in. Even when you’re tired, or you don’t want to, or you don’t feel even a little bit inspired. No matter how you feel, just open up the document and stare at it. Type away, even if what you’re putting down sucks. Anything to keep pushing forward, because the secret is this: all first drafts are terrible. All of them. But it’s actually really easy to turn a bad first draft into a great third draft. It takes a lot of work, but we’re all natural critics, and revising is just being critical of yourself. Catching plot holes, adding foreshadowing. It’s a magic trick, but it works wonders.

      Basically, I guess, write whenever you can. Even if you only have ten minutes before you have to go pick up the kids, write for ten minutes. Write for five minutes. Tell yourself “All I have to write is 200 words. Then I’m done.” You’ll find yourself surpassing that goal constantly, which will always make you feel great, which’ll keep you motivated.

      Thanks for entering! Have all the luck!

  6. Awesome review by Cassie Hoffman!! I enjoyed reading the excerpt of your book Dead Girl. It sounds very interesting and I am looking forward to buying and reading it soon. My question is What genre of books do you like to write? Thank you so much for the giveaway. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

  7. Len: Thanks for asking! Deadgirl is Young Adult, which is definitely one of my favorites to write for. The process of “growing up” and “becoming” are infinitely interesting to me, and I find myself coming back time and time again to that idea. I’ve also been through that, so I think it’s the time of my life I have the most experience and perspective on. Write what you know, and all that. If I have any wisdom (debatable) it springs from that topic.

    I also really enjoy writing fantasy, probably because of how much I love reading fantasy. I’m a Tolkien, Salvatore, Weiss/Hickman, Feist, Martin fan right to the bone. Gimme a magic sword and a hero to wield it and I’m pretty much set. Heh.

    After that probably comes Noir. I devour Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett novels, and I find that writing a cynical, cocky, highly observant smart ass comes easy to me. Go figure. My other published work, a Kindle Single called “The Lancer,” is actually a mixture of my young adult and noir obsessions.

    Thanks for asking, and for checking out Deadgirl!

  8. Superb details in this article. My name’s Temeka and I’m really pleased to view your blog.
    By the way, I’d love to get in contact with you. Perhaps we could exchange emails?

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