Andy Crowl barely knew his recently deceased cousin, Craig Moore, so he’s especially surprised to be named as the sole beneficiary in Craig’s will. Not that there’s much to inherit: just an empty bank account and a run-down house.
Once Andy arrives in the town of Mortom, however, he’s drawn into his puzzle-obsessed cousin’s true legacy: a twisted and ominous treasure hunt. Beckoned by macabre clues of dead rats and cemetery keys, Andy jumps into the game, hoping to discover untold wealth. But unsavory secrets—and unanswered questions about Craig’s untimely demise—arise at every turn, leading Andy to wonder if he’s playing the game…or if the game is playing him.
Something’s rotten in Mortom. And this dead man’s game might not be all that Andy is doomed to lose.
Revised edition: This edition of Mortom includes editorial revisions.
2016 Kindle Scout Winner
The last thing Kaylee wants to do is participate in a childish scavenger hunt--especially inside the abandoned retirement home on the edge of town. When she finds a bruised, deaf boy hiding inside one of the rooms, she vows to lead him to safety . . . only to discover the front doors are now padlocked, and her friends are nowhere to be found. Kaylee is about to learn that not everything that goes 'bump in the night' is imaginary, and sometimes there are worse things to fear than ghosts.
Erik Therme has thrashed in garage bands, inadvertently harbored runaways, and met Darth Vader. When he's not at his computer, he can be found cheering for his oldest daughter's volleyball team, or chilling on the PlayStation 3 with his twelve-year-old. He currently resides in Iowa City, Iowa--one of only seven places in the world UNESCO has certified as a City of Literature.
Q. What inspires your writing?
A. It's been said so many times it's almost cliche, but it's the absolute truth: 'A writer writes because they have to.' I write because I feel compelled to tell stories. It's as simple as that.
Q. What is your favorite thing about being a writer?
A. It's an amazing experience to write a book that can't be found in a bookstore (that you would love to read).
Q. What is the toughest part of being a writer?
A. Marketing. Your book is completing with thousands of other books, and you have to work hard to make people aware of it. The biggest mistake a new author can make is believing that once your book is published it's going to find an audience on its own.
Q. If you could not be writer, what would you do/be?
A. Professional organizer. I can easily spend hours making spreadsheets, lists, or reorganizing the nooks and crannies of our house.
Q. What would the story of your life be entitled?
A. "He played it too safe."
Q. What is your favorite book of all time?
A. This is always such a tough question to answer, but I'll say The Stand (Stephen King). King is a brilliant storyteller, and when I find myself stuck in my own writing, I'll leaf through The Stand for inspiration.
Q. Which character from ANY book are you most like?
A. I can relate to Hank, the protagonist in the novel A Simple Plan. He knows the difference between right and wrong . . . he just repeatedly has trouble making the right choice.
Q. What character from all of your book are you most like?
A. The protagonist of Mortom, Andy Crowl, is basically me with my worst attributes. I never intended to make him borderline unlikable--he just sort of came out that. He has my sympathies.
Q. Which book would you love to take a weekend vacation inside of?
A. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, because it would be amazing to explore Hogwarts.
Q. What is your favorite season?
A. I love the 'feel of Fall,' but I think my favorite season is Winter. I spend a big chunk of my time indoors writing, and there's nothing more magical than watching the snow fall from the warmth and sanctuary of my home.
Q. What inspired your book cover(s)? Or what is your favorite book cover and why?
A. The publisher designed the cover for Mortom--and did a great job--but the cover for my second novel, Resthaven, is probably my favorite. It's a simple graphic of a gloomy hallway leading into darkness, which perfectly sums up the story.
Q. Tell me something funny that happened while on a book tour or while promoting your book.
A. I recently did a signing at a Barnes & Nobles and they parked me by the front doors, almost like a greeter. It didn't take too long before I was directing people to the cafe and pointing out the restrooms. I probably should have asked for an hourly wage that day . . .
Q. Are you working on something new?
A. My third novel, Roam, is going through the editing process and will hopefully see publication by the end of this year. I've also recently finished a first draft about a father searching for his missing daughter, who might--or might not--be kidnapped.
Q. Anything you want to say to followers of this blog or those that are just stopping by?
A. A special thanks to Emily and everyone at Mrs. Mommy Booknerd's Book Reviews for letting me stop by and answer some questions. To learn more about my writing, please visit me at http://www.eriktherme.com or say hello on Facebook!