I’m an author, an editor, and the mother of three teenagers. I live year round on Cape Cod, near the beaches and crashing waves that make this area a magnet for tourists three months of every year. The ocean and sandy shores remain even after the tourists pack up to go home, and my family takes full advantage of life surrounded by all this natural beauty.
The true locals call people like me “wash-ashores” – someone who visits Cape Cod for a vacation or a season, and ends up staying. Which means, I’m not really from here. Originally from New Jersey, I spent summers on the Jersey Shore. My husband grew up in the Boston area, and although his childhood summers were spent here on the Cape, he’s considered a wash-shore too.
When we started our own family, we wanted our kids to have the same memories of beach days and sailing lessons that my husband and I each have. We bought a summer cottage here on Cape Cod, and after several years we made the decision to move here full-time.
Although the opening scenes of my book take place in Oklahoma, most of the action takes place on Cape Cod, both above and below the surface of the Atlantic. The main character, fifteen-year-old Shea MacNamara, grew up on a farm in the middle of the U.S. He’d never even caught a glimpse of the ocean or learned to swim… when suddenly strange dreams start haunting him. Dreams of drowning, and dreams of mermaids.
He has no idea why he would be dreaming about drowning, when it was a tornado that destroyed his farm and changed his life. Just as he has no clue as to who – or where – his mother might be, only that she disappeared from his life right after he was born. It’s only after moving to Cape Cod that the pieces start falling into place.
In the following excerpt, we catch a glimpse of one of Shea’s nightmares.
Excerpt from SON OF A MERMAID, 2013 from Crescent Moon Press
The blue-green coolness swirled around him as his body tumbled down through the water, arms and legs flailing as he struggled to hold his breath. Millions of tiny bubbles of precious air traced the path of his descent, escaping from his clothing and through his nose.
Eyes wide even as the water rushed past, he watched a huge school of shimmering minnows part down the middle as they swam around him, surrounding him like a silvery box. Turning his face upward to the surface, he could see the blue sky receding further and further as he sank deeper into the water’s depths.
His throat and lungs burned from the effort of holding his breath. Darkness pressed hard against his eyes, and swirls of strange colors danced in front of him as his whole body strained against the lack of oxygen.
I need to breathe, he thought wildly, his whole body feeling like it was on fire. I can’t hold out much longer. His feet finally hit the mucky bottom with a thud, coming to a stop as the mud swirled around his legs.
There, hovering before him in the water, swam a beautiful woman with flowing golden hair…and a green fish tail that sparkled with golden flecks among the scales.
Her big green eyes looked so familiar, like the ones he saw in the mirror every morning. She smiled at him, reaching out to take his hand. His head pounded as searing pain ripped through his throat, as if his entire body would tear apart any second from the effort of holding his breath.
The mermaid squeezed his hand and nodded. The pain receded as Shea stared into her eyes, lost in their green depths. As she nodded to him again, he opened his mouth to exhale the stale air that pounded like a jackhammer in his lungs. Large bubbles rushed to the surface as he struggled to breathe, but there was no air to be had. Only salty ocean water rushing in to fill his mouth, his lungs, his body...
Shea woke with a start, clawing at the sheets and disoriented for a full minute before remembering where he was. At the Hansen’s house. Because his own home – the farm where he’d lived and worked all his life – was gone, swept away and crushed by the freak tornado.
Thanks again, Penelope, for inviting me to visit! Readers, be sure to leave a comment below and enter the official Rafflecopter giveaway You could win an ebook copy of SON OF A MERMAID, or a cool beach stone mermaid necklace or other swag!
If you want to learn more about me and my mermaids, you can find us in the following spots online:
Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/AuthorKatieOSullivan
Twitter - https://twitter.com/OkatieO
Check out the website at http://www.katie-osullivan.com
Add Son of a Mermaid on Goodreads: Son of a Mermaid
Amazon Buy Link: Son of a Mermaid