February 16, 2011

Virtual Book Tour Guest - Darcia Helle

Hi All,

Today I am pleased to feature author Darcia Helle, who will be talking about her book, Beyond Salvation.

Beyond Salvation is a suspense novel written for adults. This is a departure from my usual topics which usually focus on the kid-lit world. But I think it always helps to change things up every now and then and hey, we adults could always use a good read too.

Darcia, what is this book about?

A teenage runaway disappears from the streets. The only people who care, or even notice, are her two best friends who are also runaways. For reasons of their own, they can't go to the police for help They seek out Michael Sykora, a software designer by day and hit man by night. Known on the streets as The Ghost, Michael has a reputation for taking on the twisted criminals. Rapists. Child molesters. He has never been hired to find the lost. Until now.

Michael teams up with ex-prostitute Nicki and full-time hit man Sean. Together they bend the rules of the justice system in order to find a young girl few people care about. In the process, they uncover a world where salvation comes with a price tag and God's words are used to incite fear in a congregation of believers.

What is the story behind the book?

Homelessness is a huge problem in the U.S. Every age range, from children to the very old, exist in a separate and hidden world on our streets. According to a study by the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty approximately 3.5 million people, 1.35 million of them children, are likely to experience homelessness in a given year (National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty, 2007).

In No Justice, the first book in my Michael Sykora series, two homeless teens made a brief appearance when they helped Nicki out of a difficult jam. I wanted to bring them back and let them tell their story. That’s when Sara popped into my head and led the way.

Sara is a teenage runaway, friends with the two boys, and missing. The problem with runaways is, when they disappear from the streets, no one but their few friends on those same streets notices. Often there is nowhere to turn for help. Michael Sykora works within that lost world and sets out to find Sara.

To be honest, when I began writing this book, I had no idea what had happened to Sara. I don’t outline and only began with that vague premise. As I explored the reasons behind Sara and her friends winding up on the streets, I was led to the few options they might have to reach out for help. Sadly, there will always be people who prey on those who are desperate. Cults are one of the biggest offenders, often masking themselves as Churches and various sanctuaries of hope. Sara stumbled upon one of these.

As I was writing this book, I wasn’t looking to give a lesson in morality or write a societal thesis. I simply wanted to give these lost people, the characters in my head, a voice. I hope that I achieved that and managed to entertain at the same time.

Thanks for stopping by Darcia, and giving us a chance to get to know you and your book. You can find out more about Darcia and her books by following the links below.

Darcia Helle gives voice to the characters trespassing through her mind. She currently has six books published, all variations of the suspense genre. Originally from Massachusetts, Darcia now writes in the sunshine of Florida.

You can find Darcia in the following places:

Website: http://www.darciahelle.com/

Blog: http://www.QuietFuryBooks.com/blog

Her Message Board: http://www.bestsellerbound.com/

Twitter: http://www.Twitter.com/darciahelle

Facebook: http://www.Facebook.com/darcia.helle


kathy stemke said...

Thanks for featuring Darcia.

The homeless really do have a world onto themselves. I was amazed at their inginuity in some of them creating the comforts of home in their environments. One homeless man played the piano like a virtuoso!

It's true, Darcia, society tends to forget about them. Your books are a great way to remind us that they do exist and we should be concerned with them.

Karen Cioffi said...

What an interesting concept, Darcia. I think most of us have no idea how many homeless, including children, there are.

Your book sound intriguing.

The Old Silly said...

This is a post of great interest to me. I've made a personal life study of the homelss - not academic by any means, but a sort of journalistic observation. The main character in my last novel, Beware the Devil's Hug, was a homeless man.

Enjoyed the post, thanks, Darcia, and Kevin for having her on!

Marvin D Wilson

Nancy Famolari said...

Interesting idea to use homeless people. You're right; it is a big problem. Great thing to tackle.

elysabeth said...

Kind of a bit of a flip for Darcia's other suspense/thrillers - Thanks for hosting Darcia today and hopefully she will stop by and make an appearance. E :)

Elysabeth Eldering
Author of the Junior Geography Detective Squad, 50-state, mystery, trivia series

Where will the adventure take you next?


Kevin McNamee said...

Thanks for stopping by and leaving comments. This topic is certainly a very important one. I'm glad to help address it on my blog.

Martha said...

Darcia, interesting book. Good luck. I'm sure it will do well.

Kathy, I agree with you that the homeless "have a world onto themselves."

Darcia Helle said...

Thank you, Kevin, for hosting me! I apologize for my absence yesterday. Life is in the way of my best intentions these days.

Thanks to all who stopped by! I appreciate the comments. One of my favorite characters in this one is Charlie, a homeless guy who helps to solve Sara's disappearance. I hope he puts a face to some of those unseen people out there.

Donna M. McDine said...

Homelessness is horrific and thank you for tackeling such a tough subject matter.

Best wishes,

Magdalena Ball said...

Darcia, I didn't know you'd written so many books. The latest sounds excellent.