We are so excited to bring you a guest post today from Sheryl Scarborough – author of To Catch A Killer! Before we share that, how about we tell you about the book!To Catch a Killer by Sheryl Scarborough
(Website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads)Also by this author: To Catch a Killer
Published by Tom Doherty Associates on February 7th 2017
Genres: Mysteries & Detective Stories, Thrillers & Suspense, Young Adult Fiction
Erin Blake has one of those names. A name that, like Natalee Holloway or Elizabeth Smart, is inextricably linked to a grisly crime. As a toddler, Erin survived for three days alongside the corpse of her murdered mother, and the case—which remains unsolved—fascinated a nation. Her father's identity unknown, Erin was taken in by her mother's best friend and has become a relatively normal teen in spite of the looming questions about her past.
Fourteen years later, Erin is once again at the center of a brutal homicide when she finds the body of her biology teacher. When questioned by the police, Erin tells almost the whole truth, but never voices her suspicions that her mother's killer has struck again in order to protect the casework she's secretly doing on her own.
Inspired by her uncle, an FBI agent, Erin has ramped up her forensic hobby into a full-blown cold-case investigation. This new murder makes her certain she's close to the truth, but when all the evidence starts to point the authorities straight to Erin, she turns to her longtime crush (and fellow suspect) Journey Michaels to help her crack the case before it's too late.
Book Crush Tell-All: This Journey Isn’t A Destination
As my young adult mystery, To Catch A Killer, hits the streets I’m excited for readers to get to know the characters that—up until now—have only rattled around in my head. This story follows three main girl characters, who combine their special skills—Erin Blake, (the forensic girl,) Spam (the techie,) and Lysa, (the conscience.)— to find out things for the kids at school. This service brings in a little extra cash, but mostly is a cover so that Erin can refine her actual forensic skills to the point where she can identify her mother’s killer.
The girl characters were really fun to write. But the character that took the most thought and detail was Journey Michaels, Erin’s popular boy-crush and… her first suspect. Opening the story with Erin’s crush as the number one murder suspect immediately put her off balance and it set off warning bells for Spam and Lysa.
Next I had to figure out the boy character and it turns out that writing boy characters is a lot more work than you might think. First of all, boys don’t talk very much. So, you can’t rely on just dialog for the 411 into who they are. And, when boys do talk, they frequently don’t talk about the things most girls want to hear. They’ll talk about sports or cars or robots. Heck, they’ll even talk about girl’s shoes, if they have to. Because the one thing they really don’t want to talk about are their feelings.
I have a son and when I look back, nearly all of our important conversations happened while we were in the midst of doing something. I would want to stop, sit down and talk it out. But the minute we would do that my son would clam up again. I wrote down in my notes: Journey and Erin come together while actively investigating the murder of their teacher. Emphasis on actively!
The final thing I needed was the glue to bond and hold them together.
It’s been a lot of years, but I do still remember my first boyfriend, his name was Roger Clark. Want to know how old Roger made himself so memorable for so many years? He gave me five valentines. FIVE! In fifth grade, five valentines qualified as a grand gesture.
No spoilers, but once Journey has his grand gesture, the die is cast and he and Erin are on their way to becoming another book couple.