Albert Camus

Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Guest Post and Giveaway Mounting the Whale by Colleen McCarty

Published: December 5th, 2013


The self-made and affluent Pierce family is hurled into a seamy kidnapping plot when they receive a text message from Janine—the most troubled of all the Pierce children.

Cartel got me, tell mom

The siblings, drowning in their own problems, are forced to focus on the task at hand: a half-cocked rescue mission that involves a borrowed yacht, a favor from a notorious drug kingpin, and a shocking reunion none of them expected.

When the family decides to sneak into Mexico, mother Cybil is forced to deal with a rival CEO whom she’s developed feelings for in secret. Her only son, Tom, is willing to risk bodily harm to save Janine while his other sisters, Carlyle and Valerie, suspect that the kidnapping is less than legitimate.

The long sea voyage tests the limits of the family’s already frail bonds. Dark secrets of infertility, drugs, gambling and extreme taxidermy begin to float to the surface. But nothing compares to what they begin to learn about their missing sister.

If they’re going to make it out alive, they have to recognize they're fighting the same battles and facing life’s greatest challenges: love, loneliness, and the struggle to find a place in the world.

Why “Mounting the Whale”? 

I thought about the double meaning of the word mounting, and although it worried me that people would think the book was about bestiality of some kind, I couldn’t stray away from the overall theme I think the title conveys. 

For my purposes, mounting refers to stuffing an animal and making it into taxidermy. Todd Novak—the enigmatic Buddhist CEO of STRENGTHbar—reveals a dark secret in the second act of the book. He exposes his hidden taxidermy room to Cybil, his new lover. 

In his public persona, he is openly against animal cruelty, hunting, and even eating animals. The local myth about him is that when he goes deep-sea fishing on his boat with his dedicated crew, he throws back every fish they catch—no matter how big. Cybil has even heard that he threw back a world-record sized tarpon because keeping it would “upset the balance of nature.” 

When she walks into his taxidermy room, Cybil is shocked and intrigued at the duplicity in Todd’s life. There, staring her in the eye, is the world-record tarpon Todd was said to have thrown back. 

He regales her with the tale of catching the fish—“when his light started to go out, I felt mine going out too.” Todd explains that we are not who we have been—what he means is that people can change. We all make choices every day, and even though one day we might have been obsessed with the next kill, endlessly searching for the biggest catch, we can make different choices and be different people. 

Cybil finds this concept intriguing, and feels even closer to Todd now that she knows about his hidden past. But can we change? Cybil explores this question as she embarks on the journey of her life to save her daughter from a supposed kidnapping. 

Cybil finds Todd’s biggest and boldest secret hidden in plain sight aboard his multi-million dollar yacht. In the hull hangs a mounted blue whale. What she does next is both reckless and insane—the type of thing only a desperate woman would do to regain her confidence, power and her ability to love again.

About the author:
I think I always knew I wanted to write, but kept trying to talk myself out of it. In college, I enrolled as an English major, but quickly switched when I realized I had no idea how I would make a living as an English major. I switched to something business-y.

I became an entrepreneur, opening two restaurants and a publishing company before my 28th birthday. But I always felt a tug. It wasn’t that I didn’t love helping people publish their books, and it wasn’t that I didn’t love marketing for my husband and I’s restaurant (Mod’s Coffee and Crepes, bee tee dubs)—there was just something missing.
When I would tell a story to a group of friends, or get really into a great book for example, I felt more alive. Something inside clicked on. So, even though I had a brand new baby (EVA!) and two businesses to run, I started trying to tell a story that I had been thinking about. Most of my writing was done after everyone had gone to bed, between 9pm and 12am, usually. I had a lot of help along the way, but 8 months later it was done.

Now, almost 12 months later, I’m ready to put this baby out into the world. And, I hope you’re ready too. It’s happening December 5th, 2013. There will be lots of ways to get involved, stay tuned here, or sign up for the newsletter (in the top right corner) to get up-to-date info on the book launch.
Love to one, friendship to many, goodwill to all.

Author's US Giveaway
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