Fans of coming-of-age stories will enjoy this YA contemporary book series!
Off the Grid: Book One (The Jamie Keller Mystery Series 1), by EN McNamara
When Jamie Keller's father is killed in Iraq by a roadside bomb, her mother decides to combat the financial and emotional stress by moving the family from Hamilton, Ohio to the rural town of Promise, Oregon.
Fourteen-year-old Jamie narrates the tale of the journey, intermingling descriptions of family dynamics with her own personal philosophy of life.
The victims of Jamie's scrutiny include: older sister Jenny, who listens to praise music and wears a WWJD bracelet; younger brother Jake, contained and brainy, with know-it-all tendencies; and little sister Jana, lover of animals and sometimes the comic relief.
In Reno, Nevada, the mystery begins when Jamie's mother fails to pick the kids up at the mall as had been previously arranged.
After waiting for hours in the blazing heat, brother Jake finally goes in search of his mom only to return with an amazing story. He has located the car, and everything in it is intact (including the family's pet cats), but Mrs. Keller is nowhere to be found. Intensive searching proves futile. Their mother has vanished!
Nervous about becoming wards of the state of Nevada, and fearful of being put in separate foster homes, the Keller kids decide to avoid authority, choosing instead to take the gamble, and continue on to Promise, Oregon.
On the way into town, a giant JESUS banner is the first sign that Promise is in a bible belt. Jenny is thrilled, Jamie, not so.
Upon arriving at the ranch, the Kellers are met with further disappointment when they discover that the 'ranch' is nothing more than an old trailer, situated off the grid. Jake is in his element, with the challenge of solar panels, batteries and generators, but the girls are far from enchanted.
War, religion, world peace, inner peace, dealing with financial stress and self sufficiency are some of the key topics in this often humerous story story.
Off the Grid is a contemporary novelette directed at a young teen audience but enjoyed by all ages.
More books in the The Jamie Keller Mystery Series series
Get on the mailing list
Meet the Author
My name is EN McNamara and I'm the author of The Jamie Keller Mystery Series.
As I scan the popular YA titles, I can't help but notice vampires, sorcerers, werewolves and unicorns crowd the shelves. Often the theme is good over evil, light over dark, along with the message: You are the ruler of your own destiny. The Jamie Keller Mysteries are about real people, but the message is the same.
I believe our mission in this life is to create our world, and the earlier we learn this critical lesson, the happier and more peaceful our lives will be. There is a hitch: negative thinking blocks our power. Before we can be masters of our universe, we must get a handle on our thought process. A simple concept, but not always easy. My main character, Jamie Keller is learning these lessons - sometimes the hard way.
I am attracted to writing for YA audiences because books were so meaningful to me when I was growing up. I also enjoy the middle-school crowd, as I find they possess a high level of hilarity along with very open minds. Having been a music teacher, I've rock and rolled with the best of them.
The Jamie Keller Mystery Series are about everyday people. The kids in the story are not super heroes. They go to school, have chores, and worry about money and grades. They experience young love, unrequited love and the misery of jealousy. They have misunderstandings with friends and family members. They do good deeds, and they make mistakes. They dream - and sometimes they make their dreams come true.
Like the family in the Jamie Keller Mystery Series, I live on an off the grid lavender farm in western Oregon. We rely on solar panels, windmill, and wood-stove. It's a true one horse farm and we process the lavender ourselves. Come visit! lordandladylavender.com
Folks are sometimes curious about the cover art. Yes, in the spirit of self-sufficiency I did my own art-work and editing. The editing is an on-going process and quite an education - Such a shame I was more interested in socializing then studies when I was a student.
Readers will relate to the characters in Off the Grid, Over the Edge, In the Groove and On the Brink. The series can be read out of order but it's best to start at the beginning. If you do enjoy The Jamie Keller Mystery Series (or even if you hated it) would you kindly leave a review on Amazon.
Book 5 in the series, Under the Weather, will be released in 2015.
Happy reading Everybody,
And thanks for adding The Jamie Keller Mystery Series to your collection