Sunday, March 6, 2016

Imaginary Things by Andrea Lochen Book Sale & Excerpt

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TITLE: Imaginary Things

AUTHOR: Andrea Lochen

DISTRIBUTOR:Astor + Blue Editions

ISBN: paperback: 978-1-941286-11-1
ePDF: 978-1-941286-13-5
ePub: 978-1-941286-12-8

PRICE: $10.46 Paperback
$8.99 Kindle

CATEGORIES: Fiction/Contemporary
Women’s Fiction/Family
Fiction/Fantastical elements
Fiction/Magical Realism

DIMENSIONS: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches

PAGES: 312

PUB DATE: April 27, 2015

BISACS: FIC044000/FIC045000

The eBook is normally $8.99, but March 7 - March 21, it will be available for only $1.99!

Long Description

Burned-out and broke, twenty-two-year-old single mother Anna Jennings moves to her grandparents' rural home for the summer with her four-year-old son, David. The sudden appearance of shadowy dinosaurs forces Anna to admit that either she's lost her mind or she can actually see her son's active imagination. Frightened for David's safety, Anna struggles to learn the rules of this bizarre phenomenon and how best to protect him. But what she uncovers along the way is completely unexpected: revelations about what her son's imaginary friends truly represent and dark secrets about her own childhood imaginary friend.

Living next door is Jamie Presswood, Anna's childhood friend who's grown much more handsome and hardened than the boy she once knew. But past regrets and their messy lives are making the rekindling of their complex friendship prove easier said than done. Between imaginary creatures stalking her son and a tumultuous relationship with David's biological father, Anna may find it impossible to have room in her life or her heart for another man. But as David's visions become more threatening, Anna must learn to differentiate between which dangers are real and which are imagined, and whom she can truly trust.

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About the Author

Andrea Lochen is the author of two novels, Imaginary Things and The Repeat Year. She earned her Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the University of Michigan. She teaches at the University of Wisconsin-Waukesha and lives in Johnson Creek with her husband and daughter. For more information, visit

Praise for Imaginary Things

Imaginary Things takes place in a Midwest made so vivid and alive, so much its own character, that it becomes thrillingly believable that as Grandma styles the local brides’ hair into ringlets and the next door neighbor may be fighting a pain-killer addiction, a T-rex is running through the backyard. This isn’t just a psychological thriller, but a love story, and Andrea Lochen has put words to a reality that is as imaginary as it is rock solid.
-Laura Kasischke, author of In a Perfect World
Cleverly written with a perfect touch of magic, Imaginary Things will take you on a journey of the unexpected, and leave you contemplating the power of your own mind.
-Liz Fenton & Lisa Steinke, authors of Your Perfect Life
Rarely does a book surprise me. But Imaginary Things caught me completely off-guard! Andrea Lochen writes another beautiful book, filled with vivid scenes, unforgettable characters, and oodles of heart. With a page-turning plot and an utterly unique concept, Imaginary Things entertains, inspires, and provokes thought--a perfect book club pick.
-Lori Nelson Spielman, author of The Life List
If it's possible to write a witty modern fairy tale about a down-on-her-luck young mother, her erratic ex, and her charming four-year-old boy, Andrea Lochen has done it. Anna is not your typical overwhelmed mom, but her story feels like a friend's. Imaginary Things reminded me again and again that the act of raising a child is a love story, a test of strength, and a thrill ride.
-Susanna Daniel, author of Stilsville

Imaginary Things Excerpt
Chapter One

There was something about driving an ancient Dodge Caravan packed with all of my worldly possessions, including my four year-old son and my cat, that reeked of failure and desperation. The back of the minivan was crammed with duffel bags of clothing and cardboard boxes filled with pirate action figures, perfume bottles, matchbox cars and race track pieces, sketchbooks, a remote-controlled dinosaur, mascara wands and eyeliner pencils, markers and stubby crayons; and black garbage bags stuffed with everything else: David’s rocket ship comforter, my flat iron, winter coats, story books, sandwich baggies full of earrings, and half-eaten boxes of Little Debbies that were probably smushed by now. I’d sold my bed, couch, and kitchen table for a fraction of their worth and had given my TV to Stacy for all the times she’d watched David for free. I’d also asked her to hold on to my rocking chair, the one piece of furniture I couldn’t bear to part with, until I could come back for it. I’d taken bags of clothes and toys that David had outgrown plus my old dresses, purses, and shoes to Goodwill, and still the minivan was bursting with the painfully mundane trappings of my life.

If I’d sped past myself on the highway five years ago (and undoubtedly I would have, because the Caravan wasn’t capable of high speeds), I would have looked at the maroon minivan missing its hubcaps; the back windows blocked by lumpy garbage bags and last minute additions to the trunk like Candy Land, a bag of kitty litter, a dustbuster; and then the driver—a pretty, twenty-two-year-old girl with dirty blond hair and a perfect nose sporting glamorous sunglasses, a bleach-stained T-shirt and frown lines, and thought—where the hell did she go wrong? And then I would’ve zipped past, changed lanes, secure in my own bright future, and forgotten her.

Ha. What a sucker I’d been. What I sucker I still was.

I raised my eyes to the rearview mirror and caught a glimpse of David rocking back and forth in his booster seat, singing quietly to himself, “The tie-ran-a-suss rex had big big teeth, big big teeth, big big teeth. The tie-ran-a-suss rex had big big teeth when dino-suss roamed the earth.” In her pink crate on the seat next to him, Vivien Leigh was mewling her dissatisfaction, as she had been since we’d left Milwaukee an hour ago.

        “How you doing back there, buckaroo?” I called over my shoulder.

        He lifted his blond head and squinted thoughtfully. “Me and kitty are singing,” he said.

        “I can hear that. Do you need to go potty?”

        He squinted again and cocked his head. “No.”

        Which meant yes. I popped a stick of watermelon gum into my mouth. “We’ll stop at a gas station in a few minutes and you can go.”

        The AC had been wheezing and puffing out only a tepid breeze, so as soon as I pulled off at the next exit, I cracked the windows and the pungent, familiar smell of manure blew in. Yep, definitely not far from our new home now. Strands of my hair whipped across my face, and I wished I could remember where I had packed my brush—probably in one of the duffel bags at the very bottom of the pile. Oh well. Who was there to impress at this Podunk gas station anyway? There were only four pumps, and a homemade sign advertising BAIT! BRATS! HOTDOGS! God, I hoped there were indoor bathrooms.           

        “Can kitty come out, Mommy?” David asked as I unstrapped him from his booster seat. Sensing freedom was near, Vivien Leigh was yowling for all she was worth.   

        “No, she’s fine,” I said and held out my arms for him to jump down. “We won’t be long.”

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