Guest Post, Spotlight & Contest By Alan Oakes Author Of Between Micah And Amos

Follow The Tour, And Be Sure To Leave A Comment At Each Stop For A Better Chance To Win The Contest, Good Luck!

Alan will be awarding gift cards to three randomly drawn commenters during the tour. The characters are always going to Sonic – so he is giving away gift cards in the names of the main characters: Grand Prize: Billy-sized $25.00 2nd Prize: Manuel-sized: $15.00 3rd Prize: Ashleigh-sized: $10.00 If the winner prefers, they can get either an Amazon or BN.com gift card instead of the Sonic card.

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Like a flash, the discharge from the gun lit up the inside of the dimly lit, filthy trailer Ashleigh called home. Ashleigh sat curled up on the stained pink carpet next to the pull-out bed in the living area where she slept. The victim lay dead, slumped against the wall of the trailer. Ashleigh looked at
the motionless body. She was petrified.

Meet Ashleigh Mae, a seventeen year old high school senior living in the small town of Micah, Texas. Her boyfriend Billy calls her a wild child. Her momma is always telling her she makes bad choices. No matter what, no one really understands her.

Ashleigh dreams of a life with Billy. Their love is true, she thinks. When her mother forces them to leave Micah in the middle of the night and move in with her momma’s old boyfriend Casey, on the outskirts of a town called Amos, Ashleigh’s life is torn apart.

This is her fight to get it back….

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Guest Post By Alan, I Asked Alan Was What Inspired Him To Write This Book?

My Inspirations By Alan Oakes

When I first set out to write Between Micah and Amos, I wanted to share the plight of Ashleigh Mae, an at risk teenager living on the outer fringes of an expanding Texas metropolis. I wanted to tell a story of a girl who suffers abuse who is just trying to survive, and if she is capable and lucky enough, maybe she can pull out of the life circumstances that surround her.

I suppose anyone who has worked in a high school starts wondering – we see these beautiful, yet very wounded children – and we get to wondering, gee, if only that young person was brought up in a stable home, their whole life would be different. Their whole outlook on the possibilities of life could be altered.

Between Micah and Amos isn’t just a teen romance book or an exploration of a love triangle. There are more complex layers about Texas culture that I wanted to explore. In the story there is juxtaposition between two families. Ashleigh Mae and her mother, along with her mother’s boyfriend Casey make up one family. They struggle with mental illness, addictions, and abuse. The world keeps moving too fast for them – it is like a merry go round they try to hop on for a while – but it is spinning too fast and they can’t hold on – and so they get flung off. Maybe after a while, they stop trying to get on the dang thing and create a different world just for themselves.

Ashleigh’s new boyfriend Manuel comes from completely different circumstances. His parents grew up working in the fields, but through tremendous ambition, hard work, and a dose of luck, they pulled themselves up. I could have chosen to make Manuel’s family white, but I wanted to tell the story of an aspect of Texas Latino culture that doesn’t get revealed as much.

I wanted the Garcias to embody so many families I know – that of being hard working business people. There are expectations for Manuel in his house that he will be even more successful than his parents. His association with Ashleigh Mae, is the last thing Manuel’s mother Rosa wants for her son.

I’m drawn to heroes and characters that are not all good and not all bad. If you get to their individual way of thinking, their actions make sense to some degree – or at least they can be rationalized.

I plan for Between Micah and Amos to continue. There is something about these characters and their inner conflicts that propels the story forward in my imagination. I finished Crossfire, a novella that features, Billy, Ashleigh Mae’s confederate flag belt buckle-wearing boyfriend. It takes place about four months after Between Micah and Amos.

Between Micah and Amos tells the story of broken dreams and bold ambition – forgotten people with busted up lives and hard scrapping individualists fighting for a piece of the Texas dream. The young people are witness and product of it all.

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The house band was midway into a song that got everyone out of their seats. Both Ashleigh and Billy were good dancers, having learned at a young age. Even though her head still hurt from hitting the rifle with the back of her head, Ashleigh loved the feeling of Billy holding her in his arms and guiding her across the floor. Colored lights flashed overhead and the sound of vintage guitars filled her ears. She looked at Billy and thought how handsome he was. She grabbed his butt and pulled his hips closer to hers as the two moved effortlessly around the floor. Soon the music stopped and everyone applauded. Then the band moved into a slow number with most of the couples remaining on the dance floor.

Billy wrapped his tanned, muscular arms around Ashleigh. She breathed in his smell, part Irish Spring soap, part sweat, part oil—and rested her head on his powerful chest which was only covered with his standard wife-beater T. She felt safe in his embrace—as if nothing else in the whole world could hurt her or bother her if she stayed just like this. Ashleigh closed her eyes and was lost in the moment.

“Hey,” she heard a woman’s voice call out as she felt her-self being shoved.

Ashleigh opened her eyes. It was the fat chic!

“What the hell are you doin’ with my man?” she shouted at Ashleigh.

Before Ashleigh could uncouple herself from Billy, the fat chic attacked, hurling a flurry of punches at Ashleigh’s face.

“You tell her, Billy! Who were you with last night?” the fat chic roared. “Who did you do this mornin’?

You tell her!” The bouncer had a good hold of her now and dragged her out of the dance hall.

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Author Bio:

Alan Oakes is a Graduation Coach and Counselor at a Texas High School. He is a featured writer for Green Building and Design magazine and a contributor to other magazines including Texas

Architect and New American Luxury. In the past, he served as Associate Pastor of Saint Austin Catholic Church and Director of Catholic Campus Ministry at UCLA.

Alan holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the William Allen White School of Journalism at the University of Kansas and a Master of Arts degree from the Washington Theological Union in
Washington, D.C.

To learn more about the author, feel free to go to his website: http://www.alanoakes.net/

Websites for Between Micah and Amos:

Publisher Link:



Buy links:

Ebook Amazon:

Paperback Amazon:

Ebook Barnes and Noble:


  1. Thank you for such a great tour. I have enjoyed it immensely.


  2. It's been a great tour! Happy Easter!

    shadowrunner1987 AT gmail DOT com

  3. Thanks Jody for closing out the tour today. I have had a wonderful time. I will be awarding prizes throughout the day.

    It is fitting the tour should end before Easter, because ultimately, Between Micah and Amos is about hope and new life.

    Please pray for my furry companion, my wonderful golden retriever, Lord Winston. I'm about to take Winston to the vet this morning for a double operation and I hope he pulls through and isn't in too much pain.

    TTL -- : )

  4. The second paragraph of your post is so telling. I work in a community college and see so many young people who could have everything going for them if they had had just a little more help and stability at home. We offer as much as we can--it's never too late--but so many of them have so much to overcome already!
    catherinelee100 at gmail dot com

  5. All the best for your dog, I hope it's nothing serious?


  6. Alan,
    Your very welcome it was my pleasure to do this tour. I do believe it was a pretty big hit, good luck with your writing's Alan and God bless.

    God bless,

  7. Thank you all so very much for the wonderful comments and the input of what you thought of this book, I enjoy hearing about this. This has been the biggest hit yet as far as book tours go for me, so thank you all so very much. Because it could not have happened without all of you.
    God bless,

  8. Sometimes the kids get lucky and have caring teacher or councelors who help them and I think your book has the right message, hopefully your students and young readers who need this message the most will appreciate your story.

    moonsurfer123 AT gmail DOT com

  9. Anybody else out there clean when they are nervous? -- I'm expecting the call from the vet for Winston. My house is SPOTLESS - Even the roses are deadheaded!lol!

    Thanks everyone for all of the good wishes. It is really exciting to see young people who wanted to give up stick it out and graduate.

    Everyone plays a part in helping our kids for sure. : )

  10. I don't much about texas culture so I am interested to learn about those dynamics going on in the story. Are there elements that you think are unique to texas?

    fencingromein at hotmail dot com

  11. I hope everything went well with the vet?

    I usualy backe when I'm nervous :)

    lennascloud at gmail dot com

  12. I DEFINITELY clean when I'm nervous Alan...it's very bad...the night before finals in college and I'd be staying up all night scrubbing my bathroom floor...lol

    andralynn7 AT gmail DOT com

  13. I everyone -- Winston is home! He had a double operation -- he had a tumor and when they were examining that,they noticed he had an absess tooth, which had to be pulled. He is stitched up all over - but still spirited!

    Texas culture -- I wanted people to have a flavor of Texas culture today and all of the role changes. Another teach I work with said that was her favorite part - that it captured what life is like for teens in central Texas.

    Tomorrow I will be contacting the winners. I wish I could give you all something. It has been just wonderful spending the month with you! Feel free to 'like' the Between Micah and Amos page on facebook. Please feel free to suggest the book to a young person who is struggling. I can't thank you enough for making this such a wonderful experience!

  14. Alan,
    I am so glad to hear that Winston is okay, oh goodness, I am sure you were pretty worried. I want to thank you for giving us a chance to spend the month with you as well it has been very enlightening and enjoyable to read your stories. One reason in particular I enjoyed this tour so well is that my husband and I live in Indiana now, and I am disabled and the arthritis just tears me up worse in the winters here. Texas just so happened to be one State we were going to look into for information. But we are looking into smaller towns, but having bigger town close because of my health, so this was a very cool tour for me. I can not wait to read your next YA book, and if you have one out now (lol) let me know! Take care and my prayers to you all and Winston.
    God bless,

  15. Thanks for the giveaway! I like the sound of this book, but I think the book cover could use a little polishing.
    mestith at gmail dot com

  16. Meghan,
    Thanks for stopping in and commenting on this book and the cover. All comments can help an Author out when it comes to feedback.

    Have an awesome day :-)

    God bless,

  17. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.
    MBA college in Punjab

  18. Aarya,
    Well thank you for the very nice comment and I hope you continue to keep coming back to see me. You should enter some of the giveaways, you never know you just might win one. Again thank you for the wonderful comments and I hope you enjoy each and every visit.

    God bless,


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