In the desert Southwest, it's wildflower season.
It's always amazing to see the blooms appear from
the hard soil, the craggy spaces between rocks,
and the forgotten spots in the landscape.
This style of growth is so compelling to me that
I used the flower's development as inspiration
when developing the characters for wildflowers, the book.
Today let's meet those wildflowers.
Keifer Michaels - Main character. Intelligent and curious. Laments the past, worries about the future, and struggles with panic attacks. Top student, high-achieving soccer player, accomplished abstract artist. Has a secret talent that, if used, would break him open and reveal his truths.
Abi Michaels - Younger sister to Keifer. Savvy observer and straight-forward philosopher. Lives in the moment with a spirit for fun. As a brave risk-taker, she tests boundaries while always...always...living her truth. She is a great teacher.
Sam Michaels - Father to Keifer and Abi. An overworked scientist and biologist who understands environmental change at its deepest levels. Misses his wife, loves his kids, but has difficultly letting down his guard.
The Garner Girls - Keifer and Abi's sense of adventure is rooted to these women. Two aunts, a grandmother, and their mother, Belle Michaels. Abi can embrace their lessons, Keifer is more apprehensive.
Alex - Schoolmate to Keifer. But that's all. Adam knows too much about Keifer for them to have a friendship. Both will be surprised to know how the mysteries..and people...in their lives overlap.
Noah, Ryan, and Larrick - Keifer's friends and dorm mates at LWR, Lower West Regional in Helena, Montana. When school breaks come, the boys go their separate ways, back to their homes, which have changed in varying degrees in the eight years since the evacuation.
Margo - Besides Noah, the person Keifer feels closest to...though something is holding him back. He loves her curls and her birdsong voice, but most of all, he loves how she just gets him.
Max - Beyond the gaggle of girls that are always around Abi, Max is Abi's best friend, in Arizona and at LWR. Abi's ability to relate to all sorts of people leaves a lasting impression on Keifer.
Sydney - An old woman that becomes a new friend. Ex-professor and now inventor, she knows her way around the Restricted Zone.
Desert Rats - The label given to people living in the Restricted Zone. Is their criminal reputation real or fiction?
Murphy and Tara - And here's where the great mystery could be revealed. Who are they? What do they know? Or more importantly, who do they know? Could it be that they know Belle Michaels? Abi hopes so, Keifer's not so sure.