Did You Catch It?
So, people who know me know that I love making references to things I love/enjoy/find humorous. There are several hidden references (a/k/a Easter Eggs) or shout-outs to friends and family throughout my stories. Did you catch any? If not, here’s a handy list.
**WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD!**
It is strongly recommended that you read the books first!
The Curse of Moose Lake
In Chapter 11, Phoenix meets a boy with a bunch of comic books and spots this in his locker at school: “There’s a poster for a game I recognize called Mystic Universe with an axe-wielding orc roaring front and center.” This game is a reference to World of Warcraft which I have played since “vanilla” WoW.
This one is more like an anti-shout-out. Phoenix discovers that her friend Ashley is a fan of a movie called Love Moon which is about romancing vampires and werewolves. Sound familiar? Well, that’s probably because there is now an entire literary category dedicated to that theme typically referred to as “paranormal romance.” I used Love Moon to poke fun at the stereotypical YA novels that when paranormal creatures are afoot someone obviously has to fall in love with them.
If you have ever visited my boards on Pinterest, then you’ve probably realized that I’m a big Supernatural fan. There are a smattering of references to the show (about a pair of brothers that hunt monsters and supernatural creepers) throughout the book. There are physical similarities between Jared Padalecki and Deputy Jared Graham, who also share a first name. You may have also noticed certain physical similarities between James Krushnic and one Misha Collins. I would also note that Krushnic is Misha’s actual last name.
What can I say? I felt that Supernatural deserved a big nod due to it’s influence on the story.
In Chapter 19, when Ben’s mother shows up to take him to the hospital she gives four loud knocks on the door. If you’re a big Doctor Who fan, you may have taken this as an ill omen that the Doctor was about the die. Knowing that she was going to knock loudly to announce her presence, I couldn’t resist making it four times as a very subtle shout-out to Doctor Who (you may also realize that song “Four Knocks” is on my book playlist).
In Chapter 20 we get our first look at Jefferson’s prized car, a 1970 Oldsmobile 442, a/k/a the “Green Monster.” This was put in as a tribute to my father who is a big car enthusiast and used to own a similar 442 (although his was a convertible, not a hardtop, as he likes to remind me). The technical specifications for the car came directly from him and he also helped with the nickname for the vehicle which is the name of an actual car that had been strapped with an aircraft engine. No, seriously. Go here.
In Chapter 3, Phoenix goes to watch a movie with her friends and arrive during the middle of “the opening credit sequence with ladies dancing in some bizarre flashing color intro.” What movie are they watching? Why, it is a James Bond movie.
The Bite of Winter
In Chapter 17, Phoenix reads a book over the shoulder of another agent to pass the time while traveling to La Crosse: “It’s some science fiction story about aliens being discovered through a black hole.” The book the agent is reading is The Mote in God’s Eye which happens to be one of my father’s favorite sci-fi stories.
If you are not familiar with the “Traveling Shovel of Death,” I shall direct you to this handy Wikipedia page. In essence, the Traveling Shovel of Death is an inside-joke among the participants of NaNoWriMo. It’s a shovel that’s been going around the writerly world murdering characters in books. In Chapter 21, Phoenix comes across a shovel which she then uses to take on a pack of vampires as my nod of the hat to NaNoWriMo.
In Chapter 2, we’re introduced to Agent Melody Boyd, a very capable agent with curly blonde hair. Again, if you’ve ever visited my Pinterest boards, you may have noticed that I’m a Doctor Who fan. What better way to give a nod to the show than have a character named Melody (the Doctor’s wife)?