Author Spotlight- C. Lee McKenzie

I love getting to know other authors and their work, so I am trying to do a once a week guest post hightlighting a fellow author. Today’s Author Spotlight is  C. Lee McKenzie, who I met over at YALITCHAT. She is guest posting today about her new release, Alligators Overhead.

Thanks for letting me talk about my book on your blog, Michelle. I appreciate this opportunity a lot. Here’s what the book is about:

Alligators, witches and a spooky mansion aren’t your average neighbors. Unless you live at the edge of the Ornofree swamp in the backwater town of Hadleyville. The town’s bad boy, Pete Riley, may only be twelve, but he’s up to his eyeballs in big trouble, and this time he isn’t the cause. This time the trouble arrives when a legendary hundred-year-old mansion materializes next door and the Ornofree alligators declare war to save their swamp from bulldozers. Things only get worse when Pete’s guardian aunt and several of her close friends vanish while trying to restore order using outdated witchcraft. Now Pete must find the witches and stop the war. He might stand a chance if his one friend, Weasel, sticks with him, but even then, they may not have what it takes.

So why alligators?

I’m asked that question a lot. My answer is, “Why not?” After all, cats have been done. Dogs have been done. Horse stories are everywhere. There are only a few stories with alligators out there. I know they’re not cuddly and cute critters, but they are fascinating when you know a bit about them.

Alligators were common in the Cenozoic era and looked a lot like they do today. In 65 million years they haven’t changed their fashion statement much at all. Now that’s being self-assured, don’t you think?

In the 1980’s American alligators were limited to the Everglades National Park in Florida. They were in danger of extinction because of human beings. Once they were protected, they made a major come back. They’re kind of like Rocky Balboa, the come back king.

Alligators are less aggressive than their cousins, the Crocodiles, and their snout is shorter and broader than the Crocs’. You can tell the difference if you get close enough. I suggest that it isn’t really important to tell the difference.

They lay 20 to 50 eggs in vegetation along marshy banks, and when the hatchlings start yelling, “Let me out!” Mom opens the nest for them to leave the nest.

If the nest is kept hot, only little boy alligators are born–if cool, only girls pop out. As always, girls are way cool.

I know more about alligators than I need to, but it’s great to learn new things and that’s another reason my book is about alligators. I got curious about these scaly reptiles, then I wanted a story to put them in. Hope you found these alligator facts interesting and that you’ll enjoy my book.

About the author:

C. Lee is writer who captures the pulse of adolescent confusion in her Young Adult fiction, Sliding on the Edge and The Princess of Las Pulgas. She admits to revealing a lot of her Old Adult confusion while doing that. Alligators Overhead is her first Middle Grade novel. She lives in California with her husband and assorted animals at the edge of a redwood forest. Lee blogs at The Write Game and she’d love a visit at her website.


Many thanks to C. Lee McKenzie for posting today. You can purchase her book Alligators Overhead here.

If you are an author and you’re interested in doing a guest post, use the contact tab to let me know. I am happy to schedule it.



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This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. C.Lee is all of awesome!! Just love her. Thanks for giving her the spotlight. She deserves it. ;D

  2. this is an awesome post!! Lee obviously has a great sense of humor. and while it it’s REALLY important to be able to tell a Gator from a Croc, any true Florida fan can spot the difference a mile away. 😉 Go Gators!!

    1. The closest I’m ever getting to a gator is Gatorade! 🙂

  3. I’m excited to read this. I think alligators really awesome creatures. Congrats to Lee!

    1. Sounds like a very fun book, doesn’t it? I guess I have to start reading MG again.

  4. This has been a lot of fun, Michelle! Thanks and thanks for the comments. Girls are so cool. Writing girls are even cooler.

  5. Hi Lee! *waves* The book sounds incredible – what boy wouldn’t want to read this? I know the book will do awesome! 😀

  6. Great post, C. Lee. I enjoyed learning about alligators. Never really thought much about them. Until I read your book. My whole attitude about the scaly creatures has now changed. I recommend Alligators Overhead for everyone that likes to meet characters that they won’t soon forget.

  7. I couldnt have said it any better to be honest! keep up the awesome work. You are very talented & I only wish I could write as good as you do 🙂 …

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