Today we are very excited to share an interview with author Robert John DeLuca (The Covid Kid)!
Read on to learn more about him, his book, and a giveaway!
Meet the Author: Robert John DeLuca
Robert John DeLuca served as a captain in the USMC during Vietnam. He holds BA and MBA degrees from Brown University and the University of Pittsburgh, respectively. He lives in south Texas with his wife and Labrador Floyd.
Texas high school graduate Marshall Morris is set to enter college when the COVID pandemic explodes into his life. Usually unsinkable, he is shaken but endures his “prison-like” quarantine with good cheer, thanks mostly to long chats with girlfriend Mallory.
The devastating loss of senior citizen war veteran buddies who survived combat bullets, but not this bug, leads him to become grimly serious about the pandemic, and he rails against young people who refuse to take precautions. His worst fears are realized when his precious mother is struck down by the dread disease, which he is certain he gave to her.
Though she worsens daily in an ICU, he cannot even visit. He tries to keep busy working at a struggling real estate company. The owner, desperate for cash, becomes the middleman in a bizarre international scheme to inject a bogus miracle cure into COVID patients at a local hospital. Marshall is shocked to learn the surely fatal drug will be given to his mother. He must get to her ICU before it is too late. The hospital’s COVID ward is a fortress. Can he get to her in time?
YABC: What gave you the inspiration to write this book?
As the father of four sons, who I watched grow up in a small Texas town, I was continually fascinated by their antics and escapades. The COVID pandemic gave me an excellent backdrop to merge a youngster’s coming of age with an overwhelming earth-shattering problem.
YABC: Who is your favorite character in the book?
The Covid Kid is one of a series centered on Marshall Morris, an upbeat and delightful young man, who cannot seem to stay out of entangling predicaments, often with amusing results. Even his best intentions seem to go awry.
YABC: Which came first, the title or the novel?
I always put a working title on my novels and change it later after the story is complete when I can step back and reassess what I ended up with. In this case, with the sweeping impact of the pandemic, I kept my working title.
YABC: What scene in the book are you most proud of, and why?
RSP: Of course, there are several. When Marshall gets his first vaccine injection which his friends have convinced him will be in his bottom. Perhaps at the conclusion when Marshall has to literally break into the hospital to save his mom with an entire security staff chasing him combines some real drama without losing the flavor of Marshall’s antics.
YABC: Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you’ve learned as a writer from then to now?
Write about what you know and are familiar with, but always have fun with it. When I start, I have an idea where the story will end up but much less idea how I will get there. I never close my mind to different paths for my characters. I delight in getting them in trouble and then figuring a way to get them out of it.
YABC: What do you like most about the cover of the book?
The concept was to dramatically underscore the impact of COVID, pensive young people, and a small-town Texas setting. I think we accomplished that.
YABC: What new release book are you looking most forward to in 2022?
RSP: “The Battle for Sam Jacinto”. Marshall befriends a group of old vets who are upset because a statue to a USMC comrade Medal of Honor winner is going to be replaced by a shopping center. Marshall and the old guys go to actual battle with water hoses and firecrackers. In the process Marshall bungles his relationship with girlfriend Mallory
YABC: What’s a book you’ve recently read and loved?
RSP: Most recently, I enjoyed several of Mark Greaney’s Gray Man series
YABC: What’s up next for you?
RSP: I also have another Marshall Morris manuscript almost done with the working title “Marshall Morris Goes to Prison”, which should get some of my readers’ attention. It addresses the drug problem and especially fentanyl head on.
YABC: Which was the most difficult or emotional scene to narrate?
It has to be when Marshall’s mom is stricken with COVID, and he is convinced he gave it to her.
YABC: Which character gave you the most trouble when writing your latest book?
It was probably the down and out doctor that would compromise his professional ethics for cash.
YABC: What is the main message or lesson you would like your reader to remember from this book?
The COVID pandemic was real and very serious. Everyone, especially youngsters, need to observe at least minimal social distancing protocols, given that older folks were much more susceptible to serious illness than they were.
YABC: What would you say is your superpower?
My great fortune of having a wonderful wife, four sons, daughters-in law, and ten amazing grandchildren. Oh, and I cannot forget, Floyd, our yellow lab.
YABC: Is there an organization or cause that is close to your heart?
Besides my church, and the United States marine Corps, the Veterans Administration has literally saved my life on more than one occasion.
YABC: What advice do you have for new writers?
Write for your own amusement and satisfaction. Enjoy your characters. And, of course, don’t give up. Rejection is awful but unfortunately unavoidable
YABC: Is there anything that you would like to add?
Enjoy every day of youth you are given. Old age is just around the corner.
Title: THE COVID KID, Another Marshall Morris Adventure
Author: Robert John DeLuca
Release Date: May 2022
Publisher: Stanley Kramer Books
ISBN-13: 978-1-73200596-5-8 (paperback)
ISBN-13: 978-1-7320596-4-1 (ebook)
Also available through Amazon in audio format
Genre: Young Adult Medical Thriller
Age Range: 10-18
~ Giveaway Details ~
Three (3) winners will receive a copy of The Covid Kid and a copy of Justice for a Texas Marshall (Robert John DeLuca) ~International
*Click the Rafflecopter link below to enter the giveaway*