THE OCCASIONAL DIAMOND THIEF: Book Tour and Interview with Author J.A. McLachlan

YA Bound Book Tours is organizing a Blog Tour for: The Occasional Diamond Thief by J.A. McLachlanThis tour will run from May 18th to May 29th. Check out the full blog tour schedule below:

The Occasional Diamond Thief
Release Date: 05/15/15
EDGE Publishing

Summary from Goodreads:
What if you learned your father was a thief? Would you follow in his footsteps, learn his "trade"? If you were the only one who knew, would you keep his secret?

When 16-yr-old Kia is training to be a universal translator, she is co-opted into traveling as a translator to Malem. This is the last place in the universe that Kia wants to be—it’s the planet where her father caught the terrible illness that killed him—but it’s also where he got the magnificent diamond that only she knows about. Kia is convinced he stole it, as it is illegal for any off-worlder to possess a Malemese diamond.

Using her skill in languages – and another skill she picked up, the skill of picking locks - Kia unravels the secret of the mysterious gem and learns what she must do to set things right: return the diamond to its original owner.

But how will she find out who that is when no one can know that she, an off-worlder, has a Malemese diamond? Can she trust the new friends she’s made on Malem, especially handsome but mysterious 17-year-old Jumal, to help her? And will she solve the puzzle in time to save Agatha, the last person she would have expected to become her closest friend?

Kia is quirky, with an ironic sense of humor, and a loner. Her sidekick, Agatha, is hopeless in languages and naive to the point of idiocy in Kia's opinion, but possesses the wisdom and compassion Kia needs.

Buy Links:

EDGE Publishing has a Thank you Gift for anyone who buys the print version of the book.  If they send an email to with their Amazon receipt, they will receive a copy of a short story that features Kia.

 Praise for The Occasional Diamond Thief by J. A. McLachlan
*** "J. A. McLachlan is a terrific writer -- wry and witty, with a keen eye
for detail. I've been following her work with interest and delight since
2003. In a world where young-adult fiction is booming, The Occasional
Diamond Thief propels McLachlan to the front of the pack." -- Robert J.
Sawyer, Hugo Award-winning author of FlashForward

"The story is full of humor, danger, fun, and adventure. This is Science
Fiction anyone would love." -- J. Jones, VINE VOICE

"Flawless--The Occasional Diamond Thief was one of those rare stories
where I found myself hanging onto every word. McLachlan delivers a
fast-paced, unpredictable story with perfectly-executed twists.
Descriptions were succinct and epigrammatic with no room for boredom. It
felt so real, it was almost like being in the theater with a surprise
treat at the end. Much like the theater, once the credits have started to
roll and the crowd starts to thin, there was a snippet at the end that you
do not want to miss." --

"Loved it! I haven't read a heroine I loved this much since Katniss
Everdeen. McLachlan's Kia is smart, tough and hilarious, and pairing her
with serene, forgiving Agatha left me laughing long after I finished the
story. The settings were vivid, the plot raced along, and the themes kept
me turning pages. McLachlan combines her love of science fiction, ethics
and good, old-fashioned storytelling in The Occasional Diamond Thief, and
the results couldn't be better. I loved every page." -- Amanda Darling,

"J. A. McLachlan is a remarkable creator of worlds, a remarkable creator
of character, a master of suspense. In short, a remarkable storyteller.
You don’t have to be a young adult to love this book." -- Sheryl Loeffler,
Writer, A Land in the Storytelling Sea

About the Author
J. A. McLachlan was born in Toronto, Canada. She is the author of a short
story collection, CONNECTIONS, and two College textbooks on Professional
Ethics. But speculative fiction is her first love, a genre she has been
reading all her life, and The Occasional Diamond Thief is her second in
that genre, a young adult science fiction novel, published by EDGE Science
Fiction and Fantasy Publishing. After over a decade as a college teacher,
she is happy to work from home as a full-time author now.

Author Links:
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Hello, I’m J. A. McLachlan, the author of The Occasional Diamond Thief. I’m so pleased to be meeting you, and I’d like to thank Danielle for having me here on Poetry and Reviews of a Young Artist today. This blog tour is part of my online launch of The Occasional Diamond Thief, and I’ll have something different at each stop – book excerpts, author and character reveals, vlogs, reviews and blog posts – for you to enjoy. You can find The Occasional Diamond Thief at:
And you can find me at:

Author Interview:
1 How did The Occasional Diamond Thief come about?
When I was teaching English and professional ethics at college, one of my students was an Edoan girl named “Itohan”. I thought it was a lovely name and when she told me it meant “mercy” in Edoan, I knew I had to write a character with that name. A couple of years later I did some research into the Edoan language and the characters in this book were “born”. I wanted a feisty main character, though, and the name “Mercy,” however lovely, didn’t seem right. So I gave that name to the father she loved, and picked another Edoan name – Akhi√©. That name, which her father gave her when he became ill, means sorrow. Kia is teased all through childhood for her name until she hates it, so she shortens it to Kia.
For me, a story always begins with the characters. I have an idea of the story line and the themes, but I can’t start writing until I know the characters so well they start talking to me, arguing with each other in my mind. When their voices are that clear and loud, I have to get them out onto paper. I keep paper and pens close to the lamp beside my bed for when they wake me up in the middle of the night. I can’t tell you how much my husband, who’s a light sleeper, hates that!

2 Why did you write the book?
Kia made me. Really, she’s very persistent. But seriously, I write a book when I fall in love with a character, and have to, and I mean NEED to, tell her story. Or his, but usually I write about female characters.

3 What are you working on now?
I’m writing an historical fiction novel about two sisters who both want to grow up to be queens. Only one of them does, and it doesn’t turn out at all as she expected. It took me a year to research the book. I’m also writing another novel about Kia and Agatha, and their next adventure together. I’m not writing these books at the same time, but they’re both waithing to be written, and remember what I said earlier about the characters demanding I write their story? Well, you should hear the raucous in my head.

4 Who is The Occasional Diamond Thief for?
Oh, everyone. But maybe not readers who like horror or hard-core science fiction. I’m more interested in character and story than in the future of science and technology, so I would call it ”soft” science fiction, or speculative fiction. People who don’t normally read speculative fiction have found it very accessible and enjoyable. The planet Kia goes to is very backward, with medieval undertones, so the novel has been called fantasy by some readers who enjoy fantasy, although there is neither magic nor mythical creatures involved. There’s some romance involved, and both adult and young adult readers seem to like it equally. I think it’s just a good, fast-paced story about interesting characters, with very broad appeal.

Check here for the other places I’ll be from May 18th until May 29th:

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