Friday, June 22, 2012


The Twenty (Barronlands Trilogy #1) by Claudia Carozza

The Twenty (Barronlands Trilogy, #1)
Imagine living in a time when infertility runs rampant and babies are no longer being born. The world is crumbling around you as people start talking about the end. This is the world Hazel DeSales grew up in. After her mother dies from a mysterious cancer, Hazel finds herself taking care of her younger sister Netty and alcoholic father.

It's not until twenty women, known as the Elect, become pregnant all across the Barronlands when things start looking up. Hazel and Netty apply for jobs working as domestics in the Antioch Center where the Elect will be taken care of and protected. Hazel feels change in the air and her outlook for the future starts to improve.

But she soon learns that change is not without consequence. Rumors are brewing about a government cover up and Hazel finds herself in the wrong place at the wrong time. So begins the unraveling of secrets that uncover things from her past and rattle her future. Hazel is determined to seek the truth and promises herself to do whatever it takes to succeed.

I found "The Twenty" to be an absolutely captivating read.  When I read the blurb the first thing that came to mind was The Children of Men by P.D. James.  There's something about a society that's been decimated by infertility and the prospect of human extinction that I find fascinating.  The characters in this book are so well rounded and likable.  I immediately liked and respected Hazel.  She is selfless and will do whatever it takes to protect the people she cares about.  She's self assured and amazingly strong willed, and when things get tough she squares her shoulders and marches ahead, even pushing everyone else behind her.  Her sister, Netty, while still a likable character, is much more passive and even a little coddled.  I love our two male characters, Shane and Luka.  It's not often that I am faced with a love triangle where I don't immediately know which guy I want the girl to end up with...actually, I don't think that's ever happened.  Until now.  I love them both!  Shane is more quiet and laid back, yet he's extremely passionate about what he believes in.  Luka, on the other hand, is more demanding and controlling, but he definitely has a softer side.  They are both amazing characters.  The action and mystery in this book had me completely enthralled, and the ending left me begging for more.  Seriously...I begged!  "The Twenty" is the first book of the Barronlands Trilogy, and I simply cannot wait to get my hands on the next thrilling story so I can see where Hazel and her friends end up and what forces they are up against. 

Find "The Twenty" for Kindle HERE.

Vist Claudia's Website.

Find Claudia on Goodreads.


Meet Claudia Carozza:
Hi everyone! I live in NJ and I'm indie author of the The Twenty, first book of the Barronlands Trilogy. I mostly write Young Adult dystopian, paranormal, and fantasy fiction. Reading is my first obsession and writing is my second. I love reading all genres especially those mentioned above.
I love drinking cold coffee (not ice, just cold from too much milk), I order french toast with a side of toast, and I put syrup on everything. I love watching funny movies, reading movie trivia, online shopping, Sunday dinners, and being outside on beautiful days. I have a B.A. in writing from Rowan University.

20 Questions with Claudia

1. Do you have a favorite book, one that you go back to over and over?
I rarely re-read books. There are so many new books on my to-read list that I'm always anxious to start a new one. I do plan on re-reading Harry Potter with my son when he's old enough.

2. Did you always know that you wanted to write?
I've always had a love for writing even as a little girl. About eight years ago, I was a double major in college, studying writing and teaching. Four years later, I was half way through my student teaching when I realized teaching was something I chose more as a practical choice rather than something I really enjoyed doing. So, I took a big leap and dropped my teaching major and graduated with a degree in Writing Arts instead. I always felt that I had a story waiting to burst out of me and ever since then I knew writing was the only thing I ever wanted to do.

3. Who or what was your inspiration to write?
My inspiration to write comes from all the great books I have read. I love when I become emotionally connected with a story so much so that I'm sad when it ends. As an avid reader, I know how fulfilling a great book can be and it's always been a dream of mine to write a story that provides that experience for someone else. To me, there's no better reward than when someone connects with the characters and world you's a great feeling.

4. Do you have a favorite place to read?
Favorite place to read is in bed at night.

5. To write?
Wherever quiet place in the house I can sneak away to.

6. Favorite author?
J.K. Rowling

7. Favorite genre?
Paranormal romance and Fantasy

8. Bookmarks or dog ears?
Dog ears

9. Dust jacket on or off while reading a hardback?
I loathe dust jackets...definitely off! lol!

10. Paper books or ebooks?
Ebooks. I love that I can buy a book in just a few minutes on my Kindle.

11. What book would you like to see made into a movie?
I hope they reconsider making The Power of Six sequel. I liked the I am Number Four movie and was bummed when I read they shelved the second movie.

12. Favorite comfort food?
Cheese fries and cookies and cream ice cream...sometimes consumed together if the situation calls for it.

13. What are your pet peeves?
I asked my husband what my pet peeves are and he burst out laughing... Needless to say he mentioned a few. To narrow the list down, I'll say messy closets and toothpaste in the sink.

14. What is the first book you remember reading as a child?
The Stinky Cheeseman and Other Fairly Stupid Tales by Jon Scieszka.

15. What are you reading right now?
I'm reading Insurgent by Veronica Roth and Immortal Prophecy by fellow indie author Samantha Adams.

16. How much time do you spend every day reading?
I usually can fit an hour or two at night after I put my son to bed. I read until my eyes are too tired to keep open.

17. Writing?
I fit writing time whenever I can. The time I spend writing varies day to day but on a good day I can write for a twelve hour stretch. It doesn't happen often but when it does it's great!

18. Who is your favorite character in your Barronlands series?
Hazel without question. She's down-to-earth and not afraid to take charge. Her unassuming confidence makes her a serious threat to those who underestimate her. In Book 2, we are really going to see how far she'll push herself mentally and emotionally. She has a lot on her plate, not to mention she's caught in a tug of war between two particular people!

19. What can we expect from you in the future?
I'm furiously typing away Book 2 of Barronlands and plan to have it out by the end of the summer. I'm also working on a new storyline called the Reawakening Series which is a paranormal romance. I'm having a lot of fun with new characters and delving into their world. I plan to have the first book, Awake, out sometime late fall of this year.

20. If you could be a superhero what super power would you want to have?
I would want to be Elastigirl...seems like a versatile power that could be really handy!


Claudia has kindly offered up 2 autographed copies of "The Twenty"!!  Be sure to enter below!

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