Spirit of the Northwoods by Auria Jourdain

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Spirit of the Northwoods

by Auria Jourdain


GENRE: Young Adult



Struggling to settle into a new school, junior Shannon Colfax finds herself entangled in a feud with popular football jock Brent Duray after he bullies her autistic twin brother, Shane. After an unlikely savior comes to her rescue—Brent’s friend, Cody Williams—the jock and his entourage devise an immediate retaliation plan: Duray promises to leave Shane alone if Shannon and Cody survive the infamous Paulding Light Challenge on Halloween night. Desperate for vindication, they take the dare…but are the local legends truly paranormal, or are they dealing with something more sinister?




Shane grunted as Shannon and Cody called out, but he refused to stop. It felt good to be out of that stuffy old room. The pressure in his chest had just let up, and it had taken all of his strength to keep calm. When he heard the hawk soaring above them, he knew. This was the only way to go.

Gazing up at the tall hemlocks that towered above him, Shane smiled as the birds chirped in the breeze. With every step he took, the loamy humus sprang up under his feet. He inhaled deeply, the rich, spicy scent of the pines drifting along with the afternoon breeze.

Shannon called his name again, and Shane stopped for a moment to let them catch up. Then, he ran ahead once more. His sister was getting angry with him, but Shane didn’t care. He focused on the dense trees, touching and smelling everything in his sights—the white bark of the birch peeling off in sheets, a stick on the ground enveloped in flaky lichen, a burned-out log covered in soft, springy moss. Shane shuffled through the fallen leaves as the earthy smell filled his nostrils, his anxiousness dissipating with every rustle.

All of a sudden, Shane stopped as a strange and wonderful euphoria washed over him. Glancing upward, the hawk circled high above his head, calling out to him. Follow me, Shane…follow me! It was guiding him. With a crooked grin, Shane nodded. The spirits of the Northwoods were all around them.



AUTHOR Bio and Links:

An avid reader from an early age, Auria Jourdain has fond childhood memories of spending quiet afternoons with a book in her hand. She loved the “happily ever after” sweet teen romances, and when she came of age, she plunged into the world of historical romance with fervor, transporting herself to a bygone time. Her favorites were Regency, but as a girl brought up in a common home, she was disheartened that most of the novels of this era focus on the nobility and wealth. Auria set out to write her own romance, encompassing her passion for French Revolutionary history and her innate sense of goodwill for the common man. An idealist at heart, she writes heroes and heroines that struggle to find acceptance in their world.o go along with this theme, two years ago, Auria wrote a Young Adult novel during NaNoWriMo for her 17 year old autistic son who is struggling to make his own way in the world. Looking to educate people about this mysterious disorder, she wrote Spirit of the Northwoods for him and set it in their hometown in the Upper Peninsula. Her release coincides with Autism Awareness month, April 2016, and all proceeds for this novel will be donated to the Autism Society of America. Auria hopes that someday we can break down the social barriers and forgo stereotypical judgments that harm our world so that people like her son can form positive relationships with others.


Auria lives in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan with her husband of twenty years, her four children (ages eight to eighteen), and two golden retrievers. A rather new transplant to the area, she loves the changing of the seasons, and she is currently working on a contemporary romantic suspense trilogy set in her rough and rugged homeland. Silence the Northwoods is set at a local ski resort in her hometown of Ironwood, Michigan—the ski capital of the Midwest. Silence the Waters takes place during the summer on the dangerous river ways that flow into Lake Superior in the Keweenaw Peninsula; and Silence the Birchwoods is an autumn tale set on Sugar Loaf Mountain, near Marquette, Michigan. All three involve murder, mystery, and romance, of course.

Auria spends her the long winters plotting and scheming her next book, and in the mild summers, she and her husband devote every waking moment hiking and kayaking the Northwoods. An amateur photographer, she lives fifteen miles from the shores of Lake Superior, and her muse has been piqued by the awe-inspiring beauty that surrounds her. Although she hasn’t officially acquired “Yooper” status yet, she can’t envision living anywhere else.


Find me here!








Auria Jourdain will be awarding a $20 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


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8 responses to “Spirit of the Northwoods by Auria Jourdain”

  1. Good morning! Thanks so much to Independent Authors for hosting me today. Spirit of the Northwoods is my first Young Adult novel, and it’s very special to me. I wrote it for my 17 year old autistic son in the hopes that I’d start a conversation about teen bullying and the impact it has on both autistic people and their families. One of the main characters, Shane Colfax, has autism, and when the school jock Brent Duray makes fun of him, his twin sister, Shannon, sticks up for him. She never thought Brent’s best friend Cody Williams would come to their rescue. The scene above is one of my favorites. I wrote Shane as non-verbal. Watching my son go through meltdowns over the years, I tried to channel how an autistic person would cope with being in a difficult situation, especially if they couldn’t communicate their feelings with others. This book has a little bit of everything: murder/mystery, action, teen angst, sweet romance, and even paranormal. I’d love to answer any questions you have! I’ll be in and out all day 😉

    ~Auria Jourdain~

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Mai 😀 I usually read eBooks because they’re more accessible, but I love having a paperback in my hands…if you drop an eReader in the bathtub or swimming pool, you’re up a creek 😉 . I have copies of my favorite books in hardback — my favorite authors are Nelson DeMille, Michael Crichton, and George R.R. Martin. Ironic….none of them write romance! My favorite historical romance writers are Grace Callaway and Pamela Clare, but I don’t have paperbacks of their’s. But I still have copies of my favorite historicals that I read way back in 1989 from Jo Goodman and Constance O’Banyon…they’re the reasons I wanted to become an historical writer in the first place I’ll admit the only YA novel I’ve read was Twilight, and I read the first one and stopped…I wasn’t crazy about it. My daughter’s been a huge help with this book since she reads everything she can in the genre. Great question, Mai!! Keep them coming!


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