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If you would like to contact me for any reason other than spam, click here or write to me at:

michael (at) michaelnorthrop (dot) net

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Please understand that I get a tremendous number of messages asking for help with homework assignments and book reports and sometimes I am just too swamped (seriously, if I were any more swamped, I’d be a frog) to answer. Also, I am too old to do homework.

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For matters involving the dotting of i’s and/or crossing of t’s, I am represented by the inimitable Sara Crowe at Pippin Properties, Inc.:

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77 Comments

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  1. Michaela / Jan 14 2012

    Dude I loved ur book trapped!!!!! But I was wondering if u were gonna make like a sequel to it?!?! Pllllleeeeeaase do!!!!!!

  2. Michael / Jan 15 2012

    Thanks, Michaela! I have some ideas for a sequel, but I have another book or two I have to write first. I was also thinking of writing a follow-up short story before then. Anyway, I’m glad you enjoyed the book!

  3. elise / Feb 5 2012

    i loved your book trapped! But the end of it kind of confused me!!!!! i thought that there should of been more to it! other than that the book was really good! And i was thinking trapped could be a movie!!

  4. Michael / Feb 5 2012

    Thanks, Elise! I am really glad you enjoyed the book! There are some sneaky clues about the ending of the book (for example, where the helicopter is heading at the end), but I don’t want to say too much here. A lot of people who visit this site haven’t read the book yet. Anyway, I think it would make a good movie too! There have been some talks about that, but nothing definite has happened yet. Hopefully something will work out….

  5. Bob Marley / Feb 19 2012

    Yo. Three little birds were singin’ after I read tis book “Trapped” mane. I thought de endin’ could ove’ been a bit longer there, but don’t worry about a thing cause ery’ little thing’ll be alright. You’s an alright writer, I’ll give you dat, soe keep doin what you be doin. Tis book make no women no cry. I catch you lata Michael

  6. Michael / Feb 20 2012

    Ya, mahn! This is awesome. I’m just going to admit that it’s not every day that legendary singers comment on my book from the great beyond. All I can say is: Thank you, Bob Marley. Ja-maican me very happy!

  7. Cris / Feb 20 2012

    Michael,
    I am helping my son with a class project based on your book Trapped. We have built the school and now we are illustrating the characters with our own interpretation. It has been a lot of fun to read the book with my son and then create a project about it. We also have to write a biography about you :-). Good luck with your writing!

  8. Michael / Feb 20 2012

    Hi, Cris. That’s amazing! I know a lot of people have done papers and reports on Trapped, but this is the first time I’ve heard of someone building the school. I’m declaring it a historic first! Tattawa has officially arrived. Anyway, thanks, and best of luck to your son!

  9. SARAH / May 5 2012

    Please try and make your book Trapped into a movie all of your book trailers are amazing and I’m sure you’ll make tons of money by all the people who come to watch it.

  10. Michael / May 6 2012

    Thanks, Sarah—I’m trying! Now we just have to convince some of those Hollywood types to try with us. It looked like it might happen a while ago, but it didn’t work out. Now I’m hoping for better luck next time 🙂

  11. Holly / May 18 2012

    I absolutely loved your book, and I am currently writing a piece on it for school. Every chapter was so interesting, and I love the way you wrote it. Awesome stuff!

  12. Michael / May 19 2012

    Thanks, Holly! I’m really glad you enjoyed it so much. Good luck on your paper!

  13. Brooke / Jun 1 2012

    Hi, just wanted to say thanks for writing Plunked. My seven year old son can’t put it down he loves base ball and reading. He needed to go to the next level in books that were still appropriate for his young age, thanks.

  14. Michael / Jun 1 2012

    Thanks, Brooke! That’s fantastic! I’m really glad that Plunked is helping to make his next step in reading a fun one.

  15. Lessly / Jun 2 2012

    Please make trapped into a movie!!! It was a amazing book!! It should also be made like into a sequel!! On my way to get gentleman!!:D

  16. Michael / Jun 3 2012

    Hey, Lessly—here you are again! Thanks so much for both your comments. I hope you enjoy Gentlemen!

  17. Lessly / Jun 3 2012

    You Welcome(: and Thanks I bet I will(:

  18. maddy / Oct 13 2012

    I loved your book trapped so much!! But, it left me with a whole bunch of questions 🙁 I think you should make this book into a movie and Id totally buy it… I also think that would be awesome if you wrote a second book of of trapped.. I really want to know what happens next once the storm is over!!!!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂 thanks <3 maddy

  19. Michael / Oct 14 2012

    Thanks, Maddy! I’m really glad you enjoyed the book. (I’ll take a ratio of three 🙂 to one 🙁 any day!) I hope there’s a movie, too. It’s not really up to me, but I’ve been doing my part by drowning a lot of coins in fountains and things like that!

  20. Tammie / Mar 6 2013

    I recently read Trapped, and I loved the plot and the characters. I teach Reading to middle school students, and I told all my students about your book. I highly recommend it, but I also told them that the falling action and resolution seemed weak. I actually looked several times for the (real) last chapter. I noticed that there are other comments on this site about the ending. My students and I want to know if this was on purpose so you could lead us to a sequel. I will share your reply with my classes.

  21. Michael / Mar 7 2013

    Thanks for your comment, Tammie! I can’t really discuss the ending of Trapped here because it would involve too many spoilers. I sent you a message, though—check yo’ email!

  22. Mrs. Rabinovich / Mar 15 2013

    Dear Mr. Northrop,

    Our Wilson Reading class read your book, Trapped, and we liked the book a lot! We didn’t want to stop reading it! We liked the part when they all worked together to get food and solve other problems. We were so impressed with your descriptive writing that sometimes we got disgusted. For example, the way you described Scotty popping his pimple and how Pete looked when he died gave us an image in our heads that was disturbing. On the other hand, you gave us an image in our heads while we were reading the whole story, which was great because it helped us understand and made us think more. You really made us care about the characters and what was going to happen to them in the situation they were in. We loved feeling like we were in the high school going through the blizzard with them.
    When the snowmobile flipped over most of the characters were worried, but Scotty was the one who showed his true friendship by risking his own life to go and try to help Pete. In thinking about the end of the novel, we all were a little disappointed about how we were left hanging. We wish we could have known when the blizzard ended and what happened to all the characters. We are wondering what happened to Scotty’s mom, the high school, and the other kids. In addition, we want to know how Scotty explained what happened to Pete to his parents and what their reaction was. Thank you for writing a book that we enjoyed reading! We would love to read a sequel that answers all of our questions ☺

    Sincerely,
    Caterina, Emma, Steven, & Mrs. Rabinovich

  23. Michael / Mar 16 2013

    Hello to you all! I am very glad that you enjoyed the book—and you are definitely not alone in having those questions! I think it’s wonderful that you became that engaged with the story and the characters. A sequel is still a possibility, or even a story or two from the point of view of one of the other characters. With Trapped, though, I didn’t really set out to tell the whole story of a massive natural disaster. (Ever since Hurricane Katrina, I’ve been pretty sure that’s not possible.) Instead, I wanted to narrow the focus to the story of one group of teens in one location. Of course, as you point out, one of the ironies of narrowing the focus to a small group is that it underlines how widely those stories are connected to the larger world around them.

    Thanks again for writing! Best wishes to you all!

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  27. Tish Ivory / Oct 3 2013

    I am reading Trapped to my 7th and 8th grade students. We are enjoying it as a read aloud. Every day they want me to read a little more, and truthfully, I don’t mind 🙂 I plan to have them write letters to you in response to the book. Is there an address that we can send them?

  28. Michael / Oct 3 2013

    Hi Tish,
    That’s very cool! I’m definitely glad they’re asking for more, instead of asking you to stop 🙂 They can send any letters to: 801 Ocean Avenue #16, Brooklyn NY 11226.

  29. Tracy Purvis / Oct 11 2013

    I work for the Louisiana Center for Dyslexia at Nicholls State University, a center that provides college students with services. Our students, in order to qualify for services, have dyslexia or some other related learning disorder. What advice would you, a successful author and dyslexic, give to dyslexic high-schoolers and college students?

  30. Michael / Oct 15 2013

    Hi Tracy. Thanks for writing. This is a tough question—especially for a blog comment! 😮 It’s especially difficult for me because I’m not a big believer in one-size-fits-all advice. I’m sure I have not met nearly as many dyslexics as you have, but I’ve met enough to know that we’re all different. For example, I was lucky to have been diagnosed very early and to have had a lifetime to adapt to and work with the condition, but I know that many others are not so fortunate.

    I guess I can say that dyslexia is an obstacle and not an end-point. I didn’t accept it as a reason not to become a writer, I just adjusted my approach. I started out reading and writing poetry, which involves far fewer words than prose. I knew that I needed to read a lot of great books to become a writer, but whenever possible, I chose short ones (like Dubliners or The Great Gatsby). I still do that. Speaking of which, I highly recommend My Dyslexia by by Philip Schultz. It’s a very powerful (and very short) memoir by the Pulitzer Prize–winning poet.

    And finally, not really advice, but I think it’s awesome that there are places like the Louisiana Center for Dyslexia. When I was a kid, I just kept it to myself. It was a secret that I dealt with on my own, and I don’t think that was a particularly healthy approach.

  31. avery / Jan 3 2014

    I loved your book trapped! Please make a movie out of it! I will so help you make it because i want to be a director anyway. PLEASE make a movie and PLEASE let me help. thanks

  32. Michael / Jan 4 2014

    Thanks, Avery! I hope there’s a movie. Another director beat you to it and optioned the rights to Trapped, but if she gets the go-ahead from a studio, maybe she’ll need input from another fan of the book 🙂

    In any case, I think you have a bright future as a director. 1) Avery is a great name for a director and 2) You obviously have fantastic taste in stories!

  33. Keegan Peoples / Apr 23 2014

    Hey, im writing a report about you and I was wondering where you get your ideas for your books?

  34. Michael / Apr 27 2014

    Hi Keegan,
    That is a tough question! I get my ideas in a lot places, and every book is different. To give you an example, here’s how I came up with the idea for Trapped, which is about seven students stranded in their high school by a massive blizzard.

    First of all, I grew up in a very snowy area of New England. I saw many blizzards and nor’easters. One in particular dumped four feet of snow on my hometown—and I was only four-feet tall at the time! The idea of snow up past my eyes always stuck with me. Years later, I was watching a documentary on TV. It was about the whaleship Essex, which was sunk by a wounded and enraged whale. The sailors were left adrift in their little whaleboats (like rowboats) for months. I started thinking about those men, stranded in the middle of the ocean and absolutely at the mercy of nature. Then I began to think about other ways that people could be stranded in or by nature. That’s when I remembered that huge blizzard. I decided to write a book about a group of people stranded by snow.

    I hope that helps. Good luck with your report!

  35. Keegan / May 9 2014

    Hi, I just have one more question. What advice do you have for young writers?

  36. Michael / May 12 2014

    I am too old to be doing homework, Keegan! But… I guess I already answered one question. I think I’ve learned a valuable lesson here today. Actually, I think I’ve learned this lesson several times. I just keep forgetting! Anyway—sigh—here’s my answer:

    I have three pieces of advice:
    1) Write a lot. I also think it’s a good idea to write about what really interests you, instead of what you think will be popular. Enthusiasm and originality matter more than trends or things like that.
    2) Read a lot, and try to read widely. Don’t just read the same type of books that you plan to write. You learn a lot more by being exposed to a range of styles and subjects. Last summer I read YA, middle grade, adult mysteries, and some nonfiction. I have no idea what I’ll read this summer!
    3) Finish what you’re working on, whether it’s a story or a poem or a book. Don’t get too bogged down revising as you go—there will be plenty of time for that when you’re done. I’ve heard so many authors say this, but it’s true: You learn much more by finishing a bad story (and working to improve it) than by giving up on a better one.

    I hope that helps!

  37. Angel / Jun 29 2014

    Hey Michael!
    I just finished your book Trapped and really loved it! It’s one of the very few realistic fiction stories I’ve ever read (I had my doubts on the genre entertainment wise). Anyways, Trapped is terrific and as many others have suggested, it should be made into a movie.
    I did have a few questions about the book. I’m a writer too (un-published but one nonetheless ^-^) and I’ve always really enjoyed getting into my characters and their stories. I just was curious as to what Julie, Les, Krista and Elijah’s lives were like… Jason, Pete and Scotty’s were hinted at but not really the others. If you’re like me, they all have back-stories that just wouldn’t fit into the story. If they do, I’d love to hear them!
    Thanks and sorry for such a long comment 😉
    ~Angel

  38. Michael / Jun 30 2014

    Hi Angel,
    Thanks for writing! That’s a really interesting comment. The thing about Trapped is that it’s first person from the perspective of Scotty. His perspective is the one that counts, and he really doesn’t know that much about the lives of the others, apart from his friends, Jason and Pete. That first-person perspective can be pretty intense in high school, and it certainly is in Scotty’s case. It’s not that he’s self-centered, exactly, but like a lot of teenage guys, he is very preoccupied with what is going on in his own life, with how this all affects him.

    For me, one of the biggest challenges of writing YA is staying true to that sort of intense, individual viewpoint and not adding things in from my own perspective. As the author, with more time, space, and distance, I often see things very differently than my mine characters do. Sometimes I get very frustrated with them! But when I’m writing first person, the narrator always wins.

    You’re absolutely right: I did have notes on the other characters, and a lot of material that didn’t make it into the book. But that was all about Scotty and his perspective. To me, what’s left out of a book defines it as much as what is included—just like what we don’t say is often more important than what we do. Those notes are long gone, though (I wrote Trapped 6-7 years ago now), and I sort of feel like talking about them would change that balance between what was put in and what was left out. So, I’m sorry, but I can’t do it. Don’t blame me, though, blame Scotty!

    I hope that helps at least a little. Best of luck with your writing!

  39. Angel / Jun 30 2014

    Haha! I understand completely. First-person is the best but also the worst. The only way to have other characters back-stories revealed is to have them tell their story themselves. It’s infinity inconvenient.
    I do love your story though and Scotty’s personality was entertaining! I like how you can manage to focus on what he knows about everyone instead of what you know. That’s always hard for me! 🙂
    Thanks so much for replying! I plan to read more of your works soon! Best of luck to you too!

    ~Angel

  40. Alivia / Jan 11 2015

    litterally five minutes ago i finished your book trapped i died in side when i got to the end its a major hangover and something needs to happen next alot of the readers who left comments need answers and so do plz make a sequel

  41. Michael / Jan 13 2015

    Thanks for your comment, Alivia! It’s amazing to me that Trapped came out four years ago now. I am very grateful that so many people are still reading it and discussing it—and SO passionate about it! For now, all I can do is repeat what I said in before (and get back to my current deadline), but I definitely appreciate your input. As I always say: Your vote has been counted!

  42. McKenna / Jan 15 2015

    Please write a sequel to trapped. It was great and the ending left me hanging and I would love if you made another one.

  43. chewbacca / Jan 15 2015

    I REALLY LIkED THE BOOK TRAPPED

  44. Michael / Jan 16 2015

    Thanks, Chewbacca! I consider that a celebrity endorsement!

  45. karson million / Jan 20 2015

    Please continue writing books.

  46. Michael / Jan 22 2015

    Thanks, Karson. I definitely plan to keep writing!

  47. michael / Feb 13 2015

    how old are you i’m doing a project about you so i need to nkow thankyou also I love tombquest

  48. Michael / Feb 18 2015

    Hey Michael. I tried to send the answer to the email address you listed, and it didn’t go through. Check yo’ info!

  49. Juliana / May 7 2015

    Hey! I loved your book trapped! I have a question. What are your writing influences?

  50. Michael / May 8 2015

    Thanks, Juliana! I am glad you enjoyed it. A lot of things have influenced my writing, but a few things in particular influenced me strongly when I was writing Trapped. I was trying to present an extreme situation as realistically as possible, so I thought a lot about my experiences working as a journalist. In journalism, it is important to get all of the facts correct, even if some of them are inconvenient or ordinary or strange. Even though I was making up what happened in the book, I tried to create that same sense of just reporting on real life events. My other main influences were my memories of my own high school years and of growing up in a very snowy part of New England.

  51. Kieran, Delaney, Miranda, Ethan & Caleb / May 11 2015

    We read your book, Plunked, in our Grade 5 class and loved it! The big question is, “Will there be a sequel?”
    Looking forward to hearing from you,
    Kieran, Delaney, Miranda and Caleb
    p.s. The email address belongs to our teacher.

  52. Michael / May 11 2015

    Hi, all! I am very happy that you enjoyed the book. I am pretty sure I already answered this question from you over on the Plunked page!

  53. Kieran, Delaney, Miranda, Ethan & Caleb / May 13 2015

    Hi Michael! Sorry, we didn’t see your response on the “Plunked” page. We appreciate your prompt reply. Good luck! We look forward to reading your next book!
    Sincerely,
    Kieran, Delaney, Miranda, Ethan and Caleb

  54. Michael / May 14 2015

    Thanks, y’all! I appreciate that. I hope you are having a fantastic spring—almost time for some summer reading!

  55. Emma / Jul 12 2015

    I LOVED your book trapped. I have been reading some other comments and understand you cant discuss the ending here. Is their any way you could Email me about what happened after the end. And is there ANY possibility of a sequel?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  56. Michael / Jul 14 2015

    Thanks, Emma! I’m glad you enjoyed it so much. I am pretty busy writing my new series (I am about to start Book 5!) but I would like to write a sequel someday. The tough part is finding the time! A lot of people want to talk about the ending. Do you have a specific question about it? (I know it can be hard to say without being too spoiler-y…)

  57. Riley / Aug 13 2015

    I was just wondering if Trapped was a true story? Thanks!

  58. Michael / Aug 14 2015

    Hi Riley! Thanks for writing. Trapped is not *exactly* a true story—the characters and events all come straight from my imagination—but there are definitely some elements in it based on real life. I did research on giant/long-lasting snowstorms, for example, and the school is *suspiciously* similar to one that I attended.

  59. Marcellena / Nov 18 2015

    My daughter Jewelynn entered a contest made by you. I believe it was a Make up a Character contest. Published in a kids magazine. Anywhoo…she wanted to know if a winner was picked for it already. Her teacher didn’t know so I figured I’d ask. She’s been very excited about possibly becoming a writer one day. And although she may not win your contest I think it sparked within her a desire to make that dream a reality.

  60. Michael / Nov 20 2015

    Hello! Thanks for checking in. It’s very cool that Jewelynn is so excited about writing. That spark is a huge part of becoming a writer, and it sounds like she has it. Storyworks Magazine is running that contest. All I know at this point is that we will select the winner “in late November,” and then I will write a short story starring that character. I think the editors are going through the entries now and selecting the finalists. My part starts when they are done!

  61. Wyatt / Feb 9 2016

    Your book plunked was AMAZING. But, I was wondering if you would make another book like that

  62. Michael / Feb 10 2016

    Thanks, Wyatt! I am very happy to hear that you enjoyed it so much. I would love to write another sports book. I am in the middle of a different project right now, but I’ll get back on the field someday (hopefully soon)!

  63. Kester / Apr 7 2016

    Hi Michael! I’m interested in reading “Tombquest”- it sounds really cool- and I was wondering if I could get a signed bookplate “Book of the Dead”. Please contact me at kesternucum@yahoo.com for my info. Thank you!

  64. Michael / Apr 9 2016

    Hey, Kester. Thanks for writing. Yeah, I still have some bookplates left. Just send me your address (to michael at michaelnorthrop dot net) and I’ll mail you one. I hope you enjoy TombQuest!

  65. Kester / Apr 9 2016

    Thank you! I just emailed you.

  66. Wafflecorn (fifth grader) / Apr 10 2016

    I have the whole series of the TombQuest it is awesome! Thank you.

    I just bought book 5 The Final Kingdom, the code on the inside cover is not working for Scholastic.com/TombQuest, can you tell me where to go for help?

  67. Michael / Apr 11 2016

    Hi Wafflecorn (you are definitely the first Wafflecorn to leave a comment)! Thanks for writing. I am very happy to hear that you’re enjoying the series! I’m sorry that the code isn’t working. I’ve had some trouble with those codes myself. I’m not exactly sure who you should ask about it. Maybe if you left a message on the TQ message boards one of the moderators could help out? Anyway, I’ll try to find out, and if I do, I’ll post a follow-up here. Hopefully it will all be working soon.

  68. John Amelio / Jun 7 2016

    Dear Mr. Northrop:

    We represent the middle school class (6th/7th/8th graders) of Saint Albans School in midtown Manhattan. We just completed your book, Trapped, and enjoyed it very much.

    In the beginning of the novel, we found your book to be a slow read. However, as we progressed through several of the middle chapters, we discovered that our intrigue and curiosities had been peaked. It was unexpected, but the ending surprised us with its happy conclusion (minus [????’s—Sorry, I had to edit this out—no spoilers! MN] death, of course).

    We have a few questions we’d hope you can find the time to answer.
    Would you ever think about writing a sequel to the book?
    What inspired you to write the book?
    Were the characters in the story based on people you know/knew in real life?
    Was the book based on a true story?
    How long did it take you to write this book?

    We thank you for your time and consideration in writing back. We truly enjoyed your style of writing and creativity with your storytelling.

    Your new avid readers,

    Middle School Class
    Saint Albans School

  69. Michael / Jun 8 2016

    Hey, Saint Albans! Thanks for this thoughtful and kind comment. I’m glad you enjoyed the book! I just sent you an email with the answers to your questions. Check your inbox!

  70. CARLES PONS / Sep 10 2016

    Dear Michael ,

    I am writing to ask you if you would be so kind as to send me an autographed photo which I can include in my collection. At the moment I have more than 5.000 photos .

    I started this collection in 1974 and nowadays it is nearly a book of history because there are kings, presidents, ministers, politicians, mayors, scientists, writers, actors, photographers, chefs, painters…

    Although I send this via internet, I would like to receive your autographed photo by post together with your card, so that, I can include both in my album.

    Postal address:
    CARLES PONS i PUIGGRÒS
    Post Office Box 172
    17080 GIRONA
    Spain

    I thank you for your kindness and I look forward to hearing from you.

    Yours faithfully,

    Carles Pons I Puiggròs

    COLLECTING PHOTOS 1974-2014

  71. erick / Sep 16 2016

    when were you born?

  72. Michael / Oct 2 2016

    My birthday is April 25—a very long time ago! I can’t remember if there were actually still dinosaurs walking around, but I do remember that there were no home computers or cell phones.

  73. Michael / Oct 2 2016

    Hi Carles,
    Thanks for writing. That sounds like a truly epic collection—and a very cool hobby. Unfortunately, I don’t have any promotional photos or headshots or anything like that. (I think I have a face for writing—or radio—and am definitely no movie star!) If I ever have any made, I will send you one right away, though. Best wishes—and happy collecting!

  74. Maddie Harland / Mar 30 2017

    So. I hate the ending of the book that you wrote. (Trapped) Seriously, did [EDITED! No spoilers, please!—MN] REALLY have to die? Not that I liked [???]. But is there a sequel? Because, well, you see, did the parents make it out alive? What reaction did [the others] have when he got back? Did Scotty and Krista end up dating? So yeah, I hope that you have a sequel.

  75. Michael / Mar 30 2017

    Hi Maddie. Thanks for writing. I’m sorry if the book left you hanging. Until recently, each of my books had its own page (I have too many books for that now!), and the Trapped page had close to 800 comments. A lot of them agreed with you! All I can do is try to explain my side of things a bit.

    I always knew it would be impossible to write the full story of a huge natural disaster, so I decided to narrow my focus. Trapped is the story of those seven kids stranded in that one school during the storm. It’s almost like a play, with one location and a small cast. Once the outside world came in, I knew the story would become much more about other people (the National Guard, the parents, and other adults). That’s why I decided to end it where I did. I know that kind of open ending can be frustrating and I’m sorry about that, but I also know that the ending is one of the main reasons why the book is still being read and discussed more than 6+ years after it was published. It gives readers something to think about once they’re finished. With that in mind, I definitely encourage you to come up with your own answers to those questions. How would they react? After spending a whole book with those characters, you know them almost as well as I do!

    As for a sequel, maybe someday. Right now, I am in the middle of revising a book about a misfit kid in a (snowy) town in Maine.

  76. Sierra / May 2 2017

    I loved your book, please write a sequel to it. I need to know if the parents are alive???? How they’re dealing with Pete’s loss. Please write a sequel.

  77. Michael / May 3 2017

    Thanks, Sierra! I am very happy to hear that you enjoyed Trapped! I am pretty busy with other books right now, but hopefully I will get a chance to start a sequel someday soon. As I like to say, your vote has been counted!

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