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Strange Chemistry Acquires Lisa O’Kane!

It’s that kind of Friday: the sun’s shining, the cricket’s on (keeping Amanda very happy!), and we’ve got great news for you: please join us in welcoming Lisa O’Kane to the Strange Chemistry family! Lisa has been signed in a two-book deal, with the first near-future thriller Essence coming out in spring 2014.


Lisa Ann O’Kane is a wildlife educator and former vagabond who once camped out in Yosemite National Park for an entire summer, an experience that inspired her debut novel Essence. She currently resides in Florida, and she is now a huge fan of shooting stars, indoor plumbing and keeping both her feet planted firmly on the trail.

You can reach her online:

Twitter: @lisaannokane


Essence combines The Beach‘s illusion of paradise with Divergent‘s adrenaline-fueled adventures.

Neutrality is the key to longevity. This motto has governed 17-year-old Autumn’s life in the mid-21st-century Centrist cult, which believes that expressing emotions leads to Essence drain and premature death.

But Autumn’s younger brother’s death casts her faith into question. While sprinting through a park in violation of Centrist teachings, she encounters Ryder Stone, an Outsider who claims Essence drain is nothing more than a Centrist scare tactic. She agrees to join his Community, a utopia of adrenaline junkies living in the abandoned remains of Yosemite National Park.

Autumn learns about sex, drugs, and living life to the fullest. But as she discovers dark secrets beneath the Community’s perfect exterior, she realises that this illusion of paradise could be shattered…


Lisa O’Kane: “I am absolutely thrilledEssence has found a home at Strange Chemistry. I have so much respect for Amanda Rutter’s vision for the imprint, and I am so thankful for the dedication Hannah Bowman has put into finding a perfect fit for my debut. Essence is in excellent hands, and I can’t wait to share Autumn and Ryder’s adrenaline-fueled Yosemite adventures with the world!”

Amanda Rutter: “Reading Essence was a completely immersive experience – Lisa is an incredibly imaginative writer who has created a world that is very easy for the reader to believe in. I’m so excited about Essence, and having Lisa choose Strange Chemistry for her book is a great honour.”

Hannah Bowman: “Although a newcomer, Strange Chem has already made a splash with their high-quality titles, and we’re very excited that they will be the new home for Lisa’s novels. Lisa will be a great addition to their list of extremely talented authors.”

Please join me in welcoming Lisa to our ranks, and congratulating her on the signing of her deal!



Eugene Scott

Way to go, Lisa. I can’t wait to read Essence as a published work instead of a WIP. The Pasties are proud of you and inspired by you.

Mary Siner

Congratulations Lisa! I can not wait until 2014 to be able to read Essence.

TC Smith

Oh Lisa, please let me extend belated congratulations (haven’t been on the blog in a while.) Looking forward to reading Essence when it comes out next year :)

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