Title: THE CHILDREN OF THE NEPHILIM
Genre: YA science fiction
Word Count: 63,000
Sixteen-year old Paxton Mills freaking hates living in space. The station is freezing cold, her berth is barely bigger than a port-a-potty, and her fear of heights doesn’t lend itself to a comfortable intergalactic experience. She’s one of several hundred teenagers saved from the fires that ravaged Earth. Handpicked for their ability to acclimate to celestial living, they were taken to ensure humanity’s survival. However, Paxton isn’t grateful to her rescuers for whisking her into space and educating her in hydroponics and uniform maintenance. Why should she give a damn about hanging squash or pride herself on having a wrinkle-free jumper when she's haunted by memories of her loved ones being left behind to burn to death?
But her days of moping around end when she realizes her teachers aren’t humans, but aliens known as the Nephilim. Knowing she needs evidence of her discovery to convince the other students, Paxton breaks into the forbidden Red Block and finds curled and crusty teens barely clinging to life. That's when she learns she and the other kids were never taken to ensure humanity’s survival. They were taken to ensure the survival of the Nephilim. Years of genetic manipulation has left the aliens infertile and their only hope of survival is to reclaim their own alien DNA in its unaltered state from a visit to Earth thousands of years before. That cosmic calling card swirls inside the veins of each of the taken teens.
To complicate matters even more, Paxton has to come to terms with the lingering love she has for her murdered boyfriend, Mo, and with the reluctant attraction she feels for the irritatingly perfect hybrid, Kendal.
I’ve been an active member of the Society of Children Book Writers and Illustrators since 2009 and am the group leader for the SCBWI local chapter critique group.
“Paxton, what are you doing?”
I didn’t have to look up to know Mo had entered my compartment. Although his voice had deepened in the two years I’d known him, only he still called me by the unusual girl name my mother chose. It didn’t surprise me that he showed up. Mo had been my best friend since we boarded, and I knew he’d only excuse my absence for a few days before coming for me. Anticipating his arrival, I left the slider to my berth open.
I sighed loudly and rolled over onto my back, the book still in front of me. “Hmm?”
“Are you really reading that one again?”
I glanced over in time to see his slight smile. I reluctantly closed the tattered volume.
Mo snatched the worn copy of Jules Verne’s Journey to the Center of the Earth from me. “I’ll never understand how you can read the same thing over and over.” He tossed it onto the makeshift desk that canopied my bed. “You know, you may want to take that back to the repository some day.”
I resisted sticking my tongue out at him. I finally managed a tight-lipped smile instead. This particular novel had become a favorite. The thought of an underground world, another dimension people could have escaped to before the earthquake swarms released the fires on Earth… So what if there were killer plants and meat-eating dinosaurs? Professor Von Hardwigg made it out alive, didn’t he?