Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Gone at Zero Hundred by C.R. Hiatt

Gone at Zero Hundred by C.R. Hiatt
YA - Action/Mystery
Date Published: April 30, 2012


Sydney Marie McSwain and her pal, Cody Beck, team up to take on a secret club called The Devil's Door where members are branded with the tattoo of a devil and call themselves The Privileged Ones.
Sydney Marie McSwain - a tomboy who yearned for a father.
Cody Beck - a wannabe filmmaker, wisenheimer and flirt.
Jaden White - the star who led the high school hockey team to two championships, and was now on the A-list for NHL scouts.

Sydney Marie McSwain loves her mom, Anna - a private investigator in the coastal city where they live - but they had a major issue between them. Anna refused to give Sydney the identity of her father. On the day of her high school graduation, they were battling it out, once again. An hour later, Sydney, Cody and Jaden were at the local café, and watched as Anna was gunned down, and it was broadcasted on live TV.

Faced with immediate responsibility, Sydney and Cody agreed to take over the agency, only they changed the name to McSwain & Beck. At the same time, Sydney convinced Sutter Beach Detective, Ace Carter, to help her track down her father. 

Out of the blue, a model walked in and hired them to follow her step-brother. While Cody was busy editing a trailer to solicit new clients, Sydney settled into her lemon-yellow pickup to do surveillance, and wound up staking out a secret club called The Devils Door whose suspicious members wore the tattoo of a devil.

That same night, Sydney received a call from one of her moms former clients, only the client was gunned down at the location where they agreed to meet. The mysterious discovery of a DVD revealed the possibility that teenagers were being abducted, only nobody reported them missing. 
On the hunt for the victims, McSwain & Beck were chased by men in ski masks, nearly gunned down by members of a cartel called the outlaws, Sydneys precious pickup was broken into; then the step-brother they were hired to follow, was found dead and Sydney was the number one suspect. 
If things werent bad enough already, they had to figure out how to crash a red-carpet Mardi Gras bash being held on a private cruise ship, before it sailed off into the sunset, where they just might meet the devil, himself.

Now, the clock was ticking

And time was running out

How was she ever going to find her father, now?
“Their lives were in the hands of two 18 year-olds…”


I read this book as part of a blog tour hosted by Reading Addiction Blog Tours for C.R. Hiatt. I first agreed to do it because I love a good mystery and adventure. This book did deliver such a story. This book kept the pace and was a quick read. The chapters are quick and not too long, making the story fly by. The mystery and plot was developed very well. A lot is going on, but the author does tie it up nicely at the end. However, she doesn’t finish everything in the end as there is a follow up book.
Sydney and Cody are the main characters. They are great friends and work well together. Their personal interests combine very well throughout the story. Another character I did enjoy was Detective Carter. He was the comfort of the law enforcement side to the entire story. I enjoyed his character so much I hope we see him in the next book.

Overall, I enjoyed this book. It was a great story. Plenty of action and suspense on every page. And a reminder...not everything is wrapped up because there is a second book to be published soon.

Purchased your copy of the book at:
Barnes & Noble

CR Hiatt Author Bio:

CR HIATT is a writer of screenplays and an author of YA action-mystery novels. The daughter of a military veteran, CR grew up in a small town where she became an All-American athlete. CR knew early on that she wasn't cut out for the nine to five type of job - her tendency to day dream about adventures often got in the way. But, being the daughter of a Navy Veteran she also knew one had to do what was necessary to be secure, so she disciplined herself to push those dreams aside and settled on working in the entertainment legal field. When those dreams invaded her world once again, CR finally gave in and set out to write her own adventures. What the heck, right. If you can't live 'em, you might as well write about them. The McSwain & Beck series are works of fiction, only based on real life events. Gone at Zero Hundred 00:00 is the first in the series, and available now. Fireworks on the 4th will be released in late June, just before the 4th of July holiday season.

Interview with the Author C. R. Hiatt:
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Hi. Thank you for being a host for my blog tour. It is great to chat with you today. In addition to writing the YA action-mystery series featuring the McSwain & Beck duo, I also write screenplays, which are being adapted into books.

What do you do when you are not writing?

When I’m not writing, I renovate houses, spend time outdoors, either walking, cycling, enjoying time at the beach, or touring on the back of a Harley Davidson.

Do you ever experience writer’s block?

I don’t get writer’s block, per se. I just have so many ideas running around in my head sometimes, that I have to stop and compartmentalize them before moving forward on whatever it is I’m working on at the time.

    Do you work with an outline or just write?

When I have an idea, I write out a one or two sentence logline with a begnning, middle and end. If the logline has appeal and I believe it has potential, I will write out a one or two page synopsis. From that, I will write a 100-120 page screenplay. The screenplay has characters, descriptions, action and dialogue, which can then be adapted to a novel with some development.

    I find it interesting to know what environment people write in. Do you use a pen and paper, laptop? Quiet room, music or what? Are there visitors such as dogs, cats, or children?

I use a laptop with a portable laptop desk that I can move anywhere I choose to write for the day. I don’t like it quiet when I’m writng. I need noise. If the weather keeps me inside, an action flick or musc is on in the background. If the temps are warm, I will go outside. I can watch the boats go by, and observe all the walkers and cyclists. It is never a dull moment by the ocean.

    Is there any particular author or book that influenced you in any way either growing up or as an adult?

I am a bit of an action junkie, so unfortunately, reading wasn’t a priority when I was young. I preferred to make up my own stories. However, when I hit my early twenties, I couldn’t get enough of reading. For the most part, I still stuck to action books, but once in a while, I would read something with depth.

    Sydney McSwain is described as being a tomboy. Would you say you were like her growing up or not?

There are some similarities between Sydney and myself. I was a tomboy, and grew up playing sports, etc. She has two male childhood friends, Cody and Jaden. I had a brother and an entire neighborhood of boys to contend with.

Where we differ, I didn’t have the guts and courage that she has at her age.

    Can you tell us about your upcoming book?

Fireworks on the 4th, is the second in the McSwain & Beck series, and it will be an explosive, action-packed sequel.

While Sydney was being driven to a classified location to “possibly” meet her father, Cody received an urgent 911 text from Jaden - their buddy, and star on their high school hockey team. He was arrested at the Mexican border, and accused of smuggling drugs. Cody believed he was set up.

Syd and Cody teamed up with a new rookie DEA agent in an effort to save Jaden.

Lots of action ensues.

A love triangle.

Disiillusioned young adults.

And, an evil mastermind threatening to disrupt the 4th of July festivities.

    Is anything in your book based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?

Before writing the series of McSwain & Beck, I spent time interviewing big city detectives, as well as small-town cops. Gone at Zero Hundred 00:00 and Fireworks on the 4th were both written based on real-life incidents, only with fictional plot details added, and using fictional characters.

    How did you come up with the title?

Zero Hundred is military time for midnight. Sutter Beach is a coastal community with military bases, and naval museums. Most of the streets have military terms: Sailor’s Way, etc. I titled it Gone at Zero Hundred because the private cruise ship that is being used to harbor the victims is set to sail at Zero-Hundred-Hours, and it seemed fitting.

    Why did you choose to write in the Young Adult genre?

For the most part, young adult books are written to entertain, and take the reader on an adventure, away from the realities of life for a short period of time. They are also a blast to right.

    Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers?

My advice would be to make sure you have a social media presence, long before you are ready to publish a book. Start a blog. Get a Twitter account. It is so much easier to put your work out there, when you have friends and followers in the social media atmosphere to encourage you along the way.

    Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers and fans?

Yes. I would like to give a huge THANK YOU. I am blown away by all the kind words from readers, fellow writers, and others on Twitter and Facebook, who have given me support during this endeavor. It has been such a warm welcome that I am overwhelmed and humbled. Even those that read the book, and it wasn’t their cup of tea, (not everything I read is my cup of tea either, so I understand) had nice things to say. I appreciate all the kind words.

I would also like to say thank you, to you, the bloggers. I am so grateful that you selflessly take time out of your lives in order to help writers promote their books. Thank you so much for that.

You all have my gratitude.

One last fun question:

Chocolate or Vanilla?

Chocolate, duh.

*Disclosure of Material Connection: I am a member of Reading Addiction Blog Tours and a copy of this book was provided to me by the author. Although payment may have been received by Reading Addiction Blog Tours, no payment was received by me in exchange for this review. There was no obligation to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, publisher, publicist, or readers of this review. This disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision’s 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning Use of Endorcements and Testimonials in Advertising*


  1. Hi - I wanted to take a moment to thank you for being a host for my blog tour. I appreciate the time it takes to put these posts together. I also wanted to thank you for reading, and posting your thoughts on my YA action-mystery novel, Gone at Zero Hundred 00:00. Thank you so much. You have my gratitude.


  2. Great review, this sounds like a nice series. Nice interview too! It's always nice to learn about the author behind the book. Interesting that she interviewed cops as part of her research.

  3. Hi Naida - Thanks for stopping by and commenting on the blog tour. Interviewing the cops was a blast. I was fortunate enough to get the opportunity to attend a few training sessions where I got to participate in hands-on training. It gave me a clearer view of exactly what they do in particular situations. All of those guys and gals are amazing.

  4. I'm unsure if this book is totally for me. I'm still debating it, but good review!

  5. Hi Preet - Thank you for stopping by my blog tour and commenting. That's what is great about books; when one doesn't interest us, there are plenty others that will. I still appreciate you taking the time to read the review. :-)

  6. Great review and interview. I am also on a blog tour for this book and can't wait to read it.