Ever want to get to know the characters in a book even BEFORE you read it?
Here I transcribe my ‘interview’ with Brad Sievers, the main character of Last Chance Rescue, who, at the start of the book, has just lost his job as an advertising executive…
So, how do you know the ‘heroine,’ Jessie Van Dyke?
Jessie and I went to high school together. But I hadn’t seen her in 10 years — until the night of our reunion. We figured out we’d worked at the same advertising agency, although at different times — and that was kind of weird.
I understand you had ulterior motives for attending the reunion.
[chuckles] I wanted to see my high school crush, Aimee.
And how did that go?
Let’s just say that running into Jessie changed the direction of the whole evening — not to mention the rest of my life. At one point she made a comment about people in advertising being shallow. She touched the lapel of my suit.
What did you think of that?
That was a bit unnerving, actually. But it wasn’t a come-on or anything, that was obvious.
What made you decide to leave advertising and go into search-and-rescue?
That’s a pretty complex question…after I was laid off from my job…shoot, Jessie probably knows the answer to this question better than I do.
Why do you say that?
Jessie’s got a way of looking in and through a person, if you know what I mean. She’d probably say that I needed fulfillment in my life. The things I used to enjoy didn’t interest me anymore and I felt kind of…oh, I don’t know…flat.
What kind of ‘things’?
Drinking, partying…women. I was a bit…ah…cavalier in my love life before moving to Colorado.
What do you do instead?
Well, the bills have gotta get paid, so I pitch in at my friend’s print shop. All that computer tinkering I did in high school has paid off. I sure made a lot more in advertising, though.
What about hobbies?
I play basketball with Micah. I guess you could say he’s one of my best friends besides Ryan. He’s African-American, to be politically correct. Man, my mom was weird about that; I never realized she’s prejudiced until I introduced her to Micah…
What’s your favorite part of search-and-rescue?
Other than saving lives? [smiles] Rappelling. Ryan and I go sometimes, just for the hell of it. He’s the one who mostly taught me. He’s pretty good for a young shit.
How would you say you’ve changed because of Last Chance Rescue?
Well, that’s the whole point of the book, isn’t it? The better question is what didn’t change. I wouldn’t want to give anything away or spoil anyone’s surprise, but I will say that I’m no longer cavalier about women and sex.
Any final thoughts?
I just want to say, for the record, that I did not throw up on that first rescue!