Sign Up Here for SKYLAR ROBBINS News!

Featured

Join my mailing list and you’ll get a FREE copy of Gwendolyn’s Revenge: a Skylar Robbins Fantasy Novella! Sign up below to receive new Skylar Robbins mystery announcements, free spy tips, and the chance to win a personally autographed copy of a Skylar Robbins mystery. Your address will never be shared or sold, and will only be used for Skylar Robbins announcements.

If you would like to become a secret agent and help Skylar solve her next mystery, fill out the Secret Agent Application Form (S.A.A.F.). If you have the necessary detective skills to sleuth with Skylar, you will be able to find it. If you are already a Skylar Robbins Secret Agent, remember to include your code name and badge number in any comments you make on my posts.

If you do not receive your Identikit within three days, it is because you emailed from an address that I cannot reply to, and I respect the parental control that may have blocked me from responding. Carrie Cross is very protective of her readers! Parents: please email me at Carrie at skylarrobbins dot com and I will send the Identikit to the address of your choice.

Fans can follow Carrie Cross on Facebook and Twitter.

Skylar Robbins book 2: Synopsis

BoM 2014 December Skylar Robbins

A deserted mansion perches on a steep hillside, overlooking a rocky canyon. Tattered curtains hang behind broken windows, and a turret stretches toward the sky. Three years ago the wealthy owner disappeared suddenly, leaving behind a house full of secrets: A mysterious note, tantalizing clues, a hidden floor, one piece of a treasure map, and a missing fortune in diamonds.

Thirteen-year-old sleuth Skylar Robbins moves into the mansion with her parents and embarks on a new and dangerous mission. Armed with her detective kit, and with the support of her BFF Alexa and a team of secret agents, Skylar sets out to decipher the clues and find the diamonds. Can she outwit a gang of aggressive bikers and find the hidden jewels before they do? Or will the perils of middle school–like battling ruthless bully Emelyn Peters for the attention of class hottie Dustin Coles–get in her way?

The Mystery of the Hidden Jewels is available now on Amazon.

The Publishing Experience

AuthorProfile

THE PUBLISHING EXPERIENCE: GUEST POST BY CARRIE CROSS

from Stories Unfolded

My experience getting published has been a long, winding, bumpy road. I had been writing for many years when I finally submitted my first manuscript, an adult novel called The Dark File, to several agents. While many had positive things to say, or provided constructive criticism and an invitation to resubmit, none of them ever offered to represent me.

I’ve always loved to read Middle Grade and Young Adult, so while The Dark File was being shopped (it takes months for agents to reply) I started to write my first draft of a Skylar Robbins MG mystery. This early version of Skylar Robbins: The Mystery of Shadow Hills was called Magic Summer, and while I tried patiently to land an agent, I started writing the sequel, entitled Skylar Robbins: Secret Agent. Magic Summer never got a bite, but Secret Agent landed me…an agent.

I was picked up by Writers House, and had high hopes of getting a deal with a traditional publisher. However, after months of shopping my manuscript, all I had was a pile of apologetic rejection letters. Some were complimentary but said their house had another teen detective series which was too similar, and didn’t want to bring in a competing novel. Others contained excellent constructive criticism, which I implemented in my revision. This novel ultimately became The Mystery of the Hidden Jewels.

Most agents specify that authors should not “simultaneously submit” to more than one agent. They don’t want to waste their time reading a manuscript that might get snapped up by a competitor. It was my experience that agents typically take three months to read a submission and respond. So I did the math. If I wanted to try to get another agent, and then wait for that agent to submit my manuscript to various publishers (who also take months to reply) it could take many, many years before my books were ever in print. So I decided to self-publish.

My experience with Amazon’s Createspace has been excellent. Skylar Robbins: The Mystery of Shadow Hills and The Mystery of the Hidden Jewels are now in print, and have gotten excellent reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. I would heartily recommend aspiring authors to self-publish, as long as they are willing to do their own marketing. Traditional publishing houses no longer have the budget to spend on advertising, so authors will end up doing their own publicity anyway. I offer more Advice for Aspiring Writers on my blog: http://www.skylarrobbins.com/

Thanks so much for the opportunity to talk about my experience as an author. I hope this helps fellow writers complete their journey to publication.

THE MYSTERY OF SHADOW HILLS BUY LINKS:

AMAZON

THE MYSTERY OF THE HIDDEN JEWELS BUY LINKS:

AMAZON

ABOUT CARRIE CROSS

WEBSITE | TWITTER

A Clue in a Poem

under the pier

Calling all secret agents! Skylar needs your help to solve her next case: The Mystery of the Missing Heiress. Three years ago, millionaire Xandra Collins disappeared “without a trace.” Detective Skylar knows that everyone leaves trace evidence, and sets out to solve the mysterious disappearance.

After deciphering a series of complicated clues, Skylar locates Xandra’s diary, which is filled with riddles and poems. Skylar realizes these poems contain clues and needs your help to decode them. What could this mean? Please post your guess in the comments using your Secret Agent code name.

Beneath the pier is dark and deep.

Water cold and still I weep.

Secrets locked inside a box.

Seven rocks by seven rocks.

Secret Agents: If you don’t get a quick reply…

1513303_10152140056806357_1508345748_n

Agents: if you are not getting an Identikit email within a week, it is because you are emailing from an address that can not receive emails. I have had repeated requests from prospective agents and have replied to the address they emailed me from, and my return emails did not go through. Some schools, home computers, and libraries have blocks on their computers and can not receive incoming emails. This is for the students’ safety and I respect this!

Skylar responds to every Secret Agent request and fan letter. If you don’t get a response, it is because of your computer’s settings. Please ask your mom or dad to email me from an address I can reply to.

Happy sleuthing!

Love,
Skylar

WITCHES’ COVEN WORD SEARCH

WITCHES’ COVEN WORD SEARCH

All of the words hidden in this puzzle are items found in the witchcraft references in The Mystery of Shadow Hills.

First, decode the words found in this word search by using Skylar’s basic secret code:

A=1, B=2, C=3, D=4, E=5, F=6, G=7, H=8, I=9, J=10, K=11, L=12, M=13, N=14, O=15, P=16, Q=17, R=18, S=19, T=20, U=21, V=22, W=23, X=24, Y=25, Z=26

3-5-14-20-5-18  16-15-23-5-18

1-13-21-12-5-20

3-1-14-4-12-5

3-8-1-12-9-3-5

9-14-3-5-14-19-5

23-9-20-3-8

15-22-1-12

5-22-9-12

3-15-22-5-14

3-9-18-3-12-5

9-14-11

19-20-1-18

4-18-21-13

15-21-9-10-1

16-15-20-9-15-14

19-16-1-18-11

1-12-20-1-18

13-1-6-9-3

11-5-25

3-1-14-4-12-5

23-9-3-11

 

Locate 1-4 words: You’re a junior sleuth’s assistant detective

Locate 5-8 words: On your way to becoming a junior sleuth

Locate 9-12 words: Now you’re a junior sleuth!

Locate 13-16 words: You’re Skylar’s next Assistant Detective!

Locate 17-20 words: Watch out Skylar, there’s a new Detective in town!

Post your score on www.skylarrobbins.com by leaving a comment below the jumble. Sign it using your Secret Agent code name from your Identikit. Don’t have a code name or Identikit yet? Read SKYLAR ROBBINS: THE MYSTERY OF SHADOW HILLS to learn the secret code, then fill out the Secret Agent Application Form (S.A.A.F.) .

C C O V E N S O U I J A
H E I M C E R M A G I C
A I N R P O T I O N X E
L O C T C N V S E K L A
I I E I E L I E T C E M
C N N V L R E M N A D U
E K S Z I O P L A N R L
K I E P N L W O L D U E
E A L T A R E V W L M T
Y S D I B R L A P E S A
W I T C H E K L A I R D

 

 

2 New Killer Reviews!

HIDDEN JEWELS COVER
5.0 out of 5 stars Very fun read, full of great information!, February 28, 2015
By Gary R. Casebeer Ma. Ed. Ma. Comm. “Montessor… (Portland, Oregon USA, EARTH) This review is from: Skylar Robbins: The Mystery of Shadow Hills (Kindle Edition)
Very fun read. The main character is believable and likable, has typical angst and emotional questions of a teen. Her circumstances are fun, full of questions teens have, problems teens have and solutions you as an adult hope the teens will arrive at. I thought the whole of the book was fun and would read more of this character as she progresses. Many life issues are worked through, solved and discussed in a great way.
    
5.0 out of 5 stars I LOVE Skylar Robbins!!!, February 26, 2015
By Bradley Kay (Mequon, WI United States) – See all my reviews
I am 10 years old and I just finished reading both books. I am now
interested in sign language and mysteries. I am trying to study sign
language and get better at it. I REALLY want to read the next book. When
will it be done? My Grandma and Grandpa gave me your AWESOME books.

ENTER TO WIN!

MYSTERY OF THE HIDDEN JEWELS FRONT COVER

Goodreads Book Giveaway:

Enter here to win a FREE copy of book 2 in the Skylar Robbins mystery series: The Mystery of the Hidden Jewels! Contest ends March 6, 2015.

Here’s what one reader had to say about this book:

5.0 out of 5 stars
I LOVE Skylar Robbins!!! February 26, 2015
By Grace (Mequon, WI United States)
This review is from: Skylar Robbins: The Mystery of the Hidden Jewels (Paperback)
I am 10 years old and I just finished reading both books. I am now
interested in sign language and mysteries. I am trying to study sign
language and get better at it. I REALLY want to read the next book. When
will it be done? My Grandma and Grandpa gave me your AWESOME books.

 

ENTER TO WIN! Skylar Robbins: The Mystery of the Hidden Jewels (Book 2)

Book Giveaway for Skylar Robbins: The Mystery of the Hidden Jewels (Book 2 in the Skylar Robbins mystery series)

MYSTERY OF THE HIDDEN JEWELS FRONT COVER

  • Skylar Robbins: The Mystery of the Hidden Jewels (Book 2)
    by Carrie Cross (Goodreads Author)

          A deserted mansion perches on a steep hillside, overlooking a rocky canyon. Tattered curtains hang behind broken windows, and a turret stretches toward the sky. Three years ago the wealthy owner disappeared suddenly, leaving behind a house full of secrets: A mysterious note, tantalizing clues, a hidden floor, one piece of a treasure map, and a missing fortune in diamonds.
         Thirteen-year-old sleuth Skylar Robbins moves into the mansion with her parents and embarks on a new and dangerous mission. Armed with her detective kit, and with the support of her BFF Alexa and a team of secret agents, Skylar sets out to decipher the clues and find the diamonds. Can she outwit a gang of aggressive bikers and find the hidden jewels before they do? Or will the perils of middle school–like battling ruthless bully Emelyn Peters for the attention of class hottie Dustin Coles–get in her way?

    Giveaway dates: Feb 21 – Mar 06, 2015
    Countries available: US

 

Girls looking for clean mysteries with a modern twist, here’s your series!

MYSTERY OF THE HIDDEN JEWELS FRONT COVER
4 stars!

By S. J. Henderson on February 2, 2015

     Although I’m not in the target audience for the Skylar Robbins series, I’m definitely still a kid at heart. Pretty sure that still counts. Anyway… the book.What a great story! I’ve always been a fan of mysteries, and read quite a few of my mom’s Nancy Drew books growing up. Spooky settings like Xandra’s mansion always draw me in, too, so Skylar Robbins: The Mystery of the Hidden Jewels drew me in almost immediately even though I started behind the game by not having read book 1.
     Loved the dumbwaiter idea, a childhood dream of mine since the TV series “Webster.” And the turret and gazebo and… yes. The setting was great.Because I missed that first part of the series, I assumed I’d know more about the Secret Agents. I also assume there’s an online community somewhere where readers have the opportunity to win mentions in these books. That’s a fun idea, and I know younger readers would enjoy seeing their screen names in print. This bit of missing info/back story didn’t ruin the reading experience for me. The author did a decent job making sure new readers could pick up this book with a minimum of confusion.
     As an adult, I wanted to shake Skylar more than a few times for not alerting her parents to the Crew Gang’s menacing behavior. It made for a tense story, but I don’t think it’s a great idea for kids to imitate that in real life. If someone is threatening you or your family for any reason, seek help. Jewels or boys or whatever aren’t a good enough reason to let sociopaths persist. That aside…I’d definitely read another Skylar Robbins book, and I’m happy to recommend them to girls looking for clean mysteries with a modern twist.
     Read more reviews of SKYLAR ROBBINS: THE MYSTERY OF THE HIDDEN JEWELS here. The Skylar Robbins series is available on Amazon.