Review & Author Interview: Danny Calloway by @ZCBolger


Exciting mystery for all ages! The story of Danny Calloway begins with the 13 year old bored in class on the last the day of school. He’s expecting a normal summer, but instead finds out that his late grandfather has left his old house solely to Danny.

Danny and his father fly out to look at the fixer upper, which Danny has no interest in keeping. But it isn’t long before he, his annoying cousin, and girl he doesn’t know end up discovering that the entire house is a mystery full of clues that only Danny can unlock because he has his grandfather’s unique key. Soon they’re working against the clock to find the treasure that the house is hiding.

It was an exciting ride throughout and I didn’t want to put it down. It wrapped up well and threw in a surprise twist at the end. I’m definitely waiting for the second book. I’m also looking forward to reading the stories with my kids when they’re a little older. They’re going to love this series too.

5 Stars


Thirteen-year-old Danny Calloway thinks he’s just a weird kid. His ability to solve complex mathematical equations and decipher cryptic messages in the blink of an eye has made him a school outcast, and recently he’s grown more and more certain that someone is following him around — someone who dodges out of sight whenever Danny tries to spot them.

But when he inherits the deed to a long-forgotten estate of his grandfather’s, wheels are set in motion that change the course of his life forever. Danny is soon swept into an exciting tapestry of hidden passageways, secret codes and head scratching riddles, and his race against time may just be a race for his very life. In order to come out of his adventure unscathed, Danny must solve the mystery of the Puzzle House before it’s too late.


What’s your story? How did you get into writing?

How did I get into writing? Well, I have always had a passion for storytelling. Throughout my life I pursued different ways to go about that passion and I ended up writing film scripts at an early age.

It really wasn’t until 2007 that I got into writing novels, when I first had the idea for a boy who could instantly break codes and ciphers. At that time I had started writing Danny Calloway as a film script, but halfway through I decided it would be a much better novel. I was a high school teacher at the time, and with each chapter I would write I would read it to my class the next day. There were three particular students, “the musketeers” I would call them, who pushed me to continue the story.

Over the next couple years I moved slowly on the book, not really thinking of publishing, but mainly just writing to write. It was around 2010 that I decided I wanted to pursue writing, so I took a job on a graveyard shift as a security guard in the heart of Hollywood. I thought it would allow me time to write and a quite space to do it in. But after one year of kicking bums off the property and making sure drunk people didn’t urinate on the building, I realized that writing while working was rather difficult, and even more so while extremely tired. It was then that I had the opportunity to move to Miami with my finace, and was able to work out writing full-time.

That was the start of my writing carrier.

What advice do you have for aspiring authors?

The best advice I can give to aspiring authors is “Write what you love, and love what you write”. If you are truly passionate about your work, you will work harder and more often to make it the best it can possibly be. It will be that thing that you wake up for in the morning and that which you dream about at night. When you truly love something, and are passionate about it, nothing can stop you from creating.

What are you working on now?

Right now I am working on an epic fantasy series titled The Realm Keepers. I am co-authoring it with author Garrett Robinson and it has been getting rave reviews. We will be taking it to Comikaze in November and Comic-Con in 2014.

I am also working on Danny Calloway Book 2.

What has been the most challenging part of publishing or marketing your book?

Well, to be completely honest, the printer who is supposed to be doing the hardcover editions of Danny Calloway is REALLY getting on my nerves. I won’t say who it is here but they continue with bad products, high prices and the worst customer service I have ever experienced. I am unfortunately in too deep with the investment to pull out. I have to see the hardcovers through, but I doubt I will be using them ever again.

What has been your favorite part?

My favorite part is talking to readers. I love hearing readers’ experiences with my books and what they think might happen next. I love learning who their favorite character is and why. I love to see that my book has brought joy to someone’s life. If I could afford to give my books away for free, I totally would.

Who are your favorite authors?

Hmmm… That is a hard one because it is like asking for favorite movies – there are just so many. Some of the more well-known authors I look up to are:
J. K. Rowling
Steven King
Orson Scott Card
Quentin Tarantino (His dialogue is incredible – any author can benefit from dissecting one of his scenes.)

What gave you the idea for your current work?

Well, I am not exactly sure where the idea for Danny Calloway came from. I think it probably resulted from teaching mathematics and daydreaming of a student who didn’t need help. I think I built on the idea of how cool it would be to do math instantly, and I soon had a boy who could break codes and ciphers without even trying.
I do, however, remember exactly how I came up with the puzzle house. I was reading an article in a magazine several years ago, and it was about a designer who had secretly built clues and secret panels into a condo he was remodeling. When he was done he handed the owners a simple clue but said nothing more. That led the family, over the next several months, on an adventure in their own home. I thought it was such a cool concept that the wheels started turning and I ended up with the puzzle house.

For The Realm Keepers, it was an idea that Garrett brought to me. It was just a tiny thought really when he told me about it. The pitch was “You can travel between Earth and another dimension when you go to sleep.” I thought it was an interesting idea so we sat down and started building on it. I think we did pretty great when I look back at what we started with.

If you could be any character in the book, which one would you be?

I would have to pick Danny from Danny Calloway. His ability is pretty awesome and I can tell you, it only gets better. I feel that I relate more with Sam though; we are booth goofballs, just trying to get a smile out of someone.

I have no idea who I would pick out of The Realm Keepers. All the kids are really cool and all have such cool powers.

What other books have you written and/or are working on for the future?

Danny Calloway and the Puzzle House Book 1 – April 4th 2013
The Ninjabread Man –May 13th 2013
Realm Keepers: Episode 1 – August 6th 2013
Realm Keepers: Episode 2 – August 14th 2013
Realm Keepers: Episode 3 – August 19th 2013
Realm Keepers: Episode 4 – August 26th 2013
Realm Keepers: Episode 5 – September 4th 2013
Realm Keepers: Episode 6 – September 10th 2013
Realm Keepers: Episode 7 – September 17th 2013

After episode 7 of The Realm Keeper series comes out we will be compiling episodes 1-7 into one book called “Midrealm”.

We are slated to write and publish episodes 8 – 14 over the next seven weeks, resulting in book two, titled “Wyrmspire”.

In between those we will also be releasing The Ninjabread Man 2 & 3 and I will be working on Danny Calloway book 2 (title to be announced).

What’s your favorite quote?

“It’s a hundred and six miles to Chicago. We have a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it’s dark, and we’re wearing sunglasses.” ~ Elwood Blues (EASTER EGG: Danny Calloway lives on Elwood St.)

What’s your favorite supernatural creature?

Doppelgangers. I find them quite interesting. Able to shape shift and mimic is something I think is really cool. I have a doppelganger idea on the side burner right now.

Connect with ZC


About ZC

zcbolgerZ. C. Bolger was born in March of 1986 and was raised in Los Angeles, California. From a very early age he showed a great curiosity and passion for the arts, especially in the field of storytelling. This fueled quite an active imagination and he was constantly creating characters, scenes and stories which, more times than not, he played out himself while alone in his room, sometimes into the wee hours of the morning.
Through grade school and high school, Z was lucky enough to attend the prestigious Delphi Academy in Los Angeles, which supplied him with the necessary tools to achieve the goals and dreams he imagined for himself. As part of the curriculum, there was an exorbitant amount of creative writing to be done; Z’s imagination took off in all directions at once, from western shoot outs to superhero vegetables. He also became very interested in script writing. In order to learn the trade, he found work as a production assistant on several film sets and started his own story boarding company, creating story boards out of film scripts waiting to be shot. He also became an apprentice to Hollywood film producer and director Eric Sherman and learned a tremendous amount about that end of the business.
Z. C. Bolger wrote his first full length feature film script at the age of thirteen, entitled “Line 6”. It was an every day, run of the mill, cyborg-from-the-future, science fiction type saga and a good start; after that though he decided to move towards a more realistic style of writing. He soon found himself quite interested in adapting great stories, such as O’ Henry’s “The Last Leaf”, into screenplays and writing poetry based off some of the wonderful classics, such as Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar”.
After writing several more scripts, poems, numerous short stories and a sixteen part web series, he developed an idea for a script about a boy named Danny Calloway. Even though he had gotten well into this character’s story in a film script format, he soon realized that the entire story would be better told and suited as a book. So it was at that point he changed directions once again and ventured to a brand new format; the novel.
Z. C. Bolger is currently working on a pentalogy (a series of five) of the Danny Calloway stories, as well as several cross related books; the first of this series should be going to publishing in late 2012. He currently lives in Miami with his fiancé and their overly spoiled dog, Logan.

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