I'm so thrilled to have a special guest on Chock Full of Words today. Meet Leah Walker, the star of Game On by Kyra Lennon. She's here today to talk about her family. Much of Game On centers on the relationships between Leah and her brother and parents, so I'm excited to hear more of her thoughts on the subject (especially her nephew Jamie, who was without a doubt my favorite character in the book. Please give a warm welcome to Leah Walker! (I know, I know. I missed my calling as a game show announcer.)
I’d like to tell you a little bit more about my family. You see, now I live in L.A, I don’t get to see them much anymore. And by that I mean, I haven’t seen them in over a year, since I moved to America. I think some of my friends here think that I don’t miss them because I rarely talk about them. In fact, the opposite is true. I miss them so much, it hurts to talk about them.
My mum, bless her heart, is kind of... old before her time. And she’s always been that way. We used to be close, but my rebellious teen phase put a huge dent in that. This wasn’t her fault. It was mine. I shut down, and stopped talking about what was going on with me. She didn’t make it any better by pushing, and she can give a guilt trip better than anyone I know. But it was me who initially weakened the bonds. I hope that one day we can fix it all. We talk on the phone every few weeks, and in spite of the distance, we have got closer. But there are many things beneath the surface we need to deal with.
My dad’s quiet. Not in a grumpy old man kind of way. He just likes to keep life as simple as possible, and would never dream of starting an argument, or nitpicking over something that might cause a row. He just sits back, waits. His facial expressions always give him away though. He’s the kindest man I know, and he only ever wants what is best for everyone.
My brother, Josh... he is amazing. He’s kind of the perfect combination of my parents, personality-wise. He’s like my mum in the sense that, if someone has a problem, he wants to help. But like my dad, he knows when to hold back. He didn’t interfere in my decision to move to America. Well, he didn’t try and talk me out of it. He told my parents to let me go and stop badgering me into staying near home. I knew he wanted me to stay, but he made sure that I didn’t feel any pressure from him.
Josh’s wife, Christina, is just about the sweetest person you could ever hope to have in your family. She’s been with Josh since they were at school, so she’s known me since I was thirteen. I always looked up to her when I was growing up. I thought she was really cool, and I loved her blonde curls. I remember asking my mum over and over if I could dye my hair blonde. Mum always laughed and said that blonde wouldn’t work on my black hair, and it would be more likely to come out green. During the rebellious phase I mentioned, I paid to have blonde streaks put in my hair, and they were most definitely blonde, not green. Mum was livid!
Josh and Christina have two wonderful children. Jamie is seven and Grace is sixteen months. I haven’t seen Grace since she was a baby, and I know there is a lot I’m missing out on. I was always exceptionally close to Jamie, and it lights up my day when I get to speak to him on the phone. He’s a great kid, and I know he is going to grow up to do great things.
I’m lucky, I know. I’m really looking forward to seeing them again, but talking about them? That’s always hard. So now I’m going to get a glass of wine, and think about something that doesn’t make me want to jump on the next plane to England!
Thanks so much for being on my blog, Leah! If you're interested in buying Game On (which you should be), you can purchase it on Amazon or Smashwords, at the following links:
Amazon UK Kindle
Amazon UK paperback
Barnes & Noble Nook