Inside Awake is the deftly suspenseful/psychological debut novel by Romé Sims.
David Woodall is a successful doctor to the outside world, but inside he is a slave to his past with an alcoholic and abusive father. Whatever endeavor he chooses to pursue is always overshadowed by his relentless demons.
Dr. Sharon Geraldo (Geri) is an overachiever. As the child of an emotionally distant father, Geri’s need for approval dominates every aspect of her life.
When the United Nations investigates massive loss of life around a lake in Africa and a government satellite links the incident to a radio signal off the coast of Sumatra, Geri is asked to lead a team of scientists and military personnel to discover what caused the massacre. Geri accepts without hesitation.
But Geri and the team inexplicably disappear and Woodall is hired by a questionable organization to find out what happened to the team and why so many people were murdered. As he takes on the assignment of a lifetime, Woodall must confront his own demons before it’s too late for him and for his colleagues.
How will these two lives intersect and what will they learn from one another? Can each overcome their pasts to fulfill their destinies?
Sims novel is peppered with candid personal terrors of the human condition while setting a highly suspenseful plot filled with surprise twists and turns.
Romé Sims is currently working on his second novel and lives in San Diego, California.
Excerpt taken from a 2009 Not Guilty Gear promotional interview
NGG: We have with us today, two brave heroes from the book Inside Awake; please welcome TJ and Danny Boy.
NGG: Welcome guys, and thanks for coming.
TJ: Thanks, glad to be here.
Danny Boy: Yeah, what’s up?
NGG: Nothing much, now, in the book, Inside Awake, you guys seem to be inseparable, how long have you known each other?
Danny Boy: Who us? We’ve been hanging out together since we were born.
NGG: That long?
TJ: Yeah, our families are close…real close. My mom and dad and DB’s mom and dad have lived right next to each other for over 40 years.
Danny Boy: We call each other’s parents mom and dad. It gets confusing sometimes.
NGG: You’re also members of the Navy Seals…
TJ: Actually we’re not Seals, but the branch of the military we’re assigned to is classified.
NGG: I see, well, why did you join the military?
TJ: Me? I joined to kill the bad guys. Danny Boy, he’ll never admit it, but he joined because of all of the cool stuff he could play with for free. The guy is a techno geek.
Danny Boy: laughing…Thanks J. But seriously, both of our dads were military and our grandfathers also. It’s a tradition in our family. We joined to serve our country.
NGG: Now in the book, Inside Awake, you guys get into trouble while investigating a surprisingly large underwater facility. Can either of you describe what that was like.
Danny Boy: Well for us, me and TJ, it started out not that much out of the ordinary. We’ve been on missions inside territory that isn’t U.S.A. friendly before, but never 5 miles beneath the ocean. I have to holla at my boys at the DOD though, the new technology was cool.
TJ: I think my boy is being a bit modest. That place was one of the creepiest I’ve ever seen. And when someone activated that light, well, all hell broke lose. If it wasn’t for our training, we may have never returned.
NGG: Speaking of which, the training, there were civilians that accompanied you on the mission. How did that affect things and did it make your jobs more difficult?
TJ: Of course it made our job more difficult. But technically, it was a recovery operation anyways, so our primary focus was to maintain the safety of the scientist.
Danny Boy: OK, enough of the politically correct crap. Let’s be honest, civilians on a military mission suck….
Danny Boy: ….Ok, I mean, well…some of the civilians—well let’s just say a few not only jeopardized the operation, they also put the entire team in danger. But you know, I can’t complain. It was one of those scientists that got us home.
TJ: Yeah, they were looking at bushes and bugs and stuff, while animals with big sharp claws and teeth were everywhere. We lost a good man on that mission. And tragically, there were several civilians that lost their lives also.
NGG: Wow…that must have been intense. So what are you boys up to now?
Danny Boy: We’re on leave right now, but we got a call from Rome, the author of Inside Awake, that we’ll be part of the sequel, The Commission.
TJ: Yeah, we’re looking forward to it, just as long as we don’t have to fight a Saltopus or whatever the hell those other things were. I’d rather be in the middle of a firefight on a barren mountain in the middle of Afghanistan.
Danny Boy: You can say that again.
NGG: Well, there you have it—gentlemen, thanks for coming in and good luck with your new project, The Commission.