PLEASANTVILLE, N.Y. -- A Pleasantville resident recently published her first novel.
Danielle R. Mani is the author of The Divine One about a high school senior bullied by a group of girls. Delilah, the main character, also is dealing with the loss of her sister Darcy. Delilah's mother believes Darcy is sending messages from beyond the grave.
Delilah soon meets a boy named River and develops an attraction, though she has a feeling he is withholding dark secrets from her.
"Bullying is a pretty prevalent topic," Mani said. "There's a paranormal aspect with her sister and I was a fan of the element."
Mani will hold a book signing at 1 p.m. Aug. 23 at the Pleasantville Village Bookstore at 10 Washington Ave.
Before becoming an author, Mani taught elementary school for eight years before raising her children. She often would spend her nights writing.
"I've always wanted to write a book and do something fictional," Mani said. "I like books that have twists and turns, that keep you guessing. I think I have done that with this book. I am proud and happy with the final product."
Mani said she is already working on a sequel, The Divine Too .
With the success of books such as Twilight , Mani thinks there is an audience for her book.
"A lot of people can relate to it," Mani said. "Growing up, people dealt with a lot of the same issues. Even boys have enjoyed it."
One of her goals for the book is to make sure teens can read it and identify with Delilah.
"They can think back to things she went through, like her parents getting separated," Mani said. "It deals with serious issues, but I want the book to be entertaining. I have cliffhangers at the end of each chapter."
Mani said her favorite authors are Mary Higgins and Stephen King. She grew up reading C.S. Lewis.
"He was one of the first fantasy authors I read," Mani said. "I read him to my students, I love his work."