Carpe Diem, Illinois is the first Leo Townsend novel by author Kristin Oakley. The story begins with a suspicious traffic accident near this small midwest town where there are no schools at all. Instead, children in Carpe Diem are free to grow and learn from the world around them. The book's central character, Leo Towsend, is a prize-winning Chicago reporter who is assigned to write a story about this strange town. He soon finds himself in the middle of a mess of politics and criminal activities. This is the debut novel with a series to follow bringing Leo Townsend a variety of intriguing assignments.