Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Spooky News & Links

Austin-area readers, mark your calendars! I'll also be speaking and signing at the Hastings Books, Music, and Video in Round Rock (2200 S. I-35) during the afternoon of Aug. 18. More details forthcoming! In addition, I'll visit the University Hills branch of the Austin Public Library from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Aug. 23.

What's Fresh With Cynthia Leitich Smith's Tantalize: an interview at YA Fresh (from Kelly Para, author of Graffiti Girl (MTV, 2007)). Visit Kelly at MySpace! Note: watch for another upcoming interview with me at Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast.

Tantalize (Candlewick, 2007) is a Junior Advisory Board (JAB) pick at Chapters. Emma-Lee Kramer, 12 from Edmonton, Alberta writes: "I found this book extremely entertaining. Author Cynthia Leitich Smith threw such curve balls and twists of plot that it was always a weird and wonderful read. Tantalize kept me transfixed and it was nearly impossible to put down. A book that keeps me that engaged can earn no less than five stars." City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, Book 1) by Cassandra Clare (McElderry, 2007) also is a JAB pick. Note: "The JAB contest encourages and supports a love of reading for youths aged 10 to 16 years. The annual reading contest searches the country to find the nation's [Canada's] top young readers and give them a chance to voice their opinions about what kids should be reading." Photo by Cecil Castellucci.

Kristen Pihlman of Tracy Press (CA) writes: "Tantalize is as delicious and satiable as a generous slice of rich and creamy, chocolate cake." In addition, Lyn Seippel at BookLoons Reviews calls the novel a "darkly romantic, alluring urban fantasy."

The July grand-prize giveaway for the Tantalize Fans Unite! group at MySpace will be a signed copy of Don't Die Dragonfly from The Seer series by Linda Joy Singleton (Llewellyn, 2005)(excerpt). From the promotional copy: "After getting kicked out of school and sent to live with her grandmother, Sabine Rose is determined to become a 'normal' teenage girl. She hides her psychic powers from everyone, even from her grandmother Nona, who also has 'the gift.' Having a job at the school newspaper and friends like Penny-Love, a popular cheerleader, have helped Sabine fit in at her new school. She has even managed to catch the eye of the adorable Josh DeMarco. Yet, Sabine can't seem to get the bossy voice of Opal, her spirit guide, out of her head...or the disturbing images of a girl with a dragonfly tattoo. Suspected of a crime she didn't commit, Sabine must find the strength to defend herself and, later, save a friend from certain danger." Read a Cynsations interview with Linda about the series. Note: runner-up prizes will be posted to the group board.

Eligibility for the June giveaways is ongoing. These include signed copies of Over and Over You by Amy McCauley (Roaring Brook, 2005)(author interview), Gothic! Ten Original Dark Tales edited by Deborah Noyes (Candlewick, 2004)(author interview), and Exile: Star Wars Legacy of the Force by Aaron Allston (Del Rey, 2007).

Escape Reality Summer Reading List by "Book Diva" Melissa at MySpace. Note: I'm honored that Tantalize is included on the list.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Author Interview: David Lubar on True Talents from Cynsations

Author David Lubar talks to Cynsations about True Talents (Starscape, 2007). Here's a sneak peek: "...took a big risk with the opening. Eddie is emerging from a drugged stupor. He's hallucinating, and his mind is wandering. The scene doesn't immediately make sense. That's a big risk, and I'm still worried I'll lose a few potential readers, but it seems to have worked out. Besides, how can you resist a book that opens with: 'The gorilla who clung to the ceiling was wearing a Princeton T-shirt'?"

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Daemon Hall by Andrew Nance

Daemon Hall by Andrew Nance (Henry Holt, 2007)(excerpt). Thriller novelist Ian Tremblin is sponsoring a short-story contest, and five finalists receive the opportunity to spent the night with the horror king at infamous Daemon Hall. The winner's story will be published, but is a contest worth dying for? At times seriously scary, Daemon Hall is a fearsome mind bender from a debut YA author to watch. Ages 12-up.

Author Bio

"Andrew Nance is retired from a twenty-five-year career as a morning radio DJ. He uses his storytelling skills to give ghost tours throughout historic St. Augustine, Florida, where he lives. This is his first novel for young adults."

Monday, June 11, 2007

Spooky News & Links

Author taps love of comics for 1st graphic novel by Matt West from CNN. Here's a sneak peek: "I'm a big believer in no matter what kind of art you do or want to do that you have to really delve into that genre a lot," says [Cecil] Castellucci. "I took out my charge card and bought a [ton] of comic books!" See a new interview with Cecil Castellucci from Bookslut.

Potter artist Mary GrandPré makes magic from The Detroit Free Press. Source: Big A little a.

The Texas Book Festival has re-designed and relaunched its site. "Now visitors will have the convenience of the same familiar web address, but will see great new user-friendly content. The website will feature printable event schedules, author bios, photos, past festival information, and up-to-date details about the 2007 festival, November 2-4. The new website also features the vibrant 'Children's Chapter' with information on all of their favorite authors." Note: I'm thrilled to see such great names as Shannon Hale, Kimberly Willis Holt (author interview), Deborah Wiles, and Mo Willems already on the schedule. This just in--I'll be joining them, speaking about Tantalize (Candlewick, 2007) at the festival on Nov. 4! Hope to see some of you there!

YA fans! Enter for a chance to win Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr (HarperCollins, 2007). Source: Class of 2K7 blog.

More Personally

Author David Lubar says of my new release Tantalize (Candlewick, 2007): "It's a fun, inventive read, filled with vampires, werewolves, and food. Bravo to Cynthia. (Though there's no way I'm ever letting her cook anything for me. Read the book to find out why.)" Glad to hear you're reading again! Read the whole post.

Burlesque of the Damned chimes in: "in Quince, the author has created a strong female character capable of kicking supernatural butt with a pair of snazzy red cowboy boots. Verdict: Tantalizingly cute."

Cynsational Notes

Soon Cynsations will go on summer hiatus! If you're an interviewee who has yet to turn in answers, please touch base with me on your status. It likely will make the most sense to defer your interview until regular posting resumes.

Thank you to the Central Texas Teachers of English for the lovely gift certificate to Mars on South Congress in Austin! The Tandoori chicken is highly recommended!

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Spooky News & Links

High School Scrapbook by Karla Lucht and Jane Optie, Spring 2007, LIS 404 Literature and Resources for Young Adults Graduate School of Library and Information Science, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Entertaining and informative new site links YA books and movies to the high school experience in the following categories: academics, extracurricular, love and life, and non-fiction. It also features short interviews with such YA authors as Brent Hartinger, Lauren Myracle, Justina Chen Headley, Dia Calhoun, and Cynthia Leitich Smith on our own high school experiences. See also interviews with Brent, Lauren, Justina from Cynsations.

An Interview with Cynthia Leitich Smith by Debbi Michiko Florence. Here's a sneak peek: "For obvious reasons, people don't usually think about vampires and restaurants together. But that juxtaposition freshened the blood, so to speak. It allowed me to offer something new to the old tradition."

June giveaways at the Tantalize Fans Unite! MySpace group include signed copies of Over and Over You by Amy McCauley (Roaring Brook, 2005)(author interview), Gothic! Ten Original Dark Tales edited by Deborah Noyes (Candlewick, 2004)(author interview), and Exile: Star Wars Legacy of the Force by Aaron Allston (Del Rey, 2007).

Vampire Wire: the latest vampire and paranormal dish from author Marta Acosta.

Four and Four MEME

Check out my redesigned page at MySpace.

In other news, the lovely LGS has tagged me for the following:

New in the past four years:

1. Publishing for the YA market, short stories and novels.

2. "Monk" addiction.

3. Teaching at the MFA program at Vermont College.

4. Leo & Blizzard.

New to come in the next four years:

1. First vacation with GLS since '01.

2. Carpentry and paint on outside of house.

3. Weekends off--as many as possible.

4. Not sure; it's a tricky thing, the future.

Friday, June 01, 2007

A.M Jenkins on Repossed at the YA Authors Cafe

Repossessed by A.M. Jenkins: recommendation and Q&A interview at the YA Authors Cafe. Here's a sneak peek: "My feeling has always been that religion, the supernatural and the afterlife are *the* most important issues any human has to face. We're alive on this earth for less than 100 years (most of us, anyway), and then there's the question of what happens to us for the rest of eternity. I'd say the answer to that question is crucial. And the answer--or lack of an answer--that each of us comes up with is what provides us with a moral system to live by."