Wednesday, September 14, 2011

YA Scramble Giveaway and Guest Post!

Greetings YA readers! I'm so excited to be part of this event and I hope you have an absolutely spectacular time. Check out the information below to get started. Good luck! (And pssst... check out my Timeless YA Titles hosted by T. R. Graves right HERE! Please and thank you!)

***Event Closed***
(But feel free to read the articles!)

Instructions for the YA Scramble:
1) Visit the first blog (based on list below).
2) Read the guest post.
3) Identify the PURPLE word.
4) Pick out the 3rd letter from the PURPLE word.
5) Go to the next blog.
6) Repeat #3, #4, and #5 until you visited all 14 sites.
7) At the end, take all 14 of the 3rd letters from the PURPLE words and figure out the message near and dear to our hearts.
8) You will enter that unscrambled message ONCE into this form
as your official entry for a chance to win some great prizes from fantastic authors and bloggers. You have 24 hours to complete the Scramble.

Participating Blogs (all must be visited):
Kaitlin Simpson
PJ Hoover
Cary Cummings
Heather Cashman
Kathleen Tucker
Jennifer Morris
Cyndi Tefft
Irish/ Gail
Danielle Bunner
Melissa Layton  (Surprise! You're here.)
T.R. Graves (Hosting my topic!)
Megg Jensen
Amy Jones
Laura Elliott

HUGE Grand Prize including:
- ARC of The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab (with signed bookmark)
- Ebook of Soltice by PJ Hoover (with trading cards)
- Ebook of The Space Between by Alexandra Sokoloff
- Paperback copy of Perception by Heather Cashman
- Signed paperback ARC of Anathema by Kathleen Tucker
- Chronicles of Vladimir Tod Gift Set (Trade Paperback of Eighth Grade Bites, Vlad Journal, Minion Bling Buttons and Vlad Tote)
- Signed paperback copy of Between by Cyndi Tefft
- Signed hardcover of Clarity by Kim Harrington
- ARC of Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
- Signed ARC of Fury by Elizabeth Miles
- Signed paperback of Linger by Maggie Stiefvater
- ARC of Tris & Izzie by Mette Ivie Harrison
- Copy of The Iron Witch by Karen Mahoney
- Winner's choice of 5 ebooks from a list of indie authors
- Signed paperback of Sleepers by Megg Jensen
- Ebooks of Soul Quest and The Guardian of Souls by Amy Jones
- Kindle copy of Winnemucca by Laura Elliott (plus a guest post spot on her blog!)
- Paperback copy of City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

Books That Changed Me
by Danielle Bunner
“In the case of good books, the point is not how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you.”
Mortimer Jerome Adler (B. 1902)American Author and Philosopher
I don’t know much about the person who said this, but I completely agree with the quote. We read books because they have this incredible power over us. We turn pages hoping to find an escape, a truth, hope. We want to connect with someone else who’s troubles are greater than ours or lives are better than us or have the things we only dream of having. There are so many things books can teach us, so many things books remind of us and even more ways they affect and change our lives.

I know they have completely changed mine.

It’s because of YA books that I’m exactly where I am in my life. YA books opened my world to magic, to stories from teenagers that I never had the power to face in my own life. They’ve inspired me. They’ve taught me. YA saves and YA matters. The reason these books contain so much power is because people speak out about them. Each person has a different story to tell about how which stories have affected their lives—and these are a few of mine.

A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly

I don’t know if you’ve read this book, but I read it in college. It was sitting on a FREE table outside one of the main buildings, and I was the lucky person who picked it up. At the time (sophomore year) I had never read YA. I mean, Harry Potter, yes. But I didn’t know what YA even was. I read A Northern Light and it was so fantastically written, so beautiful a story about a girl who wanted to make her own way, who wanted to go to New York, who wanted to be someone else completely. Never in my life have I related to a character like I did Mattie. Those were all things I wanted my whole life. I finished that book and I cried because it was so much all the things I wanted—including to write a book like Donnelly did. This book changed my life because it pushed me to pursue my dreams (Writing!!).

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

This was one of the first books I read when I was introduced into YA. It was actually the 4th book. There was (and is) something about it that will always give it a special place in my heart. It didn’t save me—but it taught me a lot about writing good characters and world building. It’s not even my favorite of the series (that would be City of Glass or Clockwork Angel) but when I need something that makes me smile, I can turn to Jace and Clary. Plus, I like ADORE Cassie. I met her once and could barely talk because she is a remarkable.

The Mockingbirds by Daisy Whitney

The quote above mentions books that “get through to you” and when I think of that, I always think of The Mockingbirds. This was a brave, beautiful story about a girl who was date raped. But it’s so much more than that. It’s about dealing with the truth, about moving on, about speaking out. I wish I’d been able to read something like this book earlier in my teen years. When I was a child, I was sexually abused—and Alex’s story really affected me. I never told anyone—not for a long, long time. When that happens to someone, it’s a really life-changing thing. It can be bad or good in the way it changes you, but it always changes something. For me, The Mockingbirds was inspiring. It’s a constant reminder to SPEAK OUT, and that’s something you can never hear enough.

The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

I don’t handle grief well. Grief is one of those things that doesn’t fit in a box. My life tries to be a box. I separate as many things as possible, to try to MAKE life easier and organized. Grief always spills out. It spills out and overflows and seeps into all the other boxes. So instead of boxes, I trap grief in jars…and I never open the jars. I only pray they don’t break. If they break then everything falls apart. I fall apart. I know this is probably not healthy but it’s the way I was taught. Un-teaching takes a long time.

That’s what Sky is about. It’s about the way you can’t do that! Lennie can’t do that. She tries to act like everything is fine and amazing but really it’s not. She’s broken and cracked. She’s lost someone she allowed her whole world to revolve around. That loss has changed her. It’s changed everyone in her life. And for me, it was exactly the book I needed to be able to understand my own grief. My grandma died when I was in high school, but sometimes all you need is to see someone else grieving to realize what moving on is all about.

Stolen by Lucy Christopher

This is a book about a girl who’s kidnapped. I’ve never been kidnapped. (Yay for that!) But the voice in this book makes it amazing. I read it last year and still, still to this very moment, I don’t know how I feel about Ty. I hate him. I love him. I want him dead. I understand him. When a book can do that to you—when it can make you feel and think and be so unable to sort out how you feel and think—you know it’s gotten through to you.

How to Say Goodbye in Robot by Natalie Standiford

A book about friendship and loss and what life is all about. I love this book so hard because it’s real. It’s about the people who come into your life for a season and leave it when you don’t want them to. It’s honest and connectable and shows what it looks like to truly love a friend.

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

This book comes out in November. I was lucky enough to get an ARC at BEA—and let me tell you: it’s amazing. I put it on this list because Tahereh Mafi makes words do this thing—this incredible, unbelievable, unexplainable unless you read it thing. I really connected with it. I haven’t felt what I did for a character like Juliet in a long time. Shatter Me also reminded me of what a book can be, of what it means to fight for things you want, of hope.

These are the books that have saved me in some way, and the point of a book is to share it. So, I'm going to giveaway ANY book from this list. Seriously. Any book you want. All you have to do is fill out THIS FORM!

What are some books that have inspired you?


  1. I picked up A Northern Light from a sale bin some years ago and it blew me away with its beauty.

    I always say that Lauren Myracle is my literary soulmate...I love her that much. Her YA books have a way of lifting me up with their powerful honesty and humor. I remember reading Kissing Kate for the first time and just feeling it seep into my heart and mind. I walk away from each of her books feeling more comfortable in my own skin than I did before.

    It's Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini is another one of those YA books that I found at the right time in my life when I needed it most.

    Thanks for the awesome giveaway and event.

    wordspelunker at gmail dot com

  2. Recently I read If I Stay and Where She Went by Gayle Forman and they are beautiful books!Even I always hesitate while buying books which have grief in them because then the books just make me really sad,but these books were just touching and beautifully written.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

    justjanhvi at gmail dot com

  3. i'd have to say my sisters keeper by jodi picoult. many lauren myracle books because they make me smile. also books by david levithan and rachel cohn.
    and How to say goodbye in robot by natalie standiford! I just posted about that book on YOUR blog for the YA scramble!


    mirrormera92 at aol dot com

  4. Books that inspired me are: Heartlight by TA Barron, Running Loose by Chris Crutcher, & The Giver.

  5. Fantastic post! I loved the emotion and personal emphasis you put in your recaps of each book. Well done!!


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