Monday, August 01, 2011

Welcome to the YA Scavenger Hunt!

I'm really excited to be taking part in the YA Scavenger Hunt, coordinated by Tiger's Curse author Colleen Houck. Today and today only, you can win tons of great prizes, given by the individual authors on the tour, plus a grand prize, which will include signed editions of books, signed bookmarks, jewelry, and many more exclusive gifts with at least one from every author on the tour!

Not only that, on this hunt you will gain access to exclusive bonus material, sign up for giveaways, and get an all-access pass to top secret insider information--sneak peeks into what's coming up in YA literature.

For One. Day. Only.

(See the bottom of this post for a special SHADE-related giveaway!)

Grand prize contest--Scavenger Hunt Puzzle

Directions: Copy and paste the puzzle below onto a document or blank email page and fill it out as you proceed through the Scavenger Hunt. Search for keywords, one on each website that will be highlighted in RED, insert them into the puzzle, then fill out the YA Scavenger Google form here.

Rules: To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit this filled-in puzzle before 11:59pm Pacific Time, Monday, August 1. All the keywords must be in the correct place, and you must include your full name and address. Entries sent in without name and address will not be considered!


Welcome fans of young adult literature! Don’t forget to _______ up in time to join our special event! In ____________ you roll the dice and, like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get. Our scavenger hunt is very similar. Surprises wait around every corner. Turn one page and you’re chasing a _________ through a _________ _____________. Turn another and you are being ________ by a _______ which leaves your heart ________. YA ________s are full of ___________ heroes who must ___________ themselves for the greater good. Some of the characters travel through ______ or have a _________ __________. If there is one thing YA books have taught us, it’s that if you leave your ___________ keep an eye out for a patrolling ________. They’re very dangerous. Maybe not so frightening as a ____________, but still you should be careful. Also beware lest you become __________ by vampires. ______________ one is a different story. Just remember that bite has ___________ ramifications and that afterwards the sun can ______ you unless you get bitten by a glittering type. Whether you like dark, paranormal, romance, fantasy, ___________, Sci-Fi, or a combination of those, we’ve got something for you.
We think that each fan is a __________ and we love you all!


Now let's get on with the HUNT! I am so excited to be hosting the fantabulous Lani Woodland, fellow "ghost writer"! I met Lani at the RT Convention, and she is the sweetest!

Lani Woodland has been an avid reader since elementary school when she first discovered the Babysitters Club and Sweet Valley Twins series. In sixth grade she began writing plays and recruiting (with force when necessary) her friends to act them out. Most of these early works were inspired by She-Ra, the epitome of girl power to her young self.

She graduated from BYU with a BS in Family Science. Lani has always loved scary stories, and has a hard time enjoying any book without at least a little romance in it. She lives in Southern California with her husband, their two children and a large collection of board games. She has worked as a spot-welder, babysitter, janitor, photographer, gymnastics coach, and movie extra. She enjoys bonfires at the beach, hole-in-the-wall restaurants, speed talking, chocolate as a cure-all, and the word "precisely".

Lani's upcoming novel is Indelible, the sequel to 2010's Intrinsical, about a girl who can communicate with ghosts, an ability handed down through the female members of her family. We like those kinds of books here. ;-)

More about Indelible:

Yara is beginning to understand just how much her life has changed now that she is a full-fledged Waker. After narrowly escaping death during her junior year, all she wants is a ghost-free senior year at Pendrell Academy with her boyfriend Brent and her best friend Cherie. But Yara soon discovers that there are more dark secrets in her school’s history than just the curse she broke last year. While an angry ghost makes Yara question everything she thought she knew about spirits, she and Brent learn that they might not have escaped last year as unscathed as they thought. Yara finds herself in the center of another deadly mystery, and this time all of her enemies might not be dead.

Check this out! An EXCLUSIVE look (that means it's nowhere else but here, today) at Chapter Two of Indelible. Woo-hoo!

I took a deep breath before taking a step forward. I just had to remind myself I wasn’t supposed to be afraid of ghosts.

“Where is it?” Sophia hissed, her fear and fury slamming against me. I backtracked into Brent, crushing his toes under my heels. “You took it!”

“Back up, back up, back up,” I whispered to Brent. He listened and we started slinking further into the depths of the third floor. I turned toward Sophia. “I didn’t take it.”

Her hands flew to her face, her eyes widened impossibly, and a heartbreaking wail burst from her.

“It’s gone!” she wailed. “All these years! It’s gone!”

Her red curls straightened, standing on end like she’d put her finger in a light socket. Her scream cut off and she grew to twice her size, her pale skin flaming red. She seemed to morph before my eyes from a proper, if angry, socialite, to fury-fueled psychopath. The heat of her anger washed over me like scalding water.

Brent’s hand tightened on my arms as we distanced ourselves from the stairs. My eyes never left Sophia. I knew she needed help, but it was hard to think of helping her when I was afraid she was going to kill me.

“This is your fault,” Sophia screamed.

She surged forward, her face contorted with rage. Despite my confidence in my necklace’s protection, I recoiled against Brent as she reached for me. I didn’t flinch as her nails drew near, expecting them to slide right through me. But not only did her fingers connect with me, they melted through my skin, closing around my spirit’s wrist. I gasped as pain lanced through my wrist and radiated up my arm. For a split second she paused, like she too was surprised, but then her eyes glinted with something horrible.

“Do you know what you’ve done?” she shrieked at me, her voice crashing against my eardrums. The ghost’s deranged howls filled my ears as her glowing red eyes made my insides shudder. “You led them here.”

I blinked in confusion at her hand on my wrist. She shouldn’t have been able to touch me. She shouldn’t have been able to hurt me. But she did, on both accounts. Terror washed through me as she yanked hard on my wrist. My spirit rattled inside my body, my ghostly head smacking against my physical skull.

“Yara!” Brent cried, as Sophia yanked me out of his arms and onto the floor with a painful thud. I winced as the skin underneath her fingers began to freeze from the inside out with a cold so intense it burned. I tried desperately to free my arm, but she only tightened her grip, driving the cold deeper.

Brent crouched down beside me and gaped at the purpling marks appearing on my wrist.

“Brent, she’s hurting me,” I said between chattering teeth. Sophia’s fingers wrapped more securely around my wrist.

“Tell me how to get rid of her,” Brent said in a hushed voice, his eyes frantic. He couldn’t see her, and he needed my help. I could handle this. I had to handle this. Vovó wasn’t here. I steeled my nerves, pushing away the pain and burning ache of her cold fingers, and tried to grasp at any of the lessons Vovó had taught me, but I came up blank. I hadn’t been trained for this. I gritted my teeth. “I don’t know. But she won’t let go.”

Brent’s eyes slid closed, and when they reopened, the panicked look was gone, replaced by a quiet intensity. He stood fluidly and his brown eyes zeroed in on where he knew Sophia must be. With a flick of his wrist, he swirled his fingers in an arc, sending a blast of air tunneling down the hall.

The wind hit her and batted her around, but she didn’t vanish or turn into smoke like Thomas had last year. Brent’s brute force and elemental manipulation might not be enough. Sophia turned toward him, her harsh eyes focusing on Brent as he conjured the storm.

He brought his hands together and pushed one hand palm out toward us, hitting us with another strong gust of air, its strength building to a roar. Wind zoomed past me, ripping the bobby pins from my hair. Sophia’s gauzy dress whipped around her and my hair stung my eyes, obscuring my vision.

The coppery taste of blood blanketed my tongue as my teeth sunk into my bottom lip, biting back a scream of pain. My arm burned as if it had been plunged into a frozen river and I could no longer feel my fingers. Her touch stole the heat from my body, and my brain began to go numb.

The wind suddenly died and I tossed my hair out of my eyes, immediately seeking Brent. He cupped his hands together, like he was holding a ball, collecting the elements for a stronger attack. He pointed one finger at Sophia and the flood of air hit her right in the chest. She lost her footing and took a steadying step to the side, releasing me. Warmth licked through me like a vapor of smoke and I cradled my arm to my chest, limping forward toward Brent.

Brent lowered his hands to reach for me, and the storm immediately ceased. “Where did she go?”

My outstretched fingers were inches from him when Sophia grabbed me from behind, seizing my hair and yanking it hard, ripping a fistful of strands from the scalp.

“Ow!” I yelped when she jerked me back toward her.

Several locks of hair that had torn loose floated to the floor, the dark strands reflecting glimmers of light in their fall. Brent’s eyes darkened, turning almost black as he tracked their descent. He raised his hands and the corridor was instantly in motion again. The windows and mirrors vibrated and the paintings banged against the walls. Sophia glared at Brent, her tawny eyes freezing over. She pulled me closer to her with another fierce tug on my hair. Her other hand slid around my waist and I was trapped in her iron embrace.

“Tell him to stop,” she growled from between clenched teeth.

“No.” I trembled all over, but I pushed away my fright, trying to awaken my inner Vovó, knowing she’d know what to do. “I can help you,” I finally managed.

She laughed. “I’m not the one who needs help!” She pulled me closer, using me as a shield from Brent’s attack. Her cold breath spread across my face.

Brent couldn’t see her, but with my neck twisted at such an unnatural angle, he could tell where she stood. He stretched out his fingers with a determined look and launched a bolt of air so forceful that Sophia and I both staggered back. Her grip loosened enough that I was able to break away, and fall to the floor. Sophia lunged at me but stopped suddenly in mid-air, like she had hit a wall. She hung there for a split second before being thrown backwards like a bungee jumper at the end of a cord. She jetted toward me again, but bounced off once more. She raged and snarled like a rabid dog as she came at me a third time. This time the wall wavered a bit and I felt a current of air blow in my face. Brent let out a strained grunt and his upraised arms shook as if he struggled with a heavy weight. Finally I understood what kept her away. Brent. He had created an air-shield around me.

Sophia eyed Brent and I shivered; she had figured it out too. She inhaled deeply, like a vacuum stealing oxygen from the room.

“Brent—” I started to warn, but I couldn’t finish. I coughed; my lungs burned from lack of air. Brent’s face turned red in his struggle to hold the force of his storm and breathe at the same time. Then Sophia’s inhalation stopped. She twisted her mouth in a cruel smile right before she exhaled an icy blast of air straight at Brent.

He staggered as if fighting his way through a wind tunnel. His hair and clothes whipped behind him, and he stumbled backward, slamming against the wall with a groan. Held prisoner by her torrent of air, he struggled to raise his arms against the onslaught, trying to defend himself. He gasped against the air that forced its way down his throat and into his lungs.

I pounded against the shield that separated me from Brent and Sophia, the air rippling against my palms, but Brent’s wall held firm.

“Brent, let me help you!” I screamed, pushing against the barrier. “No.” Brent’s face twisted in concentration. I fell onto my side and the beads of my necklace dug into my collarbone. It had failed me for the first time ever, but maybe it could still help Brent. I reached to undo the clasp when Sophia began to flicker like a fluorescent bulb about to burn out. Her stream of air sputtered as her shoulders slumped and her arms dropped to her sides. She sagged against the wall breathing heavily. The feral fury in her eyes faded while her flickering image grew lighter and lighter until it disappeared in a puff of colored smoke that swirled away.

Brent bent over, panting for breath. His hands rested on his knees and his hair fell into his overly bright eyes. The hall, which had roared with gale-force winds only seconds before, now settled into a peaceful calm. My labored breathing came out in loud wheezes. I stared at Brent, my hands pressed against the invisible wall he still held. My wrist burned even worse than before, the sudden warmth of the room making the cold seem deeper, but I tried to ignore it.

“She’s gone,” I called out, my voice sounding too loud in the hall.



Awesome! While you're here, sign up to win a very special prize: "marked-up" copies of Shade and Shift! Discover some of the secrets behind the writing of the first two books in the Shade trilogy, including hidden musical references, original plot ideas that got changed, and the substance that inspired "Liquid Stupid."

To qualify for this prize:

1) Complete the YA Scavenger Hunt! See instructions above.

2) E-mail me at jeri AT jerismithready DOT com with the Subject Line "YA Scavenger Hunt." In the body of the e-mail, answer this question:

In the Indelible excerpt above, what did Brent use to protect Yara from Sophia?

3) I will check your e-mail against the list of people who completed the Scavenger Hunt, then draw a name randomly from those who both e-mailed me with the correct answer to my question AND completed the Hunt. Winner will be notified this week.

4) Edited to add: Both this giveaway and the grand prize giveaway are OPEN to international entries. Cool, huh?

Now off with ya, to the next stop on the Scavenger Hunt, Kady Cross! Good luck and have fun!

(P.S.: If you're here for the deleted scene from Shift, it's located on Inara Scott's blog, where she's giving away a copy of her own Delacroix Academy: Candidates and an ARC of the sequel, The Watchers. Go show her some love--she deserves it!)



Excellent sneak peek! I've had the honor of reading Indelible, and it only gets better!

Posted by: Blogger Jamie Manning at 8/01/2011 9:11 AM

I just added your books to my goodreads list! I love this scavenger hunt!!!! Thank you!!

Posted by: Blogger Linzy at 8/01/2011 1:25 PM

Ooh, this excerpt makes me want to read Indelible even more!

And I'm all for the giveaway. I'd be ecstatic to win marked up copies of Shade & Shift, so thank you :)

Posted by: Blogger Nikki (Wicked Awesome Books) at 8/01/2011 1:28 PM

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This Side of Salvation

This Side of Salvation, Jeri's new contemporary YA novel!

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“A smart, well-rounded, and unpredictable tale...bringing to light issues of belief versus free will, spirit versus body, and family versus self.” —Booklist, **Starred Review**


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Jeri Smith-Ready

Jeri Smith-Ready is a Maryland author of books for teens and adults.

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