Tuesday, September 24, 2013

We Have a Winner!

Thanks to all who entered the giveaway for a copy of PANIC by Sharon M. Draper.  By use of my random number generator, our winner is:

(: Isa :)

Isa, please send me your contact information at admin@tinaferraro.com, and we'll get the book in the mail to you.

And everyone, keep dropping by YA Fresh to be part of our cool giveaways! 

Friday, September 20, 2013

The PANIC Giveaway!

Our giveaway is a very special book written by five-time winner of the Coretta Scott King Literary award, winner of the National Teacher of the Year, and New York Times bestselling author Sharon M. Draper.  I can’t help thinking this book would be a bonus for a high school classroom--or a personal collection.

PANIC chronicles a teen abduction and is told in a way that will help young adult readers make good choices with the goal of protecting themselves.  Here is the blurb: 

Diamond knows not to get into a car with a stranger.

But what if the stranger is well-dressed and handsome? On his way to meet his wife and daughter? And casting a movie that very night—a movie in need of a star dancer? What then?

Then Diamond might make the wrong decision.

It’s a nightmare come true: Diamond Landers has been kidnapped. She was at the mall with a friend, alone for only a few brief minutes—and now she’s being held captive, forced to endure horrors beyond what she ever could have dreamed, while her family and friends experience their own torments and wait desperately for any bit of news.

This is a riveting exploration of power: how quickly we can lose it—and how we can take it back.

You can learn more about PANIC HERE.

Our giveaway starts NOW, and ends on Tuesday morning, September 24nd.  All you have to do to be entered in this weekend giveaway is to tell us so in our comments.  

Good luck and check back on Monday!    

Thursday, September 19, 2013

What's Fresh with Debbie Rigaud as she chats about OPEN MIC

Using humor as the common denominator, a multicultural cast of YA authors steps up to the mic to share stories touching on race.

Listen in as ten YA authors — some familiar, some new — use their own brand of humor to share their stories about growing up between cultures. Henry Choi Lee discovers that pretending to be a tai chi master or a sought-after wiz at math wins him friends for a while — until it comically backfires. A biracial girl is amused when her dad clears seats for his family on a crowded subway in under a minute flat, simply by sitting quietly in between two uptight white women. Edited by acclaimed author and speaker Mitali Perkins, this collection of fiction and nonfiction uses a mix of styles as diverse as their authors, from laugh-out-loud funny to wry, ironic, or poingnant, in prose, poetry, and comic form.

Hello Debbie, thanks for stopping by YA Fresh! Please share with our readers what OPEN MIC is about.

Debbie: OPEN MIC is a collection of 10 humorous short stories about growing up between cultures. Edited by the fabulous MG/YA author Mitali Perkins, Open MIC’s contributors are 10 YA authors who have survived this type of colorful upbringing with their sense of humor intact. My story “Voila” follows what happens when my protagonist Simone’s cultural and social worlds collide in the most awkward of places.

Terrific! What's one piece of writing advice you would give to aspiring authors?

Debbie: Find your own voice. It’s a chief storytelling tool that makes the experience of reading your work unique and enjoyable. I believe that a well-defied voice speaks to readers about as much as your actual writing does.

Who would you cast if your story was made into a movie?

Debbie: This is fun to consider. Okay, I’d go with China Anne McClain from “A.N.T. Farm” as my protagonist Simone; a slightly older version of “Modern Family”’s Rico Rodriguez to play Louis; Bailee Madison would be a good Waverly—she had that Type A personality down pat as Jennifer Aniston’s daughter in “Go With It”; and finally, as the beloved Ma Tante I’d cast Cicely Tyson.

Is your main character someone you wish you could be, someone a lot like you, or your total opposite?

Debbie: My main character Simone and I share cultural backgrounds (Haitian-American), but she is a lot less trusting and much snarkier than I was at that age. Her healthy skepticism keeps her a step ahead of awkward situations, which she handles a whole lot better than I would.

Thanks, Debbie! Let's close with what was the last book you read that you really loved?

Debbie: I'm late to the party on this one, but I recently picked up a few Lois Lowry books and enjoyed them. It was interesting to read what seems to be one of the literary predecessors of today's dystopian YA.

Debbie Rigaud began her writing career covering news and entertainment for popular magazines. Her YA fiction debut, HALLWAY DIARIES/Kimani Tru was followed by the fish-out-of-water romantic comedy PERFECT SHOT/Simon Pulse. Since then, Debbie’s non-fiction essays have been published in anthologies IT’S ALL LOVE/Broadway Books and DEAR BULLY/HarperTeen. Her short story “Voila!” is featured in OPEN MIC/Candlewick Press, and TURFQUAKE, her first YA e-book will be released late 2013. Visit her website, www.debbierigaud.com/.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Fun Kindle news!

The Kindle version of my first Delacorte release, Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress, is available at Amazon at a reduced price.  Permanently!

This book was released in 2007, and picked up some lovely comments.  Such as:

"Nicolette is a likable, down-to-earth protagonist who is grappling with a lot of issues, and readers will quickly identify with and understand her. Ferraro does a fine job of setting up an interesting plot, funny dialogue and situations, and an engaging lead character," School Library Journal.

"A particular strength of the book is the romantic interest, Jared (who is very crush-worthy), and the sparkling banter between the characters. Ferraro convinces that these two are perfect for each other, but maintains Nic's obliviousness with good credibility. This was a delightful read, and I highly recommend it," Rosemary Clement Moore, author of The Splendor Falls, Texas Gothic and Prom Dates from Hell.

--and perhaps most famously--

"Very good for a book with a pink cover," a then-12 year old boy (who will remain anonymous because I make it a habit not to embarrass my children).

Anyway, I hope you'll check it out...and come back and let us know what you think!

Friday, September 13, 2013

What's Fresh with Allison van Diepen's TAKEDOWN

A teen infiltrates a drug ring to settle a vendetta in this fast-paced novel from the author of Street Pharm and Snitch.

Darren took the fall for Diamond Tony, the notorious head of the city’s drug cartel. Two years later, Darren’s finally out of juvie—and determined to get even.

Working as an informant for the police, Darren infiltrates Diamond Tony’s operation. But falling for sweet, innocent Jessica was not part of that plan. She’s a distraction—and a liability. She’s also everything Darren dreamed about while he was locked up, and with her, he has the promise of a fresh start.

When a deadly turf war breaks out between Diamond Tony and the Bloods, Darren gets caught in the crossfire. The cops think he’s playing both sides, and any mistake could be his last. Darren has to stay on his game if he’s going to protect Jessica—and if he’s going to stay alive.

Hello Allison, it’s great to have you back on YA Fresh! Please tell us about your latest novel, TAKEDOWN.

Allison: Great to be here, Kelly! TAKEDOWN is about a teen who comes out of juvie and wants to settle a score with a drug kingpin. School Library Journal called it the “Y.A. version of The Wire.”

How did the idea for this novel come about?

Allison: I love stories about an underdog who takes on a seemingly impossible mission. In this case, it’s Darren trying to bring down the kingpin who terrorizes his neighbourhood. And to achieve his mission, Darren has to do something taboo—he has to be an informant for the police.

Could you share some interesting characteristics of your main character(s)?

Allison: My main character, Darren, is smart, determined, and tough as nails. But he also loves his little brother and his girlfriend so much, and would do ANYTHING to protect them. As for Diamond Tony, he brings evil badass to another level. He HAS to be taken down, and Darren’s just the one to do it.

What is one of your favorite quotes from TAKEDOWN?

Allison: My favorite quotes are Darren’s rap lyrics, which appear throughout the book. Here’s a short one called The Mission: Before I left juvie/I told the cops I had a plan/To bring down Diamond Tony/Number-one wanted man/They gave me some green, an ID number and a phone/It was better than nothing/I would’ve done it on my own.

What's up next, Allison? Do you have another project in the works? If so, please tell us about it.

Allison: I’m writing a book called ON THE EDGE about a teen who witnesses a murder, and falls in love with the leader of a mysterious street gang. Stay tuned! And don’t forget to look me up on Facebook for the latest updates.

Allison van Diepen is the author of Street Pharm, Snitch, Raven, The Oracle of Dating series, The Vampire Stalker and Takedown. Her novels have been named ALA Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers and New York City Public Library Books for the Teen Age. She holds degrees in History and Education, and teaches at an alternative school in Ottawa, Canada. Visit her website, www.allisonvandiepen.com.

Friday, September 06, 2013

What's Fresh with Diana Rodriguez Wallach's short fiction Reflecting Emmy

Meet Emmy, Nara, Luke, Echo, and very infamous great grandmother, GiGi.

Eighteen-year-old Emmy is in the family business-trapping vapid narcissistic souls into her silver compact mirror for all eternity. It's what the Rhamnusia family has been doing for thousands of years, all under the direction of Great Grandmother. Only Emmy's latest assignment, Nara, is about to prove more challenging than she ever expected.

Gorgeous and self-absorbed, Nara is unflinchingly cruel to her classmates. Even her boyfriend, Luke, can no longer tolerate her actions--much to Emmy's relief since she finds Luke a little more than intriguing. But when Emmy tricks Nara into gazing into her mystical mirror, what she finds there is not what she's expecting.

Reflecting Emmy is the first short story in the Mirror, Mirror series followed by Nara Gazing, and Shattering GiGi.

Hi Diana, great to chat with you again! Please tell us What was the main inspiration for your story "Reflecting Emmy"?

Diana: Reflecting Emmy is the first short story in my Mirror, Mirror trilogy, which is based on the myth of Narcissus. I wanted to reimagine a myth that most people, and teens, would know very well. And honestly, within seconds of my brain contemplating Narcissus, I came up with the idea of a paranormal organization that traps Narcissistic souls by judging their reflections in mirrors. I wish I could pinpoint what part of my brain came up with this idea and how it happened so quickly, because there are times when I’m slugging through a revision and would love to manually click that switch.

Who would you cast if your story was made into a movie?

Diana: For Emmy, the paranormal secret agent who traps teen Narcissistic souls for a living, I’d cast Vanessa Hudgens. Emmy’s Greek, a decedent of the goddess Nemesis, and I think Vanessa has that Mediterranean look. For Nara, the shallow, narcissistic girl whom Emmy is targeting, I’d cast Molly Quinn (the daughter from Castle). Nara is a strawberry blond beauty just like the actress.

Please share with us what your writing process is like?

Diana: I’m the working mom of a toddler, so it’s hard to say I even get traditional “writing process” anymore. Ahh, memories. But most weeks, I have a nanny who comes three days and I immediately leave the house and write in my community’s makeshift library/game room. While I’m there, I write nonstop, completely focused. Honestly. That’s the biggest difference now that I’m a mom, when I have time to write, I WRITE. Facebook is for after dinner while I’m watching the So You Think You Can Dance.

Thanks again for sharing, Diana! Good luck with your Mirror, Mirror Trilogy! Are there any contests or upcoming events you’d like to share with us?

Diana: Reflecting Emmy is the first short story in my Mirror, Mirror trilogy. It’s different from your typical book release. Each of my short stories—Reflecting Emmy, Nara Gazing, and Shattering GiGi—will be released individually as ebooks in September, October, and November, respectively. Then they will be compiled together to create the Mirror, Mirror trilogy, which will be released in December. THEN, my stories will be added with two other authors—Jammie Kern and Magda Knight—to create the Mythology High anthology in January 2014. Whew, that’s a lot of releases. So keep an eye out for all of them!

Diana Rodriguez Wallach is the author of Mirror, Mirror, a short-story collection based on the Narcissus myth, that includes Reflecting Emmy, Nara Gazing, and Shattering GiGi (Buzz Books 2013). She is also the author of three award-winning YA novels: Amor and Summer Secrets, Amigas and School Scandals, and Adios to All The Drama (Kensington Books). In 2011, she published a highly regarded essay in Dear Bully: 70 Authors Tell Their Stories (HarperCollins), and in 2013, she will be featured in the anthology Latina Authors and Their Muses (Twilight Times Books). In 2010 Diana was named one of the Top Ten New Latino Authors to Watch by LatinoStories.com, and she placed second in the International Latino Book Awards. She hold a B.S. in Journalism from Boston University, and currently lives in Philadelphia with her husband and daughter. Visit her website www.dianarodriguezwallach.com.

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

A Free YA Book Download Sampler!

Bloomsbury has come out with a great way to introduce readers to their 2013 fall YA thrillers--and it's free!  They have put out an e-book sampler featuring chapters (and exclusive bonus material) of the following new releases:

INSANITY by Susan Vaught
CONJURED by Sarah Beth Durst
DEAD GIRLS DON'T LIE by Jennifer Shaw Wolf

Check out the Bloomsbury YA 2013 Thriller e-Sampler,


and then come back and let us know which of the books are going to be on your reading list!   

Monday, September 02, 2013

Color Me Swoon Winner!

Thanks to all who entered our COLOR ME SWOON giveaway.  The winner is:


Liviania, please email me at admin@tinaferraro.com, and we'll get that in the mail to you.

A reminder to all our readers that COLOR ME SWOON is releasing this Tuesday, September 3rd.  You can learn more about it here:  HERE.

And keep checking in here at YA Fresh for more cool YA giveaways!