Friday, May 28, 2010

FF- ENDLESS SUMMER by Jennifer Echols

Just in time for summer reading! Please join me in welcoming GCC sister Jennifer Echols to the blog, celebrating the release of her new YA novel, ENDLESS SUMMER.

The Author:

Jennifer Echols grew up in a small town on a beautiful lake in Alabama--a setting that has inspired many of her books. Always interested in creative writing, she finished her first (and still unpublished) novel soon after graduating with a degree in English from Auburn University at age 20. She worked as an editor for newspapers, a writer for business publications, and a writing instructor for three major universities, completed a master's degree in English, and finished the coursework for a PhD in genre studies before selling a book. Since then, she has written many young adult novels for Simon & Schuster, including Major Crush, which won the National Reader's Choice Award, and Going Too Far, which is a finalist in the 2010 RITA, the National Reader's Choice Award, and the Book Buyer's Best. Her next novel, Forget You, will be released on July 20. Currently she works as a copyeditor and lives in Birmingham with her husband and son.

You can read more about Jenn and her books on her website, on facebook, on her blog, and by following her on twitter.

The Book:

The Boys Next Door and the sequel, Endless Summer, in one volume!

Two irresistible boys. One unforgettable summer.

Lori can't wait for her summer at the lake. She loves wakeboarding and hanging with her friends--including the two hotties next door. With the Vader brothers, she's always been just one of the guys. Now that she's turning sixteen, she wants to be seen as one of the girls, especially in the eyes of Sean, the older brother. But that's not going to happen--not if the younger brother, Adam, can help it.

Lori plans to make Sean jealous by spending time with Adam. Adam has plans of his own for Lori. As the air heats up, so does this love triangle. Will Lori's romantic summer melt into one hot mess?

The Interview:

What inspired you to write ENDLESS SUMMER?

I grew up on a beautiful lake in Alabama, and this book captures the essence of those hot and lovely summers. It starts Memorial Day weekend, too, so I’m really excited that the book is being released at the perfect time, almost to the day.

Have you ever wakeboarded like Lori in the book?

I have not. I learned to water ski on the lake when I was five years old, but wakeboarding hadn’t been invented yet!

What songs would make the playlist for ENDLESS SUMMER?

Lori is a tomboy struggling to be more feminine so she can catch the boy she has a crush on. The music mentioned in the book reflects this: girl vs. boy = Kelly Clarkson/Christina Aguilera/JoJo vs. Nickelback. There’s also a really special love song playing at the end of the book. I took out the name of it, but you can think it in your head while you’re reading: “Endlessly” by Green River Ordinance. Oh man, I get shivers just thinking about it. I wish I could have included a CD with this book.

What's one thing most people don't know about you?

I have most of a PhD in genre studies, which is a subspecialty of English. All I lacked for my degree was writing my dissertation. But I’m glad I wrote a novel instead.

What are you working on now?

My next novel, Forget You, is coming out with MTV Books on July 20. Right now I’m writing still another novel for MTV Books that will be published in July 2011.

If ENDLESS SUMMER were made into a movie, who would you like to see in the role of Lori and Adam?

I used to say Lucas Black from the movie Friday Night Lights, because he’s dreamy and perfect and he grew up in Alabama, and Ashley Tisdale from…well, everything, because she’s hilarious. But a reader informs me that both of them have gotten too old. Now I’m not sure!

What kind of chocolate best describes you?

Instead of it describing me, can I just eat it? In that case, Cadbury Creme Eggs.

The Freebie:

To win a copy of one of Jenn's other fabulous novels, GOING TOO FAR, leave a note below, telling us - have you ever tried to change who you are to get your crush's attention? How did that turn out for you? This drawing will remain open until Wednesday, June 2.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Teen Author Carnival

Since there was no freebie Friday this week, I have no winner to announce, except maybe myself. Wait. That didn't quite sound right, did it?

That's an ongoing theme for me so far here in New York. I've been so constantly in awe while here that I'm completely verklemmpt and can't think of anything intelligent to say. (I think this is improper usage of the word verklemmpt. See not sounding right, above.)

ANYWAY, I have to tell you, the Teen Author Carnival on Monday was beyond amazing. THANK YOU, Devyn, Mitali, Korianne and everyone who helped for putting it all together! And to Marie, probably the coolest YA librarian I've ever met. Not only did I get to meet a lot of my online author friends for the first time, but a lot of my favorite book bloggers as well. I think I made a fool of myself many times over trying to talk to everyone because in truth I'm a socially awkward and kinda shy person, so I'm not very smooth conversationally. Add on top of that being completely star struck by so many bloggers and authors in the room, and I could barely think straight, let alone talk coherently.

Here's a picture I stole from Devyn Burton's tweet pix of the Mystery Fantasy panel I was on. You can't see me - I'm hiding behind Maryrose Wood (who gave me her one ARC of THE POISON DIARIES and has agreed to come visit for a future Freebie Friday! Yay!) but look at the authors I got to share the stage with! That's Eliot Schrefer, who started our sisters' theme for the panel (he's the author of THE DEADLY SISTER); then Maryrose, who hangs with royalty to research her book; me, hiding behind Maryrose; Judith Graves, who brings multicultural monsters to life (UNDER MY SKIN); Melissa Kantor, (INVISIBLE I, the first book of The Amanda Project - which has the coolest website for the series!); Violet Haberdasher, who started the Harry Potter theme for the evening (KNIGHTLEY ACADEMY); Michelle Zink, who is seriously funny and brought her own entourage (PROPHECY OF THE SISTERS); Tonya Hurley -OMG!- (GHOST GIRL); Michael Northrup, who would very much like to make the Banned Books List (GENTLEMEN); and Jeri Smith-Ready, who is the nicest person you'd ever want to meet (SHADE.)

And that's only one panel! My only regret is that I missed the other two. But I did get to meet TFC sister Stephanie Kuehnert for the first time. And see another TFC sister, Melissa Walker again. I also met Heidi Kling for the first time, after reading her blog online for so long. I'm excited for her upcoming book, SEA. Oh! And Holly Cupala actually knew who I was! (I must have totally babbled to her, I'm such a fangirl.) And so many others. 30 YA authors in one library. Oh, the power.

My publisher was kind enough to send over a box of TRANCE ARCs for the signing, and B&N was on hand with the Death By books. Jon Skovron signed next to me and we discovered not only an Ohio connection, but a D.C. connection as well. He'll be joining us later for a Freebie Friday (and giving a copy of his book STRUTS & FRETS) as will Kitty Keswick (except, you know, she won't be giving away STRUTS & FRETS... she'll be offering up FREAKSVILLE).

But really, the stars of the evening for me were the bloggers. Several I knew from before (Lenore came from Germany! And Daniel was with her!) and some I met for the first time ever (Kristi, James and more!) I probably didn't convey it very well because I was so overwhelmed by the whole event, but I appreciate their support and enthusiasm for reading more than I can say.

I could go on and on, but it's 1:15 a.m. and I have a full day tomorrow (including a group signing at Books of Wonder with another group of fabulous authors, 6-8 p.m.) If you're in New York, please stop by. I might not be able to tell you in nice, pretty words, but I'd love to see you!

Please come back on Friday for a GCC tour and Freebie with Jennifer Echols!

This week's video linkie because I am all fired up and empowered from the BEA trip so far:

Lauren Baratz-Logsted One Question Tour

Many of you may already know my friend, TFC sister and fellow author Lauren Baratz-Logsted. If not, I'm happy to introduce you to her. Lauren is the author of 15, soon to be 16 books in a variety of genres. She writes the SISTERS EIGHT series with her husband (and new TFCer, Greg Logsted) and daughter. SISTERS EIGHT is a super fun middle grade series that's "Part Snickett, Part Dahl, The Logsteds have just celebrated the release of the latest SISTERS EIGHT installment, MARCIA'S MADNESS.

Coming soon is Lauren's next Young Adult novel, THE EDUCATION OF BET, set in Victorian England wherein the 16-year-old heroine pretends to be a boy in order to get a proper education.

To promote the books, Lauren had a genius idea. Instead of the same interviews popping up all over the web, she decided to do a one-question blog tour. I'm happy to welcome the tour to my blog today and to ask my one burning question:

You write a wide range of genres, some at the same time. How do you switch gears when you're writing?

You know, I get asked so frequently about my genre-switching ways that I'm beginning to feel like the oddest woman in the world. Well, maybe not the oddest, but close. Early on in my career, my editor at RDI and I were trying to decide on what my second book for them would be, and I sent her three books to choose from. She called me up and said that if she hadn't seen the same name under the titles of each book, she'd never believe that they were all written by the same person. OK, so maybe some people would think that odd. But it all makes perfect sense to me. I don't eat the same food all day long every day. I'm capable of watching serious political shows, "General Hospital," "American Idol" and "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" all within the same 24-hour time period, even though they're vastly different in tone and content. And I can read a comedic adult novel, followed by a teen vampire novel, followed by a classic, followed by a nonfiction account of mountain climbing; I love mountain-climbing books. So why wouldn't it make sense that I could genre-switch? To me, I don't think of myself as an adult writer or a YA writer, a contemporary or historical writer, or even as a commercial or a literary writer. I think of myself as a writer, full stop. As such, I get an idea and I simply follow where the idea takes me.

On August 31, I have another YA novel coming out that some would call a huge departure from my previous YA work. It's called The Twin's Daughter and it's about a teenage girl in Victorian England who discovers that her gorgeous high-society mother has an identical twin who was raised in the workhouse. How is it a departure? Well, size for one. It's twice as long as any of my previous YAs, all of which have been more minimalist by design. It's almost much darker. Yes, there is a romance within the book, but there's also mystery, intrigue and an incredibly violent act. Did I mention that it's a suspense novel? It is. So, once again, if you now took any three of my YA novels and lined them up, you'd probably scratch your head saying, "Really? The same person wrote this contemporary comedy and this re-visioned fairy tale and this Victorian suspense novel?"

OK, you've got me. I've finally convinced even me: I am odd. But at least I'm having a good time and I hope readers are too.

You can follow Lauren's tour by checking out these links:

Yesterday, Carrie asked, "When you, Jackie and Greg first imagined the Sisters 8 Series, did you plan out each sister's talent and gift?" Find the answer here.

Tomorrow, Shon Bacon asks, "How do your roles as woman, wife, and mother affect what and how you write?" Check out the answer tomorrow here.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

In Which Linda Admits She's Overwhelmed

I like to think I can do it all. The truth is, sometimes I can't. I'm trying not to pull offline completely while I finish these books, but it might become necessary.

Meanwhile, the winner of the reader's choice drawing is Amber.

Please send me a note with your mailing instructions and book choice to gerb (@) lindagerber (dot) com and I'll get it sent out to you.

I'll be taking the rest of the week off to write, so there will be no Freebie Friday this week, but check back next week. I might just have some goodies to share after BEA, the Teen Author Carnival and the group signing at Books of Wonder. : )

Talk to you then!

Friday, May 14, 2010

FF - Reader's Choice!

This is a celebration week!

Things I'm celebrating:

* Tomorrow is my son's birthday! Happy Birthday, C!

* Last night my HS senior daughter was honored as a AP Scholar, Summa cum laude, and Valedictorian. I'm a proud mom!!!

* Last week's Ohioana Book Festival was a blast. I met a lot of fabulous authors and readers and it made me proud to be a part of Ohio's literary community. (And I got to party at the Governor's mansion afterwards!)

* At Ohioana, Lisa Klein gave me an ARC of her upcoming book, CATE OF THE LOST COLONY. I've just started it, but I have to say... I am a huge fan already! (And Lisa has agreed to visit the blog for an interview closer to the release. Yay!)

* I visited the Thurber House last week and listened to the stories of some fabulously talented HS students. I love my job!

* This week's visit to Karrer MS was awesome - especially since my dear daughter (Haley, my guest-blogger) got to spend the day with me.

* I've been reading some fantastic YA fiction lately. I love that there are so many great books out there to choose from!

So here's this week's freebie - to be entered to win your choice of the just-read-by-me books listed below, leave a comment telling me what you are/would like to be celebrating this week/month/year.

Donna Jo Napoli's THE WAGER

Caragh O'Brian's BIRTH MARKED

Aprilynne Pike's SPELLS

This drawing will remain open until Wednesday, May 19.

Happy mid-May weekend!!!!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Playing Catch Up

Aaand the winner of Jeri Smith-Ready's SHADE is...


Congratulations! Please send your mailing instructions to gerb(@) lindagerber(dot) com and we'll get that sent out to you.

Everyone, come on back tomorrow for a special celebration giveaway featuring... your choice!

What's Up This Week?

Teen Fiction Cafe is happy to welcome four new bloggers to the author lineup - and a couple of male perspectives! Come on over and say hello to Elizabeth Scott, Greg Logsted, Josh Berk and Jessica Brody.

Check out this lineup for the group signing at Books of Wonder in NYC, May 25 6-8 p.m!
Charlie Higson (THE ENEMY)
Cory Doctorow (FOR THE WIN)
Gennifer Choldenko (AL CAPONE SHINES MY SHOES)
Stephanie Kuehnert (BALLADS OF SUBURBIA)
Jessica Burkhart (RIVAL REVENGE)
Adele Griffin & Lisa Brown (PICTURE THE DEAD)

ANTM and YA? ( Tyra Banks throws her very fashionable hat into the ring.

James Patterson Wins (MediaBistro) Kids' choice for Author of the Year.

Happy Release Week to: Lisa Mangum (THE GOLDEN SPIRAL), Alyssa B. Sheinmel (THE BEAUTIFUL BETWEEN), Louis Sachar (THE CARDTURNER), Regina McBride (THE FIRE OPAL), Marthe Jocelyn (FOLLY), Cory Doctorow (FOR THE WIN) , Alice Kuipers (LOST FOR WORDS), Kimberly Willis Holt (THE WATER SEEKER), and Katie Williams (THE SPACE BETWEEN TREES)!

This week's Video Linkie for all us Buckeye Fans:

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Hi, anyone checking back for the contest winners. The drawing has been extended one day.

I'll be hanging out with my friends at Karrer Middle School on Wednesday and I'll be back to blog at you on Thursday.


Friday, May 07, 2010

Freebie Friday with Jeri Smith-Ready

I'm pleased to welcome another GCC sister to the blog today - Jeri Smith-Ready, who is celebrating the launch of her hot off the presses, released-this-week book, SHADE.

The Author:

Award-winning author Jeri Smith-Ready lives in Maryland with her husband, two cats, and the world’s goofiest greyhound.

Jeri's plans to save the earth were ruined when she realized she was more of a “problem maker” than a problem solver. To stay out of trouble, she keeps her Drama Drive strictly fictional. Her friends and family appreciate that.

When not writing, Jeri she can usually be found—well, thinking about writing, or on Twitter. Like her characters, she loves music, movies, and staying up very, very late.

You can read more about Jeri on her website, her blog, on facebook, or follow her on Twitter.

The Book:

Love ties them together.

Death can't tear them apart.

Best. Birthday. Ever. At least, it was supposed to be. With Logan's band playing a critical gig and Aura's plans for an intimate after-party, Aura knows it will be the most memorable night of her boyfriend's life. She never thought it would be his last.

Logan's sudden death leaves Aura devastated. He's gone.

Well, sort of.

Like everyone born after the Shift, Aura can see and hear ghosts. This mysterious ability has always been annoying, and Aura had wanted nothing more than to figure out why the Shift happened so she can undo it. But not with Logan’s violet-hued spirit still hanging around. Because dead Logan is almost as real as ever. Almost.

It doesn't help that Aura’s new friend Zachary is so understanding—and so very alive. His support means more to Aura than she cares to admit.

As Aura's relationships with the dead and the living grow ever complicated, so do her feelings for Logan and Zachary. Each holds a piece of Aura's heart…and clues to the secret of the Shift.

NYT best-selling author PC Cast calls SHADE "hauntingly good." Lisa Schroeder says "SHADE left me breathless." And Publisher's Weekly (in a starred review!) says "Smith-Ready changes the world completely by simply changing our ability to see."

The Interview:

What songs would make the playlist for SHADE?
Funny you should ask. I just put the entire SHADE soundtrack on my website, at You can see a full list of the songs there, listen to a sampler, and follow a link to the iMix on iTunes where you can buy any or all of the soundtrack. Some of the biggies that are mentioned in the book are “Chasing Cars” by Snow Patrol, “I Will Possess Your Heart” by Death Cab for Cutie, and “Devil’s Dance Floor” by Flogging Molly, which is the group that the main male character, Logan Keeley, models his own band on.

What's one thing most people don't know about you?
One of my high school boyfriends was a follower of political weirdo Lyndon Larouche. He was pretty normal otherwise (my boyfriend, not Larouche).

What's your favorite quote?
“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” – Ferris Bueller

What are you working on now?
I’m writing the sequel to SHADE, called SHIFT, which will be out in May 2011. I also just finished page proofs on the third book in my adult vampire series, BRING ON THE NIGHT, which comes out in August. I can’t wait to see what fans of the series think of this installment!

What is an interesting writing quirk of yours?
I’m a bracket fiend. When I’m on a roll, I don’t like to stop to look something up, or even to sit there and think of the perfect word or transition. So my rough drafts are full of things like “[need scene ending]”, “[chk dates]” and “[this conversation is going nowhere what was I thinking I don’t even know why I thought this scene would be important should I cut it off and come back or just keep pushing through??????]”

If SHADE were made into a movie, who would you like to see in the role of Aura? What about Logan and Zachary?
I’d go with Selena Gomez for Aura and Zac Efron for Logan. Zachary is a little tougher, since I don’t know any Scottish actors that age. But there’s a British actor named Tom Sturridge who would be totally yum.

What kind of chocolate best describes you?
Wow, I just spent twenty minutes staring off into space thinking of different kinds of chocolate. Not kidding. Anyway, I’m back! My answer would be a truffle made of both white and dark chocolate, because I can be very sweet (and pale) but also bitter (when I haven’t had enough sleep or food).

The Freebie:
To be entered to win a signed copy of SHADE, leave a comment below, telling us - who is your favorite ghost ever? (And are they purple-hued?) This drawing will remain open until Wednesday, May 12. Because this is a hardcover and rather expensive to send overseas, this drawing will be limited to the continental US. Thanks for understanding.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

And the Fun Begins...

Happy Cinco de Mayo! I hope your day is as beautiful where you are as it is here. I'll be spending as much of it outside as I can.

This week's winner of a signed ARC of TRANCE is:

Isi and Jas's Mom

Please shoot me an email with your mailing instructions to gerb (@) lindagerber (.) com and I'll get that sent out to you.

Be sure to come back on Friday with another GCC freebie featuring Jeri Smith-Ready and her brand new, just released book SHADE. You won't want to miss this one!

What's up this week?

It's another busy one! In fact, this whole month is going to be crazy busy. Here's where I'll be. If you're close by, come say hello. I'd love to see you!

5/5 Thurber House 6:30 pm 77 Jefferson Avenue Columbus, OH
5/8 Ohioana Book Festival 274 E. First Avenue Columbus, OH
(Panel Discussion@2:00 pm, Reading @3:00 pm)
5/12 Karrer Middle School Author Visit Dublin, OH
5/24-27 Book Expo America, NYC
5/24 Teen Author Carnival 5-8 pm Jefferson Market Branch Library
425 Avenue of the Americas New York, NY
5/26 Group Signing with Stephanie Kuehnert, Melissa Walker and Erica Kirov 6-8 p.m.
Books of Wonder 18 West 18th Street New York, NY

Also this week: TFC is welcoming four new authors to our fold. Be sure to drop in for the introductory week starting on Monday and say hello to Elizabeth Scott, Josh Berk, Jessica Brody and Greg Logsted!

Happy Release week to: A BLUE SO DARK by Holly Schindler, THE DAUGHTERS by Joanna Philbin, THE DEADLY SISTER by Eliot Schrefer, GIGGED by Heath Gibson, THE ORACLE OF DATING by Allison van Diepen, PICTURE THE DEAD by Adele Griffin & Lisa Brown, THE PYRAMID OF SOULS by Erica Kirov, SHIP BREAKER by Paolo Bacigalupi, FIRE WILL FALL by Carol Plum-Ucci, FIRE WILL FALL by Carol Plum-Ucci, JEKEL LOVES HYDE by Beth Fantaskey, MARCIA'S MADNESS by Lauren Baratz-Logsted and Greg & Jackie Logsted, THE REASON: GHOST HUNTRESS by Marley Gibson, ZEN AND XANDER UNDONE by Amy Kathleen Ryan, COMPROMISED by Heidi Ayarbe, FRIEND IS NOT A VERB by Daniel Ehrenhaft, LIES: A GONE NOVEL by Michael Grant, LITTLE VAMPIRE WOMEN by Louisa May Alcott & Lynn Messina, THE PRINCE OF MIST by Carlos Ruiz Zafon, THE RED PYRAMID: THE KANE CHRONICLES by Rick Riordan, SHADE by Jeri Smith-Ready, SOMETHING LIKE FATE by Susane Colasanti, SPELLS by Aprilynne Pike, and THIRTEEN PLUS ONE by Lauren Myracle.

This week's video linkie - because I am so stoked to see Iron Man 2 this week and this commercial made me laugh: