PRESS PLAY Cover Reveal

I threw a party and want to give you my gifts.

 

So I finally got to see the awesome, amazing, and intense cover for my next novel, Press Play. And then the Book Buzz 2014 Young Adult edition released, which has the first two chapters in it. I was so excited that I threw a party to celebrate.

 

Bethany Crandell came with a signed copy of her novel, Summer on the Short Bus and a swag pack with bookmark and pin.

Shortbus book & swag

A.G. Howard brought an awesome 18×24” Unhinged poster, as well as a Splintered series swag pack.

Unhinged posterSplintered.UnhingedSwag

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lisa Ann O’Kane rolled up with an e-copy of her debut, Essence and some sweet swag pins.

Essence. Book imageESSENCE Pins

 

 

 

 

 

 

 A. Lynden Rolland rocked the place with a signed copy of her debut, Of Breakable Things and her swag pins and bookmark.

Obt.BookImageOBT buttonOBT bookmark

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And then Justin Holley scared us all with his contribution: a signed copy of the horror anthology, Amanda’s Recurring Nightmares, in which his short story, “Wildflower” is featured.

Amanda's Nightmares

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We had a blast, and because I’m so thrilled with my cover and the sample chapters, I WANT TO GIVE ALL MY GIFTS AWAY.

 

So let’s reveal my cover and then you will have a chance to win all that you saw above, as well as a signed copy of Press Play. Awesome, right?

 

*Drum roll*

 

And for the teaser

Press Play cover teaser

 

Scroll for the real deal

 

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Press Play cover

Holy-in-your-face-what-is-going-on-with-these-kids-in-this-glitchy-video-image?

Let me explain:

About Press Play:

Does the truth really set you free?

Pound by sweaty pound, Greg Dunsmore’s plan is working. Greg is steadily losing weight while gaining the material he needs to make the documentary that will get him into film school and away from the constant jeers of “Dun the Ton.”

But when Greg captures footage of brutal and bloody hazing by his town’s championship-winning lacrosse team, he knows he has evidence that could damage as much as it could save. And if the harm is to himself and his future, is revealing the truth worth the cost?

With unflinching honesty, author Eric Devine explores the debatable truths and consequences of the choices we make to get through each day intact.

 

You’re pumped now. I can feel it. Well, if you need a fix, here are the first two chapters. But don’t forget to enter, below, to win the prize pack.

Thanks for stopping by, and happy winning, and even happier reading 🙂

 The Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

About the Author

Eric Devine is the author of multiple works of Young Adult fiction, most recently Dare Me. He is also a veteran high school English teacher, where he spends as much time teaching as he does completing field research for his novels. His work has been listed by YALSA and Booklist for reluctant readers and for Best in Sports. He and his wife have two wonderful daughters and two not-so-wonderful Labradors. Eric’s next novel, Press Play, will be released 10/28, and he is currently working on two novels. Find out more at his blog, his Facebook fan page, or Twitter: @eric_devine

 

About the Giveaway Authors

Bethany Crandell writes young adult novels because the feelings that come with life’s “first” times are too good not to relive again and again.  She lives in San Diego with her husband, two kiddos (one of whom is differently-abled), and a chocolate lab who has no regard for personal space. She believes that avocados are better than chocolate and that Jake Ryan is going to show up at her door any minute now…. twitter: @bethanycrandell website  facebook

A.G. Howard is the author of the Splintered series, a young adult gothic spinoff of Alice in Wonderland. Here are her online haunts: Goodreads  FaceBook  Pinterest  Twitter Tumblr  Website

Lisa Ann O’Kane is a young adult author and former vagabond who once camped out in Yosemite National Park for an entire summer, an experience that inspired her debut novel ESSENCE. Her background is in zookeeping and environmental education, and she has been kicked, cornered, bitten and chased by nearly every animal she has ever loved. She currently resides in Florida, and she is now a huge fan of shooting stars, indoor plumbing and keeping both her feet planted firmly on the trail.Find out more: Website  Twitter  Facebook  Instagram  Pinterest

A. Lynden Rolland was born and raised in Annapolis, Maryland. She spent much of her childhood compiling dramatic stories of tragic characters in a notebook she still keeps. As a former English teacher, she enjoys visiting classrooms to discuss reading, writing and publishing. When she isn’t writing or chasing her two young children around town, she moonlights as a writing tutor and gymnastics instructor. Of Breakable Things is her first novel.

You can connect with A. Lynden Rolland online through Facebook, Twitter, or Goodreads.

Justin Holley is the author of several scary books and short stories, many of which are published in magazines and anthologies around the world. Outside of writing, Justin likes to spend time with his family, investigate the paranormal, and play volleyball pretty much year round. You can interact with Justin at his website, at Minnesota Ghosts or on Twitter: @Justin_Holley

@Justin_Holley

 

@Justin_Holley

 

@Justin_Holley

 

@Justin_Holley

 

 

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The Good and Genetically Modified in Grasshopper Jungle

I don’t typically review books, here, but it felt right to do so, because I’m kind of infatuated with the novel, Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith, which publishes tomorrow.

I’m fortunate enough to have picked up an Advanced Reader Copy while at ALA Midwinter. Here it is with Summer on the Short Bus, which I intend to review in April:

GJ & Short Bus pic

Grasshopper Jungle is about small town Iowa becoming overrun by genetically engineered praying mantis, resulting in the apocalypse. I know, it sounds crazy, but there’s so much more to it than corn, Iowa, praying mantis, and more corn.

It’s an awesome read about friendship and loyalty, with one extremely flawed protagonist––more on Austin in a minute. However, the story takes its time in developing the central conflict. There are hints of it, but most of the 128 pages prior to things really hitting the fan are filled with exposition and characterization, as well as a mix of secondary conflicts and accounts of history. And horniness.

The protagonist, Austin, is very easily aroused, by everything: his girlfriend, his best friend, situations that make sense for arousal, and those that have no connection to sensuality. Yet, that’s his quirk, which, for me, made him an endearing character, in spite of his gross selfish interest. Really, he says he loves his girlfriend, Shan, and friend, Robby, but he has a very difficult time showing that love. Lust, on the other hand, is no issue for Austin. He’s filled with it. And such a distinction is important for teens to see.

Yet, this combination of delayed action, which most authors (me included) would have concluded the first chapter with, and quite possibly an unlikable protagonist, could make Grasshopper Jungle a difficult read. But part of the undercurrent of the story is very much a Vonnegut-esque rhythm, of the renown “So it goes.” The looping style is part of the point. The story goes where the story goes, and unfolds as it does, without apology. I respect that and hope enough teens will have the patience to first know the characters and then watch them handle the main struggle. And I don’t feel as if we have to love all protagonists from the outset, or even throughout the novel. It’s important to learn from others, who we may not initially be able to relate to, because I can guarantee, on some level, at some point, the connection will occur.

I’ve read reviews of Grasshopper Jungle questioning whether a female protagonist with the same quirk as Austin would be as positively received. It’s a good question. I don’t know if the YA world would be accepting of such, but I kind of feel that they would. Especially those who read Andrew Smith’s work. Winger, another Smith novel, handles homosexuality well, as does Grasshopper Jungle. Austin’s best friend, Robby, is gay, and Austin is…confused. He never labels himself bisexual, which I like, because at the end of the world, do we really need labels? If ever? So a female protagonist, unafraid to voice her desires, might excel, where Austin comes off as comical. Time will tell.

If you like offbeat, layered stories that do not conform to formulas for plot and character, then I suggest you take a chance with Grasshopper Jungle. I guarantee you’ll find yourself wanting to smoke a cigarette before you save the world. “And shit like that.”

Afterthought:

If you follow Andrew Smith on Twitter @marburyjack, he’s been tweeting pictures of excerpts from Grashopper Jungle. Here’s the most important one, from the Acknowledgements, which he may or may not tweet. I cannot imagine Winger or Grasshopper Jungle not existing, so I’m glad he wrote for himself and then let us see.

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