Blessed by Cynthia Leitich Smith Cover Art, Flap Copy & New Pub Date

Here’s the cover art for my YA Gothic fantasy, Blessed!

The publication date has been moved up. The novel will be available beginning Jan. 25, 2011 from Candlewick Press.

If you’re a die-hard, no-spoilers person, you may want to stop reading now. If not, continue on for my latest YA author bio, followed by the flap copy.

And if you’d like even more information, check out Candlewick’s Blessed media kit (PDF), featuring a news release, my latest Q&A, and extra series scoop.

About the Author

Cynthia Leitich Smith is the acclaimed and best-selling author of Tantalize, Eternal, and several other books for young readers.

About Blessed, she says, “Who hasn’t felt like their life is over? Like they’re all alone, facing an infernal storm? That’s when a little faith can save you, when you’re fighting the hardest to believe in yourself.”

A member of the faculty at the Vermont College of Fine Arts MFA program in writing for children and young adults, she lives in Austin, Texas.

Flap Copy

With a wink and a nod to Bram Stoker, bestselling author Cynthia Leitich Smith unites the casts of Tantalize and Eternal in a delicious dark fantasy her fans will devour.

Quincie Morris, teen restaurateur and neophyte vampire, is in the fight of her life — or undeath.

Even as she adjusts to her new appetites, she must clear her best friend and true love — the hybrid-werewolf Kieren — of murder charges; thwart the apocalyptic ambitions of Bradley Sanguini, the seductive vampire-chef who “blessed” her; and keep her dead parents’ restaurant up and running.

She hires a more homespun chef and adds the preternaturally beautiful Zachary to her wait staff. But with hundreds of new vampires on the rise and Bradley off assuming the powers of Dracula Prime, Zachary soon reveals his true nature — and his flaming sword — and they hit the road to staunch the bloodshed before it’s too late.

Even if they save the world, will there be time left to salvage Quincie’s soul?

Cynsational Notes

In related series news, two graphic novels Tantalize: Kieren’s Story (Aug. 2011) and Eternal: Zachary’s Story (TBA), both illustrated by Ming Doyle, are in the works as is with a fourth untitled (prose) novel that will conclude these Dracula-inspired storylines.

Readers also may want to look for two short stories set in the universe, both of which feature new characters. These are “Cat Calls,” which appears in Sideshow: Ten Original Tales of Freaks, Illusionists, and Other Matters Odd and Magical, edited by Deborah Noyes (Candlewick, 2009) and “Haunted Love,” which appears in Immortal: Love Stories with Bite, edited by P.C. Cast (BenBella, 2009). If you can’t find them on the shelf, ask your local bookseller or librarian for help ordering copies.