Cynsational News & Giveaways

Enter to win a signed copy of Love Drugged by James Klise (Flux, 2010). From the promotional copy:

Fifteen-year old Jamie Bates has a fail-safe strategy for surviving high school: fit in. Keep a low profile. And, above all, protect his biggest secret—he’s gay.

So when a classmate discovers the truth, a terrified Jamie decides it’s time to change. After accepting flirtatious advances from Celia, the richest and most beautiful girl in school, Jamie steals an experimental new drug that’s supposed to “cure” his attraction to guys.

At first, Jamie thinks he’s finally on track to living a “normal” life. But at what cost?

As the drug’s side effects worsen and his relationship with Celia heats up, Jamie begins to realize that lying and using could shatter the fragile world of deception that he’s created—and hurt the people closest to him.

A star-crossed romance with humor and heart, Love Drugged explores the consequences of a life constructed almost entirely of lies . . . especially the lies we tell ourselves.

To enter the giveaway, email me (scroll and click envelope) and type “Love Drugged” in the subject line. Facebook, JacketFlap, MySpace, and Twitter readers are welcome to just message me with the title in the header or comment on this round-up. I’ll write you for contact information, if you win. Deadline: midnight CST Nov. 30. U.S. entries only; sponsored by the author.

The winner of The Wish Stealers by Tracy Trivas (Aladdin, 2010) is Stacey in California, and the winner of Another Pan by Daniel and Dina Nayeri (Candlewick, 2010) is Natalee in Massachusetts.

Congratulations, Laura Logan

Congratulations to Lidia Bastianich and fellow Austinite Laura Logan on the release of Nonna Tell Me a Story: Lidia’s Christmas Kitchen (Running Press, 2010)! From the promotional copy:

America’s favorite Italian-American cook, Lidia Bastianich, shares the story of the Christmases she used to celebrate in Italy with her five grandchildren.

When Lidia was a child, she spent Christmas with her grandparents, where she learned to cook with her Nonna Rosa by preparing food in their smokehouse and kitchen. Lidia and her brother would also find a big beautiful juniper bush to cut down for their holiday tree. And they made their own holiday decorations with nuts, berries, and herbs they collected for their meals.

This delightful picture book is filled with the story of Lidia’s Christmas traditions, delicious recipes, and decorating ideas all perfected over the years by Lidia and her family.

More News

Anita Silvey’s Children’s Book-A-Day Almanac: “Daily children’s book recommendations from Anita Silvey. Discover the stories behind children’s book classics and the new books good enough to become classics.” Read a Cynsations interview with Anita.

Walking Through the Valley of Patience by Catherine Schaff-Stump from Writer Tango. Peek: “If your work is accepted, you’ll need patience continually. Waiting for the edits, waiting for the publication, waiting for the proofs, waiting for the check, waiting, waiting, waiting. This is the nature of publishing.”

National Adoption Month and Ethiopia by Jane Kurtz from The Power of One Writer. Peek: “I remember the first time I heard from a mom who had kids adopted from Ethiopia. Sandra Snook lived in Chicago in those days, and she was headed for Montana on vacation with a van full of her children–and she asked if she could stop in North Dakota so they could meet the author of Fire on the Mountain, illustrated by E.B. Lewis (Simon & Schuster, 1994).” Read a Cynsations interview with Jane.

Online Persona Week Five: Taking Risks by R.L. LaFevers from Shrinking Violets. Peek: “We avoid risk because we are afraid; we’re afraid that in exposing our true selves we will drive people away. But, if being plain vanilla and boring is going to keep people away anyway, why not throw caution to the wind and drive them away with the force of your views or personality?”

Happy [Belated] National Cat Day by Jama Rattigan from Jama Rattigan’s Alphabet Soup. Note: highlights many of children’s literature’s finest cats, including four at the Leitich Smith house.

ReaderKidZ Featured Author Linda Sue Park: this month’s features center on A Long Walk to Water (Clarion, 2010). Peek: “War, loss. Hope, gain. The scars of war are many. The thread of hope thin. But through it all, Salva Dut, one of Sudan’s Lost Boys, held on to his thoughts of family, and the things they’d shared in his short 11 years of life. Things like courage and the need to live one day – each day – at a time.” Check back later this month for Bethany Hegedus, talking about Truth with a Capital T (Delacorte, 2010) and Joseph Bruchac.

What’s Love Got to Do With It? by Lisa Schroeder from Crowe’s Nest. Peek: “Personally, I’d take a rejection that says, ‘I just didn’t love it’ over one that says, ‘The writing is really weak and the characters fall flat’ any day of the week!” Read a Cynsations interview with Lisa.

It’s Okay to Stay Private by Greg Pincus from The Happy Accident. Peek: “Lately, a lot of people have told me that they’re using Facebook just for family and friends or that they use Twitter to keep up with only a few people… and they say it in an apologetic way.”

Seven Impossible Interviews Before Breakfast: J. Patrick Lewis by Jules from Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast. Peek: “A ‘prolific’ writer is one who might toss off books over the weekend as if writing were a holiday game. Only people who do not write children’s books can harbor such nonsense. Golf ball manufacturers, the makers of M&M’s, and paper shredders are prolific. I’d much prefer to be thought of as indefatigable, though Jane [Yolen]’s ‘versatile’ would be okay, too.” Read a Cynsations interview with Pat.

Out of the Box from the Horn Book. “its goal is to provide coverage of some of the many books, near-books and neo-books that don’t need review so much as they need attention” (quoting Read Roger). Read a Cynsations interview with Roger Sutton.

Cynsational Screening Room

King of Ithaka Giveaway: Enter to win a copy of King of Ithaka by Tracy Barrett (Henry Holt, 2010) from P.J. Hoover at Roots in Myth.

More Personally

Tomorrow I’m off to Kalamazoo, Michigan! Hope to see some of y’all there!

Cynsations will be on hiatus until Monday. Have a wonderful week!

Native Now: A Sense of Time and Place by Guest Blogger Cynthia Leitich Smith at Rasco from RIF. Peek: “These stories emphasize that Native people have a past, present, and a future. They bust inaccurate stereotypes and connect young readers—both Native and non-Indian—to tribally specific characters who hail from a variety of landscapes.” See also a free readers’ theater for Indian Shoes (HarperCollins, 2002)–available for classroom use!

Holler Loudly Gets Everybody’s Attention: a review by Jennifer Robinson from BookPage. Peek: “…an apt reminder that we are all unique, and in celebrating our gifts, sometimes it may be just as necessary to bellow boldly as to listen quietly.”

Get Ready for Holler Loudly: an interview with Cynthia Leitich Smith from Shutta Crum. Peek: “Writing a novel feels like running a marathon on uncertain terrain, stumbling occasionally along the way. A picture book is more like a sprint, exhilarating. It uses many of the same muscles in different ways. It’s more about the burst or series of bursts than endurance.”

Cynsational Events

“Beyond Feathers and Fangs: Crossing Borders in Realistic and Fantasy Fiction, with Cynthia Leitich Smith” at The 33rd Annual Mary Calletto Rife Youth Literature Seminar – Kalamazoo Public Library. The seminar costs $40 (lower student rates are available) and is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 4 p.m Nov. 5. Note: Maria Perez-Stable and Beth Amidon will also present a book talk, and additional speakers are Gillian Engberg, Booklist editor, and Debbie Reese, UIUC professor. See more on the speakers. Note: I’ll also be speaking at 7 p.m. Nov. 4 in a public event at the Kalamazoo Public Library!

Authors Bethany Hegedus, Brian Yansky and Cynthia Leitich Smith will celebrate their latest books at 2 p.m. Nov. 14 at BookPeople in Austin, Texas. This joint author party will feature refreshments, alien tattoos, readings, a Q&A, and signing. Bethany’s new release is Truth with a Capital T (Delacorte, 2010)(ages 9-up), Cynthia’s latest release is Holler Loudly, illustrated by Barry Gott (Dutton, 2010)(ages 4-up), and Brian’s latest release is Alien Invasions and Other Inconveniences (Candlewick, 2010)(ages 12-up).

“Give Yourself a Longer Shelf Life: Marketing for the Long-Term” panel discussion at 7 p.m. Nov. 18 at BookPeople. Panelists: Cynthia Leitich Smith, Jay Ehret and Dana Lynn Smith. Jay is a book marketing expert, and Dana is a book marketing coach and author of The Savvy Book Marketer Guides. Sponsored by the Writers’ League of Texas.

“Fangs vs. Fur” event will include Cynthia Leitich Smith Nov. 19 at the University Hills Branch of the Austin Public Library.