BLESSED by Cynthia Leitich Smith (Candlewick, 2011, 2012). Ages 14-up. Also published by Walker Books (U.K.) and Walker Australia and New Zealand.
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?
Read an excerpt of BLESSED from Candlewick Press.
Audio Edition Voice Actor: Kim Mai Guest (Listening Library, 2011).
Learn more about TANTALIZE (Book 1)(Candlewick, 2007), ETERNAL (Book 2)(Candlewick, 2009), DIABOLICAL (Book 4)(Candlewick, 2012) and the tie-in graphic novels TANTALIZE: KIEREN’S STORY, illustrated by Ming Doyle (Candlewick, 2011) and ETERNAL: ZACHARY’S STORY, illustrated by Ming Doyle (Candlewick, 2013). SEE ALSO the spin-off FERAL trilogy (Candlewick, 2013-2015).
Three of Cynthia Leitich Smith’s short stories—“Cat Calls,” “Cupid’s Beaux” and “Haunted Love”—are also set in the TANTALIZE-FERAL universe. “Cat Calls” and “Haunted Love” are available as free ebooks.
Awards and Honors
- YALSA Teens Top Ten Nominee
- Texas Library Association Spirit of Texas Reading Program
- New Hampshire State Library “Teen Screams” List
- Cybils nominee
- Featured Title, Texas Book Festival
Order BLESSED by Cynthia Leitich Smith. Depending on the title, Cynthia’s books may be found from Native bookstores like Birchbark Books and Native Arts and Red Planet Books and Comics, her local independent BookPeople in Austin, other terrific Texas bookstores like Blue Willow Bookshop and Brazos Bookstore, retail sites supporting indie bookstores like BookShop (Affiliate), IndieBound and Libro.fm (audio books), brick-and-mortar chains like Barnes & Noble and Books-A-Million, and online retailer Amazon.com (Author Central).
“Lighthearted and genuinely funny, Quincie and her posse are interesting characters to know.” — The Salem (Oregon) Statesman Journal
“Off-handed humor, clever wordplay, and a host of supernatural beings will delight fans of Smith’s TANTALIZE (2007) and ETERNAL (2009, both Candlewick), the two novels that precede this one, though BLESSED can certainly be enjoyed as a stand-alone novel.” — School Library Journal
“As in the first two novels, the main attractions are the clever and campy blend of the supernatural and the everyday and the thoroughly entertaining characters, human and otherwise. Even in undeath, Quincie has a zest for life that shines through as she balances supernatural duties with schoolwork and running her family restaurant, the vampire-themed Sanguini’s. Romance blossoms, too, as she and her beloved werewolf, Kieren, prove their devotion to each other under deadly duress. A hearty meal for the thinking vampire reader.” —The Horn Book
“Wild and ultimately fascinating”…”..the pages fairly smolder in describing their [Quincie and Kieren] attraction to one another.” — Kirkus Reviews
“A beautiful novel that ties together two other amazing books, TANTALIZE and ETERNAL, this story has wonderful characters and a timeless setting. I felt that I had glue on my hands—I just couldn’t put it down! This is a novel for just about any fantasy reader. I would, and will, recommend it to everyone.” —Marissa H., age 14, School Library Journal
“…smart, sexy…her homage to Stoker’s classic novel is most apparent, as she uses the book’s characters for inspiration, its plot for structure and its themes for a rich background that will lead many readers to (re)discover the original DRACULA even as they enjoy this darkly humorous send-up.” — BookPage
“Quincie is a capable, independent and appealing heroine who has matured considerably since her debut in TANTALIZE. Smith plans one more book in the series; BLESSED raises expectations for a complex (and thrilling) conclusion.” — The Austin American-Statesman
About BLESSED, Cynthia 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.”
Shop Sanguini’s at CafePress for TANTALIZE-FERAL verse T-shirts, hats, mugs, posters & more.
Illustrator Interview: Gene Brenek on the Logo for Sanguini’s in the TANTALIZE-FERAL series from Cynsations. SEE ALSO Illustrator Interview: Gene Brenek on Images of Cynthia Leitich Smith’s ETERNAL from Cynsations. PEEK:
“Certainly what separated the dead from the undead restaurants was the vampire mythology. So I started brainstorming and writing down anything that came to mind when I thought about vampires.”
Cynthia has published short stories set in the TANTALIZE-FERAL series universe.
“Cat Calls” first appeared in SIDESHOW: TEN ORIGINAL TALES OF FREAKS, ILLUSIONISTS, AND OTHER MATTERS ODD AND MAGIC, edited by Deborah Noyes (Candlewick, 2009). It is available as a free e-book.
“Haunted Love” appears in IMMORTAL: LOVE STORIES WITH BITE, edited by P.C. Cast (BenBella, 2008). It is also available as a free e-book.
“Cupid’s Beaux” appears in THINGS I’LL NEVER SAY: STORIES OF OUR SECRET SELVES, edited by Ann Angel (Candlewick, 2015).
Feb. 2011 | 0763643262 / 9780763643263 | Candlewick Press | Hardcover | YA Novel/Fiction | Interior Design Elements | 480 Pages | Ages 14-up | Other Editions: Listening Library; Walker Books (U.K.); Walker Australia and New Zealand.