YASH

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YA Scavenger Hunt — Go Team Green!

Published October 1, 2015 by christinenorris

Green Team

Welcome to my stop on the YA Scavenger Hunt! I’m so happy to be hosting Tera Lynn Childs, who is an AWESOME author. She’s so awesome that she can make the clock chime  13 ... or so I’ve heard. That might be a rumor.

Anyway, Tera has provided me with some BONUS content, just for you!  Below is an excerpt from Chapter 4 of Ten Things Sloan Hates about Tru. Enjoy!

***

Tru practically leaps up from the table. “I’ll do it.”

He sounds as desperate to escape as I feel.

“Me too,” I add, hurrying to grab Mrs. Dorsey’s stack of dishes and add it to mine. “I’ll help.”

“In fact,” Tru says, balancing a stack in each hand. “We’ll even do the dishes.”

I nod in agreement.

Normally chores are among my least favorite things, right after eating grilled steak and starting my senior year in Texas. But I’ll take any lifeline I can get to escape that table for any amount of time.

In the kitchen, I start rinsing off the dishes and stacking them in the sink for him to load into the dishwasher. I’m through half of them before I realize that Tru isn’t helping.

“Hey,” I say, looking over my shoulder at where he’s lounging against the counter, “this was your idea.”

He laughs. “Just wanted to see how long it would take you to notice.”

I look at the small mountain of dishes in the sink. Longer than it should have.

I stick my tongue out at him and go back to rinsing.

We quickly fall into a rhythm. I rinse the dishes and hand them to Tru so he can set them in the dishwasher.

“Sorry about that,” he says quietly.

About what? I almost ask. But when I look at him, he nods his head back toward the dining room. Toward his dad.

“Not a big deal,” I say. “He’s not the first carnivore I’ve had to take on.”

“If anyone can put David Dorsey in his place, it’s you, New York.”

I can’t tell if he’s joking or not, so I ignore it.

As I set a dish in the sink and he reaches for one, the backs of our hands brush. A shiver of tingles races up my arm and down my spine at the insignificant touch.

The next time, it happens again. At first I think it’s an accident, but then it happens every time. With each new touch, a new wave of tingles washes over me, and my heartbeat speeds up. I’m sure if I could see myself in the mirror right now my cheeks would be magenta.

The bad thing is, I think I actually like it. It’s like a game to see how he will make contact this time, how long he will make it last. And even though I know it’s a game, even though I know he’s trying to work his charms on me, I’m not immune.

I dare a quick glance, to see if he’s having the same kind of reactions, but he is studiously focused on his work. If it’s affecting him at all, it doesn’t show.

***

Wasn’t that great! Don’t forget to write down the secret number and add them all up to be in the running for our team prize! I’m giving away a copy of A Curse of Ash and Iron. Leave a comment for me here so I know who dropped by!

And for the next stop, you’ll need to click on the link to go to Amy Christine Parker’s blog! Good luck!

Thanks for participating!

Published April 6, 2015 by christinenorris

Wow! Watching my blog stats for the last few days has been exciting! SO many of you dropped by for the YASH, it was amazing! I hope some of you will stick around, and good luck to all the people who entered the contest for Team Blue!

So much stuff coming up for me. The BEWARE THE LITTLE WHITE RABBIT launch is under way, with all of the authors getting a little spotlight on the Leap Books Blog. Soon the individual story title pages will be revealed. I haven’t even seen mine yet, and I can’t wait. Then I’ll be starting with the CURSE OF ASH AND IRON promotion — just a few weeks away from launch!

Yay! There will be lots more stuff given away on this blog in the next couple of months, I can almost guarantee it!

YA Scavenger Hunt is ON!

Published April 2, 2015 by christinenorris
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Welcome to YA Scavenger Hunt! This bi-annual event was first organized by author Colleen Houck as a way to give readers a chance to gain access to exclusive bonus material from their favorite authors…and a chance to win some awesome prizes! At this hunt, you not only get access to exclusive content from each author, you also get a clue for the hunt. Add up the clues, and you can enter for our prize–one lucky winner will receive one signed book from each author on the hunt in my team! But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online for 72 hours!

Go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page to find out all about the hunt. There are SIX contests going on simultaneously, and you can enter one or all! I am a part of the BLUE TEAM–but there is also a red team, a gold team, an orange team, a red team, and an indie team for a chance to win a whole different set of signed books!

If you’d like to find out more about the hunt, see links to all the authors participating, and see the full list of prizes up for grabs, go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page.

SCAVENGER HUNT PUZZLE
 
Directions: Somewhere in this post, I’ve included my favorite number (it will be easy to spot!) Collect the favorite numbers of all the authors on the blue team, and then add them up (don’t worry, you can use a calculator!).
Entry Form: Once you’ve added up all the numbers, make sure you fill out the form here to officially qualify for the grand prize. Only entries that have the correct number will qualify.
Rules: Open internationally, anyone below the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian’s permission to enter. To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit the completed entry form by April 6th, at noon Pacific Time (so 3 pm Eastern Time). Entries sent without the correct number or without contact information will not be considered.
And now…on with the Hunt! 
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Today, I am super excited to be hosting Victoria Strauss, author of Color Song! I’ve known Victoria almost as long as I’ve been writing, which is probably around 13  years or so. I was happy to host someone I’ve known for so long!

Find out more information by checking out the author website or find more about the author’s book here!

Author’s website: http://www.victoriastrauss.com/

Book buy now link: http://www.victoriastrauss.com/books-2/young-adult/color-song/

EXCLUSIVE CONTENT
Color Song Cover hi-res
According to common writing wisdom, a novel should start as late in the story as possible, to avoid a slow beginning and (hopefully) hook the reader’s interest. For Color Song, my first draft opened with the funeral of Giulia’s mentor—the moment right before the  cascade of events that force Giulia to flee the Convent of Santa Marta with the secret of Passion blue.

As it turned out, though, my editor and I decided that the story actually needed to start much earlier—a whole year earlier, in fact. So my original Chapter 1 wound up on the cutting room floor. Here it is!

CHAPTER 1
SEALED IN DARKNESS

Padua, Italy
Convent of Santa Marta
Early September, Anno Domini 1488

The bell of the convent of Santa Marta had begun tolling at dawn. For hours yet it would continue, in slow and solemn rhythm, until darkness brought this day of mourning to a close.

Standing at the back of the church, Giulia imagined she could feel each peal inside her chest, shaking her like a second heartbeat. She was included among the other novices for once; Suor Margarita, the novice mistress, had decided it was easier, even though Giulia was supposed to be kept separate. The vaulted nave was packed with mourners: nuns in their white habits and black veils, gray-clad novices, family members of the deceased and representatives of the public decked out in sober finery. Scores of candles burned in sconces and chandeliers, and garlands of late-summer flowers decorated the walls. The mixed smells of beeswax, crowded bodies, and wilting blossoms made Giulia feel sick.

I’m dreaming, she thought. Soon I will wake up.

But of course she wasn’t dreaming. It was real, all of it: the church, the crowd, the awful reason for this gathering. Suor Humilità Moretti–artist of genius, Maestra of the only workshop of female painters in the world, Giulia’s beloved teacher–was dead.

Giulia had wept the night before, but now she could not shed a tear. Nor had she cried two days ago, when Suor Margarita had taken her to view Humilità’s body, laid out in the parlor where the nuns received visitors, so that mourners from outside the convent could pay their respects. Many had come: fellow artists, merchants and nobles for whom Humilità had painted private commissions, associates of Humilità’s father, Matteo Moretti, who was himself a painter of fame. Kneeling by the coffin, Giulia had kept her gaze averted–she had not wanted to see Humilità’s face, waxy-yellow with her final illness, sunk in on itself in death. She’d felt Suor Margarita’s disapproval, and knew that her dry eyes only confirmed the novice mistress’s opinion: that she was a liar, a hypocrite, a girl who cared for no one and nothing but herself.

There were only a few at Santa Marta who did not share that judgment. Humilità had been one.

The murmur of voices and rustle of clothing fell to silence as the newly-elected abbess, Madre Magdalena, paced toward the altar, her steps keeping time with the cadence of the bell. The sun, streaming through the church’s great rose window, fell directly on the magnificent altarpiece painted by Humilità herself, kindling to jeweled brilliance the gorgeous colors for which her workshop was known: pulsing reds, dazzling yellows, radiant whites, brooding greens–and, most ravishing of all, the shimmering blue that had made her famous, a color so profound, so matchlessly pure and mysteriously luminous, that it had earned its own name.

Passion blue.

Instinctively, Giulia’s hand went to the small waxed canvas pouch she wore at her neck, concealed beneath her shapeless novice gown. She’d made the pouch many years ago to hide her own secret. Now it hid Humilità’s as well, passed on almost with the workshop mistress’s dying breath: the formula for Passion blue’s making, which Humilità had guarded for more than twenty years and  never shared with anyone, ever.

Until now. Giulia shivered. There were painters in Padua who would give gold for that formula, who would be furious that it had been bestowed upon a mere apprentice. And Domenica. Domenica, who expected the secret to come to her. How angry will she be?

Madre Magdalena brought her staff down on the marble floor with a crack. The ceremony began. A choir of nuns sang hymns, their voices rising in exquisite counterpoint to the tolling of the bell. Madre Magdalena delivered a funeral oration, praising Humilità’s many virtues and achievements. There was more singing. Then, as the priest in attendance spoke the words that accompanied burial, Humilità’s coffin was lowered into the marble crypt at the foot of the altar–a great honor, for normally only abbesses were interred there. The thump it made as it came to rest echoed throughout the church.

Giulia closed her eyes, fearing she would faint.

The priest spoke a final blessing. Madre Magdalena struck the floor with her staff once more, dismissing the gathering.

The nuns began to file through the door that led back into the convent. Suor Margarita snapped her fingers, the signal for the novices to line up to follow. Giulia took her place behind the others. As she passed out of the church, her vision blurred with the tears that had not fallen earlier, she heard the harsh scrape of the crypt’s lid sliding closed, sealing Humilità forever into the dark.
And don’t forget to enter the contest for a chance to win a ton of signed books by me, Christine Norris, and more authors! To enter, you need to know that my favorite number is 13. Add up all the favorite numbers of the authors on the blue team and you’ll have all the secret code to enter for the grand prize!
CONTINUE THE HUNT

 To keep going on your quest for the hunt, you need to check out Bree Despain!


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