** CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED **
Celebrate the Awesome is the brain-baby of Elana Johnson, a most awesome source for all things pertaining to writing and most especially, querying. The idea behind it is to help celebrate books that make our personal A-List of novels, ones we would go to bat for and proudly proclaim as an absolute, not-to-be-missed favorite!
I'm sure it's no surprise to any of you that my top pick happens to contain the undead. And while there are many great authors out there penning these dark tales, my favorite has to be Carrie Ryan, master of zombie fiction. Her newest book, The Dead-Tossed Waves (released March 2010) will grip you from start to finish. TDTW is a companion book to The Forest of Hands and Teeth, a tension-drenched post-apocalyptic novel where freedom is measured by the length of a fence, shackling those within to a life of constant vigilance against the Unconsecrated Dead.
TDTW picks up with the next generation and follows Mary's daughter Gabry, and their life in Vista, a coastal village with strong barriers that prevent the Mudo (the Unconsecrated) from harming the living. Gabry's feelings for her best friend's brother Catcher leads her to join her friends and leave the safety of city walls for the off-limits allure of an abandoned amusement park, ending in a horrific encounter with the Mudo. Gabry is unharmed, but Catcher is not. And those who did not die in the attack are imprisoned and at the mercy of the governing force, all except Gabry.
For me this book is a must-read because Carrie Ryan is amazingly skilled at pairing horror, despair and fear with strains of hope and compassion. Each page drips with intensity as doom chases Gabry's footsteps, yet she continues to fight, battling not only the Mudo but the doubt within herself, doing everything in her power to save those she loves. If you want a suspenseful novel that will keep you reading deep into the night, this is it.
I am HUGELY EXCITED to be able to offer a copy of The Dead-Tossed Waves to one FOLLOWER of The Bookshelf Muse that Carrie Ryan will personally sign and mail to the winner. Keep it as a gift for yourself, or have it personalized for someone else--it's all up to you. :)
RULES: Be a follower, new or old, and comment below. That's it! And as always, I really appreciate all tweets, blog mentions and the like to spread the word.
If you are in need of some outstanding summer reads, you can check out the FULL LIST, and please do drop in on Jon Arntson, who is featuring another fantastic author, Maggie Steifvater!
One more thing to add...Heather is my 700th Follower so I'm awarding her a 5 page in depth critique. Just mail me and we'll set up the details!