readergirlz is a literacy and social media project for teens, awarded the National Book Foundation's Innovations in Reading Prize. The rgz blog serves as a depot for news and YA reviews from industry professionals and teens. As volunteers return full force to their own YA writing, the organization continues to hold one initiative a year to impact teen literacy. All are welcome to "like" us on Facebook!

Thursday, May 31, 2012

The #MillionBooks Movement

Kindle SchoolsThe Million Books Movement is a campaign to send 1 million e- books to the children of Africa. 100,000 e-books have already been sent in this revolutionary book drive. With e-books, the goods can be delivered wirelessly and immediately.

Want to help? Post a banner, share the video below and tweet with #MillionBooks to build momentum.

Head here to donate and learn more. What an amazing movement!


Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Cover Stories: The Rivals by Daisy Whitney

Daisy Whitney's here with a new Cover Story!

"I only vaguely had a cover idea in mind for The Rivals, and it was similar to what I had originally envisioned for The Mockingbirds (read that Cover Story) -- something akin to the hardback cover of The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, i.e. something that just screamed "girl at boarding school." And what I've learned as a reader is that I very much prefer books with strong girls on the cover -- like Frankie, or like the cover of Where She Went (read that Cover Story), or What I Saw and How I Lied.

"The cover change (from the Mockingbirds hardback and The Rivals arc) came about through a conversation I had with my editor about a year ago about the type of covers I like and so on. She really wants her authors to love their covers, so when she learned that I had liked the hardcover, but would have preferred a photographic cover, she asked me to send her my favorite covers and that they would consider a redo for the paperback and the hardcover of The Rivals..."

See the early covers, and read the rest of Daisy's Cover Story, at melissacwalker.com.

Friday, May 25, 2012

rgz Newsflash: New Kephart Book Trailer

So happy to share our beloved Beth Kephart's latest book trailer for Small Damages. It will be available in July. Look at this beautiful cover!

Okay, listen in...Congratulations, Beth!

Small Damages
by Beth Kephart
Philomel, 2012

LorieAnncard2010small.jpg image by readergirlz

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Cover Stories: Fracture by Megan Miranda

Megan Miranda's Fracture cover is wintry and haunting (oh, and the book inside got a starred PW review, too!). Here she is to talk about how her debut cover came to be:

"I had a very vague idea for the cover: a girl on the other side of the ice, looking out. But I am also, admittedly, not gifted in the art department. We discussed the idea I had, and they gave another idea as well: a girl, in a red coat, standing on the ice—with maybe a crack running through the surface. I loved that one, as well. I believe they toyed with both these ideas, but found that such a literal interpretation, while accurate to the scene and very relevant to the plot, didn’t quite represent the feel of the story inside. So they went in a different direction to capture the mood. And did they ever.

 "Honest truth? When I first saw my cover, I jumped out of my chair..."

Read the rest of Megan's Cover Story at melissacwalker.com.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Neil Gaiman Addresses the University of the Arts Class of 2012

In this speech shared with the University of the Arts Class of 2012, celebrated author Neil Gaiman has some incredible things to say about pursuing a career in the arts, and about visualizing and achieving your goals in any field:

If you can't see the video player above, click here.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Watch for it: Devine Intervention, Unbreak My Heart, and Dragonswood

You know the volunteer divas are all award-winning YA writers as well, right? Be sure to catch these books up and devour them. Each novel is just like her author, of course.

Fast, fun, and rings with Martha Brockenbrough's awesome wit.
Devine Intervention

Honest, dear, and heart-warming with hope from Melissa Walker.
Unbreak My Heart

Exciting raw imagery and intrigue from a master of high fantasy, Janet Lee Carey.

Find these, rgz, as soon as they are all released. There is talent among us, and you will fall in love with the works of our staff. Ready, set, go!

LorieAnncard2010small.jpg image by readergirlz

Friday, May 11, 2012

rgz HOST Post: Mother/Daughter Day Out!

Calling all mother/daughter/reader teams in the PA area - tomorrow, diva Melissa and I will be joining romance authors Maya Rodale and Sarah MacLean for a Mother/Daughter Afternoon Out! We'll be at Barnes & Noble at the Promenade Shops of Saucon Valley, PA. 

The address:2960 Center Valley Parkway
Center Valley, PA 18034

The time: 

The Facebook Event info: 

Come join us in celebrating Mother's Day early (books make a great Mother's Day gift, you know. Just sayin'.)!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Sarah Dewitz, 12, and Just 1 Book

An excerpt from I Heart Daily:
When Sarah Dewitz, 12, from Orlando, Florida, learned about a town next to hers that was facing a lot of hardship and poverty, she immediately thought about the kids and what they had to do without. She wondered if they had access to books.
Then she had an idea: If every child at her school donated “just one book,” it would amount to 763 books that could go to the neighboring town! In her proposal to her school principal, she wrote, “I want to do this because if I was a child who did not have any books to read I would not be as smart as I am today. When I read books it makes me feel like I am an entirely different person and the world escapes my mind… If this is what books do for me, imagine what it can do for other children and the difference it would make in their lives...”
Read more about Sarah's incredible organization, Just 1 Book, on iheartdaily.com!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

rgz Seattle HOST: SCBWI and the Inside Story!

Here's host Stephanie Guerra with the latest from Seattle! 

Hi girlz!

Last week SCBWI Western Washington celebrated the bi-annual Inside Story at Mockingbird Books in Seattle. Local authors and illustrators came together to share their recently published books and tell their “inside stories,” including the inspiration behind their works. There was an amazing turn-out with all seats filled and a lively audience of booksellers, teachers, librarians, and fans. Host Martha Brockenbrough (Things That Make Us [Sic], Devine Intervention) upped the fun with literary trivia questions and prizes. Below please find a spotlight on the YA authors who presented, with information about their newest releases. (I was one of the number, and so excited to be a part of it!)

Weaving Magic by Mindy Hardwick

He loves magic. She loves romance. But the biggest illusion is the one Shantel and Christopher perform together.  Sixteen- year- old Christopher fights to stay sober while fifteen-year-old Shantel struggles in the aftermath of her mother’s death and seeks refuge in a fantasy world. But the unacknowledged roots of their problems refuse to stay buried and soon, the two are headed toward a deadly magic trick. Can Shantel and Christopher move beyond magical illusions to find love?

The Wicked and the Just by J. Anderson Coats

Cecily’s father has ruined her life. He’s moving them to occupied Wales, where the king needs good strong Englishmen to keep down the vicious Welshmen. At least Cecily will finally be the lady of the house.

Gwenhwyfar knows all about that house. Once she dreamed of being the lady there herself, until the English destroyed the lives of everyone she knows. Now she must wait hand and foot on this bratty English girl.

While Cecily struggles to find her place amongst the snobby English landowners, Gwenhwyfar struggles just to survive. And outside the city walls, tensions are rising ever higher—until finally they must reach the breaking point.

Breaking Beautiful by Jennifer Shaw Wolf

Allie lost everything the night her boyfriend, Trip, died in a horrible car accident—including her memory of the event. As their small town mourns his death, Allie is afraid to remember because doing so means delving into what she’s kept hidden for so long: the horrible reality of their abusive relationship.
When the police reopen the investigation, it casts suspicion on Allie and her best friend, Blake, especially as their budding romance raises eyebrows around town. Allie knows she must tell the truth. Can she reach deep enough to remember that night so she can finally break free? Debut writer Jennifer Shaw Wolf takes readers on an emotional ride through the murky waters of love, shame, and, ultimately, forgiveness.

The Lost Code: Book One of the Atlanteans by Kevin Emerson

The ozone is ravaged, ocean levels have risen, and the sun is a daily enemy. But global climate change is not something new in the Earth’s history.

No one will know this better than less-than-ordinary Owen Parker, who is about to discover that he is the descendant of a highly advanced ancient race—a race that took their technology too far and almost destroyed the Earth in the process.

Now it is Owen’s turn to make right in his world what went wrong thousands of years ago. If Owen can unlock the lost code in his very genes, he may rediscover the forgotten knowledge of his ancestry…and that less-than-ordinary can evolve into extraordinary.

Dragonswood by Janet Lee Carey

Wilde Island is not at peace. The kingdom mourns the dead Pendragon king and awaits the return of his heir; the uneasy pact between dragons, fairies, and humans is strained; and the regent is funding a bloodthirsty witch hunt, hoping to rid the island of half-fey maidens.

Tess, daughter of a blacksmith, has visions of the future, but she still doesn't expect to be accused of witchcraft, forced to flee with her two best friends, or offered shelter by the handsome and enigmatic Garth Huntsman, a warden for Dragonswood. But Garth is the younger prince in disguise and Tess soon learns that her true father was fey, making them the center of an exciting, romantic adventure, and an ancient prophecy that will bring about peace between all three races - dragon, human, and fairy.

Torn by Stephanie Guerra

Stella Chavez is your classic good girl: straight As, clean-cut boyfriends, and soccer trophies . You’d never guess that Stella’s dad was a drug addict who walked out when she was a kid. Or that inside, Stella wishes for something more.

New girl Ruby Caroline seems like Stella’s polar opposite: cursing, smoking, and teetering in sky-high heels . But with Ruby, Stella gets a taste of another world—a world in which parents act like roommates, college men are way more interesting than high school boys, and there is nothing that shouldn’t be tried once.

It’s not long before Stella finds herself torn: between the best friend she’s ever had and the friends she’s known forever, between her family and her own independence, between who she was and who she wants to be.

But Ruby has a darker side, a side she doesn’t show anyone—not even Stella. As Stella watches her friend slowly unravel, she will have to search deep inside herself for the strength to be a true friend, even if it means committing the ultimate betrayal.

The Summer of No Regrets
by Katherine Grace Bond

The day Brigitta accidentally flings herself into the lap of a guy she's never met, her friend Natalie is convinced he's Trent Yves, egotistical heartthrob-in-hiding. When the boy, who calls himself Luke, is nearly eaten by a cougar, Brigitta finds herself saving his life, being swept into his spectacular embrace and wondering if she wants Natalie's fantasy to be true.

As the two spend the summer together raising orphaned cougar cubs, Brigitta still can't be sure of his true identity. But then again, since her grandparents' death, her father's sudden urge to give away all their possessions and become a shaman, and her own awkward transition from girlhood into a young woman, she isn't sure of anything. What is the truth? More importantly, can she accept it?

Sounds like a fantastic event! Thanks, Stephanie!