novels / writing

In Which I Give Away My Last ARC to Someone Who Really Wants It

Happy 2013, everyone!

If you’re impatient and don’t want to read through this post, this, my friends, is a giveaway.

If you want to win a signed and personalized ARC of my March 2013 book 17 & Gone plus a bunch of bookmarks, just leave a comment on this post telling me why you want the ARC… or fill out this entry form  and it could be yours.

If you have a little more patience, I’ll tell you more about the book first before you throw your name in the hat to win an ARC.



17 & Gone comes out in less than three months. I am really not sure how to promote my book and myself online beyond simply telling you that it comes out on March 21 and I hope you’ll want to buy it or grab it from the library on that day. Because how to convince you? How to explain the ways this book haunted me, during the writing and also in the years before setting its first words down on the page? How to explain that the themes found in this book (disappearing girls; danger like a hand grabbing you in the darkness; visions felt in your bones, visions you can’t trust; and the desire, the need, to try to save someone else even when you’re not so sure you can save yourself), these things have been following me for years?


I’ve been writing about disappearing girls for a long time. Girls who vanish. Girls who run away. Girls who are gone. My early short stories—written fifteen, twenty years ago—often touched on this, and a novel I never got published is all about a runaway trying to discover who she was and is and is meant to be.

But it wasn’t until 17 & Gone that I really embraced this theme and followed where it led. It led me somewhere surprising. Here are the opening lines of the book:

Girls go missing every day. They slip out bedroom windows and into strange cars. They leave good-bye notes or they don’t get a chance to tell anyone. They cross borders. They hitch rides, squeezing themselves into overcrowded backseats, sitting on willing laps. They curl up and crouch down, or they shove their bodies out of sunroofs and give off victory shouts. Girls make plans to go, but they also vanish without meaning to, and sometimes people confuse one for the other. Some girls go kicking and screaming and clawing out the eyes of whoever won’t let them stay. And then there are the girls who never reach where they’re going. Who disappear. Their ends are endless, their stories unknown. These girls are lost, and I’m the only one who’s seen them.

(You can read a longer excerpt of 17 & Gone here, in PenguinTeen’s Spring 2013 preview.)

Because, yes, this is a story about a haunting and about lost girls—but it turned out to be about so much more than that. It turned out to be a book about something deeper than I realized, something I’ve been afraid of and fascinated by, something I care about deeply, which emerged during the writing of this draft, like a light came on in a dark hallway and I knew the way. I’d like to talk about this, but I can’t until you’ve read the book and see what I mean. I realize that sounds cryptic, but maybe by now I’ve enticed you enough to want to enter this giveaway or—better—buy the book when it comes out on March 21 or ask your local library to order it.



Yes, a giveaway! I have one more ARC left to give out. I’ll send it—signed and personalized—along with some bookmarks to someone who wants to read this book.


• Leave a comment on this post and tell me why you’d like to read 17 & Gone—or who you’d send this signed ARC to, and why. This is the last ARC I’ll be giving away before the book is published, so I’d love to give it to someone who really wants it or will make good use of it somehow.

• Giveaway open in the US and Canada only.


Or, if you’d like your entry kept private, just fill out this entry form:

(Go here for the form if the embedded form won’t load.)

Thank you for entering!

12 thoughts on “In Which I Give Away My Last ARC to Someone Who Really Wants It

  1. I could just say “Cause I love your writing and can’t wait to read this book,” but I actually have a better reason!

    Last month two of my best friends, after an incredible amount of hard work and determination, opened up an independent bookstore in our little Connecticut city – because they LOVE BOOKS. Even as we watched Barnes & Noble and Borders close down in our area (And evil BAM moved in) they knew that the hard fight to keep a local bookstore open would be worth it.

    I’ve had the privilege to work closely with Chris & Gina before and after their shop opened, and I am as excited as they are at receiving their shipments of new books, their first tentative reaching to bring in authors for talks and book signings, their ability to give unparalleled support to local authors.. and I’ve been happy to be able to add to their business in my own small ways. You see, neither of them really read much YA. I have been pushing them to get new YA books in their store, schooling them on the up and coming YA books, and generally trying to curate their YA section, as they have a small budget to work with in ordering new books weekly. One of the things I’ve gotten to do is read some of the ARCs they have received from being part of the bookseller’s association. It’s THRILLING to read new books months before their release (at least to me it is). Unfortunately, an ARC for 17 & Gone is not among their spoils.

    I would LOVE to have this last ARC so that I can read and review it for Monte Cristo Bookshop ( and then I could get to work on convincing you – one of my favorite YA authors, to pass the next time RJ Julia wants you to make an appearance, so that you can come meet us in New London at Monte Cristo instead.🙂

  2. I would love to have an ARC of your newest book, 17 & Gone, for the following reasons: I spend my days with teenage girls who are at-risk and I think your book could speak to them in a way that I cannot; 17 & Gone would expand the horizons of other students I work with just like A.S. King’s Ask the Passengers and Corinne Jackson’s If I Lie have; I teach high school English and am building my classroom library; and I do my best to promote authors and their books in my classroom and school every day.

    If you grace me with an ARC of 17 & Gone, I will make sure to read, review and booktalk it in all of my classes.

  3. The premise for this book sounds so intriguing, I cannot wait to read it! The cover is just beautiful, too. I’m dying to find out what the deeper something 17 & GONE about that you’ve hinted at in this post.

  4. If I win this, I would read it first, then pass along the copy and bookmarks to a fantastic YA librarian I know. I am confident that she would booktalk the heck out of it and share it with teens.🙂

  5. Wow, great excerpt. I’m defintely buying this book.
    (And not because I live across the pond and can’t enter, but because I want to ;-)). Good luck everyone!

  6. 17 & Gone sounds completely amazing! I loved Imaginary Girls and your style of writing is breathtakingly beautiful. Why would I want this ARC? Because it sounds like a truly riveting mystery, which I absolutely love! Plus, I’ve been counting down the days til it’s release since I first heard about it. After I read it (and review it) I plan on donating it to my local library. I love helping them get new books in, including ARC’s! It would be a great addition to their TeenTalk bookclub as well.

  7. I really, really want to read this, and I am impatient. I luuuurved IMAGNARY GIRLS and can’t wait to see what you’ve done with this one. I would definitely send the ARC around my circle of writer friends if I win!

  8. I could just say because I love books but there are so many more reasons!
    I love your writiting, it has the ability to wrap me up & capture me – I get so lost & look up from your books to realize that I’m not in the world you created.
    I work in a bookstore and if I was able to read your book before it was in stores I could tell the whole world about it! I do that now but I would love to recommend another amazing book.
    I also write and I look to you as a prime example as a successful, talented, amazing author! I use your writing as a guide as to how to become a better writer.

  9. This is the same thing I said on the form, but it’s so true.

    I have soo many reasons, but they all sound very, very selfish. And selfish I am not (to an extent), so I really can’t say that I’m better than any other blogger or reader here, who wants your last ARC. But here goes. I would love to win an ARC from you, especially since it’s one of yours. I’ve been following you for a long time, and not for the purpose of entering contests and winning books, but that seemed to work hand-and-hand with your blog. I have never won a single contest on your blog. Again, that sounds selfish, but it’s true. I can’t complain, because I know that every person who won a book from a giveaway you’ve hosted appreciates it very much.

    I’ve been a blogger and reviewer for a while, but I’ve just recently started seriously blogging. I don’t get ARCs like most other bloggers do, because it’s a new blog, and I don’t have very much blog traffic and followers. I’m getting there. But I can’t just request an ARC like most bloggers, and most likely get the ARC (print or ecopy).

    I would love to win your book, to be able to read and review it early. I leave honest reviews of books on my blog, Amazon, and Goodreads.

    I’m a reader first. I want to read your book to enjoy it. Not to read it once and then give it away or never read it again, or maybe until the seqeuel comes out.

    I want to cherish the fact that I’ve won something signed and personalized, with swag. Especially since it’s an Advanced Reader Copy – that makes it extra special🙂

    I have no idea if these reasons qualify me as the right person to give the last ARC of 17 & Gone, but I would love it if you did, and I wouldn’t be upset if you didn’t. Thank you so much for giving your last ARC away. I hope that fellow 17-year-olds will enjoy this book as much as I hope to! And everyone who picks it up🙂


  10. Somehow that form didn’t work for me.

    Anyway, I’d love to get my grubby paws on the ARC for 17 & Gone because Imaginary Girls was one of those books that really brought me back to the beauty of YA and of excellent writing.

    Ergo, I’m dying to read your next book, and I hope it becomes as big of a hit as you deserve. Fantastic writing isn’t as common as it used to be, so anytime I can read excellent prose, I’ll throw myself under a figurative bus for it.

  11. Unfortunately, I don’t live in the states or canada. /cues sad wailing

    Your newest book sounds really interesting though, and it comes out one day after my birthday! Sounds like a perfect self birthday present.

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