Thursday, May 24, 2012

Summer Lovin' Blog Tour: While He Was Away

Today I am apart of the Summer Lovin' Blog Tour for While He Was Away.
The Author Karen Schreck is here to talk about Why YA Rocks her world!

Why YA Rocks My World 

YA is hot. 

As in steamy, sultry, blazing, scathing, illuminating, fiery, incendiary, spicy, enlightening, searing, scorching. A wildfire. A prairie burn. An inferno of characters, settings, plots. A refiner’s fire that draws out pure gold. 

YA can also be cold. 

As in chill, bitter, harsh, blustery, caustic, shivery, biting, hard-edged, cool. A frigid wind that dips below zero. A blizzardy drift of ideas and images. One snowflake never like the next. And once all hell freezes over, than YA can be the sharp-edged ax that breaks through the ice of your soul. 

YA lit—good YA lit—is never, ever lukewarm. 

Not in terms of content—the fearless stories told, the layers of meaning revealed. 
Not in terms of character—these people live on the pages, and like most adolescents (or the adolescent in all of us, who lives on and on and on) their motivation frequently cuts to the quick: they are desperately trying to figure out just who in God’s name they are. 
And YA lit is never, ever lukewarm or tepid in terms of voice—which is so driven by character, setting, and plot, and which defines each YA novel—that distinct, one-of-a-kind voice that speaks a book into existence, that prods and goads and compels a writer—me—to tell the story. 
This is just a little bit of why YA rocks my world—why I love writing and reading books for teens. Or, supposedly for teens, since most street smart and literary savvy adults worth their salt know that Young Adult Fiction is among the best literature out and about today.

"This is just something I have to do, okay?" I hear David say. "The right thing."He cradles my face in his hands. He kisses me hard. Then he lets go of me. His eyes dart from me to whatever's next.
All she wants is for him to stay. She's been doing pretty well, pretending he doesn't have to go. But one day, after one last night to remember, she wakes up and there's no denying it anymore. He's gone.
When Penna Weaver's boyfriend goes off to Iraq, she's left facing life without him. As summer sets in, Penna tries to distract herself with work and her art, but the not knowing is slowly driving her crazy. Especially when David stops writing.
She knows in her heart he will come home. But will he be the same boy she fell in love with?

Karen Halvorsen Schreck’s new Young Adult novel, While He Was Away, will be published by Sourcebooks in 2012. She’s also the author of Dream Journal (Hyperion), which was a 2006 Young Adult BookSense Pick, and the award-winning children’s book Lucy’s Family Tree (Tilbury House). Her short stories and articles have appeared in Literal Latté, Other Voices, Image, as well as other literary journals and magazines, and have received various awards, including a Pushcart Prize, an Illinois State Arts Council Grant, and in 2008, first prize awards for memoir and devotional magazine writing from the Evangelical Press Association. Karen received her doctorate in English and Creative from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She works as a freelance writer and editor, teaches writing and literature, and lives with her husband, the photographer Greg Halvorsen Schreck, and their two children in Wheaton, Illinois.

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