Monday, November 22, 2010

[Elevensies Love #2] Kirsten Hubbard, author of Like Mandarin

I, like many of you, love debut authors and so to hit off the new year a bit early, I'm doing a weekly feature here. These features will introduce you to new YA authors for 2011: blurbs, links and giveaways--no giveaways from me, but I'll scour the 'net and see if there are any going on at the moment. If I were organised I'd have come up with some interview questions for the authors, but I'm not that smart. :P

Kirsten Hubbard is...
A 27-year-old travel writer and young adult author, Kirsten Hubbard has hiked ancient ruins in Cambodia, dived with wild dolphins in Belize (one totally looked her in the eye), slept in a Slovenian jail cell, and navigated the Wyoming badlands (without a compass) in search of transcendent backdrops for her novels. She lives in San Diego, California.
Come on, this girl's got some life! Hiking in ancient ruins? Sleeping in wild and unknown lands? She's definitely got stories to tell!

Like Mandarin

Author: Kirsten Hubbard
Release Date: March 8th 2011
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Genre: Contemporary
Part of the Contemps Challenge!!
"I want to be beautiful like you, I thought, as if Mandarin were listening.

I want apricot skin and Pocahontas hair and eyes the color of tea. I want to be confident and detached and effortlessly sensual, and if promiscuity is part of the package, I will gladly follow your lead. All I know is I'm so tired of being inside my body.

I would give anything to be like Mandarin."


It's hard finding beauty in the badlands of Washokey, Wyoming, but 14-year-old Grace Carpenter knows it's not her mother's pageant obsessions, or the cowboy dances adored by her small-town classmates. True beauty is wild-girl Mandarin Ramey: 17, shameless and utterly carefree. Grace would give anything to be like Mandarin.

When they're united for a project, they form an unlikely, explosive friendship, packed with nights spent skinny-dipping in the canal, liberating the town's animal-head trophies, and searching for someplace magic. Grace plays along when Mandarin suggests they run away together. Blame it on the crazy-making wildwinds plaguing their badlands town.

Because all too soon, Grace discovers Mandarin's unique beauty hides a girl who's troubled, broken, and even dangerous. And no matter how hard Grace fights to keep the magic, no friendship can withstand betrayal.
I've always been mysteriously drawn to this title. I like the concept of the novel, and love contemporary so, so much, because these kinds of things could actually happen! I like the cover. It's nothing too extravagant, and I think that's the main thing about the cover: it suits the book.

Early Reviews:
  • "Hubbard's writing is magical. I was so caught up in the story." (full review)
    --Ashelynn of A Gypsy Writer:
  • "A beautifully crafted, bittersweet story about an unlikely friendship that sets two very different people free."
    --Melina Marchetta

Follow Kirsten:
Check out Kirsten's site
Twitter | Facebook | Youtube

Angus & Robertson | Big W

Learn even more about Kirsten Hubbard here!

That's it for this week's Elevensies Love featurette!

My Elevensies Love contest has ended, and winners have been announced. Maybe in the future I'll be able to host more contests--I've emailed a small number of 2011 authors, and I will be giving away swag in the future. ;)

Previously on Elevensies Love:
Sara Bennett Wealer, Rival (Feb 2011)
Kirsten Hubbard, Like Mandarin (March 2011)

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