HIDE AND SEEK Impatient Reader Giveaway Winners!

I’ve been getting lots of emails and tweets and general pokes about when HIDE AND SEEK, the sequel to CAPTURE THE FLAG, will be available. The answer to that question is April 1st – less than two months away!  But last week, I decided I was feeling impatient and wanted to give away an advance reader copy…or two or three. You can read more about the books here…

CAPTURE THE FLAG is out now, and HIDE AND SEEK  is available for pre-order, through your favorite bookseller.  (I hope you’ll pick up a finished copy, even if you’re one of the winners!)

Personalized, signed copies may be ordered through The Bookstore Plus in Lake Placid, one of my great local indies by calling 518-523-2950.

And advance reader copies will be sent to the following drawing winners…




Please drop me an email with your mailing address (I’m kmessner at kate messner   dot com… no spaces) and I’ll get your ARC in the mail. Thanks to all who entered!

On Valentines and Dads

I posted a version of this story on Father’s Day a while back, but today is both my mom and dad’s birthday – and I wanted to share it again…

My dad was the school superintendent in the village where we grew up.  His office was in the junior high school, which was both convenient and mortifying for me, in turns.  Convenient because he’d carry my baritone saxophone into school on the mornings I had jazz band.  Mortifying because if I got in trouble for talking in study hall, he knew before lunchtime.  But something else happened in those junior high years, too — something I didn’t figure out until I had grown into a less gawky, slightly less nerdy high school girl.  My dad was my secret admirer.

The student council at my junior high school had renamed Valentine’s Day “Carnation Day.”  In the weeks leading up to it, you could pay a dollar to send a carnation to the person of your choice, and it would be left on his or her desk before homeroom that morning.  The result was a very colorful and extraordinarily visible display of relative popularity.  There were some kids who walked in and sat down at empty desks every Valentine’s Day morning.  It’s a wonder they kept showing up.  There were other kids whose desks were so laden with flowers there was no room for a pencil.

It was a great source of angst.  I worried.  But I didn’t have to.  In my three years of junior high school, my desk was never without a carnation on Valentine’s Day.  Some years, there was more than one.  But always, there was one.

The card was either signed “from a secret admirer” or not signed at all.  My friends thought it made me seem exotic and mysterious.  I think it was freshman  year when I figured it out.  Every year, he heard the student council’s morning announcement and made the long walk from district offices at one end of the building to the cafeteria at the other end to order my flower. 

Happy Birthday, Mom & Dad!  And Dad… thanks for the carnations when I needed them most.

Thank you, Wisconsin State Reading Association!

Living on the East Coast, winter travel can be tricky, so I don’t do too many speaking events in January and February. But when the Wisconsin State Reading Association asked if I’d speak at their annual convention and Authors Festival this week, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity. The weather, thankfully, held off just long enough for me to arrive in Milwaukee on Thursday.  We had to circle the airport a few times while they plowed the runway, and here’s what it looked like when we landed.

On Friday, I spoke to Wisconsin teachers and librarians in two separate sessions — “Letting Kids Lead,” focused on transcending the one-answer sort of thinking that standardized tests promote and helping kids develop problem-solving and divergent thinking skills through authentic literacy activities, and then “Real Revision,” focused on writing that goes beyond those single-draft test questions. The lead learners in both of my sessions were absolutely fantastic – rolling up their sleeves to write and revise and try out world-building and mystery crafting activities they might share with their students later on.

Friday night, we had a wonderful dinner with the WSRA organizers and Authors Festival Committee. There was lots and lots of laughter coming from our room at the restaurant!

On Saturday morning, the festival authors got to spend time with young writers from area schools, which was such a wonderful way to end the conference. Jack Gantos had us all laughing during the morning breakfast.

I worked with two different groups, sharing some stories from my own research and writing adventures, and then we did some brainstorming and mystery crafting together.

I’m so thankful to have had this opportunity, in addition to working with the teachers and librarians on Friday. The young writers in my sessions were amazingly enthusiastic and talented, and I have no doubt I’ll be reading some of their books one day.

Thanks so much, Wisconsin Reading Association! I loved spending time with your teachers and young writers, and I can’t imagine a warmer welcome on a snowy weekend.

HIDE AND SEEK impatient reader giveaway!

I’ve been getting lots of emails and tweets and general pokes about when HIDE AND SEEK, the sequel to CAPTURE THE FLAG, will be available. The answer to that question is April 1st – less than two months away!

The book is available for pre-order now, through your favorite bookseller, and Scholastic just sent me a few more advance reader copies, so I thought it would be fun to give some away for CAPTURE THE FLAG fans who aren’t feeling all that patient.

To enter the drawing, just leave a comment on this blog post with your name & a way to reach you if you win. I’ll draw a winner on Friday, February 15th – so let’s say that the deadline to enter is 11pm EST on Valentine’s Day.

If you’d like extra chances to win, you can do any or all of these things:

  • Blog about CAPTURE THE FLAG
  • “Like” my author page on Facebook.
  • “Like” CAPTURE THE FLAG on Facebook.
  • Write a mini-review of CAPTURE THE FLAG as your Facebook Status Update
  • Share a cover image of CAPTURE THE FLAG or HIDE AND SEEK on Facebook. (You can swipe the cover from above.)
  • Tweet a mini-review of CAPTURE THE FLAG.
  • Share your review of CAPTURE THE FLAG on GoodReads, Amazon, & Barnes and Noble.
  • Share your review of CAPTURE THE FLAG at Powells (and if you’re 1st to review it,  Powells will also enter you for their gift card giveaway!)
  • Ask your school or library to pre-order HIDE AND SEEK
  • Tweet or Facebook this update: HIDE AND SEEK, @katemessner’s sequel to CAPTURE THE FLAG, comes out April 1st! http://bit.ly/YEgLPg
  • Have the cover of HIDE AND SEEK or CAPTURE THE FLAG  tattooed on your left bicep. (Not really… I just put that in to see if anyone was still  paying attention.)
  • Do some other creative, great thing to spread the word about CAPTURE THE FLAG and HIDE AND SEEK.

Whatever you do for extra chances to win, please just leave a comment here  letting me know. Total honor system here. If you think it’ll help more mystery lovers discover the Silver Jaguar Society series, then go for it, and I’ll toss your name in the hat an extra time or two. Or ten.

And finally,  if you’re a teacher or librarian who does something cool with your whole class, let me know and I’ll enter you for  for a separate, special teacher/librarian giveaway.

Giveaway rules: Books can only be shipped to US addresses. If you’re under 13, please have an adult enter for you. Deadline to enter is 11pm EST February 14th.  Winners will be announced here on my blog on Friday, February 15th.