Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Blog tour: Drowned by Nichola Reilly + guest post & giveaways

This Wednesday is a very special day at Reader Girls. We have a favorite author of ours here, today! Welcome to the Drowned blog tour (presented by Kismet Book Tours). Isn't that a great cover? We think it's gorgeous. For our stop, we have a Guest Post by author Nichola Reilly about The Island of Tides. There are also two giveaways. Have a wonderful day. Don't forget to pick up a copy of Drowned and take it on vacation.

Drowned by Nichola Reilly

YA dystopia

Hardcover/eBook, 304 pages
Published June 24th 2014 by Harlequin Teen

Coe is one of the few remaining teenagers on the island of Tides. Deformed and weak, she is constantly reminded that in a world where dry land dwindles at every high tide, she is not welcome. The only bright spot in her harsh and difficult life is the strong, capable Tiam—but love has long ago been forgotten by her society.

The only priority is survival.

Until the day their King falls ill, leaving no male heir to take his place. Unrest grows, and for reasons Coe cannot comprehend, she is invited into the privileged circle of royal aides. She soon learns that the dying royal is keeping a secret that will change their world forever.

Is there an escape from the horrific nightmare that their island home has become?

Coe must race to find the answers and save the people she cares about, before their world and everything they know is lost to the waters.

The Island of Tides. When did the first spark for your novel begin and how did you know it was a novel/series?

I grew up spending most of my summers at the Jersey Shore. We used to laugh at the misfortunate souls who’d park all their stuff right in front of us at low tide and then do a sort of chicken-like scramble-dance as the waves rolled in at high tide, carrying beach chairs and towels out with them.

I’ve also always been a sucker for books that imagined one of the many different forms the apocalypse might take. Let’s see. Some of my favorite books are The Stand and Cell by Stephen King,  Life as We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer, Swan Song by Robert McCammon. And my favorite television show right now is The Walking Dead, but I STILL never miss an episode of Survivor. Are you sensing a trend here?

Of course, it didn’t strike me to meld those two concepts until I was right in the middle of my paranormal romance-writing career.  In early 2008 I had three books under contract and only one of them written, and I was lying in bed, probably homesick thinking of the beach, and thought . . . what if there was no land left on earth AT ALL, only a small island, and an even SMALLER island when the tide came in? What if it was SO small when the tide came in that they had a platform, and people had to stand on the tiny space assigned to them every high tide? What if that space was eroding, every day, getting smaller and smaller?

The more I thought about it, the more I built the world in my head. The useful people, like the doctors and the strong, would need to be protected, so they would have spots at the center of the platform. People stopped having children, because more people would mean less space.  These people have been subsisting like this, in a maddening fight for survival, for so long, that their humanity has all but disappeared. The only priority is living another day. And yet there’s one girl, who though she is weak and considered worthless, still keeps treasures from the past, and she’s the only one who sees what people used to be like and how far they’ve fallen.

I don’t think I slept at all that night. The next morning, all bleary (but still excited), I emailed my sounding board, who is also a YA writer (and now agent) Mandy Hubbard. She’d tell me if something was stupid, which really, most of my ideas fall into that category. She responded with her thumbs up, (“DOOOOO IT!” is what she said), and so I started writing it.

It ended up being one of those books that wrote itself. I was really excited! By the time I finished, thought, we were deep in Hunger Games knock-offs, so my agent had a few (okay, a lot of) concerns about it standing out in the crowded market. And I was deep in Paranormal Romance-writing hell, so I didn’t have time to address them. 

It was three years later that I finally did.  But when I wrote THE END on DROWNED, I realized it had a very A NEW HOPE ending to it. Like yeah, the Death Star is destroyed and Darth Vader is spiraling out into space, but he’s still alive, SO WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?  The battle was won, but not the war. And does Chewy ever get his medal? Really, I am a stand-alone gal. I look at a lot of series and think, “That could be just one book, if the #(&%* author would just get to the point.”  Until this point I was scared to death of writing a series. But this book begged me for it, and I was forced to oblige. BURIED will be out in 2015.        

About Nichola Reilly:

Nichola Reilly is Cyn Balog's post-apocalyptic fantasy-writing alter-ego. The first book in her series, DROWNED, will be releasing from Harlequin TEEN sometime in 2014, followed by a sequel, BURIED, in 2015.

WebsiteTwitter | Facebook

About Cyn Balog
Cyn Balog is a normal, everyday Jersey Girl who always believed magical things can happen to us when we least expect them. She is author of young adult paranormals FAIRY TALE (2009), SLEEPLESS (2010), STARSTRUCK (2011), TOUCHED (2012), and her most recent release: DEAD RIVER (2013). She lives outside Allentown, Pennsylvania with her husband and daughters.

She also writes under the pen name Nichola Reilly. Nichola Reilly is Cyn Balog's post-apocalyptic fantasy-writing alter-ego. The first book in her series, DROWNED, will be releasing from Harlequin TEEN sometime in 2014, followed by a sequel, BURIED, in 2015.


Daily Giveaway & GRAND PRIZE
One winner will receive a fantastic Grand Prize Package including the following HarlequinTEEN titles: 2 copies of DROWNED as well as copies of RAIN, THE AFTERMATH, THE DARK WORLD and OCEANBORN.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Love the cover. This sounds fantastic!

  2. I love that the heroine has a disability and still is portrayed as strong!

  3. It sounds so good. I love reading books with secrets. Great cover. Thanks for having the giveaway.

  4. I would love to read Drowned because it looks and sounds fantastic plus I want to learn what secret is the dying royal keeping that will change their world! thanks for the awesome giveaway!

  5. It definitely sounds interesting. After I heard about it for the first time I had a dream based on it...weird.

  6. This book sounds really good and I absolutely love the cover! Thanks for the giveaway!! :)