MADLY releases in the USA & Canada!!

Today is the release day for MADLY! Woohoo! Confetti and candy for everyone!

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Yesterday, I was on Canada’s The Morning Show to talk about the book with the beautiful Liza Fromer and awesome Jeff McArthur. They were lovely and you can watch the segment here: http://globalnews.ca/video/embed/2245420/

On set of Global Canada's national morning show!

On set of Global Canada’s national morning show!

I also have some great reviews to share with you for the book!

“Delightfully refreshing in its unique approach to the damsel-in-distress story, Madly has the heroine that needs no one to save her as she saves the princess. Sam finds the cure and gets the guy. Amazing and strong female-driven storytelling, fueled by a fantastic plot, makes this a must-read.” – VOYA

“Alward (pen name for Amy McCulloch) soon wins readers over with fast-paced adventure, high stakes, and just the right mixture of action, romance, and humor. Princess Evelyn, who has fallen in love with herself through some sloppy potion handling, steals the show with a series of hilariously perverse love scenes. The lighthearted fantasy universe mingles the contemporary and the classic, and teens will gladly suspend disbelief long enough to follow Sam on this journey and the sequels that are sure to come. VERDICT A fun read for fans who like their romance served with a big helping of magic.” – SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL

“Inventive, romantic, and downright delightful, Madly cast its spell on me from page one, and is the most fun I’ve had reading in ages! Reminiscent of Howl’s Moving Castle, readers will instantly wish they lived in the magical, modern world of Nova and fall in love (no potion required!) with the down-to-earth, resourceful, and relatable Samantha. Do not miss out on this book–you’re in for a real treat!” – SARAH J MAAS

It’s so cool!” – ZOE SUGG (aka ZOELLA)

You can buy it here: 

Barnes & Noble.com
Amazon.com
Indigo.ca
Amazon.ca

And here’s the trailer one more time!!

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MADLY book launch – coming to Ottawa 29/09!

Madly launch evite

I’m hugely excited to say that the Canadian book launch for MADLY is happening in Ottawa on September 29th, 6:30pm at Johnny Farina’s restaurant on Elgin Street, hosted by Perfect Books.

There will be drinks, nibbles, a sprinkling of magic and, of course, plenty of books! Books will be available at the bargain price of $15 (retail price is $22.99) so it’s the perfect opportunity to get a signed hardback – maybe as an early Christmas present?

This event is open to all Ottawa book lovers, so if you do think you’ll be able to make it, please let me know by joining the Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/415110695349380/ or RSVP-ing to my email: alward.amy@gmail.com

There’s also going to be a blog tour running from launch date. Check out these great blogs to learn more about MADLY from September 29th!

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LAUNCH WEEK FOR THE POTION DIARIES!!

THE DAY IS ALMOST HERE!!

I can’t quite believe that The Potion Diaries is launching in TWO DAYS time, and the official launch party is tonight, and the blog tour is happening and OH MY it’s all exciting times.

There are *lots* of different places to find me on the inter webs this week, and here are a selection:

I love the juxtaposition with Magic Mike here ;)

I love the juxtaposition with Magic Mike here 😉

There are The Potion Diaries banners running on Sugarscape, and they’re hosting an AMAZING competition to win a ‘Make Your Own Fragrance’ day with Red Letter Days and a signed copy of the book! Enter the Sugarscape Competition here!

I wrote a piece for Foyles on “Generation HP” – the influence of JK Rowling and Harry Potter on today’s authors.

MaximumPop! has a piece about Which of Sam Kemi’s Potions do you need today?

On Bookbrunch I wrote a piece on how an Old English word inspired The Potion Diaries (it’s behind a paywall at the moment so I’ll link to it when it goes public).

There will be even more going live later this week so keep checking in.

I’m also visiting some AMAZING blogs, so check these out as the week goes by:
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If you want to buy The Potion Diaries, it’s available already (shh) over on Waterstones.com!

The UK (The Potion Diaries) & the US (Madly) covers are out. Which do you prefer?

Thanks to Iceybooks.com, the US/Canadian cover for MADLY has been revealed. Hooray! (She also has a contest running on her blog to win a copy of the US book – exciting!)

Now that both covers are out in the wild, I’m curious to know – which do you prefer?

duo book covers

Pre-order from Amazon.co.uk  (UK) – called THE POTION DIARIES, out July 2, 2015
Pre-order from Waterstones.com (UK) – called THE POTION DIARIES, out July 2, 2015
Pre-order from B&N (US) – called MADLY, out September 29, 2015
Pre-order from Indigo (Canada) – called MADLY, out September 29, 2015

White Pine Awards 2015!

On Tuesday I had the IMMENSE pleasure of attending the White Pine Awards at the Festival of Trees at the Harbourfront Centre, Toronto. The Oathbreaker’s Shadow was nominated as one of the ten Canadian YA books on the list. I’d flown over especially for the event, as I’d heard it was one of the most fun book festivals in Canada (if not anywhere!). And I was not disappointed. I loved every second of my day, and it was amazing to meet so many passionate and devoted readers.

A few of the readers I met at the Festival of Trees!

A few of the readers I met at the Festival of Trees!

The White Pine is the oldest age category of books, and I was up against a superstar list of Canadian YA titles. I’d read only two of the books on the list, apart from mine (Teresa Toten’s marvellous and heart-warming story about OCD teens, The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B, and the kick-ass, action-packed RUSH by Eve Silver) but I quickly got to downloading the others onto my Kindle. This was a great year for showcasing new talent on the Canadian YA scene, as a few of the authors were like me: debut authors, on the list for their first books!

The full list of White Pine nominees!

The full list of White Pine nominees!

The awards are voted upon by the students, who have to have read a minimum of 5/10 books to be eligible. That requires a lot of devotion – especially from high schoolers, who have so much on their plate already. So I am endlessly thankful to any student who was dedicated enough to read and vote. You ROCK.

With my high school teacher-turned-librarian friend Mme Charron!

With my high school teacher-turned-librarian friend Mme Charron!

It was also amazing to have some students from my old high school come and visit me! Hello Immaculata students! And accompanying them was their librarian Mme Charron, who also taught me Phys-ed when I was a student there. It was so nice to have some hometown support.

The ceremony itself

The ceremony itself

And that brings me to the very best bit of the day: getting to meet so many readers. I don’t think there has ever been a gathering of so many people who had read The Oathbreaker’s Shadow in one place! And although I didn’t win, I had the absolute best time. For the ceremony itself, I walked in with two students from Sir John A McDonald High, one who introduced me and another who held my sign. RUSH was the overall winner, and I was so pleased for my wonderful friend Eve Silver. If you haven’t read her books yet, GET ON THAT RIGHT NOW.

With Eve Silver, Jan Andrews and Heather Smith after our panel

With Eve Silver, Jan Andrews and Heather Smith after our panel

I then did a WORLDBUILDING 101 panel with Eve, Jan Andrews (THE SILENT SUMMER OF KYLE MCGINLEY) and Heather Smith (BAYGIRL). The feedback I had was that it went really well, especially as we got to showcase so many different styles of world-building, from the truly fantastical (me) to the emotional and the real.

Signing away, in the chilly weather!

Signing away, in the chilly weather!

Doesn't get more 'Toronto' than signing underneath the CN Tower

Doesn’t get more ‘Toronto’ than signing underneath the CN Tower

My last event was a signing. I always get nervous at signings (especially ones that are scheduled to last a whole hour) because come on… it can be embarrassing to sit there while no one comes to visit! But to my surprise, there were a few students there when I arrived, waiting to be first! I signed solidly for almost an hour, which is pretty amazing. I was stunned, but it was the same for all the authors: we just happened to be in the midst of the most engaged audience, who had all read our books. It was pretty fantastic.

Being interviewed by the OLA in the green room

Being interviewed by the OLA in the green room

Thanks so much to the OLA for nominating me, and to the students for voting! I had a blast.

The main event - the Festival of Trees!

The main event – the Festival of Trees!

Meeting Morgan Rhodes (author of the AWESOME Falling Kingdoms) and Eve Silver (White Pine winner, with RUSH!)

Meeting Morgan Rhodes (author of the AWESOME Falling Kingdoms) and Eve Silver (White Pine winner, with RUSH!)

Hidden amongst the Forest of Reading

Hidden amongst the Forest of Reading

And for anyone who loved THE OATHBREAKER’S SHADOW, don’t forget that the sequel (and conclusion of the story) is out now: THE SHADOW’S CURSE!

YALC 2015 and The Potion Diaries!

I must interrupt the Hawaii posts for a super important THE POTION DIARIES-related announcement! I am thrilled to be appearing at YALC 2015 at Olympia in London from 17th-19th July 2015. *HAPPY DANCES*

YALC is the hugely successful Young Adult Literature Convention, held at the London Film and Comic Con, which was launched by the awesome Malorie Blackman last year. Like last year, it’s going to offer a mixture of panels, talks, interviews, book signings and workshops – something for everyone – but they’re aiming to make the experience EVEN better by focusing on shorter queues, separate tickets for YALC-goers, more quiet areas and bigger space. Sounds like they’re ticking all the boxes (and last year will be pretty darn hard to beat). I don’t know exactly which dates yet I’ll be appearing, or on what panels, but I promise to update you as soon as I know.

yalc-web-small

Make sure to book your tickets for YALC early – it was one of the best events I attended last year and it sells out rapidly: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/film-and-comic-con-london-tickets-15664017498

Other awesome authors like Cassandra Clare, Derek Landy, Carrie Hope Fletcher, and many more, will be there. For more information on YALC, click here: http://www.londonfilmandcomiccon.com/index.php/yalc

Proofs have arrived with my agent, Juliet Mushens!

Proofs sitting pretty on my agent’s desk!

Also incredibly exciting is that the proofs for THE POTION DIARIES are out in the wild! If you would like to receive one, make sure to drop me a link through my contact page or tweet to me and I’ll see what I can do (no promises!) This is mostly relevant if you are a non-North American blogger, as I’m hoping that the US/Canada will do their own proofs/ARCs for MADLY.  I just can’t wait to see them in person.

Here’s last year’s blog about YALC, if you want to see what all the fuss is about!

And if you’d like to pre-order THE POTION DIARIES… you can from amazon.co.uk or waterstones.com!