Monday, May 9, 2011

Six weeks to THE REVENANT -- Gothic giveaway [NOW CLOSED]

The Revenant officially releases six weeks from tomorrow, and by golly, I feel like celebrating!

Gentle reader, I invite you to join me today and the next five Mondays as I share many of the inspirations behind the story. Each week I'll be giving away a recent YA novel that relates to that week's theme. Simply comment below to enter the drawing for that book.

**All those who comment over the next several weeks will also be entered to win one of two finished copies of The Revenant!

This week's theme: GOTHIC!

What do I love about it?

I adore the iconography and themes of Gothic -- the dreary, crumbling castles or mansions, the dark forests and desolate landscapes, the atmosphere of gloom and confusion, the very real threat of supernatural forces, and the general sense of foreboding and mystery. Why is this so cool to me? I think it boils down to how Gothic landscapes are often a projection of unresolved internal conflicts. Gothic showed us "the return of the repressed" long before Freud came along (just read any Poe story for an illustration of this). As my dear husband put it, "the surroundings give form to the monster within." So compelling! (Here is a really fun Glossary of Literary Gothic Terms, if you'd like to know more.)

What does it have to do with The Revenant?

The easy answer is that The Revenant is Gothic because it's a ghost story. But for me, the setting screamed "Gothic" before I even decided to write about a ghost.


In most Gothic novels the setting itself is a major character. This 1888 photo of students standing in front of the Cherokee Female Seminary gave me a jolt of inspiration with its aura of gloom. I realize that the B&W photography lends strongly to this atmosphere, but still . . . the leafless trees, the wrought-iron fence, the clock tower and turrets, not to mention the dark clothing and grim faces of the students -- all these strongly communicated "secrets" and "mystery" to me. I wanted to place an outsider -- a girl with dark secrets of her own -- within this context and see what sort of trouble I could brew!

What am I giving away?

A shiny hardcover of Tessa Gratton's Blood Magic, which will come to you as soon as it releases (May 24). I had the privilege of reading an ARC of this book, which I devoured in about two days. With its atmosphere of danger, dark secrets and barely repressed (& often wildly out-of-control) passions, I'm delighted to say that it fits the Gothic bill perfectly. However, it is not for the faint of heart -- consider the title, folks!

In addition, you will receive an assortment of Elevensies swag, including bookmarks and goodies for The Revenant. This giveaway is open to residents of North America only. (Don't worry -- there will be another international giveaway in the future!)

How does one enter?

1. Leave a comment that includes a name and some way to contact you. This is really all you have to do to be entered for the weekly giveaway AND to put your name in the drawing for one of two finished copies of The Revenant. (Of course, I'd love for you to expound on your personal Gothic favorites in your comment, but this is not required.)
2. If you'd like an extra entry, please tweet or facebook a link to this contest. Something along the lines of: Win a copy of BLOOD MAGIC at @soniagensler's Six Weeks to THE REVENANT Giveaway! http://tinyurl.com/5wbhkra

I wanted to make it simple, so that's it! Good luck and thanks for helping me celebrate!

[Cross-posted from Livejournal]

57 comments:

  1. Retweeted this as soon as I saw it on Twitter. :) Thank you for hosting the giveaway!

    ahxockin87@gmail.com

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  2. So excited for your book release! Tweeted already, although I'm greedy and don't want to share. ;^) If I'm the lucky winner, you can contact me via FB or Twitter.

    I have to go back to the old classics - even though it's been a while since I read it, Dracula is still one of my favorites.

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  3. I can't wait for this to be released, and I'm already shivering with anticipation for both "The Revenant" and "Blood Magic".
    You can contact me at:

    purplesparklypen@yahoo.com

    Yay! Hope I win. But I'll read them both regardless.

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  4. My favorite Gothic novels are The Monk by Matthew Lewis, and Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. <3 <3 <3

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  5. I retweeted for ya!! Thanks!!

    Americangirlie1991 at yahoo dot com

    Lindsay :)

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  6. Would love to win! I retweeted too (lizzy1931)

    leebee19(at)gmail(dot)com

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  7. Love the paranormal fiction, the darker the better so this is right up my alley. Would love to read! Definetely adding to my wish list.

    ashley.mckinsey(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  8. Oh yeah, also retweeted at @Mayiread.
    Appropriate, no?! :P

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  9. I tweeted it - http://twitter.com/#!/xLeeDx/status/67590463061897217

    Awesome giveaway!

    xo
    Lisa

    fictalk(at)gmail(dot)

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  10. Awesome giveaway! Thanks so much for the opportunity! I don't know that I've ever read a gothic novel. But I would love to try one, starting w/yours.

    I tweeted http://mobile.twitter.com/andrealynnt/status/67595661574537216

    andreat78@yahoo.com

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  11. Awesome giveaway. Love the gothic theme. My fave is still Frankenstein.

    tweeted: https://twitter.com/#!/starryeyedjen/status/67598039463886849

    mrsjbruce@gmail.com

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  12. Hey!
    Did you ever read THE BONDWOMAN'S NARRATIVE? It came out in 2002 and was written by a woman named Hannah Crafts, a runaway slave. It's supposed to be the first novel ever discovered to have been written by a former slave and is a great example of Southern gothic.

    caroline starr AT yahoo

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  13. I love Gothic novels, dark = awesome! I am definitely excited to read Blood Magic & The Revenant!

    Tweeted it - http://twitter.com/#!/arick01/status/67621719157903361

    Thanks for the giveaway!
    danceislove27(at)gmail(dot)com

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  14. Thanks for this opportunity! Always looking for books to review on the blog. :)

    simplelittlebookworm(at)gmail(dot)com

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  15. Reposted the link on twitter, thanks for the awesome giveaway!

    I've come to be very fond of southern gothic over the past couple of years- the settings for Fallen and Hex Hall, steamy and sultry and full of secrets and hidden places, the south just comes alive as this menacing, secretive presence.
    ~Dot
    requiemofrain(at)hotmail(dot)com
    @dothutchison

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  16. I think one of my favorite things about Gothic novels, especially some of the classics, is the way that the characters are contrasted and connected to their surroundings. As well as the fact that nothing is ever what it seems to be in a Gothic novel.
    ~Margaret
    musingsofthegladelf(at)gmail(dot)com
    @TheGladElf

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  17. Love gothic stories and how eerie they can be! Thanks for the giveaway!

    Nicole
    settle.nicole(at)gmail(dot)com

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  18. I really enjoy Gothic novels. The feel of the 'world' be Gothic is so gratifying. So often, I feel too cheery and happy, and just want to go somewhere gloomy and haunted. We're running out of those places! I've been loving the Gothic feel that novels have been including. My only complaint is that I want more!! Don't just give me a taste, make me FEEL it. Completely surround us readers with everything Gothic :)

    Vivien
    deadtossedwaves at gmail dot com

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  19. Tweeted! I have a secret gothic side. LOVE re-reading Frankenstein and Dracula and the occasional Poe. Also Jane Eyre feels very gothic to me. LOVE IT! Happy 6 weeks!!
    ansha(at)anshakotyk(dot)com

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  20. Awesome give away! If this is open internationally I'd like to enter!

    mary-alice-cullen(at)web(dot)de

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  21. not sure if this is open to readers from the UK but anyway - tasnim-sheikh@hotmail.com

    or

    www.twitter.com/tasnim1991

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  22. I'd love to play please.

    lesly7ch(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  23. I feel there should be more Gothic literature available! I can't wait to read the new ones coming out!

    thegirlonfire27 at gmail dot com

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  24. Thanks for the giveaway! I can't wait to read either of these books!

    tweet: http://twitter.com/#!/Dani_Nguyen/status/67933881956970497

    daniellesaunders1984(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  25. Love this post and I'm a new follower! That photo screams gothic...I can definitely see where you drew inspiration from it and I can't wait to read more.

    Have just added The Revenant to my list on Goodreads as well.

    Thanks for the giveaway!
    wardkristi(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  26. Both of these books look absolutely amazing! Great giveaway :)

    Nicole

    nicoleloveskyle2@aim.com

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  27. I cant wait to read both of these books.:-) Really excited.

    Daisy
    starlitegaze11@aol.com

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  28. this looks really good. I haven't read many gothic books, but I've been wanting to read Fallen and I read this one book that I can't remember the title of, it was like green something-er-other. IDK it was about this girl who wakes up in a forest and something about ashes and she's alone. I read it like 4 years ago and it was in my elementary school's library, so its probably was published like 10 years ago haha. its really short only 99 pages and its... different. its mysterious and dark. it was really amazing. Wish I could remember the title :/

    Noelle Carey
    ur.bloody.valentine@hotmail.com
    I tweeted:
    http://twitter.com/#!/bookgiveaways_

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  29. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  30. I remembered the book was called Green Angel by Alice Hoffman.I searched what other books she wrote and she wrote Aquamarine(now a movie), Practical Magic(also made into a movie with Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman) and a book that I bought 2 years ago, Incantation, not even knowing it was the same person! haha what a coincidence! I also found out Green Angel has a sequel, Green Witch. I'm definitely going to read that! Thank you for getting me to think about gothic books I've read, otherwise I never would have realized these coincidences or found out about the sequel!

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  31. This just screams awesomeness!
    ~Jenny L. Reach me at jennylao8@hotmail.com

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  32. This book looks really amazing, I want to win it really bad at this point. I will be very excited if I were to find out that I win this book. :)

    ~Danielle Sell

    dsell15@yahoo.com

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  33. I can't wait to ready BOTH of these books, they look amazing. Beautiful covers and exciting synopsis's. Thank you for hosting the giveaway!

    samaramae.photographics@yahoo.com

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  34. sarah.langley8@gmail.com
    I tweeted: https://twitter.com/#!/SarahAnn_8/status/68078007964794880

    Thanks for the giveaway!

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  35. Shani
    greeneyed_banche@hotmail.com
    What I love most about Gothic literature are the dark and twisted hotties...the leading man is always tall, dark, brooding, and hiding something. The creepy forests, cold, dank schools, and fabulous heroines are also in the top 10 things I like in a Gothic story.

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  36. Kailey
    maroonwombat@gmail.com

    The only Gothic-styled book I've read is Beautiful Creatures. You're right; the setting itself did seem to be a character. The strange mysteries of the locations of a creepy town kept me hooked to the story!

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  37. Tayte
    thunter_5@yahoo.com

    Gothic books are one of the more interesting books out there, I say. They have that dark side to them, with a litte romance and action in there. For everyone, read Nevermore by Kelly Creagh. It's the perfect Gothic-styled book.
    Facebook link: http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=100001348268663
    Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/Tayte
    P.S. I didn't have enough room for all of the message on twitter.

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  38. I definitely gravitate toward the gothic in my own writing. I really relate to getting inspiration from old photographs. When I was in in school, I found this book of old photographs by Jacob Riis and I wrote a bunch of poems from them.

    Thanks so much for the giveaway!
    bookwormoakes AT yahoo DOT com

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  39. The exceptional literary style is what first caught my attention. I enjoy a book that doesn't lay it all out for you, so that you feel like a bystander. I like a book that requires the reader to enter the storyline, to imagine thoughts, feelings, and situations presented in the story. I feel more connected to a book that asks me to join in the plot, use my imagination to create a mental picture of the characters and their roles in the whole of the story. Thanks for a great read!!
    Allison White
    programs@bcplib.org

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  40. Thanks for the giveaway!!!
    ala_tineh(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  41. Can't wait for The Revenant to come out! I will be promoting it as the summer read to all of my English students.

    I like Gothic settings because they set the reader up for mystery or some sort of dark and twisted plot even before the story begins. I think Gothic cathedrals scream out, "Write a story about me!"

    (angelalwayz26@hotmail.com)

    Great giveaway idea:)

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  42. This book sounds amazing. I've always connected better with the gothic stories more then others. Most definitely looking forward to it.
    (vollyballgirl410@yahoo.com)

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  43. I have always loved books. Ask anyone I know they'll tell you. So... being able to win a book is one of the biggest concerns to me write now.

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  44. Yay!

    Amy Carter
    StarvnRtist@aol.com

    http://twitter.com/#!/memoryofagldfsh

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  45. Im super excited for both books they sound fantastic!
    I love gothic novels, the darker more eerie tones have just a taste of excitement that I cant get enough of. The character are usually so dark and beautiful with romance that is hauntingly interesting.
    Thanks!

    Tweeted: https://twitter.com/#!/SeeingNight/status/69035318048862210
    seeingnightreviews@gmail.com

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  46. Can't wait to read The Revenant--starting it tonight!!! I won an ARC at the Help Write Now auction. So excited!!! I'll also RT for some extra points.

    Jeanmarie Anaya

    Janaya75@hotmail.com

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  47. How exciting, Jeanmarie! I didn't realize it was on offer for that fabulous auction. Hope you enjoy!

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  48. One of my fairly current favorite gothic reads is The Ghosts of Kerfol by Deborah Noyes. It's based on Edith Wharton's story Kerfol and is a short story collection. Old favorite gothic novels are House of the seven gables by Nathanial Hawthorne and The turn of the Screw by Henry James.

    Mary Ellen - methom@earthlink.net
    Thank you for the chance to win!

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  49. Haven't read any YA gothic novels so I'm looking forward to diving into yours! The location itself is creepy and original.

    Doug - dougthewriter@gmail.com

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  50. Thanks for the giveaway!
    tweet: http://twitter.com/#!/Erinberry12/status/69158260015509504

    Erin L.
    erinberry12 at charter dot net

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  51. I can really see why the gothic idea would go with a ghost story. I have always liked the architecture and dress that goes with the gothic era.

    Thanks for the giveaway.

    valerie(at)stuckinbooks.com

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  52. I've always liked anything Gothic, much to my parents horror :-)
    My favourites include anything by Edgar Allen Poe, The legend of Sleepy Hollow and anything by Tim Burton (I know some of his stuff are more cheery, but it always has an edge to it).
    My favourite holiday is Halloween because it feels like such a haunting and magical day.

    http://twitter.com/#!/safaripoet/status/69191866670776321

    safaripoet@live.com

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  53. And I forgot to add Salem because of it's Witch-related history.

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  54. loving this contes and tweeted this already!

    my email is Kelly_martinez_77@hotmail.com

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  55. Gothic rules! My favorite would have to be Frankenstein!

    Roshinibd@gmail.com

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  56. I LOVE gothic <3<3<3
    Rebel angels series would have to be my favorate but also any historical fiction about the French Revolution or the Salem Witch trials as well!!
    princessmaddie@earthlink.net

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  57. Great, Great book. I've been disappointed with a lot of paranormal reads lately, and I was not disappointed with Blood Magic. It was a unique and refreshing take on the young adult paranormal genre. Just like the blurb says, it had all of the blood with none of the vampires. Really, really cool magic ideas and I applaud the author for doing something different. I know it didn't work for every reader, but it worked for me.

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