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See the trailer for Jason Mott's white-hot debut 'The Returned' -- EXCLUSIVE

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Poet Jason Mott’s upcoming novel The Returned has a good chance of being one of the breakout debuts of the year. In addition to garnering rave pre-publication reviews, it’s been adapted into a TV pilot starring Omar Epps, which has been picked up for series by ABC. The Returned is the story of what happens when people start returning to their loved ones from the beyond. When Harold and Lucille Hargrave’s son Jacob, who died on his eighth birthday in 1966, appears on their doorstep, they can’t agree on whether they boy is real or a wondrous imitation. As chaos erupts around the globe, the newly reunited Hargrave family finds itself at the center of a community on the brink of collapse.

Check out the trailer for The Returned below! READ FULL STORY

See the title and an excerpt from the sequel to 'Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children' -- EXCLUSIVE

In 2011, Ransom Riggs spun a chilling fantasy story from a collection of creepy vintage photographs. The follow-up to Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children — which EW can exclusively reveal will be titled Hollow City — begins in 1940, immediately after the first novel ended. Having escaped Miss Peregrine’s island by the skin of their teeth, Jacob and his new friends flee to London, the peculiar capital of the world, where more danger awaits them. Once again, Hollow City (out Jan. 14) will come complete with dozens of newly discovered (and thoroughly unsettling) vintage photographs. Are you ready to be haunted again? Check out the first excerpt below! READ FULL STORY

Hot Memorial Day reading: Christina Lauren talks 'Beautiful Bastard' follow-up, 'Beautiful Stranger' -- EXCLUSIVE

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The first holiday of summer is upon us and we’ve got just the steamy romance to spice up your Memorial Day weekend: Beautiful Stranger by Christina Lauren. The follow-up to the best-selling Beautiful Bastard is already available on Kindle, but hits shelves in paperback May 28. We took the time to speak to the two lovely ladies behind the popular erotica novels, Christina Hobbs and Lauren Billings (together, they make the pen name Christina Lauren), about their latest release, their thoughts on the fan fic phenom, and their foray into YA.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: You’re speaking to us from Paris while promoting Beautiful Bastard. What’s the reception been like over there?
CHRISTINA HOBBS: Well, it was really funny because both our husbands went sightseeing today while we were working and they went into this little random drugstore in Paris and saw fifty copies of Beautiful Bastard. It’s crazy! Even at home, every time I walk into a Target or something and see the book, it doesn’t feel real.

Beautiful Bastard originated as Twilight fan fiction much like Fifty Shades of Grey, but your new book Beautiful Stranger is 100% original. How did the experience differ from writing Bastard?
LAUREN BILLINGS: I think for Beautiful Bastard, we really liked the revision process. In fact for BB, that was all I had to really do. I came in, just for the editing part — tore it up, re-wrote the ending, that kind of thing. It was really different because it was just revisions. We didn’t really have expectations for what was going to happen with it. With Stranger, the pressure was on because we sold it in this deal to Gallery Books and we wanted to really deliver and make sure it was something that would show that we had grown as writers. So, while the drafting and revision stage were both a little more stressful, it was also more fun. We felt from the beginning this might actually be a good follow-up.

What’s the idea behind Beautiful Stranger? It’s not a direct sequel to Bastard.
BILLINGS: We had a few different ideas that had been bouncing around, and when we got the deal with Gallery, we weren’t really sure which to go with. So we proposed a few and the one that ended up being Stranger was one that Christina had come up with, which was based off the idea of, what happens if you meet someone at a bar? At first, I was like, where are we going to take that? We started talking about it and it just grew from there. Interestingly, the other one that we had loved the most became Beautiful Player, the third book in the series.

So tell me, have you ever had a kinky dalliance with your boss? Or taken home a tall, handsome stranger from a bar?
BILLINGS: [Laughs] I have. In grad school. [[Pauses] Before I met my husband, I definitely had some flirty hook-up nights. But nothing quite like that.
HOBBS: I haven’t because I am married to my high school sweetheart.

How does Max, the protagonist of Beautiful Stranger, compare to Bastard‘s Bennett?
BILLINGS: We say Max is the sugar. Max is just this big, charming sugar. He doesn’t have any pretenses; he doesn’t need to be defensive about his feelings. In that sense he’s very different from Bennett, who is caught off guard by how he feels for Chloe, so it comes out in defensiveness and anger, that sort of heat that a lot of people really love. Max is the opposite of that — he feels what he feels. He doesn’t have the need to explain it away.

What I love about this series is that it’s not really serious. Despite the comparisons, it’s really nothing like Fifty Shades.
BILLINGS: I’m so glad you say that. We don’t take ourselves too seriously. We write these books quickly and we have a really good time. We just sort of let them come, ha ha. Pun intended.
HOBBS: We just really want readers to laugh and blush and swoon. If it gives them a few hours of escape, then we feel like we’ve done exactly what we’ve wanted.

Since Bastard started as fan fic, it’s obviously somewhat polarizing. Can you talk about the reaction you’ve gotten from readers?
BILLINGS: I think it’s a sticky issue. A lot of fan fiction out there, it either has a root in the sort of vampire world of Twilight or it has the same emotional beat as Twilight: the stalker-y male, the demure, shy female. And I think that is sort of where it gets a little sticky. The thing about fic is that there’s a whole world of fic out there that has writers that explored their own ability to write things, but it really had no root in the Twilight world. Those are the ones that are in more of a gray area. It didn’t have that much of a connection to the original work. What happened was when Fifty Shades of Grey published, there was a lot of backlash because that was the first really big one. It wasn’t the first one to publish, but it was the first really big one. And it was the first one to hit it huge, obviously. So people had a lot of feelings about that. With our deal, we had some of that same reaction because people felt that we were exploiting them in some sense. The point is that people who really don’t like the book tend to be the ones that also have strong feelings about the origin and don’t really see it for being separate from the original. People who come into it not really knowing the background, I think they think it’s fun. With Stranger, which is completely original, I think most people, at least as far as I can see, just really love it. It’s a fun, swoon story and they’re having a good time reading it.

Finally, talk to me about your upcoming YA novel.
HOBBS: For both of us, the thing that we love so much about YA is that it’s such a time of self-discovery, when you’re learning who you’re going to be. You have all these amazing things, like first kisses and first loves and first heartbreaks. At our heart, we’re romance writers, so our YA is always going to reflect that. This one, though it’s pretty steamy for YA [laughs.]

The paperback edition of Beautiful Stranger hits shelves May 28. The Kindle edition is currently available.

Read more:
Read an exclusive excerpt from ‘Beautiful Stranger,’ the follow-up to the steamy ‘Twilight’ fanfic ‘Beautiful Bastard’
Check out the cover for the ‘Twilight’ fanfic turned novel ‘Beautiful Bastard’ — EXCLUSIVE
The ‘Fifty Shades’ bump: More ‘Twilight’ fanfiction is being turned into novels

'The Dream Thieves': Read an excerpt from Maggie Stiefvater's sequel to 'The Raven Boys' -- EXCLUSIVE

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Maggie Stiefvater shattered no small amount of dreams when she ended The Raven Boys on a somewhat torturous cliffhanger (don’t worry, no spoilers here). Book 2 in the Raven Cycle is still a very long summer away, but today we can offer you the first look at The Dream Thieves, as well as an interview with Stiefvater herself.

The ley lines around Cabeswater have been woken and nothing will ever be the same for Blue, Gansey, Ronan, and Adam. Ronan’s dreams are intensifying, and some shady figures have come to town seeking to solve the same puzzle that Gansey is obsessed with. Check out an exclusive excerpt from the Dream Thieves prologue below, then read on to find out more about Book 2 and why Stiefvater’s got a grudge against Beyoncé.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: It’s been almost a year since The Raven Boys hit shelves. What’s the reaction been like?
MAGGIE STIEFVATER: It’s actually really fascinating. Because I thought I had a really solid fan base with the Shiver trilogy — and I do, I love my Shiver readers — but the readers for Raven Boys have responded in a very different way in that there’s a lot of fan fiction and fan art. They really get this idea of them as this gang that has adventures. It’s really cool to see them take ownership of the characters.

The Raven Boys ended in quite the cliffhanger. I’ve seen many angry gifs on Goodreads. Have you gotten lots of angry fan email?
I haven’t gotten much of a backlash because it was so clearly pitched as a series. The only ones I can think of are the ones that said, “I cannot believe you ended it this way, please write another one.” I’m like, “Good news for you.” [Laughs] Most of the people come in knowing that it’ll be a series and they were totally fine with the ending. It’s funny because I didn’t really think of it as a cliffhanger, I just cackled at that line. I have to warn you, that might happen again. It might possibly be worse [laughs]. I’m actually very neurotic about this book coming out.

How so?
It is my favorite of all of the books that I’ve written. It’s a Maggie sort of book. I started writing this book way back when I was 19. So, it has very, very old roots.

What can you tell us about The Dream Thieves? The synopsis is disturbingly short…
It is very, very evil for a synopsis [laughs]. I don’t even think it’s because the copy writers are trying to be coy. It’s just because, like The Raven Boys, each of my books gets more and more difficult to describe. I will say that as much as there are boys behaving badly in Book 1, they behave much worse in Book 2. There is 100% more kissing in Book 2 [laughs] and it all revolves around that last line in Raven Boys.

Speaking of boys behaving badly, I remember reading a blog post from you a while back where you spoke about a “black-hearted” character. Can you tell us a little about that? It must be tricky to write a character with no redeeming qualities whatsoever.
It is interesting because this book took me longer to write than any of my others. And that’s not even counting going back to when I was 19. It took me 14 months to actually draft this because I was very painstaking. I had a very clear idea in my head of what I wanted it to be. So I lived with this black-hearted character for 14 months. I had such a blast writing him, but it was a really different experience than any other character I’ve ever done. I do so enjoy writing the bad boy with the heart of gold or the angry girl with the heart of gold. However, I do still think there are certain redeeming qualities… That’s all I’ll say.

Your characters have some of the strangest names I’ve ever heard. Where do you get them?
First of all, I have to tell you I’m very angry with Beyoncé because she named her baby Blue. And Blue [Sargent] has been named Blue ever since that first draft all that time ago. I was very pleased with that name — it came from a plot line that was lost, but basically Blue’s mother originally said that Blue’s aura was blue and that was how she got the name. So I persisted with this name and I thought it was so quirky and then Beyoncé named her child Blue [laughs]. Gansey was because when I was growing up I was a competition bagpiper and the boys never referred to each other by first name, ever. They always had some reason why they would refer to themselves by their last names, so I knew that had to go in there. Barrington Whelk… I feel very badly about naming my villain Barrington Whelk. He is named after a realtor who showed us a nice house during our house hunt and I just thought, Barrington, that sounds like an evil name. So I apologize to the real Barrington out there.

Read more:
12 New YA Novels: We Grade ‘em
Read the first two chapters of Maggie Stiefvater’s novel ‘The Raven Boys’ — EXCLUSIVE
Find Me a ‘Twilight!’

Read the first 8 chapters of DJ MacHale's 'SYLO' — EXCLUSIVE

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If you’re a fan of The Maze Runner and Alex Rider, you might want to pick up SYLO by best-selling author DJ MacHale. The new young-adult series-starter from the author of the Pendragon books follows 14-year-old Tucker Pierce, whose small town is invaded by a secret branch of the U.S. military called SYLO. The book promises a fast-paced read and a huge cliff-hanger. We have to wait until July 2 for all those big twists, but luckily, we have an exclusive first look inside the novel — and it’s a big chunk! Get cozy this long weekend with the first eight chapters of SYLO. READ FULL STORY

Here's the title of Laini Taylor's third 'Daughter of Smoke & Bone' novel. Plus, a special trailer! -- EXCLUSIVE

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Daughter of Smoke & Bone blew us away; Days of Blood & Starlight didn’t disappoint; and now we’re anxiously awaiting Laini Taylor’s third and final installment of her celestial epic, which we’ve learned is called Dreams of Gods & Monsters (out Spring 2014).

Dreams starts where Days left off, with Karou and Akiva discovering each other alive — although Karou is still not ready to forgive Akiva for killing the only family she’s ever known. And now, through an act of staggering deception, Karou has taken control of the chimaera rebellion and is intent on steering its course away from dead-end vengeance. When Jael’s brutal angel army trespasses into the human world, Karou and Akiva must ally their enemy armies against the threat. It is a twisted version of their long-ago dream, and they begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people. And, perhaps, for themselves – maybe even toward love. But there are bigger threats than Jael in the offing. From the streets of Rome to the caves of the Kirin and beyond, humans, chimaera, and seraphim will fight, strive, love, and die in an epic theater that transcends good and evil, right and wrong, friend and enemy.

If you can’t wait for the conclusion, you’re absolutely not alone! Taylor’s fans are particularly vocal and involved, and to celebrate that enthusiasm, Taylor has hosted a contest for a fan-made trailer for Days of Blood & Starlight. See the winning video by Christine Tyler below, plus a few words from Taylor herself! READ FULL STORY

The final Gallagher Girls book: Ally Carter shares the title and the cover! -- EXCLUSIVE

It will be a bittersweet day when the last installment in Ally Carter’s Gallagher Girls series hits shelves: On one hand, we can’t wait to see what happens next. But on the other… It’s the end! [Cue torturous sobs] That day is still a ways away, but today we can exclusively reveal the title and cover of the final book. Readers, it will be called… United We Spy!

Writing the conclusion to a series is always an emotional undertaking for an author, and Carter was no exception. We reached out to the writer via email to ask about her thoughts on putting the series to rest. “I can’t believe the sixth — and final — Gallagher Girls book is here,” she wrote. “I’ve been working on this series and living with these characters since 2005. Saying goodbye to them has been bittersweet, but I’m so grateful to be able to give the series a proper send-off. So few authors have that luxury. Will the ending make readers cry? I don’t know. All I can say is that this author cried buckets.”

Read the official description, then check out the cover below: “Cammie Morgan has lost her father and her memory, but in the heart-pounding conclusion to the best-selling Gallagher Girls series, she finds her greatest mission yet. Cammie and her friends finally know why the terrorist organization called the Circle of Cavan has been hunting her. Now the spy girls and Zach must track down the Circle’s elite members to stop them before they implement a master plan that will change Cammie—and her country—forever.” READ FULL STORY

Is this the literary novel of the summer? See the star-studded trailer for 'And Sons' by David Gilbert -- EXCLUSIVE

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Summer might traditionally be the time for skimpy clothes and skimpy reading, but if your brain is feeling flabby after beach reads with titles like Big Girl Panties — not that there’s anything wrong with those — give & Sons by David Gilbert (out July 23) a try.

Drawing comparisons to The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach and The Emperor’s Children by Claire Messud, & Sons follows the life of A.N. Dyer, a reclusive J.D. Salinger-like figure whose novel Ampersand stands a classic of American teenage angst. As Andrew Newbold Dyer delivers the eulogy at his oldest friend Charles Henry Topping’s Upper East Side funeral, he suffers a breakdown over the life he’s led and the people he’s hurt and the novel that will forever endure as his legacy. He must gather his three sons for the first time in many years — before it’s too late.

So begins a wild, transformative week, as witnessed by Philip Topping, who, like his late father, finds himself caught up in the swirl of the Dyer family. First there’s son Richard, a struggling screenwriter and father, returning from self-imposed exile in California. In the middle lingers Jamie, settled in Brooklyn after his 20-year mission of making documentaries about human suffering. And last is Andy, the half brother whose mysterious birth tore the Dyers apart 17 years ago, now in New York on spring break, determined to lose his virginity before returning to the prestigious New England boarding school that inspired Ampersand. But only when the real purpose of this reunion comes to light do these sons realize just how much is at stake, not only for their father but for themselves and three generations of their family.

Intrigued? Check out this exclusive trailer for & Sons, which features friends, admirers, publishing pros, and celebrities — including Brooke Shields — talking about their favorite A.N. Dyer novel. READ FULL STORY

See the trailer for 'The Shining Girls' by Lauren Beukes -- EXCLUSIVE

A grisly crime thriller meets sci-fi action meets historical fiction in a wildly inventive summer page-turner. The Shining Girls by Lauren Beukes (out June 4) features a time-traveling serial killer — yep, you read that right — named Harper Curtis who targets shining girls, bright young women who possess some unnameable quality that makes them burn with potential. Kirby Mazrachi is the only shining girl who managed to escape Harper once he set his sights on her. To bring her almost-killer to justice, she joins the Chicago Sun-Times to work with the reporter who covered her case. You’ll have to wait a few more weeks to discover what she finds, but here’s the exclusive trailer for Shining Girls below: READ FULL STORY

Marie Lu answers burning questions about the final Legend novel 'Champion'. Plus, the cover! -- EXCLUSIVE

Marie Lu’s epic dystopian series, which began with Legend and continued with Prodigy, comes to an end with the third installment Champion (Nov. 5). By the beginning of Champion, June and Day have sacrificed so much for the people of the Republic, and now they’re on the brink of a new existence — a country at peace, with hope of reunification with the Colonies. Both are back in the good graces of the Republic: June is working within the government’s highest circles as Princeps Elect while Day has been assigned a high-level military position. But just when a peace treaty is imminent, a plague outbreak causes panic in the Colonies. War threatens the Republic’s border cities once again. This new strain of plague is deadlier than ever and, as June soon discovers, the Republic’s only means of defense could cost Day everything he has.

For fans who are itching for more of June and Day’s saga, we have two treats: the first look at the cover of Champion, and a teaser interview with Lu. Check them both out below! READ FULL STORY

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