Giveaways Inspirations and Influences YA Appreciation Month

Soul Screamers Special: Rachel Vincent on Inspiration and a giveaway

Rachel Vincent is a popular UF novelist, author of the Shifter series. Her first book in her new Young Adult Soul Screamer series has just hit the shelves and Ana reviewed it here. We invited the author to be part of our YA Appreciation Month by writing a piece on her Inspiration to write the series.

Please say hello to Rachel Vincent:


Hey Book Smugglers! Thanks for having me!

You want to know what inspired my YA debut, My Soul to Take? That’s easy enough. The main character, Kaylee Cavanaugh. Who Kaylee is and what she can do—those are the things that inspired and shaped her story. So what was my inspiration for creating Kaylee herself? That one’s not such a simple answer.

Kaylee was inspired by the girl I was in high school, and by the girl I could never have been, even if I’d had her abilities.

Kaylee is a bit of a dichotomy. On one hand, she’s a normal high school junior. She’s neither beautiful nor ugly. She isn’t popular, but she neither is she a pariah. She’s bright, but not at the top of her class. In short, she doesn’t stand out in the crowd, and that’s fine with her because Kaylee has a very serious problem. She gets panic attacks that make her scream at the top of her lungs, filled with the grim certainty that someone near her is going to die. Very soon. And if she had to choose between standing out as a total freak or blending in with the background, Kaylee would gladly fade into the wallpaper anytime.

But in spite of her perceived normalness, though she doesn’t know it yet at the beginning of the book, Kaylee is a bean sidhe (the proper spelling for banshee). Her panic attacks are really premonitions of death. And that’s only half the story.

What does this mean for Kaylee? That she doesn’t fit in anywhere. She’s more human (thus more defenseless) than most of the other non-human species she’s about to discover, but not quite human enough to truly fit in at school. Especially once classmates start dropping dead and Kaylee is compelled to wail for them.
Obviously, the human half of Kaylee is the bit that was inspired in part by my own experiences blending into the walls of my high school. But the part of herself Kaylee discovers in this first book—aside from the whole being-a-bean-sidhe-thing—that’s the girl I never could have been. Kaylee is determined and compassionate, even on behalf of classmates she truly doesn’t like. She is courageous in the face of true danger. She faces down death repeatedly—and literally. She has guts, and brains, and a mind of her own.

And with any luck, that and a few good friends will be enough to get her through those last two years of high school, no matter what this brave new Netherworld throws at her.


Rachel Vincent is the author of the Shifters series, about a werecat named Faythe Sanders, who is learning to define her own role in her family and fighting to claim a place in her Pride.

Rachel’s young adult debut, My Soul to Take, will hit the shelves on August 1, 2009. My Soul to Take is the first in the Soul Screamers series, about a teenage bean sidhe (banshee) trying to balance a normal high school experience with the terrifying, hidden world she’s just discovered.

A recent transplant into the deep south, Rachel Vincent has a BA in English and an overactive imagination, and consistently finds the latter to be more practical. She shares her workspace with two black cats (Kaci and Nyx) and her # 1 fan. Rachel is older than she looks-seriously-and younger than she feels, but remains convinced that for every day she spends writing, one more day will be added to her lifespan.

Thanks to Rachel for her post and now, for the giveaway! We are giving away ONE copy of My Soul to Take to a lucky reader!

The contest is open to EVERYONE, and will run until Saturday August 15th at 11:59 PM. We’ll announce the winner on Sunday during our weekly stash. In order to enter, simply leave a comment here.

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  • Bonnie Ferguson
    August 13, 2009 at 12:15 pm

    My Soul To Take sounds awesome! 😀

  • katiebabs
    August 13, 2009 at 12:18 pm

    Will the Banshee series be exclusively from Kaylee’s POV?

  • Angela T.
    August 13, 2009 at 12:34 pm

    I can’t wait to read this one! Looks like a good book.

  • Aymless
    August 13, 2009 at 12:41 pm

    Woohoo! Count me in.

  • Ms Marjie
    August 13, 2009 at 12:52 pm

    Hard enough getting through high school without being associated with premonitions of death. Eep. Sounds interesting.

  • Sara M
    August 13, 2009 at 12:56 pm

    Count me in!

  • Memory
    August 13, 2009 at 12:57 pm

    I’ve heard good things about this book and would love to add my name to the hat.

  • Erin
    August 13, 2009 at 12:59 pm

    I have My Soul to Lose on my kindle, but I haven’t read it yet. After reading Ana’s review this morning, and now Rachel’s take I’m really excited to read it. Count me in!

  • Nicole
    August 13, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    I love her books and would be delighted to read “My Soul to Catch”. Do count me in 🙂

  • Jessica
    August 13, 2009 at 1:13 pm

    I can’t wait to read this book, and it would be great to win my own copy. Thanks for the contest!

  • MaryK
    August 13, 2009 at 1:14 pm

    Enter me please. Ana’s review convinced me to try the book. Even if it does take place in a highschool! 😆 Nick sounds interesting. I’m finding I like the idea of hero as caretaker.

  • danielle
    August 13, 2009 at 1:19 pm

    Enter me!

  • emmad
    August 13, 2009 at 1:37 pm

    Ohh I would love this. Big fan of Rachel Vincent and this isn’t available in New Zealand yet.

  • Rachel Bateman
    August 13, 2009 at 1:43 pm

    I am *super* intrigued by this book and can’t wait to read it. I may have to move it closer to the top of my to-be-read list.

    Consider me entered.

  • Jamie
    August 13, 2009 at 1:55 pm

    I read My Soul to Lose today during my lunch break. I’m hooked! Can’t wait to read My Soul to Take. Thanks! :mrgreen:

  • Christine
    August 13, 2009 at 2:13 pm

    What great insight into Kaylee. I empathized with and admired her in the prequel and am looking forward to more of her story. Thanks for the opportunity to win a copy of My Soul To Take.

  • veedee
    August 13, 2009 at 2:17 pm

    I would like to be entered!

  • Jennifer K
    August 13, 2009 at 2:19 pm

    I loved My Soul to Lose, and I can’t wait to read My Soul to Take!

  • Tiah
    August 13, 2009 at 2:20 pm

    This books sounds amazing and the cover is beautiful!

  • Delitealex
    August 13, 2009 at 2:29 pm

    I can’t wait to read My soul to take. It sounds like a good read.

  • Erica
    August 13, 2009 at 3:01 pm

    Please count me in! 🙂 MSTT Sounds amazing!

  • Biki
    August 13, 2009 at 3:30 pm

    This sounds really interesting, please count me in!

  • Wanda
    August 13, 2009 at 3:31 pm

    I would love to be entered in your draw. Thanks.
    wandanamgreb (at) gmail (dot) com

  • Tynga
    August 13, 2009 at 3:40 pm

    Please count me in! I really wanna read that book, i’m a big fan of her Shifters series!
    Thank you =)

  • Crystal W.
    August 13, 2009 at 4:16 pm

    I love these books!! :mrgreen:

  • sherry nickerson
    August 13, 2009 at 4:21 pm

    thanks sounds great

    wadesherry@hotmail dot com

  • Mara
    August 13, 2009 at 4:25 pm

    Sounds really good.

  • Ashley
    August 13, 2009 at 4:29 pm

    This is an awesome series.

    Plus the premise is really awesome too, the heroine has pretty awesome powers but, they’re all severely limiting. 😀

  • Clara
    August 13, 2009 at 4:33 pm

    I just love Rachel Vincent books! And I really wanna read her YA novel!

  • I Heart Book Gossip
    August 13, 2009 at 4:56 pm


    Please Please count me in.

    cindyc725 at gmail dot com

  • Samantha
    August 13, 2009 at 5:07 pm

    Sounds good! I’ve already read some of her other series. I’m looking forward to this one, count me in! 😀

  • Beth
    August 13, 2009 at 5:16 pm

    This looks interesting! Please enter me!

  • Jane Halsall
    August 13, 2009 at 5:27 pm

    As a YA librarian, no one’s happier than I at having a new romance series for teens. I know a lot of teens get their romance books from the adult books which can be really problematic. Tell Harlequin to get the word out to the YA librarians.

  • Amber
    August 13, 2009 at 5:28 pm

    Sounds like a great read – would love to enter!

  • Sharon K
    August 13, 2009 at 5:34 pm

    The book sounds great, hope to win it!

  • Valerie N
    August 13, 2009 at 5:54 pm

    I always love hearing about an author’s inspiration. Thanks for sharing and I hope I win!

  • music_lover3
    August 13, 2009 at 7:13 pm

    Oooh, sounds like an interesting book. Count me in, please!

  • Shawna Lewis
    August 13, 2009 at 7:33 pm

    Shawna Lewis

    I love this cover to this book!! I just love that this a YA reads!!!!!!
    Count me in to the winning pile of numbers for the win :o)Have a wonderful weekend ;O) Winks & Smiles, Shawna

  • Rachel Vincent
    August 13, 2009 at 7:38 pm

    Thanks, guys!

    And Jane, what can I do to help get the word out to YA librarians?

  • Llehn
    August 13, 2009 at 10:40 pm

    I would love to play please! Thanks.

  • Jenny N
    August 13, 2009 at 10:47 pm

    I would love to win this book. Thanks for another great giveaway.

  • Michelle A.
    August 13, 2009 at 11:36 pm

    I’m very curious to read this, now 😀 Thanks for the preview!

  • Maija P.
    August 14, 2009 at 2:04 am

    I’d love to win it. I haven’t read YA books in a while…

  • Kimberly B.
    August 14, 2009 at 3:50 am

    This series sounds so terrific! I really like supernatural creatures who are NOT all powerful and have to keep their wits about them to survive.

  • Raelena
    August 14, 2009 at 4:59 am

    This book sounds great!
    throuthehaze at gmail dot com

  • Juliana Dias
    August 14, 2009 at 5:04 am

    Please count me in!
    This book sounds awesome, can’t wait to read it!
    juiceb0xx at hotmail dot com

  • Elie N
    August 14, 2009 at 5:41 am

    This one is on top of my wish list, it sounds scary, I really can’t wait to read it.

  • maered
    August 14, 2009 at 5:58 am

    Sounds awesome! Count me in!

  • Lori T
    August 14, 2009 at 6:05 am

    My Soul To Take sounds really great and I love Rachel Vincent.

    I hope that everyone has a great weekend.

  • Jen D.
    August 14, 2009 at 6:23 am

    Thanks for the giveaway! Count me in.


  • Anonymous
    August 14, 2009 at 6:29 am

    Looking forward to this book. Definitely don’t see too many banshee books out there. I’m also big fan of Rachel’s Shifters series.

  • JennyP
    August 14, 2009 at 6:31 am

    Looking forward to this book. Definitely don’t see too many banshee books out there. I’m also big fan of Rachel’s Shifters series.

    (sorry about the anon post – still half asleep. Delete if you like)

  • Janell
    August 14, 2009 at 6:40 am

    I’m very excited about this book. The novella prologue thing was a great beginning!

  • Caitlin
    August 14, 2009 at 7:22 am

    wow, sounds like a good read and something different in the paranormal books 😀 can’t wait to get a copy here in the uk

  • Teresa W.
    August 14, 2009 at 7:47 am

    I’ve been hearing alot about this one and can’t wait to read it!

  • Jamie
    August 14, 2009 at 8:05 am

    Count me in please!!

  • tina
    August 14, 2009 at 8:07 am

    I love Vincent’s writing! 😀

  • Wendy
    August 14, 2009 at 8:09 am

    I love the shifter series and am hoping the new YA series is just as good. I would love to win a copy!!

  • Vic
    August 14, 2009 at 8:57 am

    I can’t wait to get my hands on this book!

  • Linda
    August 14, 2009 at 10:55 am

    I can’t wait to read this!

  • Lee P.
    August 14, 2009 at 11:08 am

    I’ve heard so much about this book! Thanks for this giveaway and please count me in.

  • Terri W.
    August 14, 2009 at 11:09 am

    Please count me in the contest too, thanks!

    I would love to read this book!

  • flowerchild
    August 14, 2009 at 11:27 am

    this book sounds great please count me in


  • Ana R.
    August 14, 2009 at 12:51 pm

    Since it’s an international one, count me in! ^^
    I’m always up for a good YA read, and this one seems interesting *-*

  • Adrienne
    August 14, 2009 at 1:52 pm

    I love that Rachel picked such a unique mythology ^^ Count me in~

  • Kate A
    August 14, 2009 at 1:55 pm

    Please count me in! I loved My Soul to Lose and I can’t wait to read My Soul to Take!


  • Jo
    August 14, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    Oh I would so love to read this book! I am a HUGE Rachel Vincent fan! Count me in! 🙂

  • Christie Gunter
    August 14, 2009 at 3:42 pm

    I havent been able to find a copy of My Soul to Take anywhere in NSW Australia. I would love to win a copy as i love Rachels work:P .

  • michelle
    August 14, 2009 at 4:14 pm

    please count me in, i want to read this so much!

  • dancechica
    August 14, 2009 at 5:25 pm

    The premise is interesting. I would like to give this one a try.

  • Jacqueline L.
    August 14, 2009 at 6:42 pm

    This is SO on my TBR list. I’m currently reading Prey. 🙂 Count me in, please and thank you!

  • iokijo
    August 14, 2009 at 6:57 pm

    Congrats on the new release.
    Thank you for sharing w/ us, and offering the contest. Sounds like a great read. Would love to win it. Fingers crossed.
    Thanks too for the tidbit on the spelling of banshee..very cool.. I’d never heard that this was basically the phonetic spelling.

  • Donna S
    August 14, 2009 at 9:24 pm

    Congrats on the release. Cant wait to get the chance to read it.

  • Taylor B
    August 14, 2009 at 10:09 pm

    😀 I really can’t wait to read this book.

  • Jasmine H
    August 15, 2009 at 12:46 am

    :mrgreen: i love the shifters, i would love to win My Sould to Take.

  • Collette
    August 15, 2009 at 11:13 am

    I love Rachel’s Shifter series and I’m looking forward to reading this one.

  • Megan Hartman
    August 16, 2009 at 8:38 pm

    I’ve been trying SO hard to win this book. -crosses fingers- Hopefully this’ll be the lucky one!

  • Shishi
    August 17, 2009 at 1:46 am

    I so want in on this one! Thank you for hosting (and a wonderful blog too)!

  • Sarah
    August 17, 2009 at 10:55 am

    Ooh a WW giveaway – please add me x

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