Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Optimism on Sale - Selling Hope out today!

Selling HopeToday marks the release of Selling Hope (Feiwel & Friends), the new book by Kristin O'Donnell Tubb.

I had the privilege of meeting Kristin at September's SCBWI Mid-south regional conference. Ten seconds of chatting with Kristin is enough to make you want to read whatever she writes--she is vivacious and clever, with a winning smile and creative spirit.

Yep, all of that in ten seconds.

Now just imagine what kind of ingenuity lurks inside her new book. Or, you know, just read the synopsis:

It’s May 1910, and Halley’s Comet is due to pass thru the Earth’s atmosphere. And thirteen-year-old Hope McDaniels and her father are due to pass through their hometown of Chicago with their ragtag vaudeville troupe.  Hope wants out of vaudeville, and longs for a “normal” life—or as normal as life can be without her mother, who died five years before. Hope sees an opportunity: She invents “anti-comet” pills to sell to the working-class customers desperate for protection. Soon, she’s joined by a fellow troupe member, young Buster Keaton, and the two of them start to make good money. And just when Hope thinks she has all the answers, she has to decide: What is family? Where is home?

If you've read any of my previous blog posts, you can probably see why this type of story would appeal to me. It's also got Winkin excited, too! Granted, I'm not a huge fan or reader of YA books, but the artful blend of historical realities with imaginative fiction is irresistible.

Time For More Free Stuff!

So with that said, let's have a give-away! Selling Hope is set during the Vaudeville era, a time when American show business was hitting its stride. Many beloved entertainers became famous during this period, whereas others merely used vaudeville as a platform to launch careers in other venues.

Post in the Comments below and tell me who your favorite vaudevillian performer was, and why. You don't have to go into great detail, as it won't help your chances of winning, but this is a contest so we're trying to have fun -- be original!

On Tuesday, November 16th, I'll pick one comment at random. That participant will win a FREE copy of Selling Hope by Kristin O'Donnell Tubb.

And who knows? There might be an extra surprise in there for you, too!

(Please be sure to include an email address in your comment so I can notify the winner.)


  1. W. C. Fields who started in Vauderville as a juggler but later went on to star in movies. I loved Man on the Flying Trapeze when I was a kid. No I didn't see it in a movie theater I wasn't born until 1951 and Fields died in the mid forties. email is dawgprint1@comcast.net

  2. My favorite vaudevillian is Buster Keaton, followed closely by Milton Berle. But you don't have to enter me in the contest. ;-)

    Thanks for spreading the Selling Hope cheer, Martin!

  3. @StableGranny - Agreed! W.C. Fields and I share a number of similarities. Although I grew out of my misanthropic phase, I still juggle. :-) Jack Benny would be a close second--he being a fellow Pole and all.

    @Kristin - Thanks for stopping by, and you're absolutely welcome! My family will be there Saturday for the Barnes & Noble event!

  4. I wanted to look and sound like Judy Garland when I was a little girl!

  5. Donald O'Connor counts, yes? I used to have "Make 'em Laugh" memorized in its entirity and occasionally did that spinning on the floor bit.

    Didn't have the guts for the backflips off the wall though...

  6. Congratulations to Beth Dotson Brown on winning the contest! Beth, please check your email for details on claiming your prize!