Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Happy Birthday, TAKEN!

Today, a little novel I started drafting nearly three years ago is finally making its way into the world. TAKEN is a YA sci-fi/dystopia, about a boy living in a primitive and isolated town where all boys mysteriously vanish on their eighteenth birthday. Here's the official jacket copy:

There are no men in Claysoot. There are boys—but every one of them vanishes at midnight on his eighteenth birthday. The ground shakes, the wind howls, a blinding light descends…and he’s gone.
They call it the Heist.
Gray Weathersby’s eighteenth birthday is mere months away, and he’s prepared to meet his fate–until he finds a strange note from his mother and starts to question everything he’s been raised to accept: the Council leaders and their obvious secrets. The Heist itself. And what lies beyond the Wall that surrounds Claysoot–a structure that no one can cross and survive.
Climbing the Wall is suicide, but what comes after the Heist could be worse. Should he sit back and wait to be taken–or risk everything on the hope of the other side?

Putting a book into the world is team effort. While my name is on the cover, there are a lot of people that made this book possible: friends, family, my agent, my editor, all the hard-working folks at HarperTeen. Publishing a novel also takes a lot of time. The industry is slow, and I'm now busy with multiple manuscripts that are not TAKEN, and yet TAKEN is finally starting to find its first readers. 

(Confession: This is giving me a bit of whiplash. I'm so fearful I'm going to reveal spoilers of the sequel by mistake.)

A photo of me, #TakenWithTAKEN
Still, I couldn't be happier to know that this novel is no longer mine, but yours. It belongs to the readers now, and each reader will imagine the characters and world in their own unique way, no two renderings exactly alike.

I'm completely and totally biased, but I also happen to think readers are some the smartest, most interesting, best-looking people around. As such, I can't imagine a better home for TAKEN than in your hands. If you happen to pick up a copy sometime in April and aren't camera shy, share a photo of you and your copy to twitter, tumblr, or instagram with the hashtag #TakenWithTAKEN. (It could win you a huge stash of YA books. Details here.)

I'm going to go pinch myself now. This still doesn't quite seem real.


Erin Bowman is a YA writer, letterpress lover, and Harry Potter enthusiast living in New Hampshire. Her debut novel, TAKEN, is now available from HarperTeen. You can visit her blog (updated occasionally) or find her on twitter (updated obsessively).


  1. Congratulations, Erin!! Love the photo.

  2. Congratulations!! Sounds like a very interesting story.