We certainly don't become writers for money.  Nor do we necessarily seek publication in order to rack up accolades.  But part of me wished, this past week, that I could go back and show all this to Aspiring Writer Me (the same aspiring writer that spent seven and a half years chasing her first book deal): the super-cool blurb from fellow YA author Jody Casella ("In the town of Peculiar, the cats aren't the only ones keeping secrets...A dark and creepy psychological who-done-it that will keep you guessing until the very end."), AND the starred review that just came in from PUBLISHERS WEEKLY:

"Opening with back-to-back scenes of exquisitely imagined yet very real horror, Schindler’s third YA novel hearkens to the uncompromising demands of her debut, A Blue So Dark, with its gut-wrenching portrait of mental illness. This time, the focus is on women’s voices and the consequences they suffer for speaking. Claire Cain was an award-winning high school journalist in Chicago when she was beaten nearly to death for a story. Serena Sims lost her life while pursuing a lead in the more confined purview of Peculiar, Mo. Their stories intersect when Claire’s father’s sabbatical lands her in Peculiar just in time to discover Serena’s body, surrounded by the eerie feral cats that infest the town. Schindler avoids cardboard character types—yes, there are jocks, princesses, and nerds, but the author reveals them as people squeezed into their labels, not defined by them. And while there are touches of romance, both good and bad, adolescent hormones don’t define the plot, either. This is a story about reclaiming and healing, a process that is scary, imperfect, and carries no guarantees. Ages 13–up. Agent: Deborah Warren, East West Literary Agency. (Aug.)"

To celebrate the starred review, a sneak peek.  Here, we find Serena's killer dragging her through the high school basement's window:

Click here to pre-order FERAL from your favorite outlet.


  1. That opening, Holly, could not be more creepy. And I love the video you paired it with. Yikes. I may never walk around in the woods again. (And I guess I should mention that you've forever changed my view of cats.)

    1. Thanks so much, Jody! I got COMPLETELY lost filming the video; I wound up inside a gated apartment complex, trying to convince a resident I was NOT up to anything wicked...

  2. Holly,
    this went on my wish list as soon as I read the description.

  3. Holy moley -- that video. *tingles*


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