Young Adult Scavenger Hunt — Fall 2018

I’m Jessica, your hostess for this part of the hunt, and I’m super glad you’re here. I hope you’ll take a moment to look around.

And I’m especially thrilled to be part of TEAM PURPLE, because if you haven’t noticed, I kind of have a thing for purple.


Directions: Below, you’ll notice that I’ve hidden my favorite number. Collect the favorite numbers of all the authors on TEAM PURPLE, and then add them up (don’t worry, you can use a calculator!).

Entry Form: Once you’ve added up all the numbers, make sure you fill out the form here to officially qualify for the grand prize. Only entries that have the correct number will qualify.

Rules: Open internationally, anyone below the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian’s permission to enter. To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit the completed entry form by Sunday, October 7th at noon Pacific time. Entries sent without the correct number or without contact information will not be considered.

Go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page to find out all about the hunt. There are seven contests going on simultaneously, and you can enter one or all! I am a part of the PURPLE TEAM–but there is also a red team, a gold team, a blue team, a green team, a pink team, and an orange team for a chance to win a whole different set of books!

If you’d like to find out more about the hunt, see links to all the authors participating, and see the full list of prizes up for grabs, go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page.


Today, I am hosting Chanda Stafford for the YA Scavenger Hunt!

Chanda Stafford lives in the middle of nowhere, Michigan. Aside from writing mysterious and emotionally-charged young adult books, she teaches, rescues birds, and loves researching the paranormal.

Find out more information by checking out the author’s website or find more about the author’s book here!

When Darkness Falls (Kindle Scout Award-winning Novel)

Lose yourself in a small town paranormal mystery full of murder, monsters, and romance.

On her way home from work, seventeen-year-old Austen Gillet finds her dad’s car on the side of the road, empty except for a dead woman inside. While searching for her dad, Austen joins forces with Ezra, a handsome newcomer with a hidden agenda, and Ian, a secretive lighthouse keeper protecting a mysterious cave.

After stumbling through a portal into the distant past and barely escaping with her life, Austen has to figure out who she can trust and who she can’t before she “disappears,” too. Permanently.


This deleted scene from When Darkness Falls shows an alternate opening to the novel, before the mysteries in Austen’s town become too big for her to ignore.

The dark shape darts in front of my mom’s car. About the size of a dog, all I see are long black legs, a poufy black tail, and huge triangular ears before my instincts take over and I swerve, the tires shrieking as I slam on the brakes. Holding my breath, I wait for the thump that would tell me I’ve hit it, but there’s nothing. It disappears into the brush on the other side of the highway, its tail vanishing into the dense green foliage.

Still jamming my foot on the brakes, the car skids sideways and stops in the middle of the road. Heart pounding, I clench the steering wheel and take one deep breath after another until it doesn’t feel like I’ve just run a marathon. What was that thing?

A horn blares behind me. Someone in a huge white truck waves angrily with one finger and I pull off the side of the road until my panic fades away. The truck passes, and then I’m alone on the highway again. My skin tingles, and the hairs on the back of my neck stand up. Through the ferns and pines and oaks trees, I swear I can see yellow eyes staring at me, watching me, waiting. For what?  I fumble for the lock on the door and click it. The dull thunk makes me feel safe.

A few seconds later, a black canine head pokes out of the brush. It sniffs the air, swiveling from side to side, until it pauses on me. Our eyes meet: mine green to its impossibly glowing yellow. Drawing me in, as if I can feel it reading my mind. I shiver. It blinks, and then it disappears as another car flies past.

Unable to move, I wait on the side of the road until it’s clear again, knowing somehow that the creature will return. Seconds later, it does, and its whole body emerges. Bigger than a German Shepherd, it’s mottled black and brown coat hangs in clumps off of its body, as if it’s shedding. It watches me for what feels like forever, before turning its head back to the brush and yipping once, twice, and then a third time.

Suddenly more of these creatures stream out of the forest. Big ones, little ones, and even two puppies trot and tumble across the road, following the one I almost hit. Eleven in total. All black. All strangely wolf-like, but not.

Shaking myself out of my stupor, I pull out my phone and fumble with the camera button, clicking it several times in an attempt to get a good picture. No one’s going to believe me. Not without proof.

After the last creature disappears, one of the big ones sticks its head out a final time and regards me solemnly. Once again, I’m frozen by the intense yellow of its eyes and the intelligence in its gaze. Then it’s gone.

I lean back against the seat, mind whirling. What in the hell just happened? The phone in my hand rings and I stare at the screen blankly for a few seconds before Dad’s name registers in my befuddled mind.


“Where are you?” His voice is short, irritated. “You said you were coming right home from school. I have to get some paperwork done, and you promised you’d help with your brother and sister.”

I shrug, my gaze searching the forest around me. “I almost hit something, sorry. It took me a minute to get my bearings.”

“Are you okay? I’m sorry, honey.” Suddenly, he’s contrite, worried. I would be too, if he saw what I’d seen. I’ve lived in Michigan all of my life, and whatever it was that I just saw, it’s definitely not native. Not by a long shot.

“I’m fine.” I flex my fingers on the steering wheel. “It was just… it was wild. You should have seen them, Dad. They were like wolves, only bigger, and well, not wolves.” I scroll through the pictures, but most of them are blurry. A tail here, a fuzzy black shape there. Nothing concrete, until I get to the end. In the last picture, the lone wolf/not-wolf stares at me with its too bright, yellow eyes.

“What are you talking about?” he asks.

I quickly relay the story, filling in every detail my scattered mind could remember. “I can’t wait to you show you the pictures, Dad. I mean, most are blurry, but there’s one really good one, and—”

“Stop,” he says, his voice short. “Delete them.”

“What?” I shake my head, unable to tear my gaze from that of the creature on my phone.

“You have to delete the pictures and not tell anyone what you saw.” The urgency in his voice scares me.


“Because,” he takes a breath so deep I can hear it over the phone. “Because there are things out there that you don’t understand. Things I can’t tell you. Listen to me. You have to delete those pictures right now and forget you ever saw them, okay? It was a dog you almost hit, all right? Just a dog.”

My finger hovers over the trash icon on my phone. I don’t know if I can. It wasn’t a dog, nor a coyote, nor a wolf. It was something else. Something more.

“Listen to me, Austen. You have to do this. I’m serious. Delete those pictures.”

Biting my lip, I push the button, and the image disappears. The air whooshes out of my lungs and I feel this inexplicable urge to cry.

“Now come home,” Dad says, his tone brooking no argument. “It’s not safe out there.”


Isn’t the cover of When Darkness Falls gorgeous? 🙂

Don’t forget to enter the contest for a chance to win a ton of books by me, Chandra Stafford, and more! To enter, you need to know that my favorite number is 24.

Add up all the favorite numbers of the authors on the purple team and you’ll have all the secret code to enter for the grand prize!


To keep going on your quest for the hunt, you need to check out the next author! So head on over and visit Debbie Manber Kupfer!

But first, check out the first book in The Legacy Series, which is currently FREE on all retailers!






WAIT…there’s more! Enter below for your chance to win an ARC (Advanced Review Copy) of Undefined, which releases October 22. (US winner will have choice of paperback or ebook. International winner will receive an ebook.)

By entering this giveaway, you agree to be added to my newsletter list.

[giveaway id=2026]

2 Comments on “Young Adult Scavenger Hunt — Fall 2018

October 2, 2018 at 8:37 pm

NUUUUUUUUU!!!!!! I don’t remember how I saw it, but I saw and clicked Letting Go for more info and I DONT WANT TO WIN PURPLE TEAM OR UNDEFINED. I WANT TO WIN LETTING GO D: D: D: D: I WANT TO READ LETTING GOOOOOO T.T T.T T.T IT SOUNDS SO GOOOOOOOOD and I don’t normally like sad stories!!! (case in point, I loved Once And For All by Sarah Dessen but I actually only read about half a book because I couldn’t stand to read the parts with the guy who died. So I treated the half I read as if it were the whole book and I loved it. So I cant stand sad things, but I wanna read Letting Go!!! D: is willing to rip out my heart and give it to you in exchange for Letting Go

October 2, 2018 at 9:23 pm

Haha…thanks for your enthusiasm! If you win, I’ll be happy to gift you an ebook of Letting Go. 🙂


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