I believe without a doubt that people who loved the first VA series will love Bloodlines. I've talked to a lot of readers, in person and online, and I'm continually floored by the passion and dedication you've shown for the books. That passion wasn't just for Rose alone--it was for all the things that make the VA world so awesome, like the romance, action, and humor. All those things are still in Bloodlines (even Rose is a bit), and I've already been amazed and humbled at all those fans who have told me from day one how excited they are to read Bloodlines and find out what happens in this next stage of the VA world. You guys rock.
Still, there are always nay-sayers out there who try to tell me VA readers aren't going to stick with me and read Bloodlines. I don't believe that at all. Like I said, I see the passion for the VA world every day. And after reading the excited reactions to Bloodlines' first chapter, I'm more confident than ever that you'll love Sydney's take on Moroi and Strigoi life. Nonetheless, some people have thrown a challenge down before me--a challenge I intend to accept.
The challenge: Can Bloodlines get 10,000 pre-orders in a week?
I say: yup.
Plenty of you have pre-ordered already, and from all the enthusiasm I've heard from readers, I know more are coming. I think this challenge is totally doable. To show my faith in this, I'm actually going to wager something that makes me nervous. People always ask me for cut scenes from past books, and I always decline. There's a part of me that thinks, "Well, if it's not in the book, maybe it's not meant to be seen." But if you guys can come through on this challenge, I'll deliver for you. If we get our 10,000 this week, I'll swallow my fear and release the original cut first chapter of Bloodlines--which is very, very different from what you saw in the official chapter last week. Originally, Bloodlines was going to be written in third POV, from every main character's perspective. And who was originally going to kick the book off? Adrian, of course. Now, there's a lot of Adrian wit and wisdom in Bloodlines as it is, but this "lost" first chapter was in his point of view, putting us right inside his thoughts (scary...but kind of enticing too, huh?). This chapter also covers things that were cut from Bloodlines, so it really is new material--not just a rehashing of what Sydney's told us. It bridges the gap between the two series.
So those are the stakes! If 10,000 people pre-order Bloodlines this week, we'll get to see the world through Adrian Ivashkov's eyes. When does the challenge kick off? Well...today! It'll run one week. If we can make our numbers, Adrian's lost chapter will be posted online the first week of August--before the "real" Bloodlines release.
If you've already pre-ordered Bloodlines, then I am super grateful and happy that you're ready for the next ride. Thank you so much for your support! If you've been thinking about pre-ordering but just haven't gotten around to it (I'm a procrastination queen, so I totally understand this), then this is the week to do it! Pre-ordering from any store counts, as do Kindle, Nook, etc. Here are some links to help:
Penguin's Official Bloodlines Page - Click on "Book Info" to be a shown a list of major retailers, indies, and e-book sellers with direct links to ordering Bloodlines.
Autographed Books from University Bookstore - Here are the instructions to order from the Seattle bookstore I autograph and personalize books for. You can get the book made out to you, and they'll ship internationally.
And speaking of international stuff...I mentioned in The Bloodlines Q&A that at the moment, only English speaking countries have confirmed Bloodlines release dates. So, those in non-English speaking countries can cheer on the other pre-ordering countries until we know more. But, for those in the UK, Australia, and Canada, you can take the challenge and pre-order from any of your own major bookstores and indies. For the big retailers, I'm guessing Amazon and Waterstone's in the UK; Dymock's in Australia; and Amazon and Chapters/Indigo for Canada. You guys know better than me. I know all three countries also have really awesome indie bookstores too, so definitely support those if you love them.
I'll close with a little more info for those still curious about Bloodlines. The links to the Q&A and first chapter I posted above will definitely give you the most background on the book. However, there are also some awesome reviews from readers who got to look at the book early that'll give you some insight as well:
Eleusian Mysteries Review - From a fan of the first series, who now adores Sydney as a narrator
Bibliopunkk - Reviewer who thinks Bloodlines has its own unique feel yet still perfectly continues the VA series
Teenage Bibliophile - This reviewer never actually read the first set of VA books - but had no trouble getting hooked on Bloodlines
Makshift Bookmark - A reviewer who was unsure about spin-offs and ended up loving Bloodlines. Best quote: "My fear of venturing outside Rose Hathaway's POV was unwarranted. FEAR NOT, SKEPTICS."
Exhausting post! Thank you again to those who have pre-ordered already, and thank you in advance to those who jump on the challenge this week. I'm so excited to see what unfolds! I don't write much in third or a male POV, so I'm also going to be excited and nervous when I post Adrian's chapter and get reactions. (Did you notice my use of "when I post"? Like I said, I'm pretty confident we can meet this challenge).