THE UKYA Egg Hunt is here!





Welcome to the UKYA Easter Egg Hunt! This is your big chance to win a swag bag of signed books by over 30 YA writers who live and work – you’ve guessed it – in the UK. There are some brilliant, brilliant novels out there, so get cracking.

All you have to do is read this blog, count up how many UKYA branded Easter eggs you see in it and follow the link at the end to the next blog. Keep going until you get back to the blog where you started and add up how many eggs you’ve seen along the way.

Email your answer to: UKYA2015egghunt@gmail.com. A winner will be chose at random from all correct entries and contacted by email.

This closes at noon (UK time) on Sunday 5th April, and is open internationally.

So – get egg hunting! You’ll find some awesome UKYA authors and books along the way.

Good luck!


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My name's Tanya Landman. I've produced books for children of all ages but perhaps the most rewarding part of what is do is writing historical fiction for YA readers. My latest - Buffalo Soldier - has just been shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal. If you win the UKYA Egg Hunt a signed copy will be winging it's way to you!






So… where did the idea come from? The picture below shows the shelves are to the right of my desk that house part of my hallowed collection of reference books (in fact there are another three below but they wouldn’t fit into the picture). I have to have these volumes close to hand so I can check things as I’m writing.
It gives some idea of the amount of reading and research that goes in to writing a book like Buffalo Soldier.



It all started with the volumes of books on Native American history. They date from the time I was researching Apache. I kept coming across references to ‘Negro soldiers’ in the US army. Investigations led me to the Buffalo Soldiers and in particular the men of the 9th and 10th US Cavalry. Many were former slaves who found that, when liberated, there were few if any options open to them. They had nothing, and in order to survive signed up for the army and then found themselves being sent off to fight the “Indian Wars”. When I came across the real life story of Cathy Williams - a freed slave who disguised herself as a man and joined the infantry – I was hooked. I began to think that if she'd done that - if she'd been that desperate - then there must have been other women who had done the same and got away with it…

I read everything I could get my hands on. Cox’s The Forgotten Heroes and Schubert’s Voices of the Buffalo Soldier along with Blassingame’s Slave Testimonials, Sojourner Truth’s Aint I a Woman? Jacobs’s Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, Washington’s Up from Slavery and many, many others.

Gradually Charley O'Hara took shape in my head. It took a long time to write Buffalo Soldier. I headed up blind alleys along the way and took many wrong paths. But each time I tried to give up, putting aside the manuscript thinking I'd never get it done, Charley was there at my elbow, nudging me along until I'd finished telling her story.




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www.louisareid.com