YADP Post: Nobody But Us by Kristin Halbrook

Young Adult Debut Promotions (YADP) is a post I do to help out debut authors, and to get them noticed.  My posts will definitely include a feature of the book, a feature of the author, and a giveaway, with an interview, guest post, or excerpt optional.  If you would like more information about YADP click here and scroll down until you come to the section talking about it.

Today I am featuring...

Kristin Halbrook
And she will be doing an interview and giveaway!

~The Book~

Nobody But Us
by Kristin Halbrook
Pages: 272
Release Date: January 29, 2013
by HarperTeen

Bonnie and Clyde meets IF I STAY in this addictively heart-wrenching story of two desperate teenagers on the run from their pasts.

They’re young. They’re in love. They’re on the run.

Zoe wants to save Will as much as Will wants to save Zoe. When Will turns eighteen, they decide to run away together. But they never expected their escape to be so fraught with danger....

When the whole world is after you, sometimes it seems like you can’t run fast enough.

Nobody But Us, told in alternating perspectives from Will and Zoe, is an unflinching novel, in turns heartbreaking and hopeful, about survival, choices, and love...and how having love doesn’t always mean that you get a happy ending. Described as “beautiful, heartbreaking, and exhilarating” by Kody Keplinger, author of The DUFF, Nobody But Us will prove irresistible to fans of Nina Lacour, Jenny Han, and Sara Zarr.

*A copy was provided by HarperTeen for review purposes*

Wow, I don’t think I’ve ever read a debut this sad and this heartbreaking…it was just such a strong book…I’m so impressed with Halbrook.  The writing was really, really awesome, and the idea was really good as well.  The situation that these characters were in…no one should have to deal with stuff like that.  The story line was very good, and it wasn’t a boring book by any means.  It shows a whole another side of the YA contemporary genre, and a whole another side of life.  The ending…oh my gosh.  I sat there for literally two minutes after I read that ending.  I can’t believe that what happened happened.  I don’t usually cry at the endings of books, but I almost did in this one.  I can’t decide if I liked what Halbrook did after the ending.  SPOILER ALERT:[ I feel like Halbrook probably should have made Zoe a little more sad over the fact that Will died, but then on the other hand I liked that Halbrook didn’t go through 10 pages of Zoe crying…so I think I like that Halbrook just moved on.]

I don’t think I’ve ever read a book with this kind of cast before.  The amount of crap that Zoe and Will had to deal with as young kids was just horrifying.  SPOILER ALERT:[I completely understand that Will had a difficult childhood, but if my boyfriend (HA, yeah, that’s a dream) had been kicked out of multiple schools for fighting, and had killed someone with a wine bottle, I would be sprinting the other way.]  Will was trying to fix stuff, and he was trying to make things right, but he kept on messing it up with each stupid and violent thing he did.  I know Halbrook wrote him like this to make a point, and I don’t think I’m supposed to like him, so I don’t really feel bad about not liking him.  Zoe is interesting too.  Halbrook made the romance and the characters this messed up on purpose, to show people what sometimes really happens in the world, and there are probably people out there just like Will and Zoe.  Zoe, I think, grew a ton over the course of this book, and I loved watching her change.  She was smart, strong, and tough.

This is definitely the most though-provoking and strong YA contemporary book I’ve read…I think ever.  The messed up characters, imperfect romance, and horrible situation made for a heartbreaking, sad, and riveting story.

4 pink flowers

~Author Interview~

1. Why did you become a writer?

Like so many authors, the desire to write has been with me since I was very little. I loved doing reports at school, entered (and sometimes won!) poetry, short story and essay contests throughout school, and generally loved to make up stories. I wrote terrible fantasy-based fiction as a teen, but took a break for a little while to write a zillion papers in college. A few years after that, I sold an essay to a magazine. It was a defining "I'm a writer" moment. I think the little check that came with the acceptance letter was a big help with that. After, I started novels that I only sometimes finished--my writing apprenticeship--until my craft was good enough to get an agent, and then a publishing contract. Always, this is simply what I wanted to do.

2. Who were your biggest influences?

All the authors I read over the course of my life. It's hard to rate them against each other, because each, from the heavy classics to the oft-mocked Babysitter's Club, contributed to my writing development. A writer will never be a great writer unless she is a great reader. Outside of writing, my parents and family have always been a great influence, encouraging me to follow my dreams and trusting that I knew the best way to achieve them, even if I took a misstep here or there.

3. When and how did you get the idea for Nobody But Us?

I honestly can't remember when--probably right before I started writing it a couple years ago! I tend to take ideas and run with them. As for how, I knew, first of all, that I wanted to write a character with good intentions whose life was a result of a system that hadn't prepared him to be the person he wanted to be. I wanted to write about a person desperate to improve, but who lacked resources. So it was about Will's story, in the beginning.

4. Do you have a special routine you do when writing?  Do you have a place you like to write?

I don't have a special routine. I'm always scared that if I did, and my routine was compromised, I would be unable to write. And I never want to be in that position. I try to set daily goals and reach them at the best times and in the best places. I enjoy writing in my home office, sprawled on the couch and at local coffee shops.

5. Do you like cats or dogs?

I'm 100% a dog person.

6. Dark chocolate or milk chocolate?

Ooooh, both? Probably dark chocolate over milk chocolate, but sometimes the lighter chocolate is nice. It's always a good idea to eat richer, high quality chocolate because a little goes a long way. Mmmm chocolate.

7. What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?

Pistachio! Yup, I was that weird kid who liked the green ice cream--the one that *didn't* have chocolate chips in it. I'm also a fan of Ben And Jerry's Mudslide, too. Their favorite of mine, though, was the Coconut Almond Fudge Chip. They don't make it anymore. :(

8. What is your favorite movie?

The English Patient. Also, Pan's Labyrinth. I love the direction, cinematography, acting and stories for each. Gorgeous films. I tend to prefer the more dramatic films as a whole, though an evening with Mean Girls is fun, too.

9. Is there another book in the works?  If so, what can we expect?

Definitely! Lots of projects. The most important is my next contemporary, which contains secretive pasts, lists of promises, redemption and fear.

~Plus a Little Extra Awesome~

Kristin's Top Ten Dream Road Trips

Since Nobody But Us features a road trip, I thought I would make of list of the top five places I want to road trip. I have taken a few gorgeous road trips already: Washington State to Yellowstone National Park, Highway 101 down the west coast, through the Olympic Rain Forest and down the Fife Coast from St. Andrews in Scotland. Here are some more I'd love to take:

5. The Cascade Loop. Gorgeous mountain and valley scenery, wildlife and breathtaking lakes, and small town charm are highlights of this trip around the Cascade mountain range in Washington.

4. Eastern Canada. Starting at Niagara Falls and routing through Toronto, Montreal and so-pretty Quebec City before making it to Prince Edward Island to see the Anne of Green Gables sites. Ideally, this would be an autumn trip full of delicious harvest food stops.

3. Australia's Great Ocean Road. From Brisbane and the beautiful beaches of the Gold Coast to cosmopolitan Sydney and finally Melbourne to visit some friends Down Under. This time of year, a trip like this with the promise of sun is especially appealing. The wineries along the way for samples don't hurt, either.

2. Russian River Cruise. Okay, this isn't technically a road trip. It's . . . a waterway version of the classic highway trip! I'd love to cruise from majestic St. Petersburg to fascinating and vibrant Moscow, visiting the lovely Golden Ring towns in between.

1. Hai Van Pass, Vietnam. I've been keen to visit Vietnam and Cambodia for some time, and this windy road with striking ocean views and atmospheric misty scenery would be the perfect way to get out of the cities for a time. It can be a dangerous road, but I'd still prefer the old route to the newer tunnel.

~Get to know Kristin Halbrook~

When I was little, I wanted to be a writer, the President of the USA or the first female NFL quarterback. Despite being able to throw a wicked spiral, I didn't really grow to the size needed for the NFL. Then, as I got older and studied more, I came to realize there were better ways to effect positive change than becoming president. The first one, however, stuck. Even when I was pursuing other dreams, I always took time to write here and there. NOBODY BUT US will be published by HarperChildren's in 2013.

When I'm not writing or reading (which is what I do all day, in all of my work), I'm spending time with pixies, my Mad Scot soulmate, and one grumpy cocker spaniel; traveling across oceans and time; cooking and baking up a storm and watching sunsets and waves crash on the beach. I currently live, love and explore in The Emerald City, though I occasionally make wispy, dream-like plans to move to New York, Paris or a Scottish castle one day (if just temporarily).


The Rules:
~There will be one winner
~Giveaway ends on February 9 @ 12:00 A.M.
~This giveaway is INT

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for checking out this post!  If you could share it with a friend that would be really great.  The whole point of this post was to get an awesome debut author noticed, so if you could help that would be great!


  1. Coconut almond fudge chip, oh how I miss you so... :)

  2. Awesome interview! Thank you for the giveaway too! :)

    I've been seeing this book around quite a bit! It looks good, and would go great with the Debut Challenge! :)

  3. This book sounds so good, I've had it on my to-read list for a while, and I'm a dark chocolate lover too :)

  4. This sounds good. I like the Bonnie and Clyde reference. Thanks for the giveaway.

  5. Ohmygosh I have been looking for a giveaway for this book! In the past week and a half it has blown up all over Goodreads and the book blog world, so I was like, "MUST HAVE." A giveaway would be nice though. ;)

    Marie @ Marie's Bookworm Blog


  6. I look forward to reading this. It sounds great and I am glad there are more books in the works :)

  7. Good to know there's no happy ending.

  8. Thank you! I can't wait to read this! (:


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