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Today I'm excited to be a part of the ROOTLESS blog tour. Because of Hurricane Sandy, you'll see that we had to switch the guest post today. I'm sure you'll all understand.

ROOTLESS is a dystopian novel by debut author Chris Howard about a world where there are no trees. Doesn't it sound fascinating?

So here's Chris.


Today we'd scheduled a Q&A with Phil Falco, the talented designer at Scholastic who created the awesome cover art for ROOTLESS. However, because of Superstorm Sandy, we weren't able to get the Q&A finished in time… so it'll be posted later on, and I'm sure you'll join me in wishing Phil and everyone else who's trying to bounce back from the storm a speedy recovery. Not wanting to leave a blogger hanging, I decided the ROOTLESS BLOG TOUR could use one more exclusive!!

We've talked about inspirations, science, music, characters, writing, editing, audiobook narrating… but what about food? Yep, in Banyan's world the only thing that can grow is the genetically engineered corn owned by GenTech Corporation. This means people eat corn for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Banyan survives on the microwave popcorn that GenTech calls Superfood. But the Soljahs up north in Waterfall City prefer to eat cornmeal porridge. This is a nod to a very special song - do you know it?! Anyway, cornmeal porridge is a delicious dish, and while the Soljahs wouldn't be able to make this version (they lack crucial ingredients), it's my favorite recipe "of which I'll share with you" (to quote the song!)

1 cup yellow cornmeal4 cups water1/2 tbsp salt1 cup coconut milk1 tsp vanilla2 tbsp brown sugar (or coconut sugar)1/2 tsp cinnamon(nutmeg - optional)

Process:In a saucepan, bring the water and salt to boil. In a bowl, combine the cornmeal and coconut milk into a smooth paste. Turn the heat to medium and stir the paste into the boiling water. Continue stirring for 2-3 minutes. Then cover and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally and lowering the heat if the porridge begins to stick. Stir in the vanilla, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Cover and cook for 3-5 minutes more. Ladle into bowls and serve.

A friend of mine passed on this recipe, having got it from the cook at the Whispering Bamboo Hotel in Jamaica. It's a gluten-free and vegan dish, and I hope you enjoy it!


17-year-old Banyan is a tree builder. Using salvaged scrap metal, he creates forests for rich patrons who seek a reprieve from the desolate landscape. Although Banyan's never seen a real tree--they were destroyed more than a century ago--his missing father used to tell him stories about the Old World.

Everything changes when Banyan meets a mysterious woman with a strange tattoo, a map to the last living trees on earth, and he sets off across a wasteland from which few return. Those who make it past the pirates and poachers can't escape the locusts . . . the locusts that now feed on human flesh.

But Banyan isn't the only one looking for the trees, and he's running out of time. Unsure of whom to trust, he's forced to make an alliance with Alpha, an alluring, dangerous pirate with an agenda of her own. As they race towards a promised land that might only be a myth, Banyan makes shocking discoveries about his family, his past, and how far people will go to bring back the trees.

Before he wrote stories, Chris Howard wrote songs, studied natural resources management, and led wilderness adventure trips for teenagers. He currently lives in Denver, CO, and ROOTLESS is his first novel. Join him at http://www.chrishowardbooks.com/


Chris is offering an awesome package of goodies for one lucky winner. Here's a picture of what you can win:

To enter, all you need to do is be a follower (just click the follow button if you’re not a follower) and leave a comment by midnight on November 247th. I’ll announce the winner on November 26th. Please let me know what color t-shirt you want and the size in the comments. If your e-mail is not on Blogger, please list it in your comment. 

If you mention this contest on Twitter, Facebook, or your blog, mention this in the comments and I'll give you an extra entry. International entries are welcome.

To follow the rest of the tour and get more chances to win ROOTLESS swag, check outhttp://yabookscentral.com/blog/rootless-blog-tour 
Have a great weekend! Hope to see you on Monday when I'm interviewing debut author J.A. Souders and giving away a copy of RENEGADE.


  1. It's an incredible cover! Can't wait for the Q&A.

  2. It's really cool that he has a recipe to go with the book! Might have to give it a try :)

    Thank you for the giveaway! I would love the red shirt in a small. I follow you via GFC: Jessica R.
    Thanks :)

  3. The cover is awesome, so is the story. Waiting for the Q n A.
    The giveaway is cool. Blue shirt in a medium size.

  4. I don't need the T-shirt, and I'm already a follower, but this book sounds fascinating. What a premise! And what a life -- Corn three times a day and nothing else. (I guess everything else in the diet is vitamin supplements?) Like Rachna, I'll be waiting for the Q and A.

  5. I'd love the book, though, and I just tweeted.

  6. I had a friend recently loan me an Arc for this - I read it in a weekend. It's fantastic! Since I've already had the chance to read it I'll pass on the contest, but just wanted to pop in to say that it's a fantastic read!

  7. This sounds like such an wonderful book, especially about nature and what could happen to it and us.

    GFC follower Christina Kit.

    I'd love a purple tee, small:)

    I tweeted https://twitter.com/christinafiorio/status/266963980277399553

    Thank you so much:)

    ccfioriole at gmail dot com

  8. Great story , thank you for the chance!
    Red shirt in a large size.
    GFC follower as Diana

    Tweeted: https://twitter.com/artdem83/status/266986402078679040

    artgiote at gmail dot com

  9. I've got Rootless on my TBR from reading about it somewhere before. The premise intrigued me then and still has that zing of intrigue now.

  10. i love the thought of a tree builder! Thank you for the contest! i'm a follower :)

    inthehammockblog at gmail dot com

  11. You know, my son might be interested in this book. He reads all kinds of YA, as long as the protagonist is a guy and the book only has a sprinkling of romance.

    I think I'll stick with my oatmeal, even though I'm sure cornmeal porridge is probably yummy.

    Looking forward to the interview. :D

  12. This book sounds fascinating! Thanks for the chance to win a copy ^^

    I'm GFC Follower - Carol
    Purple t-shirt/small size

  13. OOH, yes please!! (and I tweeted about it - reluctantly ;) And I'd pass the shirt onto my son, so a red small.

  14. What a cover and the book sounds so unique! Wow! Thanks for sharing and for the giveaway. I am an old follower. :)
    GFC: Jessica Haight

  15. Locusts that feed on human flesh - woo hoo!! Can't imagine a world without trees - sounds intriguing. Purple; large.

    awamom at yahoo dot com

  16. So very excited about this book!

    Blue:Medium :)

    themgowl at gmail dot come

  17. thanks for the chance to win the book :)

  18. Thank you for the great giveaway!!
    GFC - Jennifer Wheeler
    Tweet - https://twitter.com/JenniferGWI/status/268649339021324288
    Red - small
    jenni_bearz at hotmail dot com

  19. Thanks for the giveaway!


  20. Wow, this is most interesting premise I've read recently. Adding to my to read list! I'm not sure if this is open internationally (I'm from the UK), but if it is I'd love a small blue! ;)


  21. Sounds great! Loved the synopsis!
    GFC: Veronika
    verusbognar (at) gmail (dot) com

  22. Thanks so much for providing this fun stop on the ROOTLESS Blog Tour! So, I was finally able to track down Phil Falco (Art Director at Scholastic) and we chatted about cover designs and ROOTLESS here: http://foreveryoungadult.com/2013/01/29/behind-the-cover-rootless/ Sort of a Blog Tour Encore as this Q&A had originally been scheduled AT THIS STOP on the tour! I really appreciate everyone who's made this whole thing such a blast - all the bloggers and readers and the people who've commented or got in touch and asked questions. And congrats to the lucky winners of the Giveaway Prize Packs. I hope you enjoy the T-shirt my friend made and the book that I wrote! Happy reading, everyone. And thanks for all your support and enthusiasm!