Thursday, June 12, 2014

Pandemic Blog Tour, Guest Post, Review and Giveaway

Pandemic_Tour_BannerJune 3rd Tuesday: My Book Addiction REVIEW & 5 RANDOM THINGS
June 4th Wednesday: Iequals Alissa MUSIC PLAYLIST
June 5th Thursday: It’s a Book Thing REVIEW & INTERVIEW
June 6th Friday: YA Review REVIEW
June 7th Saturday: The Storybook Kingdom REVIEW & 7 FAVORITE BOOKS
June 8th Sunday: A Dream Within a Dream REVIEW & GUEST POST
June 9th Monday: Spiced Latte Reads REVIEW & DREAM CAST
June 10th Tuesday: Once Upon a Twilight REVIEW & INTERVIEW
June 11th Wednesday: Pieces of Whimsy TENS LIST
June 12th Thursday: Insane About Books REVIEW & GUEST POST
Pandemic is a contemporary, realistic young adult novel about an emotionally traumatized teenager struggling to survive a bird flu pandemic.
In Pandemic, only a few people know what caused Lilianna Snyder’s sudden change from a model student to a withdrawn pessimist who worries about all kinds of disasters. When people begin coming down with a quick-spreading illness that doctors are unable to treat, Lil’s worst fears are realized. With her parents called away on business before the contagious outbreak–her journalist father in Delaware covering the early stages of the disease and her mother in Hong Kong and unable to get a flight back to New Jersey–Lil’s town is hit by what soon becomes a widespread fatal illness.
With friends and neighbors dying around her, Lil does everything she can to survive.  Just when it all seems too much, the cause of her original trauma shows up at her door. Lil must find a way to survive not only the outbreak and its real-life consequences, but also her own personal demons.
You can purchase Pandemic at the following Retailers:

In the Mind of Yvonne: What makes me "Tick"

I’m not sure there is a “typical” creative person, but if you imagine one, I probably don’t fit the mold. I double majored in computer science and English, and I survived college by alternating between classes like Compiler Construction and James Joyce. It was an odd combination, but it worked for me. I took a corporate job for several years before focusing on my writing, and one project manager had us monitor our time so we’d know (for our own use) where the hours went each week. It’s a habit that stuck with me and I still try to track my hours on a regular basis today, although the time spent on social media tends to blur!

I’ve always loved animals and for a brief time I considered being a veterinarian. But I’m horrible with blood, stitches, and most medical things, so that wasn’t really a viable option. In Pandemic, I enjoyed creating Elsa, a minor character who is very concerned with saving the local pets when their owners become ill.

As a kid, I always enjoyed reading and the love of story has stayed with me. I’m also drawn to writing about dark situations. One trait I share with many writers is the fascination with the question, “what if?” What if a deadly flu strikes a small NJ town (much like my own) tomorrow? And what if a teenage girl, who was recovering from a disturbing trauma, became separated from the only people she could trust? How would she survive in the midst of death and disaster? Those are the types of questions that led to Pandemic.
My current work-in-progress is a young adult psychological thriller about a teen who fears she is either being haunted or going insane. It’s a complete revamping of an earlier novel I had written. The story is set in Hoboken, NJ during an otherwise typical summer. I tried to analyze how this novel might be similar to Pandemic -- I think the common thread is that I like the idea of creating scary situations in our ordinary world.

Before becoming a children’s writer, Yvonne Ventresca wrote computer programs and taught others how to use technology. Now she happily spends her days writing stories instead of code and sharing tips with other writers. Yvonne is the author of the young adult novel Pandemic, available in May 2014 from Sky Pony Press.
Yvonne grew up in Levittown, New York, where the suburban homes were famously identical in design and the streets were named in sections (birds, astronomy-related, random occupations). Her quest for publication began in middle school (sort of) when she asked the librarian for information on how to physically create a book. Writing was fun, but how do you actually get those words into bound pages? The small library didn’t have any materials about that, and it would be many years before Yvonne achieved the goal of writing a published book.
Yvonne majored in English and Computer Science – an unusual combination, but when she was stuck on a literature assignment she could debug her programs, and when that got boring she could write an essay. That strategy worked well and she graduated with honors from Hofstra University, followed by her MBA from NYU’s Stern School of Business. Her post-college life was divided into two phases: life in the corporate world (where she worked as a computer programmer, technology trainer, recruiter, and compensation analyst) and later, life as a writer.
She definitely prefers phase two. During her writing career, Yvonne has written instructional video scripts about technology, numerous articles for children and adults, a nonfiction book for teens about careers in publishing, and a biography for teens about the singer Avril Lavigne. But her real love is fiction, and after several attempts at writing a novel, she created a story about a contemporary bird flu pandemic.
Yvonne Ventresca currently resides with her husband and two teenage children in New Jersey.

My Review

Pandemic is a deep story about personal survival emotionally and physically.

Lil has experienced a personal tragedy that hardly anyone knows about.  She only has one best friend, and has closed herself off from everyone else.  However, she is a survivor.  Having an issue with control, she begins stock piling food, which will later comes in handy when the flu epidemic that starts spreading like wild fire, causes society to do unimaginable things to survive.

She begins this journey alone, however soon discovers friendships closer than she anticipated.  The will to survive is strong and so is new love.

For me, this story was an extremely fast read. I read it one day. When I started, I just couldn't stop, anxious to see who would survive, and who would not.  

It was beautifully written.  The plot was carefully planned out, starting slow like the disease, then gains momentum like a freight train.  All the characters are easy to connect to and have great personalities.  I loved how there were actually two stories in one, with Lil battling her personal tragedy along side with the pandemic that is changing the world.  It's a great story of survival on so many levels.  Although I hope to never experience this in real life, I can easily see how this story could actually happen.  The world isn't as small as it used to be.

Pandemic doesn't sugarcoat what could happen if a flu epidemic got out of control.  There's death, looting, vandalism and hardships.  Lil's parents might have thought her to be a little eccentric with the stock piling of food and supplies, her way of keeping control, however after reading this story, I thought it was brilliant of the author how it was tied into the story.

This was an amazing read, and I highly recommend it to all!

Giveaway Banner
1 Winner will receive a$75 Visa gift card, a Canvas Pandemic bag filled with a signed hard cover, a Limited Edition Necklace described in the book, Bookmarks, and an anti-bacterial Hand Sanitizer.
Must be 13+ to Enter
International Giveaway
*Book Nerd Tours is not responsible for Lost or Damaged Books in your Mail Box*
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. What a great review. I can't wait to read the book.


  2. Thanks for taking the time to review Pandemic and for being a host on the blog tour.


  3. Sounds like it could fall under the medical thriller genre, yes? I'm reading one right now called "Hypocrisy" by D.M. Annechino, and it's a great read like this one seems to be. You might like it if you liked this one. I'll have to look in to "Pandemic", your review definitely caught my attention! Thanks!