Shelli Johannes-Wells started out writing for her local school paper, winning a state Nutrition essay contest for “Be a Smart Cookie”, and singing in a local Jazz band. Somewhere along the way, she earned an MBA in Marketing and embarked on an 18-year marketing career in Corporate America working as a marketing and communications consultant.
In 2000, Shelli traded in her expensive suits, way-too high heels, and corporate lingo for a family, flip-flops, and her love of writing. She started her own marketing & communications business, www.bilaninc.com, and continues creating materials for a variety of large profit and nonprofit clients, including Spanx, Goody Hair Products, Chick Filet, Delta, CARE, and the Boys & Girls Club of America.
Shelli’s dream is to publish children’s books and magically imprint the imaginations of kids. In addition to juggling nap schedules while attending client meetings, Shelli focuses on her writing. She is a frequent marketing speaker at SCBWI conferences across the U.S and runs a popular marketing blog, Market My Words (www.faeriality.blogspot.com) where she provides marketing advice for authors in the hopes of helping them better market their words.
In her spare time (yeah right!) and if the kids allow (yeah right!), Shelli obsesses over movies, reads children’s books (over and over), wishes she could squeeze in Bikram Yoga sessions, and dreams of sleeping in on the weekends.
She currently lives in Atlanta with her dog, British-accented husband, and the huge imaginations of their little prince and princess that someday will change the world.
Untraceable, The Nature of Grace, #1
Tuesday, Nov 29th
Coleman & Stott
"Grace is a spunky, independent, nature girl who doesn't need a boy to save her. With wilderness survival, a juicy love triangle, and more twists and turns than a roller coaster, this fast-paced novel had me holding my breath until the very last page—and still begging for more!" -Kimberly Derting, author of the The Body Finder series (Harper Teen) and The Pledge series (S&S)
16 year old Grace was reared in the wilderness. Her first pet was a bear named Simon. Her first potty, an oak tree. And, her first swing, a forest vine. Grace has lived in the Smokies all her life, patrolling with her forest ranger father who taught her everything he knew about wildlife, tracking, and wilderness survival.
When Grace's dad goes missing on a routine patrol, unlike everyone in her sleepy mountain town, she refuses to believe he’s dead. After finding a Cheetos bag and stolen government file, Grace is convinced she’s one step closer to proving all the non-believers wrong.
One day, while out tracking clues, Grace is rescued from imminent danger by Mo, a hot guy who has an intoxicating accent and a secret. Grace has never felt a connection like this before, certainly not with her ex-boyfriend, the adoring, but decidedly unrugged, Wyn.
After a few run-ins with the town's police chief, her father's partner, and some new evidence, Grace travels deeper into the wilderness that has always been her refuge only to learn that her father's disappearance is not a mere coincidence.
Soon she’s enmeshed in a web of conspiracy, deception, and murder. And it’s going to take a lot more than a compass and a motorcycle (named Lucifer) for this kick-butting heroine to emerge from an epidemic that’s spreading like wild fire, threatening everything and everyone she’s ever loved.
I had to take a minute to let it all sink in before I could start to actually gather my thoughts. UNTRACEABLE is without a doubt going to be the next big YA phenomenon. With a kick-butt heroine who will become an instant favorite, this fast-paced thriller will keep you guessing at every turn. UNTRACEABLE is packed with adventure, betrayal, mystery, and a conspiracy that will leave you only wanting more. Just like the North Carolina woods Grace navigates fearlessly, Johannes weaves a beautifully mysterious story of a daughter's brave, never-ending devotion to her missing father. And I felt every emotion so fully through the writing, that my husband actually thought he made me cry. But no, it was this fabulous book, with such a rich well of emotion.
Grace is stoic, brave, fearless, inventive, and smart and is one of the best female characters I've read in a long time. In fact, I believe the YA genre needs more female characters like Grace. She doesn't need a boy to save her, she doesn't sit around and feel sorry for herself, and most importantly she's not afraid to be herself. But I have to say, those boys are something else.
UNTRACEABLE is by far my favorite debut of 2011, and I cannot wait for more in The Nature of Grace series.
|I would definitely re-read this book. And would recommend it to EVERYONE!|
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