Go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page to find out all about the hunt. There are FOUR contests going on simultaneously, and you can enter one or all! I am a part of the GOLD TEAM–but there is also a red team, a blue team, and a purple team for a chance to win a whole different set of books!
If you’d like to find out more about the hunt, see links to all the authors participating, and see the full list of prizes up for grabs, go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page.
Just a few years from today, in a world slightly changed from ours, young people modify themselves by splicing animal genes into their own to become chimeras.
When sixteen-year-old Jimi Corcoran’s best friend Del finally escapes his sadistic father, she is horrified to learn he has gone to get spliced. As Jimi plunges into the world of chimeras to save Del, the world erupts in a backlash against chimeras, and the group Humans for Humanity pushes through a new law that strips chimeras of their rights as human.
Call Me Sly by Jon McGoran
Everything was different. He knew it, even before he remembered last night. He could feel it in his bones.
He wiggled his toes and fingers, flexed his arms and his legs. His muscles and joints ached like he’d just run a marathon. But he felt strong, energized. Ready to run another one.
“There he is,” Donovan said softly, leaning forward in his chair. “Wasn’t too bad, was it?”
Flashes of the night before came back to him. It had been scary and painful, but he’d held it together. And every time he opened his eyes, Donovan had been right there.
“No. Not too bad.” He ran his hands up his arms, feeling the changes: narrower, sharper, but more muscular. “I have to pee.”
“Easy,” Donovan said, helping him up. “You’ve got to get used to yourself.”
The floor wasn’t where it should be at first—like when you’re at the top of the stairs and you think there’s one more step. But by the time he crossed to the bathroom, he felt steadier.
The hand he put on the doorknob seemed leaner, more defined, but he wasn’t sure. Maybe it always looked like that.
Inside the bathroom, he willed himself not to look at his reflection. Not yet. He needed to take care of his bladder before anything else. That would involve a bit of a reveal, as well. Things could always go wrong with a splice, and some things he was more afraid of going wrong than others.
Standing at the toilet, he took a deep breath, then he took care of business. “Oh, thank god,” he said, steadying himself with a hand against the wall and feeling several kinds of relief all at once.
He washed his hands and dried them on his sweatpants. Then, finally, he looked in the mirror.
It was a moment he’d imagined for so long. And now here it was.
His first impression was that he didn’t look like himself, but then he thought, yes, he did. For the very first time.
He’d seen a fox once, as a child. His mom had taken him outside the city to a park near where she grew up, in some zurb neighborhood that was still hanging on. A place his dad wouldn’t think to look for them. She did that sometimes, waiting for dad to calm down or pass out.
She’d lain down in the weeds, eyes closed, and he wandered off. And there it was, looking right at him, unlike anything he’d ever seen.
It wasn’t like a dog or cat. It was wild. And it wasn’t like a rabbit or a squirrel, either. It was a predator.
Its eyes were gentle and playful and smart, cute but vaguely dangerous, too. It scared him but thrilled him, captivated him. He felt an instant connection. Then it was gone, off on its own, wherever it wanted. Free.
He became obsessed: fascinated to learn foxes used to be everywhere and devastated to discover they hadn’t been seen in so long that most people—his parents included—assumed he’d seen a cat or a rat. Or that he’d made the whole thing up.
And no one had seen one since. As far as he knew, that might have been the last of them. Until now. Because one was staring back at him in the mirror.
He ran his hands over the new angles of his face, the soft hair that dusted it—fur, more accurately—white along his neck and jaw, rust above his pointy nose, covering his cheeks, his forehead, mixing in with the darker hair on his head. He lowered his head to watch his hands exploring the combination of colors and textures.
When he looked up, his face was transformed yet again, this time by a grin. And more striking than the canines was the joy it revealed. That might have been the biggest change of all.
Donovan was waiting outside the door with a grin of his own, pleased with his handiwork and happy for his friend. “So, what’ll we call you then?”
With so much else on his mind, he hadn’t even thought about that. Glancing back at his reflection, he said, “Call me Sly.”