The Ten Things I Wish I’d Known Before... The Antidote by Shelley Sackier (Guest Post & #Giveaway)

Welcome to my tour stop! Check out the fun guest post and enter the giveaway below...

The Antidote
By Shelley Sackier
YA Fantasy
Hardcover & ebook, 368 Pages
February 5th 2019 by HarperTeen


Magic is not allowed, under any circumstances — even if it could save someone’s life. Instead, there are herbal remedies and traditional techniques that have been painstakingly recorded in lieu of using the mystical arts. Fee knows this, so she keeps her magic a secret.

Except her best friend, Xavi, is deathly ill. He’s also the crown prince. Saving him is important, not only for her, but for the entire kingdom.

Fee’s desperation to save her friend means she can barely contain the magic inside her. And after the tiniest of slips, Fee is thrust into a dark and secretive world that is as alluring as it is dangerous.

If she gives in, it could mean she can save Xavi. But it also means that those who wish to snuff out magic might just snuff her out in the process.

(Affiliate links included.)

Guest Post:
The Things I Wish I’d Known Before This Whole Debacle Began
(AKA Fee’s Top Ten Tips for Keeping Magic a Secret)

1. Most important, I wish someone would have told me exactly who I was before I started to have freakish thoughts about myself. Before I realized that I wasn’t like everyone around me, and that maybe it’d be best if I hid those bizarre bits—at least to give me a break from all the eyebrow raising happening whenever my ghastly snippets of magic seeped out.

2. One of the things I’d learned early on was that if I was in the middle of making a tiny flower bud sprout—a sometimes very necessary thing whenever Savva, my mentor in the stillroom, suddenly demanded I create some new tincture or salve she was in need of, and we were fresh out of those specific flowers—I had to squish the budding blossom behind my back. Cuz those little suckers actually make a squeak of unhappiness if I don’t muffle their sound. And that always makes Savva’s furry white eyebrows move straight up to meet her hairline.

3. The best way to keep magic under wraps, or at least away from prying eyes, is to allow yourself to be kept locked away from all those prying eyes—like Savva did with me. (I seriously hope you can read the snark in my words.) The only person I saw apart from Savva—and for nearly ten year’s worthy of time—was Xavi. My best friend. My confident. My soon-to-be-king. And also the biggest worrywart in all of the kingdom of Fireli. Maybe even within the entire realm of Aethusa. And weirdly enough, he was annoyingly worse than Savva if he caught me leaking magic. Seriously, a giant fusspot.

4. Know your audience. As in, know exactly who you can trust and who is going to freak out if they see you whip up some rapid growth in a squiggly vine and direct it up a concrete wall. If for one second you think you’ve got yourself a squealer, then by all means direct their attention elsewhere—like up into the sky to see some non-existent eagle flying overhead.

5. Search your flora homeopathica medical textbooks for whatever plant, or seed, or berries around you that might work to create an extract that can do exactly that—extract the patient’s memory. There are plenty of tinctures Savva has made me whip up in the past that help “fuzzify” a person’s recollection. Yes, mostly those were made to help people forget their pain, but hey, sometimes you’re forced to use whatever is available. It’s kind of a no-brainer. (hehe)

6. Play dumb.

7. Deny, deny, deny.

8. Scare them into silence.

9. Blackmail works really well too.

10. Lastly, you could always choose to just not do it. Not doing something is a pretty big guarantee that no one is going to see you do that thing. And this is a fine choice if, unlike me, you have an actual choice. I didn’t. I had to do it to save people. Except doing it meant I was going to kill my best friend. Yeah, pretty sure you can see the tiny quandary I was strangling with.

Bonus! Also feel free to check out the author's playlist: The Antidote Playlist - Google Play or The Antidote Playlist - Spotify (both just music) and The Antidote Playlist Details (with spoilers!—song descriptions for where they fall within the book). You can also find a Pinterest board here and read an excerpt here.

About the Author

Shelley Sackier grew up in a small farming community in Northern Wisconsin continually searching for ways to grow warm. Realizing she would never be able to enjoy ice cream like real people should, she left the state and lived the blissful life of a traveling musician. Discovering her stories needed more space than two verses a bridge and a chorus could provide, she began storytelling in earnest. And then in Virginia. Which is where she lives now and continues to write.

Her first novel, DEAR OPL (Sourcebooks 2015), is a tale about a snarky, overweight thirteen-year-old, who suffers from loss everywhere in her life except on her body.

Her next novel, The Freemason's Daughter (HarperCollins, 2017) is a story about a 16 yr old Scottish girl living in 1715 who's raised entirely by six burly Scotsman--and they're all smugglers. The Antidote (HarperCollins February 2019) is a YA novel about magic and medicine, and the witches who wield them both.

To learn more about Shelley, visit where she blogs weekly about living on a small farm atop a mountain in the Blue Ridge and how it’s easiest to handle most of it with homegrown food, a breathless adoration for tractors, and a large dose of single malt scotch.

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Is this on your TBR? What do you think of Fee's list?

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