Win a copy of My Very Unfairy Tale Life! Details at the end of this post. 

Chapter 1

You know all those stories that claim fairies cry sparkle tears and elves travel by rainbow? They’re lies. All lies. No one tells you the truth until it’s too late. And then all you can do is run like crazy while a herd of unicorns tries to kill you.

Of course, I had no idea what I’d done to get the unicorns all riled up. So much for having a magical guide to help me with my adventures. Anthony was about as useful as a bent thumbtack. Still, I needed his magic if I was going to get out of this mission alive.

“Anthony!” I shrieked as I darted down a hill and away from the stampeding unicorns. “Anthony, help me!” Where was that carrot-headed gnome?

The unicorns’ glittering horns were right behind me. Another minute and I’d be a marshmallow on a stick.

“All right, Jenny,” I said to myself. “You can do this.” I forced my burning legs to speed up. If I could just get far enough away, I might be able to hide.

Excerpt copyright © 2011 Anna Staniszewski

About the book:

Is your magical kingdom falling apart? Twelve-year-old Jenny is on the case, whether she likes it or not. Saving the world might sound exciting, but for Jenny it’s starting to get old — even staying in the real world long enough to take a math test would be a dream come true! And when you throw in bloodthirsty unicorns, psychotic clowns, and the most useless gnome sidekick ever, Jenny decides that enough is enough. She’s leaving the adventuring business and not looking back. Or…is she?

What people are saying:

“Staniszewski’s debut is a speedy and amusing ride that displays a confident, on-the-mark brand of humor, mostly through Jenny’s wisecracking narration…the inventive and lighthearted premise will keep readers entertained.”–Publisher’s Weekly (read the full review here)

“A light comic romp…Staniszewski pitches her writing to a middle-school audience in her debut, emphasizing comedy along with non-threatening suspense, and keeps the tone chatty and frothy…An eye for imaginative detail mixes with these likable characters and a theme of empathy for others to keep the story appropriate to a younger audience, who easily will identify with Jenny. Charming.”–Kirkus (read the full review here)

“What a great read! Jenny is an adventurer I’d definitely want in my corner if my life ever took a wrong turn from ‘Happily Ever After’.”–Hélène Boudreau, author of Real Mermaids Don’t Wear Toe Rings

“Readers will love this bold and feisty heroine as they are swept into Jenny’s many (mis)adventures.”–Jennifer Nielsen, author of Elliot and the Goblin War

Released: November 1, 2011

About the author:

Born in Poland and raised in the United States, Anna Staniszewski grew up loving stories in both Polish and English. She was named the 2006-2007 Writer-in-Residence at the Boston Public Library and a winner of the 2009 PEN New England Susan P. Bloom Discovery Award. Currently, Anna lives outside of Boston with her husband and their adopted black Labrador, Emma. When she’s not writing, Anna spends her time teaching, reading, and challenging unicorns to games of hopscotch. You can visit her at


Anna is contributing a copy of My Very UnFairy Tale Life for a giveaway!

Just comment on this post to enter.

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Please list your extra entries in the comments.

The contest is open in the US and Canada, and ends on November 16th at midnight EST.

Good luck and happy reading!