To the Williams tribe: Thank you for always cheering me on in whatever I pursue. Hey, Caroline and Mac—now your names are in a book!
To Christa Heschke, my agent: You championed this story from start to finish. Thank you for all your hard work!
To Team Sky Pony: In particular, Alison Weiss, editor extraordinaire, who shaped this book with wit and wisdom. Kristin Kulsavage, who first saw potential in this story and made my dream a reality. And Georgia Morrissey, who gave this book such a beautiful cover.
To my fierce CPs, Katie Bucklein (the Gimli to my Legolas), Ami Allen-Vath (my favorite prom queen), Teresa Yea (my brain twin), Carolee Noury (editorial goddess), and Erin McQuaig (artist/librarian/all-around amazing person): I would be lost without you. You all make me a better writer with your brilliance and your red pens, but more importantly, you have all become important parts of my life. Your friendship is a treasure better than pearls or shipwrecked gold.
To my other early readers, Heidi Lang, Hilary Harwell, Rachel Pudelek, Christine Arnold, Sharon Criscoe, and Eve Castellan: Thank you, always, for your friendship and wisdom! To Laurel Symonds: Thank you for believing in this book, and teaching me so much. To Jodi Meadows: It was a lucky day for me when you agreed to grab coffee! The next one’s on me. To Martina Boone, Melinda McGraner Allen, Laura Weymouth, M.K. England, Gwen Cole, and Rachel Simon: Your friendship, cheerleading, and commiseration are priceless—thank you!
To Lenore Bajare-Dukes: There aren’t words for how grateful I am to have you in my life, so I’ll simply say—thanks for opening my eyes to the wonder that is Lord of the Rings, for wizard rock concerts and long talks and crazy fanfic dares. To Erin Manning: From the moment we realized our mutual love of all things ghostly and strange, you’ve become a lifelong friend, and believed in my work even when I didn’t. Thank you. To Joe Sparks: I’m still working on finding you a dragon; in the meantime, thanks for everything.
To my Twitter friends (too many to name!) and my fellow authors in Sixteen to Read, the Sweet Sixteens, and Team Rogue YA: Thank you for giving me a wonderful, strong community that’s carried me through the toughest days. And to my friends on Elendor: Thank you for sharing stories with me and shaping me into the writer I am today.
To the bloggers who have shared their excitement for this book, most especially: Becky at BookNerdAddict, Kat Kennedy at Cuddlebuggery, Brittany at Brittany’s Book Rambles, Hafsah at IceyBooks, Kit Cat at Let the Pages Reign, Liran at Empress of Books, Nori at ReadWriteLove28, Jen at Pop! Goes the Reader, and Lauren at Live, Love, Read.
And to you, dear reader: Thank you for making my dream possible.