THE WALLED CITY Blog Tour {Guest Post + Giveaway}

THE WALLED CITY Blog Tour {Guest Post + Giveaway}

THE WALLED CITY Blog Tour {Guest Post + Giveaway}
by Ryan Graudin
Published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers on November 4, 2014
Genres: Dystopian, Thriller


730. That’s how many days I’ve been trapped.
18. That’s how many days I have left to find a way out.

DAI, trying to escape a haunting past, traffics drugs for the most ruthless kingpin in the Walled City. But in order to find the key to his freedom, he needs help from someone with the power to be invisible….

JIN hides under the radar, afraid the wild street gangs will discover her biggest secret: Jin passes as a boy to stay safe. Still, every chance she gets, she searches for her lost sister….

MEI YEE has been trapped in a brothel for the past two years, dreaming of getting out while watching the girls who try fail one by one. She’s about to give up, when one day she sees an unexpected face at her window…..

In this innovative and adrenaline-fueled novel, they all come together in a desperate attempt to escape a lawless labyrinth before the clock runs out.

I am so thrilled to be a part of the blog tour for THE WALLED CITY by Ryan Graudin, an amazing and riveting book that is releasing next week and should be added to every TBR pile. I only just recently read it but was immediately drawn into this story and held captive by the writing, the plot and the characters.

I would love to talk all about this awesome new book by Author Ryan Graudin, but my stop is for a Guest Post by the author in which she shares her favorite chapter to write and some of her most challenging scenes – a post that is way better than my review could ever possibly be.

So if you’d like to know what they were (and why), here is…

Guest Post

Favorite Scene and Most Challenging Scene to write (and why) by Ryan Graudin


My favorite chapter in THE WALLED CITY was actually one of the first scenes that came to mind as I was dreaming up the story. It’s the scene that starts on page 82, where Jin Ling and Dai climb up to the top of the Hak Nam Walled City, share a bag of cha siu bao and watch the sun rise. The real Kowloon Walled City—which this novel is based on—was also called the ‘City of Darkness’ by locals, due to the fact that its buildings were stacked so closely that the sunlight could not reach the streets. To escape this perpetual sunlessness, the city’s inhabitants sometimes went up to the rooftops, where they relaxed in the sun, gambled and did laundry. As I came across this fact while I was researching, I knew I had to weave this escape into the sun into the novel somehow.

I love this scene because it’s the first time that hope has any real presence in the book. Jin sees the sun rise for the first time in ages, and the sight reminds her that there’s still beauty and light in the world. This scene is also the first step Jin Ling takes toward trusting someone. She follows Dai up to the roof because he offers food (and she’s hungry), but it’s also the beginning of a friendship that goes deeper than their business arrangements. Chma, the cat, also has a good deal of page time in this scene, and I had lots of fun writing him. I’m a big fan of literary cats (Crookshanks, Throgmorten and Mogget are some of my favorites) as well as real-life felines, so I have a bit of a soft spot for him!


The most challenging scenes to write, by far, were the ones involving Mei Yee, a seventeen-year-old girl who was trafficked from her family’s rice farm and is now trapped in a brothel. What happens to Mei Yee—what happens to the thousands of children who are trafficked every year—is horrendous. The scenes involving her “client” Ambassador Osamu were incredibly difficult and tolling for me to write. My heart was literally aching for Mei Yee and my blood was seething at the ambassador. I tried to approach the scenes between these two very carefully: I didn’t want to be gratuitous, but I also strove to paint an accurate portrayal of what girl’s in Mei Yee’s situation face every day. A good deal of research went into not only trafficking, but also the ins and outs of brothel society and the psychology behind the girl’s interactions.

On the whole, it was a very hard novel to write. Researching such heavy subjects as trafficking and writing in a culture outside of my own was both exhausting and terrifying. I actually nicknamed this book Cutthroat Novel in its early stages of life, not just because it held a lot of cutthroat scenes, but also because I maintained that it was trying to kill me. Fortunately, THE WALLED CITY and I survived the process, and hopefully we both came out better for it.

About Ryan Graudin

RyanRyan Graudin grew up in Charleston and graduated from the College of Charleston with a degree in Creative Writing in 2009. She is the author of All That Glows and The Walled City. She resides near Charleston with her husband and wolf-dog. You can find her online at

Her work is represented by Josh Adams of Adams Literary.



There is a tour-wide giveaway for…

  • (1) Grand Prize Pack – A finished copy of THE WALLED CITY, rice candy, a miniature lucky cat, a traditional Chinese paper cutout of a dragon, and a pamphlet from the real Walled City Park – US ONLY
  • (9) Winners will receive a finished copy of THE WALLED CITY – US ONLY

Enter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Tour

Week One

Oct. 27th – Novel Novice – Interview

Oct. 28th – Seeing Double in Neverland – Review

Oct. 29th – Reading YA Rocks – Guest Post

Oct. 30th – The O.W.L. – Review

Oct. 31st – Parajunkee – Interview

Week Two

Nov. 3rd – Xpresso Reads – Guest Post

Nov. 4th – Reading with ABC – Review

Nov. 5th – Bibliolatry Me – Interview

Nov. 6th – Once Upon a Twilight – Review

Nov. 7th – Two Chicks on Books – Guest Post




Rachel (a.k.a. Fiktshun) has been blogging about (mostly YA) books since 2010. She always has and always will believe that reading YA rocks and thinks she's found the perfect place to ramble here at RYAR.