I write young adult stories that could take place next week — but let’s hope they don’t.

NERVE, a YA thriller about an online game of Truth or Dare, without the truth, is available from Dial, with a feature film in production by Lionsgate, starring Emma Roberts and Dave Franco. (More here!) Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman (Catfish, Paranormal Activity 3 & 4) will direct the screenplay by Jessica Sharzer (American Horror Story), and Allison Shearmur (The Hunger Games: Catching Fire) and Anthony Katagas (12 Years a Slave) will produce. For images from the movie set, check out #nervenyc on Twitter! NERVE is available in audio and is being published in eighteen foreign editions—check out a few of the covers below.

My next book, CHARISMA, a YA suspense about a girl willing to swap out her DNA for the life she dreams of, only to discover a nightmare, is now available, with foreign versions coming in French, Dutch, and Portuguese! Here’s a sneak peek on Hypable which calls it “a scientific thriller with heart.” To find out more about CHARISMA, NERVE, and author events, visit my facebook page.


Available now from Dial/Penguin

“[R]eaders will find themselves flipping madly to the very last page.” Kirkus Reviews

“Ryan questions the nature of entertainment and explores the concept of privacy in a world of increasingly sophisticated social media. Teens will find themselves drawn in by the story’s possibilities, and unNERVEd by its outcome. Give this to Suzanne Collins’s Hunger Games fans.” School Library Journal

“Ryan’s story is thought-provoking and unsettling…the ending goes off with a bang and a twist.” Publishers Weekly

“This is a head-trip of a book, that will make you question the popularity of reality shows and online games.” Parkersburg News & Sentinel

“[T]he book whizzes along at a tremendous, thoroughly enjoyable clip.” A.V. Club

~Included in the LA Times Fall 2012 Roundup of young adult fiction.

When Vee is picked to be a player in NERVE, an anonymous game of dares broadcast live online, she discovers that the game knows her. They tempt her with prizes taken from her ThisIsMe page and team her up with the perfect boy, sizzling-hot Ian. At first it’s exhilarating–Vee and Ian’s fans cheer them on to riskier dares with higher stakes. But the game takes a twisted turn. Suddenly they’re playing all or nothing, and the prize may be their lives.

International Covers




Catalan Edition, Edicions 62

Taiwanese Edition, Doing


Available now!

“[A] provocative and entertaining read…a solid thriller.” Kirkus Reviews

“Not a far step from Ned Vizzini’s Be More Chill…The science is explained well enough for non-scientist readers to understand, and gives teens much to think about regarding medical ethics and experimentation.” School Library Journal

“[F]resh and intriguing.” Publishers Weekly

“This Robin Cook–like thriller zips along at breakneck speed to a satisfying conclusion.” Booklist

A chance at the ultimate makeover means deadly consequences in a story that’s part medical thriller, part social justice commentary.

Aislyn suffers from crippling shyness—that is, until she’s offered a dose of Charisma, an underground gene therapy drug guaranteed to make her shine. The effects are instant. She’s charming, vivacious, and popular. But strangely, so are some other kids she knows. The media goes into a frenzy when the disease turns contagious, and then deadly, and the doctor who gave it to them disappears. Aislyn must find a way to stop it, before it’s too late.

NEW! A Common Core aligned discussion guide is now available as a free PDF. Use the form on the Contact page to request a copy.