Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Tomorrow my review will go live and with it the announcement of winners. So hurry up and enter. Extra entries for anyone who visits Angie at her blog and gives her HUGE CONGRATS on the fact that The Dangerous Book For Demon Slayers is going in for a second printing, and that was even before the official release date!!!!
So go forth and enter. Leave a comment here, leave a comment on Angie's blog, blog it yourself. Just enter!
Thursday, April 23, 2009
One of the funnest parts of hosting authors on here is getting to get a sneak peak, as it were, behind the scenes to their books, writing process, and other fun details that make up the life of an author and then sharing them with all of you. So, grab a cuppa and sit back and read this Q&A I have with Angie. Make sure to post any questions for her in the comments and earn entries into this weeks GREAT contest!
Tell us about The Dangerous Book for Demon Slayers.
The Dangerous Book for Demon Slayers is the story of what happens when you take a bunch of biker witches to Las Vegas. Well, it’s more than that, I suppose. Lizzie and the gang head to Las Vegas to save her uncle from marrying a succubus.
As she experiences all kinds of new (and weird) things in Vegas, Lizzie is determined, once and for all, to master her powers. In fact, she’s going to write the book on demon slaying. So she begins a journal, The Dangerous Book for Demon Slayers, where she records what she’s learning, starting with newfound discoveries about demons, gargoyles and a particularly mischievous live spell named Beanie who likes to fill Lizzie’s boots with pumpkin spice latte.
Things get dangerous when the demons get their hooks in Dimitri. He’s much darker and sexier in this book. And we introduce a new character, Max, who is half demon and 100% yummy.
Did you have to do a lot of research for the book?
Loads, actually. First off, the biker witches ride Harleys, and I’d never been on a motorcycle before. Second, I had to figure out how to get Pirate the dog onto a bike.
I went online and learned about the Biker Dogs Motorcycle Club, made up exclusively of Harley riders and their dogs. I ended up meeting some of them, along with a few other bikers along the way. These bikers were so great to me. They hoisted me onto the back of their Harleys (with dogs in tow). They took me to biker rallies (note to self: don’t wear pink). And they laughed at me when I tried to put my helmet on backwards (I still say I was distracted by the Pomeranian wearing a tiny pair of motorcycle glasses). After a few outings with my new biker friends, I was able to make my geriatric biker witch characters a lot more realistic. And I took home some great pictures, too.
My second favorite it of research was the behind-the-scenes tour of Hoover Dam. The climax of The Dangerous Book for Demon Slayers takes place down there, and I was lucky enough to be invited to see first-hand what I’d be writing about. A guide took me far down into the inspection tunnels they used in the 1930’s and 40’s, when the cement was still curing. It was amazing to see the notes these inspectors made on the walls, to hear the stories of those that didn’t quite make it out and to walk the same old metal steps that they did. All of that made it into The Dangerous Book for Demon Slayers, along with lots of things I had a blast making up (this is fiction after all).
What was your reaction when you learned The Accidental Demon Slayer was a New York Times bestseller?
Complete shock. The phone rang on a Friday afternoon, as I was writing the climax of The Dangerous Book for Demon Slayers. I almost didn’t answer the phone. After all, who would call in smack dab in the middle of a demon invasion?
Luckily, I picked up because it was my agent, saying that The Accidental Demon Slayer would be #34 on the New York Times list the next day. I didn’t know what to think. Heck, I’d just wanted to sell enough books so that I could keep writing about biker witches, demon slayers and talking terriers. I had to ask my agent to please email me too, just to make sure I wasn’t phone-hallucinating.
What comes first: the plot or the characters?
For me, it’s both. For example, when I sat down to write these books, I had no notes about a sidekick for my heroine. But in the second chapter, when she’d learned she was a demon slayer and all hell was after her, she took comfort in her dog. As I was writing, I thought, ‘This is a sweet moment. Now how do I throw her off?’ Simple. I made the dog say something to her. Nothing big. After all, he’s only after the fettuccine from last week. And he knows exactly where my heroine can find it (back of the fridge, to the left of the lettuce crisper, behind the mustard).
It amused me, so I did it. Thanks to her unholy powers, my heroine can now understand her smart-mouthed Jack Russell Terrier. So did plot influence character? Maybe there it did. But I can tell you that as the book evolves, Pirate the dog does his share of influencing the plot too. Bottom line? I think the most important thing when you sit down to the keyboard is to be willing to follow your story in new directions, because if you’re enjoying the surprise, chances are your readers will too.
If you weren't writing, what would you be doing?
Reading…way too much. Oh wait, I do that anyway.
How does your family feel about your career as a romance author?
Well I admit I had these fantasies of my husband saying things like, “Oh let me fix dinner. You look like you’re really focused on getting that dialogue right.” Or my kids saying, “Wow. Mom is a published author. We’d better not use her laptop cord as a jump rope.” Alas, my home life hasn’t changed at all. Well, other than the fact that it might be a bit strange that my four-year-old knows what an editor is. She gets calls from her “editor” on her Tinkerbell play phone.
What do we have to look forward next?
Right now, I’m writing book 3 in the Accidental Demon Slayer series, tentatively titled A Tale of Two Demon Slayers. In it, Lizzie and the gang travel to Greece where they learn more about Dimitri’s past and a threat that could destroy them all. I’m having a ball with it because it’s so much fun to explore Dimitri’s home, his family and his juicy past.
I also have a story in The Mammoth Book of Vampire Romance 2, which comes out on Halloween. And then I’m working on a voodoo novella for this amazing anthology that I’m not allowed to announce yet. But when it is out, and when I do have copies, I’ll be sure to give some out right here because, let’s face it, Charity rocks.
Awe! Thanks Angie! I think YOU ROCK! I've always wondered though, on those anthologies? How do those come to be? Do you the authors get together and decide to pitch it or is it something the editors do? I've just always been curious!
Thanks so much for joining me over here again, Angie. I know you're at RT right now, and what a great time to for it in the ways of promoting, but I know it's tough trying to keep up with us over here! And speaking of RT, how's that going? Has Dimitri been on your heels all night yet?
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
As you know, my guest this week is the uber talented Angie Fox, author of The Accidental Demon Slayer and the soon to be released The Dangerous Book For Demon Slayers. In fact, this entire week is just one great big celebration in honor of the release of second book in this great series! Why? Because I love the series, that's why. And I'm sure that once you've had a chance to read it (if you haven't already, which I'm sure you have) you will too!
Anyway, as I mentioned yesterday their would be prizes, and whoo boy do we have prizes! Signed books! Kiss My Asphalt Tee Shirts! Cover Flats, anyone? Oh, and SIGNED GALLEY PAGES from The Dangerous Book For Demon Slayers! So, what do I have to do? you may ask, to win such Novel prizes? Well, first, since we're talking Demons, you must make a virgin sacrifice and your first born, never mind, I require no such thing. Simply help us spread the word about Angie and her new book. We have widgets you can post, click here to get one. You can use your Facebook or MySpace status to send people our way. You can use your own blog. You can use e-mail, chat rooms, or any other form you so choose. If you do blog it, please leave me a link in the comments so I can link to you. All they have to do is leave a comment here (http://novelreads.wordpress.com/)saying you sent them. Easy Peasy, no? The comment can be on any post this week that is about Angie and her books or contest rules. There is no limit to how many people you can send our way, the more the merrier in fact, since we want to spread the word far and wide about this great series. Double entries if the person you send our way also gives us their Biker Witch Name, which today my name BWN is Mantrap Marcie Fancy Pants ! I'm definitely digging that one!
This is a pic of the front of the tee shirts up for grabs, and don't forget all the other loot Angie has graciously agreed to give out. For another chance to enter, simply leave a question in the comments for Angie to answer, as she's going to be doing a little Q&A with us this week. I have tell you, she's one busy lady this week, she's also, as I type this, on a plane to Orlando, FL for the RT Convention, where she'll be shadowed by Dimitri on night, and yes, I have requested pictures.
So, what are you waiting for? Get to entering! And for some reason, some comments are getting sent to me for moderation, I'm trying to catch them as quickly as possible, I don't know how to change that yet, but promise I am working on it. This is definitely a work in progress kind of site right now!
Monday, April 20, 2009
I love debut authors. I always have. So last year, when I had the chance to inteview Angie Fox, the chance to give a way cool prizes with Angie Fox, and the chance to read and celebrate Angie's debut novel The Accidental Demon Slayer, I jumped at it and spent an entire week with the wonderfully funny and talented author. (Note, some of these links are to this blog not my blogger one. As soon as I figure out how to import the comments, those'll go up too!). BUT, you wanna know what's even cooler about introducing a debut author? Having that author back the next year to celebrate their SECOND release AND the fact that they are now a NYT Best selling author!!!!! CONGRATS Angie, you so deserve it!
And the best part? Angie not only agreed to come back this year to celebrate the release of the next book in the series, The Dangerous Book for Demon Slayers, she's also agreed to host a contest... right here on this blog! I can't tell you all the prizes just yet, but I can tell you there will be tee shirts are more! So, let's just kick it off today with an easy way to start entering. First, click here and tell me your Biker Witch Name, mine is Mosquito Bite Marcie No Pants, I imagine I'll choose a different one for every day of this Week O' Demon Slayin'. Just leave your name in the comments.
Then, click here to find out How Much of a Demon Slayer You Are, and leave me a comment telling me your percentage. Want even more entries? Use the widget on your own blog, MySpace, or FaceBook page and leave me a linkyloo in the comments and you'll get FIVE extra entries into the contest, and please be sure to link back to this post in yours.
Check back tomorrow for more Angie Fox fun! This is gonna be one WILD week!
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Evil In Carnations by Kate Collins
What do you do when your best friend and roommate can't relate to your relationship bliss? I tried to help her get back her mojo...but I didn't know her first date would turn out to have cold feet - literally.
THE DATING SCENE CAN BE A KILLER.
Determined to help her roommate, Nikki, out of her singles slump, Abby Knight encourages her to give speed dating a try. Of course Nikki wants the guy at the very bottom of Abby's list, Jonas Treat - aka Treat the Cheat - and figures one day with him cant hurt. Her lack of good judgment catches up with her when Jonas is found dead - and evidence points to Nikki as his killer.
To clear Nikki's name, Abby enlists the help of her ex-Army Ranger boyfriend, Marco. But just when Nikki's situation looks dire and Abby needs Marco most, his rambunctious extended family descends, turning Abby's hectic life into a disaster zone. Abby's patience is seriously wilting, but with a killer on the loose, she can't throw in the trowel. She's determined to dig herself out of this mess - before someone buries her instead.
I've said it before and I'll say it again, I LOVE Abby Knight and the cast of characters that is her family and friends. I want to live in New Chapel and I want to work at Bloomers. Yes, I would have no problems living in that fictional world.
Abby has had many a close call with the police. She's had to clear her own name, her hunky boyfriends name, and many others. But now, her best friend, Nikki is accused of murder. Sweet Nikki. Abby can't believe it when the police show up at her apartment to bring Nikki in for questioning. But what Abby really is having a hard time believing is that maybe, just maybe, she doesn't know her best friend nearly as well as she thought she did. And more than probably she's to blame for putting Nikki in this predicament in the first place.
But poor Abby has more to worry about than Nikki's case, her dear friend and co-worker Lottie has to be rushed to the hospital, Marco's sister doesn't exactly trust Abby with her brother's heart, and finally both families think that Marco and Abby are engaged!
In this latest installment, the eighth in The Flower Shop Mysteries, Collins proves yet again that the roots she's planted in the cozy genre are thriving. I enjoy watching Abby grow as not only a person but also as an amateur sleuth. I enjoy the relationships she's formed and the easy way in which the reader is transported into this world. Collins writes solid mysteries adding just the right amount of humor and romance to ensure something to appease even the pickiest of readers.
Collins has a new site launching on May 1, that's why her name above takes you to her joint blog.
Miss Beautiful survived a tough winter, making it through two serious cases of pneumonia, strep poisoning, scarlet fever, and a fever that lasted four days and reached as high as 104.9. She's finally back to pre-sick weight, which is still underweight for her age, but she's healthy, happy and strong and that's all I can ask for.
Bear has almost reached his self imposed goal of 100 AR points. He is 8 away and will be among a very few 3rd graders that will reach that number. He is looking forward to swimming again soon, and while practices and meets take up a lot of my time in the summer, it's worth it to see him so happy. His school work is OK, he has a noisy class and as a dyslexic it makes it tough for him, but he's passing with almost all 'A's and we're proud of him just for trying and studying so very hard. We've been reading The 39 Clues series of books together and are anxiously awaiting the next one in June. I'll be posting about them soon!
So as you can see - we're busy. I had almost decided that it wasn't really worth it to keep up the blog. That money is so tight, and things are so uncertain right now that it would be better if I just quit. But for the same reasons I thought about quitting, I've decided to get back on the horse and continue to talk books. Books are my escape, and if you're reading this, I imagine they are yours as well. So, if I can make it that much easier to decide on a good book or help steer you away from an iffy one, then that's worth it! Also, I would like to thank Fantasy Dreamer for the Let's Be Friends Award. Trust me, I needed that and it played no small part in getting me back to this site!
So, I'm going to type up some book talk next, and a second post for today will go up. I've got an interview with LuAnn McLane to post soon and Best Selling Author Angie Fox will be returning in a couple of weeks to party with us in celebration of her second book THE DANGEROUS BOOK FOR DEMON SLAYERS ! We have a some really fun stuff planned, hopefully even bigger and better than the blast we had last year!