Night Owl Reviews 3
Q & A with an Author Look into the Lives of Authors
Inside the Cookbook Find Some Awesome Cookbooks
Fabulous Fiction An Inside Look
Teen Reads Young Adult Reads For All
Urban Fantasy and the Paranormal Hot UF / PN Releases Every Month
Love and Romance in Color Diversity in Romance
Leaf’s Legends A Look Inside Legends
Novel Technology The Low Down on Tech for Readers
A Piece Of My Mind Insights for Writers
Romance Stories To Make You Fall In Love
Dark Streets Suspense at Its Best
Featured Reviews Get Insight into Titles Each Month
Staying On Top Bestselling Authors Share
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SARAH KERNOCHAN Current Release: Jane Was Here Publisher: Grey Swan Press, Inc.
Please tell us your latest news! I’m currently writing a film script for a 2012 production, and champing at the bit to start my next book. Please describe your writing environment.
I just bought my parents’ home following their deaths. It’s in Martha’s Vineyard and I can throw myself in the ocean after a hard day’s work writing. Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
Faulkner has been my lifelong crush. His voice is utterly unique, fluid, and free: the reader simply gets in the boat and the river does the rest. Like Balzac, he depicts characters from every stratum of society and he doesn’t beg sympathy for any of them: they just are who they are. In my novel JANE WAS HERE there are characters whom some call “unpleasant.” I call them human. Faulkner never shied away from character flaws, and I don’t either. I do think he had a dimmer view of human existence than I do. Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
As a child I loved to write, but then again I loved to do a lot of things, even stuff I wasn’t any good at. The idea of writing as a profession and life’s purpose took hold when I was 14. My 19-year-old boyfriend dropped out of Princeton to write a novel, and I thought that was pretty cool. I was too tall to be an actress, anyway. So I started writing and never stopped. I finished my first novella when I was 16, already preferring long-form fiction to short stories. What’s been the most challenging part of writing for you?
Finding the time to write what I want. My day job has been screenwriting for the past 30 years. Very few of my scripts have been written just for myself: usually they’re for a company or producer that pays for them and owns them. I put my career in some jeopardy when I turned down work in order to write JANE WAS HERE. It was just getting too hard to have to put it down constantly in order to chase a paycheck. I wrote the first 2/3 of the book in my spare time, and it took 3 years! Full Interview at: http://www.nightowlreviews.com/nor/Interviews/ Tamazon-interviews-Sarah-Kernochan-on-Aug-23-2011.aspx
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FABULOUS FICTION AND A FABULOUS AUTHOR!
of working on the launch of one book and the writing of another that I, oddly, love it! I like to stay busy, so it’s working for me at present.
I have to keep my part of this short, because I want to spend my word count with Sarah! Sarah Jio, author of The Violets of March quickly made herself into my new favorite author. If you have not read this title yet, you must! It was beautifully written and kept me glued to its pages. I’m thrilled to have Sarah here with me. Enjoy the interview and go buy her book!
In addition to your two books, The Debutante Ball, your blog and magazine columns, you welcomed your 3rd child into the world this year! How do you manage your time? Well, it’s a very crazy life, that’s for sure. I have three little boys, so it’s wild around here. I make it work by doing my magazine work during the day, along with answering emails and doing office work, and then when the kids are in bed and the house is quiet, I turn to fiction. I love working on my books at night, preferably when it’s raining outside and I have a big cup of tea on my desk and a golden retriever at my feet. I do have some help—a lovely babysitter who helps out here two days a week, and my long-suffering mother who travels two hours from her home every Wednesday to play with her grandsons so I can get some work done!
You’ve been a Debutante on www.thedebutanteball.com for the past year. What has your experience been like? It has been truly wonderful. I’ve loved being a part of such a creative community of women writers, and the fun thing is what you see on the blog has been only a sliver of our interaction together. We have emailed each other throughout the year to share good news and lean on each other when things weren’t going so well in our professional and personal lives. These women are true friends.
What thrills you about writing?
I get really excited about my stories, so much so that I get antsy when I can’t work on them. I am fortunate in the fact that writing is my business and my hobby, in a sense. So many people hate what they do for a living, and while its hard work sometimes, it’s also very rewarding. I adore creating my fictional worlds. In some ways, after I have had a hard day with the kids, getting to retreat to my office after they’re in bed feels comforting to me.
Your 1st book, The Violets of March, released last April. Your 2nd book, The Bungalow, was scheduled to release in 2012 and has been moved to December of 2011!! What is it like to have two titles released in the same year?
It’s crazy and exciting! If someone would have told me this would be happening, I would never believe them. The Bungalow came to me very vividly, and I was able to write it quickly. It was such a joy to write. I also was pregnant at the time, so I was racing to finish it before I got too far into my third trimester (which is the time when I become a beached whale and lose the ability to do much of anything!). But, regarding two books in one year: I found, through the process
Any authors inspire you?
I’m endlessly inspired by the careers of Jodi Picoult and Kristin Hannah. Both have sustained long and prolific careers with legions of fans who adore them. Of course, the secret is that they write great books. But, I think it’s more than that. Lots of writers write great books, but I think these two are
www.NightOwlReviews.com such dynamos because they love what they do and readers can see that. I can only hope that my career will be a fraction as successful. (And, I’m so fortunate that each of these authors praised my books—Jodi Picoult for The Violets of March, and Kristin Hannah for The Bungalow. What challenges you as a writer?
Time. I never have enough of it. I love being a mother and my children come first. But, it’s a balancing act. I literally interviewed Gwyneth Paltrow on the phone this year while nursing my baby (I didn’t plan it this way, but she called early and I had to improvise!). What challenges you as a mom?
Like almost every mom, I have a ton of mom guilt. Right now, for instance, I’m planning a book tour for The Bungalow this winter, and I’ll have to leave the older boys at home with my husband (the baby, who will still be nursing, is going with me!), and that makes me sad. I know I’ll miss them so much. My biggest challenge has always been letting go. Even when the babysitter is here, I’m still running around kissing owies, changing diapers and preparing lunches just the way I know they like them.
visiting. Take a ferry to Bainbridge Island (just walk right on) and explore Winslow. Have lunch or a grab a cup of coffee and check out the island, then catch the ferry back. This 25 minute ferry ride is one of the most beautiful experiences ever. I’m always so sad when people visit Seattle and don’t squeeze in a ferry ride. There is nothing like it! I’ve ridden the Seattle-Bainbridge ferry hundreds of times, and it still takes my breath away.
Have you ever based a character in your novel on a real person? No, not directly. But I steal character traits all the time! Aunt Bee in Violets, for example, shares some characteristics with my late grandmother, Cecelia. Do you have a “first” reader?
Yes, always my husband. He is direct and honest with me, and I always pace the floor when he’s reading my drafts and bug him every two minutes for feedback. My second and third books made him cry a little at the end (and this man never cries!), so I was very pleased! Title of the last book you read?
Do you or have you ever belonged to a book club?
I’m not in a book club now, but I have been in the past. I loved them, and I miss being a part of one. I talk to a lot of book clubs for The Violets of March (in person and on the phone) and one lovely book club in Seattle invited me to join theirs. I had so much fun with them—stayed way past 10 p.m. chatting about books, kids, life. I think I may take them up on their offer. Talk about something that is making you happy right now.
The new sun umbrella on my back deck and the dreamy string lights underneath. I love sitting out there at night. It makes me appreciate my home and the lovely Seattle summers. Tell me something surprising about you.
I sneeze, without fail, after I take my very first bite of chocolate. What are you afraid of?
Snakes and rodents (even hamsters!).
Name something people shouldn’t leave Seattle without
Houseboat by Ben Dennis and Betsy Case—I’m doing my research for my fourth novel, which is set on a houseboat! Aside from my already highly stated opinion, why should people read your books?
Because I love what I do, and I hope it shows through in my writing. A reader wrote to me recently after finishing The Violets of March, and she said something like “I can tell that you loved everything about this story—the setting, the characters, everything—so much because it comes through on every page. That was such a compliment to me. I really put my heart in my books, and it’s just an honor to send them out there and see that people are connecting with them. How can readers connect with you?
Please visit me on, www.sarahjio.com, and on www.facebook.com/sarahjioauthor -------------------
Tiffany is an avid reader, reviewer and marketing specialist. You can connect with her via the following outlets. Website- http://acozyreaderscorner.blogspot.comTwitter - @cozyreadersnook – Facebook http://www. facebook.com/groups/#!/pages/A-Cozy-Readers-Corner/152514161454295
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THE SUMMER ENDS The end of summer… it is always a sad, bittersweet feeling saying goodbye to the long hot days and settling back into the routine of life. At least that’s how it is for me, a working mom with kids. Summer is a long vacation from homework struggles , keeping school uniforms clean and parent teacher conferences. Now Autumn is here, the kids are back to school and I can curl up with a good book at night without being interrupted because the kids are back to their regular bedtimes and not staying up all night listening to music and playing video games. It’s wonderful and sad all at the same time. Thankfully there are plenty of good books to read to take my mind off the sad part. Entangled Publishing’s September line-up contains: Mark of the Sylph (Demons of Infernum, Book 2) by Rosalie Lario, Stone Cold Seduction (Book 1 of the Set in Stone Series) by Jess Macallan, which is a sexy read that is both different and intriguing, and Rachel Firasek’s The Last Rising that has been described as “strong...flawless really…bit of a paranormal twist happening. I’m completely hooked” by author Kay Dee Royal. New releases in popular UF and PNR series include: Spider’s Revenge (Elemental Assassin, #5) by Jennifer Estep, Archangel’s Blade (Guild Hunter, #4) by Nalini Singh, Dark Predator (Carpathians, #22) by Christine Feehan, Bloodstone (Deadtown, #3) by Nancy Holzner, Demon Marked (The Guardians, #7) by Meljean Brook, Envy (Fallen Angels, #3) by J.R. Ward, Must Love Lycans (Broken Heart Vampires, #8) by Michele Bardsley, The Rift Walker (Vampire Empire, #2) by Clay Griffith, Susan Griffith, and Sexiest Vampire Alive (Love at Stake, #11) by Kerrelyn Sparks. New series that look promising include: Shadow Kin (The Half-Light City, #1) by M.J. Scott, Blood Rights (House of Comarré, #1) by Kristen Painter - this cover alone makes me love the book, and Darkness Unbound (Dark Angels #1) by Keri Arthur. Some stand alone titles include: Must Love Vampires by Heidi Betts which has to be the sweetest vampire romance
I’ve ever read- if you’re looking for a sweet love story (two actually) that just happens to include fangs this is for you; and A Vampire Christmas Carol by Sarah Gray (which I’m adding to my wish list because – come on Christmas and vampires got to get it, Bound By Blood by Amanda Ashley. And if you love anthologies and short story collections be sure to check out: Enthralled: Paranormal Diversions, edited by Melissa Marr and Kelley Armstrong; The Monster’s Corner: Stories Through Inhuman Eyes by Christopher Golden; Blood and Other Cravings by Ellen Datlow; Entangled by Edie Ramer, Misty Evans, Michelle Miles, Lori Brighton, Dale Mayer, Nancy Haddock, Michelle Diener, Cynthia Eden, Liz Kreger, Jennifer Estep and Allison Brennan; Ghosts by Gaslight: Stories of Steampunk and Supernatural Suspense, edited by Jack Dann and Nick Gevers ; The Beast Within, by Erin McCarthy, Bianca D’Arc, and Jennifer Lyon ; and Vampires, Zombies, Werewolves, and Ghosts: 25 Classic Stories of the Supernatural, edited by Barbara H. Solomon and Eileen Panetta. I don’t know about you but my ever growing book wishlist just got a little longer. SUPER QUICK AUTHOR INTERVIEWS (SQAIS) INTERVIEW WITH MAGGIE JAMES Author of Love Bleeds
RR: Let’s start out by getting the name of your newest release and what genre/category it falls into: MJ: “Love Bleeds” and it is a Paranormal Romance. RR: Can you describe your heroine in 3 words? MJ: Beautiful, Strong-willed, Independent
RR: Can you describe your hero in 3 words? MJ: Arrogant, Sensual, Mysterious
RR: What is one unique trait about your heroine?
MARK OF THE SYLPH DEMONS OF INFERNUM, #2 by Rosalie Lario
Half-demon Taeg is desperate to free his pregnant sister-in-law, who is spellbound to an indestructible book that will create an army of the undead. He is convinced that an ancient sword can destroy the book and the spell forever, but this relic has been hidden for a millennia by a powerful glamour. The clock begins to run out on his search when an old rival goes after the book and Teag’s family in his quest for revenge. Librarian Maya Flores has a secret: she’s immune to magic and is well aware of the supernatural beings prowling the streets of New York City. Haunted by a brutal demon attack that took her family, she is on a one-woman mission to destroy the evil demons who did it—and any others who get in her way. Maya is Taeg’s best hope for uncovering the sword. Unfortunately, she wants nothing more than to kill him. As he fights for her trust and to save his family, she is forced to face the truth that not all demons are evil. And the worst part? She might be falling in love with one, too.
MUST LOVE VAMPIRES by Heidi Betts
Nightclub dancer Chloe Lamoureaux just met the man of her dreams: Aidan Raines is charming, considerate, rich, and hot. Of course, he’s a little mysterious about his age. And his favorite drink. And he’s not much for sunlight. But he’s asked her to marry him, and she’s ready to do it. Sure, she has a few secrets too—but they’ll have plenty of time to work things out while they’re living happily ever after. Right?
Her identical twin sister, Chuck, isn’t so sure. Maybe reporting for the local Bigfoot-sighting tabloid doesn’t make her an expert, but to Chuck, Aidan and his brother Sebastian look like honest-to-Dracula vampires. Especially Sebastian: beguiling, seductive, and just a hint of dangerous. Maybe she wouldn’t mind him taking a little taste. But with Chloe’s life in the balance, she has to know—do they want hot love or hot blood? Or maybe…a little of both?
Night Owl Reviews
www.NightOwlReviews.com MJ: She is not a starry eyed, love-sick rock star fan/groupie or a woman who is easily manipulated. She is a beautiful, intelligent woman who is no easy prey for a handsome, determined vampire, regardless of how sexy or tempting he may be.
RR: Please finish this sentence: The best thing about being an author is MJ: being able to write what I love and have others appreciate and enjoy it!
RR: What is one unique trait about your hero?
RR: And last but not least, when and where can we expect to find your book?
MJ: Not only is he a sinfully hot vampire but he is the extremely talented lead singer for the band “Slang”. (Definitely NOT your “average Joe”...lol)
MJ: LOVE BLEEDS is currently available in ebook format at Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble.com and Smashwords.com and will soon be available on Amazon.com in paperback.
RR: What is the sexiest trait of the main man in your newest book?
INTERVIEW WITH MJ PRESTON Author of the horror novel, The Equinox
MJ: He is an expert at the art of seduction (as well as an amazing lover).
RR: Name of your newest release and genre/category it falls into:
RR: What’s the heat level of your book? MJ: SIZZLING!!
RR: What kind of paranormals or paranormal elements are in your book?
MJP: In July I published my debut Horror Novel: THE EQUINOX
MJP: Obsessive, relentless, remorseful
RR: Can you describe your main character in 3 words
RR: Without giving away details, Can you describe one interesting scene in your book in less than two sentences?
RR: Can you describe your hero in one sentence? MJP: Chief David Logan is a somewhat intimidating figure to look at, but those that know him see the thoughtful, father-like, man behind the brute force.
MJ: When Kat finds out the truth behind Joe’s sensual and mysterious persona, her first thought is to run like hell; that is, until she sees another side of him that forces her to come to terms with her own emotions and her undeniable attraction.
RR: What kind of paranormals or paranormal elements are in your book? MJP: Paranormals include Windigo’s, Skin-walkers, mysterious orbs, ghostly visitations and vision quests. Readers will journey back through time and learn about the lore surrounding the creature and there is a great deal of mysticism.
RR: List three adjectives that describe your book as a whole: MJ: Tantalizing, Exciting, Romantic
RR: Can you name one unique element about your book?
RR: Without giving away details, Can you describe one interesting scene in your book in less than two sentences?
MJ: Not only is the hero a strong, dangerously handsome, alpha male vampire but he doubles as an overtly talented, modern day rock star fueled by lust and a hunger that can’t be denied.
MJP: A young boy sits perched in a tree above a man who does not know he is there; if the man looks up the boy will undoubtedly die.
RR: Can you sum up the book in 2 sentences or less?
MJ: Love Bleeds is an alluring and irresistible blend of Sex, Blood & Rock’n’Roll with a unique cast of characters that will steal your heart and make your temperature rise. A fresh, unique take on vampires and paranormal romance that leads the reader down a winding path through the immortal world of love, lust, seduction and revenge.
RR: In two sentences or less can you tell readers something unique about your book?
MJP: It is a horror tale like no other in that it delivers a creature not often represented in modern suspense novels. Couple that with a modern police investigation into unspeakable crimes; the story takes you on a ride into a town
Night Owl Reviews where worlds and cultures are destined to collide.
level of hell he is, yet all the women seem to be attracted to his powers- even if they are almost always harmed or at the very least collateral for his own pleasures.
RR: List three adjectives that describe your book as a whole:
RR: What’s the heat level of your book?
MJP: Provocative, Sensitive, Reflective
RR: What’s the heat level of your book? MJP: If “arctic winter” represents lack of eroticism then that will suffice. RR: And last but not least, where can a reader purchase your book?
MJP: The Equinox is available on my websites: MJ Preston The Equinox or can be purchased through Amazon.com or Lulu.com.
RR: What kind of paranormals or paranormal elements are in your book?
KB: vampires, vampires, and more vampires, naturally, with varying degrees of evilness and a few hints of goodness and light tossed in through the ages. Love chronicles the end of the Viking era, but Punishment takes place in Mestiphles’ dark and deadly little dimension called The Void. FATE and FANGS Book 3, Struggle, tosses in some werewolves in Colonial America for good measure.
INTERVIEW WITH KRISTIN BATTESTELLA Author of Fate and Fangs
RR: Let’s start out by getting the name of your newest release and what genre/category it falls into:
RR: Can you give me three things that describe the book as a whole?
KB: The first book in my new FATE and FANGS: Tales from the Vampire Family series Love: Ann and the Viking came out in August from Muse It Up Publishing. Book 2 Punishment: Lilith’s Trials is out this month. Where Love seems more like a traditional historical paranormal romance, it does throw in a few bloodlusty spins, of course. Punishment is a little more abstract and spends its time on pain and more dark honorific elements. The FATE and FANGS series is a sequel of sorts to my 2008 novel with Eternal Press, The Vampire Family. In these 7 books, we take the time to know the Love, Punishment, Struggle, Debauchery, Lust, Humanity, and Resurrection of several characters from that universe.
KB: Ann and the Viking is personally adventurous, yearning for satisfaction, and sea faringly sexy! RR: Can you sum up the book in 2 sentences or less?
KB: Punishment is about immortal beings being forced to confront their longevity and the evil of their eternal ways. Who would have the authority to be the judge, jury, and executioner over such ancient monstrosities and what measure of justice could make such ruthless folks see the error of their ways? RR: Please finish this sentence: The best thing about being an author is
RR: Can you describe your heroine in 3 words?
KB: In Love: Ann and the Viking, Ann is searching, experiencing, blossoming
KB: Travel. I get to journey to fantastic realms past, present, and future, both real and imagined! All this without ever leaving my perch atop my big blue exercise ball- er I mean desk chair. It’s real world magic from my head to pen to paper to you. Awesome!
RR: Can you describe your hero in 3 words?
KB: Hmmm 3 words for Eric, the titular Viking of Book 1 – hero, pillaging brute, and sensual
RR: And last but not least, when and where can we expect to find your book?
RR: What is the sexiest trait of the main man in your newest book?
KB: I love that Eric is as wicked on the battlefield as Ann is on the neck, simply put. After being on the vampire fringe for a century, she has finally found a man of action to equal her tastes and temperament. Mestiphles, however, is more alluring in his demonic mystery. No one is really sure what
KB: In actual erotica, Love is perhaps merely in the sweet category. However, if you are turned on by the vampire kink, bites and blood and other dark exchanges, then come on in! Punishment, I dare say is metaphysical vampire torture porn. Very sizzling- for those that can handle it.
KB: Love: Ann and the Viking, FATE and FANGS Book 1, and Book 2 in the series Punishment: Lilith’s Trials are both available Now from Muse It Up. The next installment, Struggle: Elizabeth in America is due out this Halloween. You can purchase your preferred ebook format from the Muse, Amazon for Kindle, Book Strand, and other e sellers.
RUNESTONES A friend introduced me to casting Runestones a few years ago and when she suggested it, I had to ask what they were. A couple of years later, I saw a PBS special on Runes, which put the little stones I’d been pulling from the bag to forecast my day, into a different light. As with a lot of things in history, there are lots of differences on how the runic symbols or alphabet came to be. Some argue the runic alphabet dates to the second and third century A.D. Others contend the first century A.D. The one thing most of the scholars seem to agree on is that the runes grew from an earlier alphabet. From there agreement ends and arguments ensue, one group attributing the symbols to the Etruscan alphabet, another group theorizes the source is Latin. Though runes may have started with early Germanic tribes, the Scandinavians got hold of them and made the word rune famous. The stone casting mentioned earlier is focused on Odin the Nordic god and his goddess Freya. Thanks to the Vikings, the stones have turned up in North America. What exactly is a runestone, you wonder? So glad you asked. According to the definition in Wikipedia: “A runestone is typically a raised stone with a runic inscription, but the term can also be applied to inscriptions on boulders and on bedrock. The tradition began in the 4th century, and it lasted into the 12th century, but most of the runestones date from the late Viking Age. Most runestones are located in Scandinavia, but there are also scattered runestones in locations that were visited by Norsemen during the Viking Age. Runestones are often memorials to deceased men. Runestones were usually brightly colored when erected, though this is no longer evident as the color has worn off.” And those Vikings got around America, too. Stones have been discovered in various states from Maine to Oklahoma. In 1783, the French explorer Verendrye came across a stone fitted into a pillar in Minot, North Dakota. It had markings on both sides and the Indians said it had been there since time immemorial. Of course, he had to take the stone with him back to France where it became lost. The runestone that has created the most discord or discussion in American is probably the one discovered outside Kensington, Minnesota. Farmer Olaf Ohman probably had no idea of the years of arguments scholars were in for when his ten years old son called
him over to look at the stone he had discovered entangled in the roots of the tree stump they took out in an effort to clear land. Disagreement still runs rampant today over the authentic nature of the large rock with runic carvings. Nine years after its discovery, Hjalmer Holand, a graduate student from the University of Wisconsin heard about it and went to see the stone. He translated the writing to read: “8 Goths and 22 Norweigans on exploration journey from Vinland over the west. We camp by 2 skerries one day-journey from this stone. We were and fished one day. After we came home, 10 men red with blood and tourtured. Hail Virgin Mary, save from evil. Have 10 men by the sea to look after our ship, 14 day -journeys from this island year 1362.” Wow, 1362, a long time before Columbus set foot on American soil. That leads to another discussion on American history and the discovery of our country that we won’t get into here, but I’m just saying, all that stuff we were taught in school about 1492 and so forth… Since the artifact was not left in place, issues on its date still come under discussion, even with carbon dating. Though in June of 2011, Arthur D. Faram posted an article arguing that it has been proven to be authentic. You can read it at http://www.thekensingtonrunestone. com/ where he lays out his evidence. The Kensington Stone weighing in at over 200 pounds is a biggie in the debate arena, but there have been discoveries in Oklahoma at various times in the 20th Century. The Heavener Stones and the Poteau keep the discussions flowing, along with the Spirit Pond runestones found in Maine in 1971. It does appear the Vikings were guys who got around and left their calling cards. In addition to writing on stones, their visit with the Native Americans in Minot, ND may explain the blue-eyed Mandan Indians who knew about Christianity before the first settlers arrived, in addition to the square medieval-Norwegian design of their buildings. Which brings up the question, Columbus, did you really discover America?
What Exactly is a Runestone?
Award winning author, Lizzie T. Leaf enjoys writing Paranormal/ Fantasy with a twist of humor. Emerging Magic, the second book in the Magical Love series is set to release late August or early September by Passion in Print Press. www.lizzietleaf.com
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IDEAS The ablest writer is only a gardener first, and then a cook: his tasks are, carefully to select and cultivate his strongest and most nutritive thoughts; and when they are ripe, to dress them, wholesomely, and yet so that they may have a relish. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827 I get some of the best ideas when I am at a writer’s workshop. Sometimes, when I’m not on the panel, I like to sit in the room with friends who have panels and watch them work. Usually I sit in the back of the room, so I can observe the audience and the panel. My friend Meghan was asked a question from the audience. This young man had stood up from his seat and asked “Where do you get your ideas from?” Meghan said, without missing a beat, “Smell the air, ideas fill them all the time!” I chuckled from the back of the room. After I did it, the words WRONG MOVE flashed in my mind. Meghan saw that the man laughing was me. She said, in a mocking tone, “The gentleman in the back of the room, who just chortled loudly, is noted author, Night Owl Columnist and media critic Bennet Pomerantz...So Bennet, where do you get your ideas from?” To quote the novel Moby Dick, Revenge is a dish best served cold. Since I laughed at her, this was her revenge… ET TU MEGHAN. I hate it when I am put on the spot. People turned around to the back of the room. All eyes were now turned upon me. I knew this was a throwaway type question to me. However, to many other beginning writers in the room, it wasn’t. I stood up and said, “I can always use Harlan Ellison’s great answer to that question...Cleveland!” In hindsight, I knew that answer sounded like a cop-
out answer to a question I could have answered better... But that was all I had at the spur of the moment! So I figure I would flesh out this question with a few of my real life experiences I have had and address the question in this month’s column.
************************ To me, an idea can strike you anywhere and at any time. I always carry a small notebook for ideas. I usually fill it out at the strangest times. I do know some of my friends and family dislike intensely when they go to dinner with me. This is because someone will say something, it will trigger an inspiration. Suddenly, my small notebook would appear from my pocket. I would write down the idea before it vanished away. My own mother was ticked at me during one meal we had together. She had said something that spawned a notion of a great story. I wrote six pages in my notebook. Every time she tried to say something, I held my finger up...so I wouldn’t lose this inspiration. After I was done writing, I asked “What did you want to discuss, mom?” She sat quiet for the rest of the meal...she told me later, she did that to make sure she would not interrupt me if I had another creative spark. In late 1976, when I was in my last year of High school, I wrote a play about a boy wizard. Note, this is long before the first film of Star Wars (now called Episode four: A New Hope) and Harry Potter books were ever released. I had seen magician Doug Henning’s amazing Broadway show, the Magic Show, which also starred a pre M*A*S*H star, David Ogden Stiers. The play was about a young magician with an unorthodox look. His first big break is threatened by a villainous rival. Later that night, I had an inspiration of a stage show about
What Exactly is a Runestone?
www.NightOwlReviews.com a young boy wizard who arrived in the mystic land of Magicka, trying to learn the energy force in this world. I wrote the play Illusions. It was work shopped in the college theater lab with a short limited run. Maybe one day I may take this chestnut of a play out of moth balls and rework it. I remember when I had a bad case of writers’ block (yes, and it does happen to the best of writers . . . me included). I could not write my weekly newspaper column, the words wouldn’t come out. I stepped away from the computer. I turned on the TV and watched a few episodes of the classic series the Wild Wild West on TBS. At that time, the TBS network would run classic 1960-70 television shows like West, Man from U.N.C.L.E., The Saint, Perry Mason, etc. They also used to have such shows running in three-hour marathon blocks of programing. I noticed there was a Sherlock Holmes book on my shelf above the TV. A thought occurred to me out of the blue . . . Sherlock Holmes in the West. From that basic concept idea, I wrote a short story entitled “Night of the Shylock”, which I combined the Wild Wild West TV show characters and Sherlock Holmes in a story set in the west. This novella did
not happen overnight, it happened over a three week period. This story appeared in the pages of Power Star Magazine and later in the Sherlock Holmes’ fan publication The Red Circle. This simple short tale even spawned a sequel, “The Case of The Retired American Agent”. All of that came from an exercise of imagination from a bad case of writers’ block! As a writer, I felt the most difficult writing assignment was to write words that I needed to speak over my father’s headstone at the unavailing. The question I had was what would I write. I don’t know where the ideas came from…then I thought of the little phrases that my father used to say. I culled these words and worked them into a poem “The Fisherman’s Son”, which was read in front of family and friends over his headstone. A number of years later, Melody J. Ravert was editing a book on bereavement. She asked if I had anything to submit for her book. So the Fisherman’s Son was reprinted in the collection “Loving Hearts Live Forever” (MJR Publication, LLC). Well that’s all for this month. So until next time, reach for the stars.
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night. But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway— a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands. True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus performers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead. Written in rich, seductive prose, this spell-casting novel is a feast for the senses and the heart.
Night Owl Reviews
Mobbed by Carol Higgins Clark IN REVIEW As promised in an earlier article, I’m posting my review of Carol Higgins Clark’s latest addition to the Regan Reilly Mystery Series – MOBBED. While Mary Higgins Clark’s novels are definitely more “on the dark side” of suspense, Carol distinguished herself with the light, often funny and always entertaining tone of the Regan Reilly mystery series. Carol became interested in writing when she retyped many of her mother’s transcripts while in college, and became hooked on creating characters and telling stories herself. Many of her ideas came from real life experiences, i.e., former jobs, etc. Carol’s characters are quite often amusing and there is a great deal of comic relief mixed in with the mysteries, which are not complex but always entertaining, and MOBBED is no exception. THE STORY
Private investigator Regan Reilly and her husband Jack who heads the NYPD Major Case Squad plan to go to the Jersey Shore for the weekend to celebrate her mom Nora’s birthday. Regan leaves without Jack because Nora asks her to accompany her to the home of Mrs. Edna Frawley who is selling her beach house and therefore hosting a yard sale including items left behind by her tenant movie star Cleo Paradise. Edna’s daughter Karen is a friend of Nora and wants her to insure her mom in her zeal does not sell any of her items. Prior to this, Regan had just finished delivering bad news to a high school classmate. Hayley Patton is a
successful New York City event planner, who had become suspicious that her beau, Scott, was seeing other women and hired Regan to follow him. When Hayley got the lowdown on Scott’s treachery, (he’d just become engaged) she vowed revenge with such vehemence that Regan is worried that Hayley might go too far. Regan and Nora arrive at the Frawley home to find a mob of garage-sale junkies waiting at the front gate. Regan is astonished to see Scott’s brand-new fiancée, who quickly makes herself scarce. Regan receives calls from Cleo’s best friend and the actress’ mother wanting to know where she is. A stalker has been sending Cleo dead roses with thorns as real life imitates the movie she starred in. Cleo’s mom hires Regan to find her daughter who has many enemies among the envious Hollywood crowd. Regan and Nora arrive at the Frawley home to find a mob of garage-sale junkies waiting at the front gate. Regan is astonished to see Scott’s brand-new fiancée, who quickly makes herself scarce. Once inside the house, Regan becomes increasingly suspicious about why Cleo left so many belongings behind when she vacated Edna’s home unexpectedly. Was she in that much of a hurry? Regan wonders. “Where did Cleo go?” is a question too many people are suddenly asking. But no one has the answer. It isn’t long before Regan finds herself searching for Cleo, whose next hours may be her last. Cleo relaxes at a dude ranch nearby, but is unaware that someone is closing in on her to hurt her; at the same Regan seeks to protect her. And, of course, there are quirky characters and red herrings aplenty. MY REVIEW
As always, a Regan Reilly mystery is fun and entertaining, due in large part to the author’s ability to craft delightfully
www.NightOwlReviews.com quirky characters that alternately make us laugh and cry. Reading one of Ms. Clark’s books can be compared to eating at Wendy’s: the menu is pretty much standard and you know going in what you’re getting: a light, fluffy plot, characters that make you laugh (for the most part) a dollup of romance and a predictably happy ending all around. The book moves quickly; there’s plenty of action. Carol Higgins Clark once again manages to take a group of seemingly unrelated characters and tie them all up in a nice little package. I must say I was surprised at the end, at who the villain of the piece turned out to be (no spoiler alert – I won’t give it away for anyone who hasn’t read it yet) but I did miss the presence of Regan’s husband and sleuthing partner, Jack “No Relation” Reilly. Hopefully he’ll make more of an appearance in her next book. I do have a concern – I hope the author isn’t running out of one word titles that end in “ed”- Otherwise that might spell the end of the series – and in my opinion, Regan and Jack have a lot of growing yet to do. I know usually a little one is a death knell, but…I’m sure Nora Reilly would love to have a grandchild to bounce on her knee while the two younger Reillys are off solving mysteries! It was a good read, although I must confess not my favorite (it’s still a tie between HITCHED and LACED, right now running neck and neck) but I would recommend it for anyone who wants a light, summer read and who isn’t in the mood for a darker tale. For sheer escapism, MOBBED more than fills the bill. 4 out of 5 stars. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------By Toni LoTempio – admin by day, writer by night, Toni is the author of several paperback and e-books of romantic and paranormal suspense – check out her website at www.tonilotempio.webs.com and her cat’s blog! www.catsbooksmorecats.blogspot.com Check out her YA fantasy, MY SUPERHERO SISTER and her paranormal romances, NO REST FOR THE WICCA and RAVEN’S KISS. She is also featured in the paranormal romance anthology, KISS ME KILL ME, available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble.
Night Owl Reviews
VICKI LEWIS THOMPSON I received A Werewolf in Manhattan just as I started writing for Night owl Reviews. I fell in love with the characters and decided on impulse to send an email to Vicki Lewis Thompson. I was thrilled when she agreed to do an interview with me. My excitement went through the roof when I found out I’d be getting her two newest ‘Wild About You’ novels. As the time drew near, I anxiously checked the mail and cheered for joy when A Werewolf in Greenwich Village was sent to my email. I finished the story of Nadia and Quentin within hours. Then, a few days later, A Werewolf in the North Woods, arrived in the mail. At that time, lots of stuff came up and I found myself sneaking time to follow the evolving relationship of Roarke and Abby. These novels were amazing and had a great romance line. Werewolves are a favorite of mine, and Vicki did a great job of creating sexy, irresistible males I had no trouble drooling over. Each of the women was heroic and handled their unique situations with sophistication and poise. The three books tied up most of the dead ends and left enough openings for future novels. To know there are a few more powerful werewolf families Vicki hasn’t showcased yet is exciting. There’s endless possibilities! I hope you have as much fun with the Wallace pack, and family, as I did. Vicki has taken the time to let us get to know the woman behind the name. NOR: How long have you been writing?
VLT: Since I learned how in second grade. I latched onto the concept immediately. NOR: How did you discover you wanted to be a writer?
VLT: I was the kind of little kid who lived in my imagination. I had an imaginary friend named Goatry (don’t ask, because I have NO idea where I came up with that) and I’d make my mom set a place at the table for Goatry. I’ve been making stuff up ever since, and once I learned to write, I could get it out of my head and onto . . . well, now it’s a screen, but it used to be paper. NOR: How long did it take you to become published?
VLT: I guess the answer is either thirty years or nine months. I was probably working up to selling a book from the time I scrawled my first poem when I was a kid. But from the time I decided, back in the eighties, that I wanted to sell a romance, it took me about nine months. That was then. This is now, and that kind of quick success is not so common these days. NOR: Do you have another job than writing?
VLT: I am extremely lucky to write for a living and not need an outside job right now. Writing is a risky business, so my fingers are crossed that it stays that way.
NOR: How do you get ideas for stories?
VLT: I have a pretty fertile imagination, and the more I write the better it works, but I also have a secret weapon. I get together with other writers for brainstorming. It’s fun, and it exponentially expands the number of available ideas. I highly recommend it. NOR: What do you do to get into the writing mood?
VLT: I have a couple of favorite triggers for writing. One is scented beeswax candles. Love them! The other is music, and one of my all-time favorite soundtracks is from the first Pirates movie. It’s so stirring, and it makes me think of Johnny Depp, which is not a bad thing.
NOR: What is your writing method like? Do you go by an outline or by seat of the pants? Do you write from beginning to end or just write scenes as they come to you and then fit them together like a puzzle? VLT: Oh, that’s another hobby! I love jigsaw puzzles. So far my most ambitious one was 3,000 pieces. But when it comes to writing, I outline as much as I have to in order to get a contract from my editor, LOL. I’m naturally a pantster, but editors have this need to know you actually have a story in mind before they give you an advance. I don’t know what that’s about. My outlines sort of resemble the finished product. Sort of. But I’m also a linear writer and it would drive me crazy to write scenes out of order, so jigsaw puzzles aside, I start at the beginning and write until I get to the end. However, when I’m stuck on a plot point, I may go work on my jigsaw puzzle, and that sometimes tweaks my brain enough to get me unstuck. NOR: How long does it take you to finish a book, including edits?
VLT: I should probably answer that in terms of hours. If the writing is going well, then I can write about three pages an hour, so if the book’s 300 pages long, that’s a hundred hours for the rough draft. But if the writing’s going slow, which sometimes happens, the rough draft takes much longer. I edit as I go, but my daughter’s my beta reader, so I go back and edit again after she’s looked at the manuscript. A nice pace for me is ten pages a day, five days a week, but I can write longer hours if I need to.
NOR: Do you ever have to deal with writer’s block? VLT: Nope, because I finally figured out what writer’s block is. When you get writer’s block, and I’ve had a couple of slight cases over the years, it means you want your work to be perfect and you know it won’t be because you’re not that good. Well, nobody’s that good, not even Mark Twain. So you just have to do it, already. Write that imperfect book and get over yourself. Important note – writer’s block is not the same thing as having a catastrophic event in your life that literally freezes your brain for a while. I’m talking about when nothing’s horribly wrong, but you just can’t seem to write anything. It’s the curse of perfectionism in that situation.
NOR: Do you like to write stories that stand alone or just
series? VLT: In the beginning of my career nearly every book was a stand-alone. Now it seems every book is part of a series. The nice thing about writing a series is slipping back into that world, which is like coming home to a lovely house. You created it, so of course you like living there! NOR: Do you venture into other sub-genres, perhaps historical romance or contemporary?
VLT: I’m currently writing a contemporary cowboy series for Harlequin Blaze called Sons of Chance, but I’ve never tried historical romance. I read it all the time and I was a history minor, so I’m definitely drawn to the idea, but my werewolves and cowboys are keeping me busy right now. NOR: What are you currently working on?
VLT: I just finished the seventh book in my Sons of Chance series for Harlequin. Next I’ll write the eighth and ninth ones, because these will come out three in a row the summer of 2012. So I’m immersed in Jackson Hole, Wyoming right now with some hunky cowboys. But come January, I’ll start the fourth werewolf book WEREWOLF IN DENVER, and I can hardly wait to see how that turns out. There’s going to be a werewolf convention! Will that be fun or what? NOR: What do you have lined up for the future?
VLT: Both the cowboys and the werewolves seem to be making readers happy right now, so that’s where my focus is. But my brain’s always dreaming up new things, so anything’s possible in the future. Well, except werewolves who ARE cowboys. That would be too weird for me. NOR: What are your hobbies, other than writing? VLT: Oh, the usual for imaginative people, I guess. I’m learning to read tarot cards
Night Owl Reviews and studying the effect of crystals. I’m into feng shui and I’m constantly redecorating and changing my home because I love playing with my surroundings. I’ve tried to make cooking a hobby but so far that’s pretty much a disaster. I daydream too much and things don’t go well.
tell you, there was much rejoicing, fine dining, and spirits involved. It was right up there with selling my first book as a peak moment. NOR: Has it changed anything?
NOR: Do you like to read as well as write?
VLT: That’s a good question and a big question. It changed my life personally, in that some relationships were formed and some were lost because of it. I realize now that was inevitable and you can’t predict how others will react to your success until it happens. The relationships that survived after the dust settled, and the dust didn’t settle for several years, were the good ones. Success has taught me many things and has allowed me to grow as a person, and I hope, as a writer. But it has not changed my process. I still love the writing as much or more than I did when I started, and sitting down to begin a new story is no different now than it was before. It’s really still about telling stories to others and making that connection from my imagination to yours. Thanks for all the really cool questions!
VLT: First of all, thanks for taking the time to interview me, and second of all, I adore reading! If I don’t have a book I’m currently immersed in, I feel at loose ends. But I usually try to read something different from what I’m writing, which is why I love Regencies, for example. NOR: Who is your favorite author?
VLT: Maybe I should play it safe and say Mark Twain, LOL. I was recently rereading HUCKLEBERRY FINN, and it is genius. As for authors who are actually alive and well, I wouldn’t dare pick a favorite. I have too many friends in this business, and they’re all great writers!
Thank you, Vicki Lewis Thompson, for taking the time to do this interview. As a fan, I love getting to know the person behind the story. And thanks to all my loyal readers. Feel free to share with your friends. And if you have a special author you’d like to see featured, send us an email.
NOR: What was it like to discover you’d become a best seller? How did you find out?
VLT: I was on vacation at a family beach cottage when I got the phone call that I’d made the New York Times. Let me
HUNTING JULIAN by Jacquelyn Frank
Gatherers Series #1 Jacquelyn Frank, New York Times bestselling author of the Shadowdwellers series, invites readers into a dazzling new world of unstoppable desire and danger.. As an Advocate for his colony, Julian Sawyer travels to Earth to bring back the Chosen—women who possess energy potent enough to help revitalize his people. The stunning, silver-clad beauty who strides into his club one night radiates a sensual magnetism unlike any he’s encountered, and Julian realizes that Asia Callahan is not just Chosen, she is his kindra: his one true mate. For months, Asia has tracked the beautiful and mysterious Julian across the country, convinced that he’s behind the disappearance of her sister and a dozen other women. She’s prepared to believe he’s a ruthless killer, but when she presents herself as bait, she discovers that the truth is far more shocking. Taken to a strange, hazardous realm she never knew existed, Asia will face the ultimate choice—between abandoning the life she’s always known, and forsaking a passion as dangerous as it is powerful.
Debbie Macomber’s Cedar Cove Cookbook I was beside myself with excitement when I received this book in the mail. I am a huge fan of Debbie Macomber and her Cedar Cove series. I fell in love with the town of Cedar Cove, and the characters that live there, from the very first book in the series. I read one after the other and made it through the collection in record time. The inside flap of this hardcover cookbook is a map of Cedar Cove. The table of contents is well organized and has the most colorful and tempting pictures. The introduction is written by Debbie Macomber but then comes the breakfast section narrated by none other than Mrs. Charlotte Jefferson Rhodes. She guides us, the cookbook readers, on a tour of Cedar Cove taking time to stop at some of the most interesting character’s houses and sharing their yummiest recipes along the way. I have to say that this is a novel idea for a cookbook. I can’t say which delighted me more- revisiting the characters or diving into their favorite recipes. Every section begins with a short account of how the characters are doing since we last read about them or short snippets from the books. I enjoyed reconnecting with these characters. If you’ve read this series then this cookbook is a must read. Every page is bordered with whimsical polka dots that remind me of a great scrapbook I once made. No matter your tastes, these sections have you covered. From soup to dessert they all look scrumptious and I can’t wait to try almost all of them! I was astounded to find a recipe for homemade granola in this cookbook so that was the one I had to try and then share. I love the basic recipe. You can certainly add and take away any of the nuts or additions to suit your tastes. Homemade is always better and this recipe confirms it. FEATURED RECIPE: HONEY NUT GRANOLA 6 cups of old fashioned or quick oats
2 cups of chopped nuts- any kinds you like 1 cup of sweetened coconut flakes 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon ¼ teaspoon of salt 1 cup of honey or maple syrup 2 cups of dried cranberries, raisins or chopped dates
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large bowl, combine oats, nuts, coconut, cinnamon and salt. In a small cup, heat honey or maple syrup in a microwave just until warm. Fold honey or maple syrup into oat mixture, stirring to coat well. Evenly spread granola on two large, rimmed baking sheets. Place in oven and bake 25 to 30 minutes, carefully stirring granola often so it doesn’t burn. Rotate pans after stirring. Granola is done when it seems lightly browned, mostly dry and no longer sticky. Let cool 15 minutes on baking sheets; pour into large bowl. Stir in dried fruit. Press mixture into bowl with back of a spoon; this will form some clumps. Let cool completely before sealing into an airtight container. ***I browsed through this cookbook at the bookstore and loved it before I’d even started reading. It appeals to me with excellent presentation, lots of pictures, easy to understand recipes and it connected to something I already had knowledge of. A+***
Looking forward: Next month I’ll be reviewing Zombie Cupcakes. Halloween is my favorite holiday so I can’t wait to share this cookbook with you. There are so many ghoulish recipes to use at your next fall party. Pamela Reviewer/Freelance Writer www.thefantasticfoodie.wordpress.com
Night Owl Reviews
We have all been there. You fell in love with a wonderful book series, you faithfully show up to pick up the next installment on release day like clockwork for years and sometimes decades, then the day comes when the book series draws to a close. You feel sad, lost, and maybe satisfied or enraged. So many book series that we fall in love with end, and with the ever popular trilogy in YA, it is happening more often than not. Sometimes series end with a bang, you softly close the back cover and you sit and reflect on just how awesome the series ended. You are sad it’s over yet happy all your questions have been answered. So, what do you do when all the questions aren’t all answered and not everyone gets to live happily ever after? I find it comforting to read a new series. I recently finished a trilogy I have been in love with for a few years and the ending was not the bang I (and many others) hoped for. I closed the book feeling dissatisfied and angry. I still feel angry when I look at the book but you have to learn to move on to something new. The Infernal Devices Series by: Cassandra Clare or The Seven Realms Trilogy by: Cinda Williams Chima are two fantastical series’ that take you on adventures. You may have fallen in love with some beautiful characters and even though the series didn’t end the way you expected doesn’t mean you can’t love those characters all the same. More excellent series recommendations include: The Morganville Vampire Series by: Rachel Caine for those of you who love the vampire and paranormal set. The Perfect Chemistry Series by: Simone Elkeles for those who want to read some edgy contemporary. There are so many things to read out there. Don’t limit you scope to one type of book or one series. Try new ones every once in a while, you might be surprised at how much you enjoy a genre you never even looked at before. Soon you won’t even remember that obscure ending to that series you once read.
Monica is a lover of books and is currently serving her countery abroad!
NATIONAL HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH September 15th kicks off the start of Hispanic Heritage Month! According to Census 2010, there are 50 million Hispanics in the United States, which is 16.3 percent of the population. Hispanics account for more than half of the country’s growth in the past ten years. Hispanic culture, also referred to as Latin culture, will be celebrated during the period of September 15-October 15. The theme of this year’s month-long celebration is “Heritage, Diversity, Integrity and Honor: The Renewed Hope of America.” Hispanic Heritage Month (HHM) first came into existence in 1968, when President Lyndon B. Johnson declared Hispanic Heritage Week. Twenty years later, President Reagan expanded the observance to a full month. For more information, go to http://hispanicheritagemonth.gov. Check the local listings in your city to find out what events will take place during this month and participate. At home, you can quietly take part in HHM by reading one of the following novels. They are by Latinos or contain Latin characters. Once you try out these books, I’m sure you’ll seek out others. IN LOVE WITH DEATH BY Y. CORREA
A dull roar. That’s all I could hear. Souls. That’s all I could see. Sophia, a young Hispanic American girl has just lost her closest ally, her grandmother Abuela. It is just after the funeral, at the cemetery, where Sophia meets the tall, almost angelic man who will play such an unexpected role in her life. A love story. A fantasy. An adventure. How else would you explain why Sophia falls so deeply in love with death? LATIN RHYTHM BY TESS MCKALL
Beware of margarita-induced chitchat, or you may find yourself in search of a hot Latin hunk—which is exactly
what happened to Laura Kincaid. Divorced, with grown children, she can’t quite picture herself dancing the salsa in Miami’s trendiest nightclub. But the moment she spots club owner, Marco Valazquez, the heat is on! Literally swept off her feet by his sexy Latin accent and stunning good looks, Laura loses herself in the arms of the younger man. CALIENTE BY MONIQUE LAMONT, SIMONE HARLOW, J.M. JEFFRIES, KELLEY NYRAE
When a girl wants hot and spicy she finds herself a Latin lover! Vincent Mendoza is a CIA agent in charge of his first mission, and he turns to jailed cat burglar Cleo Harris to help him. Little does Vincent know that the ravishing thief will steal his heart in the process. Marcelo Alcindor can’t believe after six years his old dance partner Layla Washington is back in his life needing his help. To win a dance contest, she reteams with her ex-lover, promising herself she will not let the passion they feel for dance lead to the bedroom again. Two months ago Mia Hamilton spotted a handsome man she wanted for a weekend fling, but he turned her down. Antonio Rojas was otherwise engaged until recently. He finds the object of his desire and is determined to make her his, and he is not taking no for an answer. Hollywood agent Julia Wade’s
Night Owl Reviews career is on a downward spiral. Not so A-list actor Matt Valdez is trying to recharge his career. She’s trying to get him noticed and he wants to get her into his bed. Who will win in this battle of the hearts? BRAZIL BY K. CARLTON
her brother swears framed him. As Angela and Raphael work together to find evidence that will free her brother, Raphael wants to prove to Angela that there’s always two sides to every story. DANGEROUS DESIRE BY DIANE ESCALERA
Sienna Diaz is desperate to find her missing beagle, no matter what it costs. She hires Cruz Santino, the best-and hottest-in the business. He’s an ex cop, dangerous on many levels, which comes in handy when all evidence indicates her beloved pet was snatched to use in a dog fighting ring. Cruz will do whatever it takes to find Sienna’s lost pet, but he also wants results from the smokin’ hot attraction between them-and he isn’t above breaking his own handsoff-clients rule to get there. However, until he brings her beloved beagle home safely, he won’t have Sienna’s undivided attention...and affection.
Never one to be challenged, sexy African-American spy Charly Beaudliar finally meets her match in the form of hottie Latino FBI Agent Leo Santos. In dire need of a beautiful liar, Leo is dependent upon Charly’s help if he ever stands a chance of overthrowing a powerful drug lord and cracking the mystery from a childhood tragedy. Sparks fly as the two step on each other’s toes and fight for their lives, all the while trying to avoid falling helplessly in love.
TIES THAT BIND BY KATHLEEN SUZANNE
DOMINGO’S ANGEL BY JENNY TWIST
When Angela turns up in a remote Spanish mountain village, she is so tall and so thin and so pale that everyone thinks she is a ghost or a fairy or the dreadful mantequero that comes in the night and sucks the fat from your bones. But Domingo knows better. “Soy Angela,” she said to him when they met – “I am an angel.” Only later did he realize that she was telling him her name and by then it was too late and everyone knew her as Domingo’s Angel. This is the story of their love affair. TWO SIDES TO EVERY STORY BY DYANNE DAVIS
Raphael Remeris is a Chicago policeman with a dark secret of childhood abuse. The abuse led him to his vocation to protect the innocent. Angela Reed is a freelance writer from a nearby Chicago suburb. When her brother is arrested and found guilty of gang activity and locked away in Statesville Penitentiary, Angela goes on a crusade to prove him innocent and to find the dirty cops
Raul Fernandez and Paloma Ortega have reunited in an attempt to track down their child, given up for adoption years ago. The search rekindles their old desire, but the unknown variable is their daughter: how will her reaction to meeting her birth parents affect their love for one another? Enjoy! ---------------------
Delaney Diamond is the best-selling author of AfricanAmerican and interracial romance. Her second release in the Hot Latin Men series, Fight for Love, is now available. Her September 19th, 2011 release is The Temptation of a Good Man. Enjoy free reads on her website at www.delaneydiamond.com.
How Did We Get Here? I think that I have well established that e-books are the wave of the future and print books are slowly becoming the alternative format. Ever wonder how we actually got to this point? While non-fiction may not have lent itself to e-book publishing, fiction was primed for the advances in technology. In the beginning the e-book format concept was primarily embraced by niche genre publishers of erotica, paranormal, science fiction and indie books. I can still remember my first e-book that I purchased in 2004 at Mobipocket. com to read on my Dell Axim PDA; it was “Office Slave” by J. W. McKenna. I was shocked and surprised at the eclectic mix of lesser known titles in so many genres. I found so many books that I never even knew had been published. If I was looking for erotica Mobipocket and Fictionwise were my ticked to some exceptional guilty pleasures. Erotica/Romance/Paranormal, GLBT and Indie Science Fiction genres may not have been considered mainstream draws in print format, but in e-book they represented the cornerstones and foundation of what later would be known as the digital age of publishing. While many publishing houses were slow to adopt an ebook format, Elloras Cave, Smashwords, Tor, Siren Publishing, Carina Press and many others took a chance in adopting an e-book publishing stance that stretched the boundaries of the traditional genres to include some of the more taboo or riskier themes. Their vision and success sparked awareness throughout the publishing industry of the viability of e-books for mainstream authors. As technology has advance so has the book publishing industry. Once upon a time only the obscure were offered in e-
book format, now seven years later for almost every print book published there is a companion e-book available. Now we can grab J. D. Robb’s latest police procedural In Death novel New York to Dallas on the fly, sit back and indulge in Maya Bank’s Sweet Possession or be spellbound by James Patterson’s Kill Me If You Can in seconds from the comfort of our sofa, at work or even in the elevator. E-Books have come a long way since the days of the PDA and earlier handheld devices. It’s not just a fad anymore, its fact. Technology drives our lives and now it drives what and how we read. If the book isn’t available in e-book format, its publisher is behind on the times. Tablets and e-reading devices are a growing trend and technology is pushing to make them the norm. The amount of smart mobile devices sold each month now has caught up to computer sales. People are on the move and want to be connected. Now E-books are for everyone and everything; instructional manuals, college texts, reference guides and of course leisure reading. It’s all a matter of what you want and how you want it. Well, that pretty much wraps up this edition of Novel Technology “E-books and Technology Made Simple. As always I hope that find this information is helpful and have a pleasant reading experience. I currently own a classic nook wifi-3G, an iPod Touch 4th Gen and an iPad wifi-3G. You would probably ask why so many, the nook is more for indoor reading for me, while the iPod touch is that on the go reading in line at the bank, waiting for a movie to start etc and the iPad is used for long term review reading and annotating. I still purchase my favorite authors in Imprint books, but my library has grown exponentially since I have embraced the eBook technology. Novel Technology “E-books and Technology Made Simple” next month’s article: Reading an Ebook on My iPad
Night Owl Reviews
liners to Military Superfighters by Jim Winchester
For this month’s History Bits, once again, something a little bit different in the “reference” section in that the focus is primarily on military aircraft. To start, we have The Encyclopedia of Modern Warplanes: The Development and Specifications of All Active Military Aircraft compiled by Bill Gunston (General Editor) The Encyclopedia provides a nice overview of combat aircraft from around the world. Tome includes plane specifications, role, performance, weapons and avionics, some features, and a short history. Color sketches and photographs are included. Some black and white sketches are included as well. Each warplane has one page devoted to it. Provides a nice reference book similar to what Jane’s series does.
OTHER READS THAT MIGHT BE OF INTEREST:
by Francis Crosby
The World Encyclopedia of Fighters & Bombers: An Illustrated History of the World’s Greatest Military Aircraft, from the Pionering Days of Air...and Stealth Bombers of the Present Day
Man’s fascination with flight took off in 1903 when the Wright Flyer flew for a breathtaking 12 seconds. Since then, aircraft have become much more sophisticated. Now you can discover more than 300 of the most important airplanes of the last 30 years in The Encyclopedia of Modern Aircraft. • This book details some of the finest civil and military aircraft in service today, beginning with classic 1960s commercial airliners like the Boeing 747 through the latest military wonder planes like the F-22 Raptors. • Unique specification tables provide comprehensive information on dimensions, powerplant, performance, and more. • Find out how some of the most famous planes in the sky came to fly. What inspired the F-14 Tomcat? How will the Airbus A380 change the face of commercial travel? Climb into the cockpits and design labs and see! World Air Power Guide by David Wragg
This authoritative volume is divided into two main sections covering fighters and bombers. Each traces the development of the aircraft from their first appearance, details their role in major conflicts, and analyses how technological improvements have affected their performance. Special feature topics include nightfighters, bombers of the Spanish Civil War, inflight refuelling, the Gulf Wars and fighter pilot equipment in the 21st century.
Compiled by the author of Jane’s Air Forces of the World, this book is a must for aviation experts. In one volume the reader will find the composition and details of all air elements of a staggering 169 nations’ air forces and, where they exist, army air, naval air and such paramilitary organizations as the US Coast Guard Service. By definition such a book must be regularly updated and David Wragg has researched his subject right up to the minute. This latest book supersedes the author’s early book in the Jane series.
The Encyclopedia of Modern Aircraft: From Civilian Air-
Summer’s Surrender to September As summer slips away, and the fall season comes upon us, does your reading habits change? For some, they may turn from the light-hearted “fast” beach reads, and delve into something deeper and more sophisticated. Then again, if you’re one who’s going back-to-school, you may enjoy some less-heavy material to balance out all those college textbooks. I happen to be a sucker for seasonal anthologies, so I’m looking forward to Halloween and those wonderful winter romances. There’s nothing like being snowed in with a sexy hunk to keep one company. Until then, though, enjoy this eclectic mixing of romances. And, yes, my reading list is this diverse. Tessa Dare A Night to Surrender Avon Books
The wait has been worth it. Tessa Dare infuses A Night to Surrender with great wit and an alluring romance. Dare proves once again that historical doesn’t have to mean repressed. Within Spindle Cove, the “fine” ladies are offered a different type of spa, one that lets them engage in the activities they most enjoy, even if it includes “manly” escapades such as geology. Beneath these lacy collars are real women, who are not afraid to speak their minds. Forefront in the story is Susanna Finch, a hot redhead who hides behind her proper long gloves. The reader knows that there’s more to Finch than her stalwart attire, and that she’s hiding something behind her
brave demeanor. While Spindle Cove becomes a safe haven for many, it’s also a place for Susanna to hide. Unfortunately for her, that sanctuary becomes besieged by the likes of Victor Bramwell. Not only does Susanna’s well-meaning but wacky father bestow the title of Earl of Rycliff upon Bramwell, but he also gifts him the dilapidated castle that Susanna so loves. And, Bramwell brings with him real “men,” who aren’t afraid to cower to the women of “Spinsters Cove.” The mix makes for a delightful read. I can easily imagine Dare laughing while writing some of these scenes, and I shared in that amusement as a reader. Further, she made me cry and my heart “swoon.” (Can you tell how much I liked it?) A Night to Surrender is the first in Dare’s Spindle Cove series, and I can’t wait to read more. Throughout this book, she teases a potential romantic rendezvous among a few other characters (cough: Minerva), and fortunately – for readers like me – the preview at the end of the second book, A Week to be Wicked, gives a look into exactly what we want! Dare to write faster! Your readers are waiting. (BTW, her website says coming March 2012 …). ON THE SPICY SIDE
Three’s a Charm Lori Perkins, editor Ravenous Romance Anyone familiar with my writing knows that I love a dirty witch in the middle of two hot men. Roxanne Rhoades kicks off this anthology of paranormal ménages with “Witch in the Middle.” Torn between a human, Nathaniel, and vampire lover, Drew, Ariadene needn’t work too much magic to come to a mutually beneficial relationship. In “Sensual Appari-
Night Owl Reviews tions” by Rebecca Leigh, the mistress of ménage tantalizes with the tale of a down-on-her-luck woman, Gia, who moves into the house a great-aunt willed to her. What she doesn’t know is that the quaint living situation includes two ghosts more than willing to pleasure the inhabitants. And then there’s the sexy and quirky “Super Nova” by Lisa Lane, who takes the concept of blue balls to a whole new out-of-this-world level. (If you read it, you’ll understand that I simply couldn’t help myself with that description.)
a bit uncomfortable about her looks, Xavier revels in her luscious curves. The combination makes for one hawt and steamy night. Maggie’s Secret Wish Starla Kaye
1 NIGHT STAND SERIES DECADENT PUBLISHING
Have you discovered Decadent Publishing’s 1 Night Stand series yet? These short tales, advertised between 7,000 and 10,000 words, take readers upon a romantic journey that’s supposed to last one night; however, as we know, love spawned from an erotic twist, often stretches much longer. Each story – by different authors – features some of the same elements, such as matchmaker Madame Evangeline. The shorts are delectable, and easy to read within one sitting. One Hot Australian Night Liia Ann White
In One Hot Australian Night, Liia Ann White takes readers into a wild luxurious fest in a high-end hotel in her native Australia. A heroine, Zalia, with bad dating history and Xavier, a hero attempting to move on after the death of his wife come together for an evening of mutual comfort. While Zalia’s
In Maggie’s Secret Wish, the heroine sends out a request to Madame Evangeline, and then immediately wishes that she can take it back. But, Madame believes in fulfilling every fantasy, even if the wish-maker is afraid of what she desires. When Maggie gets paired up with 40-year-old Ian, a writer of erotica and part-time Dom, her dreams are certain to come true. So tell me, do your reading habits change depending upon the season? Toward the end of the year, I have two trips planned – GayRomLit Retreat in New Orleans come October, and Chicago in December. One can only guess what I’ll be doing on those long flights! __________________
Louisa Bacio’s short story “Lilith: In Her Garden” can be found in the anthology Seducing the Myth: Myths and Legends with an Erotic Twist. For more information, visit www.louisabacio.com
by J. R. Ward
Fallen Angels Series #3 Officers DelVecchio and Reilly are aided in their hunt for a serial killer by a mysterious stranger enlisted to save the soul of the killer’s latest victim, which is hovering between heaven and hell. The battle lines between good and evil are drawn-and the price may be nothing less than total damnation.
FALLEN ANGELS SERIES COVET, #1 CRAVE, #2 ENVY, #3
www.NightOwlReviews.com A CONSPIRACY OF KINGS by Megan Whalen Turner Genre: YA / Teen, Fantasy Reviewed by: Tatiana “A Conspiracy of Kings” is the 4th book in Megan Whalen Turner’s remarkable fantasy series. Unlike previous 3 novels which were written primarily about Eugenides, this book is most and foremost Sophos’s story. Sophos is the heir to the throne of the kingdom of Sounis and Eugenide’s friend. I will not give anything away by saying that “A Conspiracy of Kings” is a story about his ascend to the throne. Of course, the road to power is hard and full of obstacles. Sophos is kidnapped and enslaved during the course of this novel, but rises to the occasion when his country needs him. His dear friend Eugenides is there to help. “A Conspiracy of Kings” is absolutely on par with Turner’s previous books - “The Thief,” “The Queen of Attolia,” and “The King of Attolia.” Although some might find the switch of focus of this series from Eugenides to Sophos disconcerting, the majority will enjoy the book because of its customarily outstanding writing, skillful world-building and intricate political intrigues. And Sophos proves himself a charming narrator. He is very unlike Eugenides and his insecurities and humbleness make his road to power so much more compelling. Romance lovers will have something to be happy about too. Turner offers another complex and never easy love story here. This novel is an excellent addition to “The Queen’s Thief” series and a must read for all Megan Whalen Turner fans. TEMPTED by Elisabeth Naughton Genre: Paranormal Romance, Fantasy Reviewed by: Aemelia TEMPTED is an action packed, sizzling hot book that never had a dull moment. From the time I cracked open the cover until I turned the last page, my butt was glued to the chair as I devoured this tale. Demetrius put the “D” in dark, dangerous and damaged. Boy oh boy did this boy have some MAJOR sucking up to do to redeem himself after the horrible way he treated Isadora in the past. But I felt that Ms. Naughton aptly described why he acted the way he did, I could understand why he was such a loner and why he resisted Isadora so much. He had a very good reason to
push people away, as many proved. But I felt that he more than payed for his actions to Isadora, and deserved to be rewarded with his soul mate. I was thrilled when Isadora stepped up and began to show her strengths. She was such a weak character in earlier books that I was concerned that she couldn’t cut it as a heroine. Fortunately she completely won me over as she stood up to Demetrius throughout the story, but mostly when she finally stood up FOR Demetrius. This story was filled with some awesome baddies. We were introduced to Apophis, an evil witch who added a whole new spin to the Eternal Guardian saga, and Hades made a special appearance just for Isadora. Then there was the wonderfully evil Atalanta, who showed her devious self, as she threw Demetrius and Isadora onto the Island of Pandora for her own sinister means. Being stranded on an island alone forced them to discover each other in a way that they never could have surrounded by others. The passion sizzled and popped between them, even as Demetrius did his best to deny what was between them, but Isadora would not let up. Elisabeth Naughton has crafted a phenomenal series that I eagerly await the publishing of each book. I can’t wait until Orpheus’s story is out, and to see what kind of soul mate he discovers as he goes to avenge Gryphon. I’m sure we will get another great taste of the evil Atalanta loves to dole out, along with the diabolic of Apophis. I also hope there is a twist for Nick, he absolutely needs his own soul mate, as do the other single guardians. :) TOPGUN DAYS by Dave Baranek Genre: Nonfiction, Military Reviewed by: Lilyraines I found Topgun Days to be a thoroughly engaging and enjoyable insight into the life of a naval flight officer. What I think drew me in the most - aside from the author’s down-to-earth manner - is that Mr. Baranek shows not only the “upside”, but the day-to-day things as well. What also drew me in to Mr. Baranek’s story is that he shows the learning process involved so the story is not all about what went right, but what could (and did) go wrong, and how he learned and improved from both. I also enjoyed the glimpse into how the instructors at the Fighter Weapons School were involved when the movie Top Gun was made. Great read and great insight!
NEW YORK TO DALLAS by J.D. Robb
In Death Series #33
The new novel from the #1 New York Times-bestselling author, which takes readers deeper into the mind of Eve Dallas than ever before. The number-one New York Times-bestselling author J. D. Robb presents an intense and terrifying new case for New York homicide cop Eve Dallas, one that will take her all the way to the city that gave her her name-and plunge her into the nightmares of her childhood. When a monster named Isaac McQueen-taken down by Eve back in her uniform days-escapes from Rikers, he has two things in mind. One is to pick up where he left off, abducting young victims and leaving them scarred in both mind and body. The other is to get revenge on the woman who stopped him all those years ago.
by Ted Dekker, Tosca Lee
Many years have passed since civilizationâ€™s brush with apocalypse. The worldâ€™s greatest threats have all been silenced. There is no anger, no hatred, no war. There is only perfect peace... and fear. But a terrible secret has been closely guarded for centuries: Every single soul walking the earth, though in appearance totally normal, is actually dead, long ago genetically stripped of true humanity. Fleeing pursuit, with only moments to live, a young man named Rom stumbles into possession of a vial of blood and a piece of cryptic writing. When consumed, the blood will bring him back to life. When decoded, the message will lead him on a perilous journey that will require him to abandon everything he has ever known and awaken humanity to the transforming power of true life and love. But the blood will also resurrect hatred, ambition, and greed. Set in a terrifying, medieval future, where grim pageantry masks death, this tale of dark desires and staggering stakes peels back the layers of the heart for all who dare to take the ride.