I Love Trouble!

Trouble In The Making

I’ve always had a passion for romance novels. Historical, contemporary, paranormal. It wasn’t until the discovery of ereaders that I was introduced to what would quickly become my new favorite….erotic romance. One of my first favorite authors was this wonderful writer named Lissa Matthews! She had a way with words and strong, interesting characters with a love of spanking (receiving and giving). I was an instant fan. Then she wrote Trouble In The Making and made me feel like I was reading a book about one of my closest friends and one of my biggest fantasies.

 

Why am I telling you all this? Because it’s like Lissa crawled into my brain and dug out my fantasy man and put him on paper. But did she write me into the story? If only.

Imagine, this, if you will. You’re painfully shy. A writer and a teacher, but attention is not something that sits well on your shoulders. It takes a lot for you to trust someone to loosen up and gain your trust. You’re willing and able to go after what you want careerwise, but always seem to find yourself tongue tied in your personal life. Until one night, hanging out with your old friend (you know, the rock star), your fantasy just slips out.

One weekend of wild, uninhibited, unadulterated sex with a rock star. And not just any rock star. A rock star named Johnny Trouble who has been there, done that…and also happens to be that old friend. (Johnny Trouble? Perfect rock star name, Lissa.)

Here’s the truth about the painfully shy, unassuming type. Shy does not equal no imagination, no dreams and no fantasies. In fact, quite the opposite is true. In fact, many of my writer friends are living proof of this fact! So when I read Liz and Johnny’s story, I found myself nodding and thinking…”you go, girl!” Why shouldn’t the shy girl have her fantasy weekend with the guy?

Unfortunately, only hours into their “fantasy weekend” business calls…. Johnny’s songwriting skills are needed….across the country. It’s important for a musician at the end of his performing career to build the future he really wants for himself. He’s got to go.

But is Johnny Trouble going to leave Liz hanging? Is he going to take a raincheck? Or does he want more from Liz than just a weekend? What does Liz want?

I know the answers, but I’m not going to tell. Instead, I’m going to tell you that you need to buy Trouble In The Making and find out for yourself!

Friendship, History and Howling At The Moon

Probably my first friend when I joined WordPress was the awesome Mae Clair. We “met” early on when I stumbled on her blog. After I commented, she was kind enough to respond and visit my blog in return. Back then I was pretty green, but she must have seen something in me because she kept coming back (and I kept stopping by hers).

Through these little visits we forged a bit of a friendship. I didn’t know much about her except that she was a writer and had recently gotten her manuscript accepted by Lyrical Press and was looking forward to being published for the first time. While I enjoyed her blog posts, especially her Mythical Mondays, I was a bit nervous about her book. You see, I wanted so badly to support her, but I wasn’t sure that her book was going to be my cup of tea. Don’t get me wrong… I’m a life long fan of romance. I adore supernatural stories (yes, that includes werewolves, vampires, Valkyries, demons and most of the other shifter/god related characters). My problem? I wasn’t sure about her leading man from the past. I wasn’t much into historicals these days. In fact, my leanings had taken a sharp turn towards the more explicit erotic romances, which this definitely was not! What if I read her book and didn’t like it? I worried for nothing. How foolish was I???

weathering-rock-mockup2

Mae’s book, Weathering Rock, was jam packed with all sorts of things that drew me in and kept me interested. Seriously. The opening scene had her heroine, a school teacher named Arianna Hart, nearly hitting a man on a horse with a car in the middle of a lightening storm…and not your usual kind of lightening. It was ball lightening! Odder still was the man himself! Handsome, muscled, but with a speech pattern that screamed old world (then again, so did his attire)!

The guy she hit was her hero, Caleb DeCardian, of course! His story is a bit of a mystery… He’s a man out of time…both literally and figuratively. He’s managed to travel from the Civil War era in the 1800’s into today and his nemesis has been following him and taunting him with killings that are steadily escalating. As if that weren’t enough to contend with, when the moon is full, he shifts into werewolf form!

With all the craziness in his life, he doesn’t have time for love! Plus, he’s got a deadly cat and mouse game going with his former best friend who is out to destroy him. Not to mention he’ll be going back to the past (though he has no clue how) once his mission is completed.

Does the book sound exciting enough for you yet? Now I’m not going to spoil the story for you, because I think you should go out and buy it, just like I did. It’s a very strong freshman effort by a wonderful lady from whom I expect great things! In fact, I can’t wait for her next one. Twelfth Sun will be launching on August 5th. Her teasing tidbits that she’s shared on her blog have had me hooked from word Go!

Have you read Mae’s book yet? What did you think? If this sort of story isn’t your cup ‘o’ tea, what do you like to read?

Art Of Prose

Words-
Dive
Onto blank page,
Breathe life,
Create feelings,
Thoughts, universes…

Strong enough
To mold minds,
Empower
Or
Bend wills.
Able to cut deep;
Gently heal.

Words-
Carelessly misplaced,
Recklessly thrown
Easily misread,
Misunderstood.
Choose carefully.

Words ARE Power.

I’ve been insanely busy, but I couldn’t let today, World Poetry Day, go by without finding a way to contribute. Many of my friends are quite brilliant wordsmiths…and I’m always blown away by their ability to impact the world around them simply by tossing words about and carefully placing them in positions they deem will have the biggest impact. Kudos to them.

Romance On Grey Covers

A close friend of mine recently asked me to read a book and let her know if I thought it was appropriate to add to her stable of books. I do this sort of thing for her on occasion because our tastes invariably run along the same styles. She sent me the book to check out through my Kindle app. I’m not going to lie…I LOVE books. I get excited over books. I enjoy discovering new authors. Libraries and bookstores are my third home! (What can I say…Coffee shops trump bookstores for me…which is why I absolutely ADORE Barnes & Noble for combining the best of both worlds.)

This time was different…and prompted this post. Many of you already know how I feel about 50 Shades Of Grey. It’s simply not my cup of tea (yes, pun intended). I’m not going to rehash that…because the reality is that it’s different strokes for different folks. The part that made this new book so different with my excitement level was simple. It had one of those trendy “50 Shades” style covers. Blah. Ho hum. Boring! (I know, ask me what I really think, right?)

If nothing else, 50 Shades will have a legacy of 2 things:

  • Gaining exposure for awesome writers in the BDSM realm of erotic romance (And I’m THRILLED about that! There are some amazing writers out there with great work who are finally getting the recognition they deserve.)
  • Those danged boring covers are everywhere these days. (Though this is all the rage that the NY Publishing houses kicked off, I no likey!)

Honestly, I get why the publishing houses are going this way. The younger set aren’t bothered by the lusty covers. The senior set don’t particularly care what people think of them anymore, love them or leave them (LOVE that attitude!) and they realize that no one can really see the covers of what they’re reading if they’re reading from an ebook anyway.  It’s the women in my age bracket (and no, I’m not going to get into that…and it’s rude to ask) that remember when there was a nasty stigma attached to those lusty romances with the half naked men and the heaving bosomed women. Personally, I enjoyed them. There were certain authors I might never have read if it hadn’t been for their racy covers.

And I know I’m not the only one. Like my friend Emma who wrote an entire post about it, I, too, judge a book by it’s cover. When all you see are grey tones and inanimate objects (ties, flowers, masks, handcuffs) how can you really gauge heat levels? How do you even know if it’s a romance? Heck, handcuffs could signify bondage or they could be a police/mystery novel! And THEY’RE BORING!!! I want my fun. I miss my spice!

Sands

Here’s a Lynsay Sands cover from her Argeneau series! It’s a bit sexy, but quite a bit more classy than the old historicals. There’s no question it’s a romance. The man and the tattoo give us something to fantasize about. And we know it’s going to be in the paranormal romance realm. Love the cover, love the author, love the book…!

Arthur

Or here’s a cover from Keri Arthur. This is from her Riley Jensen series. She’s also a paranormal romance writer. Hers is a bit more subtle, but you still know you’re getting a sexy romance. She, too, has fun, excitement and suspense rolled into her books.

Gena

Of course if you don’t want to do couples but still want to let a woman’s imagination run wild and sell books, Gena Showalter does an awesome job. No heaving bosoms…just man. And yes, I’m a HUGE fan of her Lords Of The Underworld series. She, too, in case anyone was wondering writes paranormal romance.

Foster

Of course one of my most favorite mainstream authors is Lori Foster. Obviously this is designed with women in mind. Definitely a romance…and in the ever growing popular realm of Sports related romance. This is from her MMA series…. If you’ve read the books, I’ll tell you Simon from Simon Says is my favorite…both character and book.

c phillips

Here’s another one, also tastefully done, but still completely droolworthy! Yes, Carly Phillips also does the whole Sports Romance (though both from player and agent perspectives) quite successfully. Love her characters, but probably never would’ve picked up her books had it not been for the fun covers.

Gibson

Rachel Gibson proves that fun covers and books don’t always need men on the cover. With this whimsically fun cover, combined with the awesome title-was there any doubt that this is a romance or fun? And it isn’t overly risqué, either, is it?

Andersen

If you need something even more subtle, but still sexily appealing, how about this cover by Susan Andersen? I loved the strong hand around the waist, the hint of romance and seduction with just a simple pose.

Garwood

Even this one, by one of my all time favorites…Julie Garwood. Simple, but still lovely, and nothing overtly racy about it. A cover like this would have you expecting a romance, maybe with a bit of mystery.

Phillips

And if you needed something even more tame? How about going the route of the wonderful Susan Elizabeth Phillips? Her cover shows nothing but foot and ankle and still gives off the fun, playful vibe.

But if you absolutely HAVE to go grey? Do it right, people! Do it like one of my all time favorites, Kresley Cole! I’ll buy her kind of grey any day. And the truth is, her writing is amazing!

Cole

I can’t be the only one irritated by this cover trend, can I? How do you feel about it? What things are driving you nuts about the “popular” books of today? (BTW, though I LOVE romance books, they aren’t all I read…it just seems that their covers are the most impacted by this new “trend”.)

Since I started off knocking on those shades…let me leave you with a black and white video…and one of my favorite songs as I continue my Valentine’s Day music countdown to love…Shania Twain is absolutely beautiful, and so is this song.