RT Daily Blog

Theme Spotlight: Highlanders

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, JUNE 17, 2011 | PERMALINK

There are few characters more intriguing than the kilted warriors and fiery lassies of the Highlands. From Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander hero, Jamie, to the sparkling couples of Julie Garwood’s classic Scottish adventures, it’s no surprise that many of the spots on our keeper shelves are filled with these tales of love and brogue. But we count ourselves lucky that many of the authors who set their tales in the Highlands also can’t get enough of the area, and the age of Scottish Highlanders is not over! Today author Monica McCarty chats about why she loves the Highlands. Then we highlight some of the new crop of highlanders in current series, sagas that have just begun and a few extra credit Highlanders in this theme spotlight.

All it takes is a quick browse down the aisle (or virtual aisle) of your favorite romance store to see the number of covers with plaid to realize that Highlanders are hot (the books not just the men). With their sexy, usually-strapping, usually-alpha heroes, haunting castles, dramatic seascapes, windswept moors, and turbulent history, Scottish historicals have always been a popular sub-genre. But today, authors are putting fresh twists on the ever-expanding genre, giving a little something for everyone.

Readers can still find a good Romeo & Juliet style clan-feud or Outlander type time travel, but what if you want werewolves? Got it. Vampires? You bet. If you like Navy SEALS or Special Ops romance, I’ve got you covered. My new Highland Guard series—or what I call “Special Ops in Kilts”—is a genre-mixing blend of Scottish and military romance (think Suzanne Brockmann meets Braveheart). Whether you like a “wee” bit of history, a lot of history, medieval, Tudor or regency, family sagas, humor, drama, or mystery, you can find it between the pages of a Scottish romance.

- Monica McCarty

RECOMMENDED READS


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Romance
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Sneak Peek: Seduce Me In Flames By Jacquelyn Frank

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, JUNE 16, 2011 | PERMALINK

RT brings you an exclusive first lookSeduce Me In Flames, the second in Jacquelyn Frank's futuristic series. Read on to get a behind the scenes look at the Extreme Tactics Force and their mission directly from the author. 

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Seduce Me in Flames brings us back to the adventures of the Interplanetary Militia in the Three Worlds universe. The Three worlds have seen some pretty interesting things, mostly centering around the vast political and cultural differences that tend to occur from one inhabited planet to the next. The IM polices these aliens, making sure they all play nice in the name of keeping the peace and seeing that everyone leads a reasonably happy existence. But where there are rules there are those who get very good at getting away with breaking them.


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy
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Morgan & Whitney Dish: Falling For The Nanny By Jacqueline Diamond

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, JUNE 16, 2011 | PERMALINK

In author Jacqueline Diamond's latest novel, Falling for the Nanny, high school sweethearts Patty and Alec are reunited when this single father hires P.I. Patty to keep his daughter safe, not realizing that he will be putting his heart on the line!

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Whitney: This story really is the perfect illustration of what you can expect when you pick up a Harlequin American Romance story, from the small-town setting that realistically lends itself to everyone being in each other’s business to the sweet nature of this romance between re-connected high school sweethearts.

Morgan: It was interesting for me because usually I don’t read the Harlequin Americans. I’m not really sure why not. But this one was right up my alley. There is something really comforting about a sweet read where the hero and heroine genuinely like each other. No artifice, no games. Just a real-life friendship that turns into more.


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Romance
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Cheaper By The Dozen: This Week's Hot E-Book Deals

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, JUNE 16, 2011 | PERMALINK

One of our favorite features of the e-revolution is the sheer amount of books you can pack into such a tiny digital device. But what do you do when the growing number of new reads causes your wallet to shrink uncomfotably? Shop the e-book deals, of course! In our new column we highlight some of our favorite book buys that will cost you less than a medium-sized coffee.


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Victoria Thompson's Historical Mystery Series Evolves

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, JUNE 16, 2011 | PERMALINK

This month Victoria Thompson's thirteenth installment of her long-running mystery series hits shelves, Murder on Sisters' Row. So we asked the author to give us a special look at the evolution of her series and the world of the Gaslight Mysteries!

When I started writing the Gaslight Mysteries, set 1890’s New York City, I had no idea that I would discover “the more things change, the more they stay the same.” What has surprised me most about the research I do for the series is that the problems people were dealing with back then are the same problems we’re dealing with today. In Murder on St. Mark’s Place, the murder victim is a young woman whose only sin was trying to find Mr. Right. In those days, young women had just started working outside the home for the first time in history and courtship rituals had suddenly changed to allow men and women to go places together, unchaperoned. The women would go to dangerous places to meet prospective husbands, dance houses where they could partner with eligible men who would buy them drinks. Sometimes they found the man of their dreams, and sometimes they ended up raped or murdered. Just like today.


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
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The Librarian's Quest with Robyn Bachar

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, JUNE 16, 2011 | PERMALINK

Author Robyn Bachar invites readers behind the scenes for an up-close look at the paranormal world of her two most recent e-books.

When I began building the supernatural world of The Importance of Being Emily and Blood, Smoke and Mirrors, there were a few must-have details that I wanted. First, it was important to me to not have any “accidental” vampires. If a magician wants to live forever, she’s going to have to study her butt off, put in years of training, and run the risk of the transformation not working at all. Second, I wanted to include a wide variety of paranormal creatures and magic users. Witches, shapeshifters, faeries, sorcerers, seers, librarians—

Yes, librarians. Magic librarians. Even vampire librarians.


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, E-Book, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy, Romance
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Kate Douglas Shares How Wolf Tales Came To Be ...

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, JUNE 15, 2011 | PERMALINK

In honor of wrapping up her incredibly popular Wolf Tales series, author Kate Douglas hosts a very special giveaway and reflects on the evolution of the erotica series which spawned a publishing imprint, more than twelve stories and a legion of fans. Today Douglas goes behind the scenes to take us back to the very beginning of the Wolf Tales in a special look at how her pack has thrived!

It feels almost as if it was another lifetime when I sat down and wrote my first chapter of Wolf Tales for Margaret Riley, owner/publisher of Changeling Press. I signed that first contract for Stefan, Book 1 of Wolf Tales, on March 1, 2004. The story had evolved out of a “freebie” 1000 word short I’d written for a reader’s loop about an unconscious young woman who is rescued by an unknown man, has delicious sex all night long and awakens back on the side of the road with no idea who her savior was or if she’ll ever see him again.

Margaret, better known as M to her authors and buddies, had asked me for a short, hot novella to launch her new publishing company. I expanded the short story, decided that my hero was going to be half human and half something else, named him Stefan Aragat and eventually decided he was a shapeshifter who was caught half way between shifts. At first I wasn’t sure what he was going to shift into, but then I did some research and stumbled across a sub-species of Tibetan wolf, locally called "Chanku". From that one word, my series was born.


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Erotica
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Cozy Corner: Anna Maclean Reimagines Louisa May Alcott

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, JUNE 15, 2011 | PERMALINK

It is not easy to make a historical figure your own, but that is just what author Anna Maclean has done with the New England author Louisa May Alcott. In Maclean's series, Alcott unravels mysteries that befall her friends and family. This series originally hit shelves in the mid-2000s from Signet and this month the series first, Louisa and the Missing Heiress, has been re-released by mystery publisher Obsidian. Today get Maclean shares a look at how she brought Louisa back to life to unravel these very unusual cozy mysteries!

Louisa May Alcott was so wonderfully complex! As a daughter she had to be loyal and useful; as a woman she had to follow the severe conventions of her time without losing her originality; as an author, she managed to find a way to work with so many different areas of her creativity!


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
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Video Interview: Sophie Littlefield

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, JUNE 14, 2011 | PERMALINK

Author Sophie Littlefield hit the scene in 2009 with her mystery, A Bad Day for Sorry, which won that year's RT Reviewers' Choice Award for best first mystery. Since that time Littlefield has made a name for herself with her mystery, young adult and paranormal series. Earlier this year, the author's post-apocalyptic novel Aftertime captured March's Seal of Excellence award. Today the author gives readers an insider look at her writing process, continuing series and more in this video interview with RT's Senior Editor and RT Reviews Coordinator Stephanie Klose.

Sophie Littlefield shares an insider's look at her writing and series! >>

More From The RT BOOK REVIEWS Video Channel >>


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Mystery/Suspense/Thriller, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
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ON THE BOOKSHELVES TUESDAY 6/14/2011

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, JUNE 14, 2011 | PERMALINK

Here's a look at the titles we love that hit shelves this week. 

Historical RomanceMystery/Suspense/Thriller
  
 When Passion Rules
by Johanna Lindsey

“She takes a classic captive/captor theme and fairy-tale elements and weaves them into a love story that will resonate with readers.”
  Stagestruck
by Peter Lovesey

“Lovesey’s lovable technophobe believes in investigating the hard way, and the result is a classic police procedural filled with red herrings, unexpected twists and a delightful cast.”
       

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