Here's a look at the titles we love that hit shelves this week.
With our column, Forewords, we let readers know the latest book news about some of the web team's most-anticipated upcoming releases across the genres — just as the projects are announced!
Mainstream Fiction - HarperCollins will publish Amy Tan’s next novel The Valley of Amazement. Tan describes the book as “a story about 1890-1940 San Francisco, Shanghai and the valley in-between…. A painting called the 'Valley of Amazement' is passed along through three generations of women of the same family. Despite vast differences in their upbringing, culture and circumstances, each of the women is drawn to discover the meaning of the painting and the unknown histories of their mothers.” No word yet on a release date for the novel.
RT brings you an exclusive first look at Jenna Black's upcoming April novel, Dark Descendant. Black leaves behind her vampires and fae to start a new series about the children of mythic gods. Today we go beyond the back cover blurb to talk about how the author is leaving her own special mark on these gifted offspring.
The Joys of Cannibalism
My dream of being a published author took me a long time to achieve. Sixteen years, to be exact. During those sixteen years of collecting rejection letters, I wrote eighteen full novels and one incomplete one. It was the eighteenth novel that finally sold and launched my career as a published author.
When I tell people this story, they invariably ask me if I’ve subsequently sold any of my first seventeen books. The answer is no, because my writing has evolved too much since then for me to be happy with those older books. However, when it came time for me to start a new urban fantasy series, I decided to go back and cannibalize that one incomplete novel that was sitting in a drawer. (Figuratively—it was actually sitting on a hard drive, but let’s not get technical.)
Name: Cheryl Ann Smith
Book: The School for Brides
Current Home: SE Michigan
Author Icon: My favorite book is Shanna, so Kathleen Woodiwiss.
Number of manuscripts hidden under the bed: 8-10 full manuscripts and many, many partials.
Time it took to sell first book: This book took only a couple of months to sell once my agent read the finished manuscript and submitted it to editors. But I’ve been writing for about 16 years.
Did you spend your whole week getting ready for the 2011 RT Booklovers Convention?
Here’s what you missed on the RT website.
PARANORMAL/URBAN FANTASY: Get up to speed on 4 long-running series. Learn More >>
FANTASY: Jim C. Hines’ e-book anthology gets a *Web Exclusive Review*. Get The Details >>
Today RT’s Web Editor Morgan Doremus chats with paranormal erotic romance author Sunny about her popular Mona Lisa and Lucinda series, how she transitioned into her career as an erotica author and what fans can expect next!
Morgan: I would love to start out by discussing your most well known books, the Mona Lisa series which features the Monères race. While these characters are technically aliens since they originated on the moon, your stories are generally labeled 'paranormal' rather than 'science fiction' — why do you think this is?
Gaelen Foley's historical romance series third, My Irresistible Earl is an April RT Top Pick! Today, the author gives us a guided tour of the popular establishment that her new hero is part of, The Inferno Club. But readers be warned — all is not as it seems for these members of the English peerage.
The Inferno Club is a raucous, decadent gentleman’s club that is actually a front for a spy ring in service to the Crown. What makes my dark and sexy spy guys different than every other Regency spy ring on the market today is that rather than being attached to the Foreign Office, my heroes are members of an ancient secret chivalric order, the Order of St. Michael the Archangel, that was founded during the Crusades. The Order does not fight an ordinary enemy, but an evil, centuries-old secret society of highborn conspirators that have infiltrated every court in Europe, modeled on the Illuminati.
RT brings you an exclusive first look at Elizabeth Boyle's upcoming historical romance novel, Lord Langley is Back in Town. We go beyond the back cover blurb to find out what readers can expect from the latest in this author's Regency-era series.
Meet Lord Langley, my elusive hero of Lord Langley is Back in Town. Readers first “met” him in This Rake of Mine as the devil-may-care diplomat father of Felicity and Tally Langley. I say “met” because until now, Lord Langley has never set foot on the page, making him all that much more of an enigma.
But I couldn’t shake the one known fact about Lord Langley: he’s a seducer of the first order—a real lady killer--having claimed the hearts of duchesses and princesses and ladies from one side of Europe to the other. He needed a strong woman who could match him witty retort for witty retort, outwit him at every turn, and most of all, harbored just as many secrets as he did.
And then came Minerva Sterling, one of the Standon widows, and I realized I’d had the perfect heroine for him all along. This is one of the mysteries of writing—when you look at the page one day and realize you’ve unintentionally written the perfect heroine for your rake-in-waiting. Here was a woman with secrets—Big Secrets—and Langley is just the sort of man who could uncover them—since that’s exactly what he’s been doing for the Foreign Office all these years—seducing ladies to uncover secrets of state.
In anticipation of the summer 2011 release of Jon Favreau's Cowboys & Aliens, starring Harrison Ford, Daniel Craig, Olivia Wilde and Keith Carradine, we asked our (admittedly biased) cowboy experts from our May issue article “Love, American Style” who’d win in a cowboys vs. aliens battle.
Sarah McCarty, author: Cowboys, cause they'd want it more. They have to save the day, it's their job!
Susan Litman, editor, Harlequin Special Edition: It depends on the cowboys, it depends on the aliens. If you are talking about a movie, I'm on Daniel Craig's team.
Linda Lael Miller, author: Cowboys, definitely, for the same reasons the British didn't win the Revolutionary War: Cowboys are familiar with the terrain. They'd win unless you killed them all, because even if one was left, he'd carry on.
Stacy Boyd, senior editor, Harlequin Desire: Aliens. Thinking on a practical level, with all the technology and weapons, they'd be superior.
Kimberly Kaye Terry, author: If you're romanticizing it, cowboys would win. In reality, aliens. But I think the real question is, what about an alien cowboy?
In the May issue of RT we offered a primer on several long-running and ongoing paranormal romance and urban fantasy series. Because there are so many great series out there, we couldn’t highlight them all in the magazine, so here are a few more series roundups. Let us know what you think of this feature in the comments below and post your thoughts on these going paranormal romance/urban fantasy series.
The Hollows (Urban Fantasy)
First Book: Dead Witch Walking, May 2004
Current book (No. 9): Pale Demon, February
Tell us about your heroine: Rachel Morgan is a twentysomething witch living in modern-day Cincinnati, fighting paranormal crimes and falling in and out of love. With a strong moral compass and a perchance to dress badly for the situation, she stumbles through mishap after mishap, trying to make a difference in the world, unintentionally making things worse as she serves as a catalyst for change both in small things and large. I've enjoyed writing Rachel tremendously. She's determined, focused, and the girl next door - with a little something up her sleeve.
Your universe is populated with … witches, vampires, pixies and werewolves.
How has your series changed since the first book? The Hollows stands at nine right now, which necessitates a lot of development, but the biggest change is Rachel's realization of who she is and how she is impacting others. She's done a lot of growing, and as I prepare to wrap the series up, we will be seeing Rachel coming into her own and taking charge. Smaller changes? Elves are out of the closet, werewolves have the potential to be a political force, the source of magic is in danger of evaporating, demons are poised for a last-ditch effort to save their species, and vampires are looking to Rachel to find a way for them to keep their souls after death. I think she can do it.