For my weekly column Scooped!, I scour the Internet, contact authors and pick my fellow RT editor's brains to make sure no reader question goes unanswered. This week, I go in-depth about Gabaldon's Outlander graphic novel, give you something to read while you wait for the next J.R. Ward and offer some puppy-friendly reading suggestions. Still have questions? Send them to me here and you may be featured in an upcoming post.
Question: I just got a puppy that I have fallen in love with. Are there any good romances out there that feature dogs? - M.
Morgan: My all time favorite fictional pet has got to be the depressed basset hound Fred from Jennifer Crusie's Anyone But You. But there are lots of authors doing the pet thing. Kristan Higgins has some great contemporary romances featuring dogs including RT favorite Catch of the Day. A recent release featuring dogs is Nora Roberts' The Search. In this fantastic romantic suspense, Roberts includes both well-trained search-and-rescue animals as well as a crazy puppy named Jaws. Throughout the story, the heroine trains dogs and the reader gets schooled themselves on the proper way to take care of an unruly pet.
Question: I really like MaryJanice Davidson's Queen Betsy books, but her next book (which isn't a Betsy book) looks really weird. Have you read it? - Riley Q.
Morgan: You must be referring to Davidson's Me, Myself, and Why? And you are right about the weirdness - the main character, Candace, has multiple personality disorder and her "sisters" Shiro and Adrienne surface at awkward times. But I am happy to report that the book's strange plot is charming instead of off-putting. The story and character/characters are utterly unique in their wackiness, which I consider to be trademark MaryJanice Davidson. (I especially loved the chapters devoted to the wild Adrienne who has absolutely no grip on reality and no sense of consequences.) Also, just because Me, Myself, and Why? is billed as a mystery, this doesn't mean you don't get a great romance. I suggest that you pick it up - it is guaranteed not to bore.
Morgan: I'm sorry to say that you are going to have a long wait. The next in this series, Lover Unleashed, will not be published until the end of March 2011. However, I asked around the office to see if there are any books coming up that will keep you entertained until then and I heard about a new series that you might like. It is called Mark of the Vampire by Laura Wright and features brother vampires that are drafted into a paranormal war - sound familiar? You can get the first in Wright's series in October when Eternal Hunger is released.
Question: Is the Diana Gabaldon graphic novel just the Outlander story with pictures because I've already read that book? - Jilly
Morgan: Gabaldon's graphic novel, The Exile, does follow the Outlander story, but with a few twists. First, the story begins just before the Outlander tale. Also, instead of getting Claire's version of the events, we see the world through the point of view of Jamie's godfather Murtagh, so get ready for details that aren't in the original. Personally, my favorite part of the graphic novel has got to be the "extras" at the end titled "The Making of The Exile." In this section, Gabaldon explains what she had in mind for the character drawings and what changes were made along the way. Overall, I would say this is a must read for anyone who loves Jamie and Claire's story.
Question: I just got my kids off to start their new school year and now actually have some free time! This means I can get back to reading. My favorite books are historicals and I've missed a whole summer's worth. Where do I begin? - E.
Morgan: E., you've come to the right place. I can definitely help you play catch up. Here's what I would recommend. First, go out and get The Devil Wears Plaid by Teresa Medeiros. I thought I was burnt out on Scottish romances until I read this one - it is delightful. Next, snap up Anna Campbell's My Reckless Surrender, which is a delicious post-Regency romp. And RT's Whitney was just telling me how much she enjoyed The Unclaimed Duchess by Jenna Petersen. Finally, you must get the first two books in Anne Stuart's newest trilogy Ruthless and Reckless. Read these just in time to get the last in the series, Breathless, which will be released the beginning of October. Every book in the Stuart trilogy received a Top Pick! and if you know anything about this author, you know that her books are anything but run-of-the-mill.
That's all for this week. Remember, if you have a question about anything that's going on with your favorite authors and books, send me an email at MorgansScoop@gmail.com and I promise to give you the inside scoop on the publishing world!