RT Daily Blog

Judging Ongoing Series: What Works And What Doesn’t

BY Dawn Crowne, MARCH 30, 2012 | PERMALINK

Writing an ongoing series can be extremely difficult, because series come with baggage. There are so many details to keep straight! I’ve chatted with authors who use different methods to make sure all their facts line up, from intensive documents, to color coded binders and even using fact checker beta readers. But the truth is that it’s about more than making sure that your secondary characters from book two shows up in book seven with the right color eyes. It’s a challenge to keep a series installments appealing for longtime fans and accessible to new readers. It’s a balancing act and one that is incredibly tough to master. Recently I’ve read several stories that are part of much larger series, and found some elements that really worked well — and some that did not. Today I break down three new stories in running series so that you can judge for yourself.

The Outsiders series by Rebecca Royce

Down And Dirty Series Summary: The “Outsiders” in the series are several couples with magical powers that must find and anchor each other so that they can successfully save the world from an evil demon.

Current Release: The fourth story in the Outsiders series, “Love Beyond Sight”, features vulnerable foreseer Eden Roan. She is in desperate need of protection, but her anchor, Samuel Quinn, cannot go to her because of his physical deformities. But when danger comes calling, Samuel overcomes his difficult issues in order to fight for the lovely Eden.

What Works: The author has a terrific writing style that allows readers to feel what her characters are feeling. While the plot may be confusing at points, the prose is smooth and showcases Royce’s skills as a wordsmith.

What Doesn’t: With the fourth story in The Outsiders series, readers are literally dropped into an alternate world without a roadmap. There are so many characters that newcomers’ heads will swim as they desperately try to figure out which hero goes with which heroine.

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Tags: RT Daily Blog, E-Book, Erotica
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Spring Erotica Giveaway

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, MARCH 29, 2012 | PERMALINK

Ladies and gentlemen, spring has sprung and with “the winter that wasn’t” officially behind us, today we are celebrating the season with a special erotic romance prize pack! And like the variety of flowers that will blossom with the return of the warm(er) weather, this prize pack will treat you to a plethora of different scenarios to help you heat up.

Taking a Shot by Jaci Burton is the latest in the author’s very popular Play-by-Play series and this time the author puts passion on ice, on the skating rink that is. Hero Tyler is a professional hockey player and has his heart set on one woman, Jenna Riley. But this woman doesn’t want a Mr. Right Now, she’s looking for a man who is in it for the whole game. See what RT’s Dawn and Janine Thought Of The Story >>


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Tags: Erotica
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Fifty Shades Of Grey Optioned For Film, Who We Would Cast

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, MARCH 28, 2012 | PERMALINK

In recent weeks, it has been impossible to miss the news about how E.L. James’ Fifty Shades of Grey series has taken the reading world by storm. The three books follow the development of a dominant/submissive relationship between the jaded billionaire Christian Grey who is in his late twenties, and the young college student Anastasia Steele who he introduces into his world of sexual games. The books, which grew out of fan-fiction, quickly climbed the bestseller lists.

It’s unusual for an erotica series, especially one with BDSM elements, to capture the attention of mainstream readers. And adding to the buzz is the fact that the trilogy started out as e-books and won international favor through word of mouth and recommendations. Just two weeks ago, the Random House offshoot Vintage purchased the rights to re-publish the series, and now the movie rights to the series first, Fifty Shades of Grey, have been purchased by Universal Pictures and Focus Features.


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Erotica
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VIZ Media Partners Up To Launch A Yaoi Imprint

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, MARCH 20, 2012 | PERMALINK

If you like "Yaoi" or boys’ love fiction, stories that features male/male romances, you’ll be pleased to learn that VIZ Media, LLC is teaming up with Libre Publishing and Japan’s Animate, Ltd. to launch SuBLime, a new imprint of Yaoi manga.

This recently launched line of stories ready for English-speaking readers will include works from Naono Bohra, Tarako Kotobuki and Haruka Minami and many others These stories will be available digitally, and with select editions in print, online at SuBLimeManga.com. You can see a complete list of the new works available from SuBLime here.


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Tags: Convention, Erotica
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Big News For The Breakout Series Fifty Shades Of Grey

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, MARCH 13, 2012 | PERMALINK

We love it when a series takes the booklover community by storm, and that’s certainly what E.L. James' Fifty Shades of Grey has done. Over the past few weeks these books have made international news for climbing the NYT and Amazon bestseller lists through word of mouth. So what is this series and why is it getting so much buzz?

Debut author E.L. James, the pseudonym for a British TV executive, writes the trilogy that includes Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed. And to say that they are steamy, sultry and sizzling is an understatement. The positively volcanic books follow the evolution of a dominant-submissive relationship between Christian Grey, a good-looking “tycoon” and a naive college student named Anastasia Steele. RT Reviewer Nicole King says, “Readers will be hooked by Christian and Ana’s sizzling chemistry, witty repartee and increasingly complex relationship, as well as the hints about Christian’s dark past that explain his penchant for bondage.” (You can read the complete *Web Exclusive Review* of the first story in series here.)


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Tags: Erotica
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RT Reviewers Dish: Taking A Shot By Jaci Burton

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, MARCH 07, 2012 | PERMALINK

This week, RT Reviewers Janine and Dawn are Dishing about Taking a Shot, the third book in Jaci Burton’s phenomenally popular Play-By-Play series. After readers devoured Mick and Gavin’s tales, little sister Jenna Riley finally gets her story. A wild child at heart, Jenna has had her share of previous relationships, but nothing compares to the undeniable feelings she has for hockey star Tyler Anderson. Read on to find out what our reviewers thought of this hot erotic romance novel. 

Janine: I loved getting to know Jenna, the manager at her family’s bar. She has a quick wit and is always ready to have fun and laugh. She is exactly the type of person I like to hang out with!


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Tags: RT Daily Blog, Erotica
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Rachel Grace On Her New Steampunk Erotica Geared For Pleasure

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, MARCH 05, 2012 | PERMALINK

Erotica author R.G. Alexander dons the pseudonym Rachel Grace for her new Elemental Steam series, the first of which, Geared for Pleasure, releases today. This book introduces readers to two members of the royal entourage. Dare, known as the Queen's Chalice and Cyrus, the Queen's Sword will do anything to protect their ruler, but protecting their hearts is not as easy. To find out more about this world, which is filled with familiar steampunk trappings as well as some entirely unique creatures, we asked the author what inspired her writing. And we were absolutely delighted to learn that it was real life friends that gave Rachel Grace the idea for her characters.

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HOW IT BEGAN:


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Tags: Erotica
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Exclusive: What's Up Next For Jaci Burton's Play-By-Play Series

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, MARCH 05, 2012 | PERMALINK

If you are looking to dip your toes into the ocean of erotic romance, we suggest that you check out Jaci Burton’s incredibly fun Play-by-Play series. These books feature professional athletes who are just as skilled at their respective games as they are in the bedroom. (Believe us, you may want to keep a glass of water and a fan handy while you read these incredibly steamy tales!)

But before we get to what's next in the series, first let's go recap what has happened so far. Book one in the line-up, The Perfect Play, won the February 2011 RT Seal of Excellence. Said RT’s Whitney of this read, “This erotic romance fully indulges the fantasy of being swept off your feet by a pro athlete. Fans of Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Deirdre Martin and Rachel Gibson's sports series that are looking for something extra steamy have a new author to check out." The story introduced readers to the seriously sexy football star Mick Riley and Tara Lincoln, a single mother and event planner, who Mick can’t help but fall in love with. But can she trust that this amazing man truly wants to be part of her life?


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Tags: Erotica
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Erotic Art Installations: My Investigation Inspired By A Stranger's Touch By Lacey Savage

BY Dawn Crowne, FEBRUARY 27, 2012 | PERMALINK

While reading the recently released erotic novella “A Stranger’s Touch” by Lacey Savage, I was fascinated by heroine Roxi’s unusual profession. Roxi is part of a living art exhibition — one where she’s bound, blindfolded and put on display for people to touch. This is not your average 9 to 5, that’s for sure!

I was so intrigued by this premise that I reached out to the author to learn if she was inspired by art that she had seen in real life. Lacey Savage told me, “[T]here wasn't a specific art installation that inspired this story. However, I've always been fascinated by nude models and what motivates them to pose for paintings, sculptures and other works of art, especially in classrooms or other public settings. Although Roxi doesn't pose for art, but rather is the art, my original fascination definitely carried over into this book.”

It seems that the author is not alone in her fascination of the human form. After finishing the story, I wanted to learn more about controversial modern art and I did a quick look at what some recent “living art” exhibits. There were three in particular that caught my eye.


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Tags: Erotica
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He Says, She Says: A Couple's Review Of Ellora's Cave's Male Erotica Line

BY RT BOOK REVIEWS, FEBRUARY 24, 2012 | PERMALINK

Ellora’s Cave recently launched a new line of erotica for men, called EC for Men that offers very short, sex-driven reads that aim to satisfy an array of male fantasies. In their call for submissions for the new line, the publisher specified that submitted stories “should focus more on the sex than the romance,” should contain “realistic wording and dialogue for male characters (not the language women WISH men spoke),” and be centered on “more of what men want or need from women: sex, love, acceptance, admiration, dirty talk; less of what they don't need (judgment, drama, expectation of anticipating woman's needs).” We were intrigued by the idea of erotica for men, so we asked one of our female reviewers and her boyfriend to each read three of these new stories and give us their take on some of EC for Men’s launch books.


HER TAKE:

“Hard Day’s Reward” by Cara Carnes is the closest to erotic romance of the three. It is also the only story that involves a loving relationship. (However, the only real evidence of this is the “I love yous” the couple throws around.) Chad is a stressed-out businessman who has just finished the difficult task of firing a slew of people at work, and when he comes home his girlfriend Shelly surprises him with a ménage involving one of her old college friends, Marcy. The sex scenes are decent, and although Chad isn’t the most giving lover, Shelly is, comparatively, a fairly likable character. (She’s uncomfortable with the idea of having anal sex with Chad, and she knows Marcy will, so she’s gracious enough to let her man indulge, which I guess is nice … ) But, there’s a tension between Marcy and Shelly due to an unknown former conflict that is never explored, which left me unsatisfied at the story’s end.

HIS TAKE:

In the opening scene, a sexy woman opens the door of Chad’s house and he becomes instantly aroused. He notices her hairstyle, her bust size and the color of her toenails, all before he notices that woman in front of him isn't his girlfriend. He then goes on to be serviced by this woman and his girlfriend, whose only priority in the story is to satisfy this slobbering dog of a man.

He literally does nothing to reciprocate. The female characters in Carnes' story live to serve. Things like cuddling and conversation are foreign concepts to Chad. He regards them as the tribulations he has to endure between ejaculations. As for whether this is a representation of a man's fantasy is kind of trivial. Sure, the idea of having sex with two women is alluring ... but not like this. This story portrays men as throbbing, mindless macho sex machines, dogs that somehow managed to walk upright.


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Tags: Erotica
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