A closet readers take on: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy, Romance, Erotica, YA Fiction & Audiobooks

Thursday, February 17, 2011


This is a week of big releases. One book I have been really looking forward to, is HOW TO FLIRT WITH A NAKED VAMPIRE by Molly Harper. She is also the author of the Nice Girls series, which follows ex-children's librarian, turned vampire Jane Jameson and her many shenanigans. Molly has been kind enough to stop by and answer a few questions about HOW TO FLIRT WITH A NAKED VAMPIRE and her other amazing books. Also, scroll down to the bottom of this post for my HOW TO FLIRT WITH A NAKED VAMPIRE eBook contest!!!

Author: Molly Harper
Release Date: February 22, 2011
Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Pocket
List Price: $7.99
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1439195862
ISBN-13: 978-1439195864

Molly Harper - Q & A

Q: What lead you to first start writing? Tell us about yourself.

MH: I’ve been writing ever since I was very young. My mom remembers an 8 year old me, setting up a “writing office” in the living room, complete with an old manual typewriter and a toy phone. Still, I never considered a writing career until a high school English teacher compared me to Erma Bombeck. I became more interested in column writing and journalism. I majored in print journalism at Western Kentucky University. After graduation, I got a job at my hometown newspaper, The Paducah Sun and married my high school sweetheart, David, a local police officer. After six years at the newspaper, I took a more family-friendly secretarial position at a local church office.

David worked nights and I was alone with our young daughter in the “The Apartment of Lost Souls,” where small appliances went to die. It was either go nuts or write a book. A big fan of vampire movies and TV shows, I decided to write a vampire romance novel. I wondered what would be the most humiliating way possible to be turned into a vampire—a story that a vampire would be embarrassed to share with their vampire buddies over a nice glass of Type O.

The story that emerged was that of Jane Jameson, a single, almost-30 librarian working in Half-Moon Hollow, Ky. Despite the fact that she’s pretty good at her job, she just got canned so her boss could replace her with someone who occasionally starts workplace fires. Jane drowns her sorrows at the local faux nostalgia-themed sports bar. On her way home, she’s mistaken for a deer and shot by a drunk hunter. And then she wakes up as a vampire.

It took me a year to write the book, but only three months to find an agent, Stephany. We signed a representation agreement and two weeks later, I was driving to the post office. The cell phone rang. It was Stephany and I asked if I should pull over. And it was a good thing she did because I started squealing like a five-year-old girl when she told me there was an offer. I hung up and the phone, and then immediately called back because I thought I hadn’t said thank you. She assured me that I had, several times, but calling back was a nice gesture. And then I called my husband and burst into tears.

Q: What should people know about HOW TO FLIRT WITH A NAKED WEREWOLF?

MH: I wrote a good bit of the initial notes for HOW TO FLIRT WITH A NAKED WEREWOLF during the January 2009 ice storm. Thousands of homes in Kentucky, including mine, lost power. With no light, heat or hot water, my family had to bunk at my inlaws’ house. My husband was working twelve-hour emergency shifts. This left me with our six-month-old and five-year-old. All day long. With nothing to distract them except crayons and matchbox cars. And Darcy could not understand why the TV wouldn’t come on. It was either come up with a new book or just go straight-up crazy Jack Nicholson style. By the time the power came on a week later, I had about 20 pages of notes.

Q: Tell us a little about Mo and Cooper?

MH: Mo moves to Grundy, Alaska to escape her intrusive, hippie parents. But even in Grundy, it’s unusual to find a naked guy with a bear trap clamped to his ankle on your porch. But when said guy turns into a wolf, that merits attention. For Cooper, an Alpha in self-imposed exile from his dysfunctional pack, it’s love at first sniff when it comes to Mo. But Cooper has an even more pressing concern on his mind. Several people around Grundy have been the victims of wolf attacks, and since Cooper has no memory of what he gets up to while in werewolf form, he’s worried that he might be the violent canine in question.

If a wolf cries wolf, it makes sense to listen, yet Mo is convinced that Cooper is not the culprit. Except if he’s not responsible, then who is?

Q: This book is part of a series, how many books will be in this series?

MH: I have plans for a third, but I don't know whether that will be picked up.

Q: Do you normally write to music? If so, what would be on your HOW TO FLIRT WITH A NAKED WEREWOLF soundtrack?

MH: I do listen to music when I write. In fact, I've posted the playlist I used while writing this book on my blog.

Q: The cover art for this series and AND ONE LAST THING is beautiful, who is the artist?

MH: The fabulously talented Renata Dibiase. I love her!

Q: Which of your characters is your favorite? Why?

MH: Probably Jane, because she's so similar to me, from our social ineptitude to our shared clumsiness. I once went on vacation and was stung by a jellyfish, suffered a puncture wound from a wrought iron pineapple and was struck in the cleavage by a flying champagne cork all in the span of a day or two. I based Jane’s multiple humiliations on real life experiences… though I have never been mistaken for a deer and shot.

And she’ll always be my favorite, I think, because she was the first heroine I was able to bring to life.

Q: So far, which book has been the hardest to write?

MH: The second Nice Girls book, NICE GIRLS DON'T DATE DEAD MEN. I had to rewrite that thing five times. By the time I was done, I was mentally exhausted.

Q: Your dialogue is full of snaky comments and funny one-liners. Does funny come naturally to you?

MH: My parents are the funniest people ever. If you wanted to survive Thanksgiving, you learned to quip.

Q: What is coming up next for you?

MH: Well, the sequel to HOW TO FLIRT, will come out on March 29, 2011. It's called, THE ART OF SEDUCING A NAKED WEREWOLF.

Q: What are you currently reading?

MH: BRUSH OF DARKNESS by Allison Pang. There's a foul mouthed unicorn. That's all I have to say.

Q: What is your favorite genre to read?

MH: Contemporary romance.

Q: What is your favorite television show?

MH: Ever? Probably Buffy. Currently on TV? The Office.

Q: Which authors do you admire?

MH: Teresa Medeiros, Nora Roberts, Stephen King, Olivia Goldsmith, and a lot more.

Q: What is your guilty pleasure?

MH: Chinese food. I've never met a fried dumpling I didn't like.

Q: Which is sexier: vampires, werewolves, or snaky writers that lock themselves inside lake cabins?

MH: I'm going to say sexy, snarky writers who lock themselves away in cabins. Because I know those guys actually exist!!

Q: If you had your choice between a naughty or nice book, which would you pick on a cold winter’s night?

MH: Naughty, how else am I supposed to keep warm?

Thanks Molly, for taking the time to stop-by and answer a few questions! Congratulation on the up-coming release of HOW TO FLIRT WITH A NAKED VAMPIRE. Just like your other books, I'm sure this one will be witty, sexy, and refreshing.

Molly Harper - Books


Enter below for the chance to win one an eBook copy of Molly Harper's HOW TO FLIRT WITH A NAKED VAMPIRE. The contest closes Saturday, March 5, 2011 at midnight. The winner will be notified via e-mail and will have FIVE days to respond & claim their prize! Since I'm gifting this eBook through Amazon.com, the winner must be have a US amazon.com account set up to receive their prize.

Here is what you need to do:

  • In the contest entry box below, please leave your first name/last initial and e-mail address
  • Link contest via Twitter/Facebook/Blog 1 point for each link provided.
  • Follow this blog for bonus 2 points! (button located on left-hand side)
  • Follow my twitter for bonus 2 points! (button located on left-hand side)
Rules and Legal Disclaimers:
  • I will use random.org to choose the winner.
  • Contest is open to readers in the USA only.
  • The winner has FIVE days, from the day I e-mail them, to claim your prize. Failure to contact me result in forfeit of your prize. At that time, I will choose either to re-award the prize to another entrant or not.
  • These rules are subject to change or be modified without prior written notice.
  • Contest is void where prohibited.
  • By entering this contest you are agreeing to our terms of entry.
(Scroll down in the box to fill in contest information)

Friday, February 11, 2011


Title: THE MAGE IN BLACK (Sabina Kane bk 2)
Author: Jaye Wells
Narrator: Cynthia Holloway
Release Date: September 22, 2010
List Price: $19.99
Audio CD: Unabridged, MP3 CD
Publisher: Tantor Audio
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1400169038
ISBN-13: 978-1400169030

My Ratings

Plot: 5/5
Setting: 4.5/5
Writing: 4.5/5
Originality of Plot: 5/5
Characters Development: 5/5
Ending: 5/5
Cover Art: 4/5
Narrator : 9.5/10
Likelihood to Recommend: 4.5/5

Overall: 47/50 = 94%

First Line

The Kum-N-Go's roadside-chic interior was bathed in a sickly fluorescent glow.


Sabina Kane, the fierce, sexy, take-no-prisoners half-mage/ half-vampire assassin, returns in this jaw-dropping sequel to Red-Headed Stepchild.

Sabina Kane doesn't have the best track record when it comes to family. After all, her own grandmother, leader of the vampire race, wants her dead. So when she arrives in New York to meet her mage relatives, the reunion puts the fun in dysfunctional. Not only is mage culture completely bizarre, but everyone seems to think she's some kind of 'Chosen' who'll unite the dark races. Sabina doesn't care who chose her, she's not into destiny. But the mages aren't Sabina's only problem. In New York's Black Light District, she has run-ins with fighting demons, hostile werewolves and an opportunistic old flame. Sabina thought she'd take a bite out of the Big Apple - but it looks like it wants to bite back.

My Review

Vamps and Mages and Weres! Oh my! Sabina Kane, ex-assassin for the Dominae, is traveling to New York with her sexy mage partner Adam to meet her long-lost twin sister. To say Sabina Kane has trust issues, would be the understatement of the century! Her grandmother, the only family she ever known, tried to kill her. She is now being hunted by the Dominae and her grandmother. Will her sister be the key to taking down the Dominae? Will connecting with her mage side, make her more powerful or create more issues? And will a powerful ex-fling coming back into her life, drive a wedge between Adam and Sabina?

I love the way Jaye Wells mixes the preternatural creatures in her Sabina Kane series. Sure she isn’t the first author to do this, but I felt that the was she approached the idea was fresh and different. She brought vampires, mages, fey, weres, and demons into the present, without feeling fake or forced. I also really enjoyed how she examined what it is like to live a dual life. I mean, how many half-vamp, half-mages are there? How does a person associate with a side of herself that she never even knew there? This is also very unique and important storyline.

Sabina is an amazing, kick-butt heroin! She is a physically, mentally, and now magically strong character. Even after having her love shoved back at her by her own grandmother, Sabina is willing to let her twin sister Maisie into her life. She also has a bit of a stumble emotionally, but she admited to her downfalls and picked her self up brilliantly. She proveed that she is resilient and amazing, if only she could let open her heart romantically.

The secondary character in this story take on a life of their own and love them for it! Giguhl is probably one of the most hysterical character I’ve ever read. He’s clever, he lacks social grace, and should never be let loose in high society! Most of my favorite quotes come from him. Maisie, Adam, and Slade also make great additions to the cast. I believe that they have helped Sabina open up emotionally, even after being shut down for so long.

Cynthia Holloway’s narration of this series is one word, brilliant! She is actually one of my favorite audiobook narrators, and the main reason I picked up this series on audiobook rather then eBook. She has a great variation in voices for each character, and really draws the reader in. Plus, no one does sexy like Ms. Holloway!

This is audiobook is a fast-pasted, emotionally packed joy ride from page one, with an ending that will leave the readers begging for the next book in this series.

Sabina Kane Series

Related Websites

Jaye Wells' Site
Jaye Wells' Twitter
The Mage in Black Audiobook - Tantor Media

Author Video - Jaye Wells reading The Made in Black

After seeing this video, I just couldn't help but add it to this review. I have one thing to say, Jaye Wells is hysterical!!!

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Today, I am pleased to bring you a special guest, debut author Shayne Leighton. She was gracious enough to stop by and answer a few questions about her upcoming book

Book Synopsis

Abandoned as an infant in Prague, Charlotte Ruzikova was raised by Valek, one of the last Vampires left alive. Genocide and war conflicts their secret society nestled deep in the woods of Eastern Europe.
But when the dictator in power becomes threatened by evil lurking in Valek's past, Charlotte must find a way to fight for the only one she's ever loved and the only thing she has ever truly believed in...and all before the sun comes up.

Shayne Leighton - Q & A

Q: What lead you to first start writing?

SL: I started writing very young. I remember writing my first short story in elementary school about what it would be like to live in a giant bubble. (To this day, that is still one of my favorite stories I've ever written!) For some reason, I have always had this wildly active imagination. I was never able to draw very well, so I suppose I found writing as the best thing for me to have some sort of creative outlet. My mom also loves all things magical and fairy-like. I grew up around a lot of fantasy, which I think just fed my imagination more.

Q: Tell us a little about your background?

SL: Born and raised in one of the most boring places imaginable...South Florida. I'm sure there are few people reading this with wide eyes, thinking, "Florida? Boring?" Yes. Unless you have a penthouse in Miami, Florida is boring. The amount of "snow-birds" - (elderly people that migrate down here for the winder) are unimaginable...which also makes driving impossible. I'm one of those people that would be most happy living in a flowery cottage in the middle of the woods on a mountain (as long as a large, exciting city was only a few miles away.) Yes, I am an idealist. My mom's side of the family is Russian and Lithuanian (and has the largest impact on my life), my father's side is British. My adopted, extended family is Czech (hence my fascination and my writing an entire novel series on the subject.) - I think that sums it up pretty nicely.

Q: Vampires seem to be the hot topic to write about. Why did you choose to write about vampires?

SL: A lot of people have been asking me this question, and I love answering it. I was first introduced to the vampire by one of my closest friends in high school. This was after "Twilight" had first been released. I knew this friend was really into vampires, and I was excited to tell her about this new book I had found. She read it, and to my surprise, didn't find any taste for it (though many of my other friends did.) She said to me, "You want real vampires? I'll show you real vampires..." One night, we all curled up around the television in her living room and she popped in Anne Rice's "Interview with the Vampire" with Tom Cruise and most importantly...Brad Pitt. The rest is history. I guess you can say I was *bitten* by the vampire bug (haha). After that, I read (and watched) Bram Stoker's "Dracula", I read Anne Rice's chronicles in their entirety. I had no idea how fascinating I was going to personally find this mythos. Paired with my love of European history, this was perfect! I didn't choose vampires because I wanted to jump on the bandwagon (though that is perfectly okay :D ) In fact, I knew the over-saturation might actually hurt me. But I chose to focus on them anyway, simply because I am so fascinated and in love with the idea. I think writers write their best work when they write about something they are passionate about. I love dark, twisted fantasy. Could I write a post-Civil War book? Probably. Would it be as good? Probably not. :-)

Q: Why did you pick the Czech Republic for the location of your first book?

SL: Like I said, I love Europe. One city in Europe that (until very recently with all of the "Mission Impossible" hype) never got a lot of attention, was Prague. I think Prague seems like one of the most beautiful cities in the world, and you don't always hear about it. There are so many stories set in London and Paris. From my research and the photos I've seen, Prague is just as beautiful, if not more beautiful, than these other more popular cities. Because of the dark history and so much gothic architecture (like a place Tim Burton would set one of his films), it just seemed like the perfect place for vampires to thrive. A lot of articles also say that Prague is the most haunted city in the world, making it the perfect backdrop for magical beings. I'm really excited to bring this nation's rich culture and history more to the forefront.

Q: What should people know about OF LIGHT AND DARKNESS?

SL: The only thing potential readers should know is, OF LIGHT AND DARKNESS is not going to be at all what you expect. There are a lot of young adult epics set in the modern day, and a lot of them seem to run together because of the similar themes, settings, obstacles, etc. OF LIGHT AND DARKNESS doesn't read like any other young adult paranormal that I've come across so far. It's a little darker, a little more adult, and it definitely tests the boundaries of what is generally acceptable in this genre. I can't give away too much about the story yet, but soon, you'll see what I mean. (evil grin)

Q: Tell us a little about your heroin Charlotte?

SL: Charlotte is one of my favorite characters I have ever written. She is completely pure and innocent (almost doll-like) - sheltered from the dangers of the "real world". But after everything I put her through in this story, she becomes this strong, damaged, flawed, power-house of a character. Somehow, even after many harsh reality-checks and falls-from-grace, she still maintains this impossibly innocent, little-girl-like quality. She's a twisted, little, doll and I love her.

Q: Who is your favorite character in OF LIGHT AND DARKNESS, and why they are your favorite?

SL: This is a loaded question, because I love them all so equally. I think Valek is a fabulous hero, because he is imperfect. He makes horrible mistakes, but at the end, you still fall for him, which I think is important. But I guess my favorite character, simply because he is one of the most interesting, is Francis. I loosely based him off of Prince Poppycock from the 2010 season of America's Got Talent. That might sound a little lame (to base a vampire off of a reality show contestant - even though I thought John Quale was the most TALENTED guy on that show and in the entertainment business in general - love him), Francis is amazing. He's super witty, with biting remarks and a short fuse of a temper. He's spoiled and extremely self-centered, but his heart still manages to be in the right place. Even though he doesn't want anyone to know it, he is secretly a very caring and loving character who only searches for love in return. If I could be friends with anyone of my characters in real life, Francis would be it. When the film gets made, I actually hope to approach John Quale for the role of Francis. :-)

Q: Do you have a publication date for OF LIGHT AND DARKNESS?

SL: Not yet, sadly. The novel is still neck-deep in the editing stages. My first round of edits has been completed, waiting on the second round to come from my editor. But I'm sure it will be announced some time very soon and I'll be sure to let everyone know on the book's Facebook page and on the official blog I'll also say, that when the book's release date is announced, I'll also be releasing something VERY special on that day that will be paired with the selling of the book. Can't post any details yet, but keep a look out for some teasers! I think my potential readers will really get excited about it!

Q: Is OF LIGHT AND DARKNESS part of a series?

SL: If so, how many books will be in this series? Yes, OF LIGHT AND DARKNESS is such a big story, I had to make it a series. Right now, I'm saying that there will be 5 books in the series...but I'm on the fens about possibly doing more. Depends on my stamina and how well the books are received. :-)

Q: Do you write to music? If so, what would be on your OF LIGHT AND DARKNESS soundtrack?

SL: Yes! Music is one of the things that inspires me most. I always have a soundtrack to back my scenes while I'm writing (especially the exciting scenes)! The entire playlist for the first book can be found here.

Q: What are you currently reading?

SL: Hush,Hush and Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick. Loving it so far! I great, new saga! I hope to start Across the Universe next!

Q: What is your favorite genre to read?

SL: Definitely dark fantasy and paranormal romance. I believe we read and watch movies to escape our reality, so why read something set in reality? Fantasy takes you to a whole, new, impossible world and I love that! Getting lost in a world that's otherwise impossible is always a lot of fun and very interesting.

Q: Do you have a favorite vampire series?

SL: Anne Rice's THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES, naturally. Lestat is, in my opinion, the best vampire in literature - and Anne writes so beautifully.

Q: Which authors do you admire?

SL: I love Cynthia Leitich Smith. She's not only extraordinarily talented, she's also been a good, virtual friend of mine for a few years now. Her books TANTALIZE, ETERNAL, and BLESSED are awesome and extremely seductive and I love that. Cynthia and her husband, Greg do so much for the children's and YA lit community and I just think she's a great lady. She always gives me a pep-talk when I'm in need of one. Of course, I also admire Anne Rice because she's so wicked and her writing is so beautiful.

Q: If you have your choice between a naughty or nice book, which would you pick on a cold winters night? Definitely naughty!

SL: Isn't that just more fun? ;-)

Book Trailer

If you think OF LIGHT AND DARKNESS sounds interesting, take a minute to check out the book trailers!