There is so much coming up right now for us at Book Thingo, and at Galaxy Bookshop, with author events, book specials and a special dedication. Plus, it wouldn’t be a Decadence post if J.R. Ward didn’t get a mention.
Jodi McAlister in conversation with Kat
In two weeks’ time, there is a very Book Thingo event coming up at Galaxy, when our own romance academic, reality TV recapper, and YA paranormal romance author Jodi McAlister (OMG, I just realised we have a slashie!) joins Kat in conversation for the Sydney launch of Ironheart, the second in her Valentine series, at 1pm on Saturday, March 24.
We have been sadly hesitant to review Jodi’s Valentine here, mainly because we think there’s a good chance we might be biased, but I really enjoyed reading both books. Pearl’s narrative voice is, at times, similar to the way Jodi writes reviews and recaps, but it didn’t take long for Pearl to develop as a voice separate to Jodi’s while I read Valentine.
Jodi sets herself apart from a lot of other YA stories by giving Pearl guardians who are not completely oblivious to her life, and having them go to the police when things spiral out of control and experience the slow process of making a police report instead of racing off to save the day because only Pearl can do it. I liked seeing YA tropes turned on their heads and the foreshadowing now that will pay off in later books.
I will also be there at Galaxy on the day … mostly behind the counter. Some of you already know this, but yes, this is my day job. I am a professional enabler who also gets to run a monthly Paranormal Romance Book Club that meets the first Thursday of the month (except January when everyone’s on holiday).
Nalini Singh book signing and Rock Kiss special
Which leads me to my next big announcement: Nalini Singh is coming to Galaxy at 11am on Sunday, April 8, and I’m so excited that I get to ask her questions about her writing journey and her amazing series.
If anyone has any questions they’d like me to ask, please let me know in the comments. For one thing, after I completely overthought the identity of the Ghost, I want to know if we’ve met the Architect or if they are a completely new character. So I can completely overthink this one, too.
Because her Rock Kiss series is a bit less readily available in Australia, Galaxy is offering specials on this series in honour of Nalini’s visit.
Pre-order by this Friday, March 16 to ensure they arrive before Nalini does. The discount will be added at checkout.
Vampire Undone by Shannon Curtis
A few years ago, I was part of a crowdsourcing session with Shannon Curtis that resulted in Tribal Law. At that particular time, I wasn’t feeling the most decisive or creative and didn’t think I had come up with anything useful or constructive on the spot, so I didn’t think much of it afterwards.
When I saw her at the Jayne Ann Krentz signing organised by ARRA late last year, Shannon came up to me and said, ‘I wrote your hero.’ She handed me an early copy of Vampire Undone and signed it for me. The dedication page has my name in it!!
Sure enough, its hero is a vampire named Lucien (a name I missed seeing in print over the past few years) who has black hair and pale blue eyes, a combination that may or may not have been inspired by another vampire I had read quite a bit about.
I’m completely blown away that this is a thing that has happened. It’s just absolutely surreal that an author has taken a thought from my head and used it as part of the foundation for a book.
I gushed over it to my book club at Galaxy and they gave it the most votes any discussion book has ever had. We had a great discussion about the story, its plot and setting, the characterisation, and the romance. We loved that even though, as a category romance, it was a bit on the short side at 300 pages, there was a lot that happened in the story, much like Shannon Mayer’s Rylee Adamson series, a favourite of the group.
Lucien has some great heroic qualities. He is a protector, he keeps his word, and he cares about his family. On the other side of that, he takes on too much responsibility (although when he’s been blamed for things that weren’t really his fault, that’s not a surprise) and he has been a bit of a dick for a good cause. As far as flaws go, his are certainly redeemable.
[Kat’s note: I initially read that last bit as the hero using his dick for a good cause, and was like, Umm???]
Lucien is trying to find a cure for a werewolf bite to save his sister’s life. The only person who can help him is a woman he used to know, but who now wants nothing to do with him. Or any vampire. Natalie wants to be left alone with her paranormal research and live a normal life. The last thing she needs is for Lucien to reappear in her life, just as sexy as ever.
I think Shannon has done a fantastic job in writing a hero for me, and I’m still pretty chuffed that I played a small part in this book. Go check it out. Naturally, Galaxy has it. ;)
If you haven’t heard, J.R. Ward is about to release an ebook novella set in the Black Dagger Brotherhood world called Dearest Ivie. Its connections to the characters we know are the cigar bar and Ivie’s workplace.
As the books have a different publisher in Australia and the UK, the pre-order links don’t work for us, which I was a bit upset about. I wish there could have been a simultaneous worldwide release. They are apparently working on making it available internationally, but with only a few days to go before its US release, it looks like we’ll be waiting. I rarely read ebooks since I’m surrounded by print at work and at home, but I’d make an exception for Dearest Ivie.
I have fallen a little bit behind with the cheat sheets. Some of the new characters added the last time are no longer new, and the Rhage and Mary plot has not been updated. If you check out Ruhn, it gives a basic summary of what happens with Rhage and Mary, but I haven’t forgotten about them.
At the beginning of the year, not long before my copy of Blood Fury arrived, something pretty major happened in my personal life, and it’s something that I’m still dealing with in quite a few ways, so I currently don’t have the same time for the cheat sheets that I used to, but I’ll do what I can. This is a project that I’ve been working on for almost ten years now, so I’m not letting it fall apart. I can see that we are getting closer to the Fallen Angels plot joining up with the BDB, but I’ve fallen behind where I planned to be by now. It’s still going to happen, just not in the timeframe I intended, so watch this space!