Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Books I'm talking about this week....

This week I read HARRY POTTER AND THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS, finished THEORY INTO PRACTICE (not the exciting read one might think, ha ha) and managed to fit in there ARCHANGEL'S KISS by Nalini Singh.

I am a HUGE Nalini fan.  I devoured her Changeling-Psy books (and am anxiously awaiting her new one) and so of course I followed her over to her Guild Hunter Series.  One thing I've noticed about authors who have a successful, long running series and then start up a new one, is that I go into the new one wanting more of the same but something different and I never feel like I quite get it in the right dose.  Not so with Nalini's series.  She delivers a fabulous story, great characters and enough of that alpha hero to make my heart go pitty-pat without making her Archangel too much like her Changeling heroes.

Raphael is a hero to die for (and Elena nearly does, several times :-) and Elena is the kind of heroine that a man wants to take a bullet for (and Raphael nearly does, several times--well not bullet, but you know).  The emotion these two feel for one another is fanta-nabulous.  I love how she gives us a deeper look into Elena's past and how Raphael comes across both fearless and vulnerable.  All in all, a great read.  Keep 'm coming, Nalini.

Other books I'm looking forward to?  Well, the list is long, but I'm especially excited about the next Black Dagger Brotherhood book, LOVER MINE.  Also can't wait for the next Ilona Andrews Magic book (MAGIC BLEEDS) the other three were soooo good.  Jennifer Ashley has book 2 in her MacKenzie Series LADY ISABELLA'S SCANDALOUS MARRIAGE and PRIDE MATES just came out and is in my TBR pile.  Also looking forward to Kathryne Kennedy's new series which I was lucky enough to preview.  Book 1, THE FIRE LORD'S LOVER releases in July.  

I'd love to hear about the books you can't wait to read.  What's on your list?


Saturday, February 20, 2010

Welcome Renee Bernard

I am one of the luckiest people in the world.  Why?  Because I know so many really, really cool people and author Renee Bernard is definitely one of them.  Not only is she funny as hell, she's incredibly kind and giving.  And if you've not yet tuned in for her talk show, Canned Laughter, ya gotta give it a try. 

Aside from these great qualities, Renee is also a super talented writer.  And I mean super.  Her books are smoking hot and wonderfully emotional AND you'll always get that great sense of humor in there too.  Renee has a new book coming out in just a few days titled, REVENGE WEARS RUBIES and she was kind enough to stop by and chat with me.

Welcome Renee!  So glad to have you here today.  I read recently that you were once a stand up comedian.  Is it true?  How did that happen?

Renee:  I did stand-up comedy on a lark, after a friend said, Funny at parties, okay, but can you do it up there?" when we were at a local comedy club. So amateur night rolls around, and you guessed it, I'm up there. I never got paid, but they asked me to come back so what can I say, I was the community theatre of comics -- doin' it for the joy (and keeping my day job). So, writing was almost the same track. I wanted to prove that I could do it. That all those scribbles in a notebook on my lunch hours meant more than murdered trees. I was very unsatisfied staring at cubicle walls and winning sales awards and I just dared myself to be the person I wanted to be and do what I really wanted to do with myself. And just like stand-up, I thought..."Even if no one pays me, I'll just be happy if they ask me to come back."

Erin:  Well I'll vouch for the funny at parties part.  I still remember meeting you at the Berkley cocktail party and you making me almost pee my pants from laughing.  :)  Okay, next question:  What does a day in the life of Renee look like? I know you have a newborn, as well as another child (right?) and I know from experience how busy your life must be. When do you find time to write?

Renee:  I keep looking for the hidden cameras! As the mother of two little girls (a toddler and a newborn), there are surreal moments where I'm sure that every mother throughout the ages is looking in on me and laughing hysterically (or crying, but I hope they're laughing). Fiona tried to take one of my books to preschool in her backpack (imagine my horror!) but only because the book was purple--her favorite color. Not because I had anything to do with it. So, to this point, my strange pursuit of writing is still under the radar.

It's chaos. We're helping with my husband's aging parents, so between senior duty and child care, there are days when the only thing that seems sane and stable is the imaginary universe I try to play in whenever I can. I write whenever the baby is asleep and Fiona is occupied, whenever I can really...mornings, evenings, middle of the night if I happen to be up anyway for monster duty. I've learned to improvise with notepads in my purse and recorders on my phone. The dream, (oh, yes! I have a dream!) is to be able to dedicate a scheduled block of time every day and to be able to take all that advice on time management and put it to use. The reality (oh, man! Do I have a reality!) is that Geoffrey has sworn to build me an office so that I can have a room of my own and make all my dreams come true. And in the meantime, I'll just keep plugging away because this girl has a goal to write Faster, Better, and Hotter!

Erin:  Oh, I so remember those days.  I wrote my first 3 books on lunch hours at work.  In my job now, there's no such thing as a lunch hour so I fit it in everywhere else.  All I can say, my friend, is this too will pass.  My kids are all growed up--or almost--and I wonder how I ever survived the years when they were little.  If I did (and my wee bairns) then so, too, shall you and yours.  :) 

Next question.... Plotter, Pantser, or Conjurer. (Plotters=planning, Pantsers=no planning, just take off and run, Conjurer=a little of both and a lot of magic).

Renee:  I think it's eighty percent Plotter and twenty percent Pantser, but I think that twenty is where I try to step back and let the characters make the call. Imposed decisions that aren't true to character are killers for me and can kill the joy fast. So, I map out the arc of the story, the chapters, the path and then I make sure that if the characters step forward with a better idea, I'm open to it. And frankly, it always seems to make for a better story. I'm a terrible dictator, but I love to improv!

Erin:  Improv has become my middle name, although I'm not loving it quite so much.  :)  Okay, last and most important question:  Tell us about Revenge Wears Rubies and what’s in store for the Jaded Gentleman series . . . .
Renee:  I'm having waaay too much fun with the Jaded Gentlemen and I hope the readers will enjoy the boys as much as I do. They are all very different from each other, so their stories will each be distinct to honor my heroes. I have my fingers crossed that my editor won't mind just how different as things unfold... ;--) Set in Victorian London, the Jaded share a past having been in India during the Sepoy Rebellion and are now trying to reclaim their "normal" lives in England--with a few twists.

"Revenge Wears Rubies" is the first in the new series and sets the stage. I confess, I enjoyed torturing both hero and heroine so that they could earn their happy endings. Galen Hawke is a personal favorite. I think I have a weakness for good guys who try to play the villain. Or is it villains that end up being good guys?

"Seduction Wears Sapphires" will be out in August, and it will be Ashe Blackwell's turn to meet his fate. What can I say? The heroine of "Sapphires" is American, independent, out-spoken and not impressed by Englishmen with silly fashions--just what my lady-killer needs! Ashe has to learn the difference between passion and love, and naturally, I insisted he learn it the hard way.

And then it's Emeralds and Diamonds and Opals.... oh, my!

Erin:  The whole series sounds great.  I loved your Mistress Trilogy and I can hardly wait for your new ones!

Readers, as a special treat, Renee is giving away an autographed copy of one of her Mistress Trilogy books-- Readers Choice! to a lucky winner.  Tells us what you think is most important in a romance--hero, heroine, sex, meaningful looks, pepperoni pizza--oh wait, did I say that out loud?  :)  Just tells us what you love about romance.  Don't forget to leave your email or check back later to see if you won!

For more information about Renee Bernard and her fabulous books, go to

Happy Reading!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Wednesday Book Talk

So new this year at Quinn's Essentials--Erin's Book Talk.  I love talking about books and when I read one that is really special, I always want to spread the word.  Right now I'm in a critical reading class at ASU and we are reading, of all things, HARRY POTTER.  All of them.  That's pretty much taken up all my reading time and since those wonderful books have all been talked about countless times, I'm going to skip them here.  However, in the mix I did read another book that I thought was amazing.

I came by this book by chance and loved it.  I'm a huge Jane Austen fan and indulge in a few of the Austen Revival books, but none of them have given me that... that.... ahhhhh feeling.  Well, Elizabeth Rolls doesn't revive Jane Austen's characters--she creates exciting ones of her own and she did give me that ahhhhh feeling in Lord Braybrook's Penniless Bride.  I'm not a huge  reader of any one category of books--my tastes are all over the place from Regency to Historical to Paranormal to Urban Fantasy to an occasional Stephen King to thrillers and back to my one true love, Romance.  If you, like me, enjoy Jane Austin and are looking for a book that manages to capture the customs and manners of the Regency era, I highly recommend, Lord Braybrook's Penniless Bride.  I really thought it was wonderful.

I'm not going to write a typical review--there are others who do that and probably better than I ever would.  Suffice to say, it's a great book with a spunky, appropriate for her age/era, intelligent heroine.  You won't catch Miss Christiana Daventry cutting off her nose to spite her face, and yet you won't catch her bending over backwards to please a man, no matter how sexy he is.  Having been raised in the time period of her story, Christiana doesn't drop her drawers and have illicit sex at her first ball, but Rolls manages to put all the fabulous sexual tension that makes romance the great genre it is in her story.  There are complex issues and serious conflict in this story--all handled with an artists hand.

I understand this book features characters from other Roll's books and I will be looking for them (as soon as I finish all 7 of those Harry Potter books :-) 

So I'm always on the hunt for book recommendations.  Tell me what you're reading now?  Anything you'd like to recommend?

Monday, February 15, 2010

Welcome Kim Watters

I'm so excited to have Kim Watters on my site today.  Aside from being a talented author, Kim is truly one of the nicest people I know.  Her new novel, ON WINGS OF LOVE released from Steeple Hill this month.  I asked Kim to stop by and say hi and answer a few of my questions.

Erin:  Kim, welcome to Quinn's Essentials.  Thanks for stopping by.

Kim:  Thanks for inviting me to join you today.

Erin:  Are you ready to get started?  Okaaay.  First Question:  What's the closest you've come to becoming a pop star or winning an Oscar?

Kim:  When I lived in Chicago I worked as a model. During one runway show, I lipsinced (and dressed like) Madonna's Material Girl while the other models did the show.

Erin:  I learn the most interesting things about people with that.  A runway model.  Wow.  You go girl.  Okay, next question.  When was the last time you did something for the first time? What was it?

Kim:  Christmas Day. My kids got the Wii from Santa and we all played. From bowling to golf to tennis to downhill skiing. It was so much fun, somewhat of a workout, yet no one sustained any muscle pulls or injuries no matter how many times we wiped out.

Erin:  Ah, yes...Wii.  We have had many a heated match on that as well.  It's amazing watching the kids go to town playing that game.  Next:  What do you keep in your wallet aside from money, cards and pictures?

Kim:  Hmmm. Driver's License comes to mind but I don't think that's what you're looking for;) I must be boring because aside from receipts that get shoved in there until I can't close my wallet and am forced to empty it, there's just the usual stuff. Although now that I take a look, I really need to filter out some of it. I mean, do I really need to carry around my kids' Dave & Buster cards?

Erin:  My wallet is a mess too.  I read somewhere that you can learn all you need to know about a person by looking at their shoes and their wallet.  I've yet to find that true (and I certainly hope it's not true about me because on that criteria you'd mistake me for a either a disorganized ho (love high heels cuz I'm so short) or a disorganized teenager (love sneakers because they're so comfy).  I guess that would make a disorganized teenho, lol.  Okay, I digress.  Back to Kim.  And finally to the meat of the interview. 

Tell us about your new release, Kim, and why YOU think we’ll love it.

Kim:  On Wings of Love is my first book from Steeple Hill's Love Inspired line. I'm still honored that they bought a book very near and dear to my heart. I wrote it with my sister-in-law in mind because she is an organ recipient and I poured a lot of emotion into it. I hope that this book spreads the message about how important organ donation is and the gift of life we can pass onto others in need.

Erin:  It sounds wonderful and so heartfelt.  Tell us more.

Kim:  The blurb says alot. Ruth Fontaine's job is to deliver lifesaving organs to those urgently in need. But the gruff pilot of her charter plane has no kind words for her work. And then she discovers the heartbreaking reason why. Noah Barton lost his wife and young son. Grieving, he gave in to pressure to donate his child's organs--a decision he regrets. He's bitter against those who "take advantage" of people's anguish. Yet he still flies her on her missions, with his beloved dog, Houston, as his copilot. Now Ruth will have to show Noah he has two other copilots: the Lord and her love.

Erin:  What an incredible story.  Even the blurb shows the feeling and passion you have for the subject and people in it.  Kim, this sounds like an amazing story.  I'm a donor and think that saving someone else's life if/when my should come to end is a beautiful thing.  I've told my family--give away any piece of me that someone might need but I can see for someone who hasn't made the decision clear up front, how hard it would be on family members to do that.

You can learn more about Kim at

Readers, what do you think?  Leave a comment and win an authographed copy of ON WINGS OF LOVE!!!

Buy from Amazon

Buy from Barnes & Noble

Buy from Borders

Thanks for stopping buy Kim!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Lots of giveaways at Writerspace!

It's time again for the annual Writerspace Valentine Party, to celebrate love, chase away the winter doldrums and just to get in the mood for romance! So please join me and dozens of your favorite authors at the 2010 Valentine Soiree at Writerspace on Sunday, February 14th from 8pm ET to 11pm ET. Authors will be dropping in to chat all during the evening and we will be giving away 100s of new books and other fantastic prizes -- autographed, hard-to-find, advance copies plus special treats like gift baskets and more. We hope to see you Sunday night! You don't have to be present to win, but you must be registered.

To register, and for details on all participating authors and the prizes they're giving away, visit

Thursday, February 11, 2010

And the winner of the Calista Fox prizes is...

Cherie J has been randomly selected to receive a $10 gift card for participating in my Calista Fox spotlight fun.  Congratulations Cherie!  You'll need to contact me or Calista at for your prizes.

And thanks to everyone who participated!!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Come see me at Romance Junkies!

Hi everyone, I'm blogging at Romance Junkies today about my new book, HAUNTING WARRIOR.  Come by and say hi--leave me a comment and be entered for a free autographed copy of one of my books.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Welcome Calista Fox

I am so happy to have my good friend, the talented writer Calista Fox here as my guest.  Calista has back to back releases out right now and I'm thrilled to have her here talking about them.  If you have not yet read a Calista Fox book, you need to start.  What I love best about her stories are her men.  There, I said.  She gives good man.

I asked Calista to talk about her new books and here's what she had to say:


On Sale January 29, 2010 at

Calista:  My first novella of 2010 is a paranormal romantica™ titled, THUNDER AND LIGHTNING. As the name suggests, nature’s elements play a big part in the story, but in some very unexpected ways! Here’s a little about the book:
Cane McAllister is haunted by the alluring scent and exotic beauty of Savannah newcomber Bev Goitia. The rich aroma of her blood and the heat of her skin make him crave to be human, to touch her, to love her. But Cane’s curse is of his own making, for he chose to live an eternity as a vampire—and knows from experience how detrimental personal encounters with mortals can be. Tormented, Cane stalks the most desirable quarry he’s known in his two-hundred-and-twenty-seven years of existence. Desperately wanting Bev. Knowing he can never have her…

Bev has her own cross to bear. Her neighbor, Cane, is everything she’s waited for during her exceedingly long, immortal life. But he’s a mortal soul—taboo for someone gifted an extended existence by the Aztec Gods, her distant ancestors. She is also bound by the ancient spirits to keep her immortality a secret—absolutely no one can discover her true nature, or the “gift” will be revoked.

One hot, sultry, Savannah night changes Cane and Bev’s lives forever, as they give into their unrelenting passion. Their secrets are inadvertently revealed, altering both their courses, trapping them in a deadly, doomed affair. And when the sins of Cane’s past come back to haunt him, putting Bev’s newly mortal life in grave danger, Cane becomes her only hope for survival. He is forced to make the most difficult decision of his entire existence. But will saving her soul mean damning it for all eternity?

An exclusive excerpt is on my website at!
Erin:  Wow!  That sounds great.  I've already got it in my shopping cart.  What about your second release?


On Sale February 1, 2010 at  

My second 2010 release is a futuristic erotic romance. Han Solo and Princess Leia were never this hot! The story is set on a planet in the Andromeda Galaxy known for its mood-enhancing elements. Here’s a little bit about THE PLEASURE PRINCIPLE:

To get the legendary commander of the Protective Forces to return to an intergalactic fight, patriot Gizelle Sobera must use every power of persuasion she possesses against D.T. Vaughn—including orchestrating the ultimate three-way seduction…

The year is 3091 and blockade runner Gizelle Sobera is determined to recover the largest lost treasure in the history of three galaxies. Claiming the bounty lost on PX330 (aka the Pleasure Planet) would help to supplement the resources and provisions needed by the Protective Forces of the Milky Way Galaxy as its inhabitants fight invading forces. But the fortune has already been found and she knows exactly who has swiped the treasure from under her nose—D.T. Vaughn, a pirate who’s stolen a variety of booty from her…

An exclusive excerpt is on my website at!

Visit my blog for another chance to win a Barnes and Noble gift card!

Happy 2010 everyone!

Erin:  Happy new year to you too, Calista!  Thanks for stopping by!  Be sure to visit Calista's site and blog to learn more about her great books and contests!