04.28.12

Interview with Amber Kallyn

Posted in Event at 1:00 pm by Amber

It’s a meeting of the Ambers! Today I have an interview with Amber Kallyn, author of the new release, Bloodstorm. Until the 30th you can enter to win a copy of Bloodstorm on Goodreads. Amber is the author of several paranormal romance novels and a long-time resident of Arizona. In addition to her own blog, you can read her regular blog posts with the Plot Mamas and the 7 Evil Dwarves. A big thank you to Amber for taking time out of her schedule to answer some interview questions.

Book cover for Bloodstorm by Amber Kallyn

Me: You’re a native of Arizona. The state is known for its desert climate but it also has forests and mountains. How do you think this environment influences your writing?

Amber: I grew up in the desert, but I’ve lived, as we say ‘Up the mountain’ as well. My books tend to be in small towns up a mountain, with plenty of forest for hiding 🙂

Also, because I’m used to spending so much time outside, I tend to write people outside interacting with nature.

 

Me: Your works have featured dragon shifters, sex demons, nymphs, werewolves and vampires. Which is your favorite?

Amber: Oh, wow. I have to pick one? 😉

The vampires I’m writing right now would have to be my favorite, though the mythological creature closest to my heart has always, and will always be, Dragons. They’re in every culture, representing so many different things from the Earth to health and luck. Plus, they’re big and bad and can kick butt, LOL.

 

Me: What kind of supernatural creature do you want to tackle next?

Amber: My vampires are going to be a multiple book series. When I’m finished writing them, I’m planning a spin-off with the werewolf pack. I also have some ideas I’ll get around to with demons, and werebears 😉

 

Me: Your latest work, Bloodstorm (Heart of a Vampire), was released earlier this month. Tell us a little about it.

Amber: In Bloodstorm, a vampire tracks down the monster who killed her family and turned her into the revenge driven creature she is today. She tracks him down in a small, mountain-top town (see, LOL) and finds Shane, an Apache Shaman and Keeper of the peace between paranormal races. Working together to keep each other safe is difficult while trying to avoid falling in love–especially when a vampire must choose between that love or her revenge.

 

Me: I understand you tend to plan your work instead of writing and seeing where it takes you. For Bloodstorm, which came first? The characters or the plot?

Amber: I am absolutely a plotter, the problem is my characters come to me first. Then, I struggle with the plot. I like to have a mini-outline, essentially a sentence or two for each scene that takes me from start to finish. Of course, things change while writing, an outline is really only a guideline, not a must-stick-to map. It works for me.

 

Me: What are you working on now?

Amber: I’m currently in edits on Hungerstorm (Heart of a Vampire, Book 2). It will be released in Summer 2012 🙂

04.26.12

A Long, Long Sleep by Anna Sheehan

Posted in Review at 8:32 am by Amber

Title: A Long, Long Sleep
Author: Anna Sheehan
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Source: ARC from Publisher via NetGalley

Book Cover for A Long Long Sleep by Anna Sheehan

Rosalinda Fitzroy has been asleep for sixty-two years when she is woken by a kiss. Locked away in the chemically induced slumber of a stasis tube in a forgotten subbasement, sixteen-year-old Rose slept straight through the Dark Times that killed millions and utterly changed the world she knew. Now, her parents and her first love are long gone, and Rose– hailed upon her awakening as the long-lost heir to an interplanetary empire– is thrust alone into a future in which she is viewed as either a freak or a threat. Desperate to put the past behind her and adapt to her new world, Rose finds herself drawn to the boy who kissed her awake, hoping that he can help her to start fresh. But when a deadly danger jeopardizes her fragile new existence, Rose must face the ghosts of her past with open eyes– or be left without any future at all.

It should have been a short suspended-animation sleep. But this time Rose wakes up to find her past is long gone– and her future full of peril.
In essence, Sheehan has imagined Sleeping Beauty with a science fiction setting. If you’re not a fan of science fiction, don’t let it keep you from reading this novel. Rose is an outsider trying to figure out how she fits into this new world and what she wants from her life.
The plot is solid and asks some tough questions about how children should be raised. The characterizations of Rose and her two friends, Otto and Bren, are deep. All have their faults and their merits.

04.24.12

Goblin Quest by Jim C. Hines

Posted in Review at 7:13 am by Amber

Title: Goblin Quest
Author: Jim C. Hines
Publisher: DAW Books
Source: Columbus Metropolitan Library

 Goblin Quest by Jim C. Hines In Goblin Quest we’re introduced to Jig. He’s a runt amongst Goblins and still assigned to muck duty which is usually reserved for youngsters. Filling up the 46 fire bowls in the tunnels without catching one’s self on fire is hazardous enough – Jig also has to steer clear of his bully cousin. One evening, his cousin gets the upper hand. When his cousin contaminates the muck, Jig is forced to do patrol duty. He patrols the tunnels while his cousin (and cronies) gamble. Jig’s only companion is Smudge, a fire-spider.

Jig is captured by a group of adventurers. One prince is going to prove himself to his father by finding the Rod of Creation. The other prince, a mage, is helping his brother. Their Dwarf teacher, an amateur cartographer, is there to keep them from killing one another. A sullen Elf pickpocket rounds out the party. Since Jig lives in the tunnels, they think he knows the way to their destination.

With characteristic humor, Hines shows how stubborn and foolhardy adventurers can be. It takes more than brawn and magic to figure out a puzzle. This was a light read I finished in a few days.

04.20.12

Final Day of Niteblade 2012 Fundraiser

Posted in Event at 8:38 am by Amber

Today is the final day to help support Niteblade‘s fundraiser this year. It’s the first fundraiser and will hopefully do well. When I last looked there were plenty of items still available in the $20 prize pool – first come, first served. And for $5 you can get your name listed as a Niteblade sponsor. Some of the poems have been nominated for Rhysling Awards.

I interview the writers and poets who appear in the ezine with the occasional author with a book to promote thrown into the mix. It’s not a paid position but it’s a fun one.

04.19.12

Coyote Ugly by Pati Nagle

Posted in Review at 11:28 pm by Amber

Title: Coyote Ugly And Other Tales
Author: Pati Nagle
Publisher: Evennight Books
Source: LibraryThing Early Reviewers

This collection of short stories is a delightful mishmash of genres. They aren’t set in the same place or time and really show off Nagle’s versatility. It was the unexpected that kept me returning for more.

Characters and plots have stayed with me long after reading this collection. I can still picture the feline detective checking baggage at the

04.16.12

Niteblade 2012 Fundraiser

Posted in Event at 7:31 am by Amber

You may have heard of the horror and fantasy ezine, Niteblade, especially if you’ve taken a look at my bibliography page. 🙂 They’re having a fundraiser to help with the costs of running the ezine.

The main page for the 2012 Niteblade fundraiser is at http://niteblade.com/home/2012-fundraiser-3/.

04.11.12

National Library Week – National Bookmobile Day

Posted in Event at 8:56 am by Amber

 National Bookmobile Day 2012

  • The first bookmobile began in 1905 in Maryland. It serviced 66 locations including post offices and general stores.
  • The top five states with the most bookmobiles are: Kentucky, California, Ohio, North Carolina and Indiana.
  • The average cost of a bookmobile is $200,000.
  • The average cost of a new library building is $1.6 million.

 Have you ever checked out a book from a bookmobile? I haven’t.

04.10.12

National Library Week – National Library Workers Day

Posted in Event at 8:19 am by Amber

Today is the one day of the year everyone can sing the praises of their library workers and have it heard. Nominate someone for a star if you haven’t already at http://ala-apa.org/nlwd/#galaxy. Stop by the library and say hello to your favorite person.

Since I knew today was coming, I wrote a thank you note to my three favorite library branches and mailed them Monday morning.

Next year’s National Library Workers Day wil be celebrated on April 16th, 2013.

04.09.12

National Library Week – Challenged Books

Posted in Event at 8:25 am by Amber

Today is when the American Library Association (ALA) releases information on the books most challenged in 2011.

Looking at the 2010 List, I’ve read two books (The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins and Twilight by Stephenie Meyer) and own one (Nickel and Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich) that’s been on my TBR pile for years.

Have you read any of the recently challenged books?

04.08.12

National Library Week, April 8 – 14, 2012

Posted in Event at 11:05 pm by Amber

Sponsored by the ALA, this week celebrates libraries.

Libraries were always places I loved. In middle school I spent a class period one semester in the library.

When I was little, I would walk across five lanes of traffic, both ways, to get to the Morse Road branch of the library. Now I think it’s pretty foolish to have a 10-year-old making that trip. That’s a major road! Our house had bookshelves in the family room. When I finished reading all of those books, I went to the library and saw even more shelves of books. And shelves of records too. I miss card catalogs.

One of my favorite summer activities was the library reading club. Both local libraries in my area run one for adults now and I try to participate in at least one of them each year.

Do you have any fond memories of your local library?

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