October 26th, 2010
Grave Witch and Magic Bleeds

I’ve been reading and re-reading a lot of good books lately. I just finished Grave Witch by Kalayna Price, Fur Factor by Christine Warren (It’s called Big, Bad, Wolf in paperback. I have the old Ellora’s Cave ebook version, which I wish I could get on my new e-reader.), One Dance With A Duke by Tessa Dare, Eternal Kiss of Darkness by Jeaniene Frost, and Magic Bleeds by Ilona Andrews.

Kalayna Price and Tessa Dare are new authors to me. I’d never read anything by either one. A dear friend had told me about Tessa Dare. I knew I’d get around to reading her eventually. It would’ve probably taken longer, but I downloaded the sample chapter of One Dance With A Duke and was sucked in immediately. I don’t know anything about Tessa personally, but her writing is delightful. It reminds me of a cross between Lisa Kleypas and Jane Austen, very lyrical and enchanting. If you like historical romances that are ‘feel good’ reads, then you might want to give her a try.  I was so taken by her writing that I immediately went out and picked up Goddess of the Hunt. I cannot wait to read it.

Kalayna’s writing reminds me a little of Ilona Andrews. The heroine is strong and snarky without being ‘invincible’. There are two love interests–both worth exploring because you can tell from the story that their histories will be interesting. This is especially true of Death. Yep, you read that right. Death is a love interest in this book and she’s managed to make him smoking hot. Quite a feat for a man who feels ‘cold’ to the touch. I always figure it’s a mark of a good urban fantasy series when you can enjoy the plot and still want to see what happens with the burgeoning romances. I’m not sure who I want to win in the end (another sign of a good story/character set up). I like the use of ‘grave sight’ which shows the spirit world overlaid onto the real world. Much like Chloe Neill and her Chicagoland Vampires, I think Kalayna’s someone to watch. I know I’ll be picking up her next book.

I bought Eternal Kiss of Darkness the second it came out. I couldn’t wait to see what Jeaniene had in store for the super badass of the vampire world. After all, she’d written my favorite vampire character, Bones. (Yes, he’s still mine, so back away.) I was not disappointed. Mencheres turned out to be quite a softy in the end. Okay, maybe not. More like suicidal, but it was all fun. Like Ilona, I cannot say enough about Jeaniene Frost’s writing. I love her books.

I received Magic Bleeds before it was released because Ilona took pity on me. It was either that or she was tired of listening to me beg and grovel. *g* I sucked it down like a cherry slurpee on a hundred degree day. OMG!!! This book rocked. For anyone who has been following the Kate Daniel’s series, Magic Bleeds was the ultimate payoff. I loved, Loved, LOVED this book, which is why I read it again over the past couple of nights. I wanted to make sure I hadn’t missed anything. Sigh. I hadn’t. That’s why I bought two paperback copies and another ebook version when it came out. I want to make sure that Ilona’s work sells well enough that I get to have more books from her. 🙂

Which brings me to the reason for this entry. (You thought there wasn’t one, didn’t you? ) While I was at the Novelist Inc. Conference, I had the opportunity to speak with several authors about their reading habits–particularly their ebook reading habits. I know since I got my iPad that I’ve been buying more books than usual. For a while my book buying had slowed down to a trickle. Frankly, I was tired of the same ol’, same ol’. Everything changed when I got iBookstore and Kindle for the iPad. I LOVE the fact that I can check out the first couple of chapters or so of any new book. That feature has led me to authors I wouldn’t have heard of and enticed me to try their work. If I were to turn my iPad on right now, I could list at least ten authors I’d never read before, but picked up thanks to their excerpts. It’s allowed me to rediscover my love of reading. I know that’s a bold statement to make, but it’s true. Finding all these new authors has gotten me out of my reading rut. I get excited now because I have so many books to choose from thanks to purchases and free reads. The authors I encountered at Novelist Inc. had similar tales to tell. So I’m curious, if you happen to have a Kindle, iPad, or a Smartphone, are you reading more new authors?

4 comments to “Grave Witch and Magic Bleeds”

  1. I’m reading more new to me authors, and part of it is the fact that I can buy a book before the release date and it’ll automatically download when it comes out. Used to be I’d get a book rec, try to remember it, forget, or see that it wasn’t out yet and then never see it in the store. Now I go straight from rec to buy if I like the sound of it and I don’t have to remember anything.

    The excerpts really help, too.

  2. Charli, The excerpts have sold me on so many books I wouldn’t have picked up otherwise. The convenience only makes it easier. 🙂

  3. I don’t but I plan to. I’ve been waiting because it seems like every time I pick a technology, they’re dropped like a cherry bomb in a bucket of water. 🙂

    Your comment about reading more since getting the iPad and being able to sample a couple chapters so as to try new authors makes a great case for the new publishing paradigm.

  4. Bernard, I hear you. I think ultimately you just have to pick something you like. I don’t think any of the latest devices are going anywhere, anytime soon.

    I can’t believe what a difference it’s made to my book buying behavior. I used to read blurbs to decide if I wanted to pick up a book, but now I go straight from the blurb into the book for the chapters. It’s now up to the writing to win me over. 🙂