Friday, August 31, 2012

Let's Get Lost in Larissa Reinhart's Story


Larissa began her writing career in second grade when she sold her first publication to a neighbor for a nickel. After moving around the midwest, Japan, and the south, she now lives in Georgia with her husband, daughters, and Biscuit, a Cairn Terrier. She loves small town characters with big attitudes, particularly sassy women with a penchant for trouble. PORTRAIT OF A DEAD GUY is a 2012 Daphne du Maurier finalist, a 2012 The Emily finalist, and a 2011 Dixie Kane Memorial winner. When she’s not writing about southern fried chicken, she writes about Asian fried chicken at her blog about life as an ex-expat at theexpatreturneth.blogspot.com.
 

The book...

In Halo, Georgia, folks know Cherry Tucker as big in mouth, small in stature, and able to sketch a portrait faster than buckshot rips from a ten gauge -- but commissions are scarce. So when the well-heeled Branson family wants to memorialize their murdered son in a coffin portrait, Cherry scrambles to win their patronage from her small town rival.
As the clock ticks toward the deadline, Cherry faces more trouble than just a controversial subject. Her rival wants to ruin her reputation, her ex-flame wants to rekindle the fire, and someone’s setting her up to take the fall. Mix in her flaky family, an illegal gambling ring, and outwitting a killer on a spree, Cherry finds herself painted into a corner she’ll be lucky to survive.
 

 What they're saying...

 
“An entertaining mystery full of quirky characters and solid plotting. Larissa Reinhart writes with panache and flair...Highly recommended for anyone who likes their mysteries strong and their mint juleps stronger!” -- Jennie Bentley, NY Times bestselling author of Flipped Out
 
“Don’t miss Portrait of a Dead Guy by Larissa Reinhart! Portrait is pure enjoyment, a laugh out loud mystery with some Southern romance thrown in. Five stars out of Five.” -- Lynn Farris, National Mystery Review Examiner at Examiner.com
 
“Laugh-out-loud funny and as Southern as sweet tea and cheese grits, Larissa Reinhart’s masterfully crafted whodunit, Portrait of a Dead Guy, provides high-octane action with quirky, down-home characters and a trouble-magnet heroine who’ll steal readers’ hearts and have them begging for the next Cherry Tucker Mystery.” --Debby Giusti, author of The Captain's Mission and The Colonel's Daughter 
 
“Larissa Reinhart's debut sparkles with wit. A fun, fast-paced read and a rollicking start to her Cherry Tucker Mystery Series. If you like your stories southern-fried with a side of romance, this book's for you!” -- Leslie Tentler, author of Midnight Caller
 

Get your copy...

 

 

 

Let's chat with Larissa, shall we?


Susan: Larissa, thank you so much for joining us today here at Get Lost in a Story. My goodness, you are well-traveled. Where are you originally from? 
Larissa: Thanks for having me! I’m from a small farming village in northern Illinois called Andover. Growing up there gave me a yearning to see the rest of the world and become a big city girl, but it also instilled a love for small town values. And in hindsight, a view as to how varied and interesting small town people really are.

Susan: In other words, you are Nouveau Southern—not that there’s anything wrong with it—some of my very best friends are. I’m so happy you decided to hang out down South.
Larissa: I am a carpet bagger, yes;) Much like Gretchen Wilson, the original Redneck Woman, who is also from a small Illinois farm town (Pocahontas).

Susan: Ha! I did not know that! My, my... I’ve spent right much time in the Mid-West myself. Small towns there feel very much like small towns in the South to me. Would you agree?
Larissa: Very much so, which is why I felt comfortable writing about a small Southern town. The difference: the amount of conversation and food. Sorry Illinois, but you can’t beat the South in food! (Although we do grow excellent pork chops in IL). And controversial conversation is kept to a minimum in the Midwest, which would make for a pretty dull book! There would be a lot of dialogue about weather.

 
 
Susan: What is something that not a lot of people know about you but you WISH more people COULD know?
Larissa: My children are adopted from China, and they are my life’s greatest blessing! I’m so happy we had a chance to experience living in Asia with them. And it turns out they loved living in Japan as much as my husband and I do. 
 
Susan: Where is your very favorite vacation spot?
Larissa: I’ve been lucky enough to visit many foreign countries, which I loved, but if we have a free weekend, I really like going up to the North Georgia mountains. Although, we just got back from Tybee Island, off Savannah. And I did love Tybee. And we do love Savannah... This is a really hard question. How much money and how much time do I get for the vacation? Our next big trip, we’d like to go to Austria. I’ve been obsessed since I read Mary Stewart’s AIRS ABOVE THE GROUND. When we lived in Japan, I never got a chance to go to Singapore, which I really wanted to try. Just put me on a plane. Wherever I end up, I’ll be happy, Susan!
 
Susan: Do you have any unusual talents we should know about? We had someone here a month or so back who can peel and eat a banana with her toes. Can you top that?
Larissa: Not me, but my husband can fit four or five quarters in one nostril. Does that count? It’s how he wooed me in college.
 
Susan: Now, that is an interesting courting ritual. Moving right along...  Is it true that you play cowbell in an all-girl band?
Larissa: In my head, I totally rock the cowbell! Isn’t it true you play the drums?
 
Susan: Why, as a matter of fact, I do. But this is your day--we'll discuss my talents as a percussionist another time. You have what I like to call a well-rounded education. I like to call it that because I changed majors so many times, but I believe you have me beaten. In order, please, what all have you studied?
Larissa: Oh my goodness, are you sure we have time? I started in journalism and even worked at a small town paper in high school, but hated calling people for interviews, so by the time I got to college, I thought I should probably try something else!
 
I worked my way to majoring in history, but minored in anthropology. The anthropology department was small, but we got a visiting professor to teach archaeology, which really excited me. I was in my Indiana Jones phase. We did a dig of an old woolen mill, which was really cool. I even did an independent study class where I traveled to Egypt.
 
But ancient languages are very daunting for some one who has trouble pronouncing English. I also loved art history, and actually did my senior history thesis paper on abstract expressionism. 
 
I started grad school in art history, which my husband was also studying (he was also a history major & we married after graduation). I realized we’d never work in the same state if we both majored in art history. This led me on a whole new path in art and design, and finally teaching history because that’s where I had the most credits. Which is full circle because my parents were teachers. My dad taught history.

Susan: Whew! That made my head spin--but, I did ask.
Your debut novel, Portrait of a Dead Guy, is the first in a series about an artist named Cherry Tucker. You studied art history--do you paint?
Larissa: I would consider myself a failed artist. I like to draw and paint, but haven’t done much in many years. I loved design and layout. Now I’m just a doodler.


Susan: How much do you and Cherry have in common?
Larissa: We’re both short, but that’s about it! I can be stubborn, but I think she takes stubbornness to an extreme. She says things I would never utter. She also takes risks that I would never try. If I heard there was a murderer running around my town, I’d lock my door. She’d greet them with her daddy’s Remington Wingmaster hunting rifle. Actually she does greet them with her Remington.

Susan: For the record, I love this book, and can’t wait to see what Cherry gets into next. Will Cherry be around a while? (The answer had better be the one I want to hear.)
Larissa: Thank you so much, Susan! I certainly hope so! Not many days go by when I don’t think about a funny scrape I’d like to see Cherry get out of! I’m writing her second book now, tentatively titled STILL LIFE IN BRUNSWICK STEW. It involves a literal still life and a Brunswick Stew cook off. And of course, more man trouble for Cherry. And family trouble. And goat trouble.

Susan: I do love that goat... So, this just came to you, that someone might do such a thing as paint a dead relative? Was drinking involved? If so, what were you sipping? I need to get some of that.
Larissa: My brain works in mysterious ways! In all honesty, this came to me after my father’s funeral, when I was listening to Miranda Lambert’s “Famous in a Small Town.” I suddenly saw this artist painting a dead guy and knew her name & knew the guy she painted was a thug. But that’s all I knew. Then she started talking to me and later I started hearing her conversations with Luke, Todd, and her crazy family. They made me laugh.

I just realized I sound like a total psychopath! I swear the voices I hear aren’t really “voices.” I should be drinking something...

Susan: What is your most interesting quirk?
Larissa: I often break into song. My kids call it “Momma’s rocking out again.” But they secretly love it.
 
Susan: Really? Gosh, I do that, too. But my kids call it something else, and I'm pretty sure they don't care for it. What’s the most daring thing you’ve ever done? Been skydiving? Ridden a bull?
Larissa: Good grief, no. I have a fear of heights and vertigo! I’ve eaten some strange stuff. Raw horse. Raw whale. Cow rectum (but didn’t know it at the time). That’s life in Japan:)

Susan: I'm sorry, cow WHAT? Just hearing about that's enough to put me off beef altogether. What do you do to unwind and relax?
Larissa: Mainly read. If I’m really stressed, I read Agatha Christie. Her murders are very soothing to me;)

Susan: What would you say are your heroine, Cherry Tucker’s, greatest strengths and weaknesses?
Larissa: Her sass is both a strength and weakness, because sometimes her big mouth gets her in trouble. At the same time, she has no problem calling a spade a spade. She’s a risk taker, which means she’s willing to put herself on the line for justice, but it also places her in danger. She’s an artist, so she’s very creative. This can be a negative when her creative thinking leads her to trouble. So, I’d say she’s pretty well balanced.


Susan: What about your hero, Luke Harper?
Larissa: He’s hotter than a tin roof in August with the ability to expose dimples and smoke up his gray eyes at will. He can take Cherry’s sass and serve it back double quick. Luke’s smart and resourceful, but because he’s the strong, silent type, you never know what he’s thinking. Which can be a problem when there’s a killer on the loose and you don’t know who to trust.

Susan’s GOTTA ASK: What is your favorite scene in Portrait of a Dead Guy?
Larissa’s GOTTA ANSWER: Wow, you ask difficult questions! That’s like asking which child I like better! My favorite scenes to write are the action scenes, but the scene that makes my cheeks heat is one between Cherry and Luke and a takeout order of hot wings. They finally give in to all those old feelings that have been bubbling beneath the surface from the time they meet after all those years apart. Sauce gets everywhere...

 

Connect with Larissa online...

She and her writing friends also chat weekly about books on their Little Read Hens Facebook page and littlereadhens.com.
 

Larissa has a question for you...

Do you like it when a book in a series ends with a romantic cliffhanger (for example, in a love triangle, you don’t know which guy the heroine will choose)?
BTW, Cherry Tucker loves to eat Southern food and also loves to “embellish” her clothing. On Pinterest, I’m always looking for great Southern recipes and DIY ideas to restyle ordinary clothes that would fit Cherry’s budget but lets her add personal style. If you find a recipe or DIY clothing idea you think Cherry would love, put an @LarissaReinhart in the comment section and let me know. I’ll pin it to my Southern Fixin’s and/or Cherry’s Wardrobe boards and might use them in a future book!
 


Thursday, August 30, 2012

Play casting director for the day and cast the roles of Rafe and Fanny.




Okay, so you're not a casting director in real life, but today you get to play one on Get Lost in a Story!

Whenever I am preparing to start a new manuscript, I always begin the process with a number of pictures in my mind, and even more importantly, a voice in my head. It's really weird, but I can't write dialogue unless I can hear the character's voice in my head.

So I'm going to play producer here, and give you some background on each character that I need to caste in my story and then you can then pick and choose from the actor's headshots below.

For the role of Detective Rafe Lewis:

His backstory:  The honorable Raphael Lewis, St. Aldwyn is the estranged second son of an earl whose family is land rich and cash poor. He jilted his childhood sweetheart and fiancée, Miss Fanny Greyville-Nugent and his own mother hasn’t spoken to him in five years. Readers first meet Rafe in An Affair with Mr. Kenned,

His personality: Detective Lewis comes off as a rake, but he uses these roguey traits to help him hide from his past. He is handsome in a princely way. He is athletic, extremely fit, and carries himself in a princely manner. He is also a brave and cunning fighter. Rafe has an uncanny ability to sense danger and a natural talent for sleuthing. He rarely lets anyone see his more vulnerable side, but it's there––big time. I just can't share much about it because I don't want to be a spoiler! 





Henry Cavill
The Tudors, Immortals, Superman...oh yeah, Rafe is all that.



Wentworth Miller
An interesting choice. Edgy, soft spoken, cunning...with an unexpected sweet side. 




Hugh Grant
Hugh Grant'a take on the character of Charles in Four Weddings and a Funeral is so Rafe. Princely, with a self-effacing charm.




Chris Evans
There is this scene I'm thinking of...it's a hot sweltering day. Rafe and Fanny
take turns having a swim in the loch:  
Rafe rose out of the water and waded ashore. This time she balked but did not turn away. Rivulets of water ran through the hair on his chest, down a sinewy torso...




Prince William
Does Prince William carry himself like Detective Lewis. Or does Rafe carry himself like a prince?
Casting a real prince would be a splendid choice, indeed!


For the role of Fanny Greyville-Nugent:

Her backstory: Francine Greyville-Nugent was raised by her widowed father, a brilliant inventor and busy industrialist. When he bought the estate next to the St. Aldwyn's, Fanny became friendly with both two boys next door––particularly Rafe, the youngest son of the Earl. Years later, when rumors of an engagement between Fanny ad Rafe surfaced, no one was surprised, in fact, it was expected.

Her personality: As the story opens her father is dead, killed in a grisly accident involving new  threshing machine. Heartbroken and still in mourning, Fanny is nevertheless determined to carry on with Greyville-Nugent Enterprises. She is a progressive suffragist as well as an engineer in her own right. She is darling to look at, quick tempered, and somewhat protective of a vulnerable, generous heart.



Helen Bonham-Carter
Helen is too mature to play Fanny, but her character Lucy Honeychurch is perfect for the role.
She's the spitting image of Fanny and has a feisty, tomboyish quality.




Keira Knightly
Keira would bring beauty and wit to the role and she could definitely go toe to toe with Detective Lewis.



Kate Winslet
Kate's character of Rose from Titanic would be a vulnerable, softer Fanny with an underlying strength, and resilience.



Carey Mulligan
She's fascinating in every role she plays. I would love to see her take on Fanny. 



Emma Watson
Emma is a fresh, young choice. And she is so Fanny in every way! 


So now its up to commenters, I mean casting directors! Please share your thoughts on casting the lead roles in A DANGEROUS LIAISON WITH DETECTIVE LEWIS. Your casting choices are not limited to the photos here, if you have other ideas––please share! I love to have readers participate in these casting blogs. I have a signed copy one lucky casting director, chosen at random.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JillianStoneBooks
Twitter: @gJillianStone

Purchase links:

***Note: Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North America  addresses only. If an Advanced Reading Copy (ARC) is available, the author may utilize that option for International participants. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants.





Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Get Lost in a Story by Land, Sea and...Velocipede?


Love on the Run with Detective Lewis 
A road trip romance. 


As most of you know by now, I write historical romantic suspense set in the late Victorian period (1887-1891). At this time, steam travel was in full bloom and electricity was just beginning to light up the streets and stages of London's theater district. Giant steam engines powered trains and ships, people powered bicycles––experimental submarines, and great landships were being designed, built and displayed in at Industrial Expositions. These futuristic machine demonstrations were wildly popular in London, making inventors the rock stars of the day!

In the second book of The Gentlemen of Scotland Yard series, (released just yesterday) a number of odd and eccentric inventions have a role to play in this road trip adventure, along with a plot that keeps the hero and heroine on the run...

And just in case you haven't read the blurb for A Dangerous Liaison with Detective Lewis:



When Fanny Greyville-Nugent's father suffers a gruesome death in the clutches of his own machine, mourning his loss is not the beautiful heiress's only heartbreak. Scotland Yard is convinced he was targeted in a plot to halt the rise of industry, and Fanny's former fiancé, dashing and dubious detective Raphael "Rafe" Lewis, has been assigned to the case.

For the estranged ex-lovers, bringing the notorious assassins to justice proves as tumultuous as quelling pent-up desires. Fighting peril and passion at every turn of a dangerous journey from Edinburgh to London, they are pursued by an anarchist group hell-bent on destroying her father's mysterious entry into the London Industrial Exposition.

When an astonishing discovery about the couple's failed engagement surfaces, the sleuthing duo realize they can trust no one. Rafe confesses new details about his infidelity and Fanny risks all to avenge her father's murder. But will Rafe and Fanny triumph over the pain of their past?

Here's a link for: FREE CHAPTER READ


Part of the fun of this story is that Fanny and Rafe travel in an assortment of steampunk machines as they are pursued by her would-be abductors from Edinburgh to London, these conveyances include trains, velocipedes, a landship and a submersible. Without being a spoiler, I’d love to share a few factoids about these turn of these late Victorian vehicles:




Train.
                                                   
By 1887, the network of trains and train tracks crisscrossing Britain was comprehensive, but disjointed. Because the railroads were built and owned by private investment syndicates, there wasn’t much standardization. The train track gauges were different, requiring locomotives and cars to be custom built for each section of privately owned railway. And since one railroad company couldn’t use another’s tracks, this also might require passengers to change trains along the route to their destination. Railroad investment syndicates often went bankrupt, sometimes before the new route was even finished. On the upside? Rail speed. In A DANGEROUS LIAISON WITH DETECTIVE LEWIS, Rafe boards the early train in London and arrives in Edinburgh in time for a funeral in the afternoon.

Velocipede.


According to Wikipedia, velocipede is an umbrella term for any human-powered land vehicle with one or more wheels. The most common type of velocipede is the bicycle. At one point in their escape, Fanny and Rafe use bicycles to put a bit of distance between themselves and their pursuers.

Landship.

This highly experimental, prototype of a pedrail landship plays an interesting part in the novel, helping to get Fanny and Rafe from Edinburgh to Glasgow. Sorry I can’t be any more specific about this giant war engine’s role in the novel, but I can tell you that these landships were the precursors to the tank and were first put to use in World War I.


Submersible.

            
One of the more colorful supporting characters in A DANGEROUS LIAISON WITH DETECTIVE LEWIS, in an inventor who joins Fanny and Rafe in their increasingly perilous journey to London. One of his inventions is a three man submersible that he plans on entering in the London Industrial Exposition. The sub plays a key role in the story, but alas, that is all I can say. My lips are sealed.

I wrote A DANGEROUS LIAISION WITH DETECTIVE LEWIS to be a suspenseful page turner with a hero who has a lot to prove and make up for––and a heroine who is up for both the romance and the road trip. As a film student, I studied all of Alfred Hitchcock’s work and I particularly admire the suspense films: Rear Window, North by Northwest, and To Catch a Thief. Thrills, chills, adventure––perhaps there’s a mystery to uncover, or a villain to capture, but at the story’s core, there is always a romance.


Question for commenters: What is your favorite Steampunk vehicle––land, sea or air? I have a signed  copy of A DANGEROUS LIAISON WITH DETECTIVE LEWIS for one lucky commenter today, chosen at random.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JillianStoneBooks
Twitter: @gJillianStone

Purchase links:
The Book Depository  

***Note: Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North America  addresses only. If an Advanced Reading Copy (ARC) is available, the author may utilize that option for International participants. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants.


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

DRUM ROLL FOR THE FABULOUS JILLIAN STONE


Oh, Get Lost in a Story Readers, this is going to be fun.  Today I have the privilege of interviewing our own Jillian Stone, an amazing author whose Gentlemen of Scotland Yard Series has taken readers by storm after suspenseful, sexy storm.  Please say hello to the prolific, talented Jillian Stone and celebrate with the Get Lost Crew her new release A DANGEROUS LIAISON WITH DETECTIVE LEWIS .
REVIEWS!!!!

"A fun, exciting romantic romp. Jillian Stone's writing shines with passion and wit."New York Times bestselling author Julia London

"Stone’s taut mystery/romance debut sets the stage for her Gentlemen of Scotland Yard series. The sexy, smart characters will appeal to modern readers as much as the suspense. Their repartee and sensuality heat up the pages, promising a treat for readers."—Romantic Times on An Affair with Mr. Kennedy (4 Stars)

"A satisfying romance featuring a genuinely original pair of lovers and sparkling supporting characters against an unusual social and political background."Publishers Weekly on An Affair with Mr. Kennedy

"If I get caught up in my reading and forget to pay attention to what I'm reading OR where I am and what I'm doing, that's a sign of a very, very good book, or at the least a powerfully good scene or chapter. This happened to me yesterday while I was reading An Affair with Mr. Kennedy by Jillian Stone."—Sarah Wendell, Smart Bitches, Trashy Books

“An exciting mystery mixed with steamy romance.”—Fresh Fiction on An Affair with Mr. Kennedy

An intriguing, well-written romance, this is definitely a must read. Loads of fun and entertainment!”Historical Novel Reviews on An Affair with Mr. Kennedy
READERS, IDEALLY THE REVIEWS WHET YOUR APPETITE.  BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE.... LETS GET TO KNOW WHAT REALLY MAKES JILL TICK!
DONNELL:  Jill, how fun to get to talk to you about writing two series with two different publishers.  First, you won the 2010 Golden Heart for AN AFFAIR WITH MR. KENNEDY and that award led to signing with Richard Curtis and a three-book contract with Pocket books. Then THE SEDUCTION OF PHAETON BLACK won the 2010 Romance through the Ages contest for erotica. This led to a three-book contract by Kensington Brava. 

I want to know, and perhaps readers do as well, what went through your mind as you transitioned from unpublished author to published author with so many books ahead of you. Elation? Panic?  Determination? What have you learned from 2010 to 2012?

JILLIAN: All of the above. I think I will be better able to talk about these past two years, once I finish the last book in the contract with Kensington Brava––due October 1, 2012. I have made mistakes along the way and I am hopefully learning from them. Right now, I’m just focused on getting to the finish line!

DONNELL: Your books are rich in history, particularly the industrial age, which we know as Steampunk?  Why did this era fascinate you in particular?

JILLIAN: It was a very exciting time. Everything was changing with the invention of steam engines and electricity. Inventors were the rock stars of the day. Things were moving faster and faster. Women’s suffrage, worker’s rights––lots of upheaval! I thought, what fun to write a romantic suspense series set amongst all the uproar!  

DONNELL:  How is it writing for two publishers?  Do you ever get them confused?

JILLIAN: Lol! They have very different styles of interacting with their authors, so I would never get confused. It has been difficult in the extreme, at times, juggling writing schedules, release dates and promotion schedules with two different publishers.

DONNELL: Your covers are to die for. Sexy and appealing.  Did you have any input? 

JILLIAN: I have been a very lucky author when it comes to covers. The Gentlemen of Scotland Yard cover models are all as sexy and appealing as the heroes they represent in the novels. My editors at Pocket always ask for input on the covers and I send over descriptions and photos of the characters. Kensington’s covers for the Phaeton Black series were a complete surprise, but I must say I love the interaction between Phaeton Black and America Jones on both covers.

DONNELL: Are you a plotter, panster, both? Tell us about your process.  

JILLIAN: I pretty much plot out the story in advance. With a suspense plot there is a lot of craft that goes into the pacing of the story, so I usually have a pretty good idea how the story will progress but not necessarily how it ends. I often have several different endings in mind and a number of plot/character twists that may or may not happen. I also try to avoid the typical kinds of romance tropes for my hero and heroine.

DONNELL:  Tell us about the rewards you’ve reaped since 2010; tell us about the changes you’ve had to make with such a challenging schedule.

JILLIAN: My greatest reward is hearing from readers about how much they enjoyed the books––nothing else comes close, not even a five star review.

The challenge for me, is that I honestly have had no life these last two years. None. I have not taken more than a day off in two years. Even when I go to conferences like RWA, I write everyday. I have finally accepted the idea that two contracts is too much to manage and I will never be one of these romance writers who can write five books a year!

DONNELL: Erotica or suspense?  Your reviews say they share equal time. But do you have a favorite? 

JILLIAN: I do have a favorite: The Gentlemen of Scotland Yard! The RT BOOK REVIEW for A DANGEROUS LIAISON WITH DETECTIVE LEWIS said that the romance and suspense share equal time. The Gentlemen of Scotland Yard series is not erotica, though the love scenes are steamy.

DONNELL: What would you say to aspiring authors out there?

JILLIAN: Write everyday. The moment you finish one manuscript, begin another. It is helpful to your frame of mind, if you are working on a new manuscript while you market another. Keep moving forward.

DONNELL:  What do you want your readers to take away from your stories?

JILLIAN: I want to take the reader on a great adventure and hope they fall a little bit in love along the way.

DONNELL: With six book contracts under your belt, what comes next for Jillian Stone?

JILLIAN: I hope to be able to make an exciting announcement soon! ;)


AND WE'LL BE WAITING... OKAY READERS....DO YOU HAVE A QUESTION FOR JILLIAN?  ASK AWAY AND BE SURE TO LEAVE YOUR E-MAIL ADDRESSES SO WE CAN ENTER YOU IN THE DRAWING... YOU DO NOT WANT TO MISS THIS OPPORTUNITY. 




  Jillian Stonewebsite Facebook Twitter Goodreads

Jillian will be spending Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday featuring different aspects from A DANGEROUS LIAISON with DETECTIVE LEWIS. I'm looking forward to them. Hope you'll join us each day for the fun.

DON'T FORGET to FOLLOW us on Twitter #GetLostStories or LIKE us on Facebook to keep up with all our guest authors and their prizes. ~ Donnell

REMEMBER the drawing. A copy of Jillian's newest release could be yours.


Note: Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North America addresses only unless specifically mentioned in the post. If an INTERNATIONAL name is drawn, mailing the book or supplying an electronic version will be the decision of the donator. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants. Winners of drawings are responsible for checking this site in a timely manner. If prizes are not claimed in a timely manner, the author may not have a prize available. Get Lost In A Story cannot be responsible for an author's failure to mail the listed prize. GLIAS does not automatically pass email addresses to guest authors unless the commenter publicly posts their email address.







Monday, August 27, 2012

Why You Should Be Reading Jillian Stone

It is my utmost pleasure to begin the premiere week of Jillian Stone's A Dangerous Liaison with Detective Lewis. She's a member of GLIAS and an Unsinkable Sister who won the RWA Golden Heart for her debut book AN AFFAIR WITH MR. KENNEDY.  I waited impatiently for her Gentlemen of Scotland Yard trilogy to begin and can't wait to get my hands on the second installment.

So why should you be reading Jillian Stone? It's elementary... (sorry, I just had to say that >>grin<<) But in all serious, I used pure deductive reasoning for the basis of my decision.

LOGICAL DEDUCTION #1: Reviews

A DANGEROUS LIAISON
with DETECTIVE LEWIS

POCKET BOOKS
ISBN-10: 1451629052

★★★★1/2 Romantic Times BOOK REVIEWS
"The Gentleman of Scotland Yard return on another daring mission of dark London and darker secrets. Stone is a force, entangling readers in her powerful well-crafted mystery and allowing the romance and suspense to share equal time. A colorful backdrop, historical details of the industrial era and forensic science merge seamlessly into a fast-paced plot that is filled with surprises and adventure."





AN AFFAIR
with MR. KENNEDY

POCKET BOOKS
ISBN-10: 1451629001

★★★★ Romantic Times BOOK REVIEWS
"Stone's taut mystery/romance sets the stage for her Gentlemen of Scotland Yard series. The sexy smart characters will appeal to modern readers as much as the suspense. Their repartee heat up the pages promising a treat for readers."



LOGICAL DEDUCTION #2: The Covers
Did you see these covers? Take a second look.
I mean, when you get Matthew Fox to pose for a Victorian Cover...you've got to read the story. Right?

LOGICAL DEDUCTION #3: The Writing
Jillian's STORYVILLE

A SAMPLE from A DANGEROUS LIAISON WITH DETECTIVE LEWIS
   What on earth? Something—a presence—loomed up from behind Fanny. A rough hand went around her face and clamped over her mouth. Another arm pulled her against a hulking frame and dragged her toward the shadows.
   She fought back with all her might, kicking and dragging her feet. The toe of her shoe caught on the edge of the gate and slammed it shut. With a grunt, the large oaf who seized her muttered under his breath and squeezed harder. Wrenching her neck, Fanny glimpsed a transport van at the end of the alley. The kind of paneled vehicle used for moving furniture and belongings. The back door was open. Dear God, they meant to put her inside.
   She was being abducted.

   RAFE FLEW OUT the alley, feet keeping pace with his racing thoughts. Christ, where was she? He took a corner so fast he nearly tumbled onto the bloody pavers. Regaining his balance he lengthened his stride. There, straight ahead, a furniture van wobbled down the street at a blistering fast pace. “Fanny!” Common sense and a nose for crime said he’d find her inside. She had to be.
   The clumsy conveyance would have to slow considerably to make the tight turn at George Square. Rafe vaulted over the iron fence and cut across a small patchwork of park surrounded by a quiet row of shops and townhomes. He pulled out his Webley and fired above the driver’s head. The man snapped the reins and the horses bolted around the turn.

LOGICAL DEDUCTION #4: Bond+Holmes+Byron
"Put James Bond in a time machine and transport him to late Victorian London, add a good bit of Sherlock Holmes, a splash of Lord Byron and you get pretty close to The Gentlemen of Scotland Yard. Although the detectives are reality-based characters, the plot lines, sleuthing methods and gadgetry edge on Steampunk."  ~~from the Gadget Gallery on Jillian's website. 

Three fantastic elements all in one read!













LOGICAL DEDUCTION #5: The 1880's
The late Victorian Era. The time of the industrial revolution. The beginnings of forensic science. The telephone. The phonograph. The machine gun. Coca Cola is incorporated. Streetlights. Saltwater taffy. Popcorn machine. Softball. The slot machine.The Kinetoscope. And of course, a writer's favorite tool: the ballpoint pen. 

Commenters: Of all the inventions listed above, which one is your favorite? Jillian is giving away a signed copy of A DANGEROUS LIAISON WITH DETECTIVE LEWIS to a lucky commenter chosen at random starting today through Thursday––which means you have four chances to win if you comment every day! ;)

and not the last on my LOGICAL DEDUCTION list:
   Jillian Stone
website    Facebook     Twitter    Goodreads

Jillian will be spending Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday featuring different aspects from A DANGEROUS LIAISON with DETECTIVE LEWIS. I'm looking forward to them. Hope you'll join us each day for the fun.

DON'T FORGET to FOLLOW us on Twitter #GetLostStories or LIKE us on Facebook to keep up with all our guest authors and their prizes. ~Angi

REMEMBER the drawing. A copy of Jillian's newest release could be yours.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Get Lost in a Shocking Proposal with Anna Randol









There is improper, there is scandalous...and then there is Madeline Valdan.

To the world, Madeline Valdan is a scandalous courtesan, with society's most eligible gentlemen at her feet. But no one knows her shocking secret: she has never experienced the most intimate touch of any man. So she astonishes the ton by telling them the truth . . . and by announcing the auction of her virginity to the highest bidder.

Handsome and disciplined, Gabriel Huntford knows his time is best spent hunting down criminals from the darkest corners of London. As a Bow Street Runner investigating his sister's death, he has no desire to join London's strutting peacocks in this competition when there are more important tasks at hand.

Now, his quest leads him to one of Madeline's "suitors," so he agrees to help this sinful woman. But what begins as a business arrangement quickly turns into something more . . . and love blooms with a passion neither one expected.


More about the author, Anna Randol

Anna Randol was raised in Southern California. When she was eight, she decided her diary was too dull and decided to write as if she lived on a raft in the Amazon with her imaginary dog, Cream Puff. At twelve, Anna decided racing down rapids with only a dog for company might get rather lonely. Handsome British heroes began to appear on her raft, and her love of adventure-driven romance was born.

Jillian: Where do you read and how often?
Anna: Everywhere and all the time! I recently put the Kindle app on my phone and now there’s no stopping me. I read when I waiting to get my kids from school, while cooking, at the store…you get the picture.
Jillian: What sound or noise do you love?
Anna: Thunder. As a kid, I loved sitting out on my grandparents porch swing and watching the thunderstorms roll in from over the mountains. The wind would start blowing through the aspen trees, then there’d be a low, distant grumble of thunder that I felt more than heard. Soon the lightning would flash followed by the first sharp crack of thunder and the sudden sizzle of rain. Don’t even get me started on the smell of the first raindrops on the hot pavement…
Jillian: What was the first story you remember writing.
Anna: When I was seven, I wrote a Christmas story Rudolf losing his antlers (poor Rudolph never catches a break…) and everyone mistakes him for a horse. Mrs. Clause has to sew him a pair out of felt until his new ones grow in. I proudly read the story (all three handwritten pages) in the family Christmas video that year.
Jillian: Be honest, when reading 1st person...do you miss the hero’s POV?
Anna: I do! (I’m so glad it’s not just me…) There are many books I adore that are written in first person, but I always find myself longing to find out what the hero is thinking. Just a peek, is that so much to ask? But I do admire authors who can filter an entire story through one POV. I think they have it twice as hard!
Jillian: What’s your favorite kid joke?
Anna: Q: What’s red and bad for your teeth? A: A brick

Anna has a question for commenters: Let’s hear it. What is your favorite kid joke? A print copy or ebook to a commenters chosen at random.

www.AnnaRandol.com
www.facebook.com/AnnaRandolRomance
@AnnaRandol

***Note: Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North America addresses only. If an Advanced Reading Copy (ARC) is available, the author may utilize that option for International participants. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Get Lost in a Story with Beth Groundwater

Hello Get Lost in a Story Readers:  Today, I'm excited to welcome fellow Coloradoan and talented author BETH GROUNDWATER to answer some challenging questions.  But you'll learn very soon that Beth is all about challenges.  Please welcome Beth Groundwater!


Wicked Eddies blurb & review:



Fly fishing is dangerous? River ranger Mandy Tanner had no idea until days before a huge tournament in Salida, Colorado. True, the Arkansas River can be a man-eater, but the rapids weren’t responsible for driving a hatchet into the neck of would-be competitor Howie Abbott―a secretive man who may have been cheating. While casting about for suspects, Mandy seeks clues from Abbott’s family members, including her best friend, bartender Cynthia Abbott. But when Cynthia becomes the prime suspect, Mandy realizes she’s wading into deeper, more hazardous waters than ever.
"Once again, Groundwater, mixing mystery with outdoor adventure, comes up with an excursion that will please most comers.”

-- Kirkus Reviews, May 1, 2012

To Hell in a Handbasket blurb & review:



An icy demise snowballs in book 2 of this Agatha Award-nominated series. Gift basket designer Claire Hanover is reluctantly enjoying a spring ski vacation with her family in Breckenridge, Colorado, when a bloodcurdling scream cuts the frigid air. Claire is appalled to find the sister of her daughter’s boyfriend dead on the slopes. Others assume the girl’s death was an accident, but Claire notices another pair of ski tracks veering dangerously into the victim’s path. To protect her daughter as incriminating clues surface, Claire unravels a chilling conspiracy.
"Groundwater's second leaves the bunny slope behind, offering some genuine black-diamond thrills."

-- Kirkus Reviews, April 1, 2009

 AND NOW...FUN QUESTIONS FOR BETH GROUNDWATER:




DONNELL:  Beth: Welcome to Get Lost in a Story. If you could live anywhere on earth, where would it be?
BETH: Right where I am now, in beautiful Breckenridge, Colorado! My husband and I had a vacation home here for years, while we raised our children in Colorado Springs. We moved here full-time last December, and we never looked back! We venture outside almost every day to hike, bike, ski or whatever and have been warmly received into the social scene.
DONNELL:  If you’re not writing, where will we likely find you?
BETH: On the trail—skiing, hiking, or biking, that is! Or, in the evenings at a play, party, or movie, and about three times a year on an adventurous 2-3 week trip, usually overseas. We have a long bucket list of travel spots to work our way through.
DONNELL:  You’re planning an important social function.  Just everyone will be there.  Which of your characters do you want to attend?  Who do you hope won’t crash the party?
BETH: What a fun question! From my RM Outdoor Adventures series, Cynthia Abbott, the bartender best friend of the protagonist, whitewater river ranger Mandy Tanner, would be a great party guest, with her blonde jokes and welcoming personality. I’d put her to work mixing drinks behind the bar. And, from my Claire Hanover gift basket designer series, I’d invite drug dealer and BBQ restaurant businessman Leon Fox. Why a criminal? Because once you meet Leon, you’ll see he’s a boisterous character who lights up any room he enters and can really get a party going. He’s a great help to Claire in solving murders that affect her family, too.
As for those I hope won’t crash the party, all of the murderers from both series, of course! I can’t tell you who they are, because I don’t want to give away the endings of the books. But, I want my party guests to feel safe, so they can focus on the fun. ;-)
DONNELL:  What’s in your refrigerator right now?
BETH: Lots and lots of fresh organic fruits and vegetables from my CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) shares from Grant Family Farms. I’m trying to be healthy and lose a few pounds, and I’m having fun trying to “hide” veggies such as rhubarb and beets that my dear hubby doesn’t particularly like in creative recipes. Also in the fridge are foods to go with those fruits and vegetables, such as whole wheat wraps, chili cheese curds, chicken sausages, Greek yogurt, snow crab legs, white wine, beer, and dark chocolate bars.
DONNELL:  You’ve written two series now.  Who is Beth Groundwater more like, basket designer Claire Hanover or whitewater river ranger Mandy Tanner?
BETH: I’m a little of both. I’m closer to Claire in age and life experiences (with two grown children and a husband, like her), but Claire is braver than I am, sticking her nose in where it doesn’t belong—and could get cut off! I like to think I’m smarter than her, though, because I write her out of the fixes she gets herself into. I’m an outdoorswoman like Mandy Tanner, and I love the thrill of whitewater rafting, as she does. However, she’s much younger than I am, has a lot to learn still about relationships and life, and like Claire, she’s braver than me!
DONNELL:  What was the first story you remember writing?  What was the first story you remember reading?
BETH: My first forays into fiction writing were my Freddie stories when I was in fifth and sixth grade. My protagonist, Freddie, had all sorts of wild adventures, including visiting an underground mole city after burrowing down in a giant screw-mobile. Freddie was a boy, because back in the sixties, I thought girls weren't supposed to have adventures. I know better now! And I was a huge Nancy Drew mysteries fan. I read every book in that series that I could get my hands on before moving on to Agatha Christie, Edgar Allen Poe, and Victoria Holt.
DONNELL:   What would you say is the most unusual thing you have in your closet?
BETH: Since moving up to Breckenridge, the closet in my writing office here has become the storage area for all the stuff we decided not to sell or give away but that we also haven’t found a place for yet. Peering in there, the most unusual thing I see is a robotic Tyrannosaurus Rex toy that I gave my techno-geek hubby for one of his birthdays.
DONNELL:  If you could meet anyone in this world, past or present, who would it be, and why?
BETH:  I would invite Jimmy Carter, Mother Teresa, and Jesus Christ to dinner. From this list you might think I was a very religious person. I do attend church somewhat regularly, but I’m not an over-the-top evangelist. Instead, what intrigues me about these people is the combination of their peaceful, loving demeanor and their power to cause tremendous change for the better in society, resulting in the foundation of a new religion, a huge relief effort for the poor, and the spread of democracy. Both Jimmy Carter and Mother Teresa are Nobel Peace Prize winners, to me the most important award in the world, and they were both motivated by their strong beliefs in Christianity. I’d love to have the opportunity to discuss faith and God with Jesus, his son, and to observe what Jimmy Carter and Mother Teresa would ask him.
AND NOW BETH'S QUESTION FOR READERS: 
In anticipation of the November re-release in trade paperback and ebook of To Hell in a Handbasket, the second book of the Claire Hanover gift basket designer mystery series, I will offer an autographed copy of that book or of the first book in the series, A Real Basket Case, to one commenter.
BETH:  When I write my mystery novels, I usually try to interweave at least two subplots with the main mystery plot, one of which is a romance. My question for readers is, when you read a mystery novel, do you expect or prefer a romantic subplot, or would you rather focus on just the mystery to be solved?
Bio: Bestselling mystery author Beth Groundwater writes the Claire Hanover gift basket designer series (A Real Basket Case, 2007 & 2011, a Best First Novel Agatha Award finalist, and To Hell in a Handbasket, 2009 & 2012) and the Rocky Mountain Outdoor Adventures series starring whitewater river ranger Mandy Tanner (Deadly Currents, 2011, and Wicked Eddies, 2012). The third books in both series will appear in 2013. Beth enjoys Colorado's many outdoor activities, including skiing and whitewater rafting, and loves talking to book clubs. Please check out her website at bethgroundwater.com and her blog at bethgroundwater.blogspot.com.
Note: Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North America addresses only unless specifically mentioned in the post. If an INTERNATIONAL name is drawn, mailing the book or supplying an electronic version will be the decision of the donator. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants. Winners of drawings are responsible for checking this site in a timely manner. If prizes are not claimed in a timely manner, the author may not have a prize available. Get Lost In A Story cannot be responsible for an author's failure to mail the listed prize. GLIAS does not automatically pass email addresses to guest authors unless the commenter publicly posts their email address.

THANK YOU for joining us during our RITA® celebration. Don’t forget to FOLLOW us on Twitter #GetLostStories or LIKE us on Facebook.   Join us tomorrow when Jillian Stone hosts Anna Randol.