Wednesday, May 23, 2012
Saturday, May 12, 2012
Dr. Nathan Hunter has forty-eight hours to save his job and find the missing Salt Coast Clan, a lost civilization locals believe is a myth. When ancient human remains turn up at the site of a new state water project, he’s sure the lost tribe is real. Before he can examine the bones, however, a pretty female lawyer gets an injunction to stop him.
Nila Willopah sees ghosts. Although her soul is in danger from the spirits unearthed at the site, Nila is the one person who can stop the project and protect her ancestors’ last resting place from Dr. Hunter. She’s also the only one who can help the angry spirits cross over.
Nila suspects the sexy anthropologist is hiding a dark secret behind his clear blue eyes and skilled hands. A secret she wants nothing to do with. But when a ghost latches onto his soul, Nila must set aside her fears and suspicions and enter the world of spirit communication to protect him.
When I first heard about the blog tour, I was excited. When I got the two books in this series, I burned through the pages like they were on fire. Yes. Fire. This author has a great grasp of page turning style that left me wanting more.
What I liked:
I loved Nila's character and how she struggled to tame the power within herself. She was sensual and fought for what she believed in. Dr. Hunter was not to bad himself. His demons and hers collide in a fast paced story that explores the rich Native American spirituality I have come to enjoy from this series. It also drew in characters from the first book and it felt like old friends dropping in for a visit.
What I didn't:
5/5 For great plot movement, characters that breathe and sensuality that pops right off the page. This book has some sizzling parts, so it is for mature readers, but is very enjoyable. I loved the Native American spirituality and the ghost whisperer type of story line. Great dialog and action scenes.
The first book in the series is:
Haunted by tragedy, FBI profiler Rife St. Cloud is driven to find the person who brutally attacked six women. Unfortunately the only survivor, Keva Moon Water, has no memory of what happened, and the evidence makes her the prime suspect.
Keva cannot die. She has waited a thousand years to be reunited with the man she loves, whose soul sleeps within Rife. Though he refuses to believe her claims of immortality, there's no denying the passion that burns between them. Keva desperately hopes their sexual connection will be enough to awaken Rife's memories of the love affair that started a war and bound their souls together for all eternity.
But when Keva's own memories come trickling back, she realizes that a future with Rife depends upon confronting the mistakes of the distant past...
This one gets a 5/5 also for all the same reasons. Great characters, smokin' hot scenes, dialog that will keep you engaged and a plot that had me turning the pages. You have to read these books!
In preparation for this blog tour, I took a few minutes and thought up some questions for amazing author, Misty Evans. Here are her responses...
1. What first interested you in Native American mythology?
ME: I’ve always been fascinated with Native American culture and gobble up both fiction and nonfiction on the subject. While reading books by Kathleen O’Neal Gear and W. Michael Gear, I started dreaming about Keva (my heroine in Soul Survivor) and her tribe. I would wake up in the morning and write scenes that had appeared in my dreams. Several of them never made it into Soul Survivor but they helped me understand Keva and her Pathwalks better. I hope to add those deleted scenes to the story as bonus material in a future edition.
2. You have excellent pacing and your action scenes flow perfectly. Any advice to would be writers out there (waves hand in air) about how you pace your stories (outlines, seat of your pants) and how you get your action scenes so spot on?
ME: Thank you! My advice…conflict, conflict, conflict. I give my characters angst-y internal conflict, throw in external action that heightens their internal conflict and run with it. I don’t outline every chapter, but I always know the black moment and climax, so I have a road map sort to speak of where the story’s going. I personally enjoy lots of external action and making my characters suffer to get what they need/want so there’s plenty of suspense and tension. Publishers have actually dinged me for too much action and not enough romance, but that’s the way I write…fast-paced and lots of conflict.
Since I write four different series, I have a set of tools I use to help with plotting and pacing. I even teach online workshops on how to plot a romance series. In class, we look at individual books as well as the overall series arc and how to ramp up conflict and tie it into character motivation. I used to hate plotting, now it’s one of my favorite things to do.
3. You have a witchy series also. Tell us a little about it.
ME: The Witches Anonymous series is about a bad witch trying to go good in thirteen steps. Her biggest obstacle? Lucifer. Yep, that Lucifer.
Amy’s been the devil’s right-hand witch for seven years, so going magic-free is rough. Especially when he wants her back. I have a blast writing these stories because Luc’s always tempting Amy and she falls off the wagon a lot. Who can blame her? Lucifer, like dark chocolate, is hard to resist. <wink>
4. I see you are working on a new project where all the proceeds will go to breast cancer research. Can you tell us a little about that and what inspired you?
ME: One of my aunts died from breast cancer when I was a teenager. I adored her and was devastated when she passed away. I also have a childhood friend who recently underwent a double mastectomy. I hate this disease and am a strong advocate of breast cancer research (I used to manage a public health program for uninsured women), so when Edie Ramer asked me if I wanted to do an anthology to raise funds for the cause, I jumped at the chance.
Entangled, A Paranormal Anthology, includes ten suspense-filled paranormal short stories from Cynthia Eden, Jennifer Estep, Edie Ramer, Lori Brighton, Michelle Diener, me, Nancy Haddock, Liz Kreger, Dale Mayer, and Michelle Miles, plus a Seven Deadly Sins novella by Allison Brennan. Stacia Kane contributed the foreword and all proceeds go to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. This is a dream come true for me to work with so many fantastic authors (many are role models to me) and since the anthology came out last September, we’ve earned over $7000 for the BCRF.
5. What are some of your favorite witchy movies and books?
ME: I’m a Charmed addict. I loved that show and wish it was still going. While I write light, humorous witches, I prefer to read dark witches like Stacia Kane’s Chess Putnam and Anya Bast’s Elemental Witches. I also love a good urban fantasy or paranormal romance with witches thrown in.
6. Do you write with music? If so, what?
ME: Oh, yes. Music plays a key role in all my stories. Currently, I’m writing the second book in my Kali Sweet urban fantasy series, Sweet Chaos, so I’m listening to Breaking Benjamin and other rock music…Stone Sour, Alter Bridge, Shinedown, etc. When I wrote Soul Survivor and Soul Protector, I listened to nature music, Celtic Woman and Native instrumental songs.
7. What is one of your weirdest quirks as a writer?
ME: Let’s see…most of my quirks are top secret (hey, I also write spies and black ops characters for a living!), but one of my silly quirks involves dancing. If I need some inspiration or I’m fighting off the doubt demons about my writing, I’ll put on Partridge Family songs or Beyoncé or even AC/DC and boogie around my kitchen, singing at the top of my lungs. I’m sure the neighbors think I’m crazy.
8. What inspired you to write Soul Protector? Was it based on a true story or completely fiction?
ME: After finishing Soul Survivor, the first book in the series, I knew I had to write Soul Protector so I could dig even deeper into the Salt Coast Clan and Red Fire Tribe. Both stories are complete fiction, although I read and researched as much as I could find on tribes of the Pacific Northwest and tried to be as accurate as I could with my fictional tribes.
With Soul Protector, I wanted to stay in the present (Soul Survivor involves flashbacks to a thousand years ago and some time travel) and compare and contrast the metaphysical world with the flesh and bone world. That’s how Nate (a physical anthropologist) and Nila (a shaman in denial of her gift) came to be.
9. As you write about Native American mythology and belief systems, it is obvious that you hold them in high esteem. Do you have Native American heritage?
ME: I do! My maternal grandparents several times removed were Cherokee, and I’ve always been drawn to stories about Native people. My grandparents were indentured servants to a land owner in Oklahoma, but according to family folklore, they respected him so much that when he freed them, they took his name as their last name to start their new life. It’s the only story I have about them, but I like to think they’re watching over me and guiding my hands as I write stories about Native people.
10. What was one book that really inspired you as a writer and why?
ME: There was a time before I became published when I lost all hope in my dream and felt like I couldn’t write my way out of a box. Rejections piled up and I struggled with doubt demons every time I sat down at my computer. At a local book sale, I found an old copy of Natalie Goldberg’s Writing Down the Bones for fifty cents. I started reading her simple, straightforward advice and keeping a journal of writings based on her ideas. Then I picked up Julia Cameron’s The Vein of Gold. Those two books got me writing again and restored my faith in my voice and my vision. A few months later, I had an agent and sold my first super agent book, Operation Sheba. That fifty cent investment was the best I ever made and the book sits proudly on my keeper shelf.
Thank you Misty for this great interview! It is always inspiring to hear what inspires fellow writers and the things that keep us sane. If you haven't checked out her books, here are some links:
Misty Evans Facebook
Don't forget to sign up for her newsletter to keep up with new and exciting developments.
Posted by Dana Wright at 12:00 AM
Wednesday, May 2, 2012
When young women start dying, Boston cop Samantha Ryan is the perfect person to investigate, for only she knows what the archais symbol carved into their flesh means. The last in a long line of ruthless witches, she grew up in a coven seduced by power and greed. And now she's sure that bad witches have returned to Salem. Reluctantly, Samantha goes undercover-into a town obsessed with black magic, into her terrifying past, and into the dark, newly awakened heart of evil.
This book caught my eye and I downloaded it onto my Nook. The beginning was a tad slow, but before too long I could barely keep up with my fingers as they turned the pages. This book gets top marks for action adventure of the witchy kind.
What I liked:
The heroine of the story is a witch fighting against the darkness of her past. She knows she has to embrace what dwells inside of her to bring murderers to justice, even if it costs her everything. The characters are believable, the action is non stop and there are going to be more! Series here I come!!
What I Didn't:
Witches, like everyone else chose the path they want to go down. Intent is everything. Also, it ended. Dang. 400 more pages would have been just lovely!!
A witchy action adventure story that will keep you up at night turning the pages.
Posted by Dana Wright at 8:00 AM