happy book release

Two client books officially arrived on the shelves while I was on vacation, so I didn’t get to post about them when they came out, but will do so now. And these two books are so different in concept, genre, and so forth, that it starkly highlights why it’s sometimes challenging for me to quantify what I want in a book that will hook me strong enough. Far too often I end up falling back on “something I love that I can also sell” – which isn’t too specific, of course. What do you think these might have as common elements that made them books I wanted to work on and/or authors I wanted to work with?

On August 11th:

The Fruit of My Lipstick by Shelley Adina — the 2nd book in the It’s All ABout Us Series. “The second book in Adina’s series, set in a posh San Francisco boarding school, allows readers to get to know the characters better. The plot is appropriate for its intended audience and never gets too preachy. Gillian’s first-person point of view keeps the storyline from being too much like the first book, It’s All About Us, and the mystery will pique the reader’s interest. Summary: Gillian Chang must work twice as hard in school to please her over-achieving Asian family. She balances aptitude in her classes with her love for God and her friends. She’s very attracted to fellow student Lucas Hayes and is thrilled when they begin a relationship. Things aren’t as they seem on the surface, though — can Gillian’s friends convince her that something isn’t right?” – Romantic Times, 4 Stars!

Shelley recently did a guest blog spot about Writing a Pitch-Perfect Query Letter.

On August 19th:

The Hanged Man by David Skibbins — the 4th book in the series featuring former political underground member Warren Ritter. “A death by sexual asphyxia throws Berkeley tarot reader Warren Ritter and his offbeat friends (The Star, 2007, etc.) into the company of some even more offbeat suspects. Friends don’t let friends rot in jail when they’re arrested for murder, and paraplegic computer hacker Sally McLaughlin is determined to wheel to the side of her buddy Therese de Farge, a professional dominatrix, when she’s arrested for climaxing a session with her client Greg Hawkins by choking him with a discipline collar. Even though he’s Sally’s lover, Warren’s not nearly so determined to help, especially since he seems to have his hands full keeping his dying mentor Phillip Letour’s 700-year-old Tarot deck out of the hands of the predatory Troy Baker. Soon enough, however, Warren has gone undercover as the world’s most reluctant dominant to find out more about Greg’s involvement in the Bay Area’s S&M lifestyle; Sally’s roommate, precocious teen Heather Talbridge, has gone undercover as a reporter to check out the competition for Hawkins Computer Defense Systems; and even Sally herself has gone undercover as a consultant for Greg’s widow Laura, who wants to memorialize her late husband by cracking his security codes. Skibbins leaps so lightly and matter-of-factly from one plotline to the other that a good time is had by all until the cops arrive to take the killer to jail. More adventure than detection, but the cast of regulars is in fine fettle.” – Kirkus Reviews

One response to “happy book release

  1. I don’t have an answer for your question, but I do have an opinion on the reviews themselves.
    The review/summary for THE HANGED MAN is way confusing. Too many names, and the reviewer hopscotches from one name to another without giving much reason for me to care about the characters mentioned. Isn’t this something authors are told NOT to do in a query letter if they want to hook an agent effectively? The same premise applies to book reviews; the reviewer is supposed to hook the potential book buyer, and this reviewer just botched the job. It’s great that the novel has interesting subplots and an apparently colorful cast of secondary characters, but I don’t want to hear about them in a one-paragraph summary. The reviewer should have cut away subplot fat and given us the meat of the conflict and main plot.
    Even so, I think I can hear a good book under all that noise. Congrats on both of these releases!

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