Jul 31, 2014

Street Food and Love by H.A. Enri Blitz

Street Food and Love

 by H.A. Enri

Published by: Martin Sisters Publishing
Publication date: Summer 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Romance,
 Young Adult


Sole Eaby, seventeen, has a few complaints he’d like to lodge against life, the main one being that his dad, Cedro, has recently quit his job and withdrawn his entire life savings, which included Sole’s college fund. Why? To launch a food truck business he knows nothing about.
To cope, Sole uses his knifelike wit to moonlight as a stand-up comedian, and so far, it’s paying off. He’s not only replenishing his college treasury, he’s making people laugh; but it’s one person in particular he performs for. Her name is Ava. When the fated bond of humor joins the two, and they begin a sort of quasi-romance, things begin to seem somewhat bearable. Of course, that’s when an ill-timed event decides to put another spin on things. Just when Sole is ready to move on with his own life and disconnect himself from his father and the family business, he suddenly finds himself in charge of the food truck he desperately loathes. Here is where Sole must realize that the answers to love and life are not to be found apart but, rather, are more like a savory recipe: only by combining the ingredients will the wonderful flavors reveal themselves. When comedy isn’t enough, the future seems ever bleak, and a fledgling love has barely had a chance to bloom, where will Sole turn?



H.A.'s love for all things caffeinated is what keeps him awake and alert so he can pursue that glorious tyrant called Nostalgia. And after all, isn't that what provokes most adult authors to write stories about the teenage years they long ago left behind (referring to Nostalgia, not the caffeine...he hopes)? When he isn't writing, H.A. can be found quaffing coffee (Yes, he might be addicted--don't judge) reading, riding his bike, snapping photos, making music, working on his theory of everything, and, on rare occasions, attempting to discover the elusive, and maybe impossible, secret to time travel. H.A. lives in So Cal. Street Food and Love is H.A.'s first novel.

Hi again dear readers,
I have a very interesting interview with   H.A. Enri. I welcome you to take a minuet and read it. personally i loved it.

Would you actually want to own a food truck, and if so, what would you serve and what would you call it?

Owning and operating? Hmm. Perhaps, with a capital P. In conducting the research for this book, I came to understand a) it’s no easy task to keep a successful food truck running; b) success does not always have to do with the ability to deliver big on taste; c) concept and branding i.e. marketing are huge aspects to the business and, like many artists, that whole part of it is not always where the passion of it all lie; d) a little luck never hurts. Does this sound like someone trying to be a writer? Surely does. I love to cook and do at least four days out of the week, but to make my livelihood out it...I’d have to be pretty hungry to commit anytime soon. Lot’s of love to food truck owner operators.

Have you always wanted to be a writer?
I've actually known I've wanted to be a writer since I was twelve. The brief excerpt of that mini epiphany is on my website’s FAQ's. As for YA, I didn’t know I actually wanted to write for young adults until about eight years ago. This book made it through the publication portal, but there are other predecessors on my hard drive, many young adults megabyte format wondering why they never got to graduate from being mere Word docs to full blown, bound, edited and printed books.

If you were a dish on a food truck, what would you be called?

I would be a patty of thick, ground, kobe beef, topped with cheese, caramelized onion, tomato, guacamole and a special sauce, all between buttered and toasted, thick sourdough. I’m simple, like a burger, but I am also not just your regular driver through or diner burger either (does this sound like some dating site profile? Ha!). In any case, it would be called the Soul Melt because more than deeply satisfying the palate, it would penetrate the soul of anyone who ate it. P.S. I really am into the world “soul” and all it connotates.

Novelists who inspired you?

The list is long. In YA we have Sarah Dessen, Gary Schmidt, Caroline Cooney, Ned Vizzini, I will add that not many people mention Vizzini—God rest his talented soul, and it’s shocking. He’s been considered a pioneer of the modern YA lit genre, and I agree. Hopefully, I see him on the other side and we can collaborate.

Talk about YA Lit. 

It is summarily different than it used to be even twelve years ago. And pre 2000’s—forget it. That was like reading Homer. Seriously, I mean you have to practice writing effective scenes during commercials (do don’t delete them, you aspiring YA writers, from your DVR. They may prove to be useful yet) in order to match the pace of the current ideal YA. Secondly, don’t forget the lingo the characters used in your favorite sitcom right before the commercial. It should be transposed to your novel. Remember they used to teach, “Don’t write how you speak”? Not so anymore. Those teachers, apparently, were wrong. And no, I haven’t perfectly mastered the art of copy-matching-and-pacing at commercial speed in my writing style. you remember reading with a dictionary handy? Hey, with apps now, it should be easier, except that rarely do YA books require readers to have to use one anymore. Remember when you read something and went WTF? Even after three reads! And it wasn’t because you checked out. Sometimes it was like the writer just wrote and invited you to his house but said, “There’s the fridge and stove. If you’re hungry, do your best.” I’m not saying I don’t appreciate what is happening now and don’t get it, I do and am not against it. But something in my writing approach still doesn’t mind if readers are expected to sort of work through certain language tones and aspects.

Love and romance aren’t depicted the way the YA genre seems to be going in your novel. Why?

Have you been around a high school aged lately? Till death do us part, mad love isn’t en vogue. Most young adults aren’t really sure where love fits into their lives, and to begin to truly to answer that is scary enough for many people, let alone young people. I wanted Sole to reflect a kid who didn’t just zero in on one girl and know she was the one. That’s usually not how it works anyway, at least not when your age still has “teen” as a suffix. As for Ava, many young girls with allure have older guys after them, and that’s why I wanted to show that in the first chapters. That’s reality for many young adult girls of her capacity. Sometimes, too, they chose those guys. I don’t think this makes my book not YA. Upper YA? Sure. But still YA definitely.

I sense an intentional avenue in your book carved out, specifically referring to your focus of a father and son conflict. Explain that.

Well, it’s got nothing to do with my own relationship with my father. We have an outstanding and close one. But you’re correct about the father and son aspect. Many fathers take a backseat in literature or are two dimensional caricatures who are hands off and don’t really permeate the minds of the young adult protagonist. Really? That is most dads? Huh... Anyway, I wanted to write not for guys, but so that guys could related to the literature as easily as girls could and do. Let’s face it: girl readers vastly outnumber young males, and I sort of wanted both to equally relate here. I can say I’ll probably continue to develop that in other novels.

You have a lot of comedy in your book.  What’s the best joke (keep u clean) that you’ve ever heard?

I heard Dennis Miller onstage and, though I’m not saying this is my favorite, I’ll mention it because it just came to mind: he was speaking of the past and with subtlety, in his verbal memoir, he said, “It was hot back then...” and he paused. It was all about the way he said it. The audience slowly got it. Then he said, “The sun was still hot then, right?” He was comparing it to the way people think the past happened in black and white. The genius was, he didn’t even have to say that part to get audience in on it. Brilliant.

Are any of the characters in the book based off of someone you know?
Most characters are concoctions of many people in various forms—those we know, those we’ve heard about, those we’d like to know and those we knew. Once you put all that together, my answer, like a writer, would technically be kind of but not really. Not very technical, is it...

Why did you write this book?

I wrote this book because this idea had never been pursued in YA lit, let alone fiction.th When the idea came to me, I thought it was worth telling for others out there. Of course, now there’s a film about a food truck owner operator, but not when I wrote the novel. I wanted to explore the concept of the food truck operator as a person with issues, so that’s when it turned YA because my teenage protagonist Sole became the focus. You can watch The Great Food Truck Race or Eat St. if you just care about someone and their food truck, but life as an owner operator is not the star idea of this narrative.

How’d you pick the title of the book?

It’s the material clashing with the existential. The truck is a symbol for all things wrong with the world for Sole, the novel’s main dude. Street food is what the truck is all about, so I used that terms versus “food truck.” Since the food truck or “street food” are always at odds with Sole and his heart (yes, it’s okay to sigh and say “aw.”), I chose to capture that with “love.” Until these two opposing forces learn to coexist, neither of them has a chance to make it. The title, in a simple way, somewhat epitomizes those novel’s major motifs.

Why did you pick LA as the setting?

My character, as an aspiring comedian, inspired all that is L.A.—someone who wants to get into showbiz and has the chops to do so. Sole thinks, like many, that achieving his celebrity plan is his exit card from all things painful. From  there, I wanted to unveil of a story of someone whose greatest obstacle is not external—abuse, violence, etc.—but rather is the soft issues of the heart that are sometimes more detrimental than the obvious ones. There is this individual surrounded by the giant of possibility that is L.A., and his world is just this tiny, fading echo. I liked the contradiction.

How often do you write?

As often as I can but not as often as I’d like. This is where you probably want to hear my writing process and such. Really, some days it feels like I’m hacking away like a lumberjack at a petrified tree other days it feels like I’m driving up the 101 outside of L.A, ocean to my left, top down, music son, and the sun holding back some of its heat just because I’m on the highway. Do I go at it daily? At least four days out of the week, but I aim for seven. Writing doesn’t currently foot the bills fully, so I have another gig. I know, I know: when I say that I leave myself open for comments like, “Good thing, then I don’t have to worry about reading too much of your work,” or, “I can see why you  keep your day job.” Sure, I get that I’m vulnerable to those criticisms, but it’s just the reality of most writers’ lives. Want to buy a thousand copies and change that? Ha, ha. Kidding.

What kind of books do you read?

I’m a social science junkie. I’m talking an obsession beyond obsessions. As for other genres, I do read lots of YA, of course, lots of it. And, I take in about four literary adult novels a year, one per quarter. I read that in parts between my others.

How important are names to you in your books?

Sometimes too much, so I try to back off. Many of my first drafts start off with names looking like this: ________. Yes, really. Then, when I finally give them a name, it’s nothing as potent and floral and full of atmosphere and meaning like I thought it would be. Someday, I’ll name my characters Jim, John, Jen and things like that.

What writing advice do you have for other aspiring authors?

I’m sort of just lifting off the launch pad. That’s a flattering question, but  I’m not quite in a position to answer that yet. One might say, “I’ll take his advice and do the opposite.” Ha. I’m kidding about the mini joke. But really, I feel like I’m still aspiring. I’ll answer better when I’m past the aspiring level.

What secret talents do you have?

You mean writing isn’t one of them?

Your main character’s defense mechanism against pangs of the soul is comedy. It seems like you can relate.

That is maybe one trait the novel’s main dude and I share.

If you had a superpower, what would it be?

Time travel with knowledge retention. I would continually perfect my life, constantly updating it with the new life lessons I am learning.

What is the biggest lie you've ever told?

If I answered that, then that would be it. The biggest one hopefully was my best and hopefully I got away with it (last time I checked, that was still the case). So, yeah...

Is there a certain type of scene that's harder for you to write than others? Love? Action? Racy?

That’s up to the reader to decide. If it doesn’t work, they’ll probably say that scene is my trouble spot. As for love and romance: I like to trace the scene and use allusion. Most writers, if honest, probably like scenes that the editor said, “Eh.” So, I just go where the character needs to and try not to worry about the words, like real people do in real life in difficult situations.


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Author Lauren Smith Interview and Amazon Gift Card Contest LIVE Here!

Lauren Smith Interview

If you could eliminate one thing from your daily schedule, what would it be and why?
LS: Driving. I wish they had teleportation machines. I’d be the first in line to try one out. I think driving can take up a lot of time when you have to run errands or when I drive to work. Wouldn’t it be cool to just step through a portal and blam! You’re where you need to be in a matter of seconds!
BBB: If you could switch bodies with a certain author, who would it be and why?
LS: Hmm, well I might have to go with something crazy and say Stephen King. If we switched, I think it would be hilarious to go around saying things that people wouldn’t expect from him. I’d probably, as King, start saying people should read more romances LOL.
BBB: If you were a professional wrestler, what would your ring name be and why?
LS: Wow, that’s a great idea! I’d probably be something like the “Dark Tornado” since I’m from Oklahoma and I think Tornadoes are pretty darn scary. I’d like to instill that dread in my opponent if I was a wrestler.
BBB: What would you say are the main advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing versus being traditionally published or the other way around?
LS: I’m mainly traditionally published, with only one novella that was sort of self-published through my agency’s literary agency. I think the advantages to traditional publishing is the promotional support, editing quality and cost saving. To be a successful self-pubbed author, you have to be willing to put in the time to hire a good editor, pay for good cover art and pay for promotion. Publishers will cover these costs for you, and that is part of the cut they get from your profits. I think it’s a fair trade for new authors like myself. Once you have an established fan base it’s easier to transition to self-publishing so long as you can afford the costs.
BBB: Please tell us more about Wicked Designs and the storyline that drives it.
LS: Wicked Designs is the first in my Regency set series “The League of Rogues”. Basically, a duke and his four friends, kidnap a debutante (named Emily) in London in 1821 so that it will ruin her reputation and therefore destroy her options for marriage. Sounds pretty dastardly right? Well, Emily’s uncle stole a bunch of money from the duke (Godric) and this is the way he gets his revenge because Emily’s uncle wanted to marry her off to a bad guy named Blankenship who would pay off Emily’s uncle’s debts.
What starts off as an abduction turns into a madcap series of adventures for Godric and his friends as they in turn become captives of the innocent, intelligent and charming Emily. When Blankenship comes after Emily to reclaim her as he sees her belonging to him, Godric and his League of Rogues must defend the woman that Godric in particular can no longer live without.
BBB: How many more books will there be in the League of Rogues series?
LS: There will be 6 books, one for each member of the League. In the first book there are five league members but by the end of the book, they’ve added a new rogue to their numbers.
BBB: What sets Wicked Designs apart from other books in the same genre?
LS: Two things really. The first is that most authors write secondary characters who come and go during a book in the series and don’t get much page time until their books You might see them mentioned, but you don’t get really interact with them as a reader or even be in their point of view much or at all in other series. With Wicked Designs, you get up close and personal with all the members of the League. They are all part of the adventure and the story and work to support Godric and Emily to reach their happily ever after. The second thing is that this book is for readers who might not like historicals or maybe have never been interested in historicals. I want readers, no matter their romance subgenre preference to enjoy this story. The book is more character driven, and fully of action, humor and suspense. You don’t need to be an expert on the Regency era to read or enjoy the book, the time period is more of a window dressing for a reader to enjoy.
BBB: What types of characters can readers expect in your world?
LS: Deep characters with flaws and chances for redemption. I want my characters to will last in your memory for weeks or months after you’re done reading. I have truly bad boy alpha male men in my series, but they all have sweet interiors that get busted down one by one for the women who will change their lives. You will also have smart, sensible heroines with humor and bravery who will equal their heroes and make you want to be their friends.
BBB: If you could have an unlimited storage of one thing (besides books), what would it be?
LS: Diet Dr. Pepper. It’s my ambrosia. I need at least two in the morning to be fully functional.
BBB: Name one thing that drives you crazy in the publishing industry.
LS: I think the most annoying is that when editors tell you they are looking for fresh new ideas they are pretty much not wanting that. They almost always reject fresh new ideas in favor of publishing book after book of exactly the same thing they’ve published for the last decade. I’ve been fortunate to land with three publishers who like my unique storylines.
BBB: Share one funniest, one silliest and one wackiest status you have put up on a social networking site.
LS: I think the wackiest status I posted was more about the picture. It was a .gif of Kermit the frog waving his arms around frantically in excitement. People loved it! The silliest thing was probably just the other day when I shared a picture from my favorite tv show Supernatural which had a picture of Dean with a cup of pudding and I was saying how I can’t hear the word pudding or pie and not think of Dean since he LOVES pie and pudding. The funniest post was probably a post about Stephen Colbert discussing the Amazon v. Hachette issue. He’s one of the funniest guys out there.
BBB: If you were a genie, what wish would you absolutely NOT grant?
LS: A million dollars. I wouldn’t do that. The law of genies is that the money or whatever is wished for cannot be produced out of thin air. It comes from somewhere else, and I would worry that wherever my genie powers found the money, it would be taking it from someone who might need their money.
BBB: Tell us about a unique or quirky habit of yours. (writing or otherwise)
LS: I write everything for the most part by hand. I’m an artist in my spare time and there’s something you can’t beat about writing or drawing with your hand rather than typing on the computer. People always react with shock when I saw I write by hand, so I guess that’s quirky lol.
BBB: What’s coming up for you for the rest of 2014?
LS: The second book in my League of Rogues series comes out November 11th. It’s called His Wicked Seduction. I also will be starting my modern gothic series for a different publisher. It’s a series with stand alone books that involve english ghost stories set in present day. Think Downton Abbey but with a present day setting with all the sexiness and excitement and supernatural elements of the tv show Supernatural. It’s a blend of both of those worlds and it’s super fun!! The first book in this series is called The Shadows of Stormclyffe Hall and it comes out September 22nd (just in time for Halloween!)
Read a 4 star review of  Wicked Designs by clicking here.
Buy a Kindle copy of Wicked Designs from Amazon by clicking here.
Books in the League of Rogues series in the order they should be read: Wicked Designs

About Lauren Smith

Author Lauren Smith
Author Bio:
Lauren Smith is an attorney by day, author by night, who pens adventurous and edgy romance stories by the light of her smart phone flashlight app. She’s a native Oklahoman who lives with her three pets: a feisty chinchilla, sophisticated cat and dapper little schnauzer. She’s won multiple awards in several romance subgenres including being an Amazon.com Breakthrough Novel Award Quarter-Finalist and a Semi-Finalist for the Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley Award.

11 Quick Things About Lauren

Favorite Food? Orange Chicken with fried rice
Favorite Color? Cobalt blue
Favorite Movie or TV Show of all Time? Supernatural (tv show) Laura (1944 film noir movie)
Favorite Drink? Diet Dr. Pepper
Favorite Book? No way I can possibly answer that question, but if I had to pick one, The Host by Stephanie Meyer (don’t laugh lol, seriously, read it!)
Favorite Season? Fall
Favorite Online Hangout? (think FB, Twitter, Goodreads) Facebook
Favorite Animal? North American River Otter
Favorite Band or Musician? Evanescence
Mode of Travel? (Trains, Planes or Automobiles) Automobiles
Favorite Vacation Destination?  Cambridge (UK)

Connect with Lauren

Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Books by Lauren Smith | Reviews of Lauren’s Books |

CONTEST INFO: Open to readers worldwide.  Prize: $25.00 Amazon Gift Card

Author Elizabeth J. Kolodziej Release Party and Amazon Gift Card Contest LIVE Here!

Elizabeth Kolodziej Release Party

Demonic Charms: Why we love Paranormal Romance
In my dazzling 2014 debut, Demonic Charms, I discuss the pull faith faces with finding out she is not just a witch, and the last in the world, but a deadly slayer as well. The psychological turmoil it presses against her will is detrimental to her health. Especially when the furies are called upon.
Though this fourth book is a brand new invention into the life of the last witch in the world, it still holds the bare bones of who this woman is and what she is suffering through.

The book comes from the perspective of the traditional Faith and Trent, along with the introduction of a brand new character: Kasidy, who is featured in her own Demonic Cravings Series (Demon Protection Plan being the first book).
Writing in the Paranormal Romance genre is not only exciting but it is mind blowing considering all the research, which goes into creating this mysteriously shrouded world.
So why is this genre so popular?
Demonic Charms brings into question the greatest and oldest though: who will win, good or evil? Which side is stronger? And which side is much more fun to play for?
Paranormal Romance brings together the love of romance and the heart of action adventure. Along with a complex storyline and characters that beg for a more substantial ending, which you will not receive from Demonic Charms. The reader will just have to salivate until Divine Betrayals is released.
For the well-rounded reader who loves the supernatural, paranormal romance is just for you. Especially when it comes to The Last Witch Series, which encompasses love, hate, death, destruction, gods, adventure and of course the paranormal of all kinds.
This is a genre that will continue to grow and be loved by so many readers out there.
Read a 4 star review of Demonic Charms by clicking here.
Buy a Kindle copy of Demonic Charms from Amazon by clicking here.
Books in The Last Witch series in the order in which they should be read:
Vampyre Kisses
Werewolf Descent
Witch Devotions
Demonic Charms

About Elizabeth Kolodziej

Author Elizabeth Kolodziej
Author Bio:
Elizabeth J. Kolodziej is a novelist and a lover of gadgets, writing, mysteries, and an avid reader. Her paranormal romance, The Last Witch Series, is coming up on its fourth book, Demonic Charms, and there is still more on the way!
While taking the past ten years to build this new age world, Elizabeth as done lots of hands on research such as experiencing flight, sensory deprivation, and much more to really master the art of bringing her descriptions to life for the reader.
With a Bachelor’s degree in Fiction Writing from George Mason University and her on going learning of the art of writing, Elizabeth believes she can truly help others master their own art and love of writing.
With the support of her family, friends, dog (Sherlock) and cat (Ahmeemotep) she is more than happy to give her readers exactly what they want in her books…adventure.

Connect with Elizabeth

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Books by Elizabeth Kolodziej | Reviews of Elizabeth’s Books |


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Operation Angelica by Juliene Lloyd



Genre: Suspense
Publisher: Dark Sword Press
Release Date: July 2014
Buy: Coming Soon

Book Description:

FBI sniper Elizabeth Ashton's ideal life shatters with the murder of her fiancée in Honduras, Central America. Let down by the government she serves, Ashton takes justice into her own hands. However, after crossing paths with a shadowy Washington D.C. consulting firm, Vormund/Ames, she decides to join the company. 
Partnered with former soldier and CIA operative Brandon Casey, Ashton learns that sometimes governments and law enforcement agencies need an ace up the sleeve. Her first assignment: to aid in the rescue of twelve people held hostage by rebels in Colombia, South America.
With the help of three very different men in her new life, Ashton leaves her FBI life behind while the Vormund/Ames team prepares for their mission. But can they rescue a dying woman held prisoner for five years in time? Can Ashton be the ace?

Juliene Lloyd is a writer and entrepreneur living near Ann Arbor, Michigan. She enjoys living life to the fullest with her husband, three children, dog, cat and several goldfish.

 Hi to all of you , my dear dear readers,
Today it's my honor to host Juliene Lloyd on my blog Coffee Books & Art ... here are some words of wisdom from Juliene to lighten your day :

How I Keep My Writing Different

As a business woman, I understand how important it is to be able to communicate what is different or special about your product or service. Fiction writing offers a unique challenge in that people want to read something fresh, but still have genre-specific expectations. In mysteries, we want to be challenged, but we expect the case to be solved by the end of story. In romances, we love the drama, but expect the heroine to find happiness in the end.  Thrillers are no different. We want to be intrigued, we want action, and we expect the good guys to save the day. So, how, as a writer, how do I keep the story different AND interesting?

1)      I stay in the writing cave. 
I haven’t read a book or watched a TV show in thriller/suspense genre since I started writing. I’m as susceptible to influence as anyone else and I try to avoid duplicating plot lines and characters.  I will confess to watching a few “Bourne” movies and “Zero Dark Thirty”.
2)      I talk to myself 
I role play the dialogue, imagining what the character sounds like and how he or she is interacting within their environment. I also imagine what the character is thinking vs. what he or she is saying, bringing in non-verbal clues to let the reader know what’s really going on.
3)      I use real people as models 
I use people I’ve known through the years as models. For example, Ed Agosti is a combination of two very different men I worked with. One was a gentleman farmer with an authentic Cajun accent while the other was down-to-business real estate executive.
4)      I want my characters to surprise the reader 
If you read “Operation Angelica”, you’ll find that I like to change up archetypes. Elizabeth Ashton is a college educated southern belle with a wicked aim. The rough looking Dumont is a caring, sensitive person with a tragic past.  Brandon and Shannon Casey both look perfect, seem to have the perfect life, but their relationship is falling apart.  And Mike Van Dellen is a cool headed gunslinger, until he’s around the woman he loves.
5)      I try to keep it real 

I knew nothing about guns or military/police procedures when I started writing “Operation Angelica”.  I read and learned as much as I could. And, again, I would like to publically thank the technical experts (you know who you are) who kindly corrected my errors with laughing. I tried to bring in cool tools and gadgets to the story while avoiding a “James Bond” type of ridiculousness. For example, Van Dellen’s bush plane is real airplane released in 2009.

My biggest hope as writer is that readers will find my stories interesting, thought provoking, and entertaining.

Writing Influences

When I was younger and not married/without kids, I read a lot. I discovered speed reading in high school and have used those skills to devour books. Seriously, I can finish a novel in six hours. As a result, I read a lot of series fiction. I’m also a movie fan, as you will learn if you keep reading.
In the nineties, I read Tom Clancy novels. “The Hunt for Red October” is the best political thriller of all time. I admit that Clancy’s Jack Ryan series got a little ‘out there’ in the later stories, but the earlier ones were superb. Clancy excelled at attention to detail and ‘do it or die’ action sequences.
My husband introduced me to Elmore Leonard novels in 2001, and I became an instant devotee. If you’ve ever only seen the movies- “Get Shorty”, “Out of Sight”, “Jackie Brown” – based on his stories, you’re missing out on the genius that was Elmore Leonard. Yes, fellow Leonard fans, I know there are dozens of other movies, but I’ll save those for another blog post. Leonard defined the pulp fiction genre -bad guys with a heart, good guys that aren’t so good. There are no innocent characters in his stories – only complicated people stuck in complicated situations. These are not feel good stories. The sudden violence shocks the senses and the endings leave you wondering who the hero of story really was. Oh, Mr. Leonard, how I miss you. At least we have Raylan Givens for another season of “Justified”.
I confess that it’s taken me a few years to admit my third major influence – Joss Whedon. I was a fan of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” way before it was cool to be one. I mean, what super hero girl doesn’t want a hot boyfriend? She doesn’t care if he’s a vampire. She just doesn’t care. Oh, and the collection of complicated friends- that’s something we can all identify with. And then Whedon went and did “Firefly”. Let me make this clear – Joss Whedon bent the unbendable rule of television. He mixed western and science fiction into a delicious campy cocktail. “Firefly” fans are fans for life. But, Whedon really proved himself as a movie writer and director with “The Avengers”. I don’t think he’s received enough credit for managing to take all the Marvel super heroes and weave them into one story. Let’s face it, up to that point, as far as stories went, the “Hulk” movies were terrible, “Captain America” was dry, and “Thor” was silly. Only John Favreau’s “Iron Man” movies had a true story arc and character development. “Avengers” would have been little more than a Saturday morning cartoon without Joss Whedon’s magic touch.

Operation Angelica”, has hints of all these influences – moody protagonists, disparate team members, intense action, and characters struggling against their flaws.  I can only hope that my stories are as accurate as Clancy’s, intense as Leonard’s, and as fun as Whedon’s. 


July 31 - August 7
July 31 - Introduction at VBT Café Blog
July 31 - Guest Blogging at Coffee, Books, Art
July 31 - Spotlight at Cherry Mischievous
August 1 - Reviewed at Storyteller SK Gregory
August 1 - Spotlight at 4 Covert 2 Overt A Place In The Spotlight
August 1 - Spotlight at Urania's Distractions
August 2 - Spotlight at Deal Sharing Aunt
August 3 - Spotlight at Debbie Jeans
August 3 - Guest Blogging at Mythical Books
August 4 - Review & Interview at That's What She Read
August 5 - Spotlight at Musings of a Book Maven
August 6 - Spotlight at A. Literary Mafia
August 7 - Guest Blogging at Lori's Reading Corner
August 7 - Guest Blogging at Sun Mountain Reviews


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