Interview & Giveaway: The New Owners of Torquere Press – Kristi Boulware and Joanna Talbot

torquereLong and Short Reviews welcomes the new owners of Torquere Press, Kristi Boulware and Joanna Talbot, today. Leave a comment – three winners will receive their choice of an ebook from Torquere Press. In addition, you can check out the current Open Call for Anthologies. Enjoy the interview.

Kristi is a Texan girl, through and through. There’s no doubt about it from her accent and Southern style to her thought processes. Joanna is also a Southern girl from Louisiana/Arkansas. Kristi also admitted, “I am a crazy dog lady with seven dogs.”

When Kristi and Joanna are looking at a manuscript, they want to see fully developed characters.

“World building is very important but the characters have to be able to draw some form of emotion for the readers,” they explained. “Whether you love them or hate them there has to be something memorable to them. Also there should be some type of conflict internal or external. Of course also having some great hot sex is always good too!”

They interact with their readers daily through social media.

“We interact with out readers daily through social media. We always love to hear what they have to say whether it be a request for a particular author, a problem with an order, or a suggestion for our shopping cart that we can put into place to make things more user friendly. We address all comments, we also encourage readers to email us at Torquere@torquerepress.com if they need assistance.”

It makes these two ladies happy that they putting out books that anyone and everyone can enjoy.

“We have coming of age stories that can help young people in the GLBT community know it’s okay to be out and proud. We also enjoy hearing that our stories inspire our readers,” Kristi said.

They publish erotic romance, so I asked them how they distinguished between pornography, erotica, and erotic romance.

“When we are vetting stories we distinguish by pornography is sex without story, erotica is a book with a lot of sex some back story but it is centered on the sex, erotic romance is more what we publish with is stories with romance, sex and there must be a happy for now or a happily ever after. We know that in real life there isn’t always HFN or HEA but we want to be able to take our readers into a world where things are okay and end happily.”

Torquere Press also has an imprint, Prizm Books, which publishes young adult, edgy young adult, and new adult – handling all genres in GLBT and mainstream characters. They wanted to have books with characters like the people reading them.

“If there is a closeted GLBT young adult that needs to see there are characters like them that are happy and have a full life that is important to us,” Krisit said. “We have coming out stories for GLBT and mainstream readers of all genres.”

“What do you envision happening in the YA field in the next five to ten years?” I wondered.

“The YA field is growing rapidly and a good majority of the YA readers are adults. As shown from the number of television shows and movies adapted from YA books it shows the field of YA is growing exponentially.”

Finally, I asked, “What advice would you give a new writer just starting out?”

“For a new author just starting out I would say firstly get a beta reader and a critique partner. Not a best friend that won’t be honest with you but someone that will go through your manuscript and give you honest help. Then submit and don’t get discouraged. If you are turned down find out what they think and why? Then keep submitting do not give up! If you are accepted pat yourself on the back and start marketing!!!”

About Torquere Press: Back in 2003, two writers and critique partners were getting tired of being told there was absolutely no market for male/male romance. Publishers all over the country were turning these stories down, but Shawn Clements and Lorna Hinson had been writing for years, and loved the spicy-hot aspect of m/m fiction. They knew other people felt the same way, and on the impetus of an online chat, Torquere Press was born.

Torquere Press has always been about the readers of LGBT romance, providing those readers with great stories about men and women who truly care about each other. Whether novel-length or short story, whether steamy or sweet, Torquere provides readers with the fiction they crave. The catalog has grown from those first five books released in September 2003 to approximately two thousand titles and nearly two hundred authors, including Sean Michael, Chris Owen, Tory Temple, Kiernan Kelly, Mychael Black and Stormy Glenn.

In 2007, Shawn and Lorna launched the Prizm Young Adult line, a labor of love created in the name of giving back to the LGBT community, who has been so supportive of Torquere through the years. Prizm books focus on the experiences of gay teens and young adults. In 2012 Prizm Books opened up to mainstream as well as LGBT stories for young adult and new adult age groups.

Torquere has also supported charities with a short story collections for the last three years, with authors donating their royalties, and Torquere matching those donations 100%.

In 2014 Shawn and Lorna chose to focus on their writing careers and sold the business to the other shareholder in the company Kristi Boulware along with her fiancee’ Joanna Talbot.

Torquere’s tagline has always been, “Romance for the Rest of Us”™ and a lot of people have asked what that means. It means that Torquere pushes the boundaries, providing romance for readers who like to color outside the lines and believe that everyone deserves a happy ending. It means that you can love traditional romance and also embrace differences in life and love. Anyone can enjoy a Torquere Press book as long as they bring an open mind to the bookshelf, and as long as they enjoy a traditional romance with non-traditional characters.
Kristi and Joanna have over 30 years together in experience in the publishing industry, marketing, business management and more. We are very excited to see where Torquere and Prizm go in the next few years with much success. We have been around for over 10 years and are not going anywhere but up.

Twitter – Torquere | Twitter – Prizm Books | Facebook – Torquere | Facebook – Prizm Books
OPEN CALLS FOR ANTHOLOGIES

Our anthology calls are a great place to get your feet wet with a short story, or to explore a theme without committing to a full novella or novel. For all anthology calls, we’re looking for fully realized, romantic LGBT stories about the chosen monthly theme. Make us laugh, make us cry, or surprise us and make us glow with happy endings!

Please send your submissions following the below specified word count to submissions@torquerepress.com with the title of the theme (ie: Torqued Tales) and your story title in the subject field. Please see our general submissions guidelines for formatting etc. Each theme has a title and due date listed on the individual call.
If the completed anthology reaches a minimum word count of 60K, the book may go to print. In that case, payment is a $35 flat fee for first time electronic and print rights for three years, as well as an electronic and print copy of the book. Print rights are reserved for six months. If the print rights are not optioned, all print rights revert to the author.

We’ll also be releasing the story on its own in ebook format. Royalties for the single title electronic version will be 45% net on books sold through Torquere Books and 35% net on books sold through our distributors, again for a period of three years.

FIRST TIMERS – DEADLINE MAY 15

It’s cherry-popping time! Be it a virgin lover under the covers or a virgin cop undercover, nothing stirs that special spot in our hearts (and heats up various other parts of the anatomy) like a first-timer. Send us your stories of first loves, first kinks, first threesomes, first-time parents, first shifts, or first base hits or misses!

Please send your 3000 -10,000 word submissions to submissions@torquerepress.com with “First Timers” and your story title in the subject field. Please see our general submissions guidelines for formatting etc. Deadline for submission is May 15, 2015; all submissions will be held and reviewed after the deadline.

If the completed anthology reaches a minimum word count of 60K, the book may go to print. In that case, payment is a $35 flat fee for first time electronic and print rights for three years, as well as an electronic and print copy of the book. Print rights are reserved for six months. If the print rights are not optioned, all print rights revert to the author.

We’ll also be releasing the story on its own in ebook format. Royalties for the single title electronic version will be 45% net on books sold through Torquere Books and 35% net on books sold through our distributors, again for a period of three years.

EXCHANGE OF POWER – DEADLINE JUNE 15

Even Alphas need to learn a lesson now and then. We’re looking for your sizzling paranormal stories of power exchanges between Doms and subs, Alphas and betas, Tops and bottoms. Maybe your wolf-shifter alpha needs an attitude adjustment from his beta, or a vampire prince needs a reminder of what it was like to be human. Give us your hottest paranormal dynamics flip!

Please send your 3000 -10,000 word submissions to submissions@torquerepress.com with “Exchange of Power” and your story title in the subject field. Please see our general submissions guidelines for formatting etc. Deadline for submission is June 15, 2015; all submissions will be held and reviewed after the deadline.

If the completed anthology reaches a minimum word count of 60K, the book may go to print. In that case, payment is a $35 flat fee for first time electronic and print rights for three years, as well as an electronic and print copy of the book. Print rights are reserved for six months. If the print rights are not optioned, all print rights revert to the author.

We’ll also be releasing the story on its own in ebook format. Royalties for the single title electronic version will be 45% net on books sold through Torquere Books and 35% net on books sold through our distributors, again for a period of three years.

HAUNTED HOTTIES – DEADLINE JULY 15

What’s better than a great ghost story just in time for Halloween? A great ghost LOVE story! From haunted houses to haunted underwear, from howling at the moon to mooning your werewolf lover, there’s no shortage of paranormal creatures to tap for a blazing hot haunting!

Please send your 3000 -10,000 word submissions to submissions@torquerepress.com with “Haunted Hotties” and your story title in the subject field. Please see our general submissions guidelines for formatting etc. Deadline for submission is July 15, 2015; all submissions will be held and reviewed after the deadline.

If the completed anthology reaches a minimum word count of 60K, the book may go to print. In that case, payment is a $35 flat fee for first time electronic and print rights for three years, as well as an electronic and print copy of the book. Print rights are reserved for six months. If the print rights are not optioned, all print rights revert to the author.

We’ll also be releasing the story on its own in ebook format. Royalties for the single title electronic version will be 45% net on books sold through Torquere Books and 35% net on books sold through our distributors, again for a period of three years.

LOVE IN A UNIFORM – DEADLINE AUG 15

Who doesn’t love a man in uniform? All kinds of uniforms can make for sizzling fantasies, including military, police, fire, EMT, postmen, or deliverymen, when they’re stuffed with hot men hungry for a good time!

Please send your 3000 -10,000 word submissions to submissions@torquerepress.com with “Love in a Uniform” and your story title in the subject field. Please see our general submissions guidelines for formatting etc. Deadline for submission is August 15, 2015; all submissions will be held and reviewed after the deadline.

If the completed anthology reaches a minimum word count of 60K, the book may go to print. In that case, payment is a $35 flat fee for first time electronic and print rights for three years, as well as an electronic and print copy of the book. Print rights are reserved for six months. If the print rights are not optioned, all print rights revert to the author.

We’ll also be releasing the story on its own in ebook format. Royalties for the single title electronic version will be 45% net on books sold through Torquere Books and 35% net on books sold through our distributors, again for a period of three years.

HOLIDAY WANT ADS – DEADLINE SEPT 15

Who needs Santa when you have Craig’s List? Maybe your hero’s hunting at a garage sale and finds his perfect mate among the power tools and old golf balls. Or, perhaps he’s put out an ad for a housekeeper, and finds someone he wants to play house with instead! The plots are only as limited as your imagination, and we want to see your hottest Want Ad stories!

Please send your 3000 -10,000 word submissions to submissions@torquerepress.com with “Holiday Want Ads” and your story title in the subject field. Please see our general submissions guidelines for formatting etc. Deadline for submission is September 15, 2015; all submissions will be held and reviewed after the deadline.

If the completed anthology reaches a minimum word count of 60K, the book may go to print. In that case, payment is a $35 flat fee for first time electronic and print rights for three years, as well as an electronic and print copy of the book. Print rights are reserved for six months. If the print rights are not optioned, all print rights revert to the author.

We’ll also be releasing the story on its own in ebook format. Royalties for the single title electronic version will be 45% net on books sold through Torquere Books and 35% net on books sold through our distributors, again for a period of three years.

Return to the interview.

Q&A and Giveaway with Linda Goodnight

Linda Goodnight is visiting Long and Short Reviews to share a special recipe with us and talk to us about her newest release The Memory House. Leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of the book.

4_7 Fresh Lemonade

What is the central message of THE MEMORY HOUSE?

THE MEMORY HOUSE explores themes of loss and grief, healing and redemption, and offers perspective on the way people cope when life goes awry. A number of the characters, Eli, Julia, Charlotte, Ben, and Lizzy face deep tragedy, but each one responds differently. When you read it, (as I hope you will), look at the different responses and see which character responds the way you might.

What inspired you to write THE MEMORY HOUSE? Did it start with a character? The place?

The idea for THE MEMORY HOUSE began with a thought that led quickly to a character-Julia. I wondered, when a child goes missing and never returns, how does the family cope? Does every family react the same way? And of course the answer is, no. Individuals react differently, according to their personal make up. As I researched, I discovered warriors like Colleen Nick who start foundations and become activists. I also discovered families who became reclusive, don’t give interviews anymore and shy away from thinking about that horrible day. With that information in mind, I saw Julia Presley trying to put her life back together.

You’re known for writing about families and exploring familial relationships. How does your own family play a part in that?

I’m an extremely family oriented person. Family is what I love, what interests me and I think it’s a common interest most people share. We all have families, whether functional or dysfunctional, big or small, traditional or non. The dynamics in family relationships fascinate me and I love to explore them.

Readers generally comment on your heroes and Eli Donovan is no exception. Reviewers are already commenting on him. Is there a reason, you write such strong male characters?

Writing men has always been easier for me because I grew up with only brothers and a dad who coached baseball. I was surrounded by males every day of my life! To a kid, that’s not a fun thing but later on, I changed my mind. Also, my husband and I share four sons, so with all this testosterone in my life, writing the male perspective comes easier than writing women. Lately, though, I’ve wanted to explore sister relationships and those are growing within the pages of The Honey Ridge Novels.

What’s next?

Currently, I’m hard at work on another time-slip story set in Honey Ridge, Tennessee, THE RAIN SPARROW. Several characters from THE MEMORY HOUSE also appear in THE RAIN SPARROW, a story about facing the truth of a painful past so that it doesn’t ruin the future. There’s much more than that in the story, but that gives you a sneak peak.

Then in November, book 2 of The Buchanon series, a short contemporary romance for Love Inspired releases with The Christmas Family.

4_7 linda goodnightSix years ago, Julia Presley lost everything that mattered, and only the purchase of an antebellum mansion turned bed and breakfast has saved her sanity.

Eli Donovan is a broken man hiding from his shameful past. A small town seems the perfect place to hide and hope that no one learns the truth.

But the old Civil War home and a 19th century mother and son just might make a difference for two wounded souls in search of hope.

About the Author:4_7 Linda Goodnight author photoNY Times and USA Today Bestseller, Linda Goodnight writes novels to touch the heart as well as to entertain. Her stories of hope have won the RITA , the Carol, the Reviewer’s Choice, and numerous other industry awards. A small town girl, Linda remains close to her roots, making her home in rural Oklahoma. She and husband have a blended family of eight, including two teenagers recently adopted from Ukraine. Many of her books are about family and children and rightly so, as she draws her emotional stories from her surroundings, her great love of family, and from personal experiences as a nurse and teacher. Website

Xeranthemum – Meet Our Reviewers and Win Prizes

winter blogfest banner copy

Merry Christmas and welcome to a chance to meet our reviewers! Enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win a grand prize of a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift card, with runnerup prizes of a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble gift card, or one of four book/swag prize packs (US only).

Why did you become a reviewer?

After an initial hesitation, I decided to give it a whirl because I had no friends or relatives that read the genres or the volumes of books that I did. No one to talk to, share the excitement with or share a fan-girl moment when a new book in a series came out.

Reviewing for LASR provided me with book camaraderie – people who understood what it means to have a compulsion to share the awesomeness found within a book’s pages. Reviewing for LASR has been one of the best decisions I have ever made, short of marrying my husband.

What are your favorites genres to read in and why?

I actually prefer cross-genre books. It’s like a great salad – throw in a bit of contemporary splash so I can relate, add a dash of paranormal for the excitement of the unknown, toss in a suspenseful- full-of-action-challenge to overcome, and sprinkle some spicy heat or even some erotic habanero to make me sweat – the combination works well for me.

Recently, I’ve added historical romances and I’ve found that they can be as entertaining as Contemporaries. A lot depends on the voice of the author and whether or not they use a lot of archaic language and notions. I’m not keen on the helpless virginal maiden that is a victim of circumstance throughout the whole book. Today’s historicals seem to find a way for the heroine to show some spunk and feistiness within the constraints of the era. I like reading about a woman with brains and ingenuity.

I’ve pretty much have stayed within the romance genre and have not deviated much beyond that. There have been a couple of YA books that have surprised me, but as a rule, I don’t seek them out.

I’m a glutton for a solid happy ever after.

What book in your youth made a big impression on you and why?

That’s going back decades – it’s all fuzzy. I remember something about kids living in a boxcar but the one I really remember was A Wrinkle in Time. Mrs. Hannigan read that book aloud in class in 5th grade. She had the ability to keep me enthralled and reading time was my favorite part of the day because of it. Before her, no one had ever read a story book out loud. I wasn’t a very good reader back then but she showed me that a book could be exciting, could take me to places, and the world was a much bigger place than I knew.

How I got from A Wrinkle in Time to Romance is a mystery. LOL

Do you have any “bad book habits”? Dog Ear? Reading in the tub or while eating? Breaking the spine?

Bad habit? Probably staying up way too late and suffering for it the next day.

I try to stay away from series books if I’ve not started with the first one, unless I can figure out if a book is truly a standalone – then I might give it a shot. No, wait! I broke my own rule once! I started the Anita Blake series at book # 5 Bloody Bones. I was on a werewolf kick and it popped up in a word search. I didn’t know it was a series – but I was so wowed at the time due to its originality, that I went back and read the whole series – and have been reading it ever since. Bad me.

What do you mean eating and reading at the same time is a bad habit? I do that all the time!

It’s a compulsion – I’ll read the cereal box, a cook book, ingredients list, newspaper, a BOOK, anything while I’m eating. When I don’t, I feel so weird.

I can’t read in the tub, nor dog ear my book because I read mostly on a Nook. Water + Nook = Fried ereader. I’m good to my Nook. However, if I get a paperback at a library sale – I’ve been known to dog-ear it and the spine is usually compromised anyway so no one will EVER know if I do or don’t.

What is one thing we would be most surprised to learn about you?

Some know this, some don’t. I write a blog that gives tips and instruction on writing reviews for reviewers – The Chrysanthemum Connection. After six years, I’ve experienced most of the learning curves but when I was starting out, there was absolutely nothing out there to guide me. Granted, I used LASR as my guide so the advice may not be applicable to every review site out there, but the basics of reminding reviewers about no spoilers, no profanity and always respect the author and their works, and that a review is about the reviewer’s opinions of the book and not the synopsis of the story – I think those are pretty universal. The blog has not been as active as it was when I first started because, wow, was there a lot of ground to cover. Nowadays, I write a post if someone suggests a topic or I come across a new learning curve that I need to share with the reviewers to help them in their own journey.

So that is the one thing I’ve done that not a lot of people know about and I feel very good for having done it.

What is something that makes you stop reading a book?

What, besides a TSTL heroine or hero?

If it is an erotic book, the one thing that is a complete turnoff for me is a book without a story. I won’t read about sex with ornamental book ends. I need the right brain working most of the time in the novel or novelette.

For all other book types, the one thing that makes me stop reading is extreme darkness or depravity; too much drama and tension to the point that the book is no longer fun and ends up nothing but a chore to slog through. Some book series have become so mired in pushing the envelope down further and further into darkness and meanness, making the villain almost omniscient and powerful, I end up feeling helpless and stressed. At that point, I don’t care if the hero or heroine ultimately save the day; the journey wasn’t worth the ending. So I stop. I’ve stopped reading three series because of that. Their popularity continues, but without me as a reader or reviewer.

What books have most influenced your life? Why?

The most important is what I mentioned earlier, A Wrinkle in Time. It instilled in me a desire to read. That’s about as influential as it gets.

What book do you think should be made into a movie? Why?

That question is EASY! Sleigh Bells in the Snow by Sarah Morgan. Oh, wait, she just came out with the end of the series, Maybe This Christmas. I choose both books for the very same reasons. They both encompass the heart of romance and touch upon the sentiments that make the holiday season so welcome. Her descriptions of winter in Vermont are the very things Hallmark is known for – the beauty of the location, the love of family and friends, of forgiveness and new beginnings, gentle humor and a passion between the hero and heroine that touches the romantic at heart. There’s laughter and tears, challenges to overcome and a proposal to sigh over in weepy contentment.

They’re on my keeper shelf for those reasons. They are books I wanted to hug. Although, reading on a Nook kind of makes that a bit problematic to accomplish.

What would you choose as a superpower? why?

The ability to speak, write and understand other languages. Much of the strife in this world comes from the inability to communicate. It’s not suffice to say, I want to speak all languages – it’s more. It’s understanding the nuances and subtle doublespeak that makes naughty humor, innuendos, puns and even relationships so interesting. People just don’t speak with their mouths – they use body language, eye contact, sounds and the fluttering of hands to convey more than the words they say. I would love to understand all languages in all their complexity.

Why? Well why not? Bet 007 would appreciate my superpower. *grin* Make it Sean Connery when he was younger.

Describe your perfect reading space.

My perfect reading space would be situated where I could see nature or a garden through the window, have great light, a comfy, cushy chair, a side bar for water and/or ice when needed, tissues for those sad parts, and NO INTERRUPTIONS!

If you could spend a day with anyone from history, dead or alive, who would it be, and what would you do? What would you ask them?

This is where that language super power would kick in. I’d love to spend a day with Cleopatra. I mean, she was one of the most powerful women in the world – a queen – she was pampered and waited on and yet governed a kingdom usually run by men.She waged war to reclaim the throne. I’d love to have a pampering session with her while getting insights as to what it was like for her back then. What did she love about her position in life? What did she find hard? What made her laugh? What was it like dating Caesar? Who romanced her better, Caesar or Mark Anthony? What were her favorite foods? Did she like to dance? Forget walking like an Egyptian, I’d love to dance like one.

Even to this day, Cleopatra is considered an amazing woman because of all that she accomplished. I bet I could learn a thing or two from her.

What were your top ten books you reviewed for LASR in 2014?

Maybe This Christmas by Sarah Morgan
Spell Bound by Emma Weylin
Night Unbound by Dianne Duvall
How the Scoundrel Seduces by Sabrina Jeffries
How to Handle a Heartbreaker by Marie Harte
Ghost Seer by Robin D. Owens
River Road by Jayne Ann Krentz
Heartbreakers by Lori Foster
Spirited: A Tidewater Novel by Mary Behre
Noble Intentions by Katie MacAlister

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Hawthorn – Meet Our Reviewers and Win Prizes

winter blogfest banner copyMerry Christmas and welcome to a chance to meet our reviewers! Enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win a grand prize of a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift card, with runnerup prizes of a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble gift card, or one of four book/swag prize packs (US only).

Why did you become a reviewer?

When I read a good book I love to share it with others because I think it’s a shame a lot of good reads get overlooked. Being a reviewer with LASR enables me to reach a wide circle of readers.

What are your favorites genres to read in and why?

I love to read diverse genres, such as crime stories, suspense, romance and young adult. In short, as long as the book is well-written, I’ll love it.

What book in your youth made a big impression on you and why?

I read a lot as a youngster so it’s hard to pick one story that stayed with me. Perhaps, the author that stands out is Enid Blyton and her Famous Five series. I loved those adventures and I re-read them several times.

What is one thing we would be most surprised to learn about you?

That I’m a heavy metal fan? :-)

What is something that makes you stop reading a book?

Poorly-written characters or characters that are so unlikable that I can’t identify with. If the characters are good, I’ll stick with a book even through slow pacing or bad plotting, but if the characters aren’t compelling … Characterization is the most important factor for me.

What books have most influenced your life? Why?

They were probably many, but the one that I remember most clearly is Blindness by Saramago. I was amazed at how skillfully Saramago uses language and style to create an illusion. Incredible. I had a book hangover for days after that one.

What book do you think should be made into a movie? Why?

I rarely like movie adaptations, so I don’t particularly like to see my favorite books made into movies.

What would you choose as a superpower? why?

I’d love to be invisible because then I’d be the ultimate spy.

Describe your perfect reading space.

Anywhere that’s quiet enough for me to focus on the book.

If you could spend a day with anyone from history, dead or alive, who would it be, and what would you do? What would you ask them?

I’d love to chat with Zadie Smith about her books, writing habits and her view of life.

What were your top ten books you reviewed for LASR in 2014?

Played to Death / BV Lawson
Chasing the Flames / Cheryl Adnams
Share the Moon / Sharon Struth
Secrets, Lies & Homicide / Patricia Dusenbury
Right Kind of Wrong / Chelsea Fine
Play / Kylie Scott
Dangerous Territory / Emmy Curtis
Blue / Lisa Glass
Paradise Point / Dana Volney
Once Upon a Wager / Julie LeMense

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Poppy – Meet Our Reviewers and Win Prizes

Merry Chwinter blogfest banner copyristmas and welcome to a chance to meet our reviewers! Enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win a grand prize of a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift card, with runnerup prizes of a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble gift card, or one of four book/swag prize packs (US only).

Why did you become a reviewer?

Because it seemed as if the majority of reviews were for NYT publishers (not small press) and also that many reviewers thrived on being unkind/snarky. The no-snark policy of Long and Short Reviews appealed to me. Since I love to read and talk about books, it seemed like a no-brainer.

What are your favorites genres to read in and why?

Nearly everything. I prefer romance, typically, but also read young adult, mysteries, science fiction and my first love was fantasy, so I still read quite a bit of that as well. I’ve found lately that young adult fiction is some of the most intriguing and well written, so that’s on my nightstand quite a bit.

What book in your youth made a big impression on you and why?

The first real books I remember reading were The Hobbit (I did a book report in fourth grade for that book), Black Beauty (this kept me company during a week-long illness, during which I read it about fifteen times) and Where The Red Fern Grows, the first (and last) book I voluntarily read that had a sad ending. I don’t read books with unhappy endings any more if I can help it (and, yes, sometimes I peek to make sure).

Do you have any “bad book habits”? Dog Ear? Reading in the tub or while eating? Breaking the spine?

Does reading the end before I read the rest of the book count? I do this with a lot of books outside the romance genre. I hate unhappy endings, so avoid them at all cost. I do re-read my favorite books a LOT, so they tend to fall apart, but really, I do my best to avoid abuse.

What is one thing we would be most surprised to learn about you?

I know how to milk a goat. LOL!

What is something that makes you stop reading a book?

Aside from finding out it doesn’t end happily (am I sounding like a broken record?) hmmmm…. characters that are TSTL, bad writing or editing, a completely implausible plot or no conflict. Actually, quite a bit stops me from reading a book … I have very little extra time any more, so you have to grab me and keep me because life is too short to waste on bad books.

What book do you think should be made into a movie? Why?

I’ve heard rumors that the Dragonriders of Pern series is going to be filmed — that would be one. It was my first adult fantasy series (read as a teen, but not written for teens) and as long as they don’t ruin it, I’ll be first in line for tickets. Otherwise, there are dozens of YA books I could name. Thankfully, it seems as if many ARE being made (Hunger Games, Divergent, Maze Runner) and that makes me very happy, especially since they are doing a pretty decent job on those (unlike the Mortal Instruments and Percy Jackson movies, which were terrible adaptations).

What would you choose as a superpower? why?

Teleportation. My friends and family are all over the country and flying is just a pain. I’d love to be able to pop in and say hi whenever I wanted! The ability to live without sleeping would be handy. Or to eat anything without gaining weight… but if I had to choose one, it would be teleportation.

If you could spend a day with anyone from history, dead or alive, who would it be, and what would you do? What would you ask them?

My dad … he died twenty years ago and I miss him. I’d really love to spend one more day with him and say all the things we didn’t get to say. It would be cool if he could meet his granddaughter, too!

What were your top ten books you reviewed for LASR in 2014?

Citadel of Fire by Matthew Wolf

The Meatball Mistress by Tiffany N. York

Happy Medium by Meg Benjamin

Country Roads by Nancy Herkness

The Green Rose by Stephanie Burkhart

The Prosecutor by Adrienne Giordano

Savage Deception by RT Wolfe

A Shadow on the Ground by Rebecca Lee Smith

What Echoes Render by Tamsen Schultz

Heart on a String by Susan Soares

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Sorrel – Meet Our Reviewers and Win Prizes

winter blogfest banner copyMerry Christmas and welcome to a chance to meet our reviewers! Enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win a grand prize of a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift card, with runnerup prizes of a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble gift card, or one of four book/swag prize packs (US only).

Why did you become a reviewer?

I love reading books… Been reading books for as long as i could remember. There were books that I absolutely loved but sometimes some aspect of the story or book just puts me off. So when I found that authors do actually love to find out honest opinions of readers, what they liked and disliked about the book, I was very excited. Being able to actually help others with their books, that’s like the best thing for me. The books are bonus for me.

What are your favorites genres to read in and why?

Mystery, Thriller, Horror, Paranormal, Fantasy, Sci-fi, Contemporary Romance, Suspense, Historical.

I grew up in a country where its next to impossible to find the kind of story books I wanted. With a crazy family drama that goes on, books were my best friend through everything. I rarely read YA; for me it represents a time in my life that always make me cringe. So, finding a YA that doesn’t make me cringe and close the book has been difficult. Most of the genres I like are ones that make me get lost in books for days at end.

What book in your youth made a big impression on you and why?

The Elemental Assassin series by Jennifer Estep, Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs, Charley Davidson series by Darynda Jones and the Women’s Murder Club by James Patterson.

I love books with women as the lead character. Though every now and then I read damsel in distress kind of books.

Do you have any “bad book habits”? Dog Ear? Reading in the tub or while eating? Breaking the spine?

Lol! I used to dog ear the book until my elder sister started complaining and said that she will stop sharing books. I have a lot of cousins and a couple of sisters. All of them love reading books. Even my aunts but life interrupts for my aunts. After taking care of children, husband and work with household work its a miracle if they actually get time to do anything else.

Now, breaking the spine. It happened to my library book. Had to pay a fine for the damage. But totally worth reading. :D

What is something that makes you stop reading a book?

Family… Definitely. They’re the reason I would start reading sometimes and they’re the reason that I stop reading. A very big dilemma.

What books have most influenced your life? Why?

I think it was the Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs that changed my view in a lot of things.

I am a very quiet and shy women. It would usually take me years to open up to people. It is so easy for people to push me around because of how I am.

This is book that helped me to say NO! Develop and create my own brand of stubbornness to withstand my family’s controlling nature.

What book do you think should be made into a movie? Why?

Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas. I think it would be a fantastic movie!

What would you choose as a superpower? why?

Mind Reading… It’s nice when someone says the truth even if I may not like what that person says. It’s better than the lying nature that a lot of people have adopted.

Describe your perfect reading space.

My bed!

If I sit and read what happens is suddenly everyone finds things that I have to do. I never get to just read.
In bed, I can pretend to sleep. They won’t disturb me then.

What were your top books you reviewed for LASR in 2014?

Common Enemy by Sandra Dailey

Tempted by a Rogue Prince by Felicity Heaton
Beneath a Sicilian Sun by Lynette Rees

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Rose – Meet Our Reviewers and Win Prizes

winter blogfest banner copyMerry Christmas and welcome to a chance to meet our reviewers! Enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win a grand prize of a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift card, with runnerup prizes of a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble gift card, or one of four book/swag prize packs (US only).

Why did you become a reviewer?

Quite honestly, my book habit was getting out of control and when I saw “free books” I was all over that like white on rice.

What are your favorites genres to read in and why?

I like YA, paranormal, mysteries, suspense, and any combination of them. I do not like straight romance, for the most part, but supernatural romance, romantic suspense, etc…. oh yeah!

What book in your youth made a big impression on you and why?

Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery and Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. Both Anne and Jo were wonderful young women who loved books, writing, and flights of imagination. In both books I felt I had found “kindred spirits.”

Do you have any “bad book habits”? Dog Ear? Reading in the tub or while eating? Breaking the spine?

If I’m eating alone I ALWAYS have a book (or ebook) with me… and love reading in the tub–a hot tub, a glass of wine, and a good book. Heaven!

What is one thing we would be most surprised to learn about you?

I have a master’s degree but have never held a job in that field.

What is something that makes you stop reading a book?

Bad editing (especially in self-pubbed works). Also, I used to consider it a positive that, if I started a book, I would finish it no matter what. I’ve since come to feel that life is too short to waste on books that don’t hold my attention. I give a book three chapters–if I’m not feeling the love, I find another book (unless I have been advised by people I trust to hang in there.)

What would you choose as a superpower? why?

The ability to teletransport. My family and friends are scattered and it would be nice to be able to think myself to see them. If not that, then the ability to eat what I want and never gain weight!

Describe your perfect reading space.

A nice hammock on the patio, next to the pool, with a tall glass of my beverage of choice and snacks within easy reach.

What were your top books you reviewed for LASR in 2014?

Angel Heart by Cornelia Funke
What’s It to You by Judy Irwin
Molly Harper by Emelle Gamble
Dark Shadow by Stephanie Burkhart
Unintentional by MK Harkins

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Willow – Meet Our Reviewers and Win Prizes

winter blogfest banner copyMerry Christmas and welcome to a chance to meet our reviewers! Enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win a grand prize of a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift card, with runnerup prizes of a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble gift card, or one of four book/swag prize packs (US only).

Why did you become a reviewer?

At a convention an author I met suggested that I give reviewing a go since I read so many books. I started on some of my social media sites and I have loved it ever since.

What are your favorites genres to read in and why?

Contemporary Romance and romantic comedy. I’m obsessed with cheesy chick lit and I love happy endings.

What book in your youth made a big impression on you and why?

I wasn’t much of a reader when I was little, so when I found I books I liked it was a big deal back then (now not so much since I read everything under the sun) The books that made a big impression on me and still do today would have to be Sadako and the Thousand Paper Canes by Eleanor Coerr, Max Remy: Super-spy series by Deborah Abela, Mao’s Last Dancer by Li Cunxin and the Harry Potter series by J.K Rowling

Do you have any “bad book habits”? Dog Ear? Reading in the tub or while eating? Breaking the spine?

I can not stand when people dog tag their books or anything like that but I did use to read in the tub until I ruined my brother’s book…oops

What is one thing we would be most surprised to learn about you?

I have OSD when it comes to reading books. In the first sitting I have to read 100 pages and I can only stop on even number of chapters – never in the middle of one.

What books have most influenced your life? Why?

Harry Potter is the series that got me into reading so I’m always going to be thankful to Ms. Rowling for that.

What would you choose as a superpower? why?

The ability to go without sleep so I could read more.

What book do you think should be made into a movie?

I would love it if the Temptation series by Karen Ann Hopkins got turned into a movie. Switched, my favourite series by Amanda Hocking should defiantly become a movie and they should make the rest of the Vampire Academy series into movies.

Describe your perfect reading space.

I can read anywhere. I read on trains, at the park, at home, at work….literally everywhere.

If you could spend a day with anyone from history, dead or alive, who would it be, and what would you do? What would you ask them?

I would want to spend the day with William Shakespeare. Every since I went to Stafford upon Avon earlier this year I have wanted to know more about his life and inspiration for some of his plays. We would go to the ‘new’ Globe Theatre to see one of Shakespeare’s plays with him and ask him if its what he envisioned when he wrote it.

What were your top ten books you reviewed for LASR in 2014?

I started reviewing in October this year and have only reviewed 4 books. But my favourite so far would have to be My Last Season with You by S.V.C. Ricketts, which is scheduled for next week.

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Lisianthus – Meet Our Reviewers and Win Prizes

winter blogfest banner copyMerry Christmas and welcome to a chance to meet our reviewers! Enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win a grand prize of a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift card, with runnerup prizes of a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble gift card, or one of four book/swag prize packs (US only).

Why did you become a reviewer?

I honestly became a reviewer because it’s what I’ve been doing since I fell in love with books and reading. I’ve always recommended books and at times pushed my friends to read them, so writing my thoughts and getting them to a larger audience was the natural progression. I love reviewing. It’s my escape.

What are your favorites genres to read in and why?

Erotic Romance, mostly contemporary, because I like seeing real life situations come out nice in the end. I also love Paranormal because I can completely escape into a new world.

What book in your youth made a big impression on you and why?

Matilda by Roald Dahl. I wanted to be her, and I totally strove to be her and read everything I could get my hands on.

What is one thing we would be most surprised to learn about you?

I’m a really shy person, I talk a lot so people don’t realize that I’m actually really shy and prefer to be at home.

What is something that makes you stop reading a book?

Cheating, very poor editing but mostly cheating or if the book just doesn’t seem like the author knew where it should go.

What were your top ten books you reviewed for LASR in 2014?

Special Delivery by Heidi Cullinan
Tough Love by Heidi Cullinan
Iron Rods by Brenna Zinn
Carnal Magic by Lila Dubois
The Wizard King by Dana Marie Bell
Farren’s Wizard by Amber Kell
Homecoming by Meredith Daniels
Slide Down on Me by Lissa Matthews
Having Her by Jackie Ashenden
Theirs to Share by Trista Ann Michaels

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Tulip: Meet Our Reviewers and Win Prizes

winter blogfest banner copyMerry Christmas and welcome to a chance to meet our reviewers! Enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win a grand prize of a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift card, with runnerup prizes of a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble gift card, or one of four book/swag prize packs (US only).

Why did you become a reviewer?

Admittedly, the free books allow me to feed my voracious reading habit. It’s also a great way to find new authors that I might not otherwise have discovered. Also, I rely on reviews when choosing books, especially new authors. So I like recommending great books to other readers like myself. I consider it a compliment when another reader chooses a book because of my recommendations.

What are your favorites genres to read in and why?

I enjoy reading erotic books. Well, I think that speaks for itself.

I love paranormal books because they usually have the best alpha males.

I also enjoy contemporary, but only the ones with adventure or suspense.

What book in your youth made a big impression on you and why?

I think it would have to be the Little Women Series. I was in about the fourth grade at the time. I felt grown up because the girls were dealing with the ups and downs of young adult issues.

Do you have any “bad book habits”? Dog Ear? Reading in the tub or while eating? Breaking the spine?

I have been accused of being neurotic about keeping my print books in pristine condition, so very few “bad book habits”. Unless you count reading in bed while everyone else in my family is sleeping.

What is one thing we would be most surprised to learn about you?

Two things. I am a grandmother who loves reading erotic novels. Also, I often recommend books to random strangers.

What is something that makes you stop reading a book?

It’s never happened. I can usually find something good about any book.

Now, bad grammar is an issue for me. I absolutely hate it when an author is a repeat offender. I’ve come across a few of those, but have yet to find one that I couldn’t finish.

What book do you think should be made into a movie? Why?

That is an easy answer since I’ve actually discussed this with my daughter / reading pal. I think that the Immortals After Dark Series by Kresley Cole would be an excellent choice for the big screen. It has everything ! Awesome supernatural characters, adventure, romance and Nix the Everknowing.

What would you choose as a superpower? why?

X-Ray Vision. Again, I think that speaks for itself.

Describe your perfect reading space.

I read everywhere, but my favorite place is my bedroom because it’s tranquil and private.

If you could spend a day with anyone from history, dead or alive, who would it be, and what would you do? What would you ask them?

I’m not sure, but I’ve romanticized about Robert the Bruce, King of Scots. Most likely because of all the highlander books I’ve read. Truth be told, I don’t know what I’d ask him.

What were your top ten books you reviewed for LASR in 2014?

1. Alpha Mine by Aline Hunter
2. Mating Brand by Laurann Dohner
3. As Hot As It Gets by Elle Kennedy
4. Highland Fling by Shelli Stevens
5. Texas Twist by Cynthia D’Alba
6. The Viper by Kele Moon
7. Rebel on the Run by Jayne Rylon
8. Zero by Sam Crescent
9. Nash by Sam Crescent
10. Champion by Cat Johnson

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