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Something Different This Way Comes

When I was in L.A. at the Romance Writers of America conference a couple of weeks ago, I met with Tara Gavin of Harlequin Nocturne. Last year she put together a concept project and asked if I had read it. I was excited about the idea because it’s so innovative. Gavin assembled four PNR authors to collaborate on a “Royal House of Shadows” series of fairytales retold.

Each book begins with…

Once upon a time…the Blood Sorcerer vanquished the kingdom of Elden. To save their children, the queen scattered them to safety and the king filled them with vengeance. Only a magical timepiece connects the four royal heirs. Now they must return and save Elden…and time is running out….

Book One is Lord of the Vampires, by Gena Showalter. (Alice in Wonderland)

Book Two is Lord of the Rage & Primal Instincts, by Jill Monroe (Goldilocks and the Three Bears)

Book Three is Lord of the Wolfyn, by Jessica Anderson (Little Red Riding Hood)

Book Four is Lord of the Abyss, by Nalini Singh (Beauty and the Beast) REALLY ENJOYING THIS ONE SO FAR… 25% through.

I have just finished Lord of the Vampires and started on Lord of Rage. It’s a really fresh approach to read each of the books in the series written in a different voice. I wish I had all this information when I started reading because I think it would have added to my enjoyment to be watching for the parallels. I kept wondering why they were referring to the “big bad” as the Queen of Hearts.

I’m told the series is best read in order as the story interweaves and is interdependent.

Barrons Books and Baubles 5

I don’t make any secret of the fact that my two favorite series are Kresley Cole’s Immortals After Dark and Karen Marie Moning’s Fever Series. This post is about a central feature of the latter.

This picture was poached from a Facebook fan site because I just had to share. http://www.facebook.com/victoria.danann.9?ref=tn_tnmn#!/pages/B-B-B/318302944881239

You know I LOVE my e-reader. With the new backlighting (thank you, been salivating for it for many years now) I can read in the middle of the night, under the covers, without disturbing my spouse. I can take 20 books on vacation and it doesn’t weigh me down any more than does my wallet which is stuffed with stuff I don’t need.

All that said, let me add a big HOWEVER!!! When I saw this picture, I fell in love with books all over again. I remembered the days when I used to get two kid-free hours a week and would use them browsing (translation: prowling) the bookstore aisles. I can’t remember seeing anything more magical. 

Like Moning’s heroine, Mac, I would want to live there and take care of it, too. I could just put a mattress down and be happy. Nothing could be better unless, of course, it was shared by Barrons.

Wonderful. Wonderful. Wonderful.

Sneak Preview: The Witch’s Dream Reply

The Witch’s Dream excerpt #1

When Kay’s bunch arrived it suddenly seemed as if the one hundred seventy five room palace on twelve thousand acres would not be nearly big enough. His family had migrated to South Texas in the nineteenth century and found it agreeably inhospitable. Berserkers enjoy a good challenge. So they founded an organization to clean up the mess, taking on rowdy itinerants who heartily embraced a get-it-done, no-rules philosophy and called it the Texas Rangers. Were it not for berserkers it seems unlikely that the frontier mix of Comanche, desperados, and javelina could have been subdued so relatively quickly and by so few.

Chaos Caelian, named such by his maternal grandmother as was her privilege in berserker society, was affectionately known as Kay. It was the nickname bestowed upon him by his teammate Rammel Hawking soon after they’d met. Ram had thought a knight named Kay – like the foster brother of King Arthur from Arthurian legend – was amusing. So Chaos became Sir Kay and it stuck. Even his own parents eventually began calling him Kay.

Yes. Everybody knew the near giant knight as Kay except for his three older sisters who refused to give up calling him Bubba, never letting him forget for a minute that he was the “baby” of the family. The four youngest Caelian children were close in age, only a year apart, and in familial ties. There was a much older brother, but he and their parents almost seemed to comprise a second family. The three preschool girls started out calling him “brother”, but the nickname quickly degenerated into Bubba and would not go away.

Their grandmother, sometimes called Evil Gran by those she had named, gave the girls similar hardships to bear. Having inherited the “sight” from her own grandmother, Evil Gran claimed she knew three girls were coming and set out to name them after the Norns; the three keepers of time according to Norse myth. Hence, they were named in order of linear time – past, present, and future: Urda, Verdandia, and Skulda. In a triumph of sibling camaraderie and conspiracy over custom, their names had morphed into something more suitable before they entered kindergarten. Urda became known as “Urz”, Verdandia as “Dandie” and Skulda did a triple twist into “Squoozie” which, odd as it was, seemed like a custom fit.

Elora had once heard Kay say that opening the door to his boyhood home was like going through the wardrobe to the land of “Nornia”.

The entire family resembled the popular perception of Vikings: tall, fair haired, fair skinned, with blue eyes, an abundance of athletic ability, and an indomitable desire to know where to plunder the best jewelry. Fortunately the family had accumulated multigenerational wealth in land, cattle, and oil in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century so the quest for jewelry did not require going a’viking as it was known in the old days. Kay’s sisters were content with the occasional plunder of Gump’s, Tiffany, and Cartier.

New Series Mini Banner Reply

This banner contains elements of the first three books of the series. Tell people you like the series by adding the little banner to your website or Facebook page. Please link back to me at www.VictoriaDanann.com.

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M.F.S. Reviewed by Night Owl Reviews Reply

Their fabulous review of My Familiar Stranger can be found here: click here for Night Owl’s Review

A NIGHT OWL REVIEWS BOOK REVIEW * Reviewed by: Hitherandthee

Elora Laiken is an enigma. After falling through a previously unknown portal from another dimension, torn and bloodied and a complete mess, few were sure she would survive. But survive she does, and wakes to find herself in a parallel world eerily similar to her own, but with a treasure she never could have imagined. She arrives as a prisoner, an unknown and greatly misunderstood creature, cared for by the notorious Bad Company, B Team of the Order of the Black Swans. Ram, Storm, Kay, and Sol are back at base, recovering from the loss of a team member, when Elora arrives and proves herself an invaluable team member. Several weeks pass, but when an outbreak of vampires in New York City has B Team scrambling to uncover the reason and method to stop them, Elora is right there with them. Little do they know a saboteur is waiting to destroy everything the team, as well as Elora and Ram, have built. When the saboteur strikes, can Elora and Ram solve the mysteries, save the team, and learn to recognize the love in their hearts while not tearing the team apart? Dig in and find out.

My Familiar Stranger is a very complex book that is beautiful and heartwarming. There are numerous laugh out loud moments, as well as several nail biting edge of your seat moments. The adventure quotient is high, but not too much so. The romance in the novel is built in seamlessly, exquisitely enhancing the story. I absolutely loved this novel, and cannot wait for the next one!

Jun 11, 2012 * B007V8RAKW

 

M.F.S. Reviewed by Between the Bind Blog 1

Between the Bind

Review from Jenna Lynne at Between the Bind Blog POSTED 6/26/12

She gave me 4 1/2 stars on Amazon, but, I’m still proud enough of this review to post it because she took SO much time on the analysis and went so deep into her personal reactions. As an author, you can’t help but be moved when someone is emotional engaged by the characters of an otherworld that originated in the strangeness of imaginescape. Thanks Jenna. Not just for this review, but for promoting the genre of Paranormal Romance. – Victoria

5.0 out of 5 stars Unique and Captivating – 4.5 Stars,June 26, 2012

This book was a RIDE! I simply cannot say enough great things about Victoria Danann and the genius that is My Familiar Stranger. Danann’s writing style is uniquely honest and captivates her audience with both plot and characters in a well-developed and thoughtful world (or “worlds” as it seems).
The Love Nest:
Elora Liaken is the perfect meshing of kick-butt-ness and vulnerability. Literally dropping into an alternative dimension after watching her family be assassinated, Elora is saved by Storm, the de facto leader of the elite B-Team in the paranormal military unit, “Black Swan.” All Elora remembers of Storm is his delicious smell and comforting words while drifting in and out of consciousness. Well, that and another voice saying, “We should kill it.”
After healing, Elora distinguishes the latter from B-Team’s resident womanizer, Ram, who immediately recognizes Elora as his elven mate. Showing more brains than brawn, he doesn’t try to force his culture on Elora, knowing that humans rarely mate for life. Ram is crude at best while competing for Elora’s affection – but he is unaware that the competition is with not just one other man, but instead, two! The last in this triad being the ancient, overtly sexy, and repentant vampire, Istvan Baka.
These relationships seem to be straight forward at first, but progress interestingly enough and actually? One of my initial complaints is now my most favorite piece of Danann’s puzzle. I really did want Elora to choose each one of the men depending on the page I was on, to the point of being extremely frustrated that said gentleman was taking time away from my current fav, but, in what I’ve come to know as classic Danann style, this was exactly the point. As a reader, you are physically but moreover, emotionally pulled in several directions – just like Elora.
There is not one clear stand out mate until a choice is made and you’re like WHAT?! HIM?! Wait…but what about…?! These relationships develop organically, taking ample time before jumping into any sexual relationship. I enjoyed the flirting so much! Most writers do not give enough attention to the simple act of flirting. *sigh*
**SPOILER** The major qualm I had with this trio of suitors was that Baka wasn’t really ever in the running for me. Even though he was sexy as all get out, he was never a true contender for Elora’s heart. So this “trio” is really just a “duo” with a super sexy friend involved. **END SPOILER**
Our Heroine: The premise of a woman not needing protection from her man also brightened the read. I loved how competent Elora was in all aspects without being an unobtainable heroine or perceived as perfect – well from anyone but her men!
The Awesome: Danann’s world building is quite astounding. She has a knack for detail and can write such vivid imagery that I could recount to you with reasonable accuracy what rooms and buildings looked and felt like. I could not however tell you just what all three of our male characters looked like…well except some inappropriate details. 😉
This book had a slow first few chapters but once I understood Danann’s style and relaxed into her flow I enjoyed every page turn. I will be waiting ever-so-patiently (HA!) for the next installment, The Witch’s Dream to be released in Fall 2012.