Category Archives: General

SAPAHM Guest: Ekaterine Xia On the Portrayal of Mothers … and then Confucius!

Hi friends! I’m glad to welcome back Ekaterine Xia to ALBTALBS! She’s going to be out APAHM hero this year, and has written other really thoughtful posts before, which  I hope you’ll check out of you missed them. (Lime, WTF are all those letters and what do they mean? SAPAHM = Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Heritage Month!) So without further ado… another incredible post by Ekaterine!

On the Portrayal of Mothers … and Confucius!

I have mommy issues.

Specifically, I have issues with how mothers are portrayed in fiction, particularly science fiction and fantasy.

Even within Romancelandia, SFFR has a lot of mommy issues. Contemporary does much better, and I have to ask if it’s because contemporary wasn’t influenced by men and their favorite tropes in the same way science fiction and fantasy romance was.

It took me a long time to put that niggling unease into concrete examples, but once you start the list, things start to look pretty bad really quickly. Continue reading

“Desperately” Seeking: [Privately] Pierced Heroes

Hi friends! So … usually these posts are OMG I WANT/NEED THEM NOW! But … this one happened because of twitter. If you follow me you might know periodically I tweet [kindle] freebies and books on sale. It’s ~scary out there in bookworld now (so much to eventually talk about…) but anyway – so these lists are more and more curtailed – but! This was one I’d read before and enjoyed:

Rock Me by Cherrie Lynn book coverAt the time, Rock Me by Cherrie Lynn was free for kindle. Anyway, this was the tweet that set it off – and people began listing other books, but I’m in recovery and this didn’t happen as quickly as I’d like so… whatever. Good news, Maneuver by Chelle Bliss (I haven’t read/finished this one yet) also has a pierced hero.

I want to say this was a “trend” that was pretty popular in the late 00s/early 10s but it seems to be less common now. I know there are more but these are the books off the top of my head I remember… and some crowdsourced from conversations where people gave me permission to use their replies. 🙂 Continue reading

10 Tenacious Questions with Lorelei James (In Which Lorelei Interviews Herself)

Hi friends! You know what? I can’t believe that Lorelei James has never been an official guest at ALBTALBS before! How is that even possible?! And you know what else is fun? She’s not the first author to have interviewed herself. (Yes there’s even a tag!) ANYWAY. 😀 Please let me welcome Lorelei and see what she has to say!

10 Tenacious Questions with Lorelei James

That got your attention, didn’t it? When I was chatting with the lovely, sweet Limecello and she asked if I’d be interested in doing a blog post, I said sure…can I interview myself? Luckily she didn’t balk at my request, or think it was weird 😊

Why did I choose this type of format? Because honestly, I’ve been published for 14 years and I get the same questions over and over and over. And it really blows when I get a set of generic questions right before a new release and I know damn well the blogger/reviewer hasn’t read my book. I knew Lime hadn’t read this one yet, so I thought it’d be fun and less promote-y given the fact I do have a release this week–1st book in a new contemporary romance series, I Want You Back, buy it now!!—to do something different. Thanks to Lime and A Little Bit Tart, A Little Bit Sweet for letting me have my dirty, wicked way with this post. Continue reading

Desperately Seeking: Smitten Heroes

Devil in Spring by Lisa Kleypas Book CoverHi friends! Back with a quiet feature of ALBTALBS – where I (and anyone else can!) look for recommendations from the community. It’s pretty self explanatory … but I am desperately seeking them! I’m in a Mood what with recovery and such, and … I just want books with a strong strong strong romance/pursuit from the start.

Merriam Webster defines smitten as: deeply affected with or struck by strong feelings of attraction, affection, or infatuation

Which … yeah. I want your favorite books where the hero is taken from the start. He’s head over heels for the his love interest, whether overtly or not – but he’s now pursuing her, courting her … or him! M/F or M/M … or other pairings are welcome. I just want a romance where one of the characters is gaga for the other(s) from go. If you have F/F recs I’d love to hear them too. F/F is definitely a genre I’m not very familiar with, but I’m very glad to see there are more stories being written in Romanceland/more visibility.

Off the top of my head … Devil in Spring by Lisa Kleypas would be one such book. In fact … I’ll list them, in no particular order. Continue reading

About Avon’s KissCon Weekend Affair!

Hi friends! So I know this is coming down to the wire (like a lot a lot) – it was meant to go live on March 5th, but timing didn’t align – but if you’re a procrastinator or were on the fence… hopefully this gives you information/the push you need! While this is the first ever KissCon Weekend Affair … I will say I’ve been to other Avon events, and a KissCon, and they were all great. Avon puts together fabulous events for readers – where you get actual time with authors, but not just that, there’s the swag, treats, everything is really well done. Anyway, without further ado, info from Kayleigh about the event! 

Avon Presents KissCon Weekend Affair

I’ve always thought there was something magical about cons. For one weekend, like minded individuals are brought together to celebrate something that they love so irrevocably, that it’s deeply rooted in their soul.

For some, it’s comic books. For us? It’s romance novels.

Avon has been hosting regional KissCon events for years, bringing a panels of 6-8 authors to indie bookstores (and libraries!) around the US for a two-part ticketed event filled with cheeky games, Q&As, a signing, and for VIP ticket holders, a wine and cupcake mixer that allows for more intimate mingling with their favorite authors. Basically, these small one day affairs are four hours of pure romance bliss, where you’re definitely going to go home with an HEA moment (and a lot of really great swag).

After the continued success of the regional KissCons, we began to wonder: what would happen if a KissCon lasted the entire weekend? Could we take four hours and stretch it into a full weekend of romance and wonder? Being the overachievers that we at Team Avon, we could say only one thing: YES! Continue reading

WHM: Cynthia Sax on Trailblazing Women In Science Fiction Romance

Hi friends! We have Cynthia Sax back with us today, and I’m thrilled to have our first official Smithsonian Heritage post of 2019, for Women’s History Month, and such a great topic. I’m out of it so you’ll have to forgive me on timing and mistakes etc – especially when we’ve got such a wonderful guest and post!

Trailblazing Women In Science Fiction Romance By Cynthia Sax

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley book coverWhen Limecello suggested this topic, I immediately agreed to cover it, thinking it would be an easy post to write. I’d search on Google, read a couple of posts on the history of Science Fiction Romance, add my own experience in this wonderful subgenre and bam, my post would be done.

Except when I searched on this topic, very few posts were mentioned. Wikipedia’s coverage of Science Fiction Romance was sparse and mentioned only one book, a book I knew couldn’t have been the first Science Fiction Romance.

This can’t be right, I thought. There must be more articles. My mad Google skillz must be failing me. So I put out a call in a SciFi Romance group for reference articles. A couple more resources were mentioned (including Heather Massey’s A Brief History Of Science Fiction Romance) but it was clear much of the history of this female writer dominated subgenre hasn’t be recorded and, if it isn’t recorded soon, it might never be noted. It would be lost. Forever. Continue reading

So … This Is Awkward. I Need Help. (Please)

Hi friends! … So, a few things. I’ve been slightly more close mouthed and cagey about it this time. (I know, I know, you’re going “what? You? Quiet about anything?!”) … So there is that. But uh … I’m not even sure when this will be going live, or where I’ll be … (please Jesus God in Heaven let me be home by this time, not in the hospital or a rehab facility) … but I probably won’t be lucid. Anyway – I’m having major surgery. Major.

The last time I had to have this done, I was in the hospital almost nine days. I also almost literally died. … And then I “just” wanted to die. So yeah.

And … now we get to the even more awkward part. (God can it get even more awkward? … Sadly, yes.)

I need help. Monetary, mostly, to be honest. I’m going to be out of work for more than three months, and without pay. I guess the positive is I’ll still have my sad little job to go back to once I’m a bit more on my feet … but having no income while at the same time racking up major medical expenses is unfortunately putting me in a really difficult situation.

And … then there’s the other also awkward part. You might remember last time (and unfortunately I’m actually still recovering from it…) … there was also a GFM for me. That was done by Ashley March/Elise Rome. She wanted to help me out and suggested staring a campaign for me, and asking if I’d be ok with it. I was touched, and thanked her. Well … things didn’t go quite as expected and she kept most of the funds for over a year. She has started sending some more of the money as of this year, which I really appreciate.

I’m not actually trying to shame her – I really simply want to explain what happened last time – why I’m asking for “yet more money” and such. Although to be honest all of that was gone/already spent on medical things before it would’ve even ever gotten to me. If that makes sense. Everything is a muddle.

The point is, if you could find it in your hearts and wallets to donate to me … I can’t tell you how much it’d mean to me, or how much I need it. I’m embarrassed, mortified, sick with … shame and need, but there you have it. My needs are greater than my pride.

https://www.gofundme.com/help-limecello 

If you can’t afford to give, which I absolutely understand, I’d ask that you please share the campaign to reach greater numbers. 

Thank you all so much for your kindness and support. 

All my love.

[Limecello]

Author Interview with Avery Flynn!

Hi friends! I’m reviving an old ALBTALBS feature today, with the fabulous Avery Flynn! She just had a new book come out on Tuesday – Tomboy which I really enjoyed (I’m even going to review it! I know!!! Gasp you should!!!) But first, we’re here for some fun, wherein we do 0 book talk (yeah I don’t know how that happened either) – but I asked Avery a bunch of off the wall questions and challenged her to answer them. The crazier the better right?!

But first, I mean, we can’t >.> have no book talk… so you know. Info! Tomboy is the third Hartigan book. (Although I still really consider The Charmer to be the “first” Hartigan book … >.> I mean Felicia Hartigan is the heroine … and that book might be my favorite by Ms. Flynn … so far… *whispers* so hybrid series Harbor City/Hartigans and all thus Tomboy is Hartigan 4…) BUT ANYWAY!) N.B. while each book can stand alone I think it’d be helpful to read the Haritgans books in order. You definitely don’t have to though. … But you should read Harbor City book 2. The Charmer. I really liked it – can you tell? :P) The other two preceding Hartigan book are Butterface, and Muffin Top (which I reviewed.)

Tomboy by Avery Flynn book coverHow exactly has one good deed landed me in the penalty box?

Ice Knights defenseman Zach Blackburn has come down with the flu, and my BFF—his PR manager—begs me to put my nursing degree to use and get him back to health. Of course she would call in a favor for the most hated man in Harbor City.

But when he’s finally on the mend and I’m sneaking out of his place, everything goes sideways. Paparazzi spot me and pictures, plus accusations that I slept with him, fly faster than a hockey puck.

At first, all of Harbor City wants my blood—or to give me a girlie-girl makeover. But then…the team finally wins a game. And now this fickle town wants me with the big jerk twenty-four seven.

Argh. I never slept with him the first time! But no one will listen. Then the grumpy bastard goes and promises to break his no-fan-appearances rule to help raise money for a free health clinic—but only if I’m rink-side at every game. That’s not a deal I can turn down.

But when the team keeps winning, and I realize there’s more to him than his bad reputation, suddenly remembering to keep my real hands off my fake date gets harder and harder to do.

If you could be any one character in any book or series, who would you be? 
You know, I wanna be Kinsey from Kate Meader’s Flirting With Fire because Luke should be all mine. Seriously. That man. *faints*
Continue reading

Guest Eden Bradley: Backlist Books Are New Again!

Hi friends!!! Happy VDay all! Whether you love or hate this holiday – it’s here and hopefully everyone gets what they want from this day. And if nothing else, discount chocolate and maybe flowers the next one, if you like. 😉 Anyway! We’re welcoming back Eden Bradley today! Love and such for all! <3 

Backlist Books Are New Again!
With Eden Bradley

This year is the year of re-releases for me! I’ve gotten rights back on some older titles and I’m finally getting around to re-editing them, expanding a few, and of course giving them new covers. This is exciting because a lot of my newer readers have never seen most of these books!

But first, in case some of you don’t know me, why don’t I do a little self-interview Q&A? Here we go!

Q: How long have you been writing? What do you write?
A: My first story was published in 2004. I’ve written almost strictly erotica and erotic romance. I stick mostly with contemporary settings, aside from my Midnight Playground vampire series (it’s set in a dystopian London), and my story in the multi-author Wasteland post-apocalyptic series with authors Crystal Jordan and R.G. Alexander. Continue reading

On Cultural-ness and a Low Key Hiatus, and BHM

Hi friends! If you haven’t noticed … we’ve been pretty quiet at ALBTALBS lately, and it’s just … I’ve got a lot going on and I can’t even remember if I put the blog on hiatus – and I do want to say it’s not going to look like that at all for the next few weeks … but then we’ll be back to a few posts.

First of all … pretend this went live the date listed. Continue reading