Archive for the ‘ Sherrilyn Kenyon ’ Category

To read, perhaps to listen?

I have been distracted this week due to family issues but I have still managed to keep up with some reading and I have rediscovered my love of (some) audio books. I have written about audio books before. I stand by what I say. The narrator makes of breaks an audio book for me. I can’t make myself overlook bad voice acting or horrendous accents. It ruins a lot for me.

In preparation for the new instalment of The Dresden Files ‘Changes’ by Jim Butcher, I’m listening to the books to refresh my memory. There’s been a lot of them. ‘Changes’ is instalment 11 or 12 I think. It’s one of the few series I have kept up with. I normally get ‘series fatigue’ by book 5 or 6. Jim Butcher, JR Ward, Lara Adrian, Nalini Singh, Meljean Brook, Lorelei James seem to be the only survivors of this condition.

Sometimes I wish authors would swap, what must be, the security of an established fan base and a nice big fat book contract, and take a chance. Write something new.

I suppose they feel pressured as well. When you get hundreds of letters and email asking when the next instalment is, I imagine it’s hard to disappoint people, even if the creative drive is no longer there. (Which is evident in a LOT of authors who write long and protracted series) I suppose it’s also hard not to listen to people who are there to advise you. Publishers need to make money as much as an author. Why take a chance on something you’re not sure will sell when you have a product (a brand in some cases) that sells really well? Maybe these authors find it hard to write that second series. Find it difficult to come up with new ideas so they stay in their comfort zone. Maybe some even like the notoriety? Who knows?

But I think audio books might be the answer to some of my series fatigue. I don’t feel like I am wasting my time when I am listening to an audio book while doing the dishes, or the laundry. Plus, a stack of  audiobooks just doesn’t look as intimidating as a massive stack of books can.

So I can maybe pick up some of those series I let fall behind. I left the ‘In Death’ books behind at around book nine, I think. I would love to pick that series back up but every book started to feel very samey to me. I could also finally get around to reading the last Harry Potter. (I know, I still haven’t read it AND I have managed to stay unspoiled! Don’t ruin it for me.) Does Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Dark-Hunter books have audio? Are they any good?

I doubt they are as good as James Marsters is. I think they should pass a law that he should read all audio books from now on. Le sigh.

What about you all? When do you usually drop a long running series? What about good/bad audiobook narrators? Any I should stay away from?

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UK vs. US

Sometimes I feel like I am in a South Park episode. The one where Butters is Professor Chaos and he’s trying to take over the world and every time he comes up with a plan his sidekick General Disarray tells him, ‘The Simpsons did it!’ It’s like that in Romancelandia a lot of the time. You come up with an idea and go looking for pictures or quotes and then find that someone had beaten you to the punch.

Example. I was going to do this post on Nathan Kamp and how he seems to be on every frickin romance novel cover and why the hell is this the case cause yeah, he’s good-looking but he’s not that good-looking. Went to get some pictures and saw that Jessica over at Racy Romance Reviews had all ready done it. And her post was so much more eloquent and rational than I would have managed I thought to myself, ‘Yep, I’m not gonna even try!’

The I was going to do this post on UK vs. US covers and saw that Meljean had done something similar over at Oddshots. But you know what. I have come to the same conclusion poor Professor Chaos did. Romancelandia has been around for aeons and will be around after I go and we always talk about the same subjects again and again and again so another repetitive blog post ain’t gonna kill us. Plus, I have pretty pictures I want to show you all…

So UK vs. US book covers.

There are different reasons for a change in cover which Meljean goes into in her blog post here. But I have to say, maybe it’s because I am from the UK, I think the UK edges out the US a lot of the time…*controversial* Let me show you.

Keri Arthur

I just prefer the UK one. It feels more evocative somehow. Although I do like the colour scheme of the US one, it feels like anyone with Photoshop could have done it (Although I know that isn’t the case..)


Nalini Singh

I prefer black over lurid pink. I’m not sure what possessed that particular choice. Admit it, you’d be much happier reading the UK cover on the train.


J.D. Robb

Again much more evocative. I find the US covers really garish and it doesn’t tell me anything about the book at all.


Sherrilyn Kenyon

Admit it, it’s just much prettier. Although admittedly, the US covers have had a make over and I do prefer the covers with just the sigils on them to the lurid men covers they used to have.


Jim Butcher

I think the US covers for his Codex Alera series are like a badly drawn school project. I really dislike them.  (Although they are probably drawn by someone really famous.) I was so happy when Orbit brought the new UK covers out. I think they convey the fantasy feel without falling into the usual pitfalls of fantasy covers.


As for his Dresden Files series. I also prefer the, admittedly, boring UK covers. Why? Because as much as I like Chris McGrath’s covers he draws Harry with a freakin’ fedora on and HARRY NEVER WEARS ONE IN THE BOOKS. EVER! It really irritates me. So I prefer the UK ones cause they leave me to imagine the characters myself without putting ideas in my head. Of erroneous hats.


Ann Aguirre

I love the new cover for Ann Aguirre’s Corine Solomon series. It’s dark and moody much like the book (although there are lighter moments). I do like the US cover as well, I just like the UK more. Sometimes that happens. Even though the US cover is probably more representative of the character.


Eloisa James

No contest as far as I am concerned. It’s a beautiful picture and I love the little chess piece in the picture. It gives you a clue to the content but looks out-of-place there so you give it a second look. It’s just such a lavish picture. Very representative of Elosia’s work I think.


Julia Quinn

Although the UK covers are a lit too chick-lit in execution, I do think that they translate the sense of fun and humour that is apparent in Julia’s work. Unlike the US covers that are so vague they almost seem surreal.


However there are exceptions with Julia Quinn. The two ‘Cavendish’ books for instance. I much preferred the US covers. Go figure.


Lisa Kleypas

It’s not always the case that I prefer the UK over US either. I prefer the US covers to Lisa Kleypas’ newest historical series. The blue dress is stunning and much more interesting to my eye than the far away figure in the UK cover.  US cover win.


Rachel Gibson

I  do like the UK covers better. Again, they seem to convey a sense of fun. Although, that said, it is obvious that the UK publisher is trying to make this cover seem anything but romance as that is a dirty word in the UK.


It’s a subject matter that has been discussed ad nauseam and it’s true that while you know what you’re getting when you have mantitty or a back/dress combo, namely a romance novel, why does it feel that romance readers get the short end of the stick when it comes to cover art? Especially in America. Why is it that YA novels get beautiful covers like this?


And romance readers barely warrant any effort at all. Srsly, I CAN do better than this on Photoshop.

Why is there more effort put into a book for teens, than into a book for adults? Because that’s what it feels like. ‘Oh, they’ll buy it regardless so let’s not bother.’ But that’s a whole other subject for a whole other day.

(I’m probably going to get panned now from rabid Chris McGrath fans..*ducks*)

Help!

I’m looking at the top of my TBR pile. I have too many choices. Not a bad thing, I hear you say, but it is. I can’t decide what to read next! Arghhhhh!

I need some help.

Should I start….

1. Loyalty In Death by J.D. Robb – This is the next Eve and Roarke adventure for me. I am slowly wading through the back-catalogue of a bazillion books in this series. It’s taking ages though. Thankfully these books can be read as stand-alones and don’t really rely on any kind of reading continuity. But I am nothing if not ocd about reading a series in order.

2. The Viscount Who Loved Me by Julia Quinn – I blame Sarai for starting me on historicals. Like I haven’t got enough to read without adding a whole new sub-genre to the melting pot. I read The Duke And I and friggin’ loved it. I was crying and everything. It wasn’t pretty. This is the second of the Bridgerton Series by Julia Quinn. It’s Anthony’s story.

3. The Rest Falls Away by Colleen Gleason – This combines two of my fav genres in Romance. First it’s a paranormal, second it’s a historical (my new favourite kid on the block.) It’s basically Buffy in ‘Olden Times’. Genius. Why hasn’t anyone come up with a historical paranormal before this? And there’s a triangle/quadrangle in there too. Ahh, food for the soul a good love triangle is.

4. Catch Of The Day – By Kristan Higgins. Kristan won the Rita this year with ‘Just One Of The Guys.’ This is an earlier book which had me at the mention of ‘love’ and’ priest’ in the same blurb. I’m in. I love divesting a man of his dog collar!

5. Sins Of The Night by Sherrilyn Kenyon. I read the first five or six of the Dark-hunter series in quick succession but by this book I kinda lost the will to live. For me a series seems to have a natural run of around six or seven books, after that I struggle big-time. But with Acheron coming out it whet my appetite again so I picked it up after a six or seven month hiatus and got completely lost straight away. I think to enjoy this I may have to go back and read the last few preceeding this, but the thought of re-reading something right now when I have to much to read just does not appeal. Is it worth it?

6. Dark Roots And Cowboy Boots by Luann McLane. It’s a gun, cotton candy read. Nothing to serious or soul searching. I loved all this authors other books but I feel kinda all puffed out when it comes to contemporary romances at the moment. The only thing saving it from going further down the reading list is the cowboy factor. Yep, I love me a cowboy.

7. The Mammoth Boook Of Vampire Romance. This is an anthology packed to the brim with well known authors. There are vingettes from Lillith Saintcrow, Shiloh Walker, Colleen Gleason, Amanda Ashley, Kimberley Raye, Jenna Black, Karen Chance and Susan Sizemore. The reason I bought it is for the short story by Keri Arthur. It’s a Riley Jensen story from the POV of Quinn. Rawr. I had to have it. I have already read the Keri Arthur story, how about the rest?

8. Jacob by Jacqueline Frank – I have been promising my friend I would read this forever! And JF seemed really cool on DIK.

9. The Hell You Say by Josh Lanyon. I want to read this so bad but at the same time I can’t because I know this is where it all falls apart for Adrien and Jake. I don’t want a sad ending. I want a happy ending.

10. Anything Nora Roberts. I have been on a Nora jag recently. Just finished the Chesapeake Bay quartet and loved it.

Help. Tell me what to read or give me more recommendations!! I’m serious. Note the use of double exclamations!! *g*