More on diversity, Some changes at Samhain Publishing, Sexism in Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Name that body part and Some new Movers & Shakers.
Yes, There is Diversity
Is it possible that the media’s attention to diversity in romance novels isn’t just a passing fad? Last week USA Today interviewed authors Tiffany Reisz and Tiffany Ashley and the topic was…Diversity in Romance. Be still my usually skeptical heart. I enjoyed reading the interview and I think you will too. Plus I really want to pick up the books mentioned:
Q: As an African-American writer, Tiffany A., do you feel more pressure to portray your characters in a certain way?:
Tiffany A.: I do not feel pressure to portray my characters a certain way. However, I do feel a certain obligation to reveal human relationships as realistic as I possibly can. Throughout my life, I’ve found the things that divide us are not as simple as skin color. Social class, upbringing, finances, and life experiences mold us into the individuals we are and define (if not strengthen) our stereotypes. The need to feel a part of a group is as strong as creating a sense of exclusivity. As a writer, my job is to uncover the good and bad in all my characters, expose their weaknesses and emphasize their strengths. Only by doing this, am I able to humanize my characters. And once humanized, the reader is able to connect (if not sympathize) with the character’s situation. Allowing any character to easily fall into a general stereotype would be irresponsible, and to be quite honest, damn lazy.
You can read the full interview here.
What’s Old is New Again
The ebook publishing powerhouse, Samhain Publishing has a…err, new woman at the helm. Christina Brasher, the owner of Samhain, will be taking over as publisher. Yes I know that sounds a little confusing:
“Brashear’s return is part of the imprint’s redirection. In a move to keep the publishing house agile in a growing eBook world, Brashear has restructured the editorial team. The imprint’s current publisher Lindsey Faber is leaving her post and will only stay on in a consulting role. In addition, Heather Osborn will transition from Editorial Director to freelance editor.” Source.
Samhain has become a go-to staple for me for quality books. So I have high hopes that this transition goes smoothly.
Yes, Yes and YES!!!
I have a crazy love for the Black Girl Nerds blog, but this weekend my love skyrocketed to stalker/soul mate levels. They’ve put up a great post by Kyoko M discussing sexism and misogyny in Sci-Fi fantasy and it was EXCELLENT. I found myself nodding often and belting out “Preach!” several times before I was done reading:
“The only way to combat sexism and misogyny in our favorite fiction is to simply speak up about it. Any authors worth their salt hungrily devour their readers’ comments, and if they are well-meaning authors, they can address these issues. Few writers go into a project wanting to make enemies. For the most part, they want their readership to be happy with what they’ve done. That’s why it’s so important to stand up for things that are generally awful like Riddick. That’s why it’s important for authors to read lots of material and recognize the signs of bad female characterization. It may happen by accident, but it’s still something that can be remedied. Everyone wants to be represented fairly. Women are no different. We’re fantastic and flawed. Write us that way.”
Take the time to click on some of the links she has listed throughout the post. They are equally as good and informative. The full awesomeness of the post can be found here.
How Many Ways Can You Say…
Okay…so I had to add this to today’s post because it turned me into a pool of hysterical laughter and I had to share. So how many different ways can you say the word…penis or vagina? Well the lovely people over at Book Riot have come up with a list of euphemisms for body parts used in romance novels. They were even nice enough to rank them for you:
When it comes to sexy times in romance novels, clinical and anatomical descriptions can really ruin the mood. So it’s up to authors to work around those sex ed terms and come up with something a bit more creative. Unfortunately, certain words should never be used when describing a character’s bits and pieces. Here at Book Riot, we’ve ranked some of the worst euphemisms in romance novels. It’s a dirty job, but someone has to do it.
1. Rod – We’re starting off easy. Nothing like a little construction equipment to get the blood flowing.
2. Manhood –
3. Member – It’s always throbbing and it may be a sign of priapism. Get that checked out.
4. Nub – Can we just file “nub” into the “Least Sexiest Words Ever” folder?
5. Love button – This isn’t Family Feud.
The full list can be found here. Number seven is my personal favorite.
Movers and Shakers
The Elven King by Lexi Johnson
I feel like I blinked and this book appeared in the top 5 of the IR/MC lists this week. I haven’t had a chance to pick it up yet, but the premise has me intrigued and who doesn’t want a little extra spice to their summer?
Stranded far from home, can Sade Hughes accept the developing erotic bond between her and the fugitive elven prince, Aranion, a bond that promises to take Sade to the heights of sexual pleasure even as Aranion’s secrets threaten to destroy the both? And will their fragile relationship survive Sade’s first introduction to the elven king?
Sade Hughes needs to get out of the city for a while. Her crazy, drug-dealing ex-lover wants her back, and he’s promised to find her, one way or the other. But when Sade takes refuge in the sprawling country farmhouse she inherited from her grandmother, things go from bad to worse as a seductive elf from her childhood dreams comes face to face with the nightmare of her city past. Now, stranded far from home, can Sade accept the developing erotic bond between her and the fugitive elven prince, Aranion, a bond that promises to take Sade to the heights of sexual pleasure even as Aranion’s secrets threaten to destroy the both? And will their fragile relationship survive Sade’s first introduction to the elven king?
This is part one of a three-part serialized Fantasy Erotic Romance. This part has a length of about 20,000 words. It contains strong sexual content and is not intended for readers under 18.
Third Daughter by Susan Kaye Quinn
This lovely book had me at “Skyships”. I’m a huge fan of Steampunk Romance and I can’t wait to sit down and read this one. The added plus is that the heroine is a woman of color. Score!
Skyships, saber duels, and lots of royal intrigue… and, of course, kissing
The Third Daughter of the Queen wants her birthday to arrive so she’ll be free to marry for love, but rumors of a new flying weapon may force her to accept a barbarian prince’s proposal for a peace-brokering marriage. Desperate to marry the charming courtesan she loves, Aniri agrees to the prince’s proposal as a subterfuge in order to spy on him, find the weapon, and hopefully avoid both war and an arranged marriage to a man she does not love.
Third Daughter is the first book in the The Dharian Affairs Trilogy (Third Daughter, Second Daughter, First Daughter). This steampunk-goes-to-Bollywood (Bollypunk!) romance that takes place in an east-Indian-flavored alternate world filled with skyships, saber duels, and lots of royal intrigue. And, of course, kissing.
Scandalous Heroes (Box Set)
Yes we are living in the age of the box sets. That can’t be disputed. I keep telling myself, “Noooo Laurel! Your TBR list is already too full. Don’t add another box set. Don’t do it!” I’ve been pretty good lately, but then a bunch of my favorite authors go and drop this bit of lovely and my trigger one-click finger goes off. I can’t wait to devour each of these stories.
ALPHAS, SHIFTERS, DOMS, BILLIONAIRES, BLUE COLLAR HUNKS AND URBAN HEROES: 9 BEST SELLING AUTHORS OF SENSUAL ROMANCE. SCANDALOUS HEROES COLLECTION GIVES READER THE KIND OF BAD BOYS WOMEN LOVE–This collection includes best sellers of USA Today and Amazon Top 100 Authors whose stories reflect the diversity of romance such as contemporary, mafia drama, urban lit, BDSM to paranormal and sci-fi. These authors have taken the time to pen new full length and original stories for the readers only found in this collection for a limited time. Collection stats: 1,857 pages/485,737 word count. Total retail value: $35.91.
Authors in the set: Latrivia Nelson, Tiana Laveen, Bridget Midway, Yvette Hines, Sienna Mynx, Serenity King, Pepper Pace, Aliyah Burke, Erosa Knowles
Suddenly Blue by Tressie Lockwood
Oh drama. You all know I love it and this bad boy looks like it’s full of it. Older woman, younger man…check. Unplanned pregnancy…check. Controlling family…check. Livelihood in danger…check. One-click buy? Heck yeah 😉
Ryenne Hill just turned thirty-eight and feels like the chance for a happily ever after is fast leaving her behind. She’s getting older, and she can feel her eggs turning to powder. Six months ago, she broke up with her ex when she caught him cheating, she kissed their talks of getting married good-bye and nursed a broken heart.
Ryenne runs into Shane Allen whom she’s had a light flirtation going on with. Shane is sexy as hell, but he’s also only twenty-eight. Ryenne would never think of getting involved with him. She’s not going through a midlife crisis, and she’s got nothing to prove.
Shane has wanted Ryenne for a long while, and now is the perfect time to take the flirting to something more tangible. He will stop at nothing to have Ryenne, even with the threat of losing his job working for her dad.
What neither of them expected was for Ryenne to get pregnant. Ryenne is thrilled she’s going to be a mother, but embarrassed for everyone to find out about her sexual activities. Relationships with family and friends are threatened, and work is on the line. Can Ryenne overcome the issues and her doubts to find her own brand of happiness?
Some Bookshelf Porn
I’m sure it’s no surprise that I’m a bit of a Doctor Who fan. So when I saw this I went into a fit of envy. I’m pretty sure I can find some place for this in my home 🙂
Laurel Cremant is an opinionated author and reader of romance with a wicked sense of humor. RNIC was smart (or crazy) to bring her on as a blogger. Come back on the second and fourth Thursdays of each month to get her romance industry news…with a colorful twist.