Tuesday, March 31, 2009

CHUCK, 3/30

Here's the thing: I fully intended to talk about CHUCK *and* HEROES, but HEROES put me to sleep. No joke. I couldn't keep my eyes open. Was it good or did the sleep injection equate to the show's return back to pre-Fuller form?

Anyway, here's CHUCK!

* Badass Trish Helfer is the "new Sarah"! Is she going to be in all my coolest programs? (BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, BURN NOTICE, SUPERNATURAL) Someone is totally going to say "frak" tonight.

* Casey likey.

* Yeah, Sarah! The girl gets fired and she goes right for the computer to help Chuck, looking up Bartowski, Sr. That's loyalty.

* "Xanadu!"

* Every guy should be as awesome as Awesome. He loves his Ellie.

* Porno gun sex, secret-agent-sight-gag style. I imagine Casey doesn't even mind that it's not real sex because this is *it* for him.

* I can't wait for Chuck's dad!

Well, there were no "frak"s that I could hear, but it was an episode that really moved things forward. Onward, CHUCK!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

SUPERNATURAL, CHUCK, HEROES 3-in-1

I told you I wanted to start chatting more about SUPERNATURAL when I caught up with the series, so here I am. I was also behind on CHUCK and HEROES this week, so I apologize, since I was in New York. (Yee! That's another post.)

Here we go....

SUPERNATURAL

Just in general, it was a relief to see a funnier episode after last week's downer-fest (which was, BTW, an awesome episode. It's just hard to see Dean suffer so much and to have Sam continue driving me to drink.). Some highlights for me:

* Meet Dean Smith, American Psycho. (Anyone else think of Patrick Bateman?)

* Smith and Wesson. Perfect.

* So, I used to think Jared Padalecki's eyes were brown in seasons one and two...but lately, they look gray. Contacts? Lighting? Any theories?

* Who else gave an inappropriate laugh when the microwave "dinged" at the commercial break? Damn, I'm sick.

* Egads--a pencil in a neck! Methinks that SUPERNATURAL's the goriest program on TV. And, perversely, melikes.

* The references to "real life" ("I could use a beer," the flipflopping of Dean using "dude" while Sam uses "dick," Dean calling Sam "Sammy") is like a treasure hunt for fans.

* Um, what did I say about this being gory? Shee-it. That sliced in half body really upped the ante.

* LOL for the name checks: Bobby, Ellen (where art thou?), Jo, and Madison.

* Good heavens, without those jackets covering the Winchester torsos, the boys are obviously quite broad, yes? (Not that I haven't noticed before, but tonight's eppie made it easier to enjoy. Mr. Kripke, showgod, I hereby formally request fewer jackets in the future.)

* I'm glad the angels are trying to help Dean out, but give the guy some credit for surviving hell, why don't ya? Telling Dean that his life really is pretty good isn't really cool when, truly, Dean has been through the wringer.

And on to CHUCK, which provided a laugh-a minute....

* The MUMMY guy!!! He's hot. Did you guys ever watch RED SHOE DIARIES? He was in the bestest eppie ever: it featured a man and woman who had offices in buildings opposite each other, so they could see through each other's windows. They had this naughty flirting thing where they'd fax over dares, and it was SMOKIN'. Yow. I am temporarily unable to think, so I must pause.

And...back to the recap.

* This is gonna be good--here are some rival Buy More employees from Bev Hills. Inspired and definitely a bit bitchy. Go Burbank!

* Jeff's office is gross yet amazing. Totally appropriate.

* Alternate title for this episode: "How Some Idgit Geeks Almost Frakked up the World." It's the IQ challenged version of WAR GAMES.

(BTW, since Bobby on SUPERNATURAL used the word "idgit" recently, I am in love with it and must employ it whenever possible.)

* Hah! Vintage BATTLESTAR GALACTICA spotlight for Mummy Guy as he faces his superiors!!!

* "I'll be turning tricks again by the end of the week."

* Too many funny things to mention during the Buy More break-in scene, but one of them includes, "Mother? Mother?" (Lester was ON tonight.)

* Big Mike and Mama are makin' it to Air Supply. Poor, poor scarred Morgan.

God, that was highly enjoyable.

HEROES

* Good to see the show embracing Suresh's dumb streak again as the hunter effortlessly captures the idgit.

* LOL for Hiro, Ando, and Touch and Go Baby's ET moment in the closet.

* When that ATM spit out the money and message, I am reminded of Micah--and then he shows up! Awesome! But I'm freaked out that he now speaks three octaves lower than he used to.

* Damn, that's a cute baby. Child is cracking me up all over the place.

* I love that Micah is Rebel. I didn't expect that.

* Totally funny how that baby is gulping down his milk like a blue-collar worker after a hard haul. That rugrat is a scene stealer.

* Awwww about Daphne. That death was well done. I do actually care that she's gone.

So, for next week, let us hope that CHUCK brings it as wonderfully as usual, that HEROES keeps bringing it harder, and that Sam doesn't bring it to that demon woman I saw in the previews. (I swear, Sam's issues are going to send me from wine to vodka right quick.)

See you soon!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

OOTB Book Tour: The Vampire's Quest

The Vampire’s Quest
A Valorian Chronicles Novel
By Vivi Anna

Silhouette Nocturne
April 1

In a race against life and death, one woman holds the key to sanity and salvation

After escaping from the Otherworld Crime Unit, Kellen Falcon came to Nouveau Monde to crack a rare blood disease. But the European hotbed of temptation yielded sport no vampire could resist—criminologist Sophie St. Clair. And with only days to live, Kellen sought sweet release from her to escape a savage past.

The lycan beauty wasn't one to stray from her pact. But an investigation into a downtown bombing now tied the two together. And it wasn't long before Kellen's smoldering eyes and Sophie's fierce desire for this vampire put her loyalties to the test….

Excerpt: http://www.vivianna.net/thevampiresquest.php

RT TOP PICK

“THE VAMPIRE'S QUEST (4.5) by Vivi Anna: This is a fantastic supernatural thriller from start to finish. Anna takes two supernatural beings and makes us believe the romance and attraction between them are real.”

“A perfect blending of passion, danger, humor and profound emotions make THE VAMPIRE’S QUEST absolutely enthralling on every page. “ – 5 STARS-Cataromance.com
“Vivi Anna demonstrates her spectacular writing skills yet again with THE VAMPIRE’S QUEST. Kellen’s story is one that is even more satisfying than usual as I’ve anticipated and hoped for this story for quite awhile. THE VAMPIRE’S QUEST is highly recommended!”- 5 STARS – CK2KWIPSANDKRITIQUES

About the author

Frequently on Recommended Reading lists, award-winning Canadian author, Vivi Anna likes to burn up the pages with her unique brand of fantasy fiction. Whether it's in the Amazon jungle, an apocalyptic future, or the otherworld city of Necropolis, Vivi always writes fast paced action-adventure with strong independent women that can kick some butt, and dark delicious heroes to kill for.

Website: http://www.vivianna.net
http://www.valorianchronicles.com

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

RITA Nomination!

I just got a phone call telling me that I've received my first RITA nomination ever! It's for my Special Edition, FALLING FOR THE LONE WOLF, the third book in my Suds Club trilogy, and it's among nine other titles in the Contemporary Series category.

For those of you who aren't familiar with the RITA, this is the romance industry's equivalent of an Oscar nomination. The ceremony takes places at the annual national RWA conference, and everyone gets dressed to the nines for a truly classy night. If you don't really read romance, the RITA list is a great entry point, as it features a lot of the cream of the crop. (I can't believe I'm on that list, LOL.) I used to read those nominees, and I've found some of my favorites through the RITA.

Cool!

(ETA: I just found out that my critique partner, Judy Duarte, also made the finals with her inspirational MULBERRY PARK. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! What a great day. To see the list, you can go to:
http://www.rwanational.org/cs/contests_and_awards/2009_rita_and_gh_finalists_announcement#RCSR)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Almost Back....

I'll be posting about CHUCK and HEROES later in the week while explaining the reason I wasn't able to watch either one of them last night. I didn't watch last week's SUPERNATURAL, either, so I've got to get on that!

Hope you all are having a great week.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

SUPERNATURAL Catch Up...

No CHUCK, no HEROES tonight, but I have caught up with the rest of you on SUPERNATURAL. (Unfortunately, I can’t watch Thursday’s new episode until next week. Dang!) Overall, I absolutely love almost everything about the direction of the series: the angels, the escalating conflict between Dean and Sam, the amount of crap that’s sure to hit the fan by the end of the season. But, as you guys know, the only element I don’t like at all is Ruby. I said in the comment section that she’s a demon, and demons are demons for a reason. Without totally blowing the entire concept of what a demon is, I’m not sure she can ever be “good,” and I’m pretty sure that she can’t be shoehorned into a true, root-for-her-because-she-deserves-Sam heroine’s mold. Then again, this show is awesome, and if any creative team can do the near impossible, SUPERNATURAL’s can. Yet, the alternative isn’t attractive to me, either: if she’s epically screwing with Sam’s mind, that would make Sam the world’s biggest chump, and I don’t want that to happen. In spite of all Sam’s shortcomings (hah—6’4” worth of “short”), I still adore him. I feel the same about Dean, and I hope he becomes that hero he’s never quite believed he truly is.

Also, I want to note that I thought the way they opened the season with Dean busting out of the pine box was awesome. Talk about getting straight into the action and pushing dramatic momentum. Wow. Sam’s become a real mystery, and it’s strange because I think that, when the series started, we were meant to relate to Sam as the “everyman.” This vicarious sensation has switched to Dean, and that’s pretty damned cool. But it also makes me, as a viewer, uncomfortable. A good kind of uncomfortable that’s going to compel me to watch every week.

BTW, our fantastic Selena posted entries for A DROP OF RED on her blogs. Check them out!!!

http://selenaillyria.com/2009/03/guest-blogging-chris-marie-green-a-drop-of-blood/
http://selenaillyriasthoughts.blogspot.com/2009/03/guest-blogging-chris-marie-green-drop.html
http://darkicegoddessmusings.blogspot.com/2009/03/guest-blogging-chris-marie-green-drop.html
A heartfelt thank you, Selena. J

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Shout Out!


Just want you all to know that I was paging through my latest Entertainment Weekly when I saw that wonderful Gena Showalter made the top ten Publisher's Weekly bestseller list!!! Her new book is THE VAMPIRE'S BRIDE, the fourth installment of her Atlantis series. I'll be starting this one soon, and I can't wait.

Gena has always been gracious enough to feature my Vampire Babylon books on her blog, and since I am a part of her admiration society, I want to put the word out about her great books. :)

Congratulations, Gena!!!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

CHUCK...3/9/09

Yes, I named this entry just CHUCK. I'm down to only two comments for last night's HEROES episode.

CHUCK

* Rival or not (and scamp or not), I kinda love Barker.

* Then there's Chuck, with the covers up to his neck in bed. How sexy.

* Gratuitous shirtless shot of Barker. I'm always in the market for this sort of camera work.

* Bwah! Love how Chuck's moving-in-with-Morgan problem has become Morgan's moving-in-with-Anna problem. Well-played, CHUCK.

* "Repulsion is our business."

* Okay--when I said I'm always into gratuitous shirtless shots, I didn't mean to include Jeff.

* Chuck has a quiet Chuckgasm when he gets the gun.

* It's sweet that Anna thinks Morgan has "ridiculous quirks" instead of "severe mental challenges."

* I really do like how Barker treats Chuck as if he's capable of more than just computer work.

* Chuck rescues Barker. Hee.

* Like Barker's not gonna be back. Chuck still needs to watch out.

* Awww--Chuck (kind of) confessed his love to Sarah!

HEROES

1. Wow--so the entire big bomb set up...ended like THAT?

2. John Glover as an evil lunatic. Love.

And that's it for the week. Looking forward to next....

Sunday, March 08, 2009

You 'n' Me, SUPERNATURAL, 3

And the love continues.

Here I am with my comments about SUPERNATURAL, season 3, which was waaaaay too short, due to the writer's strike. I'll say that I think I liked season 2 better, if only for the lack of a couple of characters I just never warmed up to in this third season. However, we did get a lot more of Bobby, the redneck mentor to the Winchester brothers, and I do love Bobby. (Having said that, I also like Ellen, but she was MIA. I would've much rather seen her get the screen time frakkin' Bela got, but we'll get to her in a bit.)

Sam is getting darker (and, hence, even HOTTER--good gosh, how? He was smokin' to begin with.). Dean is getting more heroic, and I loved seeing his return to "awesome hunter form" that he sort of lost when he became a bit more "comic relief" than he used to be at the beginning of the series. (Remember the Dean who was in control and in charge? For a while, it looked like Bela had emasculated him in that regard.)

What I loved:
* the continuation of the mythology and how very few punches are pulled as we come closer to an ultimate showdown. SUPERNATURAL dares to make their characters suffer--and not just for one episode. The consequences are long-lasting and change the course of the series as well as offer more character growth for the guys.

* the funny episodes. I'm embarrassed to say that I kept rewinding that scene in "The Mystery Spot" where Sam is saying everything Dean is saying, because Sam *knows* what Dean is going to say, due to repeating the same day over and over. "Sam Winchester cries during sex. Sam Winchester sleeps with a ruler next to the bed and every morning he wakes up and..." Heh! Perfect instance of the actors playing off of each other and doing it extremely well.

* the brotherly emotion. Who among us did not give a heartfelt "awwwwww" at the end of "A Very Supernatural Christmas" when Sam and Dean watched football together? Great scene, because everything unsaid weighed heavily between the lines of dialogue. Sniff.

* the season cliffhanger. Oh. My. Dean...!!! I'm chomping at the bit to start season 4 and am determined to catch up with the series just so I can see this season's cliffhanger when everyone else does.

What I didn't like so much:
* Ruby. I think it was the way she was introduced, with all her Barbie snarkiness. She became halfway interesting when she revealed herself as a demon, but then she claimed that she remembered what it was like to be human. Hmmm. To drive that point home, it would've been cool if her character had shown more flashes of a slightly endearing humanity instead of all that demon sneer. I know she'll be back for season 4 though. Not sure how I feel about that.

* Bela. Let's just say this--in a deathmatch between Ruby and Bela, I would put facepaint on and write Ruby's name on my bare chest in sub-zero degree weather to root Ruby on. This has to be one of the most reprehensible characters ever created, and the thing is, I'm not 100% sure we weren't supposed to start feeling sympathy for Bela at some point. She got the "abused child" flashback in the end that I guess was supposed to make us understand where she was coming from, but from the time Bela SHOT SAM to the final act of her barging into the boys' room and SHOOTING WHAT SHE THOUGHT TO BE THE GUYS IN THEIR BEDS, I despised this wankette. I don't often feel relief when a character expires, but I have to admit to sporting quite a lot of satisfaction when this wench bit it. (The thing that worries me though is that we never actually saw her die. I'm crossing my fingers that she didn't somehow outsmart death....)

So there we go. And here I am, a newly converted uber-fan. This will be the number one panel I'll be aiming for at this year's Comic-Con, San Diego, and that's saying something, based on its competition.

I'll be back when I catch up with this season, and I'd love to do recaps....

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Mysterious Galaxy

Just a reminder that, if you're in the San Diego area at around 4pm today, I'm signing with Amber Benson (BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER) at Mysterious Galaxy on Clairemont Mesa Blvd. This fantastic store has a wide variety of sci-fi and fantasy books, so it's worth a stop just for that alone!

Also, Chere from PNR has posted a review of A DROP OF RED, Vampire Babylon, Book Four. Click here to read it!

Thursday, March 05, 2009

CHUCK/(some)HEROES, 3/2/09

A couple days late, but I know a lot of you are watching these shows on delay, anyway....

CHUCK

Another funny episode bolstered by sweet emotion...and a new threat for Chuck.

* LOL for Sarah's expertise in cutting the Banana of Chuck's Horror.

* LOL for Big Mike's plummer talk.

* Love the BATTLESHIP POTEMPKIN/UNTOUCHABLES baby carriage set up in the elevator (baby in danger) with Casey and the Fulcrum guys. But instead of a baby in danger on a staircase, there be no baby in the carriage! Fun twist.

* Oh, oh--I sense a real rival for Sarah's affections here. This Brit superspy and Sarah had some electric banter going on, and he's a "dangerous spy guy," just like Bryce. Seriously, Chuck--watch out.

* Hah! Morgan's "low hangin' fruit." That. Was. Funny.

* Oh, man--the casting couch interviews. Lester and Jeff slay me more each week.

* Surely Sarah knows better than to spill Chuck's Intersect status in front of anyone whom she doesn't know inside and out....

* Yikes. The kiss with the Brit. Sarah was into it.

* Scary! Case de Chuck y Morgan. Can you imagine?

Another fun time was had! Keep it up, CHUCK.

HEROES

Okay, honestly, I didn't watch very much of this episode. But there were a couple of things that caught my ear:

* Hee about "the bass player" in Def Leppard. Rick Savage, baby!

* Incorporating a great Fleetwood Mac song *might* win me over, HEROES. :) I liked how they used "The Chain."

And...that's all. Um, yeah. Sorry about that. Maybe there'll be more next week?

Until then, tune in for my comments about SUPERNATURAL, season 3....

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

A DROP OF RED, Vampire Babylon, Book Four, is released today!


Today's the day, you all--A DROP OF RED is out on shelves. I hope you guys enjoy this "reboot" of the series. It begins a new trilogy hunting adventure for Dawn Madison and the team, and it's not just about vampires. There are plenty of issues to be resolved between Dawn and Costin, Frank/Breisi/Eva, and also with Kiko and his ongoing struggle with his psychic abilities.

Today, I'm blogging at NINC (click here), Romance Junkies (click here), and the Knight Agency blog (click here). At the last two, there are book giveaways happening, so check them out!

I'll be back later in the week for the CHUCK/HEROES recap, and I plan to post my thoughts about SUPERNATURAL's third season this weekend, when I'll be done with it and forging into season four....

Meanwhile, Happy Hunting!

A DROP OF RED, Vampire Babylon, Book Four, by Chris Marie Green

A bloody good time…

Hollywood stuntwoman-turned-vampire hunter Dawn Madison is tired to the bone and beyond. Along with her comrades-in-arms, she managed to wipe out the Los Angeles Vampire Underground. And in doing so, she uncovered not only her own dark family heritage but also a terrible truth about the man she loves. Now all she wants to do is get to the next bloodsucking community, taking care of business with them, too.

Luckily, when it comes to battling the undead, there’s no shortage of Undergrounds.

When a new one is found in England, Dawn and the team are dispatched to carry the fight from the flash of Los Angeles to the seemingly staid and stolid streets of London. Dawn knows by now how deceiving appearances can be—and she is about to find out that it’s not only the beautiful people of Hollywood who are willing to bargain with evil…

(ISBN: 978-0441016815)

Excerpt: http://www.vampirebabylon.com/excerpt_ador.html
About Chris Marie Green

A long time ago, in a land far, far away (Milwaukee, WI, St. Luke's Hospital), Chris Marie Green (also writing as Crystal Green) joined the world. While moving to Southern California, then Kentucky, then back to California and now Nevada, she amused herself by writing poetry and short stories featuring the ultimate Alpha males--Superman and Indiana Jones. Later, after graduating with a B.A. in English from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, Chris decided to become a professional writer.
While she pursued this goal, Chris worked as an eighth-grade teacher, but resigned in 2002 to pursue writing full time. She creates urban fantasies for her Vampire Babylon series, action-adventure stories, and romances. She also loves to read, overanalyze movies, practice yoga , and travel, and details her obsessions on her Web pages, www.crystal-green.com and www.vampirebabylon.com.

About Vampire Babylon

The first book, NIGHT RISING, was released as a trade paperback by Ace in February, 2007, and reissued in mass market format on January 27, 2009. The second trade book, MIDNIGHT REIGN, hit shelves in February, 2008, and will also be reissued in mass market format in July, 2009. The third book that closes out this initial trilogy, BREAK OF DAWN, came out in trade format September, 2008 (mass market reissue date pending). Ace is reissuing each book in the first trilogy to introduce the second trilogy (books four through six, which will be released in trade format).
The Vampire Babylon series uses trilogy arcs to tell one basic story, much like the way JK Rowling used seven books that didn’t solve every plot thread book-by-book to tell Harry Potter’s story. While each individual novel focuses on a central mystery that’s solved by the end, the three books together build character and mythology arcs/mysteries until everything culminates in the third book. Each trilogy repeats this pattern.

Release dates for the second trilogy, which continues the adventures of Dawn and team, are as follows:
A DROP OF RED, Book Four, March, 2009
THE PATH OF RAZORS, Book Five, August 2009
DEEP IN THE WOODS, Book Six, date pending

Website: www.vampirebabylon.com

Monday, March 02, 2009

OOTB Tour: ANGELS' BLOOD


If any of you all have ever read a Nalini Singh book, you know you're in for a huge treat. Here's her newest, out tomorrow (along with A DROP OF RED, heh)....

ANGELS' BLOOD
A Guild Hunter Novel

by Nalini Singh

Berkely Sensation
March 3, 2009

New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh introduces a world of beauty and bloodlust, where angels hold sway over vampires…

Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux knows she's the best—but she doesn't know if she's good enough for this job. Hired by the dangerously beautiful Archangel Raphael, a being so lethal that no mortal wants his attention, only one thing is clear—failure is not an option...even if the task is impossible.

Because this time, it's not a wayward vamp she has to track. It's an archangel gone bad.

The job will put Elena in the midst of a killing spree like no other…and pull her to the razor's edge of passion. Even if the hunt doesn't destroy her, succumbing to Raphael's seductive touch just may. For when archangels play, mortals break…

Excerpt: http://www.nalinisingh.com/angelsblood.html

ABOUT NALINI SINGH

Nalini Singh has traveled as far afield as the deserts of China and the temples of Japan, but it is the journey of the imagination that fascinates her the most. She’s beyond delighted to be able to follow her dream as a writer.

Check out her website for excerpts, travel photos, and behind-the-scenes info on the Psy/changeling and Guild Hunter series.

REVIEWS

"With the launch of a second paranormal series, Singh provides incontrovertible evidence that she's an unrivaled storyteller...This book should be at the top of your must-buy list! Tremendous!"
~ Romantic Times (Top Pick)

"Angels' Blood...will have you captivated from the first page!...Raphael, the Archangel hero, is one of the most deliciously dark protagonist[s] I've come across in a long time and Elena is a hunter worthy of a strong mate...It's strong storytelling at it's very best!"
~ Lucy for Ever After, The Romance Book Specialists

"I loved every word, could picture every scene, and cannot recommend this book highly enough. It is amazing in every way!!!"
~ New York Times Bestselling author Gena Showalter

"Angels' Blood is phenomenal."
~ Literary Escapism

WEBSITE: http://www.nalinisingh.com

Pg. 69 A DROP OF RED, Vampire Babylon, Book Four


Tomorrow the big day for the release of A DROP OF RED, the fourth book in my Vampire Babylon series. Dawn Madison and the team are relocating to London, and there are plenty of strange, vampy, bloody, dramatic things in store!

I was asked to blog on a site where you isolate the 69th page of the book and you decide whether it's a good representation of the content. To see the results, you can go to http://page69test.blogspot.com/.

See you tomorrow!