MaryJanice Davidson Q&A and Giveaway!

New York Times and USA Today best-selling author MaryJanice Davidson joins today to talk about Superheroes and her latest release Undead and Underwater. And keep reading for a chance to win a copy of the book!


“Super, Girl!” one of the novellas in your new anthology Undead and Underwater, features a brand new protagonist, Hailey Derry. Where did your inspiration for her and her unique powers come from?

I’ve been a comic geek since I was 13, and I’ve always wanted to write a superhero story. But as I do with my paranormal characters, I wanted to tweak the tropes; I didn’t want a fiercely hot superbabe with giant boobs and a costume the size and density of a doily who constantly agonized about Her Responsibility To Do The Right Thing. So Hailey’s not especially sexy or outgoing (as an HR exec as well as a superhero), doesn’t spend much time searching her soul, and has a power that irritates the hell out of her and grosses people out. She can eat anything and not die no matter what she ingests. She can then use what she eats to make herself stronger, quicker, and more durable. So if she sucks down a meat lovers pizza with a side of thumbtacks and a glass of glass, she’ll be stronger and quicker and hard to hurt—temporarily. But there’s nothing sexy about being able to eat all the ashes out of a fireplace. When the hero remarks that he thinks it’s great she’s got a cool power, her brittle response is, “It’s neither great nor cool. Because my power isn’t to make things taste good; it’s to be able to eat anything. So a tree branch tastes like a tree branch and bricks taste like bricks and yogurt tastes like yogurt. God, I hate yogurt so much.”

Will we be seeing more of Hailey, do you think?

Oh, I hope so! I really loved indulging my inner comic book geek and would love to do more with Hailey. She’s the product of IVF—her mother donated dozens of eggs; four were fertilized and then implanted, and Hailey was the one that “took” for want of a better word. But her mom saved the other eggs…and then they disappeared. So there’s a strong possibility that Hailey’s got up to a dozen siblings out in the world. Where are they? What can they do? What will they do?

How do you feel about the superhero trend in Hollywood? Do you have a favorite superhero of your own?

I love the superhero trend! Who knows, maybe superheroes are the new vampires. I’ll watch any superhero movie, from the great (Avengers) to the yucky (Eric Bana’s Hulk). My favorite superhero was always Illyana Rasputin (Magik of the New Mutants). She was kidnapped as a pre-schooler and fell into a demonic realm where she was taught hand-to-hand fighting and black magic. She killed to survive. So I loved that she was a badass even without her powers, and that she had a huge dark side to her that could at any moment turn her into a villain. I loved how conflicted she was. I won’t lie: I occasionally rooted for her to be evil.

In “Super, Girl!” there is a lot of office culture, with most scenes taking place at Hailey’s work where she is responsible for HR. How would you characterize various departments? Do you imagine an epic battle between them?

Yes, I do. And so does anyone who has ever worked in any office anywhere ever. Also, imagine? I don’t have to: interoffice epic battles go on all the time, but like Fight Clubs, it’s off most people’s radar. I promise you, wherever you are when you read this, there’s an epic office battle going on right now. And IT is probably winning it. Describing Hailey’s job came easily to me because before I could write full time, I worked a number of office jobs. It was great fun to pull some of my past work experience into my writing. I had just as much fun plotting Hailey’s work life as her superhero life.

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

Telekinesis! I hate having to get up and shut off lights.


MaryJanice talks books and writing tomorrow, March 13th,


Courtesy of Berkley/NAL, I have a copy of Undead and Underwater by MaryJanice Davidson for one (1) lucky winner!

Contest is open to US residents only. No PO Boxes, please. To enter, just fill out the form below. Contest ends March 29. I’ll draw a name on March 30, and notify winner via email.

Good luck!

Read more

Fantasy Book Review: Under the Gun

Under the Gun by Hannah Jayne

Quick thinking and loyalty have taken human Sophie Lawson a long way in the UDA – along with a healthy dose of magic immunity. But when her old boss Pete Sampson asks for help after a mysterious two year disappearance, she’s determined to find out what high placed demon has put two ruthless werewolf killers on his tail. Of course, sucking up to her icy vampire department head and negotiating a treacherous interoffice demon battle are the kind of workplace politics that could easily get a “breather” way worse than reprimanded. And sexy fallen angel Alex is doing whatever it takes to heat up Sophie’s professional cool and raise feelings she’s done her best to bury. Too bad their investigation is about to uncover the Agency’s darkest secrets…and powerful entities happy to sign one inquisitive human’s pink slip in blood.

Sophie is in over her head again when her old boss shows up asking for help. He’s werewolf with hunters after him. But right when he arrives in town, viscous murders begin popping up – apparently by a werewolf. Meanwhile, her guardian Will takes off for England, leaving her with Alex, their relationship even more mixed up than before. Unfortunately, Sophie has deeper feelings for Alex that seem more like infatuation than anything. I’m team Will, mostly because I’ve never been on board with Alex’s motives and checkered (not-so-distant past).

Otherwise, I thoroughly enjoyed the latest installment in this urban fantasy series. Fast-paced and full of mystery, adventure, humor, and romance – Under the Gun is a quick but riveting read. A dark, fascinating world of vampires, werewolves, demons and other creatures and quirky, unforgettable characters make this a fun series that’s easy to love.

Mystery Book Review: Sherlock Holmes: the Legend Begins: Black Ice

Sherlock Holmes: the Legend Begins: Black Ice by Andrew Lane

When Sherlock and Amyus Crowe, his American tutor, visit Sherlock’s brother, Mycroft, in London, all they are expecting is lunch and some polite conversation. What they find shocks both of them to the core: a locked room, a dead body, and Mycroft holding a knife. The police are convinced Mycroft is a vicious murderer, but Sherlock is just as convinced he is innocent. Threatened with the gallows, Mycroft needs Sherlock to save him. The search for the truth necessitates an incredible journey, from a railway station for dead bodies in London all the way to the frozen city of Moscow—where Sherlock is afoot in a world of secrets and danger.

This is the 3rd young Sherlock novel in an exciting series that takes him from London to Moscow this time. Several minor characters make a return, and though the mystery is a standalone, it’s helpful to have read the previous installments to know who all the characters are and their histories with Sherlock. Black Ice was a pleasantly unpredictable journey that focuses on Sherlock’s brother Mycroft. Intrigue and mystery abound with plenty of twists and surprises. A fast-paced read, I thoroughly enjoyed this new Sherlock Holmes adventure.

SciFi Book Review: The Prey

The Prey by Andrew Fukuda

With death only a heartbeat away, Gene and the remaining humans must find a way to survive long enough to escape the hungry predators chasing them through the night. But they’re not the only things following Gene. He’s haunted by Ashley June who he left behind, and his burgeoning feelings for Sissy, the human girl at his side.

Their escape takes them to a refuge of humans living high in the mountains. Gene and his friends think they’re finally safe, but not everything here is as it seems. And before long, Gene must ask himself if the new world they’ve entered is just as evil as the one they left behind. As their enemies close in on them and push Gene and Sissy closer, one thing becomes painfully clear: all they have is each other…if they can stay alive.

Gene and his companions finally arrive in a human colony, seemingly safe from the vampires (or Duskers as they’re called here). And there are numerous questions that no one can answer, and those that do are most likely lies. The Mission itself (the human colony) is surrounded in mystery and frustratingly few answers. The females are treated worse than cattle, and I found myself angry through most of the book at Gene and the others’ reactions. The Hunt (first in the trilogy) was edge-of-your-seat suspense and horror. This time it was emotionally-driven drama, suspense, and mystery.

Second in Fukuda’s thrilling series, The Prey further develops the characters and the dystopian world of vampire-like Duskers. This YA horror trilogy is wholly unique, exhilarating, and riveting, with plenty of chilling action and adventure. And both The Hunt and The Prey are easily some of the most memorable books I’ve ever read. I eagerly await the final installment.

The audio version is read by Sean Runnette. Unfortunately, he has a very slight speech impediment/lisp that made it a bit distracting. Though after a while, I got so into the story that it wasn’t noticeable.

Fantasy Book Review: Unspoken

Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan

Kami Glass is in love with someone she’s never met—a boy she’s talked to in her head since she was born. This has made her an outsider in the sleepy English town of Sorry-in-the-Vale, but she has learned ways to turn that to her advantage. Her life seems to be in order, until disturbing events begin to occur. There has been screaming in the woods and the manor overlooking the town has lit up for the first time in 10 years. . . . The Lynburn family, who ruled the town a generation ago and who all left without warning, have returned. Now Kami can see that the town she has known and loved all her life is hiding a multitude of secrets—and a murderer. The key to it all just might be the boy in her head. The boy she thought was imaginary is real, and definitely and deliciously dangerous.

Kami and her friends are great characters, with fun, unique personalities. Kami has two love interests – the Lynburn cousins. Both are handsome, but one has an irresistible connection to her. The story and mood did remind me a bit of Beautiful Creatures as it has been compared already, as both are dark and moving.

This is the first in a new YA fantasy with plenty of romance, drama, and magic. I loved the mythology and worldbuilding, and will certainly want to follow the rest of this fascinating story. The mystery and suspense builds to a surprising conclusion that I didn’t see coming. Unspoken is a promising start to an intriguing and exciting series.

Exclusive Interview and Giveaway: Author Piper Maitland

Author Piper Maitland joins today on the latest stop for her blog tour for a Q&A talking about vampires and her latest release, Hunting Daylight! Follow Piper on Twitter at: @PiperMaitland, and keep reading for a chance to win a copy of Hunting Daylight!


Can you tell us a bit about Hunting Daylight in your own words?

It’s a love story, blended with adventure and the science of vampirism. The action opens a few years after Acquainted With the Night ends. A vampire cabal has chased Jude and Caro Barrett around the globe, but that’s the least of their problems. Jude is having trouble adjusting to vampirism, Caro is plagued by nightmares, and their three-year-old daughter, Vivi, might be at the center of a disturbing 8th century prophecy. When Jude disappears on a scientific expedition, Caro’s life flips upside-down.

Describe your vampires. (Are they of the traditional Bram Stoker variety?)

I honored the core myths but reinforced them with science. I have a B.S. in nursing, so it seemed logical that my vampires would have a human-like physiology. A unique type of stem cells are responsible for longevity, rapid healing, athleticism, and hyper-immune systems. The thirst for human blood is driven by the need to replenish stem cells, which are found in the bone marrow and vascular system. And it takes more than three bites for a human to turn into a vampire. Transformation is possible but requires large amounts of stem cells, usually through intravenous infusions.

When vampires perspire, a fragrant terpene, similar to cat nip, is emitted. As humans inhale the “bat-nip,” they relax, allowing the predator to move in for the bite. A mild neurotoxin is also excreted in a vampire’s saliva, and this further subdues the victim.

A vampire’s brain is super-developed, with heightened senses of smell, hearing, touch, taste, and vision. Some immortals are telepathic and/or possess psi talents; others lack these skills. They can by killed by a catastrophic injury or certain blood-borne diseases.

Psychologically, vampires can be neurotic, prone to obsessive-compulsive disorders, depression, phobias, and psychoses. When a human becomes a vampire, his personality quirks are magnified—a slightly suspicious human would become a paranoid vampire.

Vampires are photosensitive due to an inborn error of metabolism and an overproduction of a compound called IgE, which causes an extreme exothermic reaction, resulting in blisters, second and third degree burns, and death.

How many books are planned for this series?

Read more

WP2Social Auto Publish Powered By :