What's on the nightstand this week? Well, it's a couple of my most favorite books that's for sure. I initially read this entire series last summer thanks to the Hernando Public Library. Since then, I've been collecting and re-reading them.
I first introduced this series on the blog several weeks back with ThemBones. Now I've made my way back through the first four books, BuriedBones, SplinteredBones, and CrossedBones.
I love them all, but this second time around SplinteredBones is holding my most favorite position right now because its just so dang funny! Tinkie especially. There are several laugh-out-loud parts for Sarah Booth's friends, Tinkie and CeCe. Carolyn's writing is so vivid, so purely southern I can see those two women in my mind clear as day.
WithBuried Bones, Sarah Booth is reveling in the fact that she's saved her family home from the auction block but is also mucking her way through the holidays all alone. Then comes the perfect social occasion: Lawrence Ambrose's dinner party. Unfortunately when Sarah Booth discovers a bloody corpse things take an unexpected turn. Most people just help load the dishwasher or wipe up spilled drinks after a party but Sarah Booth goes digging for answers. Oddly enough, most of the folks with answers are six feet under, or soon will be. And for Sarah Booth, if she's not careful she could be pushing up daisy's right beside them.
In SplinteredBones, Sarah Booth is hired by her friend, Eulalee McBride, to prove her no-account husband earned the stomping he finally got, which also means Eulalee has confessed to his murder. Having your client confess where the Sheriff can hear isn't the best way for Sarah Booth to start an investigation. But as the song says, some times a wife hitting, gambling, piece-o-crap man like that just needs to die. As Sarah Booth puts together the pieces of the case, a killer is preparing to strike again. This time it could send one late-blooming sleuth into a early grave.
In Crossed Bones, Sarah Booth is beginning to feel the heat. That is the heat of finding her way around a handsome businessman, the waffling and still married Sheriff and a steamy blues player who might have notions of being more than her client. Before it's all said and done, Sarah is caught between her desire for the truth and how that truth will affect her small southern town. But most of all, she might get caught up in how the truth will put her life on the line.
This series is one of the best I've read and I can't say enough good things about Ms. Carolyn. She's a true southern woman, a lover of books, a teacher, and advocate for all friends furry and feathered. I can think of no better combination than that.
For those of you out there going to Ms. Carolyn's shin-dig, Daddy's Girl's Weekend on March 11th, you can easily see why I picked these books to celebrate on the blog this week. DGW is coming up fast and I couldn't be more thrilled since I'm actually getting to attend! More of this series to come soon :)
A native of Mississippi, Carolyn Haines lived in southern Alabama on a farm with her horses, dogs and cats. She was recently honored with an Alabama State Council on the Arts literary fellowship for her writing. A former photojournalist, she is active in organizations that rescue animals and promote animal rights. (Carolyn Haines Bio)
What an amazing weekend it was! So many good things happened around here I can hardly stand it. With so many positives it seems odd to be introducing a song titled Assassin. The story she must gone on though. I can't reveal too many tid-bits at this point without things getting too spoiler-ish. The coming peeks will make up for my lack of info hopefully. *wink, wink, nod, nod*
Hope everyone has marked their calendars for 4-1-11 because that is when the first round of sneak peeks will be on the blog!! It's very exciting and very scary for me all at the same time. I'd really like to hear from you all what type of peeks you want to see. Which characters or situation are you most interested in? That kind of thing. Drop your suggestions in the comment box.
I added the count-down widget late in the previous week so I hope you all enjoyed that new addition. Please feel free to "get it" for your own screen. My tech-savvy brother helped me with it and the thing was surprisingly easy to do for someone like me who is computer self-taught. Snaps also need to go out to niece Number Two for continuing to be my story prop model for the widget photo, ain't she a doll!
So here we are at song number eight from the play list. I can't say enough wonderful things about Muse. Like they really need me saying things about them though because they've exploded over the last couple of years thanks to being attached to Twilight. Anyway, I still love their music. A band that can sing and play this well can't be denied.
What an amazing day! The sun was so bright and the sky so blue I could hardly stand it. Big changes coming up this week for the book after having a marathon conversation with my writer friend M tonight. Even now I'm having to force myself to finish my few weekly tasks so I can jump head-long into everything we discussed while my brain is still percolating. As you can see by the four books on the blog today I've been keeping myself busy with reading while I waited for M to bring the hammer down on me haha! No worries, I asked her to tear it apart. It was an awesome experience picking things apart with her. What a talent and a true gift and opportunity to have knowledgeable eyes lent to my work.
Due to the extensive time I need to put into the book, in the next few weeks my blog entries will be down to one per week in order to utilize the rest of the time for writing. Once a dental assistant always a dental assistant, so my organization meter is at def-con 4 right about now. So much to do! This week I'll be planning my writing schedule, advising the troops on their duty schedule and preparing the appropriate pieces for sneak peek releases which is another very excited thing coming up fast. Keep those peepers peeled folks! Good things are on the way.
A Lick of Frost by Laurell K. Hamilton
In this installment of Meredith Gentry's story, Princess and heir apparent to the throne in the realm of faerie and one time private investigator in mortal world, things are becoming very dangerous. Merry is surrounded by her royal guards at all times due to the threat from her nutty cousin Cel. But even with her Darkness and Killing Frost by her side, Merry still isn't truly safe and neither are her men now that they hold her heart.
Add to it that the fact that her uncle Taranis, King of Light and Illusion's, cheese has officially slipped off his cracker and even exile isn't safe for Merry anymore. She's got one chance to save all those she cares for. Merry has to give birth to a new heir. Slipping back to Los Angeles, in the hope of outrunning the gathering shadows of court intrigue, Merry soon fears even that won't be enough to escape the grasp of those with dark designs.
Swallowing Darkness by Laurell K. Hamilton
This is the continuation of Merry's story, and as the title hints to, much more about Merry and Darkness (aka) Doyle. Merry is leaning on her men heavily in this installment. She's battered and wore to a frazzle. The world as they all have known it for thousands of years is changing rapidly and Merry is trying to keep up. Whether she and Doyle will make it through together remains a mystery.
Divine Misdemeanors by Laurell K. Hamilton
This is Laurell's most recent book detailing Merry's story. In this installment, Merry has attempted to go back to the life she once new in L.A. Considering she's the last remaining faerie princess, that's easier said than done. The paparazzi are making the lives of all Merry's people miserable along with making it nearly impossible to work as a private investigator. Merry only thought she left court politics behind her. She soon comes to realize that evil knows no borders and nobody lives forever-even if they are magical.
I LOVE these books! Laurell has one of the most amazing imaginations I've encountered in years. Merry's story begins with A Kiss of Shadows, A Caress of Twilight, Seducedby Moonlight, A Stroke of Midnight, Mistral's Kiss, A Lick of Frost, Swallowing Darkness and DivineMisdemeanors. Now you can read these books out of order, but I don't recommend it. There is so much detail and so many bits and pieces of each character that if you don't discover them in order you will really miss something. I've listed them here in correct order. If you love fantasy as much as I do then you should really get to know Merry, she doesn't disappoint!
Bullet by Laurell K. Hamilton
Bullet is number 19 in this series and the most recent installment in Anita Blake's adventures. Anita is back at it in St. Louis and trying to live a normal life as resident federal vampire executioner and necromancer. Considering the complexities of Anita's version of normal, it remains to be seen how successful she gonna be. There's no way for me to tell you more about this story without giving things away.
Anita's story is so incredible I'm going to do something I would never normally do and stress that you read these books in order. Of course they can be read out of sequence as they are all wonderful but you will be so lost on most of the important details and back stories! Ask me how I know, well I tried it. There are dozens and dozens of fantastical characters in Anita's story so there's no way to really understand them all without going to the beginning to keep up. I can't describe how much more I enjoyed the series the second time through in order. Since there are so many books, I won't list them all here but you can click on the link and see them all in order starting with GuiltyPleasures. http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/h/laurell-k-hamilton/ As with Merry's series, Laurell's fantastic imagination spins yarns that leave me giddy for more. Anita is girl power to the tenth and is witty as the day is long making her one of my most favorite characters! If you're looking for a new series to fall into, these two don't disappoint.
Laurell K. Hamilton is the New York Times bestselling author of the Meredith Gentry novels as well as soon to be twenty (2011, HitList) acclaimed Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, novels. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri.
I'm going to veer off my usual this week and do a second W.O.N.S simply because the books are backin' up on me. Plus all the sunshine and vitamin D I've been soaking up the last couple of days has me in a great mood. Wasn't the weather incredible in the south?? Oh I am loving it!!
Now to the books.There are little things that strike me about every story I read. Sometimes it's the cover, the elegant verbiage, the humor...or sometimes...it's just such an awesome title I can't pass it up. Both these selections have great titles. Each is telling a part of the story in just a few words but we as the reader can't know what the puzzle is until finishing the story. A truly great title makes you unable to resist.
Naming my own book was harder than writing it, crazy but true. The reason is because I know how quickly a crappy title will turn me off of a book. Heck, the only thing harder than naming one is trying to tell someone what your book is about in less than five sentences. Why five? Because most people stop listening to you after that. Didn't know that little fun fact did you? Next time you're talking to someone and they get that glazed look in their eye try to remember how many sentences you've used. It might just surprise you.
Till Then, KD
Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver Samantha Kingston, main character, has it all if you're a teenage girl. Super hot boyfriend, popular best girlfriends, ruling spot among the masses at Thomas Jefferson High. This particular Friday, February 12th, should have been nothing but ordinary in her charmed life, instead it turns out to be her last. Then, she gets a second chance. Well, she actually gets seven chances to relive her last day. But will that be enough for her to untangle the mystery surrounding her death and hopefully discover the lesson hidden in the pain?
This was a wonderful book. I laughed I cried and everything in between. It was sort of weird that I actually read it on February 12th and didn't realize it until I wrote this blog. If I'd read this story as a teenager I don't know if I could have fully appreciated all the underlying messages. Reading a book like this as a teenager, when all the emotion of similar experiences would've still been so fresh, would have been painful for me but enlightening. But reading it as a thirty-six year old woman, oh yeah, I got them all. Lauren has done an excellent job with this work and it shows. Her voice is dead on for the ages of the characters. I could definitely see these girls and boys as real people. Best of all, I truly couldn't figure out the ending until I read the words. Awesome!
I come from a family of writers and so have always (mistakenly) believed that spending hours in front of the computer every day, mulling over the difference between "chortling" and "chuckling," is normal. I've always been an avid reader. As a child, after finishing a book, I would continue to write a sequel for its characters, because I did not want to have to give them up. Somehow, this did not get me ridiculed (too badly) at school, and I managed to make real friends as well as imaginary ones.
I continued writing, eventually making the switch to my own stories and characters (with varying degrees of success). I also took ballet, drew things, painted things, made collages, sang, acted, experimented with cooking (um, burning) gourmet meals, and in general tried to spend my time being as creative and useless as possible. It worked. I made it through high school and college at the University of Chicago, where I continued to be as impractical as possible by majoring in philosophy and literature. I was inadvertently aided and abetted in my mission by my older sister, Lizzie, who pursued a Ph.D. in philosophy and cognitive science. This eventually led our parents to resign themselves to the fact that their children would never be lawyers, doctors, or even gainfully employed.
After college, I attended the MFA program at NYU and worked briefly as the world's worst editorial assistant, and only marginally better assistant editor, at a major publishing house in New York. My primary career contributions during this time were flouting the corporate dress code at every possible turn and repeatedly breaking the printer. Before I Fall is my first published novel. I am deeply grateful for the chance to continue writing, as I have never been particularly good at anything else.
I live in Brooklyn, the happiest place on earth. I (still) love to cook, am slightly obsessive about my kitchen, drink way too much coffee and eat far too much ketchup, even on things like toast and tomatoes.
I spend a lot of time on trains, airplanes, subways, and buses, and write constantly—in notebooks, on napkins, using my phone. I have ten tattoos (and counting—sorry, Mom), a wonderful family, and the world's best best friends, many of whom I have known for ten years or longer. One of my favorite quotes is: "I will write this down/and then I will not be alone again." -Dar Williams
(from Lauren Oliver's Bio page)
Spider Bones by Kathy Reichs
When Temperance Brennan is called to the scene of a drowning in Hemmingford, Quebec, she knows immediately this will be no ordinary case. With an investigationt that eventually works it's way from Canada, to North Carolina then to Hawaii and the U.S. Military Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command, Temperance and Detective Andrew Ryan begin the frightening process of putting the correct name on their floating John Doe and trying to untangle a four decade old case of possible mistaken identity all while trying to stay live themselves.
Now I usually don't indulge the green-eyed monster but I'll be a grown-up and own it now. I'm SO jealous of this title!! Just saying SpiderBones gives me tingles up and down my arms! Having just suffered through the task of trying to name my own book it makes me especially jealous. Writing the book was a breeze compared to putting a name to it. On my list of all time favorite titles, this is number two. Kathy Reich has done a masterful job with this story. Her wit is razor sharp, her descriptions are exquisite and the suspense is riveting. If you are into crime stories, mystery or suspense this is one you need to read for sure because it will not disappoint.
Oh and if you haven't figured it out already, the popular Fox series BONES is inspired by Kathy's books. That's a big congrats to Kathy for uber-crossover success.
Kathy Reichs’s first novel Déjà Dead catapulted her to fame when it became a New York Times bestseller and won the 1997 Ellis Award for Best First Novel. Her other Temperance Brennan novels include Death du Jour, Deadly Décisions, Fatal Voyage, Grave Secrets, Bare Bones, Monday Mourning, Cross Bones, Break No Bones, Bones to Ashes, Devil Bones, and 206 Bones, Spider Bones (August, 2010). Dr. Reichs is a producer of the hit Fox TV series, Bones, which is based on her work and her novels.
From teaching FBI agents how to detect and recover human remains, to separating and identifying commingled body parts in her Montreal lab, as a forensic anthropologist Kathy Reichs has brought her own dramatic work experience to her mesmerizing forensic thrillers. For years she consulted to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in North Carolina, and continues to do so for the Laboratoire de Sciences Judiciaires et de Médecine Légale for the province of Québec. Dr. Reichs has travelled to Rwanda to testify at the UN Tribunal on Genocide, and helped exhume a mass grave in Guatemala. As part of her work at JPAC (Formerly CILHI) she aided in the identification of war dead from World War II, Korea, and Southeast Asia. Dr. Reichs also assisted with identifying remains found at ground zero of the World Trade Center following the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Dr. Reichs is one of only eighty-two forensic anthropologists ever certified by the American Board of Forensic Anthropology. She served on the Board of Directors and as Vice President of both the American Academy of Forensic Sciences and the American Board of Forensic Anthropology, and is currently a member of the National Police Services Advisory Council in Canada. She is a Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte. Dr. Reichs is a native of Chicago, where she received her Ph.D. at Northwestern. She now divides her time between Charlotte, NC and Montreal, Québec. (from Kathy Reichs Bio page)
First things first today. I have to give a huge shout out to my new wonderful friends in the North for being the first country besides the USA to break the "100 people just from Canada on the blog stat". Considering I don't personally have a single family member from or in Canada this is an amazing thing to me. I am honored you all visited and stayed around long enough to help reach this mark. I sincerely hope you continue to visit and enjoy the blog as much as I'm enjoying writing it. Today was one of those really amazing reading experiences that are few and far between. I toted these books around the whole day because I couldn't stop reading. Aren't stories like that what we bookworms live for? You betcha!
Suzanne Collins book The Hunger Games is wonderful! The story took me back to the first time I read The Hobbit. Immersing myself into Tolkien's story was life altering for me because it was pure fantasy and creation in it's truest form. I'd never read such a fantastical book before. The level of imagination and ability he had to posses in order to put The Hobbit together blew me away then. Now, so many years later, TheHungerGames took me back to that same feeling of WOW. We don't actually have to discuss the exact number of years later though.
In the story, what we know as North America has been left in ruin and replaced by Panem. Within these newly formed boarders of twelve districts, everything is governed by the Capitol. To cruelly remind all the districts inhabitants of the Capitol's power, each district must choose a male and female child to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death.
For sixteen year old Katiness Everdeen, being chosen is becoming more her reality each year. So far she's been lucky, but when her sister Prim is chosen on her first year of eligibility, Katiness steps forward to take her place. Her actions are pretty much a death sentence but she's been close to death before. And for Katiness, survival is second nature after growing up in the Seam. Without meaning to, Katiness becomes a force to be reckoned with in the Game. But if she is to make it out alive, it will come down to her ability to weigh survival against it's price and life over love. This is my first experience with Suzanne Collins work and even as I type I'm itching to go dive into the second book, CatchingFire,and then the recently released third, Mockingjay. So I'd say she has done a wonderful job! This story is beautiful and really fueled my decimated imagination tank. Alcoholic and drug abusers try to accomplish with those things what I can do with a superb book like this. Absorbed in a great book I can blissfully float away from my floors that need sweeping, laundry that needs folding, bathrooms that could seriously use a scrub down and just live vicariously through someone else for a bit. Books are written and published for this very feeling. Escaping reality for just a moment to peer into someone else's and get truly lost in it, what a rush and without all the need for rehab.
CatchingFire by Suzanne Collins is one of my reads this week. I can honestly say this series has grabbed hold and refused to let me go until I reached the end, and what a spectacular ending it was. Katiness has finally saved Peeta and herself from the certain death of the Hunger Games in the only way she knew how. The Capitol is of course furious with her actions but she's just relieved to still be breathing.Thanks to Peeta's quick thinking and charisma, Katiness is finally going back to her family and hopes to live her life out in peace. But a unexpected visit from the Capitol lets her know really quick just how much trouble she's in.
My heart was heavy for Katiness in this book. She has fought such a long and hard battle for so young a girl. I have to give it to her though, Lordy is she tough. I think I might have given up two clicks before half the misery she has endured. I can't tell you much more about the story without getting spoilerish, which I will not do. Most of all, I LOVED this book.
The final installment in Katiness's story, Mockingjay, is absolutely perfect. It's so perfect I would even recommend my sister read it. Now anyone who knows The Sister can understand how significant that is. For those of you who don't know, well let's just say The Sister is extremely picky about endings. If her movies and stories don't end correctly, you might 'orta look out if you were the one to recommend it. The Sister has no issues with telling you exactly how stupid your movie or book is if it ends wrong. Probably all while wearing her angry wig too.
I can't say much about this story without giving things way from CatchingFire so just my adoration for the series will have to be enough at this point. Mockingjay is wonderful, totally and completely wonderful. The entire trilogy is fantasy perfection and if you don't read anything else this year these three need to be the ones you do.
Since 1991, SuzanneCollins has been busy writing for children’s television. She has worked on the staffs of several Nickelodeon shows, including the Emmy-nominated hit Clarissa Explains it All and The Mystery Files of Shelby Woo. For preschool viewers, she penned multiple stories for the Emmy-nominated Little Bear and Oswald. She also co-wrote the critically acclaimed Rankin/Bass Christmas special, Santa, Baby! Most recently she was the Head Writer for Scholastic Entertainment’s Clifford’s Puppy Days.
While working on a Kids WB show called Generation O! she met children’s author James Proimos, who talked her into giving children’s books a try.
Thinking one day about Alice in Wonderland, she was struck by how pastoral the setting must seem to kids who, like her own, lived in urban surroundings. In New York City, you’re much more likely to fall down a manhole than a rabbit hole and, if you do, you’re not going to find a tea party. What you might find...? Well, that’s the story of Gregor the Overlander, the first book in her five-part fantasy/war series, The Underland Chronicles.
She currently lives in Connecticut with her family and a pair of feral kittens they adopted from their backyard. (SuzanneCollinsbooks.com BIO)
What a week of weirdness. The random snow on Monday then back to the forty's and fifties Tuesday only to drop into winter again on Wednesday with four inches of snow. Make up your mind already will ya. I'm so ready for Spring. For the work part of the week, it's been wonderful. My two week recharge was pleasant in some ways but now I'm back to work full blast. By Monday afternoon I was 27,904 words into my next book and mentally spent thank goodness. I'm sleeping dream free again and woke up ready to hit it. Things are as they should be. *sigh of contentment* Can you believe we've made it to seven songs already? I know I can't. The seventh song on the list is a really great song if I do say so myself. 3 Doors Down is an amazing band and they have some wonderful songs. This is one from a older album of theirs and has always been one of my favorite songs. As it relates to the story, something very traumatic has happened at this point. Neely, Hayden and Andrew's tenuous relationship has come full circle and all the big badness is poised to rear it's ugly head and land that final strike. Secret plans have been set into motion that will pitch all the characters head-long into a mystery they never saw coming. Everything is one step away from falling into chaos because of it. There's also enough pain, fear, confusion, regret and anger to go around for everyone. Oddly enough, this doesn't actually reach the height of the conflict, it's only the jumping off point.
We are getting closer and closer every day to sneak peek releases and I'm feeling the nerves of it. I hope you all are enjoying this small glimpse inside my overstuffed book bible and are getting a feel for the characters. They are all so near and dear to my heart I expect to run into them at Walmart anytime I'm in Laurel. Strange, I know. Soon I'll post the actual release date for sneak peeks up so mark your calendars. The Brother is designing something special to add to the blog for the release date so be on the look out for it. Thanks for all those follows and keep the comments coming. Till then, Katie
I have never been so glad to see two weeks without writing come to an end in my entire life. The dreams officially started to freak me out this morning. Last night I suffered through scene after confusing scene until I finally got up in a snit and just started my day.
First, I was traveling back to visit some neighbors in Hueytown I didn't even like, then I was nekked (that's without clothes for y'all not from the south) in church and finally at a new years eve party with Sarah Booth, who is a lady in a book I'm reading, trying to snatch her man from her. The only thing that would've been worse is if there had been black widow spiders on me.
I am planning on the coming week being dream free as I pitch myself head-long into work while praying the temperature rises. Not sure about the rest of you but I'm so ready for spring. Aside from the loads of crazy, the backgrounds of all my dreams have been full of daffodils and spring green grass. Here in north Mississippi, the air is entirely too cool for this chick. Thankfully, Spring Break is just around the corner and I couldn't be happier about that.
It's been a great reading week in spite of such suckish weather and nocturnal irritations. My reading choices were smaller in length but all big on action and full of awesome writing. Snuggled in with my new blue and pink throw The Auntie gave me for Christmas, I blew through five books and was still hungry for the rest of the story. Now that's how books should be. I'll be combining some of them next week but for now this is a single.
"G" The Gift is the continuation to James Patterson and Garbrielle Charbonnet's "W" Witch and Wizard I told you about last week. For this second installment Mr. Patterson has partnered with Ned Rust. This story was another work of art in it's construction. I especially enjoyed the dialog in TheGift more than in Witch and Wizard. It seemed more real, more the way a couple of teenage siblings would converse with each other.
In this new and awful system of Ones in the New Order, The One Who Is The One has gained so much power he's very close to the ability to control the forces of nature. Unfortunately, poor Whit and Wisty Allgood aren't making as much progress. Despite their best efforts to find their parents and to help rescue all the imprisoned children, the brother/sister magical dynamo are floundering. As a result, the kids left in Freeland who are counting on them to save them, also known as the Resistance, are struggling to survive in what's left of the world as they once knew it. Amid all this, Wisty has somehow become the new poster girl for butting heads with The One. Wisty's new title might seem cool, but in reality, all it's done is paint an even bigger bulls eye on them both. Add to this the fact that her brother is sinking deeper into his own personal sorrow over the loss of love and things are teetering on the edge of a whole lot of bad.
These stories have actually surprised me. I wasn't expecting them to be as good as they are. After finishing both, I find myself anxious for the next installment. This is my first experience with co-author Ned Rust and I think he brought good things to the table. This series is superb and one I could gladly recommend to adults and kids.
The subject of a Time magazine feature called, "The Man Who Can't Miss," James Patterson is the bestselling author of the past year, bar none, with more than 16 million books sold in North America alone. In 2007, one of every fifteen hardcover fiction books sold was a Patterson title. In the past three years, James has sold more books than any other author (according to Bookscan), and in total, James's books have sold an estimated 170 million copies worldwide. He is the first author to have #1 new titles simultaneously on The New York Times adult and children's lists and is the only author to have five new hardcover novels debut at #1 on the list in one year—a record-breaking feat he's accomplished every year since 2005. To date, James Patterson has had nineteen consecutive #1 New York Times bestselling novels, and holds the New York Times record for most Hardcover Fiction bestselling titles by a single author (56 total), which is also a Guinness World Record.
From his James Patterson Pageturner Awards (which rewarded groups and individuals for creative and effective ways to spread the joy of reading) to his website ReadKiddoRead.com (which helps adults find books that kids are sure to love) to his regular donations of thousands of books to troops overseas, Patterson is a lifelong champion of books and reading. His first foray into books for all ages was the critically acclaimed Maximum Ride series, which debuted on the New York Times bestsellers list at #1 and remained there for twelve straight weeks. The series has so far made appearances on The New York Times bestsellers lists ninety-four cumulative times, proving that kids of all ages love page turners. He captured the attention of boy readers with the Daniel X series, and his third series for readers of all ages debuted in December 2009 with Witch & Wizard, which spent five consecutive weeks atop the New York Times bestsellers list.
Patterson is the creator of the #1 new detective series of the past dozen years, featuring Alex Cross and including the Hollywood-adapted "Along Came a Spider" and "Kiss the Girls," starring Academy Award-winning actor Morgan Freeman. He is also the creator of the #1 new detective series of the past five years, featuring Lindsay Boxer and the other members of the Women's Murder Club, from which the ABC television drama series was adapted. He has authored books behind six films on the Hollywood fast-track, including the upcoming Maximum Ride movie forthcoming from Avi Arad, the producer of X-Men and Spiderman.
He is the author of novels—from The Thomas Berryman Number (1976) to Honeymoon (2005)—that have won awards including the Edgar, the BCA Mystery Guild's Thriller of the Year, the International Thriller of the Year award, and the Reader's Digest Reader's Choice Award. And, he has won a Children's Choice Book Council's Children's Choice Awards "Author of the Year" award (2010).
One of Forbes magazine's Celebrity 100, James made a guest appearance on the popular FOX TV show "The Simpsons" in March, 2007. (JamesPatterson.com Bio) For more information on upcoming titles and Mr. Patterson visit his website at http://www.jamespatterson.com/
Ned Rust lives in Croton, New York, with his family. He also has collaborated with Mr. Patterson on Daniel X: Watch the Skies.
It's been a while since we had a character interview so I thought I'd slip one in this week. In this interview you get to meet Nathan Nelson, third son of Will and Camilla and Hayden's older brother, also a supporting character in the story. Nathan holds a special place in my heart so I hope you enjoy this tiny glimpse of him. Enjoy! Till then, Katie
BOOK CHAT with Caroline Irvine
The first three character interview's were such a hit with our audience my editor cleared a few more. I was thrilled of course, then I realized I'd have to convince the remaining characters to talk to me. After the hoops I had to jump through to sit down with the main three, my task seemed daunting. Meeting Neely, Hayden and Andrew was interesting but after meeting Hayden's gorgeous older brother I struggled to lump his interview into the same category with them.
A single call to the Nelson home and I was granted a visit by Mrs. Nelson who passed the message through to Nathan. I have to admit I was a little startled by my good fortune...well...that is until I actually met Nathan.
A few days later, I was greeted at the door of the Nelson's home by the boy's mother, Camilla and assaulted by the heavenly smell of baking bread and cookies. It was like walking into a cloud spun out of sugar and butter as I followed her into a cozy living room to wait. Mrs. Nelson explained that Nathan was on his way in from morning classes at Jones County Junior College and was running late.
Warm cookie and huge glass of milk in hand, I sat in a comfy leather chair waiting for Nathan to arrive. Seeing a real opportunity, I asked Mrs. Nelson if she'd contribute a short interview while we waited. Realizing exactly where Hayden had inherited his amazing turquoise eyes, I fidgeted as Camilla Nelson measured me closely for a minute or two before she excused her self to make a call since she hadn't been cleared for an interview yet.
A few minutes later and armed with the go-ahead from the author's camp, Camilla settled into the couch beside me and swung one long leg under the other. Her dark auburn hair reflected some of the soft lighting back at me. She was dressed in jeans and a faded blue tee shirt and bare foot. This was a woman comfortable despite me being a stranger. I could tell she was sizing me up on all points though.
Q. Thanks for agreeing to chat with me Mrs. Nelson. May I call you Camilla?
A. Sure. It's no problem really. I just can't believe Nathan's so late. He enjoys talking about himself almost as much as pretty girls. Combine the two and I can only imagine he'll be in hog heaven. *laughs*
Q. Well I appreciate that. Hayden told me he has three older brothers, Todd, Caleb and Nathan. I can only imagine how hard it's been raising four teenage boys. You and Mr. Nelson must be exhausted.
A. *Louder laugh this time* It has definitely been a learning experience. Poor Will and I've been soaked in teenage hormones and testosterone for years now. I can't really complain though, they're good boys.
Q. Sounds like you both have been busy. This year though, how has all the attention from the book affected your family?
A. So far, the story hasn't really even made a ripple in our lives. Hayden is generally my more sullen kid so he seems to get grouchy about it at times, but then again, he's grouchy a lot these days. Teenage hormones remember.
Q. I understand that, I didnt' think I'd survive high school. Nathan is only a supporting character but I take it he's not as grouchy as Hayden?
A. No...not at all. Nathan is the consummate flirt and prankster around here. Nothing gets him down. I figured out several years ago that he's really the glue in our family unit. Nathan can be all things for us. A shoulder or ear for each of his brothers, hardworking for us as a family, best friend, confidant, little chick magnet when his brother's need dates...anything. He's the most adaptable of the boys and they all lean on him in different ways.
Q. I'm even more anxious to meet him now. So how are you holding up personally to the new attention on your family?
A. I've enjoyed it so far. I think once things heat up and the book is released the hoopla might ratchet up a notch or two. I'm expecting it though so it won't be a surprise. The story is great so I'm excited for people to finally get to read it.
*The front door slams right about then*
Q. Is it safe to guess that's Nathan?
A. Sounds like him.
Q. I won't keep you any longer. It was wonderful to be able to chat with you Camilla and thanks.
A. Absolutely and just yell if you need anything.
A very tall, very handsome young man entered the living room from the kitchen right about then. Rising to shake hands, another matching set of sparkling turquoise eyes took in our girl chat with a eager smile sprinkled with just a smidgen of suspicion. Completely filling the doorway with a broad set of shoulders, Nathan Nelson is easily over six feet tall, nicely tanned and so muscled his shirt is straining to hold them in the cloth. Top that off with auburn hair streaked with copper and a purely wicked smile and I was left wondering for a second if I knew what I was getting myself into.
Camilla excused herself with a pat to Nathan's massive shoulder and a warning to behave before she disappeared into the kitchen. Taking my hand to shake it, I felt the strength in his grip and swallowed hard around the bundle of nerves that had sudden closed off my air.
Q. It's very nice to meet you Nathan and thanks for agreeing to talk with me.
A. The pleasure is all mine. *this smile is even more wicked, gulp*
Q. Your mother is a very nice lady and so generously gave me a short interview. I asked this one of her too. Has the attention generated from the other interviews affected you or are you still holding on to your privacy at the moment?
A. Hmmm...no, not really. We are still going about our business around here as usual. The only difference we've had is with Todd in vet school, my brother's and me are having to share his work between we other three. That part has sucked but all the other stuff is the same.
Q. As you know, I've interviewed your brother, Neely and Andrew already. They have all been so different and interesting, what do you think you will be bringing to the table as a supporting character?
A. Well, good looks for one thing. *chuckles*
Q. Sounds like lots of self-confidence too huh?
A. Of course.
Q. Tell me a little bit about yourself. School, hobbies, music and those sorts of things? A. I'm finishing up at Jones and then it's on to USM. As far as hobbies...hmm...do girls count?
Q. Depends I guess. A. *Laughs* Good one. I don't have hobbies or junk like that other than going hunting with my brothers. Music...I enjoy a good song anytime but I'm not as picky as Hayden. I spend a fair amount of time in the gym. That's about it.
Q. Okay, well can you tell me a little about your relationship with Neely? I know she's a friend of your family and best friend to your brother but what role does she play in your life? A. That question is teetering real close to one that could get me in a whole heap of trouble. *wagseyebrows at me*
Q. Katie read you the zip-the-lip list too huh? A. You ain't got no idea how much she would rain on my parade if I slipped up. Plus, Hayden and Neely did so good with their interviews I'd never live it down if I spilled the beans.
Q. Alright maybe you can answer this one then, what part of the story do you enjoy most? A. That's a tough one. Chapter three is a real good one, lots happening you know. I like the intense parts the best. Seriously though, it was sort of hard to watch it all happen and not be able to do anything about it. I care about Neely and my brother so it affected me differently than I expected in the beginning.
Q. How so? A. I really don't like to see anyone I care about hurt. Neely is like a sister to all of us and Hayden is my baby brother. Brothers look out for each other you know. It bothered me that there wasn't anything I could do to help them. It bothered me a lot.
Q. Mrs. Nelson spoke about how your brothers, well really all your family, leans pretty hard on you. That's a wonderful compliment but I could see where that might be hard on one guy to handle. A. Naw. I love my family, period. There's nothing I wouldn't do for any of them and Neely is family too. When you always think about it that way, decisions that might be hard for other people ain't for me.
Q. That's really sweet. A. Thanks.
Q. Well I won't keep you any longer. Is there anything else you want to add? A. Yeah, you got plans tonight? *most wicked smile of the afternoon*