I'm feeling very sad, and not much like being silly, but I so appreciate the humor that other people have created today. It is much needed, and I am thankful.
Specifically, I am thankful for Jim C. Hines and his bear. Jim emailed me asking for suggestions from romance cover art for his poses for charity, and I sent a few. The Pull My Finger Viking, for example, and a few others, but he went with my absolute favorite: nude Fabio Johanna Lindsey.
And he posed both as the male and the female in the cover art image. Oh, my.
Well played, Jim. Well played.
And speaking of silly, I have more than my share of 50-Shades-referenced pitches in my inbox, but Francesca sent me this link to a Tumblr collection of excerpts from “Fifty Shades of Mr. Darcy,” a 50-Shades-parody rewrite of Pride and Prejudice, which, judging from the clips, seems to be rather faithful to both.
My favorite: “'Come now, let's move the plot along!' shouted Elizabeth's Subsconscious.”
And the bad reviews are the kind that make me want to buy it even more. “Buffoonery?” Egads. I like buffoonery. A lot.
This made me go “Huh,” when it arrived in the mail: Celeste Bradley and Susan Donovan's novel The Courtesan's Guide to Getting Your Man, pictured below:
…has been re-released, re-titled, and re-cover-arted in 50-shades-style to look like this:
First, where are her knees? Does she not have knees? I'm not sure if those are thighs or arms or what.
Second, isn't it interesting that the focus of the cover art so clearly switches from historical to erotic with the image change?
And finally, a few books on sale.
Prodigal Summer weaves together three stories of human love within a larger tapestry of lives inhabiting the forested mountains and struggling small farms of southern Appalachia. At the heart of these intertwined narratives is a den of coyotes that have recently migrated into the region. Deanna Wolfe, a reclusive wildlife biologist, watches the forest from her outpost in an isolated mountain cabin where she is caught off-guard by Eddie Bondo, a young hunter who comes to invade her most private spaces and confound her self-assured, solitary life. On a farm several miles down the mountain, another web of lives unfolds as Lusa Maluf Landowski, a bookish city girl turned farmer's wife, finds herself unexpectedly marooned in a strange place where she must declare or lose her attachment to the land. And a few more miles down the road, a pair of elderly, feuding neighbors tend their respective farms and wrangle about God, pesticides, and the complexities of a world neither of them expected. Over the course of one humid summer, as the urge to procreate overtakes a green and profligate countryside, these characters find connections to one another and to the flora and fauna with which they necessarily share a place. Their discoveries are embedded inside countless intimate lessons of biology, the realities of small farming, and the final, urgent truth that humans are only one part of life on earth.
Chicago private investigator Kira Graceling should have just kept on walking. But her sense of duty refused to let her ignore the moans of pain coming from inside a warehouse just before dawn. Suddenly she finds herself in a world she's only imagined in her worst nightmares. At the center is Mencheres, a breathtaking Master vampire who thought he'd seen it all. Then Kira appears—this fearless, beautiful . . . human who braved death to rescue him. Though he burns for her, keeping Kira in his world means risking her life. Yet sending her away is unthinkable. But with danger closing in, Mencheres must choose either the woman he craves, or embracing the darkest magic to defeat an enemy bent on his eternal destruction.
With his wild heart, Sawyer McKettrick isn't ready to settle down on the Triple M family ranch in Arizona. So he heads to Blue River, Texas, to seek a job as marshal. But in a blinding snowstorm he's injured—and collapses into the arms of a prim and proper lady in calico. The shirtless, bandaged stranger recuperating in teacher Piper St. James's room behind the schoolhouse says he's a McKettrick, but he looks like an outlaw. As they wait out the storm, the handsome loner has Piper remembering long-ago dreams of marriage and motherhood. But for how long is Sawyer willing to call Blue River home? As the gray skies clear, Piper's one holiday wish just might bring two lonely hearts together forever.
I was obssessed. It was as if he called to me, demanding I reach out and touch the brushstrokes of color swirled onto the canvas. It was the most exquisite portrait I'd ever seen—everything about Lord Denbury was unbelievable…utterly breathtaking and eerily lifelike. There was a reason for that. Because despite what everyone said, Denbury never had committed suicide. He was alive. Trapped within his golden frame. I've crossed over into his world within the painting, and I've seen what dreams haunt him. They haunt me too. He and I are inextricably linked—bound together to watch the darkness seeping through the gas-lit cobblestone strets of Manhattan. And unless I can free him soon, things will only get Darker Still.