Links! You Can Read Words on the Internet!

I have a bunch of things to share with you. Ready for reading and thinking and entertainment? 

First up: Vicki sent me this link to the worst Christian romance covers of 2013. First…I'm sorry. It is a slideshow and I apologize even though I didn't build it and wish it wasn't a slideshow. That said? It's very fun. 

I think this one is my favorite: 

Book photoshopped image of Amish woman with big sparkly star bands coming out of her hat plus a ribbon and a big bestseller seal on it. it's a hot mess.

“Oh, the things you can do… with Photoshop:

– Paste a new head on a body
– Stick an Amish bonnet on your model
– Give that bonnet extra sparkle power
– Proclaim the book as a generic best seller”

 

~.~.~.~

 

I was over at Kirkus this week talking about the books I gave A's to in 2013, specifically Ripped, by Sarah Morgan: 

But the most noticeable part of an A-grade book is that I continue to think and talk about it. I may not make sense when I talk about it, and make a bunch of noises and wave my arms around trying to put a noun and a verb in the proper order instead of just making Good Book Noise, but I will always talk about those books. When someone says they read one on my recommendation and loved it, I get the happiest of happys, since they enjoyed it as much as I did, and so I know they are experiencing the same emotions I did.

When the emotions from a story are as grade-A as the story itself, sharing the story makes those same feelings even bigger and more enjoyable. When I make Good Book Noise, and someone else reads the same story and also makes Good Book Noise, it’s just the best.

There were three As from me this part year, and two of them I discussed in my romances to give as gifts column. I also covered books for children, if you're looking for birthday presents or perhaps gifts for Los Reyes! 

~.~.~

 

Journalist Diana Reese wrote about Janet Dailey's death for the Washington Post, and asked to talk to me while she was researching Dailey. I think Reese's resulting profile is a balanced and honest look at a complicated career and a complex person: Romance novelist Janet Dailey a pioneer but leaves ‘complicated legacy’.

If you’re not familiar with the history of romance novels, you might not understand just what a difference Dailey’s books made. As [Eileen] Dreyer explained rather bluntly, “American writers were the first ones to have a heroine with a spine or a real occupation. In the old European romances, the heroine was a virginal idiot and the hero was a jerk.”

Dailey’s heroines were strong, independent, even feisty women and she set her books, like the immensely popular Calder series, in distinctly American settings, especially the West.

A few readers in my Twitter feed were lamenting Dailey's loss in the days after she died, talking about the books of hers they still have on their shelves.

Like many said, it's complicated.  On one hand, as a reader, her plagiarism, which was covered in the media in 1997, was the end of my reading Dailey's books. I hadn't read many but I didn't buy another after that – not that I bought many. I was in college then and was more often acquiring books from the library.

But likewise I know one event in her life didn't sum up everything she accomplished as a writer or as a human. Dailey was part of changing the genre when she started writing, and was part of establishing romances set in the US as a now-common aspect of the genre. 

~.~.~

I was a guest on two podcasts recently, too, if you'd like to explore the world of book-loving podcasts! 

I was also a guest on the Amazon Kindle Love Stories podcast along with Lea Francza from USA Today's HEA blog, Aestas from Aestas Book Blog – who is the most followed reviewer on Goodreads, and Duchess Nicole, who is a Goodreads “Best Reviewer.” You can listen to the podcast if you subscribe (I don't see a play-on-page option, I'm sorry). 

I was also a guest on the Anglo-Filles podcast with RedHeadedGirl, Alina, and Kayleigh, talking about man titty (obviously), privilege and marketing, and high fantasy romance. 

But really, the best part:  RedHeadedGirl found what might be the most perfect Fabio gif in all the Fabio gifs in Fabio Gif Land: 

Fabio shaking water out of his hair topless in a pool of blue green water

 

I think this might be my new meditation focus image. 

Examine the breath. Follow the breath. Imagine the peace of Fabio's wet hair. Shake shake whip. The water falls. 

 

Categorized:

The Link-O-Lator

Comments are Closed

  1. 1
    Sally says:

    Re: Amazon Kindle Love Stories podcast
    No need to subscribe! :) There is a link to the podcast under each guests’ blurb.

  2. 2
    Holly Bush says:

    Sorry to disagree, Sarah, but I’ve got to go with #4 on the worst Christian Romance Covers. I will admit it was very hard to choose, especially with Amish vampire girl licking her bloody fingers but I just can’t resist the cover for A Christian Guide for the Sexual Marketplace. Not only is the title creepy and confusing (why would a Christian be trolling ANY sexual marketplace) but the stance of the model and the weird hand on his shoulder propel this cover to the #1 spot for me. I’m not sure that Photo Shop would help either.

  3. 3
    Lostshadows says:

    The slide show I didn’t mind so much, its short, but having to dismiss the same pop up ad on every page was annoying.

    I’m kind of tempted to read the Amish Vampire one now. (Its probably a good thing I can think of better uses for $6.)

  4. 4
    Gloria says:

    And this is when I discover that people write Amish romances.

  5. 5
    Iola says:

    Yep, those are some awesomely bad covers!

    I’ve actually bought Amish Vampires in Space. I read the Kindle sample, and it was intriguing. Would you like a review when I’ve finished it?

  6. 6
    Gloria says:

    Wish I could edit. Anyway, “Amish space vampire” is an old science fiction fandom joke, I assume that the book was written for spec fic fans rather than the Christian market. It’s still kind of hilarious, but less so when you know the background for it in my opinion.

  7. 7
    kkw says:

    I just finished Ripped and I loved it. I hate novellas as a rule but this one was pretty much perfect. That’s not to say I don’t want it to be longer, cause I really really do, but the story was well told, complete, and utterly satisfying. I just want more time in the world of this book because it’s great, the people are great, and the heroine narrator in particular was fantastic, and so what if the plot is resolved and all is well, I’m happy to listen in while she dusts and goes food shopping and talks about her dreams or whatever mundane things she needs to do. One of the least boring, totally real characters I’ve encountered in ages, and yet somehow, miraculously, I don’t feel cheated that the whole thing is as long as a sneeze. 90 measly pages, and yet it gets the job done.

  8. 8
    Dread Pirate Rachel says:

    Holly Bush said,

    I’ve got to go with #4 on the worst Christian Romance Covers. I will admit it was very hard to choose, especially with Amish vampire girl licking her bloody fingers but I just can’t resist the cover for A Christian Guide for the Sexual Marketplace. Not only is the title creepy and confusing (why would a Christian be trolling ANY sexual marketplace) but the stance of the model and the weird hand on his shoulder propel this cover to the #1 spot for me.

    and I have to agree. What’s up with the arm? Why is it there? Are the cover models reenacting Samuel L. Jackson’s final scene in Jurassic Park? And why do they find dismemberment sexy? So many questions.

  9. 9
    Diane says:

    I’m glad you mentioned Janet Dailey.  Yes, she’s left a complicated legacy, but it is also a rich legacy.  Her mistakes shouldn’t define her, as I hope mine won’t define me.

  10. 10
    SB Sarah says:

    @Iola – I’d love to hear what you think of it!

  11. 11
    hapax says:

    As far as the bad covers go, I’d like to give some love to #5, because who among us hasn’t had to come up with something for the cosplay parade at the last minute, with no options but raiding the hotel cleaning supplies closet?

    Either that, or the heroine literally has a stick up her … well, never mind.

    I’d like to say something about #2, but I done died of dysentery.

  12. 12
    Phaenarete says:

    I fully expect to return here in short order to a review of “Amish Vampires in Space” – the question is, will it hold up to other such legendary greats as “Pregnesia”?

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