August 30, 2010

Guest Post by Linda Weaver Clark - Romance VS Mystery!

Romance VS Mystery!

I have written five historical romance novels but have changed to mystery. The writing process between romance and mystery is quite a change with a completely different mind set. It’s so different from telling a love story. With romance, you plan out the plot around the meeting of a couple. As you write, you develop some sort of charisma between the characters, making the reader feel excited that one day they're going to hit it off and fall in love. You, as the reader, know what the outcome will be. But with a mystery, the reader is in the dark. The author has to come up with a plot that no one knows about until towards the end of the story and hope they haven’t figured it out. In a mystery, you may or may not allow your reader to know who the bad guys are, according to whether it’s just a mystery or mystery suspense. Do you know the difference between a mystery and a mystery suspense novel? In a mystery, when a knock is heard at the door, the reader doesn't know who's behind it. With mystery suspense, the reader knows who's behind the door and yells to the heroine, "Don't open the door!"

Anasazi Intrigue is the first book in a mystery adventure series called “The Adventures of John and Julia Evans.” It’s about a devastating flood that takes out several homes in a small town, the importance of preserving ancient artifacts, and a few puzzling and mysterious events. Julia is a reporter, and when she finds out about a possible poison spill that kills some fish and neighbor's pets, she has a feeling that something isn’t quite right. Before she realizes what is happening, Julia finds out that this incident is much bigger and more dangerous than she thought. With dead fish, a devastating flood, and miscreants chasing John and Julia, they have their hands full.

Artifact theft is a very intriguing subject. That’s why I call it the Intrigue series. In my research, I found that archaeological thievery is becoming more and more of a problem every year. Did you know that looting is only second to selling illegal drugs? While researching the second book in this series, Mayan Intrigue, my eyes were opened to the problems they have in southern Mexico. When an ancient ruin is discovered, it doesn’t take long for thieves to take it apart. The reason why is because the Mayas used astrological alignments when planning their city. Looters have learned the layout of the Mayan cities so they know where to dig. With this knowledge, they can loot a sacred temple in a few days. I also found that artifact theft in Mexico has been taken over by drug dealers from Columbia. In other words, since organized crime has taken over, there is also an increase of violence.

Mayan Intrigue will be released on August 30th and I’m having a week long celebration with a book give-away at my Blog at http://lindaweaverclarke.blogspot.com. Mayan Intrigue is about the discovery of a priceless artifact that puts Julia’s life in great danger. While on assignment for the newspaper, John and Julia try to enjoy a romantic vacation among the Mayan ruins, but when Julia accidentally comes upon a couple suspicious men exchanging an item, she quickly turns and leaves but it’s too late. Before John and Julia realize what's going on, they find themselves running for their lives through the jungles of the Yucatan. To read an excerpt from each of my books, you can visit www.lindaweaverclarke.com.

August 1, 2010

Review: Undead and Unfinished by MaryJanice Davidson

Undead and Unfinished (Queen Betsy, Book 9)



When Betsy gets into a huge fight with her husband Sinclair she decides to make a deal with her step-sister Laura's Mom, the devil. Betsy agrees to accompany Laura on a trip to hell. When the duo gets there they learn the truth. The devil thinks it's time for Laura to embrace her darker side and learn how to travel to any time or place at will so that she can successfully run Hell when the devil retires. But they don't end up traveling to a random time or show up in places that are key to the very future Betsy is now living. Can they make it back without changing their lives as they know it?

Even thought the Queen Betsy series is one of my favorites, I'll be the first to admit that the series was getting stale (read my review of book eight Undead and Unwelcome). But with Undead and Unfinished MaryJanice Davidson really shook things up. And don't get me started on the ending. Before reading the book I read a blog post by MJ who explained that everything will be all right in the end. Together, that little tidbit and this book's ending has me over the top anxious for the next book. I totally understand the negative reviews of this book but if you're a fan of this series, Unfinished is a MUST READ!


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