Thursday, June 6, 2013

Guest Blog with Lauren Grimley

As much as I love to write and create, I was a reader and lover of stories first. Though my book choices have come a long way from Frog and Toad are Friends, every author I’ve read has played some role in my journey to becoming a writer, but some more than others. Here are the top four books and authors that I credit (or blame?) for turning me from fang-phobic to vamp-obsessed.

1. Harry Potter by J. K. Rowling — Okay, technically this is a series, not a book. (If held at knifepoint and forced to give a favorite, I’d choose Order of the Phoenix, but luckily I’ve escaped being book-mugged lately.) These were the first fantasy books I ever read and enjoyed. I picked them up in college only because I felt if I were going to teach middle school, I ought to read what my students would be reading. I never thought I’d become the crazy, obsessed fan dressed in full costume at midnight releases, but that’s exactly what happened. If I hadn’t fallen so hard for this series, I doubt I ever would have gone on to read, never mind write, a vampire book. Luckily, I did.

2. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer — When my seventh grade girls started gushing about a YA romance novel featuring sparkling vampires, I groaned. Nothing could have seemed further from my interests as a reader. (I was far too busy rereading the Harry Potter series for the seventh time.) But I have little tolerance for whining, and when I grudgingly realized the only way to get them to stop was to capitulate and read the first book of Meyer’s series, I caved. I was sorry I did. Not because I hated these books, as I had thought I would, but because I found myself adoring yet another series. My rereading schedule was completely thrown off!

3. Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris — When a friend heard I had adopted another YA obsession, this time with the Twilight series, she felt it time for an intervention. Adult women should at least read some adult books, I was told. She suggested the Sookie Stackhouse series, since my love for fanged men seemed pretty irreversible. I wasn’t too far into book one when I realized what I had been missing reading YA books. Forget feathers and innuendo, Harris left little to the imagination, which left this Catholic-raised New Englander blushing beneath her book lamp. Happily blushing, I might add.

4. Dark Lover by J. R. Ward — There was no turning back once I’d been bitten by the steamy world of Bon Temps. It was a natural and inevitable progression from there to the Black Dagger Brotherhood books. Ward managed to make Connecticut even hotter than Louisiana. My blushing reached a never-before-seen shade of crimson, but I was thrilled—and inspired.

It was after reading most of this series, and devouring a few more fangtastic YA vampire series, that I decided to put aside the realistic fiction novel I’d been unsuccessfully trying to finish and try my hand at fantasy. I pulled what I loved from all of the above books. Rowling gave me a love for meaningful names and fantasy in general. Meyer and Harris inspired me to write a female protagonist who could be both emotional and vulnerable, like Bella, as well as kick-ass and quick with a comeback, like Sookie. Ward taught me just how much women love flawed but hot alpha males, especially in great love scenes (something I am still pitifully working at). Most importantly, they are all wonderful female authors, who started out as I am, a little-known writer with story to tell. I hope to entertain my readers half as much as any of these authors. And like them, I hope to improve with each new book and series.

Author Bio:
Lauren Grimley lives in central Massachusetts where she grew up, but her heart is on the beaches of Cape Cod where she spends as much of her time as possible. After graduating from Boston University she became a middle school English teacher. She now balances writing, reading, and correcting, all with a cat on her lap and a glass of red wine close by. Unforeseen, the first novel in the Alex Crocker Seer series, was Lauren’s debut novel, and she’s thrilled to be continuing the series with Unveiled. To learn more about her or her writing or to connect with her online visit her website at

Alex Crocker Seer #2
By Lauren Grimley

With strength comes vulnerabilities. With love comes loss. With power comes pain. The world Alex now belongs to hinges on such balance. Her every step seems to be lurching her precariously closer to one wrong side or another.

Alex had known her life as a Seer wouldn’t be easy. She knew her gift would be difficult to control and constantly sensing others’ emotions would be overwhelming. She even knew she’d be hunted for the power it would provide whichever coven of vampires controlled her. What she didn’t foresee were the difficulties she’d have with the parts of her life she ought to be able to control: her decisions, her actions, and her relationships.

It isn’t until she’s botched every facet of her new life that the opportunity arises to make things right. Rocky’s lover has been abducted, and Alex’s gift is the best shot at bringing her home alive. But even that will require tipping the scales in a direction no one but Alex can understand.

This sequel to Unforeseen is a darker tale of the battles Alex continues to fight against her enemies, her gift, and even herself. This time victory might cost her sanity, her lover, or her life.

Author Links:

Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Google+ | Goodreads | Pinterest

Purchase Links:
Amazon | Amazon UK | Barnes & Noble

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