Tuesday, 9 October 2007

A different point of view...

Today instead of myself or a writer on the blog, Cathie, an avid reader, from http://caffeys-reads.blogspot .com/ was gracious enough to answer questions from a readers point of view.

1. Is there any genre you think is done to death when it comes to books?
***This I had to think long about, because I tend to rotate what I read, meaning genres, authors, etc, so this rarely happens to me because of that.
At this point, no, there is no genre that I feel that has been done to death. I know many speak of there being too many vampire and paranormal books out, but that's what the fad reading is right now. That occurred for a time with other genres, too outside of romance, like Chick Lit, when there was a great many of them released and tables set up of them in Borders. It then tapered off and I still see the Chick Lit, but I also see other genres. A genre will always be one that will never go away. As I a reader I rotate what I read. I hope to see that the publishing industry does that as well as the authors, if its in there interest (that's another story for another day, but I always believe that authors go with their muse of what they want to write, rather than what others want).

2. Is there any genre you will not read?
***Horror. I think that if it had some romance in it, I wouldn't mind to read it if it was like vampire related on Halloween. But I can't tolerate reading graphic violence within books. For me, reading is to be something to enjoy, even when its paranormal reads, not one to dread.
3. Reviews are important but do you take them as gospel and avoid books with bad reviews?
***I have a very different thoughts about reviews than maybe others have. As someone who does some reviews, I find it a joy to share my thoughts and feelings regarding a book I have read, so that I can share that with other readers. Its one way I say that I can give back to the author by giving my thoughts to the book.
But my review is mine, its not generalized to everyone who will read it will feel or sense what I did from the story. So I find a review is more like reading some input from other readers about the book.
I also find the purpose for reviews for me is to find more reads in different genres, sensuality's, etc. I hope when I read a review, that I won't read word for word of what the blurb says, but it will say what the story is about. But more important as a reader, I'm looking for info on the sensuality. That's totally missing when you buy the print NY authors most of the time. You have no idea about the sensuality you are going to read in general. I've read reviews on RT that rated them 'hot' and I was thinking 'absolutely not, it was sweet to warm'. Yes its an individual interpretation, but its good to get from various readers (reviews) their take on the sensuality and other parts that the reader wants to know to decide on the book (genre, length, etc)
To put it all in a shorter answer, Reviews are:
1. Reviews by readers that will vary by each reader
2. Reviews are informative so that the reader can find new books/authors to read based on their interest (sensuality, genre, etc)
3. Reviews are a readers feedback individual to the author about the book they read, so that they may share this with others.
4. As a reader, what do you think is the most important thing a romance writer should remember when writing a book?
***Strength of the character (s) to make the story! There will be a great plot, but its up to the characters to make that plot work. Got to have the character fit the role, and as it being a romance book, prove the drive of the love between characters (tension, emotional, etc)
5. How much sex in a book is too much sex?
***Whatever fits the story! I've read a good book that had outstanding sexual tension between the characters. Through the story, you as a reader could feel the emotions thrown out by each character and the drive of them wanting to be together. Its up to the author (or they may say the characters) to fulfill that impact by bringing it out and together. It can be so disappointing reading a book full of excellent sexual tension and emotional tension of love, etc, and then there is the start of a kiss and the door closes. Its not because the reader didn't get to read the act between the characters, its because the reader didn't get to feel the satisfaction that the two characters met their needs for one another and that they belonged there. I have read traditional regencies, where the sexual tension was outstanding through the book, and their books are closed doors when it comes to the act, but this author could still bring out the emotion with the characters!
One last thing, if you reading a quote on the book, and this may apply to more likely print books, that says something like '"Ms. Author writes a smouldering story of two characters driven to be together with a sizzling outcome" and to be disappointed that we end up reading a sweet romance. I think its pretty easy to put books in four sensuality's, sweet, warm, hot, and anything more :)
6. Do you think the writer behind the book is just as important as the book? For example would you buy a book with great reviews if you perceived the writer was pushy?
***Yes and no. First there have been ebooks I have read where I've never communicated with the author because of no author site, blog, or never attends chats. So the information of what we as a reader know about the author may be nothing but their voice in their writing. That in itself may be enough for me most times. I want to see if the book I am reading is grabbing me to keep reading.
If the author did excessive promo as well as asked the reader "Did you buy (read) my book yet?" or mass deliveries announcement of a review to numerous site and does it daily,then that turns me away from the author. As a reader, I don't want to feel pushed. I have a good mind to be able to find the authors site, or review site, or talk with readers, to get input about the books. I don't need the reviews pushed on me, but rather that I seek it out myself. I have refrained from reading authors that have been pushy with books.
7. What is the best book you have ever read?
***Can't believe I have to name just one!
That would be ANNIE'S SONG by Catherine Anderson
Its more because I feel a personal connection with the character being deaf, but also that the author got it so right on about the communication and emotions, and so much more in a plot that also is emotional as well. This shook up me reading this book and I picked this based on that feeling of having a connection to the story.
But then I could also pick a best book I read that had me laughing and so joyous reading it (its a different author). So you just got me on a day that I thought of ANNIE'S SONG first
8. Don’t name it but what was the premise of the worst book you ever read?
***Note this is applicable to a HISTORICAL ROMANCE book. H/H fought so much to be together in the first book. Beautiful Historical romance as the spine says. Book two, spine says Historical ROMANCE. (Romance to me means HEA, love stories are much different than romances). So as this being a romance, reading the back blurb, I see the hero's name again, but not familiar with who they are naming the heroine. So when I start to read, I realized that the heroine from the first book, who had their whole story, is killed off. I could read no more.
First it should have been labeled Historical Fiction (not Romance), but after commenting about it, they would not change the spine to remove 'Romance' and I felt bad for others that were going to read right in the beginning, the heroine from the previous book being killed off.
9. What are you reading now?
***BONDS OF DARKNESS by Armond (Liquid Silver Books). My first time reading this author :)

Thanks Cathie! Check out http://caffeys-reads.blogspot .com/ today

On Kelly left us with…

PJ shot a look at Emmeline for interrupting her. "Besides she's a virgin until the Goddess Festival. And even you, Leo, can't stop the Festival from occurring."

"The Coronation--" Leo protested.

"--is a wash, birdbrain." PJ dusted her short tunic. "Who did you think I was going to give your tail to when I got it? Duh, Emmeline. It will be her Coronation your feathers facilitate."

Leo clamped his eyes shut, covered his ears and began to hum Row, Row, Row Your Boat.

PJ and Emmeline screamed. "This can't be happening. Not like this!"

Row, row, row your boat? What the? My turn…

“Women! They scare so easily,” Sam snorted in derision as he watched them cower.

“But they are cute,” Leonardo murmured, his eyes on PJ.

“And you’re a pair of wankers,“ PJ snorted. “I’m sorry, I can’t pretend to be in awe of these men any longer, Emm. They’re dipsticks.”

“Yeah it was a stretch.” Emmeline lifted her peeler, set it to stun and both men dropped to ground. “That stopped the bastard humming. Hybrid, my arse.”

PJ dropped to her haunches and sliced off Leonardo’s tail. “Play with me will you, eagle boy? Ha!” She looked at Emmeline. “What now?”

“We need a man.” Her quills clacked together as she paced deep in thought.

“What for?”

“We set up a puppet king and rule this planet with a man as the front.”

“Great idea! But where do we get a man?” PJ looked dismissively at the two men drooling at her feet.

“I told you Max, I heard a noise,” whispered Gabrielle as they opened the door to the Leo’s chamber.

“You’re just trying to get out of sex.” Max saw the quilled woman and bounty hunter. “Who the hell are you?”

Emmeline smiled. Excellent. “We are you destiny, my liege.”

“What? Who are these women?” Gabrielle instantly went on the defensive.

Emmeline aimed her peeler at Gabrielle. “Is she important to you?”

“I love her but she won’t have sex with me,” Max responded in frustration.

“Ooh, she’s smart. We can use her.” PJ looked him up and down. “Take your clothes off.”

“Why?” Max backed away from the advancing women.

Will Max take his clothes off? What will they do when he does? Will Gabrielle change her mind about sex with Max? Check out tomorrow. And, as always swing over to for her wise thoughts on every day life in Americana. Tomorrow Total E Bound showcases their new blog – Hitting the Hot Spot. Do you want to win some great prizes and check out some great reads? Then go to and join in the fun Wednesday. Also while you're there, check out My Last Dark Day by Barbara Huffert and a couple by the Jones girl. See? So many great things to read and do.
Go ahead: Live with abandon. Be outrageous at any age. What are you saving your best self for?


anny cook said...

Excellent answers Cathie! Excellent questions as always, Amarinda! Good interview.

Molly Daniels said...

I totally agree about the horror genre. I don't watch the movies, and while I do admit to liking the occassional Stephen King book, there was one he wrote that I actually had to put down and walk away from for several days before I could finish it. And I don't like to read that way. A good book should be savored; reread; and talked about to one's friends. And only loaned out with a homing device attached, so it will return to be read again!

Molly Daniels said...

There is also a thing as too much sexual tension. I can't remember the name of the book, but the characters fought so much, yet didn't fulfill the act until nearly the end. I was ready to scream at them to either give it up and walk away, or lock them in a room together. And it drives me crazy when the H/H won't TALK to each other! I probably have too much talking in my books, but then, that's the way I write.

Kelly Kirch said...

Great job AJ an Caffey. It is a gift to see reviews through the eyes of the reader. After your blog and Anny's I feel well equipped. Thanks.

Cindy Spencer Pape said...

Very interesting to see things from a reader's point of view. And Cathie is such a familiar face around the loops, so supportive of all the authors, that it's nice to see her in the spotlight for a change.

Caffey said...

Hi Amarinda, Cindy, Kelly, Molly!
Oh definitely you got the same feel I had about the sexual tension! I'd be saying 'that's it?!!??!' for the book
thinking no way was it resolved or played out in the way it was built up to be shown.

Thanks Cindy! Really its YOU ALL that I thank for writing your stories and the joy it brings me.

Caffey said...

Question #6

I wanted to mention I just used the example to answer about an author pushing their book and that really she was asking if the writer behind the book is just as import as the book. I wanted to say too that I've read debut authors (and now its a favorite thing for me to read new to me authors) and their books have been some of the most wonderful reads. Yep I have autobuys too, but there's been authors that I too never read and so glad I was one who took blind chances with a book I knew little of from anyone talking about it and they now stay here right on the keeper's chest! I call them treasures! So absolutely, the author is important, they are woman and men I respect in their career they are working in, but too, the author's writing, their voice makes the story. Not what their name is. So I suggest if you see books and for example, a good blurb, go for it. Don't say "I never read that author before" because it doesn't matter. So its the story we read! If you have a moment you should thank that author for read that touched so much of you.

Amarinda Jones said...

Thanks your opinions. You can drop by anytime