February 14th, 2011

First Review for Heart of Ice - and it's a good one!

Reviews make me so anxious. My eyes just skitter over the page. At first all I noticed was that they liked the breast cancer subplot. Heart of Ice (A Triple Threat Novel) comes out April 5, just nine days before my birthday.

Heart of Ice: A Triple Threat Novel
Lis Wiehl with April Henry, Thomas Nelson, $25.99 (336p) ISBN 978-1-59554-707-1
Fans of James Patterson's Women's Murder Club books will find the same friendly crime-solving vibe in Wiehl and Henry's appealing third Triple Threat novel (after Hand of Fate) featuring federal prosecutor Allison Pierce, FBI special agent Nicole Hedges, and Portland, Ore., TV crime reporter Cassidy Shaw. At the Portland Fitness Center, Cassidy joins the boot camp class run by the beautiful instructor Elizabeth Avery, unaware that Elizabeth served time in a juvenile facility for two horrific crimes committed at age 13 when she was known as Sissy Hewsom. The icy sociopath has already had her fellow former inmate, firebug Joey Decicco, burn down the home of Sara McCloud, her gorgeous lawyer boyfriend's money-grubbing ex-wife, and Elizabeth now wants Sara and Sara's small son, Noah, dead. The authors smoothly bring together the various story lines, including a sharp subplot centered on Nic's breast cancer diagnosis. (Apr.)

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Romance never goes out of style

Romance never goes out of style. Romance books as a category, that is. Because the romance category was never review-driven, it hasn't hurt it that there are fewer and fewer formal reviews in newspapers and magazines.

In an article about romances Ad Age says, "It helps that romance was well prepared, in many ways without trying, for the challenges that would come. Its fans like to talk to one another, to the eventual advantage of the romance sites and social-media plays that have now emerged. And its books were typically priced pretty low. There's more free content every day, but romance publishers are proving that cheap can be pretty persuasive, too. "What I've seen as the economy has slowed down and e-books have started to pick up, is folks are buying fewer books," Mr. Norris said. "But they have a tendency to buy more paperback books and books with a low price point. With romance there really hasn't been a compromise for readers to make."

Read more here about how romance is finding new ways to connect with readers.

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As Borders departs

Borders seems to be in its death throes, which saddens me for several reasons.

They used to employ some of the smartest event coordinators around. Darren Noble, who now works at George Fox College, was excellent, as was Dan Eichler. But they kept cutting and cutting staff. And 10-12 years ago, Borders used to send folks to the Pacific Northwest Bookseller Association conferences, so they always felt more indie and less corporate than B&N.

And for towns where Borders was the only bookstore, now there will just be Amazon, consolidating more power in Amazon's hands.

Shelf Awareness reports: "Wall Street Journal predicts that Borders's contraction and possible end "will mean fewer places for consumers to buy books, which in turn is expected to speed the pace of online and e-book sales."

Read more here .

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