Monday, August 09, 2010

Guest Author: Jess Granger

I'm delighted to host Jess Granger on the blog today.

As I mentioned in Friday's Book Club post, I read Jess Granger's Beyond the Rain while traveling. I absolutely loved it - the world was complex and intriguing, the characters beautifully realized, and the story just sucked me in and didn't let go. It's a book I highly recommend. Follow this link if you'd like to read an excerpt.

Please give Jess a warm welcome everyone!


The Joy of a Good Series

Hi everyone,

I am so thrilled to be here on Nalini’s blog. I’ve got a confession. I’m hugely addicted to the Psy/Changeling series. I think my addiction is getting a little out of hand. I picked up BONDS OF JUSTICE at the Berkley Book Signing at the RWA National convention, and by the end of the day, I was on chapter seven. The next morning instead of getting out of bed at the alarm and taking a shower so I could meet my editor, I picked up the book.

A half an hour la
ter, my booty was numb from sitting on the floor of the bathroom so the light wouldn’t bother my roommate, and I still hadn’t gotten my shower. I knew I had to put it down. Fifteen minutes later, the shower went right out the window. I’d taken one the night before and my hair looked okay, right?

I rushed out the door, book in hand, only to resume reading as I waited for my editor by the fountain
. That’s addiction.

So why am I so addicted? I think it’s in the nature of a series. (Or it could just be Nalini.)

The thing I love about series is that they give an author room to get complicated. In romance, so much of the arc of the story is rightly filled by the romance. A series gives an author room to flesh out the background and give you more of the world.

I had so much fun returning to Azra for BEYOND THE SHADOWS.

Here’s the blurb:


His renegade wit
. Her rigid code of honor. And a betrayal so deep it could tear their world apart.

Commander Yara knows perfect leadership requires perfect control and discipline. She has spent years living without the distraction of caring for anything—or anyone. It’s a sacrifice she’s willing to make. Yara has honed herself into the perfect heir to the Azralen throne, but a bloody coup could destroy everything she’s worked so hard for. She must return home to prevent war. Unfortunately the only ship available belongs to an Earthlen trader with no regard for authority—especially hers.

Cyn is a rebel, driven to protect those suffering at the hands of the Elite leaders of Azra. Using his alias to manipulate the lovely but icy commander onto his ship, he has to keep her from Azra long enough to ignite the revolution. But when he awakens a vibrant and feeling woman beneath that icy exterior, he gets more than he bargained for—love. He must find a way to convince Yara to join him, before they get caught in a web of deception that could tear their world apart.

In the first book, I didn’t have much time to go into detail about the hows and whys of Azralen culture. I was able to explore the nature of Azra in greater depth in the second book. It was fun, and I find I still have more I’d like to reveal if the publishing gods let me.

So I’m afraid I’m always going to be a series reader. I’m already looking forward to Nalini’s next book. I can’t wait to see what happens. What about you guys? What are some of your favorite series? Happy reading! Jess Granger

Links:
http://www.jessgranger.com
http://www.jessgranger.com/books/beyondtheshadows

Nalini: As I was at the RWA Conference, I was able to stalk meet Jess in person. Here's a photo from the night of the RITA Ceremony (Angie Fox, Jess & Me).

Now, let's talk series! As you might guess, I adore them :)

18 comments :

Anonymous said...

I, too, love the potential a series offers for fleshing out the details of a world/culture, since how much an author can actually include in a given book is limitted by the need to focus on the story and not go off on tangents in a Herman Melville fashion. My fave series is by P.C. Hodgell, and isn't actually a romance, but is a wonderfully complex world and culture.

Danica Avet said...

Hi Jess! I picked up Beyond the Shadow at the Berkley signing. I would've been the person drooling over Cyn's armbands *wave*. I ended up getting Beyond the Rain on my Kindle when I got home and LOVED both of them.

I love series. They make me feel like I'm one of the gang by the time they come to an end because I've grown to adore the characters and feel more deeply for their struggles.

I can't wait to read more from your Realms Beyond series!

kylie said...

Hi Jess - welcome! I'm a series junkie for the same reason you stated: complication. The worlds and characters become more complex and multidimensional. Anyway, it's a given that I'd follow the Psy/Changeling as long as it continues. Others I love include JR Ward's BDB, KM Moning's Fever, and M Liu's D&S. I may need to pick up yours too as I've become addicted to several authors who have guested on this blog.

Ina said...

a few years ago I read only stand-alones and today my bookshelf is full with series *gg* I can't get enough of them and I love the aspect that authors have more time to create their world... and there are many secondary characters who are waiting for their books... so yeah, I'm addicted to series :)
some of my favorite series are those by Lara Adrian, Jennifer Rardin, Rachel Caine and yours :) from both of you *g*
greetings, Ina

Jess Granger said...

Wow, thanks guys. I'm glad you liked the books. I certainly had fun creating them.

I've just got a thing for creating worlds that are lush, beautiful, and fantastic. It's my very favorite part of writing.

One of my favorite things to do while reading a series is to come up with wild theories about what's going to happen next.

I remember before the last Harry Potter book came out, I made about seven predictions, and I nailed every single one of them.

I had some friends convinced I had some weird inside scoop they were not privy to. It was fun.

Princess Bumblebee said...

Oh, congrats, Jess! This series sounds pretty awesome. I'm gonna have to check it out! Also, I'm an aspiring author myself and am writing one that has to do with outer-space (well, some of the time) and find it thrilling!
Love the captor/captive theme, as well as the hero's 'unthawing' the heroine! Classic!

mbreakfield said...

Hi, Jess,
I have your books in my TBR pile. I love series! Some of my favorite are:
1. Dark-hunters
2. Immortals After Dark
3. Psy/changeling
4. Guardian

Chelsea B. said...

Hi, Jess! I, too, am a series lover! Here are some of my favorites:
Kerrelyn Sparks' Love at Stake series.
Cindy Miles Highlander series.
Gena Showalter's Atlantis series.
Kresley Cole's Immortals After Dark series.
And a bunch, bunch more! Thanks for posting :-)

Christina said...

I adore series, I have 3 I follow religiously, although Nalini is the only author so far not to disapoint me. The series I follow are both of Nalini's (although I am in love with the Psy/CHangeling world than the angel world, I think), Kresley COle's Immortals After Dark, and Gena SHowalter's Lords of the Underworld. Lately, though, I haven't enjoyed Gena's as much, the heroines have gotten on my nerves too much. I also read PC Cast, I started with her Goddess Series, and now I read her HOuse of Night (*so* much better than Twilight, in my opinion)

BinnyBoBen said...

Your book looks really interesting! I believe I'll pick up a copy very soon. :-)
Series I follow:
Nalini's series (both of them), Ilona Andrew's series (both of them), Ann Aguirre, G.A. Aiken dragon books, Anne Bishops black jewels, Michelle Sagara 'cast' series, Lisa Shearin, etc,etc...I am such a sucker for a good series. It's not even necessarily the world building...I just have to know what happens next!! :-)

Jess Granger said...

I read a couple of the Lords of the Underworld series. I liked them. Right now I'm reading Susan Grant's Borderlands series as well. She always writes great romances.

T.L. said...

Hi Jess! I'll have to check out your books; they sound great!

Since you nailed all your Harry Potter predictions, I'm curious: Do you have any Psy/Changeling predictions? Like do you think Hawke will end up with Sienna?

And my series are Singh's Guild and Psy/Chang, Cole's Immortals after Dark, Ward's Brotherhood, Mead's Vampire Academy, and Kenyon's Dark Hunter.

orannia said...

Welcome Jess! Lovely photo of you, Angie Fox & Nalini BTW :)

I think as long as an author doesn't forget to keep the romance front and centre, as you said, and as long as she/he remembers what has come before (if there is an inconsistency readers will find it :) and also knows where they are going (because writing oneself into a corner isn't fun) then a series works.

I like to see a series as a giant jigsaw. Each book is a different section, but each book can have an artfully placed piece that gives the reader a clue to the greater picture (if that makes sense).

Oh, and I'm useless at guessing what comes next. As for favourite series - the Psy/Changeling series definitely! I have a few others whirring around my head, but they'll all finished now.

All the best with the series :)

noyba said...

I also love reading books in a series and there are quite a few that I follow. My favourites are the psy/changling, the Black dagger brotherhood series by J.R Ward, the troubleshooters series by Suzanne Brockmann, the in death series by J.D. Robb, the station five firefighters by Jo Davis, the sweet series by Maya Banks, the breeds by Lora Leigh, dark hunters by Sherrilyn Kenyon and many more. The appeal of a good series is being able to see the further development of charachters that we grow to love and the world they live in. I just love to hear mentions of previous primary characters and how they are going now. I haven't read Jess Granger's series before, but it looks interesting and I look forward to finding it in my local book store soon.

azteclady said...

I have a love-hate relationship with series myself...

... mostly because I don't like waiting between installments! *gnawing on fingernails*

I mean, I just read Bonds of Justice and now I'm literally counting the days 'til Play of Justice comes out!

On a slightly different note, I love Beyond the Rain and really like Beyond the Shadows. I'm hoping to see the next book in the Realms Beyond series out soon *crossing fingers*

Aasana said...

I love Lisa Kleypas's Hathaway series and yours. There are more but that would take too long to list.

Anonymous said...

Helen G. says...

AHHHHH!!! I want to read more Jess!!!

I absolutely loved your book Beyond the Rain and I cannot wait to read Cyn's story!!!

I am also a Nalini Stalker, ahem... I mean BIG FAN!!!
I also like Patricia Briggs- Mercedes Thompson Series. Have A good one!!

Helen G.

Jess Granger said...

Hmmm, Psy/Changeling predictions here? I'm afraid that might get me in trouble.

I will say this. I'm not so curious about Hawke's future love life as I am about trying to guess what Sienna's power involves. I've got a few theories.

I'm also extremely curious about Kaleb. Extremely curious. I've got a couple good ones about him as well.

Other than that, I'm pretty much along for the ride. I love how Nikita has become such an interesting character lately.