Monday, May 31, 2010

Monday Mini Reviews

Here is the first installment of our Monday Mini Reviews!

Keeping Promise Rock Keeping Promise Rock by Amy Lane - 5/5 Stars
One word: Amazing. I loved the detail Lane put into this work. Her characters felt like they were real people and I really cared about them. Each one had their own unique personality, too. I love how we got to see their relationship evolve from childhood through adulthood. Lane even brought me to tears a couple times. Highly Recommended.

Rough Ride
Rough Ride by Carol Lynne - 4/5 Stars
This was a pretty good story. It wasn't great, but it had a good mix of plot/sex. It was also fairly angst free. If you've liked the earlier Cattle Valley books, you'll probably like this one too.

Play On
Play On by J.M. Synder - 3/5 Stars
I think this is the worst of her Playing the Field books yet. I didn't much care for any of these characters, and the way they spoke annoyed me to no end. Her characters felt extremely shallow, immature and uneducated through out the piece. There's not much going on is this story besides non-stop sex.

Interview with Sam C. Leonhard

I'd like to welcome Sam C. Leonhard, author of "Tainted Blood", to The Dancing Dove today! Sam has agreed to do a short interview with me today.

The Dancing Dove: What was it like when your first novel, "Tainted Blood,” was published?
Sam Leonhard: Actually, submitting the first four chapters to my publisher rather than the publication date was the most exciting part, and when they asked for more, I was thrilled. Three weeks later, they agreed to publish it, and I couldn’t stop yelling Hooray. It is my first novel and Dreamspinner Press was the first publisher I contacted… I simply couldn’t believe my luck. Somehow, I still can’t believe it, especially because English is not my first language.

TDD: What is the novel about? Where/when was it published?
SL: It is a fantasy novel and was published on May 3rd, 2010 by Dreamspinner Press. Basically, it is about a murder mystery, portals to other worlds, runes, and magic – that sort of stuff. I am a big fantasy fan and I felt the genre could do with a bit of gay love, which is an integral part of the story.

TDD: What inspired your novel "Tainted Blood"?
SL: About three years ago, I began writing fanfiction, and I stumbled upon a page where readers could leave reviews. Reviews, now, are a big motivation for me, but eventually, I wanted to write something original. "Tainted Blood" was inspired by a scene I couldn’t use in the fanfiction world. It is the scene with the centaurs – a bit too cruel and too bloody to be used in my fandom, so I wrapped my own story around it.

TDD:What made you start writing fiction?
SL: I read my first fantasy novel with twelve, loved it, and never grew out of it. I enjoy playing with words, I enjoy twisting fate, and it was wonderful to find fandom, where people tick just like me. Writing fanfiction was and still is great, but eventually I learned that writing about characters someone else invented is not wholly satisfying. So now I create my own worlds, my own stories, and make my own characters beat the fate I invent for them.

TDD: How often do you write?
SL: I try to write on a daily basis, but don’t always make it. Sometimes, half a week passes before I manage to open my notebook. If I don’t write for too long, I get miserable, I must admit. I guess I just need my fix.

TDD: Is writing your full time job or do you have another occupation?
SL: I don’t know if I would like writing fantasy novels to be a full-time job. At the moment, it is my way into other worlds. I can leave reality behind for the time being, and this might very well change if I had to do it for a living. I am working as a technical editor, which earns me my bread and butter. When at home, I spend some of my time as a fantasy author, which is very satisfying. Perfect combination, in my opinion.

TDD: Is there a certain place you like to write? The beach, the library, a comfy spot on the couch?
SL: I prefer to write at home, and mostly on the couch. Occasionally, I choose the armchair in the dining room, but only if the living room is too hot. Writing outside doesn’t work for me, although I always have a pen and paper on me in case I have an idea about the next chapter. Writing things down helps me to concentrate on the task ahead, and that I can do everywhere.

TDD: What's your least favorite part of the writing process?
SL: Writing is what I love to do, and when I am not at my notebook, I think about the story and the next chapters. The only part I have my problems with is getting myself kicked into editing a story I consider finished. Reading and rereading and rewriting and correcting is not what I like to do. Editing and reworking a story, awaiting and incorporating feedback is a very important part of the writing process, but I don’t like it anyway.

TDD: Do you have any works-in-progress you'd like to tell the readers about?
SL: I am working on the sequel to Tainted Blood, which is my first priority at the moment. In addition, I am writing a story about an assassin. The main character, Rage, is usually a man who does the job he got paid for without questioning it. This time, though, he makes the mistake of feeling sorry for one of his victims, a young girl deeply hated by her father. Instead of killing her, Rage saves her, and has now to deal with a spoiled princess, a jealous lord, an annoying cat, and a very cruel, sadistic killer. The content is adult, but the love story between Rage and the gardener’s son is only a small part of the plot. I will post a draft blurb on my LiveJournal next weekend, hoping I can gather some early feedback.

TDD: Do you have anything else you'd like to tell the readers? (Contact info, upcoming books, exclusive website content, etc.)
SL: I made it to Facebook only recently, so anyone who likes can find and friend me. I’m always happy for feedback, and whoever likes can mail me directly. As soon as there are news concerning the sequel to Tainted Blood or Rage, I will put it on my LiveJournal and on Facebook. Also, I plan to post the first chapter of Tainted Blood to a friend’s website; under all reviewers I will raffle two PDF-copies of the novel. I’ll announce on Facebook and LJ once the chapter is up and give a link to the site as well.

Thank you very much for the interview!
Sam C. Leonhard

You can contact Sam at the following places: Facebook, LiveJournal or by email at sc.leonhard (at) googlemail (dot) com

You can learn more about Tainted Blood at Dreamspinner Press’s website. Information about the Ebook can be found here here. Information about the Paperback can be found here.

Thank you so much for joining us, Sam! I hope everyone enjoyed the interview. =)

Saturday, May 29, 2010


I have some good things planned for next week! I'm starting a new thing called "Monday Mini Reviews" where I'll post short reviews and ratings for a few books I've read recently. It won't replace my normal reviews, but it'll allow me to put reviews of books that I either liked or didn't like but don't have a whole lot to say.

I've also got three interviews coming up next week. So far I have the following authors scheduled:

Sam Leonhard on May 31
Kate Cotoner on June 1
and Anne Brooke on June 2

I'm going to try and do more interviews with people from the literary world - authors, editors, beta readers and possibly some publishers. If you're any of the above, please feel free to email me to schedule and interview.

I've also got a couple book reviews planned for next week, too! Keep any eye out for those. ;)

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Short Fiction Piece - William Cooper

Hello, guys! My name is William Cooper. My first story - Broken Bones, Mended Hearts - was released today from Dreamspinner Press.

When Noah wakes up in the hospital, he's relieved to see his best friend Mark at his side. Mark's always been there for him—ever since a school bully tried to steal Noah's lunch money. Is it too much for Noah to hope that Mark will want to be a more permanent part of his life?

You can find out more about Broken Bones, Mended Hearts on Dreamspinner's website.

In order to celebrate, I'm posting this short piece exclusively here, on The Dancing Dove. I hope you enjoy it.

Josh had his arm around my waist as the two of us walked down the sidewalk. The street lamps cast a romantic glow on everything. Most of the shops along the main street were closed, except for the few that remained open late.

I glanced up at Josh’s face; he looked even more handsome with the bright white moon behind him. “I can’t believe you picked such an expensive restaurant for our Valentine’s dinner.” Every year we went out to dinner for Valentine’s Day, and each year we switched who got to decide – this year was Josh’s year. “You know we don’t need to go to fancy places to enjoy ourselves.”

Josh pulled me closer to him, planting a kiss on my cheek. “I know, but I wanted tonight to be special. We’ve been dating for six years now.”

My heart rate sped up. God, even after six years he can still make me hard as a rock with a single kiss.

The two of us walked along in silence for a little while longer. There were other couples walking around, enjoying the rest of their Valentine’s Day evening.

“Where are we going?” I asked after a few minutes.

“To the park.”

I looked over to see a huge grin on Josh’s face. “Why are we going to the park? It’s nearly eleven.”

Josh’s grin got even bigger. “You’ll see . . .” He leaned over and kissed me again, this time on the lips. I eagerly kissed him back, probing the inside of his mouth with my tongue. I groaned when Josh pulled away from me.

“We’re in public, remember?” he chastised.

I blushed and wished we were heading home, rather than to the park. The two of us continued walking towards the park, Josh still with his arm around my waist.

When we got to the park, Josh led me to a secluded area by a small lake. The crickets were chirping as the two of us gazed at the lake. The night sky was littered with stars, giving us plenty of light to see by.

As I enjoyed the serenity of the lake, Josh stood behind me and wrapped his arms around my waist. I leaned back against him, content to just stand in his arms. Sex with Josh was always amazing, but nothing compared to just holding each other.

Josh turned me around to face him. “Tyler . . . You know I love you, right?”

I nodded. God, I hope he’s not breaking up with me. That would be such a shitty way to end a perfect evening.

Josh grinned and backed away. He fished in his pocket for a moment before he knelt down onto the grass. In his hand was a dark blue box containing a small ring. “Tyler Barret, will you marry me?”

Is he serious? My mouth went completely dry as I tried to avoid falling over. One glance was all it took for me to see that he was very serious. I smiled at Josh and pulled him into an embrace. I pressed my lips to his, letting our tongues entwine.

“I’ll take that as a yes?” he asked when we pulled apart.

Both of us panted from the intensity of the kiss. “Yes, it’s a yes. This was the most perfect night ever. Of course I’ll marry you, Josh!” I hugged him again. “I love you.”

I felt his arms tighten around me. “I love you, too.”

Everything felt right in my world.


Thank you for reading! You can visit my website at

Monday, May 17, 2010

Author Fan Letter: Tamora Pierce

The Author Appreciation Blog Crawl continues today. Kassa started this crawl on her blog and has 29 blogs lined up. Yesterday was Obsidian Bookshelf and today, is me!

Choosing an author for this letter was extremely hard. There are many authors that I love reading and think write amazing books. In the end, I decided to go with the author whose books I've read multiple times.

Dear Tamora Pierce,
I started reading your books after one of my friends told me how great they were. She went on and on about the books trying to get me to read them. (I think the only thing she didn't do was beat me with them.) After I finally gave in, I was hooked.Terrier

I want to use my letter to let you know that I absolutely adore your books. You've done a great job of creating magnificent fantasy worlds with great detail. I truly appreciate all of the effort you've put into creating both your Tortall and Emelan worlds. You are, by far, my favorite fantasy author. (And one of my all-time favorite authors!)

You've created realistic characters who accomplish their goals without being cliché. Each of your characters has a unique personality. I love how I can tell all of your characters apart by their personalities and even by just reading a few lines of dialog. I also like how your characters aren't perfect, they all have their flaws - Kel's fear of heights, Alanna's height, Tris's weight, Daine's youth - you've shown women that they don't need to be perfect super models to be successful. You've given us females who start at the bottom rung and are able to work their way to the top, not from relying on men but by working hard and never giving up.

Magic Steps I've really enjoyed watching your writing style grow and change through out your career. It's interesting to see how similar yet how different your style is between Alanna: The First Adventure and Bloodhound. I really appreciate all of the work you've put into perfecting your writing and it definitely shows. I'm eagerly awaiting you next releases to see how it has changed again.

I hope you continue to write for many years to come! I'm always anxiously awaiting your new books. I like how you put the time and effort into your books. Rather than pumping out half a dozen books a year, you can tell that you spend time and put a lot of effort into your books. (Though if you find a way to clone yourself and put out six books a year, I won't complain!)

Thank you for allowing us to read your master pieces!


Don't forget to check All I Want and More tomorrow for the next post!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

New Blog!

Author Roseanne Dowell has a relatively new blog I thought you guys might be interested in. She's doing a lot of interviews with people in the book industry - publishers, authors, agents, etc. A few Dreamspinner authors will be being interview their this month! (Including William Cooper!)

If you're interested in reading these interviews, you can find her blog at

Also, look for some exclusive content from William Cooper to be posted here this weekend!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Chaos Giveaway - Broken Bones, Mended Hearts

Chris over at Stumbling Over Chaos is having another book giveaway! This time she's giving away a copy of William Cooper's Broken Bones, Mended Hearts! Head on over to her blog before May 18 at 7PM CDT to enter for your chance to win!

Plot summary:
When Noah wakes up in the hospital, he’s relieved to see his best friend Mark at his side. Mark’s always been there for him – ever since a school bully tried to steal Noah’s lunch money. Is it too much for Noah to hope that Mark will want to be a more permanent part of his life?

About the Author:
William Cooper is a new author to the M/M genre. BB,MH is his first book and will be released on May 19 from Dreamspinner Press! You can learn more about William and his book on his website

Saturday, May 8, 2010

New Poll!

I just put a poll on my sidebar to see what you guys would like to see more of. Do you want more interviews, book reviews, giveaways, something else? If you'd like to see something not listed in the poll, please feel free to comment here and let me know what you want. Please be honest, I can't grow my blog without feedback from my wonderful readers (and Chris). ;)

Those of you reading through a feedreader will have to visit the site in order to see the poll!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Out of Bounds - Review

Out of Bounds
Title: Out of Bounds
Author: T.A. Chase
Series: Love of Sports
Rating: 2/5 stars

Professional basketball player Kasey Johnson makes a point of keeping his sexual preference under guard and out of the public eye. Empty, off-season flings are all he can look forward to until he retires. He figures his secret is safe-until he meets Ingram Fletcher, a nightclub owner who ignites a passionate inferno in his body.
Gram has lusted after Kasey ever since the long, tall basketball player was traded to Phoenix a year ago. But with Kasey-s twin brother running interference, up until now Gram-s been unsure if it-s safe to make a play. Then some incidental contact in the crowded club leads to a kiss that starts Gram wondering if a relationship is possible-now, and beyond March Madness.
A romantic weekend together answers that question. Now the only one remaining is if Kasey is ready make a fast break out of his comfort zone.

The main reason I rated this book so low was the lack of plot. This was definitely more of a porn without plot book than a romance novel. There wasn't much romance, just a lot of sex and the characters magically falling in love. The sex started barely a couple pages into the story and continued for most of the book.

The plot that was there was very thin. Most of the scenes that weren't sex, were about Kasey whining about what would happen if his team mates found out he was gay. Kasey worries over this for a while and doesn't really do anything about it. Through out the whole novella, I really wanted to smack Kasey and yell "GET OVER IT ALREADY."

The characters were fairly one-dimensional. I don't really know anything about Kasey or Gram, I don't know any of their personality traits, their backgrounds, nothing. The relationships were really weak - the characters fell in love after doing nothing but have sex. Even the relationship between Kasey and his twin brother's relationship was week. You didn't feel the love between the two like you would between brothers.

This isn't a book I'd recommend unless you're looking for a book that doesn't have much plot. If you like your books to have a good balance of plot and sex, I would pass on this book.

** Warning ** This novel contains sex scenes and may not be appropriate for readers under than age of 18.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Birthday Book Giveaway - Ryland's Sacrifice

I meant to post this sooner, but the winner of my last giveaway was Lily! Sorry for letting everyone know so late but finals got in the way of everything.

Today is my 20th birthday, so to celebrate, I'm hosting a giveaway that I was supposed to host for Earth Day! Kim Dare has allowed me to giveaway a copy of her ebook Ryland's Sacrifice. This is the first book in her Thrown to the Lions series. It was published February 2010 by Resplendence Publishing.

Here's the blurb for her book:
Principles don’t pay tuition fees. When Ryland’s math scholarship disappears overnight, he has two choices. He can borrow money from fellow student Jason Burrows, who has very interesting ways of collecting debts. Or, he can volunteer to be thrown to the werelions.

One night spent playing the part of a willing human sacrifice will give him enough money to finish his PhD. It seems like a good deal—right up until the moment he finds himself naked, blindfolded, bound and surrounded by lions.

You can find out more about Ryland's Sacrifice and read an excerpt on her website. The novel is available in PDF format. If the winner already has a copy of this book, they may choose another from her backlist.

Contest Rules (Borrowed and modified from Stumbling Over Chaos <3<3):
* To enter, leave a comment stating that you are entering the contest. Contest closes Midnight EST on May 13.
* If you share this contest (on Facebook, Goodreads, you blog, etc. I'll give you an extra entry for each medium you use, up to three extra entries.
* You must leave a valid email address with your comment. If you don't include an email address in your post or on your Google Profile, Chris's Blog Gnomes will turn your post into kitty litter for the Chaos Cat.
* Winners will be selected by random number.
* If a winner doesn’t respond to my congratulations email within 48 hours, I will select another winner.
* If you win, please respect the author’s intellectual property and don’t make copies of the ebook for anyone else.
* This contest is open worldwide!