All About Valentine’s Day and Romance with Carrie Schmidt!

Can I just say how super-sweet it is to have Carrie Schmidt (you may know her through Reading is My Superpower blog and Facebook page). Let me tell you a little about this precious lady.

Carrie  is an avid reader, book reviewer, story addict, KissingBooks fan, book boyfriend collector, and cool aunt. She also loves Jesus and THE Story a whole lot. A reviewer for RT Book Reviews and a co-founder of the Christian Fiction Readers’ Retreat, Carrie lives in Kentucky with her husband Eric and their quirky dog Zuzu. She can be found lurking at various blogs and websites (because she can’t stop talking about books) but her main home is the blog she started in 2015 – ReadingIsMySuperPower.org.

She’s been super precious to me and I’m glad she’s here.  Waving at you, Carrie! I asked her some questions about romance, Valentine’s Day, and of course books. You’re going to love her answers and guess what? She’s giving away a Romance Trope and Book Boyfriend candle to 2 lucky winners! (U.S. Only, the entry form will be below.

So, let’s talk romance, books, and Valentine’s Day.

How old were you when you were drawn into the romance genre? What book hooked you?

I was probably 11 or 12, something like that, when I discovered Love Comes Softly by Janette Oke. One read was all it took, and the rest is history 😊

What was it about that book that caused you to fall in love with the romance genre?

I have always loved romance – from the moment I first watched Prince Charming dance with Cinderella. But Love Comes Softly showed me that fictional romance could go beyond Disney’s definition, that it could include real life & history & friendships. And that, in the process of telling me a great story about two people who fall in love, it could also help me fall in love with God a little more too.

Why do you think women love to read romance? Is this why you love romance? If not, tell us what it is you love about this genre?

I really think women love to read romance because it’s part of that ‘eternity’ that God has placed in our hearts (Ecclesiastes 3:11). We crave these romance reads where some form of Prince Charming comes riding in on some form of a white horse, rescues us (I mean…the heroine), and we (I mean…they) lived happily ever after… because it’s the story God’s been telling from the beginning! We are the Bride of Christ & one day Jesus will come riding in on a literal white horse (see Revelation 19) and rescue us for the ultimate happily ever after (Revelation 21). So I think it’s just part of our soul’s DNA and, because we’re still waiting for it to play out in reality, we gobble up these little reflections of it in the meantime. And all that to say (lol) – that’s what I love about reading romance! It reminds me that I’m living in an even greater Story with an even better HEA that one day will actually come true. And… you know… the hot heroes and swoony kisses don’t hurt either.

Oh my word! I agree too. It’s why I love to write it. I have to share that Divine Romance with readers!! Love this so much. And uh, no they don’t!  

Describe the perfect romantic hero? (Have you found this hero in a book or are you still waiting on him?)

The perfect romantic hero? Hmm.. that’s a tough one. Because so much of it depends on the story itself, the reader’s personal preference and the chemistry with the heroine. But for me? It never hurts if he resembles Henry Cavill (just sayin), if he speaks in some sort of accent, if he’s flirty and/or smoldering, if falling in love takes him by surprise but hits him hard emotionally and (on that note) if he’s not afraid to share emotion when appropriate. He needs to love more than himself, and he needs to be a protector at heart. And a good kisser. But … looking like Henry Cavill gets you a lot of grace on these other points 😉

Have I found him yet? I believe so. But currently it’s a 5-way tie. And interestingly enough, three of them favor Henry Cavill a great deal. LOL! At least I’m consistent. (I remember one of your heroes looking suspiciously like Henry too 😉 ) (Jess here: Yes, I did use Henry but not for Holt! For Griffin Noble, but you see how you want. I don’t mind!) Anyway, I had a book boyfriends shirt made with five of my very faves, and the guys include:

#myJames (aka James MacDonald from Carla Laureano’s Five Days in Skye)

Ty Porter (from Becky Wade’s Meant to Be Mine)

Charlie Lionheart (from Joanne Bischof’s The Lady & The Lionheart)

Vance Everstone (from Dawn Crandall’s Everstone Chronicles)

Wes Harrison (from Pepper Basham’s Just the Way You Are)

I adored Charlie Lionheart and Ty Porter. I also need to step up my game and read and these other books! Do you have a favorite romance sub genre? Why is it your favorite?

I love romantic suspense. Because as long as I’ve loved romance, I’ve also loved mysteries. Nancy Drew is my home girl. (Do people say that anymore? Lol) But my favorite Nancy Drew stories were the ones when she teamed up with the Hardy Boys because, let’s face it, Frank Hardy made a better book boyfriend than Ned Nickerson. (sorry Ned) Getting to read a romantic suspense ties both of these loves together for me, plus the tension created from the suspense adds to the romantical tension which is another win-win.

Yes! I mean how can this rom/suspense writer who always throws in mystery not love that answer. Have you ever thought about writing your own romance novel? Why or why not?

Thought about it? Yes. Will I ever actually write one? Probably not. Mainly because a) I don’t think I have that specific kind of talent and b) it would cut into my reading time too much lol.

What is one romance novel that has stuck with you over many years? Why do you think that is?

Newlywed Games by Mary Davis. I don’t exactly know why it’s stuck with me for so long but I think one of the reasons is because it was really the first Christian fiction I read that showcased the kind of romantic tension that makes you forget to breathe. The chemistry between Bruce and Meghann is AMAZING and electric and oh-so-swoony. Also I think this is the book that started my love of the ‘fake marriage’ trope, which is really a derivative of the marriage-of-convenience story that Love Comes Softly spearheaded. It all comes full circle 😊

Okay, I gotta read this book! Wow! Do you celebrate Valentine’s Day? Some people don’t want to be told to do something special on one day but feel romance and kind gestures should be done all throughout the year, which I agree, but I love Valentine’s Day. Might be because it’s the anniversary of the first date with my husband (24 years ago!) What’s your take on this day?

As a kid, I loved Valentine’s Day! My parents made it so special for us. From the special meal my mom would make (complete with hearts cut out of just about any food she could, even the butter) to the scavenger hunts that would send us scurrying all over the house to find the next clue and – eventually – our candy gifts. As an adult, Valentine’s Day hasn’t been nearly that much fun haha! But it will always be special to me because in my senior of college this guy (who happened to be one of my best friends) decided to boycott Valentine’s Day by going to see You’ve Got Mail together (yeah, just about everyone saw through that except us). A year and a half later, we got married ❤

I love this! How fun! Have you read many romance novels set around Valentine’s Day? Which ones do you recommend? (I read Paper Hearts by Courtney Walsh and took that idea last year, stringing paper hearts all over for my man to read. He was so surprised and saved them!)

Ok, now you’re really making me think!! LOL. Honestly?!? I know that there are some, but I haven’t read many. I’m not sure why. Totally seems like my thing. I definitely recommend Paper Hearts by Courtney Walsh and The Cupcake Dilemma by Jennifer Rodewald. Other books that people have recommended to me (but I haven’t read yet) are Once Upon a Winter’s Heart by Melody Carlson, Secretly Yours by Valerie Comer and Operation Valentine by Elizabeth Maddrey.

If your special someone gave you a gift for Valentine’s Day that was solely focused on a book/reading them, what would that gift (day or weekend!) look like?

Ooooo what a fun question! I have always loved the idea of this bookstore date from The Dating Divas! And I really really want one of these adorable custom bookish blankets from Sweet Sequels on Etsy!

I love the Dating Divas site! I just printed some stuff from there for this lovely week! I’m spoiling my man because he ALWAYS spoils me!

Thank you so much for being here today, Carrie! It’s been fun. Readers and writers, you can also connect with Carrie on Facebook @ meezcarriereads and everywhere else social at @meezcarrie.

Enter for a chance to win 1 of 2 Novelly Yours candles! 

 

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On the 8th Day of Christmas…

My authors gave to me…

Deep Waters (and an adorable Christmas ornament) by moi… 

An adorbs book cozy from Susan Tuttle 

The Memory of You by Catherine West

A Child’s Christmas Wish by Erica Vetsch

On Love’s Gentle Shore + tote bag from Liz Johnson

The Gift of Twins by Gabrielle Meyer

The Rancher’s Mistletoe Bride by Jill Kemerer

Christmas Captive  by Liz Johnson

What is this I’m talking about? The 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway is BACK!

 

You read that right! Each day the prizes have been building and new winner is drawn daily. On Day 12, the grand prize winner will be drawn and he/she will win all 10 books, bonus gifts, & a Kindle Fire 8!

Just now getting in on the fun? You’re not too late to revisit the prior blogs from Day 1-Day 8 and enter to win. You can enter every single day! Tomorrow, don’t forget to stop by Bethany Turner’s! Her link is below.

Here is the line up:

12/1 Liz Johnson
12/2 Jill Kemerer 
12/3 Gabrielle Meyer 
12/4 Liz Johnson 
12/5 Erica Vetsch
12/6 Cathy West 
12/7 Susan Tuttle 
12/8 Jessica Patch 
12/9 Bethany Turner
12/10 Lindsay Harrel
12/11 Karen Barnett 
12/12 Liz Johnson 

 

Also, if you’re looking for a holiday read to cozy up with while you wait to see if you’re a winner for these sweet prizes above, may I suggest Hope Under Mistletoe? If you love Hallmark movies, holiday romances, and swoon-worthy heroes, plus a beautiful redemption story, then this is the book for you! And only .99 cents! You can purchase it NOW on AMAZON

Merry Christmas, friends!

*Forward Friday will return next week! 

 

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Deep Waters Summer Prize Package! Enter to Win.

Hey everyone! I’m super excited to celebrate a milestone in my writing career. Deep Waters marks my 5th Love Inspired Suspense AND the 1st book in a new 3-book series that covers an elite team of private security specialists. Their mission is to protect and they’lll go down in a blaze to follow through with their promises! 

I love these characters so much and the series kicks off in a fictional Florida small town called Turtle Bay. Deep Waters was a super fun and emotional story to write. My heroine is a marine-life vet who speicalizes in sea turtles (so that’s a big theme!) and my hero works for her older brother at Covenant Crisis Management (the private security company).

It will release on Kindle July 1 and in paperback on July 4! So to celebrate I’m hosting a month-long Summer Prize Package that includes lots of goodies:

A signed paperback of Deep Waters, an adorable sea turtle knicknack, a summer tote, beach towel, a drink cup and an adult ocean themed coloring book with colored pencils. You’re all ready for the beach or summer sunning and then some! 

Enter the rafflecopter below to win. U.S citizens only 18+ 

 

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Join the Patch Pack!

***Update 2/21/2017 Thanks, everyone, the spots have now been filled. There was an overwhelming response (to which I’m grateful) and not everyone could squeeze in. However, know that the Patch Pack will open up again in the near future. Those who filled a slot have been notified personally by email and added to the private facebook group. Thanks again for your support!***


Hey ya’ll!

Guess what? My 4th Love Inspired Suspense novel, Final Verdict, is releasing in April and there are a few limited spaces in the Patch Pack for those of you who might be interested in joining up to help me spread the word!

By joining the Patch Pack, you’ll receive a FREE advanced digital copy of Final Verdict. Here’s  a peek at the book:

FATAL JUSTICE 
When Aurora Daniels becomes the target of someone seeking their own twisted justice, Sheriff Beckett Marsh is the only one who can rescue her. As a public defender, Aurora has angered plenty of people in town—and in her past. And while Beckett constantly clashes with the feisty lawyer professionally, it’s his duty to protect and serve. Guarding her 24/7 is now his sole assignment. He may not have been able to save his fiancée from a dangerous felon, but he’ll do whatever it takes to keep Aurora alive. Even if working with her to catch and convict this ruthless killer puts his heart in the crosshairs.

Sound like a book you’d like to read? Great! Let me share a few other perks of being in the Patch Pack. You’ll be added to a “secret” group on  Facebook. We have a lot of fun over there as we chat about books, life, and sometimes Patch Packers help me brainstorm ideas and help out with character names and the like…also…with each book they commit to promote, they’re entered into an exclusive giveaway full of fun prizes. This last book I gave away a kindle fire, signed paper back, cool coffee mug and coaster to boot!

 Basically, the Patch Pack team helps me spread the word about the book through their circle of influence such as social media sites, church friends and family, word of mouth, and of course, honest reviews!

Space is limited, so if you feel like this might be something you are interested in, please fill out the Google form: PATCH PACK GOOGLE FORM

Thanks again for considering teaming up with me!

Kiss or Miss? Featuring Melanie Snitker!

Thanks for playing. The contest is now closed and the winner has been notified. For those of you who guessed if Melanie’s excerpt below was a “kiss or miss” it was a MISS! I’m going to call it a miss!
 Parker really wants to kiss her and brushes a whisper of a kiss on her cheek, but he walks away when he wants to give her a true kiss. Instead, he lets her have the space she wanted – or at least she thinks she wants!

Welcome to the “Kiss or Miss” Scavenger Hunt.
I am so glad you’ve stopped by today to play along. Today is stop #6, but you can journey through all eight stops, following the order in the schedule. Each stop will include two or three clue words in red. Collect them all and enter to win our grand prize at the final stop on February 17th on Crystal’s site.

Along each stop, you’ll get to meet an awesome author friend, read a super fun excerpt from one of their favorite kiss-or-miss scenes, and enter some sweet giveaways.

Here Are the Deets:
Scavenger Hunt Schedule: February 13th through the 17th.

Once you have all the words, arrange them in order to complete the mystery quote and enter it at the final stop of the event on Crystal’s site, 2/17.

Grand Prize: A paperback from each participating author, as shown in the image below.

Ready to Dive in? Follow the blog hop order below:

Stop 1 – 2/13/17: Crystal’s blog, featuring Pepper Basham
Stop 2 – 2/13/17: Pepper’s blog, featuring Stacy Claflin
Stop 3 – 2/14/17: Stacy’s blog, featuring Juliette Duncan
Stop 4 – 2/14/17: Juliette’s blog, featuring Sarah Monzon
Stop 5 – 2/15/17: Sarah’s blog, featuring Jessica Patch
Stop 6 – 2/15/17: Jessica’s blog, featuring Melanie Snitker
Stop 7 – 2/16/17: Melanie’s blog, featuring Melissa Tagg
Stop 8 – 2/16/17: Melissa’s blog, featuring Crystal Walton
Stop 9 – 2/17/17: Crystal’s blog, final entry

Stop #6 Featuring Melanie Snitker Thanks so much, Melanie, for being here today. I’m stoked for everyone to read your Kiss or Miss scene!

Thank
you so much, Jessica, for hosting me on your blog today! I’m looking forward to
sharing more about my new release, Finding Joy.
Sometimes, what looks like a dead end, is
really a new beginning.
A horrific
accident changed everything for Parker Wilson. The beautiful new employee his
mom hires is the last thing he needs and he’ll do whatever it takes to make the
girl quit. All he wants is to regain the peace and quiet he prefers.
Chelsea Blake
had been under the influence of her parents for ages,
but nothing short of desperation would force her to work on a local cattle
ranch. She may not be cut out for ranch life, but her determination to succeed
is stronger than her handsome employer’s efforts at forcing her to leave.
Unprepared to
discover all they have in common, if they set aside their initial dislike, they
might find joy beyond measure.
 Finding Joy is available for $0.99 through February 19th.
Click here to snag your
copy!
For your chance to win a digital copy of Finding Peace, the first
book in this series, read the excerpt below. Then vote below to enter your choice of “kiss” or “miss” in the Rafflecopter form.
A winner
will be chosen randomly on February 18th, 2017.
Excerpt from Finding Joy:
Chelsea
nodded slowly. “That makes sense. It hurts when people don’t see us for who we
really are.”
There
was no doubting the sadness in her eyes. “Are things still not going well with
your parents?”
She
gave a half shrug. “I don’t know why it always surprises me. You’d think I’d be
used to it by now. You were right, though. My parents never knew me.” She took
a long drink. “I’ve always been their daughter and Laurie’s sister. Never
Chelsea. I’m not even sure I know who I really am.” 
“Well,
I do.” Parker reached across the table and cradled her hand in his. Not even
the hot drink had warmed her skin after being outside. He covered it with his
other hand. “You, Chelsea Blake, are a beautiful, intelligent woman. You never
give up, no matter how many obstacles get in your way. You were willing to fly
in the face of what your parents expected of you in order to find your own
direction in this world.” She was blushing furiously now, but he wasn’t done.
“And you were able to single-handedly drag a grumpy man out of his misery with
a broken bottle of tea and your stubbornness.”
Chelsea
laughed then and covered her face with her hands. Her eyes brimmed with tears
as she shook her head. “You’re something else.”
“Oh?
A good something, or a bad something?” He hiked one eyebrow at her.
“Good.”
She peeked at him from beneath her lashes.
Someone
else came into the coffee shop, bringing with him a blast of cool air. As much
as Parker didn’t want his time with Chelsea to end, he kept in mind the area of
town she lived in. It was nearly dark, and he’d rather she got home sooner than
later.
Chelsea
sighed and reached for her coat, apparently realizing the same thing.
Parker
escorted her to her car and held the door open. Chelsea started the engine and
cranked the heat up all the way. Instead of retreating, he waited, one hand on
the roof of the car and the other on top of the door.
She
turned toward him, lifting her chin. “Thanks for the hot chocolate.”
“You’re
welcome.” He leaned down, his face inches from hers. “Chelsea?”
“Yeah?”
So, what do you
think? Do they kiss? Or is it a miss?
Vote below to enter for
your chance to win a digital copy of Finding Peace.
About the Author:
Melanie D. Snitker has enjoyed writing for as long as she can
remember. She started out creating episodes of cartoon shows that she wanted to
see as a child and her love of writing grew from there. She and her husband
live in Texas with their two children who keep their lives full of adventure,
and two dogs who add a dash of mischief to the family dynamics.
In her spare time, Melanie enjoys photography, reading, crochet, baking,
archery, target shooting, learning about essential oils, and hanging out with
family and friends.
Follow Melanie:

Ready for Stop #7?
Did you collect your clue words in red above? Jot them down and hop over to Melanie’s blog for the next set of clues, goodies, and more.

Great read, Melanie! Okay, everyone don’t forget to go to all the blogs to find the words and enter for a chance to win! Yay! 

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On the 3rd Day of Christmas…

…this author gave to me…
10 copies of Concealed Identity!


And 10 adorbs Christmas ornaments but that didn’t rhyme so…
I am so excited to be a part of the 12 Days of Christmas! Just look at the graphic to see how amazing it is! Each day a new author will be giving away a fun prize (books included) and YOU could win! All you have to do is enter the giveaway below!

My newest book has some Christmas elements in it. For example, my heroine, Blair Sullivan is obsessed with Christmas (she has reasons) and that’s why she’s named her antique store It’s a Wonderful Life. She even has a bell above the door so an angel can get its wings (like, she knows this isn’t real, it’s nostalgia) and her sweet little shop that’s set in the quaint and quirky small town of Hope, TN is decorated like Christmas 24/7. Yeah, my hero,  Holt finds it weird but as he gets to know Blair and falls in love with her, he discovers it’s rather endearing.

DEEP-COVER ASSIGNMENT 
After Holt McKnight’s criminal informant disappears, the DEA agent must go undercover to get close to the missing man’s sister, who may know more than she’s letting on. But when Blair Sullivan’s attacked, it’s up to him to protect her—without blowing his cover. Blair isn’t sure she can trust her new neighbor, Holt. After all, the last charming and handsome man she fell for was her late husband, and he turned out to be the brother of a ruthless drug lord. Yet when it’s clear the target on her back is somehow linked to her past, she has no choice but to accept Holt’s protection. Even if getting close is the last thing her scarred heart can handle.

Tomorrow, you’ll have a chance to enter again (enter each day if you want!) to receive Gabrielle Meyer’s, A Family Arrangement! CLICK HERE to go to her website. 

Have you missed the chance to enter to win on Day 1 or Day 2? Well, here you go! Go enter!


DAY 1 Win Hazardous Holiday by Liz Johnson 
DAY 2 Win Watercolor Dreams audio book (digital download) by Sherry Kyle

Do you have a favorite Christmas ornament? If so, share in the comments. If not, tell me your favorite Christmas song or carol!

Okay, now enter to win! 
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Beach Read Prize Package Giveaway!

Hi everyone! Protective Duty, my 2nd Love Inspired Suspense, just released on Kindle today and the paperback releases on shelves and online retailers June 7th! I’m so excited to share Eric Hale’s story with you. 

To celebrate, I’m giving away a BEACH READ prize package to one winner! 

Included is: A fun beach bag, beach towel, bandana, flip flops (will get the size from the winner after the drawing ends), a sweet tea and sunshine tumbler, and a signed paperback copy of Protective Duty! Yay! 

All you have to do is enter for a chance to win below! U.S residents only, 18+ 

Buy the BOOK!
HIGH-RISK REUNION 
Minutes into FBI profiler Bryn Eastman’s first case since a near-fatal shooting, a brazen serial killer sets his sights on her next. Now her life—and career—is in the hands of her new partner, Detective Eric Hale, the man she once loved and lost. Racked with nightmares of the shooting and regrets for the tragedy that tore her and Eric apart, Bryn doesn’t want Eric to discover the secrets she carries—but she needs him. Seeing Bryn brings back memories Eric can’t control. Memories of a once-in-a-lifetime love. But the tough detective knows their only path to a second chance goes straight through a relentless killer…one who won’t quit until he counts Bryn as his fifth victim.

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Wanna Join the Patch Pack? Yes, You Do!

Together we can do anything!

Hey everyone! January will soon be here and I’m looking for some friends who are interested in joining my Patch Pack! 

What is the Patch Pack and what do I get out of it, you ask?

The Patch Pack is a group of friends from all over who would  like to help me spread the word about my upcoming novel, Fatal Reunion, and other books (check out my Seasons of Hope Series HERE).  Word of mouth is by far the best way to get the news out. I simply can’t do this alone and I need a pack of people who want to jump onboard the crazy train with me! Okay, it’s not crazy but it will be fun.

What does it entail? Simply spreading the word across social media such as facebook posts, tweets, pins on Pinterest, posting pics of you with my books on instagram. And writing a review (can be super simple) on review sites like Amazon, GoodReads, and B&N. But I stink at creating tweets and FB posts, you say! That’s okay, I’ll help you. Also, you can request my novels at your local libraries and if you’re in a book club, suggest my book and a Skype session with me! Think out of the box! 

How does it benefit me? First of all, you get to be privy to information before anyone else. You get to meet new people who have one thing in common as you–the love of books! You’ll also get a complimentary Advanced Reader Copy (e Book) so you can leave that review on reader sites if you enjoy it. And you’ll be entered into giveaways that no one else is! I’ve got some cool prizes lined up for my Patch Packers. Also, I’ll need help brainstorming and naming characters etc…if I choose your ideas you get your name in print in acknowledgments and maybe even a character named after you, which is always fun to see in print! Also, I will love you forever but not in a stalkerish kind of way. 🙂 

Do I have to do something every day? Because, I’m like…busy with my own life. Nope! My books with Harlequin are only on book shelves for a month, so the most I’d ask of you to help me out is once a week. But if you want to do more like create cool memes or post quotes on social media that you really liked or spoke to you, feel free to do as much as you want; I won’t complain.

How long am I stuck in this group? I hope you’ll want to be in the Patch Pack for a super long time! But you don’t have to promote every book. You can leave whenever you’d like. You’re not obligated to anything. 

This sounds super cool. How do I join? It does, doesn’t it? All you have to do is email me at jessica (at) jessicarpatch(dot)com with the following information:

  1. What state do you live in?
  2. Have you read any of my books before?
  3. What social media sites do you regularly post on? (you do need to be on facebook!)
  4. Why do you want to be a part of the Patch Pack? 

Space is limited, so sign up soon before it’s full! Thanks so much everyone! I’m excited about Fatal Reunion coming out in January. Here’s the back cover:

WRONGLY ACCUSED 
When her beloved grandmother is almost killed during a home invasion, Piper Kennedy isn’t surprised that she’s a suspect—especially since Luke Ransom is on the case. The handsome detective she once loved thinks she knows more than she’s telling about the attack. And given her crooked past and the heartbreaking way she’d been forced to betray Luke years ago, Piper understands why he doesn’t trust her. But when attempts are made on her life, Luke insists on keeping her safe and finding out who wants her dead. And Piper and Luke soon realize a remorseless criminal will do anything to keep them from the truth…or an unexpected second shot at a future.

Preorder Now!

photocredit: freedigitalphotos/hin255

Don’t judge a book by its cover…but for the love, read the back!

 
 
A true story…
 
My friend, I’ll call her Jane since she said not to use her name as she humiliated herself, came over this week. She brought her laptop, and we decided to search the Amazon store for free books that we could read together. While browsing through them, I became engrossed and tuned her out. I’m really trying to get better about this habit. Our conversation went like this:
 
“Oooh, Jess, this book looks really good!”
 
“Hmmm…”
 
“Are you listening to me?”
 
I was reading the back cover of a love inspired book. “Yeah, what’s it about?”
 
 “A paranormal detective. Stop what you’re doing, and look at the cover. It’s intriguing!”
 
I glanced up as she turned the laptop around, and staring me in the face was a nice looking man with sinister yet determined eyes. In the background a dark shadowy house beckoned my attention and piqued my interest. I had to admit, the cover looked like something I’d definitely want to consider. Not so much the man, but the house and the darkness. I looked at the title, which I’ll not name, typed it in, and hit my “one click” button. BAM…I can read it whenever.
 
I moved on to other books, and then I decided to go back to the paranormal book. I scrolled down to the item description, and my mouth fell open. “Jane, did you read the back cover?”
 
“Um…yeah.” I looked up and glared at her until she felt it and met my eyes. “What? I did.”
 
I can’t arch one brow like most fictional characters, so I raised both. “So…you enjoy gay porn?”
 
Her eyes grew wide, “What!? No! That’s not what that book is about!”
 
I cleared my throat and proceeded to read, “Putting his life and sanity on the line—for a man beyond his reach. Sam Raintree’s experience with things he can’t explain isn’t the only reason his new job as a paranormal investigator is a perfect fit. His coworkers, preoccupied with things outside the norm, will never notice he’s gay…This book has been previously published. Warning: This title contains explicit male/male dream-sex, cross-dimensional electromagnetic theories (mmm, that’s hot!), intense violence, and language graphic enough to wake the dead.” *the remark in parenthesis is not mine.

I sat the laptop down. “Not exactly inspirational fiction.”

Her face turned red. “Maybe I just skimmed it. The cover looked so good.”

Maybe? Do you realize that since I downloaded this book, next time I’m on Amazon it will prepare a list of books I might enjoy reading based on what I’ve downloaded!?”

“That’s bad, huh?”

I gave her a pointed look and promptly deleted the book. “Don’t even ask to get a say in our next book club read. The answer’s no.”

 

 
 
You never know what’s inside it!
 
Book covers influence what I pick up and what I curl my nose up to. I may put a book down just because the cover isn’t intriguing. (I should also take my own advice and not judge a book by its cover!) But it is important. I went on Amazon and started scrolling through books. Christian and non. I found a pattern to what draws my eye. I then scrolled through some authors I enjoy reading and lo and behold, I found the pattern! Here are few:
 
 

 

 

 

See the pattern?
 

Guess I like scary houses (shrug). I don’t know. It’s what drew me to download the gay porn novel. It was the back cover that inspired me to delete it! The above books have mystery…intrigue. What secrets are lying behind the cover of night? I love designs that hold shadows of people or places. Even if I’m reading a romance, which I love to read, I’d rather see a setting of where the book takes place than to see the people (unless they’re shadows =)). It’s just my reader preference. It’ll probably be my preference when my book goes through cover design. We’ll see what happens when the time comes.

 
Do book covers influence your choice of reading? What kind of designs determine what you purchase?  Have you found a pattern that draws your eye?
 
* Mary Keeley an agent with Books and Such Literary group wrote a great blog on book covers and the design process this past Wednesday. Check it out.
 
Have a great weekend! See you Monday!