Trilogy Giveaway + Author Interview + Review – Caroline Hanson, Valerie Dearborn Series
Love is Mortal Review
Betrayal and redemption are the primary themes in Love is Mortal, book 3 in the Valerie Dearborn series. It also completes the story arc of Valerie and Lucas. Stuck in the land of the Fey, Valerie is desperate to get out of Cerdwellyn’s clutches. Her powers as an empath, while useful, are not enough and she’ll have to work with Lucas if they have any hope of freedom. But can she trust him after his betrayal?
I have enjoyed this series quite a bit so it was sad to see this come to the end, though this book was a fitting way to conclude their story. There’s a lot of character development, particularly on Lucas’s end. After the devastating revelations in Love is Fear, there was a lot of rebuilding to be done when it came to Lucas and Valerie’s relationship and not a lot of time to do it. The work around was effective.
There wasn’t as much action this time around as Val and Lucas spend a great deal of time captive. It’s more of a psychological game. The the start was a little on the slow side for me because of this, but it does hit its stride and doesn’t really stop until it’s over.
Even though this doesn’t leave on a cliffhanger, there are a lot of questions still left when it comes to the land of the Fey and Cerdwellyn’s past and future, as well as Jack and Rachel, so thankfully we’re not completely finished with Valerie Dearborn world. It’s a fabulous series and I still want more.
*ARC provided by the author.
I’d like to extend a warm welcome to Caroline Hanson, author of the fantastic Valerie Dearborn novels. With the third and final book (for this arc at least) now released, Ms. Hanson and I thought it’d be a great opportunity to hold a giveaway as well! But before that I had a few questions for our guest of honor.
1. Could you tell us a little about yourself? Where did you grow up and how did you come to love the Urban Fantasy and Paranormal genre?
I grew up in Fresno, California which is not particularly exciting. The most famous person to come out of our school is Kevin Federline– what’s that tell ya? I’m an only child and had strict parents so I spent a lot of time in my room reading. I moved to England at 20 which should also tell you something about me– halfway around the world from Fresno. Lol.
I loved Anne Rice and Depeche Mode as well as The Cure during high school and always liked paranormal books. But it was reading Laurell K Hamilton several years ago that started me on my urban fantasy obsession.
2. Can you share a little bit of your process with creating the Valerie Dearborn novels? Did you have a three initial books in mind, or were you initially planning one book and then your ideas expanded?
Valerie Dearborn actually came to me as a fairly full-fledged idea and was in response to what I had been reading. I did not like how action-based or mythology-based urban fantasy had become. Very external plot driver whereas Hamilton or even Meyer are all internal plot. I love internal conflict and building external problems to reflect the character’s internal bullshit. Joss Whedon is the master of that type of storytelling.
I also really don’t like the way vampires have been glamorized. That they have become all PC and nice. WTF? They’re killers! Very smart, very manipulative and very beautiful killers. That is what I find fascinating about vampires.
As for heroines, with the exception of Bella, they are usually very kick ass. I don’t relate to that. If a vampire was going to attack me I would probably huddle up in a ball and wait for the end. I wanted to read a story about a normal girl who gets dragged into the vampire stuff against her will. I think Valerie is relatable and that’s what has resonated with people. Or Lucas. Either way they like the books.
3. Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
Ugh. That’s tough and my answer isn’t very nice. I think in order to be successful, you have to be a little insecure with your writing. I’m an attorney (have you noticed how many successful writers are attorneys?) and I was terrible at law school. My law school was proud of the fact that they would tear us down and try to rebuild us. To succeed in writing one must be comfortable with being torn down. You will be told your writing blows. That’s just a fact. But successful writers take that criticism and look for the truth in it, even when what they want to say is ‘Go f*ck yourself!’ If you can’t cut your favorite scene or cut out thousands of words and start over again, you probably won’t be successful. And that sucks.
4. Do you have any favorite authors who have inspired you?
Well, as I said a little bit above it would be Laurell K Hamilton and Anne Rice. But I also love Laura Kinsale and Loretta Chase. I met Loretta Chase this last year and went up to her, wanting to tell her how much I loved her stories but I got all teary-eyed and had to leave because I was gonna cry. It was a little bizarre to have such a fan girl reaction.
5.What can we look for next for your future works and the Valerie Dearborn world and other future works?
You know, I’m not sure what’s next. I’ve written three books, two novellas, two short stories and a couple of other random things in the last two years and I like to think that I am now going to take a break. But writers write and I still have to tell Cerdwellyn’s story. Jack and Rachel’s stories are not complete and I have Molly. In my mind, I think I know what that story is. Or at least part of it, but that may change. I really have to let that percolate, because I know people want Valerie and Lucas in there too and right now I’m not sure they have enough conflict to be very interesting in that book. So the next to Valerie book is going to take a while.
I’m working on a few new things, the first of which is a book called A Lady Out of Time and the heroine is a tough girl. She is a soldier who goes back in time to England and meets a very stuffy duke. I’ve read a lot of historicals and am so sick of the virginal, weak heroine that I really want to write something different.
My other series is called Incendia which means to ‘set alight.’ It’s urban fantasy and different than a lot of the things I have seen. I think this is the series that will make the Lucas fans happy. I think they’ll fall in love with Alexander. It will be very emotionally based, have a love triangle, and both men are pretty flawed. It’s got a Roman feel to it but is modern. Mainly.
Thank you again to Ms. Hanson and we look forward to what you’ve got next!
With Your Urban Fantasy Ms. Hanson is holding a giveaway for TWO winners to receive the complete trilogy of this series. It’s perfect for those of you who are new to the series, or for those who still want a chance to read the final book. It’s a win win!
I am collecting entries through Saturday, December 8th. I will announce the winner the next day.
How to Enter (PLEASE READ CAREFULLY): My giveaways are only open to followers of Your Urban Fantasy who are 18 years of age or older. In order to enter YOU MUST COMMENT ON THE ANNOUNCEMENT POST! If you’re a new member, sign up on the right panel to follow my blog via email and/or Twitter. (Make sure you check your email to confirm your subscription. You should receive a notification immediately, so check your spam folder if you don’t see it right away). Current followers can just say so in their post and your entry will be added. Overall, there are up to 3 chances to win:
- Follow this blog via email (THIS IS REQUIRED)
- Follow me on Twitter (bonus entry)
- “Like” Your Urban Fantasy on Facebook (bonus entry)
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