Saturday, September 05, 2009

Book Review: Romanced to Death

This summer I mentored an aspiring writer as part of the Barbara Burnett Smith Aspiring Writers Event. There were a lot of published authors who mentored, Susan Rogers Cooper among them. Frankly, it was like homecoming to get to see authors/friends I hadn’t visited with in a while. Susan is one of my favorites. She’s written three series.

Romanced to Death is the latest (the 8th) in her EJ Pugh mystery series. I would call Romanced to Death a cozy since the protagonist, EJ, is a housewife who gets involved in crimes because she’s curious, believes in righting wrongs, and just can’t seem to help herself. I should also mention EJ is a romance writer. In Romanced to Death, EJ is up for the top award given out for romance writers. Therefore, EJ comes to Austin for the big convention and gets caught up in backstabbing writers, crazy fans and ditzy reporters, and, of course, murder. But it’s not all about EJ. When EJ heads to Austin, she leaves behind her husband and three kids. Those three kids are headed for trouble as a brother who’s been dead for 10 years turns up on the Internet stalking one of the sisters.

If you’ve ever been to a writers’ or fan conference, you’ll enjoy Susan’s opening of the curtains on the behind the scenes shenanigans. And if you ever go to another conference, you’ll spend more time in the bar where the real action plays out.

EJ tells her story in first person. She takes you along on a wild ride. You’ll get to know her, her family and her writer friends. And you’ll worry about her kids as they do just what parents tell teens never to do - they begin to believe the Internet stalker. He may just be the long-lost brother.
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  1. This sounds like such a fun book! Thanks so much for introducing me to sounds right up my alley.

    Mystery Writing is Murder

  2. You guys are turning me into a mystery fan - I've read "The Ride" and "The Prairier Grass Murders" and now I'm reading Elizabeth's "Pretty is as Pretty Dies." Looks like this is another one I'll have to add to my list.

  3. Sounds interesting. It takes a special author to pull off first person - to me anyway. Well done it can be nicely intimate feeling. She does a good job of it, I take, or you wouldn't have given it such a sterling review. Thanks for the tip off. :)

    Marvin D Wilson

  4. Well, I tend to hang out in the bars anyway! LOL

    Sounds like a fun book. Can't wait to read it. Yeah!!! for Susan. As a fellow HOTSINC sister, I'm thrilled to say I know the gal.

    Thanks for sharing her work, Helen. And people thought writers lived a quiet, solitary life! Not even!!

  5. Sounds like an interesting book! I've never heard of this author, but I think the heroine sounds fun. :-)

    Thanks for stopping by my blog! :-)

  6. Not really my genre, but I love that cover. Probably down to my sweet tooth.

  7. Marvin, Susan has written three series this is the 8th in the EJ Pugh series, so she's had some practice.

    Anton, I read a lot in the mystery/suspense/thriller genre (with YA, romance, fantasy thrown in), but I tend to alternate. Now that I've finished Susan's cozy, I've started on a thriller.

  8. Thanks for bringing this book to my attention, Helen! I love stories that happen 'behind the scenes'. Shall check it out as soon as I've finished the two books I'm reading now.


  9. This one definitely sounds interesting, on so many levels.

  10. It sounds like a really good book and how nice of you to do mentoring like that!

  11. Terri, I had fun doing it. I need to email her, as a matter of fact, just to check in.

  12. Helen,

    Your review sold me on this book, but, alas, it's not available for the Kindle and doesn't appear to be available in any e-book formats. Drat!

    I know a lot of people read only print books; I read mostly e-books.

    Lillie Ammann
    A Writer's Words, An Editor's Eye

  13. I'm always on the lookout for a good mystery. I'll check this out.

    I think it is so cool that you mentor aspiring authors. Very commendable.


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