Thursday, September 13, 2012

Review ~ Special Offers by M.L. Ryan

Hailey Parrish is quick-witted, irreverent, and hasn’t had a date in three years. She only wanted an eBook reader because her collection of paperbacks threatened to take over her small living space. Little did she know that the "special offers" that prompted the purchase included much more than a reduced price in exchange for a few ads. The device came pre-loaded with the essence of Sebastian Kess, an erudite womanizer with magical abilities from a parallel dimension. When she inadvertently releases him and he inhabits her body, she finally has a man inside her, just not in the way she imagined. And soon her predicament introduces her to yet another supernatural, the handsome could-be-the-man-of-her-dreams Alex Sunderland. Can Alex and Hailey find a way to return Sebastian to his own body, stay one step ahead of the criminals who want to keep him where he is, and not lose their sense of humor?

My Review

A new and exciting paranormal series. The premise for this book is very unique along with some other aspects of the story. Hailey works at a dairy farm milking chinchillas! I really like the heroine. She is smart, sassy and full of snark. I found myself smiling and chuckling while reading this book. The Coursodon are "people" from another dimension, and while it doesn't give a lot of back story as to what they really are, I didn't feel like I missed anything. The book flowed really well and I couldn't wait to see what was going to happen next. There is some light romance, but that is not the main focus of the story. There was one or two mistakes in editing, but believe me, it doesn't take away from the story! I really enjoyed this book and I am looking forward to the next!


ONLY .99!! Special Offers (The Coursodon Dimension)


Where did you come up with the idea for Special Offers?  I had just purchased my full-priced Kindle when I saw Amazon was selling less expensive versions that came with “special offers.”  For some reason, my warped brain thought it would be amusing if what made the cheaper Kindles special was that they came with some fiendish spirit.  Originally, I imagined something like a havoc-wrecking poltergeist, but that quickly changed into the annoying, yet ingratiating Sebastian Kess.

Chinchilla milking, how did this come about?  Much as I am reluctant to admit this, I personally have experience milking rodents.   Not chinchilla, and not for cheese, it was in the name of nutritional research.  But I decided to make Hailey a chinchilla-milker because I didn’t think anyone would believe there was a market for rat-milk cheese.  

Can you explain a little about the Coursodon?  The Coursodon are the inhabitants of a dimension that exists parallel to ours.  They are much like us, except they all have varying degrees of magical aptitude.  There will be much more information about them in the next book, which I hope to have out in the late fall.  I haven’t decided yet on its title; maybe your readers can give me suggestions?

Do you have any hidden talents?  Well, I was a fantastic rodent-milker.  World-class, in fact.  Not that it’s all that difficult; the hardest part is getting the tiny stool underneath them.
Cat or dog?  Both!  We have four cats and two dogs.  I think having both allows people to learn two of the most important life lessons  – dogs teach us the beauty of unconditional love while cats instruct us how to not show it under any circumstances. 

How long have you been writing?  I’ve been making up stories in my head for as long as I can remember, but Special Offers is my first attempt at actually writing one down.   

If you could visit any place, where would it be?  Outer space.  Unfortunately, I get motion sickness just thinking about flying, so my dream of becoming an astronaut is just that, a dream.
Favorite food?  Yellow cake with dark chocolate frosting.

What jobs did you have before you became a writer?  I still have a “day job” - I’m a scientist who studies gastrointestinal diseases – but I write at night and on the weekends.  Before I received my Ph.D., I worked as a picture-framer, a dog groomer and an apartment manager.

What is one book you could read over and over?   The Harry Potter series; I’ve read each book many times.

What do you do in your free time?  I like to read other people’s paranormal romance – urban fantasy novels and I play soccer on two different women’s recreational-league teams.  I also like to spend as much time as possible with my fabulous husband and son.

How do reviews, good or bad, affect you?  Good reviews make me feel like all the time and effort I put into my work is worth it.  Not that I write for other people, but it is rewarding when you realize others enjoy what you’ve written.  As for bad reviews, I haven’t really gotten one yet.  Well, at least not from an reputable source that is.  One of my fellow faculty members stopped me in the hall one day and said he had started to read Special Offers, but couldn’t finish because it was “really not very good.”  As he went on to detail all the negatives, I realized that because the book was written in first-person narrative, he thought the main character was me.  So much for higher education…

When writing, do you plot and organize, or do you write then fit it all together?   I have a general idea of where I want things to go when I start, but that’s about the extent of my organization.  I don’t outline chapters, or develop intricate character profiles.  I like to see where the characters take me. 

What is one thing you absolutely cannot do without while writing?  My first thought, being an irrepressible smart-ass, is air.  But besides my laptop and a relatively quiet spot, there isn’t anything I have to have in order to write.   

I really appreciate you taking time from your schedule to answer these questions.  

Visit M.L. Ryan

Twitter: @MLRyan1


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