Tag Archives: Debra E. Marvin

Top 10 Tuesday — The Novella

17 Jul

no·vel·la

noun
1. a short novel or long short story.

Yep, that is the official definition of novella, the subject of this week’s Top Ten Tuesday. As in the case of their longer cousins, novellas span genres and styles — historical, contemporary, suspense, romance — there is something for everyone! Looking at the varying forms novellas take, I have come up with a few categories. What do you think?

Don’t forget to check out other bloggers favorite novellas at That Artsy Reader Girl.

 

 

Top Novellas

The Complimentary Novella — books that are written to introduce or compliment a novel series. These help to fill in the blanks, as well as entice a reader with a quick read. They are often prequels to the main story.

An Awakened Heart (An Orphan Train Novella) by Jody Hedund

Then Came You (A Bradford Sisters novella) by Becky Wade

 

Interrelated Novella Collection — these 2-4 novella collections often have several authors all writing within a continuing storyline. The examples I have chosen either follow different members of a family, involve characters connected with a place, and/or tell the story from different characters’ points of view.

Austen in Austin, volume 1 by Susan Dietze, Gina Welborn, Anita Mae Draper, and Debra E. Marvin

Invitation, Cycle One of The Harbingers Series by Frank Peretti, Angela Hunt, Bill Myers, and Alton Gansky

Where Tree Tops Glisten by Tricia Goyer, Cara Putman, and Sarah Sundin

 

Serialized Novellas — a series of individually published novellas (not part of a published collection) that follow a character, or group of characters, and are written by a single author.

Boo series by Rene Guttering (there are 4 in the series)

In The President’s Service series by Ace Collins (there are 14 books in this series, I have included the covers of the first 2)

Summer of The Burning Sky series by Susan May Warren (a third is due out in August)

Thematic novella collections — several novellas published together and united by a common theme or subject matter. They often involve several authors.

Among The Fair Magnolias by Tamera Alexander, Dorothy Love, Elizabeth Musser, and Shelley Gray

Sins of The Past by Dee Henderson, Lynette Eason, and Dani Pettrey

 

Standalone Novellas — a complete, unto itself story, just in novella length. I have found that there are lots of novellas published with Christmas themes — great for quick reading during a very busy time of year.

12 Days at Bleakly Manor by Michelle Griep

An Endless Christmas by Cynthia Ruchti 

Remembering Christmas by Dan Walsh

Silent Night, Deadly Night by Richard Mabry, M.D.

 

What is your favorite novella?

 

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Book Review: Austen in Austin, Volume 1

30 May

Discover four heroines in historical Austin, TX, as they find love — Jane Austen style. Volume 1 includes:

If I Loved You Less by Gina Welborn, based on Emma
A prideful matchmaker examines her own heart when her protégé falls for the wrong suitor.

Refinements by Anita Mae Draper, based on Sense and Sensibility
A misguided academy graduate spends the summer falling in love . . . twice.

One Word from You by Susanne Dietze, based on Pride and Prejudice
A down-on-her-luck journalist finds the story of her dreams, but her prejudice may cost her true love . . . and her career.

Alarmingly Charming by Debra E. Marvin, based on Northanger Abbey
A timid gothic dime-novel enthusiast tries to solve the mystery of a haunted cemetery and, even more shocking, why two equally charming suitors compete for her attentions.

Gina Welborn writes lighthearted historicals featuring spunky heroines and wild-at-heart heroes.She can be contacted via her website http://www.ginawelborn.com.

Anita Mae Draper’s historical romances are woven under the western skies of the Saskatchewan prairie where her love of research and genealogy yields fascinating truths that layer her stories with rich historical details. Discover more at:
Website – http://www.anitamaedraper.com
Pinterest – http://www.pinterest.com/anitamaedraper/

Susanne Dietze began writing love stories in high school, casting her friends in the starring roles. Today, she’s the award-winning author of a dozen new and upcoming historical romances. You can visit her on her website, http://www.susannedietze.com, and sign up for her newsletter for an occasional cheery hello: http://eepurl.com/bieza5

Other than writing light-hearted romances and gritty gothics, Debra E. Marvin has rather normal obsessions such as fabric, peanut butter, vacations, British dramas, and whatever mystery series she’s currently stuck on.

debraemarvin.com
Inkwell Inspirations Blog, Colonial Quills Blog
Pinterest @debraemarvin
Facebook debra e marvin
Instagram Debra E Marvin… you get the drift. She’s not hard to find!

 

My Impressions:

Austen in Austin, volume 1, is a fun take on classic Jane Austen stories with the sass and swagger of Texas in the 1880s. With a definite American twist, the four novellas focus on the love stories that make Austen a favorite with romance fans. All four novellas have the fresh voice of their respective authors, but contain a central thread that unites them. While many characters make repeat appearances, Mrs. Collins, the headmistress of the Jeanette C. Austen Academy for Women located in Austin Abbey, provides a great unifying influence. While the stories use the original novels as a framework, they include fun additions and unique takes. There are cowboys, ranchers, and railroad men, along with the women who add sweetness, elegance, and romance to the hill country town. I love Austen variations, and Austen in Austin is a wonderful addition to my Austen-esque library. The original novels given a remix are Emma, Sense And Sensibility, Pride And Prejudice, and Northanger Abbey. Readers in the know easily see the Austen influence, but each novella presents a new story to enjoy. A big plus in this series is the faith thread that runs throughout the book. The characters’ dependance on God is a welcome addition.  It’s hard to pick a favorite of the four (all are great), but I have to say that Alarmingly Charming was great fun. Northanger Abbey is my least favorite of Austen’s works, but this novella made me want to revisit the tongue-in-cheek gothic.

There’s so much reading fun in Austen in Austin, volume 1, that I am glad there’s a volume 2! I can’t wait to travel back in time to Austin and Austen!

Recommended.

Audience: adults.

To purchase, click HERE. It’s currently 99 cents for Kindle!

(Thanks to WhiteFire publishing for a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

Top 10 Tuesday — New To Me Authors

2 Jan

This week’s Top 10 Tuesday theme is 2017 New-To-Me Authors. As often as can, I try to include on my reading list authors I have not read. It’s easy to stick to the tried and true, but you really miss out on some wonderful books if you don’t expand the horizons a bit. I am sure that many of the authors on my list will be familiar names to my readers, but I had not read them before 2017. My bad! 😉 How about you? What new author did you read and love this year?

 

Top New To Me Authors of 2017

Karen BarnettThe Road to Paradise

Christine DillonGrace in Strange Disguise

Michelle Griep12 Days at Bleakly Manor

Debra E. Marvin The Case of The Clobbered Cad

Joanna Davidson PolitanoLady Jayne Disappears

Dina L. SliemanDauntless

Amy K. SorrellsHow Sweet The Sound

Ann Marie StewartStars in The Grass

Claire WongThe Runaway

Which new-to-you author did you discover in 2017?

 

 

 

Book Review/Author Interview/Giveaway! — The Case of The Clobbered Cad

12 Oct

 

Series: The Nosy Parker Mysteries
Genre:  Journey Fiction, Historical, Mystery 
Publisher: Indie
Publication date: August 1, 2017

Inspired by the famous Girl Detective, the members of the Olentangy Heights Girls’ Detective Society, affectionately known as the Nosy Parkers, spent their formative years studying criminology, codes, and capers. Unfortunately, opportunities to put their unique skills to work were thin on the ground in the post-war boom of their little corner of suburbia and they eventually grew up to pursue more sensible careers. Until…

Heather Munro’s youthful devotion to The Girl Detective led to a passion for digging around in history. Now pursuing her Master’s Degree in Celtic Studies, Heather must balance exploring Edinburgh with her determination to excel in her all–male classes at the University. Unfortunately, on her first night working in the Archives room, she discovers the dead body of a visiting professor, the same would-be lothario she’d hoped never to see again.

As clues come to light, it’s clear someone hopes to frame Heather for the murder. Besides her quirky landlady, whom can she trust? How can she clear her name? The police and the American Consul have plenty of suspects, but only two seem to have both motive and opportunity: Heather and the quiet Scottish historian she longs to believe in.

GOODREADS | AMAZON

Debra E. Marvin is a member of ACFW, Sisters in Crime, a Grace Awards Judge, and serves on the board of Bridges Ministry in Seneca Falls, NY. She’s one of the founders of Inkwell Inspirations Blog, and is published with WhiteFire Publishing, Forget Me Not Romances, Journey Fiction and contracted with Barbour Publishing. Debra works as a program assistant at Cornell University in upstate NY, and enjoys her family and grandchildren, obsessively buying fabric, watching British programming and traveling with her childhood friends.

 FACEBOOK | TWITTER | PINTEREST | AMAZON | WEBSITE

 

1. Who or what inspired you to be a writer?
I started making illustrated books as a child, then became a student who wrote two thousand words for a five hundred word essay. Hanging around with readers and authors just feels right, because we are all compelled to step into a story. I love beautiful words and images and there’s not quite so satisfying as finding just the right word. There may have been a time when I read a story and thought… I can do that!  (Oh how naïve! I can do it but it’s darn hard work!)

2. What did you want to be when you grew up? Did being an author ever cross your mind?
Despite the fact I tend to be a bit driven by all I want to get done now, I wasn’t a particularly focused child. I recall a few years of wanting to be an astronomer, but basically I just liked to make things and spend time daydreaming.  I was an art major (and we know how difficult that is as a career!) and then all of a sudden I was a housewife and mother who obsessively made things. Finally, I took a creative writing class in my thirties and it all just took off. Writing satisfies like nothing else!

3. What is your current WIP? What can you tell us about this project?
Currently, I’m working on my second contemporary romance novella. Somewhere along the way this project became a difficult emotional journey and was put aside while I finished this mystery and a colonial era novella. The first contemporary romance was a breeze—I wrote 17,000 words in three days. This one is like picking up egg whites, but I’m determined to see it through! It takes place on Cape Hatteras and will be out later this year from Forget Me Not Romances.

What inspired the idea for The Case of the Clobbered Cad?  Oh I wish I knew how to explain the tangled lines that became this story. Ideas just seem to pop up and then explode into a puzzle that needs to be solved. When my setting changed from Sturbridge Village to Edinburgh, Scotland, research pulled me into the University’s archeology department. I had that lovely lightbulb moment upon seeing some reference to an artifact. I’d contacted the secretary of the History and Archeology departments and it happened that a retired archeology professor gave me all sorts of information on the very vibrant archeology department of the 1950s.

4. What do you want readers to take away from reading The Case of the Clobbered Cad?
This story doesn’t quite fit into a nice, neat genre and so I hope readers find it unexpected,  fresh, enjoyable, entertaining and creates nostalgia for the days when a girl detective story kept them up late on a school night!

5. When you are not writing, what hobbies do you enjoy?
I love to make things that involve color, texture and handwork. It might be decorative painting, knitting, gardening and the occasional fairy house. But mostly I’m like to design and sew—quilting or making costumes. (I have a little problem with buying fabric.)

For fans of Nancy Drew, Agatha Christie, or cozy mysteries in general, The Case of The Clobbered Cad is a treat! Main character, Heather Munro is on the case of the murder of the much hated celebrity archaeologist/author/professor Jack Winters. There is no lack of suspects; everyone seems to have a motive and opportunity. And the police, though completely in control of the investigation, seem to have preconceived notions of just whodunit! It takes Heather, with a little help from her landlady, to get to the bottom of things.

I really enjoyed this historical cozy mystery. The setting of Edinburg in the 1950s gave it a classic mystery vibe, while the sweet, and somewhat naive Heather is the perfect girl detective. Heather has some history with the murder victim which puts her on the short list of suspects. I liked how the author allows Heather to come to grips with her small indiscretion as she searches for the killer. Heather’s landlady assists Heather in the investigation and in Heather’s ultimate forgiveness of herself. Other characters are all a bit shifty, and it is difficult for Heather to know whom to trust. The clues and close calls keep Heather and the reader on their toes. I didn’t see the ending coming, which is a big plus in my book. There is a bit of romance for Heather that I would love to see explored should there be another book (yes, please!). Heather Munro is an endearing character, and I’d love to join her on more mysterious adventures in Scotland.

Recommended.

Audience: adults.

(Thanks to Singing Librarian Blog Tours for a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

Enter the giveaway HERE.

 

October 2-Reading Is My SuperPower
October 3-Bibliophile Reviews
October 4-Singing Librarian Books
October 5-Joy of Reading ​
October 6-Karen Sue Hadley
October 7-Fiction Aficionado
October 9-A Baker’s Perspective
October 10-allofakindmom
October 11-The Power of Words
October 12-​By The Book
October 13-Ponderings of a Poet & Procrastinator
October 14-Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen 

Top 10 Tuesday — Fall TBR List

19 Sep

Can you believe that in two days it will be Fall?! Here in middle Georgia the department stores are sporting Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas decor for sale, but the temperatures are hovering in the Summer-range, so Fall doesn’t seem that imminent. But what is imminent is my Fall TBR list (or pile!). The folks at The Broke And The Bookish are asking bloggers to share what they will be reading in the next few months, and I am always eager to oblige. I have a wide variety of reading ahead of me — historical, romance, contemporary, mystery/suspense, and interestingly enough, a couple of Christmas novels! So without further ado, my Fall TBR List!

Top Ten Books on My TBR List

The Case of The Clobbered Cad by Debra E. Marvin

Charming The Troublemaker by Pepper Basham

The Christmas Blessing by Melody Carlson

Christy by Catherine Marshall

Colors of Christmas by Olivia Newport

Deeds of Darkness by Mel Starr

How Sweet The Sound by Amy Sorrells 

Lydia by Diana Wallis Taylor

Many Sparrows by Lori Benton

Vanishing Point by Lisa Harris

What are you reading this Fall?