Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Blog Tour: Interview with Laura Lee Nutt + Giveaway!

 

WELCOME TO THE BLOG, LAURA! :)




In elementary school, Laura Lee Nutt checked out every fairy tale in the library so often, if she picked something else, it was cause for curiosity. Even into adulthood, she nurtured her imagination with stories of fairies, true love, monsters, especially werewolves, and the fantastic, but she wondered what happened after “happily ever after.”
This curiosity and catching an illness one chill winter day brought her before a blank computer screen, desperately desiring to write something new. Heinrich, Blanchette, and Karl swiftly spun the tale you just read. Laura feverishly typed, barely fast enough to keep up.
Once Red and the Wolf was born, other stories coalesced in Laura’s mind, Beauty and the Beast, Sleeping Beauty, Hansel and Gretel, all asking the same questions: What might happen if the end of these tales wasn’t really the end? What were these characters’ lives really like after the harrowing events of the fairy tale? What if achieving true love and happiness required something extra? Thus came the idea for this series, Embracing Ever After, where achieving true love requires something special and happily ever after isn’t really the end.
 
Where to Find Laura:


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The_Book_Queen: Hi Laura! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Laura: First, thanks so much for having me today. I am the eldest and only daughter of a family that proudly traces our ancestors back to Scottish clan MacNaughton, who was kicked out of Scotland centuries ago because of a love affair worthy of novelization. Therefore, I have a soft spot for anything Scottish. Further back, I’m descended from Pictish kings, the small but fierce guys that ran out naked but for woad and gave the Romans nightmares. Family and history are dear to my heart, and you will see a lot of those themes in my stories. My husband and I also got together through a series of dramas, heartaches, and feats of love that gave me a very good basis to appreciate and color my fictional romances.

 
 
TBQ: Wow--sounds like your life, and history, is anything but boring! :) I know that you love to write, but if you couldn't, what other dream job do you have? Perhaps one that you had when you were younger?

L: Hmm, that’s a tough one. I think it would be a tossup between a dancer/actress—of course I’d need lessons--or an anthropologist focused in studying courtship and male-female interactions. Though, if you look at my Myers-Briggs recommended careers, drill sergeant should be on that list too. I think I’d prefer the more creative route though.

 
 
TBQ: I think anthropology would be a fascinating career! ;) Your newest release, Red and the Wolf, recently came out. Can you tell us a little bit about this book, and why readers are going to love it?

L: The charm of Red and the Wolf, the thing that makes it stand out amidst all the fairy tale stories in vogue, is that it is not a retelling of an old legend. It is the sequel to Little Red Riding Hood with a little more logic and a lot more romance and paranormal thrown in. Red, or Blanchette as she’s known in my book, did not live happily ever after. Rather, she responded to the attack in her childhood like most children would, with fear. In the course of the story, she has to overcome this fear before she can accept love, accept herself, and save her village from a murderous nix, which is a freshwater German-style merman, and the huntsman from a man determined to execute him for lycanthropy. Red and the Wolf is a story about finding peace and happiness after something horrid, and it’s about learning to accept the good and the difficult of life. And, of course, there’s the romance, but I’ll not say too much more so I don’t spoil it.

 
 
TBQ: Ooh, I can't wait to read it! :D Are there other genres you would like to write about?

L: Yes. My first love is fantasy. However, my fantasy tends to have a lot of romance and my romance a lot of fantasy, so in the long run, I think they will compliment each other well. I also like science fiction with good characterization and most things with a medieval element to them. Most of my stories include at least two of the above.

 
 
TBQ: I hear you are a huge fan of fairy tales (me too!)---what other retellings do you have planned?

L: I’m glad you asked. They’ve all been tumbling through my head for a couple years. Right now, I’m working on the sequel to Hansel and Gretel, which I plan to be second in my Embracing Ever After series, of which Red and the Wolf is the first book. This new one is currently titled Gretel and Her Ghost. Now grown, Gretel is determined to marry and have a normal life, but nearly getting eaten as a child still haunts her and her brother. Hansel is determined not to lose is little sister and does everything he can to keep her, including driving away all her suitors. When a mysterious man comes to the village begging Gretel’s aid in rescuing more children, she has to make the most difficult decisions of her life, but ones that might ultimately set her free and satisfy her desire for a loving husband.

I also have some partial work done one a Sleeping Beauty sequel and Beauty and the Beast, which is my favorite fairy tale. For all these, I like to investigate the original legends for inspiration.

 

TBQ: I cannot wait to see how your B & B turns out--that's my favorite, as well! I know we all hate this question, author and reader alike. :) But I have to ask: What are a few of your favorite books and/or authors?

L: Actually, I don’t mind the question a bit. I usually scope out authors’ answers to this question for reading ideas. My absolute favorite book is The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle. It’s absolutely enchanting. I also love Patricia Briggs, Jim Butcher, and Stina Leicht, all of who write urban fantasy. In romance, I recently discovered Cecilia Grant. Her A Lady Awakened was tremendously funny and heartwarming. The Knight and the Rose by Isolde Martyn will also ever be a favorite because it was the first romance I ever read. I also like Joyce DiPastena who writes sweet historical romance that sweeps me away. And recently, I discovered Sasha White. She writes erotica, which I don’t normally read, but she ‘s such a wonderful person online that I tried her My Prerogative and Meandros out. Meandros made me tear up, a significant feat, and My Prerogative had some of the most fascinating characterization I’ve read, so Sasha is now on my read-more-of list.

 

TBQ: We've all fallen for a hero (or two, or three, or....ahem).  Tell us one hero that you've fallen for—who is he and what drew you to him?

L: Adam Hauptman, from Patricia Briggs’s Mercedes Thompson series, stole my heart long ago and refuses to surrender it. Beyond the fact that he’s plenty nice to look at, he’s courageous, strong, honorable, and a gentleman when he wants to be and a ravenous protector the rest of the time. On top of that, he’s an alpha werewolf, and I love werewolves. He’s powerful, intuitive, caring, and he will stick his neck out time and again for Mercy’s sake, no matter how she annoys him or what danger she brings to his doorstep.

 

TBQ: I really must read The Mercedes Thomspon series, I've been meaning to for years! What's next-- Can you tell us a little bit about your upcoming releases or WIP?

L: Aside from Gretel and Her Ghost, which I described earlier, I’m near to finishing a book I hope to be the start of a fantasy series based in historical Germany. I took one of the antagonists from Red and the Wolf, the man out to execute Blanchette’s huntsman, and started telling of his adventures. His name is Karl Kaismann, and as noble a heart as he might possess, he frequently ends up on the wrong side of things. This particular book delves into the legend of the Lorelei Rock, a real rock, more a cliff, along the Rhine River. Stories differ about the origins of its name. Some say a young woman named Lorelei threw herself off it when she was denied the right to marry the man she loved. Others speak of a nymph that lurks nearby and distracts sailors so their ships crash on the dangerous rocks and in the churning current. It’s a dangerous, beautiful, and haunting place. Karl shipwrecks there and gets drawn into saving a town that despises him, falling in love with a woman he has no right to claim, and grappling with a destiny he would rather forgo but his honor demands he accept. (Sounds great!)

 

SPEED ROUND:

 

A day on a secluded island OR a day at the spa?
Secluding island. There’d be far more adventure.


Reading a spicy romance novel OR a sweet “my-heart-skips-a-beat” one?
My-heart-skips-a-beat.


Which would you rather have an affair with: a sexy highlander OR a devilishly handsome English lord?
Definitely the highlander.


Hot summer days OR cold winter nights?
Cold winter nights.


Where would your dream house be: in the city, where all the action is OR nestled in the mountain where you can enjoy the quiet and the wilderness?
In the moutains.


If you could live in any time period, past or future, which one would it be?
Medieval, but only if I was nobility.


Cover Lover OR Blurb Fan?
Cover


Steamy Novella OR Sweet Novel? (aka, Quickie or Slow Build Up?)
Slow, sensuous buildup.


Quick—name the one food that you cannot live without?
Chocolate. (Living without chocolate wouldn't be living at all, I say!)

 

And finally, tell us 3 unique/wacky/fun things about yourself:


  • I am 4 feet 8 inches tall.

  • I love larger dogs that have a little wolf look in them.

  • As a child, when we played Princess, I was always the brave, young heroic knight and my brother the evil villain.

 

The_Book_Queen: Thanks so much for stopping by, Laura, and please know that you are welcome back anytime! Do you have any questions for our readers—something to spark a good discussion? :)


Laura: Thank you again for having me. It’s been a pleasure. And, yes, I have a question.
 
What is your favorite fairy tale hero and why? Mine is Beast from Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. He’s so dramatic, noble but monstrous, conflicted and loving, and he’s full of depth. I don’t care for him nearly as much when he becomes human again, though. He just becomes bland to me then.

 
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Red and the Wolf by Laura Lee Nutt
Publisher:
Series: Embracing Ever After, 1
Genre: Paranormal Romance

 
They said Little Red Riding Hood lived happily ever after. They lied.
Six years after the attack at her grandmother’s cottage, Blanchette still wilts at the sound of a wolf’s howl. The scent of pine rising from the Black Forest surrounding her home is a constant reminder of the beast’s assault and the injury it left on her finger. After years spent hiding away, Blanchette’s world tilts when she wakes--naked and without memory of the previous night--in the forest, instead of behind the safety of her closed shutters.
Since rescuing Blanchette and her grandmother, huntsman Heinrich has befriended her family by day, and keeps watch as a powerful wolf over his territory by night. Sinister otherworldly creatures constantly threaten his domain and the human village he protects.
When the emperor sends a hunter to investigate the attack and slay any inhuman beings, Heinrich must tread carefully and protect not only himself, but his newly-discovered mate, who prowls the moonlit nights alongside him. He must also determine who is responsible for a string of murdered villagers, proving he can control his lupine nature and offer protection to the village, rather than danger.
CONTENT WARNING: Vengeful fae, dark magic, vicious murder, moral quandaries, explicit sex, and tragic honor.
 
Where to Buy*:
More Info:
 
Red and the Wolf by Laura Lee Nutt
Excerpt



Herr Kaismann’s soul-scouring gaze left Blanchette certain the man had memorized her every detail. He showed no regard for Herr Jaeger’s unconcealed aggression, yet an odd compassion in his gaze made her unsure whether or not he would inspire nightmares. Usually in her terrorizing dreams, strangers joined the wolf along the shaded woodland path where the flowers dripped fat drops of blood when she plucked them.

Breaking his stare and shifting his attention to Herr Jaeger, Herr Kaismann said, “I thought the girl was blond.”

“What?” Herr Jaeger asked, incredulous. “What does the color of Blanchette’s hair or your being some--” Herr Jaeger bit off whatever he had originally intended to say and glanced at her as if remembering she still clung to him. “What does any of this have to do with Fraulein Blanchette?”

Herr Kaismann folded his hands neatly before him. “The tales say Little Red Riding Hood was blond, and from everything I have seen, your Blanchette is the true Little Red Riding Hood.”

Herr Jaeger glanced at her, scowled, gray eyes igniting with the comforting protective anger of a man defending his woman. He shifted and turned on Herr Kaismann. “You speak of nothing more than a child’s tale. Do not harass our young women in its name.”

Only, it was true, at least in part. How had the man found her out of all the girls in the Holy Roman Empire? In the world? How had he realized she was the girl to whom the tales referred?

A thin smile turned Herr Kaismann’s lips. He stepped forward so less than a pace remained between the two men. “The emperor and I find the prospect of such simple stories being pure fancy rather…unbelievable. At the heart of every fable or children’s tale lies a grain of truth. In discovering it, we reveal the real danger. We cannot have man-eating wolves running loose, now can we?”
 
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Giveaway Details: For Red and the Wolf’s release week, I’m hosting a giveaway. There are several ways to earn chances to win one of two prizes, an e-copy of Red and the Wolf and an adorable Annette Funicello Collectable Bear Co. Little Red Riding Hood valued at $105. You have from Monday, March 4th, 12 AM central time through Sunday, March 10th, 11:59 PM central time to get as many points as you can. Each point equals an additional time your name gets entered in the drawing for these prizes. I will announce the winners on my blog Monday, March 11th. To begin with, you will earn your first point for the drawing by commenting on today’s post. For more ways to earn points see my blog. Good luck!

 


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Thanks for stopping by today, Laura! :) I very much look forward to reading Red and the Wolf, and I cannot wait for your future books!
 
 
Don't forget Laura's question:
 
 
What is your favorite fairy tale hero and why? Mine is Beast from Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. He’s so dramatic, noble but monstrous, conflicted and loving, and he’s full of depth. I don’t care for him nearly as much when he becomes human again, though. He just becomes bland to me then.
 
 
In answer to your question, I'm like you--Beauty and the Beast is my favorite, always has been (and not just for the library!). I think I have to agree with you, as well about the Beast, he was much better while still, well, a beast. :)





Enjoy!



Until Next Time,



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*TBQ's Book Palace is a member of both the Amazon and Barnes and Nobles affiliates program. By using the links provided to buy products from either website, I receive a very small percentage of the order. To read my full disclosure on the matter, please see this post!

4 comments :

  1. Thanks so much for having me today. So far, it's been fun. :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh boy I think I am in love with the sound of this!!! I have such a love for fairy tales especially in a romance...its sounds so delightful!!! And the cover is just gorgeous. I just love a good and strong hero. And I just loved the interview...brought a smile to my face!! :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thanks so much! I'm so glad it caught your interest, and thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I like Beast from Beauty and the Beast because he's a werewolf and is caring.


    bn100candg(at)hotmail(dot)com

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