Friday, March 22, 2013

I Kissed a Dog by carol Van Atta: Interview and Review


What was the scariest moment of your life? At fourteen, the horse I was riding decided to run with me. Normally, I would have considered that a free thrill ride. Unfortunately, the saddle had been put on improperly and was slipping to the side, me right along with it. Afraid I’d end up dangling between Streaker’s (appropriate name for that horse) thundering legs, I threw myself off and landed on the hard, wet sand. At first I couldn’t feel my limbs. That was a very scary life moment. Thankfully, only my arm was crushed. The last remaining evidence of that day so many years ago, is a long, jagged scar on the inside of my right elbow, and the fact my arm will never straighten completely. I am so thankful. It could have been much worse.  

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?  I’m embarrassed to admit I wanted to be a Genie, like Barbara Eden on I Dream of Genie. I had very good (selfish) reasons for my Genie obsession. First, everything I ever desired was just a blink away. Cross my arms, blink my eyes, and tada! Secondly … the genie bottle would be mine to lounge in. I adored Genie’s bottle with the couch that wrapped around its inner wall overflowing with colorful pillows. What little girl wouldn’t want to slip into a pink and purple Genie bottle for some much needed R and R?

What group did you hang out with in high school?  The hoods. Yep, the smokers, stoners, heavy metal, head-banging, 80’s kids. Though I managed to keep good grades, I led a pretty crazy life. I loved rock stars and experienced a few years of infamy as a groupie, meeting and partying with numerous big-hair bands. I’ve included a picture of me “back in the day” with a certain famous lead singer, for a certain famous band that is still rocking hard today. Think: Back in Black. 

See “Rocker Chick” photos below.

Do you have a milestone birthday coming up? If so, how are you approaching it?  I do have a milestone birthday approaching in the next two years. It’s a biggie. One I’m dreading more than I care to admit. I am not approaching it very gracefully. I’m open to complaining about my worries to anyone who will listen. Guess which milestone I’m talking about.  

How do you react to a bad review of your book?   I do a little pouting. Next I might “research” the reviewers other book reviews to see what type of average they have for overall ratings and reviews. And then I go back and read my positive reviews. The only major pet peeve with reviewing is when a reviewer rates and reviews a book they did not finish. I can’t tell you how many times I wasn’t exactly thrilled with a book, but continued only to end up really enjoying it. I’ve had a review where the reader loved the book, but because the ending wasn’t a HEA, they decided they hated it and rated low. What? I’m confused. Reviewing is highly subjective. One person may love a character and while another can’t stand that same individual. You really have to develop tough skin, because your book is your baby. Imagine someone saying, “Wow, your baby is so ugly. I hate her eyes. I enjoy looking at her nose, but everything else is just so so.” Though I can admit it gets easier as time goes on. I’ve yet to meet an author who enjoys a negative review, but it’s part of the whole package, and reviews are such an important piece to marketing and spreading the word about a book.  

Morning Person? Or Night Person? How do you know? Night person. You’ll know if you come looking for me before noon on a weekend, and by the light still on in my window at midnight … and beyond.  

Use no more than two sentences. Why should we read your book? I’m going to “cheat” a bit … okay, here’s why you should read I Kissed a Dog:

I thought everything about this book was outstanding. I whole heartedly urge all paranormal romance readers to add this to your TBR list.” (taken from a 5 Star review on Amazon)


Like most authors, Carol Van Atta is no stranger to the written word. She penned a short novel at age 12 (somewhat frightening illustrations included, and lots of bunnies were involved), and had a creative writing piece published in her high school newspaper (about David Bowie's Diamond Dogs LP). Yes, she's an ex-80's chick.  
Devouring books from numerous genres, Carol developed a deep thirst/hunger for more reading material, and could almost always be found with her nose in a book.  

She has contributed to several popular inspirational anthologies and devotional books, and lives in the rainy wetland of Oregon with a terrifying teen (another in college) and a small zoo of animals. She is taking an undetermined hiatus away from inspirational writing to delve into her darker side. (Though you can check out her latest spiritual suspense novel, Soul Defenders). It is rumored that this genre-jumping occurred after Carol discovered too suspicious red marks on her neck, and experienced an unquenchable urge to howl at the moon. 


I Kissed a Dog
The Werewolves of the West Series Book One
Carol Van Atta
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Cambridge Press US under the umbrella of Charles River Press (CRP)
ISBN:  1936185725 
ISBN13: 9781936185726
ASIN: B009SV179U
Number of pages: 446

Cover Artist: Ann Falcone


Book Description: 
Chloe Carpenter isn't like other women. She can communicate with animals. A gift she unwrapped following one of her frequent dances with death. 

 In her otherwise wacky life, she's finally found a semblance of sanity working at the Plum Beach Wildlife Park, where her unique talents can make life or death differences for the animals in her care. That semblance is shattered when a new veterinarian roars into the park in his spiffed up sports car and sets his golden gaze on her. If she had her way, he'd roar right back out. 

Problem: He's her new coworker and he's saved her life twice - in the past twenty-four hours.

Zane Marshall, Enforcer for the Pacific Pack of purebred werewolves, has a job to do - figure out who or what is mutilating the young men of Plum Beach.  

With orders to find the woman who talks to animals, he accepts a position working alongside the fiery Chloe Carpenter, a female who ignites his interest far more than he ever expected. Remarkably, she's the one elusive female with potential to bring meaning and passion to his empty existence. 

Problem: She despises him.  

Together, they're forced to unravel a mystery of supernatural proportions, a murderous mystery with eternal implications for everyone. In the process, they discover opposites really do attract.  

Major Problem: Zane is pledged to another woman, and she'll do anything to keep him from Chloe. 

Buy the book  
4 Stars 

I thought this story was unique, and loved the cast of fully developed characters that supported an intriguing plot.  The author weaves a complicated but believable mythology around the supernatural races – werewolves and vampires.  I fell under the book’s spell early on and stayed enthralled throughout.
On a slightly critical note, I was a bit jarred by the cliffhanger ending, and felt a cold aversion to the drunken, non-memorable wedding night fiasco.  The quickie nuptials and the fact that Chloe had no memory of the consummation just didn’t really ring true for me, especially in light of the otherwise unimpeachable integrity of Chloe as well as Zane.  Chloe seemed entirely too blas√© about the incident, and it just really felt out of character for Zane to have resorted to such an unhanded shenanigan. 
Luckily, the story quickly moved away from the sham and my attention was redirected to more gratifying and adventurous hurdles and scrapes.  I hope the next adventure will be available soon because I am hooked.  The author has constructed an alternate reality that easily ensnared my imagination and kept me eagerly reading.
The book was given to me by the author in exchange for my honest review.
Reviewed by Laurie-J



Next Few Stops

March 28 Guest blog

Booked & Loaded  

March 29 Interview
Pembroke Sinclair

April 2 Guest blog
Paranormal Romance Fans for Life  

April 3 Guest blog
Share My Destiny

April 8 Interview and review
Shut Up & Read 


Love is in the air ... Win Big! 9 Books (digital-formats only) with paranormal twists are up for grabs. Carol Van Atta, author of I Kissed a Dog, invites you to enter to win Ebooks and Promo Posters from her publisher. 

1. I Kissed a Dog, book one Werewolves of the West, Carol Van Atta, with one poster

2. Soul Defenders: The Black Orchids, Carol Van Atta, with one poster

3. Black Moon, Jessica McQuay, with one poster 

4. Blood Betrayal, Alison Beightol, with one poster 

5. Morningside, Ashley Madau, with one poster 

6. Drama Queens, Kevin Klher, with one poster 

7. The Dogman Cometh, Jonathan Womack, with one poster 

8. Blood Destiny, Tessa Dawn, with one poster



1 comment:

Carol Van Atta said...

Thank you for taking the time to read and review I Kissed a Dog. I'm so pleased you enjoyed it, and appreciate you hosting a spot on my book's blog tour. I'm having a great time perusing your awesome site!