Thursday, December 29, 2011

PYN Review of Shield of Fire

Reviewed by SJ Byrne
PYN Reviewer

Shield of Fire opens with immediate action as Brother Powell of Menda Abbey supplies Icarus, son of the Demon Bane King, with an innocent victim in hopes of luring out bigger prey.
Ravyn lives in Menda Abbey and has been there as long as she can remember; it's the only home she can recall and her parents are a complete mystery. Being a little on the weird side, on top of all that, its little wonder the abbey sisters have practically branded her in league with the devil.
On the fateful night of the opening scene, Ravyn finds she must flee the only home she's ever known, only to be rescued from Icarus by a mythical warrior. Under the protection of Rhys Blackwell, she must embrace a world full of magic and secrets or forfeit her life to the demons hunting her like a prized relic.
Pulled into Rhys's world, Ravyn investigates the awesome gifts she has kept hidden her entire life.  Ignorant of her parentage and unsure of the full extent of her mystical abilities, Rhys and Ravyn open to each other and begin a wondrous adventure neither had thought possible.
This is a book that leaves the reader wanting more and promises much more is to come. I would definitely recommend Shield of Fire to anyone that enjoys a great paranormal story.
I thought the story line good enough to have been marketable in the mainstream arena, though the intimate scenes might/might not hinder it from doing so.
I am looking forward to the next installment from Boone Brux.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Interview with Boone Brux

Hey, Boone! Okay, oh my PETE! I looked you up and started researching and decided you are my peeps! LOL! You’re MARRIED to a vampire?! How did this happen?

I met him in Barrow, Alaska. The Arctic is the perfect place to winter if you’re a vampire. We’re talking some long, cold nights. He’s like the opposite of a bear, hibernates in the summer and is at his peak around December 25. Can I get an amen? Is he sparkly? *giggle* No. As a matter-of-fact, it’s difficult to get anything sparkly out of him. He told me I’ve hit my diamond quota and hands me the Cabela’s catalogue when my birthday rolls around. I have stories about when I dated a vampire. We definitely need to chat. That didn’t go so well. How’s it working for you? Good so far, but I’m not afraid to stake him if I have to. I think on some level he senses this.

Twin daughters, you say? I have two daughters that are three years apart and I had my hands wickedly full. How do you carve out time to write? 

Girls, they’re so cute, almost like real people sometimes. I depend heavily on the public school system and the internet, or what I lovingly refer to as ‘nanny’. They’re in fourth grade, so when they get on the bus, I hit the computer. My pirate, vampire husband is super supportive and likes to take the girls golfing or flying. At least I think that’s where he takes them. I should really check on that sometime. Anyway, I’m pretty focused when I’m working and have mastered the art of tuning out cat-fights and door slamming.

I started off thinking I knew something about writing, and then I hit the point where I “mastered” it. *nods* Yeah. I realize now that I know pretty much nothing about it. What was the moment you realized you needed to learn more? (For me, that would be daily. “Is ‘cautious’ a real word? It looks made-up.” @_@)

Every day of my life is like a little slap of reality when it comes to writing. Just when I think I’m pretty awesome, somebody or something gives me the backhand of truth. Remember when you were super innocent and announced to the world that you were going to write a book. Gee, I miss that ignorance. *gives a reflective sigh* There have been many days when I’ve wanted to light my manuscript on fire in the middle of my living room. Partly because I’m pissed at the book, but also because I want new wood flooring. Anyway, writing is in my blood and everybody’s journey is different. My journey likes to take a detour from time to time and stops at the Self Pity Lodge. Here you’ll find me curled in a fetal position, watching back-to-back episodes of Castle. (Dang I wish Beckett and Castle would kiss.) It’s either self-indulgence or self-medicating with Nyquil. (I love that stuff.)

Which book are we talking about today and what is it about?  Shield of Fire, Book One of the Bringer and the Bane series.

Shield revolves around Ravyn and Rhys. She’s been locked in an abbey all her life and he’s the last full-blooded Bringer, a mythical race of people. (Or is he? *wink wink*) Rhys is what you call a Shield. He rushes around the countryside kicking Demon Bane butt and protecting humans. He ends up saving Ravyn from a particularly nasty demon named Icarus, and realizes Ravyn is much more than a pretty face. These two are the catalyst characters who ignite the events in what is predicted to be a war to end all wars between the Bringers (good guys) and the Bane (bad, naughty demons).  (Did that last sentence make any sense? I was trying for epic.)

What inspired this book?

It’s kind of a blur now, but I think it had to do with copious amounts of alcohol while watching Legend of the Seeker. Kidding…kind of. Actually, Shield of Fire started out as a historical romance. The current version being released by Entangled Publishing is nothing like the original version. Can I get a hallelujah for that? It’s been through the editor mill and I’m really happy with the results.

Tell us something about your characters that we wouldn’t be able to figure out by reading the book.

You mean like Ravyn has a gluten allergy or Rhys prefers boxers to briefs? Hmm, let me think. Well, Rhys has had three names. I refer to him as Rhys, formally known as Griffin, formally known as Drake. We still call him Drake around the house.

Is there a book 2 in the works? Can you tell us a bit about it?

Yes, and a book 3, 4, and 5.

Where can readers purchase your book?

Amazon, Barnes and Nobles, BAM (Books-a-Million), and Books On Board.

Where can your readers connect with you on the web?

Please connect with me on any of these sites. I love talking to readers!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Interview with Traci Slatton

Hey, Traci! I’m so excited to have this opportunity to get to know you! Tell us a little bit about yourself that’s not on your site

I love sci-fi movies, sitcoms, horse-back riding, and yoga; Cape Cod and Rome are my two favorite places in the world, with Paris coming up close behind them; Chocolate is one of my reasons for incarnating in the physical body; my husband sculptor Sabin Howard makes the most best shrimp scampi; “For fun and profit” is my usual answer when my kids, those opinionated creatures, ask “Why?”; 3rd Rock from the Sun is my favorite TV show and “Whom the Gods would Destroy” by Richard Powell is my favorite novel; Giotto, Cimabue, Raphael and Chagall are my favorite artists; I think the first TERMINATOR was a perfect movie; I love my dogs, my kids, my friends, sometimes my husband, sunshine, daisies, yellow roses, trees, time by the ocean, and teasing the people I’m close to.

So you’re from a Navy family. I am soooooo sorry! *helpless shrug* However, I must say that my Marine Corps father wasn’t too thrilled when I joined the Army. His only consolation was that I hadn’t joined the Navy. LOL!! How do you think your ingrained military background affects your writing,?

Your dad was a jarhead? Just joking! I have to defend my dad a little. J Being in a military family gave me an opportunity to experience two things: 1, the idea that service to our country is important, worthy, and honorable—which I think the current generation does not understand; and 2, moving around between cultures. The South is different from the Midwest which is distinct from the Northeast, here in the US. I got to understand at a gut level that there are different and equally valid ways of being in the world. I live now on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, which has its own specific culture, and it astonishes me how so many folks here have an unconscious arrogance about their political beliefs and attitudes, as if theirs was the only intelligent way to live.

You were accepted into Yale in your junior year?! I’m feeling my brain cells shriveling already! LOL! I bet your prose just roll of the tongue in an almost musical sort of way. How did the other kids treat you when you were accepted?

I think about 10% of my class at Yale was young, having skipped at least one grade. It wasn’t uncommon. My high school classmates already thought I was weird and a brainiac. Sigh. I was just very passionate about becoming a writer, and thus getting the education I needed for that goal.

How did you get started as a healer? What drew you to this?

I was and am on a spiritual journey. I have never been able to get away from a profound sense of the Imminent. This is not at all related to religion, in my mind. To me, religion is a social/cultural construction that was formulated to ensure secular control by the priestly and aristocratic classes. At best, it’s a structure in which to live a family life and raise children with values about kindness, honesty, generosity, and integrity. At worst, it stifles free thinking, creativity, and the direct experience of the divine. Now, the Divine itself, whatever it is, fascinates me, and constantly taps me on the shoulder. I also have a deep sense of the suffering of others, and a wish to see them released from it.

Let’s talk about your book a bit, shall we? LOL! What is it called and what is it about?

I have two paranormal novels out very recently: FALLEN, which is the first in a romantic trilogy set during the end times, the AFTER Trilogy; and THE BOTTICELLI AFFAIR, which is a playful romp through the art history byways of vampire lore. FALLEN is a dystopian love story, a tale of survivors in a ravaged world who are haunted by strange psychic gifts and devastating mists that have killed billions of people. TBA is about a frisky art forger trying to go straight while she searches for her missing father and a fabled lost painting. She’s pursued by lethal vampires and falls for a half-souled vampire who can’t consummate their passion.

What inspired this book?

FALLEN came to me as a situation: a man and a woman, each with secrets, who fall in love despite themselves, and can’t be together. I had a sense of the intensity of their longing for each other. I felt their despair and their tenderness in the face of cataclysm and death, and I always knew it would take 3 books to tell their story. TBA came to me as Laila’s voice, which I found intriguing. She’s strong, tempted, kind-hearted, quirky, a bit zany, goofy, idiosyncratic, hot-blooded. I could hear her in my head.

Tell us something about your characters that we wouldn’t be able to figure out by reading the book.

Emma the female protagonist of FALLEN will loose everything before she gains everything; Laila in TBA has a dark and vengeful side.

Is there a book 2 in the works? Can you tell us a bit about it?

The second book in the AFTER Trilogy is called COLD LIGHT, and I am working on it now. Emma is back in Canada and her oldest daughter Beth gets kidnapped by a rogue band, so she sets out to rescue Beth. Laila shows up in THE CODEX CAPER looking for a Mayan Codex that heralds the end of the world, while also pursuing vengeance for her father’s murder. Laila meets a dashing hedge fund manager named Chris Davenport who tries to seduce her away from John Bolingbroke.

Where can readers purchase your book?

FALLEN and THE BOTTICELLI AFFAIR are everywhere on the internet!, Amazon, as ebooks on Amazon, iTunes, smashwords and Readers can also find the recently released and very gorgeous sculpture book, THE ART OF LIFE, which I wrote with my husband classical figurative sculptor Sabin Howard. THE ART OF LIFE has over 100 color photos, and it surveys figurative sculpture from the earliest times to now, showcases the work of Greek sculptors like Polykleitos and Kritios as well as Renaissance and Baroque masters Donatello, Michelangelo, and Bernini, the great Neo-Classicist Canova and the modernist Rodin, culminating in the work of modern day master Sabin Howard. THE ART OF LIFE touches on the philosophy of art and why beauty is important. There’s a lovely back section that shows Sabin’s figure drawings, from which he taught for 16 years. It’s like looking at Da Vinci’s or Raphael’s drawings!

Where can your readers connect with you on the web?

They can find me at, at, and at  They can find out more about my husband Sabin and his work at


Friday, December 2, 2011

PYN Review of Once a Goddess

Reviewed by SJ Byrne, PYN Reviewer

'Once a Goddess' is a unique Celtic tale of love, family ties, and duty to ones community. Brigid, is a member of the legendary clan of the Tuatha de Danann, 'Eire's earliest inhabitants, and has been pressed into the service of her people. Sacrificing any possible chance of finding her soul mate or 'anam cara', in order to protect the future of her family from being wiped out by the enemy clan of Fomorians, Brigid marries into an enemy clan.
Living in a foreign camp, that has taken over parts of her beloved land, Brigid somehow finds within her heart the ability to accept and adjust to her new position. While forging a stronger bond with her husband Bres, son of the current Fomorian chieftain, whom she admires but fears she will never love, Brigid discovers her 'anam cara' is a member of the new community she calls home. Together, the inappropriate couple learns what it means to sacrifice all for the benefit of others.
With 'Once a Goddess', Sheila R. Lamb has created a work of historical fiction that enlightens and entertains. Some of the concepts put forth about the fabled Tuatha de Danann are simplistic and reasonable, leaving the reader asking why they never thought of it. An engaging tale, with only a few technical errors that don't distract from the experience, I enjoyed reading this book and exploring the mythical world created by Shiela R. Lamb.