Saturday, May 2, 2009

Daring to Be Different

It's hard to be different.

Whether you're a teenager trying to fit in, an adult dealing with the limitations life's tossed your way, or as an author whose story ideas are bit outside the norm--or outside the box. It can be hard to be the one who is different.

Here at the Chatelaines we understand that struggle because we all fall a little outside the norm when it comes to our books. Maybe that's why we're friends. I'd like to think so. But maybe it's also because we all also understand and respect the fact that readers want something a little different from the popular norm. We are after all readers ourselves.

We are fortunate to have found a publisher who encourages and appreciates our uniqueness. Dorchester takes risks on books that might often fall between the cracks. Proof of this can be found in three of our most current releases.

Vexing the Viscount by Emily Bryan

Takes a familiar situation with a titled lord who is down on his luck and pairs him with a wealthy heiress . . . but it doesn't stop there. No, Emily Bryan tosses in deception, lessons in love, and a treasure hunt to mix things up, off of which takes this story from the norm to the spectacular. Here's what one of her critics had to say:

"Vexing the Viscount by Emily Bryan has one of the best first chapters I've ever read. It has it all--humor, mystery, sexual tension, a fascinating look at history and original characters. I knew after the first few pages that I was going to love this book and I was right. This book is hard to classify because it fits in neither the light and funny historical romance category or the dark and emotional category but manages to be both." --Cynthya Petzen

The Lady and the Libertine by Bonnie Vanak

Bonnie Vanak also manages to defy the norm with her Egyptian historicals by once again creating characters outside of the norm. A handsome Englishman tries to seduce a virginal heroine in order to steal the treasure she guards and gets a little more than he's bargained for. Here's what one of her critics had to say:

"Bonnie Vanak proves [in the Lady and the Libertine] yet again why she's one of Leisure/Dorchester's best authors... Her talent for mingling exotic settings with captivating heroines, guaranteed-to-melt-your-butter heroes, and spellbinding story is unsurpassed." --Fruit Loop

The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie by Jennifer Ashley

Any discussion of "outside the box" would not be complete without including Jennifer Ashley's latest sensation, The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie, that portrays a hero afflicted with Aspergers Syndrome. Jennifer's hero is dark, dangerous and devastating, a man who is uniquely flawed but lovable just the same. Paired with a heroine whose presence quiets the noise in his mind, and you have a story that breaks new ground. Here's what one of her critics had to say:

"The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie ... is a truly unique book in a sea of historical romances that all take the same safe route. Sir Ian Mackenzie is one of the most unique heroes in recent years and should be read for that alone. The author is offering something exceptionally unique and yet is still within the parameters of what we readers expect in a HEA romance." --Jody Allen

It takes a lot of guts sometimes to write outside of the expected. I applaud Emily, Bonnie and Jennifer for doing just that.

What about you? Have you read any books lately that have defied the norm? If so, what did you like about those books?


Caffey May 2, 2009 at 6:01 PM  

I so love the unique reads and so appreciate all you do! I don't know what I'd do without these wonderful reads. Keep believing because I will always be there reading these! Thanks again for all you do!
Cathie, a reader

C.L. Wilson May 2, 2009 at 7:08 PM  

Excellent post, Gerri. Dorchester is indeed unique in this respect. The fabulous editors at Dorchester have discovered more "big name" talent than I can shake a stick at, and their willingness to go out on a limb for something new and different made me a loyal Dorchester reader long before I was a Dorchester author. :)


Jennifer Ashley/ Allyson James / Ashley Gardner May 3, 2009 at 7:34 AM  

I feel very lucky that Dorchester took a chance on me. The stories that come to my mind are a little "out there" LOL, and I'm happy that Dorchester is so supportive of them. I think all Dorchester authors understand that.

Thanks for the post, Gerri! I second the recommendation of Emily's and Bonnie's recent releases. Good stuff. :-)

Cindy Holby

Gerri Russell

Joy Nash

Bonnie Vanak

Emily Bryan

C.L. Wilson

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