Ahh, welcome to the Avon Addicts Blog Hop! This was something that kind of happened by accident. Well, all of it happened by accident. The beginning sounds like a nice place to start so let’s go there. Wink wink.
Earlier this year, I discovered an author that has completely stolen my bookish little heart. I am a huge audiobook fiend and every month, my Audible would suggest these books that I had never read. The Night Huntress Series by Jeaniene Frost. I started out with First Drop of Crimson.
I fell head over heels in love with Spade (the main man in FDOC) and Bones and by the end of the book, I was dying for more. Only one book down and Jeaniene had me HOOKED. So I started digging and found out that FDOC is actually just the first book in a SPINOFF SERIES. How could this amazingly awesome tale be a lowly SPINOFF?!?!?!?
Well, it was. I stopped right in my tracks and went back to where it all started.
Halfway to the Grave – Night Huntress Series Book #1…….O. M. G.
After reading FDOC, I was babbling to a friend of mine about the book (oh yeah, I totally got her hooked too!) and I told her that as much as I LOVED Spade, I was really diggin’ on one of the side characters. This character that I commented to my friend about is the co-star!!! Ahhh, Bones. I was in heaven!! You have this vampire who is dead sexy and sarcastic on a level that only people like me and my twisted friends could appreciate! He’s just awesome.
I bought Jeaniene’s entire library and I burned through the entire series, listening to a book a day. I was so unbelievably sad when I reached the end of Night Huntress and then realized that I had the Night Huntress World series and the Night Prince to look forward to (at that point, it hadn’t been released yet).
A book that I didn’t go looking for is how I became so hooked on Jeaniene Frost and I am now a fan for life and DESPERATELY awaiting the release of Twice Tempted (Night Prince #2) and Up From the Grave (tentative title for Night Huntress #7).
To top everything off, Jeaniene Frost’s books introduced me to a vocal actor that, in my eyes, goes down as the single most talented vocal actor I have ever had the pleasure of listening to. Ms. Tavia Gilbert.
She is just stunning in her ability! This woman took a series of books with a monstrously huge cast of characters and gave every single one of them their own voice, completely and totally breathing life into them. Even with the male characters, you completely forget that you’re actually listening to a woman read. She’s…….she’s…….GAH!!!! She’s just frikkin awesome!
My new found love of Jeaniene Frost (and Cat….and Bones….and Spade….and Mencheres…..and Ian…..and VLAD!!!! *swoon*) led me and my nosey self to Avon Romance and Avon Books.
I am not dead or living in a cave in the middle of the Antarctic so I had actually heard of Avon. I just didn’t read it. See, when I was growing up, my mom used to have what has now been coined “bodice rippers”. You know. The ones with Fabio or Fabio lookalikes on the cover. Horrible romance novels that, although written well in technical terms, had no REAL story line. It was straight up mommy porn. Books that didn’t need to have a story line because women weren’t reading them for the story. They were reading them because they were hot and exotic and really, the polar opposite of their humble home life. Now, I don’t know if my mom ever actually READ these books because I swear to you I have never seen one in her hand.
Well, I read one………and that was it. Ok, part of one. Curiosity got to me and after running through all of my own reading material, I decided to see what those books were all about. I was 15 and there were half-naked men just chillin’ on the book case so why not. Here. I’ll tell you why.
I picked up one of these books. Don’t remember the title at all. Don’t even really remember what the plot line was masquerading as. I just remember that this chick somehow ends up in a frikkin ice cave in the middle of Siberia. Of course, the cave is occupied by a delectably hot man with more abs than an entire football team and although it’s like -50 degrees outside, Mr. Abs hangs out in his ice crib. In a loin cloth. Ok, that may just be my memory of his attire from the cover of the book. I’m honestly not sure. Anyway, the chick and the guy start getting it on in his little ice cave and at one point, he sets her naked booty up on a shelf made of ice and starts doing her there. I call B.S.
This scene did not spark thoughts like “Wow, that’s frikkin HOT!!!”. Instead, I abruptly threw the book across the room because that little maneuver would be IMPOSSIBLE. Ok, not impossible but all thoughts of naked men and naked man parts would go flying out the ice cave door the minute my naked ass touched down on a shelf made of ice. And if you somehow managed to ignore that initial shock, the cold would eventually numb your ass to the point of painful. B. S. BS. BS, BS, BS.
Not only was this book not believable, the…..*ahem*……plotline was bland to the point of forgettable within minutes. I remember the ice shelf scene and literally NOTHING else about that book. That was the end of my romance reading days. Or so I thought….
Avon was always an imprint I assumed published those kinds of books. Jeaniene Frost changed that preconceived notion for me. Everything I thought romance novels were flew out the cave door. This time, it was Bones’s cave though so it’s WAY better than Mr. Abs’s cave. (CLICK HERE TO READ MY INTERVIEW WITH JEANIENE FROST)
I got poking around on the Avon Romance site and was amazed at the number of familiar authors there were on there! Authors that I knew wrote urban fantasy with a little bit of dirty material sprinkled about but I never would have considered them “romance authors”. At least, not in the traditional bodice rippers sense.
Here are just a few of the list:
Anne Rice (Writing as A.N. Roquelaure)
I ended up following Avon Books on Twitter and started devouring their books. In addition to the authors that I was already a fan of, I found some new ones that I like a lot too. Then one day I saw a Tweet that intrigued me.
Avon Books Tweeted about something they were calling Avon Addicts. Avon Addicts??? I’m totally addicted to Avon!! I followed the link….and found my people!
Avon was looking for their next “class” of Avon Addicts. Every 6 months, they are choosing 25 lucky Avon readers to be part of something fantastic! As part of this “club”, you get swag packages from Avon containing tons of books to read and giveaway, merchandise to give away, exclusive news, author interviews, etc. I even got the chance to participate in an online video chat with author Kerrelyn Sparks!!! (CLICK HERE TO READ ABOUT MY CHAT WITH KERRELYN SPARKS)
Well, as the second class of Avon Addicts, we decided to take this thing to a whole new level.
Ish just got real.
First, we started a Facebook group for both current and past members. It’s been a lot of fun chatting on there with a big group of people that not only have the same interest in reading but are actually reading the same books as you. There are even a few of us who are writers, several of which are participating in NaNoWriMo – or Avon’s own NaROWriMo! (CLICK HERE TO READ ABOUT NAROWRIMO)
Then, while Facebooking our brains out about something to do with the Avon Addicts, someone threw out the comment, “we should do a blog hop”. I waited for someone else to chime in and then my blog tour skills went into overdrive.
I threw together a banner, created a place to sign up, created a calendar to keep track of all who sign up and then I emailed the entire group to let them know what had been done and there was no turning back now!
A short few weeks later, here we are! Today kicks off the 1st Annual Avon Addict Blog Hop!! I am so happy I applied to be part of this group and even happier that out of all the applications, they chose me. It’s been an amazing experience where I have met some pretty amazing ladies. The Avon Addicts themselves are awesome! To top it off, we have a team of wonderful people at Avon continually feeding our addiction and making our little hobby of reading a super-fun, super-exciting experience.
I encourage you all to follow the Avon Addicts Blog Hop. You will meet some pretty incredible ladies and who knows – maybe you will find yourself as part of the next class of Avon Addicts!! On top of getting to meet all the fabulous members, THERE IS A GIVEAWAY AT ALMOST EVERY SINGLE STOP!
Oh, GIVEAWAY caught your attention, did it??? Well, what fun would a blog hop be without a giveaway at the end!
I went through all of the swag that Avon has sent me and I put together a MONSTER SIZED GIVEAWAY PACKAGE!!!
Books included are:
Sacrifice the Wicked by Karina Cooper
White Tiger (Dark Heavens Book One) by Kylie Chan
Seducing Mr. Knightly by Maya Rodale
The Way to a Duke’s Heart by Caroline Linden
A Notorious Countess Confesses by Julie Anne Long
A Cowboy for Christmas by Lori Wilde
Confessions of a Slightly Neurotic Hitwoman by JB Lynn
Further Confessions of a Slightly Neurotic Hitwoman
In The Pink by Susan McBride
One lucky winner will get the whole thing!! Just fill out the short form below and you’re entered!
THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.
WINNER HAS BEEN NOTIFIED VIA EMAIL.
Thank you all for stopping by and here is the entire Avon Addicts Blog Hop schedule!
(click on the name of the blog for the blog address)