My Top 5 favourite TV series based on books.

One of my ambitions as an author is to have my work on screen; I mean who wouldn’t? So, as my work hasn’t been picked up by a lovely TV producer (yet) here’s my top 5 TV shows based on books.


10964Outlander:
I just binged watched this time travel romance series based on the books by Diana Gabaldon. Gritty and sometimes gruesome, this gem of a series sweeps the viewer into an amazing story filled with hunky highlanders, sadistic soldiers and with just a hint of witches and magic. My only gripe is that the heroine, Claire is not as strong as 301082she could be and makes a lot of fundamental mistakes that kind of annoyed me.

True Blood: Although not on your screens anymore, this vampire extravaganza is
definitely worth a watch. They took just enough liberties from the novels to make it interesting for readers and had some truly gorgeous vampires and rugged werewolves in there. Ended with a fizzle rather than a bang (just like the book series!) but hey, sometimes that happens.

13496Game of Thrones: I’m certainly not alone with this one! You really can’t ask for much more in one series: frosted zombies, dragons that are just as cute huge as they were when they were hatchlings, killer knights, mythical magic, and warring factions where there is both good and bad on every side. I’m so looking forward to the next season coming back in April, although we are now getting to the stage where the TV series will be overtaking the books, it will be interesting to see what will h30071appen here.

The Walking Dead: Based on some amazing graphic novels, the Walking Dead has me hooked on their undead and post-apocalyptic anarchy. There was a bit of a lull in the middle (around season 3), and if I’m honest, it almost lost me – but now I’m counting the days till the new season resumes in February. They have some great characters and don’t seem afraid to kill them off either! Edge of your seat stuff!

656War & Peace: Featured on the BBC here in the UK, I have a great feeling about this Tolstoy classic. Sweeping drama drenched with lavish settings, costumes and an amazing cast. It has the potential to take the viewer by the hand and lead them through a turbulent time in history and introduce a whole new generation to this masterpiece of literature.

 
Happy watching, and remember to let me know if you are watching any gems yourself. Nicx

Book Review: The Winter King by C.L. Wilson

91G-t5phdNL._SL1500_Synopsis:

Wynter Atrialan, the Winter King, once lived in peace with his southern, Summerlander neighbors, but when Falcon, the prince of Summerlea, stole Wynter’s bride and murdered his young brother, Wynter vows vengeance. Calling upon a dangerous Wintercraig magic called the Ice Heart, he gathers his armies and marches against Summerlea, crushing their armies and spreading icy winter in his wake. After three long, bitter years of battle, Summerlea is defeated and Wynter comes to the heart of the kingdom to issue his terms for their surrender. The prince of Summerlea stole Wynter’s bride and slew Wynter’s Heir. He wants the loss replaced. The Ice Heart is consuming him. Wynter hopes holding his own child in his arms will rekindle the warmth of love and melt the Ice Heart before he becomes the monster of Wintercraig legend, the Ice King. The Summer King has three very precious daughters whom he loves dearly. Wynter will take one of them to wife. She will have one year to provide him with an Heir. If she fails, he will turn her out in the ice and snow of the mountains and claim another princess for his wife. And so it will continue until Wynter has his Heir or the Summer King is out of daughters. All the while, Wynter will enjoy the vengeance of knowing the Summer King will suffer each day without his beloved daughter(s), as Wynter suffers each day without his own beloved brother. The plan is perfect—except for one small detail. The Summer King has a fourth daughter. One of which he is not so fond. Blamed as a child for the death of her beloved mother, Khamsin Coruscate, the forgotten princess of Summerlea, has spent her life hidden from the world like an embarrassing secret. Dressed in cast-off gowns and left to her own devices, with only the determination of her loyal nursemaid to ensure she receives the education befitting an Heir to the Summer Throne, Khamsin haunts the abandoned towers and gardens of Summerlea’s royal palace, close to her beloved late mother’s treasures, and waits for the day her father will recognize her as a Princess of the Rose. But though she dreams of the valor and sacrifices of ancient Summerlea heroes and pines for paternal love that will never come, Khamsin is no sweet, gentle, helpless princess-in-a-tower. She is a fiercely passionate creature with a volatile, rebellious temper that is often as reckless and destructive as the dangerous forces of her weathergift, the power of storms. Together will their stormy personalities be able to meld or will their powers destroy not only their love but the whole world?

Add it to your Goodreads Shelf

 Available for purchase at Avon Romance Amazon  BN  Kobo

About the Author: cl_wilson_web

C. L. WILSON grew up camping and waterskiing across America, from Cherry Creek reservoir in Denver, CO, to Lake Gaston on the border of Virginia and North Carolina, to Georgia’s Lake Lanier and Lake Allatoona. When she wasn’t waterskiing and camping on family vacations, you could usually find her with a book in one hand and a sketch pad in the other—either reading, writing stories, or drawing. Sometime around the ninth grade, she decided she was better at drawing her pictures with words than paints and charcoals, and she set aside her sketchpad to focus entirely on writing. Wilson is active in Tampa Area Romance Authors (TARA), her local chapter of Romance Writers of America. When not engaged in writerly pursuits, she enjoys golfing, swimming, reading, playing video games with her children, and spending time with her friends and family. She is also an avid collector (her husband says pack rat!), and she’s the proud owner of an extensive collection of Dept. 56 Dickens and North Pole villages, unicorns, Lladro figurines, and mint condition comic books. Wilson currently resides with her husband, their three wonderful children, and their little black cat, Oreo, in a secluded ranch community less than thirty miles away from the crystalline waters and sugar-sand beaches of Anna Maria Island and Siesta Key on Florida’s gulf coast.

http://clwilson.com/

https://twitter.com/clwilsonbooks

https://www.facebook.com/clwilsonbooks

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1310735.C_L_Wilson

http://www.amazon.com/C.-L.-Wilson/e/B001JS38U6

My Review:

This book was a lovely escape into a romantic fantasy world; it was kind of like a cross between Game of Thrones and a historical romance. I loved the supernatural element and the set up between the two kingdoms was almost Shakespearean.

From a writer’s perspective, it was put together beautifully and built the world around the reader without effort or force. It felt almost fairytale like in its storytelling, and drew you in really quickly. My only criticism, and this is just me, is that the relationship did the typical romance to and fro – he deceives her, she lies to him, they hate each other (a little too much) he’s a bit of a brute, she’s a bit too precious… And I’d have liked to have seen a less tired romance formula used, as the rest of the book was original and enthralling.

The front cover is beautiful too – it really sets off both characters and will do really well on the virtual and physical book shelves alike.

Overall, I’d give The Winter King, 4 out of 5 stars – feeling like reality is getting you down? Then pick up this book and sink into an epic fantasy love story.

The Winter King Banner 851 x 315

 

My favourite villains.

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We all love a bad boy, it’s practically ingrained in our DNA. So I wanted to take this opportunity to talk about a few of my favorite movie, comic, and literary villains of all time and why I like them.

Eric Northman – be still my beating heart. Not a villain per say but he’s not exactly a good guy either. He’s the dude your daddy warned you against and the one your mom secretly wants for herself. In the books, like most villains, he seems to be only held up as a mirror to other characters such as Bill, Quinn and Alcide. And Sookie only falls for him when he has his memory zapped – it’s harder to stay with him when he is back to his conniving true self.

Ming The Merciless – Fresh from the Flash Gordon comics, Ming rules the planet Mongo and has a weakness for a beautiful lady. He has an almost Guinness Book of Records style beard and has that look in his eye that lets you know, he always has a plan. And hey, power is sexy, right?

Dracula – Depending on the version you read/ watch, this blood-sucking tuxedo wearing villain usually has a tug at my heart strings. Although his polygamous vampire brides are slightly off putting, he’s usually on the quest for true love and doesn’t mind how many lawyers and doctors he battles to get there.

Dr Frankenstein – come on, who doesn’t want to make their own man? His crazy God-complex aside, he’s a driven medical student, who in my humble opinion, masquerades as the villain in the book. When all is said and done, the horrors that occur in Mary Shelley’s novel only happen because of his poor choices and selfish nature. Okay, but he’s still a doctor and quite wealthy, so still kind of attractive.

Candy Man – The supernatural serial killer from the movie of the same name and originally from the dark mind of Clive Barker. He’s polite, as he only comes when you call him. He’s good to animals, he keeps bees. And hopefully is made up of a few sweet treats (I’m really grabbing at straws now!) He’s actually one of the only movie villains that scared me when I first saw the movie back in 1992.

The Phantom of the Opera – Okay, he had an unfortunate accident and is kind of a murderous control freak, but who doesn’t want to be serenaded and called his ‘Angel of Music’. The novel was amazing and the movie, although a bit disappointing, still had a gothic romantic vibe that clung to the Phantom like an extra cape.

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The King slayer Jaime Lannister – The rugged yet alluring knight from Game of Thrones. Started off as an incestuous, child killing scumbag, but through the third season has been tormented into a more noble, loyal knight. I’m looking forward to the conclusion of this season to see his continued transformation.

Now I can’t very well talk about my favorite villains without giving a nod to my own creation. Nicholas the vampire is a the nemesis of Bad Blood’s heroine Britannia. He does some very naughty things and has quite a warped sense of love and loyalty. He is a gentleman though, and is always impeccably dressed, even when fighting zombies, and he has a secret – one that you’ll find out if you pick up your copy of Bad Blood today.

List of Romance Genres

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I just can’t stay away from those lists!

My two top genres are horror and paranormal romance and as I’ve already covered horror genres, I thought I’d do the same for romance. Looking at the list, the explanations tend to be a little obvious, so rather than patronize you with over-blown explanations, I’ve kept it brief and included links to examples where necessary.

Adventure Romance:

Strong hero, even stronger heroine. These face paced and full of danger and can be set anytime and anywhere. Happily Ever After OR HEA is preferred here by most publishers, but as always, do read each publisher’s guidelines carefully when submitting.

Chick-lit:

Relatively new genre, these are romances with a dash of humor and HEA (happily ever-after ending) is more flexible here. It’s a bit cliched but think Bridget Jones’ Diary by Helen Fielding.

Contemporary/ Main Stream:

Not to point out the obvious, but this is set in the present and will date quickly. HEA is optional. So many authors and examples here, as they are set in the normal world, with natural human characters.

Dark Fantasy:

This combines elements of supernatural abilities and paranormal creatures. It goes a little beyond the normal sword and magic fantasy romps, but can also have quite serious themes. A good example of this is the WindLegends series by Charlotte Boyett-Compo. HEA here is optional.

Erotic Romance:

Not to be confused with Erotica, Erotic Romance focuses on the development of romantic relationships through sex making it a consistent theme through the story. The sex is not there for titillation sake but should be so bound into the story line that taking it out would ruin the plot. HEA is a necessity here.

Erotica:

Shall I just say it… Fifty Shades of Grey. Although there’s a case that E L James’ novels should be sitting in Erotic Romance, as the main character’s relationship is both cemented and complicated through sex. I personally think that the amount of it required to show this is less that what was shoe-horned in. You’ve also got a lot more license in Erotica to delve into the darker/ more fetish related practices here. A great example of well written Erotica is Liliana Hart’s Erotic Fairy Tale books. HEA is optional, although I think still preferred by most publishers.

Fantasy:

Like Fantasy in general there are both saga and political elements involved with this genre. Game of Thrones is a classic example of a good fantasy. When adding this element into your romantic mix though, you have to be careful. It’s a strong genre and can easily over power your romance. It’s kind of like banana in a smoothie, it doesn’t matter what other fruit you put in there, if you throw in a banana – it only taste of banana! HEA is optional.

Futuristic/ Sci-Fi:

Strangely Stephanie Meyer’s The Host comes to mind. Set in the not too distant future, and with a strong theme of ‘love will conquer all’ and an emphasis on the deep love of both family and partners. This is a great genre to really let your imagination run wild. You can create your own world and therefor tailor the situation to the needs of your romance. HEA is not always found in these worlds, but personally I’d always try for it.

Gothic:

I think we’re on the verge of a comeback for Gothic Romance. Often described as brooding and dark, a classic example would be Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte. Check back at my horror genre list for more info on Gothic Blue Books.

Historical:

Not hard to work out what these ones are all about, but tread carefully, some time periods are just simply not interesting so won’t appeal to either readers or publishers. Lots of information and authors can be found on Historical Romance Writers.

Medical:

Novels in this genre centre on characters in the medical profession and even have their own Mills & Boon line. These books reached their peak in the 1960s but still have a place in modern romance, especially if mixed with other genres. Vampire doctors and werewolf surgeons?

Military:

Don’t just stick to the obvious on this one. Think sexy assassins and sassy bounty hunters – also don’t be afraid to throw in the supernatural on this one too. Kaylea Cross does this genre justice and she also has some great suspense romances too. Usually a HEA here, or Happily Ever After For Now – again check guidelines.

Mystery/Thriller/ Suspense:

Danger abound in this genre. There’s usually something to solve either a murder or another crime. These can get pretty dark and HEA is optional.

Paranormal:

My personal favourite. I love reading them and writing them. They’ve never been so popular and have even morphed into Dark Romance too. The best example, and one of my fav authors, is Keri Arthur, although some of her books also drop into other genres listed here too.

Regency Romance:

The Regency period was between 1811 to 1820 and although strictly a Historical Romance, is so popular that it has a genre all to itself.  For a massive list of books see Regency Reads.

Time-Travel:

I shy away from time travel in my stories, as its hard to keep a good grip on what’s going on. If you tackle this one you have to be ubber vigilant with your plotting. The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger is a strong example of this genre.

Urban Fantasy:

So, as per the horror list, this is supernatural elements within an industrial/ town/ city setting. I personally love these as the setting itself makes the paranormal aspect slightly more believable. Lots of examples here, however there’s a really comprehensive anthology aptly called The Urban Fantasy Anthology which would give you a great selection of authors such as: Kelley Armstrong, Holly Black & Patricia Briggs.

Young Adult:

The Young Adult category was introduced in 1983 and includes all the above, but for a younger audience. We’ve spoken a number of times about this genre and of course the most obvious and popular example for this genre is The Twilight Saga by Stephanie Meyer.

 

There are probably hundreds of more genres for romance, after all, its one of today’s most popular reads. If I’ve missed any off this list, please feel free to leave a comment with the addition, a description and links to good examples.

 

 

 

What I’m looking forward to in 2013

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What I’m looking forward to in 2013:

Okay, so I love TV, Movies and Books. I also love a good list, so I’ve managed to combine everything here to give you a taster of some things I’m looking forward to watching and reading this year.

 TV Series:

Revolution – season 1 – No technology, no power – a concept I used in my short story ‘What they learnt in the dark’ I can’t wait to see what JJ Abrahams does with it!

Game of Thrones – season 3 – If you haven’t watched the other 2 seasons, then you’ve either been living in a cave, or have missed the most amazing series to come out of HBO. Dragons, zombies, warlords, family politics, knights and princesses; if you watch nothing else, watch this series!

The Walking Dead – end of season 3. Will Rick leave them? How closely is it following the graphic novels? It’s already kicked off now, I can’t wait to see how season 3 ends, especially as Walking Dead is now leading US viewing figures.

Utopia – Hopefully a 2nd season…?. A crazy series, that somehow makes perfect sense! Is Janus what they claim it to be? Go onto the website, take the quiz, and see how long it would take for them to find you…It would take them 55 hours to find me.

Hannibal – season 1 – I loved the films and the character of Hannibal Lector is just so delicious, so hopefully this series won’t stray too far. But time will tel

 MOVIES:

Beautiful Creatures – They’ve already had some critics at their throats from missing out important characters such Marion, but the effects and trailer look spectacular – so maybe they missed out what they didn’t need? When I watch it, I’ll let you know.

Hansel & Gretel – Witch Hunters Fairy Tales are soooo popular right now and again the trailer looks exciting and filled with wicked witches. Great concept, fingers crossed it lives up to it.

The Host  I loved this Stephanie Meyer’s book, a much more developed and deeper plot/ characters than the Twilight Saga. It’s also got Saoirse Ronan in who was brilliant in The Lovely Bones.

The Mortal Instruments  City of Bones – I haven’t seen that much on this one, but what I have seen looks amazing, great British cast and, if it’s anything like the books, will be an amazing journey into another world, that sits neatly into our own.

Iron Man 3  I’ve really grown to love Robert Downey Jr. In my opinion he does a great job as Iron Man, and I loved his part in Avengers Assemble. This has also got Guy Pierce in and Ben Kingsley – should be a fab popcorn movie.

Kick Ass 2 – It has Jim Carrey in as Colonel Stars & Stripes – need I say more?

 BOOKS:

Once I read these, I intend to review them here, so I’ve just added links so you can pre-order/ buy in the meantime.

Sookie Stackhouse Series – Dead Ever After – Charlaine Harris

Morganville Vampires – Fall of Night – Rachel Caine

Infernal Devices – Clockwork Princess – Cassandra Clare

Masque of the Red Death – Dance of the Red Death – Bethany Griffiths

The Raven Boys – The Dream Thieves – Maggie Stiefvater 

And of course, it would be remiss of me to not mention my own book in this list! Bad Blood will be available in May (watch this space for the front reveal and publication date) My vampires VS zombies extravaganza packed with turbulent relationships, un-requited love, and more slathering undead than you can shake a sharp stick at!