Monday, June 17, 2013

Review, Giveaway, and Guest post by Shannyn Schroeder author of More Than This

Shannyn Schroeder is guest posting for me today. :-) Thank you Shannyn!

Choosing a Genre

Thanks for having me today. I came to be a romance reader later in life than most and in kind of a round about way. I read a lot of suspense, like Tess Garrison, Lisa Jackson, and Linda Howard. At the time, I didn’t think about them being romantic suspense, although I have to admit that I loved the romance every bit as much as hunting the bad guy. When I went to look for backlist titles for many of these writers, I discovered them in the romance section. Since then, I’ve read romance in many subgenres. I like some more than others, but if the story sounds good, I’ll give it a shot.

When I sat down to write my first book, I wasn’t even sure if I had it in me to write a whole novel, but I had this idea, and it was romantic suspense. Everyone always says to write what you know and I definitely knew romantic suspense. I still believe the premise was good, the execution however…Well, it was my first book and it will never again see the light of day. I dove right into my second book, but by then, I joined the RWA and starting learning a lot more about craft. Even as I drafted that novel, I knew something wasn’t right. It wasn’t suspense-y enough. I rewrote and included a villain point of view and tried to ramp up the suspense. It didn’t help.

When that book was almost finished, I came up with the idea for MORE THAN THIS. No matter how I looked at it, I knew it had to be a straight contemporary, no suspense at all. Although I had read a handful of Nora Roberts novels, I didn’t think I really understood the subgenre. So while I started my draft, I began reading many, many contemporaries. I fell in love with the genre.

And I discovered my voice. My writing voice. The whole reason romantic suspense wasn’t working for me was because my voice is squarely in the contemporary arena. It’s where I belong and where I’m comfortable. Since that first draft of MORE THAN THIS, I’ve written 4 more books and 1 novella. They’re all contemporary.

Does this mean I’ll never try anything new? Of course not. If I hadn’t been willing to take a stab at writing a contemporary, I might not be where I am now. Sometimes I have an idea that starts to edge back towards romantic suspense and I make some notes and I might revisit it. Maybe at some point I’ll have some strange idea for a new place and write a paranormal. I can’t imagine doing it now, but never say never.

As a reader, do you stick with one genre, or are you open to lots of new things?

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Shannyn Schroeder is a former English teacher, who now works as a part-time editor while raising her three kids.

Even though she wrote from high school through college (mostly poetry), she’d never considered a career as an author. Writing fell by the wayside as she focused her energy on creating lesson plans and new and fabulous ways to torment her teen students. One group in particular dubbed her “The Torture Master,” a title she carried into motherhood.

After the birth of baby number two, Shannyn resigned from teaching and fell in love with reading romance novels. She read so many books so quickly that her husband teased, “If you’re going to read so many damn books, why don’t you just write one?”

So she did.

That first book is safely buried on her hard drive, but the process set Shannyn on the path to professional author. She came to reading romance later than many, but lives for the happy ending because real life can be depressing. She writes contemporary romance because she enjoys the adventure of new love.

In her spare time, she loves to bake cookies and watches far too much TV, especially cop shows. She is recovering from her Diet Coke addiction, fears putting her foot in her mouth on social media, and has a renewed appreciation for the bad girls of the world.

Web site / Twitter


When a lonely teacher teams up with a handsome bartender for some outrageous acts, they both get more than they bargained for…

Learning her ex-husband is going to be a father, Quinn Adams is determined to have a baby of her own—without the partnership of a man. But her sister and friends believe she needs to focus on herself first, and step out of her comfort zone by completing a list of adventures. Challenge number one is to go on five dates within two weeks. After a few disastrous attempts, Quinn’s ready to give up—until sexy bartender Ryan O’Leary offers his assistance.

Ryan has always been the dependable one in his family, often at his expense. But lately, he’s been longing for a life—and a woman—of his own. The woman he has in mind is Quinn. Though it seems all she wants is friendship, Ryan can’t ignore the explosive chemistry he feels between them. In the hopes of becoming closer, Ryan offers to help out with Quinn’s list. But when she asks him for a serious favor, he’s afraid it will jeopardize his chance to become more than friends.

Purchase Links:




Ryan and Griffin sat on the black leather couch in Ryan’s living room. They each held a bottle of beer. The White Sox game played on the TV for lack of anything more interesting to watch. Ryan shifted in his seat. He hadn’t been able to get Quinn out of his head for the past week. The more time he spent with her, the more he wanted her, and the more he realized he needed to distance himself from her. Nothing was working, though.
“If you don’t sit still, I’m going to hit you. What’s wrong?” Griffin threw one arm over the back of the couch and leaned back into the corner.

“It’s Quinn.”

“How can you be so hung up on her? You just met.”

“I’m not hung up. I told her I’d help her with her list. What do you know about speed dating?”

“Not much. I’ve never done it. All I know is a bunch of people move from table to table and try to hook up in a couple of minutes.”

“I’m thinking of setting up a speed dating night at O’Leary’s. What do you think?”

“Isn’t your bar already a place where people go to pick up strangers?”

“The format takes the awkwardness out of it. I think it’d be easier for shy people.”

“Like Quinn. I can’t believe you’re trying to . . . woo her.”

“Woo? Who the fuck says that?”

“I can’t think of another word to fit. You’re going out of your way to do a bunch of crap to make her like you. What’s next, a love poem? Why don’t you ask her out?”

Ryan puffed out his cheeks with a breath of frustration. “I have. She won’t date me because I can’t be her summer romance.”

Shannyn will be awarding a $10 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour.

 If you'd like to follow the tour, you can find the schedule here. The more you comment, the better your chances of winning. :-)

My Thoughts:

Beware of sisters who want you to step out of your comfort zone. lol! Be thankful for them too, they might just know what's best for you. :-)

In this book, Quinn is a lonely, somewhat shy, teacher who has problems being spontanious or taking chances. This results in her leading a boring life. When Quinn and her sister Indy were younger, they each made a list of what they wanted to to do when they grew up. Quinn decides she wants to have a baby and shares this desire with Indy and Kate, another friend. They decide to make Quinn a new list. They won't let Quinn have any say in the list.

Enter Ryan, Quinn's favorite bartender. He owns two bars and has a slew of family members who rely on him. He's had his eye on Quinn for awhile now but she's been hurt by a bartender before and refuses to take the chance on him even though he is super yummy to look at and really easy to talk to. Slowly but surely he weasels his way into her life. He volunteers to help her with her list in an effort to show her that he's not like her ex-husband. He'll take any opportunity to get to know her better.

I love Ryan! He was so awesome.

I loved the whole book except for the part near the end where both Quinn and Ryan were being wishy washy. You know, should we stay friends or should we be more? It was just a little annoying. I knew what would happen in the end and i just wanted to get to the HEA. :-) Yes, I am impatient. Sorry!

I am really looking forward to reading Indy's story which should be coming soon. :D

I totally recommend this book. If you like romance you should read this. The chemistry between the main characters was sizzling but not overly erotic. ;-) I especially liked watching their friendship grow.

I received an ecopy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. I honestly thought it was terrific.

Do you have a favorite bar or hangout?

Thank you for commenting! Don't forget to enter the Comment Incentive Giveaway. The link can be found at the top of the page!


  1. Oh i think i would love this one even if i'm not fan of contemporary^^. i do have favourite genre ( paranormal romance/urban fantasy) but i don't stick to that, i try often thanks to challenge i enter to expand my horizon and last year i was focused on discovering a new subgenre of romance each month... i really loved suspense romance, steampunk but chick lit is really not for me^^

    I guess i'm a little like this character or even worse^^ i don't have a special hangout or bar simply beacuse i don't go out^^

    thank you for the giveaway too


    1. I think you'd like it Miki. :-)

      Don't feel bad. I don't really have a hang out either.

    2. I'd much rather stay at home too! I dont go out very often and if I do its only with a few close friends. I dont do crowds really well.

    3. reading time is too precious^^

  2. I read right across the board in all genres.

    No special bar I like to hangout at. I'm more a home body.


    1. I'm a homebody too Mary. Give me a comfy seat, a book, and my family and I am Golden. :D

  3. +JMJ+

    I have a favourite bar, but I haven't visited it in months! My friends don't really like going to bars, so we only go there on special occasions.

    Having sisters who are happy to pull you out of your comfort zone sounds like a fun way to get a romantic plot started. If only it happened more often in real life! ;-)

    PS -- My e-mail address is on my Blogger profile.

    1. +JMJ+

      I forgot to answer the other question!

      I like to read a variety of genres and can't imagine sticking to the same thing every time. (On the other hand, I always order vanilla ice cream. Go figure. LOL!) Sometimes, at the end of a reading streak in one genre or with one author's works, I try to read something completely different. That was how I went from Laura Ingalls Wilder to Pope Benedict XVI to Robert A. Heinlein, just this year!

      So I can see why a writer would want a bit of variety in his output as well. =) In that case, however, there are considerations like loyal readers being confused when a totally different book comes out. I get why authors who have made a name for themselves in one genre or sub-genre use pseudonyms when publishing very different books, and only later revealing that the different writers were the same person!

    2. It makes sense to me too. I think it's funny when I buy a book that sounds good only to find out after that it is in fact one of the authors that I really like writing under a different name. :D

      I am always amazed at how well rounded you are with your reading. I read most everything but I definitely have my favorites that I keep returning to. :D

  4. A really fascinating review. This sounds like a really good story.

  5. Thank you so much for hosting me today.

  6. I don't go to bars, I'd rather stay home and read. Yikes, I sound boring. lol

    I have enjoyed the tour, good luck with your wonderful book.


    1. If you are boring, then that makes two of us. lol! :-)

  7. Hey guys, I can not believe that I forgot to mention that there are two really awesome sounding recipes at the back of the book. One is for an achoholic drink served at one of Ryan's bars and the other is for comfort cookies. They sound soooo yummy! :p

    1. Hi Brenda - The cookies are delicious. Every time I make them, people gobble them up. Thanks for mentioning it.

    2. If you only knew how much I loved food you would understnd why I am shocked that I forgot to mention them in my review. lol!

    3. even worse since we will our new meme soon^^ but perhaps you just wanted to keep them for you and that's not something bad^^

    4. lol! Miki, You know how much I love to share. I would never keep something yummy to myself. :p

  8. No, no hangout really. Generally if I'm with a group of friends we will just go anywhere. Usually though we end up going to the movies. I've seen this book around and it sounds really good! I'll add it to my never-ending list. And I jump around alot. My mom makes fun of me cause I'll go from serial killers to romance. I'll pretty much read any fiction.

    1. lol! Serial killers in love. You finally found something that I wouldn't read.

    2. haha that would be a great book! Thats all I used to read when I was younger. I was such a big horror fan. It was when I was about 13 that I got into romance. So now I just go back and forth with everything.

    3. I can't read horror. I am such a chicken.

    4. I think I get it from having 3 older brothers. They would watch all this scary stuff when I was little and I just loved it.

    5. I only have one brother. Thank God! Mine was the type to scare me, torment me, and make me miserable. Maybe he scared me so badly that it traumatized me and that's why I can't watch or read anything remotely scary.

    6. Mine would too but I also loved playing with them when I was little. Theres 3 years difference between me and my oldest brother so the older 2 didn't really mess with me that much. They more fought with each other and then my youngest older brother is 4 years difference. Him and me got into it more. That stuff just doesn't bother me for some reason. They used to make fun of me because I would go from begging to watch like Halloween to watching the Little Mermaid.

    7. lol! I am the youngest in my family. My brother is the closest in age to me. He is six years older than me. I also have four sisters. They are seven, eight, and nine years older than me. Sometimes that was a good thing and sometimes not so much. lol!

  9. Hi - I'm back from hanging out at the pool with my kids. That being said, I find it really funny that we're all homebodies who would rather read than go to a bar to meet people. :)

    1. There is nothing like reading a good book. :-) Great minds tend to think alike. lol!

  10. My husband came from a small town in Michigan. There was an amazing bar in town that I loved to visit.
    Debby236 at gmail dot com

  11. Anyone in need of a pick me up ought to check out the site They have a book by the same name, with true stories that will blow your mind, ... and possibly get you fired up to get to that something you have always wanted to! God bless :)


  13. I think that as a reader I am very open to new genres. I'm not a fan of traditional romance, but I can't seem to get into a story unless there's at least something of a romantic plotline that threads through the story.

    andralynn7 AT gmail DOT com

  14. No I don't go to bars.
    Thanks for the chance to win!
    natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com

  15. I enjoy a number of different genres, but my favorites are historical romance, paranormal romance, and urban fantasy.

  16. nope, don't have any favorite bar nut I guess my favorite hangout would be starbucks :D