Sunday, March 17, 2013

Book Tour for Wicked Lies by Karina Cooper (Review & GIVEAWAY)

Fans of the paranormal and the m/m genres will find much to entertain them in Wicked Lies by Karina Cooper.  Today you get some insight into this short story through an enticing blurb and my review.  You also get to learn more about Ms. Cooper through an in-depth interview. Before you leave though make sure to sign up for the giveaway.......

TSP:  Knowing what you do now about the publishing business, would you have done anything different career-wise?
KC:  I like this question, because it always makes me think I’m doing a good job. Overall, I’m really happy with how things have gone, and I don’t regret anything I chose. I love my agent, my editorial teams have been wonderful, and I’ve been treated right. It more than makes up for any issues along the way!
TSP:  What does your writing space look like and do you surround yourself with any particularly inspirational items?
KC:  My writing space looks like a bomb went off. So not kidding! I try to keep my space as neat as possible, but deadlines creep up and I’m always doing something else, so I’m not as neat as I should be. I have a little shelf above me, affixed to the wall, that has one copy each of all my books and a few little knickknacks that make me happy, and I’ve put up pulpy noir-style art on my walls, but there’s nothing particularly inspiring. I get inspiration from too many things to focus on just a few!
TSP:  The majority of your books are paranormal in nature, what draws you to that genre?
KC:  I love worlds where there’s that something “other”, that bit of magic or mystery or paranormalcy. Overcoming odds that are bigger than your standard relationship issues, end of the world big, is a lot of fun for me. I love adventure, and paranormal adventure is my favorite kind.
TSP:  Beyond its synopsis, what do you want us to know about Wicked Lies?
KC:  Wicked Lies came about because Jonas Stone needed his story told. I love Jonas, he’s my favorite character in the whole series—maybe tied with Phin—and I wanted very much to share his real face with the world.
talked about the hardships of LGBTQ teens and youth on my blog, and in it, I explain that I’ll be donating everything I make from the sale of the novella to the It Gets Better Project. It’s really important that we take care of our kids, to give them love and acceptance no matter their background, sexuality or history. I don’t have kids, so I’m hoping my readers will help me take care of others the best we can.
TSP:  Which of your books would you like to see made into a movie and who would play the main couple?
KC:  I have only ever really casted Lure of the Wicked, with Bradley Cooper and Stephanie Jacobsen as Phin and Naomi, but I really think Blood of the Wicked would make a much better movie. It’s got action, shootouts, crashes, hot sex, and they get together in the end. What more could we ask?
TSP:  Of all the heroes you've written, who's the most heroic in your opinion?
KC:  Phin, hands down. He wasn’t raised to be a fighter, he wasn’t persecuted. He was raised in the lap of luxury, by two women, and still had the guts to fight for what he wanted—breaking every mold ever expected of him doing so. Of all the characters, I think Phin—sensitive, patient, earnest man that he is—really has to overcome a lot more, emotionally and mentally. Everything he knows is ripped out from under him, and he can’t ever get it back.
And yet, he still loves Naomi with all his heart, and works damned hard to make it work.
TSP:  How has the digital revolution affected your career and how you market yourself?  Do you have an eReader yourself?
KC:  I do have an eReader, but I’ll tell you, I came from a web-development background. I was already all over the social media sphere, and marketing myself hasn’t changed at all since becoming a full time author. 
TSP:  My site's all about favorite things, so what are your favorite things/the things you can't live without?
KC:  Coffee! Take away all else, but leave my coffee alone. It’s my comfort drink of choice, and I always have some on a heating plate while I write. It’s my favoritest thing in the world. Next to the cats, rabbit and man candy, of course.
TSP:  Thanks so much for taking the time to answer my questions and I look forward to your visit to my site!
KC:  Thank you for having me! I giggle at your name because I’m wearing a scarf right now—I like wearing them on cool days, even inside, and have way too many to count. Cheers!

Jonas Stone has been given his first independent operation: rescue the insurrection leader’s imprisoned grandson from the Mission. Getting the job done means more than getting Danny Granger out-it means staying with him while he heals. Staying too close, for way too long.
Danny is everything Jonas isn’t: confident, optimistic, honest--a man to be reckoned with. If only it didn’t mean going against everything Jonas has planned. He’s kept his secrets for years, hid behind a mask no one could see through...until now. Danny isn’t the kind of man Jonas deserves. But he might be exactly the man he needs...

The DARK MISSION series so far….
The streets of New Seattle have become a battleground between the Holy Order's agents and the witches persecuted in the name of "keeping of the peace". Battle-lines are shifting, good and evil not nearly so clear-cut as witches and rogue hunters have banded together in an uncertain alliance with rebels determined to peel back layers of conspiracy that go back decades before the cataclysm that changed the world forever. The Order has made its move, overthrowing the city government in a bloody coup, and present-viewer Jessie, ex-hunter Silas, newly minted witch Naomi, the felon Phin Clarke, seer Caleb and genetically enhanced witch Juliet are suddenly thrown together with the displaced Mission Director Parker Adams and Simon,  a double-agent whose witch genes are slowly killing him. The rebels need to gain some ground, get back their imprisoned people, or this will be the shortest rebellion in history.


A blue-white light flickered in the dark. Sparks glinted off the tool racks bolted to the wall across the shadowed room, reflected from the metal braces left leaning against the desk. As silence—mind-numbingly loud, thick as water, and twice as hard to breathe—filled the narrow room, that blue-white light caught in the circular lenses of a pair of glasses and threw a glare across the screen.
Jonas Stone stirred. “It has to be now,” he said, his voice too loud in the oppressive weight of the shadows behind him. He couldn’t look away from the feed spilling its incandescent glow over his desk, his keyboard.
His conscience.
Because the man framed in that digital feed—the kid strapped to the chair dead center of the surveillance footage—wasn’t the first suspected heretic to sit there. To sweat there.
To bleed.
“Be sure, Jonas. We get one shot at this.”
His brain wanted to look at the comm unit beside his left hand. His body refused to obey, every cell focused on the prisoner’s dark, drooping head. Scarred fingers twitched, knuckles whitening, and Jonas frowned as he realized his right hand had closed into a painful fist.
It had to be now. The kid wouldn’t last much longer.
“There’s no alternative,” he replied. “We’re not going to get another opening soon enough to .” He hesitated.
The voice over the comm link didn’t waver. Not even a fracture. “Soon enough to save him.”
Only through recent experience did Jonas know that the raspy, lifetime-pack-a-day voice coming out of the secure line belonged to a woman named May. Leader of a rebellion that had saved Jonas’s life, and the perpetrator behind a string of hacking jobs that left Jonas seriously reconsidering a career shift before the Church had made that choice for him.
The fact that she was very, very good was all that kept him from throwing in the towel now.
But he’d never met her in person. Hell, he’d never met the prisoner now struggling to raise his head in Jonas’s feed, either. Instead, all he had was a picture in a box, a hacked security feed, and too many hours spent staring at the incandescent screen until his eyeballs throbbed and the vicious curl of helplessness inside him turned to a spiraling ache.
That boy didn’t belong in that kind of interrogation room.
A single light, faded blue, gleamed over shoulders broader than Jonas’s, but not by much. The prisoner was athletically lean where Jonas was simply skinny. The narrowly defined muscles of his chest were outlined by the stained remains of a thin, long-sleeve shirt.  Blood and sweat had turned it nearly brown. His slumped shoulders strained against the restraints confining him to the hard metal chair, a position not just awkward but painful as hell. Jonas hadn’t seen his face for over an hour.
He didn’t have to. He knew what he’d see when—if—the kid raised his chin again.
Blood caked into a ridged scab across the fine slash of his upper lip, under his broad nose and over a determinedly sculpted chin. He’d see the blackened stains of it dried into the man’s ears, blending into his dark brown hair. Even now, that greasy fringe flopped over his forehead, long since sweating off the gel that had held it into its fashionable spikes. The longest of the textured strands would slide into one swollen eye, if it ever opened again.
The prisoner had eyes the color of the computer-lit confines of the places Jonas preferred to inhabit. Almost black, even without pain stripping them to an endless void. When open, those eyes all but crackled with an intensity that could take a lesser man’s objectivity away in a single glance. Like a hungry kid or a kicked puppy.
Or a man on the edge of desperation.
Jonas’s chest kicked.
“Let me know when your people are ready.” He didn’t bother hiding the raw regret in his voice. He’d felt a lot of it, lately. After all, he used to be the man who helped put people into rooms just like that.
“Fine.” May’s voice cracked. Flattened. “I’m trusting you, Jonas.”
“I know.” They always did. “Let me try. I’m positive I can get him out. They won’t expect it this soon.”


As a fan of the paranormal and m/m genres I found it easy to immerse myself in this short story even though I haven't read any of the other books in the Dark Mission series.  The actions and emotions in this story felt separate from the series and it was the acceptance of love and empathy that drove this story to its immensely satisfying conclusion.

The beginning of this story is gritty and hard to read as main character Danny is being tortured for knowledge he supposedly has.  The author pulls no punches, literally, as these early scenes are bloody and leave you feeling every punch through its vivid imagery.  Just when Danny thinks the end is near he gets help from Jonas, the physically and emotionally damaged tech guru who everyone relies on.  Danny considers Jonas his savior from that moment on but it's really Danny who's doing the saving as he forces Jonas to open himself up to the possibilities of love and happiness through unconditional acceptance.

Danny is a strong-willed young man comfortable with who he is and who admitted the truth about himself long ago.  He exudes confidence even at his lowest moment.  Jonas has kept his real self hidden and only has one-night stands as he wants to keep himself safe in his own little world.  With the physical disabilities he carries he never wants pity which is yet another reason for his one-night stands.  Danny refuses to let him hide from the truth or himself though and a relationship that starts out as a slow burn soon becomes something more profound and immensely satisfying.

The sexual interlude and interactions between the two leads is realistic with constant undertones of sexual tension.  The romance is surprisingly fully fleshed-out for the story's shortness and though the ending feels more like a HFN, the positive message and deep seated emotions between the two points towards a more permanent ending. This story can definitely be read on its own but will be more meaningful read amongst the rest of the book series.  As it is it's an emotionally satisfying read with likable characters that has me wanting to read more books by Ms. Cooper.

My rating for this is a B+

*I received this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.



Born from the genetic mash-up of lesser royalty, storytellers, wanderers and dreamers, KARINA COOPER was destined to be a creative genius. As a child, she moved all over the country like some kind of waifish blonde gypsy and thrived in the new cultures her family settled in. When she (finally) grew up, she skipped the whole genius part and fell in love with writing because, really, who doesn’t love making things up for a living?
One part romance fanatic, one part total dork, and all imagination, she writes dark and sexy paranormal romance and urban fantasy. When she isn’t writing, Karina is an airship captain’s wife and Steampunk fashionista. She lives in the beautiful and rainy Pacific Northwest with a husband, four cats, two rabbits, the fantasy of a dog, and a passel of adopted gamer geeks.
Twitter: @karinacooper


a Rafflecopter giveaway

No comments:

Post a Comment