Monday, 16 May 2011

Piatkus Blogger Event - 12th May 2011

Last Thursday I was invited to go to the Piatkus offices to find out about the new releases they have coming out this year.  I can't even begin to tell you how excited I was, Piatkus publish some of my favourite authors - Larissa Ione, Keri Arthur, J.R. Ward, Christine FeehanSherrilyn Kenyon to name a few - and are without a doubt my favourite UK publisher when it comes to adult paranormal romance stories!  They don't just publish paranormal romance though, they also publish urban fantasy, women's fiction, romance, historical romance, romantic suspense and even crime novels and thrillers!  I met up with Viv (from Serendipity) before the event and it was great to have a catch up as we walked along to the very posh Piatkus offices (I wish I'd thought to take some pictures inside the foyer).

When we arrived we spent some time mingling with the staff and some other bloggers in the library (yes we did start drooling over the books!) and we were treated to drinks and some delicious looking cupcakes.  I finally got to meet the lovely Carolyn from Book Chick City which was great - her blog is one of the first ones I discovered when I started blogging so it was nice to put a face to the name.  When everyone had arrived we were shown to a conference room and given a presentation by some of the editors and the marketing team.  Let me tell you they have some amazing looking books coming out this year and I can't wait to start reading them!

One of the first books they talked about was The Guardian Angel's Journal by Carolyn Jess-Cooke which is the Piatkus super lead title for 2011.  The story is about a woman in her 40's who dies and gets to come back to earth as her own guardian angel.  It was described as the Lovely Bones meets the Time Travellers Wife and had me really intrigued.  We were given a copy and I've already started reading it - I'm about half way through now and really enjoying it.  I'll get my review posted as soon as I can so I can tell you all about it.  Carolyn Jess-Cooke is currently working on a sequel which I think will be called Angel Behind the Door.

Next up was Afterwards by Rosamund Lupton that is being published in the UK in June.  Rosamund's debut novel Sister was the fastest selling British debut novel in 2010 selling 430,000 copies in the UK and it is being launched in the US this summer.  I've heard good things about Sister and am going to have to get hold of a copy soon.  Afterwards is about a mother who runs into a burning building to rescue a child and sounded fantastic.  It was described as crime fiction meets women's fiction and early reviews have been rating it as even better than Sister.

We had a chat about Nora Roberts who writes romance under her own name and romantic suspense as J.D. Robb.  She is an incredibly popular author all over the world and has written over 190 novels with at least 4 new books every year (she sells at least a million copies of each book in the US alone!!).  I have heard great things about her In Death series (published under the name J.D. Robb) but have always been reluctant to start a series that already contains over 30 books!  We were told she writes feisty women and great sex scenes so I think I'm going to have to bite the bullet and buy a copy of Naked in Death to try.  Piatkus are going to be releasing ebook versions of some of her previously unreleased short stories to encourage new fans and I'm looking forward to giving them a try.

If you're a Sherrilyn Kenyon fan you can look forward to book 20 in the Dark Hunter series Retribution which releases in August.  The whole series is getting a new look and I have to admit I really love the new covers.  Now, I'm a bit late jumping on the Dark Hunter bandwagon and have only read the first book (Fantasy Lover) but I can already tell that Sherrilyn Kenyon will be included on my favourite authors list!  I have the next 3 or 4 books on my to read pile and I really think I need to work on catching up on the series this year.  Other good news for fans is that Sherrilyn has started on a new series - The Belador Code - the first book is called Alterant and is out in September.  If you're up to date with the Dream Hunter series (which I believe is a collection of some of the books in the Dark Hunter series) then you can also look forward to the next book The Guardian in November.  Like I said, I really need to get a wriggle on & catch up!

Christine Feehan is another prolific author who usually releases 4 books a year.  Piatkus have just released Savage Nature from the Leopard series (sexy leopard shifters - yes count that as another series added to my wish list!) and will be releasing the next Carpathian book Dark Predator in September.  I'm a huge fan of her GhostWalker series (another one will be released in January 2012 squeeee!) but have only read the first Carpathian book (Dark Prince).  I admitted that I wasn't as keen on that one as I was on the GhostWalker series and editor Donna told me that they have re-released Dark Prince with 100 extra pages.  One of the other bloggers said it's now like a different book so I'm keen to try it again and see how I think they compare, Donna very kindly gave me a new copy so I'm hoping to read it soon.  Christine Feehan has started a new series called Sisters of the Heart (which is linked in with her Drake Sisters books) and the first book Spirit Bound will be out in December.

I was incredibly excited when they mentioned Keri Arthur's new Dark Angel series.  I've read nearly all of Keri's back list since I started blogging in Jan 2010 (I think I have about 4 books to go before I've finished the Riley Jenson series but I've finished the Spook Squad trilogy, Nikki and Michael series, Damask Circle & Ripple Creek series - yes I'm a huge Keri Arthur fan!!).  The Dark Angel series is a spin off from the Riley series and tells Risa's story, the first book Darkness Unbound is out in September and we only have to wait until October to get hold of book 2 Darkness Rising!  I think I squealed out loud when I found there was an ARC of Darkness Unbound in our goodie bag :o)

Pretty much anyone who reads adult paranormal romance books has heard of the Black Dagger Brotherhood series by J.R. Ward (if you haven't where have you been hiding?  It was one of the first series I discovered in the genre!)  I read the first 6 books in the series (Dark Lover, Lover Eternal, Lover Awakened, Lover Unbound & Lover Enshrined) about 3 times each before I started blogging but am working my way through them again now to review them before I finish reading the series.  Book 9 Lover Unleashed was only released 6 weeks ago and has already sold 9,000 copies in the UK (I haven't even bought my copy yet!).  J.R. Ward also writes the Fallen Angels series which is set in the same world but about different characters, I've only read the first book (Covet) but am looking forward to reading the rest of the series and the third book Envy will be out in September.

A new urban fantasy series that I'm really excited about starts with First Grave on the Right and is written by Darynda Jones.  This is a debut novel but has already won an award and J.R. Ward said: "The best debut novel I've read in years . . . An absolute must read - I'm already begging for the next one".  High praise indeed & luckily we don't have to wait too long to read it, First Grave on the Right is released in November and sequels Second Grave on the Left and Third Grave Dead Ahead are due out in January & February 2012.  The series introduces 20 something Charley Davidson who is a PI and also a grim reaper.  It is an adult series but will have cross over appeal for older teens.  The TV rights have already been snapped up by the people who created Gossip Girls and The Vampire Diaries (although this doesn't guarantee that a TV series will be created).  I can't wait to get started on this one!

Jacquelyn Frank is the author of the popular paranormal romance Nightwalkers series.  I've heard a lot of good things about the series but it was unavailable in the UK so I haven't started reading it yet.  The good news is that Piatkus will be publishing the whole series starting with Adam (book 6) in November (at the same time as it hits the US) and then the rest of the series in 2012.  I was very excited to find a copy of Adam in our goodie bags but I have a thing about reading a series out of order so I may have to wait until I've been able to get hold of the earlier books before I can read and review it.  They will also be publishing Jacquelyn's new Three Worlds trilogy so that's a lot of new books to look forward to.

I am incredibly excited that Piatkus are going to be releasing Larissa Ione's Demonica series in the UK (all 5 books will be published between July and December this year).  I already have US copies of the first 3 books which I loved but I think the UK covers are awesome and I'm going to have to replace my copies!  The Demonica series is about super hot demons who work at a demon hospital and is one of my favourite paranormal romance series.  Larissa's new Lords of Deliverance series (starting with Eternal Rider which has just been released in the UK) is a spin off from the original series and will have appearances by the characters we've already met but can be read separately.  The second book Immortal Rider will be out in December so it's going to be easy to get a Larissa Ione fix this year!

If you're an urban fantasy fan and looking for something a little different it will be well worth keeping an eye out for S.G. Browne's new book Fated.  This was billed as a witty urban fantasy full of black humor and sarcasm and is being released in September.  It sounds like a fun story and I'm looking forward to reading it.  If you're a fan of Christopher Moore or Chuck Palahniuk this should be right up your street (that's another two authors I'm going to have to add to my to read pile lol).
I haven't read many historical romances since I started blogging but hearing about some of the new titles Piatkus have coming out has made me think it's about time I picked up a few again.  The first one they talked about was Just Like Heaven which is the first in a new series by Julia Quinn.  This was described as a comical historical romance that is a cross between Bridget Jones and Jane Austen and sounds like it will be a really fun read.  The book is being released in June so you don't have too long to wait if it sounds like something you want to read.

Another exciting historical series by Eloisa James starts with A Kiss at Midnight which is a retelling of Cinderella but set in regency England.  The first book is released in August with the second (When Beauty Tamed the Beast - bet you can guess what fairytale that one is based on!) coming out in September.  There are going to be 4 books in the series with the remaining two being retellings of The Princess and the Pea and The Ugly Duckling.  I can't wait to read them all!

If you fancy a Georgian romance for a change keep an eye out for Elizabeth Hoyt's new series.  I have to admit I was sold on Scandalous Desires as soon as I heard that the hero is a sexy London river pirate - oh yes this is on my wish list!!  Piatkus are also re-releasing Claire Lorrimer's Women of Fire series that was originally released in the 70's and 80's and sold over a million copies worldwide.  The series follows a family from the end of the Victorian era right through WW1 & WW2 and sounded really interesting.

If you're a Stephanie Lauren's fan you can look forward to a new series from her starting with Viscount Brekenridge to the Rescue in September.  This is a series about 3 sisters who are all looking for husbands but instead of being set in London they take their search to the Scottish Highlands (can I hear you say kilts & accents? Yay!).  Sorry for the lack of a cover image for that one - I couldn't find one online yet.  Last but not least we talked about The Apothecary's Daughter a debut novel by UK author Charlotte Betts.  This one sounded really interesting and I'm looking forward to reading it.  The story is set in London at the time of the plague just before the Great Fire in 1066.  I don't think I've ever read anything set in that time period so it should be really interesting to find out more.

After the presentation it was back to the library for some more drinks and nibbles and time to chat about all the amazing books we'd heard about.  It was lovely to have time to chat with the editors and publicity team about the books we all love and the kind of things we'd like to read in the future.

Here are a few pictures I took while we were chatting:

I mentioned earlier that we were given a goodie bag but I still can't quite believe how many amazing books we came home with!  It really was like Christmas come early and I can't wait to get reading.  My only problem is where to start lol.  I would like to say a massive thank you to all of the staff at Piatkus for being so generous and for hosting such a great evening.  We literally had to drag ourselves away so we didn't miss our trains but I could have happily stayed all night!

Do you have any preferences on what you'd like to see reviewed first?

Who was there:
Paola, Donna, Lucy, Sophie, Maddie, Jo, Steph, Kate & Emma - Piatkus
Viv - Serendipity
Carolyn - Book Chick City
Grete & Tracey - Book Thing
Tanya & Anna - Murder One Romance Book Club
A couple of other bloggers arrived a bit late and missed the introduction so I didn't get their names & blog addresses written down so if I've missed you off please let me know & I'll add your link.


  1. A fabulous post and a fabulous day. We really did have to drag ourselves away.I look like I am in book heaven. I forgot to mention how wonderful it was to meet Carolyn from Book Chick City.

  2. Fab post. I've got book envy right now LOL. From a selfish perspective I'd suggest reviewing Darkness Unbounds so I can read your review ;p

    I'm a huge Keri Arthur as well, and have read all of them (I think!) to date, just before I started blogging.

  3. Oh man ... you got Adam? I've been waiting 3 years for that book (and still got to wait until november). You're so lucky!
    I've been dying to read First Grave on the Right, it sounds really awesome; and what can I say about Darkness Unbound? I'm also a huge Keri Arthur fan and I'm waiting impatiently for it.
    I want them all!!!

  4. Thanks for the overview of the blogger event! I had no idea Larissa Ione's books were getting lovely new UK covers - I think I'll preorder the nice new one instead of just grabbing the older USA version. The new covers are gorgeous! I think I'd vote for Eternal Rider to be first up for a review.

  5. What a great event, I had such a good time - and the goodies were just amazing, can't wait to read them all! It was good to meet you too! :D



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