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BLOG TOUR - SEBRING by KRISTEN ASHLEY + A Rock Chick Fairy ARC Review + Excerpt + Giveaway BOOK BLITZ - Blood, Milk & Chocolate – Part 2 by Cameron Jace + Excerpt + Giveaway BOOK BLITZ - Before Goodbye by Mimi Cross + Excerpt + Giveaway BOOK BLITZ - INTERLUDE by THERESA DALAYNE + GIVEAWAY BOOK BLITZ - Immurement by Norma Hinkens + Excerpt + Giveaway

Thursday, May 22, 2014


INQUISITOR (A Witch and Wolf Novel)
RJ Blain
Urban Fantasy
Date Published: May 16, 2014
When Allison is asked to play Cinderella-turned-Fiancee at a Halloween ball, the last thing she expects is to be accused of murder. She has to find the killer and quick, or she'll be put to death for the crimes she didn't commit. To make matters worse, the victims are all werewolves.

On the short list of potential victims, Allison has to act fast, or the killer will have one more body to add to his little black book of corpses.

There's only one problem: One of the deaths has struck too close to home, and Allison's desire for self-preservation may very well transform into a quest for vengeance...

A Fire Fairy Review

I haven't heard of RJ Blain before. But the moment I read the book's blurb, I know I just have to read this book.

If you're a fan of Urban Fantasy, werewolves, and witches then Inquisitor is a must-read for you. It's fast-paced, action-packed with just a very, very, little hint at romance. I could have given it 5 fairy wings but there were some inconsistencies that I felt should have been dealt with. Other than that, the book is really entertaining.

This is the second book I read in a row that deals with werewolves and witches and I'm glad they both didn't stick with the usual formula for the subgenre. In Inquisitor, Blain added some interesting info adding uniqueness to the story. A werewolf allergic to all dogs is pretty hilarious. And a werewolf-witch as the heroine is an interesting character. Story-wise, I love the plot. It has mystery, action, and some humor. I love how the story didn't focus on Romance. It just doesn't have a place in this book.

I'm having some problems with the characters. They weren't consistent for me. I'm still thinking about what happened to Officer Marten, if Donnie is connected to the Inquisitors since he sent James to Victoria, and more questions that would be deemed spoilers if I post them here.

I'm giving Inquisitor 4 fairy wings. It was entertaining and fun to read. The story is a 5'er but I deducted a pair of wings for the problems I mentioned.

My recommendation goes to all Urban Fantasy, paranormal fantasy, werewolves, and witches fans. I encourage you to read Inquisitor. It's worth your time!

The Hardest Thing about Character Development
by RJ Blain

There are few criticisms that can damage a novel’s reputation more than weak characters. Many readers pick up a book for the characters, to share in an adventure or experience with these fictional creations. Without strong characters, the rest of the novel often falls flat, resulting in a less-than-perfect experience for fans and readers.

It took me years to truly understand that a book isn’t really about the plot and the events, although these elements are important. Many readers want to love—and hate—characters.

Building a realistic, engaging character is difficult.

My approach to writing characters is fairly simplistic compared to many others I have spoken with on the subject. All of my characters, from the primary character to a no-name tertiary one, share one thing in common: They’re people.

When I create my cast, I use stereotypical personality types. I determine whether the individual is aggressive, submissive, or somewhere between the two. This determines how a character will approach situations. I decide their basic background. 

Is the character from a poor family, but is now wealthy? Has this person always been poor? Rich? Are they from a religious background? These things are huge factors in how people interact with each other. Someone who comes from a poor background without access to higher education—or education at all—may be a lot rougher around the edges than someone who has come from a wealthier background. They perceive the world in different ways.

Is the person shy or outgoing? This differs from aggression—aggression takes many forms, including a ‘go-getter’ personality type. A shy person can be a go-getter, but in different ways!

Once I know the basics of their personalities, all of the decisions these characters make follow the basic tenants of these personality types. As they live their lives through the book, the characters change based on their experiences.

This allows me to develop a character—even a minor one—without having to write an encyclopedia about each and every character.

The hardest part of developing a character for me is remembering one little thing: A person is the product of their past, their present, and their experiences. The same applies to characters. And people change. It’s these changes that are so important, and all-too-often so difficult to get right.

As a bonus difficulty, I find it is also difficult to remember that characters, like people, will make good and bad choices. Staying true to a character means letting them make those bad decisions because that is the choice they would make. And because I let characters make realistic choices suited to their personalities, I never know when what I thought was a minor character becomes a true force in the book.

But there is a fringe benefit to doing this: Because I treat all of my characters in the same way, it’s possible for me to turn tertiary characters into main characters or antagonists.

This method won’t work for everyone, of course, but I find I really enjoy discovering how all of my characters change, even those nameless minor ones I never dreamed would account for anything.

Good characters are people—and when I read a book, I love wondering and guessing if these minor characters will rise to become stars. That’s what I try to accomplish in my own writing.

About The Author

RJ Blain suffers from a Moleskine journal obsession, a pen fixation, and a terrible tendency to pun without warning.

When she isn't playing pretend, she likes to think she's a cartographer and a sumi-e painter. In reality, she herds cats and a husband. She also has a tendency to play MMOs and other computer games.

In her spare time, she daydreams about being a spy. Should that fail, her contingency plan involves tying her best of enemies to spinning wheels and quoting James Bond villains until she is satisfied.

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