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Backlash by Karyn Good Guest Post and Giveaway! : $25 Amazon Giftcard GIVEAWAY!

Monday, June 4, 2012

$25 Amazon Giftcard Giveaway, INTERNATIONAL GIVEAWAY!  Comment with a valid email address for a chance to win!

We’ve all read those books. The ones we were sad to see end because of compelling characters we remembered long after we closed the book. For me that started in grade school after reading Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery and meeting Anne Shirley. In high school I fell a little bit in love with Atticus Finch after reading To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. I was hooked on romance and great heroes after reading Nora Roberts’ Sea Swept and meeting Cameron Quinn. In love with vampires after staying up to read J.R. Wards’ Dark Lover. 
“Dark and difficult times lie ahead. Soon we must all face the choice between what is right and what is easy.” Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.
Our most beloved characters have a style of speech and mannerisms all their own. A way to say and do things that gives them a unique personality.  I have to walk around in their shoes for a while to get to know them. I want to explore what their instincts tell them to do. Test their reactions to all kinds of different stimuli. Develop a backstory. In Getting into Character: Seven Secrets a Novelist Can Learn From Actors Brandilyn Collins explains that it doesn’t matter how strong the plot is if the reader fails to connect with the characters. It’s important to get it right. Creating strong characters readers will remember after they’ve finished reading is what makes a great reading experiement.
A favorite resource of mine is Suzanne Brockmann’s Tall, Dark & Believable: Creating the “Perfect” Romance Hero Workshop. Because I love her style and her stories, I like to read it over and remind myself what I’m striving to achieve before I start a new project. I’m a great believer in being guided by the subconscious. Hopefully it will steer me in the right direction and help me create that ‘perfect’ flawed hero or heroine as I draft the story. During the editing process I have to ask myself are these characters likeable and engaging? Unlikeable enough to be interesting? Strong enough to know when to quit? Smart enough to stay alive? Flawed enough to be human? Sexy enough to have great chemistry together? Are they the correct balance of all those things?
My romantic suspense, Backlash, is a reunion story. After being separated for a decade the main characters find themselves having to join forces to protect a thirteen year old boy from a vicious gang leader. That’s what came first – the basic plot. The characters evolved over many revisions, aided by character charts, character interviews, beta reads, and critiques. Sometimes, I feel like it took a village to raise these characters. I hope they’re memorable, that they resonate with the reader and create a lasting impression.


“We have to work together, Chase.”

Right. Against one of the most vicious gangs in the country. He caught sight of her pretty pink toenails peeking out from under her blanket. Him and the pretty little small town teacher up against Raphael Tessier. Maybe the bad guys would die laughing.

He meant to back away. To leave. Before her clean scent began absorbing into his skin. But with Lily, things never quite worked out the way he planned. Good intention turned into forward movement. Until they were chest-to-chest and hip-to-hip.

“Chase, be reasonable.”

Reasonable? He could smell her. Her breasts pressed against his chest with every breath. He’d left reasonable so far behind he’d need a map to find it.

Then it was too late anyway. He needed to know if she tasted the same. Felt the same. And she was right there. In front of him. All he had to do was bend his head. Just a fraction of a movement and his self-imposed exile would end.

And he was only human.

So he tipped his head and put his mouth on hers. Ran the tip of his tongue over her bottom lip and got a yes to question number one.

His hands did a slow glide up her arms, over her shoulders to her face. He gently tilted her head and waited. Waited for the slight parting of her lips, the invitation to enter. When it came, it almost brought him to his knees.

He dove in like a man who’d been too long in the desert and she was his first taste of water in years. He needed his tongue in her mouth, tasting, savoring. He needed the warmth pulsing through his system to burn forever.


  1. Great post! I can't remember the first book I felt this way about. Honestly, I'm not sure I can remember the last.

    For some reason, out of all the books I've read, Maureen Johnson's 13 Little Blue Envelopes comes to mind. When the novel was over I wanted more of the characters. Which I think is funny as it's merely a great piece of YA chick lit.

    I think that sometimes our desire for MORE MORE MORE is what helps push capitalism in the publishing business. More often books that were never intended to be nor should be part of a series are turning into six or seven book ventures, that slowly but surely decrease in levels of greatness all because WE, the consumer, demand more of that character from that author.

    Sorry for my rambling, lol :)

    BTW thanks for the giveaway.
    mirrormera92 at aol dot com


  1. M.A.D. said...:

    The premise of Backlash sounds pretty good [plus I like that title], I'd sure love to read it!

    Okay, I really agreed with what you've said [and the above poster made some excellent points, too] regarding memorable characters, or those characters you hate to say *goodbye* to.

    Decades ago, I read one of the most incredible historical romances, Forever Amber, - which, at the time was a huge bestseller when being a bestseller required EXCELLENT skill/talent/etc.

    Anyway, it took the author 10 years to reseach and write this book. Suffice to say, the characters were so lifelike, so beautifully flawed, and yet also larger than life, that it was horrible when the book ended.

    It was a stand alone novel. Honestly, one of the best I have ever had the pleasure of reading. And over the years, I've re-read it - just to *reconnect* with those characters! Silly, but still - it was a hard book to just walk away from lol

    Okay, sorry to babble for ever here ;D

    And thank you for the sweet giveaway, too <3
    GFC: Mary DeBorde M.A.D.
    zenrei57 (at) hotmail dot com

  1. Great characters are indeed memorable. They make to return to the book & the author.

    Thank you for your insight.


  1. Rebecca Hipworth said...:

    Thank you for the giveaway.

  1. Great post. I so agree. There are some books you long to continue or be real life and go into the characters lives because the story is that good. Harry Potter is definitely one of those books for me.

  1. Evie said...:

    It's all about the characters for me when I'm reading a book. I really like Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. The characters are great and have so much chemistry.
    by.evie at yahoo dot com dot br

  1. Characters are fundamental for me! Even after so many years, Harry Potter's characters still stay with me!

    aliasgirl at libero dot it

  1. Thanks for hosting me today. I'm very happy to be here today talking about what makes great characters and therefore great books!

  1. Hi Mera,

    First thanks for the book recommendation. I'll have to check out 13 Little Blue Envelopes!

    Also you make a very valid point. It's always wise to quit well you're ahead. To know when to retire beloved characters and end a series. As much as we love the characters in a certain series, when it gets to be watered down or old, it's no good for anyone!

  1. Hi Mary,

    I know what you mean about wanting reconnect with characters. I've reread books on days when I needed to do just that, curl up in a corner and visit friends!

    Thanks for the recommendation of Forever Amber. For some reason that name rings a bell!

    If you choose to read BACKLASH, I sure hope you enjoy it!

  1. Hi Natalie!

    The Harry Potter books are wonderful examples of rich, well-developed characters. Definitely books to read and reread! Makes me wonder about her next book!

  1. Your welcome, Rebecca!

  1. Hi Evie,

    I love Jamie and Claire! The whole concept of the story is such a mixture of ideas. It makes for wonderful characters and a great read!

  1. Hi Reading Mind,

    Another vote for Harry Potter! The incredible thing about the Harry Potter books is their universal appeal. Whether your a reader or not you've heard of him. Even before the movies! That's when you know you have something special!

  1. Annette said...:

    Hi Karyn,
    You've taken a great deal of care with your characters.
    Thank you. It is great when an author helps the reader connect.
    I look forward to reading Backlash.


  1. MomJane said...:

    this was one of the most interesting posts I have read in a long time. I know that any book you write will have fascinating and likeable (or despicable) characters in it. What a great read your stories will be.

  1. Loved your post!

    Writing is all about continuous learning and now you have me more than a little interested in the Tall Dark and Believable class you took. I'm going to have to search it out.

    Love your thoughts about it taking a village to 'raise' your characters....cp's and editors and beta readers all have great input into helping the author get it right!

  1. Emily said...:

    Great post. Thanks for sharing!

  1. Cool post! I love those characters. Thanks for the giveaway.


    drinkshrunkentears at gmail dot com

  1. Hi, Annette! Thank you so much! I hope you enjoy Backlash :) I couldn't have made it happen without my writing group!

  1. Thank you so much for the kind words, MomJane! I'd take either fascinating or despicable!!

  1. Thanks, Christine! The workshop is actually a free pdf I downloaded from Suzanne Brockmann's website. Since that was a while ago I'm not sure it's still there. I'll get back to you with a link if I can.

    I couldn't have done it on my own. I needed the support and knowledge of other writers! It was an essential part of the process for me!

  1. Your welcome, Stephanie! Thanks for dropping by!

  1. Karen H said...:

    I love a good reunion story and this one sounds very promising.

    Yes, you must get a copy of Forever Amber. I read it in the mid 60's. I got a new copy of the book last Christmas. It is a keeper.

    kareninnc at gmail dot com

  1. Hi Karen! I love reunion stories, too. I hope you decide to give BACKLASH a try. And I will definitely check out Forever Amber!

  1. Addie R. said...:

    Thanks for the giveaway & post :)

  1. ann said...:

    Great post with a great giveaway to. i like a book with good character ones I will remember even after I finish a book. This one sounds like a book I would enjoy. Thanks for the chance to win.
    amhengst at verizon dot net

  1. Cathy C said...:

    You piqued my curiosity - i look forward to reading your book, Karen!

    catherine0807 at hotmail dot com

  1. Cant Wait To Read This Book. Great Post.

  1. Hi, Ann! Memorable characters stay with us and even entice us to read the books again. Should you get the chance, I hope you enjoy BAKLASH!

  1. Thanks, Catherine! I hope you enjoy it!!

  1. Thanks, April! I hope you enjoy BACKLASH! I had so much fun writing it!

  1. I can honestly say I liked reading this post so much! Thanks for sharing :)
    I'm looking forward to reading your book! It sounds great.

  1. I so love/loathe those books that I hate to see end. I find myself re-reading them and still feeling the same way. I love them because of the emotion they can cause but I hate them because they make me feel that way... does that make sense. Anyway I look forward to reading Backlash! It looks excellent :D

  1. Dyniy said...:

    I think that I am older than most of you as my 1st memories of great books were the original Nancy Drew books that my mother grew up with. I couldn't wait to get the next book to see what mystery she would solve next. To this day I find the YA genre as appealing as Adult even though I like anything with a decent plot. Backlash sounds interesting though I would like to see a little more of what's happening in it before I make a judgement call. Thanks for the generous giveaway I could definately put it to good use. Also thank you to Ms Good for her guest post, it's great. I love hearing how other people's love of reading came about. It always makes me feel like I've made a new friend. ;-)

  1. Wall said...:

    I love that books can transport you into another world and that the characters in books become your friends. If we are lucky they linger in our minds for years to come. That is what I always wanted to convey to my students and mow my blog readers. When I was little I wanted 12 children because the family in "Cheaper by the Dozen" always seemed to have so much fun,of course when I got older and realized I would have to be the one to give birth that changed, but I still love that family.

  1. Lori Thomas said...:

    I like books that make you feel your right there with the characters (Harry Potter, Nancy Drew, The Mortal Instruments series.) Great review & thx 4 the chance!!

    ctymice at gmail dot com

  1. Christina Kit. said...:

    I love how the books that touch you really stay with you and become a part of you. I love your inspiration and the excerpt is wonderful!

    Thanks so much:)

    ccfioriole at gmail dot com

  1. I'd love to read this! Thank you for the giveaway!

    volta2173 at sbcglobal dot net

  1. Anne said...:

    A couple of series I read have recently finished. The authors tied up most of the open storylines and tried to provide HEAs, but I really miss learning more about the characters and following the adventures. One was the Riley Jensen series by Keri Arthur. I know Riley is supposed to show up in the series spin off, but it's not the same.

  1. books4me said...:

    One reason I hate seeing a movie after I read a book is becaues a really good author will write a character that jumps off the page and I can picture him/her in my mind. Going to a movie changes how the character looks in my mind. If I read a book and I can't get into a character, I usually can't finish the book!

    Thank you for a great post...can't wait to read your book. I love romantic suspense books and the storyline sounds interesting!

    books4me67 at ymail dot com

  1. alterlisa said...:

    I love books that are a sort of reunion story. It gives us hope that we meet again that one that got away and get right this time.


    alterlisa AT yahoo DOT com

  1. Steph said...:

    This sounds really interesting! Thanks for the giveaway!


  1. Hi Lacey! Thanks for the great compliment! I hope you enjoy BACKLASH!

  1. Thanks Maegan! I know exactly what you mean. And you're right, it's hard to explain how we form attachment to some characters and we don't want to let them go. We want to stay with them into the future! I hope you enjoy BACKLASH!

  1. Aw thanks, Dynie! I loved reading Nancy Drew as a child, or any mystery! YA is a wonderful genre, for any age group. I'm lucky enough to have a couple of teenagers and we share books. I've read some great stories.

    I'd be more than happy to have you follow my tour, Dynie! That way you can learn a little bit more about myself, my thoughts, and BACKLASH.

  1. Welcome, Mindy! I remember reading Cheaper by the Dozen in school and falling in love with the family. But I hear you one the birthing thing! I was so excited a few years ago when the movie came out. Alas, the only thing similiar was the name and the amount of kids :(

    I think there are times in everyone's life, young or old, when we need our fictional friends as backups. Your students are lucky to have you!

  1. Hi Lori! I think that's important, too. When a story or the characters bring you along for the ride, you know you've got a winner!

  1. Thanks, Christina! I feel sorry for people who never get to experience that feeling of being carried away! To take something of the character with you, whether it's Anne Shirley's enthusiasm or Harry Potter's flawed goodness,is a comforting feeling!

  1. Thanks, Jennifer! If you get the chance I hope you enjoy BACKLASH!

  1. Hi, Anne! I know what you mean about a series ending. Or even a trilogy. You wonder if you'll be able to replace it with something equally as engaging!With characters you care about and root for!

    I've haven't read Keri Arthur but will definitely check her out!

  1. Hi Books4me! Yep, great characters jump right off the page and grab your attention and they don't let go until the end of the book. Not even then. I find they never look the same in movies as I picture them. That's why I don't buy books with the movie version cover! It throws me off.

    I agree, if you don't connect with the characters it's very hard to finish the book! You're better off finding one you love and reading it.

  1. Hi, Lisa! I love reunion stories, too. There's something so appealing about getting it right the second time around!

    How much do I love that cat!

  1. Melissa said...:

    Thanks for the giveaway!! :)

    bookcrazy124 at gmail dot com

  1. Kae said...:

    Thanks for the giveaway this sounds like a interesting book

  1. Hi Melissa! Thanks for stopping by!

  1. Thanks, Kae! If you get a chance to read BACKLASH, I hope you enjoy it!

  1. It's stuff like this that keeps me from getting anything done! Such a great excerpt, I'm on the hunt for a copy now :) Thank you for bringing it to my attention!


  1. Thanks for the wonderful compliment, Tiffany! I hope you enjoy BACKLASH!

  1. christaj3 said...:

    This sounds like a book that would keep me up all night trying to finish it! Thanks for sharing!

  1. Thanks for the wonderful compliment, Christa!!!

  1. Alba said...:

    OH MY GOD->

    "He'd left reasonable so far behind he'd need a map to find it"

    How AWESOME is THAT!!!!
    I'm sold!!! Thanks for the excerpt!


  1. Thank you for sponsoring such a great giveaway. Good luck on the rest of your writing career.

  1. Unknown said...:

    I agree so much with you about characters. For me the characters are the things I remember most about a book I read, so I think it is very important to have well developed characters that the reader can fall in love with

  1. The excerpt sounds very interesting! Thanks for the giveaway!

    ejhtan @ gmail . com

  1. Wow, that was a pretty intense excerpt! I think "Backlash" sounds like a really compelling read, and that the characters would stay with you...I love books that stick with you, years after you've read them.

    Thank you so much for the giveaway opportunity! :D

    Name: Hira Hasnain
    Email: Enamoredsoul(at)gmail(dot)com

  1. Nancy said...:

    Characters and a good character-driven novel always stay with me for a time. Thanks for the giveaway.

  1. Unknown said...:

    I just love the excerpt!!

  1. Munnaza said...:

    Good luck with the rest of your career, adn thank you so much for the giveaway!

  1. Suz Reads said...:

    I love your comments about how compelling characters stay with you long after you close the book! Reading this made me think about the book characters that have stayed with me! Thanks for sharing!

    susanw28 (at) mindspring (dot) com

  1. Sayomay said...:

    Thank you so much!

  1. I have been reading for so long that I don't remember the very first time I felt that way- but I can remember hundreds of times since then. Those are the books that I return to - to read again and again.
    Thanks for the giveaway!

    jill.watkins (at)

  1. Unknown said...:

    This book sounds really good. Thanks for the chance!
    amandarwest atgmaildotcom

  1. Anonymous said...:

    This book sounds really interesting! The premise is intriguing, and the title is amazing.

  1. Ohhh, awesome teaser :D And seems like a great book ;) Even though I mostly just read YA books :p Hih. :) Thank you for sharing. <3
    Love, Carina ~

  1. katayoun said...:

    great post, good stories do stay with you and sometimes i have to think hard to remember if i've seen a movie or it was a story, they become so alive.

  1. Anonymous said...:

    I like to see who authors are reading. Enjoyed the post.

  1. Andra said...:

    As an aspiring writer I enjoy reading other writers' thoughts behind their books. Thanks for sharing! :)

    heartstick (at) hotmail (dot) com

  1. Lilian said...:

    Haha, I totally stayed up to read JR Ward's's like my guilty pleasure!

    And How to Kill A Mockingbird!Loved that book!

    Lilian @ A Novel Toybox

  1. Darlene said...:

    I love the Romantic Suspense genre! Thanks for the giveaway!

    PS: I love The Black Dagger Brotherhood by JR Ward as well!!

    darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com

  1. Carol M said...:

    I would really enjoy this! I like romantic suspense!

    mittens0831 at aol dot com

  1. Lisa said...:

    That's really cool. I love Anne of Green Gables too, but it was Rilla of Ingleside that I just wanted to keep reading about!

    lhoffpauir at gmail

  1. Wow sounds like a hot book love a hot romance.
    sasluvbooks at yahoo dot com

  1. missymyt said...:

    sounds good!

    missymyt (at) hotmail (dot) com

  1. What a great excerpt thank you for sharing and for the great giveaway!
    Latisha D

  1. Anonymous said...:

    There's something of a love/hate relationship for me with characters that I really grow attached to. There is little more frustrating than not getting to see the rest of their lives after the book ends.