Saturday, August 06, 2005

you can't fool me. this is all the same guy.

Master Of DesireThe Pirate PrinceSilver Feather


A message to book blurb writers: no matter how many times you say it, it's not a word.

In the spirit of sharing, I bring you my new favourite book description. It's from the improbably named How to Marry a Millionaire Vampire, written by the even more improbably named Kerrelyn Sparks.

From the Publisher

Roman Draganesti is charming, handsome, rich ... he’s also a vampire. But this vampire just lost one of his fangs sinking his teeth into something he shouldn’t have. Now he has one night to find a dentist before his natural healing abilities close the wound, leaving him a lop-sided eater for all eternity.

Things aren’t going well for Shanna Whelan, either. After witnessing a gruesome murder, she’s next on the mob’s hit list. And her career as a dentist appears to be on a downward spiral because she’s afraid of blood. When Roman rescues her from an assassination attempt, she wonders if she’s found the one man who can keep her alive. Though the attraction between them is immediate and hot, can Shanna conquer her fear of blood to fix Roman’s fang? And if she does, what will prevent Roman from using his fangs on her ... ?

But wait a minute, you say, aren't vampires only one corner of the romance market? What about pirates? What about the savage but passionate Scotsmen? Although she does seem to avoid the high seas, Ms. Sparks will not disappoint, at least according to this reader/reviewer who will remain nameless out of common decency:

There are so many unique aspects to this novel, and in a time where paranormal romances are hugely popular, Ms. Sparks singular take on vampires will make her stand out among the rest. I loved the fact that her vampires had their own television network, and was impressed with her fusion cuisine, where Roman’s synthetic blood creation is flavored with, for instance, chocolate and is called chocolood. To add variety to vampire diets. Shanna and Roman made a spectacular pair, their scenes together crackled with sexual tension and deep affection. How do a woman who is afraid of blood, and a vampire co-exist? Ms. Sparks makes it compelling and entertaining to find out. I haven’t even mentioned the kilt clad Scottish warrior/vampires who guard Roman they were inspired. [emphasis added]

It's official: there is no premise so preposterous that it hasn't already been written. Highland vampires? Done. Choose-your-own-adventure erotica? Done. ("If you lick the finger, turn to page 67. If you find the idea repulsive and refuse, turn to page 112.") Yet, while they push the boundaries of what we might consider publishable, writers continue to recycle some of the worst ideas in literature, exemplified by this Cassie Edwards about-the-author quote: "Over 78 of her historical romances have been published and Edwards has won the Romantic Times 'Lifetime Achievement Award' for her Indian series and a 'Reviewer's Choice Award' for her first Indian romance, Savage Obsession." Wow! Racist and tedious. Two great tastes that taste great together. It's not all offensive, though--some of it is just boring. While I was shelving one day I misread one cover blurb as "Each new Connie Mason book is an old Connie Mason book!" which seems kind of prescient the more books I am exposed to.

I'm picking on the romance novels, but I could do this for any genre, including literary fiction. Don't believe me? Read the plot summary from Daren King's Jim Giraffe:

From the Publisher
Scott Spectrum is being haunted by a ghost giraffe named Jim. Scott thinks he’s a man who has everything — a high-speed internet connection, alien-shaped slippers, and a beautiful wife called Continence. But Scott hasn’t touched her in years and she’s been left furiously polishing the sideboard, dreaming of black stallions. According to Jim, Scott’s days are numbered, and to save himself from certain death from sexual repression he must quickly perform every act in the lovermaker’s lexicon.

Jim Giraffe knows a lot about sex, luckily. He also loves pizza and beer and has breath that smells of tree-tops. The prudish Scott is at first shocked by this profane, perverted ghost giraffe, but he accepts his help. Little does Scott realize that Jim has his own agenda and that his suburban idyll is about to be well and truly buggered up.

One is rendered awestruck.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

the look of love

I am so amused by this that I had to share...for anyone who wasn't there, this is a shining moment from our commitment party. And yes, we're still speaking to one another.

Lazy loved Pubah and loved loving her...

I just had one of those conversations that you can only have with old friends--I called my friend Pubah in Vancouver and she answered the phone practically falling over from tiredness. "Aw, honey, do you need to go and have dinner and relax?" I said. "I really do tonight," she said, and then asked me how things were on my end anyway. We crammed a couple of important things into five minutes worth of talking and she asked me to suggest that she should just eat and read a book tonight. I told her I thought that was a fabulous idea and that she should consider it a favour to me to take care of herself, since I'm not there to do it. She told me the people who were upsetting me were rat bums. We got off the phone.

It's amazing how many ways you can find to say "I love you" when you know someone well.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005


After seeing Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, I have come to the conclusion that Johnny Depp is completely, freakishly attractive. Is it even possible for him to seem unappealing? With this character's neurosis and his weird greenish skin and his Prince Valiant haircut, why am I still thinking "Wow, he's hot." !?

Wrong! Wrong! Wrong!