Thursday, April 14, 2011

What are you reading...Michelle Styles?

PHS editor and Harlequin Historical Michelle Styles discovers a new  author for her keeper shelf, a must-have compliation and a book to escape into.
Last Tuesday, I went to a book launch for a member of the RNA Northumberland, Hazel Osmond. Her debut Who's Afraid of Mr Wolfe has just been published by Quercus. A rom-com set in a London advertising agency, the novel follows the adventures of advertising copywriter Ellie Somerset  and how she copes with various twists and turns in her life. As Richard Armitage inspired the hero Jack Wolfe, I was keen to read it. Within half a page I was immersed in the novel's world.. Ellie is an unforgettable character and Jack Wolfe was to die for. There is just something about a RA inspired hero. There were laugh aloud moments mainly having to do with Ellie's struggles with the various accounts as well as her eccentric, obscene scrabble-playing great aunt Edith. There were parts where I bawled my eyes out and I finished the book very satisfied. Anyway, Hazel Osmond has now become a new author for my keeper shelf and I am eagerly looking forward to her next book.

Donald Maass has published a compliation of his best bits from his previous writing books, plus a completely updated version of The Career Novelist in his new book -- The Breakout Novelist -Craft and Stratigies for Career Fiction Writers. The final third which is given over to career planning is extremely useful for anyone who wishes to make ficition writing their career. In addition, he does have his best exercises listed (and more importantly provides a website where you can download the worksheets should you be so inclined). There are 73 exercises in all. The theory behind the worksheets is very important though.  Because he hopes the book will live on people's desks, the binding is ring binder type so it can lie flat.  It is a book to be used rather than stored in a bookcase.

Finally, as I was ill at the weekend, I was very pleased to escape into Donna Alward's Honeymoon With the Rancher. It was just the sort of book I needed to forget a pounding headache and feeling grotty. Donna does not disappoint.
Michelle Styles writes historical romance for Harlequin Historical. Her next full length release will be To Marry a Matchmaker in July 2011. You can read more about her books on her website


  1. Funnily enough I'm working through Donald Maass' book right now. It's everything you said it would be when you recommended it a while back, Michelle, but I've only just managed to get my hands on a copy. Thanks for the tip!
    Hope you feel better now.

  2. I am so glad it works for you, Christina.
    have you tried downloading the worksheets? I found that printing off several of the worksheets has really kick started my imagination with the latest wip.

  3. You've mentioned Donald Maass so many times Michelle (on your blog) that I *really* must read his books! I shall go online and look-see. Thanks Caroline x