Hello my fellow little munchkins. How are you all doing? I am doing fairly well. It is the second day of finals. I am not doing anything at all today besides watching movies so I will knock out another book or two. Yesterday I already finished one book which was a poetry book which I will be reviewing either on Friday or in the following days.
Anyways, why don’t we get into this long post! Don’t forget to enter the giveaway!
Book Title: What We Do for Love by Anne Pfeffer
Category: Adult Fiction, 227 pages
Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction
Publisher: Bold Print Press
Release date: May 21, 2019
Tour dates: May 20 to June 14, 2019
Content Rating: PG-13 + M (My book has a few instances of the F-word and Sh— and one somewhat explicit sex scene.
Book Description, “If Lorelai Gilmore of Gilmore Girls was dropped into a thriller, it might resemble this appealing novel.” –Kirkus Reviews
Thirty-eight-year-old Nicole Adams has given up on finding love. Instead, the single mother focuses on the things she cherishes most—her sixteen-year-old son Justin, her friends, and her art. When she convinces a prominent Los Angeles museum to feature a piece of her work, a large-scale installation, she thinks her life has finally turned a corner. Then Justin brings a girl, Daniela, home to live with them. Daniela’s angry parents have thrown her out of the house because she’s pregnant with Justin’s child.
Shattered, Nicole takes Daniela in and, in so doing, is drawn into the inner circle of Daniela’s family—a frightening world of deceit and violence. Nicole struggles to keep life going as normal. Forced to deal with people she doesn’t trust or like, fearful for the future of both her son and the grandchild they’re expecting, Nicole wonders if she can do what she tells Justin to do: always have faith in yourself and do the right thing.”
This book definitely wasn’t what I was expecting it to be like. It was set up to be one way however it ended up falling flat on me. Both due to the writing style and also due to how the pacing of the story was.
The premise of the book was set up to incite interest into what may have happened towards the family however the concept wasn’t fully achieved and ended up dragging on. The romance within this book had also fallen flat due to the point of view it was shown in. Pacing within the book seemed okay in the beginning however it sporadically changed as the book kept on going.
The point of view in this book was from the mother which felt like a wrong step for me just due to it being harder to grasp. However, this is my own personal issue due to reading more Young Adult compared to Adult Chick Lit.
Overall, this book didn’t feel like it was written for everyone, feel flat in some areas, and the overall concept of it wasn’t accomplished to the best of the abilities of the writer.
What made you want to write this book?
The original kernel of an idea came from the road I lived on for fifteen years in the Hollywood Hills—a rutted, one-lane track that ran along the side of a canyon past our home and up to a beautiful lot with a view of the city. A single mother lived there with her daughter. Sometimes our homes seemed to me these perfect, secluded hideaways from the world, but on a really dark, stormy night, mine, at least, felt lonely and vulnerable.
Our neighbor was a social creature who always had friends coming up and down the road for parties and gatherings. I thought it would be fun to write about a single mother living in this setting; thus, the birth of Nicole Adams and her son Justin in What We Do for Love. Nicole, Justin, and my other characters were invented by me and, beyond the initial premise, any resemblance to real people is accidental; similarly, I made up the events of this book from my imagination.
So, although the people and events of this book are fictitious, you can rest assured that the Trail of Terror is real. I’ve lived there.
While you were editing your book what were some thoughts that were going through your mind?
It’s an interesting question for me to answer, since this is the first book I’ve written with an element of suspense to it. It also has dark and light sides to it that I had to make sure meshed well in one book. So I started relatively light yet tried, from the beginning, very slowly, to build in bits of menace.
Throughout, I was trying to plant seeds for reveals that were coming down the road, so that when the reveal came, the reader thought, “That make so much sense—why didn’t I think of that?” At the same time, I had to be careful not to slip up and drop some small fact that would give part of the story away.
I also tried to make sure that I had a strong factual basis for the twists and turns of the story, so that no one could say, “That’s ridiculous. It could never happen.”
I hope I succeeded at all that – I sure tried.
Do you google yourself?
Since I started publishing my books, yes, I do. It’s part of a neurotic search to find every scrap of what’s being written about me and my books. Through Google, I find things I wouldn’t have otherwise known about: reviews, comments, mentions in blogs or articles. This can be a bit of a nightmare, of course, but for now, I’d rather know what people are saying than stick my head in the sand.
What advice do you have for other writers?
My advice would be to write something you love, something you want to read, that reflects you and what you believe. It’s the only way your book will ring true and resonate with readers.
Don’t write a romance just because romances sell, or a paranormal thriller because they’re the next big thing. For your book to succeed, it should be authentic. It needs to be something only you could write.
How much research do you do for your books?
It depends on the subject matter. Little research was necessary for What We Do for Love, while others of my books have required quite a lot.
Luckily, virtually every human experience seems to be on Youtube. For The Wedding Cake Girl. I’ve dived vicariously among treacherous columns of kelp and alongside a 600-pound sea bass. For Girls Love Travis Walker, I’ve climbed ladders and blasted water from the hoses of a virtual fire truck. I’ve done those things, so I can write about them.
Even very mundane things, like a drive up the 5 freeway from LA to Santa Cruz, have been recorded by someone who actually thought to strap a camera onto his dashboard – handy if you need to describe a certain freeway exit.
When did you first start writing?
About fifteen years ago. I was obsessed with Dr. Seuss and wanted to write the next Horton Hatches the Egg. However, to write verse like Dr. Seuss does, you have to be a genius—like him. After toiling over the adventures of a pair of white rabbits named Peri and Winkle, I left those manuscripts to their deserved obscurity. However, I don’t think it was such a bad thing for me to spend hours trying to perfect my sense of rhythm and rhyme as I was learning to write.
I moved on to writing prose—children’s and YA books. The four books that I’ve published are all coming of age novels about young people looking to find their place in the world, to learn who and what they love and what things they want to devote their lives to.
In my latest book, What We Do for Love, I’ve moved on to women’s fiction and hope to write some more books for this audience.
What do you believe is the hardest part of writing?
For me, the hardest part is making sure that I’m conveying information in exactly the way I hope to. Like when I hope to portray a character as, say, dark yet lovable in an interesting sort of way, sarcastic yet vulnerable … how do I know I haven’t missed the mark? How do I know I haven’t inadvertently made her look like a b&$%#tch on wheels?
That’s when beta readers, or editors, or any honest eyes become helpful. These are people who will tell you in a kind, constructive way that you need to rethink your approach. That your leading lady is cruel and malicious (which is okay if you meant her to be that way, but not okay if you didn’t).
It’s also exactly the time to listen to that little voice in your head. You know, that little warning we all like to ignore that says you took that too far or that joke isn’t funny. But we don’t pull back, or we use the bad joke, and we fall flat on our faces.
My advice is, don’t do that.
How did you decide to pick out your book cover?
Book covers are the hardest things ever. They’re extremely important, yet I have no idea how to choose them, and I’m honestly not sure the so-called professionals do either. That said, here is the tiny amount that I’ve learned.
Make sure that your cover is consistent with other covers in your genre, so that you get the reader’s expectations in line. For example, chick lit covers, understandably, look entirely different from those of murder mysteries. At the very least, make sure that your cover clearly puts your book into the right category.
If you’re like me, you cannot imagine how rough ideas will look in their final form. You have to see them finished in order to know if you’ll like them. Unless you’ve got a great designer/illustrator at your disposal to churn out numerous ideas for free, this can be a problem.
One thing I’ve tried is www.99designs.com, where you can run a contest during which young designers submit ideas for a cover. Sometimes you’ll get as many as a dozen designers submitting a range of ideas. You can work with those designers, give them suggestions and ask for changes. It’s not super-cheap, but neither is hiring a professional designer, which gives you much less choice and control over the project than this does.
You can also review pre-made book covers, on the slim chance that you find one just right for your book. They can run as low as $25 or even less, so you can buy a couple and test them out on people. That’s how I got my cover for What We Do for Love.
How can your readers discover more about you and your work?
Go to my website at www.annepfefferbooks.com. There you can read descriptions and excerpts of each of my books. Or, even easier, I’ve got a one-sentence description of each below.
What We Do for Love When sixteen year old Justin brings home a girl who’s bearing his child and has been thrown out of her house, it is up to his single mother, Nicole, to take the girl in.
Just Pru When shy, anxious Pru loses her apartment in a building fire, she learns how to make friends and find love.
Girls Love Travis Walker Despite his sexy charm and good looks, Travis must struggle to get the job and girl that he wants.
The Wedding Cake Girl When expert scuba diver Alexandra wants to leave her island home for college, she must stand up to her difficult, demanding mother.
Any Other Night After Ryan’s friend Michael dies with a secret, Ryan must take over Michael’s unfinished business.
What We Do For Love won the Chick Lit category and made finalist for Best Cover Design/Fiction in the 2019 Next Generation Indie Book Awards!
To read reviews, please visit Anne Pfeffer’s page on iRead Book Tours.
Buy the Book:
Book will be free on May 22-24
Award-winning novelist Anne Pfeffer grew up in Phoenix, Arizona reading prodigiously and riding horses. After working in Chicago and New York, she escaped back to the land of sunshine in Los Angeles
She has worked in banking and as a pro bono attorney, representing abandoned children in adoption and guardianship proceedings. Anne has a daughter living in New York and is the author of four books in the YA/New Adult genres.
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