Thursday, June 23, 2011

A fan letter to: Pamela Clare

Dear Ms. Clare,

When I signed up for the fan letter Blog Crawl I didn't know who I was going to write to - I read a lot and have many "favourite" authors (what can I say?  I like to share my love around :D).  I have had something of a Romantic Suspense slump in the last year or so - I had a few bad experiences with plots that were just too unbelievable and/or boring and/or characters I didn't care about.  I found my way back to it with JD Robb and Suzanne Brockmann - both authors whose work I adore and who could easily have had their very own fan letter from me.  But, they are, I believe, really super famous authors and I figure they get fan letters all the time.  So I thought I'd favour someone slightly less famous but no less deserving.

After coming of a Robb/Brockmann high, I had to choose my next-to-read book - this is always difficult - the better the book I've just finished, the harder it is for the next book I read to live up to it.  Anyway, the hospital handpass went to you.  And (to continue with the AFL metaphors), not only did you not drop the ball, you kicked it right in between the two big white sticks and out of the park.  So, that's why I decided to write to you.

Also, when I stumbled across your blog recently and contacted you to volunteer to put your Breaking Point gif on my little blog, you not only responded really quickly (which was both unexpected and kind of gratifying) but also were really friendly so that made me want to like your books even more.  But, no matter how much I want to like something, it all comes down to the books.

I (now) have all 5 of your I-Team novels - but due to my slump and at the time in question, I'd only read the first two.   As I'd been drooling over Jed Hill on the cover of your May 2011 release, Breaking Point, I was inspired to open Naked Edge (during the course of which,  I then realised that I hadn't read the third book so then I went back and read Unlawful Contact). Then, because Breaking Point hadn't come out yet, I did a re-read of the first two, Extreme Exposure and Hard Evidence next, just because I could.

I want to thank you in particular for the wonderful heroes in your books.  Heroes who:-
  • like kissing for the sake of it and not just as a means to an end
  • think going down on a woman for a long time is selfish but do it anyway
  • kill spiders for their lady without complaining* (except apparently the big hairy ones in the Sonoran desert but I don't exactly know why this is)
  • are super protective and all muscled and manly and uber-hot
  • encourage their lady to use their own skills and talents and don't stand in their way/wrap them in cotton wool  (even though sometimes they might secretly - or even not so secretly - want to).
  • are willing and actually prepared to die for the lady they love if that's what it takes
  • have actual friends, both male and female

I want to thank you for the heroines who:-
  • know better to complain when their man is being *ahem* selfish.
  • understand that all spiders must die (even just pictures of them)
  • are smart and talented and brave and not TSTL
  • use those talents and smarts to help solve the crime/catch the bad guys and don't just sit around getting rescued all the time
  • have actual friends, both male and female

I want to thank you for your stories in which:-
  • there are mostly believable (it is fiction after all) suspense plots**
  • the hero and heroine do not have sex when they're being shot at
  • I am educated (in a good way) about such things as Native American culture (Naked Edge) and the US prison system (Unlawful Contact), the high murder rate in Ciudad Juarez (Breaking Point) in particular and (good) journalism in general
  • even a US Senator can be (and is) sexy (Extreme Exposure)
  • use words like "penis", "testicles" and "vagina" and make them sound sexy.  Really. (Note: I never said I could make those words sound sexy!)

Finally, may I thank you for writing a book where the hero was inspired by Jed Hill and for having an editor who loves you enough to put Jed Hill on the cover of said book.  Thank you thank you thank you.

So, thank you. I really like your books and I'm looking forward to reading more books from you in the future.  Thank you so much for your efforts in creating these tales which entertain me so much.

best wishes

*Marc was about to lose some serious points because there was some teasing when a freaking Black Widow ran out and terrorised Sophie.  However, he redeemed himself by using the giant boot for some much needed squishing and then flushing it without further comment and then giving comfort (important after such a harrowing experience)  and making sure there weren't any others hanging about without being asked.  I was a bit worried for a minute that he was going to do something juvenile like pick the thing up and put it really close to her face or something (grounds for instant dissolution of relationship) but thankfully, Marc is a better man than my brother.  Also, I am never going to the Sonoran desert.

**I say "mostly" because I thought Marc got out of prison just a tad too easily - frankly I'd rather believe that it wasn't 100% realistic as there is a prison not too far from where I live and I happen to know that most of the inmates are neither innocent nor gorgeous.

Yesterday's letter was by Closet Reader and tomorrow the Blog Crawl heads over to Obsidian Bookshelf. For a full list of who, when and where, go here.


Lori said...

Yes, yes, and yes! Great letter!

Tam said...

Wonderful letter. I've not read this author but this

"the hero and heroine do not have sex when they're being shot at"

applies to the m/m I read too. Good lord, how can you get hard when you are in a gun fight, although I can't find the word now, there is an actual "kink" if you will where people get turned on when their lives are a risk. Great.

Great job.

Helyce said...

Awesome choice. I love Pamela Clare and her I-Team series. Slowly working through some of her older historicals. I agree with all your points!

Kaetrin said...

@ Lori - thank you! :)

@ Tam - well, at least with the kink story it would make sense! So glad Pamela Clare's don't go there.

@ Helyce - thank you - I haven't tried her historicals yet but they are definitely on my list now. :)

Lea said...

Awesome letter Kaetrin. I have a couple of Ms. Clare's books here in the stacks and your letter has inspired me to move them up closer to the top. lol I've heard nothing but wonderful things about her work!

That - is One. Hot. Cover. Yum!!

Thank you for sharing and for commenting at my blog yesterday. ;)

Chris said...

LOL about them not having sex at completely unrealistic and ludicrous moments! :)

What a great letter!

Now back to admiring that Jed Hill cover...

Ronlyn said...

Great post! I'm so glad that Pamela was able to help get you out of your slump. She's fantastic.

Anonymous said...

Hi Kaetrin
Wonderful tribute. Love your lists. They covered everything I love about Pamela writing.
Mary G

Pamela Clare said...

Oh, Kaetrin! Thank you for making my day! I've never heard of the fan letter blog crawl. A reader tipped me off to this post, and I just read it out loud to my son.

I am thrilled that you've enjoyed the stories, and it's really reassuring to know that other people understand the TOTAL VILENESS of spiders. Each one is a little bit of evil running round in the universe. EW! Don't ever let me tell you about the time I found 15 black widows underneath the chest of drawers next to my bed. Can you say "scarred for life"?

You're right about Marc breaking out of prison. It would never be that easy. (I won't tell you why it wouldn't, but there's one specific reason.)

As for words like "testicles," "vagina" and "penis," I have to use real words because phrases like "turgid shaft" and "wet, weeping core" and "inner passage" belong in science fiction novels and involve alien space vehicles.

The response to my I-Team books has been so very gratifying, and I'm so grateful that you gave them a try. :-)

orannia said...

Kaetrin - that was brilliant. I kept laughing and nodding and agreeing with all your points, but especially about the hero and heroine not having sex when they're being shot at :)

And now I know who Jed Hill is *grin*

Kaetrin said...

@ Lea - thank you and you're very welcome!

@ Chris - I've been devouring that cover for quite a while now - it's quite distracting - I think it should come with a warning!

@ Ronlyn & @ Mary G - thank you and thx for stopping by :)

@ Pamela Clare - excuse me while I have a mad fangirl moment - SQUEEEE!!! - okay, that's out of my system now. Thank you so much for stopping by my corner of the blogoverse. And yes, definitely, "turgid" anythings do not belong in the I-Team!! *grin* As for spiders *sticks fingers in ears and sings LA LA LA* I'm not listening, I'm not picturing, they do not exist (do you think if I keep it up it will become true?)

Kaetrin said...

Thank you Orannia! *blushes*

southerngirl said...

You couldn't have picked a better author to write your letter to! I'm so glad you discovered Pamela Clare's I-Team series. And her historicals are just as wonderful as her romantic suspense if anyone is wondering. Besides being a great author she is also an amazing woman. I agree with everything you said. Another thing I love about her books is that they are all different. They're not the same story with different people like I have found with a lot of other series. Most of the time I get bored while reading a series & have to take a break & read something different between the books. Not with Pamela's. I can read them back to back & start over & read them again. If you haven't read a Pamela Clare book you don't know what you're missing.

Anonymous said...

Pamela Clare is one of my favorite authors. So glad you found her I-team series. And I agree with Tonya -- her historicals are great, too.

Julie said...

Your little lists made me laugh. Great letter!

Kaetrin said...

thx for visiting everyone! :)

Patti (@TheLoveJunkee) said...

This is a new-to-me author; based on your letter I'll be reading her books soon! Great letter!

Kaetrin said...

Thx Patti. Let me know what you think! :)