As Meghan Trainor Would Say, “I’m all ’bout that… premise”

For me, the numero uno factor in deciding whether or not to read a book is premise. It’s true. Not age group. Not genre. But a gripping concept that I have to experience for myself. So what has gripped me? This week, we’re sharing our faves books, so without further ado (and in order of reading) these are the books that pop to the forefront of my mind from the past decade or so…

echoes-in-death-j-d-robbIf you haven’t experienced “J.D. Robb” (aka a pen name of Nora Robert’s), I highly recommend it. What drew me to this series was the fact it was a futuristic crime mystery series. “Well that sounds fun,” I thought. I gobbled down the first book, instantly endearing to the main character, Eve Dallas, and her alluring Irish husband, Roarke, and then eagerly sought out the next book in the series. That was thirty books ago. Yes, there are over thirty books in this series. In fact, I *think* there are currently forty-three books, with forty-four on the way. I’m a little behind, but I miss Eve, and writing this post has inspired me to read number thirty-one asap.

 

vampire-academy

[tweet_dis]Hi, my name is Jenni, and I went through a vampire phase [/tweet_dis](if I’m being honest, I wouldn’t mind if Vamp Books reemerged from the dark). Twilight, House of Night, Sookie Stackhouse, Morganville Vampires, My Blood Approves, Kiera Hudson… I read ’em all. But when I saw a vampire series set in a secret boarding school, I clicked ‘buy’ so so fast. Great decision. I devoured these books (and the spin-off series) and felt like the main character, Rose, was one of my girlfriends. No joke, I said to my husband, “omg, you’ll never guess what Rose did.” He was like, “who?” I widened my eyes. “Rose, from my book.” He shook his head

 

the-madmans-daughterAs a historical fiction author, I love me some historical fiction. Megan Shepherd’s gothic suspense trilogy was right up my alley, especially after learning the inspiration behind each book:

Book 1: H. G. Wells’s THE ISLAND OF DR. MOREAU

Book 2: Robert Louis Stevenson’s THE STRANGE CASE OF DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE

Book 3: Mary Shelley’s FRANKENSTEIN

 

cinder

I have a weakness (a big one) for retellings, as you can can clearly see. There’s something so compelling about taking a premise that’s “known” and giving it a new spin. And man, Marissa Meyer’s series really scratched an itch for me, giving a cool science-fiction bend to familiar Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Rapunzel, and Snow White fairy tales. It was fun to pick out little tidbits from the original stories, but then see how Meyer’s completely broke the mold by putting the characters in a futuristic China and a whole new planet amongst the stars. I made a big mistake of starting this series while doing my first round of edits for BECOMING BONNIE because all I wanted to do was read (and not my book).

 

Interestingly enough, the most memorable books for me have all been part of series. There’s something about spending multiple books with a character that I enjoy, especially after growing to know them so well.

If you know of any books with amazing premises, pls do pass along your recommendations!

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Jenni L. Walsh spent her early years ​chasing around cats, dogs, and chickens in Philadelphia's countryside, before dividing time between a soccer field and a classroom at Villanova University. She put her marketing degree to good use as an advertising copywriter, zip-code hopping with her husband to DC, NYC, NJ, and not surprisingly, back to Philly. There, Jenni's passion for words continued, adding author to her resume. She now balances her laptop with a kid on each hip, and a four-legged child at her feet. BECOMING BONNIE (Tor Forge/Macmillan, 5/9/2017) is her debut novel that tells the untold story of how church-going Bonnelyn Parker becomes half of the infamous Bonnie and Clyde duo during the 1920s. SIDE BY SIDE, telling Bonnie and Clyde's crime spree story, will be released in the summer of 2018. Please learn more about Jenni's books at jennilwalsh.com.