This week's spotlight is truly a treat, as it is about one of my favorite new authors. I first heard about Julie James when I saw a wonderful review from Rowena at Book Binge for "Just the Sexiest Man Alive". The review was so engaging that I was immediately hooked, so much so that I hadn't even read the book yet when I decided to go meet her last November when she was having a booksigning in Chicago.
I always get a bit nervous meeting people for the first time, but Julie is one of those people who immediately puts you at ease (much like another fave, Suz Brockmann). The signing was at a local bookstore called The Book Cellar, an independent bookstore that caters to the wine drinker crowd, which was perfectly fine by me. In addition to signing her books, there was also a the part of the event where she read a portion of her work, and had a Q&A session. Now, those in the crowd did not come across as your typical romance readers, yet I think even they were tempted to pick up a copy of such a fun, snappy book. And if you've read either JTSMA or PMP, then you know exactly what I mean by that. It's easy to see the Julie must have been a very successful attorney, because she grabbed the crowd's attention and left us wanting more.
Since that night, I've read both of her releases and LOVED them immensely, and have met her at other events. I'll admit to being more of a historical romance reader, but Julie's contemporaries are at the top of my auto-buy list. Anyone looking for sexy, dynamic heroes and intelligent, confident, sassy heroines are definitely in for a treat with Julie's books. I'm usually all about the hero, but Julie writes about heroines that we can all appreciate and respect (just ask Kati who wrote a lovely tribute to Payton Kendall recently at RNTV); women who hold their own against any man and never stoop to being petty, silly or whiny. It was such a revelation to read not one, but two wonderful contemporary romances that showcased strong, capable, funny, compassionate, likeable women that aren't bitter or self-pitying harpies. Now to be fair, not all contemporary heroines are painted with that brush, but it's rather common to come across a heroine who has some irritating quirk that renders them almost unsympathetic. But you won't find one of those in a Julie James' novel.
Julie's next release, "Something About You", is scheduled to be released in March 2010, and it's definitely on my TBB list. A loooong wait, but one that I know will be well worth it. And Julie's been recently seen teasing us on Twitter with little tidbits about the coveted Book #4. Gotta love the sound of that. I sure the heck do :)
Have you met Julie and/or read any of her books?
Do you have a favorite scene from JTSMA or PMP?
I'd also like to take this opportunity to give a little shout-out to a fellow fan, who also happens to be Julie's husband. That would be Mr. James, an incredibly brilliant individual with exemplary taste who, from what I've been told, has been known to swing by this place from time to time. Maybe one day we can find out what it's like to be the inspiration for all those heroes :D
What say you, Mr. James????