Last year, as part of a job interview process, I was introduced to Dorchester's new Shomi line and their first title, Wired, by Liz Maverick. It was a great book - a sort of Matrixy action/adventure story about time travel - fun in every way you can imagine. Next up was Moongazer by Marianne Mancusi (who I absolutely adore now) and Driven by Eve Kenin.
It's romance for the next generation and romance for the atypical romance reader. I thought this was a fantastic idea. I mean, I completely understand the perception a lot of non-romance readers have about this section (I did work 6 years in retail book sales). This is a great way for people like me to gain introduction to a slew of fantastic authors, like Mancusi and Maverick. And actually, the once atypical romance reader has become more of the typical romance reader these days, if you ask me. Romance and mystery are two of the most innovative genres out there, and their rabidly loyal fans always seem to be open for something new and different. It's easy to insert other genre elements into both mystery and romance titles giving readers a wide array of books to choose from. In romance alone, there are regency (which I don't read), contemporary (aka chick-litty romance), paranormal (this is the big one these days), futuristic (not sure why this one is sectioned out the way it is, but it is), and romantic suspense. Now, I personally rather enjoy contemporary romance and apparently the paranormal, futuristic, and suspense stuff, too. Imagine my surprise.
Colby Hodge's Twist is just one of this year's seven Shomi titles - a post-apocalyptic, time traveling, alien vampire tale (it works! I read it in one night). Also coming this year are new titles by all three of last year's mavens. Check them out at the Shomi site.
I should also mention Dorchester's other new release that has me really excited, and that is the upcoming collection, These Boots Were Made for Stomping. It's three great stories all in one book. In Julie Kenner's "A Step in the Right Direction," a push-over who lives in the pages of her comic books gains superhuman powers with the purchase a new pair of shoes. In Jade Lee's "Kung Fu Shoes," a mild mannered teacher kicks some serious butt when her new shoes endow her with moves any black-belt would be jealous of. Finally, in Marianne Mancusi's "Karma Kitty Goes to Comic Con," a comic book creator morphs into her own character when she slides on a special pair of golden boots. Stomping will be followed by another installment, These Boots Were Made for Strutting, featuring three different authors next month.