Tuesday, March 10, 2009

How Do You Spell Relief?

By Robin Kaye

If you asked me, I’d have to say…A GOOD REVIEW

When the Goddess of all publicists, our very own Danielle emailed me to tell me the ARCs (advanced readers copies) of Too Hot To Handle had gone out to reviewers, my first thought was, Oh my God, I’m going to be sick. Which was quickly followed by, What if they hate it? Which then led to, My dream career is over and I have to get a real job.

I know, I’m neurotic. I say a little neurosis adds character and my husband seems to buy it. He lovingly calls me his cashew: an expensive nut.

I’m not sure how long I suffered, I guess I could go back and search my emails, but suffice it to say it was a long, long, long time. And then, all my worst fears were realized… No, just kidding. I received another email from Danielle, the subject line stated “New Review” when I got the guts to open it, she had written: “An early review but a good one. ☺”

Relief flooded my system. I read the review, and after thanking God profusely, I think I may have screamed since my children came running. I’m sure they thought I’d fallen off my treadmill because they seemed disappointed when they arrived and had nothing to laugh at.

Here’s what Helen Durow from Armchair Interviews thought of Too Hot to Handle… (I especially liked the part in bold.)


In Too Hot to Handle, Robin Kaye picks up where her previous novel, Romeo, Romeo, left off, but instead of following the original main characters, Nick and Rosalie, we are re-introduced to her sister, Annabelle Ronaldi, and Nick’s best friend, Dr. Mike Flynn.

The story opens on a very confused, very hung-over Annabelle. Could last night have been real? She was sure she saw a ghost…and did things with him that ghosts shouldn’t be able to do. The man next to her in bed was most definitely not a ghost, but he could be her dead boyfriend’s double. When she saw Mike, the non-ghost, at her sister Rosalie’s wedding the night before she couldn’t believe her eyes. She had lost her boyfriend, Chip, over two years ago, but seeing this man who looked so much like him, brought up emotions she had gotten really good at repressing.

Strong feelings develop on both sides, and Annabelle and Mike start dating–although she never mentions Chip or the uncanny resemblance. Why should she start talking about Chip now when her own family didn’t even know he ever existed? As things progress, Annabelle’s best friend (and Chip’s twin sister), Becca, uncovers a truth that no one saw coming…especially Annabelle. When family secrets are revealed, will Mike and Annabelle’s newfound love survive?

Robin Kaye is a master at romance, and her second novel is even better than the first. The story drips with emotion and her characters are so real and likeable that you keep turning each page to see what happens next.

Wonderful from beginning to end, Too Hot to Handle will definitely please even the most discerning romance fan.

See, I told you that part in bold was good!

I thought after going through all this with Romeo, Romeo it would get easier. But then that’s what I thought after the first submission, the subsequent rejection, the first contest win, the first sale… Are you seeing a pattern here? Needless to say, I was wrong on all fronts. Now, I’ve decided to embrace my neurotic tendencies. What the hell, I’m an author. We’re supposed to be a little bit crazy. And hey, as Jennifer Cruise's Gwen Goodnight in Faking It said: “If you can’t be a shining example, be a horrible warning.”

So, are you a shining example, or a horrible warning?


  1. Great post, Robin. That's one heck of a review, and it's well deserved. Can't wait to read THTH.

    I used to be a lot more of a nut than I am now. I made a conscious decision last year to let go of a lot of the stuff I can't control in this business, and it's made me a lot happier. I write for me, and if other people like what I write, that's just frosting. It's not the cake.

  2. Which am I? Well, so far the reviews are good, so I'll stick with the shiny stuff.

    You cashew, you... (You do know that's going to stick, right?)

    Congrats on the fabulous review - but then, I would have expected nothing but!

  3. Big congrats! There's nothing like a great first review on a new book.I wish you many sales on THTH.


  4. I'm smack dab in the middle of THTH and let me just say, the review is spot on! I love it so far (and I know Mama Jackson will love it as well--she's telling me to hurry up and finish it so she can read the ARC)!

    You know how much I LOVE to send good reviews around :) And thanks for calling me a goddess--it made my morning!

  5. Marie~ I'm glad to know there's hope for me.

    Judi ~ As for you sticking with the Shiny stuff, I'm sooo not surprised. We couldn't have you in a tarnished tiara.

    Adele~ Thanks so much for the good wishes, I'm keeping everything crossed.

    And Danielle - you are a Goddess. I so appreciate everything you do for me and I'm thrilled you're enjoying Too Hot To Handle.

  6. Dear Ms Cashew,
    You are not alone. As one who has had to learn to take the good with the bad, let me say that I have been a very slow learner. Cherish the good ones and take what you can use from the critical ones and soldier on. Not much else we can do, really... though now that you ask, I just may be that horrible warning...

  7. Thus far I'm neither a good example OR a horrible warning when it comes to writer reviews. But maybe that will change this year.

    In the meantime, you GO girl! I'm so proud of you I think I'll send my husband out for cashews today. You got me hungry for them, and it'll make me think of you with every crunch.

    I cannot WAIT to read THTH!

    Hugs and Love - Debra aka D K Newhouse (Debra McGill is my writing name)

  8. That 'nuttiness' never ends, in my experience!

    But you know what... it only means you care deeply and love what you do and want to keep doing it! Bring on the whole damn bowl of nuts, 'cause there's a bunch of us, from filberts to pecans!

  9. Congratulations Robin! I have no doubt that the gals at Armchair Interviews are 100% correct. And not just because they gave me a great review too! LOL!! I know your book will be fabulous.

    I am in the midst of review hell and it isn't fun. The good, the bad, the mediocre. I see no pattern at all and it drives me crazy. I am gradually pulling away from the whole thing as it is just too weird.

    I like what Marie said: "I write for me, and if other people like what I write, that's just frosting. It's not the cake." I think I shall place that on my frig, or better yet as a banner right over my blog!

  10. I think reviews are writers' crack - can't get enough of 'em! Congrats on yours. :)

  11. WOOHOO! Well-deserved, Robin. LOL on the "expensive nut" thing...I believe I resemble that remark:-) I've gotten way better about taking reviews, actually. My seething time has gone WAY down for the bad ones, at least. I just try to focus on the positive anymore...the vast majority of my reviews are good, and if the entire world loved my work without exception, that would indicate there was something wrong with it. We can't please everyone, so we should just focus on pleasing ourselves and those who appreciate what we're doing. That's art for ya:-) Great post, and congrats!

  12. Hi Cheryl~ I take criticism well and of the few not so glowing reviews or comments I've received, most made sense to me and I keep them in mind during revisions. I think it's the waiting, the not knowing that kills me. Which, when you think about it, is probably the result of my overactive imagination.

    Deb~ Thanks so much and I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you on the publication front. Enjoy the nuts!

    Donna~ That's so nice to know! I feel much better now.

    Sharon~ At least we're all in this together. I'm so lucky to have all the Casababes to be nutty with. I can't wait until Nationals when we'll all be together again.

    Carmen~ Thanks so much. I definitely see the addictive nature of great reviews. It keeps me writing to get my fix.

    Kendra~ Good point you can't please everyone. Good luck unpacking. I'm so glad I'm not you.

  13. Ooh, burn! *sticks tongue out* Though you have a point...until these boxes are unpacked, I'm not really sure I want to be me either...

  14. Kendra~

    I'm sorry, sweetie. Every time I move, the first things I unpack ares my books--even before the kitchen which I find amazing. You know me. Feed me and I'm happy. Though I guess I've just proved not as happy as I am when I have a book in my hand. Well as long as there's take-out. Once the books are unpacked, no matter where I am is home.

    Unpack your books, take a deep breath and don't obsess. The world isn't going to end if you're digging through boxes for the next few weeks.

    Hugs....Robin :)

  15. You do realize that I now have to buy TWO copies of THTH? Remember the book I had you sign for my girlfriend? She LOVED it, and since her birthday arrives shortly after Nationals . . .

    Cashew? I mean, really, let's go for the gusto and be a Macademia! Expensive and tropical--if you get those grown in Hawaii, even better. Beaches, sand, sun. (Yes, dear, I'm hating cold and wet right now. Can you tell?)

    Congrats on the fabulous review. Never doubted you could do it.


  16. LOL, Robin, the day I stop obsessing will be the day they stick me in the ground, I'm afraid! Still looking for all of my books, but I like your idea. I'm happiest when I have a book in one hand and food in the other. This may not be a good thing:-)

    Meh, moving is no fun. What IS fun is seeing my friends get well-deserved kick-butt reviews! And I am totally psyched for you!

  17. I understand and could have written every word of your post--well, except for the part in bold. That hasn't happened to me yet. I've seen a couple of reviews for Promise and they were nice, but yours are positively glowing.

    Anyway, I'm happy for you. Very very happy.