Well, now you get to meet Obo.
Felix, he's not.
I'm not going to try to kid myself that you all came to see me for this launch party. After all the blog tours I've done, I know that readers really want to see the characters and learn the story, and one of the biggest scene-stealers I've ever written is Obo the cat. That's with a small "c," but that's only because he hasn't thought to capitalize it yet. But I'm sure that's coming at some point.
Obo is a seemingly stray cat in Seattle, who stops by Murphy's Antiques to chat up Eden, a genie who's been sentenced to 3000 years in her bottle. He also hangs out at Matt Ewing's house for hand-outs. That's Obo, always cutting corners and looking for the easy way out. He's also only looking out for himself.
I really had to corral him in this story; for Obo, it's all about him. And while he's enjoyable, it's only in small doses. Like your children, you don't have a favorite, but you might like one a little more than the others for a certain reason at a certain time; that's Obo. He was a blast to get to know, but really really wanted the story to be all about him. Luckily for me, Obo has some backstory of which he was unaware, and it just killed him that I knew it when he didn't. It got him to behave... most of the time.
Here's a time when he didn't. Eden has just been expelled from her bottle in the middle of a storm, hit her head, and landed, unconscious, face-down in Matt's lap on the sidewalk. Matt, a modern day knight-in-shining-armor around damsels in distress, brings her to his home to help her recover. He's gone into the other room to get her some dry clothes and Obo makes his second appearance of the day to Eden, who is now worried about her baby dragon, Humphrey. This scene is pure and classic Obo.
“You’re an awful actress, you know.”
Eden opened one eye. “Obo? Where’s Matt? And what are you doing here?”
The cat shook himself, water droplets spraying everywhere. “I’m doing the same thing you are, babe. Warming up. And Matt’s in the other room. The bedroom.” He did a wink-wink nudge-nudge toward some area behind the sofa.
She blew out a breath. Like she needed to be thinking like that now.
OK, not that she hadn’t already gone there, but follow him into the bedroom? She wasn’t that desperate.
Or… maybe she was.
Eden shook her head. She had more pressing matters to worry about first. “What happened? How did I get here?”
“I’m not quite sure of the what, but the how was this. Mr. Murphy, for whatever reason mortals come up with for their stupidities, tossed your bottle in the trash with a bunch of other stuff. The garbage truck came along, the jaws came down, and the next thing we all know, you’re face-down in Matt’s lap.” The cat smirked. “Talk about a wasted opportunity.”
She waved her hand. The opportunity—wasted or not—was gone, and she was free. Tossed aside like yesterday’s trash, but free. “What happened to my bottle?”
The cat raised an eyebrow. “More importantly, what happened to Humphrey?”
“Humphrey? Oh my stars, what happened to Humphrey?”
“Nothing, thanks to me. The lizard did make it out of your bottle, but I managed to take a flying leap out of the tree and grab his tail before he followed the butterfly into Matt’s line of sight. I gotta tell you, those claws of his might be tiny, but they’re sharp.” Obo rubbed his nose.
“Where is he now, Obo?”
Obo rolled his eyes. “I’m fine, thanks for asking. I could use some disinfectant, but I should live. Not sure about rabies, though. Has the little fire-breather had his shots?”
Obo sighed. “He’s investigating the inside of one of Matt’s socks. Should take the little buzzard a long time to find his way out of that one.”
“Where is he, Obo? This weather isn’t good for dragonlets. They can’t regulate their own temperatures yet.”
“Yeah, that’s what has me worried the most. Not the fact that you’re out of your bottle—which is missing, by the way—or that Matt is gonna need some kind of explanation, or that Mr. Murphy was getting rid of you in the first place. Do you realize you could have spent the rest of your sentence mired in dump muck?”
(c) Judi Fennell, 2011
The book is already in stores and it downloaded to my Kindle app on January 1, so head on out to your local bookstore for your own magic carpet ride! One commenter will win a signed copy (please leave your email address with your comment) - and wait until you see the cover; Sourcebooks' Art Department came up with the awesome idea of putting real genie Glimmer on the cover. Okay, so it's just glitter, but it makes the cover sparkle. Many many thanks, AGAIN, to Anne Cain for her incredibly wonderful artwork and for bringing the story to life.
What The Publisher Says About I Dream of Genies
He needs to change his luck,
Matt Ewing would gladly hunt down a fortune in lucky pennies if he thought it would help save his business. But for all his hoping, Matt’s clueless when his long awaited lucky charm falls in his lap in the form of a beguiling genie. He just can’t believe that this beautiful woman could be the answer to his prayers…
She’s been bottled up
for far too long!
Spending 2,000 years in a bottle would make any woman go a little stir crazy. So when Matt releases Eden from her luxurious captivity, she’s thrilled to repay him by giving him the magical boost he needs…
But for all her good intentions, Eden’s magical prowess is a little rusty and her magical mistakes become more than embarrassing. And though Eden knows falling in love will end her magic and immortality, she can’t help but be drawn to the one man who wants her just for herself…
What Reviewers Say About I Dream of Genies
"Cute as a pink Persian kitten, this scamper of a romance... will keep the reader enraptured."
"Fennell’s sexy contemporary romp... pure fun."
- Lynne Welch, Booklist, 12/1/10
"Ripe with one liners, unpredictable predicaments, Genie on the run, poor sap as a hero that just can't seem to keep his flag from flying at full mast and a array or quirky hilarious characters. This goes from giggle mode to all out laughter in less time than it takes to snap your fingers."
"This story is absolutely delightful, complete with incredible sex on a flying blanket amid the stars. Eden's magic gone awry, along with her butterflies and baby dragon, will keep readers amused and completely enthralled in the cutest story ever. This is such a stunning creation."
"A light and breezy read for all... The author uses humor with misfire wishes and talking cats to amuse the reader to the very last page. Well done Judi Fennell!"
"I Dream of Genies is a dream come true!"
"A fun, quirky story."
"A fun twist on a genie book... a delight to read."
What Authors Say About I Dream of Genies
-Kate Douglas, bestselling author of Wolf Tales and The DemonSlayers
"You will want to believe in magic!"
-NYT bestselling author Kerrelyn Sparks
"Fun and flirty. Judi Fennell will make you believe in genies, dragons, and the magic of happily ever after."
author of the Elemental Assassin urban fantasy series
For another excerpt, check out my website: www.JudiFennell.com
and I'm at Borders TrueRomance today as well. Stop by and see my video interview.