Thursday, September 6, 2012

GUEST LAUNCH + GIVEAWAY: Charming Blue by Kristine Grayson

 Please welcome back Casablanca Author Kristine Grayson, whose new novel in her fairy tale inspired series, Charming Blue, hits stores this month! In today’s post, she shares some infor about a recent signing…

By Kristine Grayson

Last weekend, I went to a book signing. Actually, I was part of that book signing, as I have been every year since its inception. Bob’s Beach Books in Lincoln City, Oregon, hosts one of the largest book signings in Oregon every August.  (

We sit outside the bookstore in the cold. Yes, cold. As in 55 degrees. Oregon beaches are always cold in the summer, usually because of fog, but mostly because of the west wind that constantly blows off the ocean. Think Gothic Romance beach instead of Hot California Nights beach. (Sex on the beach is not advised around here, unless you want to freeze your parts off—or you just want the alcoholic beverage.)

The locals bring extra coats because the guests always forget the cold. Usually there’s a fifty-degree temperature drop from the main cities 100 miles away.  The writers hide behind their stacks of books, or mill about and talk with each other. It’s not uncommon to send a runner to find an author to sign a book for a tourist, because the author’s talking to friends she hasn’t seen in a while.

The signing is always successful. Streams of tourists buy books, have books signed, gossip, and just hang out for the entire event. They even forgo the (very cold but sunny) beach.

I write under a bunch of pen names, so signings like this are dicey for me. I have to get up about four hours earlier than usual, so I’m not at my best. Then I’m signing different names on different books, and the last thing I want to do is put Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s signature on a Kris Nelscott novel.

This year was the first year that I had a book coming out just after the signing. Charming Blue hadn’t hit stores yet, and I’ve had such a crazy summer that I’d been thinking it was July, not August, so I didn’t even think of asking Sourcebooks to ship some copies early.

Two days before the signing, my author copies of Charming Blue showed up. I gave five to Bob’s Beach Books—and the staff scarfed up four copies, then demanded more. I haven’t had that happen before a signing ever, not in more than thirty years of publishing.

But the kind folks at the bookstore had heard me talk about this one for more than a year. In Wickedly Charming, I had a passing scene with a very drunk Bluebeard, and while he smelled bad and stumbled around, I find him strangely appealing. Plus he nearly stole an entire third of the first draft of that novel. (I had to cut it back.)

Clearly the man wanted a book of his own.

Although why a notorious villain thought he deserved a romance all to himself, I didn’t know. Not then anyway. Except that Cantankerous Belle, who is the grumpier cousin of one Tinker Bell, kept saying that we’d all misjudged Bluebeard.

Misjudged? I argued with myself. I thought there was proof.

So last August, as I went to the signing, I was writing about Bluebeard. He told me his convoluted story. Apparently, I had mentioned it to the staff at Bob’s Beach Books, and they’d been waiting ever since.

I brought ten more copies to the signing, and all of them sold, not just to the staff and their friends, but to folks I’d never met before. Of all the books I had at the signing, Charming Blue sold the best. And the only reason it was even there was a box of books had landed on my porch that same week.

I thought Bluebeard had some cache. I didn’t realize how much.

I just hope I signed “Kristine Grayson” on all those copies instead of one of my other pen names. I guess I’ll never know…

Thank you Kristine, for chatting with us today! To enter to win one of two copies of Charming Blue, please share in the comments your favorite fairy tale, or leave a question for Kristine. Please leave an email address so you can be contacted if you’re a winner! Winners (US and Canada mailing addresses only) will be chosen Tuesday, 9/11.

Welcome to the fractious fairy tale world of Kristine Grayson, where the bumpy road to happily ever after is paved with surprises...

He lived through ages with the curse of attracting women...who end up dead...
One upon a time, he was the most handsome of princes, destined for great things. But now he's a lonely legend, hobbled by a dark history. With too many dead in his wake, Bluebeard escapes the only way he knows how—through the evil spell of alcohol. But it's a far different kind of spell that's been ruining his life for centuries.

How will she survive this killer Prince Charming?
Jodi Walters is a fixer, someone who can put magic back in order. She's the best in Hollywood at her game. But Blue has a problem she's never encountered before—and worse, she finds herself perilously attractived to him.

"Grayson deftly nods to pop culture and offers clever spins on classic legends and lore while adding unique twists all her own." —Booklist Starred Review for Wickedly Charming

Acclaimed author Kristine Grayson has won the RT Book Reviews Reviewer’s Choice award and, under her real name, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, the prestigious Hugo award. Before turning to romance writing, Grayson edited the Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction and ran Pulphouse Publishing. She lives with her own Prince Charming, writer Dean Wesley Smith, in Portland, Oregon. For more information, please visit and follow her on Twitter, @KristineRusch.


  1. Wonderful, wonderful premise! An underdog among underdogs, and who wouldn't want to see HIM liberated from his castle of misery.
    Maybe those chilly Oregon summers stir up the creative juices, because it sounds like you've come up with a new classic.

  2. I love fairytales. At least Disney version with there happy endings. I like cinderella and sleeping beauty.

    I feel so bad for blue beard. I hope he ends up with a happy ending.


  3. Sounds like fun! I loved visiting the Oregon beaches when we lived in Tigard. :)

  4. Hi Kristine. Your book sounds good. My favorite fairy tale is Cinderella

  5. Mine too was Cinderella.

  6. I absolutely love this premise, congrats on the release. Sounds like a great location for a book store, btw. :)

  7. Love the cover. My favorite has always been Beauty and the Beast - inner beauty over the superficial - true love.

  8. What fun! I'd love to visit that area sometime. It's going on my list to visit there during that book signing!

  9. I've always loved Cinderella, but your take on the story in Wickedly Charming was delightful and gave me a whole different outlook on the fairy tale. :D

    Barbed1951 at aol dot com

  10. Oregon is a beautiful state, even if the temp can drop to your toes. At least all those books can help keep you warm =)
    And yes, bring on more of very drunk Bluebeard!! hahaha!

    I have a soft spot for any fairy tales, though my favorite was always Beauty and the Beast (can't get over how he changes/grows and becomes this strong caring man). So of course I am loving your books and can't wait for Charming Blue!!

    eyesofblueice (at) gmail (dot) com

  11. Congrats on the book! I like Cinderella.


  12. There are actually two fairy tales that tie for my favorite: Little Red Riding Hood and Rapunzel.
    Writing under so many pen names, do you have books from multiple ones when you do a signing or do you stick to one name per signing?
    manning_j2004 at yahoo dot com

  13. Congrats on the latest release! Charming Blue has such an intriguing premise, I can't wait to read it :)

    As for favourite fairy tale, it has always been Cinderella for me :)


  14. Wow! I didn't realize this was another of your pen in the world are you keeping all of your universes must clone yourself! Congrats on the new release, I like Beauty and the Beast!

  15. CONGRATS on your latest release, Kristine!

    My favorite fairy tale? Rapunzel:)

  16. Thanks to everyone who commented! Our winners are
    Melody May
    June M.

    I'll email you both shortly.