Thursday, May 27, 2010

Guest post & giveaway: Lee Nichols on Libraries

Deception (Haunting Emma)
In April, I had the privilege to read and review Deception, the first in the new Haunting Emma young adult paranormal series by Lee Nichols. I really enjoyed the book, and in conjunction with its release June 8, Lee Nichols graciously agreed to write a guest post about her love of libraries. You can also win a copy of Deception by filling out the form at the end of this post.

Lee Nichols on libraries:
I can still remember my elementary school librarian’s voice, and the books she read: How to Eat Fried Green Worms, Tomas and the Red-Headed Angel, and The Gift of Magic. My class sat between the stacks of picture books, as she mesmerized us in the late afternoons. Lois Duncan became a favorite of mine, and it’s where discovered the joys of Judy Blume.

I’ll also never forget the Jones Library in Massachusetts, where as I college student I came across one of Marion Chesney’s Regency romances in the new books section. Nothing is better than falling for a new author and discovering they’ve got a hefty backlist. In Chesney’s case, it was twenty or so books. I read them all, before moving on to her cozy mysteries written as M.C. Beaton, which I loved just as much.

During this same period, there was a librarian at the Forbe’s Library in Northampton, dressed in a tweed jacket, who grumbled when I asked her to find me copies of  Woman’s Home Companion from the 1930’s, which I desperately needed for my senior thesis. She tried to talk me out of it, but I persevered. She reappeared from the basement, moments later, cobwebs in her steel-gray bun, and a smile on her face. “There’s a Willa Cather story in this one,” she told me. It was the first time I read Willa Cather.

I sometimes hesitate to take a chance on a new author at the bookstore, but never at a library. And the chances have paid off big: I’ve discovered authors from  Toni Morrison to Elmore Leonard, and from Isabel Allende to Helen Fielding to Jonathan Lethem. Once I fall in love with an author, I’m theirs for life. I’ll read everything they ever write, even after they’ve lost my enthusiasm. Hear that, Laurell Hamilton?

So my dream is that someone will see the first book in my new series,
Deception, A Haunting Emma novel, on the shelf and think, “Hmm, I wonder if I’d like this. No reason not to try it.” Or that maybe a librarian will hand it to her, saying, “Try this one.” And I hope she takes it home and forgets herself for a brief moment, happily living in the world I’ve created--and eagerly waits for the next book. And that libraries continue to have funding to support new authors, their communities and most importantly: readers.
About Deception: When Emma Vaile’s parents go missing while away on a mysterious business trip, she’s left all alone in her creepy old house. But her brother’s very cute best friend, Bennett Stern—Emma’s knight in J. Crew armor—arrives unexpectedly to whisk her away to New England. There, Emma settles into his family’s museum-like mansion and enrolls at an old-fashioned private school. She quickly finds friends in the popular legacy crowd at Thatcher and spends her free time crushing on Bennett. But the eerie visions she’s been hiding from everyone have gotten worse. Emma has memories of Thatcher that she can’t explain—it’s as if she’s returning home to a place she’s never been. Finally, Emma confides in Bennett and learns she is a ghostkeeper, a person who can communicate with ghosts. Bennett brought Emma to Thatcher to protect her, but now he needs her help tracking an other-worldly murderer.  
A rich New England setting filled with mystery, tradition, and prep-school intrigue make Deception the perfect choice for fans of series like Kate Brian’s Private, as well as all those paranormal fans. The shocking ending will leave readers desperate for book two. 
About Lee: Lee Nichols is the author of five romantic comedies with Red Dress Ink: Tales of a Drama Queen (2004), Hand-Me-Down (2005), True Lies of a Drama Queen (2006), Wednesday Night Witches (2007) and Reconstructing Brigid (2008). This spring, Lee will be debuting on the YA shelves with the first book in her haunting paranormal trilogy, Deception ~ A Haunting Emma Novel (Bloomsbury Children’s Books, June 2010). Follow her on Twitter at LeeXNichols or Friend her on Facebook at Lee Nichols.
Want to win a copy of Deception, the first Haunting Emma novel? Fill out this form by midnight Eastern Daylight Time on Sunday, June 6, 2010!


  1. What a wonderful blog.
    Kelly Bookend Diaries

  2. Great post; I love his thoughts on libraries, naturally! :-)


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