Tall, Dark, and Divine, Jenna Bennett
Being the Greek god of love doesn’t mean you believe–or want–anything to do with that sappy emotion. Sure, Eros runs his matchmaking business, Made in Heaven, but finding his own love has never been part of the equation. When he spots the sweet baker who works across the street, he vows to match her with someone else before she stirs his sullen heart.
Annie Landon has given up on finding Mr. Right. What she needs is Mr. Right Here, Right Now, and this so-called “Greek God” she’s heard is on the rebound sounds like the perfect kind of distraction. But picking up the bitter workaholic is easier said than done…especially when he seems unreasonably determined to match her with someone else.
Can a woman looking for love—and the matchmaking god who wants her to find it with someone who isn’t him—have a shot at a happy ending? May the best god—or mortal—win.
About the Author:
Jennie Bentley is New York Times bestselling author of the Do-It-Yourself Home Renovation mysteries from Berkley Prime Crime, featuring designer and amateur sleuth Avery Baker and her boyfriend, handyman Derek Ellis, who renovate houses in Waterfield, Maine.
As Jenna Bennett, she writes and publishes the Cutthroat Business mysteries featuring Southern Belle and new-minted real estate agent Savannah Martin in Nashville, Tennessee.
She also writes a variety of romance, from contemporary to futuristic and from paranormal to romantic suspense.
Where you can find the Author:
Paranormal romance has long been a genre grounded in heavy world-building and dark, tortured heroes. We love those traditional paranormals at Entangled and have an amazing selection under our Select and Edge imprints. Book series like Rosalie Lario’s Demons of Infernum, Tiffany Allee’s Files from the Otherworlder Enforcement Agency books, and Nina Croft’s brand new Order novels are just a few of Entangled’s offerings. But if there’s one thing we know about paranormal romance, it’s that it breaks rules. All kinds of rules. And that’s where the Covet imprint comes in. Covets are firmly grounded in the contemporary world, but each novel brings in supernatural twists, breaking the contemporary and paranormal rules, alike. Covets have all the sexiness, emotion, and happily ever after that readers have come to expect and love from Entangled. With our launch this month, we’re bringing five titles to the forefront of this rule-breaking imprint. Greek gods, witches, demons, shifters, vampires … there’s something for everyone. To find out more about our launch titles, chat with authors, participate in special events, and to find out what books you’ll be coveting next, visit the Entangled website, follow us on Twitter, and LIKE our Facebook page. We have lots of exciting events coming up, and Round Two of our launch in May! Take a look at the first Covets, and start adding to your TBR pile.
We had the opportunity to ask the author, Jenna Bennett, a few questions. Here is our short interview:
(JB – Jenna Bennett/TP – Turning Pages)
TP- Every story begins with the seed of an idea. What was your inspiration for Tall, Dark, and Divine?
JB- I’ve always enjoyed mythology, Greek and otherwise. A few years ago, when I was reading Gena Showalter’s Lords of the Underworld series, I came up with the idea of a lighter, romantic comedy type paranormal series featuring Greek gods. I put the action in Astoria, Queens, New York, because I spent close to a decade there once, and it’s a heavily Greek neighborhood – at one time the biggest Greek settlement in the world outside Greece – and it seemed like a good place to drop a handful of Greek and Cretan gods and goddesses to see how they’d make out in the modern world.
TP- In your opinion, what is the most difficult part of the writing process?
JB- I don’t like to edit. I know that that’s where the story becomes tighter and better, but I’d still love to be able to write a perfect draft the first time out, and never have to look at the story again.
TP- What do you hope your readers take away from the story?
JB- It’s not really a very deep story, and I wasn’t trying to do any teaching when I wrote it. It’s pure entertainment. I guess I hope to give a couple of hours escape. Nothing more, really. I’ve written other books with deeper themes, but this isn’t really one of them. It’s pure fun and games.
TP- In the book, Annie has problems with her self image. I find it refreshing when protagonists struggle with real life issues, as do we all. What, if anything, did you hope that Annie’s character would convey to the reader?
JB- I don’t know that I thought much about it, but I think it’s nice that the slightly-less-than-perfect heroine can end up with the hot guy, and have him love her for what she is, even if she isn’t the most beautiful woman he’s ever seen. Eros was married to the most beautiful woman in the world – Psyche – for a few millennia before she left him. He’s learning – slowly – that beauty isn’t everything, and that Annie has more important qualities. And isn’t that what we all want? To be loved for who we are, in spite of our flaws?
TP- Do you find any particular struggles with writing in the romance genre?
JB- I started out writing first person mysteries, so having to write in third person is a bit of a challenge. I don’t feel like I ever get as close to the character as I can in first person POV. When I’m actually writing as the character – “I did” versus “he did” – there’s an extra level of intimacy I’ve never managed to achieve in third person.
So it’s not precisely a struggle of the romance genre, per se, but since most romances are written in third person POV, male and female, it’s the best I can come up with.
TP- What advice would you give aspiring writers?
JB- Read a lot. Read everything. Good books and bad books. In the genre you want to write, and in other genres. You can’t be a writer unless you read. And then write a lot. Like everything else, it takes time and practice to get good at it.
TP- One of my favorite aspects of the story is the in corporation of Greek mythology in a contemporary setting. If Eros wasn’t in the match making business, what other job do you think he would choose for himself?
JB- Eros is the Greek god of love, and the best job I could imagine for him in modern society was as the owner of a matchmaking business. I did my best to give all the gods modern day jobs that suit their gifts, like Dionysus with his bar and Alastor – the minor god of vengeance – with his P.I. firm. If Eros couldn’t be a matchmaker, I suppose he’d have to take some other job where he could help people with their love lives. Marriage counselor or sex psychologist or some such. It’s how he’s wired, after all. Who he is. God of love isn’t just a job, it’s his purpose, his whole being. I can’t imagine him being anything else.
REVIEW OF TALL, DARK, and DIVINE:
What if you discovered that the really handsome, polite guy who works across the street from you was actually a Greek god? Annie Landon has gotten a little mired down by the lonely monotony of her life. Little does she know, but she lives in a city that hosts the very beings of myth. And when she has a chance encounter with Eros, the god of love, in a bar one night, neither of their lives will ever be the same.
Tall, Dark, and Divine is an extremely fun escape into a world where the gods of legend walk and work among us. Some of them, right across the street. Jenna Bennett gives us the perfect point of view into this hodge-podge world where the mundane and the fantastical are thrown together, in the ‘Everywoman’ character of Annie Lawson. Readers can easily seat themselves in Annie’s character, further engulfing them in the delicious story of an ordinary girl who is able to upset the balance in the life of a millennia old god, and enjoy every part of the journey.
Christie + Heather