Monthly Archives: July 2012

Darklands release day!

Today’s the day! Darklands is now out in the world. If you’re out and about and you see a copy, let me know where you saw it.

I’ve seen some great reviews for Darklands so far. RT Book Reviews had this to say:

Part of what makes the Deadtown novels so compelling is how Holzner employs themes of discrimination and fear. Vicky’s determination and stubbornness are alternately her greatest asset and her most dangerous weakness. Holzner generates complications and tension with grace.

From A Book Obsession:

With each book in the Deadtown series, I only get sucked further in, this installment even more so considering the way things ended. While not a cliffhanger in the strictest sense, a lot of things are left in the balance, leaving me desperate to find out what happens next. Darklands was incredibly action packed, leaving me literally on the edge of my seat. Combine that with the intense emotional moments and Vicky’s character growth, and Darklands made for an incredibly entertaining installment that cannot be missed!

From Bitten by Books:

With each installment, the reader gets treated to a wild ride of exploration as Holzner depicts another alternate plane within her intricate universe. As each of its predecessors in the Deadtown series does, the terrific Darklands strikes an ideal balance between action, introspection, world-building, and character development. Vicky’s family dynamics, despite the paranormal aspects, feel realistic and genuine, and along with new developments in relationships keep the reader invested in how things play out. In each outing, layers of the mythology underpinning the story get revealed, adding richness to the tale. As always, the author’s deft use of humor hits just the right notes, comfortably sharing space with the emotional moments. All urban fantasy lovers should be reading this superb series, and this reviewer will be first in line for book five.

From I Smell Sheep:

This is another home run in the Deadtown series with page turning action, humor, clever world building and a twist at the end I didn’t see coming. Love it when that happens.

From Whatchamacallit Reviews:

All in all I really liked Darklands. I’ve been a fan of the Deadtown series and this is probably my favorite book of the series thus far. I enjoyed the medieval setting of the limbo-limbo-like-underworld, the new characters, and the action and new spins on the story. I can’t wait for the next book, and would have no trouble recommending this one to anyone who likes urban fantasy.

I’m also embarking on my blog tour, with lots of guest posts and giveaways. Check out the schedule here, and enter to win a signed copy of your choice of any book in my series here.

Go get ’em, Vicky!



This weekend, I’ll be at ArmadilloCon in Austin, TX. It’s a fun con, and I’ll also have a chance to visit my daughter, who lives in Austin.

My panels and other events are on Friday and Saturday. If you’re at the con, here’s where you can find me:

Friday, 7:00 p.m.: Opening ceremonies

Friday, 8:00 p.m.: The Still-Changing Definition of Urban Fantasy

Saturday, 3:00 p.m.: Signing

Saturday, 6:00 p.m.: What’s New with Zombies

Saturday, 8:30 p.m.: Reading

I’ll be moderating the urban fantasy panel, so if you have thoughts or questions for an awesome group that includes Anne Bishop and Chloe Neill, let me know!

My reading will include a sneak peek at Darklands, which will be in stores on July 31.

It should be a great weekend! There’s a lot going on at ArmadilloCon. Check out the full program here.

Tales from Deadtown on Kickstarter

A lot of readers have asked me to write a prequel to Deadtown, detailing what happened during the plague that turned two thousand Bostonians into zombies. Originally, I thought I could tell the story in a few thousand words. As I thought about it and outlined and thought about it some more, the story grew. If I were to write it, the story of the plague that created Deadtown would be at least novella length.

I thought it would be fun to bundle this novella together with some short stories set in Deadtown’s world to create a longer book. Some of the stories would feature Vicky, and others would feature secondary characters. I could explore the world of Deadtown while the main story arc of the series moves forward in books 5 and 6–and invite readers to explore it with me.

Because this project is a sideline to the series, I decided to write and publish it independently. To help finance it, I created a Kickstarter project for Tales from Deadtown. I liked the idea of using Kickstarter, because besides seeing whether there’s interest in the stories, I can solicit feedback from contributors. Writing this collection will be a two-way street: I’ll keep supporters updated with progress reports, snippets, and thoughts about what I’m writing, and I’ll also ask for supporters’ thoughts about the questions they’d like answered and the Deadtown-based stories they’d like to read.

The cover art, created by the extremely talented Robin Ludwig, really captures the feel of the series and the excitement of these stories. If you’d like to support the project, helping to cover expenses for the cover, editing, formatting, and proofreading (as well as allowing me the time to fit the project into my schedule), please take a look at my Kickstarter page. I’ve got some fun rewards for all levels on contributors–as well as my endless gratitude. Thanks for your support!

Darklands is coming!

Darklands is making its way into the world. It went out to bloggers a week ago, and today a big box of books arrived on my front porch. The fourth book in my Deadtown series, it will be in stores on July 31.

But you may not have to wait! I’m doing an early giveaway of Darklands on my Facebook page. Click through to find out how to enter.


I’m not a gardener. I used to say that the only thing I could grow is crab grass, but this year even the crab grass has dried up and shriveled. Even so, I love flowers. I’m lucky to live in a neighborhood inhabited by an astonishing number of talented gardeners. Yesterday evening, I went for a walk through my neighborhood, and the photos below are just a small fraction of the flowers I was able to enjoy.

Sure beat crab grass, don’t they?

Are you a gardener? What do you like to grow?

Guest Post: J.R. Turner, author of REDEMPTION

Today I’m very happy to have author J.R. Turner stop by to talk about her new novel, REDEMPTION. I’ve had a chance to read the manuscript and recommend the book to anyone who likes an action-packed, sexy urban fantasy.

So please welcome J.R. Turner!

Sometimes you really have to wonder why you waited so long. That’s how I feel about my first urban fantasy. I absolutely adore apocalyptic (zombie or otherwise) books and movies. If there’s an end to the world as the hero knows it, a romance, and plenty of violence—I’m a happy camper. So really—why did I wait so long?

The only answer I have is that somehow I allowed myself to focus on what editors wanted instead of following my joy and when I gave carte blanche to my imagination, the result was really cool.

Okay, where did all this start, right? When I was a kid a lot of very bad stuff happened to me, the sort of things that might explain a drug addiction or a criminal history. Instead, I became obsessed with understanding human nature and in particular, our ability to rise above disastrous, tragic, or horrific events and discover happiness, even triumph.

At 11, Gone with the Wind became my favorite book, shortly after that I read The Stand by Stephen King and got hooked on horror. Then at 13 I saw the Nadia Comaneci and found her ability to excel under pain, that in fact her pain may have helped her excel, so inspirational I vowed to never let my own pain hold me back.

Much of the underlying themes in Redemption are born from the struggle I faced in dealing with the aftermath of all those terrible events. Part of me was furious that those I loved never protected me, and in some cases, caused the pain. Part of me was desperate to connect and be loved. Part of me wanted nothing more than to be left alone. Part of me yearned to dream and trust in the possibilities. In the end, I recognized that all those parts make a whole person and these are universal struggles.

Savannah is a soldier, a leader, and when she dies and is resurrected, she must face the horror of what she did in the line of duty while attempting to earn her way into heaven. Nico is a modern-day Robin Hood who lost his way when he fell in love with a demon who stole his soul. He is on a vengeful mission to kill those he believes are responsible for the deaths of his sister and her children. The balance of good and evil inside us is always being tested and through this half-angel and half-demon, you sometimes wonder who has the more pure and selfless goal.

I hope readers will enjoy Redemption as much as I loved writing it. I loved the process so much, I’m working on my second urban fantasy now. Thanks Nancy, for having me here today!

J.R. Turner

J.R. Turner is the Executive Director of the Wisconsin Writers Association. She writes in a variety of genres including middle-grade adventures, young adult horror, romantic suspense, horror, military action, and urban fantasy. In her spare time she enjoys arts and crafts, traveling, and movies. Few things in life compare to her passion for the written word, except perhaps the pursuit of chocolate.

REDEMPTION is available here:

DARKLANDS blog tour!

DARKLANDS releases on July 31. To spread the word, I’ll be doing a blog tour from July 31 through August 8, with a final stop by a friend’s blog on August 14. Here’s a list of where you can find reviews, mentions, interviews, guest posts, and (of course) giveaways:

TUES July 31 Release Day Blitz

A Dream Within A Dream

Fall Into Books

A Bibliophile’s Thoughts on Books

Faerotic Prose

Sarah Mäkelä

Pearls Cast Before A McPig

Between Dreams and Reality (Guest Blog)

Read 2 Review 

Mary’s Garden (Interview) 

Midtown Underground

WED August 1

Urban Fantasy Investigations (Guest blog)

Flutey Words

Urban Girl Reader

THURS August 2 

I Smell Sheep (Interview)

Midtown Underground

FRI August 3

Fall Into Books (Guest blog)

Simply Infatuated

The Cheapest Vacation  

SAT August 4

A Dream Within A Dream

What the Cat Read (Interview)

SUN August 5

Dark Faerie Tales and All Things Urban Fantasy (Deadly Destinations event)

Snarkymamma: An Avid Reader

MON August 6

Wolf Majick (Interview)

Paranormal Cravings (Guest blog)

TUES August 7

Bookin’ It Reviews

Curling up by the Fire (Guest blog)

Mama Knows Books (Guest blog)

WED August 8

Zombiegirl Shambling (Interview)

Ex Libris (Guest blog)

FRI August 10 

The Book Nympho (STOMP vs ROMP event)

TUES August 14

Angels Gather Here: Linda Poitevin’s blog

Whew! As you can see, I’ll be busy. Thanks to Roxanne Rhoads of Bewitching Book Tours for organizing my tour. I hope you’ll stop by some of the blogs I’m visiting and say hello. I’m planning lots of giveaways, too, so be sure to enter for your chance to win.

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