A Barb the Zany Old Lady Release Day Review: The Leprechaun Next Door by Elizabeth Coldwell

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Rating: 3 stars out of 5

Devon loses his job at a tech support company and almost the same time he loses his life partner when he finds out he’s been cheating on him. He takes his few possessions and meets a really cute redhead on his way into his new apartment. The redhead is Johnny, who has a touch of brogue in his voice and a glint of gold in his eye. Fun and mischievous, Johnny leaves Devon desiring to learn more about the Irishman. He gets his wish when Johnny tells him he’s a leprechaun but Devon hesitates to go any further with him. He really needs a job and he has revenge against his ex on his mind. After an accidental encounter with the ex, Devon takes Johnny up on his offer to show him how a leprechaun can grant three wishes. He chooses a new job, revenge on the ex, and to meet the man of his dreams. 

I’m torn about this story. I liked it in general, but I didn’t buy into the romance. And part of the reason for that was the way the leprechaun character was created right from the beginning of the story. Someone who claims to be a leprechaun who can grant gifts, someone who shows up and then seems to blink out of existence in a moment, someone with the power to create havoc where you want it and find you a good job in the blink of an eye. Can they be real? Add to that the look the leprechaun gives—sometimes sweet, sometimes almost evil, I was left with the impression that the character would be a catalyst to Devon’s romance, not a part of it, so I remained wary about him as the story progressed and I looked for reasons to doubt his sincerity. Unfortunately, as it turned out, the leprechaun was the man of Devon’s dreams—but not mine. 

The author wrote a nice story but the way Johnny was portrayed led me to believe he’d be a secondary character—one with an evil streak. Maybe I’ve read too many books in the spirit world lately where that turns out to be the case. In any event, I really liked Devon, and I appreciated the slow journey he took as he came into his own. I just wish his happy future wasn’t with Johnny. 

The cover by Adrian Nicholas is very clever. It features a redhead man standing over a pot of gold, his hands in prayer. Instead of a beam of golden light falling on him and the gold, the beam is a rainbow of colors. Very nice!

Buy links: Dreamspinner Press

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Book Details:

ebook, 145 pages
Expected publication: March 15th 2019 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN139781640808751
Edition LanguageEnglish

Elizabeth Coldwell on Writing, Characters and her new novel,The Leprechaun Next Door (author interview)

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The Leprechaun Next Door by Elizabeth Coldwell

Dreamspinner Press

Cover Art: Adrian Nicholas

Buy links: Dreamspinner Press

Amazon US

Amazon UK

 

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Elizabeth Coldwell here today talking about writing, characters and her new novel,The Leprechaun Next Door. Welcome, Elizabeth.

 

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Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Interviews Elizabeth Coldwell

  • How much of yourself goes into a character?

Not that much, I don’t think. When it comes to writing MM fiction, the characters are more how I feel I might be if I was a man, which might not always be positive traits. Part of what appeals to me as a writer is becoming someone who I could never be in real life – not because I don’t like who I am as a person, but because I like to explore different perspectives and possibilities.

  • Does research play a role into choosing which genre you write?  Do you enjoy research or prefer making up your worlds and cultures?

It all depends on the story. For The Leprechaun Next Door, I was bringing a fantastical element into the everyday world, but both parts of that equation required more research than you might think. Everyone knows the basic traits of a leprechaun, such as their green suit and their pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, but I needed to know if they had any other quirks I could work into the story, and that’s how I hit on every one of the wishes Johnny the leprechaun grants having a sting in its tail (but then there’d be no story if everything came easily to the hero, would there?) As for the real-world element, Devon is looking for work lands a job in a coffee shop, so I did a little bit of research into how to use an espresso machine, because that’s something he needs to be taught.

  • How do you feel about the ebook format and where do you see it going?

Ebooks revolutionized book publishing. They opened up publishing to any number of people who would never have got a book in print due to the limited number of slots available via traditional publishers, but they’ve also allowed an awful lot of poor-quality writing to see the light of day. For a while now, there have been suggestions that the ebook market is saturated, particularly when it comes to romance, but I think good books and good publishers will always thrive.

  • How do you choose your covers?  (curious on my part)

I don’t self-publish, so I’ve never had to create a cover of my own or commission one (which is probably a good thing, as my talent is writing, not art of creative use of PhotoShop). All my covers are put together by talented artists who work from the ideas I send them. For The Leprechaun Next Door, Dreamspinner cover artist Adrian Nicholas came up with a variety of images and I chose my favorite. I love it because it’s very colorful and light-hearted and it suits the mood of the book.

  • Do you have a favorite among your own stories? And why?

This will sound like a cop-out, but it’s almost impossible to pick one out of everything I’ve ever written. I’m very fond of the Lionhearts series I wrote for Totally Bound. They’re MM shifter stories about various lion shifters around the world and the humans who are destined to be their mates, and the series as a whole takes in centuries-old conspiracies, human sacrifice, ghost hunters, murder, arson, obsessed stalkers – all the good stuff!

  • Have you ever put a story away, thinking it just didn’t work?  Then years/months/whatever later inspiration struck and you loved it? Is there a title we would recognize if that happened?

That happened with a novel I wrote for Xcite Books, Someone Else’s Skin. It all sprang from an incident many years ago when I was hypnotized by someone who’s a well-known hypnotist in the UK at the launch of his self-help videos (yes, that’s how long ago it was – no such thing as DVDs in those days!). He claimed he could hypnotize you to show you who you were going to be in a future life, rather than who you’d been in a past one, and I thought that was such a great idea for a story, but I couldn’t make it work and I shelved the book. It was never meant to be an erotic romance, but when I changed the heroine’s self-absorbed, cheating boyfriend into a sympathetic character who enjoyed threesomes, suddenly everything fell into place and I had great fun writing it. But I’ve never been hypnotized since…

  • If you could imagine the best possible place for you to write, where would that be and why?

It’s somewhere I’ve written in the past. A few years ago, my partner and I were on holiday in Amsterdam, staying on a houseboat that had once been a working barge. One day it rained, so I sat writing and watching the rain fall. Just the perfect creative atmosphere.

  • What’s next for you as a writer?

I have an idea for a novel involving a vampire character who gets a tiny mention in The Leprechaun Next Door. Once I have the time to get into the meat of the story, I think I’m going to have a good time with it.

 

The Leprechaun Next Door by Elizabeth Coldwell

Blurb:

Happiness might be waiting at the end of the rainbow, but will it come with a price?

Devon’s down on his luck—he’s lost his job and discovered his boyfriend is cheating on him. His neighbor, Johnny, is not only cute, he also has a big secret: he’s a leprechaun with a pot of gold… and the ability to grant wishes.

Can Devon wish his way out of the hole he’s found himself in? He’d like a new job, some revenge on his lying ex, and maybe even love. Johnny can give him what he wants, but it won’t come for free… or in the ways Devon expects. Can he trust a sexy leprechaun to help him make a new start and wish himself into the arms of the man of his dreams?

Author Bio:

I am Rotherham’s foremost (okay, only) writer of quality erotica and erotic romance. Though I’m now based in London, family and football take me back North on a regular basis. Indeed, if you’re ever at a Rotherham United match (I know, what are the chances?) and you spot a small blonde with a large ‘London Millers’ flag, that’ll be me. Originally from South Yorkshire, Elizabeth Coldwell has been making up stories for as long as she can remember, only now she gets to people them with hot men. When she’s not got her nose in a book, she’s reviewing or trying to stop one or both of her cats from walking over her keyboard. She spends her time following her home town football team and baking the best brownies in East London.

 

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