Today I’m delighted to welcome author Rosemary Rey to the blog as part of Diverse Books Month. The author of The Pentagon Group series and Flame, she lives in the Midwest with her husband and three kids. She used to be a practice lawyer and now puts her legal know-how into her books. I’m so pleased that she’s chosen to answer some questions for us!
1. What does the term “Diverse Books” mean to you?
Diverse books means to me the inclusion of characters of diverse races, nationalities, ethnicities, religions and languages within a book. Our world is diverse, including a variety of people within our lives. We encounter a variety of people in our everyday lives so why not read a book where the main characters reflect the world that I live in. And I would prefer to see heroes and heroines of diverse backgrounds engage in romantic relationships or deep friendships withing the books I read and write.
2. Please tell us about some of the diverse characters in your books.
I write Erotica, Erotic Romance, Erotic Suspense/Thrillers. The main characters of my book are Latino. My heroine is half Dominican and Puerto Rican. I describe her as tanned with long black curly hair, but I didn’t go into explicit detail because as a writer I want all readers to imagine which model or actress would be the heroine or replace themselves with the heroine, so if I went into to much detail, they may not relate. My hero is half Spanish and Irish American, his mother coming from Spain and his father from New England. Both speak fluent Spanish and use it minimally in the story. Both main characters have diverse friends, colleagues, and employees. I also include LGBT characters who are a strong support system for the heroine. I based a lot of my characters on people I know and love–and don’t love so much for the antagonists–in my real world.
3. What do you see as the challenges facing authors of diverse books?
I don’t want to box myself as an author of a particular genre just because I’m Latina and write diverse characters. I feel my stories can be read by all women of all backgrounds. My stories are universal and can be read by everyone because it is about the romance, betrayal and resolution. However, all Indie authors are suffering from the inability of getting their stories read, reviewed, and talked about to other readers within the genre. I have the belief that if you’re seen as a diverse author and character, then there may be a perception by readers that the story won’t resonate with their experiences or fantasies. Despite these challenges, I will continue to write the stories that organically develop.
4. How do you think we should encourage diversity in the literary world?
To encourage diversity in the literary world there has to be more promotion of diverse authors. To see more diverse authors in whatever genre they write will encourage more readership and more diverse authors to be true to their craft without fear of being ignored. The first place may have to come from the Publishing houses because of their higher visibility. They must sign more diverse authors and promote them as they do the standard authors from the last several decades. In the Indie World, it would require an immense amount of promotion. Most of all, authors just have to keep writing and publishing because once they’ve hooked readers, you have to keep them tethered to their narratives.
5. Please tell us some of your favourite diverse books and/or authors.
I read a lot of Indie Authors in Erotica and Contemporary Romance. I love Ella Dominguez who is Latina and writes diverse characters. Out of my genre, I love Jamaica Kincaid, Terry McMillan, and Toni Morrison. There are many emerging authors that I hope to read soon.
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Thank you, Rosemary, for such well thought out and heartfelt responses!
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Rosemary sent us a copy of Rebound, book 1 of her Pentagon Group series and this was our review:
This is a book that is designed to conflict our emotions.
The main character is Perla, who has suffered some heavy emotional damage from her ex-husband. Most of the time she’s strong and independent, but she also has a very vulnerable side. She’s very self-critical and her self esteem is low. She’s also struggling financially and can be quite prickly about it. At first I liked her very much, but as she begins to compromise more and more on her freedoms and independence, I wanted to give her a serious talking to about growing some backbone. That’s not a bad thing – a reaction like that means I was emotionally invested in her as a character and I wanted her to be happy.
Enter Doctor Dashing, the handsome doctor who’s all over her like a rash he wants to cure. Right from the get go I didn’t like him. He came across as controlling and domineering and it really began to bother me that Perla was recognising his behaviour for what it was, but excusing it and ignoring it in her desperate quest to be loved. If, like me, you have past history that would make this behaviour uncomfortable to read then please note that this book has a lot of triggers.
I’m glad I persisted with the book, despite my misgivings about the doc, because it turns out that this is not your average erotic romance. I’m not going to spoil it for you by revealing the ending, but it’s safe to say that if you’re sick and tired of all of those lovey dovey simperers adoring alpha asshole types, this book might surprise you with a refreshing ending for once.
It is an easy read – I finished it over a couple of days. There are a lot of spelling mistakes, but structurally the story is sound and enjoyable.
The ending is kind of a cliffhanger, so if you dive in, be prepared to purchase the rest of the series!
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To find out more about this lovely lady, contact her and/or to buy her books, please check out the links below:
Rebound, The Pentagon Group, Book 1
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00K0WNDEI
Unbound, The Pentagon Group, Book 2
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00N1M7QRO
Bound, The Pentagon Group, Book 3
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00VGQXEV4
Amazon CA: http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B00VGQXEV4
Facebook Profile: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100005110849683
Facebook Group: Rosemary Rey’s Twisted Love – https://www.facebook.com/groups/372063399637445/
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/rosemaryreywriter