<![CDATA[V. S. Holmes - Official Site of the Award-Winning Author - News]]>Sat, 25 Sep 2021 00:25:18 -0700Weebly<![CDATA[broken, bloody, and brilliant]]>Fri, 24 Sep 2021 21:30:52 GMThttp://vsholmes.com/news/broken-bloody-and-brilliant
I just finished--just as in, this very morning--Even If We Break, by Marieke Nijkamp. It's an incredible YA horror/thriller, set against the backdrop of a stormy, haunted mountain in the southwestern U.S. Five semi-estranged friends convene at one of their family's luxury cabins for their last tabletop gaming night before college, internships, and adult jobs sink their teeth in. As their RPG characters unearth a fictional murder mystery, the teens--each hiding their own terrible secrets--begin to uncover a bloody plot that is entirely too real. 

This is my first foray into one of Nijkamp's grusome, clever worlds, and boy did I enjoy it! Her characterization perfectly captures the heartache of new adulthood, and the pain of realizing you have outgrown dear friendships--or they have outgrown you. The confines of a hunted mountain, the game that binds the group together, and the secrets that drive them apart, all add a great modern gothic feel.  I was thrilled to find two trans characters--nonbinary and a trans guy--plus an autistic character, and two others with physical disabilities, all of whom were thoughtfully written. While decidedly creepy, the real fear throughout the novel was whether each of the friends could remember to trust one another in time--or if they would be picked off when their time came. 

For fans looking for a creepy, nerdy, yearning read! 5 stars!
]]>
<![CDATA[strap in for the ride]]>Wed, 15 Sep 2021 16:00:00 GMThttp://vsholmes.com/news/strap-in-for-the-ride
Aurealis Magazine is back with this glowing review of Nel's second adventure!

"...​​After the absorbing, dig-based, science-y plot of the first book in the series
(Travelers), the story in Drifters departs along different parabolas. Nel adopts survivalist mode as a fugitive from justice, somehow staying alive through freezing conditions, starvation rations, and random injuries. Ex-lovers appear when she needs them, only to put themselves in danger, and it’s hard to distinguish the good pursuers from the evil ones.

It’s also hard to resist the breathless pace of this adventure, even in its unlikeliest moments. I Shouldn’t Be Alive meets the X-Files—strap in for the ride and follow Nel through privation and exhaustion as she seeks the meeting place with her backers. After all, her extraterrestrial lover is out there somewhere, and the thrilling expanse of outer space beckons.

Read this, and get your hands on book three as soon as you can."
]]>
<![CDATA[Coming to headphones near you!]]>Sun, 12 Sep 2021 14:28:00 GMThttp://vsholmes.com/news/coming-to-headphones-near-youGot some exciting news in the wake of the Lightning and Flames audiobook production--book one, Smoke and Rain, will be getting a brand-new audiobook remastering! Jake Ruddle, the incredible narrator of the Blood of Titans series, will be producing a newly narrated and finalized version of the first book, to be released with its sequel. If you haven't already stepped into this dark, slow-burner of a story, this is the perfect time to hear Alea, Arman, and Bren's stories brought to vivid life through your headphones! 
]]>
<![CDATA[Holmes leaves no option but to keep reading]]>Sat, 14 Aug 2021 13:57:11 GMThttp://vsholmes.com/news/holmes-leaves-no-option-but-to-keep-reading
So honored by these review from Aurealis Magazine on Travelers!

"...Holmes immerses the reader in the dirty and painstakingly slow processes of on-the-ground archaeology. There’s enough readerly fascination to snag attention, while wincing at Nel’s behaviour. Setting up an engaging but unlikeable main protagonist is a feat. Holmes leaves no option but to keep reading. A romp through pre-history using the framework of universal history, Travelers opens unexpected storylines to play out in the next three episodes. Readers who like stubborn, badly behaved but splendid characters will have a ball. The vibe is deadpan, gumshoe noir. She may be no Lara Croft, but Nel is some adventurer."
]]>
<![CDATA[Join Me At When Words Collide]]>Sun, 23 May 2021 17:26:24 GMThttp://vsholmes.com/news/join-me-at-when-words-collide
This is exciting to finally share: August 13th - 15th I'll be joining the When Words Collide Festival for Readers and Writers! It's both virtual and in-person, though I'll be tuning in virtually. The lineup of panels is so incredible, and I'm honored to be on four of them!  I've put times and descriptions of the panels of which I'll be a part below, but be sure to see what else this amazing group has to offer. 

Check out the Festival and you can register for FREE!

Friday 2 PM
Awakening to Social Sensitivity Panel

This panel will discuss writing about other genders, races, classes, cultures with honesty and sensitivity. How can a writer be inclusive without appropriating or creating token characters? 

Saturday 10 AM
Writing Well: Diversity and Sensitivity Panel

Proactively looking at writing diversity well in your works. Discussion on how to be mindfully inclusive while navigating the "forced diversity" narrative, how to avoid writing stereotypes offensive to minorities, and best practices on choosing sensitivity consultants/editors/readers.

Sunday 2 PM
Translating Real Science into Gripping Fiction Panel

Fiction authors discuss using hard science as a source of inspiration, and sometimes a basis, for their fiction. 

Sunday 4 PM
Science Fiction As a Critical Tool for Understanding Social and Political Issues Panel

"Art plays a key role in shaping people's view of the world, and on the
twenty-first century science-fiction is arguably the most important genre of
all, for it shapes how most people understand things such as AI,
bioengineering, and climate change. We certainly need good science, but
from political perspective, a good science-fiction movie is worth far more
than an article in Science or Nature."
- Yuval Noah Harari, "21 Lessons for the 21st Century"

]]>
<![CDATA[Nel vs Alea with Musing of an Author]]>Mon, 17 May 2021 13:00:00 GMThttp://vsholmes.com/news/nel-vs-alea-with-musing-of-an-author
I teamed up with Peni Jo Renner to discuss the differences between Alea and Nel, the underlying style in all my work--despite their very different voices!-- and more!

Read More!
]]>
<![CDATA[Research and Challenges]]>Sat, 15 May 2021 12:45:41 GMThttp://vsholmes.com/news/research-and-challenges
I jumped onto Lisa Haselton's blog to share what my biggest challenge, is when writing, what my writing space looks like, and how I research the science in my series! 

Read More!
]]>
<![CDATA[V and Liz on Behind the Book!]]>Wed, 12 May 2021 11:13:09 GMThttp://vsholmes.com/news/v-and-liz-on-behind-the-book
I joined the lovely Liz Butcher of Behind the Book to chat about the impact of COVID on our work, which site I'd love to work on, and how Nel started as a standalone! Thanks to Liz for having me and to Creative Edge for putting this together! 

Read More!

]]>
<![CDATA[Travelers: Internationally Bestselling LGBTQ Science Fiction]]>Mon, 10 May 2021 13:00:00 GMThttp://vsholmes.com/news/travelers-internationally-bestselling-lgbtq-science-fiction
It's been a whirlwind week! I was exhausted by my 2nd Covid shot, and just had another book hit international bestseller status! This time it's Travelers, which is #1 LGBTQ science fiction in the US and Canada! Not only that, but Heretics launched on the 8th and has already been bought and reviewed by so many of you. Your support means the world!

I seriously couldn't do this without the incredible author and publishing community I've found--especially big thanks to Mickey Mikkelson of Creative Edge for all he does, and the powerhouse of Rebecca Hamilton for her amazing mentorship and team.
]]>
<![CDATA[Everything Heretics on Urban Book Reviews]]>Tue, 04 May 2021 13:00:00 GMThttp://vsholmes.com/news/everything-heretics-on-urban-book-reviews
​I joined Urban Book Reviews to discuss what my biggest struggle was when writing HERETICS, who main character Nel Bently has become, and my favorite part of the book! 
Read more!
]]>