New Year, New Books, New Resolutions
Candace Havens / January 6, 2011

It’s a new year and I don’t know about you but I’ve had to increase my book budget to handle all the cool releases coming out this year. Even with grad school I have a goal to read at least three books a month that are non-school related. For me, with my day job as a TV and Film critic, books are my last escape. And I noticed last year that I was lucky if I read a book a month. That’s crazy. We have some great releases from some of my pals this month so let’s get going… Writing THE PERFECT DISH was an exercise in rebellion for author Kristen Painter, who is one of my favorite people in the world. “At the time, the older heroine, younger man scenario just wasn’t being done,” Painter says. “In fact, I was told not to write it that way because it wasn’t marketable, but I’m stubborn and telling me not to do something rarely works. I also felt like a heroine of forty-four wasn’t in any way old – I know a lot of women who are forty and older that are amazing in every way. Why don’t those women deserve…

Candy Havens | Fall Season in Full Swing for Movies, Television and Books…
Candace Havens / November 3, 2010

We’ve had a lot of books to movies/TV this fall. Have you seen The Walking Dead on AMC? In case you were wondering there are zombies on that series but that isn’t really what it’s about. It’s really about people trying to survive in rather extraordinary circumstances. Some films we’ve seen so far from books include Freakonomics, Let Me In, The Social Network (based on THE ACCIDENTAL BILLIONAIRES), It’s Kind of a Funny Story, Secretariat, Conviction, Red and others. There are even more in November. I can’t wait for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1, and I’m also looking forward to Fair Game [book] and Love & Other Drugs. Oh, and if you haven’t seen 127 Hours or read the story, you need to. It’s about what happened to mountain climber and caynoneer Aron Ralston (James Franco) who was trapped in a canyon for several days. Danny Boyle directs and it’s one of the best films you’ll see this year. On another note: You guys we’re getting very close to the holidays. I don’t know about you, but I’m so not ready. My favorite thing to do this time of year, especially when it’s nippy outside, is…

Candy’s Inside Books | September = Fall Season Preview and Great Reads
Candace Havens / September 6, 2010

It’s September. I can’t believe we are already into fall. Not only is school starting, it’s also time for the new television season. In October Discovery ID is doing a whole series, Hardcover Mysteries with authors Harlan Coben, Sandra Brown, David Baldacci, Kathy Reichs, Lisa Scottoline, Joseph Wambaugh and Sara Paretsky and others. They’ll be sharing stories about mysteries that have confounded investigators.. The new CW drama Hellcats is based on the book CHEER by Kate Torgovnick, and the show stars Ashley Tisdale and Alyson Michalka. This is one of those series that surprised me by how good it is. The cheer and dance sequences are fun to watch, and there’s a great deal drama and college-aged angst. It’s definitely worth checking out. Overall, this is a pretty good season. Maybe not as strong as last year, but there is definitely a wide variety of shows from which to choose, and some great ones in the mix. That’s enough about television. I have a ton of books to tell you about this month, so let’s get to it. I love me some Eve Silver and she doesn’t disappoint with SINS OF THE SOULS, the second book in the Otherkin trilogy….

Summer Blockbusters…Books, Films and more in July
Candace Havens / July 3, 2010

What are you guys thinking about the new season of “True Blood?” I like that executive producer and creator Alan Ball takes liberties with the story. And what did you think of “Eclipse?” I’m a fan of the film franchise and the series of books. I feel like director David Slade did a great job with pacing in the film. There’s angsty romance, but it’s mixed with some stellar action. He took the best elements of the books made some twists here and there, and created what may be my favorite of three films. In fact, I liked the film better than the book. There are several other books made into films this summer including BEEZUS AND RAMONA BEASTLY, EAT, PRAY, LOVE, SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD and “The Switch”. It’s always interesting to see how the adaptations work. Out of all the films coming out this summer, I’m most looking forward to “Eat, Pray, Love.” I really hope they don’t screw it up. One series I wish they would turn into movies or a television show is Annette Blair’s Vintage Magic. The third installment is DEATH BY DIAMONDS. “I was having a discussion about my second mystery with my…

Candy’s Inside Books | Beach Books for June…
Candace Havens / June 5, 2010

It can’t possibly be June already. Wasn’t it just February? I should be grateful for the warmer weather and the lazy days of summer, but unfortunately there isn’t much time to laze these days. (Smile) I did make myself a promise, and that is reading at least one book a weekend. So far I’m averaging two, and I have to say it’s the one way I can get my brain off of my crazy life and send it into a lovely new world someone else has created. There are tons of fun books and here are a few for you to check out: BLOOD SONG is the first of a new series by Cat Adams (formerly C.T. Adams & Cathy Clamp). This is the story of Celia Graves, a vanilla human trying to get by in a paranormal world. “But Celia’s life is rocked when she’s bitten by a master vampire and becomes half human and half vampire,” says Clamp. “Celia’s world was first developed in an unusual fashion. There’s a saying: ‘A picture is worth a thousand words.’ Well, in the case of this book, a picture was worth a hundred thousand words. Cie Adams and Cathy Clamp were…

Candy’s Inside Books | Ready for the Summer Season?
Candace Havens / May 2, 2010

Candy’s Inside Books A look at books, authors and movie events I don’t know about you guys, but for some reason I read more in the summer. It’s not that I have more time. I think it’s more that there are so many great reads out there. First on my list re-reading Charlaine Harris’ third Sookie book before “True Blood” returns on June 13. I haven’t seen the first couple of episodes yet, but they have sent me clips. Once again executive producer Alan Ball is sticking pretty close to the books, but doing his own twist with them. I’m looking forward to the “wolves” this season. Those guys really know how to stir up some trouble. There are lots of fun books to talk about for your TBR (to be read) pile, so let’s get to it… Susan Mallery says her new Fool’s Gold series is something new for her. The first book is CHASING PERFECT. “Instead of setting out to write a three-book series or a four-book series, I’m creating a series with no defined ending,” Mallery says. “One of the biggest challenges that faced me as an author is keeping all the details straight from book to…

Candace Havens | Exciting April Finds…
Candace Havens / April 7, 2010

If you haven’t had a chance to check out Rosemary Clement-Moore’s books, you should. Yes, they are young adult novels, but they are fun for all ages. Highway to Hell, the third book in her Maggie Quinn: Girl versus Evil series. “Maggie and Lisa are away from parental supervisions when they head for Spring Break on the Texas Coast,” says Clement Moore. “Oh, the college freshman days, when you think you know everything. They never make it to the beach. They wreck the Jeep when they hit a cow in the middle of the road, and get stranded in a one-horse town, where folks are convinced El Chupacabra is killing their livestock. After facing demons at the prom and sorcerous sorority sisters (say that three times fast!), Maggie and Lisa think they can take on this Mexican version of Bigfoot. But it’s bigger and badder than they realize. “ Clement Moore says this book is personal. “It takes place where I was raised,” she says. “I get to incorporate South Texas culture and legends, and I’ve thrown in a hot cowboy or two. Come on, and an El Chupacabra. What’s not to love?” Highway to Hell was named one of…

CANDANCE HAVENS | Let’s Talk Academy Awards
Candace Havens / February 23, 2010

It’s almost time for the Academy Awards, which is a big time of year for my day job as a film critic. While I could attend as press to the awards, I prefer to stay at home and watch in my pajamas on the couch just like everyone else. If you’re press, you are usually stuck in a big tent somewhere or next door at the hotel in a ballroom where you have to listen to foreign press ask inane questions that embarrass the room. Since most of my job is done before the awards, I choose to stay home. I thought I’d go through the list and talk about some of the folks I’d like to see win. This is not necessarily who will win, though I’ll try to help you with that too. We’ll go through the Best Picture and Acting categories and I’d also love to hear about some of your choices. Supporting Actress: Penelope Cruz, “Nine”; Vera Farmiga, “Up in the Air”; Maggie Gyllenhaal, “Crazy Heart”; Anna Kendrick, “Up in the Air”; Mo’Nique, “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire.” I think the woman to beat here is Mo’Nique, even though I despise that film,…

Candace Havens | New Series, Romantic Adventure…it’s February!
Candace Havens / February 3, 2010

I have so much to tell you about this month. First of all, those of you who are fans of M.J. Rose’ The Reincarnationist might want to check out Past Life on Fox, which was inspired by the by the book. For those of you who are familiar with the book, basically the institute is there and they deal with past life regression cases, but that’s where the similarities end. Kelli Giddish, Richard Schiff , Nicholas Bishop and Ravi Pate star. I like the concept, but I feel like maybe they should have picked a different episode for the pilot. It starts out kind of slow, but I liked the second episode. My fear is that Fox is the worst at giving shows a chance. If it doesn’t hold the ratings, it won’t be around for very long. And, not unlike Dollhouse, it’s a show that needs a little time to find its footing. There is some decent chemistry between Giddish and Bishop His character has just lost his wife; so don’t expect a big romantic bang up top. It’s certainly worth checking out. I’m super excited about the release of my first Harlequin Blaze, TAKE ME IF YOU DARE….

Candace Havens | Bright Lights in 2010…TV Pilots and books…
Candace Havens / January 3, 2010

Candy’s Inside BooksA look at books, authors and movie events I’m getting ready to head out to Los Angeles to cover the new TV season for the day job. I’ve seen a few of the new pilots and I liked some of them. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen anything very fresh – At least not yet. (Hollywood, if you’re listening I have some great books that could be turned into fabulous TV series. I haven’t ever seen a series about a witch who protects the British prime minister, or a magical librarian, or four sisters who protect our world from alien beings. But I digress. It occurred to me the other day that some of my favorite TV shows and films from 2009 were based on the lives of writers or were adaptations of books. “Castle” is one of my favorite television shows, which is about a fictional writer who works with a police detective to solve murders. I also liked the adaptation of Debbie Macombers’ “Mrs. Miracle,” which was a very sweet film. “The Last Station” is a movie about Tolstoy’s struggle to balance is slightly insane family with his commitment to his belief in living a life with out…