Friday, September 6, 2013

The Witch on Twisted Oak: Blog Tour +($20 Amazon GC Giveaway!)

The Witch on Twisted Oak
Susan C. Muller
A powerful psychic is brutally murdered. Secrets are revealed. An old enemy is out for revenge. Detective Ruben Marquez is thrust back into his childhood memories when he investigates a gruesome murder that occurs only feet from his mother's home. Is the killer somehow connected to his own past? Is the beautiful, mysterious daughter of the victim someone he can trust? Or is her revelation that she’s a witch a sign he should stay clear. But how can he, when it appears she’s next on the murderer’s to-do list. In the ultimate test of courage, he uses himself as bait to protect all he holds dear . . . his career, his family, and the Witch on Twisted Oak.

The bell rang on the far elevator and Ruben twisted in time to see a tall woman step out. She was young, no more than twenty-eight or twenty-nine. He looked closer, thirty, maybe. Her build was hard to determine under a long, diaphanous skirt that almost brushed the floor and a gauzy blouse that hung to her hips.

Despite several people in the hall, she headed directly for him. Her skirt and blouse flowed back against her body, revealing a slim figure. Her eyes and hair were as dark as his own, and her olive complexion glowed like polished brass.

"I’m Theresa Reyna. Yolanda Garza’s . . . niece.”

“I’m Detective Ruben Marquez,” he said.

“Yes, I recognize you. You really haven’t changed much.”

What did she mean by that? He’d never seen her before. He’d have remembered that face. “Let’s get my partner and head into one of the interview rooms. It’ll be quieter in there.”

Ruben strode to the squad room and beckoned to Adam. When he looped back toward the woman he did a double take. She faced away from him and her hair hung past her shoulders in a black waterfall. The florescent lights that made most people look sickly, reflected off the darkness like the full moon in a mirror.

A feeling of déjà vu swept over him and was gone. Where had that come from?

Adam rounded the corner and she twisted back, her hair billowing around her, framing her face.

Ruben stumbled over the introductions and led them toward the furthest interview room. He needed the time to clear his head. He could feel Adam studying her. Adam might be spoken for, but he wasn’t dead.

So I have been thinking for a while on the idea of blended genres. Are there any true genres anymore? Romances aren't that exciting without a murder or some kind of mystery thrown in. Thrillers are great, but sometimes seem flat without a love interest, or something paranormal to keep things interesting. I asked the lovely Susan to chit chat with me about the issue! Here are her thoughts! 

Hi Andra, thanks for inviting me on your blog to talk about blended genres!

My novel, The Witch on Twisted Oak, came out on August 28th, from Soul Mate Publishing. It is the second novel in a series that almost never was.
I entered the first book in the series, The Secrets on Forest Bend, in several contests and received high scores, even finaling and winning several times. But I couldn’t get an agent.
Oh, I received very complimentary rejection letters. They loved my writing, my voice,  my characters, they even loved the plot twists. They really hated to miss this opportunity.  But I had blended genres and they just didn’t know how to sell it.
You see, I love mysteries, but I also love romance, and I have a fondness for paranormal stories. So what was I supposed to do, cut myself off from the stories I love?
If agents didn’t know how to handle romantic suspense, or paranormal romance, a paranormal romantic suspense was more than they could conceive of. But lots of us like more than one thing. That’s why someone invented vanilla chocolate swirl ice cream. Or pizza with pepperoni, sausage, and mushrooms.
Agents are coming around—slowly—to the idea of blended genres, but publishers have already embraced the idea.  Someone hidden away in the depths of a publishing company’s market department suddenly realized. “Wow, this book will appeal to readers of several different genres.”
Or a researcher tracking trends in indie publishing noticed that many of the bestsellers contained more than one genre.
And the blended genre became an accepted idea.
All I can say is thank goodness my publisher was forward thinking, because the third book in my series will be out in January and the fourth one is in the planning stages.

Here’s an excerpt from The Witch on Twisted Oak, in which I tried to show a touch of all three genres.

Ruben’s desk looked just as it had when he left on Friday. No little elves had come in and cleared it for him.
“Morning, partner. You look like shit.” Adam gazed at him over the rim of his coffee mug.
“Thanks. You look like sunshine yourself.” Actually, Adam did look pretty good. Smiling. Who smiled at 8:00 on Monday morning? Someone who’d had a better weekend than he had.
“Ready to go catch us a bad guy?”
“Couldn’t happen too soon for me. Someone broke into Tessa Reynas’ house on Saturday. I’ve had her stashed at my cabin all weekend.”
Adam’s eyebrows rose. “Was she hurt? Any idea who did it?”
“No, and no. Not unless I have a report hidden here somewhere about fingerprints.” Ruben shuffled through his in box. Nothing.
He glanced at Adam. “I’ll call Tessa and make sure she’s okay before we head out to question Jacinto.”
“She’s a witness, Ruben.” Adam sat his mug down and stared at him.
Wow, he must be serious. He let go of his coffee. “I know exactly what she is and I don’t need a Romeo, even a reformed Romeo, to remind me.” I also know what she thinks she is; a witch with magical powers.

 What genres do you like to read and how do you feel about blended genres?

Meet The Author!

Susan C. Muller is a fourth generation Texan. She attended Stephen F. Austin State University where she majored in Business Administration. She started her first novel at age eleven, but it wasn’t until after she had worked many years and raised a family that she returned to her first love, writing. She is a member of Northwest Houston RWA, Kiss of Death online RWA, and The Houston Writers Guild. Her novel, The Secrets on Forest Bend, has won several awards. Susan and her husband, Sid, live in Spring, Texas with their rescue dog, Buster, a 120 pound black lab of advanced age. They have two children and four grandchildren. They love to travel and have been fortunate to see much of the world. Her favorite places include Kenya, New Zealand, and the Galapagos Islands. When not writing, she can be found doing volunteer work at a local hospital. She loves to read, travel, snorkel and take long walks. Website:

Susan will be awarding a $20 Amazon gift card to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour, so get commenting! Answer the question about blended genres, or ask your own! Thanks for stopping by and good luck in the giveaway! 


  1. Thanks for inviting me today, Andra. I love a chance to talk about blended genres.

  2. I enjoyed the excerpt, sounds like a good book.


  3. Well, it’s Friday. Had fun following you around this week and looking forward to more good stuff next week. Have a great weekend!
    kareninnc at gmail dot com

    1. Thanks for following me around, Karen. See you next week. :)

  4. I like blending Genres. One I've actually become a fan of shockingly is Zombies and Romance. I've always been put off from the romance genre but had been recommended some that had a Zombie Apocalypse twist and they've been really, really good. Due to this I've branched into reading more blended romances usually with a Paranormal or Dystopian element of some sort. By the way I really liked this Excerpt as well. Thanks for putting the book on my radar.

    1. Glad you enjoyed it, Kristin. I didn't care for zombies until I got hooked on The Walking Dead. Now I'm a fan.

    2. The Walking Dead tends to do that to people. :)

  5. As a writer and a reader I can't imagine being restricted to ONE genre. In fact, many of the books I read ARE blended (even the ones shelved in ONE genre will contain elements of other genres). I don't believe I've come across any books that had elements of only ONE genre in them.

    1. Forgot to put in my email address:

    2. Thanks, Bethany. I know you understand my love of blended genres.

  6. Thanks for sharing the great excerpt and the giveaway. Sounds like a great book. evamillien at gmail dot com

  7. My favorite genre is Historical Romance. Second is a tie between paranormal and fantasy, both romance of course. Not sure about blended. I think time travel is ok, as long as they travel to the distant past.

    1. Thanks, Amy. Those are good choices. Obviously I like paranormal, but fantasy is a close second.

  8. Great blog, Susan! I too write blended genres and can't imagine any other way! The Witch on Twisted Oak is great! Thanks!

  9. i enjoy blended genres especially paranormal erotic

    1. That sounds like a fun blend. Thanks

  10. Thanks for the giveaway!
    mestith at gmail dot com

  11. The blurb tells me I'm going to love this.


  12. The blurb tells me I'm going to love this.


  13. Thanks for the chance to win!
    Sounds like a great read!!
    natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com

  14. Great post, Susan! What an unusual blend :-)

    Usually I'm glad to mix things up, though I confess I sometimes kick back with a good old-fashioned English Village Mystery. Currently reading G.M Malliet's Wicked Autumn.

  15. I love blended genres. My favorite genres are new adult and paranormal and contemporary.
    Thanks for the giveaway!

    justjanhvi at gmail dot com