BLOG TOUR: NOWHERE TO RUN by Nina D’Angelo

Today’s Stop on this Blog Tour:

REVIEW AND AUTHOR INTERVIEW

Nowhere to run blog tour banner

Book Description:

A dominatrix is murdered; her body displayed in a show of dominance. An actress is found dead beneath the Hollywood sign. There’s a murderer roaming the streets of Los Angeles and he’s having far too much fun to stop.

Stephanie Carovella is a woman of fire and ice. She left her career, her friends and her home town of LA but she couldn’t outrun the demons of her past. When she is lured back by the death of her best friend she enters a world where no one’s safe.

Can Stephanie find her friend’s killer or will she discover that she has nowhere to run?

Review and Author Interview:

4 Stars!

Stephanie Carovella is on a mission to find out who killed her dearest friend, Angeline. Her murder takes Stephanie back to L.A., the very place she ran away from six months ago. Stephanie is reunited with the friends she had left behind. Painful memories of their pasts come tumbling down as Stephanie tries to focus on her goal of finding Angeline’s killer. But as soon as Stephanie steps back into the city, more murders are happening. Each related to her past, each with a goal of getting closer and closer to the perpetrator’s intended victim. Stephanie needs to stop the killer but she can’t do it without the help of her friends. And since no one is above suspicion, their alliances are tested and their loyalties fall under scrutiny.

It is quite refreshing to read a story about such an imperfect heroine. While she is portrayed as a femme fatale who has left many broken hearts in her wake, Stephanie Carovella is an emotionally damaged woman. Stephanie’s indifference towards her safety is the driving force behind her determination to come face to face with her killer. Her will to live after losing all of the important people in life is gone and so she brazenly faces death head-on without any fear. The book delves into a mature subject matter and there are vivid descriptions of both the killer’s methods and the crime scenes. The events in the story are fast paced and yet so skillfully written that the reader becomes invested in Stephanie – her fears, her hang ups, her façade, her impulsiveness and her search for answers.

Nina D’Angelo just took me out for a thrill ride. The road was full of twists and turns, the path constantly changing. Gruesome murders one after the other, secrets revealed one at a time. Just when you think things are starting to make sense, another tidbit rises to the surface that simply contradicts your trend of thought. Nowhere to Run provides an intense, intelligent and exciting escape for a few worthwhile hours. Great work, Nina D’Angelo!

BBB is thankful to have had the chance to spend some time with Nina for a few questions about the book. Read on:

BBB: I must admit, this book is one of the few I have read in the past year that is not in the romance genre. What inspired your idea to write a detective novel , and a series at that?

NINA: I actually never planned writing Nowhere to Run. I didn’t sit down and think hey, I am going to write a crime novel. I sort of fell into crime writing by accident actually. I started writing in a writing group called the Twisted Sisters writing romance and every time it was my time to write a scene, it always ended a little twisted or darker. They used to joke that they brought the romance and action and I brought the death.

I sat down and write the beginning of Nowhere to Run one Saturday night. It started with a prologue and then I had three chapters. I didn’t plan it, I just wrote and it all came together in my head.

Halfway through Nowhere to Run I suddenly realized I wanted to turn it into a full- fledged novel and it wasn’t just me writing for myself anymore. It was around that time I realized I couldn’t have the novel as a stand-alone. Each of the character in Nowhere to Run has their own story to tell and share. I also want to show the aftermath of Nowhere to Run. And, let’s face it, torture my characters a little more.

BBB: The heroine, Stephanie Carovella is headstrong, intelligent and determined but also very damaged. Walk us through how you developed Stephanie’s character in your head as you were writing the story. And the supporting cast of characters?

NINA: I always knew Stephanie Carovella was going to be a strong character. I wanted her to be a heroine people could admire but also relate to. I’ve read so many novels in which the characters are simpering idiots who can’t do anything for themselves. I wanted people to see she wasn’t perfect. She had issues. Let’s face it, we’re all do and I wanted people to see why she was driven.

Some of the aspects of Stephanie Carovella are aspects of myself. When I started writing her, I wrote her as a woman who would stop at nothing to protect the people she loved, even if it meant sacrificing everything. She does it because of what she has already gone through in her life and her past losses.

I wanted people to think she was reckless, sometimes dangerous and careless but to also show that she never did anything without thinking about other people first.

As for the surrounding characters, they came to me with time. I based Jase Devlin and Ben Reynolds on real people I know and love. I wanted Stephanie Carovella to have a group of friends who are family to her – not just Ben Reynolds and Jesse Carlisle but also Gena Evans. I also felt that I needed another strong female character – one who would balance Stephanie out and Gena Evans came to mind. Gena Evans is sort of the yin to Stephanie’s yang. She’s equally as headstrong and can be just as reckless when it comes to protecting the people she loves. Both and Stephanie struggle to understand each other at times because Gena can’t understand why Stephanie does what she does and Stephanie doesn’t understand why at times Gena hates. But both of them have the kind of relationship in which they will do anything and everything for each other.

Where the male characters are concerned, I wanted strong male characters to balance out the female characters. Hence why I created Jesse Carlisle, Ben Reynolds and Jake Carlisle – not to mention I wanted male characters who were drop dead gorgeous 😛

BBB: Any reason why you chose L.A. as the setting for the story?

NINA: I lived in Los Angeles and it’s one of my favorite cities. It just seemed to fit to make Stephanie Carovella running away from Los Angeles and it’s an allude to dreams. Most people go to Los Angeles to make their dreams come true – they want to be an actress or a musician or whatever, but it’s where dreams can be broken. In this case, Stephanie left Los Angeles because her own dreams were shattered and she needed to escape.

I also felt Los Angeles was the perfect setting to be the killing city. While there is a beautiful side to the city, there is also a seedier side. I also thought it would be the perfect setting for serial killers and a lot of this goes into later novels in this series.

BBB: What type of research did you have to do to ensure that you were providing a realistic view of the investigative world that Stephanie and Gena were a part of? Additionally, how difficult was it to write about crime scenes so descriptively?

NINA: I did a lot of research. For me it was about ensuring everything was perfect when I wrote it. I’m a bit of a perfectionist so I research databases Detectives use. I researched crime scenes, autopsy procedures. I researched the type of cars Detectives drove, the guns they used, crime scenes. I even researched knives and medical examiners.   I love research, so it was always a lot of fun for me to do all that research and I think it made me a better writer for it.

Writing the scenes actually came easy to me. It just came together on paper and I’m extremely proud of Nowhere to Run as a whole.

I think the fact I read a lot of true crime and also a lot of crime fiction certainly had its advantages but I also wanted to write it in my own style, in my own way and I think I did.

BBB: Jesse, Jake, Jase – I have to tell you I had to keep them straight throughout the story. Such similar names, was this intended? Can you tell us why?

NINA: I actually never planned on having three guys with names starting with J in my novel. I started writing Jesse Carlisle first and he was always going to be a Jesse. From the moment I started writing him, that was his name. It suits him to a T. Jase Devlin is based on someone I know. Like Jesse, he was always going to be a Jase. Then Jake Carlisle came along and he was specifically a Jake. I wanted to write about Jake and Jesse Carlisle, two strong, sexy, masculine hero types from San Antonio, Texas.

All in all, I didn’t mean to make it a tongue twister for people. The names just came to me and when they did, they stuck. I can tell you though, book two won’t be so much of a tongue twister and no more guys named J will be introduced.

Gosh! I hope that didn’t make my book hard to read.

BBB: Just when I thought…..now that Epilogue! Can you tell us a little bit of what to expect for Book 2? Will some of the secondary characters be coming back?

NINA: Book two is called Nowhere to Hide. Well it’s going to be darker and grittier. Many of the characters will be dealing with the aftermath of Nowhere to Run. The novel will be set three months later and will see Stephanie Carovella back at university studying forensic science and psychology. It’s a way of getting her foot in the door.

She will be trying to deal with everything that happened at the end of Nowhere to Run, and she will be trying to get on her life and move on. But, it won’t be so simple. Instead she’s going to be dealing with a killer, one focused on imitating ‘the greats’ as he sees them. Stephanie will be drawn into the investigation and once again, she will become a killer’s obsession.

This book will be different though because another killer will be lurking in the background, watching and waiting. While she’ll be focusing on a copycat killer, determined to bring him down another killer will be focused on her – a killer from her past.

If you thought the ending of Nowhere to Run was controversial, it’s going to be nothing compared to the ending of Nowhere to Hide.

You will see a number of characters come back. Jake and Jesse Carlisle will be back, Ben Reynolds, Gena Evans, Emily Watson (who will become a little more central in this novel) and of course Jase Devlin.

I’m hoping to have Nowhere to Hide released by August of this year and then another in December 2013/January 2014

BBB: Please tell us a little bit about yourself. When did you decide that you wanted to be a writer?

NINA: I’ve always been a writer. From the moment I could hold a pen and scribble, I was writing stories. Some of my earlier memories were walking around the house with a pen and a jot pad and just writing.

I started taking it seriously when I was about 11 and I knew at 13, I was going to be a Journalist. At 16, I wanted to be the next Jackie Collins, but I never told anyone because I was afraid I would be laughed at. My parents didn’t really support my writing and pretty much told me I wouldn’t make money from it. I didn’t care though and studied Journalism anyway.

I never stopped writing creatively, but Journalism took hold for a long time. It was only after I went back to University in 2005, I started to take my creative writing seriously. After a lecturer read my short story The Perfect Crime and told me I wrote like Quentin Tarrentino, that I started thinking hey, maybe I should write crime and write a novel.

I finally convinced myself last year, if I was going to do this then I had better get my act together and do it. I held off for a long time because I didn’t think I was good enough. Even now I think my writing sucks most of the time.

BBB: What is your preferred genre? What inspires you to write and where do you do most of your writing?

NINA: I really like crime and psychological thrillers. It’s the whole thing of not showing but writing it in such a way it can really mess with someone’s head. I like leaving things unsaid and letting the reader’s imagination take over. It’s fun. I also am fascinated by criminology and the ins and out of it. I find it fun to write.

I don’t think it’s an inspiration for me rather more I have to write. If I didn’t write, I don’t know what I’d do. It’s such a huge part of me and sometimes I don’t know where it ends and I begin. I’m always thinking of things to write about and ideas for novels. When I’m writing, I like to listen to music and tune out that way. That’s kind of my writing inspiration.

I can write anywhere, but I usually close myself away from the world in my room and write. I’d like to convert a room to a study and write in there, but that’s a future project to work on.

BBB: Aside from Book 2 in the Stephanie Carovella series, can you tell us a little bit about your other projects for 2013?

NINA: I actually want to write book one in the Live and Let Die series. This is, in some ways a spin-off of the Stephanie Carovella series. One of the male characters from the Stephanie Carovella series will fall in love with Dominique Arlington, the lead female in the Live and Let Die series. Let me tell you folks, if you thought Stephanie was a tough cookie, wait until you meet Dominique. She’s a lady with a dark past and protects her friends and isn’t afraid to use deadly force to do it too

Nowhere to Run Cover

About the Author:

Nina D’Angelo is a freelance writer and photographer. After graduating from Deakin University in 2005, with a Bachelors Degree in Journalism and Public Relations, Nina briefly worked in P.R. Not satisfied with her profession, she returned to freelance writing. Since graduation from University, she has written her own TV series, produced a music show for three seasons, worked for several music magazines and her photography was published in Aqua Pulse.

In 2012, she decided to take the plunge into the fiction world and started writing her debut novel, Nowhere to Run. Nowhere to Run is the first novel in the Stephanie Carovella series. Its release date is February 14th 2013.

Nina has already started working on her second novel – and the second in the Stephanie Carovella series. Nowhere to Hide is slated for an August release. Nina also plans on releasing her third novel in December 2013, which will be part of the Live and Let Die series.

Connect with NinaNina D'Angelo

Official Website

Facebook

Twitter

Goodreads

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Paula
    Feb 03, 2013 @ 14:40:57

    Hi Nina G 🙂
    Now following your blog 🙂 I’ve just finished Nina’s book as well and loved it. Check out my blog http://www.thephantomparagrapher.blogspot.com
    Cheers, Paula

    Reply

  2. Leighta Bennett
    Feb 04, 2013 @ 19:34:34

    Fabulous interview and what a great review! I loved Nowhere to Run too 🙂

    Reply

  3. anngom
    Feb 04, 2013 @ 19:36:55

    Thanks for stopping by Leighta!

    Reply

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