Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Blog Tour - AWAKENING by Elene Sallinger - INTERVIEW

by Elene Sallinger
Published: November 5, 2013, Sourcebooks Casablanca


In Awakening (November 2013), Elene Sallinger brings us two of the most memorable characters in BDSM to date. Claire, a lost soul who can’t shake a masochistic-abusive relationship that lasted 10-years too long, and Evan, a sexy bookshop owner and dominant who is still getting over the loss of his wife to cancer.

Claire Ryan, 35, confused, and alone, misunderstands her own desires and joins a local book club for romance readers, where she reads her way through the shop’s erotica shelf yearning to accept and fulfill her sexual fantasies.  

The minute Claire walks into Evan Lang’s bookshop, she arouses every protective instinct Evan ever had. After weeks of extreme sexual tension, it only takes one touch for him to see how open and responsive she is to his dominant side.

More than just a tale of sizzling sex, as they embark on the path of Claire’s submission, it becomes difficult for Evan to keep his emotional distance. As Claire learns to accept the sensuous woman she is and fully understand her urges, she falls deeper in love with Evan, only to realize he is holding back on his true desires. Will Evan confront his own past in order to save his passionate new love?

Complete with well-drawn characters who confront life’s most traumatic pitfalls, Awakening reveals the true vulnerabilities in adult relationships, showing how two people can learn to trust and love again.


AWAKENING by Elene Sallinger
ARC Review
Published: November 5, 2013, Sourcebooks Casablanca

My rating: 5 of 5 ⭐️

It's been fifteen years since Claire Ryan has engaged socially without her ex-husband by her side. A year since he finally gave up on her. A year she spent mostly shielded from the world, only accompanied by her one trusted companion, her dog Chester. Scared as she is, Claire is ready to start living again. She is thirty-five years old and without direction, without fulfillment. Having spent most of the past year reading, a book club seemed like the least threatening way to venture out among people again, without exposing herself too much.

'Bibliophile' was a dream Evan Lang realized after his years in the military. A comfortable and somewhat eclectic ...... CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF MY REVIEW!!!


First, let me say, thank you for having me. It's a pleasure to be here.

It is a bit of a jump from writing and illustrating children' stories to your debut AWAKENING, how scary was that??
It was scary, but only in the sense of whether or not I could do the story justice. The only thing that changes between writing for children and writing for adults is vocabulary. The need for story structure, a compelling plot, and respect for your readers is the same across all genres and ages.

What precipitated the writing of a book as AWAKENING? Just a moment in time, an idea? Or is there some significance to the idea of the Chrysalis, the start of a new growth?
At first, there was no plan for a series. The series actually came after Awakening was already submitted for publication. Awakening was born out of several interactions I had in submissive forums of Fetlife and talking with BDSM Dominants, Dommes, and avowed Masters. A trend I saw during those experiences, was for newbies to BDSM to leap with both feet. Some accepted Doms with little to no inquiry of their background or taking any time to get to know this person they were delivering their psyche to. My discussion with the Doms, Masters, etc revealed a disturbing trend that they were aware of and had labeled sub-frenzy. Based on that, the story of Awakening took shape. A woman with significant emotional dysfunction who wanted to enter BDSM and the path she took to do so.
After publication, readers began to express a desire to know about Bridget, Claire's best friend. As I toyed around with the idea, plots for Bridget's story and three subsequent books took shape – a series was born. The unifying theme of the series is transformation, so Chrysalis was a perfect fit.

When describing your characters' reactions and emotions, do you ever draw on personal experiences? Can we see anything of you in Claire?
Absolutely! I think every writer does to some degree. The bit of me that's in Claire is that I am a trained Diamond Grader, I pulled on that history in crafting her back story, and I'm a Pit Bull owner. I have two wonderful, goofy Pit Bulls named Bella and Floyd. Floyd served as the model for Chester. He's my own 75-lb lap dog.

Who would you say are your biggest influences, as a writer?
My influences are varied as I read any and everything voraciously. When it comes to writing style, however, I love the succinct, rawness of Karen Robards and the emotionality of J.R. Ward. I also strive to bring the story structure and plotting inherent to literary fiction into my own writing. I also have a strong love of creative non-fiction and memoir and I try to create a feeling of exposition when I write.

Do see yourself writing in a genre other than erotic fiction?
Definitely! I'm about half-way done with the third book in the Chrysalis series, but after that I have a humorous, chick-lit story simmering away. I also have plans for a suspense duology and a work of creative non-fiction about Pit Bulls.

Thank you so much for answering my questions an I'm looking forward to the next story in your Chrysalis Series.....


Hailing from Washington, DC, Elene Sallinger first caught the writing bug in 2004 after writing and illustrating several stories for her then four-year-old daughter. Her writing career has encompassed two award-winning children’s stories, a stint as a consumer-education advocate, as well as writing her debut novel, Awakening—a novel of erotic fiction that won the New Writing Competition at the Festival of Romance 2011. Visit Elene online at elenesallinger.wordpress.com.

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