Monday, November 5, 2012

Karoleen Vry Brucks Author Interview

Photo Content from Karoleen Vry Brucks

French-American author Karoleen Vry Brucks lives with her husband and 3-year-old daughter in North Carolina. She enjoys writing, painting, cooking different cuisines and loves animals. She loves North Carolina because one can get the beach and mountains with very little distance in between the two.


Was there a defining moment during your youth when you realized you wanted to be a writer?
I loved making homemade neighborhood newspapers when I was in elementary school. My mom was always into gossip news so when I was little I was great at finding all the secrets in the neighborhood and reporting them. Naturally I got into big trouble and the newspaper was cancelled but I always continued writing.

Why is storytelling so important for all of us?
I believe storytelling is important to us all because it gives us a way to express ourselves and what has happened. Storytelling was also a way to pass down traditions from historic times. In my family I loved hearing stories from my father about his childhood in france and the difference in culture. Without storytelling I think this world would be quite boring.

What is the best piece of advice you ever received from another author?
I always try to be everyone’s friend but I found out the hard way not everyone will like you and some people will down right hate you. I had an author and friend tell me that it is the same with writing a book. Not everyone is going to like it and there will be many that will hate it but as long as you keep your chin up and stay true to yourself you can make it.

In your new book; Valley of Dust, can you tell my Book Nerd community a little about it?
Where to start. I love to do research and I always found vampires intriguing but I also wondered where did they come from. I decided to create an immortal from the ancient days before Dracula. Strigoi’s intrigued me and I kept researching them. Soon I decided to create a society of them and thats when I came to Valley of Dust. Its about Selene a live Strigoi born from two mortals who finds out that she is not like everyone else the hard way. When she finds where she does belong, she finds it difficult to fit in because she is rare even to her own kind. Part of me wants to keep going and describe it all but then I would ruin it like I do with all my Christmas presents;)

What part of Lucian did you enjoy writing the most?
Lucian is compassionate. I love how he feels and loves. It is sort of how I am. I give my whole heart regardless if it will be returned. He is a person who cares dearly for everyone even people who hurt him and I enjoyed immersing myself into his character and I found I understand myself even more then I did before.

For thoe who are unfamiliar with Selene, how would you introduce her?
She had a rough childhood. Life was not handed to her on a silver platter. She had to work for everything she got even leaving home to pursue her dream of being an artist. She is not one to be dominated. If anything I would consider her to be free spirited and odd;)

What are some of your current and future projects that you can share with us?
I have a prequel in the works. My editor loved Lucian and Anton and suggested that I go into more detail about them. I had planned on it but I never thought someone else would bring it up. There is also a sequel to finish Valley of Dust. The title is Beneath the Dust and it will be done next year. Both books will answer almost every question from the first book.

I also have a young adult book I have been working on the past year. There is no title yet but I will not be self-publishing it. I plan on doing it traditionally.

If you could introduce Anton to any character from another book, who would it be and why?
Alice Cullen. I think knowing her and knowing the consequences of his actions might help him from falling prey to stupidity. Though maybe even Alice would be blind to his future?

When asked, what’s the one question you always answer with a lie?
I am actually quite honest. Maybe a little too honest. But if you ask me if you look fat in those pants I will always say NO WAY. I don’t believe in negative criticism. If you do look horrible in those pants I will work my butt off to find a better pair that will make you shine. I find that being constructive and nice is the best policy.

What’s the best advice you can give writers to help them develop their own unique voice and style?
Follow your heart and don’t let anyone put you down. I think everyone can do what they dream and I love people who go for it. Don’t worry what people say because they are not everyone. Be yourself and stay true to your characters.

Who is the first person you call when you have a bad day?
I have intracranial hypertension so I get a lot of migraines and a lot of bad days but when I need someone the most my husband has always been there for me. When I got diagnosed with this horrible disorder I was scared I would go blind and my anxiety prevented me from going outside but my husband stood by me and has never left my side always helping me get through the obstacles I get stuck at.

What is your favorite room in your home and outside environment?
I have a willow tree in my front yard and when it is cold I love to sit under the tree and read. Now on hot days my favorite room is my office. It has asian themes to it and I enjoy the serenity it brings to me.

Which is the hardest thing you ever had to do?
Battling multiple diagnoses and anxiety every day to live a normal life. I do it every day even though it is tough but I know that doing it is the best thing for me.

Who was your first boyfriend?
Wow, I didn't really start to date until I was 19-20 and then it was a horrible person. I don’t want to say a name but lets just say he broke my heart several times by using really good lies. One was he was going training and would be back in a month. ( He never came back). Then there was another one where he told his friend to tell me he died in Iraq so he could go and have fun on his R and R. After him I really didn’t have a boyfriend until I met my husband and I was shocked to find someone who didn’t lie LOL.

Who was the last person you hugged?
My daughter she is so awesome. She is three and she is a gem. I love how she lights up when I am writing and asks me hundred of random questions. I am so proud of her.

What is the one, single food that you would never give up?
Sushi. I just love raw fish with wasabi and soy sauce.

Even as a little girl, Selene had always been adventurous, climbing trees and finding new adventures in every nook and cranny. She was never accepted by either gender—all children thought she was too outspoken and strange. Little did she know how different she truly was until an encounter with a mysterious stranger changes her life forever. Readers can witness the intriguing events unfold in Valley of Dust, a novel by Karoleen Vry Brucks.

From the moment that Lucian saw Selene, he knew she was special and that she was his destiny. He sent his brother, Anton, out to watch over her and protect her while she was still unaware of her true nature. Lucian, however, didn’t foresee that Anton and Selene would be mutually attracted to each other. Will Selene come between the two brothers? How will she handle the truth about what she is and the power that courses through her veins? Readers can unravel the exciting answers as they explore the Valley of Dust.

Karoleen Vry Brucks’ Valley of Dust is the story of Selene. She always thought of herself as normal but felt as an outcast by her family and school mates. Although she’s a bartender at night, she’s always kept to herself and uses art as a channel. One evening jog, she is approached by someone but an unknown man comes to her rescue. This is when she learns that she may not be normal at all. Selene belongs to a species called Strigoi who can inject life and also drain it from another person. The mystery man, Anton, was sent to watch and protect her by his twin brother Lucian. Lucian has been eyeing Selene for quite some time now because he saw something special in her. What Lucian didn’t anticipate is a mutual feeling between his brother and Selene. Now this attraction seems to cause tension between the brothers while Selene is slowly learning about her special powers.

This paranormal romance is highly intriguing. The love triangle drives off into a new approach and it was quite a fresh take. Not to spoil too much on this incredible story, but Selene is the perfect protagonist. She is strong, smart, and straight-forward. She may be a little unforgiving at times but it’s only because of the desertion she has experienced all her life. The story progression is simply brilliant. Although it is a quick read, authorKaroleen does not fall short in explaining everything. Her writing style possesses great attention to detail as evident to her richly-textured descriptions. There are plenty of twists and turns to keep the mind’s interest levels at high rates. Valley of Dust delivers a paranormal romance that is extremely fascinating and its unique concept will have readers totally captivated.

You can purchase Valley of Dust at the following Retailers:

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you KAROLEEN for making this giveaway possible.
1 Winner will receive a Copy of Valley of Dust, Bookmark and Postcard by Karoleen Vry Brucks.
Winners will receive a Valley of Dust Bookmark by Karoleen Vry Brucks.


  1. Thank you Karoleen and Jean for this awesome giveaway!

  2. Thank you for this awesome giveaway :)

  3. Hey there, great giveaway! I'm a new follower! I'm having 2 giveaways right now if you'd like to enter, one only has 10 hours left. Just click on the giveaways tab to check them out. Either way I would love it if you would stop by for a visit! Here's the link if you would like to follow back: MaMa's Book Corner I hope you have a wonderful weekend! :)

  4. Thank you for the giveaway :D
    Little Book Star

  5. Ohmygosh thank you so much for the donation Karoleen! The story you have created sounds amazing and the cover for your novel, it is just too beautiful!!

  6. Thank you Karoleen for this awesome donation! This book sounds amazing, hope to have a chance to read it.

  7. Oh, I like the cover! Thank you for this great giveaway!!

    Julie K