Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Thursday's Special Is ... Bad Ice!


Bad Ice by Sandra "Chumplet" Cormier



What kind of person writes "romance with a dash of suspense"? Apparently you have to be Canadian, with roots that go all the way back to 1644 when Canada was French and beavers ruled the land. Being also of Acadian, Mik'Maq and Basque descent doesn't hurt either. Except for that unibrow thing - but Sandra swears it's under control.

You must also at times imagine you're a hobbit and wander around in the woods for no apparent reason other than to pretend you're a hobbit and in need of all those maps of Middle Earth you've collected.

And it helps to surround yourself with a husband and teenagers of the geek variety, along with a dog and cat - both too pretty to be boys - while hoping to someday grow up just so you can keep a pony in your backyard.

Somehow this background gives you an astonishing ability to plop readers right into your story and make them feel like part of the action. Seriously. That's the quality about Sandra's writing the reviewers point to consistently.

In Bad Ice, Christina Mackey is thrust into the testosterone-powered world of hockey when she inadvertently prevents the murder of her idol, Jason Petersen. But as Jason's feelings for the widow who saved him grow, his past threatens not only their happiness, but the life of Christina's innocent young daughter as well.

Sandra will be posting in the comments as her alter-ego Chumplet.

For a chance to win a copy of Sandra's e-book, read the excerpt below, then answer the questions.

***

Jason returned his attention to the monitor. He felt a rush of relief when he learned the woman, a single mother, was only slightly wounded in the fracas and was expected to make a full recovery.

After several replays, the network returned to the live scene. The announcer stood on the steps above the players' bench. Officials still worked behind him, and a few fans remained.

“The alleged gunman was not so lucky. When arena security opened fire, he was critically wounded, then pronounced dead upon arrival at St. Michael's Hospital. Names have not been released, but it’s been reported he may have been an employee of this building. Police Services will be investigating the incident.”

Jason raised his eyebrows and glanced up at Bertie. “That’s how he got the gun in, I guess.” He shook the sweat from his hair. “Man! What a close one, huh? Who would think somebody could go postal in a hockey arena?” He finally began to unlace his skates.

“Jason.”

“What?” Jason looked up again at Bertie’s face. His friend’s eyes focused on a point just above Jason’s head.

“Take a closer look at your lid, man.”

Jason stood and took his helmet from the shelf. A narrow groove traced along the left side of the helmet, about a half-centimeter deep and a few centimeters long, just above the gap where his ear would have protruded.

If he had been looking to the left or downward, the bullet would have penetrated his head or the back of his neck. Even if the glass slowed it down, Jason knew any impact in the temple area or the base of the skull could be fatal—or worse, career ending—whether by elbow, stick, puck, or bullet.

Jason shivered and sank back to the bench, staring with round eyes at the helmet.

“Holy shit.” He felt a ghostly tingle and rubbed the back of his head. “I could be dead right now. Shit.”

***
Questions:
1) Which hockey team does Sandra like best?
2) What color is Jason's helmet (and why)?
3) Write a 4-line poem titled "Ode to a Hockey Puck." Please do not rhyme puck with f*** (even though we know that's all you can think to rhyme it with now).

80 comments:

Phoenix said...

Whew .. July is hot in more ways than one!

So let's all just cool down a little with some "Bad Ice."

Sandra (aka Chumplet) is now on the grill. Let the roasting begin!

Roast Master Phoenix

ChrisEldin said...

Looks like another good one!
:-)

Chumplet said...

Squeeeeee! It's Pawty time! I'm in my jammies and everyone's gone to bed. I can't promise to stay up all night 'cause I have to work a half day tomorrow, then I'm all yours.

The winning book will be in PDF format, but I know many of you prefer the paper kind.

Therefore, in addition to the pdf copy, I hereby promise to send the winner an AUTOGRAPHED PRINTED copy as soon as it becomes available in just a few short months (just in time for hockey season).

Sarah Laurenson said...

1) Which hockey team does Sandra like best?

Team? Who cares about teams when there's all those fine asses in tight pants. OK. OK. So they're padded fine asses.

2) What color is Jason's helmet (and why)?

Blue to match his piercing ice blue eyes.

3) Write a 4-line poem titled "Ode to a Hockey Puck." Please do not rhyme puck with f*** (even though we know that's all you can think to rhyme it with now).

Oh puck
You stuck
In the net
I won the bet

Hoo Roo Sandra! Happy Roasting!

Chumplet said...

The puck is dropped, and Sarah flies toward the net...

Charles Gramlich said...

1) Which hockey team does Sandra like best?

Answer: The Toronto Snipers

2) What color is Jason's helmet (and why)?

Answer: It's white, so the blood spatters will show up nicely after he sticks an opposing player.

3) Write a 4-line poem titled "Ode to a Hockey Puck." Please do not rhyme puck with f*** (even though we know that's all you can think to rhyme it with now).

Answer:
The first bite was murder
But still I had another
Gotta love that hocky puck burger
When it's made by your mother

Chumplet said...

"Hockey Puck Burger"
Maybe that's why so many hockey players have missing teeth.

Chumplet said...

I'm going to tuck myself into my little bed -- see y'all in the morning!

Shona Snowden said...

Absolutely rolling on the floor about question three. Naughty, naughty Phoenix. That's a fine note to start on!

I have Sandra's other book, The Space Between, which I absolutely loved. I've also seen quite a few excerpts of Bad Ice here and there and it's utterly absorbing.

Sous chef Shona

Bernita said...

Oh damn. I have to be away all day today.
1. In general any team, except when they are playing the local heroes or les Habitants.
2. white.
3. A forward pass
kisses the ice
the goalie's ass
is rather nice.

Stephen Parrish said...

Hi Chumplet! Fancy running into you here. I'm not allowed to compete for the book (I'd lose anyway, as everyone knows), but I can't resist contributing to literature by answering question #3:

I'll tell you why
My dear readers
I hate ice hockey:
No cheerleaders

Think I should submit it to Poetry Magazine?

Chumplet said...

Good morning, all!

I have my cuppa java and I Canucked it up a little.

Bernita and Stephen, great poems!

laughingwolf said...

1. sandra's dream team? the saskatechwan sasquatch, of course!

2. jason's lid would be red - cuz he's a blue-blooded canadian, eh?

3. ode to a hockey puck:
a hard bit of rubber
flashing across the ice
often it hits blubber...
today, it struck jason's left ear - since he votes ndp, i guess!

Kimber Chin said...

1. The Habs - is there any other team (and no, don't you dare mention the Buds)

2. That bright orange minor league players wore in the 80's.

3.
Jason and Christina about to get busy

Action so hot it makes readers dizzy

One thing drives the poor girl to maddening

Is why do players have to have so much padding?

Miss Savannah Spitfire: said...

Well, well, well, if it isn't our Miz Chumpley here with us today!

Now I know I'm supposed to be focusing all on food and tasty treats, my darlin', but I really do have to ask about that "ghostly tingle" you were describin' in your book.

I like ghostly tingles, although I do have to admit, I most often have them when I've just tasted somethin' delightful. And I suppose the gentleman in your novel had just tasted what it truly felt like to miss death by a hair's tiny breadth.

Well, I just can't help myself, I have to know...did he have any special cravin's later on, after he didn't die and all? Any special foods?

And would he rather than die than not be able to play hockey any more? If so, he really is a dedicated man, and I think he deserves a mighty good meal.

lainey bancroft said...

Although Sandra would sooner die than admit it publicly, her favorite hockey team is the Toronto Maple Leafs. As a romance writer she can't resist the lure of that 'so close, and yet so far' fascination.

Jason's helmet is black in the hopes that less than swift players will mistake it for the puck so their attention is diverted from the actual puck. Jason is a puck head!

Hit the ice and grab that puck
Pass to a team mate and you're in luck
If your time with the puck is rather brief
You're probably a Toronto Maple Leaf!

Chumplet said...

Great poems!

You would think I'm a Leaf fan, but I'm way more complicated than that.

Miz Savannah, I don't recall Jason craving anything but Christina, but you were clever to spot the death vs. career comment.

laughingwolf said...

SASKATCHEWAN, of course! :(

Chumplet said...

LW, you just like saying Saskatchewan. It's a cool word. Almost as tongue-twisting as Shubenacadie (my mom called it 'shit in agony')

ChrisEldin said...

I finished reading "Space Between" about two weeks ago (very behind in reading my authorly friends)--and really loved it!!!

And Chumplet already knows how I feel about ice hockey players.
;-)

DH and I fight over the remote. He wants to watch *golf?!* and I want to watch ice hockey.

Love the poems!!!

Phoenix said...

I am getting SUCH an education from all you guys! :o)

The thing that saddens me most is that Sandra never got her pony. She draws them so beautifully. Have you seen her brilliant artwork? If not, go to Sandra's blog right now and scroll down the left-hand side. Breath-taking, aren't they? (*trying to not let my jealousy of her art skills show*)

Roast Master Phoenix

Chumplet said...

Now MY face is turning rosy hue a la Xujun.

Judith Leger said...

Yahooooo!

Hi Sandra! Good to see you here!

Lord, favorite Hockey team? Not sure but hey, I came out to root for you. RA RA RA!

Can rhyme either...sorry! Love ya anyway.

Hope you sell a ton and have a massive fan club.

Chumplet said...

Thanks, Judy Lou!

Patrica said...

This sounds like a fantastic read and I'm looking forward to reading it.

laughingwolf said...

lol... true, sandra!

shitagony is TOO funny, will have tell some of the locals ;)

jason evans said...

Welcome Sandra!!

Jason is a fine name for a protagonist. I should be used FAR more often.

--Sous Chef Jason

jason evans said...

Erm, I meant *it* should be used far more often. Really.

--Sous Chef Jason

Chumplet said...

Your Freudian Slip is showing, Jason...

Xujun Eberlein said...

Hi chumplet, just want to say Hi first. I'll drop by again to try to answer the first two questions. I don't think I'm capable for that poem though. :-)

Stephen Parrish said...

I'll do Xujun's poem for her:

I know a goalie, his name is Keith.
He wears lots of padding underneath.
To Keith, my friend, I shall bequeath
Some dentures, because he has no teeth.

Sarah Laurenson said...

Stephen - you are a riot. Great poem.

jason evans said...

Can I get in on the poem action?

They drop you
Slap you
Stuff you
Ice you
And for their goal's devotion
Not even a rubbery thank you

--Sous Chef Jason

Phoenix said...

Jason. Hockey mask. I'm starting to get some weird vibes here...

Do you have any juicy tidbits that sizzle that you can share? Like, did your research for Bad Ice involve lots (and lots) of interviews with hockey players? Maybe in their locker rooms?

Spill it, girlfriend. I don't want to have to go all Barbara Walters on you, now.

--Roast Master Phoenix

Chumplet said...

Well.... my friend is friends with the brother of Steve Thomas. Does that count?

I ran into a few players by accident but was too shy to 'interview' them.

Another friend used to do radio interviews for a sports station. She saw a few bits. Apparently, Tie Domi never passed up a chance to stroll out of the dressing room sans towel for an interview.

Mostly, I just breathed, ate and lived hockey since I was seven years old.

In later years, I added fantasizing to my list of activities.

I was a hockey mom for a couple of years when my son played peewee (very badly) and hung out with a few ex-NHLers.

Chumplet said...

Um, I hung out with them, not my son. After all, he was only eleven.

Chumplet said...

Goin' for a walk with the kid and the dog -- be back soon!

pjd said...

I wish I had time to hang here all day. It's busy season at Day Job, unfortunately.

Sandra, I remember Bad Ice over at EE's, and the congratulatory post there, too... I can't wait to read it.

Stephen's poem... priceless. "Without cheerleaders, it's just a game."

Now, on to the questions:
1. I'm guessing Sandra likes her son's hockey team best. (I'm assuming he plays. Isn't it a law in Canada?)

2. Jason's helmet is, um... blue. Cuz the Leafs wear blue, and St. Michael's is in Toronto, right?

3. Ode to a Hockey Puck
tough and solid
flying across the ice
all eyes on you
I'd still rather be the stick

Mary Witzl said...

I can't answer those questions (though I'm guessing green for the helmet) -- I don't know enough about hockey. But I'll have a stab at the poem because, well just because.

I never saw it
streaking by
until it smacked me
in the eye

Doreen Orion said...

Hey, Sandra!

1) The Mik'Maq Marauders.

2) Pink - he's secure in his MikManhood.

3) Since we couldn't use the f-word, I figured I was screwed, anyway, so took some liberty with the #lines. (I'm more of a limerick gal, myself):

Hockey players love pushin' puck.
Though touchin' it's apparently "yuck."
In a public arena,
Who wants to be seen a
Commin' when the puck gets Canuck'd?

mlh said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mlh said...

(I messed up that first one. Let me try again)

Wow, I am so late and there are a lot of good answers. So I think I'll skip the banter. Yet I might try for the rhyme, if I get a little time. But I profess, I'm much better being a mime.

Um...what was I about to do?

"Bad Ice"
Juicier than mice
Serve me up a slice
I believe it's better than nice.


I gotta go...see you people at the next show.

Sam said...

1) Which hockey team does Sandra like best?

Uh - the one on skates?

2) What color is Jason's helmet (and why)?

Red - to hide the blood!

3) Write a 4-line poem titled "Ode to a Hockey Puck."

Ode to a Puck

Dear puck,
thou art so useful.
Skidding around on the ice.
Then later, as my paperweight.

Chumplet said...

You're not late at all! We have at least six more hours of fun and ice!

Most of the ice is in my drink. I'm back from my walk and I'm all misty.

Yanno, I think they have cheerleaders at the Tampa Bay Lightning games.

More great poems!

Chumplet said...

Damn crickets.

Phoenix said...

You'll need to let us know what's in your drinks besides ice.

You say you've been an avid hockey fan for *mumble* years. Did you set out specifically to write a book featuring hockey or was that sort of a bystanding happy-stance?

Evil Editor said...

Bad Ice? It'll never get published with that title. How about Zamboni Blues?

Evil Editor said...

The Puck Stops Here.

Chumplet said...

The Canadian Whiskey ran out a few minutes ago.

In writing the story, hockey was definitely at centre ice!

Chumplet said...

Evil Editor! You arrived!

I know you hated the title and I tried another one, really I did! For a while it was called The Lost Season.

Thanks so much for coming to my barbecue!

I think there's a paper plate here somewhere. Oh, here's one. I'll just scrape and erase it and it'll be as good as new.

Dave F. said...

What Team? - I only recognize my local team - Penguins. Besides, they already made a movie at the "igloo."

Team Colors: Ruby Red and Gory Gold - So the red doesn't show the blood

Poem: (Cuss, I gotta do work to post this? I'm hungry and I gotta cook, yanno ;)

Oh, sure of flight and swift of purpose puck,
So eager to defy the laws of Newton
Bend thyself into the net
And make the big lights yell score!

Chumplet said...

Oh, Dave! How... poetic. Great job!

Dave F. said...

I do good stuff when I'm hungry.
;)

Chumplet said...

Oh, please forgive me. Care for a schnizengruben?

Dave F. said...

I made Chicken Stock all day today. Dinner is chicken in white gravy with roast potatoes.

Chumplet said...

Mmmmm. Did you make enough for everyone?

BernardL said...

1) Which hockey team does Sandra like best?

New Jersey Devils. :)

2) What color is Jason's helmet (and why)?

White, because he’s Christina’s knight, and Sheila’s (Bad Ice Villainess) obsession.

3) Write a 4-line poem titled "Ode to a Hockey Puck." Please do not rhyme puck with f*** (even though we know that's all you can think to rhyme it with now).

Struck hard, the puck flew toward the net,
Curving enough to make the goalie fret.
He leaped to his right, snagging the puck,
When being good won’t work, he’ll take luck.

Phoenix said...

So, Chumplet, gotta ask. And I may as well do it publicly since I have your attention. What's the story with "Chumplet"? Personally, I love it. But I've been curious since I first saw you around the blogosphere those many, many, many months ago...

If it's a secret, just whisper it here. We'll keep it under wraps.

Chumplet said...

When I was a teenager, my sister and her boyfriend were absolutely crazy about each other. They snuggled close and giggled and whispered for years non-stop.

Chumplet was his endearment for her. I just loved it.

They got married after college and stayed together for 11 years, until they grew apart and divorced.

The name Chumplet resonated with me, and when I decided to venture into blogland, I used the name as a tag just in case I said something stupid and no one could trace the stupidity back to me.

Later, I discovered some poker dude used the name Chumplet for his online nickname, but I stuck with it anyway.

A definition for Chumplet is 'cute, fuzzy, adorable creature.'

Xujun Eberlein said...

1) Which hockey team does Sandra like best?

She doesn't like any hockey team, that's why she has people shooting at them.

2) What color is Jason's helmet (and why)?

Red...by why red? Help me Sandra! I don't like red.

3) The poem Stephen wrote for me is fantastic! Everyone should read it!

Grinagain said...

Hockey team: Well, since it’s on the cover of her book and the book is titled “Bad Ice” - I’ll guess it’s NOT the Maple Leafs

Helmet color: Pale white – to match the ghostly tingle going up his spine

"Ode to a Hockey Puck"
Stout round disk of blackest hue,
slides on ice as shouts ring thru
the air - eager to fly again.
Awaiting the next power play.

Chumplet said...

I could give a hint and say I live near Toronto but geography doesn't always play a big part in a hockey fan's devotion to a team.

laughingwolf said...

sandra, you are palling up to our american brothers and sisters a tad much... you know WE spell it like the scots: WHISKY :O lol

i'll have another wee dram, svp ;)

Chumplet said...

Really? *Runs to look at bottle*
Damn, you're right! Centennial Canadian Rye Whisky.

Well, I'll be a beaver's cousin!

Chumplet said...

This is a rare moment when American spelling actually ADDS a letter to a word instead of shortening it. *snort*

pjd said...

Interesting. I didn't know that about the whiskey spelling. Here in the Bay Area, the USS Hornet aircraft carrier has been parked as a museum. In the forward catapult room, there are several high pressure tanks that run the catapults to fling the jets off the flight deck. Anyway, these look like big liquid storage units, so the sailors labeled them BEER, GIN, RUM, and WHISKY. (This room is also known as the "room of wishful thinking" since no alcohol was allowed on the ship.)

When you tour the Hornet, they note WHISKY as a misspelling. Maybe the one who painted them was Canadian, eh.

pjd said...

I just thought everyone would be thrilled to know that.

laughingwolf said...

just thrilled pjd, thx... it also COULD'VE been a scot who spelt it thus! :O lol

Chumplet said...

Cool story, pjd.

Less than an hour to go, kids. I have to go pick up my daughter from work so I'll go over the answers when I get back.

There's still time to amuse the Chumplet.

Don't forget, in addition to a pdf copy, the winner will also receive an autographed print copy when it becomes available. Maybe even a puck or a Chumplet hockey card if I get my act together and make them!

Dave F. said...

I spell Whiskey as
J o h n B a r l e y c o r n.

Shona Snowden said...

I'm sick. I need whisky and lemon. On second thoughts, hold the lemon.

Anonymous said...

Finally got away from the kids!

1) Which hockey team does Sandra like best?

Why, the best-looking one of course!

2) What color is Jason's helmet (and why)?

It is pink with little red hearts upon it. He is very much in touch with his feminine side.

3) Write a 4-line poem titled "Ode to a Hockey Puck." Please do not rhyme puck with f*** (even though we know that's all you can think to rhyme it with now).

Hockey puck, oh hockey puck,
What the hell are you?
Sandra dear, oh Sandra dear,
Hi, and how d'you do!

Good luck with the book, Chumplet!

Dolores Haze

Phoenix said...

Hey guys -- we're hanging out the "closed" sign. Chump ... I mean Sandra ... is mulling over all the excellent offerings and is almost ready to announce the winnah!

Meanwhile, I see Shona over in the corner firing up the grill and getting ready for Nicola Marsh and "The Desert Prince's Proposal".

Woo-hoo! It's been a fun, fun day!

Chumplet said...

Well, that was a great turnout! This was a wonderful day and I had loads of fun reading all the great poetry.

First, let me thank Phoenix, Chris and the other Roast Masters for making me feel so welcome, and to everyone who commented and generally hung out with me today.

As some of you know, I live near Toronto and I love the Leafs, but the boys that are really close to my heart are Les Habitants aka The Montreal Canadiens. I was born in Montreal and they were the first team to catch my attention.

Those who guessed the Leafs or the Habs were half right, and those who said Jason's helmet was blue or white were also right.

The poems were an absolute delight!

It was hard to pick a winner but I'm happy to announce the winner is:

Bernita! Bernita was extra right when she said I'll take any team that isn't playing my Habs or my Leafs. I don't choose when they play each other, I just sit back and enjoy the game.

Her poem was also stellar. Hockey players' butts were a star attraction, but I laughed out loud at her quick, concise and to the point declaration about a nice ass.

Bernita, I'll email you a pdf copy of Bad Ice, and later on I'll get your snail mail address for your hard copy.

Thanks, everyone! See you around blogland!

McKoala said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shona Snowden said...

Well done, Bernita! Thank you Chumplet!

Phoenix said...

Congrats, Bernita! What is it about you and asses, eh? If it's not yours, it's someone else's ... :o)

So Bad Ice will be in print in time for hockey season, huh? Now THAT's promotion you just can't buy.

Sandra, it's been a joy. Thank you for being such a wonderful roastee!

Bernita said...

I scored?
Meeeeee?
She roared.
I'm floored!

Oh, Sandra, thank you so much! I didn't get home until late and didn't see this until now.
Thank you so MUCH!

laughingwolf said...

grats bernita!

thx to sandra for a fun time, and the participants for their hilarious contributions :)

ChrisEldin said...

Congrats to Bernita! Sorry I'm getting here late.

Thanks to all for stopping by and playing!!!
:-)