Davidson, MaryJanice (Janice Pohl)
PERSONAL: Married; children: two.
CAREER: Writer. Manager of operations for a brokerage firm.
AWARDS, HONORS: Sapphire Award for Excellence in Science-Fiction Romance, 2000, for story "Love's Prisoner."
Adventures of the Teen Furies (young-adult novel), Hard Shell Word Factory (Amherst Junction, WI), 2001.
By Any Other Name (novel), Hard Shell Word Factory (Amherst Junction, WI), 2001.
Canis Royal: Bridefight (e-book; novel), Ellora's Cave (Stow, OH), 2002.
Under Cover (short stories), Brava (New York, NY), 2003.
Beggarman, Thief (e-book; novel), Loose-ID Publications (Carson City, NV), 2004.
Undead and Unwed (novel), Berkley Sensation (New York, NY), 2004.
Undead and Unemployed (novel), Berkley Sensation (New York, NY), 2004.
The Royal Treatment (novel), Brava (New York, NY), 2004.
Undead and Unappreciated (novel), Berkley Sensation (New York, NY), 2005.
Derik's Bane (novel), Berkley Sensation (New York, NY), 2005.
Hello, Gorgeous! (novel), Brava (New York, NY), 2005.
Also author of e-books, including novels Thief of Hearts and Love Lies, for Ellora's Cave, and Dying for Ice Cream (young-adult), for Fiction Works, and nonfiction, including including Escape the Slush Pile, for Fiction Works. Contributor of short fiction to anthologies, including Men at Work Berkley Sensation (New York, NY), 2004; Bite, Bad Boys with Expensive Toys; Perfect for the Beach; Cravings; How to Be a "Wicked" Woman; Naughty or Nice; and Secrets, Volumes 6 and 8. Contributor, under pseudonym Janice Pohl, to Reunions: Four Inspiring Romance Stories of Friends Reunited.
SIDELIGHTS: MaryJanice Davidson is primarily a writer of romance novels and short stories, but she has worked in a variety of subgenres, including supernatural, science-fiction, young-adult, erotic, and inspirational romances. Her work often features copious helpings of humor and frank sexuality. The winner of a romance-writing contest sponsored by author Lori Foster, Davidson has written extensively for publication in both print and e-book form, and the success of her e-books has helped build her print career. For instance, Undead and Unwed, a novel about a young, single, fashion-conscious female vampire, was originally published as an e-book, and it caught the attention of an editor at Berkley. After the company published the novel in print form, it released several other books by Davidson, including two sequels to Undead and Unwed.
Undead and Unwed introduces readers to Betsy Taylor, a woman who joins the undead after dying in a traffic accident. Unlike most vampires, Betsy can go out in the daytime and is not bothered by religious symbols, and these qualities make her a candidate for queen of the vampires. But she also must do battle with another candidate, an evil, five-hundred-year-old vampire named Nostro. Assisting her in this effort is Eric Sinclair, a vampire who is handsome and sexy, but who nevertheless does not appeal to Betsy. Describing the novel as a "chick-lit foray into the paranormal," Booklist critic Diana Tixier Herald dubbed the story "sexy," "funny," and "delightful."
In Undead and Unemployed, Betsy has become vampire queen, but she still needs a job in the mortal world, so she goes to work in a department store selling one of her favorite things: designer shoes. Meanwhile, she has to fight off a gang of vampire-slayers and come to the aid of an enigmatic young girl. Booklist critic Herald praised the novel highly, calling it "wickedly clever and amusing." The series continued in 2005 with Undead and Unappreciated.
Vampires are not the only supernatural creatures to appear in Davidson's writings. The hero of Derik's Bane is attractive young werewolf Derik Gardner. His wolf pack sends him on a mission to kill Morgan le Fay, the wicked enchantress of the King Arthur legends, in order to stop what the werewolves believe is Morgan's plot to destroy the world. Morgan has been reincarnated in modern-day northern California as Dr. Sara Gunn, with whom Derik falls in love after failing to kill her. Sara, at first skeptical, eventually comes to believe she is indeed Morgan, but she claims Morgan has been falsely accused of evil intentions, and she and Derik join in fighting an Arthur-worshipping cult that is truly threatening the planet. Harriet Klausner, writing in MBR Bookwatch, found Derik's Bane "a unique well-written romantic fantasy with a Camelot twist," adding that Derik and Sara are humorous and appealing. Herald, again reviewing for Booklist, also noted the book's comic aspects, writing that it "will elicit delighted howls of laughter." The novel was the first in a projected "Wyndham Werewolves" series.
Hello, Gorgeous! is a venture into science fiction involving a young woman who is brought back to life after a fatal car crash through the implantation of mechanical parts. The procedure gives this "bionic woman," Caitlyn James, superpowers, so the U.S. government enlists her as a secret agent, giving her a mission to track and thwart a computer hacker. In Booklist, Herald predicted that readers would enjoy the novel's "over-the-top humor and raunchily funny sex scenes"
In The Royal Treatment Davidson envisions an alternate reality in which the state of Alaska is an independent country ruled by a monarchy. The royals like to mingle with the common people, and one day the king brings home a rootless young woman as a bride for his eldest son, the crown prince. The woman and the prince do fall in love, but they are not wholly compatible, and they must overcome their personal differences while dealing with troubles facing the kingdom. Booklist contributor Maria Hatton deemed the book "quirky" and "fun."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, March 15, 2004, Diana Tixier Herald, review of Undead and Unwed, p. 1274; May 1, 2004, Maria Hatton, review of The Royal Treatment, p. 1550; August, 2004, Diana Tixier Herald, review of Undead and Unemployed, p. 1908; December 1, 2004, Diana Tixier Herald, review of Derik's Bane, p. 641; February 1, 2005, Diana Tixier Herald, review of Hello, Gorgeous!, p. 948.
MBR Bookwatch, January, 2005, Harriet Klausner, reviews of Derik's Bane and Men at Work; February, 2005, Klausner, review of Bad Boys with Expensive Toys.
Publishers Weekly, June 7, 2004, review of Cravings, p. 37; January 3, 2005, review of Bite, p. 42.
All about Romance Web site, http://www.likesbooks.com/ (March 25, 2005), Megan Frampton, review of Under Cover.
AllReaders.com, http://www.allreaders.com/ (March 25, 2005), L. Watson, review of Hello, Gorgeous!
Allscifi.com, http://www.allscifi.com/ (March 25, 2005), review of Canis Royal: Bridefight.