Heart pounding, gut wrenching, laugh out loud moments. If you read a Toni Aleo book than it’s a guarantee that you will feel each of these things and more!
Toni Aleo is a self published New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, taking the publishing world by the balls and making it her bitch. If you haven’t heard of her than you’re either living under a rock or new to the Contemporary Romance Genre. She’s best known for her Assassin’s series. The overall Arc of the Assassins series is about a team of strong hockey player’s falling in love with strong women. As with any book no character is perfect. They all have flaw’s and it’s those flaws that make her reader’s fall in love with her characters and coming back to get more and more.
The series is so popular that it spawned a spin-off series titled The Bellevue Bullies. Think of it as the younger, bad assier (new word right there!) sibling to the Assassins. With 3 brothers in college trying to make into the NHL draft, the last thing they need are relationships, but fate has a different opinion and throws everything it’s got at them.
As if that wasn’t enough Toni also started the Patchwork, a paranormal series about a young woman who happens to be a descendant of Dr. Frankenstein. She also has the Taking Risks series which follows a young woman on a self finding trip to Ireland and a whiskey “royal” family. You can check out my review for the latest book in the series Whiskey Rebellion here.
All of this she’s done by self publishing! She recently signed with publisher Waterhouse Press and is part of the “Misadventures” family, with her book Misadventures With a Rookie coming out April 10th, 2018 and Misadventures with A Manny coming out October 9th, 2018! We’ll have our review for Misadventures with a Rookie release day so check back for that! (Hint: BUY IT!)
Needless to say Toni is one busy as hell woman and that doesn’t factor in her personal life as well. But she somehow managed to find time to answer some of our questions!
Iconic Reads: So we know you have a deal with Waterhouse Press that has resulted in Misadventures with a Rookie. Are there any more books in this deal and if so how many?
Toni Aleo: Yes! I am so excited, I have two more with them thus far. I’ve already wrote one of them and it’s probably one of my favorites. I can’t wait to write the next!
Ic: How do you write such strong female characters?
TA: I was raised by a very strong woman and also 2 very strong grandmothers, so I think i pull from them and then all my own life experiences. Even though im only thirty-four, i feel I’ve been through some hard times and being able to pull from that sort of heals me in a way. I want my females to be relatable and strong. Someone a reader can look up to.
IC: I know previously you had mentioned that you had thought about doing another hockey team but it didn’t work out. What changed with Misadventures with a Rookie?
TA: I go back and forth. I love my little Assassins world, something insane, but yet, with Misadventures, I had to do something completely different. It was so much fun and i sort of go back and forth since writing Rookie of doing another team. I don’t know! LOL.
IC: I know you’re working on your next book End Game which is a Bellevue Bullies novel. Assuming this is Aiden’s book what made you decide to go ahead and do the time jump? and when will it be out can you share?
TA: Again, I went back and forth about the jump. There are so many pros and cons I feel, but yet, I felt it needed to be done. The book should drop June 12th, 2018, and we’ll see who it’s about! LOL
IC: What do you think it is about your books that has resonated with so many readers? And how do you keep the stories fresh and new?
TA: I think they’re real and everyone can find something to relate too. Which is something I strive with each book. I want to push the envelope and bring real stories to real people because to me, they are real. I think that’s how I keep everything fresh and new too. In my head, they’re telling me the story, so to me, it’s all new and amazing.
IC: We know with every book that you publish there is a piece of your heart in it. Which book mean’s the absolute most you and why?
TA: I think I have to go with Overtime. That book was very personal. It deals with addiction and over coming that. Some people can’t fight, and I wanted people to know they can.
IC: What or who pushed you into doing self publishing? I’m assuming it wasn’t your first choice or was it and why?
TA: Yeah, it wasn’t. When I finished Taking Shots, I looked at my husband and told him. He told me to do something with it. So I did. I queried everyone, and tried to get an agent. Nothing worked and then I was on this site called Books, and one girl was like you should just publish this yourself. So I did, and the rest is history as it’s always said!
IC: Walk us through what your typical writing process is.
TA: My writing process, is much like my life, a hot mess. I can write in my bed, on my couch, at my desk, at my daughters gym, and even in my car. I can, thankfully, write and anywhere and im one of those writers that just do it. I don’t do outlines cause I never follow them, and half the time, I don’t ever know how the story ends. I usually only have the beginning and I go from there.
IC: How did it feel when you first found out you had become a New York Times bestselling author?
TA: Oh I cried. I cried so damn bad, it wasn’t even funny. I remember lying in my kitchen floor, crying, clutching my phone in my hand as my best friend told me how proud my mom is of me. I had lost her seven months before so I was very emotional.
IC: We know you love Supernatural so here’s an easy question Sam or Dean? and why?
TA: Dean all the way. There is something about that man that gets me going! He is so funny, so hot, and ahh! haha
IC: Okay last question. What is next for Toni Aleo? After End Game of course.
TA: Oh, so much. I have a new down home series coming out, I have four hockey books coming out and then another Misadventures! I am very excited!
You can see why we selected Toni Aleo as our first Featured Author! We look forward to the continued success and journey that Toni is on!
As a little extra I took the liberty to make a little bracket challenge seeing as we just got done with March Madness, but I put a little Assassin’s twist on it! if you want to make your own you can head on over to our facebook page Here.