Posts Tagged ‘Urban Fantasy’
Bad Blood (Latter Day Olympians Bk 1)
Tori Karacis is a little more than your average private eye. Among other things, her family line may or may not trace back to a drunken liaison between the god Pan and one of the immortal gorgons. It may be just coincidence that her glance can literally stop men in their tracks, or that her family sports enough irregularities to keep the Rialto Bros. Circus in business. Then again, maybe not.
Tori’s debilitating fear of heights has kept her out of the family acrobatic troupe, but her extreme nosiness fits right in with her Uncle Christos’ private investigation business, where she was apprenticing when he disappeared on an Odyssean journey to find himself. Muddling through on her own, she’s reduced to hunting (not stalking, as that would just be weird), brass-bra’d Hollywood agent Circe Holland in order to deliver her a message…only to witness her murder by something that looks like the creature from the black lagoon.
Suddenly, all of her family’s tall tales seem a bit more believable, especially when Apollo—the Apollo out of myth and legend, though now hiding out among humans as a star of stage and screen—appears in her office, looking to hire her. She knows the stories and that tangling with gods never works out well for their human lovers, but she’s drawn to Apollo in a way she can’t resist, even given her feelings for one very hot and hardened cop.
Her love life has to take a backseat to the danger at her door, though it’s a toss-up which will kill her quickest.
We’re 12 authors from the Seductive Supernaturals box set, and we’re about to share blurbs and snippets with you, so prepare to have a reading experience! But, first, you should know about the bundle itself. Right now, it’s only .99 for a limited time. (Regular price 9.99.) That’s right—for only .99, you’ll get 6 full-length novels and 6 novellas from bestselling authors! Bought separately, these books would cost over 40.00.
So in short = Amazon bestselling bundle, all standalone books, no cliffhangers, low price! You can cozy up with sexy bad boys and tortured alpha heroes in these 12 steamy full-length paranormal romance novels and novellas from NY Times, USA Today, and national bestselling authors, just in time for Halloween!
And this is what you’re gonna get…
From NYT bestselling author Erin Quinn, who writes dark paranormal romance. Her books have been called “riveting,” “brilliantly plotted” and “beautifully written.” More at erinquinnbooks.com, http://www.facebook.com/ErinQuinnAuthor
Gracie Beck vowed that she would never to return to Diablo Springs, but the haunted town lures her back—along with the man who betrayed her years ago. Reilly broke her heart with his lies. Now, he wants a second chance to win her, but can they survive the ghosts of Diablo Springs?
Surprise darkened his eyes. Uncertainty shadowed them. Gracie didn’t give him the chance to make a decision—wrong or right. She took his face between her hands and kissed him. Earlier, in the kitchen, too much of their past had been churned to the surface. She’d needed a moment to let it settle, to let the doubts sift to the bottom so she could see what was important.
Reilly had done what he’d thought best. So had she. They’d made the decisions of teenagers—the same age as the two children who slept across the hall. Using those choices as a measuring rod now would be as foolish as the choices themselves.
Besides, through it all, in spite of it all, there was still this—the fire, the passion that led them to her pregnancy in the first place.
From NY Times and USA Today Bestseller Caridad Pineiro, a Jersey Girl who just wants to write, and travel. Caridad is the author of over 40 novels/novellas and loves romance novels, super heroes, TV and cooking.
Twitter at https://twitter.com/caridadpineiro
Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Caridad.Author
Would you be reborn for love? Ryder Latimer, sexy Southern vampire, will have to make one of the most difficult choices in his undead life: Become human again or protect his new wife and child.
“No, Di. In the mirror. I can see myself in the mirror. Just faintly, but my image is there.”
He waited for her disbelief, but instead there was only calm acceptance as she trailed her hand across his cheek and then skimmed it down to run across the bare skin at his shoulder. “You’re warmer, too. When you’re not in your vampire state that is. I noticed that you’re warmer the other night in bed.”
He’d thought so also, but had been afraid that it was just his imagination or maybe the changes in Diana.
Much like he’d had a taste of slayer blood, so had Diana in order to save her life during the birth of their daughter. Combined with his turning her, she was now a dhampir like their newborn child, and gifted with some vampire strength and healing, but also with mortal limitations.
“Do you think it’s possible that . . . I’m different? That the slayer blood did something?” he asked.
From Erin Kellison, the New York Times bestselling and award-winning author of dark fantasy romance, including the Shadow series and the Reveler series.
Just discovering her magic, ballerina Annabella Ames didn’t mean to summon a dark wolf from Twilight, nor the tempting fallen angel Custo Santovari, who has no place in Heaven. The cunning wolf stalks them relentlessly, and danger seduces as they fight for redemption and love.
She’d had one lover before, long over, but never, even at the peak of that passion, had she felt a fraction of the desire Custo evoked with the rake of his lust-hungry eyes. How could it be that an angel and temptation were one and the same?
Annabella’s breath caught as Custo leaned forward and found her jaw with his mouth, whispering against her skin as he traced a line toward her lips. “Your mind is a jumble, but it’s clear the direction you’re going. Decide already.”
The thought of her body under his, his muscles bunching, broad shoulders flaring as he braced himself over her had the burn coiling into a sublimely torturous, yearning knot. She was happy, celebratory, and, yes, she wanted it all. She wanted him.
From Lisa Kessler, an Amazon Best Selling author of dark, passionate, paranormal romance, including the Award-Winning Night Series and Moon Series.
When Colin Flynn returns home to Ireland, the immortal Night Walker’s flesh has healed, but the scars hide a broken spirit. Juliana Duffy plays piano in spite of her deafness, challenging him to redefine himself and find the strength to battle an ancient enemy.
He tipped his head. As she came around the bar, he turned his attention back to Juliana. Her determined stance reassured him. She was a fighter, heart and soul. He didn’t need to peer into her mind to see it. “I’ll meet up with you before sunrise.”
He stepped closer to her, the floral scent of her skin enticing him. She tipped her chin up, staring into his eyes, as his finger tenderly traced her jawline. He had to touch her soft, warm skin. This woman had been through enough already. Losing her cousin would surely break her. He needed to protect his territory, but now it was personal. He had to protect Juliana. And right now, that meant finding Muriel. He could not fail.
Leaning closer, he whispered, “Please be safe.”
Her lips parted, tempting him to bridge the distance between them. Before he could act, she rose on her toes and her lips tenderly brushed his, setting fire to his ancient soul. She lowered, breaking the kiss, her lashes fluttering up as she stared at him.
From Chris Marie Green, the BookScan bestselling urban fantasy author who writes the Vampire Babylon and Jensen Murphy, Ghost for Hire, series.
SHADOWS TILL SUNRISE
Two monster hunters fighting a star-crossed attraction and one bloodthirsty phantom leaving a trail of death… Can love survive till the sun rises?
The boots were clinging to me like fingers clawing their way down my skin, leaving delicious shivers that floated up, arousing me higher and higher. I moaned under his lips, wanting more, wanting to be anywhere but here with him…
I might have even made a small, agitated sound when he ended the kiss, his mouth less than an inch from mine, so close that I could feel every warm word echo against me.
“Now,” he whispered, “I can concentrate with a clear head, cher.”
And, with that, Philippe Angier set me back on my feet, tweaking my chin and walking away.
From USA Today bestselling author Mary Leo, who writes romance, paranormal romance, romantic suspense, and mystery. Her books have been described as “a must-read,” “thought provoking,” “delicious,” and “delightful.” Please visit her at: www.maryleo.com
A SHADOW AT TWILIGHT
They say Hotel Colorado is haunted, but when Dillon Spencer appears in his hotel room to find Hilly Thompson, his assistant, soaking in the tub, he begins to question whether or not he’s alive, dead or caught in another dimension.
“You can’t be here. It’s impossible. You’re too near death to be so well.” She tried to think of scenarios that could have brought him out of his coma and into the room, but none of them made any sense.
He pointed at a black leather notebook on the dresser in the corner of the room. “My things seem to be everywhere, along with yours. Yet you say we’re not dating, and there you are exposing yourself to me in the bathtub. Odd, don’t you think?”
A pang of guilt swept over her. “I, um, can explain everything. I was tired and—”
“You have feelings for me. I felt it when you touched my face. Those feelings aren’t love, they’re something else. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but then I can’t seem to put my finger on anything.” He giggled, and swiped at a towel hanging on a metal rack. His hand seemed to pass right through it.
From USA Today bestselling author Maureen Child, the award winning author of more than 130 romance novels in several different genres. More at www.maureenchild.com .
MORE THAN FIENDS
At 32, Cassidy Burke discovers she’s a legendary Demon Duster. But she’s got bigger problems than some pesky demons. Like, Logan Miller–first love, baby daddy to her genius daughter is back. Then there’s Devlin Cole, a walking orgasm with too many secrets. Cassidy’s life is out of control and about to get way too interesting.
I stared up at Magic Nights, and it looked a lot different in daylight. White brick, so clean and brilliant, it seemed to glow in the sun, the building took up nearly half the block. Windows glistened blankly, curtains closed tight across them. Neatly trimmed green hedges hugged the edges of the building and a small, elegant brass plaque by the double front doors proclaimed in swirling script, Magic Nights.
If you didn’t know what it was, the building could pass for any upscale business place. I’d never been inside Magic Nights, but I had driven past it at night. All lit up by bright white lights and flashes of color, music poured out the doors that were harder to get through than the gates at Buckingham Palace.
I’d often wondered why Devlin Cole had chosen to bring his exclusive club to La Sombra. After all, he probably would have done even more business than he did, if the place was in Los Angeles or San Francisco. But, maybe his clientele appreciated the smaller town vibe.
From Cassi Carver, the author of sexy urban fantasy, contemporary romance, and paranormal romance.
When Dr. Evelyn Vale is paired with Immortal Bounty’s sexy commander to go undercover and infiltrate a supernatural body-trafficking ring, she’s eager to get to work. Until she learns the catch… To crack this case, he’ll need to possess her body.
A few of the naked men turned their backs on her, others adjusted the towels at their waists, but one man in particular turned his torso in her direction. He was naked from the top of his glorious head to the tips of his sturdy feet. It was the rest of him that had Evelyn’s attention though. Her partner was…glorious. She’d thought perhaps his clothes had made him look bigger, broader at the shoulders, but no. That bulk was all him. Pure Greater-American muscle.
“Yes, Dr. Vale? Can I help you?” Jesse picked up a towel and cupped it over his groin.
His legs were slightly splayed, his thighs too densely muscled to press completely together.
“Uh…” Was this where she ran out screaming, blurting apologies, or was she supposed to seem unaffected by the locker-room scene, like just one of the guys. Darlene had warned her not to show fear. Did that apply to naked men?
From Janet Wellington, who writes award-winning contemporary & paranormal romance. Publishers Weekly: she creates “characters readers root for from page one.”
Tarot cards predict a dangerous journey for Taylor Rose, but she doesn’t expect to travel back to 1888 San Diego. What the cards didn’t predict was falling for a man bent on revenge, a helpful ghost, and spooky séances. Is she there to prevent a murder or to find love?
He was neatly dressed in a clean white shirt and ornate crimson and black brocaded vest, a loosely knotted silk string tie at his neck. His inky black hair was combed back, and seemed to be cut in longer layers than most of the other men. A few untamed tendrils curled onto his forehead. He was clean shaven, with a generous mouth that, she had already noticed, was quick to smile. He was hot—by anyone’s standards, no matter the time or place.
Taylor took another swallow of beer and tried to distract herself, self-conscious and embarrassed by her attraction to the man. It was as though she couldn’t help watching Jackson’s reflection in the mirror as he worked, the muscular outline of his broad shoulders straining against the fabric of his shirt as he constantly reached for bottles and glasses. She glanced downward to a waist that revealed an obviously flat stomach and narrow hips.
Taylor blinked, now more than a little shocked at her brazen staring. It must be the whiskey, she thought. Why else would she be on the verge of fantasizing about a man who—with any luck—would think she was a man?
And, add to that the fact that at least it appeared she was actually sitting in a saloon in San Diego in 1888.
From award-winning author Theresa Meyers, who writes the Sons of Midnight, Shadow Sisters, Legend Chronicles, Vector Force and Enochian Brotherhoood series.
WELCOME HOME, VAMPIRE
Corporal Cole Wagner lost his humanity in war – literally. Turned into a vampire by the military’s Vector Force, he’s the ultimate weapon, but when he returns home to set the past right, will the enemy stop at nothing to get him, including threatening the life of the woman he loved, and lost, before?
Cole instantly broke off the kiss. Kayla’s creamy skin was flushed with just a hint of pink and the heat in her brown eyes could have scalded him like a fresh cup of coffee. Her lips, now a deeper pink and slightly parted as her breath came faster, begged him to taste her again. But Cole held himself in check with a level of discipline that would have made his drill sergeant proud.
“I didn’t mean for that to happen,” he said, perhaps a tad too brusquely. The sparkle faded from her eyes and she pulled further away from him, crossing her arms over her chest. Great. He’d hurt her feelings. Not what he’d intended. But then none of this had been what he intended.
She gave him a narrow-eyed look. “Then exactly what did you have in mind?”
Yeah, like he had a prayer of explaining his vampire state or his powers to any civilian, let alone a woman who knew him better than anyone except his dead friend. Cole shook his head. “Doesn’t matter. Won’t happen. We had our time and it didn’t work out. I’m just here as a friend.”
From Sheri Whitefeather, an award-winning, bestselling romance author. Her books are generously spiced with love, passion and sinfully hot heroes.
Two tenderly romantic, wildly erotic stories featuring supernatural hybrids (vampires/genies) who grant wishes for the exchange of blood.
Marie’s heart punched her chest. Although Nicholas was immortal, he looked about her age, with tousled dark hair, hazel eyes, a bad-boy smile, and a hot-as-sin body clothed in a black shirt and slim-fitting jeans. No scarves, no headdress, no genie attire from her childhood imaginings.
A gap of sexy silence passed between them. Or that was how it felt to her. But maybe she was reading more into it because he was so gorgeous. She’d expected handsome, but not the holy-fucking-hell kind.
“Hello, Marie.” His voice was as devilish as the rest of him. “It’s nice to meet you.”
She could little more than reply, “You, too.”
He gave a slight bow. “I’m at your service.”
From bestselling author Elisabeth Staab, who loves happy endings, coffee, and sob-inducing “restore your faith in humanity” stories. She lives in Washington DC with her family and her mug collection.
WILD NIGHTS WITH A LONE WOLF
A mandatory vacation lands Agent Sherri Walker in bed with a local werewolf. Asher Hughes walked away from his outlaw pack but couldn’t ditch the bad blood. Together they’ll have to pull off one hell of an act to get out of treacherous territory alive.
She looked him over. He smiled easily, seductively, as relaxed and confident now as when he’d clutched that other man’s shirt in his fingers. Eyes that appeared coal-dark outside now glowed like warm amber, glittering under the bar lights. Blunt nails and roughed-up hands suggested manual labor, but his fingers looked long and elegant. The kaleidoscope-color tattoos of a skeleton wearing a wolf pelt and the bold text that decorated his forearms suggested— “Oh, hell.”
Pack emblems. She’d attended a seminar on them before leaving DC. “You’re a werewolf.” They’d made their existence known over the past couple of decades, small gangs of them living along the Mexico border. Further north, some still didn’t believe in their existence, but their penchant toward violent behavior had landed more than one on the government’s watch list.
The words Los Lobos Muertos twisted around each tattoo. His pack name. Must be.
Contest: Up for grabs—a $10 Amazon gift card! All you have to do is comment about your favorite kind of sexy paranormal hero! (Contest ends Monday, Oct. 27, 2014.)
I’m so excited! Today is a release day for me. The third book in the Draven’s Crossing series is out. *Grins* I hope you like it. I have another book or two planned for this series.
Excerpt: Meeting With Draven
Out Now at Purple Sword Publications
Draven’s Crossing: Hidden Diversions
With so many distractions, can they catch a killer before someone else dies?
Their passion may be the death of them…
Werewolf Chief of Police, Torger, is running into walls while tracking the Draven’s Crossing serial killer. No matter what he tries to do, he can’t find the clues needed to stop the terror that stalks the streets of his city. Things aren’t helped by his attraction to dragon shifter, Draven City News Reporter, Isadora Jones. With political pressure and bodies mounting, can he get through all these distractions to the truth before it’s too late?
Reporter, Isadora Jones wants to help with the investigation into the serial killer but Torger refuses to let her. She decides to do it on her own, but her world goes upside down when the killer sets his sights on her. Under Torger’s protection, they start to put the pieces together but will it be too late for them?
Things go from bad to worse when another killer appears. Draven’s Crossing just got a whole lot more dangerous.
Purple Sword Publications:
Torger tossed and turned in his bed. He could smell her on his covers. Her scent drifted around the room like an enticing trail he wanted to follow. His skin burned as his muscles contracted. Blood flowed straight to his cock, thickening the shaft. His balls hardened and throbbed with the need for release. With a groan, he rolled onto his stomach. His mind was split into two parts: one half didn’t think it was right to want sex much less have it with so many bodies piling up, and the other didn’t give a shit and needed to feel something good in a world full of crap. He didn’t want to think about anything. He had the All Packs meeting that was coming up after the full moon. His mind was abuzz with thoughts and lists. There were things he had to do and things he had to discuss. Torger hadn’t met with his Beta yet, nor had he met the new leader of the Branson pack after the old one had been ousted. Then he had to make sure that Draven would get the old ones to meet with him about the killer. There was Evanson to deal with, and he didn’t want to think about the shit storm that could come out of accusing him of anything, especially not with the man’s wife dead. Whether he had anything to do with it or not, the public wouldn’t be happy. Muffy Evanson was a beloved figure in the community. If the Representative had anything to do with her death, there would be chaos. He needed to be sure, to dig deeper. Torger knew he’d have to ask Isy to dive into the archives and see what she came up with.
The sweetest perfume drifted under his door. He snorted and sat up. She was near. His eyes had already adjusted to the darkness. He saw a shadow move in front of his door but it didn’t go to the guest room across the hall. He waited; the seconds ticked by. Each moment like a drip of water on his face, it seemed to last forever and there was no end in sight. He swallowed. His lips became dry as his heartbeat sped up. The jangle of a hand on the door handle rang in his ears. The delicate shells prickled at the musical sound. He waited. His heart stuttered and then crashed against his ribcage in a heavy drum beat. His body heat spiked as his wolf waited. Need coiled in the pit of his stomach. He licked his lips again, hoping, praying for what, he didn’t know. All he saw was that if she didn’t do something soon, he would. And then there would be no turning back. Everything would change for them, and he wasn’t sure how everyone would react or how everything would land.
As the seconds ticked by, her shadow remained at the door. The hand had stopped jiggling. Opening up his senses, he allowed her emotions to wash over him. He tasted the tang of hesitation with the sweetness of eagerness. All of it was tinged with the bright spice of lust. Underneath it all, there was Isy’s own unique natural scent. Not wanting to let the torture for both of them continue, he called out, “Isy, you can come in.”
There was a moment and then the door knob turned. Her perfume and emotions rushed into the room, driving away the stale trail she’d made before. It was as if someone had turned on the sun in his room. Heat poured over him in waves as she advanced into the space and shut the door behind her. Both of them were covered in darkness and yet he knew she stood between the door and his bed. So close and yet so far away as the cliché went. His fingers ached to hold her, to feel the silken warmth of her skin and bury his face in her neck and inhale deeply. Torger’s lips tingled with the need to kiss her, to feel her lips against his and slide his tongue into her mouth and taste her. He wondered what he’d find there. He didn’t want to think about it anymore.
“Isy? What’s wrong?” Torger knew what was wrong but didn’t want to come out and say it. His wolf on the other hand wanted him to get up off the bed, strip off her clothes, bury his face between her thighs and eat her out until she came. His cock jerked at that urge. Heat flared along his skin, flushing through is cheeks, down his throat, and crashing into his chest. Prickles danced along his flesh as his nerve endings came alive. His sense sharpened as his wolf came into play, pushing at its restraints, demanding that they finally get what they’d longed for after so much denial. And he couldn’t move. Frozen by his guilt as his responsibility pushed forward to the forefront of his mind. Pack. Duty. Draven’s Crossing. Those words screamed in his head, and he felt a tinge of shame.
No shame! His wolf cried out and growled at its master’s retreating libido. His skin cooled as his heart went back to its normal rhythm.
“Torger. Shut up. Stop thinking.” Isy’s voice came out as a low, husky command. Just like that, the fire inside burst to life. It went from simmer to all out firestorm as Isy advanced toward his bed. How she knew about the war going on in his head he didn’t know. Do dragons smell things the way other shifters do? The question pushed back some of his doubts.
The bed dipped under her weight, which served to shove back more of the pressure on his mind.
“Can you…” The question caught around a lump in his throat. It had formed when he wasn’t looking. A nervous sweat began on his forehead. He felt large and unsure of himself, like a teenager during his first experience. “Your stress and frustration reeks. It’s time to put an end to that. Your doubts and concerns won’t save the people of Draven’s Crossing and it sure as hell won’t help you catch the killer. Now didn’t I tell you to shut up?” Her hands closed around his ankles. He felt them slide up his legs. The cloth abraded his skin. Even though it was smooth cotton, it felt a thousand times rougher than before. He swallowed again, not used to this side of Isy. Rather than ask, he did as she said and stayed quiet. He didn’t move or even dare to breathe without her say so. His thoughts drifted away with her touch. She ran her hands over his thighs. The scrape of her nails over the cotton intensified his sense of touch. The blunted pain only enhanced his need. Desire crawled through his body as blood thickened in his veins. Her unique aroma became his air. Each gulp sent his head spinning and his mind drifting. He was lightheaded with her nearness.
“You’re going to let me take care of you. I’ll be handling your pleasure tonight. You do what I say and want without a single word, understand?” She placed a butterfly kiss on his stomach, so light it could have been the brush of the wind for all he knew. Her humid breath told him otherwise.
Torger nodded his acquiescence. He let out a yelp when he felt her teeth sink into one ridge of his abdominals. “No. Let me hear you say it. Tell me, yes, Isy, I understand.” She lapped at the pained flesh with quick licks of her tongue. Each lap pulled a soft groan from his throat as the pain turned to pleasure.
“Yes, Isy, I understand. Please.” He reached for her, wanting to bury his hands in her hair and pull her close but did nothing until told to. His alpha male self went to war over giving power to Isy. It had nothing to do with her being a woman or even a dragon. Everything in him was designed to take care of people, solve problems, and yet he was rescinding control to her. He was allowing her to take care of his problem, solve it for him and take care of him. He wasn’t sure how to respond so he did nothing. Curiosity peeked out from the wolf. It wondered how this would go, not in the least bothered by the shift in power.
The anti-hero and his epic heart.
Is it true that women love bad boys? Or are we only in love with the idea of the bad boy? The great thing about fiction is that these two questions need only one answer—who cares! They shouldn’t even exist for the reader. Logic doesn’t enter the equation of whether or not its safe to love the bad guy. Real world mores and repercussions are irrelevant and inconsequential in the pages of a good book. Beneath the roof of a house of leaves, anything and everything the heart desires is perfectly acceptable—even encouraged. Bring on the bad boys, the badder the better, because its so much more fun to love the beast than it is to tame him.
The anti-hero is a fascinating character. He can be so many things at once, even the antithesis of everything we know to be good and worthy of our love. In fact the more dangerous, the more deadly, the more brutal he is, the more desirable he becomes. If he is capable of such heartless, single-minded purpose to gain his own ends, how powerful and shattering a thing might it be to capture his heart and be the target of his passions! He would love with all the unstoppable violence of a storm, devastating and consuming. It would take a strong woman to withstand such an encounter—that secret heroine in all of us, who thumbs her nose at danger and takes the devil by the horns with every intent to survive and triumph. There is no place at an anti-hero’s side for a simpering little Miss. He’d crush her before he even saw her. But a woman of spirit, now there is a prize any man would die for—doubly so the anti-hero, because he has absolutely no fear of death.
No matter how dark the anti-hero’s heart, it can be redeemed by the power of love. He may have the blood of thousands on his hands, but the stain is washed away (semi) clean when he meets the one woman who can reach through his savagery to the vulnerable man beneath the skin. Through her love he can find redemption, but he needn’t lose his edge. Love doesn’t transform the danger in his heart, it merely redirects it, channels it. The woman he loves becomes the center of his existence and woe betides the fool who dares get in his way. If anything, once the anti-hero finds his mate, he is even more deadly than ever before. Because if there is anything an anti-hero might fear, it would be the loss of his woman and so he would be driven to the single-minded purpose of keeping her close; never letting go.
In my series The Horde Wars, the recurring character Lord Daemon is a balls to the wall anti-hero. He is guilty of countless deaths, of immense destruction, yet he is without remorse. He can’t feel remorse (yet). He views life as a fleeting, inconsequential thing and as such, the taking of a life means little to him. Daemon will do anything and everything he must to achieve his goals. All because of a woman he loved and then lost.
Imagine being the focus of all that dark obsession.
Since the death of his woman, in a misguided attempt to resurrect her, Daemon has killed, maimed and corrupted everything in his path. He has turned the world in on itself and the gutted it. All in the name of love. Its twisted and its bleak, but Daemon is a shadow, not a rainbow. He has seen such darkness that were the light of a woman’s heart to find him now he would be blinded to everything else. But he’s so lost in his abyss of suffering that he may never find such a love again. There may not be a woman strong enough or brave enough to reach him anymore. But we can all fantasize. We can all imagine ourselves to be the one woman strong enough to ride out his fury, to claim his attention, become his new obsession and absolve his soul. We couldn’t tame him, would never tame him, but we could find the strength inside our deepest, most feminine self, to be capable of securing his all-consuming love.
That’s why the anti-hero is so appealing. Because no matter what he’s done, no matter how much of a monster he can be, to that one special woman he is the ultimate alpha male. Willing to kill, to poison his own soul, so that he can have her forever. He will tirelessly work to keep her safe and completely his. He would never crush her, but worship her, because she is his salvation. He has no heart, because she keeps it for him. An anti-hero would do anything, without regret, to hold onto his woman’s love. Savage, animalistic, barbaric and indomitable—this and all things dark are what comprises the anti-hero’s DNA.
Heady stuff. At least, in this reader’s opinion.
Sherri King lives in the American Midwest with her husband, artist and illustrator Darrell King. An avid bookoholic, when she isn’t reading or writing, she’s playing epic, time wasting video games with her husband, friends and two supernatural dogs, Porkchop and Spike. Sherri is the author of critically acclaimed series The Horde Wars and Sterling Files, as well as the horror lit-erotica, Venereus. Her books are available in electronic, print and audio formats from Ellora’s Cave Publishing, Inc. and Simon & Schuster.
To contact Sherri (provided she’s in Earth’s orbit and can be reached):
Facebook Page (where posts and news appear most frequently): http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sherri-L-King/116986838311505
Heroes and Villains
Sometimes there is a very fine line between the two. Call it the bad-boy syndrome or the anti-hero, but many story “heroes” often flirt with both sides. It can make for a nice dynamic, particularly if the heroine isn’t entirely sure what to make of it. And of course, she’s most likely going to be attracted to him, just for that reason. If he’s truly bad, can he be redeemed? And will she be the one to do it?
For myself, I don’t mind it if my heroes straddle the line, because people generally tend to exist in shades of grey, and that’s exactly how I like my characters. I enjoy watching a hero’s layers slowly peeling back as we discover what makes him tick and what those inner motivations are. Often we find certain actions that may have appeared villainous or untoward at first become much more heroic once we know *why* he did them.
Not that those reasons necessarily excuse them from being an asshat, but it lends a certain amount of sympathy to their plight and it can be much easier for a reader to connect with that character. We can make allowances as to why he very well *should* end up with the heroine.
In my debut, A Brush of Darkness, Brystion the incubus has a certain element of the anti-hero in him. He’s motivated by the need to rescue his sister, but my heroine Abby has very little incentive to trust him, particularly when she has her own set of missing people to deal with. Of course, they end up having to join forces in the end…but things aren’t always what they seem. As much as Abby is attracted to him, she’s also very much aware that Brystion is an actual daemon, and one known for his overly seductive traits. Although she does give in to him (partially due to attraction and partially due to a deal they worked out), there is always a niggling of uncertainty in the back of her mind. Will he love her? Or betray her?
Here’s a little excerpt of A Brush of Darkness:
“I wasn’t trying to seduce you. The offer was genuine.” He pushed his hand through his hair. “It’s a little disconcerting to be turned down by a mere mortal.”
“Just a mortal,” I snorted. “Real nice. I’ll see what I can do about soothing your ego, O gracious and tactful one.” I chewed on my lower lip thoughtfully and gave him a sly smile. “Of course, you probably shouldn’t feel too bad. After all, I am wearing a magical amulet now.”
His mouth pursed. “You are?”
“Sure. It’s made of silver and moonbeams and blessed by a flatulent dwarf,” I intoned gravely. “It’s a guaranteed ‘plus four’ against Incubus Seduction.”
“You’re an ass.”
“Kiss, kiss, darling.” I fluttered my eyelashes, puckering my lips in mock affection.
His hand snarled into my hair, fingers twined tightly at the base of my head. “This is a complication I don’t want, Abby.” He growled the words, but there was no mistaking the desire that smoldered behind his now glowing eyes.
“The bulge in your pants says otherwise,” I retorted, perversely nudging my hips against him. A little voice in the back of my mind was going into apoplectic fits at my boldness. As far as I was concerned, the incubus had been acting like some sort of preternatural cocktease since we’d met and I’d had enough.
He let out a stifled groan, his other hand snaking down to grip my ass. “You’ll regret it,” he breathed, releasing his hold on my hair to trace a curious thumb over my jaw. His face drifted closer until his mouth brushed mine. I shuddered at the delicate intrusion. His fingers slid up to the small of my back.
“Probably.” I sighed, my mind happily unable to focus on anything but the way he was nipping at my lower lip. “I regret a lot of things.”
The incubus stared at me, an unnamed emotion flickering across his face, and then his lips were on mine, fierce and possessive. He devoured me utterly. There was only the sweetness of his tongue, probing hot and wet into the velvet contours of my mouth. It swept shallow, lingering to taste the soft edges, and then moved deeper, pulsing and rhythmic to match the rapid beating of my heart. I jerked forward to bury my hands in his hair, my ragged breathing giving way to a low cry of longing.
“How’s that ego?” he purred.
“Rock hard from the feel of it,” I gasped. “Just the way I like it.”
I had a naked incubus in my bedroom. With a frying pan of half-cooked bacon and a hard-on. And a unicorn bite on his ass. Christ, this was turning out to be a weird morning.
Six months ago, Abby Sinclair was struggling to pick up the pieces of her shattered life. Now, she has an enchanted iPod, a miniature unicorn living in her underwear drawer, and a magical marketplace to manage. But despite her growing knowledge of the OtherWorld, Abby isn’t at all prepared for Brystion, the dark, mysterious, and as sexy as sin incubus who shows up searching for his sister—and is convinced Abby has the key to the succubus’s whereabouts. Abby has enough problems without having this seductive shape-shifter literally invading her dreams to get information. But when her Faery boss and some of her friends vanish as well, Abby and Brystion must form an uneasy alliance. As Abby is sucked deeper and deeper into this perilous world of faeries, angels, and daemons, she realizes her life is in as much danger as her heart—and there’s no one she can trust to save her.
A marine biologist in a former life, Allison Pang turned to a life of crime to finance her wild spending habits and need to collect Faberge eggs. A cat thief of notable repute, she spends her days sleeping and nights scaling walls and wooing dancing boys….Well, at least the marine biology part is true. But she was taloned by a hawk once. She also loves Hello Kitty, sparkly shoes, and gorgeous violinists.
She spends her days in Northern Virginia working as a cube grunt and her nights waiting on her kids and cats, punctuated by the occasional husbandly serenade. Sometimes she even manages to write. Mostly she just makes it up as she goes.
Facebook: – http://www.facebook.com/apang
Twitter: – http://www.twitter.com/allison_pang
Ah, Villains. My favorite. They add tension, conflict, danger, and suspense to any story. And in the case of The Zero Dog War, they bring the humor by the busload.
Yes, I just finished writing a comedy Urban Fantasy. It stars a heroine who is a mercenary captain trying to save her team from bankruptcy and save her heart from a potential rival—Green Beret Jake Sanders. But the craziness really ramps up when the villain strolls onto the scene. Meet Jeremiah Hansen, capitalist necromancer whose business plan involves using the zombies he controls to work in a factory that produces powdered gelatin. The Zero Dog mercenaries are ordered to stop him, and wild zombie-fighting mayhem ensues.
And if that scenario wasn’t wacky enough, Evil Overlord Jeremiah has a few odd personality quirks that sometimes hinder, sometimes advance his plot for world domination.
1) Jeremiah is a necromancer overlord and entrepreneur who hates golf. Hates it. He’s horrible at it. And despite the golf course being the “green boardroom,” he still can’t get a handle on the game. When he rules the world, golf will be banned.
2) He transports his zombie hordes around in a yellow school bus. This is by necessity, and not a stylistic choice, as school buses generally score low on the Villain Cool Scale.
3) He robs banks. With zombies. Enough said.
4) He has a crush on the heroine. And I think we can all guess this can only end badly.
5) Keeping zombies in line is a thankless, 24 hour a day task. Yes, when your employees are largely hungry mindless undead, it can be a struggle dealing with HR issues, productivity challenges, and manufacturing safety. If a few zombies end up in the powered gelatin mix, he’ll never be able to get the factory ISO 9000 certified—not to mention it throws off the color and taste of the lime flavor product.
6) All this and more! Seriously, there’s a ton more jokes/humor/comedy in this book. Everything from nudist-inclined werewolves to mages who can summon alien ferrets and demonic kittens.
Also includes: Action, romance, more action, forklift accidents, dark elves, and fire.
Here’s the blurb:
The first bullet is always free. After that, you gotta pay.
Zero Dog Missions, Book 1
After accidentally blowing up both a client facility and a cushy city contract in the same day, pyromancer and mercenary captain Andrea Walker is scrambling to save her Zero Dogs. A team including (but not limited to) a sexually repressed succubus, a werewolf with a thing for health food, a sarcastic tank driver/aspiring romance novelist, a three-hundred-pound calico cat, and a massive demon who really loves to blow stuff up.
With the bankruptcy vultures circling, Homeland Security throws her a high-paying, short-term contract even the Zero Dogs can’t screw up: destroy a capitalist necromancer bent on dominating the gelatin industry with an all-zombie workforce. The catch? She has to take on Special Forces Captain Jake Sanders, a man who threatens both the existence of the team and Andrea’s deliberate avoidance of romantic entanglements.
As Andrea strains to hold her dysfunctional team together long enough to derail the corporate zombie apocalypse, the prospect of getting her heart run over by a tank tread is the least of her worries. The government never does anything without an ulterior motive. Jake could be the key to success…or just another bad day at the office for the Zeroes.
Contains explicit language, intense action and violence, rampaging zombie hordes, a heroine with an attitude and flamethrower, Special Forces commandos, ninjas, apocalyptic necromancer capitalist machinations, absurd parody and mayhem, self-deluded humor, irreverence, geek humor, mutant cats, low-brow comedy, and banana-kiwi-flavored gelatin.
Get it here! Samhain Publishing
And Get it Here! ARe
And Don’t Forget Here! Kindle
Or Here! Nook
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