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Blog Tour Feature: Indigo Knights Series by A.J. Downey

I am pleased to announce a cool book blog tour going on right now, presented by A.J. Downey, an author I met during my journey! Congratulations on your contemporary romance series! :)

When a series is completed, it is both a thrilling and bittersweet time for authors!

Plus, here at the I Love Romance Blog, we love discovering new romance novels!

Let’s hear a little about this MC romance series…

Such great covers!

Let’s learn a little more about the Indigo Knights Series…

This is the blurb for Her Thin Blue Lifeline, book one:

Chrissy Franco has every reason to take one hell of a victory lap around the courtroom. She’s just defended her client to the best of her ability and what’s more? Her client was actually innocent. Oh, she’d killed her husband, baseball legend Skip Maguire, alright; but he’d been about to hit a homerun with Miranda’s head.

His rabid fan base doesn’t agree with the verdict, and they’ve set their sights on Chrissy as the one to blame. One of them is about to set into motion a dangerous game when he publishes poor Chrissy’s address online…

Enter Tony McCormick, a detective with the right kind of attitude and Chrissy’s sort of ex-boyfriend. When he’s called to Chrissy’s apartment, he’s prepared for the worst. He’s a homicide detective after all. When he arrives, it seems that someone might have forgotten to check to see if Chrissy was still alive… now it’s everything he can do to find the man who did this and the other behind it all before it’s really too late.

Book Info:

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Keywords: contemporary romance, second chance, MC romance, mystery, suspense

Length: Novel

Release Date: June 28, 2017

Publisher: Second Circle Press

Cover Artist: Dar Albert at Wicked Smart Designs

Here are some teasers to entice you with.

Purchase Link:

Universal Reader link:  https://books2read.com/u/3LGDRJ

Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/38310257-her-thin-blue-lifeline

This is the blurb for His Cold Blue Command, book two:

Assistant District Attorney Damien Parnell leads a double life above and beyond his membership with the Indigo Knights. Driven by dark desires considered shameful by most, he covets the one thing he can’t allow himself to have – a real relationship.

Enter Ally Blaylock, an innocent by Yale’s standards. She’s the sweet and beautiful girl who makes his coffee at the café across the street from his office. She’s done her best to flirt off and on with the high powered attorney and he can’t help but be drawn to her whimsical charm.

When Ally finds her world tipped on its axis, Yale goes against his better judgment and offers her some unlikely help. He knows better than most that the road to hell is paved with good intentions, but in this particular case, could it be the opposite? Could Allison Blaylock be the start down the road to his salvation?

Book Info:

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Keywords: contemporary romance, MC romance

Length: Novel

Heat Level: Steamy, some BDSM

Release Date: November 7, 2017

Publisher: Second Circle Press

Cover Artist: Dar Albert at Wicked Smart Designs

Here are some teasers…

Purchase Link:

Universal Reader link:  https://books2read.com/u/38xZQ6

Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36380279-his-cold-blue-command

This is the blurb for A Low Blue Flame, book three:

Lillian Banks’ career took off like a house on fire and she’s on top of the world. Great job that she loves, moved to a great city, into an opulent new condo, in one of the world’s premier smart buildings no less; all she was missing was the kind of romance to set her soul aflame. She thought she’d found it but instead, found herself burned.

Backdraft knows what it’s like to get burned and not just by fire. His ex, Torri, did quite the number on him recently by banging one of his firehouse bros behind his back. He’s sworn off love and dating altogether for the time being and is happier for it. He just wishes he could get the time he wasted with that crazy skank back again.

Out of the ashes, an unlikely friendship is formed. Backdraft and Lilli could find themselves rising if only they can get past their hurts and give things a chance. Of course, lasting happiness is no guarantee, no matter how much they might burn for each other. After all, sometimes what was doesn’t want to let go.

Book Info:

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Keywords: contemporary romance, MC romance

Length: Novel

Release Date: May 22, 2018

Publisher: Second Circle Press

Cover Artist: Dar Albert at Wicked Smart Designs

Some more teasers…

Purchase Link:

Universal Reader link:  https://books2read.com/u/bwqvoG

Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40015086-a-low-blue-flame

This is the blurb for His Wild Blue Rose, book four:

Alyssa isn’t completely honest when she answers the ad for a roommate online. True, she needs a place to live; true, she’s getting a divorce; true, he’s a cheating jerk. There’s just a little bit more to it than that. So when the ad comes across her screen Indigo City beat cop looking to rent out a fully furnished room… she jumps on it, because what could be safer than living with a cop?

Golden isn’t too keen on living with a chick, but after posting online looking for a roommate, he’s found the pickings are slim. The softly spoken brunette doesn’t seem like she’s much trouble, plus she’s got the cash up front, so what the hell? She’ll just have to get over his bringing home badge bunnies from the 10-13. He’s got a stressful job, and the best way to blow off steam, in his estimation, is hot sex.

It’s a pressure cooker waiting to blow and it turns out the new roomie has moxie, which gets Golden to thinking, which leads to him feeling. This is either going to be a really good or a really bad idea.

Book Info:

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Keywords: contemporary romance, MC romance

Length: Novel

Release Date: July 17, 2017

Publisher: Second Circle Press

Cover Artist: Dar Albert at Wicked Smart Designs

Quite a few teasers for you to enjoy…

Purchase Link:

Universal Reader link:  https://books2read.com/u/3ygEen

Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40390125-his-wild-blue-rose

This is the blurb for Her Pained Blue Silence, book five:

Everleigh has had a wandering spirit since the day she was born. Her boring, small town could barely contain her and at the first opportunity, she fled. It was only natural falling in line with the freedom that MC life brought to her. The allure of never being told what to do a strong one. Sadly, she found herself trading one cage for another. Given the road name Silence, for her shy lack of voice, she’s been a part of a motorcycle gang out of Maryland. A rough and tumble lot believing in sovereignty, running guns and drugs through Indigo City.

Narcos has been undercover with the outlaw MC, the Knights of Crescentia for more than a year. In that time, he’s seen and heard all sorts of things, except for Silence’s voice. She’s the president’s Ol’ Lady and probably knows infinitely more than he does as a prospect to the club. All that is about to change. Narcos is about to be patched in. Unfortunately, patching in means going to an extreme he’d never thought he’d be pushed to and Silence is in the crosshairs.

How will he get through this, through to her, and keep them both alive?

Book Info:

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Keywords: contemporary romance, MC romance, suspense

Length: Novel

Release Date: January 22, 2019

Publisher: Second Circle Press

Cover Artist: Dar Albert at Wicked Smart Designs

More teasers for you…

Purchase Link:

Universal Reader link:  https://books2read.com/u/b6x8O6

Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42975298-her-pained-blue-silence

✫✶•Releasing in April•✫✶

 

This is the blurb for A Code Blue Call, book six:

It was a dark night of the soul for Angel, the night she appeared like his namesake. He would have liked to have known her, but she was gone the next morning. Now, more than a year later, he was doing much better, continuing his work in Indigo City’s streets as a paramedic, responding to medical emergencies.

Claire could never forget the medic whose life she saved just by being in the right place at the right time. Still, it wasn’t enough to rescue her from her own dark night of the soul and unlike him, she followed through.

Fate had other ideas for the both of them and for whatever reason, their paths crossed again at exactly the right moment. Both of them were now determined to not let this second chance pass them by, not like the first…

Book Info:

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Keywords: contemporary romance, second chance, MC romance

Length: Novel

Release Date: April 16, 2019

Publisher: Second Circle Press

Cover Artist: Dar Albert at Wicked Smart Designs

A few teasers…

Pre-order Link:

Universal Reader link:  https://books2read.com/u/mYrpZP

Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43563810-a-code-blue-call

Love the tension and the steam in this series. ♥♥♥

 

Plus, A.J. is giving away a $25 Amazon gift card during this tour. Follow the book tour HERE for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!

 

.•°GIVEAWAY LINK°•.

https://www.silverdaggertours.com/sdsxx-tours/indigo-knights-book-tour-and-giveaway

 

Thank you for telling us about your new steamy MC romance, A.J.!

I know I can’t wait to read this sexy series! 🙂

Readers, don’t forget to pick up a copy of the Indigo Knights Series!

Author Bio

A.J. Downey is a born and raised Seattle, WA native. She finds inspiration from her surroundings, through the people she meets and likely as a byproduct of way too much caffeine.

She has lived many places and done many things though mostly through her own imagination…

An avid reader all of her life, it’s now her turn to try and give back a little, entertaining as she has been entertained. She lives in a small apartment in a quiet neighborhood with a larger than life fiancé and two cats.

Thank you for telling us about your awesome book tour! I know readers can’t wait to get ahold of this delicious and suspenseful MC romance series!

And don’t forget to enter the cool giveaway!

Thanks again to A.J. and her blog tour sponsor!

We hope to see you back on ILRB sometime. 

Happy reading, everyone!  ♥♥♥

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Filed under Authors, Blogging, Book News, Book Release, Books, coming soon, Contemporary, Event, Fiction, giveaway, MC and biker romance, Mystery, Readers, Romance, Romantic Suspense, Second Chances, steamy, Tour, Writing

Blog Tour Feature: Weapons of Redemption by Saloni Quinby

¸.•*´¨❥¸.•*´¨ BOXED SET¸.•*´¨❥¸.•*´¨

While plotting to destroy the man who, centuries later, still thinks he owns them, they use their powers to protect other victims…

I am pleased to announce a cool book blog tour going on right now, presented by Saloni Quinby, an author I met during my journey! Many successes on your MM paranormal romance boxed set! :)

Here at the I Love Romance Blog, we love discovering new romance novels!

Let’s hear a little about this great book…

Nice!

This is the blurb for Weapons of Redemption:

Five men, enslaved by a vampire pirate and forced to do his bidding, rebelled against their master and earned the wrath of a monster. Now, while plotting to destroy the man who, centuries later, still thinks he owns them, they use their powers to protect other victims.

Whips and Chains: In a seedy underworld of sex and violence, a serial killer is stalking men and Guy is called upon to find the murderer. Ryan, a professional Dom known as the Beast Tamer, specializes in meting out pleasure and pain to oversized men. Is the sexy young man with a mysterious past the next victim — or the killer?

Sword and Shield: Rule coped with his abduction by the vampire pirate Tarun by cutting off his emotions. After centuries of self-control through punishment, he found a man who finally reached his heart. Now it’s up to Rule to save his former lover, but once he sees Joel again, will Rule be able to resist him?

Cloak and Dagger: When police detective Bryce Tarunson arrests a man who looks just like his lover from two thousand years ago, he’s pulled closer to the vampiric master he hates. The bond between Bryce and Shane forces them into a battle that might end in the destruction of the Weapons of Redemption.

Marksmen: Ansley and Brayden were stolen as boys by the hated vampire pirate, Tarun, to work aboard his ship. As men, their friendship blossomed into a deep, undeniable love. In the final battle between the vampire pirate and the Weapons of Redemption, Ansley and Brayden’s love for each other will either save or destroy them.

Fangs and Floggers: To lure his rebellious blood children back into the fold, ancient vampire Tarun abducted the hunter Adrian. He hadn’t bargained on his human prisoner being a match for him in every way — including his darkest desires. Though Tarun warns Adrian he won’t like what he hears, the hunter is determined to uncover the secrets of the vampire’s twisted past.

***Publisher’s Note: Weapons of Redemption includes the previously published novellas Whips and Chains, Sword and Shield, Cloak and Dagger, Marksmen, and Fangs and Floggers.

Saloni is giving us a peek at her LGBT paranormal romance, Weapons of Redemption, today.

Intriguing cover!

Book Info:

Genre:  Paranormal Romance, MM romance

Here is an excerpt.

Guy released a breath as he let his whip fly. It struck his old friend, Ruliff, or Rule, as he preferred to be called. Rule stood, his hands suspended from manacles dangling from chains overhead.

Even if Rule screamed, no one would hear him, deep in the cellar of this mansion owned by their vampiric kin, Ansley and Brayden. Rule wouldn’t scream, though. It wasn’t in his nature to show what he believed to be weakness. To drag more than a groan from Rule, Guy would be forced to practically kill him and his sessions weren’t meant to cause permanent damage. They had already been at it for longer than usual, even for someone with a supernatural constitution.

Five more times Guy struck him with strategically placed blows before he paused and approached Rule. Using the handle of his whip, he traced an especially fierce-looking welt on Rule’s sweat-slicked back. Rule had a tremendous capacity for pain. Always had.

Guy recalled the days when they, along with Brayden, Ansley and the fifth member of their “family,” Bryce, had sailed with Tarun, a genuine monster. The five men had shared a strange and violent past, one that could have destroyed them, but together they had overcome it. Still their days at sea with the vampire pirate — the master who had tried to mold them in his image — had left scars on their souls as well as their bodies. These sessions with Rule reminded Guy of how strong yet vulnerable they all were, even if they refused to admit it.

Rule could be stubborn to the point of stupid.

Guy tightened his hand around the whip and struck Rule again with a blow that would have had most men screaming. A strangled groan escaped the tall, dark-haired man and Guy curled his lip in disgust.

He loved the whip and was an expert with it. Like his vampire kin, he had taken what he’d learned about pain and battle from their hated master and made it a form of expression. They had ultimately used their skills to fight back, not only for themselves but for victims who crossed their path. Each of the five men had mastered certain weapons. Guy’s obsession was the lash. From bullwhips to floggers, all were slaves to him, bringing pleasure or pain as he saw fit. His love of leather had melded into every part of his life, including sex. He used his floggers to pleasure and punish, sometimes separately, sometimes both at once.

Long ago, Guy had honed his skills on his willing brothers, except for Bryce, who refused to submit to anyone, even for fun. Only Rule to this day came to Guy for regular sessions. Guy decided this one had gone on long enough. He knew Rule would push himself past his limits. He needed a strong but sensitive Dominant who knew when to stop.

Glancing at Rule, Guy noted that he seemed to be in a trance. His blue eyes were narrowed to slits, his lips parted and his breathing shallow. Wet black curls clung to his perspiring forehead and neck. Blood trickled from his lower lip where he’d pierced it with his fangs.

“Our session is over for today,” Guy said without room for argument.

Rule ignored his authoritative tone and said in a deep, hoarse voice, “More.”

“Your name might be Rule, but you don’t rule here,” Guy said.

“Fine. Release me then.”

“Not until you calm down.”

“I am calm.”

“You forget how well I know you.”

Rule’s cool facade snapped. Bellowing, he yanked at his bonds.

Now he screams, Guy thought, but he knew it was probably a good thing. Rule wouldn’t allow Guy to comfort him like some clients enjoyed after a session. Guy worked mainly with supernatural beings — vampires, wizards, and even an occasional werewolf paid well for him to tease and torment them with his leather and chains. But even those creatures had a tender side. Rule’s was buried deep and Guy hoped that eventually someone would reach it.

Despite Rule’s impressive strength, he couldn’t break the chains. Guy’s survival often depended on knowing how to properly bind supernatural beings.

Guy placed his whip next to a heavy purple flogger on a table covered in red plastic. He’d clean his tools later. He was about to clean Rule’s back when his cell phone rang.

He knew who it was by the ringtone.

He picked up the phone and said, “What’s up?”

“It’s Bryce. I need your help. It’s business.”

Although the five men had different careers in the human world, their true purpose was to protect those in need. The weapons they had once used as criminals were now their means of redemption.

Bryce worked as a police officer in the city. Sometimes he called upon his brothers to help him resolve crimes in which the human world could offer no justice.

“What does he want?” Rule asked, having ceased his rampage when the phone rang. “Is there a case for us? Let me go!”

“Do you have Rule strung up in the dungeon again?” Bryce asked.

“Yes. I’m putting you on speakerphone.”

“You don’t have to. I can hear him quite well,” Rule said, straining to look at Guy over his shoulder.

Though keen senses were an advantage of vampirism, the speakerphone would make a three-way conversation easier.

“I’ve been working on what we believe are serial killings,” Bryce said. “You’ve probably heard about them. The media calls them the Bodybuilder Murders. We’ve found a common denominator and, Guy, I believe you can get the evidence I need. Will you help?”

“You have to ask?” Guy said.

“Can you use me?” Rule asked.

“Right now this is a one-man job,” Bryce said. “But thanks.”

Rule looked a bit disappointed, but with all the trouble in the world, he was sure to have another case to work on soon.

“Guy, can you meet me in an hour?” Bryce asked.

“Absolutely. Where?”

“Stay put. I’ll come to you.”

Purchase Links:

Universal reader link:  https://books2read.com/u/bP5Kkl

Publisher:  https://www.changelingpress.com/product.php?&upt=book&ubid=2638

Wow! Sounds like a riveting tale here. ♥♥♥

Saloni is offering a $15 Amazon GC to one lucky winner during the tour. The winner will be chosen by Rafflecopter. Please use the link below to enter. Remember, you may enter every day for a chance to win so be sure to follow along with the blog tour. You may find the locations for the rest of the tour here.

Link:  https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/801c221b58/

 

Thank you for telling us about your MM paranormal romance boxed set, Saloni! I know I can’t wait to read this fascinating collection! 🙂

Readers, don’t forget to pre-order a copy of this awesome book! Or add it to your Goodreads list!

Author Bio

The child of a painter and a psychic dreamer, Saloni Quinby feels spirituality and storytelling go hand-in-hand. She loves the scent of gardenia, the sound of wind chimes and the taste of honey. By listening to what isn’t said, she creates works based on unspoken desires. Saloni prefers blurred gender lines and many varieties of romance. In a world where passion must at times be restrained, she believes erotica is a pleasure to be shared. With her stories she would like to make her fantasies yours and hopes you enjoy the ride. She also writes under the name Kate Hill. Please visit her online.

Author Links

Website:  http://www.katehill.com

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/katehillsaloniquinby/

https://www.facebook.com/compellingbeasts/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/katehillromance

https://twitter.com/compbeastsblog

Amazon Author Page:  https://www.amazon.com/Kate-Hill/e/B002BLS7OW/

https://amzn.to/2JTabXb

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16157.Kate_Hill

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5037108.Saloni_Quinby

 

Thank you for telling us about your awesome book tour! I know readers can’t wait to get ahold of this delicious romance!

Thanks again to Saloni and her blog tour sponsor!

We hope to see you back on ILRB sometime. 

Happy reading, everyone!  ♥♥♥

5 Comments

Filed under Authors, Blogging, Books, Event, Fiction, LGBT, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy, Readers, Romance, Tour

Book Feature: King in Chains by author Grey Francis

I am pleased to announce a great book by Grey Francis, an author I met during my journey! She’s stopping by to tell us about her awesome paranormal erotic romance, King in Chains, which released back in September!

Woo hoo! It’s always fun to discover new authors and books. 😀

Grey is allowing us a look at her sexy paranormal romance, King in Chains, today.

Great cover!

This is the blurb for King in Chains:

Two hundred years. For two hundred years, vampires Alastair and Cassie lived without their Master, Killian. Killian’s return is cause for rejoicing—and nights of unquenchable, burning passion—but Alastair still harbors the fear that his True Mate will abandon them once again.

Complicating matters, Killian still refuses to take his place as the rightful Vampire King, leaving it to Alastair to rule in his stead rather than serving as the Arm of Power.

As Alastair struggles with his doubts, a new threat appears in London. A new Master Vampire stalks the streets, launching brutal attacks on Alastair’s warrior patrols. When this dark new presence makes a brutal attempt on the life of Alastair’s son, war becomes a certainty.

With Cassie and Killian away on important business, Alastair must lead this war alone. He faces a dangerous foe: a necromantic Master Vampire of intense power and uncertain motivations—and intimate ties to Alastair’s past.

The second installment of Grey Francis’s erotic Into the Dark Woods series, King in Chains continues the sensual tale of Alastair and his lovers—and threatens to rip their eternal passion to shreds.

Ooh..interesting!

Let’s hear from the author! Hello, Grey! 🙂

Hi, readers!

Lovely to have you here, Grey! Tell us a little about this book.

A psychologically compelling and literary erotic novel, King in Chains reveals hidden secrets as a new enemy threatens all of Vampire Kind, one who offers the tormented Vampire King, Alastair, something his lovers, Cassie and Killian, never could. With the second novel, I was able to delve deeper into the psychology of the compelling but complex Alastair. As he struggles to resolve the scars of the past that still haunt him, he is confronted by a powerful and sadistic enemy, who threatens to destroy all those he loves and the realm he has built. I wanted to make King in Chains the story of a warrior’s reawakening, as Alastair discovers how to truly love and trust again. He must confront his darkest memories and greatest truths and learn to accept his fate as King, while fighting for those he loves.

Fascinating! King in Chains is the second erotic paranormal romance novel in the Into the Dark Woods series featuring the vampire trio Cassandra Monteclaire, Killian Monteclaire, and Alastair St. Germaine. What’s new for the trio in this sequel to Bound to a Vampire?

In the same way that Bound to a Vampire was told primarily from Cassandra’s perspective, focusing on her history and her journey, King in Chains is Alastair’s story. From his near death on a battlefield at age 10, to his early years as Killian’s Protector and Mate, this book sheds new light on the two men’s tumultuous and passionate relationship. In current day, the story picks up where Bound to a Vampire left off. Only now, it is Alastair who seeks answers. He questions Killian’s devotion to the sacred threesome when he refuses to take his place as King. Unlike the first book, there is a formidable single enemy, a female vampire from Alastair’s past threatening destroy all those Alastair loves and the realm he rules. It is his turn to fight, to visit the past and face his demons, seeking the answers he needs to save himself and his Mates.

Much of King in Chains focuses on Alastair’s mental state. What are some of the psychological issues he deals with in this novel?

When the book begins, Alastair is in therapy, trying to reconcile the trust issues he has with his Master and Mate, Killian. Two hundred years apart after being abandoned has left scars. However, Alastair carries with him a much deeper wound. Inside him lives a very real death wish. He will always feel guilty for being the only survivor of a battle during the 1600’s. As a Protector, warrior and later as a King, he has always believed his fate would eventually catch up with him. Twice now, his death has been predicted by Seers. The first time, he was resigned to it, but against all odds, Cassandra beat fate and brought him back. Now, centuries later, his death has been seen in a vision experienced by his son Haven. Haven is a precognitive and his visions of death are never wrong. Only this time, Alastair is up against an extremely dangerous enemy. But instead of telling his Mates, whose presence in battle would greatly better his chance of survival, Alastair tells no one of the vision, once again accepting his fate as a warrior and validating his own sense of sacrifice.

A necromantic Master Vampire of intense power stalks the streets of London in this novel. What can you tell us about this new villain, and how does it threaten Alastair and the rest of the vampire world?

Ever since Ashen was a little girl, she could speak to the dead. Her ability has always been exploited, but none worse than by her Vampire Masters, Violet and Ambrose. Ashen was also unfortunate enough to fall in love with Alastair after being sent to seduce him. Ultimately, she fails to break up Alastair and Cassandra, a plan orchestrated by her jealous Masters in exchange for eternal life. The last anyone saw Ashen, three centuries earlier, she had been sold to the vampire King of Russia, a collector of curiosities. In time, he would ultimately turn her into a vampire. But when Ashen becomes immortal, her dark gift transforms into something much more powerful and dangerous. Ashen, in her new form, can command the dead to do her bidding. And Ashen wants power. Even the strongest vampires cannot fend off her unearthly electrical attacks. But more than power, Ashen wants Alastair, the only man she’s ever loved, the vampire who rejected her, and the vampire who shares her she wolf spirit. She has waited a long time and now that the Russian King has been murdered, she has nothing holding her back.

What themes are explored in this novel and how do they affect Alastair, Killian, and Cassandra?

There are a few dominant themes in this book. The first is trust. Much of Alastair’s destructive actions throughout the book are driven by a lack of trust, primarily in Killian’s commitment to him when he refuses to take the throne that Alastair has held safe for centuries. Another important theme is the gift of life. Alastair has always struggled with his own long life when he believes he should have been dead centuries earlier. Alastair, deluded by the idea of sacrificing himself for the survival of his family, is forced to come to terms with the true value of his life and all those who depend on him. In a dream-like afterlife, wandering through death’s landscape, Alastair must revisit key moments in his long life to truly appreciate what a precious gift his life has been. And what it could be again – as a King, as a father, and a Mate. And what it means to lose it all.

King in Chains is your second erotic paranormal romance. What do you find challenging and/or interesting about this particular genre, and what have you learned after having written two books in this type of series?

The biggest challenge for me when writing this series is deciding which character’s story I want to tell next! I feel completely committed to Alastair, Cassandra and Killian’s world and all the fascinating vampires who inhabit their past and present. If I could change anything, it would be the ability to write faster! Writing erotica is very interesting because it needs to stay fresh and interesting. You don’t want to write the same bondage scene over and over. It needs to personify the characters and what they are personally going through at that moment. There is also a psychological component playing out in most of the erotic scenes. A Master must understand what each submissive needs in order to feel loved, safe and fulfilled. For Alastair, this might mean pain. For Cassandra it means to be completely overtaken. Balancing the psychological and erotic is always interesting for me. It became especially interesting with a character like Ashen, who simply doesn’t understand love and only wants control. That led to some pretty rough scenes. Going to the edge without going over it is a delicate balance and stretches me as a writer.

Are you working on another book and, if so, what can you tell us about it?

Yes! It’s called The Shapeshifter’s Heart, and it focuses on Tristan, Forrest, and Eloise. Tristan is such an interesting character to me. The ability to transform into any human or vampire opens the door for all sorts of exciting storylines. Aside from being completely devastatingly attractive and irresistible to both males and females, Tristan is very old, a political mastermind, and a renowned Sexual Dominant. Even though he has been mated for centuries to Eloise, his heart stopped beating the minute his Natural Mate, Bella, was murdered by Torians in the 1500’s. In a way, Tristan takes care of everyone in his realm, including his King, but he is unable to truly feel anything for himself.  When Tristan takes over for Killian on a diplomatic mission across Europe while mentoring Forrest, Tristan discovers that Forrest’s former boss, and guardian, Cyril Winterman, who betrayed the entire Sentient organization, is hiding out in Scotland. In Scotland, Tristan finds himself in tremendous danger as he confronts the very vampire who killed his human clan and made him a vampire. Facing danger and exploring their growing bond to one another, Tristan and Forrest set out on a journey that will reveal great truths and change them both forever.

Sounds intriguing! Let’s read an excerpt from King in Chains

England, 1648

With Alastair tucked inside his cloak, the Scotsman moves fast, giving him the sense they are soaring through the night sky. When they stop, he hears the Scotsman talking to someone. Alastair opens one blurry eye and sees a young warrior standing at the doorway of a fancy carriage. The next time he wakes, the ground is moving beneath them, the carriage rumbling along the muddy road. Alastair is given something warm and strange to drink but he never opens his eyes to see what it is. He only knows it takes the pain away and makes him feel stronger. Alastair continues to sleep against the Scotsman’s chest for several hours, inhaling his wondrous scent, too exhausted to lift his head. Dreamlike, he hears the Scotsman talking to the warrior.

“He’s a wee lad. How could anyone put him out there?” the younger voice says disdainfully.

The Scotsman chuckles. “He’s a little warrior. I doubt he gave them much choice.”

“How’s the wound?” the younger voice asks.

“No longer bleeding . . . ” the Scotsman responds in a low, concerned voice.

After a long pause, the younger man asks, “What is it? Is something wrong with him?”

“No. Quite the opposite,” the Scot says, something unsteady in his commanding voice. “He doesn’t smell or taste like anyone I’ve ever met.”

“Killian, would it be best if I held him for a while?” the younger man responds with concern in his voice.

Killian.

“No,” Killian answers sharply. “It was just a moment. I can control myself.” There’s a long pause and Alastair senses Killian’s hand on his forehead, stroking him. “We must take care of him, Finn. He is someone to me.”

That is all Alastair hears before falling back to sleep. He wakes to find himself alone in the carriage, sleeping on a cushioned bench, a blanket tucked around him. They are stopped along a roadway, some sort of commotion taking place outside. Alastair moves tentatively at first because of his wound, but quickly realizes with astonishment there is no more pain. He pulls up his torn, bloodstained shirt and sees that his wound is wrapped in clean dressing and is no longer bleeding. Even the bite on his leg and the deep slice on his arm have miraculously begun to heal. His mind spins, trying to remember what the Scotsman did to him, what he drank. It had been something warm and strangely quenching, and not from a cup. The shouts outside quickly distract him and he moves to the window.

He sees that soldiers have stopped Killian, Finn, and their driver. Alastair’s heart pounds with fear, wondering if this has something to do with him. Listening closer, Alastair realizes the soldiers are asking for papers and hassling his rescuers. What fascinates him is how indifferent Killian and Finn seem to this inconvenience. They have no fear of these soldiers. On the contrary, Alastair gets the sense the Scotsman is goading them.

The next thing he knows, weapons are being raised and in a blur, Killian is no longer standing next to the carriage but in front of two soldiers, splitting them open and slashing their throats with what appears to be very long, sharp claws, leaving both men dead before they hit the ground. Finn takes the other two soldiers down in fast, lethal strokes of a blade. The last soldier, stunned and having no time to react, is clutched in the Scotsman’s arms, his head bent back as Killian sinks huge fangs into the man’s neck and drinks, blood pouring down his face. Killian’s two young warriors merely watch impassively, Finn whistling as he wipes off his sword and returns it to its sheath.

Observing this, Alastair breaks out in a cold sweat, coils of fear gathering inside him. Killian is no human. He’s seen the creature’s sharp fangs and claws, and the power and speed with which he killed the soldiers, as if they were made of straw. It also explains how he drove off the scavengers in seconds, killing most of them. Killian is some sort of monster that drinks blood—an undeniable and frightening fact. But watching Killian slaughter soldiers from the same army that annihilated his regiment is a spectacular sight to behold. Never had he seen faster or more ruthless kills, all done without a single weapon.

Darker thoughts dawn on Alastair. Impressed as he is, maybe he is being naive. It’s possible Killian only saved Alastair to feast on his fresh young blood later. Breathing hard and ready to flee, Alastair finds himself conflicted. It would be easy to slip out of the carriage with Killian busy feeding and Finn occupied with collecting the bodies into a heap. But something stops him. Perhaps it is the feeling of safety he experiences being close to Killian that still lingers seductively inside him. Never has Alastair known such a feeling. If Killian wished him harm, he had had plenty of opportunity. And why go to so much effort to heal his wounds if the Scotsman only means to kill him later? If anything, he seems highly protective of him.

He touches his wound, something coming back to him. A taste left in his mouth. It had been blood, Killian’s blood. That was what Alastair drank, not from a cup, but from the flesh. Thoughts begin to fit together, stories told around the fire, folklore. He should be afraid, very afraid, but instead he cannot pull his eyes away from Killian, fascinated by a creature of such power and speed, beauty and brutality. A vampire. A real, sodding vampire.

What people are saying about this book:

It is exciting, perplexing, heart-breaking, sexy and superbly entertaining!” – C.J. Populus, Amazon

It was a book that was never dull, and putting all of the sex and torture aside, it is a story of a deep never ending love between the three main characters. I recommend reading the books in order and I can’t wait till the next book in the series.” – Linda, Amazon

Purchase Links:

Universal Amazon link:  https://bookgoodies.com/a/B075V5LRQR

 

Wow! Great excerpt. ♥♥♥

Thank you for telling us about your book, Grey! 🙂

You can check out book one of the series too…

 

Readers, don’t forget to pick up a copy of this awesome book! Or you can add it to Goodreads! 😉

Author Bio

Grey Francis, a native of Los Angeles, graduated with BA in Journalism before setting off for the New York publishing world. She later relocated back to Los Angeles to work in the film industry. She eventually put her fascination with the paranormal to work as a screenwriter, but it wasn’t until the birth of her series, Into the Dark Woods, that she found her voice as an erotic writer and novelist. Her first book, Bound to a Vampire, was published in January 2015 and the sequel, King in Chains, was released in September 2017.  Francis is currently hard at work on her third book in the series, The Shapeshifter’s Heart. When she isn’t writing, Francis is a busy full-time mother of two wonderful kids.

Author Links

Website:  http://greyfrancis.com/

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/GreyFrancisAuthor

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/grey_francis

Amazon Author Page:  http://amzn.to/2iFjkls

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13504371.Grey_Francis

Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/greyfrancisauthor/

 

Thanks again, Grey! We hope to see you back on ILRB sometime. 

Happy reading, everyone!🙂

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Filed under Authors, Books, Dark Fantasy, Erotica, Event, Fiction, Interview, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy, Readers, Romance, Writing

A Character Interview with Nick D. from NOT QUITE JULIET plus a conversation with author Katherine Rhodes!

Today, we’re doing something a little different. If you remember, we interviewed Palessa’s character on September 22nd and it was so fun that I thought we may as well make an occasional habit of it. I had the pleasure of meeting Katherine Rhodes, the author of Not Quite Juliet, on my author journey and I asked her if she’d let me borrow one of her main characters, Nicholas Dovadsky, from the book. We’ll get a chance to talk to Katherine in a bit, but now we have on the stage…Nick D.!

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Marie Lavender:  Hello, Nick.  Please have a seat.

Character Nicholas Dovadsky:  Hello.  Thanks for having me.

Marie:  Of course. We’re going to start out with some simple questions, all right?

Nick: Sure.

Marie:  What is your occupation?  Are you any good at it?  Do you like it?

Nick:  By day, I’m a mild-mannered chemist. I work with the coroner for Allegheny County and get to blow stuff up. I’m good at blowing stuff up. I do rather enjoy it.
By night I’m the lead singer in Silver Soul. Damn straight I’m good at it—and I wouldn’t be up there if I didn’t like it.

Marie:  (Chuckles.)

Fair enough. So, what is your family like?

Nick: My mother and father are gone, but my sweet Morgan and her sister make up for it. By extension, my band is my family, too and they rock. Literally.

Marie:  All right. What did your childhood home look like?

Nick:  It was very similar to what I live in now, a gorgeous old home my parents took time and pride in restoring. I loved growing up there; probably a great measure of why I bought my current place.

Marie:  I can’t blame you there…

So, do you have any hobbies?  What do you enjoy doing?

Nick:  Writing music and playing with the guys. I also love giving my Morgan private piano concerts. Those are ‘invite only’.

Marie:  Okay. So, what is your greatest dream?

Nick: I kind of think I’m living it. I have my band, my music, my awesome full time job, my girl, my house… I mean, it doesn’t get better than this.

Not Quite Juliet

Marie:  All right.

What kind of person do you wish you could be?  What is stopping you?

Nick: A little more involved with charities. I know I’ve got it good and I want to spread that around. What’s stopping me? Well, time at the moment. Full schedule all the time.

Marie:  So I’m going to throw another random question at you now. 

Who was your first love?

Nick:  Her name was Casey Line.

Marie:  All right.

So, what’s the most terrible thing that ever happened to you?

Nick:  My first love.

Marie:  Okay…I would push for more information, as I’m dying to know, but this looks delicate.

Let’s move on to something a bit lighter, shall we?

[Nick nods.]

What was your dream growing up? Did you achieve that dream? If so, in what ways was it not what you expected? If you never achieved the dream, why not?

Nick:  To be a chemist. I always loved finding out what was in things and what made things up. And I’m happy to say I got there.

Marie:  Great!

So, who is your role model?

Nick:  Go ahead and laugh- Hedy Lamar. The woman was a walking sexpot and genius. Did you know that she invented spread spectrum technology that we use in our cellphones? In 1940! Damn. I’d love to have lunch with her.

Marie:  Interesting!

Well…you’ll probably think I’m digging for dirt on the next question. 

Is there someone you pretend to like but really dislike?

Nick:  Vatori’s brother, Simon Garabaldi. Dude is straight-laced and as boring as they come. He’s always on duty even when he’s not.

Marie:  Okay.

Let’s try something else…

So, what is your deepest desire, Nicholas?

Nick:  Children. I had that for just a moment once…

Marie:  What is your greatest fear?

Nick: Having that child ripped from me again…

Marie:  I’m so sorry. 😦  I know nothing I can say will take your pain away…

Well, we’re out of time. Thank you for visiting us today, Nick. It was so interesting getting to know you!  (Waves goodbye to her guest.)

Now, let’s shift over and get the author’s perspective.  We have author Katherine Rhodes on the stage today. Hi, Katherine!

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Author Katherine Rhodes:  Hello.  Thank you for having me here.

Marie:  My pleasure!  We just got to talk to the hero of your story, Nicholas Dovadsky, or Nick D. Quite an interesting character.  Can you tell us a little about him?

Katherine:  Well, he’s the kind of guy I would have loved to date and/or marry when I was younger. Someone who had a crazy creative side, but utterly laced with intelligence and humor.

Marie:  Nothing wrong with that!  😉

So, what are your character’s greatest strengths?

Katherine:  He’s loyal and dependable. He was betrayed badly by his ex-fiancee, so he really doesn’t mess around with that stuff.

Marie:  Well, that’s certainly understandable.

Now let’s take the opposition on that. What, do you feel, are his greatest weaknesses?

Katherine:  His past. He’s had a time getting over that betrayal.

Marie:  Well, as a recipient of certain betrayal in the past, all I can say is that is does take time to trust again.

Let’s try something else…

What are some of his favorite foods?

Katherine:  Italian, but he loves good Asian—Japanese, Asian, Indian, Korea. But never balut.

Marie:  Can’t blame him there. Yuck! But I can agree with the rest.

So, what’s a positive quality that your character is unaware that he or she has?

Katherine:  His perfect timing. He has no idea that somehow he manages to always say or do the right thing at the right time for everyone.

Marie:  Very nice!

Will readers like or dislike this character, and why?

Katherine:  I hope they like him! He’s fun to write and fun to find out about.

Marie:  I’m sure they will! I already do, and I’m dying to learn more.

Well, now that we have a real taste of Nick D., we have a few questions for you as well as the author.

What first gave you the idea for your book?

Katherine:  I wanted to write a rocker romance and decided to go with a rom com feel to it. I love books that make me laugh, and rockers seemed like the perfect place to do it.

Marie:  Good idea!

So, what is your writing style like? Are you a pantster or a plotter?

Katherine:  I’m a pantser! I start writing on the fly, and about three or four chapters in, I should really write down the ideas that I’m messing with!

Marie:  (Laughs.)

Now, I’m throwing this one in for our aspiring writers. Did you come across any specific challenges in writing Not Quite Juliet or publishing it?  What would you do differently the next time?

Katherine: I didn’t, actually. This one of the books that fell off my fingers. But I have had trouble with others that wouldn’t finish themselves. I have to walk away from those for a while. I just walked away from a book for eight months because I couldn’t figure it out. Then I realized I was making it too hard, dissected it, and saw exactly what I was looking for.

So for a new author? It’s okay if you can’t see the end right away or have to walk away. It WILL come to you!

Marie:  I agree. We can always use those tips of encouragement, at any stage in our careers! Thank you for that, Katherine!

Well, it was a such a pleasure having you here on the I Love Romance Blog!  And how apropos is that, considering what a great story Not Quite Juliet appears to be.  I certainly want to learn more!

Readers, you will just have to pick up a copy of this awesome book by Katherine Rhodes, a very talented author! 🙂

Not Quite Juliet

Here is the blurb for Not Quite Juliet:

One fateful night, by the grace of beer and peanuts, Morgan Kirkbride–the self-professed super fangirl of Silver Soul– falls for the sexy rock god, Nick D. Literally.

Lands on her ass right in front of him.

Morgan is sure the lead singer of Silver Soul thought she was a graceless flake, but instead asks her to a midnight diner and winds up back at her place. She’s captivated, but sure it’s just a crazy one-night fling… Imagine her shock when the very next Monday at Allegheny County Courthouse, the highly respected, well-credentialed chemist Dr. Nicholas Dovadsky is called as a witness — and Morgan recognizes him as the rock god who rocked her bed.

Sparks fly between them, but things get complicated – fast. When an ex-boyfriend returns to haunt Morgan and her roommate, no one takes him seriously. But when the simple threats become violent, perverse and horrifying, she realizes someone is out to get her.

Nick doesn’t intend for anything or anyone to stop him from getting to know the spunky, curvaceous, if clumsy, woman. He just keeps coming back…because there’s one thing he knows: he wants Morgan in his life, for good.

**Content Warning: Contains explicit content and adult situations that may not be suitable for all audiences. 18+ Audience**
Katherine is also offering us a great excerpt from the book!

I took the offered hand and nearly swooned. Swooned. Who the hell swoons? I stood up and followed him through the mostly empty club as the staff was sweeping and pushing tables around. He didn’t let go of my hand as we wound through the tables to the door stage right.
This time, the little bitch in my head slapped me. I was being led backstage by the man I had a severe fangirl crush on, and we were going out for food and a chat. I almost dropped my cider at the realization. I was walking backstage with Nick D. I realized I had an obligation to women everywhere at that moment–and I fulfilled it.
I dropped my eyes and I gazed upon the most gorgeous denim-clad backside I had ever seen. He walked just enough to press those firm globes into the denim and release them a moment later with the next stride. The cloth hugged him, and it was one of the most delicious sights I’d ever seen in my life. Squeezable Tush. I wondered if I could bottle it.
“Enjoying the view?” he asked.
My eyes shot up to his, where he was peeking over his shoulder at me about to push the door open. Fire rushed into my cheeks. Let’s see, I had proved I was graceless, easily flustered, worked at a BDSM club, and had absolutely no stealth to even grab a glimpse of the World’s Most Fantastic Backside. I’d probably dump the soup down the front of my shirt.
His eyes sparkled mischievously, though, as he looked at me. I took a chance. “Hmm. It could be a little better. Could you just turn to the right a little?” He laughed, and obliged me.
Oh, it was a perfect ass.

Not Quite Juliet Teaser

(Laughs.) I definitely want to read more!  😀

Purchase Links:

Universal Amazon link:  http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00JJARYYM

Barnes & Noble:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/not-quite-juliet-katherine-rhodes/1119943535

CreateSpace:  https://www.createspace.com/4892036

About Katherine Rhodes

KRphoto

Author of erotica, light BDSM erotica and paranormal erotica. Expert in the profundities of bad movies and awful literature. Armed with her Bachelors of English, Literature she has set her mind to writing erotic romances which are kinky, dirty, and fun. A lackadaisical laundry goddess, Katherine resides in Philadelphia with her husband, three cats and a betta named Fishtian Grey.
Katherine’s Books:

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Not Quite Juliet

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And, if you want to know how to connect with the amazing Katherine Rhodes, here are some of her author links:

Website/Blog:  http://katherinerhodes.com/

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/katherinerhodesauthor/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/Mistress_KayR

Amazon Author Page:  http://www.amazon.com/Katherine-Rhodes/e/B00H693JXS/

Google+:  https://plus.google.com/u/0/108748357441081849146/posts

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7091498.Katherine_Rhodes

Publisher:  http://www.beaucoupllcpublishing.com/katherine-rhodes/

Once again, I want to thank both of our guests, Nick D., the male main character of Not Quite Juliet, and Katherine Rhodes, the brilliant author of the novel, for stopping by!  It was so much fun to have you here! 🙂

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Filed under Authors, Books, Character Interview, Contemporary, Erotica, Event, Fiction, Interview, Readers, Romance, Writing

A Character Interview with Cassandra Monteclaire from BOUND TO A VAMPIRE plus a conversation with author Grey Francis!

Today, we’re doing something a little different. If you remember, we interviewed Nina Mason’s character on June 9th and it was so fun that I thought we may as well make an occasional habit of it. I had the pleasure of meeting Grey Francis, the author of Bound to a Vampire, on my author journey and I asked her if she’d let me borrow on of her main characters, Cassandra Monteclaire, from the book. We’ll get a chance to talk to Grey in a bit, but now we have on the stage…Cassandra!

Cassandrapic - Grey Francis author - Bound to a Vampire

Marie Lavender:  Hello, Cassandra.  Please have a seat.

Character Cassandra Monteclaire:  Hello.  Thank you for having me. It’s a pleasure to be here.

Marie:  It’s good to have you visit. We’re going to start out with some simple questions, all right?

Cassandra: Of course.

Marie:  What is your occupation?  Are you any good at it?  Do you like it?

Cassandra:  I am an obstetrician, specializing in high-risk pregnancies. I perform both human and vampire deliveries.

As far as how good I am at my job… Well, I’ve been doing it for over three centuries, so I guess you can say I have more experience than your average OB. I also have the advantage of being a Healer, which in the vampire world refers to someone who can heal any injury or disease with their hands. With my touch, I can fix virtually anything — from stopping hemorrhages to keeping a baby’s heart beating. I’ve never lost one yet.

I love my work. My mother was a midwife and in my human life, I followed in her footsteps. It’s all I ever wanted to do. For years afterwards as a vampire, I wanted to make a difference in the human world. I’ve lived a long time and I’ve seen a lot of suffering. But I’ve learned you can’t save the world. Now, I work exclusively with my own Kind and the human blood donors who live among us. Every birth for us is a miracle but every birth is high risk for the vampire mother. I like to be challenged and helping bring more of my Kind into the world is very rewarding. I am also doing research on the vampire biology to see how to make us fertile more than once a century. It’s a work in progress.

Marie:  That’s impressive!

So, what is your family like?

Cassandra:  Wow, that’s a complicated one. I have two mates and they’re completely different. First there’s Killian, my Sire. He is an eight hundred year old vampire who embodies both masculine and feminine beauty in one extraordinary body, resonating sex and power like a drug. He is as elegant as he is deadly. He’s a commanding leader and brilliant businessman with an incredible intellect. He also has unfathomable powers that even I don’t understand. Killian is Dominant and our Master in the bedroom – and a true artist in the practice of Bondage and Discipline. When he looks into my eyes, he sees me all the way down to my soul. I never have to tell him my needs. He knows them better than I do. He has always been my touchstone and the hand the guides me. For a long time, while he was gone, a big part of me was missing.

Then there is my other mate, our Third, Alastair. We are from the same time in history and when we met, he was our human Protector with no intention of ever becoming a vampire. Alastair has a dark savage masculine beauty about him. We’ve always had an uncontrollable, sexual heat between us and were undeniable mates from almost the beginning. A great deal has happened since those early years, which I won’t get into here, but Al is now our King and carries the Arm of Power, making him feared, respected and untouchable. But in the bedroom, he is Killian’s submissive and my Dominant. He is the perfect switch. Outside the bedroom, however, there’s no question Alastair can be stubborn and arduous, definitely the dark brooding type. But he is also the funniest person I’ve ever known. No one is more fun or makes me laugh like Al. But as I said before, he never wanted any of this. In his heart, Alastair has always been, and will always be, a ruthless and talented warrior. The spirit of the wolf lives inside him, making him difficult to control, yet utterly impossible not to love.

These two males are my mates and my heart. Together, we have brought four children into this world—extending in ages from three hundred years old to one hundred. Each possesses a gift of their own that makes them a vital part of the empire we rule. But regardless of their individual powers and talents, I see each as a beloved child, a miracle, and an expression of the love that exists between myself and my mates.

Marie:  I see. What did your childhood home look like?

Cassandra:  Well, you’re talking the 1640’s, so from the little I remember it was a cottage with stone walls, a thatched roof and a dirt floor. It was small and had a stone hearth. I recall only a table and one straw bed I shared with my mother. The most distinct thing I remember about my first home was my mother’s work area where she crushed herbs and made tonics. It smelled of lavender and mint and chamomile flowers. To this day, when I smell these scents, I think of my mother.

Marie:  Do you have any hobbies?  What do you enjoy doing?

Cassandra:  I’m a bit of a workaholic. Much like my mates, none of us rarely stops. But when I do have down time, I enjoy curling up with a good book (I read everything from medical research texts to romances), but my true passion is watching movies. I love science fiction, political intrigues, family dramas, and good romances. But no horror. I’ve had enough of that in my real life! I’ve seen vampires films and find them amusing, if not annoying. But I admire the human imagination. For years, when Killian was gone from our lives, Alastair and I would spend our weekends locked together away in our flat listening to music and watching every film we could get our hands on.

Marie:  So, what is your greatest dream, Cassandra?

Cassandra:  My dream is for my children to what I have been so miraculously blessed with– to be with bonded with a True Mate (or mates as the case may be.) Our children have not been so fortunate. Each has found their True Mate, but for reasons too complicated to get into here, they stay apart from their mates and suffer from the empty void it leaves in their lives. It has been rumored that my disregard for fate and my restoring of lives destined to end, has left a curse upon my family. I do not know if I believe in these superstitions. But I do believe in the power of love and it’s ability to conquer anything. Even curses. My dream is for each of my children to overcome their personal demons and then knock down the barriers between themselves and their mates, and let themselves be loved.

Marie:  What kind of person do you wish you could be?  What is stopping you?

Cassandra:  Hmmm, that’s a tough one. I’ve had almost four centuries to become who I want to be. And yet I remain a jealous and possessive creature. So much bad came from my inability to accept the vampire nature. By that, I mean we are not strictly monogamous. We live too long to not exchange sexual energy with other vampires. But for me, my mates have always been more than enough. Alastair, much younger than Killian, needed sexual conquests as a form of nourishment. I was counseled to accept this by every vampire I respected. Because I was not able to share my mate, even in this fleeting, meaningless way, my actions led to my own capture by the Torians and Killian’s decision to go to the earth for over two centuries. All those years lost, all those years wandering in search of him, stem from one single act of defiance. Defiance that came from a jealous heart. And yet, to this day, I still tell Alastair he is free to take his pleasure with any male, but I will not tolerate another female in his bed. Alastair, only recently, has obliged this wish in an attempt win me back by his side. But he gave up a great deal of personal power in order to do so. Remember, sex and blood feeds the immense power inside of him. And it is that power that protects us all. I realize now I was asking him to go against his nature and jeopardize his strength as King. So to answer your question, I wish I did not care. I wish my heart beat more like a vampire’s and less like a human’s. Nothing is stopping me. I try everyday, century after century…

Marie:  All right, so I’m going to throw another random question at you now. 

Who was your first love?

Cassandra:  That’s an easy one. I had no real notion of love until Killian took me to his bed that first time. He took ownership of me–body and soul. And I, in turn, understood the ecstasy of surrender. It was as if I was finally awake for the first time, every inch of my body alive with pleasure. He deflowered me as a vampire and showed me how to truly make love. But he also showed me the depths of my heart by sharing his own with me. No matter who came before, it was all washed away when Killian claimed me as his.

Marie:  (Sighs.) I love romance.

Bound to a Vampire - Front Cover

Let’s try a different question, shall we?

So, what’s the most terrible thing that ever happened to you?

Cassandra:  Not to sound overly dramatic, but there have been so many horrific events in my long life, it’s hard to pick one. I’ve been captured by Torians and kept in silver manacles, my skin constantly burning and peeling, never knowing when I’d be killed. A century later, my son was captured and tortured for weeks on end before we found him. Friends have been hacked to pieces before my eyes by our enemies. How do you live in this violent world for over three centuries and pick the most terrible event? But in truth, there was one thing more terrible than all the horrors I witnessed. And that was losing Killian. When I escaped the Torians and found Alastair, we thought we’d find Killian in a matter of days or weeks. When Beaumont, his attorney, read his will, we realized Killian had no intention of coming back from wherever he’d buried himself. It was that moment, and the hundreds that followed when we wandered across Europe for decades in search of him, hitting one dead end after another, that we realized we’d lost him. Nothing can replace a mate, especially one like Killian. We were two lost souls without him. We had to learn to be for each other what we’d both lost.

I’m so sorry.  😦

Let’s move on to something a bit lighter, okay?

[Cassandra nods.]

What was your dream growing up? Did you achieve that dream? If so, in what ways was it not what you expected? If you never achieved the dream, why not?

Cassandra:  My dream has always been to help people. Not just as a midwife, but as a healer. As a human, I had the ability to take away pain with my hands. Seeing the relief and peace I could bring people with my touch, I knew it was my calling. But back in those years, a simple healer did not aspire to too much. I only knew I wanted to help as many people as I could before someone called me a witch and had me killed. That came soon enough. It wasn’t until I was made a vampire and my gift turned into the ability to heal that I saw the bigger picture. I wanted to help humankind on a grand scale. Of course, that was impossible. Killian made certain I only used my healing on humans in our own inner circle. Otherwise, I would have caused mass hysteria. It was hard for me to understand that then. I felt only that I was being held back and that my great gift was being wasted. I swore one day, I would break free and find a time and place where I could heal without superstition and fear. That time was the 20th century. With the liberation of women, I went to medical school and opened a medical practice. Of course, I had to put an ocean between my mate and myself in order to do so, and that was horribly difficult, but I lived my dream.

But you ask an interesting question: was it not what I expected? The answer is no, it was not. I was finally able to help people but the price was too high. I was separated from my own Kind – my mate, our children and all our friends. I was living in exile. In time, I realized my own Kind, our warriors fighting nightly battles and our females struggling to bring life into this world, needed me more. The human race would struggle on with their medications and machines. But my place was among my own Kind where I didn’t have to pretend to be something I wasn’t.

Marie:  I see.

So, who is your role model, Cassandra?

Cassandra:  Strangely enough, because I barely remember her anymore, my role model continues to be my mother. My memories of her are of being awakened at all hours of night, sometimes in the worst of weather, and dragging herself, and me, to wherever farm or village a woman was giving birth. There was never a consideration of herself or her own discomfort, only the purpose she served. It is that blind dedication that inspired and molded me into the healer I am today.

Marie:  That is certainly an honorable calling.

Well…you’ll probably think I’m digging for dirt on the next question. 

Is there someone you pretend to like but really dislike?

Cassandra: Sadly, there was, but she is no longer with us. She was a selfish, short-sighted human and a ruthless vampire. I had the misfortune of being her Sire, and as such, I had to pretend to care for her well being. But it was always difficult knowing I’d brought a monster into the world. As I said, she is no longer with us. The French Revolution and the rampant violence and anarchy of the streets took care of her, so I will not speak ill of her any more other than to say some vampires are their own worst enemies and bring about their own demise.

Marie:  Very true.

So, what is your deepest desire?

Cassandra:  My deepest desire has always been, and continues to be, making love to both my mates at the same time. There is a deep connection and a euphoric flow of power that inhabits us when the three of us become one. Whether we are in the bedroom or our dungeon, whether we are using leather restraints or we are just flesh-to-flesh, I am nourished by their uninhibited, ravenous passion, not just for me, but also for each other.

Marie:  Okay. What is your greatest fear?

Cassandra:  Loss. I know it well and I don’t want to feel it ever again. I know that’s impossible, but I do whatever is necessary to protect my own. With the return of Killian, I have been given an extraordinary gift. But there are so many others close to my heart who put their lives in jeopardy every night and there are only so many times I can bring them back from the edge of death. But that’s what I do. I keep everyone alive. Or at least try.

Marie:  Well, I hate to say it, but we’ve run out of time. Thank you for visiting us today, Cassandra.  (Waves goodbye to her guest.)

Now, let’s shift over and get the author’s perspective.  We have Grey Francis on the stage today. Hi, Grey!

Grey Francis - Author Photo

Author Grey Francis:  Hi. Thank you so much for having me here, Marie! 🙂

Marie:  My pleasure! 

As you know, we just got to talk to the hero of your story, Cassandra. Quite an interesting character.  Can you tell us a little about her?

Grey:  Cassandra is a passionate character – not only in her relationships with her mates, but in her quest to save each of them. But like many women, Cassandra is torn between her career and her family. In the past, she struggles between wanting to do more as a healer and being obedient to Killian and the Triune. In the present, she must choose between her medical practice in New York and returning to her vampire clan in London. Ultimately, love always wins out with Cassandra. Her deep love for her mates is the very fabric of who she is. When she discovers Killian is alive, after being missing for over two centuries, she stops at nothing to find him, including using Forrest and his Sentient resources to track him down before they do. She does this despite the strained relationship that has developed between these former allies and Vampire nations. She also pursues this dangerous route against her mate’s wishes. Cassandra can be headstrong and stubborn and rebellious this way.

Cassandra also goes to great personal lengths to calm the overwhelming power that churns inside Alastair that ultimately threatens to destroy him. At one point in the story, Alastair describes Cassandra as “pure love.” She is sensitive and intuitive in regards to Killian and Alastair’s deep but fractured love for one another and stops at nothing to mend their relationship. Early on in the story, Cassandra has a vision of the three of them together and acts as a conduit to bridge the gap between these two complicated males. Three and a half centuries later, she must do this again despite the festering betrayal that haunts Alastair. Cassandra is not only a healer of the body, but she heals the emotional scars of the ones she cherishes and forces them to work it out. What I love about Cassandra’s character is her personal growth throughout the story. She is always a strong woman, but her willingness to act ruthlessly when necessary and act independently of her overpowering Master Vampire mates, shows how she really comes into her own as a woman and as a vampire.

Marie:  That’s great!

So, what are your character’s greatest strengths?

Grey:  Cassandra’s greatest strength is her compassion. Even as a newly turned Vampire who feels betrayed by the human race for attempting to execute her as a witch, she still feels a great deal of compassion for the suffering of human women and children. Despite being forbidden to do so, Cassandra goes to great lengths to help abused women or pregnant women who would not otherwise survive birth without her intervention. Killian calls this quality Cassandra’s “human stain”, but it is more of a gift than any of them realize.

Marie:  Now let’s take the opposition on that. 

What, do you feel, is her greatest weakness?

Grey:  Cassandra’s strength is also her greatest weakness. Her compassion for humans, a world she has been sworn to not interfere in, is something she is willing pursue, even if it means betraying her Master’s wishes. There are disastrous consequences resulting from Cassandra’s unwillingness to stop delivering human babies and she almost loses everything she holds dear because of her recklessness.

However, I think it’s a toss up between Cassandra’s human stain and her possessiveness of Alastair. Her unwillingness to share him sexually, a common practice among vampires, causes turmoil in the Triune and makes her act out irrationally, again with disastrous results. As Killian tells her at one point in the story, “Your problem, my darling, is you love him too much.”

Marie:  Okay. So, what are some of her favorite foods?

Grey:  Even though my vampires can eat and enjoy solid food, they really prefer blood. When Cassandra does eat, she appreciates a very rare steak.

Marie:  Let’s try something else.

What’s a positive quality that your character is unaware that he or she has?

Grey:  That would be a quality in the bedroom. Although Cassandra is a natural submissive, she at certain points, in order to help her mate, must take on the role of the Dominant. As a Mistress, she is commanding and knows how to use bondage and controlled pain to banish Alastair’s demons and release the unwieldy power that builds up inside him. She believes she cannot completely tame him, but when she really needs to, Cassandra can transform herself and take control, bringing her great King to his knees.

Marie: Will readers like or dislike this character, and why?

Grey:  Readers will like Cassandra and probably identify with her on many levels. Cassandra starts her journey in a pretty dark place. Women, especially midwives and healers, were persecuted throughout history. Watching Cassandra become vampire, we see her rise from the ashes of being a victim of violence to being a strong powerful creature who will never let a man abuse her again. Cassandra projects a sense of empowerment with her choice of human prey, gravitating almost exclusively to rapists and abusive men. Readers will certainly sympathize with Cassandra as a strong, intelligent female in a historical context, struggling to have a say over her life and her powers. They may even recognize her success as a doctor in the modern world as a feminist journey through time. And lastly, as a creature of passion, Cassandra fulfills our fantasies of being mated to not only one scorching hot, seductive and powerful male, but two. But it is her emotive nature and her compassion that make her the most human of all my vampires, and I think readers will find themselves relating to her over and over.

Marie:  Great!

Now that we have a real taste of Cassandra, we have a few questions for you as well as the author.

What first gave you the idea for Bound to a Vampire?

Grey:  The story has really changed a lot from my original idea. When the book was born in my head, I was thinking about the women in my life and some of our more adventurous sexual histories. Everyone has a history, some more extensive and interesting than others. Who didn’t have that great love that vanished from their lives? Or that big mistake we’d rather not think about. As humans, these adventures usually take place over a relatively short period of our overall lives. Then I started wondering about vampires. I was already deeply entrenched in vampire literature for years and I was frankly, a little tired of the male perspective. I wanted to know what a female vampire’s sexual/romantic history would look like after several centuries. Would it be a long messy trail of great loves and tragic losses? I found this idea fascinating. I wanted to go into the past and document a female vampire’s love life. But once I began, Cassandra did not cooperate and took on a personality of her own, dedicating herself to only two lovers. Two very disarmingly sexy, complicated, charismatic, powerful lovers. In the end, it allowed me to explore a very deeply complex triad that was far more interesting than a parade of characters coming in and out of her life.

Marie:  Wow, that is fascinating! Isn’t it funny how things turn out not only different than you planned, but better? 😉

So, Grey, what is your writing style like? Are you a pantster or a plotter?

Grey:  I am definitely a plotter. I create long, detailed outlines, sometimes including dialogue (whenever it comes to me, I write it down, even in the outline). I follow my outline, but inevitably as the characters develop, the story evolves and new scenes are added, often taking me in unexpected directions. A book, at least for me, is almost a living, breathing thing. I give it life but then the characters take over.

Marie:  Yes, I know what you mean. Some of my characters really go their own way. (Laughs.)

So…I’m throwing this one in for our aspiring writers. Did you come across any specific challenges in writing Bound to a Vampire or publishing it?  What would you do differently the next time?

Grey:  This is my first book and I tried for months to get an agent. I rarely got past a form letter from an editorial assistant. It was very disheartening, especially as someone who worked in both publishing and film, having written screenplays that have been represented and working with hundreds of authors — I knew I had something. After a lot of research I decided to self-publish. It’s a lot of work, but I liked having the control over who designed my cover and having input and I liked working directly with my editor. I have no regrets. I worked with the options that were available to me and these days, as writers, we definitely have options. The biggest challenge has been marketing and making the world aware of my book. I think next time I would definitely start the marketing and publicity end of things much earlier in the process.

Well, it was such a pleasure having you here on the I Love Romance Blog.  And how apropos is that, considering what a great story Bound to a Vampire appears to be.  Readers, you will just have to pick up a copy of this awesome book by Grey Francis, a very talented author!  🙂

Bound to a Vampire - Front Cover

Here is the blurb for Bound to a Vampire (Into the Dark Woods Series).

Cassandra Montclaire is a three-hundred-and-sixty-year-old vampire living in modern-day New York. Her human life ended three centuries earlier when, condemned as a witch, she was rescued and turned by a Master Vampire named Killian. Bonded in a passionate trio with their Protector, the three lived an exciting and dangerous life full of love, decadence, and dark passion. But then Killian vanished without a trace. Until now.

A human ally of Cassandra’s has proof Killian is alive and is killing off members of his organization. Killian is now a marked man, and Cassandra must find him before time runs out and he is eliminated.

But Cassandra must first journey into her torrid past and face her demons before she can fight for what was lost.
Filled with erotic passion, great tragedy, and dark mystery, Bound to a Vampire is a turbulent thriller that delves into the history of vampires and the dramatic events that shaped them into who they are. For fans of Vampire Mistress by Joey Hill, author Grey Francis creates a vibrant world where secrets abound and the BDSM power exchange between mates is as essential to their survival as the blood they drink.

Purchase Links:

Universal Amazon link:  http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00TKOBMDQ

Tower Books:  http://www.tower.com/bound-vampire-into-dark-woods-grey-francis-paperback/wapi/135326373

About Grey Francis

Grey Francis - Author Photo

Grey Francis, a native of Los Angeles, has been writing since she was a teen, penning stories about ghosts, witches and vampires, among other denizens of the night. After graduating with a B.A. in Journalism from San Diego State University, Grey was employed in the New York publishing world before relocating
back to Los Angeles to work in the film industry. She later explored her fascination with the paranormal as a screenwriter, but it wasn’t until the birth of her series, Into the Dark Woods, that she found her voice as an erotic novelist. When Grey isn’t writing her next book, she is a busy full-time mother of two children.

Grey’s Book:

Bound to a Vampire - Front Cover

And, if you want to know how to connect with the amazing Grey Francis, here are some of her author links:

Website:  greyfrancis.com

Blog:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/13504371.Grey_Francis/questions

Facebook:  facebook.com/greyfrancisauthor

Amazon Author Central:  http://amzn.to/1JHSssN

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13504371.Grey_Francis

Once again, I want to thank both of our guests, Cassandra, the female main character of Bound to a Vampire, and Grey Francis, the brilliant author of the novel, for stopping by!  It was so fun to have you here! Readers, don’t forget to check out Grey’s latest release!  🙂

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