Hi all! Grab a cup of tea – or whatever it is you like to drink – and join in the discussion. Today we have Katherine Wyvern, Nicky Penttila and Siobhan Muir visiting and giving us a look into their writings.
About our guests...
Katherine Wyvern ~ I am the dreamer who always wanted to be somewhere else and ended up living a gipsy life in Italy, Norway, Germany, France, Spain, different universe, you name it. I worked as a printer, a welder and a gardener. I still am an artist and poet at heart. I am currently settled in SW France (for a while), living in a yurt. I don’t have a car, but I have a horse. Hay prices worry me far more than oil prices. Find Katherine at her Website/Blog and on Facebook
Nicky Penttila ~ I live in the DC metro area, after working for newspapers in Hartford, San Francisco, and Baltimore. I love honorable (if a little complicated) heroes and adventurous (if a little dreamy) heroines who may not solve all the world’s problems but not for lack of trying. As for reading, I'm a nomad, any book is fair game, but I always return to my first loves, historical fiction and science fiction/fantasy. Find Nicky at her Website/Blog on Facebook on Twitter and at Goodreads
Siobhan Muir ~ She lives in Las Vegas, Nevada, with her husband, two daughters, and a vegetarian cat she swears is a shapeshifter, though he's never shifted when she can see him. When not writing, she spends time looking down a microscope at fossil fox teeth, pursuing her other love, paleontology. An avid reader of science fiction/fantasy, her husband gave her a paranormal romance for Christmas one year, and she was hooked. She’s been writing since childhood. Friends and family threatened to lynch her unless she published. Siobhan believes in happily ever after, redemption, and communication, which you’ll find in her paranormal romance stories. Find Siobhan at her Website on her Blog on Facebook on Twitter at Goodreads and at Google Plus
What book are you going to tell us about today?
Katherine ~ Black Carnival, it is my debut novel. At a certain point it was intended as the beginning of a trilogy. For the time being I will just say that the sequel, White Sands, is almost finished, so please stay tuned for news!
Nicky ~ A Note of Scandal, my first to be published!
Siobhan ~ Her Devoted Vampire is my debut EP release. It’s not in a series, but it is the first story to introduce my world. All my stories take place in this world and these characters will show up again as secondary characters in other stories. They don’t have to be read in order, but it’s easiest to start with Her Devoted Vampire.
How'd you/your muse come up with this story?
Katherine ~ Black Carnival started out years ago as a short story while I was stitching a black and silver costume for the Carnival in Venice. I was already writing erotica as a hobby, and the costume cried for a tale of its own. I never got to wear the costume in Venice, but the story remained. Last year it suddenly demanded attention again and turned into a full blown novel, integrating elements from other old stories and new inspirations.
Nicky (A Note of Scandal) ~ First I had an ambitious heroine who wanted to get her music out to the public. Then, as I was doing research on newspapers in the Regency, which I'd assumed were all gossip rags, I discovered that the first publisher who tried to publish "truth and nothing but" was founded in this time. So of course, she lies to sell her story to him.
Siobhan (Her Devoted Vampire) ~ To be honest, I got inspired when my husband said he thought romance was silly and unrealistic. I wrote a story I thought would interest him as well as my regular female readers. I tried to make the hero believable to him as well as sexy, strong, and wonderful for women. :) It worked out pretty well.
Describe the hero in five words.
Katherine (Black Carnival) ~ Quiet, firm, rangy, unfussy, and mysterious.
Nicky (A Note of Scandal) ~ Powerful, principled, socialized but untamed.
Siobhan (Her Devoted Vampire) ~ Mysterious, devoted, primal, protective, and handsome.
Describe the heroine in five words.
Katherine (Black Carnival) ~ Emotional, shy, self-ironic (is that two words?), tender, lonely.
Nicky (A Note of Scandal) ~ Ambitious, clever, adaptable but adrift.
Siobhan (Her Devoted Vampire) ~ Skeptical, strong, determined, sassy, and humorous.
Who's your favorite character in the book & why?
Katherine (Black Carnival) ~ It’s really hard to choose, it would have to be the hero or his male lover, Laz’law. Maybe Laz’law, because he shares something of my own nature, adventurous with a hint of insecurity, but in a more flamboyant style. He is a stunningly beautiful black boy, a bit of a brat, a bit of a sweetheart, hiding a very tender heart behind a smug, tough, muscular, all-tattooed and pierced exterior.
Nicky (A Note of Scandal) ~ I love them all, especially Will (the hero, a newspaper wretch like me) and Swizzlewit (a minor character). But I guess my fave is my heroine, Olivia, because she goes full-bore for what she wants. She inspired me.
Siobhan (Her Devoted Vampire) ~ My favorite character is Bridget because she is introduced to the world of fantastic creatures and won’t take it at face value. She makes them explain it to her and even then she’s skeptical. I also love that she grows and learns. Her understanding comes later.
What's your favorite line in the story?
Katherine (Black Carnival) ~ Oooh! That is a painful one! There are so many! Ok, a little description of Laz’law: “Even in that room full of gorgeously clad and masked figures, he looked as beautiful, powerful and exotic as a dew-spattered panther in a pack of well-groomed poodles.”
Nicky (A Note of Scandal) ~ Most of my favorites need exposition, but here is one: She felt a new composition coming on.
Siobhan (Her Devoted Vampire) ~ “Except, perhaps, being kidnapped by a vampire with a house full of werewolves.” (Fredrick)
If the font in the following sections seems small, hold the 'Ctrl' key on your keyboard and click on the + (plus) key until it's large enough for you. :)
Here's a look at Black Carnival by Katherine Wyvern...
~ Blurb ~
The city of Venice has been rebuilt on the far planet of Cydonia. Despite the uneasy presence of the mysterious, only part-human Sand Riders who roam the Cydonian deserts, The Black Carnival has become a celebration of beauty and lust known all over the Galaxy.
Ivory Blake, a young artist from the conservative Central Planets, is thrown in the middle of the festivities to illustrate a new book about the Black Carnival. As a guest of the glamorous art collector Lukan Løvensgård, her professional assignment quickly turns into a highly emotional exploration of sensuality in all its most varied aspects, from BDSM to romantic love, passing through obsession, fear, jealousy and passionate, tender complicity.
~ Excerpt ~
Laz'law took the almost empty glass from my hand; I heard him getting up and walk off towards the bar, but by then Lune was kissing my mouth in intense, hot, tongue-and-teeth kisses, and I was quite distracted. I felt Laz'law sitting back on the sofa and lifting my skirt up. He took off my tall, soft suede boots and began caressing my knees, just under the edge of the skirt, then further up, running a flat warm palm along my legs. When his hand reached the naked skin of my thighs I shuddered with pleasure and finally broke the kiss, opening my eyes to look at him.
He smiled at me, and kept caressing me in flat even caresses as if savoring the smoothness of the silk stockings and of my skin. Lune looked at him with a curiously affectionate smile, and then he said to me, "Come here."
He pulled me to sit in his lap, and began kissing me again, running his searching lips on my mouth, my throat, my neck. I sighed, my head thrown back, quite abandoned in his arms, when I felt Laz'law standing up behind me. His warm hands began to massage my naked shoulders, as if to ease my nerves. I didn’t think I needed any easing, but his warm fingers seemed to unravel my back as if it had been knotted. I bent my head forward to invite his hands higher. He obliged; his palms rubbed warmly along my neck, crawled in circles on my skull, loosening my hair, then descended again. He caressed my tightly corseted breasts and sides. Then he lifted my hair out of the way and started kissing the nape of my neck and my spine, between my shoulder blades.
I was melting like chocolate.
I pressed my face in the curve of Lune’s throat, opening my lips to taste his skin. Laz’law kneeled on the carpet behind me, lifted the skirt up around my waist, and went on kissing his way down my back as his hands caressed my legs and then my buttocks. His breath puffed warm through the crisscrossing lacing of my corset, making me shiver in anticipation.
I think I could have gone on like that forever, but after a while Lune sat up and moved further back on the deep sofa.
“Turn,” he whispered, pushing and pulling me around until I turned in his lap and sat facing Laz’law, who smiled, running his hands lightly along the inside of my legs.
I relaxed against Lune’s body, my back on his chest. I parted my legs a bit, feeling wonderfully exposed, slutty and happy. Lune lowered the zipper of my corset and, as my breasts spilled out of their almost painful confinement, I sighed and put my arms up around his neck, turning his face down to mine, silently begging him to kiss me again.
He was more than willing to comply, and kissed me deeply, hotly, his lips covering mine entirely, his tongue lashing down my throat, circling in my mouth, searching and teasing, pinning my head irresistibly against his shoulder. He kissed in fierce, carnivorous kisses, in surprising, delightful contrast with the quiet courtesy of his manner and the sweetness of his smile.
One of his hands had taken hold of my left breast, and he was squeezing my nipple, softly at first and then harder, rolling the tender skin between his strong fingers until it almost hurt. He smoothly pushed his knees between mine, and spread my legs wide with his, opening me to Laz’law’s kisses. My breath was quick and shallow in his mouth.
I could feel Laz'law's rough, scaly, metal studded brows brushing on the skin of my thighs, his warm mouth open on the almost transparent lace of my panties. His tongue was even warmer, and he ran it flatly on the damp lace a few times before untying the two twin bows that tied the panties around my hips. When my sex was naked and open before him, I pushed it upward towards his face, with a tiny pleading moan. When he stooped forward, I began rocking against his rough chin; he laughed softly and started lapping me in brief quick laps, retreating out of my reach after each lap, until I strained and arched my back for more.
"What a hot little thing she is, indeed," he said, and Lune broke the kiss again to nod and laugh.
“Told you,” he said.
They both stared at me, and I suddenly felt somewhat self-conscious at the thought that they had been talking about me, although it was quite natural, I guess. I sat up a bit straighter, closing my legs somewhat. Laz'law smiled up at me, caressing my thighs, murmuring something unintelligible but soothing while kissing my knees apart again, but in that moment I felt Lune's hands gently pushing me off his lap. I stood up and he carefully unbuttoned my skirt, which slid down my hips with a silky rustle. I kicked it off, and Laz'law, still fully dressed, still on his knees on the carpet, pulled me toward him and pressed his mouth hard on my sex.
That is when the last of my shyness went overboard.
Buy Black Carnival here Evernight Publishing -- Amazon -- ARe
Here's a look at A Note of Scandal by Nicky Penttila...
~ Blurb ~
What’s the harm in a little white lie? Especially when it could carry so much good—a new life for a wounded soldier, catharsis after long years of war, and an opportunity for lady composer Olivia Delancey to finally hear her music played in public.
Newspaper publisher Will Marsh refuses to compound the sins of his father’s generation by taking money to print propaganda. But with the end of the wars in France and America, he needs something new to drive Londoners to grab his paper first. Why not publish the score of the “Tune That Took Waterloo,” by a wounded vet, no less?
As Olivia struggles to keep her secrets from this unsuitably alluring publisher, and Will fights to find the truth without losing his hold on this bright-eyed angel who has descended into his life, both discover another sort of truth.
Being the talk of London can be bad—or very, very good.
~ Excerpt ~
“Drinking in dear Cousin Olivia?” Avery accepted a mug of over-yeasty ale from the passing barkeep.
“The Honorable. And once my intended. Seems I’ve cocked that up, as well.” He sipped the foam off the top of the ale. “Too bad I can’t invite you to sup with us tonight. Should be a right circus.”
“She hangs so on his words.” Will frowned, and then caught himself. She was not the story; that florid piece of political beef beside her was.
“Can’t you see? Look at her chin. The edge, there, under her ear.” It was pale, but even at a distance he could see a slight tremor. A crack in the chiseled beauty.
“White-hot angry, my friend.” Will tore his gaze from the porcelain lady to raise an eyebrow at him. “Trust me,” Avery said, “she has had that tiny flaw since she was a dandled babe.”
“Taken advantage of it, have you?” Will’s eyes narrowed, oddly protective. Avery put up his hands in mock surrender.
“Only a very small snake.” He grinned. “Down the back of her dress, at a tea party.”
“And all she did was set her chin?” Ladies were cold, he knew, but that sounded downright frigid.
“At first. Then the screaming started.” Avery pushed into the crowd. “We’d best remove the poor man from danger, don’t you think?”
Though the room was small, they made slow progress through the swells of men reeking of sour beef, stale beer, and sweat. Wishing to avoid even the appearance of aggression, so swift a complaint to launch against newsmen, Will allowed Avery to lead. But he did not take his gaze from the lady. Mellon’s hand had crept up to her shoulder. Was he pulling her closer?
Will’s hand fisted. He might need to punch his quarry before interviewing him.
“Mellon.” Avery stepped between the couple, allowing the society jewel to take a step back, arm intact. Will stopped short beside her.
When her attention was elsewhere, her round, full lips dominated her face, the bottom line of the lower lip parallel with the soft oval of her jaw line. But no one would notice the rest of her face, or the fragile cream of her skin, when she turned her gaze on them. Eyes like sapphires, expensive and rare. And crackling with anger.
Buy A Note of Scandal here Evernight Publishing -- Kindle
Here's a look at Her Devoted Vampire by Siobhan Muir...
~ Blurb ~
Bridget doesn't believe in vampires or werewolves, but that doesn't stop one from kidnapping her.
Bridget Shanahan’s life seems bleak and boring until she gets mugged and abducted from her favorite coffee shop by the sexiest man she’s ever met. Unfortunately, he’s a lunatic who believes he’s some kind of vampire savior surrounded by a security force of werewolves. And he’s determined to keep her.
Fredrick MacGregor has been having visions of this woman in danger for the last six months. A woman he must protect because she’s the Avatar of the Goddess. However, when he brings her home, she doesn’t believe he's a vampire or that she is the Avatar, and she definitely doesn't want to stay. But the sense of danger persists and he'll do anything to keep her safe, even if it means risking the loss of the only woman who makes his endless life bearable again.
~ Excerpt ~
“Who the hell are you? Did you escape from a mental institution? Forget to take your meds today? I have got to get out of here!” Bridget shoved the tray toward him and tried to slide out of the bed, naked or no. She’d raid one of the closets for a coat and walk to the nearest place to get a taxi. Maybe I’ll just take his trench coat.
“Bridget, I can’t let you leave quite yet,” he said as he caught her right arm in a gentle but firm grip. “Not until you tell me what you are.”
“You can’t let me leave? Or won’t?” She pulled against his grip, but it was like she was handcuffed to a concrete post.
“The result is the same regardless of semantics.”
“Why are you keeping me here? What am I to you? I was just minding my own business and told you I didn’t want or need your help getting home, and you kidnapped me! Why didn’t you take me to the hospital?” The last was shouted at him as she jerked her arm to get away. She kept pulling despite the pain in her shoulder as his grip tightened. “Let me go!”
She yanked the full weight of her body against his hold on her arm and felt the shoulder separate. His fingers bruised her arm, and his expression shifted into feral intensity that made her pull all the harder as she tried to breathe through the pain.
He’s a freak! I won’t be held like some animal for him to admire!
Fredrick squeezed her arm until it was numb from the elbow down, and she moaned in anguish. At the last second, she reversed her momentum and swung her free hand, balled into a fist, at his head. To her amazement, he caught it and held it fast, not crushing her fingers, but holding them tightly closed. She froze, absorbing the meaning of his strength, and realized she’d never get away from him. He was just too strong for her to fight. It infuriated her she was so easily defeated, and she directed all that impotent rage at him through her livid glare.
“Let. Me. Go.”
“You are tired and overwrought. You should rest.” He met her gaze unflinchingly. “We will speak more after you’ve slept.”
Fredrick didn’t release her until she relaxed her body back into the pillows on the bed. But her eyes burned with her wrath, and two tears slowly spilled over her lower lids to drip down her cheeks. She didn’t sob, nor did her lips tremble, but her anger seethed beneath her skin. She said nothing, and after a while he let go of her and stood.
“Don’t try to escape.” His voice crackled with cold fury. What did he have to be mad about? “I will tell Cynthia and the others to keep an eye and an ear out for you. One thing about werewolves and vampires you should be aware of: we are a hundred times faster and stronger than the average human male, so you won’t be a problem to catch. I don’t recommend trying to run.”
He picked up the tray and stepped back from the bed.
Bridget said nothing, just stared at him with recrimination. She wouldn’t give him the satisfaction of rubbing her numb arm where it began to tingle. It was badly bruised, she knew, maybe even dislocated, but she didn’t look at it. She glared as he nonchalantly turned his back on her and went to the door of the room.
Before Fredrick left, he reached out and grabbed the pocketknife, then switched off the light and shut the door behind him. She lay in the dark with nothing but the light from the crack beneath door to illuminate her tears. She waited until his shadow stepped away before she rolled over and allowed herself to cry.
Buy Her Devoted Vampire here Evernight Publishing -- Amazon -- ARe -- Barnes and Noble -- Bookstrand -- Smashwords
Thank you for joining us here today! It was a pleasure getting to know all of you and your work.