Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Interview with Elisa Paige- plus a summary of her next book!

I have recently read all 3 of Elisa Paige's published books- Stealing Time, Shadowplay and Maelstrom- and wow, were they good!

Below Elisa answers some of my questions about writing, reading and vampires!

If you were stuck on a desert island with one of your characters who would you choose?
(assuming your blood was not tasty to vamps)

Of the books already published (Stealing Time, Shadowplay, and Maelstrom), I’d choose Roddie to be stuck with on a desert island. Primarily, this is because I love his playfulness and sense of humor. It would also be nice to have a master musician for company . . . especially one who happens to be a really hot redhead with dimples, brilliant blue eyes, and a sexy Irish lilt.

In the publication pipeline is another book called Honor Bound. Luca Beltenebros, the hero, is my absolute favorite of all my characters. He’s strong, smart, super hot, and has a wicked sense of humor. He’s also a BorĂ©an, a new kind of supernatural with amazing powers.
Which of your characters do you identify with most?
Amalie is my favorite character because she says what’s on her mind and you always know where you stand with her. She’s also smart, snarky, and fiercely loyal. I identify most with Evie, though.
What (if any) music do you listen to when writing?

I’m always listening to music and am inspired by it. Each of my books has its own “sound track” – the songs that resonated most with me while I was writing a particular story.

Here are some examples:

-- The erotic song James and Evie dance to at the rave: Jasmin Tabatabai’s “Let Yourself Go Wild.” After I wrote the scene, I found a music video on youtube and thought WHOA, that's exactly what I was going for. Here's the link:

-- The dark techno song immediately following the sexy song? Shiny Toy Gun’s “Le Disko.”

-- I’m normally a pretty upbeat person, so to write Mia’s breakdown, I needed something to get me in the proper mindset. Davey Spillane’s “Caoineadh Cu Chulainn” (Lament for Cuchulain, Ireland's legendary hero) did the trick and I was a basketcase for a week.

-- Roddie’s master fiddling skills and the music he played were inspired by Scythian’s incredible fiddler, Alex Fedoryka (who’s also very easy on the eyes).

-- Amalie’s theme song: Relient K’s “Who I Am Hates Who I’ve Been.”

-- Nick’s theme song: Marshall Crenshaw’s “Some Day, Some Way.”

-- The music Nick plays to Amalie from beyond her fence line, night after night, until she finally goes to him was inspired by Scythian’s cover of the theme to “Last of the Mohicans.” Nick’s skill with a feadog pipe was inspired by The Chieftain’s Paddy Moloney.

-- The music I listened to while writing Stealing Time’s sequel, Killing Time (due out June 2011): Nine Inch Nails and Rob Zombie, as well as Robert Tree Cody ("Lakota Lullaby"), Randy Granger ("Apache Tears"), Tribal Spirit ("Tatanka"), traditional songs like "Shawnee Stomp Dance" and "Assiniboine Lullaby." If you've never checked out Native American music, I highly recommend it for its haunting beauty and the rich cultures represented.

How long did it take you to write all 3 books?

Each book takes about three months to write, edit, and polish. Because I studied classical piano when I was young, I can type 110 wpm with 100% accuracy. I also write about twelve hours a day, even on weekends.

wow, 12 hours a day! How do you keep up with friends, life etc working such long days?

While my daughter is in school, I write until it's time to pick her up in the afternoon. We hang out, do homework, have dinner, then she goes to bed, and I return to writing. Many nights, I don't go to sleep until 2:00 or later. A couple of times, I've been so engrossed, I was still writing when the sun came up. I paid for it, though, and was exhausted for days!

What was your favourite book as a child?

I read constantly and had way too many cherished books for one to be a favorite. Topping my list, though, were: The Hero and the Crown, The Blue Sword, the Dragonriders of Pern series, and the Riddle Master series. At one point, I could quote pivotal scenes from Tolkien’s books. And my big brother got me hooked on Stephen King when I was eight, at which point, I could go to sleep only if all the lights were on in my bedroom. That first book, The Shining, still scares the bejeebers out of me. These days, my brother and I share zombiepocalypse books. World War Z and Patient Zero are favorites.

What book had the biggest impact on you/your writing?

No single book, but Robin McKinley and Patricia McKillip cemented my love of the written word.

If you had a special ability what would it be?

This question made me laugh because I was actually thinking about super powers the other day when a bad-tempered driver cut me off in heavy traffic. My blood pressure spiked and I envisioned all sorts of nasty things happening to his jacked-up pickup truck. Which was when it occurred to me that, if I were telekinetic, sudden, savage impulses like that would have immediate, bloody outcomes. Which means you’d have to have incredible self-control not to allow such thoughts. So telekinesis would not the best super power for me!

I do find the idea of shape-changing very appealing. Becoming something else, especially something that could fly? That would be cool.

There are a lot of people who compare all vampire books with Twilight and think they are 'copies' of Twilight. How would you feel if your books were compared to Twilight in this way?

I'll confess that this is a sore spot for many writers who include vampires in their books, at least to those I've talked with. And while I’m thrilled that any book appealed to millions of readers and inspired the kind of passion Twilight did, I’m beyond surprised that all books that include vampires are invariably compared to it.

The oldest known document with a reference to a vampire-like being is a circa-2400 BCE tablet known as "The Sumerian King List." The first book that brought vampires to popularity was Bram Stoker's Dracula, published in 1897, and countless other books about the immortals have been written in the ensuing 114 years. Which is my history-geek way of saying that Meyers didn’t invent vampires. If anything, we have Anne Rice to thank for practically reinventing them in her fantastic Interview with a Vampire, published in 1976.

Nonetheless, my editor said it was inevitable when one reviewer compared my adult urban fantasy, Stealing Time, to Meyers’s young-adult Twilight. Which cracks me up on another level since I personally couldn't get through the Twilight series. The whole idea that ANYone would have to suffer high school eternally explains why Meyer’s vampires believe they’re damned. (Mine aren't. They’re not angst-ridden and, when given a choice, they don’t hunt animals. Nor are they dead, cold, possessing stone-like skin, lacking a heartbeat, or -- horrors -- celibate; quite the opposite, on all counts.)

So, um, yeah. (grin) Comparing one of my books to Twilight makes me kinda nuts.

If you were President for the day what would you do?

If I were president for a day, I’d order all the uber-classified files brought to me so I could find out the truth about Roswell, Area 51, the grassy knoll, Marilyn Monroe and JFK .
If you were a vamp would you drink people or just animals?

Neither. If I were a vamp, I’d set up a black market for packaged blood the way James and Leo did in Stealing Time. Biting animals wouldn’t hold any appeal since you’d get a mouthful of fur. Blech. Think of the hairballs!

In your books we have met bodach, Shucks, Aughisky, High Fae, Lesser Fae and vamps with a mention of shifters. Are there any more creatures in store for us?

Absolutely. I love the idea of multiple supernatural species trying to coexist at the same time they're struggling to find a place for themselves in the mortal world.

Here’s the first sneak peek into Stealing Time’s sequel:

Killing Time is about a bittern named Sephti, a specialized assassin whose species is the result of fae bio-engineering, and Koda, an immortal anzhenii tasked with protecting the Native American nations from supernatural threat.


The anarchist, Philippe, and his Dark Fae ally, King Reiden, go on a bloody rampage across the U.S., brutally awakening humans to the existence of supernaturals. Other supe species take advantage of the ensuing chaos and war unlike anything ever imagined explodes across the world. Because Native American elders are the only ones who remember the old ways, they’re uniquely able to defend against the escalating violence, which makes them targets for retaliation. To protect them, Koda is forced to form a hostile alliance with Sephti, a supe who represents the horrors his people have suffered over the centuries. But as the only bittern to ever escape the faes’ cruel service, no one knows better than she how to combat their assassins.

So, in addition to the vampires, bodach, and fae we’ve met in my other books, Killing Time introduces readers to Native American supernaturals like the Yar Wetar, pukwudgie, Kashehotapalo, Bohpoli, and colocolo.

Why did you decide to write a prequel as your second book in the Texas Fae series (Maelstrom) rather than a sequel?

I actually wrote Maelstrom first and Shadowplay was its sequel. But for reasons too complicated to go into, I offered Shadowplay to my publisher first. BookStrand wound up wanting Maelstrom, too, and -- because of the timing -- released it as the prequel instead. I'm thrilled that BookStrand sped up the print cycle on both, so the Texas Fae series is available in both ebook and mass market paperback.

Sunday, 13 February 2011

Review of Maelstrom by Elisa Paige

4/5 stars

This is the prequel to Shadowplay. And being mildly pedantic I read them in the intended order- Shadowplay and then Maelstrom. I enjoyed both immensely but I do think I would have enjoyed them even more had I read Maelstrom first.

Amalie is a Light Fae exile suffering from amnesia and living on a ranch in small town Fundy, Texas. Her past starts to catch up with her - starting with her boyfriend Nick who she literally disappeared on years ago- and soon it's not just hunky boyfriends knocking on the door! Psychotic brothers, creepy distant relatives and a whole lot of trouble! As the memories come flooding back though, so does her inherent power which makes Amalie a kick ass heroine.

The romance between Amalie and Nick is sweet and well written, and the theme of friendship and loyalty is strong throughout the book.

The book ends right where Shadowplay kicks off, so the flow of the story over the 2 books is seamless.

This is the third book of Elisa Paige's I have read, and I have loved all 3. The writing is good, the world building is excellent and the characters are believable. Another triumph for Ms Paige!

Source- I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Favourite Book Quotes

A selection of my favourite quotes from books I have read:


"...I waited for my thighs and butt to uncramp. Of course, they didn't know the loosening rule. They were screaming things like *Are you crazy? Do you know we're thirty-five years old? Sit down and feed us a Twinkie!* - Shannon Parker"
— P.C. Cast (Divine By Mistake)

"what's your name?"
what?" i asked, squinting at the light.
your name." I reconized Dr. Olendzki peering over me.
you know my name."
I want you to tell me."
Rose. Rose Hathaway."
Do you know your birthday?"
Of course I do. Why are you asking me such stupid things? Did you lose my records?"
Dr. Olendzki gave an exasperated sigh and walked off, taking the annoying light with her. "I think she's fine,"
— Richelle Mead (Frostbite)

"The world is not full of crazy ninja perfume ladies!"
— Elisa Paige (Shadowplay)

"We're, ah, taking a break to evaluate things, and, um, reexamine our relationship, so I stuffed him in a closet!" I burst out in shame. Timmie's eyes goggled.
Is he still there?"
— Jeaniene Frost (Halfway to the Grave)


"I will love you always. When this red hair is white, I will still love you. When the smooth softness of youth is replaced by the delicate softness of age, I will still want to touch your skin. When your face is full of the lines of every smile you have ever smiled, of every surprise I have seen flash through your eyes, when every tear you have ever cried has left its mark upon your face,I will treasure you all the more, because I was there to see it all. I will share your life with you, Meredith, and I will love you until the last breath leaves your body or mine."
— Laurell K. Hamilton (A Lick of Frost)

"Puck whispered, smiling to soften his words. “I wouldn’t defy Oberon for just anyone. But, for you…” He leaned forward, touching his forehead to mine. “I’d come back from the dead for you."
— Julie Kagawa (The Iron Daughter)

"I stared at him in silence. There were so many things I wanted to say. Like, How could you think what I feel for you is only physical? or, Don't you know you're my best friend? and finally, Bones, I love-"
— Jeaniene Frost (Halfway to the Grave)

"I'm crazy about you, Archangel. You scare the shit out of me at times, but I want to dance with you anyway.

-Elena to Raphael"
— Nalini Singh (Angels' Blood)


"There are wounds that never show on the body that are deeper and more hurtful than anything that bleeds."
— Laurell K. Hamilton (Mistral's Kiss)

Thursday, 10 February 2011

If you only buy one book for your kindle this week make it one of these!

These are all available for under £5 on the Kindle at the moment and are some of the best books I have read this year. Some are new, some are not so new but all got a 4 or 5 star rating from me!:

When artist James Wesley realizes Evie Reed is dying, he is so moved by the beautiful reporter's determination to live that he makes her immortal—a vampire, like him. She's the woman he's been waiting over 150 years for. Though initially shocked by the change, Evie quickly embraces her second chance at life, and love.

Just as James and Evie begin to define eternity together, a zealot breaks an ancient treaty, threatening a peace between humans and vampires that has stood for a thousand years. And when he focuses his hatred on Evie, the immortal lovers find themselves swept up in a deadly supernatural war...

Half-vampire Catherine Crawfield is going after the undead with a vengeance, hoping that one of these deadbeats is her father—the one responsible for ruining her mother's life. Then she's captured by Bones, a vampire bounty hunter, and is forced into an unholy partnership.

In exchange for finding her father, Cat agrees to train with the sexy night stalker until her battle reflexes are as sharp as his fangs. She's amazed she doesn't end up as his dinner—are there actually good vampires? Pretty soon Bones will have her convinced that being half-dead doesn't have to be all bad. But before she can enjoy her newfound status as kick-ass demon hunter, Cat and Bones are pursued by a group of killers. Now Cat will have to choose a side . . . and Bones is turning out to be as tempting as any man with a heartbeat.

Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux knows she's the best - but she doesn't know if she's good enough for this job. Hired by the dangerously beautiful Archangel Raphael, a being so lethal that no mortal wants his attention, only one thing is clear - failure is not an option . . . even if the task she's been set is impossible. Because this time, it's not a wayward vamp she has to track. It's an archangel gone bad. The job will put Elena in the midst of a killing spree like no other . . . and pull her to the razor's edge of passion. Even if the hunt doesn't destroy her, succumbing to Raphael's seductive touch just may. Because when archangels play, mortals break . . .

And if you are a bit short on cash why not try:

Which is absolutely free!!

Rae Wilder has problems. Supernatural creatures swarm earth, and humanity is on the brink of extinction. Stalked by a handsome fairy who claims she is like him, demonkind, she thinks maybe it was a mistake breaking the rules by going over the Wall into demon territory.

Plunged into a world of dark magics, fierce creatures, and ritual sacrifice, she is charged with a guarding a magical amulet. The changes to her mind and body are startling, but rather than accept her purpose she struggles against who she is destined to be. Throw in a big lust for a vampire who can't keep his hands off her, and life starts to get complicated.

Rae is forced to make the ultimate choice: to live and die human, or embrace her birth-right and wield magics that could turn her into something wicked, a force of nature nothing can control

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Review of One Hundred Candles by Mara Purnhagen

One Hundred Candles (Past Midnight, #2)One Hundred Candles by Mara Purnhagen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is the sequel to Past Midnight, but could be read as a stand alone book.

There is a darker edge to this one compared to Past Midnight. Charlotte has some pretty heavy stuff to deal with- parental problems, relationship problems and a demon that is following her!

Despite this there is something refreshing and light about this series. Ms Purnhagen deals with these issues without overdramatising, keeping them realistic and believable. Charlottes reactions to events are believable and she is -as much as possible- a normal, likable girl.

The ending is not quite a cliffhanger but does make me interested enough to look out for the next in the series to see what will happen.

I enjoyed this story just as much as the first. It is a quick, interesting read and suitable for younger teens.

View all my reviews

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Review of Shadowplay by Elisa Paige

4/5 stars

Set in the same world as Stealing Time, but a seperate series Shadowplay is an action packed paranormal romance centering around a dark Fae named Mia. Mia is a half breed- half dark and half light Fae. Her father also happens to be the ruler of the Unseelie Court- and he doesn't have any kind of paternal feelings for his only surviving daughter.

She spends most of her time avoiding the Unseelie assassins sent by her father to kill her. When she finds herself accidentally caught up in a war between Vampires she doesn't imagine for a minute that she would find friends, or love. But she soon finds herself entangled with Roddie, a vampire who is determined to show Mia that there is more to life than pain and simply surviving.

There are plenty of fight scenes interspersed with the developing romance between vampire and Fae to keep things moving along at a comfortable pace, and by the end of the book, friendship and love are not the only things that Mia has gained that she thought impossible before.....

Another excellent story from a new author that I hope to see much more from in the future.

Source- I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review

Saturday, 5 February 2011

Review of Archangel's Consort by Nalini Singh

3/5 stars

I was expecting great things from this book, having just finished the first two in the series which were fantastic.

Angel's Blood and Archangel's Kiss were both exquisitely written blends of sexual tension, world building and a rich plot full of twists and turns and excitement. Archangel's Consort was primarily sex scenes and romantic encounters between Elena and Raphael with a bit of a plot thrown in for good measure.

I kept reading because I just knew it would get better, Nalini wouldn't let me down- and it did- but only the last 25% of the book showed the promise of the first two.

I feel that so much more could have been made of Caliane's awakening and it's effect on the other archangels. And I know Elena witnessed terrible things in her childhood and has some serious Daddy issues. But really, does it need shoving down my throat every chapter? Because honestly I am getting bored of it now.

In a nutshell, about 50% of this book is "Oh look, Elena is sad because of her past. Let's have sex to make it better. Oh look, Raphael is sad because of his past. Let's have sex to make it better...."

When we finally get to the action in the very last part of Archangel's Consort, it is the usual action packed adventure I have come to expect and the very end has me gripped and waiting once again for the next in the series.....

Source- I bought a copy from an online bookstore

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Archangels Kiss by Nalini Singh

5 out of 5 stars

This is the second book in what is fast becoming my favourite series.

Elena is now an angel- the first to be Made and not born in living memory. (that's a lot of memory for angels!) but she is very weak still and there are enemies around every corner that would kill her to further their angelic careers or just to get at Raphael.

Luckily Raphael has her back and had his Seven elite warriors training her to have a chance at defending herself. Plus Raphael is ready to tear apart anyone that threatens her.

A lot of the book is taken up with the development of the relationship between Elena and Raphael and Elena's slow but steady recovery from her transformation.

There are still plenty of other plot developments and twists to keep us gripped though. Trying to figure out who is behind the violent attacks on vampires and angels and trying to figure out what Lijuan is up to kept me guessing. And credit to Ms Singh I was surprised on both counts!

I can't wait to read the next one and I hope Elena grows stronger so we get to see a lot more action from angel Elena.

-Source - I purchased this from an online bookstore