Blood and Ghosts; by Shira Anthony – Guest Interview and Giveaway
Please welcome back Shira Anthony who is here today to talk about her newest release, Blood and Ghosts. Make sure to read through to the end to check out the very cool giveaway Shira is doing.
Welcome back Shira, since you’ve been a guest before, how about just a brief reminder about yourself?
Thanks for having my again, Andrew! So the quick down and dirty about me… I’m a former opera singer, an attorney, and I write gay romances. I’ve written stories about musicians, lawyers, mermen, and vampires.
So let’s jump right in, you’re really moving away from your ‘comfort’ zone lately. First Mermen, now Vampires. Talk about that dynamic a bit.
I love writing contemporary romance, but I’ve loved reading fantasy and sci fi since I was a kid, so I think the progression to stepping out of the comfort zone of “what I know” (musicians) into my imagination was a natural one. Maybe out of my comfort zone is becoming my comfort zone?
But seriously, writing in a universe readers are familiar with (contemporary) is a great place to start before tackling the more challenging fantasy world building. I had written enough contemporary books that I felt more confident writing a universe from the ground up. But it’s still a huge challenge, and I couldn’t do it without my beta readers and my fabulous editor.
The Blood series, can you give us an overview of the series as a whole?
Three books in total: Blood and Rain, Blood and Ghosts, and Blood and Eternity. The vampires are not so much demonic, but a different species from humans. They can breed with humans, and they can also create vampires in the more traditional style from human beings. Their society has a hierarchy, with those born vampires (“ancient vampires”) as the equivalent of royalty. The ancients take care of other vampires and they entered into a true with the vampire hunters that the hunters may execute vampires who murder humans.
The plot begins in the late 1800s in France, and extends to 2015 in the United States. It follows the two main characters, Nicolas Lambert, an ancient vampire, and Adrien Gilbert, a vampire hunter. Adrien falls for Nicolas in spite of his hatred of the creatures who killed his mother when he was a young boy. Adrien becomes immortal through Nicolas’s blood, although Adrien does not become a vampire. Adrien and Nicolas are separated, and Adrien vows to find Nicolas.
The story features three pairings, and never fear, all will get their HEAs (I’m a sucker for a happy ending!). But before they get their HEA, Nicolas and Adrien will struggle and suffer as they try to prevent a war between hunters and vampires.
Shifting to Blood and Ghosts, how does that move the series along?
Blood and Ghosts is a bridge between books, in some sense, in that it features the manifestation of Adrien’s power as an immortal hunter: he can control time. Blood and Ghosts answers many questions, but although the book ends with a happily for now, there is still a great deal that needs to be resolved before the two men can by happy.
How much research did you do to write this type of novel?
I researched French history from the late 1800s and incorporated that into the books. France was much like England in Victorian times. A society on the verge of the modern era, but with one foot still firmly planted in the past, with its conventions and customs.
The ending was the most fun to write, because I was able to reunite the two main characters after a great deal of grief. It’s romantic, and it’s poignant, because it leaves Adrien with a choice to make (I won’t spoil that). I love writing angsty scenes!
What part made you struggle them most?
The time travel. Hands down. I rewrote the time travel bits a half a dozen times, and kept tweaking with my betas and editors so it makes logical sense. There are still a few anachronisms left unexplained, but they are intentional, and will be resolved in the last book in the series. Seriously, time travel makes my head spin!
Tell us something interesting that is not in the blurb?
Adrien’s power comes with his own personal demon, of sorts. For those of you who know Star Trek, think good Kirk/evil Kirk. Adrien’s demon is his baser nature. He must learn to control the demon to control his power, and if he fails, he will die. The struggle isn’t at all over at the end of Blood and Ghosts, but the stage is set for it.
The last book will probably be released in the first half of 2016. And while I have an idea for a spinoff series for my Mermen of Ea books, this series will end with the Blood and Eternity.
Wow! Tough question. I haven’t had a lot of time to read lately. I have read a few graphic novels (Japanese manga) to cleanse my writing palate, though. There’s a fabulous series called Tokyo Ghoul I’m pretty much hooked on. It’s pretty violent and gruesome, but the plot and the art are gripping. I’m also completely in love with the Attack on Titan series. Similar, paranormal/fantasy manga from Japan. I’m a very visual person, so reading the graphic novels inspires me with my own writing.
Last question is all yours – feel free to talk about anything you want your readers to know about you, your book, anything at all.
The last book in the Mermen of Ea Series, Running with the Wind, comes out on June 8th! I’m so excited about that, although I’m going to miss some of those characters. Some I’ll reconnect with in a planned spinoff series featuring 2 secondary characters, though, so readers will have a chance to revisit all of the series characters, if only in cameo.
Even better? I’ve got a fabulous map of the Ea universe that will be part of the book! I’ll be sharing that when it’s closer to release time, but it is so cool – I can’t thank the Dreamspinner folks enough for indulging me!
Thanks, Andrew, for hosting me today! -Shira
Sequel to Blood and Rain/Blood: Book Two
With vampire Nicolas Lambert’s marriage to a rival clanswoman only weeks away, Adrien Gilbert struggles to come to terms with his defeat at the hands of Verel Pelletier, a vampire hunter and an immortal like himself. Adrien and his former teacher, Roland Günter, begin to explore his newly acquired abilities. But without his soul’s sword, Adrien flounders.
On Nicolas’s wedding day, a two-hundred-year old secret is revealed, sending the wedding party into a blazing battle between hunters and vampires. Once again Adrien finds himself facing Pelletier’s superior strength. Just as Adrien believes all hope of a future with Nicolas is lost, he finally learns his true gift—he can turn back time. But time travel comes with a high cost. To save Nicolas, Adrien must become strong enough to use his power without descending into madness.
About the Author:
Shira Anthony is a complete sucker for a happily-ever-after, and rarely reads or writes a story without one. Never a fan of instalove, Shira likes to write stories about real men with real issues making real relationships work.
In her last incarnation, Shira was a professional opera singer, performing roles in such operas as “Tosca,” “Pagliacci,” and “La Traviata,” among others. Her Blue Notes Series is loosely based upon her own experiences as a professional musician.
Shira is married with two children and two insane dogs and when she’s not writing, she is usually in a courtroom trying to make the world safer for children. When she’s not working, she can be found aboard a 36’ catamaran at the Carolina coast with her favorite sexy captain at the wheel. She’s given up TV for evenings spent with her laptop, and she never goes anywhere without a pile of unread M/M romance on her Kindle.
Interested in hearing Shira sing? Here’s a link to a live performance of Shira singing an aria from Puccini’s “Tosca”: http://www.shiraanthony.com/wp-conten…
You can subscribe to Shira’s monthly newsletter for updates, free fiction, and subscriber-only contests here: http://www.shiraanthony.com/newsletter/
Find the Author:
Web site: http://www.shiraanthony.com
Blood and Ghosts Blog Tour Participants:
April 20th – Prism Book Alliance
April 21st – Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
April 22nd – My Fiction Nook
April 23rd – Love Bytes
April 24th – MM Good Book Reviews
April 25th – Andrew Q. Gordon (The Land of Make Believe)
April 26th – Aisling Mancy
April 27th – Bike Book Reviews
April 28th – Charlie Cochet
April 29th – Hearts on Fire Book Reviews
April 30th – Kim Fielding
Blood and Ghosts Blog Tour Giveaway:
Enter to win a Blood Series prize basket including a Dr. Who Wibbly Wobbly Timey Wimey Pendant, a paperback copy of Blood and Rain, and a Blood Series pen.