Debut Print Book: Hearts of Darkness by Kira Brady
I’ve had some concerns by readers who are primarily print readers that the coverage at Dear Author has been too focused on ebooks. When I asked the readers what they were interested in seeing, they responded that they would like to know more about print debut authors. We developed a little questionnaire and every Wednesday at 10:00 AM CST (as long as we have content) we’ll post the questionnaire answers along with links to the author’s site and a buy link to her book. I hope this helps people discovery new books. Now, on to the answers.
Name of debut release: Hearts of Darkness
Release date: 08/07/2012
Publisher: Kensington Zebra
2 sentence summary: In a gritty alternate Seattle, two warring shape-shifter races fight to control the Gate to the Land of the Dead. A mercenary werewolf is forced to team up with a human nurse to stop the Gate from opening and unleashing an apocalypse.
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Characters: Hart is a jaded mercenary who has been outcast from his people, an ancient race of shifters who can assume the form of their totem animal. He will stop at nothing to earn his freedom from the dragon shifter who owns his soul, until he meets a human woman determined to get in his way.
Kayla Friday is a human nurse who knows nothing of the supernatural until she arrives in Seattle to search for clues in her sister’s untimely death. With the help of Hart, a dangerous man who is all kinds of bad for her, she quickly learns the rules of this new, war-torn Seattle.
What makes this story different: The Deadglass world is a unique blend of Babylonian, Norse, and Native American mythologies set in an alternate, modern day Seattle. Publishers Weekly named it one of the best romances of the summer.
Is this a series?: The Deadglass Trilogy
Why you wrote this book: I was inspired by the ghost stories and legends of my native city to reimagine a Seattle in which the two clashing cultures that shaped the landscape were really two enemy shape-shifter races. In the Deadglass world, the Scandinavian immigrants who built much of Seattle are megalomaniac Norse dragon shifters, and the local people who must fight to defend their culture and territory are shape-shifters based on the myths of Raven, Thunderbird, Crow, and Wolf. There is a great quote attributed to Chief Seattle where he promises that “these shores will swarm with the invisible dead of my tribe…There is no Death. Only a Change of Worlds.” I imagined a Seattle teeming with malevolent ghosts from a cracked gate that separated the living and dead worlds. The image was so clear, I knew it demanded to be written.
Why is this your first published book? How many did you write before? I discovered romance novels in graduate school and started writing one never-to-see-the-light-of-day time-travel Regency romance, erroneously thinking that liking to read Regency meant I should write it. I quickly learned that my skills lie in making stuff up, not historical accuracy, and jumped ship. Hearts of Darkness is my second full manuscript.
What’s your writing process? It’s an evolving thing. Hearts of Darkness was mostly pantsed, with only a few major turning points and the ending mapped out in my head. I started it in November for National Novel Writing Month and rewrote it many times. I’m currently finishing the third book in the trilogy, which I plotted in much more detail. I use Write or Die to get down the first draft, which leads me to write in 1k word chunks. Once I reach the climax of the story, I start at the beginning with heavy editing. After it’s smoothed out, I share it with my critique partner and write the ending. More editing and beta readers, then it’s sent to my editor.
Your next published book. Hearts of Shadow, Book 2 of the Deadglass Trilogy
The last book you read that you loved. Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor (reviewed here)
The last book you read for research. Sons of the Profits: There’s no business like grow Business. The Seattle Story 1851-1901 by Bill Speidel
The romance book character you most identify with. Molly Somerville from This Heart of Mine by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. She writes and illustrates children’s books featuring Daphne the Bunny and has an impulsive streak.
You can check out more about Kira Brady and her books at http://www.kirabrady.com