Today I have Kim Kasch,a fellow Crimson Frost author, on my blog, sharing her thoughts on books and writing. I will be reviewing Kim’s New Adult, historical fantasy novel; ‘The Viking Princess’, in the next few weeks. I love Arthurian legends and this one is intriguing. See what you think.
THE VIKING PRINCESS is not your typical Disney princess. This story sizzles. Morgaine LeFey is King Arthur’s half-sister and she has a Viking Prince for her lover–and who needs a Knight to come to your rescue, when you have a Viking?! But England and Scandinavia were at war – so this is one romance that nearly tore two kingdoms apart: They met on a battlefield, poised against each other, but their attraction was more powerful than any sword, stronger than any warrior and more magical than Merlin.
What would you like your readers to know about Kim Kasch?
I’m a writer who grew up in a family with nine kids, when Mom and Dad could probably really only afford two. Plus, Grandma came to live with us after Grandpa died so, I was into recycling before it was the trendy thing to do…back then, we called it wearing “Hand-me Downs” not Repurposed articles and it was nothing to be proud of. Today, in Portland, the wealthy recycle, reuse and repurpose articles and feel no shame in telling people they shop in thrift shops. ;D Times have really changed.
The Viking Princess is your debut novel. I understand it’s a retelling of a little known legend involving King Arthur’s half-sister and a Viking. It sounds intriguing, can you tell us a little about the story and its characters?
Well, The Viking Princess isn’t your typical Disney Princess. She is a sorceress and a shield maiden who doesn’t need a Knight to come to her rescue. In fact, she meets her Viking lover on the battlefield as they sit poised against each other: Knights versus Vikings.
Morgaine Le Fey is King Arthur’s half-sister and Holger Danske is the Danish Viking Prince and warrior who ride against each other as enemies but they faced an attraction more powerful than any sword, stronger than any warrior and more magical than all the powers of Merlin.
Holger steals Morgaine away from Camelot in the hopes of using her as a bargaining chip against King Arthur but, when they are alone together, emotions are sparked inside them that rage into a blazing fire that threatens both their kingdoms.
Is having your book published like a dream come true? If so what does it mean to you?
I have been writing stories for as long as I can remember. Maybe because we only had one television and with twelve people living in the house, I never got to pick the shows we watched. So, instead I read books from the library and wrote my own stories to entertain my brothers and sisters and later my own kids. And, getting a book published validates the writing I’ve been doing over the years. Plus, sharing The Viking Princess with English-speaking people is very important to me. I believe King Arthur and Holger Danske really lived epic lives that have been memorialized in legends over the years. And, perhaps the only reason we know the stories about Arthur is because they were written in English.
I think it’s time people learned about the other stories that are woven together throughout history in French, Danish and Celtic languages. The Viking Princess shares one such story.
What inspired you to write The Viking Princess? Is it a standalone story or part of a series?
The Viking Princess is the first book in The Viking Series. The second book, The Viking Queen, should be coming out soon. The Viking Princess is a story that stands alone as it tells the tale of the budding romance and is the beginning of the romance between Morgaine Le Fey and Holger Danske. It is a true sizzling romance but the next book will build more upon the legends and lives of the characters.
I was inspired by Hamlet’s Castle, when I went to visit the historic site with my husband. There in the tunnels beneath the castle I first saw Holger Danske and heard of his legend. When I came back home to Portland, I started researching the stories of King Arthur, Charlemagne and Holger Danske and found that their stories were woven together. All three Kings were given magical swords but I had never heard of any of them except for Excalibur. That peaked my interest and I had to learn more. . .
Have you a favourite writing place? If so, where and why do you like writing there?
I love to curl up on my bed, late at night, with my laptop…not very romantic but it sure is a cozy place to write ;D
Was it difficult to write about historical events and Vikings who are usually characterised as wild and hedonistic for the New Adult market?
It was hard to try to weave the Arthurian legends into the Viking tale, along with the stories of King Charlemagne while being respectful to all three legends in a way that could tell Holger’s and Morgaine’s romance without seeming trite.
Social media savvy is important for writers. What’s your favourite social media platform and why?
I love Pinterest because I can see so many crafts, foods and fun things without having to travel any further than my laptop. Plus, I love blogging too because I can share so many stories, recipes, and pictures with my family and friends…did I say I love to write ;D
I love fantasy stories and King Arthur’s legends are particular favourites of mine. Was it your love of history and legends that made you write this story? Would you like to write in any other genre?
I have always loved historical stories but I also love to see new spins on old tales. I loved Wicked because it was a new perspective of The Wicked Witch of the West and brought an entirely new light (of green) to Elphaba. Plus Maleficent was another story that took a totally different twist on an old tale. Those types of books really appeal to me. I even enjoyed Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Maybe because I also love horror stories.
I love to write all sorts of stories from kids’ stories to sizzling adult romance. One day I’d even like to write a recipe book ;D I just love to write.
Do you have a writing process you would like to share with us?
Late in the evening, I love to relax with my laptop. Not very romantic to curl up with an electronic device…but, then again, it can be very soothing.
What’s next for you and your writing?
I have a young adult horror novel coming out in July. It’s set in my hometown of Portland, Oregon and it’s about a demonic tattoo artist. Did you know that Portland, Oregon is the fifth most tattooed city in the country? Just check out this site: http://www.today.com/id/38722211/ns/today-today_style/t/top-most-tattooed-cities-america/#.VSi7VJOEz9M
Anyway, Demon’s Ink is a mix of Stephen King’s “Needful Things” and the legendary horror of “Rosemary’s Baby.”
And, I have book II in the Viking Series, The Viking Queen, coming out soon.
Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us today Kim. I look forward to reading and reviewing , The Viking Princess soon.
‘He laughed at her, making her senses bristle.
She was not amused. “Am I humorous?”
“I have heard you are many things,” he replied, “but humor has never been cited as one of your virtues.”
“First you laugh at me, and then you belittle me. Is this the way you treat all women?”
He pulled back on the reins. His horse slid to an immediate standstill. Then, burying his face into her hair, he whispered in her ear, “I have shown enormous restraint. Would you like me to show you how I treat all women?”
The burning ember inside her flared to a flame. The muscles low in her belly tightened, as she clenched her legs tighter, wrapping them around his steed. Sucking air into her lungs, she felt the immediate pulse of desire race through the core of her body. She wanted to reach back over her head and wrap her arms around his neck, to pull him even closer.
It was all she could do to hold her tongue and keep from begging him, when all she wanted to say was, “Yes, yes, please show me.”
Her body motionless, she could feel the warmth of him as his hands grew bold, slipping beneath the soft linens covering her, his fingers gently gliding up over her stomach, travelling beneath her breasts and edging up…
A voice whispered inside her head. What are you doing? This man is your enemy. He intends to kill you, your brother, everyone you love…
She grabbed his wrists, holding him still and steady. “You have caught me, kidnapped me, and dragged me here. I may be your prisoner, but do not think that I am interested in your advances.”
His body tensed and he pulled back his hands, gripping her firmly about the waist. “I, Holger, the prince over all the Norse lands, have never had a woman decline the privilege of being my lover.”
“Prince or pauper, it matters not to me what rank you hold, for I, too, am highborn and accustomed to many privileges,” she snapped back, unwilling to let him bask in his own conceit. “And being your lover is not a privilege I would prize.”
“Perhaps,” he said, softening his touch. Slowly he ran his finger down the length of her neck, taunting her. “But are you accustomed to this?” He swung her around to face him; his mouth moved to her neck, gently caressing her throat with his lips and tongue.
The warrior with the devil’s horns was surprisingly gentle and tender with his affections. Morgaine could not contain her pleasure. A small sigh moved up from her throat, over her lips, unexpectedly escaping into the night air. “This is nothing,” he whispered against her flesh, his hand moving down over her navel. Travelling to the valley between her thighs, he pressed his fingers into her apex and she gasped at his touch.
He pulled his hand back. “After your shrill tongue and insults, the next time you will have to beg for my attentions.”
His tone shocked her back into the present. No man had ever spoken to her in this manner. He had no idea of her power. She was not some peasant he could toy with. Morgaine Le Fey was a princess, the sister of King Arthur. It was her turn to laugh…and it came out of her loud and hard. He must not know of her talents. She was the most powerful sorceress in Camelot and perhaps a dozen other kingdoms.
“Me? Beg? To think you will ever witness such an act from me,” she started to say but then shook her head and continued, “You must be more than foolish.”
“We will see,” he said, sounding more arrogant and insolent than ever.
“Yes, we shall see,” she replied, as he gave his horse a nudge and they continued riding.’