Posted in Author Interview, Blogging Community

Author Interview with Kim Kasch – The Viking Princess

Kim Kasch 11.2014Today 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.

VikingPrincess_KimKasch_SmallBlurb -2THE 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.

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Author Interview

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.

 Excerpt - 1He 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.’

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Posted in The Revenge Masquerade, Writing Journey

The Revenge Masquerade – Motivations and Inspiration-.

Inspiration Ten days ago I posted  my inspirations behind The Dragon Legacy. This week I’m sharing my motivations behind my current  release The Revenge Masquerade.

DSCN1092When I wrote my debut novel I didn’t think past the initial story.  I wanted to write about a dragon in the twenty-first century searching for the last dragon egg. His motivation? To save the dragon race and ultimately the human race from domination by evil. I wanted my fantasy/paranormal characters to have a human appearance in our world but also be part of a secret paranormal world, not normally seen by us.

When people started to read my first story most commented on two of the secondary characters JasmineJasmine, an independently minded young woman, destined to be guardian witch and Zane, the street wise wolf shifter.Zane

They were together in several scenes of  ‘The Dragon Legacy’ and people wanted to see how their fledgling relationship played out.

Readers were the main motivation behind ‘The Revenge Masquerade’ , it was great to know I’d created two characters they wanted to know more about. 🙂

Having decided to write Jasmine and Zane’s story, what came next? Defining my characters is important to me but I’d already done this with Jasmine and Zane, as they featured in my first story.

The Setting  where my characters travel on their emotional journey is an important part of what motivates me to write a story.

DSCN0763 Sometimes it’s somewhere I have visited often and love, like the  English Lake District in ‘The Dragon Legacy’. This time it was a combination of somewhere I’d visited and enjoyed and a place that epitomised several themes of my story; romance, historical and mystical worlds impacting on contemporary society.

Lakeside Path heading north towards Bardolino Taken by A W MacFadyen. released by owner to public domain.)
Lakeside Path heading north towards Bardolino Taken by A W MacFadyen. released by owner to public domain.)

THE REVENGE MASQ-LARGE

Lake Garda is somewhere I have holidayed in the past and its beauty and charm stayed with me.  I haven’t been to Venice but it was close enough to Lake Garda to include it in my story especially with its:

 With ‘The Revenge Masquerade’, deciding on the Plot  was the last of my motivations. At the end of ‘The Dragon Legacy’, Jasmine is separated from Zane. I wanted to explore what happened to her emotionally in the months that followed. Zane left to act as an ambassador for the infant dragon with the supernatural world, what happened to him? Does his still think about Jasmine and how he treated her, or is he really the player he appears to be?

Lost love,  Reunion and facing one’s destiny are all explored in the story.  The story starts one year after Zane leaves. Jasmine is in the Lake District with a new companion and strange mystical dreams.Whilst Zane reaches the final stop on his mission – Venice and  is confronted with a new evil. Can he save Larna (Lukas’ the dragon lord’s sister)? Should he contact Lukas and risk the safety of the infant dragon Tarriannah? Has he really seen Jasmine in Venice?

After the first couple of chapters I let the characters tell their own stories whilst I buckled up for the ride , peeking through my fingers whenever it got too scary. 🙂

I hope you enjoyed sharing some of my motivations  for writing and thoughts about ‘The Revenge Masquerade’. If you want to know what happens next it’s available at the following outlets:

Zane

Amazon UK

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Itunes

KOBO

Inktera

All Romance eBooks

The Revenge Masquerade - Excerpt

The English Lake District: Just over a year ago in Hallows House’s garden.

Zane shook his body until his fur lay flat against his broad back. His shift into his wolf completed, he padded across the silent garden, eager to be on his way. He paused and looked back at the house. A movement at a downstairs window drew his predatory gaze. He stood transfixed as the artificial light illuminated Jasmine’s titian hair. Jasmine leant against the kitchen window and stared into the moonlit garden. His silvery-eyed stare moved lower and devoured her hourglass figure’s perfection, barely concealed by the emerald robe she wore.

His ears flattened as a shrill whistle assaulted his acute hearing. Jasmine disappeared. Instinctively he edged further away from the house to where the garden merged with the dark hills. He waited. A turquoise streak of light momentarily dazzled him. He followed its progress and recognized the baby dragon as it flew into the room occupied by its guardian, Fleur. Zane assumed Lukas, his friend the dragon lord, was there too. He growled softly, pleased by Lukas’ happiness. Jasmine’s image flashed into his mind. Zane shook his shaggy head–she wasn’t for him.

The shrieking noise quieted and the unmistakable creek of the heavy door alerted him of someone’s approach. His hackles rose and then flattened in recognition of the scent: a mixture of flowers and spice unique to Jasmine. He resisted the urge to shift into his human form. As a wolf, their encounter would remain platonic. His mind and heart warred over the morality of his desires. He couldn’t stay. His mission necessitated he leave immediately. Was it fair to take Jasmine’s heart and leave her alone with needs mere memories wouldn’t satisfy? The wolf ignored his human conscience. Time was short and the instinctive need to brand the flame-haired witch with his mark too strong. He shifted back into his human form.

Zane leant against the jagged stone wall. His naked body barely registered the rough-hewn rock, which imprinted his skin. His abrupt shift into human form didn’t include clothes. The cool night air soothed his fevered body as Jasmine appeared. A faint blush stained her pale skin everywhere his gaze rested.

“I saw your wolf through the window,” Jasmine said, perhaps to explain her presence in the garden.

“I wanted to talk to you.” Zane enclosed her small hand in his. She offered no resistance.

“Just talk?” Her gaze darted away from his erection, taunt against his abdomen. He sighed and pulled her tight against his hardness, enjoying the contact with her soft curves. “This isn’t talking, Zane,” she said, her voice breathless.

©Jane Hunt 2014 Crimson Frost Books.

Posted in Sunday Snippet

The Dragon Legacy Series – Jane Hunt – Last Sunday Snippet of 2014 –

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Sunday Snippet

If you’re looking for something different to read in the new year,what about my quirky, fantasy series: The Dragon Legacy.

The Dragon Legacy – Book 1 is Fleur’s and Lukas’ adventure to find and save the last dragon egg in the English Lake District.

The Revenge Masquerade – Book 2 is Jasmine and Zane’s romantic adventure in Venice, Italy.

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DSCN0682 ‘She stirred as the first signs of daylight appeared over Helvellyn. Fleur threw back the covers and stretched. The last vestiges of sleep dispelled, she drew back the heavy curtains. Through the mist, near the garden’s boundary where the hills’ wildness began, an outline caught her attention. She vacillated between curiosity and fear. A man moved towards her window. The sunrise lightened the sky. It revealed Xavier’s dark broody face. A rush of adrenaline flooded her body. Her heart rate increased, its beats so loud they disturbed the room’s silence. Her mind was awash with questions, none of which she could answer. He stared at her window. He must recognise her. Startled, she stepped back. A frisson of alarm raced along her spine.’ ©Jane Hunt 2013

The Revenge Masquerade - Banner

‘He reached a solid wooden door carved with intricate Byzantine designs. He howled once loud and prolonged then stepped back from the door poised for flight or fight, whichever came first. The door creaked open and a slight female creature stood in the doorway with an expectant look on her face. He bent his head. She stroked it with cold fingers so long and thin to the point of emaciation they seemed disproportionate to the rest of her body. Zane growled softly in greeting. Nightwalkers often used telepathy, but they wouldn’t open their minds to a stranger. “You’re welcome, wolf. Follow me. The council is ready to meet with you.” She indicated the door at the end of the long wide hallway, bedecked with renaissance treasures all adorned with thick dust and cobwebs.

Zane hesitated. This could be a trap, his wolf insisted. He risked opening his mind, but its tentative search found nothing. Insurmountable mental barriers forced his retreat.’

©Jane Hunt 2014

Zane

THE REVENGE MASQ-LARGE

The Dragon Legacy Series
The Dragon Legacy Series

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Posted in The Dragon Legacy #2, The Revenge Masquerade, Writing Journey

The Revenge Masquerade – Jane Hunt – Snippet – #2 The Dragon Legacy

In the spirit of the season here’s a snippet from The Revenge Masquerade my latest release…

Snippet

‘Zane stood motionless. Jasmine stepped into the room, surprised Zane’s protective hands didn’t reach out to stop her. She looked round to make sure the destruction’s instigator wasn’t hiding in plain sight. The room appeared empty except for the body slumped in the middle of the floor. She picked her way over the damaged antique furniture and knelt by the body. She drew a deep breath. She touched an arm visible amid the tangle of threads. The bluish skin was cold and clammy but lacked the stiffness associated with a corpse. She pushed aside the debris covering the body and revealed raven colored hair with turquoise and blue highlights.’
Jasmine

‘Zane Lupus, the wolf shifter who loved and left Jasmine broken-hearted, is in danger. Haunted by nightmares, Jasmine risks her fragile heart and travels to Venice to find her one-time friend and lover, hoping she can save him and rekindle their passion. Abducted by Lorenzo, a passionate dragon, Jasmine is tempted away from her quest to find her wolf.
Zane is confronted with what he suspects is an enemy from his past. He tries in vain to warn the dragon lord, Lukas, about the threat to the infant dragon. The horror beneath The Revenge Masquerade is ancient and terrible and determined to capture the infant dragon for its own ends.
The Dragon Legacy faces its greatest test. Is Jasmine, empowered by the guardian witch’s snake ring, strong enough to restore the natural balance? Or will the sacrifice she must endure destroy her before she embraces her destiny?
THE REVENGE MASQ-LARGE
Zane

Amazon UK
Amazon

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Posted in Book Review

4* Review: The Golden Key Chronicles (#1-4) A J Nuest

22012973BLURBThe key would unlock his future and the safety of his kingdom,
but he never imagined the sorceress would unlock his heart…

When antiques restorer, Rowena Lindstrom, purchases an armoire containing a hidden key and a “magic” mirror, she believes the handsome warrior prince waiting on the other side is some sort of elaborate joke. Yet she cannot deny their connection seems bound by more than just the key and, as her love for Prince Caedmon grows, she agrees to join him in his realm. Prophecy intervenes in a way neither of them could have expected. Lost and alone in the Austiere Kingdom, Rowena struggles to find her place, and though she fights the heated advances of the dangerous Prince Caedmon, the attraction between them brings challenges much deeper than her troubled heart can recall.

After two torturous years held captive in the dungeons of Seviere’s Keep, Prince Caedmon returns home with more than just lash marks lacing his back. He now retains the secret behind the key, and is the only one who understands its grim connection to his beloved Rowena. Yet their enemies to the north are merely one of many obstacles determined to see them fail and, to escape the clutches of the evil Wizard Gaelleod, Rowena and Caedmon flee to the future—the one place Caedmon’s worst fears are confirmed. Though Rowena’s memories have returned, everything he loves stands to be ripped from his grasp.

Join Caedmon and Rowena as they embark on an epic journey bound by fate, and struggle to unravel the significance behind an age-old prophecy in The Golden Key Chronicles.

Buy Links

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My Review -120659709

#1 Rowena’s Key
Rowena’s Key is the first story in ‘The Golden Key Chronicles’; it gives a whole new meaning to ‘through the looking glass’. An adult fairytale full of humour, poignancy and passion it’s a fun read. Adult fans of ‘The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe’ will devour this book.

Rowena an antique dealer goes against her professional instincts and buys an antiquated armoire from England because of its tenuous connection with her past. When it reveals its secrets she comes face to face with Caedmon a sexy prince who is hot enough to star in every woman’s fantasy. Caedmon’s language is ancient and strange with an urban edge.

The armoire comes complete with a golden key that makes Rowena, who Caedmon believes to be a powerful witch, key to the future of the fantasy kingdom.
With a great supporting cast of real and fantasy characters Rowena’s key is entertaining escapism for an hour or two.

18756636This part of the story is set two years later when Rowena and Caedmon are living in the fantasy kingdom apart. Rowena is determined to gain her freedom and she shows her resourceful nature and admirable independence to achieve her aim against immeasurable odds. Tortured and imprisoned Caedmon fights his way back to his love. He finds a very different Rowena and little chance of reclaiming their lost love. There is lots of action, particularly good fighting scenes featuring Rowena but little romance except in Caedmon’s memory. A great story to illustrate Rowena growing into her powers and destiny.

18756642#3 Caedmon’ Curse.

‘Caedmon’s Curse’ is the third in The Golden Key Chronicles series; this is a fast paced fantasy romance full of sensual tension, larger than life characters and page turning action.

I hadn’t read the second in the series ‘Candra’s Freedom’ when I first read this book but this no way spoiled my enjoyment. Caedmon and Rowena’s delightfully witty dialogue effortlessly fills in significant past events as they battle with their enemies and their magnetic attraction.
Caedmon attracts Rowena despite her distrust of his motives and memory loss. Their sexual chemistry coupled with losing him forever forces her to question why she is pushing him away. Rowena is a 21st century woman not in need of an alpha super hero but a partner who respects and supports her. Caedmon’s fulfils this role admirably.

Full of important clues ‘Caedmon’s Curse’ still leaves the reader with more questions than answers and desperate for the next instalment which is previewed at the end of the book.

A must read for lovers of fairytales.

20806972This final story sees Rowena and Caedmon sure of their love and back in the modern world where Rowena first came from. There are some lovely and humorous reunion scenes with Oliver and Jon, sizzling passion between our two lovers and important clues to the prophecy. Back to the fantasy world for the last part of the story, with an epic battle, jaw dropping magic and a happy ever after? The well thought out ending leaves the way for further stories in this fantasy kingdom. A great final instalment of a cleverly written, engaging fantasy.
I received a copy of this book from Harper Impulse via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

Posted in The Revenge Masquerade, Writing Journey

Sunday Snippet: The Revenge Masquerade – Jane Hunt

PicMonkey CollageHere’s a snippet from my upcoming release The Revenge Masquerade which is due for release in December 2014. The second book in The Dragon Legacy series, this is Jasmine and Zane’s story set in romantic Venice and the Italian Lakes.

Sunday Snippet

The shrieking noise quieted and the unmistakable creek of the heavy door alerted him of someone’s approach. His hackles rose and then flattened in recognition of the scent; a mixture of flowers and spice unique to Jasmine. He resisted the urge to shift into his human form. As a wolf their encounter would remain platonic. His mind and heart warred over the morality of his desires. He couldn’t stay. His mission necessitated he leave immediately. Was it fair to take Jasmine’s heart and leave her alone with needs mere memories wouldn’t satisfy? The wolf ignored his human conscience. Time was short and the instinctive need to brand the flame-haired witch with his mark too strong. He shifted back into his human form.
Zane leant against the jagged stone wall. His naked body barely registered the rough-hewn rock which imprinted his skin. His abrupt shift into human form didn’t include clothes. The cool night air soothed his fevered body as Jasmine appeared. A faint blush stained her pale skin everywhere his gaze rested.’

©Jane Hunt 2014