I’m happy dancing all over my home office today, celebrating release week for my debut novel, Haven. Yay! 🙂
My release week party started on Monday when I visited (Laura Kaye’s blog for a chitchat and giveaway. Today, I’m pleased to be here on my group blog home, Paranormal Unbound, for another discussion and giveaway.
So let’s talk Haven and urban fantasy and vampires, shall we? We shall…
You have chocolate in my peanut butter, romance in my urban fantasy…
I’m a major urban fantasy fan. But I also love romance. So, when I sat down to write my urban fantasy featuring vampires (my other obsession), love had to play a major role in the narrative.
Urban fantasy, by definition, takes place in an urban setting, often occurs in present day, contains supernatural (fantasy) elements, of course, and is often written from the first person perspective. Haven meets these criteria. The story is set in San Francisco in a world rife with preternatural creatures and the reader experiences the adventure from the heroine, Carina Tranquilli’s point of view.
Haven is also a romance. Carina meets her destined soul mate Alexander, and, thanks to Team Evil in hot pursuit, the two of them must fight hard for their relationship. Carina also struggles to trust her new and sudden feelings for this hot, undead musician Fate has deemed her forever mate. Will these two lovebirds overcome all obstacles and achieve their Happily Ever After? I’m not telling — no spoilers here. 😉
What’s in a name?
The title for my story came easily to me. Haven, defined, means “a place of safety or refuge.” This is one of the story’s core themes. How do you make a haven for yourself in the world, and, what will you do to protect it?
Estranged from her three brothers, Carina creates a home for herself with her best friends. And with her bisexual friend and business partner Adrian, she builds Haven, a dance club in the Castro neighborhood of San Francisco. Her club is a safe space where *everyone* – regardless of race, religion, sexual preference – is welcome. When her refuge is threatened by the emergence of vampires in her life on both Teams Good and Evil, Carina must make some hard choices…
It’s all about the vampires.
I’ve loved vampires since I was a kid watching Dark Shadows reruns on TV. Evil or good, lovers or fighters, feral or civilized…I can’t get enough.
My vampires run the Haven show for both teams Good and Evil. They’re undead, sensitive to sun and silver, possess a basic set of vamp-y skills including heightened senses and super strength. Some of the older vamps possess unique powers, too. As one of them puts it, “Gifted in life. Gifted in death.” For more info, you’ll have to read the story. 🙂
All you need is Love.
Words to live by, right? And possibly to die by…Since I write urban fantasy romance and paranormal romance it should not prove too shocking to learn that Love is a core theme running through my work.
In Haven, a key question I pose is this – to what lengths will you go to protect the ones you love? As you’ll see from the book description below, Carina’s family went pretty darn far.
San Francisco nightclub owner Carina Tranquilli works hard, plays hard, and never allows the death of her parents and her twelve-year memory gap to get her down. But her life takes a left turn when a witch attacks her on her twenty-fifth birthday.
Three hauntingly familiar vampires emerge to reveal she possesses a latent power. To protect her from their enemies, they admit to wiping her memories clean and abandoning her as a child, but now they need her help. As she struggles to evade her new protectors and even newer enemies, she meets Alexander, an enigmatic, undead musician. Insta-lust flares, leaving her wanting more.
With evil’s minions hounding her every move, and everything she thought she knew turned on its head, Carina must harness her burgeoning power, unravel her vampire family’s web of deceit, and fight to have a love life…without getting killed in the process.
I froze, my moment of weakness chased away by a jolt of adrenaline. I resisted Adrian’s pull. “Did you hear that?”
“Nothing, I guess.” A wave of energy rolled into me, curled itself possessively around my body, and gave me one hell of a head rush. “Oh, wow.” I bit my lip, bracing against reaction.
Adrian tightened his grip on my waist. “Rina?”
Mark and Ren stalked over, faces grim.
“Did—? Do you—?” My mouth was so dry I could barely speak. “Do you guys feel that?”
Adrian squeezed, capturing my wandering attention, concern etched in the stern set of his jaw. “Feel what? What’s wrong?”
I started to tell them the Invisible Man hugged me against an electrified fence, but a second wave of energy bowled into me, making me tingle from head to toe. The sensation walked the line between pleasure and pain. A moan escaped me.
Mark took me from Adrian. “That’s it. We’re out of here.” He tried to pick me up, but I shook my head. Bad idea. Dizziness took the hall, and me, for a little spin.
Turn around. Turn. Around.
Was it a voice or instinct urging me on? Either way, the desire proved irresistible. I pulled away from Mark, pivoted, and forgot how to breathe.
The electric energy pulled back. The dizziness abated. All extraneous noise and people drained out of my perception until there was only Him.
Tall, fit, and bad-boy handsome with skin like pale honey, his thick, walnut brown hair hung tousled in a sexy, I-just-got-out-of-bed way. A hip, black, button-down shirt accentuated a sculpted upper body before it tucked into slacks painted on long, lean legs. The whole package made my mouth water.
Hot. Yummy. Totally my type.
“Who are you?” I whispered.
His mouth twitched in a hint of a smile as if he heard me—impossible given the distance between us. Heat spread, loosening my muscles, and my pulse sped up. Nerves. What’s wrong with me? Guys never made me nervous, not even gorgeous ones.
I nibbled my lower lip, mind racing to make sense of my reaction. His gaze tracked the movement and then slid back up. The heat from his stare hit me full force, driving a shaft of need through me. Energy rocked me again, a warm, electric breeze bathing my skin. My eyes widened in comprehension. The energy came from him.
Giveaway: Comment to Win
Thanks for visiting today, everyone! To celebrate my debut release, I’ll give one e-book copy of Haven to one lucky commenter. What to comment…Did you have a favorite line from the excerpt? A favorite urban fantasy series? Or, ask me a question!
Want an additional entry?
- Tweet this and leave a comment about your tweet to count as the entry:
Celia Breslin celebrates Haven’s release week on @ParaUnbound – come chat and enter giveaway! – Click to tweet
Open to international. This contest will run through Friday, July 5 (11:59 PM Pacific) – Winner will be drawn and announced Saturday.
The gods at random.org have spoken! The winner of the e-book copy of HAVEN is: BN100!
Disclaimer: Prize must be claimed within one week of the winning announcement.
Haven Book Cover Credit Awesome cover art by Amanda Kelsey. Copyright Champagne Books, all rights reserved.