It’s Mardi Gras, cher, but this year le bon temps kick off with murder…
For generations, the White Monks have treated the vampire Thaddeus Dupont as a weapon in their battle against demons. However, when a prominent matron drops dead at a party, Thaddeus and his lover Sarasija are asked to find her killer. Their investigation leads them to an old southern family with connections everywhere: Louisiana politics, big business, the Church, and an organization just as secret as the White Monks.
Meanwhile, an esoteric text containing spells for demon-summoning has disappeared, Thaddeus is losing control of le monstre, and Sara is troubled by disturbing dreams. These nightmares could be a side-effect of dating a vampire, or they could be a remnant of his brush with evil. As the nights wear on, Sara fears they are a manifestation of something darker – a secret that could destroy his relationship with Thaddeus.
Special Release Pricing
Vespers (Book 1) – $0.99 reg. $3.99
Bonfire (Book 1.5) – $0.99 reg. $2.99
Nocturne is only $2.99 (40% off) through Oct. 12.
We’re excited to welcome Irene Preston and Liv Rancourt on From Top to Bottom Reviews today! Please join us in giving them a warm welcome!
Thanks so much for having me back on From Top to Bottom Reviews! This time my writing partner Irene Preston is here too. We’re really excited to be sharing our newest release, Nocturne – Book 2 in the Hours of the Night.
Last weekend we did back-to-back promo events on Facebook. In both, readers asked us questions about our inspiration for the Hours of the Night series. They wanted to know how we decided on the mix of religion and mythology that resulted in a Catholic vampire monk falling in love with an Indian-American agnostic Hindu.
Because yeah. Not something you see every day.
The underlying concept for Vespers was Beauty and the Beast. We started with a reclusive vampire who inadvertently brings a modern, young man into his household. The vampire is gay, but refuses to act on his inclinations. Now why would that be? Oh, because of his religious vows – therefore he turned out to be a Catholic monk.
The modern young man is also gay, which sets up the main “will they or won’t they” conflict.
But why would the gay vampire monk expose himself to temptation? Well, because of the younger man’s name. He assumed the assistant he was hiring was a woman. To set that up, we needed a name that most readers would identify as female, and came up with Sarasija, or Sara for short.
Settling on the name dictated the character’s identity – and gave Irene a ton of homework! We decided early on that we’d each write from one character’s point of view. Thaddeus was a natural fit for me, because I have a long history of involvement with the Church. Irene took on Sara, and she’s been more than up to the task of creating a believable agnostic Hindu character.
So what’s new in book 2, Nocturne? I mean, we built Vespers on a Beauty and the Beast template, but Disney never made a sequel to that one, ya know?
Irene says that “in Vespers, Thaddeus is very locked into a world view and Sara is confronted with evidence of the supernatural for the first time. They’re both challenged by the beliefs of the other, and I think we wanted to evolve.
“The gang is still on the trail of the De Praestigiis Daemonum, but we wanted to throw some new supernatural challenges at them. Also, the guys are experiencing some of the insecurities of a new couple.”
Insecurities of a new couple? You could say that. We knew we needed to push their relationship, and I think (I hope!) we found a way that will be satisfying for readers. We were also conscious of the fact that our original idea was to write a trilogy, and we really didn’t want Nocturne to be the soggy middle.
Of course, given the list of plot threads we’ve left dangling, we’re either going to end up with final installment that’s 700 pages long, or we’ll write more books.
We’re keeping our options open.
If you’ve just stumbled over our Hours of the Night series, you probably want to start with Vespers. We’ve made that easy for you by marking it down to $0.99, at least until Nocturne’s release day 10/12/17. Bonfire, the holiday novella that follows Vespers, is also $0.99, and Nocturne itself is $2.99. The prices jump up to regular after release day, so give them a try!
Keep reading for an excerpt and make sure to enter our rafflecopter giveaway. We’ve got a $25 gift card for someone!
Release Celebration $10 Gift Card Giveaway – Rafflecopter:
The giveaway will open be thru 10/31/17.
Prize is a $25 Gift Card to Amazon or Barnes and Noble.
Jo threw back her head and laughed. “Darlin’, don’t you worry about that. Just tell me you didn’t blow up some shitty house out in Mandeville for kicks or something.”
“No.” This seemed like a great time to ask her about that night, except she had just rescued him, and he wasn’t sure exactly how to phrase the question, anyway.
“All right, then. We’re all good.” She finally stopped rummaging in the giant bag she had crammed on the floor between Sara’s legs and pulled out a flask. She offered it to him first. “You had an ordeal. Want something to steady your nerves?”
Or make him puke. “I’m good.”
“Pot? Xanax?” She pulled out another pill bottle, shook it, then squinted at the label. “What are these?”
Did she have a whole pharmacy in there? He watched as she shook one of the mystery pills out and swallowed it with a swig of whatever was in the flask. No wonder the twins had waited outside. He dropped his head back against the seat rest and looked forward to being home.
He was exhausted, which was his excuse for why he didn’t first notice they weren’t headed toward the Garden District. He sat up a little straighter, trying to see around Jo, who had turned up the radio and was singing along as they speeded along.
“Where are we going?”
“Grandma Berta’s party, remember?” Jo gave her hips a little shake to the radio. Sara’s thighs did not thank her.
“Grandma left us her place out in the country.” Sef downshifted into a turn. “Better place to party than town for all of us right now.”
“Guys,” Sara protested. “I’d love to party with you, but I’ve had kind of a day.” He had just spent hours in an interrogation room. He had barely slept. He was in sweats. “I’m not even dressed.”
“Sara.” Jo rested her head against his. “Sa-ra. Don’t ditch on us.”
He looked over to Sef, hoping for sanity. Instead, he got a wicked smile.
“Let’s play a game.” The Maserati picked up speed.
“Does the game involve dropping me off at home?”
“Maybe.” Sef’s smile got a little wider. “It’s a little like Truth or Dare.”
“So, all you have to do is answer one little question and we take you home. Ready?”
“What are you?”
The Maserati picked up more speed. They were out of the city center, but plenty of traffic surrounded them. Sef wove in and out. He was going to blow the timed lights and have to stop soon, Sara thought absently. The next intersection was coming up fast, and sure enough, the light went yellow.
“Faster,” Jo whispered.
The car surged forward.
“What the hell, Sef?”
“No, what are you, Sara?”
They blew through the light just as it turned red. Up ahead, Sara could see the next light. Truth or Dare. Shit. They were crazy.
“What do you mean? Like my sign? I’m a Pisces.”
“Pisces!” Jo laughed, “Oh, you’re funny.”
“What the hell is wrong with being a Pisces?” Except now he thought of it, none of the heroes in books or movies were ever Pisces. They were all Taurus or Cancer, or he thought James Bond might be a Scorpio.
“Shhhh.” She patted his face. “Nothing’s wrong with Pisces. Mr. Rogers was a Pisces.”
Okay, Mr. Rogers was…not an action hero.
“And Emperor Constantine.”
The car hadn’t slowed down.
“Cute,” Sef drawled. “But not what we’re asking, sweetheart.”
The light up ahead turned red, and a steady stream of cars started across the intersection. The Maserati didn’t slow. They would need to slam on the breaks to stop in time. Sara was suddenly very aware that he hadn’t managed to fasten his seat belt before Jo landed in his lap.
“Relax,” Sef said. “Watch.”
The light turned green, and they sailed through. The next light was only a block away. There were cars stopped in both lanes in front of them.
Join Liv & Irene in their private reader group, After Hours!
About Irene Preston
Irene Preston has to write romances, after all she is living one. As a starving college student, she met her dream man who whisked her away on a romantic honeymoon across Europe. Today they live in the beautiful hill country outside of Austin, Texas where Dream Man is still working hard to make sure she never has to take off her rose-colored glasses.
About Liv Rancourt
I write romance: m/f, m/m, and v/h, where the h is for human and the v is for vampire … or sometimes demon … I lean more towards funny than angst. When I’m not writing I take care of tiny premature babies or teenagers, depending on whether I’m at work or at home. My husband is a soul of patience, my dog’s cuteness is legendary, and we share the homestead with three ferrets. Who steal things. Because they’re brats.
Blog Tour Genre: Mystery Genre: Paranormal Orientation: Gay Pairing: M/M Self Published Tag: Guest Post Tag: Part of a series Tag: Religion Hours of the Night series Irene Preston Liv Rancourt Nocturne