novembre 23, 2011

New release: The Tea Demon + lovely review!



Hello, everyone :)!
I have wonderful news - my latest short story, The Tea Demon, is out today at Dreamspinner Press. It was an experiment for me, in which I got to explore my favourite writing genres - steampunk and humour. I've always loved light-hearted, wildly creative, vaguely ridiculous stories, like the ones my father and I used to make up together when I was a kid, driving around in his aqua green Panda. Needless to say, I had lots of fun writing this!

Blurb:

Thief Eric Devon wishes one thing: for people to leave him bloody well alone. And maybe for more whiskey. Until a mysterious stranger offers him a job so dangerous that no one has ever attempted it and survived to tell the tale: recover a priceless object from the Turtle Merchants’ impregnable palace. Intrigued by the man and the challenge, Eric accepts—but the stranger is none other than the legendary airship captain known as the Tea Demon, terror of the Sea of Clouds. Eric must come up with the best plan in history if he wants to complete his job... and survive it too.


You can grab a copy on Dreamspinner's website!

Here's an excerpt from the story, involving a handsome stranger, a hot bet, and some... intense action ;)!

Excerpt:

ERIC DEVON sat at the inn’s counter and wished people would just leave him bloody well alone.

A middle-aged man dressed in purple clung to his arm, drooling and cajoling. “Please, Eric. You’re my last hope,” he slurred. “You know what my wife will… do to me if I don’t recover that doily? You have got to help me….”

The tall pendulum clock in the corner struck eleven. Eric groaned and pressed the heel of his hands to his eyes, then drew his fingers back, messing up his already tangled black hair. It was nearly lunchtime and he was nowhere near drunk enough. He gestured for the innkeeper. That needed to be fixed, and fast.

“Eric,” the purple-robed man whined. Eric kept his eyes steadily on the glass being filled in front of him. “You know I’m no good at stealing. We’ve known each other for... for at least two days. Help a man out....”

“Piss off, Olaf.” Eric snatched his whiskey up. “I told you I’m not looking for a job.” He shoved his way past the wobbling man and through the crowd to a tiny empty table crammed in a corner. He plopped down on the chair, shoulders hunched, feeling his mood sink even lower.

“Well, isn’t that a shame.”

Eric lifted his gaze, malevolent. A stranger was straddling the chair across from him, leaning forward on the backrest, arms folded. He was smiling, lips curled up in a too-smug grin on his impish face.

“What’s a shame?” Eric grunted.

Clever green eyes twinkled beneath a mess of chestnut bangs. The stranger was wrapped in a red cloak, and a thick braid rested over his shoulder. He lifted his hand to carelessly push his bangs back, without much success. A thick leather strap was tied around his wrist. “You. Not taking jobs.”

Eric rubbed at the stubble on his chin. “How come?” he couldn’t help but ask. The stranger shrugged, and there it was again—that crooked smirk. Annoying, Eric thought. But also....

(Read the rest of the excerpt!)


Also, the story already got its first review, which is incredibly exciting - I couldn't have wished for anything better than this lovely 4 stars review by Ami on Goodreads:

Wow, this book feels like an adventure of Aladdin, straight from 1001 nights. There thrilling adventure and romance as thief Eric Devon helps a stranger -- who turns out to be an infamous airship captain, Jonathan Tea or is well-known as "Tea Demon" -- to retrieve a priceless object. Their first meeting is sensual (love the bet, and the outcome of the bet) follows by action (bar fight!). Then there is hot love-making on the airship. And well, the promise of long and budding relationship. It's a satisfying read most definitely. And it comes in 52 pages!! Impressive.

novembre 21, 2011

New cover + lovely review!



Hello, everyone :)!
I have a brand new, shiny cover to share - it's for my upcoming novella, The Ronin and the Fox, which will be released by Storm Moon Press in February. Nathie, the artist, is just amazing - I'm a little bit in love with all her art!

Here's the blurb for the novella :).

In feudal Japan, Kaede Hajime lives as a vagabond ronin, a samurai without a lord. As he spends the night at a village's inn, the innkeeper begs him to help stop a mischevious kitsune, a fox spirit, plaguing their village. But when he captures the spirit - in the form of a hauntingly beautiful man -Hajime learns that the kitsune has troubles of his own. The pearl that contains the fox's soul has been stolen, leaving him a slave to the new owner, who is forcing him to attack the village.

Hajime agrees to help the fox retrieve the jewel, but living with a fox spirit isn't easy, and the budding trust between them is constantly tested. Kitsune are tricksters above all, and Hajime must decide how much of the story the fox tells him is truth. What's worse, an old comrade of Hajime's is in town, bringing with him the sour memories of Hajime's time as a samurai. Hajime must find a way to locate the thief and steal back the jewel before the thief turns the kitsune's considerable power against him.



Boy, what a month this has been. I'm in my final semester at uni, I have exams and a final project to write and a job and I'm basically surviving on coffee and frozen pizza. Also, me and my flatmates have been without heating or hot water for a few days now (hopefully tonight it will be sorted). So, to fight the cold and unwind a little after spending the whole day sitting at various desks, I've started coopting the flatmates for traditional dance parties in the kitchen every night. Feels amazing - I love traditional Occitan dances (Occitania is a tiny region in the Italian mountains). Half an hour is enough to make all my muscles ache and get me drenched in sweat. It's such fun!

In other news, I got another lovely 4 1/2 Hearts review for my short story Apples and Regrets and Wasted Time, from MM Good Reviews. I'm thrilled with it:)!


Review:
I don’t believe that I have ever been as enthralled with a book as I was with this one. I don’t even know where to begin as this is a story with no names.

It’s been three years since he last saw his old lover and now here he is sneaking through his window, to get cleaned up before leaving again. Even though his old lover doesn’t seem happy to see him they put aside their hurts as their passion is re-ignited.

Even though this is a short story do not be fooled that it will not draw you in with its intense emotional longings and the devastatingly hopeless love. These two lovers have not seen each other in three years but neither has forgotten or stopped loving the other. They remember everything about each other and they both do things ‘just in case’. but they both know that it is hopeless between them, that it can never be.

Incredibly written, so full of detail, so full of emotion, so poignant, this is a masterpiece just waiting to be read. I have to recommend that you don’t miss this book, it is a ‘must be read’ and enjoyed.