Okay, I have a confession to make. I’m huge fan of Survivor, but not for the usual reasons. To be honest, I wasn’t at first, the idea of a bunch of people trying to out-nasty each other just didn’t do it for me. One show, though, was different. I won’t give the season because it doesn’t really matter. They were having one of their challenges, a test of strength and endurance, this one involved bags of sand. All the attention was on the two big muscle men on the show. Neither of them won. Instead it was the quiet lawyer who was the leader of one of the tribes. He didn’t make a big deal out of it, he just stood, endured and got the job done. The fact that he was sort of cute in a lean and sexy way didn’t hurt. (Yes, I wrote a book about him, but not the one I’m talking about today.)
From then on I was hooked. Not on the ‘stars’ but on those people, the ones in the background, the ones who get the job done. Once or twice, they’ve even won.
My heroes have always been different. One of my favorite authors was mystery author and ex-jockey Dick Francis. For many reasons not least of which that I loved his heroes. They were simple stories of good men trying to do the right thing against all odds. They weren’t anti-heroes nor were they your classic hero types. They weren’t snide or mean, they didn’t sneer or smirk, they just got the job done. Stand-up guys, the ones who are there when you need them.
He was the only three-time winner of the Edgar awards and a romance story in his own right. He was deeply in love with his wife, who was his researcher on many of his stories until her death. When she died, he was heartbroken and retired until his son Felix got him writing again. He and Felix wrote three stories together before Dick Francis died. Now he is reunited with his Mary.
There are a lot of people who write stories of Alpha males, of dominance and whatnot and they write them really well, so I think I’ll let them keep doing that. *grin* I want to write stories of good guys, of strong men who defy all the odds, strong men who respect strong women. I liked 300 for the same reasons, that Leonidas was a great King, powerful and sexy, with a strong Queen.
So, you’re asking, how does a book about Demons fit in there? Aren’t Demons the bad guys? Especially Asmodeus, the Prince of Demons himself?
I had started writing the story of Asmodeus because a lot of people were writing stories of vampires and werewolves and I wanted to do something different. (And I’d written one myself.) Just as suddenly I started noticing there were lots of stories about big bad demons popping up.
Well now, that’s the other thing. I don’t tend to write anything the way anyone expects. I like to put a new spin on things, look at them from a different perspective. So from there I went to, what if? What if everything everyone thought or was taught about demons was wrong? As a student of history I knew that over the centuries various groups have been ‘demonized’ for reasons that were just as varied, tribe, religion or race, or a bad case of I just don’t like you or I want what you have.
And then I had it, that first scene, when Gabriel, the heroine, meets Asmodeus for the first time. It was clear and sharp in my mind’s eye.
The stage or platform area captured her attention. She was transfixed, riveted by what she saw there. Her heart seemed to stop.
Spotlighted in the center of that vast chamber was without question the most magnificent specimen of masculine beauty she had ever seen in her life.
Hair as dark and glossy as a raven’s wing streamed as smooth and straight as a ruler to his broad shoulders, framing a face that might have been carved by a master sculptor. Every line was clean, perfect, from his broad forehead to his high cheekbones with their deep hollows, from his finely bridged nose to the defined line of his square jaw. His mouth was a thing of beauty—firm, neither too thin nor too lush. There would probably be dimples if he smiled.
Completely naked from the top of his horned head to his clawed feet, it was impossible for her to miss any part of him.
All six foot five or six or so of gleaming muscle, silken hair, rampant… Oh, sorry…
Didn’t I say I don’t tend to write your standard leather clad Alpha males? I don’t and he isn’t.
He was naked. *grin*
Did I say he wasn’t sexy? No.
It probably doesn’t hurt that Asmodeus is not only gorgeous but has some mad skills in bed and out. And up against the wall, among other places. Then somehow, something else was introduced into the mix. When I wrote it I was a little concerned because he has some…uh…extra…assets. Then I read a few books by other authors and stopped worrying. He wasn’t given the title Demon of Lust for nothing. The boy is talented. That little something extra doesn’t hurt either.
To find out more, you’ll have to read Demon’s Kiss, coming from Ellora’s Cave this week on January 26, the first book in a possible series called Demon Allure. You’ll also learn about the Book of Demons and meet battered, scarred Ashtoreth, the hero of book two. But that’s for another day. For now, I hope you enjoy Demon’s Kiss.
Book 1 in the Demon Allure series.
F.B.I. Agent Gabriel Nicholas is kidnapped and dragged into a vast, underground chamber. Spotlighted in the center of that room is something—someone?—quite unbelievable. He’s also, without doubt, the most magnificent specimen of masculine beauty she has ever seen. He is absolutely stunning.
Despite the circumstances, Gabriel burns to touch all that gorgeous, gleaming skin—a living palette of shifting red and black. She wants to run her fingers through his silken, ebony hair, feel those strong hands on her flesh.
He is Asmodeus, the Demon of Lust, legend come to life. But Gabriel soon realizes that Asmodeus is just as much a captive as she is.