READ, WRITE, LOVE AT SEASIDE
A Buffalo Steampunk Adventure
by Laura Strickland
ENTICE ME & ROPING THE COWBOY
THE RANCHER AND THE CITY GIRL
Tempting the Rancher, book 1
by Joya Ryan
Thank you for having me on your blog today, Angela. I’m super excited to be here.
When I started the Dragon series, it was the result of needing something to balance out the darkness around me. It was my response to postpartum depression and grieving. Having a spark of an idea, I threw myself into researching everything I could find out about the Norse gods, and Viking life.
Most of us are aware of Greek and Roman gods, and Marvel has taught us a lot about Thor, Loki and Odin, but once I pulled back the veil, boy was I amazed. The tales were so epic.
I wanted my characters to be influenced by these deities, but also I wanted to infuse my world building with historical details. The first story I set in 1520, which is the time of the Protestant Reformation, and I wanted paganism and this new religion to interact. The second story then takes us to France in 1799, after the French Revolution and right before the rise of Napoleon. This time period is full of conflict, and so I was able to also include historical figures, referencing them in dialogue.
I have a graduate degree in religion, and love history. So, for that simple reason, I love to bring history to life – be it part of Church History, and referencing how Magic was regarded and punished, to the Haitian Revolt and the names of the prominent leaders behind it all. My goal is for my reader to leave with a nugget of truth.
For the first book, I took a college course through the University of Barcelona on Magic in the Middle Ages. I wanted to make sure that I had those facts correct to be able to present the conflict in such a way that the reader would understand the overlying threat of being a time-traveling fish out of water.
For the second story, A Dragon’s Desire, I researched colonialism, the Haitian Revolt, the French Revolution in all of its progressions, and the life of Napoleon – this included devouring anything that I could get my hands on regarding France at that time (for example the ceruse paint that they wore contained lead; and their eyebrows were made out of mice skin).
In this world building, I’m excited to see where the story takes us next, but also when. I’m ready to explore more of this grand world, and interact with these characters who’ve taken me from darkness into the light.
A Dragon’s Desire: Blurb
When you make plans, the gods laugh. All decisions come with consequences.
In this second book of the Dragons series, time travel and fantasy weave together in a fantastical romance.
Although Jaz is a dragon, the fact that the paranormal exists hasn’t made life any easier. The Norse gods are a little too active in her life, and her lover, Erich, the necromancer, a Viking and demigod, is acting distant. His going from extremely hot to cold has her second guessing everything, and wondering if his proclamation of love was just simple manipulation, and if their relationship has lost its like new car smell.
When trouble comes, it comes in heaps, and right at Jaz’s feet. This trouble happens to send her back to 1799 to Étretat, France. The political upheaval combined with Napoleon’s forces and the threat of the Reign of Terror leaves her wondering who she can trust — one wrong move and she’ll lose more than her dragon head.
A Dragon’s Desire Excerpt:
Relationships are built not only on the love that the couple has for one another but also on their shared experiences. In 1520, while back in time learning about the great Black Knight, I’d also learned a lot about my handsome man. Staring at his profile now, his dark brown hair no longer flowed as it had, but his austere appearance did not mar the attractiveness of his strong features. A neatly trimmed beard rested along a strong jaw and if I told a joke or two, I was sure I could get those gray eyes to turn silver. I loved him, and he kept my heart safe. I’d do whatever it took to keep those seeds of love alive.
His eyes grazed over my body, and in one nanosecond, all the magic I’d been storing up formed into a tight, bright orange ball and then exploded around us.
“What did you do?” Tink asked.
Her question made me stop giving Erich my come-hither stare. Would I be a bad friend if I admitted that I wanted to kick out Tink, his non-blood relation who he called sister on this earthly plane, so that I could explore where his hot gaze might lead?
Tink snapped her fingers before my eyes.
“Jaz,” she screamed. “What did you do?” She backed up until the kitchen table jammed into her side.
It was then I noticed the army of fire ants that paraded down the wall and marched toward her. Climbing on top of each other, they quickly formed a three-dimensional shape resembling a moving wave.
“Make it stop!” she said.
I had no idea how to make fire ants obey me. Hell, I didn’t even know I could conjure them up. Like a madwoman, I gathered pots and pans and began to scoop them up, while saying every Latin word I could think of. “Sic semper tyrannis,” I said, as if the motto of the Virginian flag might help.
Instead the ants continued to pile on top of one another. Tink scampered away, and still they came.
She followed my lead and started to bang together pots and pans to knock them away.
“Say something to stop this,” I said.
Tink waved her hands. Nothing happened. “I can’t. You’re magical. Your magic is not like anything I’ve ever handled. You have to learn how to hone in and control it.”
“Brutum fulme” I then shouted, as if calling forth senseless lightning would cause a bolt to come through and fry the pesky things. Still nothing happened.
“I’m so not qualified for this,” I screamed. Frustration caused a tingling in my fingers, which rose up my arms like I’d touched a hotplate.
“Jaz,” Erich interjected, “concentrate.”
I closed my eyes, took a deep breath and focused on the dragon resting just below my skin. I felt her stir, awaken. Fire grew in my belly. My lips puckered and uttered the words the beast had whispered to me, “Carpe noctem.” Seize the night!
The ants stopped mid-step, frozen.
Hearing the beast, I repeated what it ordered: “Transit umbra, lux permanet.” Shadow passes, light remains. The fire ants disintegrated, leaving not even a speck of dust behind.
Tink hurried to her cauldron, which was boiling over, vomiting a cloud of what looked like pixie dust on to the counter and removed her black choker with Chakra stones. “I’ve read of many wearing talismans until they are able to get control of their powers. This will protect you. Do NOT take it off, do you hear me?”
“Sure, sure,” I nodded my head, but really, I just wanted to push her out of the door. “Thanks, Tink.”
Tink looked first at me and then at Erich.
Instead of moving towards the door, I wished for it to open, and it did.
“I guess that’s my sign to leave,” she said and quickly packed everything into her wicker basket.
“I didn’t know I could do that.”
Tina Glasneck Bio:
Tina Glasneck is a writer of crime fiction and fantasy romance. Her imagination thrives when it comes to hot coffee, great music and laughter. She believes in miracles, the power of positive thinking, and that in each of us a dragon lurks. Learn more about Tina on her website: http://tglasneck.wixsite.com/tglasneck