Have you ever read a blurb that just captures your attention? Grabs you from the drudgeries of your day and stops you in your tracks - makes you read on? No cover, no flash - just the crafty words of a quirky character and a savvy author?
I think you'll find those things in Piper's Fury - the debut novel of author, Rachel Firaske.
So, let me first say congratulations on your novel! Why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself and your new book.
Well, I currently live in the heart of Central Texas with my husband and three children. I'm an active member in the Romance Writers of America, and belong to the Heart of Texas, FF&P, and YA chapters. Most days though you'll find me surfing the Savvy Authors site daily as their Article Editor.
By day I'm an office manager, and an urban fantasy/paranormal romance author by night. Passion of the Soul: Piper’s Fury is my first release, with Crescent Moon Press.
Do you have an excerpt from your book that you’d like to share?
I'd love to!
Passion of the Soul: Piper's Fury
by Rachel Firasek
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publication Date: March 2011
Cover art by Ash Arceneaux
It's an empath thing...
Using your "powers" to help the Dark Hills Police Department hunt down serial killers doesn't leave much time for dating. Not that Piper Anast is complaining. The last thing she needs is some guy brushing up against her and pumping his pornographic thoughts into her head.
When she meets Bennett Slade, a sexy, tormented vampire, Piper stumbles headlong into a telepathic connection with his missing daughter. She can't leave the kid to the evil surrounding her unwanted visions, nor can she resist her draw to Slade. He's the first guy she's been able to touch vision-free in, well, forever.
As she and Slade close in on the evil creature holding his daughter, Piper's powers morph into a deadly fury. To save Slade's daughter-and herself-Piper must face down demons she never knew she had and trust the one thing she keeps from everyone.
He leaned into my hand. His slight stubble scraped along my palm and I found myself exploring the hard angles of his face, firm muscle wrapped over steel. I let my hand slide along his neck to tease the hair curling gently at his collar. His eyes shut, allowing me the freedom to watch the emotions shift across his skin.
Dark and strong. Two simple words to describe the vulnerable strength in this anything-but-simple man. I craved the taste of him again. Leaning forward, I slid my parted lips across his. His intake of breath encouraged me to run the tip of my tongue along the seam of his mouth, teasing for entry. His eyes opened and I pulled back.
“You were kissing me with your eyes open.”
He touched my cheek. “Why?”
“I wanted to watch your face.”
“Your honesty, Piper, is what I like most about you.” His hands braced my head and he pulled me back down for another kiss. This time, he took control and deepened the assault on my senses. His tongue plunged into my mouth, sliding along mine and withdrawing only to plunge in again, coating my taste buds with his minty flavor. He tilted my head for better access and drove his tongue even deeper. A moan escaped him, sounding almost like a growl.
I broke away. “Am I hurting you?”
“No. Less talk, more kissing.”
Talk was overrated, anyway. He leaned deeper into me and explored my mouth the same way you nibble the cherry out of a cordial at Christmas. Delicious. When he moved to tease my jaw with his teeth, I asked, “Slade, will you show me the other way?”
He had worked down to my neck and a ragged breath escaped me when he worked the skin between his teeth. My stomach tightened and a dampness gathered in my panties. “What other way?”
“You said there were two ways to feed.”
His head rose from the crook of my neck and I completely forgot to breath. The heat in his eyes made my anger look like a holiday. Fire surged from his body and ate through my skin. Power. Pure energy. Little sparks darted between us like one of those static balls at the mall.
“You do not realize what you are asking.”
“You won't hurt me, will you?” In my heart, I knew he wouldn't. He was too gentle, too careful.
Wow! I just love this! It is so compelling. Piper is so interesting - childlike in her interest to learn but you have this sense that she's deadly.
Where do you find your inspiration?
I find my inspiration from many things. Mostly from scenes I pick out at random places. Piper’s Fury really came from a lot of places, but mostly my daughter inspired Piper’s characteristics. I wanted to create a character with some quirks that were a little abnormal. The rest of the book was a series of reactions from Piper.
I noticed on your web site that there is a play-list to go with Piper. So, I take it you listen to music when you write? What kind of music do you listen to?
I absolutely listen to music when I write. My fave is Emily Autumn. I love her gothic lyrics. Evanescence is my second fave. After that, it’s a combo of anything with a good beat.
Who would you say is/was your biggest inspiration and why?So, what's in the mix right now? What are you working on?
I hate this question. I have so many and for so many different things. For this book, my daughters absolutely inspired me. They are both so different, and when I used too many quirks from one, the other balanced Piper out. For my writing career as a whole, I emulate LK Hamilton. I’d love to have her business sense one day. She’s truly a brilliant author.
I couldn't agree with you more - on the question and LKH - she's in my list of favs as well.
What do you find to be the hardest thing about creating your stories?
I don’t have a hard time creating stories, it’s remembering the little things that get me. Piper wears gloves most of the story, I had a hard time remember that she did. You don’t think about that, but I promise you it’s the little things that a reader will catch every time. Or at least, I do.
I know exactly what you mean - I've resorted to list.
Do you have a favorite character?
Slade is my favorite. I bet you thought I would say Piper, huh? He’s so patient with her, even when you know she’s testing his stoic control. I love that about him.
He does appear to have the control of a Saint - to a point. (I can't wait to read this - it's definately moved to the top of my pile...)
What are reading right now?
I’m reading Come Back To Me by Julia Rachel Barrett, but I just finished Fated by Rebecca Zanetti. Fated was fantastic. I read it twice. Loved it. Come Back To Me is good so far, but a very different read from my normal paranormal romance. I’m loving it, too!
I just finished a novella and I’m ready to dig back into Book 2 of the Passion of the Soul series. The working title is The Gypsy Triangle. I also have several project novels, which means that they are in pure plot form right now.
Ahhh, more for the TBB piles...can't wait!
Where can your readers learn more about you?
I’m everywhere. My website is http://www.rachelfirasek.com
You can find me on twitter: raebob78
I have an author page on Facebook: Rachel Firasek
And you can get to all these from my website.
Thanks so much for joining us today, Rachel! Readers - this is definately one author to check out - and watch. I'm sure more wonderful work is in the works!