First in a sexy new series featuring four succubus sisters fighting demons and desires.
Cassie Ryan and Tina Gerow are with us today with an excerpt from Cassie Ryan’s latest book, just out today, and a fun interview. Leave a comment or question for Cassie and you may just win a copy of “Seducing the Succubus”.
Jezebeth is living out the centuries as any succubus must-seducing men to survive and corrupting souls to make her quota with her queen, Lilith. But, when she’s attacked by a bounty hunter demon, it’s a handsome human who saves her.
Noah Halston is a horror writer who owes his life to Lilith. Now he must pay up by eluding the fearsome beasts of hell while escorting a very attractive and tempting succubus safely to Lilith’s lair-or else he will forfeit his soul to an eternity of torture.
Trouble is, if he spends too much time with the all too tempting Jezebeth, he may just lose his heart-or, even worse, his life.
When Jez could finally draw a breath, the stench of fresh sewage crossed with rotting flesh filled her lungs and stung her eyes. She stumbled backward, trying to put distance between her and the demon, but by the intensity of the stink she knew it was already too late.
The sweeping laser lights showed the crowd of humans still streamed toward the exits. The bluesy music continued to play like a macabre accompaniment to the human screams, sounds of breaking wood and screeching metal.
Jez dodged around overturned tables and chairs, trying to lose herself in the crowd of stampeding humans.
As she neared the exit door, her survival instincts screamed and her gut clenched, surging adrenaline through her body as she whirled to look behind her.
A flicker of movement was all the warning she had before red-hot pain sliced through her shoulder and left arm and she found herself flying backward. Her back smacked against something hard, and her breath whooshed out for the second time in a few minutes.
She gasped against the pain, even as her brain belatedly told her she’d been slammed against the wall. A few long seconds later, she glanced up into the glowing red eyes of the bounty demon.
Fear and frustration warred inside her belly as she struggled against the poison-tipped demon’s claws that were sunk inside her arm and shoulder pinning her back against the wall. Her movements were sluggish, which told her the poison had already begun to affect her.
“Jezebeth, follower of Lilith. Finally, we meet.” The demon’s hot, rotten breath huffed against her face with each cultured word. It towered over her, the laser lights flashing off its thousands of jagged sharklike teeth. Mottled black skin covered every inch of the demon and maggots and worms crawled along its flesh in a constant sea of putrid motion.
A pestilence demon.
Jez tried to ignore the shiver of revulsion as some of the maggots slid off the demon’s hands and crawled onto the bare skin of her shoulder.
She shoved aside her fear, glared up into the demon’s glowing red eyes and raised her chin. “You’d better hope Lilith never finds you. She’ll rip you into tiny little shreds to send back to your master.”
The demon laughed. “The size of the reward that Semiazas has on you will go a long way toward protecting me from the anger of the queen of the whores, little one. Besides, you’ll be dead long before that.” He opened his mouth revealing ten rows of razor sharp teeth, and Jez tensed as she waited for the deathblow.
A sizzling sound drowned out the music, and the stench of burning flesh filled her lungs just before the demon’s jaws snapped closed like a deadly animal trap just an inch from her nose. The demon let out a high-pitched squeal and wrenched his claws out of Jez’s flesh.
White-hot pain sliced through her, and she crumpled to the floor as she was freed from the demon’s grip.
“Run!” shouted a very deep voice.
Not about to argue and waste her chance to escape, Jez scrambled toward the door on all fours, trying to ignore the sudden rush of warmth down her arm as blood gushed out of her wound.
Another loud squeal from the demon made her glance back as she pushed to her feet.
A human male nearly as tall as the demon stood holding a Super Soaker toy gun Rambo style in front of him. There was no trace of fear in his gaze as he pumped the gun and then shot a stream of liquid toward the demon.
A sound like a thousand skillets of frying bacon filled the air along with another keening sound from the demon. The demon convulsed as plumes of black acrid smoke rose toward the ceiling in lazy curls.
The man turned his head toward Jez as if he sensed her scrutiny. Their gazes locked and Jez jumped like a guilty child caught eavesdropping. “I said run, damn it!”
Lisa: What do you write and why?
CR/TG: As Tina Gerow I write paranormal romance and romantic suspense. As Cassie Ryan I write erotic paranormal romance. I love the romance genre because of the happily ever after and the complexities between women and men as they go through the stages of their relationship. I’ve been fascinated with anything paranormal for as long as I can remember, so the two together seemed a natural combination for me. As for the erotic, I sort of fell into writing that, and it’s lots of fun. But it’s also a nice variety to take a break from the erotic and switch back to the sensual stuff.
Lisa: It’s always nice to fall into something erotic. It’s a bit like Christmas, only better. Are you aware of any themes that run through your stories? If so, what are they?
CR/TG: A very HOT version of Christmas, but yup – definitely But to answer your question, all of my stories have strong heroines who have to find themselves through the course of the book both through whatever external conflict they are going through, and through their interaction and conflict with the hero. My heroines like their men strong and they want partners not caretakers.
Lisa: What would you like readers to take away from your stories?
CR/TG: I’d love for readers to get sucked into the stories and enjoy the worlds as much as I did while creating them. If the reader walks away feeling like the characters they met in the book are real somewhere out there, and they think about how they are doing now and then, then I’ve done my job.
Lisa: You said “Sucked” :-). What inspires your stories?
CR/TG: That’s what he said…er….I mean…I write what I’d love to read. I like stories that fascinate me and keep me reading, that make me alternately laugh out loud and cry, and most of all that let me step into someone’s else’s life and live it with them for a while. I don’t think I ever stopped playing “What if” from when I was a small child. Now I get to do it fulltime and no one tells me to stop and pay attention J
Lisa: Will you be attending any book or writing conferences in the coming year? If yes, which?
CR/TG: I’d love to be able to attend RT and RWA Nationals next year as well as a few smaller conferences, but we’ll see how that pans out.
Lisa: If I ever get to one of those, you, Lizzie T. Leaf and I are going to give some poor bartender a hell of a time! Do you have any book signings or author appearances coming soon? If yes, where and when?
CR/TG: OMG – you and Lizzie and I would have an amazing time! Let’s start saving for bail now As for my upcoming appearances, my next book signing is in a few days – October 8th at the Desert Ridge Barnes & Noble in Phoenix, Arizona ( http://store-locator.barnesandnoble.com/event/68074). After that, I have a Radio Interview for Canned Laughter Radio Show with Renee Bernard, then another book signing in November as well as the Glendale Chocolate Affaire, 1st weekend in February in Historic Downtown Glendale, Arizona, at the Romance Writer’s Booth. For a full listing of my appearances check out my website at www.cassieryan.com and click on Appearances.
Lisa: What is your writing schedule like?
CR/TG: I usually have my part time Starbucks job in the early morning – and by early morning I mean I’m there by 4am to open. But hey – they have killer insurance and anyone who has ever tried to live with self-employment insurance will tell you – good insurance is like gold. After I get home 4-6 hours later depending on my shift, I do a power nap and then sit down to write for several hours. All my other gazillion activities come after that. Then once I hit dinner time, it’s total family time…and then if there’s time left…there’s always sleep, right?
But seriously, I try to write every day. I feel a bit rusty if I take a day off.
Lisa: Do you have any other passions besides writing? If yes, what are they? Why?
CR/TG: Well, other than writing, I’d have to say reading. After all, that’s what sucked me into this business in the first place. I can sit down and read a book in one sitting if I let myself and I’m an eclectic reader – Urban Fantasy, Romance, Sci-Fi, Fantasy, memoirs, literature, self-help, satire…pretty much anything but politics. But my biggest passion is spending time with my two guys. My husband and son are amazingly supportive and proud of me and I’m thankful for both of them each and every day.
Lisa: You said “Sucked” again J. What is your best memory?
CR/TG: Other than the biggies like the birth of my son etc, from a writer’s perspective I’d have to say seeing my very first book published. It was electronic, so I couldn’t hold it in my hand, but I was proud regardless and I’m still a big eBook supporter.
Lisa: That’s a good thing because we epublished authors need all the support we can get! What is your favorite comfort food?
CR/TG: Support – that’s what he said…ha! Oh, my comfort foods. Yes? Oh, you meant a specific food. Snerk! I’m kind of a foodie, so it really depends on my mood. If I’m in the mood for something sweet – anything with caramel, peanut butter or chocolate and I’m your girl. If we’re talking real food, a thick beef stew or some nice pasta with a rich tomato sauce is amazing. Damn…gaining weight just thinking about it!!
Lisa: What relaxes you?
CR/TG: Reading, definitely. Hot baths, absolutely. Meditation also helps clear my mind and tone down on the stress that comes as part of life. But my biggest stress reliever is hanging out with my son. He’s a teenager and shares my warped sense of humor, so just watching a movie with him or going swimming or for a walk helps me see life from a more relaxed perspective.
Lisa: What is your favorite guilty pleasure?
CR/TG: David Tennant. No, seriously. I have a total fan-girl crush on David Tennant to the point that my husband calls him my boyfriend and my son calls him his future stepfather…lol. I LOVE watching Dr. Who and anything else David is in, and yes, I have even based characters on him. In fact, the hero in Book 2 of the Sisters of Darkness Series, Levi from The Demon & The Succubus is based on David Tennant.
Lisa: What decade has been your favorite? Why?
CR/TG: I loved the 80’s. Probably because that was the era I grew up in and went to high school in. It was a more innocent time and I really do remember it fondly – and yup, I even still like most of the music! Who doesn’t love Journey and Bon Jovi? Although if I had to pick a decade to live in that I wasn’t alive during, I think I’d love to be a lady in Regency England. I’d probably get into tons of trouble since I’m more outspoken than a lady is supposed to be, but I could totally see being one of those eccentric Duchesses J
Lisa: I saw Bon Jovi in London in 1993. (It was a very good year.) I’m all for being an eccentric Duchess! What is your favorite way to promote your work?
CR/TG: I do all the normal stuff like banners and blogs and chats, but my favorite is book signings. I know many authors don’t like them, but I absolutely love them. I get to talk to readers personally and talk about one of my favorite things—books!
Lisa: Where is your favorite place to write? Why?
CR/TG: Most of my last several books have been written in a squishy chair at my favorite Starbucks. It’s got a nice large lobby and I can put my headphones in and write there for hours. The chai lattes also don’t hurt. I can also write at home in my recliner but the guys and the cats tend to bug me and keep interrupting, so I usually make better momentum at Starbucks.
Lisa: What is your favorite fairy tale? Why?
CR/TG: I love Cinderella. She had to be pretty brave to trust a woman who materializes out of nowhere and changes her into a princess for the night. Would most of us be so brave and risk our stepmother’s displeasure? Go, girl! Grab your dream with both hands and don’t let go!
Lisa: That’s what he said! J What was your favorite vacation?
CR/TG: Kidlet and the husband and I went to Universal Studios and Disneyland a few years ago and it was amazing. Kidlet was just big enough to ride everything, but still young enough to have that little kid enjoyment of those places. Wait – what am I saying?? I STILL have that little kid enjoyment of those places! But I think anywhere we go and we’re all there together is a blast.
Lisa: If you had another career, what was it?
CR/TG: My degree is in Instrumental Music Education and my first career was as a band director. I taught in a small town in Texas called Pearland. I taught beginning band at the elementary and was an assistant director at the junior high and high school, so I got to do the gamut. :) Now that my kidlet is in band, it’s nice to get to relive some of those memories
Lisa: If you didn’t write, what would you do instead?
CR/TG: I think I’d love to be a public speaker. I do give talks on writing and finding your dreams. And I’ll be teaching several online writing classes at Savvy Authors over the next few years, but I could totally see doing a speaking circuit. I’d love it! :) (You can check out that Appearances tab on my website for a list of upcoming classes.)
Lisa: If you could have one wish, what would it be?
CR/TG: Abundance in all good things. How’s that for covering all my bases?
Lisa: That covers it alright! If you could describe yourself in only one word, what would it be?
Lisa: Can you explain? (Just kidding.) Are you a cat or dog person? Do you have any pets and if so, please tell us about them.
CR/TG: I grew up as a dog person and had Westies for a long time. But when I married my husband, he was a total cat person. Up to then I had viewed cats as play toys for dogs. But the damned things followed me around and wore me down until I got used to them, and now I love the little critters. Most of my bios say we have two orange tabby cats and until October of 2009 that was true. Unfortunately, my husband’s cat that he’d had since he was twelve years oldKatie–had to be put down. She had just gotten so old and sick that it was time. The entire household grieved, including our other tabby cat, Rusty, who moped for weeks. But then for Christmas we took my son to the humane society and let him pick out a kitten. He chose a feisty little black kitten named Nox. She and Rusty get along great and now I can’t imagine the house without her in it. (As I’m typing they are both curled up under my laptop and between my legs on my recliner)
Lisa: Yeah, I have two German Shepherds who seem to think they’re cats and like to curl up under my laptop too. I’m pretty sure cats provide a completely different mood though. What is the one thing you most want to do that you haven’t yet?
CR/TG: I have lots of goals around writing, publishing, personal things etc, but there isn’t really any one thing that I feel like I have to complete before I die. I spend every day working on the things I love and working toward those goals. I’m stubborn and I’ll just achieve as much as I possibly can before the Universe decides my time here is up.
Lisa: You seem to be doing pretty well in both writing and publishing. Sapphire Blue Publishing, which you began with Maria Clayton a little over two years ago has amassed an impressive catalog (including my own books) and will be offering paperbacks soon too. Now for the serious question…
When the zombies take over, what will you do?
CR/TG: Lock & Load!! Or in the immortal words of the Zombieland movie – “Double Tap”!
Lisa: Atta girl! Look for a crazy woman in a Jeep wearing a bandana and yelling “Yippie Kiy Yay!” That’ll be me. We’ll kill ‘em all for good.
Another important question…
Vampire or werewolf? Why?
CR/TG: I’ll be ready and waiting for that jeep! As for the question…Vampire. There’s just something hot and sexy about a vampire. That and I’m just not into the whole furry guy thing.
Lisa: Hear that, gentlemen? Tina requires manscaping. Please tell us about your most recent release (of the literary type) and where we can purchase it.
CR/TG: Maybe not full manscaping – a little body hair on a guy is masculine and sexy, but if you have more than my cats – then yeah – I’d say opt for the manscaping…lol! Seducing the Succubus is the first book in the Sisters of Darkness series and releases on October 5, 2010. The series is about four succubus sisters in Hell’s version of the Witness Relocation Program – and their journey to stop the end of the world…all while finding their own happily ever after. You can purchase it at any brick and mortar bookstore like Barnes & Noble etc. And since Penguin books (aka Berkley) have come to a digital agreement with Amazon, it should also be available for Kindle and hopefully all of the other ebook formats.
Lisa: Succubus, witness relocation and happily ever after? Sounds like a scream! I’m in!
Thanks for sharing your latest book with us! Is there anything else you’d like to share with your readers?
CR/TG: I love to hear from my readers and I’m very active on Facebook and Twitter. Or they can contact me through my website.
You can find (or stalk) Tina Gerow/Cassie Ryan online here: