Today I'd like to welcome Susannah Sandlin to Romance Book Junkies for a guest post and giveaway. She's going to be talking about how every vampire needs a flaw. So lets get started. Susannah you have the floor.
Every Vampire Needs a Flaw
There are two kinds of vampires: the ones who’ve been around so long, and have spent so much time in the company of other vampires, that they’ve lost much of their humanity. Quirks and habits and flaws that might have plagued them as adults have usually gotten ironed out after a couple of hundred years.
The other vampires are the ones who carry the flaws of their human lives with them. At least theoretically. Once I started trying to think of some, I started hitting brick walls. Do we want our vampires to have lost some of the handicaps and flaws that made them human?
Who are some of your favorite vampire heroes? The Black Dagger Brotherhood guys, of course, have serious handicaps and flaws, but they were never human so I’m not sure they count.
What about Jean-Claude, Anita Blake’s vampire? He still carries physical and deep mental scars from his treatment at the hands of Belle Morte before he was turned. (Think Zsadist, only in France.) There’s also a vampire named Willy that shows up periodically in the Anita Blake series. Willy hasn’t been turned very long and he was kind of a pathetic guy in his human life…and he’s kind of a pathetic vampire. He still wears bad suits and tells bad jokes.
Bones, from Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress series, was a male prostitute back in the day, so he’s learned a lot of, er, useful skills—and has some mental scars.
And…I can’t think of many more. Vampires have a lot of political baggage. It seems to come with the territory. But when I created the vampires for my Penton series, I wanted to keep them in touch with their human sides. Part of that desire came from the idea of having vampires and humans living in close proximity, bonded together by blood and forming long relationships on equal footing.
So Aidan, the hero of Redemption, still has callouses on his hands after four centuries because when he was turned he was a farmer in 1600s Ireland. He misses working with the soil, so he rigs up a greenhouse where he can work at night and still smell the sun on the plants from the day.
Mirren, his second-in-command and hero of book two (Absolution, coming in October), has a very human flaw that embarrasses him: he’s color blind. So, is he really as big a badass as everyone thinks…or does he wear black clothes because that way, he doesn’t have to worry about what matches? (Well, okay, it’s a little of both.)
Will, the brilliant vampire who’s the hero of the third book (Omega, coming in December) looks perfect on the surface—he’s sex-on-two-legs handsome, smart, funny…and hiding a deep shame that goes back to childhood and shapes everything he’s done since.
What do you like in your paranormal heroes—perfection? Or just a few flaws left over from their humanity?
Book One Penton Legacy series
By Susannah Sandlin
Following a worldwide pandemic whose vaccine left human blood deadly to vampires, the vampire community is on the verge of starvation and panic. Some have fanned into rural areas, where the vaccine was less prevalent, and are taking unsuspecting humans as blood slaves. Others are simply starving, which for a vampire is worse than death—a raging hunger in a creature too weak to feed.
Immune to these struggles—at first—is Penton, a tiny community in rural Chambers County, Alabama, an abandoned cotton mill town that has been repopulated by charismatic vampire Aidan Murphy, his scathe of 50 vampires, and their willingly bonded humans. Aidan has recruited his people carefully, believing in a peaceful community where the humans are respected and the vampires retain a bit of their humanity.
But an unresolved family feud and the paranoia of the Vampire Tribunal descend on Penton in the form of Aidan’s brother, Owen Murphy. Owen has been issued a death warrant that can only be commuted if he destroys Penton—and Aidan, against whom he’s held a grudge since both were turned vampire in 17th-century Ireland. Owen begins a systematic attack on the town, first killing its doctor, then attacking one of Aidan’s own human familiars
To protect his people, Aidan is forced to go against his principles and kidnap an unvaccinated human doctor—and finds himself falling in love for the first time since the death of his wife in Ireland centuries ago.
Dr. Krystal Harris, forced into a world she never knew existed, must face up to her own abusive past to learn if the feelings she’s developing for her kidnapper are real—or just a warped, supernatural kind of Stockholm Syndrome in which she’s allowing herself to become a victim yet again.
Susannah Sandlin’s REDEMPTION is the first in the Penton Legacy series. Book two, ABSOLUTION, will be out September 18, and book three, OMEGA, on December 18.
Susannah Sandlin is the author of paranormal romance set in the Deep South, where there are always things that go bump in the night! A journalist by day, Susannah grew up in Alabama reading the gothic novels of Susan Howatch, and always fancied herself living in Cornwall (although she’s never actually been there). Details, details. She also is a fan of Stephen King. The combination of Howatch and King probably explains a lot. Currently a resident of Auburn, Alabama, Susannah has also lived in Illinois, Texas, California, and Louisiana. Her novel Redemption won the paranormal romance category in the 2011 Chicago North RWA Fire and Ice contest, and is the first of three in a series that debuts this year.Website/Blog: http://www.susannahsandlin.com
Indie Bound: http://www.indiebound.org/book/9781612183541
Susannah is hosting a tour wide giveaway of 6 Redemption Prize Packs, with a signed book and swag, and one $50 Amazon Gift Card. All you have to do to enter is fill out the rafflecopter below.