by PM Briede
"Death is only the beginning." You hear that all the time. Maybe it is, for the soul who passes on. But what about the ones who are left behind?
I lost my husband unexpectedly in a tragic accident and now have to move back to my childhood home in New Orleans. Thank God for my friends Wesley and Paige. I’d be absolutely lost without them. As I pick up the pieces of what is left of my life, we settle back into our old routines. That is until I hire Olivier to work for me. Now my world is once again turning upside down as the people I’m closest to, old and new, shed the skin of what is familiar and ultimately redefine the nature of our relationships. Couple all of this with the return of my debilitating headaches and ominous dreams of green fire, and well, I’m just at a loss.
What do you do when what you thought you knew turns out to be wrong? What do you do when you find out you can’t trust the people closest to you? What do you do when you keep trying to move forward but life keeps getting in the way? And given all of this, how am I supposed to figure out who Charlotte Grace is now?
He cut me off and growled, “Im iam damnari,” under his breath before silencing us both by crushing his lips to mine. A familiar burn instantly tore through me, stealing my breath as it singed my skin. I opened my mouth to gasp. He seized the opportunity to invade it, his tongue lapping at mine hungrily. My knees buckled and I arched into him, gripping his neck with hands I didn’t even know had wrapped around him. His arms supported me as his hands roved and caressed my back, waist, hips, and neck, restless in their search.
After what seemed like a lifetime, Olivier stopped just as suddenly as he had begun. My eyes remained closed as I tried to compose myself. Remembering what he’d said before the kiss, I asked, “Why?”
“Why what?” he responded through labored breaths.
I opened my eyes to see that his were liquid pools of the green fire. And not in their coloring or meaning that he desired me. Though that was there too. I mean flames. Living, undulating flames were burning in his eyes; dancing around his pupils. Holy crap! How is that possible?! All the familiarity snapped into place. The burning I’d experienced from his kiss, while exciting, was the same as when I had the fire dreams.
I blinked and they were gone. No smoke. No embers. No trace. Had they even been there? I must be crazy. It’s not possible for them to be there. Actual fire doesn’t burn in someone’s eyes. I’d had quite a bit to drink tonight. My mind had to be playing tricks on me. When I let go the image of my dreams lighting in his eyes I remembered what Olivier had said before he kissed me.
Let's Learn a Little about author PM Briede!
What is your writing environment?
If I had my choice, I’d write outside in a beautiful, shaded garden. But in reality, I write on my sofa with my laptop on the coffee table. This allows me to be a writer and a mom at the same time. We take a lot of road trips during the year as well and I’ll prop my laptop in my lap and write during the drive.
Who is your perfect hero and why?
In real life, probably Jon Stewart. He’s smart and funny and socially conscious. I don’t necessarily agree with all his views but I love how he interacts with his guests, even if they don’t see eye to eye.
In fantasy, Captain America. He’s hot and idealistic and pretty damn handy with that shield.
What authors have caught your interest lately and why?
I like HP Mallory and Deanna Chase. You can tell that the authors don’t take themselves too seriously and have fun with their characters.
What type of book have you always wanted to write?
Something with a science twist. Not full out scifi but something closer to that genre. I have an idea in my head and once I finish my current trilogy WIP, I plan to give it a go as my next standalone novel.
Top 3 things on your bucket list?
Italy, Italy, Italy! If that doesn’t count, then Rome, Verona, and Venice.
How did you get the idea for this particular novel?
I was a dream and idea that wouldn’t let me go. It festered for years and I finally sat down and wrote it. I’d sat down with ideas before but could never get past the first few pages. With Smoldering Embers, the story and characters just seemed to write themselves.
What is your favorite scene in your new release?
My favorite scene in Smoldering Embers is the banter between Charlotte and Wesley after their date in Celebration In The Oaks. I wanted to make my characters playful and clever. It was important that they seem grown up but not stuffy. I feel that this particular scene really strikes that balance and really paints the true nature of Charlotte’s and Wesley’s relationship.
What are you working on now and when can we expect it to be available?
I am currently in the second book of my trilogy based on demons and demon hunters. It’s a twist on vampires and probably won’t be out until late 2015/early 2016. Some of this is because my publisher already has a trilogy from me that we plan on releasing through 2014. Some of this is because I won’t release a series until all the books are written because I kind of have a habit of changing my bad guys, their characteristics, and names. Once a book is published, it’s kind of in poor taste to do that.
What do you like to do when you are not writing?
I work a full time job and have a family. So in those few moments when I have time to myself I enjoy reading and watching TV.
What would you consider a perfect date?
The first date with Olivier in Smoldering Embers is pretty much my ideal date. A wonderfully romantic dinner. A jazz club and some dancing. Then a carefree walk through some kind of natural setting.
What is one interesting fact about you that readers don’t know?
When the movie The Next Karate Kid was casting, talent scouts were trolling the martial arts schools in the south. After class one day, I had one ask if I would be interested in auditioning for the roll. Acting was never a dream of mine so I turned them down but it was nice to be asked.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
I am a lover of all things artistic. I grew up surrounded by the performing arts both as a spectator and performer. That love of creation and design is the fuel for my writing now. Being able to create and entertain is a dream come true.
The imagination is a powerful thing, able to take you places you never dreamed. I write realistic fantasy. The idea of the possible having impossible explanations fascinates me. That idea is the driving force behind the Charlotte Grace series.
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