Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Guest Alicia Dean

Paranormal with a side of Suspense…

I love paranormal romance. I adore vampires and shapeshifters and ghosts and werewolves. And, yes, Grim Reapers. But, suspense is in my blood, and I find it difficult to write a pure paranormal story without throwing in some suspense, usually in the form of a serial killer. I mean, why should a character limit itself to dealing with the supernatural, when they can also battle a heinous murderer?

In my first paranormal romance, Heart of the Witch, my heroine is a witch who crosses paths with a sadistic killer. Fun stuff, right? So, a few years back when I decided to write another paranormal, and decided my characters would not be your standard vampire/werewolf fare, I chose to write about Grim Reapers. Not only is my villain a Grim Reaper, but my hero is as well. And, not only do my hero and heroine have to deal with the evil villain, Gaylen, a pesky serial killer is also wreaking havoc. Of course, in a world where Grim Reapers need souls to take, it’s rather handy to have a murderer around. J


She spent her entire life fighting death. Now she’s falling in love with him.

As a nurse, Audra Grayson devotes her life to healing others. She realizes death is inevitable, but struggles every day to help her patients combat it. When she has a near-death experience of her own, she inadvertently opens a portal between the world of the living and the dead. Two Grim Reapers step through—Gaylen, bent on vengeance, determined to bring death to the innocent, even when it isn’t their time. And Dimitri—sexy and deadly, even though he’s just ‘doing his job.’ When Gaylen targets Audra’s patients, then her loved ones, she’ll have to conquer her fears to defeat him. But she can’t as easily conquer her feelings for Dimitri—she’s falling in love with him, and there’s no future with a man who exists in a world beyond the grave.


He was being summoned. Someone was in jeopardy.
He wouldn’t know if they were to be taken until it was over, but he had to go. Had to be there in case Gaylen got any ideas about making an appearance. He backed away, keeping Audra in his sight for as long as possible.
He let the sensation lead him to a small motel room. Not exactly a five-star one from the looks of it.
The room held two occupants. The girl was young, maybe in her late teens, although admittedly it was becoming more and more difficult for him to guess ages. After being dead for over two hundred years, that was to be expected.
A man crouched over the girl. Dimitri could only see the back of him, but he appeared to be older than she. His hair showed hints of gray, and his damp T-shirt was molded to rolls of fat. The bottom of a tattoo was visible beneath the sleeve of his shirt. Was that a dragon? A dinosaur? Dimitri squinted. Maybe Godzilla. It was definitely some kind of monster. Fitting.
The man cut the strap of the girl’s pink, lacey bra. She screamed, and he clamped his hand over her mouth.
Mascara-smeared eyes wide with terror, she fought against his grip, but she was no match for the man’s strength, or for his frenzied excitement.
The girl’s pale, pink-streaked hair clung damply to her cheeks as she wept. Skimpy clothing lay discarded on the floor. A prostitute, perhaps? Or maybe just a foolish runaway who had no idea what kind of danger she’d gotten herself into when she took to the streets.
She certainly had an idea now.
No light filtered in through the curtained windows. The room was nearly dark, save for the glow of the muted TV. The screen flickered with images of people at a party, drinking, laughing, while on the bed in the room that reeked of sweat, old food, and fear, the girl struggled for her life.

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Author Alicia Dean began writing stories as a child. At age 10, she wrote her first ever romance (featuring a hero who looked just like Elvis Presley, and who shared the name of Elvis’ character in the movie, Tickle Me), and she still has the tattered, pencil-written copy. Alicia is from Moore, Oklahoma and now lives in Edmond. She has three grown children and a huge network of supportive friends and family. She writes mostly contemporary suspense and paranormal, but has also written in other genres, including a few vintage historicals. She is a freelance editor in addition to being an editor for The Wild Rose Press.

Other than reading and writing, her passions are Elvis Presley, MLB, NFL (she usually works in a mention of one or all three into her stories) and watching (and rewatching) her favorite televisions shows like The Walking Dead, Dexter, Justified, Sons of Anarchy, Haven, Vampire Diaries, and The Originals. Some of her favorite authors are Michael Connelly, Dennis Lehane, Lee Child, Lisa Gardner, Sharon Sala, Jordan Dane, Ridley Pearson, Joseph Finder, and Jonathan Kellerman…to name a few.

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Victoria Craven said...

What a great original idea. I love the plot.

Diane Burton said...

I love how you weave suspense in your paranormal stories. I can't leave out suspense, either. Soul Seducer seemed so believable. As if the Grim Reaper just hung around waiting for souls. Creepy concept. :)

Maureen said...

I love the combination of my two loves- suspense and paranormal- and I loved Soul Seducer! A great story!

Alicia Dean said...

Thank you, Victoria. I had lots of fun creating it. :)

Alicia Dean said...

Ha, Diane. Yes, that's kind of how I picture it, if they were real...or are they...? :) Thanks so much!

Alicia Dean said...

Thank you so much, Maureen! I'm thrilled you enjoyed it.

Anna Durand said...

Definitely have to read this book, Alicia! Paranormal romance is one of my favorites to read -- and to write.

Alicia Dean said...

Mine too, Anna. If you read it, I hope you enjoy!

Elizabeth Alsobrooks said...

OMG, Alicia! Love this premise and the excerpt is wonderful!

Pamela S Thibodeaux said...

Wow....sounds like a great combination Alicia!
good luck and God's blessings

Susan Coryell said...

Suspense is written all over this excerpt! Very seductive reading.

Kara O'Neal said...

Sounds like another good one! I admire people who can make up these different rules to our normal worlds. Good luck!

Marissa Garner said...

This is a great book. I highly recommend it!

Alicia Dean said...

Shoot, I didn't realize I'd missed some visitors. Sorry, all!

Elizabeth - Thank you SO much. I'm so pleased you like the premise and excerpt!

Thank you, Pamela. I appreciate you stopping by!

Susan - Thank you! I love to try to heighten suspense. Glad it worked for you! :)

Hi Kara, I'll have to say, making up and sticking to the rules was a challenge, but I enjoyed it immensely. Thank you!!

Aw, Marissa. Thank you for the kind words. I am honored you loved the book!

CJ Burright said...

Ooh, great excerpt! That's such a great idea, having two opposing grim reapers!

Darcy Flynn said...

The concept of a grim reaper as the hero fascinates me! Loved the excerpt, Alicia!

Nicole Fitton said...

Great premise Alicia. I'm with you - no matter what I write suspense always finds a way in! Good luck with the release 😊