Rogue’s Pawn by Jeffe Kennedy
July 16, 2012
This is no fairy tale…
Haunted by nightmares of a black dog, sick to death of my mind-numbing career and heart-numbing fiancé, I impulsively walked out of my life—and fell into Faerie. Terrified, fascinated, I discover I possess a power I can’t control: my wishes come true. After an all-too-real attack by the animal from my dreams, I wake to find myself the captive of the seductive and ruthless fae lord Rogue. In return for my rescue, he demands an extravagant price—my firstborn child, which he intends to sire himself…
With no hope of escaping this world, I must learn to harness my magic and build a new life despite the perils—including my own inexplicable and debilitating desire for Rogue. I swear I will never submit to his demands, no matter what erotic torment he subjects me to…
1. Where did you get the idea for the novel?
I always loved the idea of crossing over into another world. From the time I started reading books like that when I was a young girl, I started assembling my own rules for how I’d handle it. It made me crazy when the people who crossed over did stupid stuff or spent all their time worrying about how it happened instead of dealing. This was my chance to tell it my way.
2. Your title. Who came up with it? Did you ever change your title?
My critique partners and I brainstormed about 20 titles. I’d long been using the title “Obsidian” and had planned on that. But I published another book with the same publisher called “Sapphire.” It was kind of a coincidence – and kind of that I have a thing for one-word titles that involve shiny stuff. At any rate, Sapphire is a contemporary BDSM, not the same kind of story as Rogue’s Pawn at all, so the press was worried readers would see them as connected. So, “Obsidian” got the boot and one of my favorite possible second-choice titles, “Rogue’s Pawn” was chosen.
3. Which came first, the title or the novel?
From the first morning I started writing the novel, I’d called it “Obsidian.” In some ways, that will always be the real title to me. ;-)
4. Since becoming a writer, what’s the most exciting thing to ever happen to you?
I’m not sure I could pick one thing. Having readers write to me and say what they love – those are the best moments. Sometimes they compare my books to those of other authors I really love also – and that’s just an unbelievable feeling!
5. What book are you currently reading or what was the last book you read?
I just finished Delusion in Death by J.D. Robb. I have been reading that series for years and years. I gobble up each new one!
6. What was your first book that you ever wrote (very first one you wrote, not published)?
Actually it’s Rogue’s Pawn. I had other work published first, but I’d been working on this book for years and years.
7. What is your writing process?
I write every day and I’m pretty ritualized about it. I believe in quiet and ritual and discipline. I write most of my stories from beginning to end, discovering them as I go.
8. Who are your favorite authors of all time?
Ann Patchett, Margaret Atwood, Anne McCaffrey, Jacqueline Carey, Nora Roberts/JD Robb,
9. At a book signing, do you just sign your name or do you write a note? How do you come up with stuff to say?
I almost always get to chat with people first, so I write a note related to what we talked about.
10. What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
People always seem to be surprised that I’m really an introvert. I love being social, but I’m happiest tucked in at home with my man and the animals.
11. How do you react to a bad review?
If there’s something useful I can extract, that strikes home, I try to note it. Otherwise, I let it go. Reviews are for readers and I feel they should get another reader’s honest perspective. If something in the review upsets me, then I need to examine why and figure out how to get over it.
12. How did you celebrate the sale of your first book?
For me, celebrations always involve champagne or a more expensive wine than I’d usually buy – and some kind of indulgent pastry. I also have wonderful CPs who send me gifts to celebrate milestones and book releases. For Rogue’s Pawn, they gave me an obsidian pendant – now you all know why! – and I wear it often, with a warm glow, knowing that they understood what that book means to me.
Rogue's Pawn Excerpt:
“Enough,” a male voice said.
As if I’d ceased to exist, Tinker Bell blinked her eyes and regained her lovely self, face smoothing, shining once again in sunny elegance. Reboot and resume program. She gracefully stood and glided to the tray, set the bowl precisely in the center, lifted the tray and left the room without hesitation.
Booted footsteps crossed the room toward me. Act II, scene ii. Exit Nasty Tinker Bell, Enter God-Only-Knows-What-Now. My face was sticky with whatever the brothy stuff had been, my hair wet and fouled. I stank. I hurt. I was chained to a bed in a place so completely unknown I couldn’t begin to understand it. I tried to squeeze my legs closer together, but the chains seemed at the limit of their reach. The energy of my brief triumph evaporated, allowing tears to well up again.
Oh, please, please, please, do not cry. The threatening sting worsened. I closed my eyes and one tear leaked out. He stopped next to me, surveying me.
“You’re certainly a mess.” His wry voice was rich and smooth.
My eyes snapped open to glare at him through the blur. Fifty different smart remarks flew across my tongue, most along the lines that any failures of appearance on my part could be laid on the doorstep of someone besides myself. But even the buzz of the first word on my vocal chords brought searing agony. Relieved to have a legitimate reason for the tears, I almost welcomed the searing sensation.
“No, don’t try to talk—no one needs to hear what you have to say, anyway. Not that we can help it, since you think so loudly. And you have a decision to make. We have a quandary.” He began pacing, boots echoing against stone. “No one can heal you while you’re bound in silver and we can’t release you from the silver until you have yourself under control. Which will take a considerably long time—perhaps years of training—if you’re even able to accomplish it at all.”
I thought of the birds crashing in increasing cacophony with a small shudder.
“Exactly,” he confirmed. “And yes,” he said from the window behind my head where he seemed to be gazing out, “I can hear most of your thoughts—another reason to save trying to speak aloud.”
My stomach congealed in panic. Had he heard my secret thoughts? Don’t think of them, bury them deep, deep. Think of other things…like what? Think of home, think of Isabel. Isabel, my cat—Clive hated her. What would happen to her now? How could I not have thought of her until this moment? Abandoned, wondering why I never came home for her… And my mother—she’d be frantic. How long had I been gone? They could be all dead and buried, lost to me forever. The anguish racked me.
“Shh.” The man sat on the side of my bed now, heavier than Nasty Tinker Bell. He brushed the hair back from my forehead, then placed his long fingers over my brow and, with his thumbs, rhythmically smoothed along my cheekbones, wiping away the tears that now flowed freely.
I stifled a sob. I had cried more in the past day than I had in years. The sweeping along my cheekbones soothed me, melting warmth through my skull. The rhythm became part of my breathing. Deep breaths. Smooth, easy. The awful tightness in my chest gave a little sigh and released.
“Let’s try again, shall we?” The man pulled his hands away. I could hear him brush them against his thighs. Soup, tears and blood. Yuck.
My eyes cleared enough for me to see him. Ebony-blue climbed over half his face. The winding pattern of angular spirals and toothy spikes swirled out of his black hair on the left side of his face, placing sharp fingers along his cheekbone, jaw and brow. For a moment, the tattoo-like pattern dominated everything about him. Ferocious and alien.
Once I adjusted, I could see past the lines. His face echoed Tinker Bell’s golden coloring. He could be her fraternal twin, with those same arched cheekbones. But where she was golden dawn, he was darkest night. Midnight-blue eyes, that deep blue just before all light was gone from the sky, when the stars have emerged, but you could see the black shadows of trees against the night. He shared Tinker Bell’s rose-petal mouth, but with a curious edge to it. I suppose a man’s mouth shouldn’t remind one of a flower, and there was nothing feminine about this man. Where she wore the pink sugar roses of debutantes and bridal showers, his lips made me think of the blooms of late summer, the sharp-ruffled dianthus, edges darkening to blood in the heat. His bone structure was broader than hers but still seemed somehow differently proportioned, his arms hanging a bit too long from shoulders not quite balanced to his height. Inky hair pulled back from his face fell in a tail down his back. One strand had escaped to fall over his shoulder and I could see a blue shimmer in its silk sheen.
He arched his left eyebrow, blueness in the elegant arch, repeating the deep shades of the fanged lines around it.
“Shall we?” he repeated.
I stared at him. What was the question?
About the Author:
Jeffe Kennedy took the crooked road to writing, stopping off at neurobiology, religious studies and environmental consulting before her creative writing began appearing in places like Redbook, Puerto del Sol, Wyoming Wildlife, Under the Sun and Aeon. An erotic novella, Petals and Thorns, came out under her pen name of Jennifer Paris in 2010, heralding yet another branch of her path, into erotica and romantic fantasy fiction. Since then, an erotic short, Feeding the Vampire, and another erotic novella, Sapphire, have hit the shelves.
Her contemporary fantasy novel, Rogue’s Pawn, book one in A Covenant of Thorns, will be published in July, 2012. Jeffe lives in Santa Fe, with two Maine coon cats, a border collie, plentiful free-range lizards and frequently serves as a guinea pig for an acupuncturist-in-training. Find her on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/Author.Jeffe.Kennedy) and Twitter (@jeffekennedy) or visit her at her website http://jeffekennedy.com/.
Check out my post about Jeffe's other books! Feeding The Vampire and Hunting The Siren!
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