Posted April 22, 2012 by davincikittie in All Series

Giveaway (US/Int): Author Jane Kindred on the delicate balance between darkness and light

Please help me welcome Jane Kindred, author of The Fallen Queen, to GT today!

I’ve been told by some that I write dark fantasy; on occasion, someone will tell me it’s too dark for them. Others tell me my fantasy isn’t quite dark enough to qualify, my dark characters not quite “other” enough—I received a rejection, once upon a time, from an agent who loved the story but was disappointed that my demons weren’t monsters.

I suppose, like me, my characters are constantly straddling this elusive middle ground between dark and light, good and evil, naughty and nice. I’ve always thought a person needed a good dose of both ends of the spectrum to be healthy. It’s one of the reasons my own blog title is “Somewhere Between Heaven and Hell”—metaphorically, it’s the place I feel most comfortable—somewhere in the grey.

Writing fantasy with romantic elements poses additional challenges. Fantasy purists often balk at a love story, but I think even the darkest of stories have love at the heart, and a fantasy world without any romance at all strikes me as an incomplete one. Readers more used to romance, on the other hand, can feel a little overwhelmed by the necessary world-building in fantasy. Writing romantic fantasy becomes like a recipe, adding a little of this, but not too much; a dash of that, without overwhelming the palate.

With the romantic element, there’s also the added responsibility of not letting your readers down when it comes to the “HEA”—the requisite happily-ever-after. My endings, predictably, straddle the fence. And while it may seem contradictory, I actually have a personal requirement of happy endings. There’s enough misery in life—and more than enough misery that I put my characters through along the way—that I prefer my fiction to tip the balance toward happiness in the end.

That might come as a surprise to people who read my fantasy looking for a traditional HEA in the romantic sense, because it may not be the one you’re expecting, but for me, it’s definitely there, and I hope my readers agree. Though I do like to leave a little something for the characters to yearn for, particularly if it’s a series. Each book opens little packages of surprises, but they don’t all come at once.

Ultimately, I like turning the expected on its head. My hero may not always be the person you thought it would be, and the villain may turn out to be something more than you assumed. I write about angels and demons, but you may be surprised by the direction that takes. I’ve never quite bought into the black and white qualities traditionally ascribed to angels and their fallen counterparts. Lucifer, after all, is described as the Angel of Light—how did he get to be the ultimate in darkness? Sometimes it’s just a matter of perception.

Heaven can go to hell.

Until her cousin slaughtered the supernal family, Anazakia’s father ruled the Heavens, governing noble Host and Fallen peasants alike. Now Anazakia is the last grand duchess of the House of Arkhangel’sk, and all she wants is to stay alive.

Hunted by Seraph assassins, Anazakia flees Heaven with two Fallen thieves—fire demon Vasily and air demon Belphagor, each with their own nefarious agenda—who hide her in the world of Man. The line between vice and virtue soon blurs, and when Belphagor is imprisoned, the unexpected passion of Vasily warms her through the Russian winter.

Heaven seems a distant dream, but when Anazakia learns the truth behind the celestial coup, she will have to return to fight for the throne—even if it means saving the man who murdered everyone she loved.

Get your copy of The Fallen Queen at….

… and look for the next installment of The House of Arkhangel’sk trilogy coming August 7, 2012 from Entangled Publishing!

About the Author

Jane Kindred began writing fantasy at age 12 in the wayback of a Plymouth Fury—which, as far as she recalls, never killed anyone…who didn’t have it coming.

She spent her formative years ruining her eyes reading romance novels in the Tucson sun and watching Star Trek marathons in the dark. Although she was repeatedly urged to learn a marketable skill, she received a B.A. in Creative Writing anyway from the University of Arizona.

She now writes to the sound of San Francisco foghorns while two cats slowly but surely edge her off the side of the bed.

You can find Jane on Twitter: @JaneKindred
on Facebook: www.facebook.com/somewherebetweenheavenandhell
or on her website: www.janekindred.com


Jane is giving away one e-copy of The Fallen Queen to a commenter on today’s post!  To enter to win, leave us a comment telling us…

Where do you fall? Dark? Light? Or somewhere in between?

… then fill out the Rafflecopter.  Easy peasy.  =)

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Sue "DaVinciKittie" Brown-Moore is a veteran romance blogger and reviewer and the primary voice for GraveTells.com. Sue and GraveTells have won several blogging awards, and GraveTells recently celebrated its five-year anniversary! Sue is also a freelance Developmental Editor passionate about helping authors bring out the best in their stories. She loves reading romance, fantasy, and sci-fi and edits any genre she reads for pleasure. You can follow Sue's editing blog, with tips and tricks for authors, at DaVinciKittie.com.