Release Day Spotlight: Exclusive interview with badass convict Eden Reece from Lindsay J. Pryor’s Blood Deep
Please help me welcome Blackthorn series author Lindsay J. Pryor as she introduces us to Eden Reece – the hero of her newest release, Blood Deep – in an exclusive interview!
Note from DaVinciKittie:
Don’t miss an excerpt from the book after the interview!
LINDSAY J. PRYOR: You’re just about to enter the south side of Blackthorn. Unlike the third-species-dominated east, west and north, this area is riddled with humans instead of vampires or lycans. Only these humans are cons, extradited from the penitentiary across the border in Lowtown. How worried are you?
EDEN REECE: Maybe I’d have something to be worried about if I didn’t know how to look after myself. I’ve done a pretty good job so far. I’m sure I’ll handle it.
LINDSAY: But you’re still entering a world where there’s a lot of division between humans and the third species. Which side are you more likely to pick?
EDEN: I don’t have a bias towards either. I’ve seen the worst side of both. I do right by those who do right by me.
LINDSAY: You say you can look after yourself. The evidence on your arm tells me you’ve walked on the wild side… what’s kept you alive?
EDEN: Thinking before acting, knowing my opponent and recognising my own limitations and strengths. I watch my back at all times and trust no one until they’ve proved themselves at least twice. Most of all, it’s about knowing what I want as well as what I’m willing to risk to get it. Gut instinct has also been a pal of mine for a long time – he never lets me down.
LINDSAY: Those con tattoos stand out from the norm though. That’s a lot of numbers. It looks like they might get you a little more attention than you might want.
EDEN: Some cons might see it as competition. For most it should be a warning signal to stay away. Luckily I’m good at reading between the lines, so I’ll have a decent stab at which to expect in enough time to do something about it.
LINDSAY: I’m assuming you’re planning on finding some female company once you’re in. Are you going to opt for a con, or a third species like a vampire or lycan?
EDEN: Depends. Both carry their risks – and both could be worth it for the kick. I’m sure I’ll find something to do with either.
LINDSAY: You seem confident. You might be nice to look at, but why would any girl trust a con like you?
EDEN: I’m not asking anyone to. Besides, the girls I spend my time with enjoy not being able to trust me. They’re not all looking for a husband, stable boyfriend or a best friend. Basically, if you can’t handle it, don’t play with it in the first place.
LINDSAY: You’re clearly a ladies’ man. I’m assuming there’s not a special someone?
LINDSAY: Are you saying you’re not?
EDEN: If there was a special someone, it would make me extremely vulnerable confessing to it where I’m going. So how far do you think this conversation is going to persist?
LINDSAY: Then before I go, let me put one more thing to you: What makes you think you’re going to be able to hold your own alongside our line-up of Blackthorn heroes? After all, you’ll be trying to earn your place next to the two most powerful vampires in this district as well as the leader of the lycans – and you’re just human, aren’t you?
EDEN: I’m not claiming to be anyone’s hero.
LINDSAY: Neither did they.
EDEN: Then maybe I’ll let others decide if I have a place in that line-up or not. To be honest, it could go either way with me. I guess we’ll just have to venture into Blackthorn to see how it pans out. There’s nothing quite like a bit of unpredictability.
The tattoos covering Eden Reece’s arm tell the tale of a con with an appetite for danger. Even so, arriving at The Circus – the criminal heart of Blackthorn – and demanding an audience with the notorious Pummel, is the sign of a death wish.
Jessie knows that Eden is trouble. Serious trouble. Held captive by Pummel, despite her powers, she also knows how dangerous a game Eden is playing. Even so, she can’t ignore a connection far deeper than the physical spark between them – because Jessie has seen Eden before…
Jessie is the only one who can help Eden save those he loves. But as he uncovers her secrets one by one, he can’t ignore the emotions she stirs in him – feelings neither of them dare face. He risks death. If she trusts him, she risks a fate far worse.
As Pummel’s twisted plans become clear, there’s no doubt all hell risks breaking out in Blackthorn. With time running out, together Jessie and Eden might be the only ones that can stop it.
In a thrillingly sensual novel, the stakes in the dark world of Blackthorn just got higher.
Read an excerpt
She blew out a curt stream of smoke that promptly dissipated in the cold night air. ‘You’re new here, right?’ She raked him swiftly again. ‘Only I’d remember you.’
‘New as of a few hours ago.’
‘They just dump you off on this side of the border? Shit, isn’t it? No money. No provisions. No directions.’ She took another swift inhale before exhaling just as brusquely. ‘Do you know what percentage of cons dropped off here make it to the second night?’
She shrugged again. ‘Nah. Still, it’s better than the penitentiary. At least you get to do what you want around here.’
‘You’re a con?’
She slid her jacket sleeve up her arm with her cigarette-holding hand to give him a quick flash of her own numbers.
He knew exactly what they meant. ‘Murder?’
She shrugged again. ‘Stopped him cheating.’
He didn’t know whether he was saddened more by the indifference in her tone, or the lack of expression on her heavily made-up face.
‘You don’t get sent here just for murder,’ he said.
‘I killed one of the penitentiary guards who reminded me of him.’ Her jacket sleeve dropped into place again as she wrapped her arm back around her waist.
He didn’t doubt it was more than bravado. The capability consumed her morally apathetic eyes. He knew the type only too well. Had handled enough.
‘I don’t remind you of him too, do I?’
She smiled, revealing surprisingly good teeth. ‘Good looking and a sense of humour. Nah, you’re all right.’ She stepped up to the edge to look down at the alley before turning to face him. ‘Building up the courage to go in, huh? You’ll be all right – unless you’re planning to make your mark and get beaten to a pulp for it. My advice: keep your head down. And don’t flash those numbers too much. Some might see it as competition.’ She lifted the cigarette back to her lips and exhaled as she assessed him from head to foot again. ‘Messing up that handsome face, let alone that body, would be a crime in itself.’ Her gaze lingered before she sauntered back over. ‘I’ve got a room in there. You can bed down with me until you get yourself straight.’
‘And where does someone get themselves straight around here?’
‘This patch is Pummel’s. If you’ve got something to offer, he might give you a room. If not, you can try one of the abandoned buildings, but security ain’t good. Any further afield and you’re going to find yourself with vamps as neighbours or a rogue lycan or whatever other third species crawls the back alleys of this district.’
Anywhere beyond the thin margin of the south that didn’t belong to anyone other than the squatting cons.
‘Pummel?’ he asked, despite already knowing he was in the right place.
‘That’s what he’s known as around here. For good reason.’
‘He sounds like a charmer.’
She smiled again, but this time it didn’t reach her eyes. ‘So you want that room?’
‘With my history?’
She exhaled a steady stream of smoke as she sidled closer. ‘This place gets lonely. Besides, whatever those numbers say about you, I’m a good judge of character. Hang around long enough and you get to know types around here.’
Clearly not that good a judge.
‘As much as I appreciate the offer, you don’t want to be bedding down with me.’
She smiled as she closed in, her overpowering perfume surrounding her like an aura. ‘Why? You got some kind of fucked-up kink or something? Only I’m open-minded.’ She looked back down at his arm before looking him in the eyes again, lingering with a confidence only experience brought. ‘Just how far up do those numbers go anyway?’
Eyes that, despite their confidence, looked on edge, almost impatient.
He glanced over at the fire escape and back at her. As he’d guessed, her impatience escalated.
‘Or we can stay up here,’ she said, discarding her cigarette before running her hand down his arm, guiding him to face her, his back to the fire escape, as she pressed her lips together. ‘That’s quite a body under that jacket. I bet you know how to take care of yourself. And me.’
It was subtle. And she was good. But not good enough for it to do anything but confirm he’d been right to sense the signs of an ambush.
‘And taking care of me is the only thing I’m interested in right now,’ he said, removing her bony hand from his arm, a hand he could so easily crush for what he suspected, before backing away.
‘At least let me show you around,’ she called out louder than she needed to, catching up with him as he crossed to the steps. ‘Hey! Wait! You’ll want to know where you’re going in there.’
‘I’ll take my chances,’ he replied, descending.
About the author
Blackthorn really captured the imagination of Lindsay’s publisher as a fantastically vivid and complex world, one which readers will utterly lose themselves in. She paints this multi-layered world effortlessly, and uses it as the setting for intense forbidden romances.
Lindsay’s Blackthorn series regularly tops Amazon’s U.S. and U.K Gothic romance charts. Blood Shadows has been number 1 in the vampire romance chart and the number 1 ‘Most Wished For’ paranormal romance on Amazon UK. She has also skirted the top 100 in Amazon’s overall kindle charts in both the US and the UK.
Lindsay has been creating stories since she was nine years old, when she quickly decided that fantasy was more interesting than reality. She thought she’d grow out of it but hasn’t yet.
Lindsay holds an honours science degree in Psychology and Communication, is a qualified lecturer and English teacher. She currently teaches children with special needs. When not writing or teaching, Lindsay indulges her fascination with mythology and is a keen supporter of animal welfare. She’s Welsh but now lives in the South West of England with her husband and their rescue bunny.