Friday, April 27, 2012

Good Morning and Happy Friday to everyone. Instead of doing a Q&A today, we are going to shake things up a bit. Zoe Archer is here to tell us her thoughts on Historical Paranormal Romance. Zoe wanted to write soon after her mother taught her how to read. (Incidentally, the first book she read was Arnold Lobell’s, Grasshopper On The Road.) One of her first works, written at the age of eleven, was a 60 page fantasy epic inspired by the musical Cats, which is now sadly lost to the mists of time. Now Zoe likes to entice readers with her books, The Hellraisers, (featuring a group of very bad boys), and The Blades Of The Rose. Thanks for being here Zoe.

Seven Reasons Why I Love Writing Historical Paranormal Romance:

1.  History dork.  I love doing research into historical time periods and learning all kinds of interesting facts, then incorporating them into my books.  For example, did you know that, in the 18th century, most London business relating to trade and stocks was done in coffee houses? This is where Leo, the hero of my novel DEMON’S BRIDE, spends his days, wheeling and dealing and making himself into one of the richest non-titled men in England.
2.  Cool powers.  It’s so fun thinking up cool and unusual magical powers to give to my characters.  Thanks to a gift from the Devil, if Leo touches a coin or piece of money, he can foresee a disaster that will befall the owner of that money.  It certainly helps Leo plan his business ventures.
3.  Pretty clothes.  Today’s fashions are fine, but if you want really sumptuous clothing, look no further than the 18th century.  Silks, satins, lace, embroidery—and that’s just on the men!  Also, I can never resist an opportunity to put my heroes in tall boots.
4.  High stakes.  Nothing raises the stakes of a story than adding the paranormal into the mix.  It’s not just about a person’s reputation in a ballroom, but the fate of the world. When Leo and his fellow Hellraisers are given powers in exchange for accidentally freeing the Devil from his prison, they unwittingly set in motion a chain of events that could lead to literal Hell on Earth.
5.  Hot romance.  It’s fun to play with the elegant veneer of 18th century society, and throwing in some steam to mix things up.  Leo’s marriage to Anne starts off as one that’s primarily a business arrangement.  Yet Leo and Anne discover an unexpected connection, which leads to very spicy scenes between them.

6.   World building.  With historical romance, an author has to do research (see Number 1 above), and with paranormal romance, the research consists of world building (creating the rules, the history, the different types of magic and how it works).  By writing historical paranormal romance, I get to combine both! So I needed to figure out exactly what kind of magical gifts the Hellraisers receive, and also how those gifts integrate with their everyday lives in 18th century London.

7.  Kick ass heroines.  It can be a challenge in historical romance to find ways for heroines to be empowered and strong.  It’s definitely possible, but as an author, I often find history’s societal expectations of women’s roles to be confining.  By adding the paranormal into a historical setting, the heroines can break out of these confines and really kick some butt!  Anne starts off DEMON’S BRIDE as a woman limited by society’s demands.  Without giving away spoilers, I can tell you that, through paranormal means, Anne discovers her own strength—which she’ll need when it comes time to fight for Leo’s soul.

So, tell me, have you read any paranormal historical romance?  What about the subgenre might attract you?  Leave an answer along with your email address, and one commenter will win a copy of DEMON’S BRIDE (US/Canada only).


The Hellraisers, Book 2 

Hell to Pay 

Leo Bailey may have been born to poverty, but ruthless business sense and sparkling intelligence have made money worries a thing of his past. It doesn't hurt that the Devil himself has granted Leo the ability to read the future.  

But even infallible predictions are a déclassé commoner's trick to some members of the ton. They'll never see Leo as their equal - one good reason to prove himself their better. And a noble marriage is an obvious start.

Bookish Anne Hartfield, daughter of a baron, is hardly the flashiest miss on the marriage market. But her thoughtful reserve complements Leo's brash boldness in an attraction neither can deny. A whirlwind courtship sweeps Anne and Leo into a smoldering marriage before either can believe their luck. But happiness built on Leo's dark powers can't last. Soon, Anne will have to save her husband...or lose her heart.

Zoë Archer is an award-winning romance author who thinks there's nothing sexier than a man in tall boots and a waistcoat. As a child, she never dreamed about being the rescued princess, but wanted to kick butt right beside the hero. She now applies her master's degrees in Literature and Fiction to creating butt-kicking heroines and heroes in tall boots. She is the author of the acclaimed BLADES OF THE ROSE series and the paranormal historical romance series, THE HELLRAISERS. She and her husband, fellow romance author Nico Rosso, created the steampunk world of THE ETHER CHRONICLES together.  Her steampunk romance, SKIES OF FIRE, is now available from Avon Impulse, and Nico’s steampunk Western, NIGHT OF FIRE, will be available in July. Zoë and Nico live in Los Angeles.

1762. James Sherbourne, Earl of Whitney, is a gambling man. Not for the money. But for the thrill, the danger—and the company: Whit has become one of the infamous Hellraisers, losing himself in the chase for adventure and pleasure with his four closest friends.
Which is how Whit finds himself in a gypsy encampment, betting against a lovely Romani girl. Zora Grey’s smoky voice and sharp tongue entrance Whit nearly as much as her clever hands—watching them handle cards inspires thoughts of another kind...
Zora can’t explain her attraction to the careless blue-eyed Whit. She also can’t stop him and his Hellraisers from a fiendish curse: the power to grant their own hearts’ desires, to chase their pleasures from the merely debauched to the truly diabolical. And if Zora can’t save Whit, she still has to escape him…


  1. yes a kick a$$ historical.. i cant wait for

  2. I love paranormal historicals. One of my favorite series is Donna Grants DARK SWORD series. I haven't had the pleasure of reading Zoe's books yet but I'd love to start. Thanks for the contest and chance to win.
    Carla G.

  3. romance and a hero. love these two together

  4. Sounds amazing. I can't wait to start reading your books.
    Thank you Zoe!

  5. Wow paranormal historicals, sounds very interesting- I will def. add to my TBR list. Thank you Zoe for stopping by.

  6. I love all paranormal.. cant wait to get a chance at this one... thanks VWFohMy

  7. I actually haven't read much historical paranormals--mostly I read those categories separately. I'd love to give it a shot, though!

    julieguan AT gmail DOT com

  8. I actually got into paranormal romance because of Zoe Archer! I love seeing paranormal creatures and magic in a historical setting.

  9. I have read quite a bit of paranormal historical romance. I love it because those are two of my favorite genres and to get them both in one book is a bonus to me.

    Barbed1951 at aol dot com

  10. The books sound very interesting. Thanks for stopping by and another series to add to my growing TBR pile lol

  11. I can't wait to read your books Zoe! You make me want to read historical romances!! Can't wait to start!