The Necromancer Series
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance
Publisher: ImaJinn/Belle Books
Number of pages: 226
Cover Artist: Debra Dixon
Her powers have been hobbled. Her enemies are growing stronger.
Old loves challenge her. And her worst betrayer may be herself.
Necromancer Ruby Montagne is battling for her life in the realm of demons. Unfairly branded for the death of a fellow necromancer, she’s got to prove her innocence without the full use of her magic. And the real culprit is still on the loose.
While someone is stalking her friends among the witches, Ruby searches for answers inside the dark intrigues of both the demon and necromancer worlds. Ruby must confront this new, sinister threat while reconciling her feelings for her former lover, a demon warrior. Only it’s difficult . . . because a sexy vampire is making it clear that he’d like to be a lot more than just friends.
The competition for Ruby’s trust heats up as the enemy pushes her toward a dark side that could threaten the entire realm. Yet what can Ruby do when she’s not even sure what she is? With the fabric separating the realms at stake, she must decide whom to trust. But will the ultimate betrayal be her own?
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“See, that’s the difference between demons and vamps. No honor, here.”
I stuttered a laugh. “Demons do not have honor.” I paused. “You have honor. You just don’t want to admit it.”
“Does an honorable vampire lust after the woman his friend desires, but can’t have?”
I laughed, taking his words as typical alpha supe flirtation, but when I looked at his face, my laughter stilled. He wasn’t joking. I dropped my gaze to the deck, and he returned to messing with the sails.
His admission had tainted our breezy conversation, and a salty awkwardness layered the air between us for the rest of the cruise. When Ewan had stumbled upon Lysander comforting me after my encounter with Dominic, I had to lie to him. Of course, that led him to imagine a much worse scenario than the actual truth, which I couldn’t reveal. Now a new, more insurmountable obstacle divided Ewan and me, but the episode with Lysander was almost more unacceptable to Ewan because I’d caused it. And now, Ewan had written our relationship off, and I was sailing in the moonlight on a boat captained by a hot vampire, who used to be a pirate, and who had given me the occasional glimpse into a passion and vulnerability that would be increasingly hard to resist. I was screwed.
We cruised into the Oakland Inner Harbor, heading for the Alameda Marina. He pulled up next to a catamaran and docked the boat. We disembarked and traversed the wooden dock, heading for one of the new oyster bars that signaled the revitalization of the once-industrial area. I clutched my scarf against the chilly air creeping along the waterfront. The nearly-full moon projected an incandescent glow onto the water, providing the only light to dispel the thickening darkness. We left the dock and took a dirt path intersecting a concrete sea wall on our left and a string of warehouses on our right. The only sound came from the water slapping against the sea wall. I darted my eyes around us and sidled closer to Lysander. The shadows lengthened, seeming to nip at my heels as we walked. Shadows didn’t have malevolent intent, did they? These seemed to crouch, ready to pounce; Seemed to whisper, “Come . . .”
Lysander gave me a reassuring look, obviously perceiving my nervousness. The lights of the bar about fifty feet ahead became visible, and I shook off my anxiousness. I was with a fricking vampire who used to be a pirate.
“Not very smooth for a vampire,” I said with a laugh.
He didn’t laugh back. His only response was to stop suddenly and groan. I moved to face him and recoiled at the sight of his face illuminated by the moonlight. “What the hell? You’re turning all Nosferatu on me. I liked the movie and all, but it’s not a look that works for you.”
When he met my eyes, and I saw his confusion and desperation, I realized this wasn’t some normal vampire transformation. His skin was shriveling in sick slow motion before me, prune-like, turning to the color of ash and flaking away as if burning from the inside out. “Oh, Christ. Lysander, what’s happening?”
“I don’t know,” he managed to croak from a throat that was shrinking upon itself.
Whispers, real now, louder, drifted toward us from the shadows clinging to the spaces between the warehouses. No. I’m not going crazy. Someone is out there. “Who’s there? Son of a bitch. Show yourself!”
A soft laugh answered me.
Fuck this. I turned toward the warehouses, but a tug on my pants stopped me. “Blood,” Lysander rasped.
“Where . . . oh.” He meant my blood. “We can’t.”
“I’m dying.” His voice sounded as shriveled as he looked. His skin was no more than a thin layer of plastic shrink-wrapped around protruding bones.
I slapped my head with my palm. Oh God. Oh God. I can’t do this. I wasn’t worried about transforming into a bloodsucker. I knew it took much more than a few blood exchanges to turn someone. My fear came from my own power. Like with Dominic’s lieutenant, the necromancy could taint the blood connection and turn Ly into a zombie. I took another look at him and dispelled my fear. He was dying. Maybe he was stronger than Dominic’s lieutenant. Maybe his blood would resist my power. Please.
I squatted next to him, held out my wrist, and squeezed my eyes, not sure what to expect. Getting sucked on by a vampire was supposed to feel better than ecstasy—that’s why so many people frequented the vampire club—but when the lieutenant had sucked my blood, his fangs had felt like hot pokers ramming into my neck.
Lysander jerked his fangs into my wrist, and I cried out. Okay. No pleasure here. His fangs shook, like he needed his fix bad. He tore at my skin with sloppy slurps. I gritted my teeth at the pain that scorched my wrist. My arm shook, but he held tight and sucked. I didn’t even know if this would work. I didn’t want him to die, but what would I do if he transformed into a zombie? I felt my power murmur inside me, unhappy at the intrusion, but I stamped it down, hopefully before it could taint the blood.
Lysander pulled off my wrist. The force of the movement caused me to fall back on my ass. The air and ground spun around me, and I fought off the nausea with deep breaths. The moonlight slashed across Lysander’s profile, and I sighed, relieved at the pale, vampire tone of his wonderfully tight and unshriveled skin. I reached out my hand, trembling violently, and touched his shoulder. He twisted his head, and I recoiled, seeing the same emptiness in his eyes that the lieutenant had reflected when he’d drunk my blood.
No. No. No
When did you first consider yourself a “writer”?
Hmmm. I still sometimes struggle with that, but if I were to pinpoint the event that made me feel like this was the real deal was when I signed my contract with ImaJinn for my necromancer series.
How long did it take to get your first book published?
From the time I had a completed manuscript in hand, about six months.
Do you do another job except for writing and can you tell us more about it?
I have a day job in community development with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. A bureaucrat! Actually we do some pretty great work, helping cities formulate and fund projects to help low-income communities develop and thrive.
Who is your publisher? Or do you self-publish?
My necromancer series is published with ImaJinn Books, an imprint of Belle Books, and I am also self-publishing a pirate historical romance series.
How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?
To arrive at my first draft, on average about five to six months, and no one should ever be exposed to my first drafts. I spend a few months editing and then hand it over to critique partners before it gets professionally edited/sent to my editor.
What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
I’ve come to the conclusion I’m a genre hopper. I have too many interests to stick to one genre. I’m writing the second book in my pirate series then I’m contemplating an action/adventure series with some supernatural aspects along the line of Romancing the Stone set in different countries where I’ve traveled. The first will take place in Brazil.
What genre would you place your books into?
My necromancer series straddles a line between Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance. It goes into mythology way more than most paranormal romances and the central conflict is as much about the heroine’s journey as it is about the romance, but the romance definitely plays an important part of the story. My pirate books are historical romance all the way.
What made you decide to write that genre of book?
I’ve always loved the paranormal, horror, and unexplained, and pirates!
How long have you been writing?, and who or what inspired you to write?
I’ve been writing since I was probably about ten. I have all my journals since then which I’m kind of afraid to peel open. Not sure I’m ready to confront the rantings of a twelve year old again! I used to write lots of poetry, was an editor for both my high school literary magazine and newspaper. Writing has always been a part of my psyche. As far as what inspired me to write? The voices in my head, I guess.
Do you have a certain routine you have for writing? ie You listen to music, sit in a certain chair?
I basically have to write in whatever time I can snatch away from my day job and family so I don’t have a set routine, but I do love writing while listening to music. I listen to progressive rock for my paranormals and classical for my historicals. I love listening to certain movie soundtracks too. The songs can be very dramatic.
Do you read all the reviews of your book/books?
I do because I like punishing myself. LOL. Good reviews are obviously very nice to read and motivating especially when the reviewer gets what you are trying to do. That is extremely gratifying. As far as reviews by people who didn’t like the book so much, I pay attention to the ones that really seem like they have something constructive to say. What I don’t pay attention to are reviewers who are more into “hearing” themselves in the review and have their pat phrases down instead of providing something constructive.
Do you choose a title first, or write the book then choose the title?
I start writing the book and hopefully by the time I finish it, the title will have come to me!
Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along?
I was a complete pantser when I began my necromancer series. The characters basically wrote themselves. I did some sketching regarding their motivations and goals and their overall growth arcs. With my second pirate book, I did a lot more work with developing my characters and their traits. I wanted the pirate hero, Christopher Taylor, to be very distinct from the hero in the first pirate book, Devil’s Island. I use a book on characters traits and it’s been very handy, helping me develop a very fun and interesting personality for Taylor.
Are there any hidden messages or morals contained in your books? (Morals as in like Aesops Fables type of "The moral of this story is..")
I would say there are more themes than morals in my books. I don’t like moralizing and with the paranormal stuff, my characters are all exploring the grey areas of morality and human conduct because they aren’t really human and are subject to very extraordinary circumstances and abilities which require extraordinary responses.
Which format of book do you prefer, eBook, hardback, or paperback?
I like them all. I read a lot of ebooks these days, but all my books are available in print which is great when I do personal appearances and have a physical book to sell.
Mimi Sebastian raised herself on books and the strange and unusual, and an unhealthy dose of comics and movies. When a career as a punk guitarist failed to materialize, she completed her degree in urban planning, spent two years in the Ivory Coast with the Peace Corps, and another three years in Brazil. By day, she debates the merits of transport oriented development, by night she writes about necromancers and pirates. She’s convinced she could live off coffee, ice cream, and comic books, but is sure only one of those is good for her health.
She's a member of Romance Writers of America and the Fantasy, Futuristic and Paranormal chapter of RWA. A transplant from the beaches of Florida, Mimi now wanders the desert in Phoenix, AZ, and attempts to balance writing with a day career, fantastic family, and household diva: her Amazon parrot.