Blood Shackles (Rebel Vampires Volume 2)
by Rosemary A. Johns
GENRE: Urban Fantasy Paranormal Romance
WELCOME TO THE BLOOD CLUB
Light is a Rocker Blood Lifer with a talent for remembering things. He’s meant to be the predator. It’s been that way since Victorian times. But not now. Not since someone hunted him. Enslaved him. Ripped out his fangs. Who are these ruthless humans? Who’s their violent leader? And who betrayed the secret of the Blood Lifer world?
WHERE THE PREDATORS
London, Primrose Hill. Grayse is the commanding but alluring slaver’s daughter. The enemy. She buys Light, like he’s a pair of designer shoes. So why does Light feel so drawn to her? Especially when his family is still in chains. Will he risk everything – even his new love – to save them?
BECOME THE PREY
Does a chilling conspiracy lie behind it all? A stunning revelation leads Light to an inconceivable truth. If he can face his worst terrors, he can save his family and his whole species from slavery.
Maybe he can even save himself.
The third book in the series, BLOOD RENEGADES, will be out Spring 2017
‘Yeah, it is rather parky, darlin’.’
You gaped at me, as if you’d been expecting me to speak some strange Blood Lifer tongue and not the Queen’s English. Like you hadn’t assumed I’d sound…human. Then you gathered yourself together. ‘Here,’ you led the way to a sheltered trio of arches. ‘Better?’
‘Almost like I wasn’t starkers.’
You gave a tight smile.
I leant against a column, as I had a gander back at the silhouette of the great house, its steep terrace, the wood encircling it beyond and the drive sweeping down to it, between the dark sentinels of oaks.
In some screwed up world, this was the worst Jane Austen scene ever.
Well, maybe not ever…
You were giving me these quick, surreptitious looks. ‘This is, like, fried.’
I shrugged. After the year I’d had, this new twist to my existence had some dead stiff competition in the fried department.
You edged closer. ‘You don’t have to look so scared; I’m not gonna scoop ya.’
I raised my eyebrow. ‘Good to know.’
That flummoxed you.
You ran your fingers nervously through your ash blonde hair, which hung in a bob to your shoulders. I had the sudden thought of how soft it’d feel on my lips…and then wanted to scrub my brains out.
I haven’t long been alone – utterly, truly alone – since my first death. Since I lost the only person, who mattered to me in this brutish world, I feel too easily.
Us Blood Lifers do that; every emotion is amplified.
‘I didn’t want…one of those broken things. Though you’ve gotta be soft making trouble for daddy. He’s the one, who’s insisting I buy one of you. He’s eager for me to learn about the business now I’m back. It’s not like I want…’ Embarrassed, you looked away.
‘Don’t worry, I wouldn’t want me either.’
‘Naw, it’s just…I’ve never even looked after a dog before.’
‘Lucky I’m not a mutt then.’
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
ROSEMARY A JOHNS is a traditionally published author of short stories under the name R. A. Johns. She is the author of Blood Dragons the compelling first instalment of the Rebel Vampires series.
Rosemary A Johns wrote her first fantasy novel at the age of ten, when she discovered the weird worlds inside her head were more exciting than double swimming. Since then she’s studied history at Oxford University, run a theatre company (her critically acclaimed plays have been described as “uncomfortable, unsettling and uneasily true to life”), and worked with disability charities.
When Rosemary’s not falling in love with the rebels fighting their way onto the page, she heads the Oxford writing group Dreaming Spires
Rosemary is a Goodreads Author: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31348711-blood-dragons
To sign up to Rosemary A Johns’ VIP Email Newsletter with news of hot releases, promotions and the free short story “All the Tin Soldiers”, click here: http://eepurl.com/bQ0kMX
Universal Amazon Buy Link: http://viewbook.at/BloodShackles
What would we find under your bed?
Nothing – my bed has drawers! But inside those drawers..? I could be all mysterious now… But amidst the bedding, there’s also a collection of history books from my university days. I use them to research the historical sections of my novels. I’m passionate about history. So vampires..? Perfect. Because they both lived in the past and remember it.
My new fantasy series Rebel Vampires is set in the supernatural world of Blood Life, where vampires are both predator and prey. I love vampires. But I wanted to write a vampire book for adults. Where they were both the hunters. And the hunted. In a hidden paranormal London of vampires, rebels and romance.
In the first book in my new fantasy series Rebel Vampires – Blood Dragons – Light has a photographic memory. Light is the British Rocker Blood Lifer at the heart of each book. The idea was sparked by my autistic son, who is a savant with a photographic memory. I wondered what it would be like to live through the centuries witnessing glorious wonders and devastating horrors. And remembering everything with the clarity of a photograph.
Blood Dragons is out now (e-book and paperback). Click here: http://viewbook.at/BloodDragons
It does mean Light remembers from the time he was elected in Victorian England by the savage Elizabethan Ruby, through the wild 1960s when he met his human lover Kathy to the present day – when he’s been enslaved. Why, how and the conspiracy behind his species’ enslavement? You’ll have to buy the series!
What was the scariest moment of your life?
I don’t scare easy. I’ve been through some tough times and I think that’s really useful as a writer – pain is art and all that. There are moments, which were scary: I acted and I always got terrible stage fright just before I stepped out onto stage. Every. Time. But then the buzz after..? Like nothing on earth. So…it made up for those seconds of terror.
I tend to get sad or angry, before I get scared. Facing up to things. Having the courage to do that? I didn’t when I was young but experience forces you to confront your fears. We all go on our own journeys.
Do you listen to music while writing? If so what?
I’m a music fanatic. But I still can’t listen to music when I write the first draft. I’m too lost in my new world then. I see a novel happening in my head and it’s like I’m just translating it down onto the paper. Once I’m onto further drafts and edits – that’s when the fun begins…because I can put on the music my characters listen to!
So if you want to listen to the same soundtrack as me, the clues are littered throughout the books. Because Light is into his music too. In Blood Dragons it’s The Stones, Billy Fury and Jimi Hendrix. In Blood Shackles? Amy Winehouse, The Beatles and 1920s jazz. Eclectic? Yeah. But then these are Blood Lifers.
There is one band I listen to whenever I need a boost in my writing (if you don’t count Nirvana because that’s number one for energizing). Ghost of the Robot. Stumbled on them. Love them. Enough said.
What is something you’d like to accomplish in your writing career next year?
Blood Renegades (Rebel Vampires Volume 3) is coming out in spring. Light has only two weeks to give his witness, on trial for his life, before he’s burnt at the stake – because who wants to hear the truth? So I’d like to accomplish that!
Here’s an excerpt:
‘Betrayal. Death. Hope.
Isn’t that how all truly great stories start?
I don’t know if anyone will hear it. Governments silence their critics. Censor. Detain. Execute.
Bollocks to them.
The Blood Life Council’s atrocities and war crimes–
Mr Blickle, please note: we are not at war.
Yet. We’re not at war – yet. And my name is Light.
Very well. Light. But we’re not holding this inquiry to debate the nature of the Council’s actions. Rather those of your terrorist group.
We prefer ‘freedom fighters’, sweetheart.
Really? Well, I prefer to be called Liberty.
Having a laugh, aren’t you?
You don’t think ‘Light’ has a shade of irony to it?
All right, Liberty, but I delivered my band of merry misfits out of slavery – one you wankers sold us into. So labels? They don’t figure. They never do.
But you do have a name? Your band of misfits?
Yeah – it’s called a family.
Captain told me you were cute. Renegades. That’s what you call yourselves.
Look, you want me to bear witness, I’ll bloody bear witness. I’m your prisoner here anyway with a stake pointy-like at my heart. And I’m all about survival. But just don’t figure on liking what you hear. No one does when it’s the flayed truth.
You want to be ready don’t you? You know what’s coming? In less than two weeks now. 13 days. Your trial.
Kangaroo court more like.
Closed court. But nothing’s decided. Yet. It rests on your testimony.
Then where’s my solicitor?
You’re a terrorist. You’ve forsaken your rights. Like you have your own species.
And the jury?
The material’s too sensitive–
Embarrassing. The word you’re grasping for, sweetheart, is embarrassing. For you and the rest of the Blood Life Council. So here’s a question–
I ask the questions, Mr Blickle.
Bit of respect here. Dead man talking. And who’s the judge again?
It won’t help you to know–
It’s Captain, right?
I’ll take your silence as a yes.
So, let’s say Captain doesn’t like what I have to say – and he won’t – what then? What happens in two weeks? Slap on the wrist? Trip to the naughty step? Bare bottom spanking across his lap until I bawl? Or..?
Execution. By fire. Most likely.
Figured. So that’s 13 more days until I go up Mr Bonfire for you nice people, yeah?
You don’t know…
Don’t play games. Not about this.
That’s outside my remit. I’m just here to take your statement.
It must be nice to be able to compartmentalize. Everything into nice, neat little boxes. Then you can go home happy each night with no dirt on your hands because all you’ve touched is paperwork.
Hitler’s lawyers were good at that too.
All right then, if I’m going out in flames – high in their glory – then Christ in heaven will you get my witness.
One you’ll never forget.
And even though I may only have two weeks to live, it’s a truth I’ll remember until my second death.
Sod it. Bring on the fire and ashes.’
Rebel Vampires Volume 3: Blood Renegades
I also have a second series, which I’ve been planning for a little while. I’d like to see where that can go as well.
How long did it take you to write this book?
Blood Shackles was being written at the same time as I was editing and polishing Blood Dragons. The two books are standalone but set within the same secret world, where death drives desire. And Light is the central character. When your main character is a vampire you have different time periods to play with. The vampire can live on – even when humans age or die.
Developing, researching, writing and editing both books? Two years. That’s why I love Light. And I’m passionate about my books. There’s two years of love right there.
Can you describe your dream home?
If I get a dream home, I may as well shoot for the stars…
I don’t care about numbers of bedrooms, swimming pools or tennis courts. I loved Georgian houses – until in my new fantasy series – Rebel Vampires – I enslaved my Blood Lifers in a gorgeous Georgian mansion in Blood Shackles. Contrasts work like that. Unexpected. Horrifying things hidden in suburbia, for example, rather than a dank alley. So…ruined that for myself.
Any dream house… I see marble. Staircases. Chandeliers. Except now I’ve described Master’s Estate on Mann in Blood Shackles. As I said, being a writer – ruins it…
Blood Shackles is the second standalone book in my new vampire series. Rebel Vampires is set in the supernatural world of Blood Life, where vampires are both predator and prey. I love vampires. But I wanted to write a vampire book for adults. Where they weren’t simply the hunters but also the hunted. A hidden London of vampires, rebels and romance.
In this latest book – Blood Shackles – Light (the British Rocker Blood Lifer with a photographic memory), is hunted and enslaved. It’s his species freedom from slavery he has to fight for. And it’s love and family he discovers. Like Taken with vampires.
If we were to come to your house for a meal, what would you give us to eat?
Forward aren’t you? Inviting yourself? No problem, you’re very welcome. OK, so…what to cook. Lasagna, that’s a given. I adore Italian food. I’m part Italian on my mother’s side. Light cooks a meal for Grayse – and no surprises it’s lasagna he serves.
‘You sucked the pasta off your fork: from the orgasmic expression on your mush, I figured it was good. ‘So, maybe you can do, like, more of the cooking?’
I raised my eyebrow. ‘Anyone would reckon I was your slave.’
You flushed, hurriedly munching another forkful.’
Blood Shackles: Rebel Vampires Volume 2
Click here: http://viewbook.at/BloodShackles
Tell us about the absolute BEST fan letter you have received.
Best or funniest? Or are those the same? I love hearing from readers. It’s the best part of being a writer. You don’t write in a vacuum. I mean you could – but it would be a bother to set up. I write a book so it will be read. Although I write what I love to read – dark, intelligent, passionate – so…bonus.
Some messages are short. And lovely. Americans are so nice; I’d never been called ‘honey/princess/sweetness’ before I became an author. Maybe it’s an English thing. But I’m loving this American way! Others are long. And detailed. And funny. Laugh out loud – I wish I’d thought of that line – funny.
Hats off to my readers.
They’re more like conversations between my readers and me. At least that’s how I see it.
If you want to drop me a line, you can message me on Facebook or tweet me. But you can also directly email me on email@example.com
Say your publisher has offered to fly you anywhere in the world to do research on an upcoming book, where would you most likely want to go?
Is that a hint? Go you! OK – so the next book is Blood Renegades. It’s coming out spring 2017. Light has only two weeks to give his witness, on trial for his life, before he’s burnt at the stake – because who wants to hear the truth?
It’s set in London and the UK – why didn’t I choose the Bahamas – or Egypt? I’ve always wanted to see the Pyramids. Maybe I could blag that? Blood Lifers and the ancient Egyptians…maybe getting a little into Anne Rice territory there…
Although this was how one of the critics described the first book in the Rebel Vampires series – Blood Dragons:
“If Interview with the Vampire and A Clockwork Orange eloped and had a book baby – this would be it! … Completely gripping and a fun read… A book like none other!” – Silver Dagger Scriptorium 5*
Blood Dragons was developed from the idea of a vampire with a photographic memory called Light. Light’s extraordinary memory is based on my son’s. My son is an autistic savant – meaning he has a photographic memory. I wondered whether being a vampire with such a gift would be a blessing or a curse.
Light is caught between his century old love for a savage Elizabethan Blood Lifer and his forbidden human lover.
Blood Dragons is out now (e-book and paperback): http://viewbook.at/BloodDragons
Who designed the book cover for the book you are touring?
JD Smith. An award winning UK based book designer. I’m very lucky to have her; she’s the designer for a bunch of bestsellers. She blew me away. She understood me. The book. And the series. Each book fits together with the others. They look stunning together. She gave it an iconic feel. A uniqueness.
I love paperbacks. I also love Kindle. But if the cover is particularly beautiful or striking I have to own the physical book. That’s what I wanted for my series. And that’s what JD Smith delivered. The back cover and spine, as much as the front cover. It’s gorgeous.
Blood Shackles is out now at the promotional price of $0.99. Click here: http://viewbook.at/BloodShackles
Want to read Blood Dragons first? Click here: http://viewbook.at/BloodDragons
One randomly chosen winner via rafflecopter will win a $50 Amazon/BN.com gift card.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Thanks for having me on your site today! The tour so far has been fantastic and the series is now on the Best Seller Lists, which is as Light would say, ‘blinding’. What’s been your scariest moment? Hope everyone is having a great day!
The Blood Life world-building sounds very engaging!
Thanks Trix – worldbuilding is so important – with urban fantasy it’s that line between our world and the fantasy world you create. And how those blur. Have a great day!
Congrats on the tour and thanks for the chance to win 🙂
Thanks Lisa – I hope you’re having a good day!
Even the birth of these souls will imprint really like codes into the Earth and the consciousness of humanity to support the additional manifestation of the Era of Enjoy.
Great excerpt and interview – thanks for sharing 🙂
Hi Victoria! Glad you enjoyed them and hope you enjoy the series – have a great day! Rosemary
Good luck with the book tour, Rosemary! 🙂
Thanks Nikolina – hope you’re having a good day!