Series: Novel of The Elder Races Book #6
Author: Thea Harrison
Blurb: Two opponents must confront the cause of their obsessive fury in the latest Novel of the Elder Races…As a harpy, Sentinel Aryal is accustomed to dealing with hate, but Sentinel Quentin Caeravorn manages to inspire in her a burning ire unlike anything she’s ever known. Aryal believes the new Sentinel to be a criminal, and vows to take him out as soon as the opportunity arises. But the harpy’s incessant wrath has pushed Quentin to the limit, and forces him to make a deadly vow of his own.
To put an end to the conflict, Dragos, Lord of the Wyr, sends them on a reconnaissance mission to the Elven land of Numenlaur. Forced to work together, Aryal and Quentin’s mutual antagonism escalates. Each fight draws forth more passion—culminating in an explosively sexual confrontation. But when their quest reveals real danger, Aryal and Quentin must resolve their differences in ways beyond the physical, before the entire Wyr is threatened.
Thoughts: It was interesting to see the relationship evolve between Quentin and Aryal. The two despised each other in the beginning of the book – so much so that they are constantly plotting how to kill each other without bringing down the wrath of Dragos or the rest of the Sentinels. The friction between these two has reached unbearable levels though, and it is decided by Dragos that they are to spend the next few weeks together on a mission in the hopes that they will reach some kind of a compromise. When the friction – and supposed hatred – between them ends up hiding an explosive attraction to one another, will they find they have more alike than they thought? In the midst of battle, all of their feelings are brought into the forefront – and they discover all the reasons why they are both so perfect for each other. But will they survive the mission that turns out to be much more than they bargained for?
Kinked has a fascinating and captivating storyline to it. Both of these characters are so brash and dominant that it was hard to see how the writer was ever going to get them to admit their feelings for one another – especially when they wanted to go straight for each other’s jugular as soon as they caught each other’s eye! It was so interesting to see their relationship develop. Oddly enough, it had it such sweet and touching moments in it that you could feel your heart ache right along with theirs. I really didn’t see those coming when I first started the book, but to be honest the whole novel surprised me. It was one of those books that will just stick with you – one that you will remember for a long time to come. While it was obvious this one was part of a series, it was easy to keep up with and not get lost in a lot of back history. Harrison explains what needs to be explained for new readers, but doesn’t get lost in the details so that her fans don’t get bored by the repetition. This was my first experience with a Thea Harrison novel, and I guarantee it won’t be my last! My next step is to go back and read all the previous books in this series….:) Definitely a novel you won’t want to miss!
Q&A with Thea Harrison
Q: What is one of your favorite Myths/legends to write about?
A: When I started to write my reply to this question, I realized it wasn’t going to be a simple or easy answer! I’ve had so much fun with the world building in the Elder Races series. It’s almost impossible to pick just one. I really enjoyed taking the Oracle of Delphi and putting it into a modern context for Oracle’s Moon. When I turned my attention to the witches’ demesne in Louisville, I wanted to make sure it felt as rich and developed as the rest of the world building I’d done for the other demesnes and mythological creatures. That story was fun for a lot of reasons, because I also really enjoyed building the Djinn society based on Middle Eastern legends. Another favorite has been developing the Elves, in Lord’s Fall and continued in Kinked. And a third was when I created my own version of Vampyres in Serpent’s Kiss. I have two more Vampyre stories that I’m dying to tell. When I get excited about a story, it’s hard to wait for the right time to tell it!
Q: You’ve been gifted (or cursed) with the ability to shift into another form by a witch. What kind of shifter are you and why? (All creatures, including mythological, apply.)
A: Awesome question! I think I have two answers for that one. If it was a gift, then I think it would have to be something winged and strong. I think there’s something to be said for being as fearless as a harpy, although I’m quite sure I wouldn’t win any popularity contests! If the ability was a curse and meant to be nasty, the witch would probably turn me into my phobia—a spider! That would be the meanest, nastiest thing anybody could ever do to me!
Q: Since Aryal is a harpy and considered an immortal Wyr, how did you approach her character development in order to make her believable and someone that readers can identify with?
A: I’ll be honest, I was worried about writing Aryal. I really didn’t want to compromise her identity. Aryal has strong emotions but no real morals in the abstract sense, no true compulsion to do what is right for its own sake. She’s abrasive and dangerous… And I had to figure out how to also make her sympathetic. My first decision was to not be in a hurry to write her story. I wanted to take the time to show her character from a couple of different points of view. The reader first sees Aryal from Pia’s perspective in Dragon Bound, but then in Storm’s Heart I was able to show Aryal from Tricks’ point of view, someone who loved her. I also wanted to make sure that humor came into the mix. Still, the real test came when I sat down and actually started writing Kinked. Then I had to get close enough to her to write her as a main POV character. It helped that I had so many established relationships and characters to work with—such as Grym, Dragos and Graydon—and the world-building in place. With that in place, I could concentrate on developing Aryal herself. I’m very grateful to my editor Cindy Hwang for providing such a supportive platform to write Kinked.
Q: Do you have an Elder Race Bible to help keep your facts start? If not, how the heck do you keep your facts start?
A: So far I’ve had two things in my favor—I’ve got a bit of a freakish memory for detail when it comes to writing, and I also have fantastic beta readers who are good at spotting issues. Still, the world has become big and complicated enough that I’ve got someone working on a series bible right now. It’s over a hundred pages by now and should be done by the end of the year.
Q: Who was the harder character to write Aryal or Quentin and why?
A: Neither character was as hard as I had feared they would be when I started Kinked. Still, Quentin was easier. I felt more confident writing his character, and I felt the stakes were pretty high on getting Aryal’s character right.
Q: Was there anything about Aryal that surprised you as her story unfolded?
A: I think I probably had the same experience as a writer that several readers have had so far in reading the book—I was surprised at how much I ended up liking and enjoying her. I wouldn’t want to rush out and befriend a real-life Aryal, but I think she’s pretty cool between the pages, and I’m really looking forward to writing more about her.
Q: In the event of an apocalypses (zombie, alien, solar flare or 4 horsemen) which of your characters would you like to team up with?
A: I would absolutely like to team up with Dragos—as long as I was someone he valued, otherwise he might ditch me in a heartbeat.
Q: What is next for the Elder Race series?
A: I’m now contracted for books 7-9, so I’m writing Graydon’s story which will be released around August of 2014. The main characters have also been decided for books 8 and 9, and I’m eager to get to those stories! I also wrote a self-published project, a novella entitled Dragos Takes A Holiday, which releases November 25th. I loved spending time with Dragos and Pia, and their little son Peanut gets his POV debut.
Enter to win a copy of the book! KINKED