YA Dragon Shifters

June 19, 2011 at 6:13 am (Deborah Cooke) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Finally stopped back here for a visit – it’s been a crazy spring. Here’s a big wave to everyone!

My paranormal YA series, THE DRAGON DIARIES launched this month. This series is a spin-off of my Dragonfire series, featuring dragon shape shifters. FLYING BLIND is the first book in a trilogy, featuring the coming of age of Zoë. She’s the only dragon shapeshifter and so she should be the Wyvern and have special powers. The problem is that her powers are AWOL and she has no idea how to develop them. In book one, her first shift is triggered so she gets sent to dragon shifter boot camp with the other dragon shifters – where the young dragons discover that it’s up to them to save their kind from a new threat. Book #2, WINGING IT, will be out in December, followed by book #3, BLAZING THE TRAIL, next June.

You can read more about The Dragon Diaries on my website for it, right here. I’m also in the midst of a blog tour this month, so there are reviews, and guest posts and copies of the book to be won – read more here.

In Dragonfire, DARKFIRE KISS was released in May. That’s the story of Rafferty’s firestorm, and it had awesome reviews – you can read about the book right here. There are two more Dragonfire titles scheduled: FLASHFIRE in January 2012 and Dragonfire #8 in October 2012 (no title on that one yet.)

Lots of dragons in my office this year!

In other news, I’ve been republishing some of my Claire Delacroix backlist digitally this year. All of these books are available for Kindle for $2.99, and at Smashwords – they are perking their way to other distributors like Apple, Sony, KOBO and Barnes & Noble.

The Rogues of Ravensmuir is a medieval trilogy, each book featuring a hero with something to hide. These are a bit Gothic, and I’m glad to see them available again – especially with wonderful new covers. They are THE ROGUE, THE SCOUNDREL and THE WARRIOR. You can see the covers and read excerpts here, plus connect to buy links.

Three of my time travels are also available again. LOVE POTION #9, THE MOONSTONE and ONCE UPON A KISS were originally published under my pseudonym Claire Cross and have been unavailable for a long time. It’s exciting to have new covers on them, too. You can read about them right here.

And last but not least, the only wolf shifter book I’ve ever written was a medieval published by Harlequin Historicals called ENCHANTED. I’ve just learned that they’re going to re-release that book digitally in July. This book features a hero cursed to be a wolf half of the time, a fairy tale feel, and a heroine who just doesn’t take no for an answer – especially when her HEA is at stake. I love this book and am quite excited about this. There’s a bit more about it here on my site, but you’ll have to scroll way down.

Edited to add – Actually, Harlequin is going to republish that entire trilogy. Links and stuff on my blog, right here.

Phew! That’s all my news!

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Cover for First Dragonfire YA

September 27, 2010 at 11:18 am (Deborah Cooke) (, , , , , , , )

I’m so excited! I’ve got the cover for FLYING BLIND, the first in the trilogy of dragon YA titles coming from NAL next summer. These are linked to my Dragonfire series – the trilogy is called The Dragon Diaries.

The trilogy focuses on Zoë coming into her powers as the new Wyvern. FLYING BLIND is book #1 and will be released in June 2011. Tentative pub dates for #2 and #3 are December 2011 and June 2012.

Hop over to my blog and take a peek!

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Run Fast, Run Happy

October 19, 2009 at 5:00 am (General) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

LoneWolf72web

First, I’d like to take a moment and introduce you to my new book cover!  Isn’t it pretty?  Lone Wolf is the sequel to The Moon: Tigress by the Tail and will be released in December with Tease Publishing!  I can’t wait.

Once the victim of scientific experimentation by the Government Control of Supernatural Activities (GSA), Damon doesn’t have a past, and he isn’t sure he has a future. He doesn’t even know if his ability to change from human to wolf is a virus, or magick. But the instant he lays eyes on the pretty cop from the local police force, he knows he has to learn the secrets of his past before they destroy her future.

Krystal is the best animal cop on the police force, hiding magickal talent beneath layers of excuses and quick thinking. For five years she’s tracked Peter Burke, a butcher who steals any form of canine to supplement his dietary needs. The day she saves a wolf from losing his head at the sharp end of an axe, her entire life changes.And then there is Damon, the mysterious, sexy ex-soldier with no memory of his past who awakens fantasies of dark and sensual nights.

But the GSA isn’t finished with Damon, and when the shadowy government agency joins forces with Burke, Krystal too finds her life in jeopardy, the target of men and women led by their own desires. Damon and Krystal must work together to stop evil and destroy years of illegal research.

Ok, please watch this video before you go further down on this post, otherwise you’ll never come back to it. 🙂 Lisa will understand.

Next, I’d like to share my awesome news with a friend. Her name is Lisa Kristof. For the last couple of years, we have talked about the lighter side of life.  Okay, the darker side of romance novels, but thepinkribbon lighter side of life.  One thing our shifters never have to deal with is cancer. That’s not necessarily true about their human mates.

When I wrote Tigress by the Tail, our hero’s mother was dead.  She died of Cancer.  I never specified what kind of cancer, and for the rest of that story, you’ll have to read the books.  I remember one of my reviewers said how sad it was even in our fantasy worlds, the C word manages to break in and cause just as much pain there as it does in real life.  But there are reasons I chose cancer for Lance’s mother.

I met Lisa online. She was originally from New Zealand, living in Texas. She was an avid animal lover who worked for many years in canine rescue, specializing in the hard to place rottweilers. Several dogs found wonderful, loving homes because of Lisa.

Lisa was one of those rare people who developed cancer at age 32, long before the age 40 when our doctors start to at least watch for it.  So early in fact, her doctors insisted she did not have cancer, that the pain in her arm was not related to the lump in her breast.  She had to return to New Zealand for a family visit and see a doctor there in order to force the mammogram, where she was diagnosed with cancer, MONTHS after the physical symptoms. Lisa left us on May 6, 2008, after 7 years of fighting this horrible disease. She left with a strength of character that most of us can only write about in our books. She left a legacy of honor, strength, love and purity. Lisa, you shall always be missed.

October is breast cancer awareness month and I thought I’d share a video taken of Lis just before her death in 2008.  Her message:  Run Fast, Run Happy.  My message:  Don’t let youth stop you – if you find out you have a lump, please push your doctors for a more specific diagnosis. Don’t let what happened to Lisa happen to another.

Learn more about young women and cancer.

WEBMD about Younger women with breast cancer.


Lisa Kristoff, 1969-2008
Run Fast.  Run Happy

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Ready to Go Spelunking?

October 16, 2009 at 1:00 am (General) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

In Destiny of the Wolf, my heroine and hero end up in a cave–seems appropriate since Silver Town is an old silver mining town, and so at a point in the story…they end up in one of them.

Have you ever been in a cave? Normally, they’re cold. Very cold. And when I’ve visited them, I’m usually dressed for warm weather, so it’s a real shock to the system. Deep in the bowels of the earth, you’d think you’d be getting closer to the hot molten rock of the center of the earth, and it would be warmer, right?

But then again, you’re farther from the sun, so it should be colder, right?

In some caves, it’s definitely colder. I visited one in Maryland, loved the shimmering quartz in the rocks, the water dripping, the stalagmites reaching to the ceiling and the stalagtites clinging to the ceiling, and in some cases, the one dripping sediments on the other until a column is formed.
But did you know that some caves deep in the bowels of the earth are actually warm? I visited one on an island in the Caribbean, the Hato Caves, made of limestone from fossilized coral within a coral reef, where the Arawak Indians left petroglyphs 1500 years ago. Long nose bats live there and it was once both a shelter for the Indians and a burial ground. No whispers of ghosts there that I heard, but maybe at night when all the tourists weren’t around? Who knows. But it’s so warm, it increases the limestone deposits and so it was really spectacular as far as all the wondrous out-of-this world-looking cave formations.
Hato Caves
When I was researching Yellowknife as a place to set Legend of the White Wolf, the gold mining caves under the earth there are also warm. There in the Canadian Arctic! Yep, the miners wore no shirts while they worked in the sauna-like conditions. And once they stopped mining, they hope to harness the geothermal energy underneath the earth to use for the city’s energy resources.
Well, in Destiny of the Wolf, compared to a blizzard, the cave Darien and Lelandi end up in feels warmer, free of the chilling wind. Everything is relative, you know. But then again, they find just the way to heat things up while they’re stuck in a cave until they can find a way out. 🙂

Did I mention I have claustrophobia?

So being jammed into small spaces, surrounded by rock walls and people behind and in front of me, with no quick way to escape really isn’t a feeling I like to experience. However…seeing the beauty of some caves is…and so, conquering my fear, I couldn’t have enjoyed seeing the wonders beneath the earth, millions of years old, and the amateur geologist in me, loving to see this for real, and not in pictures in a book, most. And the historian in me loves to visualize what it might have been for ancient peoples to have hidden in these caves for protection and shelter.

Have you visited a cave? Where and what was it like? If you haven’t, ever desire to do so?

Terry
“Giving new meaning to the term alpha wolf.”
http://www.terryspear.com/

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Deborah Cooke’s March Newsletter

March 16, 2009 at 5:08 am (Deborah Cooke) (, , , , )

Lori had a fantastic idea, that we could each do a monthly newsletter post to the blog, to keep people updated on what’s going on in our respective corners of the world. I already post a newsletter through my Yahoo group (it’s called Chestwick) but that one goes out on the first of the month. Sometimes there’s news later in the month, that I don’t want to wait to share!

So, I’m all over this idea. Look for my SSR newsletter post mid-month, each month, from here on out.

For March, there’s definitely some exciting news. First of all, I have covers. Yum! I’ve put the cover and excerpt up for my next Tor book – these are future-set romances with fallen angel heroes. My editor calls them “post-nuclear pre-Apocalyptic” which isn’t easy to say three times quickly. – book #2 in that trilogy is called GUARDIAN, and the excerpt is up on my site now. Karen Chance recently gave a quote to my editor about the first book in the series, FALLEN, saying it was “beautifully written,
exciting and inventive.”
Nice! If you really want to see the GUARDIAN cover super-sized (and who wouldn’t?) take a peek on my blog, HERE.

I also have the cover for WINTER KISS, Dragonfire #4, but I don’t think I’ll be able to share it with you until the first of April. Everything is ready to be uploaded when I get the a-ok, so stay tuned. It’s a yummy yummy cover, too. Trust me. 🙂

And I’ve been invited to give the keynote speech at the Emerald City conference, hosted by the Greater Seattle RWA October 9 – 11. I’ll also be teaching two workshops – topics TBD – and participating in the booksigning. The booksigning, which will be held on Saturday afternoon, is open to the public, so if you’re out that way, please stop in and say hello. We will have GUARDIAN, but it’ll be a bit too early for WINTER KISS to be available for sale.

I also have a short story in the upcoming MAMMOTH BOOK OF VAMPIRE ROMANCE 2 – which will be called LOVE BITES in the UK – and will likely have more info on that by the beginning of April. I’m guessing that it will be a fall 2009 release (that’s what Amazon thinks, anyway).

Very exciting news from the garden too – my snowdrops are coming up! We might get spring after all.

Phew! Busy month!

Deborah Cooke
Alive & Knitting blog

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KISS OF FATE is available!

February 4, 2009 at 5:23 am (Deborah Cooke, New Releases) (, , , , , , , )

Finally, February is here and Erik’s book is out in the world! I’m so excited about the book – KISS OF FATE is #3 in the Dragonfire series, and features Erik, leader of the Pyr, as the hero du jour. (Click fatethrough for the back cover copy and to read an excerpt.)

My favourite element of this story is the twist – Erik, as those of you who have been reading the series know, has already had his firestorm. That’s why his hair is turning grey at the temples. When I met him – he walked into Sara’s bookstore in KISS OF FIRE and was very bossy – I wondered about that firestorm and what had gone wrong. I didn’t expect him to tell me. He’s that kind of a guy.

But he’s getting a second chance. Destiny had bigger plans for Erik Sorensson – against all expectation, his mate has reincarnated as Eileen Grosvenor, a comparative mythologist.

Worse, Eileen ends up in possession of some weird artifacts, which prove to be the elusive Dragon’s Teeth that Erik and the Pyr are seeking. Worse again, she’s on the trail of a story known as the Dragon Lover of Madeley, a myth that she can’t get out of her mind. She can’t understand why it fascinates her so much.

Of course, you and I can guess that Eileen and Erik hold the key to that story themselves – because it’s a story echoing the truth of their first firestorm and the choices Eileen made in her past life as Louisa.

The second time around, Erik’s firestorm is even more powerful than he recalled. He’s completely intrigued by Eileen, who is like his lost wife yet utterly different. The differences are intriguing – and sexy. Erik, even though unwilling to revisit the past, can’t keep the truth from Eileen, not once he realizes that it can help her to heal from the past.

Add the usual mix of Slayers and mayhem, lots of action and dragon fights, Erik spilling the beans about a bunch of Pyr history, the Wyvern’s first romance and Erik’s overdue confrontation with his estranged son, Sigmund. Phew! It’s a jam-packed book and one that I love to bits.

It also opens the door for Dragonfire #4, but I’ll tell you more about that next time.

I hope you all enjoy Erik’s book, too!

Deborah Cooke
Alive & Knitting blog

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Are Fallen Angels Shape Shifters?

September 16, 2008 at 6:10 am (Deborah Cooke) (, , , )

I’m asking this, not just because FALLEN which comes out at the end of this month features a hero who is a fallen angel, but because I can’t decide. I hadn’t thought of this series as having anything to do with shape shifters, then my husband said “well, why not?”

You know how it is with those questions tossed across the dinner table. Sometimes they make you stop and think. If nothing else, they make you doubt your assumptions.

Why not?

FALLEN

FALLEN

First, let me tell you a bit about this new world of mine. It setting is the late 21st century, the world has survived a number of nuclear attacks, and spontaneous mutations are common among humans. Mutated humans, though, are called shades – because they have failed the criteria outlined in the Sub Human Atomic Deviancy Evaluation – and essentially enslaved to do manual labour. The shades are out of sight and essentially out of mind for many. There is a group of scientists called the Society of Nuclear Darwinists who do ongoing investigations of the effects of radiation upon humans – their shade hunters also “harvest” shades that they discover, and send them either to the Society’s research labs or surrender them to the federal government.

It’s not a nice world, but you probably picked that up already.

But it’s also a world on the cusp of the Apocalypse, and the angels are intervening to save humanity from ourselves. Angels, in this scenario, volunteer to take flesh. As angels, they are beings of light and energy, who can choose to reveal themselves to humans or not. They are above and beyond sensation and sensory detail. But those volunteers have their wings removed, sacrificing their angelic status to become human. They become mortal, and are indistinguishable from “norms” — except for the two diagonal scars on their backs (which would condemn them as shades, if revealed.) Each takes a mission, and once that mission is complete, regains his wings and his angelic status.

(It’s not a spoiler to tell you that so far, I’m two-for-two on fallen angel heroes who choose to stay on earth, for the love of the good woman they’ve found. These are romances, after all!)

But you see, there is a transformation, from a being of light to a mortal man. And I guess that could be considered shape shifting. I didn’t think of that before because for me, shape shifting is a more back-and-forth thing, changing at the full moon or at will, or on some more regular basis than, um, ONCE.

What do you think? Is this shape shifting? Or not?

Deborah Cooke
who also writes as Claire Delacroix, in case you’re confused!

Alive & Knitting blog

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Settings for Shapeshifters?

June 20, 2008 at 7:50 am (General) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Arcitc WolfAs I write my shapeshifter series, I want to keep the stories as realistic as possible. So my werewolves won’t be located on island paradises, because if they get caught in their wolf coats, there’d be trouble. This is not to say they can’t go there on vacation when the moon isn’t out, or if they are royals (evolved from the early lines that have very little human mixing) where they are able to shift at will despite the moon’s presence, but just that living on an island where wolves don’t live, would be pretty difficult to explain if they caught like that. And the thing is, they live in secret, so it’s not something they would normally do. What about the desert? The Amazon jungle?

Authors could explain that the wolves were once someone’s pets and they ended up having a pack, if they’re located where they ought not to be. Or it could be an alternate world where the animals still exist. As I’ve done research for historical stories, I’ve learned that wolves used to live in many areas where they’re extinct now, so they would be fine in a historical setting.  

 In my first three stories, Heart of the Wolf, Destiny of the Wolf, and To Tempt the Wolf, the werewolves are located in Colorado and Oregon, where wolves exist. In Legend of the White Wolf, the story is set in Maine so you’ll have to read why Arctic wolves are living in the unlikely state of Maine!

 

 

 

 

 

In my Changeling story, the heroine shifts to a panther and the story is futuristic, so they live on another planet and can exist anywhere.

 
But what about other kinds of shifter stories? Do the dragon shifters need to have caves? Selkies who change to seals would have to be near water at some point, I would imagine.
 

 

 Golden Dragon

So what have you read or do you write? Are the shifters constrained to a certain setting or environment, or are they free to live where they please?

Terry Spear

“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male.”

www.terryspear.com 

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Werewolf Puppies or Babies?

June 2, 2008 at 7:37 am (General) (, , , , , , , , , , , , )

So if a were-creature has offspring, what does it have? Puppies, kittens, human babies? Someone asked me this of Heart of the Wolf for when Bella has her babies. I thought it interesting because I’ve never seen anyone address it in any shapeshifter story. In fact, I don’t think I’ve seen anything about were-creatures getting pregnant. 🙂 Twin Babies

In Heart of the Wolf, Bella is pregnant at the end of the story. And the werewolves in the story all were born like that–tending to have multiple births for two reasons–one, because they’re part wolf and wolves have litters, and two, as humans, since they come from multiple births, there would be a human genetic tendancy that way also. Wolf Pups

In subsequent stories, readers will see what happens when someone is bitten and changed that way. I try to make my stories as realistic as possible, so what would happen when Bella has her babies? 🙂

Why not be able to have their offspring in either form, whichever is preferable? Whichever is easier on them? But then what about the offspring? Of course, a werewolf in wolf form would have wolf pups, not human babies, and the human wouldn’t birth wolf pups. But then how do you deal with newly birthed wolf pups? Do they have to be a little older before they’re able to shift? Pups are blind and deaf at birth, although they have an excellent sense of smell, and they’re unable to do a whole lot really early on. So attempting to make it realistic, I would think it would take a while for them to shift the first time. So if the mother shifts back for necessity sake, she’s got wolf pups to nurse? LOL4 Day Old Wolf Pups

And what about if they “do” it in their wolf form and the female gets pregnant? In my stories, they do make love in their wolf forms, but not on scene. The drive to do it is a natural part of who they are. So the human to human mating is part of the ritual of becoming permanent mates. The wolf part of them needs the same consummation. But in my stories, the genetics for a wolf changes when they become human, and vice versa, so that if their blood is tested as a wolf, it would show only wolf DNA…etc.

Their offspring would be the same way then however they were born. If we get beyond the birthing for the time being, then what happens when they’re a little older? Can the baby turn into a pup at will? Children need to learn right from wrong as they develop. And the shifting would be a natural part of who they are, and part of that is instinctual. But part would have to be taught–not to change just to fight another kid who’s irritating the heck out of you–etc.   

🙂 So what do you think? If a pregnant were is in her were-form because she has to be for whatever reason–can she have babies in her were-form, and if so, what happens if she shifts back? Can the babies shift also? And then at will? 🙂 

Terry Spear

Heart of the Wolf, Don’t Cry Wolf, Betrayal of the Wolf, Allure of the Wolf

www.terryspear.com

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