Guest Blogger: Esri Rose
The three winners are: Tessa Brixton, Terra 57 and Pam P. Please contact me with your snail mail addresses and I'll pass the info along to Esri. Thanks so much to everyone for stopping by (whether you left a comment or not!!).
In the world of paranormal romance, the setting must fit the creature. Consider Boulder, Colorado. If New York is gray and silver with concrete and fashion, and Chicago is black and red with grit and jazz, then Boulder is all colors of the freakin’ rainbow, with an emphasis on green. I set Bound to Love Her in this quirky university-and-tech town because I live here, and I chose elves as my paranormal characters because vampires would throw up their hands at our lack of human predators and seedy alleys in which to bite them.
Boulder is an example of the conflict and love that exists between elves and humans, humans and nature. To the west, the town founders against the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, where nature is red in tooth and claw. Storms kill the unwary, and mountain lions maul the occasional hiker. We push at the wilderness, and it pushes back. Lawn ornaments are likely to be live deer, bears must be rousted from under people’s porches, and hummingbirds fly right up in your face, jeweled feathers flashing as they scold you for intruding. We love living so close to nature, until the coyotes eat our dogs and the fleas start spreading plague.
In the Bound to Love Her universe, elves live in the wilderness and draw energy from their piece of land. But I need them to come into town, too. Boulder Creek runs through the city, so my elves can subsist on energy from flowing water if they have to. And how do they get around? The creek runs through a city-long park, so I decided my elves would not only merge with the earth, but travel through it. Where’s the conflict? By taming wild areas, humans are unknowingly driving elves to extinction, but elves can use people for their energy needs. And Boulderites are probably more susceptible than most to elven glamour. We live in a Peter Pan world, where young women wear fairy wings for an evening on the town, and there’s a guy with a pirate hat and a Jolly Roger flag flying from his scooter. Our minds are primed for magic.
Bound to Love Her is my first paranormal romance, and part of the Zebra debut-author program ($3.99 cover price). In the book, Erin Chandler is hiking in Boulder’s woods when she comes across an injured man, who turns out to be an injured elf. Galan’s bond to his land has been severed by Fellseth, a dark elf who preys on his own kind. Erin and Galan mysteriously bond, so Galan needs Erin to keep helping him if he wants to stay alive. But when Fellseth learns of Erin’s ability to provide energy for an elf, he decides to finish Galan off and take Erin for his own.
It’s been fun to bring magic into my hometown. In this city at the edge of two worlds, the question is not, “Why would elves live in Boulder?” The question is, “Where else would they live?"
Esri Rose lives in Boulder with her husband, Angel Joe, and her cat, Musette La Plume, only one of whom has pointy ears. Bound to Love Her is on bookshelves now (Zebra debut-author price, $3.99), and you can read the beginning here. The second book in her elven universe, Bound to Want Him, will be a May 2009 release. You can visit Esri Rose and find out more at ElvesAmongUs.com.