Paranormal romance author Sherrill Quinn dons the penname Cynthia Garner for her new series, Warriors of the Rift. For the first book, this month's Kiss of the Vampire, Garner puts a great spin on paranormal tales by adding a science fiction-like element to the story in the form of noncorporeal beings that come to earth. As the tension between races rise, and the story introduces readers to an unusual half-demon, crime-fighting heroine, we went straight to the author for insider details about her latest release.
Kiss of the Vampire is the book that launches your Warriors of the Rift series. This paranormal series has all of the usual suspects — vampires, demons and ... aliens. Can you tell us a bit about adding this science fiction element into the stories?
Let’s face it. There really are no new stories. Vampires and werewolves have been done. Over done, according to some. The only thing an author can do is put a new twist on an old idea. As far as I’m aware, no one had come up with the idea that all of our creatures of myth are what they are because they’re humans who’ve been taken over by entities from another dimension. As soon as that idea hit me, it was a real light bulb moment. Blame it on years of sci fi TV, from all the incarnations of Star Trek to Stargate to V.
Were these shows the big inspiration for your series then?
I love everything paranormal, so there wasn’t one specific show or book that I drew from. The idea of the rift came to me after watching a news program about an upcoming meteor shower.
Pretty mundane, I know. As far as the paranormal aspect of the series, I didn’t want to limit it to just vampires and werewolves, but I love them so didn’t want to leave them out, either. And after I got done asking all the “What if”s, I had my world. Or, rather, worlds.
The heroine from Kiss of the Vampire, Nix, is very interesting. She is half-demon and half-human, but accepted by neither group. How has this conflict shaped her as a character?
Nix as a youngster tried desperately to fit in, but wasn’t wanted by either side of her family. Her mother, a demon, isn’t exactly motherly and didn’t want to care for an infant. Her paternal grandmother took her in out of a sense of duty but never let her forget her demonic origins. She has finally found something that she’s good at, that makes her a contributing member of society, yet she still feels the need to prove herself.
Nix's ex, Tobias Caine, may be a special agent working for the "good guys", but he also happens to be a very dangerous vampire. Their relationship didn't work out so well the first time around, in what ways is their reunion any different?
Their reunion initially does not go well. Nix is still angry at how he left her, and when he sees her anger (which brings out the demon in her), he realizes he still affects her but not in a good way. He’s afraid that she’ll lose her grip on her humanity and, then, her control on her sanity. He knows once the job is done he’ll need to get out of her life again.
We had such a good time reading this story that we can't wait to hear about your next book. What can you tell us about the Warriors of the Rift series second?
Thank you! The second book in the Warriors of the Rift series is The Secret of the Wolf. Two of the characters you met in Kiss of the Vampire, Dante MacMillan and Victoria Joseph, get to tell their story:
As a werewolf liaison to the Council of Preternaturals, Tori Joseph is used to straddling the world between humans and immortals. She plays by the rules and always delivers justice, no matter the cost. But after a string of increasingly brutal attacks results in humans turning into werewolves, Tori doesn’t reveal her horrifying suspicion: Someone very close to her might be responsible.
Investigating the paranormal violence, no-nonsense detective Dante MacMillan believes Tori is hiding something. His search for the truth draws him into greater danger as he gets closer to the dark realm of the immortals — and to the sexy werewolf who stirs his primal lust. Now with evil closing in around them, Dante must convince Tori to trust him ... before her deadly secret destroys them both.
You can pick up your own copy of Kiss of the Vampire in stores now and then mark your calendar, the series second, Secret of the Wolf, will be released in July 2012. And for more genre coverage and news be sure to visit our Everything Paranormal & Urban Fantasy Page.