GUARDIAN is Available NOW!

SoulHunterCover325Here we go, lovelies. Time for E’s story. Time for the next story arc of the HIDDEN universe. Time to see what the world looks like from the perspective of one of the oldest beings in existence.

Are you ready?

Guardian is now available on Amazon! I cannot wait to hear what you think. Please feel free to give me a shout on Twitter or Facebook, via email, or (always appreciated!) leave a review on Amazon and/or GoodReads. There are no words for how much I appreciate it.

I cannot wait for you guys to read this! This is, so far, my personal favorite of all my books. I love E, and I hope you guys love her just as much.

Happy Reading!

Reader Question: My Collections

I got an email from Sherrie last week. She said:

“I read the Hidden series and loved it all! I noticed that you mentioned Molly collecting things like pottery, and then in Soulhunter you mention collecting again with E and her shirts. Is this something you’re interested in? If so, do you collect the same stuff Molly does? I’m a junker myself, though I tend to like more rustic items….”

Sherrie caught me. :) I don’t have any huge collections, but I do have several small collections of certain things. Of course, the fun thing about a collection is that it only gets bigger with time!

So, the two main things Molly collects are McCoy pottery and old milk glass. I have some of both. I only have two McCoy pieces (both flower pots) but I have a larger milk glass collection. I have a mix of vases, bowls, mugs, and tea cups, as well as a perfume bottle (that might be the next thing I start collecting — vintage milk glass perfume bottles!)

The McCoy thing with Molly is mostly based on childhood memories. In two of the houses I grew up in, I remember pottery which, I only realized as I got older, was McCoy. There was a baby bootie, and a donkey with a cart, and a few others that I remember being both in my room in our first house and then, later, in the bathroom of the house I spent most of my childhood in.

pottery collage

The milk glass, I collect mainly because I think it’s pretty, and it’s pretty inexpensive, so if you’re starting a glassware collection, it’s a good way to go.

Aside from those two things I have in common with Molly, I also collect (a small collection, for now) Pewabic Pottery (made in Detroit!), vintage Pyrex bowls, and Lincoln Beautyware canisters. I also have a lot of comics, though most of them were technically my husband’s from his childhood and teenage years, plus the ones we’ve bought since I started getting into them.

collections collage

The only other thing I collect is really a more recent thing, within the last few months. I love going to thrift stores — that’s where I’ve found most of my collection pieces, and I always looked through the aisles of picture frames and artwork. The past couple of times we’ve gone, I’ve ended up purchasing small pieces of art, one of a kind items that were most likely done in art classes or something like that and ended up selling for $1.99 at the Salvation Army. I’ve started hanging them in my office, and they make me happy. I guess maybe it’s the idea that someone, at some point, put work and thought and creativity into creating these things, and I want to be surrounded by that kind of energy or feeling when I’m writing.

So, those are my collections! I have fun answering questions like this, so if you ever have anything you’re curious about, whether it’s about my books or me, send them along — it’ll give me things to blog about between book releases! :)

Questions About Guardian, and a New Teaser!

GUARDIANfbbanner
We are less than a week away from the release of the first Hidden: Soulhunter book, GUARDIAN! I am dying for you guys to read this one! Over the past few weeks, I’ve gotten a few questions about the book and this new series, so I figured I’d take a second to answer them here for you…. and keep reading, because there’s a new teaser from the book as well!

Soulhunter Q & A

Q: So… is this a new series? A spinoff? Explain yourself, woman.

A: Hidden: Soulhunter is a spinoff series of Hidden. It focuses on Eunomia, and is told from her point of view.

Q: Where does it fall in terms of the main series?

A: Hidden: Soulhunter takes place two years after the events of Nether.

Q: So, is it a continuation of Hidden?

A: In some ways, yes. The events of Soulhunter are a result of what happened in Hidden, and the things that happen in the Soulhunter series affect the rest of the Hidden world. (For a more in-depth explanation of the way I am planning future Hidden world books, check out this post.)

However, because this series focuses on Eunomia, you get a different look at the world. She is very different from Molly in many ways, and her life experience and history plays a huge role in her life now. The things that happen in Soulhunter are things that only E can handle… which is why she got her own series. :)

Q: Are the other characters from Hidden going to be in it?

A: Sure! Most of the old cast appears in Soulhunter. Some are more important to E’s story than others, but I think Hidden fans will be happy to see some familiar faces in the book and catch up on what’s happening with their favorites.

Q: Do you have to have read Hidden to read Hidden: Soulhunter?

A: No. I have tried to write this series in such a way that those who haven’t read the main series can start reading Guardian and not be lost. This series has a self-contained story arc that, while it ties into the main storyline, stands separately as its own plot. Of course, if you’ve read Hidden, it’s likely you’ll enjoy this series even more because you know the characters a little better, but I’ve tried to strike a balance between making it welcoming to readers who have not read Hidden as well as those who read the entire Hidden series.

Q: Fine. I want it! When can I have it?

A: It’ll be available in ebook format on Monday, 5/4/15 from Amazon. Paperbacks will be available shortly after.

Q: Is there a pre-order? I really like those.

A: Sorry, not this time. I am not organized enough to do pre-orders. Maybe someday I’ll do them, but for now it just makes more sense for me to do them this way.

Q: Okay. Can I get a reminder that it’s available?

A: I’ll send out a newsletter (you are subscribed to the newsletter, aren’t you?) as soon as it’s available, and I’ll also definitely be sharing the links on my Twitter and Facebook accounts.

Q: All right. So where’s my teaser, Colleen?

A: Here ya go. :)

* * *

Hephaestus and I appeared in a train station in Beelitz, Germany. Train stations and airports tended to be good places to reappear, because usually no one was focused on anything other than getting to their gate, and, if they were not, nowadays they were usually staring at a phone or other device.

“Okay. Fill me in here. Who’re we lookin’ for?” Hephaestus asked me.

“Friedrich Munch,” I said, leading him out of the train station. “Mass murderer. Killed seventeen teenage boys in an attempt to regain his lost youth.”

“Sickening.”

“Agreed. But of our two souls here in Germany, he’s the less evil of the two. We are also here to hunt the soul of one Peter Stumpfe. In his time, in the late sixteenth century, he was known as the werewolf of Brandenburg. He claimed the devil made him do it, and he was tried with cannibalism and murdering sixteen women and two infants.”

“And was he a werewolf?” Hephaestus asked

“He was. There was a werewolf clan here at the time, but he was a loner.”

“Why do I have a feeling there’s even more to it than that?” Hephaestus asked.

“Stumpfe was a sadist who enjoyed playing with his food before he ate it,” I answered, and he nodded. “If you need to get an idea of how monstrous he was, those two infants he killed? He ate their hearts. One of them was his own son.”

“Those are the ones I most would like to kill,” Hephaestus growled, and I nodded in agreement.

“This was where he ran after he was executed. I had to chase him down. This is as good a place to begin as any, considering how long he has been free,” I said. “There is a small inn down this road, I think.”

“E, when was the last time you were here?” Hephaestus asked with a laugh.

“Not that long. It is still here, I am sure,” I told him with a glare, and he laughed.

‘If you say so. Are we walking or traveling the sensible way?”

“We will walk. It is the best way for me to sense for energy signatures. Is that all right?”

“It’s your party,” he said.

I furrowed my brow. “I would not call it a party.”

“It’s a figure of speech, E.”

“I do not like those.”

“I noticed,” Hephaestus said, and I shook my head. We walked on, and I noted with some amusement that, as I’d predicted, his eye was caught by every distraction presented to us. Car models we did not usually see in Detroit, the man playing some one-man-band contraption on one of the street corners. He was in his element.

“You should take your family on travels more often,” I said to him. “You love this.”

He shrugged. “I will someday. When things settle down.”

“That could be never, my friend,” I told him, and he nodded.

“Eventually,” he said with a shrug. “So… what’s the deal between you and the shifter?”

I stumbled a little and swore under my breath in irritation as he laughed. “Yeah, that’s what I thought,” he said.

“There is nothing going on. He is my friend, and Mollis has us working together on this mess.”

“Sure. Yeah. That’s all,” he said, and I could tell from his tone of voice that he did not believe a word of it.

“He is too young for me. He has no understanding of our world, and he wants someone who will be a meek, delicate little flower,” I said, waving away my irritation, able to be more open with Hephaestus than I allowed myself to be with most beings. “He wants to know every detail of my life, and gets irritated when I will not tell him every single thought in my head.”

“We both know he doesn’t want someone who’s meek,” Hephaestus said.

“Well, he thinks he does, except when he thinks he doesn’t,” I answered. “I can be honest with you. I like him quite a bit. But he has had a whole mess in terms of relationships before me. And I am not particularly adept at putting in the time long-term with anyone. The relationships I have had the past two years have all been short and I was able to walk away before they became ridiculous.”

Hephaestus scratched his chin, thinking. “From experience here, E, things don’t really get good until they start getting ridiculous, until you start arguing about shit you’d never imagined yourself arguing over, and then you just look at one another and laugh. Until you’ve been through late nights and tears and anger and every other emotion, and you know one another inside and out. That’s when the relationship shit gets good.”

I shook my head. “I will have to take your word for it.”

“Why not find out for yourself?”

“It would be stupid,” I said. “And I do not want to talk about it anymore.”

* * *

Guardian (Hidden: Soulhunter, Book 1) will be available 5/4/15. 

Are you on GoodReads? You can add Guardian to your shelf here!

Lessons in the Mundane {A Hidden: Soulhunter Short Story}

13648446099i2neThe first thing you learn is how to be invisible.

How to avoid being seen, even when you are standing right beside someone.

In all honesty, sometimes, it is not that difficult. A man gasps his last breath, a woman fades away peacefully in her sleep, and they are alone as they pass. Just you and them, and in those moments there is beauty. It is a sacred moment. Sad, to those left behind, but sacred nonetheless.

Sometimes, it is not only the deceased there. Some lucky humans die surrounded by loved ones. It is easy to stand among them to witness those last moments. Their attention, after all, is not on me.

Violent deaths are different, I thought to myself as I walked along a dusty road in rural Wisconsin. Those, I usually did not watch. We never knew we would have to be there until the death had already happened. Random. Cruel. Violent death left its victims with no dignity, no peace in that moment, that infinitesimal space between life and death.

The hot summer sun beat down on my hair, making my scalp feel hot. I’d shed my leather coat a few miles back. Even I have my limits, and there was no one here to intimidate.

 * * *

So the first thing you learn is how to be invisible. The second thing you learn is how not to care. Caring is useless, a waste of time and energy, when our entire existence was devoted to one purpose: escorting the dead to what came next. There was nothing else.

A crow passed overhead, squawking at me in passing, and I knew that it was going to claim a soul. I could feel it, that old urge to escort it myself still strong. In this case, a twenty-seven year old man had died when his tractor tipped and crushed him beneath it. He was leaving four children and a young wife, and there was not a single thing that could be done about it because death comes for all, even those who are not human.

I have watched great human empires rise and fall. I have watched the most powerful men and women take their final breath. Some raged against me when I came to claim them. Some went happily, ready for the next part of their journey. I wondered how this man would feel, a father and husband, with so much yet to live for.

I pushed it aside, and walked on. It was no longer my concern. In some ways, I was glad for that. For the first time in eternity, my path was one of my own choosing.

I never would have guessed that freedom would be so stifling.

I have made choices in the past couple of years that I never could have imagined making before. The decision to not merely befriend Mollis Eth-Hades, but to fight for her, to defend her and her home against those I’d known for millennia, had surprised me as much as anyone. It felt right, and I still do not understand why, but I am glad I did so.

More decisions. More choices, things I never even gave a second thought to before, such as how I would dress, how I would wear my hair, which foods I preferred. Music, movies, books. None of them were things I had given any consideration to before. It was as if a whole new world had opened itself to me. I have seen everything. Nothing surprises me. Yet I find that I delight in ordinary things in a way that feels alien to me.

Perhaps I am changing.

 * * *

The first thing you learn is how to be invisible. The second thing you learn is how not to care. The third thing you learn is that your only value lies in how well you dedicate yourself to those you were created to serve.

I was the most dedicated. The most reliable. The one who would go without sleep, food, or even sitting down for days on end if it was needed. I was the perfect servant, the perfect hunter for the god of Death. I reveled in it. I believed in it. I prided myself in my ability to keep working long after the others had decided to quit.

I believed in Hades. The beauty and dignity in death. I believed in justice, in my role in assuring that actions taken in life were judged and punished after death. Balance. Righteousness.

I still believed in those things, but somehow, it was not as simple anymore. My god had died. My king. If death can claim even the god who ruled it, what balance can there truly be in this world? What purpose is there for someone like me, like Mollis? Is it all just chaos that we fool ourselves into believing we have some control over?

I kicked a stone and idly watched it disappear into the tall wildflowers at the side of the road. Perhaps Mollis changed us all, with the things she’d done. Some believe so. Mostly the Aether gods. I do not think so. My sisters began betraying Hades and his family before Mollis even became part of our lives.

I furrowed my brow. It was a choice they’d made. One I had not. One I had not been privy to until I was slapped in the face with the cold reality that the twelve immortals I’d referred to as “sisters” had not only betrayed everything we were, but had left me behind.

I took a breath and looked up at the clear, empty blue sky. It was time to move on from here. It was time to stop wandering, hoping to find something I am not even sure I would recognize if I saw it.

 * * *

The first thing you learn is how to be invisible. The second thing you learn is how not to care. The third thing you learn is how to serve. And the fourth thing you learn, the thing all immortals hold on to, is that humanity is beneath us. Humans are a means to an end, to either be ignored or toyed with; chess pieces in an endless game to use as the gods see fit. To Hades, they were like tally marks, and all had to be accounted for.

I believed all of it, once upon a time.

I walked back toward the small log cabin I had slept in the night before, and every night the month before that. When I opened the front door and stepped into the single room of the cabin, the woman I had been staying with was lying in bed, watching me with a sleepy expression on her lovely face. Violet smiled, and I smiled back.

“I am glad you are awake,” I said.

“I was wondering if you’d taken off on me already,” she said, sitting up. Her toes peeked out from beneath the buttery yellow sheets, her toenails painted a pearly pink. Her long blond hair flowed in waves over her shoulders, her skin tan from days spent out in the summer sun. She was golden and soft and warm, and I was happy I’d known her.

“Not without saying goodbye,” I said, a small smile still on my lips. I sat on the bed beside her, and she gently ran her fingertips through my hair. An intimate gesture, one I would not have expected as part of my life.

“Thank you for last night,” Violet said, giving the ends of my hair a gentle tug.

I smiled wider. “I feel as if I should be thanking you,” I said, and she laughed, and it was rich and alive. She hugged her knees, still sitting in bed beside me.

“You really have to go?”

I nodded.

“I haven’t had many flings, Mia,” she said, using the shortened form of my true name I’d begun giving to the humans I met along the way. “I’ve gotta say: usually I feel like shit when it’s all over.”

“And now?”

She grinned. “Usually I feel like shit because it’s awkward,” she said. “This isn’t awkward. I’m glad you stuck around.”

“I am awkward by nature,” I pointed out, and she laughed again.

“Not as awkward as you seem to think,” she teased. She sobered. “I want you to take care of yourself, Mia. I know you’re a quiet person by nature, but these past few days it’s been clear there’s something on your mind.”

I nodded. How odd to be known, even a little bit, by another. “My family needs me,” I said.

“I hope everything goes all right, then,” she said softly, taking my hand. “Be safe. The way you talk about your family, I keep picturing The Godfather or something.”

I let out a short laugh. Well, she was not too far off. I was familiar with those movies. “It will be fine. I have been away for some time. I miss a few of them.”

“And the rest?” she asked, delicate eyebrow raised.

“Not so much,” I admitted, and she laughed.

“That’s the way it is with families, I think,” she said, and I nodded in agreement. We sat in silence for several long, comfortable moments that I wanted to hang on to for as long as possible. She was a good woman. A sweet woman, and she’d brought laughter, warmth, and pleasure into my life in the time we’d spent together. I had never lied to her. She knew I would not stay, and she was not looking for more, content, at this point in her life, being alone. I looked up at her, meeting her soft brown eyes as I had so many times when we’d loved one another, my gaze moving to her full lips, and I warmed at the memory of the things we’d done together. I met her eyes again, and she smiled.

“I’m not going to see you again, am I?” she asked in a low voice.

I squeezed her hand, leaned forward and gently pressed my lips to hers. She sighed in contentment, and the sound filled me with joy. That my touch could have this effect on someone still amazed me. She kissed me, gently nibbled my lower lip, and I heard a soft sound escape me, one that spoke of desire. Need. She had that effect on me. A few more soft flutters across her lips, and I pulled back.

“So I guess that was a ‘no,’” she whispered, worrying her full lower lip between her teeth, as if mimicking the way she’d just done the same to my own mouth.

I did not want to think about the next time I would have the chance to see her. Likely, it would not be until her soul passed from the mortal realm, and all of her warmth and life was left behind her. I hated the thought of it.

What a surprise, that death, which has always been my life, is something I have come to greatly dislike at times.

“We both knew it would be so,” I reminded her gently, and she nodded.

“I know,” she said. “It would just be nice to know you’re okay. You’re pretty awesome, Mia.”

I smiled. “As are you, Vi. I will be fine,” I told her, squeezing her hand again. “I do not know how to be otherwise.”

She shook her head and climbed out of bed. I watched as she pulled a white t-shirt over her body, covering curves I’d delighted in over and over again.

“Take a picture. It’ll last longer,” she teased, and I smiled.

“I will remember,” I said, and she smiled back. She was beautiful, and I would not forget her. I have been with a small number of people in my time wandering. Men, women. What equipment they had or did not have did not matter to me. Eyes. Smile. The ability to make even a cold old woman like me laugh. Those were the things that made me want someone. I would not call any of it love, if such a thing is even something I am capable of. But there was joy, and warmth, and laughter. Life.

Gods, life is a beautiful thing.

I stood up, and grabbed my black duffel bag out of the closet where I’d left it the night before after I’d packed. Violet watched me, and I went to her, and we shared one slow, sweet kiss before she tugged my hair gently and pulled away.

“Go on. Otherwise I’m totally going to kidnap you and keep you here,” she murmured with a smile.

I laughed, and we hugged. “I will never forget you. Thank you for this time.”

She nodded, and blinked a tear from her eyes, and gave me a small wave. I walked down the road, toward town, where it would be possible to catch a bus if one needed to travel that way.

When I was out of sight, I turned back one last time. The cabin looked tiny in the distance, its green metal roof shining in the summer sunlight, heavy branches of the nearby white pines arching over one side of the structure. I breathed in the scent of wildflowers, dusty road, her scent still on my skin.

 * * *

The first thing you learn is how to be invisible. The second thing you learn is how not to care. The third thing you learn is how to serve. The fourth thing you learn is that humans are of no consequence.

The fifth thing you learn is that we are the choices we make. And this is something the humans learned long before we immortals did.

I dropped the enchantment that had hidden my wings from Violet. It was no longer needed, and it was time to be myself again.

I had spent over two years trying to find myself, trying to find a reason for being now that my role was stripped from me.

I do not know that I found it. What I do know is that this world is beautiful and worth protecting. And there is one woman who does that better than any other. It was time to serve my friend, my Queen. I spread my wings and rose into the air, delighting in the warm sun on my skin, the air cooling me as I flew east.

It was time to go home.

 

Audiobook News and Writing Update

Things have been BUSY around here lately, and I have a few things to share with you guys.

First off, the audiobooks for both Broken and Home are finished and available on Amazon, iTunes, and Audible! My narrator, the fabulous Tonya Cornelisse, did an amazing job with both books, and we’ll be moving forward with Strife as soon as Tonya and her production crew can work it into their schedules. There is nothing quite like hearing that moment toward the end of Broken when Molly feels you-know-who again in the Nether. Or that moment when she sees Sean for the first time in Home. I’m very pleased with all three of the HIDDEN audiobooks, and I hope you enjoy them as well!

In more audiobook news, I have signed the very talented Julia Knippen to narrate the Shadow Witch Rising audiobook! It’s looking like that will be available sometime in July, so you’ll be hearing more about that as time goes on.

If you are interested in sales links or listening to audio samples of any of my audiobooks, please check my the Audiobook page.

Writing Update

I am in the home stretch of Hidden: Soulhunter! I have been editing as I go, so there really shouldn’t be too much clean-up to do once I have the end the way I want it. I’m planning to have it finished by 3/31, and then on to my beta readers and editing, which is a pretty quick process — we’re pretty much all pros at this by now. :)

I have Shadow Sworn (Copper Falls #2) all outlined and writing has started on that as well. The current plan is to have Hidden: Soulhunter #1 come out in April, and then if everything works out, Shadow Sworn should be out in June or July. I’ll take a look at things and decide after that whether I want to launch straight into writing Copper Falls #3, Hidden: Soulhunter #2, or the first of the HIDDEN vampire novels. So many options, which is really a nice situation to be in.

I hope you all have a fabulous week!

XO,

Colleen

What’s next for the HIDDEN universe?

I’ve gotten a few questions about this, so I thought this might be a good time to explain my thought process and plans for the HIDDEN universe, and maybe shed some light on why I’m doing things the way I am.

I’ve mentioned before that HIDDEN was hugely inspired by superhero comics. Everything, from the sometimes frenetic action to the drama between characters, was informed and inspired by my love for superhero comics. I wanted to create a hero unlike anyone I’d seen before. I wanted her to be tough yet vulnerable, powerful yet completely breakable if pushed too far. I wanted her to be imperfect. I wanted her to make mistakes. Sometimes, huge ones that messed things up big time. I wanted her, like many of us, to have more questions than answers.

And we ended up with Molly, and she will, most likely, always be my favorite character from my own books.

Because HIDDEN was inspired by comic books, I always thought that, eventually, it would be expanded.

How to explain this…. if you are familiar with comic books, you know that Marvel publishes The Avengers, right? And you can follow that story and be happy. But if one series isn’t enough for you, maybe you take a look at New Avengers, and maybe Secret Avengers, and maybe you really like one particular character, so you read Captain America or Black Widow as well… and while each book has its own focus, its own primary characters, it all relates back to The Avengers. And then every once in a while, you’ll have a great big crossover event where all of the different teams and characters end up coming together when the shit is really going to hit the fan.

This has been my model for the HIDDEN universe for quite a while, and I wanted to let you guys know what my thoughts are moving forward.

So we have HIDDEN, the original series, which focused on Molly and the team that developed around her.

And then we have the upcoming HIDDEN: SOULHUNTER series, dealing with Eunomia and those who end up working with her. We’ll see some new characters, some familiar ones, and hear a bit about how things look from where Eunomia stands. This team is allied with the original HIDDEN crew, but separate.

Coming up in a few months, we’ll have the first of the HIDDEN: BLOOD BOUND series (that title is still something I’m deciding on, by the way) which is about Rayna and her family of vampires. They are the street-level muscle, and deal with a whole different set of problems from what Molly and even Eunomia deal with.

There may very well be another series about the shifter coalition in Detroit. That would be Brennan’s series.

At some point, it will all come together for a giant, crazy crossover series.

My plan for the series is that they each build on the original HIDDEN story, but (because this is me) we start seeing that things are changing in ways no one quite expected after NETHER. So you can read each series independently, and you can likely even read them if you haven’t read the original HIDDEN, because my goal is to tell a complete story in each series, but still tie them all together and raise the stakes so that it all comes back together in the end.

Heh. And this is where I pray to the writing gods that I can pull it off. :)

Anyway, I just wanted to let you know what was happening next. I am nowhere near finished writing in this world, and I hope you’ll come along for the ride. And those of you who have fallen in love with Copper Falls — don’t  worry! Shadow Sworn is moving forward as well.

Thanks for reading!

Weekend Update, Shadow Witch Rising Edition

ShadowWitchRisingCover_200So Shadow Witch Rising came out this past week, and I can admit now that I was terrified. It was a different direction for me, and both my husband and Elizabeth Hunter probably heard way more panic from me than they ever wanted to. But, I’m a lucky girl, and both of them withstood the onslaught of “oh my god I suck —  what the hell am I doing… I should just write more HIDDEN!” like pros. :)
My fear was somewhat alleviated by the fact that both Elizabeth Hunter and Grace Draven (two of my absolute favorite authors) beta read and blurbed the book, which was something I really didn’t expect. Even so, I wondered how my readers would respond, and so far, a little less than a week in, the feedback has been very, very positive and people are excited and a few people have crushes on Calder, so I’m happy.

Aside from the Copper Falls series, work continues on the first Soulhunter book. This one is also getting very enthusiastic feedback from my newsletter subscribers (who are reading it in weekly installments as I write it) and I’m looking forward to writing the rest of Eunomia’s series once this book is available.

If you follow me on Facebook, you may have seen that I mentioned my planned upcoming releases. I don’t have release dates yet, but I know that I’ll be publishing the first Soulhunter book in the next couple of months, followed by the second Copper Falls book. After that, the next release will either be the second Soulhunter book or the first of my planned spinoff HIDDEN series about Rayna and her family. I’m still deciding which it will be.

Reading

I am still working my way through Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy by Karen Abbot — it’s a really good read so far, but I read nonfiction much more slowly than I read fiction, so it is taking me a while. Highly recommended so far if you enjoy Civil War and/or women’s history.

I have also finally read Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander and have started Dragonfly in Amber. Holy shit. Reading something like Outlander makes me want to weep in delight as a reader, but despair as a writer because there is no way I’ll ever be that good. But I can try. :) (Seriously. Why have I not read this series before?? I see more historical romance in my future. If you’ve read Outlander and can recommend similar books/series I might like, drop them in the comments, please!)

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I’m also re-reading Grace Draven’s Radiance just because it’s too good not to read again. I will have a more comprehensive write up here on the blog eventually, and I know many of you have already read it. Another “holy shit” read for me. I called Grace a writing mage over on Facebook and I’m even more sure of it upon a second reading.

I beta-read Elizabeth Hunter’s third Irin Chronicles book, The Secret. We’ll just go three-for-three with the “holy shit!” reads in this post, apparently. It is amazing. Beautifully written, captivating perfection. Hunter’s ability to create and sustain a mythology throughout a series is amazing, and I have loved every second I’ve spent reading the Irin Chronicles. You all are in for a major treat when it is available on March 31st. Again, I’ll have a more complete write-up at some point here on the blog.

Of course, there have also been comics. Thor and Bitch Planet have continued to make me a happy reader. I am behind on others, but I’m hoping to catch up eventually.

That’s about it for now. I am going to try to blog more regularly, but that depends on how well the writing is going. Today, I met my word count early, so it seemed like a good time for a post. :)

Have a great weekend!

XO,

Colleen

 

Shadow Witch Rising

Shadow Witch Rising Cover
Available Now!

Two people, bound by a powerful curse.

When Sophie Turner finally returns home to the sleepy tourist town of Copper Falls, she imagines the kind of life she’d always dreamed of: calm, quiet, and peaceful. After years of having her steps haunted by a powerful and devious stalker, she is now living on land settled by her ancestors. She can feel the magic in her blood responding, and she feels like she finally has the chance to build a life.

Until he comes along.

All of her dreams of peace and calm come tumbling down the second Calder Turcotte enters Sophie’s life. The danger he brings threatens everything she’s worked for, everything she’s tried to build for herself. He gives Sophie an ultimatum: break the curse her ancestor set on his family, or lose the very land that’s allowing her to heal. And as much as she despises him, as much as she fears him, she’s equally drawn to his icy gaze, his strength. Helping him is the right thing to do.

She never would have guessed how much she’d end up losing to save him.


“Colleen Vanderlinden proved herself a master of fantasy action and adventure in her HIDDEN series. In COPPER FALLS, she only digs deeper. Character. Atmosphere. Humor. Intrigue. Shadow Witch Rising will draw readers into the Copper Falls world. It’s a fantastic start to a series I’m eager to follow.”

—Elizabeth Hunter, author of the Elemental Mysteries, and the Irin Chronicles

“A spectacular start to a promising series.  SHADOW WITCH RISING takes the reader on a turbulent journey with Sophie and Calder, where Evil is parasitic, relentless and determined and Love, in its many forms of friendship, brotherly affection and timeless devotion, offers hope.”

—Grace Draven, USA Today Best-selling author of RADIANCE

In which I read to you…

Shadow Witch Rising CoverMonday, guys! Shadow Witch Rising will finally be here, and I am about to die of excitement. I can’t wait to share this story with you. So, because I’m losing my mind here, I figured I’d try something I haven’t done before: an author reading. But because I don’t especially enjoy leaving my house, I recorded myself reading a little bit of Shadow Witch Rising. :)

To set it up: this scene takes place between Sophie and Calder’s ancestors. Because Sophie and Calder are in the situation they are in due to the actions of their ancestors, I wanted to tell a bit of their story along the way as well. So in this scene, Migisi (Sophie’s ancestor) and Luc (Calder’s ancestor) meet for the very first time. Enjoy!

HIDDEN Love Letters

Happy Valentine’s Day, all! To celebrate, I thought I’d have some fun and share some love letters from some of our favorite HIDDEN couples. I hope you enjoy them! (Warning: Spoilers if you haven’t read Nether yet!)

hephletter

meaghanletter

 

 

zeroletter

 

 

stoneletter

mollyletter

nainletter

Happy Valentine’s Day, all!

XO,

Colleen