Monday, August 15, 2011

Paranormal Guest Author: Laura Kaye + Forever Freed Giveaway

Please welcome today's paranormal guest author Laura Kaye!  Laura is the author of Hearts in Darkness and Forever Freed.

EJ:  When did you begin writing?

  I wrote my first stories as a child. I was an only child and alone a good bit, so I became very good at entertaining myself, and cultivating a vivid imagination was one part of that! The first story I remember writing, although I doubt it was my first, was a paranormal retelling of A Secret Garden. I have no idea whatever happened to the notebook in which I handwrote the story, but I can still see the book in my mind’s eye. In high school, I won a prize for a story called “Peter Save the Tsar,” which was a time travel tale about a modern-day kid who stopped the assassination of the Russian royal family in 1917.

That story also reveals my interest in history, which is where my writing became concentrated once I went to college and graduate school. As a professional historian, writing has been a part of my life for my entire career. But it wasn’t until three years ago that the fiction bug hit me—literally! I hit my head on July 4th and after several weeks of severe headaches and other “post-concussive” side effects, I found myself wanting to write fiction. At the end of August, I started writing the book that became Forever Freed, and the draft was done by November 1.

EJ:  What brought you to the paranormal genre?

  Well, as my paranormal retelling of A Secret Garden shows, I’ve been interested in the paranormal since I was a small child. That interest stems from my family, all of whom believe in the supernatural. It was completely normal for my family to sit around my grandmother’s dinner table on a Friday night and tell stories about their houses being haunted, or the evil-eye curse my grandmother believed her mother-in-law placed on her, or the angel that came to my grandmother when she was pregnant with my mother. We all saw instances of odd, unexplainable things happen in some of our family’s houses, particularly my grandmother’s. The supernatural just was. The two authors I remember being totally hooked on the earliest were Anne Rice and Stephen King, so I’ve always been most interested in the paranormal genre. And it’s so totally cool to be writing in it, now!

EJ:  If you could be any paranormal or have any one supernatural talent, what would it be? Why?

Teleporting. I would totally love to be able to move from one place to another instantaneously just by willing it. How cool would that be? Poof! And you’re gone. Need to check on someone? You can. Need to get somewhere quick? No problem.

EJ:  Tell us why readers will enjoy your new release.

I would love to! Forever Freed is a paranormal romance about a reclusive, empathic vampire who falls in love with a woman he planned to kill and her young daughter, then fights his ancient guilt, bloodlust, lie by omission, and an old vampire rival who threatens everything he holds dear.

One thing I think is interesting and appealing about Forever Freed is that it is first person point of view from the vampire hero’s perspective. And Lucien Demarco is such an amazing, sympathetic, complicated character—his mind is an interesting place to be.

Another enjoyable part of the book is the heroine’s daughter, Olivia, who goes by “Ollie.” Ollie is as central to the plot and to Lucien’s character development as the heroine Samantha is, and Ollie’s often an incredible scene stealer. Not to mention how heart-melting it is to see Lucien and Ollie interact.

Readers will also enjoy the way the paranormal world in Forever Freed is meshed with the real world of contemporary Detroit, and the rationale for that is based on the true history of the city, which I think is pretty cool.

EJ:  If your book(s) were being made into a movie, who would you cast for the leading roles? Why?

  Ooh! I love this question! For Lucien, it’s so easy too! Alex O’Loughlin was THE character in my head the whole time I was writing Forever Freed.

This picture perfectly captures Lucien’s mood and the general atmosphere of the book. And, ya know, IT’S ALEX O’LOUGHLIN!!! (LOL) I’ve always had a harder time picking just the right actress for Samantha Sutton—maybe Amanda Seyfried or Kate Hudson—they both have that pretty wholesomeness about their look that I associate with Samantha. Dakota Fanning when she was young would’ve made a great Ollie, but of course she’s all grown up now! Dakota always had that cute precociousness that is totally Ollie. Thinking about the book being made into a movie is so much fun!!!

 Forever Freed by Laura Kaye

A heart can break, even one that no longer beats.

I stalk my new neighbors, a single mother and her child, drawn by the irresistible scent of their joy and love. I crave their blood, starved for some healing respite from my ancient grief. Now to lure them into my grasp.

But they surprise me. Little Olivia accepts me without fear or reservation—talking, smiling, offering innocent affection that tugs at my long-lost humanity. Her mother, Samantha, seeks me out when she should stay away, offering sweet friendship, and calling to the forgotten man within me. They lure me instead.

Ah, Dio, Lucien, run and spare them while you can…

Thank you Laura for joining us here today at From the Shadows!

To learn more about Laura Kaye and her books, please visit her website.

**Forever Freed Giveaway**

We are giving away one ebook copy of Forever Freed by Laura Kaye to one lucky winner and two sets of Forever Freed romance trading cards to two runners up!

To enter, please leave a comment on this post including your email address (so we may contact you if you win).  You do not have to be a follower to enter (though I always appreciate a follow!).  This giveaway is INTERNATIONAL.  Giveaway ends August 30th midnight EST.


  1. Thank you for the giveaway! I liked reading about who the author would cast into the leading roles. When authors answer a question like that it helps me picture the characters better when I read. I like to understand their vision of the story. :) Very cool.

    ceeenndee at gmail dot com

  2. The excerpt sounds good...looks like the tables turn for him :) I would pick teleporting too. How cool would it be to pop into France for breakfast, England for lunch and Italy for dinner...that would be completely awesome. Thanks for the chance to win.

  3. Ohhhh Alex O'Loughlin, He is my dream man book em Dano. Great intereview, sign me up please
    lvs2dv at gmail dot com

  4. Please enter me in contest. I would love to read this book. It sounds very good.

  5. What a great guest post! I wish I could get the writing bug after hitting my head! All I get is the headaches, though :) And I absolutely LOVE Alex O'Loughlin, so I totally get why you would be picturing him when writing! I picture him all the time and I'm not even a writer!!! Thanks for an amazing giveaway :)
    jwitt33 at live dot com

  6. Great interview! Alex O'Loughlin is the best and Forever Freed sounds very interesting.
    Thanks for the giveaway!

    artgiote at gmail dot com

  7. Forever Freed is an amazing story! This is a great interview with one of my favorite authors. Thanks for having this amazing post today E.J.

  8. Awesome interview! I'm an only child also and how cool would teleporting be, I could travel all over the world. I'm an old follower. Forever Freed sounds great!

  9. Good morning everybody! I'm totally thrilled to pop in and find so many comments already! And, hmm, so many Alex O'Loughlin lovers among you (er, MINE!!!)... Uh, sorry, what was I saying? ;)

    Thanks for having me here today, EJ!

  10. O wow. I can't wait to read this it sounds good! Thanks for giveaway and awesome inerview


  11. How can any hero be anything but irresistible if based on Alex O'Loughlin, especially if the picture you posted sets the tone!

  12. Laura,

    I'm just popping in to say hi and tell you how much I'm enjoying Forever Freed.Ollie and Lucien's relationship is heartwarming. You're right, Ollie is a scene stealer. Bless her.

    Are you thinking about writing another story with perhaps one of Lucien's 'family'? How about Ollie all grown up?

    Add me to the Alex O'Loughlin lovers out there. He'd make a great Lucien.

    Paranormal is a big deal in our family, too. We all have stories of odd and unexplainable things happening either at our homes or somewhere else.

    I sure enjoyed the post, gals. :)

  13. My sweet Alex! He's the very reason I started writing my vampire series. I loved Forever Freed. You're an awesome writer, Laura.

  14. Laura, excellent interview! I enjoyed getting to know you better.

    It is not easy to writer from first person POV and still find it compelling! Your hero Alex O'Loughlin happens to be one of my favs. I watched him in moves well before he did Moonlight.

    I can't wait to read your book and congrats on the release.

  15. I love the cover and the concept, I was going to ask a question but got distracted by Alex.

    Oh yea now I remember if you can write with anyone who would it be?


  16. Great interview Laura!!! :)

    Congratulations on the release too...

    Lisa :)

  17. Hi Karen--Thanks for your question about other books in a potential series. I am definitely planning just that! I had originally planned it as a four-book series, but hit some snags with the publisher because the book two didn't focus specifically on a new romantic relationship/couple. So I've gone back to the drawing board and am consolidating what I'd planned for book 2 and 3 into a single book - and it will be Ollie's story, all grown up. And you're going to FLIP. OUT. when you find out who she ends up with. There's also a prequel, already drafted, that is Lucien's story before he meets Sam. The additional books in the series are tentatively titled Forever Damned (prequel) and Forever Young (sequel).

    @BLHmistress - If you're talking co-authoring, hmm, that's a great question! My fave PNR authors are J.R. Ward and Sherrilyn Kenyon, and I would totes go fangirl crazy to ever have the opportunity to write with either of them! :)

    So much fun hearing from you all!

  18. I had to come over and say hello to one of my new favorite Authors...Lauara K!
    EJ: your blog gets more awesome every time I come here!

  19. Aw, Leanore--thank you! And, about EJ's blog, isn't it the truth? Love it over here!

  20. This looks like a very good read. Thanks for the opportunity!!


  21. Great interview. Alex O'Loughlin would be awesome to see as the lead.

    Thanks for the great giveaway!


    mary_reiss @

  22. Laura, loved the interview. Forever Freed is on my TBR list. I love the premise and I can't wait to meet Ollie!
    Thanks for taking the time to share a little about yourself with us and Thanks E.J. for bringing Laura to us!
    t dot lynne dot tolles at me dot com

  23. OMG@Laura... Nick St.John from MoonLight! I bought that series on DVD simply to oogle at him for hours!!! LMAO. Great interview, I never knew about your first hand written story. I always love hearing about how authors get the "bug".

  24. I look forward to the other books. I'm going to flip out who Ollie ends up with? Hmmm... I love surprise. lol

  25. Please enter me in contest. I would love to read this book. It sounds very good.
    rogcaprino (At)hotmail dot com

  26. I've enjoyed the Six Sentence Sunday teasers. Forever Freed sounds wonderful.
    cate.masters AT

  27. Thanks for all the great turnout from the PRG group and the amazon PNR lists! And also so great to see so many Facebook and twitter friends!

    Woot! Making my night, y'all!

  28. Thank you everyone for stopping by. Good luck with the giveaway! :)

    Paranormal Author E.J. Stevens
    From the Shadows

  29. Thank you for hosting this giveaway!
    I read Laura Kaye's book Hearts in Darkness and enjoyed it. I can't wait to read Forever Freed!


  30. Laura - LOL! I think all of my heroes lately have resembled Alex O'Loughlin . . . keep telling my hubby that I need to take a research trip to Hawaii to observe him up close and personal - wanna go?


  31. LOL Robin--There's an Alex for every occasion! And can I go along with you if you convince the hubs on the Hawaii trip???

    ladyreadsalot--Glad you enjoyed Hearts in Darkness!

    Thanks for all the great comments! I'm really enjoying reading them!

  32. Lovin' It!

    Kitty Bullard

  33. great give-a-way :)

  34. What a great post! I think it would be wonderful to have the supernatural history in my family that you have in yours!! You mention that you each have seen something unexplainable in your homes - what have you seen?

    I'm looking forward to reading Forever Freed. Thanks for the giveaway.

  35. Awesome interview!


  36. I actually followed Laura over to your site. Glad I did. Your site lookds great and we seem to have similar interests in books so you now have a new follower. I have been wanting to read FOREVER FREED for a while now. Thanks to both of you fo rthe chance to win a copy.
    manning_j2004 at yahoo dot com

  37. Love the 1st line of the story blurb & the book cover. I so hope to win!

  38. ALEX O’LOUGHLIN!!! So Hot!
    Can't wait to read your book !
    Love Vampire Stories Reading Christine Feehan right now.
    love to find new to me Authors that wright Paranormal Romance .

  39. Good morning everyone! Great to see so many new commenters overnight!

    @KarenC--OMG, so many stories! Personally, I believe I've seen at least two ghosts. The first, when I was about 10 in my cousin's house. A ghostly figure that started out a diffuse light crossed my cousin's bedroom in the middle of the night and by the time she disappeared into the attic door she looked more human in shape, with a floor-length gown. Their family always had weird stuff going on, and the woman who lived in that house in the 19th century was allegedly killed in the park across the street. The other story was from when I was 17: our next-door neighbors were two unmarried sisters in their 60s, Miss Betty and Miss Patty. Miss Betty got sick and had been in the hospital. One Saturday morning I walked through our back yard to go to the store for my mom (we lived in a little town on the main street) and Miss Betty was walking up her back yard toward her house. I waved and said hello and she smiled at me, and I remember being glad she was better. When I got back from the store, I told my mom Miss Betty was home and seemed better, and she got this weird look on her face and told me Miss Patty had called while I was gone to say Miss Betty had died that morning in the hospital. Even as I type this, the hair is standing straight up on my arms. I also believe my dad, a very troubled man who died 15 years ago, comes to me in my dreams/nightmares. And my mom, who died 6 years ago, often sends me little signs.

  40. Yay! June, Linda, and Stacey--so glad to see you all here!

  41. I love when the author makes the hero either reclusive/loner/ill-tempered~ well you get the idea.

    Thanks for the great giveaway!


  42. Hi Laura and EJ
    Great interview and thanks for the giveaway!
    I too like Alex O’Loughlin :)

    dany7578 at hotmail dot com

  43. Great interview! I enjoyed reading it and the book sounds fabulous. Thanks for the international giveaway!


  44. Who doesn't like Alex, Daniela? Seriously! LOL

    @winnie--thanks so much! And you're welcome for the international part! I know international readers sometimes get shut out of giveaways, but not this time! :)

  45. Laura, Forever Freed sounds like a book I'd enjoy. I love when there are children involved in the story, because it does stir the pot and ups the ante. The title, too, makes me want to know who is Freed.