Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Twas the Darkest Night by Sophie Avett: Guest Post and Excerpt




Sophie Avett’s New Gotham Monsters:
The Weird and the Wicked

I hate vampires. Ha. Weren’t expecting that, were you? A paranormal author who hates writing vampires—sigh, I know what you’re thinking. What the heck am I even doing here if I’m not down for the fangs? I know, I know…I weep into chocolate.

But alas, I’m the kind of author that does everything in my power to never write a vampire. The idea of writing something with the ability to eat my intellect with a scoff and a few well-chosen words Ghandi himself probably told him…well, it annoys me, frankly. Why? My characters are all sadistic pricks with bloodlust and bad-attitudes—the hell I’m going to give them yet another advantage.

Do you think they give a care about my plot? My dignity? The laws of hygiene I am steadily bending as I furiously try to write the twelve new chapters they’ve insisted they need because of some deep, dark psychological trauma I gave them? They’re tyrants—all of them.

They also happen to be creatures of the oddest variety. Did I get out of writing a vampire with my latest release? Almost. Try Marshall Ansley on for size. He’s something mythology text books refer to as a cambion.

Check out the cambion entry from New Gotham’s Grimoire (Glossary for Readers)

“Cambion: (Judaism) The offspring of a succubus/incubus, using the reproductive biological material from a human male AND a human female. (See incubus for more information.) An incubus is not bound by the law of gender. It first transforms into a succubus, mates with a human male (acquires a sperm sample), transforms into an incubus, mates with a human female, and impregnates her with the sperm.

Therefore, a cambion is really a mixture of three creatures: the incubus, the female creature (usually human), and the sperm donor. The cambion will adopt characteristics of all three ingredients. In New Gotham, which characteristics the cambion will inherit from its parents is entirely dependent on random genetic mutation. Biology for the damned, indeed.” ~ Sophie Avett’s New Gotham Grimoire

So basically, he’s a rare Frankenstein creature made up of the sum of his parts. And this vampire is packing fangs, incubi lust, and a spaded tongue twisted enough to open mother’s wine.

Typical Scrooge, he doesn’t do regrets. He doesn’t do apologies. He does…whoever he wants. When he’s behaving like a prince, I call him “imp.” When he’s behaving like himself, he’s the “pompous imbecile.”

The only woman who will deal with him is a troll. Nope. You read that right. I’m the utter genius that said, “She eats horse dung and looks like the ass crack of oblivion? Hmmm? I bet you, I could make that sexy.”

The raven who reads me to sleep scoffed immediately. I resisted.

I said, “What the bloody hell are you squawking about?! It was your idea in the first place?!”

Another scoff, of course. (Mrs. Potts—oh ye fairy-godmother of little faith.)

Well, Elsa Karr is a troll with a long list of things to do. Top of the list is saving her father’s shop.  She doesn’t give a whit about the vampire upstairs. Cake, her cat, and peace of mind are all she needs. She’s not the type of woman who takes bullshit…even from the devil. No, no. Not ever. Have a seat, little vampire. Any blood shed will be on her terms. Don’t press her. Or else.

The pompous imbecile…pressed.

Oh, dear...

Care to see how that panned out? I assure you, it’s a bloody good time.

Twas the Darkest Night
A New Gotham Novel
A Sinister Stiches Spin-off
Sophie Avett
Genre: Erotic Gothic Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Skeleton Key Publishing
Date of Publication:  March 15, 2014
Number of pages: est. 355 pages
Word Count:  est. 160, 000 
Cover Artist: Elaina, For the Muse Designs
Book Description:
Remember the story about the troll who lived under the bridge—yes, well, that twit didn't have to pay rent.
Owner and operator of Bits and Pieces, and resident expert on charms and glamours, Elsa Karr is a witch with a sour frown and a list of things to do as long as Thor’s hammer. Top of the list is saving her father's shop from ruin. If she isn't trying to claw her way out of debt, she's arguing with her cat, Fenris, or shoveling carts of cake into her gob. She's not interested in romance or the vampire who rents the flat above her shop. All she wants is a little peace and chocolate--fine, all right! All right! The vampire is kind of screw all cute. (Curse him.)
The disgraced son and heir of the Wingates House vampire clan and a mad-man to boot, Marshall Ansley spends most of his time working and dodging his mother's phone calls. Marshall is beyond family. He's beyond everyone, actually. Don’t be daft, he especially doesn't do…Christmas. But behold, the plague brings an original flavor of annoyance this year when his boss tasks him with acquiring the account of a recluse fey and her upcoming Gothic clothing boutique, Sinister Stitches. That is the ONLY reason he's bothering with his shrewish landlord. No, that's it. No…really. Fine, if you insist, the witch might be a tad bit...all right, she's adorable. (Damn her.)
Scrooge meets Scrooge. Dominant meets Dominant. Tempers…spark. In each other, they may unfold a tale that only comes to pass on the darkest of nights.

“Pardon the interruption, Ms. Karr, but are you ready for dinner?”
She forced her hand to her side and tossed a flat frown over her shoulder. “Indeed, vampire.”
Leaning against the door frame, Marshall was the picture of bloody elegance. Black slacks with a matching vest. A deep wine shirt. He’d left the top buttons undone. It was rich simplicity, and he wore it sickeningly well. Damp, disheveled locks drifted over his eyes as he peered at the blue marble on the coffee table with interest. She breathed in deeply, thoroughly appreciating the combination of his sandalwood body wash and amber cologne. His mouth quirked and she swallowed twice before she could speak. “Huldra, I—”
“And then be done with it, Elsa.” Ingrid reminded her firmly, but added in her signature sultry burst of frost. “Otherwise, enjoy. For both of us.”
Marshall lifted his eyebrows slightly and Elsa flushed and snatched up the speaker. She tapped the orb and it died into a mundane glass marble. “Ignore her. Besides, I’m ready.” She levered herself out of the chair and tossed the ball back in her bag. It clanked and rattled, circling until it dropped deep into the depths of the magical pocket.
He reached out for her hand. “Come here.”
She draped a black fur stole over her forearm and eyed his palm with suspicion. “Why?”
“I mean you no harm,” he promised.
Time stilled between them. She searched his expression and found nothing but the steely shrewd regard of a predator. Her feet felt heavy, leavened. She did not come to any man’s beck and call. Never. Never again. She offered her hand, but did not budge an inch. If he wanted her cooperation, he would appeal to her on her terms.
Marshall did not hesitate to take the distance between them, coming to stand so close, so quickly she back-stepped and the back of her shins bumped the chair. Snowy blue eyes were almost black in the shadows. His cool slender finger closed around her wrist and he hauled her against the solid wall of his chest, his embrace sealing around her like a coffin.
“Stubborn little witch.” He yanked and something popped. She hardly noticed. She was gone. Yearning for the individuals folds of the thin skin stretched across his bottom lip, wondering whether each individual wrinkle was a crevice of flavor. What would he taste like? Her tongue snaked out to tease the line of her mouth and she found it a poor substitute for his.
Marshall showed her the writing on the small tag he’d apparently pulled from her dress. “Twirl to activate skirt,” his voice rolled over the words in a deep murmur. It vibrated it in his chest and her naked shoulders tensed as she stifled a shudder. He took a step back and guided her around. Slowly. So very slowly. He studied from hooded eyes. He savored. Without reserve or shame.
One time around. Then two. Then a third. Every time their eyes would meet, her skin grew warmer as desire deepened the snowy depths into a profound sapphire blue. Her knees were weak, but as he drew her around faster and faster it didn’t seem to matter. Nothing seemed to matter. He became her only point of focus in a world quickly blurring beyond what she knew. Beyond what she could readily understand.
Magic. It crackled to life, sparking across the textile and thread. Energy tickled her naked thighs and the limp silky material puffed and inflated into a billowing bell of smoky black tulle. “What …” Unfamiliar excitement danced in Elsa’s veins and she reveled in the fabric twirling about her. Wispy and light. Akin to smoke and shadows, the bottom hemmed by a ring of gray fog.
Marshall finally drew her to a stop and she mopped her hair back out of her face, breathless. He didn’t immediately close the distance between them again, and Elsa couldn’t control her legs as they carried until the hem of her large skirt covered his slick black dress shoes. They stood enthralled in the moonlight. Pale light beating down them like a blessing.
“Beautiful,” he whispered and backed away toward the door, drawing her along with him.
 Tethered to him by their entwined fingers, Elsa couldn’t help but feel like somehow, someway, Marshall had finally caught her.

About the Author:
Sophie Avett is kind of a nerd. Like not even one of the cute, hip ones everyone brags about nowadays. More like the socially awkward hippie who eats way too much bread and dreams about being a dragon from behind towers of mythology books. Um...yeah. Picture old, tattered paperbacks and comic books--mostly Batman and Wonder Woman--dwarfing a tiny desk, with just barely enough room for the troll who writes there and the 70 pound hell-hound that insists on laying it's wet nose on top of her bare foot.
Granted not the most exciting existence, but she tries to make up for it by writing romances populated with her own peculiar ilk of paranormal beasties.  Trolls, wyverns, the obscure Nordic brownie--she likes to keep things interesting. And bloody. (And mostly naked--but, we'll keep that bit between us.)
Sophie Avett loves to hear from her readers. (Hi, mom.) So if there's something on your mind, feel free to leave a message after the scream. 

(Mom, seriously…you can just call me.)
Brimstone Pub, the Blog: http://thebrimstonepub.com/


The first five people to comment on one of Sophie Avett’s Bewitching Book Tour Stops will automatically win a free e-book copy of ‘Twas the Darkest Night. Available formats include: mobi, pdf, epub, and prc.
Interested parties should leave their email address and which format they would prefer at the end of their comment. The ravens will keep tally and submit prizes! (If your e-reader format is not listed, contact the ravens directly via the contact form and the ravens will fashion a book especially for you!) Likewise, any winner of Sophie Avett’s contests will also receive a free e-book copy of ‘Twas the Darkest Night. 

Giveaways- Rafflecopter entry
1 Carriage Charm
1 set of Raven earrings
1 Sinister Stitches Dress

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Take a trip to New Gotham!

A paid vacation to New Gotham is an expensive affair. So, the ravens have decided to cover the cost of travel and fashion this delightful "Carriage Charm." 
"Naked wizards and scheming vampires? Where do I sign?!" all the witches scream and random sparks of black magic crackle across the ceiling. 
We're getting to that, dearies...
An Appointment for Tea with Mrs. Potts the Storymaven (aka Fairy Godmother) will require the use of the earrings the pixies have fashioned out of raven skulls, AKA, "Raven Ear-wings."
The baubles should land the winners in New Gotham's clock-tower square.  It could be that they do nothing at all. Or you might end up in oblivion. Good luck with that. The crickets will read about it in the papers, no doubt.

“What do I have to do?” everyone screams and waves their good silver stakes in the air. (Good girls.)


How to Win the Vacation of a Lifetime... 

You have to fill out information in the Rafflecopter form at the bottom of the tour stops

Win a Dress from Sinister Stitches!

Sophie Avett's ravens have partnered with the Witches-Who-Stitch to offer a special prize. It’s a dress featured in Sophie’s upcoming release, ‘Twas the Darkest Night. The sinister witches made it special for Elsa but after many carts of cake offered to the trinity in sacrifice, they have agreed to stitch an exact replica for one lucky witch.

“What do I have to do?!” everyone screams and fails theirs arms like deranged daisies. (Just go with it.)

How to Win a Dress... 

You have to sign up via the Rafflecopter form that will be posted at the bottom of each and every Sinister Stitches Tour Stop. 

At the end of Sophie Avett’s Bewitching Book Tours campaign (March 17 to March 31 2014) the ravens will announce a winner and gather that witch's measurements via email.


What are you waiting for? 

Every girl needs a dress for a wicked fairy tale.


  1. @ Behind Closed Doors: First of all, I love the frogs! Thank you so much for hosting me! I have a total blast writing this article and everything looks wonderful! Here, have a piece of chocolate for all your efforts. :-)

  2. Oh, sure, she gets chocolate. What about me?!

    Sigh, anyway, love the mythos. Always nice to see a new twist on a classic. :)