Hey guys! Jodi here.
Today, I’m pleased to introduce a long-time writing friend of mine, Jaime Lee Moyer, author of DELIA’S SHADOW, A BARRICADE IN HELL, and the third in the series, releasing tomorrow (October 6, 2015), AGAINST A BRIGHTENING SKY. (Tor.)
Jaime and I met on the same online workshop over eleven years ago and we’ve been reading each other’s work ever since. I’m a huge fan of Jaime’s series. History, ghosts, murder, mystery, seances, and a bit of swoony romance. I can’t recommend these books enough!
1. What is the biggest, most important thing you want readers to know about AGAINST A BRIGHTENING SKY?
That this is the story I wanted to write, a book about hope for the future, friendships that endure through every test and trial, and the memories of loved ones that live on in all of us. Books about the struggle to push back the shadows, and protecting those you love, are just as important to me as books that focus on shiny ideas.
Don’t get me wrong, there are lots of shiny ideas in AGAINST A BRIGHTENING SKY, but the story is about the people.
2. How much input did the cats have when it came to plotting the trilogy?
My cats, Morgan and Gillian, have been pushing for co-author credit of Delia’s books since day one. They claim that giving Delia a ghost hunting cat in the second book was all their idea. That’s not even remotely true, but I’m not going to fight with them over it.
You know how cats can get.
3. Over the course of the trilogy, what were the three most interesting things you had to research?
The most interesting weren’t always the most pleasant or the most fun. It’s also really difficult to narrow this down to just three.
a. The decomposition rate of a body in salt water, the damage fish and other sea creatures can do, and how quickly rigor mortis vanishes in cold temperatures. You know you’re a writer when you can read about this stuff and not lose your lunch. That bit of research was really gruesome and still really interesting.
b. Shell shock in The Great War. Today we’d call it Post Traumatic Stress, but this syndrome or condition had almost never been seen in solders before WWI. There might have been individual cases scattered over the years, but not the huge numbers of men affected during The Great War.
c. Trance lecturers and their spirit guides. This was really fascinating. Trance lectures became a popular form of entertainment as spiritualism spread, and was tied to many of the mid to late 1800s social reform movements. While in the trance, the person giving the lecture–many if not most of them women– were seen as being under the control of their spirit guide. If a spirit guide voiced opinions on women’s rights, slavery, or marriage that ran counter to societal norms and practices, no one could hold the woman at the podium responsible. The spirit was in control.
I thought that was a neat, if to our modern eyes somewhat sneaky, way to get your message out into the world, and to bypass the restrictions on what a woman could say in public.
4. Do you have any encouraging words or pieces of advice for new writers? What about writers with a book or two already out?
I have the same thing to say to both groups.
Keep writing. Believe in yourself and your work even if no one else does. Don’t give up. The universe will send you a passel of conflicting messages, but no matter how dark and dire the future looks KEEP WRITING.
5. If you could have a drink with any of your characters, which one would you choose, and what would you drink?
I’d love to have a drink with Dora. She could tell me stories of the places she’s been and all the things she’s seen, of the battles between the light and the dark most of us never see. Dora probably wouldn’t approve of me drinking beer, but the whiskey she drinks would likely kill me. Time with her would be well spent.
All my characters carry a part of me inside. Isadora Bobet holds the biggest piece of my heart.
6. Pub brawl! A huge fight has broken out. What’s your weapon of choice?
Tranquilizer darts, fired from behind an overturned table. Once everyone’s had a good nap and calmed down, hopefully they won’t feel the need to fight.
By 1919 the Great War has ended, peace talks are under way in Paris, and the world has been forever changed. Delia Martin, apprentice practitioner of magical arts, and her husband, Police Captain Gabriel Ryan, face the greatest challenge of their lives when fragments from the war descend on San Francisco.
As Delia prepares to meet friends at a St. Patrick’s Day parade, the strange ghost of a European princess appears in her mirror. Her pleasant outing becomes a nightmare as the ghost reappears moments after a riot starts, warning her as a rooftop gunman begins shooting into the crowd. Delia rushes to get her friends to safety, and Gabe struggles to stop the killing—and to save himself.
Delia and Gabe realize all the chaos and bloodshed had one purpose—to flush Alina from hiding, a young woman with no memory of anything but her name.
As Delia works to discover how the princess ghost’s secrets connect to this mysterious young woman, and Gabe tracks a ruthless killer around his city, they find all the answers hinge on two questions: Who is Alina…and why can’t she remember?
Against a Brightening Sky is the thrilling conclusion to Moyer’s glittering historical fantasy series.
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JAIME LEE MOYER lives in a land of cactus, cowboys, and rhinestones, while dreaming of tall trees and the ocean. She writes novels about murder and betrayal, friendship, ghosts and magic, and she feels it’s only fair to warn you that all her books are kissing books. You can learn more about Jaime and read samples of her writing at www.jaimeleemoyer.com