Black Slumber by Helen Scott ~ A Cursed All Hallows’ Eve Author Spotlight Interview

 

 Blurb:

After centuries in the Black Sleep I’ve woken up to find my uncle, the regent, calling himself king. When I rise to the throne will he step back like he’s supposed to or put up a fight?

I get the answer I’m looking for when a mage attacks during a royal court event, cursing me to never be able to feed again. Just when I’m about to give myself to the sun everything changes and I know I’ve been betrayed on the deepest level.

The only question that remains is can these men that saved me from the sun help me take back what is mine?

 
 

Excerpt:

Once Kyra was around the table and standing behind her seat next to her father, the music changed to something statelier, as though I were an old woman, which I supposed in some ways was true. I ignored the dig at my age and began my own procession through the crowd.
The room was silent as everyone turned to stare at me, like a bride on her wedding day. No applause this time. Just a breath being held by everyone until I entered the room, and then murmurs and whispers spread like wildfire as women and men openly talked about me. It was like they had forgotten I had vampiric hearing just like them. Variations of “Doesn’t look much like a queen to me,” and “She may as well be a child,” and “Look at how beautiful she is,” filled my ears.
Once I was in front of my uncle, I curtsied as was custom and waited for him to release me from the pose. Since the short period of time until I was crowned was the only time he was going to get me to bow to him, I knew he would take advantage of it. That was just the kind of man he was. True to form, he let me hold the pose for much longer than necessary.
“My wonderful niece, how good to see you awake and moving around again! Stand, stand. We don’t need to be on formal behavior here.” He laughed, and the court joined in as though I had just made a complete idiot of myself.
I straightened and tried not to grimace at the mask he’d chosen. A huge smiling sun covered most of his face. There was something about the expression on the mask that seemed slightly menacing though. “Uncle, it’s good to see you again as well,” I said, plastering my best smile on my face. My uncle was a portly gentleman whose salt-and-pepper hair would have given him an air of elegance if it weren’t for his ruddy face. Before I’d slept, he had been a heavy drinker, a fact that his skin reflected even now, though he seemed quite sober. I always found it funny that most members of the royal family had the traditional pale skin that humans thought of as appropriate for a vampire, while other members had cavorted to the point that they looked more like the humans they so detested.
“Come and sit down. We set a special place for you tonight at my right-hand side.”
I didn’t miss the implication. The place was special because he never expected me to sit there again, and he certainly never imagined I’d be able to take his seat. I knew if I drew attention to the remark, he’d brush it off, tell me that I was being paranoid or too sensitive. So I smiled and sat, and quietly reaffirmed the knowledge that I wouldn’t be able to trust anyone in my family.

Where can readers find Black Slumber?

Available exclusively in A Cursed All Hallows’ Eve: Limited Edition Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy, and Reverse Harem Halloween Themed Collection

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The veil is thin. Darkness calls. Will you answer?

Halloween curses plague the daring heroes and spunky heroines in this spirited collection of tales. A Cursed All Hallows’ Eve brings you 20+ stories stuffed with everything from dark gods to brooding shifters, delivering hours of decadent, pleasure-filled reading from bestselling and award winning urban fantasy and paranormal romance authors.

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Answer the call, because this Halloween, not all the costumes are disguises.

 

 

AUTHOR INTERVIEW

Hello and welcome, readers! We have Helen Scott here with us today. Helen Scott, thanks for visiting us.

How long have you been a writer and how did you come to writing?

I’ve been an author for almost four years, but I’ve been writing for most of my life. I never expected to be an author, I just thought it wasn’t something I could do, I mean who can plan a whole book out let alone multiple books? But then I started taking classes and learning and slowly after a brief stint in the publishing industry itself I decided it was time to jump in.

Tell us about your title featured in: A Cursed All Hallows’ Eve

Black Slumber is the tale of a princess who has been asleep for centuries due to the royal vampires taking turns to be on the throne. It’s all about her waking up and dealing with the new world, and the people who don’t want to take her rightful place on the throne. There are curses and lovers and evil people who just want to have all the power for themselves.

How did you come up with the storyline?

It’s a bit of a twisted retelling of Sleeping Beauty but with vampires.

What inspires you to write?

The characters I day dream about, the worlds I wish I could visit, and of course the drama of falling in love.

Tell us about your other books:

I love mythology so most of my books have some of that running through them with a fantasy twist!

The Siren Legacy was my first series, which is about a group of brothers descended from the sirens from Greek mythology. I also have the Wardens of Midnight series (shifters who run an animal shelter). Both of these are just regular paranormal romance.

I also have the Cerberus series which is a PNR RH, and a Fantasy RH series called Four Worlds.

I’m lucky enough to have done some cowritten reverse harem series with some amazing authors! The first, The Salsang Chronicles, was with Serena Akeroyd (and is a complete series), but I also have a complete series, The Hollow, with Ellabee Andrews, a soon to be complete series with Lucinda Dark called Twisted Fae, and I have a series going with May Dawson called Prisoners of Nightstone, and I have a series called Legends Unleashed Lacey Carter Andersen!

Where can readers find you?

Come on over and join the fun in my reader group:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/289711754819956/

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/helenscottauthor/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/helenscottauthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/HelenM459

Website: http://www.helenscottauthor.com

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/authorhelenscot/

Don’t forget you can find me and all my books on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Helen-Scott/e/B06W2HJX77 and BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/helen-scott-63356698-e15f-4baa-bacf-ebdf6902bfa6

About the Author: 

Helen Scott lives in the Chicago area with her wonderful husband and furry, four-legged kids. She spends way too much time with her nose in a book and isn’t sorry about it. When not reading or writing, Helen can be found absorbed in one video game or another or crocheting her heart out.

Get more Halloween themed stories like this in 

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Book Review: As You Witch by Erin R. Bedford

Title: As You Witch
Author: Erin R. Bedford
Genre: Paranormal, Reverse Harem, Witches
Rating: 2 stars

Purchase: Amazon

If you could wish for anything, what would you wish for?
When Max gets a magic amulet that makes nearly every desire come true, she’ll learn the truth of be careful what you wish for.
However, magical hijinks aren’t all that Max has to worry about. With her hard-working parents strained to pay her tuition, Max’s only chance to stay in Winchester Academy is to win the scholarship at the big school fair. Of course, to win, she has to beat her bully of a rival, wow the entire school, and juggle four guys vying for her attention.
Nothing a few wishes, a little magic, and a lot of luck can’t handle … she hopes!

I previously reviewed the first book in the series, Witching on a Star. That wasn’t a success by any means – I rated it 2,5 stars, and while I had high hopes for a reverse harem set in a witching academy, my hopes fell flat and the book was a bit of a dissapointment.

Still, I picked up book two, As You Witch, because I wanted to see if it would get any better. The series has a lot of potential, it just never executes it well, so I thought that maybe some of those kinks would’ve gotten fixed in book two. Alas, no such luck, and I even liked this one less than the first one.

This book was filled with unnecessary drama from the start until the end. With a million possible options to pick villains when your book is set in a witching world, the author keeps on using the mean girl as a villain. It’s dull and predictable. The dialogue is so bad that I had to roll my eyes at every other sentence. Max is immature, childish, entitled, and the guys she’s supposedly in love with are so bland and boring even I wouldn’t be able to keep them apart.

There is no conflict. There’s nothing really at stake. The relationships are too perfect – these four guys are instantly OK with all of them being with the heroine, and none of them is trying to win her for themselves. Of the four guys, only two have a hint of a personality, and the other two are basically just thrown in so this would be a reverse harem and not a love triangle. Either give them more personality or focus on the two that do have developed personalities and that a reader can root for.

Look, I know I’m one of the few who isn’t fond of this series, and it has really high overall ratings on Goodreads and Amazon. So, don’t take my word for it, this is after all just my opinion. But as far as reverse harems go, I’ve seen a lot better than this one.

Book Review: Witching on a Star by Erin R. Bedford

Title: Witching on a Star (Academy of Witches #1)
Author: Erin R. Bedford
Genre: Paranormal, Reverse Harem, Witches
Rating: 2,5 stars
Purchase: Amazon

All her life Max knew she was destined for more, but when she graduated high school, she never expected to find out she was a witch.
Now Max isn’t headed to the ivy league college of her dreams but to the Witch’s Academy, where the spells are real and the classes just might kill you.
If Max hopes to survive her new destiny she’ll have to put up with mean girl cliques, way too sexy for their own good bad boys, and a popularity contest she didn’t expect to win.
Turns out, wishing comes with consequences and all magic has a price, especially at Witch Academy, but Max may find she’s more prepared than she thought to handle it all.

Last week, I was in the mood for a reverse harem romance. Reverse harem, for those who don’t know, is where one girl has several love interests…and actually ends up with several or all of them! It might be a bit of a strange concept if you’re not used to it, but the last year it’s really gained some fraction in the reading community and more and more people are picking up this genre of books (with more and more writers starting to write in this genre as well). Reverse harem is kind of a guilty pleasure of mine, so I’m glad to see its success growing over the past year.

Anyway, on to this book, Witching on a Star, one of the first reverse harem books I’ve picked up in a while. We meet Max, our heroine, who never expected to find out she was a witch after she graduated high school. But lo and behold, not only does she have powers, her family is actually pretty famous in the witching community, and her grandparents are swimming in cash.

Witch Academy could be fun and exciting, but on the first day, Max already makes enemies out of the current queen bee of the school, and bumps into several guys who each have their unique, interesting personality traits. There’s the typical division: smart but somewhat shy, sexy bad guy, and then two more who don’t make that much of an appearance in this book and weren’t quite that memorable to me. In fact, personality-wise, basically the only one I could tell apart from the others was sexy bad guy. The others are so bland and indescriptive that they might as well be the same person.

So far, the book seems to have everything you’d expect in a reverse harem, right?

Well, it does, but it’s all kind of cringy. The romance is cringy. Everyone Max meets instantly falls in love with her, even willing to put morals and jealousy aside to be with her; they don’t mind if she’s dating multiple guys because she’s Max, the most special snowflake to ever walk this earth.

Max’s special-snowflake behaviour is so annoying. She goes from having no powers to being overpowered in a matter of pages, without actually needing any training. She scarcely spends any time in classes, more often than not hanging out with boys instead.

The villain is a mean girl. Yes, in a world of magic where you could conjure up about any type of villain, the villain Max has to stare down is Sabrina, typical mean girl who used to be queen bee until Max came along, who promptly stole Sabrina’s boyfriend (ex-boyfriend since he dumped Sabrina previously, apparently for cheating on him with his brother… which is exactly what Max ends up doing from the start, out in the open, and he makes no comment about it whatsoever…double standards much?).

The best friend is just filler, and only shows up when Max needs her to, conveniently disappearing at any other moment. The world-building is OK but I’m curious to find out more about this wizarding world and its many families. So far, the school and world feel really, really smal. I would also like to find at least one guy in this series who is NOT instantly falling for Max.

I also picked up book two just because I wanted to see if it would get any better, as despite the mean-girl clichés and Max being a Mary Sue, I am intrigued by the guys and if they will keep swooning over Max or if more drama will come their way. Stay tuned for my review of book two soon.