Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23261044-blood-and-rain
Shira Anthony was a professional opera singer in her last incarnation, performing roles in such operas as Tosca, Pagliacci, and La Traviata, among others. She’s given up TV for evenings spent with her laptop, and she never goes anywhere without a pile of unread M/M romance on her Kindle.
Shira is married with two children and two insane dogs, and when she’s not writing, she is usually in a courtroom trying to make the world safer for children. When she’s not working, she can be found aboard a 35’ catamaran at the Carolina coast with her favorite sexy captain at the wheel.
Shira can be found on:
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Reese Dante
Blood: Book One
Adrien Gilbert has spent several lifetimes searching for the love he lost. Born in the 1800s into a clan of fabled vampire hunters, Adrien once wanted nothing more than to tend his family’s vineyard in southern France or read a good book. But Adrien’s peaceful existence ends abruptly when his older brother, François, is murdered. Bound by his hunter’s oath, Adrien sets out on a path that will forever change his life when he agrees to execute his brother’s killer, the vampire Charles Duvalier.
After months chasing the elusive Charles, Adrien reluctantly makes a bargain with Nicolas Lambert, an ancient vampire. Adrien will escort Nicolas to Paris for his marriage to a rival clanswoman, and Nicolas will help Adrien find Charles. Nicolas’s quiet strength and gentle heart soon convince Adrien that Nicolas is nothing like the vampires he has sworn to destroy. As the wedding date draws nearer, a force intent on destroying the fragile peace between the vampire clans threatens to tear apart both the vampire realm and the world of the hunters. To secure both past and future for those he loves, Adrien must find a way to stop the looming war between hunters and vampires. But first he’ll have to let Nicolas go.
Categories: Contemporary, Fantasy, Fiction, Gay Fiction, Vampires, Historical, M/M Romance, Romance, Paranormal
Adrien licked the skin of Cole’s neck, feeling the blood pulse there, hearing it call to him. Cole tilted his head in anticipation, opening himself to Adrien.
Adrien buried his teeth in Cole’s skin. Blood flooded his mouth and danced on his tongue, sweet and salty. Too long. His body was far more vampire-like in its craving for blood than when he’d first been given the gift of an ancient vampire’s soul. He wondered if it was the same for other immortals.
Adrien tried to ignore the images that flashed through his mind—the sound of silvery laughter, a mother’s loving caress. Cole’s memories. Adrien despised this forced intimacy, but he’d come to see it as the price of blood. Something to be tolerated.
It hadn’t always been that way. When he’d shared Nicolas’s blood, Adrien had experienced great joy. He’d seen himself through Nicolas’s eyes and felt the depth of Nicolas’s love. Each drop of that precious liquid had opened new doors. Each taste offered insight into Nicolas’s heart and soul. A beloved memory. A mystery—the mystery of Nicolas—unfolding with every swallow.
Adrien drank his fill, then claimed Cole’s mouth. This kind of contact he could stomach. He didn’t need sex to survive, but he enjoyed the release. Cole unbuttoned Adrien’s black silk shirt and his cock swelled against Adrien’s thigh. Adrien moaned as Cole skated his fingertips over his chest.
“I have never known a hunter to crave blood,” Cole whispered in his ear. “I thought only we experienced the bloodlust.”
“You were wrong,” Adrien said as he pulled Cole’s shirt over his head and mouthed a pretty pink nipple. Sex was always better after he fed, and Adrien’s cock was already hard at the thought of fucking such a lovely ass. He drew Cole’s body against his, walked backward into the living room, and pulled Cole with him onto the rug. Soon they were naked and he was no longer a hunter or an immortal, he was simply a man, seeking release, seeking pleasure.
For at least an hour after, Adrien lay on the floor and allowed the night air to caress his bare skin. He closed his eyes and dozed.
The voice awakened him. Nicolas’s voice again. Why sleep if it only served to reawaken the pain he sought to suppress?
He stood and pulled on his jeans. He walked onto the balcony in his bare feet, then climbed to the roof of the penthouse.
Having reached the edge, he spread his arms. He leaned forward and fell unimpeded, riding the wind like a sigh. The glass of the building sailed by him, the breeze buffeting his face. He hit the water and sank into the cold blackness. He wished he could die.
1. How did you get yourself into accompanying the man he loves to his marriage to someone else?
I’ve asked myself that more times than I can count! *laughs* In the US, they say that hindsight is 20/20. Add on a century or so, though, and things become muddled again. I really believed the entire proposition would be as simple as Nicolas and his brother Jean proposed. They agreed to take me to Charles Duvalier, the vampire I believed killed my brother, and I was to escort Nicolas to Paris to be married. They did just as they’d promised. I just never realized that when it came to Nicolas, I’d grow to care for him so much. No, I’m not being honest. Not just care for him, but that I’d come to love him more than I could have imagined.
2. What did you really feel when you first set eyes on Nicolas?
Confused. I’d heard of hunters falling for vampires, but I hated them. Or that’s what I told myself. One of the bastards had killed my mother, and another my older brother. What was I supposed to think? But Nicolas seemed different. Calm. Focused. Kind. *shakes his head* I expected he’d be weak. At nineteen, I didn’t understand that power and goodness could reside in the same person. The first time I saw him, I lost myself. I forgot everything around me, and just saw him. I should have realized then that I’d already fallen in love with him.
3. Favourite childhood memory?
My mother took me and my brother, François, to the ocean when we were young. It took us nearly four days to ride there by coach, and I remember the feeling of excitement I had when I first saw the water. We didn’t do anything but play in the waves, but we were happy. The next year, my mother was murdered, and my life changed. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that when I left France, I settled in Miami. When I walk the beaches there, sometimes I imagine the high-rise buildings were never built, and I can almost see myself back on the sand, on the Mediterranean, more than a hundred years ago.
4. If you could be anywhere in the world/time right know where would it be?
Anywhere, any time, with Nicolas.
5. Ideal date (when and where)?
Given my last answer? *shrugs* I suppose I’ve grown accustomed to modern technology. Cell phones, internet, computers. I’m not sure I’d want to revisit the past again. What do the American’s say? “Been there, done that?”
6. One thing from your back story the reader won’t know from reading the book?
It’s no secret that I never wanted to be a vampire hunter. When I was quite young, I used to imagine myself captain of a great sailing vessel. I often dreamed I might sail away and never return to the vineyard or my studies. I suppose it’s fitting that I ended up making my fortune in shipping, though I didn’t learn to sail until I was more than a century old.
Rafflecopter Prize: Handmade “Blood and Rain” unisex pendant from artist Martin Brodour. $10 Dreamspinner Press Gift Certificate
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