Posts Tagged ‘Bonnie Vanak’

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A Confession: I Really Do Love Flying Cockroaches by Bonnie Vanak

November 24, 2008

Bonnie Vanak has written about some creepy critters in her paranormal romances for Silhouette Nocturne: werewolves, evil shapeshifters…even flying cockroaches! Bonnie tells us about the different species that appear in her new ebook, Broken Souls, and how her werewolf hero and heroine find love — despite the cockroaches!

by Bonnie Vanak, author of Broken Souls

I live in Florida. We have giant palmetto bugs. I mean, they’re disgusting. They fly into your hair. They’re big. Scurry away faster than, well, cockroaches, when you run after them with a can of Raid.

Recently, I read an article about how the hissing cockroach from Madagascar may soon infiltrate Florida. These bugs are up to five inches long. When they’re threatened, they hiss at you.

I chortled as I relayed the fact to my green-faced co-workers.

Then I confessed my little secret. I really do love flying cockroaches. Not in my home, or in my hair (not even on a bad hair day). But wow, they’re a perfect addition for one of my Nocturnes.

For my Nocturnes, I created a race of werewolves called the Draicon. Their enemies are the Morphs, former Draicon who turned evil when they killed a close relative for greater power. Morphs can shift into any life form, including snakes, scorpions, and cockroaches.

In Broken Souls, my Nocturne Bite, Katia, the heroine, remembers how her family home was infiltrated by Morphs shapeshifting into roaches to slide between the rags she and her father stuffed beneath the door to keep them out. In that particular battle, she fled, the important promise she made to her father lost in memory.

Except for those disgusting cockroaches. She remembers those.

She must recall what promise she made, and find her father to expunge her guilt for abandoning him as he was overwhelmed by Morphs (shapeshifting from those cockroaches). So Katia performs the very dangerous, and outlawed blood candle spell to call forth her father. She does this because Baylor, who loves her and brought her to his pack, wants to mate with her. He’s given her a deadline, yet she must discover first if her father is alive. Katia believes her first loyalty is to her own blood.

The problem is, she doesn’t know what she’s calling forth. If her father is alive, will he have turned into a Morph himself? Capable of turning himself into a flying cockroach?

Sure does raise interesting questions for a family reunion.

When I created the Draicon, I knew I wanted them to have destined mates. Yet I also wanted to explore the idea of what happens to Draicon who lose their destined mates.

Are these werewolves destined to live unhappily ever after?

Not in my world. This is why I wrote Baylor and Katia’s story in Broken Souls. They are two lost, broken souls whose destined mates are gone. Facing them is the important question: what is more important, loyalty to family or love for a possible mate?

Baylor was more a villainous type in The Empath, my first Nocturne. He was suspicious of Nicolas, Damian’s beta wolf, and gave him a hard time. In Broken Souls, he becomes a true hero determined to win the love, and Katia, the Draicon who also lost her destined mate.

Baylor is determined to protect Katia and remain loyal to the core to his pack. He nearly loses his life in a Morph fight to keep his people safe. But for Katia, he will do more. He will risk not only his life, but his carefully guarded heart.

Baylor and Katia are sorely tested in Broken Souls. Yet in the end, all works out well. Broken Souls is, after all, a romance. Despite the fact that their destined mates are gone, Katia and Baylor discover that they can find true happiness.

Even with those nasty cockroaches. Because not even a nasty flying roach can separate those determined to make their own destiny to share their lives, and their hearts.

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Forget the Flying Monkeys. What about Flying Werewolves?

November 5, 2008

Shifters and Draicon and Morphs, oh my! Silhouette Nocturne author Bonnie Vanak fills us in on her latest paranormal romance, Enemy Lover, featuring magic spells, warring shapeshifters, a superpowered heroine, and an “uber alpha” werewolf hero.

by Bonnie Vanak, author of Enemy Lover and Broken Souls

My November Nocturne, Enemy Lover, is true shifter book. It shifted so many times while writing it that some days I felt like a werewolf clawing at the keyboard. Or a floating fairy flying the story to a new stratosphere.

You see, I started out creating Jamie, the heroine, as a flying fairy. I wanted her to be pixy-like, a kind of Super Fairy. That didn’t work out. So instead I endowed her with superpowers she doesn’t know she has until halfway through the book. She can teleport, play “floater basketball,” and has the power of telekinesis. In one scene in the French Quarter, she physically hurls Damian, the hero, and a rival werewolf into the air to prevent them from killing each other.

Flying werewolves! It fit, and seemed cooler than flying monkeys.

Enemy Lover pairs an old-fashioned, powerful Alpha Draicon werewolf with a young, hip woman who is his very reluctant destined mate, Damian is a protective, aggressive Alpha who would give his life for his pack and especially for Jamie, his mate. He’s sexy and dynamic, but as overpowering as he is, she is equally strong.

Jamie tried killing Damian with a poison kiss because she believes he murdered her brother. She also happens to be a computer geek who is into World of Warcraft and she’s dying of a spell turning her into stone. Damian is faced with searching through New Orleans to find an ancient book of magick to save her life, figuring out what Jamie means when she calls him an “uber Alpha” and fighting the Morphs, the enemy that want them both dead.

Then he finds out she’s got a whole boatload full of psi powers he’s never before encountered. What’s an Alpha to do, let alone an “uber” Alpha?

When I created the Draicon werewolves for my first Nocturne, The Empath, I decided to have them search for their destined mates, who contained the missing half of their magick. They needed an enemy to fight, so I invented the Morphs, former Draicon who turned evil by killing a relative to gain power. Morphs can shapeshift into any animal or insect form. In Enemy Lover, they shift into a swarm of hornets to attack Jamie and Damian.

But for Enemy Lover, I wanted the Draicon to have a more powerful weapon in the Morph war. Jamie possesses the ability to become that weapon, which is ironic because she regards all Draicon as her enemy, especially Damian. Damian must convince her to trust him, and gently coax her into becoming his lover and his mate. It’s a challenge he never anticipated, especially when he discovers she can turn him into a flying werewolf. Jamie gradually turns to him, enlisting his help in harnessing the magick she’s longed for all her life. Yet the use of her new powers expedites the stone spell, changing Jamie’s internal organs into granite and turning her hair and nails gray. Damian and Jamie must race against time to find the magick book before Jamie is forever turned into stone.

Each of my Nocturne books can be read alone, even though they are connected. I hope you enjoy Damian and Jamie’s story of courage, strength and how two strong-willed individuals learn to set aside the past to forge new beginnings formed from love and understanding. You can read an excerpt of Enemy Lover on my website, http://www.bonnievanak.com. Happy reading!

P.S. An interesting bit of trivia — part of Enemy Lover was written on location in the French Quarter at the Hotel Provincial. The hotel, a former Confederate hospital, was recently named one of the top ten best haunted hotels by AOL Travel. Maids have reported seeing bloodstained sheets appear and vanish. I didn’t see any ghosts, bloodstained sheets, or even flying werewolves while staying there. However, I did have a great view of the Ursuline Convent from the bathroom window. The convent is rumored to be haunted as well. That particular ghost story inspired a funny scene in Enemy Lover.

Use the above widget to add an own excerpt of Enemy Lover to your own site. And Bonnie will return to paranormalromanceblog.com to tell us about her Nocturne Bite, Broken Souls — also featuring the Draicon and Morphs — later this month!

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Paranormal Inspiration: shapeshifters and hungry ants

December 7, 2007

 By Bonnie Vanak

What would happen if evil beings could shapeshift into any animal or insect form, retain their intelligence and clone themselves into a killing army?

This is what happens in my December Silhouette Nocturne book, The Empath.  In The Empath, army ants attack Nicolas and Maggie, werewolves who are forced to run for their lives. The Morphs, former werewolves who turned evil to gain power, shapeshift into bears, ants, bees, wolves, an alligator with razor-sharp teeth, even a fire-breathing dragon. Morphs need energy from dying victims, feeding off their terror to gain power. Nicolas and Maggie must work together and learn to trust in each other and their powers to defeat the enemy.

In one scene, army ants crawl over Nicolas and begin munching on him as if he were fast food. Of course (spoiler alert!) he survives. The idea for this scene stemmed from my childhood, when I accidentally sat on an ants’ nest while wearing shorts. They were only carpenter ants, but I’ll never forget the sensation of feeling something crawling on my skin and looking down to see a mass of black ants teeming over my bare legs. 

Maggie is a veterinarian who tries to find a cure for the mysterious disease killing her beloved dog. She’s unaware that she’s a werewolf, and the pack’s long-lost empath who can heal injury and disease. Nicolas must convince her of her true origins, and teach her to accept her destiny as a werewolf and the pack’s empath. As they race to cure the pack’s leader of the disease that is slowly killing him, they must continually evade the evil Morphs. At each turn, they wonder what form the enemy will take to try and destroy them.

Writing The Empath made me think about the tremendous power in the animal and insect kingdom. Of course it’s paranormal romance fiction, so all turns out fine in the end for Maggie and Nicolas; but as for me, next time I’ll look twice before sitting in the grass with shorts on.