My guest today is urban fantasy author Christine Cody (otherwise known as Chris Marie Green, author of the Vampire Babylon series). Her Bloodlands trilogy (Bloodlands, Blood Rules, In Blood We Trust) will be released starting on July 26, 2011.
Two people who post a comment will win a signed copy of NIGHT RISING, Vampire Babylon, Book 1. As always, details are listed at the end of the post.
Chris Marie Green/Christine Cody has also written the Vampire Babylon series for Ace, which is best described as “noir fantasy-mysteries” featuring a vamp hunter. She used to be an eighth-grade teacher, but she became a full-time author who will have published over forty books under these names as well as the pseudonym Crystal Green.
The Fangslinger Cometh
by Chris Marie Green
When people have me describe my new Ace series, Bloodlands, I ask them to imagine a paranormal SHANE meets MAD MAX.
But that’s just the start of what this post-apocalyptic western fantasy is all about. In the first book, we meet Gabriel, a drifter who is looking for his lover—a woman who mysteriously deserted him and ran off to the New Badlands, which is a desolate place where people have gone to hide from the terrible events of this new world. He finds trouble out there, as well as a bunch of survivalist types who take him in when he’s wounded. Like most western movie gunslingers, he has lost his soul—but this is literal for Gabriel because he’s a vampire. When a monster hunter appears in the New Badlands, Gabriel and his protectors need to decide whether or not it’s worth “outing” him to save all of them, and Gabriel even wonders if giving himself up is his path to regaining what he remembers of his humanity.
The second and third books really open up the Bloodlands world, because the “hubs,” or what we might call civilization, come into play. Once there, I had a lot of fun with research. What will our current economy or state of the nation or cultural habits yield in the future? At times, I was little scared by what I found out and then put to paper for the Bloodlands….
What I also loved about this series was how I was able to twist some tropes from old western movies into something different. I’ve enjoyed every cowboy from Shane to the High Planes Drifter to the Pale Rider, and you’ll see definite reminders of all of them since they have so much in common plot-wise and thematically. But I used other tropes, too—those of the fallen woman, the mysterious sick lady in town who usually wore a black veil and suffered from leprosy or tuberculosis, the crusty sheriff, and the disillusioned yet determined pioneers.
The first book was mainly inspired by those old, fabulous cowboy movies, but I would say that BLOOD RULES (book 2) was the “road trip” portion. IN BLOOD WE TRUST (book 3) was my tip of the hat to Bonnie and Clyde. Also, in these later books, I got to delve into the origins of blood creatures, which was fun because this series doesn’t concentrate on just vampires. I got to use research to put a spin on other creatures, such as my version of gremlins as well as what are known as “tik-tik”s (female vampires who have a blood appetite for…let’s just say a really unappetizing meal. Tik-tiks are my take on what we would think of as “fallen women” in those old western movies.)
This post-apocalyptic western paranormal vibe has been used before. (I’m dying to see the movie adaptation of PRIEST when it comes out and SANTA OLIVIA is a wonderful book, just to name a couple of examples.) But I think there are a lot more stories to be reaped from this landscape. I hope, when Bloodlands hits the shelves, you’ll fall into this world as far as I did….
Two lucky commentators will have a chance to win a signed copy of NIGHT RISING, Vampire Babylon, Book 1.
To enter, leave a comment below answering the following question:
What is your favorite bit of vampire folklore/legend/or myth?
1. +1 entry for answering the question (required).
2. +2 entries for becoming a follower of this blog and Dark Faerie Tales on Twitter.
3. +3 entries for tweeting about this contest, blogging about it, linking via your sidebar etc…(please tell me where!).
4. Giveaway is open to U.S. residents only.
5. Please include your email address in your comment.
6. Giveaway ends Saturday, April 9th at 11:59 PM EST.
7. The winner will be picked with the help of Random.org.
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