Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Gifts that Keep on Giving...

There's just something about a series. It's the gift that keeps on giving. I mean, let's face it, another new book in a continuing saga keeps readers coming back for more. But why do we love them so much? That's easy. In book one we fall in love with the hero and heroine and want more of them, even if it's just an eensy taste. We want to know if they got married, had kids, and if they are still saying 'I Love You' as subsequent stories unfold. It's hard to give them up. Nothing keeps an avid reader on the edge of her seat more than the anticipation of the arrival of another installment in a favored series. I got hooked on them years ago when I began reading Nora Roberts. I loved how she would introduce three characters and make us anticipate that next installment, weaving in everyone from prior books. JR Ward has done it quite successfully with her Black Dagger Brotherhood series as has Christine Feehan with several of her series.

You know how you'll read a book and see it become a movie? Often we are disappointed in those because two hours usually just isn't long enough to capture all the details that made the book so delicious. I suspect this is why the longer television series are a perfect medium for the telling of the book. We want more time with the main characters (and often want more time with the secondary characters as well). Would the Charlaine Harris stories that are the basis of the hit HBO series True Blood, have worked better as a movie? I don't think so. We want a rich...not a rushed...telling of our favorite stories.

For an author, writing series simply gives us more time and more opportunity to enrich our characters, giving them layer and depth that would be much harder to achieve with a single novel. Personally, I love writing them. There is something definitely satisfying about the inclusion of past characters mixing in with the new folks who populate the storyline. My first series for Ellora's Cave was the High Plains Shifters series about a small Texas town entirely populated by wolf shifters. It is a challenging project no doubt about it. Building a whole new world and filling it with interesting characters is a fulfilling as an author and keeps my creative energy high. Nothing like it.  

Tomorrow the fifth book of the High Plains Shifters series debuts at Ellora's Cave. Lawman was a bit long in coming but I hope fans of the series believe it to be worth the wait!


Book 5 in the High Plains Shifters series.

In the deep of night she longs for him. Mate, lycan, lover. Her lawman. As Katalin Petrova struggles to control her wild and untamed “gift”, she yearns for the only man who can make her whole. His every touch burns, searing her with unimaginable pleasure. Only her strong, protective lover can tame the wild yearnings of her body and help her claim the power of her ancestors.

While Gabriel Dunham, lycan lieutenant of the Wolf Creek Pack, watches over his intended mate, his patience to claim her nears an end as savage need burns his body. Consumed by unbridled lust, he claims her, takes her, hoping it will be enough to protect Katalin from unseen forces determined to rip her from his arms

An Excerpt From: LAWMAN

Copyright © REGINA CARLYSLE, 2011

All Rights Reserved, Ellora's Cave Publishing, Inc.

Chapter One

Though it was midafternoon, weariness settled over Sheriff Gabriel Dunham like a shroud and he had only a serious lack of sleep to blame. Nights spent in his truck while watching over Katalin, his intended mate, had taken their toll on him. Every night, he stared toward her small, secluded house where a warm bed and a beautiful woman waited for him. But he was no fool. He didn’t dare go inside. Taking her now, making her his wasn’t an option at the moment.

She was too fragile, much too delicate and Gabe simply wasn’t strong enough to hold back from his determined need to stake his claim on her.

Kat needed more from him now than hot, frantic sex.

After all she’d been through, Katalin needed safety and he wasn’t quite sure that he could deliver considering the raw, savage need that clawed through his belly. It was like a prairie fire gone wild, alarming in its intensity.

Protecting others was in his nature and he’d face death rather than hurt her.

A lawman who’d lived more than two hundred years on this earth, he’d worked the docks in the great ports of St. Louis during American expansion to the West and then later, he’d followed covered wagons filled with hopeful adventurers. In those days, he’d been a lycan in search of a pack, a place and a people to call his own. He’d settled in rough, rowdy towns throughout the savage West selling his skills with a gun, sometimes in the name of law and order and sometimes not. Many had been the time Gabriel Dunham had accepted the job as “protector”, a bodyguard to the rich and powerful. That he was a giant of a man who stood well over six foot seven and appeared as intimidating as hell had kept him employed throughout the West during the many years of his life.

Gabe leaned back in the chair at his scarred desk and propped his booted feet atop it, crossing them at the ankle. His eyes burned like hellfire and he needed sleep in the worst way. Burning the candle at both ends wore at him.

As always, in quiet moments, he thought of Katalin Petrova.

Through the past centuries, he’d hoped and prayed for a mate, the woman destined to belong to him alone and he’d pretty much given up on ever finding her. But now, through an act of fate, she was here, a beautiful female who was too damn delicate to touch.


She’d just taken a job at the library at Cloverfield High School. The school year was brand new and suddenly the local streets were quiet since every teen lycan in town was currently parked at the school instead of dragging Main Street or partying out by the lake as kids were known to do. He knew that after her ordeal over the summer she was making baby steps toward re-entering society. Dr. Santos, a lycan psychiatrist from Dallas, had suggested this job would be a good thing for her so Katalin had bravely forged ahead with things.

Was she thinking of him as he thought of her, a quiet obsession born of desperation burning just below the surface of her skin? Scrubbing his palms over his face, Gabe finally closed his eyes and let her image swim to the surface of his mind. Damn but his mate was a pretty woman. The ache of his need wasn’t a sudden thing but a perpetual burning in his gut, a need to claim her, fuck her, and make her his.

For life.

Sighing deeply, the sound of the air conditioner a low hum in the room, he let himself drift off as memories of his first moments with her sifted through his brain and sleep took him away.

“I’ve got you now, Katalin. You’re safe.” Sitting at the side of her bed as shadows surrounded them, Gabe reached out his hand to brush back a pale reddish curl from her forehead. Someone had once told him this particular color was strawberry blonde but it sure looked like a Texas sunset to him. Katalin Petrova’s exotically tilted blue eyes looked back vacantly but he sensed the current of emotion that raced through her veins. Letting his mind meld with hers, he absorbed her desolation into his pores. A vast emptiness, fear, rage, guilt.


What the fuck? Why?

That he felt her emotions, even buried as deeply as they were, was no surprise to him. This was the way of mated couples. Instant recognition had swept him from the first moment he’d clapped eyes on her. “You don’t have to worry about anything now. Not even talking, honey. I know you can’t right now but that’s all right. Do you hear me? You are going to be fine and nothing is gonna pry my ass from your side. Do you believe me?”

Katalin blinked.


Kate Hill said...

I agree, Regina. As a reader and a writer I love series so I can revisit characters I love.
Congratulations on the release of Lawman!

Tess MacKall said...

You know, I'm not as favorable on a series that features the same person every single time. Although I do read them. But I much prefer when an author takes a secondary character from a book and gives me an entirely different book---of course, same world and cameo appearance by prior characters. lol or a shift in time forward as in when someone grows up and it's then their story.

But that to me is the best kind of series. I love YOUR series, Regina. Perfection!

Allie Standifer said...

I love reading & writing series. It's an addiction...really. I start off writing just one single book then the next thing I know it's five books later & the series is over.
I love theme continuation. Also the expansion of secondary characters & finding their happiness makes me want to keep reading & writing.

Anonymous said...

I haven't read any of the books in this series, but I can't wait to get started! I love the style of your writing, and sexy shapeshifters are a delicious plus. Could u list, in order, the books of this series. I hate when I accidentally read them out of order! :0&. One more book on my kindle before I can get wrapped up in your world!


Regina Carlysle said...

Thanks Kate! I truly am addicted to a good series. I'll often read something (unknowing if it's a planned series) and find myself hoping it is. Characters often seem to just step from behind a curtain, make an appearance and I'm left HOPING.

Regina Carlysle said...

I'm with you on that, Tess. I've read several series books featuring the same heroine. Some of them I like but often I would rather see the secondary characters get a chance at stardom.

Regina Carlysle said...

Allie, I just love your Club Botticelli series. I know what you mean about writing them being FUN. It's pretty cool to give readers a teasing little glimpse of what they can expect in future stories. You can vary your characters personalites and really have fun with it.

Harlie Williams said...

Congrats on the release tomorrow! This is the one series that I haven't read. I know, you can hit me later. Personally I like series books. But then I'm a huge Harliequin fan and some of the lines have ongoing series within the line and I love it.

Julie Garwood has done well with her contemps and historicals, too.

I think it depends on the characters really if I want to revisit them or not.

Regina Carlysle said...

Hiiiii Elece and thanks! The HPS books in order are Highland Beast, Lone Star Lycan, Ringo's Ride and Edge of Nowhere. Then Lawman comes out tomorrow.

Harlie Williams said...

Also, Mari Carr's Wild Irish series is awesome. My favorite series is either Linda Howards's McKenzie clan or Susan Elizabeth Philips Chicago Stars series.

Regina Carlysle said...

Harley, do you read a lot of paranormal? I know you love the contemp stuff so I wasn't sure about that. I know what you mean though, continuing stories are so great because they'll draw you into the 'world' leaving you anticipating more. I think you might like the HPS series because they are Texas-set. Small town but with a sexy twist.

Regina Carlysle said...

Oh hell yeah, Harley. You are singing my song here. Love the MacKenzies (L. Howard) and SEP is one of my all time favorite writers. The Chicago Stars books were soooo yummy and it's honestly hard to name a favorite. It Had to Be You holds a special place in my heart though and I adored Nobodies Baby But Mine.

Harlie Williams said...

I honestly have never read a wolf shifter series. Again, slap me hard this time. I've read vamp series before I love wolf shifters. Its called being very lazy and not branching out. LOL!

I've read Biana d'Arc's Brotherhood of the Blood (vamps) and most of JR Ward's stuff, too. I beta read for someone that has a very good wolf shifter series out and it has really turned me onto that part of the subgenre.....

Harlie Williams said...

Actually, Match Me if You Can is my favorite Chicago Stars book.

Wolf McKenzie.....sigh.....

Regina Carlysle said...

Harley, I really LIKE shifters. Always have and I'd have to say I prefer them to vamps (although I love them too).

Ana Lee Kennedy said...

Yup, I'm a fan of series too, both for reading them and writing them.

Regina Carlysle said...

siiiiiigh. WOLF McKenzie! WOW. You now what I loved???? The Susan Johnson series featuring Hazard Black and his children. It was historical and set in Montana in the 1800's. Lots of gorgeous Native American heroes. YUM YUM. First book in the series was called Blaze. Still have the entire collection and have re-read many times. I think there were four in the series.

Regina Carlysle said...

As readers AND writers, they are rather hard to resist, Faith.

Harlie Williams said...

He and Joe were the best! sigh....

Also, Joanne Johnston and her series set in Texas. (sorry the name excapes me right now) They started in Harliequin category and now they are in single issue thru HQN. Great books, too.

Molly Daniels said...

As you know, I'm a huge fan of series books:) Love Nora's Key, Born, and Sisters trilogies, as well as my favorite e-authors.

Congrats on releasing another High Plains:)

Karenna Colcroft said...

Congrats on the new release, Regina!

I think series can be a lot of fun, both to read and to write. You get to know the characters so much you don't want to let go of them!

I haven't written any romance series yet (though I'm working on a sequel to one of my upcoming releases), but I have two young adult series under a different name, and I really enjoyed writing them.

Regina Carlysle said...

Those are some of my favorites, Molly. I loved her Dream series (sucker for 'friend' stories) and the Three Sisters Island and the Harbor series about the brothers. Those were awesome too.

Regina Carlysle said...

Thanks Karenna. Good luck with the other series. I just think everyone likes a continuing series.

Mia Watts said...

The only difficulty with series, is that the reader can't jump in at the middle and feel the same bond. However, as a writer, I love incorporating prior characters. I like checking in on them too.

Reggie, we're release day sisters! I completely forgot about my release when we were emailing yesterday. LOL. Also, this looks like another awesome read. Many sales to you, my dear.

Anonymous said...

I love series, like KMM Highlanders or her Fever series or Hannah Howells Murray family series, there are lots of great series out there.