Mar 28, 2011

Marie Treanor - Guest blog and Contest

PVN is delighted to welcome back Marie Treanor author of the sensuous Awakened by Blood trilogy including Blood on Silk and the soon to be released sequel Blood Sin (April 5, 2011). Blood Eternal will be published in October or this year. Today Marie discusses the vampire as created in her imaginative world. She is also offering one of her current titles to a lucky reader. [See end of post for details]

[Read an interview with Marie.]

Vampires Behaving Badly – or are they?

Like everyone else around here, I love vampires. I love reading about them, and I love writing about them. To my way of thinking, there’s room in the literary world for all varieties and characters of the undead, and I can enjoy all of them. But… I confess to a sneaking preference for vampires who  behave rather more dangerously than humans with a dietary requirement. In my own writing, I have great fun with this.

When I began Blood on Silk, the first of my Awakened by Blood trilogy, I knew my vampires would behave badly. Even my hero, Saloman, behaves badly – in fact he’s better at it than his fellows – but what makes him stand above the others is that he has a mission beyond his next meal and the kudos of bossing around a few weaker vampires. It’s not exactly a selfless mission, since he wants to rule the human and vampire worlds, and in Blood on Silk we’re never very sure whether it’s even a benevolent mission. Elizabeth Silk, my heroine, doesn’t think it matters, since she’s against tyranny of any description.
Now that Blood Sin, the first sequel, is about to hit the bookshelves on 5th April, I’ve been thinking again about what’s changed for my characters and their world; are my vampires still behaving as badly? Blood on Silk was all about discovering the vampire world and my characters’ places in it. Blood Sin is about developing these things.  And to be honest, this development was the hardest as well as one of the most exciting parts of writing Blood Sin.

Elizabeth, the academic, who has discovered she can fight as well as think, wasn’t so difficult: she’s faced up to her responsibilities as an unofficial vampire hunter while still pursuing her academic career. And of course, she’s been learning to live without Saloman, whom she loves and can never be with. Or so she believes until she unexpectedly walks into his arms at a party of celebrities, and all her old conflicts of love and loyalty are given increased edge when she agrees to work with him to find Saloman’s missing sword - which could be a devastating weapon in the wrong hands.

Saloman and the vampires required a bit more thought to develop. I had fun getting to know some of Saloman’s friends and enemies. But most of all in Blood Sin, I had to get deeper into Saloman’s head, and show him in a more revealing light to both Elizabeth and the reader. Working together could teach him and Elizabeth the value of each other’s views… or it could lead to greater tragedy and death.

Saloman is re-organizing the chaotic vampires of the world, forcing them to live by his rules, ruthlessly squashing opposition and extracting allegiance from their petty leaders. It was tempting, since he is such a strong and irresistible character, to let him overcome the vampires with ease, but somehow this didn’t ring true. My vampires are independent, hedonistic and selfish; they just wouldn’t submit without very good reason. And so, while I made it easier for him in Europe, where he is based and where his past and present reputation is strongest, I’ve given him a harder job globally.

Take America - divided between two powerful vampire factions - which still refuses to bow to Saloman. Although this gives the vampire hunters hope of a halt to Saloman’s inexorable power grab, there is also new danger in the inevitable vampire clashes – people get caught in the cross-fire of New York street battles. A politically powerful human wants to become a vampire. The vampires all still want to kill Elizabeth, the Awakener, and will do anything to gain the power of Saloman’s sword.

So, yes: my vampires are still behaving badly!
When, in the midst of this mayhem of battle and blood-drinking, Elizabeth allies with Saloman, the hunters’ relationship with Elizabeth must also surely change. Can she keep her love for Saloman a secret from her friends, who would consider it betrayal? And walking this tightrope of divided loyalties and conflicting aims, can she maintain her own principles in the face of Saloman’s powerful and seductive persuasion?

I’m not going to tell you here. Blood Sin is out on 5th April. I hope you’ll read it and find out for yourself!

Marie: I’ll leave you with a question: how flawed do you like your heroes? How badly can they behave before they lose you? 


* Marie is offering a copy of Blood on Silk or Blood Sin - winner's choice
* Leave a comment on Marie's question for a chance to win. 

* Be sure contact information is included with your comment. 
* Contest ends April 11, 2011 at 11:59pm EST
* Contest is international.

Blood on Silk, Awakened by Blood 1, is available now.
Blood Sin, Awakened by Blood 2, will be released on 5th April. It is available now for Pre-order.
Blood Eternal, Awakened by Blood 3, will be published in October 2011.


buddyt said...

I don't mind a hero having a flaw or two but when a hugh chunk of the book revolves around him battling these flaws, then I thinbk the story suffers.

Thanks for the giveaway.

Carol T

buddytho {at} gmail DOTcom

I am a Follower via GFC

Jud said...

Intriguing question, Marie. I guess I'm ambivalent about flaws in protagonists. If the flaw is realistic and the protagonist is able to overcome the flaw and grow as a person, then my tolerance level is very high. I enjoy reading novels in which people overcome amnesia, traumas, physical disabilities, etc.

OTOH, my tolerance level for congenital character defects is low. In real life, mean, selfish, violent, dishonest people don't change much -- or at least that's been my experience. If a protagonist starts off as a jerk and ends up as a jerk, it's boring. If the jerk turns into an angel, it's fluffy... and even more boring.

(In the unlikely event I get lucky on the draw, please award to the next person in line. I've already pre-ordered Blood Sin.)

Marie Treanor said...

Hi Carol - you're weclome :). So you prefer the flaws to be a side issue - I can see your point, although I suppose it depends on how the story's told...

Hello, Jud! I agree the characters have to grow,but realistically! Thanks for dropping in :)


Aik said...

It's OK when the hero has some minor flaws, but if there's a lot, there's no guarantee that I will tolerate them.

I'd love to win Blood on Silk.

aikychien at yahoo dot com

debbie said...

I like a character to have some flaws. Who wants to read about a perfect character? To me, that would not be realistic enough to draw me in. I don't like a egotistical character though. Selfishness and narcissism, are just what would turn me off of a character.

Marie Treanor said...

Thanks, Aik - glad to hear your view!

Hi Debbie - I know what you mean. They're not lovable characteristics :)


booklover0226 said...

Hi, Marie.

I don't mind hero's with flaws. He will either overcome it or learn how to live with it...much like the rest of us!

I look forward in starting this series.

Tracey D
booklover0226 at gmail dot com

Katy said...

I love a flawed hero. In fact, if my hero doesn't have flaws, I feel that they tend to fall flat and lose me quicker because of how unrealistic it is. Everyone has flaws, especially heroes. It is how that hero deals with their flaws that endears them to me.

hense1kk AT cmich DOT edu

SandyG265 said...

I don't mind a hero having flaws but I wouldn't like a hero who was just totaly bad.

sgiden at

Tanya1224 said...

well I'd take a bad boy. I just read Kresley Cole's new book and Declan was a bad boy and very scarred but I'd take it. I've never been one for the goddy goodies =) I'd love a chance to win your book and I'm also going to add them to my TBR list because I'd love to read about your vamps.

Julie S said...

I think heroes can be bad to a point, but unless they are truly heroic and better than the villain, it's hard to really see them as the hero.

I'd like the first book in the series if I win.

Marie Treanor said...

Thanks, Tracey! And you're so right :)

Hello, Katy - I think you've hit the nail on the head!

Hi, SandyG - No, an all bad hero would leave you nothing to love. But guessing for a bit can be quite fun :)

Thank you, Tanya - I hope you do :). Yes, what is it about bad boys and scars... ?


Tore said...

I love heroes who are bad boys and have a flaw or two but I dont like when the whole book concentrate on him and his flaws. Please enter me in contest

Daelith said...

Like most of the others have said, I don't mind having a flawed hero at all. Makes them more realistic. They become a bore and lose me when the flaws become the focal point of the plot. I especially dislike it when it's constantly thrown in the reader's face and goes to the "Oh whoa as me" route.

Thank you for the giveaway.

cheleooc at yahoo dot com

Marie Treanor said...

Hi Julie! I agree hero has to be at the very least better than the villain :). Though I admit I also like villains with a hint of compassion or other goodness!

Hi Tore - I'm hearing this a lot and it makes good sense.

You're welcome, Daelith :). And I get lost too when the hero degenerates into whining!


K.A. M'Lady said...

Hi, Marie! I absolutely loved Blood on Silk and am anxiously awaiting your next book release. A hero should be flawed - they are after all, people and without flaws what do they have to overcome? To learn from? A vampire awakend in a new time has even more to learn and overcome - Alpha's that they are. It becomes a great mix with a 21st century female unwilling to put up with their ruling thumb - to a point. Makes for a great story and you have done an excellent job - I'm hooked!

Blessings ~ K.

Virginia C said...

Hello, Marie! I loved "Blood on Silk", and I would adore to win "Blood Sin"! Saloman and Elizabeth are two of the most compelling and complex characters I've ever met : ) Much about them is sensual, but nothing is simple! The appeal of the "flawed bad boy" is elemental, but the continued fascination with the character lies in the hands of the storyteller. Unfortunately, the desire for power will always be the controlling factor in the existence of any society. Human, animal, or supernatural, there is always the quest for dominance. Evil is insidious, but it is never simple, or just black and white. The more layers and shades of gray it obtains, the more horrific and invasive the evil becomes. Most humans have a touch of evil. It may be just a flicker, but it’s there. True evil seeks out that weakness in others and uses it for its own dark purposes.

US Resident, GFC Follower, Subscriber

gcwhiskas at aol dot com

catslady said...

I think I'm open to anything. As long as I care about the hero or villian (either love or hate - doesn't matter). Love the Blood on Silk cover!


Marie Treanor said...

Thank you, K, what a nice thing to say! And obviously I agree with everything else in your comment too :)

Hi Vriginia - thanks so much! I'm delighted you enjoyed Blood on Silk so much! And thans foryour comment - eloquent as profound as always!

Hi Catslady! You're so right - you forgive the hero anything if you care about him. Just like life, I suppose :). Glad you like the cover for Blood on Silk - I've been really lucky with both of them.


Anonymous said...

i`ve been dieing to read the first book but i didn`t have the time to go search for it . Yay !


babyleah_sk(at)yahoo dot com

Danielle Gorman said...

I actually like it when the hero has flaws. It makes them all that more real to me. No one is perfect in life so why would I want to read about someone who is perfect. I want my heroes to be realistic. I hate when heroes are total a-holes and treat everyone like dirt. For me, it's kind of hard to come back from that.

Robin K said...

I love flawed heroes. The more bad behavior the better. In books characters can act how they want because it is all fiction, so I say go for it! Shock me :)

robin [at] intensewhisper [dot] com

Pam S (pams00) said...

I'd have to say my tolerance level is pretty up there and I'm open minded to flawed jaded men. I enjoy these types of heroes. If it can be portrayed realistically and growth shown in the character as the story develops I say bring it on :).

Both books sound wonderful I'd love a copy of book 1 to get me started if I win.

Pam S
pams00 @

Tanya said...

I like my characters to be flawed, as the story grows you can see their personal growth. As well as identify with their angst. But there is that fine line of woe is me and being to tough where everyone is the problem that it borders on whining..that's where I become disinterested.

Marie Treanor said...

I'm glad to hear that Anonymous (Babyleah!). And just in case you don't win, here's the Amazon link: :)

Hi Danielle! There's a fine line between alpha self-confidence and total a-holedom :) I agree, best not to cross it!

Hello, Robin. Good to hear a vote for shocking :).

Thanks, Pam! And I agree you need character growth...

Hi Tanya! Yes, whining is a definite turn-off. Can't let that brooding go too far :)


Bethany C. said...

Characters need to be at least a little flawed to be believable. I think for them to lose me, they'd have to intentionally do something cruel just because.


Kulsuma said...

I do love flawed heroes, but not to the extent that it's not believable. Relatability and feeling empathy for the hero is my main concern.


GFC follower.

Marie Treanor said...

Thanks, Bethany and Kulsuma! I agree pointless cruelty might be a flaw too far. As you say, some empathy with him has to remain!


mbreakfield said...

I enjoy reading about a flawed hero, sometimes flaws make them more adorable. Just as long as the hero isn't whiny, I don't like whiny heroes.

donnas said...

I dont mind if they have flaws. It really makes them a more interesting and believable character. But in order to lose me they would have to be irredeemable and unwilling to change.

bacchus76 at myself dot ocm