UTC is thrilled to have Zoe Archer here today to chat with us about her wonderful books! Thanks so much for stopping by. Let's talk about your latest release, Devil's Kiss! Zora is a very liberated woman in the 18th century. Did you find it hard to give her this right at that time and place? Do you see yourself in her?
My research into Romani culture showed that while women of the Rom were expected to be modest and obedient, they were also very powerful within their families. Zora isn't exactly a typical Romani woman, and she chafes against the restrictions within her culture. She operates outside of traditional 18th century society, too, since the Rom and gorgios (as non-Roma were called) didn't mix. In many respects, Zora is unique. But I think that, in every time, in every culture, there are people who rebel, and Zora is one of them.
I'd like to think I've got Zora's fire, and she certainly doesn't think of herself as a second-class citizen just because she's a woman, much like I do. But I can't read palms or cheat expertly at cards, so in that, she's got me beat.
Whit is a sexy, bad, untamable man (well, before Zora). Which character other than the ones you've created would you like to tame for yourself?
It'd be nice to have a djinn or some other magical creature to do my bidding—like clean the bathroom.
HellRaisers is such a great addition to the PNR world. How did you come up with this idea?
Thanks! Back in the 18th century, there were a few clubs of aristocratic rakes, and they all called themselves the Hellfire Club. There were rumors of secret meetings, devil worship and wild orgies. I started to think about what if there was a group of 18th century English rakes who really did get involved with the Devil. What if they earned the name of Hellraisers, and then literally rose Hell? Also, with my Blades of the Rose series, the heroes were all decent, good guys, and I wanted to explore what it would be like to have some truly bad heroes. How bad could I make them? Could they be redeemed? And what kind of heroine would be the counterpoint to these bad boys?
Some of your series are completely different genres, sci fi and historical paranormal romance. What inspired you to write such seemingly opposite genres?
The uniting element is, I think, the action and adventure, plus heroines who unapologetically kick ass. It doesn't matter what era they're in or what planet they hail from, they can take care of themselves. And all my heroes think this quality is sexy as hell.
How do you feel about followers/fans commenting about your book on Twitter/Facebook? Irritating? Stalkish? Or do you welcome it?!
It's great to see my books engendering discussion. That way I know I've moved people.
What does your workspace look like? It is clean and orderly or scattered and covered with post-it notes? Any visual would be great.
Since my husband (fellow romance author Nico Rosso) and I share an office, along with the elliptical trainer, bookshelves, file cabinets and two cats, the office itself is...full. I like to keep my desk tidy, though. Can't work if everything's cluttered.
If I blindly stuck my hand in your purse and grabbed something, what would I find?
Which of you heroes would you...
Marry — Catullus, from STRANGER, because he can build anything
Have a One Night Stand with — Bennett, from SCOUNDREL, because he knows exactly what he's doing
Have a Summer Fling with — Whit, from DEVIL'S KISS, because once he's pried away from the card table, he gets very focused
(By the way, this is all harmless speculation, because my heart always belongs to Nico!)
How about some rapid fire questions!
Singing in the shower or car? Car. The window to our bathroom is right off the catwalk in our apartment building, and I don't want to torture anyone with my rendition of "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go."
Sunset or sunrise? Sunset. Sunrise is too early.
Coffee or tea? It used to be tea, but then I became a full-time writer and had a legitimate reason to stay awake, so now I'm a full-blown coffee addict.
Plotter or panster? I plot out the whole novel before writing, but I often discover as I get into the book that things need to change, and so I figure those elements out when I get there—but even that is plotted.
Favourite food? A cold, fudgy brownie with a ribbon of salted caramel.
Favourite genre to write? Aaah! Don't make me choose!
Favourite genre to read? Historical romance.
Favourite place to read? I'm still looking for the perfect reading chair in the perfect reading nook. For now, I read on the sofa. But if someone wants to donate a chaise longue, I wouldn't say no.
Hellraisers Book 1
A handsome devil
1762. James Sherbourne, Earl of Whitney, is a gambling man. Not for the money. But for the thrill, the danger—and the company: Whit has become one of the infamous Hellraisers, losing himself in the chase for adventure and pleasure with his four closest friends.
Which was how Whit found himself in a gypsy encampment, betting against a lovely Romani girl. Zora Grey’s smoky voice and sharp tongue entrance Whit nearly as much as her clever hands—watching them handle cards inspires thoughts of another kind…
Zora can’t explain her attraction to the careless blue-eyed Whit. She also can’t stop him and his Hellraisers from a fiendish curse: the power to grant their own hearts’ desires, to chase their pleasures from the merely debauched to the truly diabolical. And if Zora can’t save Whit, she still has to escape him…
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Bio: Zoë Archer is an award-winning romance author who thinks there's nothing sexier than a man in tall boots and a waistcoat. As a child, she never dreamed about being the rescued princess, but wanted to kick butt right beside the hero. She now applies her master's degrees in Literature and Fiction to creating butt-kicking heroines and heroes in tall boots. She is the author of the acclaimed BLADES OF THE ROSE series. December marks the beginning of her new paranormal historical romance series, THE HELLRAISERS. Zoë and her husband, fellow romance author Nico Rosso, live in Los Angeles.