Today I’m happy to welcome fellow Wild Rose Press author Zoe Forward, whose book DAWN OF A DARK KNIGHT (Scimitar Magi, Book One) was released in March.
Thank you for having me visit!
So glad you’re here, Zoe. Please tell us a little about the book.
Dr. Kira Hardy jeopardizes her brilliant medical career to save Ashor Vlahos, Scimitar Magi commander, after a brutal daemon attack. Their attraction is instant and, for Ashor, forbidden. As an ancient nemesis resurfaces and targets Kira, they face a crucial decision – follow the gods’ rules or follow their hearts.
This is an urban fantasy paranormal that’s got lots of action, adventure and romance.
But the real question is what makes the Scimitar Magi series different than all the other paranormals out there?
For the Scimitar Magi series I created a new type of hero. As a passionate reader of paranormals I’ve read my fair share of vampires, weres, face, shape shifters, and demons. And loved them all. But I wanted something fresh. The Scimitar Magi are ten pseudo-immortals that live within our modern world, but struggle to remain incognito. The guys are not exactly thrilled to discover they vowed their eternal soul eons ago to serve the Egyptian gods, and now must execute daemons for the rest of their lives.
With no past-life memory, they’ve got no clue how to wield the powers gifted to them by the gods. Man to super warrior in a five-minute induction ceremony with no instruction manual. So, it takes each Scimitar a long time to work it out. At first losing control at random is the norm, and irritates the bejesus out of the more experienced guys. Incidents happen like blowing up a gas station, which is misinterpreted as an international terrorist act.
Congratulations on the idea for a new kind of hero.What drew you to this particular story?
I was initially drawn to the characters – the magi, the women and their enemies. Once I had the world built, the story fell into place…and more stories just keep coming. The magi are so entertaining. And most people ask: Why Egyptian? I have always been fascinated by ancient Egypt, but had yet to find a romance that made the mythology accessible and modern. There are so many intricacies to Egypt mythology and so much discrepancy that, honestly, it’s not possible to get all of that into a modern story. My take on the mythology is that it would get somewhat lost over time with a group of pseudo-immortals that get reincarnated every couple hundred years, although the basics would remain. In future installments of the Scimitar Magi series story arc the mythology will take a more central role.
Your story sounds fascinating, Zoe. I’ve always been interested in the ancient Egyptian gods. Incorporating them into a modern, urban setting is unique. Could you share an excerpt?
Her captor dragged Kira deep into the shadows of a recessed doorway. He clinched her chest so tight that she couldn’t breathe. A dizzy terror hazed her mind.
Keep it together.
He rolled her inwards until her face pressed tight to his chest as if he feared she would scream.
“I’ll shoot,” she murmured against his rock-solid pecs, burrowing the muzzle of her Glock into his abdomen.
“Go ahead, sweetheart. Add it to the tally for the night. It’ll sting like a bitch, but I guarantee it won’t kill me.”
He sounded disappointed about the last part. Something about that lightly accented baritone struck her as familiar. Kira reined in her escalating fear enough to do an aura screen. He had none of the inherent darkness of a Hashishin. He radiated mystical vitality and ancient power. But not evil.
With a good push, she got herself some space. Yet he didn’t release her. She cricked her neck upward. It was a good ways up since this gladiator dwarfed her by almost a foot.
“Ashor?” She shook her head and whispered, “This can’t be real.”
Tell us about your next project. That new book is due out soon, isn’t it?
The second Scimitar Magi novel is due out later this year and I’m just waiting for its release date. In this novel…
After an unjustified two-century stint in purgatory, Scimitar Magus Dakar returns to the human realm, renewing his eons-old curse. Once again he must murder the woman he loves. To break the vicious cycle, he must kill her before she strikes her deathblow, something he's never done in the past.
Archaeology grad student, Shay McGinnis, suffers a near-death attack in pursuit of a piece of Scimitar Magi lore. But did the magnificent warrior who pinned her to the wall injure her or the daemon he fought? In her search for answers, she draws the attention of both an ancient evil sorcerer and the warrior Dakar. The attraction between her and Dakar is instant, and for Shay confusing. She wants to be with him, but intuition equates him with death. Not random death. Hers.
Will this be the lifetime they break the curse before they are murdered by an age-old enemy or worse kill each other yet again?
What a sequel, Zoe. Looking forward to that story. What one tip would you offer writers?
Read, read, read. Keep reading those stories that inspired you to begin with. We often forget this, but I find there is no better way to stay motivated than to read a favorite author or discover a new one.
In DAWN OF A DARK KNIGHT, Ashor and Kira were destined to be together. What do you think is the appeal of knowing a man and woman are destined to be together?
I’ve always loved paranormals that bind souls. There’s something very romantic about knowing there is a perfect someone out there that is the character’s other half. This one being completes that character. In the case of the Scimitar magi, the senariai plays a much more vital role than just being the magus’ other half. She is the key to allowing him to liver longer, by healing his soul when damaged by the corrosive evil of the daemons he must fight.
I love the idea of there being someone who is our other half. Thanks for visiting and sharing your stories today. Best of luck with your upcoming release. I’d love for you to come back when it’s out.
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