Trouble With Air and Magic
Posted by Nancy Northcott Feb 12 2013, 12:37 am
I’m delighted to welcome New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Patricia Rice back to the Lair. I’ve loved her books about the Malcolm and Ives families, and she’ll chat with us today about the latest in that series, Trouble with Air and Magic. She’ll also brief us on upcoming developments in her other series.
Welcome, Pat! Who are the Malcolm and Ives families?
The Malcolms are a family of females with various psychic gifts. The Ives are a family of scientific, logical males. Explosions happen when the two families are combined!
Where did readers first meet them?
In my Georgian historical romances, the Magic series, currently being reissued by Sourcebooks.
How does Merely Magic relate to Trouble with Air and Magic?
Hardly at all <G>. Obviously, my Georgian couples had children. Those children traveled far and wide, but at the time I wrote the historical series, the rights were tied up and I couldn’t write about them. So I began plotting contemporary stories for their descendants. In TROUBLE, my protagonists are both descendants of these families. My heroine comes from a Chinese branch that recognizes their psychic abilities. My hero comes from a scientific branch that scoffs at woo-woo but once they realize psychic abilities exist, realize they might have a touch of the same. And both branches are being jeopardized by an unknown person who is interested in their abilities, but possibly not for the power of good.
Please tell us a bit about Trouble With Air and Magic and, if you like, share an excerpt.
Don’t ask me to reduce all those pages to a few paragraphs, please! Here’s the official blurb:
Dorothea Franklin’s life is sliding toward disaster just as surely as her house is crumbling into the Pacific. Her unusual talent for feng shui can’t bring harmony to her invalid father or prevent her brother from dying in an experimental helicopter crash. Or has he?
She turns to computer genius Conan Oswin, whose brother also reportedly died that day. When Dorothea informs Conan that she didn’t feel the vibrations of her brother’s death, he wants to dismiss her illogic… but his instinct for trouble is already on full alert. His attraction to her is almost as distracting as her nonsense about chi and harmony — nonsense that plants doubts about the deadly crash. If only she would quit twisting his head with temptation, he might be able to save their brothers and her life.
And here’s a brief excerpt:
Standing in the downpour that inundated the coast, Dorothea Jai-Li Franklin watched another piece of her garden crash into the Pacific. A yew swayed at an angle over the cliff before it, too, descended in a mudslide to the roaring surf.
Once the house followed the yard, all trace of her mother would be gone. Until his helicopter disappeared, she’d had her brother to remind her of their heritage, but now Bo, too was lost to her.
Pulling the hood of her billowing rain cape over her hair, she let the wind and rain gust around her. A raindrop slid down her nose, and she wiped it while watching the crumbling cliff. Tilting and swaying, the pepper tree looked to be the next victim of the mudslide. Perhaps, if she got rid of the evidence at last…
Holding her temples, concentrating, she located the earth’s energy and shoved at the weakening tree roots with her mind.
Before she could completely grasp the tree’s chi, an irritatingly self-confident voice crawled up her spine, breaking her concentration.
“Shouldn’t you be retreating to safer grounds?”
Dorrie scrambled to hold the tree with her mind before it revealed its roots. But she had tilted it to an angle she couldn’t correct.
Cursing, she didn’t turn around until she could analyze the intruder’s vibrations and knew whether to welcome him or be wary.
She shivered at the visceral effect of a man she couldn’t see.
Sexy was her first response to his energy. But that could just be her hormones appreciating the resonance of his voice. His overconfidence could be a hazard, and his lack of sensitivity had destroyed her concentration. She was prepared to be irritated.
Mostly, she was terrified of what he would see as the rain ravaged her garden.
As he approached, she sensed the earth force shifting from left to right. Most people produced straightforward energy. Was he pacing back and forth?
The stranger’s chi possessed a creative, intriguing layer of energy. Like her brother, he exhibited no-nonsense technical vibrations.
She detected nothing overtly dangerous. Powerful, yes, but curiosity seemed to be his driving force.
“There goes ten thousand in dirt,” the newcomer commented, apparently determined to be tactless. He stood beside her and watched a clump of sod slide away.
Dorrie turned, half expecting to see a policeman condemning the property.
Instead, she met the dark gaze of a sun-bronzed surfer. She barely reached his shoulder. With heels, she might look him in the…nose.
Quite a formidable nose, she observed, fighting a twitch of her lips. “And you are?”
Instead of answering, he was looking over her shoulder. “Is that a skull?”
Succumbing to fatalism, Dorrie watched the pepper tree give up its fight and tumble into the ocean. In a single fading ray of sunlight, glimpses of filthy white could be seen mixed with the roots. He must have amazingly good eyesight.
“You want to go out there and find out?” she asked defiantly.
“You’re not curious?”
“Not curious enough to send a policeman out on that crumbling cliff to look for old graveyards.”
Okay, now I’m curious about the skull! You’ve written other paranormal romances and urban fantasy. What draws you to the magical elements in stories?
First, I do believe there are stranger things in this world than we understand or are willing to accept. I like exploring these ideas with my characters. Secondly, magical elements add new conflicts and unique problems for the couples to deal with. Why worry over money or status when you can fight about hunting for trouble with your sense of smell or ability to shift energy?
You’ve recently reissued some of your older novels. What has that experience been like?
I’m in awe. I’m in love with digital reissues. I have whole new libraries that I’m buying for little or nothing and can carry around in my e-reader . I’m earning money on books that haven’t sat on a bookstore shelf in decades. The only downside is that I have to re-read all those old books and realize how little I knew about craft in those days! Of course, the upside is that I can now edit and tighten those old books for today’s readers. And now I’m learning to put together print books so the books can actually sit on shelves again! Next stop…audio!
And of course we finally got Michael’s book, The English Heiress, in ebook format! What’s next for you?
Sourcebooks is still reissuing the Magic series, the next one will be out in April. My Jamie Quaid persona will have a new book at the end of June from Pocket–DAMN HIM TO HELL. Nick’s book in the Rebellious Sons series, THE NOTORIOUS ATHERTON, will be out in July. There’s more happening behind the scenes, but it’s too early to know how it will all work out. I have a newsletter that comes out maybe twice a year with updates, if you sign up for it at http://patriciarice.com/newsletter.htm
Woot! Not only another Jamie Quaid but another Rebellious Sons book. Yay!
For more info on Pat and her books, you can also check out her website. She’s giving a copy of Trouble With Air and Magic to one commenter today. While trying to organize books, I discovered I had an extra, never-read copy of her wonderful Volcano, so I’m giving that the same commenter.
So tell us, do you have a go-to genre when you have time to kick back with a book? Do you reach first for historical, contemporary, urban fantasy, or paranormal (either historical or contemporary), or romantic suspense? Or do you dive into whatever first comes to hand? Why?
Posted in paranormal romance, Patricia Rice, Trouble With Air and Magic