Today’s guest blogger is Alyxandra Harvey, author of WHISPER THE DEAD, a YA historical paranormal featuring witches, which releases next Tuesday. She’s here with character sketches and a chance to win one of three print copies (open to U.S. and Canada). To enter, please click on the Rafflecopter link at the end of the post. Welcome, Alyxandra!
Visit magical London in 1816 and meet the heroine and hero of
Whisper the Dead from The Lovegrove Legacy:
- Age: 18
- Hair: short and blond
- Eyes: brown
- Familiar: Wolfhound
- Magic: “Whispering”… sensing when a spell is going wrong and knowing instinctively how to fix it
Gretchen is wild and rebellious and impatient. Her twin brother Godric and her cousins Emma and Penelope are the only ones who let her be herself. Her mother is determined to mold her into a proper debutante, which is something Gretchen fights with as much dedication as she fights the Greymalkin Sisters terrorizing London. She spends most of her time hiding in libraries at social events like balls and musicales.
She has short hair, which became a bit of a trend in the early 1800’s (even Lord Byron’s lover Lady Caroline Lamb cut hers off). Gretchen is much more interested in riding horses, climbing trees, and sneaking about than she is in fashion— but she would have been the first to run out and chop her hair off as soon as she could. She feels choked by the rules of society and she isn’t too keen on learning a new set of witch-society rules.
She is quite keen however on thumbing her nose at The Order of the Iron Nail.
The problem is, the Order is now perfectly aware of her ability to get herself into trouble.
And Tobias Lawless, a Keeper, keeps getting in her way.
- Hair: blond
- Eyes: blue
- Familiar: Wolf
- Magic: Tracking magic and curses
Tobias is a Keeper for the Order of the Iron Nail, sworn to keep the peace and protect witches from warlocks. He believes in rules and order, both for the protection of Magical London and also for the protection of his own secrets.
Which is why Gretchen Thorn is going to be a problem.
She is reckless, defiant, infuriating—and quite possibly the most interesting girl he has ever met.
Unfortunately, the Order comes first.
More About Whisper the Dead
Gretchen is struggling with her newfound gift as a Whisperer; the constant buzzing in her ears from detecting spells is more frustrating than fun, especially when she is spending time with one of the Order of Iron Nail’s Keepers, the icy but strikingly handsome Tobias Lawless.
But while Gretchen tries to hide the truth and resolve her feelings for him, London fades from beautiful and bustling to deathly silent …Something evil is once again menacing Mayfair, and Gretchen and her cousins must use their powers to prevent a horrible sacrifice.
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The contrast between fighting off the Rovers and pasting a polite smile on her face for the single sons of earls was too stark. Residual magic burned through her. She was surprised the air around her didn’t crackle. Her mother shouldn’t begrudge her a stolen moment in the library, not if the alternative involved magic shooting off the ends of her hair. Hardly subtle.
Not to mention hardly marriageable material.
On second thought….
Better not. She’d already pushed her luck by going off with Godric.
Egyptian onion farming it was then. She walked along the book shelves, reading titles and glancing into the glass-fronted cabinets that held Lord Worthing’s collection of painted globes. It was dull and dusty and soothing. Her witch knot stopped aching.
Until someone grabbed her arm, yanking it behind her back and spinning her around. Her check pressed to the cold glass of a curio cabinet. Pain shot up to her elbow when she tried to move.
“Who are you?” a man’s asked, his voice quiet and cold in her ear.
“Who am I?” she barked back. “Who the hell are you?”
He evaded the kick she aimed at his most sensitive parts. Her skirts wrapped around her knees, hobbling and infuriating her. He turned her roughly around.
She wasn’t sure which of the two of them was more surprised.
Someone so chilly and perfect and wearing such a flawless cravat shouldn’t be mauling ladies in dark libraries. He also shouldn’t have several short iron daggers tucked inside his cutaway coat. It probably said something unsavory about her character that the sight of those daggers made her like him a bit more. But only a little bit.
“Let me go,” she yanked savagely down, breaking his hold. He didn’t move back, and his body continued to block her against the cabinets. The glass rattled.
“What are you doing?” he stepped closer still. She had to tilt her chin up.
“I am currently being accosted,” she snapped, driving the heel of her shoe into the top of his foot. He fell back a step, growling in his throat. Growling. He really didn’t seem the type.
She made a proper fist, not like the ones girls made when they hadn’t practiced before. She’d already punched a Rover tonight. She was very comfortable punching Tobias, Lord Killingsworth. Eager, in fact.
“What is wrong with you?” she asked finally. “Are you drunk?”
She raised an eyebrow. “I’m the one being mauled and yet you take offense?”
“I can smell it on you,” he answered which was no answer at all. “There’s no use prevaricating.”
“I don’t usually bother lying about perfume,” she replied, now more bewildered than concerned.
“Not perfume,” he ground out, as if she was the frustrating one. “Dark magic.”
Her eyes narrowed to angry slits. “I beg your pardon.”
“As you should.”
She aimed for his head. It was big and fat and so perfectly groomed, how could she miss? He caught her wrist and squeezed. Hard. He shouldn’t have been fast enough.
An iron-nail pendant in the shape of a wheel slipped out from under his collar. Gretchen stared at it, then transferred her glare to his haughty, unkindly beautiful face.
“I knew it.” She gave him a smile better suited to one of the animals in the zoological gardens. “You’re a bloody Keeper.”
More About Alyxandra
Alyxandra Harvey lives in a stone Victorian house in Ontario, Canada with a few resident ghosts who are allowed to stay as long as they keep company manners. She loves medieval dresses, used to be able to recite all of The Lady of Shalott by Tennyson, and has been accused, more than once, of being born in the wrong century. She believes this to be mostly true except for the fact that she really likes running water, women’s rights, and ice cream.
More About the Giveaway
CLICK HERE TO ENTER TO WIN ONE OF THREE PRINT COPIES OF WHISPER THE DEAD (U.S. AND CANADA ONLY).
CLICK HERE FOR A COMPLETE LIST OF JILL’S GIVEAWAY RULES.
Thank you, Alyxandra, for guest blogging today! Tomorrow, I’ll post FF&P’s October workshop descriptions & links and Friday (hopefully!) I’ll load up some pictures from the Baltimore Book Fest. Hope everyone had as great a weekend as I did!