Sunday, April 29, 2007

Blood Will Tell--July 11

Not only does Blood Will Tell have a gorgeous cover, it has a real, official release date!

***July 11, 2007***

And here's a little excerpt from the very beginning:

The shadows moved.
Cecelia Barnes quickened her pace through the dark parking lot. There’s nothing there. It’s just your imagination.
But the night was closing in on her, airless and fetid like a tomb. Her car was only fifty feet or so away. It seemed an impossible distance.
Why had she let her assistant, Doug, go home? He’d left only half an hour ago. Her work could have waited. Hell, he could have waited.
Then she wouldn’t be alone now, her breath unnaturally loud in her ears and her heart beginning to pound.
Something clanked, metal against cement, to her left. She turned quickly, gasping, the South Florida heat searing her lungs, the sweat on her brow turning ice-cold.
The hubcap on the pavement still vibrated in the foggy steam of the night, as if someone had moved it to climb into the sewer…or out of it.
Running now, she shifted the keys in her hand until the point of her car key protruded from between her index and middle fingers. She’d taken a self-defense class the year before. A key could scratch out eyes, or puncture a windpipe.
Unfortunately, she had not learned how to use a key to attack when grabbed from behind and dragged backward. She tried to scream but was able only to emit a choked-sounding squawk. She writhed against the arms that held her, her hands clawing ineffectually at them, her feet battling to kick or make solid purchase on the pavement.
Three men stood in a loose circle around her, their eyes gleaming as they watched her struggle. Another scream disappeared from her throat when the man closest to her opened his mouth in a wide, open grin, and she saw his fangs.
Ohmygodthey’revampiresohholyshitthey’re FUCKING VAMPIRES—
There was a shout behind her. Cecelia tried to turn her head to see what was happening, but she was held fast. Her thin silk blouse tore as she tried to wriggle free.
Another shout, closer this time. The vampires looked up, tracking the source of the sound. Time slowed as the greedy expressions on their faces turned to fear. The arms holding her loosened, and as she fell to the hard pavement, just before her vision went black, she saw a man with a face like an angel’s leap forward to attack her captors.
* * * * *
That face was the first thing she saw when the world came back into focus.
“You’re the angel,” she said.
The man seated close to her raised an elegant eyebrow. “I know,” he replied. “But we must never speak of it again.”
This struck Cecelia as a rather un-angelic thing to say, and she frowned. “Am I dead?”
“Do you feel dead?”
She struggled to sit up, her elbows sinking into soft fabric. “Not really.”
“Well then.”
She frowned again. He might have the face of an angel—his dark hair framed perfect, strong features—but he was definitely not anything but a man.
“What happened? Where am I?”
“Clichés, clichés,” he said, waving a pale, long-fingered hand. “Is this where I tell you that you’re in heaven and the Kumbaya sing-along will start at any moment?”
“Excuse me, but fuck you,” she said. “I’m in a place I’ve never seen before. I’m pretty sure I was attacked. I don’t think it’s untoward to ask where I am. Or who you are, for that matter.”
“But you haven’t asked who I am,” he pointed out. His tone was reasonable and his voice mellifluous, with an accent that hinted vaguely of green fields and stone buildings.
“You’re English,” she said.
“Yes. Is that relevant?”
“I don’t know. Is it?”
“Only if you’d like to discuss the Queen.”
“I wouldn’t.”
“Well, I suppose it isn’t relevant then. Shall we move on?” She was fascinated by his face as he spoke. His skin was smooth and pale, his large dark eyes expressive. He was at once very, very handsome—she had not been wrong to think he looked like an angel—and very haughty.
He watched her expectantly, his eyes gleaming, like he was waiting for—what? More questions? An accusation? Maybe he was waiting for her to throw off her tattered top and beg him to leap on top of her. Which, she was slightly ashamed to admit, was an option she could consider. He really was devilishly handsome.
“So who are you? And what the hell am I doing here? Where are the police? Did you call them?”
He smiled. His teeth were very white, and his smile changed his face, drove the coldness away and made him look almost wholesome. Her breath caught.
“My name is Julian Mansfield,” he said. “And I saved your life.”
When she didn’t respond immediately, he asked, “What’s wrong? No sharp reply?”
But she couldn’t speak, not at first. It all came back to her, the horror of the dark still night, the vampiric faces in front of her, sharp teeth in cavernous mouths like ivory stalactites gleaming dully in the moonlight.
Not to mention that she’d never in her life met a man with such a flair for the dramatic. Something in the way he spoke made her itch to take him down a peg or two.
“Like yourself much, Mr. Mansfield?”
“As much as I like anyone,” he said. “And do call me Julian. Most women do, when they’re in my bed after I save their lives.”
“You do this a lot?”
“I don’t like to toot my own horn.”
“I seriously doubt that,” she said.
“Tsk tsk. We’ve only just met and you’re already so judgmental.”
Feeling that the whole conversation had somehow become absurd, Cecelia sat up completely. “No more jokes,” she said. “Who were they? How did you come to be there and how did you beat them? And, since you didn’t answer me before, where exactly am I?”
“You were attacked,” he said. “In the parking lot of the Butler Medical Research Center. I’m not sure who they were. I was walking by with some friends and I suppose we scared them off. And you’re at my house, as I mentioned, in my bed.”
“But they were—” She stopped. Were they vampires? Really? She’d never believed in such things. She was a scientist. Scientists don’t believe in vampires.
But she hadn’t imagined those teeth. She knew it.
Julian was watching her expectantly. “They were—?”
She shook her head. She certainly wasn’t about to tell this aristocratic, extremely good-looking man that she thought she’d seen vampires. He would laugh at her.
Then he would try to have her committed.

I had a "real" post planned, but I hope you guys will be okay with waiting for tomorrow, because I am waaay too excited today!

(There is and will be more excerpty goodness over at my new Yahoo group--the link is at the bottom of the sidebar to the right!)


bunnygirl said...

Congrats on your release date! And thanks for the excerpt. It's not a genre I'm in the habit of reading, but I enjoyed it just the same!

cyn said...

what wonderful news! i'm so excited for you, december! what a great early bday present, hmmm? and fantastic opening, too! yay!!!!!

December Quinn said...

Thanks, guys! I'm glad you enjoyed it!

Yep, it's a great early birthday present, Cyn! I'm very excited!

Bernita said...

Very NICE.
I do hope he's later taken down a peg...!

Anonymous said...

Congrats, December.

This does have a nice cover and the opening is enthralling. -V95

Sherrill Quinn said...

Woohoo, D! Congratulations!! The story sounds great!

December Quinn said...

Don't worry, Bernita, he goes down--er, I mean, he gets taken down nicely. :-) The power sturggles between those two were so much fun to write.

Thanks V95! I hope the rest of it is too!

Hey Sherrill! Thanks!

BernardL said...

Exciting excerpt, and a great cover. Even BAM will have a hard time Snarking your cover. :)

December Quinn said...

Yeah, I think this one is pretty good, I'm pleased with it! Thanks!

writtenwyrdd said...

"Excuse me, but fuck you." ROFLMAO!! Loved your dialog there, gal. I would love to read more of this.

Rashenbo said...

I agree with writtenwyrdd... some very nice dialog you have! Excited you should be... I'm totally doing a virtual clap for you *clap* *clap* *clap*

Rock on, sista! Rock on!

December Quinn said...

Thanks guys! I'll definitely be posting at least one more excerpt--I'll probably put all of Chapter One up on the new website--and the book comes out in only 9 weeks or so! Gah!

I almost peed myself when I got the release date last night!

Anna J. Evans said...

Yeay!! I love your cover and big congrats girl. Can't wait for your first solo EC release :). Especially this book. It has a special place in my heart as it was how we met. I feel quite privileged to have already read most of this, lol. (There's a car chase scene at the end that is absolutely fucking brilliant. One of the best book action scenes I've ever read!)


Anna J.

Serena Joy said...

Wow! I love the excerpt and the cover really does rock. Congratulations all around!

Anonymous said...

Yup. You're amazing.

You rock. You kick ass.

I'm gushing.

Totally geeking out.

Arin Rhys said...

Wow that really is a good cover. Usually the Ellora's Cave books tend to have those soulless poser manikins on the covers.

Your descriptions were awesome in the excerpt. Very good at setting the tone.

December Quinn said...

I know, Anna, I feel the same way! There are a few lines in it that I read now and think "I remember when Anna suggested he say that this way" or "That's the first "lol" I got from Anna."

Which is probably way too dorky for words, seriously.

I'm gonna put your comment about the car chase on the my website, hehehe.

December Quinn said...

Thanks Serena! I'm so excited!

Oh, Seeley, there's so much more geeky goodness inside! I had to do a trademarks list, and mine includes:
Fontainebleau Hotles
Dr. Seuss
MAC Cosmetics
Wile E. Coyote

Also, wait for my contest. The first person to find the hidden Breakfast Club reference wins a prize.

December Quinn said...

Thanks Arin! Yeah I hate those poser people. EC isn't using them as often anymore but they make me cringe every time I see them.

Caffey said...

Hi December! Its my first time here, having found your blog! And I have had the joy of reading one of your books and so looking forward to hearing about the others. And to come and see this cover and get goosebumps reading this excerpts, I don't know how i'll make it to July, LOL.
You really have a beautiful voice to feel in stories. I so love historicals and have so many questions for you!! (I love that cover of Pride and Prejudice you have, I must find that one, and is Restoration London about the culture and all during those times? I've always wanted something to read to learn more about those that I read. More for curosity (no i'll never write cuz I want to read them all, eventhough i'm writing too much here on your blog) Smile. Just excited to find it here. Cathie

Caffey said...

PS on the Pride and Prejudice. I was looking for that sort of cover in trade size, much easier to read!

December Quinn said...

Hi Caffey, welcome! And thanks so much, what a treat to see a compliment like that in the long dull afternoon hours!

I can't wait until July either. ;)

Ask away, I love talking about history! I actually am planning a series of historicals for EC that I'm really excited about. Yes, the book is a general overview of life during the Restoration. The author. Liza Picard, has done a few of those--Elizabethan, Restoration, Georgian, and Victorian. Fun reads, lots of info.

If you click on the P&P cover, it should take you to a buy link for that edition on Amazon.

Thanks so much!

coffee . bean . cards said...


syntropy said...

lady cardinal~
waits atop the fence
at last her red-hot lover

Robyn said...


My favorite line- "Excuse me, but fuck you." Genius!

Isabella Snow said...


And the cover is hawt - especially the chick, very pretty.

Yay again!

Rhian / Crowwoman said...

JULY!!!!! ARGHHHH!!!!!!

Caffey said...

Hi December! Super on the EC historicals! I just can't explain the joy it is reading any of the settings! And them being hot :D So i'm going to look forward to hearing about them in the near future.
My second favorite genre is paranormal, particular vamp and werewolf, so i'm indeed in the right place :)
I did get to go to Amazon with your link, thanks! Its such a beautiful cover for a mass market but I have to go back today to look for a tradesize. Much easier to read! Do you know if like the book that came out from the P&P movie, is different than the one out exculsively from Jane Austen? I figured maybe the movie had some other info included, like maybe some cultural info, but wasn't sure if changes within the book.
I'm still learning! Thanks for your help too! And gonna read more today finding your releases :)

December Quinn said...

Thanks, coffee bean cards!

What a lovely haiku, syntropy. Unfortunately I'm absolute crap at poetry--limericks are about as far as my poetry talent stretches--but I love the ones on your blog. :-)

Thanks Robyn!!! That is one of my favorite lines, but my favorite--well you'll just have to wait and see. ;-)

December Quinn said...

Thanks Isabella! Yeah, it is hot, isn't it? I wanted the red color wash and the sexy people, and they even got the vials of blood I asked for in there! So color me pleased overall, yes indeed. She is pretty, isn't she? I actually think she's a bit prettier than the character actually is, lol!

I know, Rhian, how am I going to last that long?!

December Quinn said...

Sorry, Caffey, you did say you wanted trade size, I didn't see that. Ooops!

I'd imagine the book with the movie cover is the same, although they certainly changed stuff in the movie itself.

I'd look for a Penguin edition. I always like those because they have little glossaries and footnotes in the back, so they're excellent if you want to learn more about a particular period or if you just like having extra stuff to read. I tend to think of them the same way I think of DVD extras--I don't need them to enjoy the movie, but I like them just the same. :-)