H&H is pleased to welcome A.C. Arthur, whose paranormal New Adult e-book trilogy Shadow Shifters: Damaged Hearts kicked off with Mine to Claim last week. A.C. writes sexy shapeshifter romances because she's a fan of them herself, and today she joins us to talk the irresistible pull of alpha shifters as well as to share some of her favorite series. Thanks, A.C.!
From the moment a romance novel is opened, a reader is searching for one thing: that belly-dropping, spine-tingling, whirlwind thrill of falling in love. Oftentimes that thrill is found in a contemporary setting with a very sexy alpha male and a feisty, independent female. On other occasions, the fall into love will take a scandalous duke by storm, or entice the proper lady to let go of her inbred reservations and give in to passion. And then there are the times when a reader simply wants to shift the scene entirely.
Hot, sexy, alpha males combined with the DNA of deadly animals. It’s not a new combination of hero, and yet the depths of the current shapeshifters are pushing the envelope of desire and passion and oh-my-I-need-a-fan-while-I-read elements in paranormal romance.
Let’s begin with Kate Douglas’s Chanku race. Who didn’t want to lay down with Lucien “Luc” Stone (Wolf Tales II) and let him, or his wolf, lick every delectable inch of them? For that matter, every member of Pack Dynamics run by the illusive and deadly Ulrich Mason. This twenty-one story (novels and novellas) series came with everything from steaming hot sex, emotionally charged relationships, and an intricately designed world that made me look at wolves in an entirely different light. It made me think of paranormal romance as a world I could get lost in day after day.
Another shapeshifter series that thrust me deeper in love with the genre was Christine Feehan’s Leopard Series. Rio Santana was beyond alpha, he was beyond sexy as he prowled the forest with his clouded leopard counterparts. Not only did he protect Rachel in his stunning human form, but as his cat made its debut he continued to make her his main priority. The connection between them, the physical and emotional was complexly built around the world of the jungle, of the leopards, and I was completely hooked!
There’s definitely a different chemistry when the hero or the heroine, for that matter, is not totally human. We’ve come to understand—or at least partially empathize with—some of the human frailties where falling in love is concerned. We know that the hero may be battered and bruised but that he will still fight for his woman and that the heroine may have struggled with her past or is currently trying to find her place in the world, but that their love will conquer all the issues that might stand between them. But that may only encompass human issues. What happens when the scene is shifted and the human conflicts become interwoven in the otherworldly? When an animal species must stake their claim in a human dominated world?
Is your heart beating fast as you wonder how love will survive, how the new couple will weed their way through not only the muddy waters of relationships, but the war two dominant species have inadvertently staked against one another? Are you breathless when animal instincts offer a mouthwatering prelude to each and every sex scene? I was, and that’s why I decided to write about shapeshifters, to journey into the world of those who straddle the fence of human and animal. That’s why I love paranormal romance.
Learn more or order a copy of Mine to Claim by A.C. Arthur, out now:
A.C. Arthur was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland where she currently lives with her husband and three children. An active imagination and a love for reading encouraged her to begin writing in high school and she hasn’t stopped since. Her debut novel Object of His Desirewas written when a picture of an Italian villa sparked the idea of an African-American/Italian hero. Determined to bring a new edge to romance, she continues to develop intriguing plots, sensual love scenes, racy characters, and fresh dialogue—thus keeping the readers on their toes!