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Albert Camus

Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.

Monday, April 4, 2016

the beating heart of a love story - Electromancer by Daco

Readers of both comic book sagas and romance novels will find the sparks that fly between Alexa and Sigfred very electrifying indeed.~ Colleen Sargent Library Journal
When arch villain Momo threatens to destroy the world with The Big Zapper—a weapon of mass destruction the likes of which has never been seen before—it’s up to Alexa Manchester and her new electricity-harnessing superpowers to stop him. 

Description:

Published: February 1st, 2016
Cover design by Fred Machuca,
Illustration by Ricky Ostendi

With a heart as pure as platinum and electricity at her fingertips!

She soars like a falcon and travels at the speed of light! 

She’s … ELECTROMANCER!

When arch villain Momo threatens to destroy the world with The Big Zapper—a weapon of mass destruction the likes of which has never been seen before—it’s up to Alexa Manchester and her new electricity-harnessing superpowers to stop him. 

With a little help from her sexy chauffeur, Sigfred Sawyer, and some exciting encounters with the mysterious and handsome Blue Arrow, soon Alexa’s love life is charged up, too. And to defeat the seemingly invincible Momo, it might just take the naturally super power of love to save the day. 

Offering all the Kabam! Pow! Zap! of beloved comic book sagas with the beating heart of a love story, this over-the-top, genre-blending send-up is sure to delight superhero fans and romance readers alike.

GUEST POST
Superhero stories aren’t romances, are they?
By D.S. AUFFENORDE
Exclusive to the Kensington City Examiner

Of course they are. Aren’t all stories really just love stories? Whether the tale involves falling in love with the hero or fighting for those we love, love is unquestionably integral to the storytelling process. Some might argue otherwise, but there can be no stronger motivation in the universe, no greater superpower!

Most superheroes have love interests and are motivated, and often conflicted, by love. The recent motion picture Dead Pool is a classic example of a superhero romance. But the traditional superhero often keeps his love connection in check. This is surprising: what’s the point in keeping the love strings tight when love motivates so much of a story? 

Today, we’re just beginning to see the crossover of superheroes into the romance genre. For romance, paranormal has been the order of the day—shapeshifters, vampires, wizards, fairies, and other magical creatures. But comes now Electromancer, a combination romance, paranormal, and fantasy, with a strong dose of classic comic-book superhero. Why is Electromancer unique? Because unlike other superheroes, she’s not afraid to bare her heart and soul and yes, even her body, in pursuit of love. 

In some ways, Electromancer is not unlike the superheroes from the beloved comics of yesteryear, when Superman, Batman, Spiderman, and Wonder Woman ruled. These and other classic superheroes thwart evil, save us from disaster, and then leave us hanging, anxious to experience the next episode in their continuing battle for truth and justice. 

But how does Electromancer and other romance superheroes differ from these earlier characters? In the traditional superhero story, we’re not guaranteed the happy-ever-after ending. In the traditional paranormal story, we are led to believe that—eeeek!—there may really be some mysterious force or monstrous not-of-this-world being that might still take us to the dark side. But in a romance superhero story, we get a bigger bang for our buck—the larger-than-life fantasy and the heart-rending love story. Romance superheroes may just be the biggest earthshattering phenomena to hit the universe … or multiverse. Call it superlove!

So what’s the novel Electromancer all about? The story is set in the very near future on an earthlike planet with earth-like cities. It features Alexa Manchester, the heiress to her brilliant father’s energy corporation, and his magical element, Electromite, which could solve the world’s energy problems. Until everything goes wrong, and Electromancer must save the day. And that’s where all the Kabam! Pow! and Zap! come in.

But here also comes the romance: Electromancer can’t do it alone. So who’s Electromancer’s love interest? The handsome mayor of her town, Kensington City, who might someday lead the country of Britannia? Or the mysterious Blue Arrow, half-cloud, half-man, who appears and disappears in a flash? And who in heavens name is trying to shut down the world’s energy supply and take over the planet? That’s what I, reporter D.S. Auffenorde of the Kensington City Examiner, intend to find out. 

So join me as I set off on an investigatory assignment to discover the truth. I intend to get to the bottom of Electromancer’s mysterious existence and discover what her intentions are. There’s no assignment too tough. I’ll do what it takes to ferret out and interview all of these characters. Because with every assignment I take on, it’s not the end result that makes the story worthy of reporting, but the journey as it is told through the lives of others. So whether you’re starting with this column or must return to previous post to catch up, follow along as the story is picked up over the wire.

  EXCERPT






Excerpt from Chapter 6

Sigfred couldn’t be sure whether the mayor’s proposal pleased or displeased her, but it wasn’t his place to ask. He could do one thing—help her get that blasted ring off her finger. He went to the pantry and retrieved a bottle of olive oil—cold pressed extra virgin, of course, because this was Yurdlemon’s kitchen.

“Let me help you get that off,” he said.

“No, I’ll do it myself.” She paused suddenly, staring at the big green stone as if transfixed. “Maybe I’m not sure I want it off.” She shook her head. “But I do, I do. Oh, I don’t know what I want.” She sighed. “Wait! Yes, I do. I want to talk about last night.”

“Of course, if you wish.” He waited for her to speak, but she seemed stumped.

Then she said, “What did you think about last night?”

He cleared his throat and said, “Yes, right. It was quite—”

“Sigfred!” She slapped her hands down on the sink and looked back at him. “It was nothing like quite, it was more like Oh-My-God in the highest order. No offense.”

“Yes, quite.”

“Don’t keep saying quite! You could say yes, shocking or even jiminy crickets or holy ‘expletive omitted,’ but there was nothing quite about last night. I mean you were there, you saw everything.”

He couldn’t think of an appropriate response—at least, not one that he could articulate to his employer.

“Am I right, you did see everything?” she asked.

“Yes,” he said. “It was unintentional, of course, Ms. Manchester. I found you lying on the floor next to The Magpie.”

Her eyes widened, and her eyebrows arched upward in disapproval. “I didn’t mean that, Sigfred. I’m talking about my hands shooting those bolts of lightning from my fingertips—pure electricity!”

He cleared his throat again. “Ah, yes. And there was that.”

“It’s ridiculous. Absurd. People don’t emit electricity. Gladys says I should see a doctor. That I must have been exposed to the Electromite. Am I cursed?”

“It doesn’t seem to be life-threatening. On the contrary, you’ve become stronger by it, or so it seems. If I’m not mistaken, you saved the child from drowning because of it. Perhaps it’s not a curse, but a gift.”

She seemed to consider this, absentmindedly pulling at the mayor’s ring.

“Just a moment,” he said. “I think I can assist you with that little problem you’re having.” He opened the bottle of olive oil and drizzled some over her ring finger. Then, very gently, he began working the ring back and forth. He thrilled when he touched her, but she didn’t seem to react.

“I can fly, you know,” she said, her tone surprisingly casual.

“Yes, madame. I suspected that’s how you saved the boy.”

“What happens if I try to fly, and then these magical abilities suddenly vanish?”

“Perhaps they won’t ever vanish.”

“Yes, perhaps you’re right,” she said in a quiet, serious voice. “And that would mean I haven’t been infected at all. Instead, I’ve been inalterably changed. It would mean that there’s no cure. It means my body and spirit have been transformed into something ... alien. It means I’m not Alexa anymore.”

“You’ll always be Alexa,” he said, reaching up and tipping her chin toward him with slippery fingers. His eyes locked on hers, and he spoke with hushed solemnity. “Nothing can ever change that.” He wanted to call her lovely Alexa, kind Alexa, beautiful Alexa, but of course, that was impossible.

“When I was inside The Magpie, I heard my father’s voice. Is that crazy?”

“Not at all, Ms. Manchester.”

She studied his face. “You don’t think I’m crazy?”

“Not at all.” And he meant it. Things went silent as they looked into each other’s eyes. Sigfred had just swayed imperceptibly closer to her when a sudden dull thunk interrupted them. The ring had finally fallen off, clattering into the sink. The moment was lost. He realized, with some awkwardness, that he was still touching her face and dropped his hand.

She colored and looked away, speaking a bit brusquely. “My father called me Electromancer. I get the ‘electro’ part of it, but what’s a ‘mancer’? Have you any clue?”

“You’ve got me there, madame.”

“Mancer? It must mean something.”

“Almost like Romancer.”

Her jaw dropped. “Oh, Sigfred. Not you, too.”

He stiffened. He wasn’t about to explore his feelings with her or to take the liberty of allowing his romantic thoughts about Alexa to go unrestrained. It was his utmost duty to remain her servant and protector, always physically near but emotionally distant. But when she’d transformed into this Electromancer, he had to admit to himself that she was absolutely and without a doubt the sexiest woman alive. Any red-blooded male would be hard pressed to deny that fact.

“What are you going to do about the mayor’s proposal?” he blurted out. So much for knowing his place. “He’s not worthy of you.”

“Bobby Baumgartner is the mayor of Kensington City. He might be prime minister one day.”

“I don’t care if he’s prime minister, king, and president of the Americanas combined. He’s beneath you.”

“And just who are you to talk about rank?”

Her words stung, the pain more intense than the damage those thugs had inflicted the previous night. “Quite right, madame,” he said. “My station is lowly. But I’m one thing the mayor isn’t. I’m a man of integrity.”

“I saw the way you looked at me last night. I may have been Electromancer, but I know when a man is gawking at me.”

“I wasn’t gawking. I was appreciating the qualities of ... You’re a beautiful woman, madame.”

“You mean, Electromancer is beautiful.”

“No, madame. I mean you. Alexa Manchester.”

She looked at him in surprise.

“What’s the meaning of this?” Chef Yurdlemon bellowed from across the room. “Who is invading my kitchen? You are trespassers.” He pointed at Sigfred. “Especially you, Sigfred Sawyer.”

Sigfred nodded slowly. He was trespassing, though not in the way Yurdlemon meant.

“This mess with the olive oil is all my fault,” Alexa said. “I was using it to try to get this ring off. It was stuck on my finger. Sigfred was just trying to help me.”

“You used my cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil to remove a ring?” Yurdlemon cried. “Such olive oil is not for ring removal. Such olive oil is to make a divine dinner as only I can make it. The olives for that oil come from a small orchard in Sicily that produces only two hundred cases a year! Do you know what that costs? More than a Chateau Latour Bordeaux. More than a fine Sauternes. I need it for my dinner preparations. Oh, everything is ruined now. Each and every minute of preparation is accounted for. There won’t be time enough left in the day, not now. Not when I’m forced to return to the market, where I can only get inferior olive oil.” Chef Yurdlemon grabbed the sides of his head and looked as if he were about to sob. It wouldn’t have been the first time.




About the author:
Daco is an award-winning author of the espionage-thriller series featuring CIA operative Jordan Jakes. Her debut novel, The Libra Affair, was a 2013 #1 best seller. Of The Libra Affair, Publishers Weekly said, “The keenly sharp intelligent female characters soar in this edge-of-your-seat adventure...”

Her short story The Pisces Affair was a 2015 Global Ebook Awards double gold medalist (Best Thriller Fiction and Best Science Fiction), a 2015 Shelf Unbound Notable 100, a 2015 Royal Palm Literary Award winner, and a Publishers Weekly “PW Pick”.” In its review of The Pisces Affair, Publishers Weekly wrote, “Jakes is a lively and witty narrator with the wits and skills of James Bond, and readers will savor her fresh perspective on being a woman in the male-dominated spy world.”

Her story The Virgo Affair is part of Killer Nashville Noir: Cold-Blooded (Diversion Press, October 2015), an anthology, including numerous best-selling authors.

Electromancer (F+W Media, Inc./Crimson Romance, February 2016), is her first superhero novel, featuring Electromancer and Blue Arrow.

Upcoming works include The Scorpio Affair, a Jordan Jakes novel, and The Ophiuchus Affair, another Jordan Jakes short story.

Daco holds a B.A. and M.A.S. from The University of Alabama in Huntsville and a J.D. from the Cumberland School of Law. She is a member of the International Thriller Writers, Mystery Writers of America, Romance Writers of America, Authors Guild, Alabama Writers Forum, Florida Writers, and Alabama State Bar.


3 comments:

Daco Auffenorde said...

Dear Mythical Books!

Thank you for having Electromancer on your show today! It’s such a pleasure to be here with you and your readers. I can’t wait to hear your thoughts about the Electromancer, and your readers as well. When my publisher asked me to write a superhero story, I had no idea where I’d take it. Other than to say that I wanted it to be fun, light, and reminiscent of the classic comics. I hope that I’ve delivered.

Please do post your reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. It’s a great way to stay in touch. And, I’m starting a newsletter so that if anyone is interested, they can sign up to learn about my future events, new releases, and giveaways.

Thank you so much, and a note to everyone, don’t forget to register for a chance to win that super-amazing Amazon Echo! ( pun intended 😉 )

Happy Reading!!

All the best,

Daco

Bridgett wilbur said...

This book sounds great and I would love to read it. ty.

Daco Auffenorde said...

Hi Bridgett!

Thanks so much!! I hope you enjoy the book. And here, take this little "ZAP" for your pocket. Electrical Warning: Use with caution, may cause serious injury or death. ;-)

Happy Reading!! Can't wait to hear your thoughts.

All the best,

Daco