Please give Eileen a warm welcome and read on, you will also have the chance to win a copy of Death Magic! :-)
Stella: Hi Eileen, welcome to Ex Libris! Could you please introduce the World of the Lupi series to those readers who haven't read it yet? And for your seasoned fans, can you tell them what they can expect of Death Magic?
Eileen: If you’ve been following Lily and Rule in my Lupi series, you probably have some idea of what the new book is about. If not—well, DEATH MAGIC covers the same ground most books do. Life and death . . . love and magic . . . coffee and werewolves.
Okay, maybe the last pair isn’t standard fare for every book, but they show up in mine pretty consistently. DEATH MAGIC is the eighth book in the series, and both werewolves and coffee are present in every one. As are life and death, love and magic.
Those of you who are new to the series will want to know if you can read this one without having read the others. Yes, you can. I work hard to make it possible for a new reader to enter my world with any of the books, and each book has its own, stand-alone plot, as well as elements that stretch through multiple books. But speaking as a reader, not a writer, I think it’s more fun to read a series in order. The series I love most have characters who grow and change over the course of several books, so that’s the kind I write. The Lily Yu you meet in Tempting Danger isn’t exactly the same Lily who’s dealing with ghosts and shadows in DEATH MAGIC. The world she lives in isn’t the same, either.
Lily has always known better. For one thing, she’s a touch sensitive, able to feel magic tactically, but unable to work it or be affected by it. For another, her grandmother can turn into a tiger. (And no, I’m sorry, but you won’t get to meet Grandmother in this one—you’ll have to check out the earlier books for that. But you do get to meet some brownies.) When DEATH MAGIC opens, Lily’s world has changed drastically since she first met Rule Turner. She’s engaged, for one thing, and the man she loves doesn’t consider himself human. She works for the FBI now, not as a homicide cop. And the world is at war . . . though most people don’t realize it.
Stella: There are already 8 full length novels and 6 novellas published in the World of the Lupi series, how many more do you have planned? Or it's not determined yet?
Eileen: No specific number planned, though I do have an end book in mind. Roughly in mind, anyway.
Stella: How much do you plan of the story arc? or are you more of a pantster?
Eileen: I plan, but with great, gaping holes in the plan. Some of the elements of DEATH MAGIC were planned, such as the basic set-up with the Shadow Unit and the murder. Some were not. The brownies, for example. I had no idea they’d show up—and when they did, I had no idea why.
Stella: Any supporting character who is your favorite? (either because it is a joy to write his/her scenes or just because they are fun or unique?)
Eileen: Grandmother. I can’t help it. I want to be her when I grow up . . . maybe because she is totally adult about the things that matter, yet childlike in her ability to enjoy herself. Plus, hey--she turns into a tiger.
Stella: What can we expect from you next, what are your future plans?
Eileen: I’m working away on MORTAL TIES, Book 9 in my lupi world. That will be out next October.
Stella: You have another new release this month, Tied With a Bow a holiday novella, yay! Can you tell us a bit more about it, whose story will it be?
Eileen: My story in the anthology is all about Benedict and Arjenie, who met and were bonded in BLOOD CHALLENGE. They head back east to spend Christmas with her family . . . her large, noisy, Wiccan family. Benedict wants badly to make a good impression--it’s shame the way things go wrong as soon as he sets foot outside the car.
Stella: You are an UF author, do you like to read this genre in your free time? If yes which series, authors are your must reads? Or will you shock us and say you like to read some completely different genre?
Eileen: I read all over the place. Can’t begin to list all of my favorites, but I recently raced through half a dozen thrillers by Lee Child; devoured a high fantasy series by Elizabeth Moon; and today I ordered a historical mystery by Margaret Frazier. I’m waiting eagerly for the next Edge book by Ilona Andrews, just gobbled the new Tanya Huff book, and really wish Jim Butcher wrote faster. And Patricia Briggs, and Karen Chance, and Carrie Vaughn—oh, and there’s a lovely little paranormal mystery series by Mary Stanton. I read the latest one this week. And I can never have enough Lois McMaster Bujold. I’ll read absolutely anything she writes.
Stella: Besides urban fantasy you also pen romance novels. Do you prefer your UF to have a pinch of romance as well or remain strictly sans?
Eileen: I love a bit of romance in a story. I don’t insist on it, but love and sex are such a big part of being human, and a series without any romance at all would involve some unusual characters, wouldn’t it? It can be done, and done well—Moon’s Paksenarrion books, for example--but my preference is for a bit of romance.
Stella: Is there any other genre you'd like to give a try?
Eileen: Straight fantasy. It’s hard to get a decent advance in that genre if you’re new to it, so I don’t know if that will happen, but I have an idea I’d love to try.
Stella: What is your favorite thing about writing UF stories?
Eileen: The possibilities. Readers of urban fantasy are very open to all sorts of stories, so I’m able to fly unfettered . . . which is both scary and wonderful.
Find out more about Eileen and her books at http://eileenwilks.com/. You can also find her on Facebook and Goodreads.
Eileen has generously offered a paperback copy of Death Magic to a lucky commenter!