Monday, August 22, 2011

Guest: Michelle Rowen

VampChix welcomes Michelle Rowen today, whose latest, BLOODLUST is available in stores now!  Read all about the darker side of Michelle's stories today.  She's giving away one copy of Bloodlust to a lucky commenter, so show her some love!  [contest open to US/Canada residents only; thank you]

The Light Side and the Dark Side of Vampires
by Michelle Rowen

For five books, I wrote about the lighter side of vampire life. I suppose, in a way, my paranormal romance series, Immortality Bites, was a bit of a parody of vampires in general, although I did personally take the story and characters more seriously than that. I got to play with expectations and established myths by having vamps go out in sunlight (although they needed sunglasses because it was bright), they mixed their blood with alcohol in vampire nightclubs, some got their fangs filed down to cosmetically fit in better with humans, and they would tuck tail between legs and run if there was a vampire hunter around. I mean, my first title in this series was the beyond adorable Bitten & Smitten. These were obviously not vampires that tore the throats out of innocent victims. Well, not most of them, anyway.

These vampires were basically humans who needed blood to survive. They weren’t necessarily evil -- unless they’d been evil as humans. It was my way of saying, “who is the real monster?” Someone with the stigma of being a monster through no fault of their own (the vampire)? Or someone who chooses daily to do evil things and hurt other people for their own gain (the vampire hunter)?

I had a lot of fun with that series. So much that I’ve resurrected my heroine, Sarah Dearly, who will be the main character of my new paranormal mystery series that starts next August with Blood Bath & Beyond. I love funny vampires and Sarah cracks me up like no other character I’ve ever written.

But I guess I have a dark side, too. Because after playing on the light side of the genre, I wanted to dip my toe into the dark waters of vampires. My favorite genre to read is urban fantasy and I used to love horror novels. I wanted to create some vampires that didn’t enjoy cocktails at midnight while hiding their fangs from the general public. I wanted to write some vampires that, if you discovered their secret, they would be more than happy to rip your throat out with a smile on their face and a song in their hearts. (Cue evil laughter).

Of course, I couldn’t make (read: didn’t want to make) that sort of vampire the hero or heroine. So instead, I created a human heroine named Jillian who was thrust into the dark world she never knew existed when she was injected with a formula that turned her blood both poisonous and irresistible to vampires. I gave her a dhampyr protector, one whom she didn’t necessarily trust for a while. And, since I do love that question of “nurture or nature” when it comes to breeding evil, I also have a vampire who is both unrepentantly deadly but shows some heroic traits at the same time. There might not be quite as many laughs in my Nightshade books as there were in my Immortality Bites series, but both were a lot of fun to write and gave me the chance to stretch my vampire-lovin’ legs a bit.

My question to you is this -- do you like your vampires dark or light? Villains or heroes? Romantic or scary? Or are your favorite vamps a mix of all of the above?

I’m giving away a signed copy of my latest (dark side!) vampire release, Bloodlust, to a randomly chosen commenter. Good luck!

For more info on my books, vampire or otherwise, check out my website at!

Bloodlust (Nightshade #2) – Berkley Sensation, July 2011

For those who feast on blood, Jillian Conrad is a fatal attraction. After being injected with a serum that made her blood both irresistible and deadly to vampires, she was used as a pawn to assassinate the vampire king. Now, the vampires want her eliminated.

Hunted and unable to return to her old life, Jillian desperately seeks to prevent the poison in her veins from killing her. And she must find a way to help her dhampyr protector, Declan, whose exposure to the serum has split his personality into one part uncontrolled desire, and one part stone cold killer.

But an even greater danger is rising. The Amarantos — a secret society of vampires — is seeking the infant daughter of the slain king to complete their quest for true immortality. And if they succeed, no one, living or undead, will escape the darkness.


Erika said...

I like a mix of both! I think it makes a interesting story!

Michelle Greathouse said...

I believe I like for my vampires to be a mix of both. I want them to BE vampires with all that entails; blood drinkers, night walkers, fierce beings. On the flip side, I want them to be the good guy. LOL Makes no sense whatsoever - but that's how I like them.

Thank you for the giveaway.

kweenmg at yahoo dot com

BookLover said...

I like a little of everything. They need to be a real vampire.

vamp_girl said...

I like both types of vampires but they need to be romantic or else I lose interest.

Blodeuedd said...

I read book 1 and really want this one too :) I liked the wicked evil vamps.

As for the question well I like them all :D I like the totally inhuman monsters, I like the sexy ones who want to such your blood and more. What I do not like are the ones that go all vegetarian and sparkle, lol

Barb P said...

Hi Michelle! I generally like most any kind of vamp except maybe the true horror vamps. I really don't like the rip the human apart kind. I do appreciate at least a little bit of romance though. Love your books! Thanks for the contest!

SandyG265 said...

I liek all kinds of Vamps.

sgiden at

Anonymous said...

mix of both I guess and should be romantic (vampires are always scary no matter how romantic they are )

Thank you for the give away !

donnas said...

Mine are completely a mix. I like them both dark and light. Mainly depending on my mood.

bacchus76 at myself dot com

Rain Maiden said...

Keep them mixed and I'm a happy camper. These days Vampries stories seem to be whatever an author makes of them. I would be board if they were all the same. Thanks for the giveaway.

Mel G said...

Definitely a mix, for me it goes back to them being as they were as humans. I'm really excited to start this series! You got me hooked with the Living In Eden series, now I'm working my way through the Immortality Bites series (grateful there will be more Sarah in a new series!)and Nightshade series will be next, whether I win a free copy or not :)

Brenna said...

They need to be a mix, a good balance of all of the above for me; but that's the same with any good character. Good characters are complex, they're both appealling and flawed at the same time. I want someone I can relate to in both good and bad ways in a character. I think that's something I've really been enjoying with the vampire trend now, is seeing how multifaceted they can be.


vampgirl13 said...

Just likeeveryone else I like a mix as if u have them all one thing you'll never be suprised by what they do next. If they are a mix then you never know what's coming next as it makes them all the more interesting.

tetewa said...

I enjoy them both!

jfort357 said...

I luv my vamps to be a combo of them all!!! Oh, & they have to be super sexy & strong!!!! ;-)


My Life With Books - Jennifer K Jovus said...

I like both just like humans we all have a dark side and a light side - so should vamps be any different. Oh wait, they are dead, but I still like inner conflict. :)
Jennifer K Jovus
kjovus at gmail dot com

PS I love and adore The Demon Princess series, living Eden and Immortality Bites. I can't wait to start this series. ♥

readinrobin said...

I like both, but I think I do prefer them a little on the lighter side, just because I like romantic humor in my books. I was excited to see you here, I just read Bitten & Smitten recently and promptly ordered the rest of the series, so that tells you what I like! But I've already read a couple of reviews about your darker series as well and do plan to read it also.

Kalex said...

mostly shadowed