Flibbertigibbets, Hellhounds and Percy Bysshe Shelley’s Heart with Alyxandra Harvey (and a #giveaway!)

Please help me welcome author Alyxandra Harvey to Preternatura today. Alyx is the author of the six-book YA vampire series, The Drake Chronicles, which was published by Walker, as well as the books Haunting Violet and Stolen Away. She has an exciting new series, The Lovegrove Legacy, which will debut in January of 2014 with the first book titled A Breath of Frost (previously Witching Season: Stormcaster).
Alyxandra Harvey lives in a stone Victorian house in Ontario, Canada, with a few resident ghosts who are allowed to stay as long they keep company manners. She loves medieval dresses, used to be able to recite all of The Lady of Shalott by Tennyson, and has been accused, more than once, of being born in the wrong century. She believes this to be mostly true except for the fact that she really likes running water, women’s rights, and ice cream. Among her favorite books are The Wood Wife by Terri Windling, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte, and of course, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. Elizabeth Bennet is her hero because she’s smart and sassy, and Mr. Darcy is, well, yum. Aside from the ghosts, she also lives with three dogs and her husband.
You can learn more about Alyx by visiting her website or by following her on twitter. 
ABOUT BREATH OF FROST:  In 1814, three cousins-Gretchen, Emma, and Penelope-discover their unknown family lineage of witchcraft. Beyond the familiar manicured gardens and ballrooms of Regency London, a dangerous, alluring new underworld visible only to those with power is now open to the cousins. But unbeknownst to them, by claiming their power, the three cousins have inadvertently opened the gates to the Underworld. Now the dead, ghouls, hellhounds-and the most terrifying of all: the spirits of dark witches known as the Greymalkin Sisters-are hunting and killing young debutante witches for their powers. And, somehow, Emma is connected to the murders…because she keeps finding the bodies. Can the cousins unravel the clues and mystery behind their heritage and power before their gifts are stripped away …or even worse, another witch is killed?

And now, let’s hear from Alyxandra…

I love Mr. Darcy.

This is not news to anyone who’s ever read anything I’ve written. I have snuck references to Pride and Prejudice in my books once, twice….a gazillion times.

In my vampire series The Drake Chronicles, one of my favorite characters, Lucy, thinks that Pride and Prejudice is boring. That was hard to write. Harder than chopping off the heads of a bunch of the other characters, some of whom I quite liked.
 
But after I finished all six books of The Drake Chronicles, I wasn’t sure which world I wanted to play in.  

I love historical fiction with its corsets and swords and strange jellied salads. If I went back in time to 1814, I think I would starve. Calves foot jelly. I mean to say.

Despite the questionable taste in food, I adore the Regency era.  I love cravats and candles and family secrets in old houses.  So it was obvious choice for a setting.  

But I like my curtsies with a dagger in hand. So I blended my love of the early 1800s with my love of fantasy fiction, with its magic and battles and strange creatures.

And I had such fun juxtaposing the messy results of untamed magic and the very proper etiquette of the Beau Monde!

 Favorite historical tidbit?

After  Percy Bysshe Shelley drowned, his calcified heart didn’t burn on the funeral pyre. It was said

that his widow Mary Shelley (of Frankenstein fame) kept it wrapped up in a handkerchief on her mantelpiece. And that she and Byron fought over who should keep the heart for years.

I love this anecdote more than is probably healthy.

Favorite Regency word:

Flibbertigibbet

Favorite magical creature?

I loved introducing ghouls, hellhounds and warlocks into Regency ballrooms, and mansions. But I had the most fun using the Dullahan, who is an Irish headless horseman. He carried his head under his arm and a lantern made of human bones. His whip is a human spine. What’s not to love?

Favorite Historical Fantasy novels:

Sorcery and Cecelia: or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot, by Patricia C. Wrede, Caroline Stevermer
Infernal Devices, by Cassandra Clare
Shades of Milk and Honey, by Mary Robinette Kowal

Thanks, Alyx!

Have you read a great mix of historical and paranormal fantasy? I am a fan of Colleen Gleason’s Regency Draculia series, with some very uptight, proper (and improper) vampires! Leave a comment to be entered for your chance to win a copy of any book in The Drake Chronicles series or you may choose to wait for a copy of Breath of Frost when it is released in January.

23 thoughts on “Flibbertigibbets, Hellhounds and Percy Bysshe Shelley’s Heart with Alyxandra Harvey (and a #giveaway!)

  1. I love the Outlander serie by Diana Gabaldon. It not really paranormal….but there is time travel and the lochness monster !!!!

    Can’t wait to read Breath of Frost !!!! It sound interesting.

    +1 comment

  2. The Drake novels are awesome!! LOVE the vampires:)

    My favorite historical paranormal is Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood. It’s about witches in an alternate version of 19thC history and there’s a lot of feminist theory in it as well as awesome witches and romance:)

    That bit of info about Shelley was so so awesome. I hope someone writes a book about it, maybe someone finds his heart and it leads to something awesome!

    Thank you!! 🙂

  3. I love the mix of historical and paranormal. It adds such a wonderful twist on the elegance of a Regency books. My favorite series are The Darkest London series and The Soulless series. Both feature everything I love about historical romance with the intrigue of paranormal.
    Breath of Frost sounds fantastic. I’m definitely adding to my TBR.

  4. The Shades of Milk and Honey series by Mary Robinette Kowal is written in the style of Jane Austen, with magic!

    I also love the Parasol Protectorate series by Gail Carriger, and now she has an Etiquette and Espionage YA series as well 🙂

  5. Blood of the Rose by Kate Pearce has vampires in the Tudor court. I also like the the Parasol Protectorate series. Rejar by Dara Joy is also set in Regency England for part of the story. Breath of Frost looks great. I will add it to my TBR pile.

  6. I am not very original. I still haven’t found a Paranormal series I like more than The Twilight series
    I would like book 1 of the Drake Chronicles if I win.
    Thanks for the interview and giveaway.

  7. Hi there! My favorite historical fantasies are those written by Tim Powers, particularly The Stress of Her Regard and Last Call (which is only half historical, but all good). I am also really enjoying Marie Brennan’s Onyx Court series, which introduces a fae underworld into Elizabethan then Civil War era England; it’s very good.
    Thanks for the great giveaway!

  8. I love the mix of historical and paranormal. I’ve enjoyed the Darkest London series by Kristen Callihan, Lydia Dare’s Westwood Wolves series and Gail Carriger’s Parasol Protectorate series is historical paranormal with the added bonus of steampunk.

  9. I love it when books mix genres… One series that comes to mind is the Parasol Protectorate beginning with Soulless… Regency England, shifters, ghosts, vampires… and humor! I’ll have to check your books out. AND thanks for the contest! I’d love to win one!

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