Today is: National Bombshell Day (and therefore the perfect day to meet Holly!), National Indie Bookstore Day (shop and support! holla!), National Start Seeing Monarchs Day, National Truffle Day (if they mean the Lindt variety, I took care of that), National Life Insurance Day, National Scrapbook Day, and my second favorite behind Bombshell Day, National Homebrew Day.
So get your day on. However you choose.
Everyone, meet Holly Octane. She's been waiting for you.
Holly was conceived, like many of you, at a concert. (Thanks, rock stars!) About two years ago, I went to see Marilyn Manson and Alice Cooper. Alice's guitarist was this bad ass chick who absolutely shredded. I could've sworn that he introduced her as Holly Octane. As soon as I got home, I looked up Alice's current touring band, because if I didn't hear him right, I was so using Holly Octane as a character name.
Since I'm telling you about a character named Holly Octane, his guitarist was actually Orianthi. She's currently doing some thing with Richie Sambora. I think she's also doing Richie Sambora. Some girls have all the luck! Beauty, talent, and a smokin' hot old dude on their arm.
Anyway, I kept thinking about Holly Octane. I had to write about this girl. I knew she was part of my Vegas vampire world, but I never considered her a vampire. She figured in with Cash Logan. When Jolene Haley approached me about the Pen and Muse Dark Carnival collection and I chose to write about a fire dancer, my Holly came blazing to life.
Holly was always meant to have her own book, and that story, Heaven's on Fire, was always meant to be the first chapter. (It's changed quite a bit from the original, but the bones and the concept are still there.) Cash and Holly were a bit impatient for their debut, and they both figure into the events of We Own the Night.
Since she wasn't a vampire, I had to figure out what the heck she was. I knew she was an immortal creature, but honestly, so what. Those bitches are a dime a dozen. There was more to Holly than an infinite future. She's a Bleed. Her immortality extended both ways. Forward, backward, and if possible, sideways. She can travel back in time, but she can alter human history. Vampire history always stays the same. Why?
You'll have to read the book and find out.
A couple places Holly travels to in The Fire Dancer: The Tropicana in Las Vegas in the 1960s to train with one of those showgirls from Les Folies Bergiere, and Bethlem Royal Hospital in 18th century London.
We learn what Holly is the same time that she does. She was adopted, along with her girlfriend Rainey, by a woman named Lucille who sees the girl as an embarrassment. It's much easier to manipulate them if she keeps them in the dark. Rainey's gifts are more clear, she's a Seer, but Holly is an anomaly. She knows to find the answers she needs, she must find her parents. But to do that, she must alienate the person who loves her the most. Rainey.
Holly loves performing. For those few minutes each night she's on stage, she's untouchable. No one knows what to make of her. And she's becoming addicted to the feeling. She didn't always burst into flames, extreme emotion makes her ignite. And she's still not quite sure how to control it.
As far as Holly knows, she's the only one of her kind. But when Cash Logan introduces her to Blade Bennett, sparks fly. He's a vampire with a power that he shouldn't have and he can't control. Fire. Holly's the only one who could possibly help him figure out this power, but their connection is too fiery to ignore.
So what does Holly want? To find her family. To be loved. To have the never ending adoration of the crowd. And a headdress.
About The Fire Dancer cover: If you see artwork online and you're absolutely in love with it, contact the artist! I got in touch with Daoyi Liu after finding her amazing illustrations online, and I was able to commission her to bring Holly to life. She NAILED it. Daoyi made Holly just as beautiful as I imagined her to be. I handed the reins over to Hang Le, and the cover was born.
Since Holly loves it when she has an adoring audience, she's hoping you'll help spread the word about The Fire Dancer's release! Enter for the chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card! All you have to do is share a post on Facebook, tweet about the book, or preorder it.
Good luck! The contest runs between now and May 20. It's sponsored by moi, and WordPress, Facebook, Twitter, and Amazon have nothing to do with it. You can enter each day.