Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Welcome Ashlyn Chase!

Today's guest is the very wonderful Ashlyn Chase, who delights readers with her light, humorous brand of paranormal romance, such as her Strange Neighbours series. Welcome, Ash!

Shapeshifters with a Difference 
Ashlyn Chase

I was asked what makes my shapeshifters different from others in the paranormal genre. Well, for one thing, mine are lovable, charming and humorous. I don’t write dark paranormals. I write light.

I also like to make my shifters as unique as we humans are. I may borrow bits from collective mythology, but I want each character to stand out—to be an individual. I let them be flawed, put them through hell, and then watch them rise to their challenges.

My werewolf Konrad is “too nice.” He was kicked out of his pack when a competing Alpha showed up and won the challenge by cheating. Konrad was hurt that his pack would believe the new Alpha’s lies and turn their backs on him, but he never stopped looking out for them, even though it was from afar. Konrad is protective of those he loves and he loves thoroughly.

Often in Vampire vs. Werewolf lore, the vampires are more cerebral and the shifters are more animalistic. Konrad is extremely intelligent and has a sensitive side. He was the dean of a private school for boys until he was replaced as Alpha and dean and run out of town.

His apartment is lined from floor to ceiling with books, and there’s a rolling ladder to reach the top shelves that he doesn’t need since he’s 6 feet, 5 inches tall. 
He has an identical twin brother who’s a Boston police officer. They share a strong bond despite being very different as people. Later in the story, their shared DNA becomes integral to the story.

I like to tie everything in—or to paraphrase Alfred Hitchcock, “If there’s a gun on the wall in the first scene, it damn well better go off later.”

I also make sure all loose ends are tied up by the end of the story. I couldn’t solve the crime that Konrad was accused of, because it’s a real art museum heist that happened in the nineties. The Boston police haven’t solved it, so neither did I. I did, however, go through the whole courtroom trial and have Konrad plead innocent based upon solid evidence.

I won’t tell you the outcome, although this is a romance and it’s probably fairly obvious what needs to happen to arrive at a happy ending.

Title: Strange Neighbors
Digital List Price: $6.99
Category: Romance
Print ISBN: 9781402236617
PDF ISBN: 9781402236648
EPUB ISBN: 9781402254277

Strange Neighbors is available as an ebook for 99 cents between 10/28 and 11/3 at Amazon, B&N, Sony and all major on-line outlets.

The first in a series of funny, light, and sexy paranormal romances.
Light paranormal romance in the vein of Linda Wisdom and Mary Janice Davidson, with a mixture of paranormals and humans and a very funny premise.
Paranormal romance is still at the top of the category, with light paranormal selling well.
Author is e-pub bestseller, is building her readership, and garnering rave reviews.

Enjoy book 1 in the Strange Neighbors series. It’s about shapeshifter and professional baseball pitcher Jason Falco and nurse Merry MacKenzie.

Enjoy book 2 in the Strange Neighbors series…The Werewolf Upstairs. It’s about Konrad and his attorney girlfriend, Roz Wells. I hope you eat up their unique love story. 

Enjoy book 3 in the Strange Neighbors series…The Vampire Next Door. It’s about vampire Sylvestro Flores and his witch Morgaine Marlowe.

Excerpt from The Vampire Next Door:

Carrying his one cardboard box tucked under his arm, Sly unlocked and opened the door to his apartment. He took one step and halted. This was his apartment, right? He glanced back at the door and saw 1B proudly displayed in brass.

All he’d expected to find in his place was possibly Merry’s bedroom set, but a worn leather couch, an old trunk, and an antique-looking chair were grouped around his fireplace. A braided rug covered the floor beneath the welcoming scene. Artwork, candles, vases, books… every comfort of home graced the walls and bookshelves.

As he stood in his living room, confused, he heard snickers coming from the back of the apartment.

“Surprise!” his friends yelled as they jumped into view.

Merry, Morgaine, Gwyneth, Konrad, and Roz stood there grinning and laughing.

Just then, Nathan strolled in behind him, carrying an old bird perch. At least that’s what Sly thought it was. It looked like the tall metal T-bar that a parrot would sit on.

“Did I miss the big surprise?” Nathan asked.

Sly smiled. “Apparently.”

“Good. I hate those things. Here.” Nathan extended the item in his hand and set it on the floor next to him. 
“It’s my old perch. You can use it for a coat rack—or something.” Then he looked over toward the rest of the group. “Is there cake?”

Merry held up a bottle of champagne. “No, only this. Sly doesn’t eat.”

Nathan sighed. “Well, I’ll be going then. Welcome to the neighborhood, Sly.” He extended his free hand and Sly shook it.

“Jesus, man. I’ll never get over how cold you are. Go drink a rat or something.”

Gwyneth folded her arms. “Nathan Nourie, y’all git back here. Not only was that uncalled for, but this here’s a party and we’re all celebratin’.”

“I know. That’s why I’m going.” He left and closed the door behind him.

Gwyneth rolled her eyes. “I do declare, I don’t know what’s wrong with that boy. You’d think we was making him stand in front of a firin’ squad.”

“That’s just the way he is, Gwyneth,” Morgaine said. “I don’t think we can change him.”

“I suppose not. Ain’t no point in beatin’ a dead horse… ’course, it can’t hurt none either.”

Sly grinned and wandered closer to his friends.

“I guess you gave me some of your old things?”

“Well,” Roz answered, “Merry told us that someone was too proud to let her furnish the place with new stuff, so everything here is used.”

“We figured y’all wouldn’t mind a few little cast-offs since it didn’t cost us nothin’.”

“Thank you.” He scanned the cozy-looking living room, and a lump formed in his throat. “I’m truly touched.”

He wandered over to the eclectic furniture grouping. His amplified sense of smell told him exactly who’d previously owned each piece.

The antique chair was from Roz. The couch was Merry’s. He ran his hand over the back of it. The beat-up old brown leather only made it softer and more comfortable.

The trunk was Morgaine’s, and a bookshelf held the scent of Konrad’s wolf hair.

“We put a few items in the kitchen too,” Gwyneth said.

He strolled past the dining area furnished with a tiny round table and two chairs, again with Merry’s scent, and stepped into the galley kitchen.

Gwyneth opened the cabinets and showed off a five-gallon bucket and a couple of large copper pots. “These will come in handy later on when we set up the—”

Morgaine cleared her throat and sent her a quick head shake. “There’s plenty of time for him to look around and see what’s here.”

Gwyneth looked over at Merry and must have realized she had almost spilled the beans about the still in front of the landlady.

“Of course. Silly me. What was I thinkin’?”

“And Sly,” Merry added as she set the champagne on the counter, “if you need anything else, please ask. Okay?”

“I can only think of one thing I really need, and that’s a way of darkening my bedroom during the day. Did you bring any blankets?”

“I didn’t have to,” Merry said. “Morgaine suggested room-darkening shades. It’s the only thing I bought, Sly. I promise.”

Sly looked over at Morgaine. She blushed slightly and dropped her gaze to the floor. Why was she embarrassed? She had thought of his needs and suggested the perfect way to meet them. He wanted to hug her, but not in front of an audience.

“I really can’t thank you enough—everyone.” Were those tears threatening to form in his eyes? No way was he going to let people see the big, scary vampire cry—especially gross, bloody tears.

Today, Ashlyn is giving away one paranormal title from her backlist - winner's choice. To enter the drawing, tell us the funniest werewolf situation you can think of - or comment on Ashlyn's post in some other way. This contest will end at midnight tonight and the winner will be announced tomorrow on this thread.


  1. Do not enter me into the contest, please.

    I just want to say this is a great series. I'm reading The Vampire Next Door now and I just love it.

    I look forward in reading more of Ashlyn's works.

    Tracey D

  2. Thank you, Tracey!

    I SO appreciate your telling people about my series and that you're enjoying it.

    You might be happy to know I'm writing a spin off series beginning with Konrad's twin brother Nick!

  3. Hi Tracey! Thanks for the recommendation!

    Ash, thanks so much for joining us today! The spin-off series sounds equally fab! Tell me, just as a matter of interest, have you always written in the paranormal genre, or have you others under your belt? And are there any genres you'd like to write but haven't yet got around to?


  4. Other than paranormal, I've only written contemporaries. I thought I'd like to try writing YA, but I couldn't do it. I missed the sex scenes too much! LOL

  5. ohhh this looks really really freaking good! i hope i get to win!

    the funniest thing.. is getting mistaken by a dog catcher and muzzled (an author i read had something similar happen in one of the books..)

    and what is your fav book out of all you have written?

  6. Hello Ashlyn, I love the Strange Neighbors series, but have not read any of your other books. I love Konrad, he and Roz are my favorites and Werewolf Upstairs was my favorite book.
    My question for you is what is the next series or books do you have coming out? Also do you prefer to do stand-alone or series?
    Thanks for the giveaway and the chance to win. Keep on writing the great books and can't wait for the next one.
    GFC & blog follower: Chris Bails

  7. Hi,

    Have already enjoyed some of your books and hope to enjoy more!!!

    I do love a bit of humor in my shapeshifter books...I like reading with a smile...hehe!

    in Germany

  8. I love that idea, Alainala! LOL. I can see it happening. And since the prime directive of any pack is to protect the pack...and since the best way to protect the pack is to keep the existence of weres a secret...said were would have to let himself be put in the doggie paddy wagon. LOL

  9. Thanks so much, Chris! I can assure you, if you enjoyed Strange Neighbors I have plenty of other books you'd like...
    Vampire Vintage
    Being Randy
    Wonder Witch
    Death by Delilah
    Giggles by Gabby
    Djinn and Tonic
    Wow, that's just off the top of my head.

  10. Hey, Valerie!

    *Ash waves wildly

    Great to "see" you!

  11. Hi Ms. Ashlyn! I've heard great things about this series and it sounds like my kind of read I love a good comedic, paranormal romance!

    I really like werewolves and shifters but I can't think of a humorous werewolf situation, wait I lied I just thought of something.

    The book was a really good read and it some funny bits in but I don't think the actual book was a light humorous read like your series is.

    I think the book is by Terry Spear and I can't remember the exact situation but think it was something like this; the hero had changed into his wolf form to protect his mate or something like that and when he was close to her he.... stuck his nose in crotch.

    That scene was kind of humorous!

    Thanks for the contest! I really wouldn't mind reading one of your books!

  12. Hey, Gabby!

    Nice to meet you. I know Terry and her wolf books well. She and I share the same publisher! I love when "the obvious" isn't overlooked. Great share.

  13. Hi Ashlyn,
    I have read all 3 in this series and thought they were great. I look forward to reading Nick's story. I did read one funny story in Sex and Chocolate by Belinda McBride where the wolf pigs out on chocolate bars and gets found by the heroine, his mate who is a vet, and ends up in her clinic in a crate sick as a dog. Talk about a blow to the ego and he is too sick to shift right away.

  14. I never thought about chocolate and canines, Deanna! That's a great bit.

  15. i love humor when I read.
    The funniest for me ( and i cant remember which book) the werewolf couldnt get passed the cumplsion to chase cats and the heroine got called by the neighbor to get the cat down out of the tree

  16. Something that I would think would be funny would be if the wolf were male and the heroine was either allergic to wolves (and therefore the guy) or if she was a big cat shifter (you know the saying that dogs and cats can't get along). Or if he was allergic to wolves (and therefore himself). I'm really no good at this, that's why I read and leave the imagination to you authors, lol.
    GFC follower: June M.
    manning_j2004 at yahoo dot com

  17. I love the allergy idea. The whole, hero and heroine come from naturally opposite animal families, like wolf and rabbit. Or a werewolf who doesn't believe in any other paranormal stuff. Thanks for the giveaway. This series sounds like so much fun!

  18. I love that idea, Jennifer. Chasing cats up a tree! Hilarious! I suppose he could chase cars too.

    And June...allergies to dogs should have occurred to me. My husband is very allergic and has to pop a Benadryl whenever we go to his dad's house. They make you sleepy. Maybe the heroine would keep falling asleep on him. ROFL.

    Jen, another great idea. A were who thinks vampires, witches, ghosts, etc are a lot of hooey. LOL

  19. Oh Jen B.? Speaking of of shifters that shouldn't or don't belong together I just remembered a book that might be intriguing for you because of that!

    I have it on my nook and I'm reading it right now, the books entitled Bunny and the Bear by Eve Langlais.

    As you can probably gather from the title the book is centered on a grumpy bear shifter and the rather perky bunny shifter that he can't seem to keep out of his thoughts, it's pretty intriguing so far.

    Oh and one last thought, June M? There is a book that your post made me think of that has a story line similar to what you thought of. The book's called Dark Side of the Moon by Sherrilyn Kenyon.

    The hero's a cat shifter who gets adopted by the heroine, it's only later that she finds out that she allergic to the hero. The idea is still pretty cool though!

  20. Snorting my early morning coffee here, reading some of your funny situations :). Thanks for those!

    And many thanks to Ashlyn for being such a fabulous guest of honour!

    I'll be back in a moment with her lucky winner...


  21. And Ashlyn's lucky winner is...


    Congratulations, Gabby, you lucky thing! Please let me know your choice of Ashlyn's backlist titles: Marie AT MarieTreanor DOT com.


  22. Awesome! I'll get a hold of you in a bit! Thanks!

  23. Congrats Gabby!!!

    in Germany