Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Of Mystics and Mayhem with Heidi Vanlandingham

Posted by Susan B James on 3:00:00 AM with No comments
Heidi Vanlandingham has a three book series called Of Mystics and Mayhem

When I looked inside the first one, In Mage We Trust I thought the premise was great (demons who are the police enforcers of the magical world and a college student from our Universe whose magic surfaces after an encounter with the chief demon,) And the writing very good. I read the sample. Check it out.
The third book in the series The Curse that Binds came out last week.

I asked Heidi for an interview.
Heidi, please tell us a little about yourself.
 I was born in Oklahoma, the oldest of four girls, and grew up in what I call the state’s armpit—Woodward. I still live in this fabulous state with my husband, whom I met at 13. We’ve raised two boys, the oldest in the autism spectrum, and the youngest working his way toward a doctorate. I can’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t read and even have the children’s books with my scribbles crayoned in where I was “improving” the stories. I currently write in three different genres: historical western (sweet), World War II (with and without paranormal elements), and paranormal/fantasy romantic suspense.

I love "firsts"  so tell me about the moment when Soul Mate Publishing told you they wanted to publish your book
I did a Snoopy dance for a week!
 Who are some of your favorite authors in the paranormal genre?"
 Oh my, but there are many. If I had to name the top five, I would say Christine Feehan is my absolute favorite. I have all her books and will buy them for as long as she continues to write. Next would be Heather Graham. She was the first paranormal author I ever read. Third would be Sherrilyn Kenyon, whom I adore as an author and a person. Fourth is Lyndsay Sands, who is a total sweetheart, and fifth (but not the last by far) is Darynda Jones. I’ve never laughed as hard as I did through her Charley Davidson series.
What is my favorite pastime, other than writing?
 As far as hobbies go, I love painting Old World Santa and nutcracker figurines, make jewelry, sew just about anything, and baking. I don’t enjoy cooking meals: I love baking all the sweet stuff, and I blame my grandmother. She taught me how to make cinnamon rolls when I was around 8, and my mother had me baking breads and cookies at about the same time. Me too. My mother went to Le Cordon Bleu when I was five. But she didn't like to make sweets and my brother and I loved sweets as much as we hated Cordon Bleu recipes. So Alex and I both learned to make cookies and cakes.

What was your dream job as a child?
Not many people know this, but I’ve always dreamed of singing. Not as a teacher, which, unfortunately, was the only thing I probably could have done in the 1980s. We didn’t have any of the opportunities the kids have today: The Voice, YouTube, etc. My family all sings and practically every weekend we would go on a road trip to see grandparents and great-grandparents—singing the entire way. Some of our favorites were songs by Marty Robbins; Jimmie Rodgers; John Denver; Peter, Paul, and Mary; and the Kingston Trio. At the age of 3, my sister Kathleen knew all the words to “Take Me Home Country Roads” by John Denver. Love it!

Tell us about your latest release.
The Curse That Binds is the third book in my Of Mystics and Mayhem series. I love everything about these books. They have it all: a blending of mythologies, humor, action, battles, creatures, and great characters. I also love the covers—so pretty!
Released from the containment spell trapping her in a diary, Cassia Kallias finds her family embroiled in a war with the egotistical god who spelled her there, but Zeus still covets the power he senses deep within her.
As the demon king, Lucien struggles to contain the chaos spiraling out of control throughout Dark World, but when he accidentally hits the diary of judgments with his demon flame, he releases Cassia from her curse.
Reunited with the daughter she was forced to leave, Cassia must come to grips with all she has lost, accept her growing feelings for Lucien, and learn to control her new powers to defeat Zeus to save Dark World and those she loves.
Present DayDemon Realm, Dark World
We can’t let that twisted pipsqueak of a Greek god win this war.” Lucifer pivoted like the general he was and retraced his steps across the dark jewel-toned slate floor, his long blond hair flaring behind like a cape with each turn. The Overlord of Dark World was in a fine snit.
“Zeus is behind this, Lucien. I know he is. He’s always wanted my job and control of my domain. I’d let the idiot have it, but I don’t relish being tortured for another millennia by Big Britches upstairs. Besides, I know Zeus too well. His tyranny would destroy everything we’ve worked toward—what I’ve worked toward. After eons of waiting for even the tiniest hint of a positive response, I am so close,” he growled, jabbing a fist in the air in front of him. The ever-present darkness surrounding him rippled, swelling and distorting like a building tornado.
My boss’s face darkened to a lobster red. Not a good image for the lobster, much less the ex-archangel. I had learned long ago it was best to let Lucifer work out the frustration in his system. Interference could be deadly, and I had too much work left to do in this ridiculous war to die today.
I brought my attention back to Lucifer, surprised to discover him standing before the fireplace, staring into the undulating white flames. My eyes watered from the brilliant aura until everything went fuzzy. Blinking to clear my vision, I focused instead on Lucifer’s leather-covered back and fought the urge to smile. Red leather. No wonder early Christians believed a red-skinned devil hid in the shadows, biding his time for someone to do something wrong.
Lucifer had been the peoples’ advocate and God’s best soldier until a certain sniveling Greek God—Zeus, to be exact—manipulated events. Now my boss controlled Dark World, trying to prove his innocence and regain his position by God’s side, which meant he needed proof the little Greek shit had done the manipulating in the first place.
“Discover what he’s up to, Lucien. The Oracle’s predictions grow more dire with each passing day.” Lucifer’s fists flexed at his sides, the whitened knuckles a stark contrast from his tanned skin. “I don’t have to remind you everyone’s future is at stake. Find him and destroy him.”
With a single nod to my boss, I left the room. So much banked on Sabine and Willow’s spell. Not only did I need to rescue my brother, but we needed Gerard’s vast knowledge and magic to help them. Help us.
With a slow, steady pace, I thought about everything that had happened in the short time Johnna and Willow had appeared in Dark World. My world. I couldn’t help but worry what Zeus had in store for all of us. His plans were notoriously bad for everyone. I stopped in the doorway of my conference room and studied the people within. My amazing family.
My gaze landed first on Johnna and I felt my lips curving up. I couldn’t be prouder of my niece, how well she’d adjusted to this crazy world. I refocused on Willow, her wild honey-colored mane of hair hiding her face as she and Sabine worked on the spell. While Willow might not be related to me by blood, my heart was drawn to the young woman. It was no wonder Malachi had fallen for her. She was just as amazing as Johnna—perhaps more so, because of her tragic past. She was strong, whether she realized it yet or not.
Sabine straightened with a satisfied nod. “Done. And if I do say so myself, this is the best spell I have . . .” Her gaze dropped to Willow and smiled. “We have ever written.”
Willow returned her smile. “It’s the best for me because the last spell I wrote summoned a demon. Anything has to be better than that. Now what do we have to do?”
“Say the spell and, hopefully, rescue my brother.” A twinge of trepidation reared its ugly head, but I shoved it away. This wasn’t the time for doubt. The thought of losing the people I cared for the most, though . . . I refused to think about it, instead refocusing on the task at hand as everyone faced the huge window.
I moved the curtain to one side with a flick of my hand. The sight from behind the glass reminded me of a picture Sabine had showed me last year of a house decorated for the Mortal Realm’s Christmas celebration. Giant bottles had lined the porch, each stuffed with LED lights—at least that’s what Sabine had called them. They were almost as beautiful as what I now stared at.
“What are those?” Willow whispered.
“Souls,” Malachi replied.
Sabine positioned everyone in an orderly line in front of the window. I stared at their superimposed reflections, the glittering souls shining through their almost transparent bodies. A chill skittered over me as I held Niki’s yellow gaze.
Keep them safe, Enforcer. I used our mind link, trusting Niki to do just that. I had no doubt he would give his life to save the people in this room. I wanted to go with them, though, to be certain they all returned—including my brother. But while my two best enforcers were inside the Well, my place was here. Leaving my realm unprotected would mean losing it to Zeus.
Standing near the large table in the middle of the room, I watched as they all held hands. Willow laid her head on Malachi’s shoulder. “I know I said I’d follow you no matter where . . . But, we have to go in there? I would much rather abdicate and let Gaia take the throne. Lucien can have yours.”
I smiled, hearing Malachi’s exasperated sigh. “Gaia and Lucien have to revitalize the army and protect the Demon Realm, remember? He supplies the Summoned demons and as the earth goddess, she heals them. To answer your question, yes, kitten. We do have to go in there.” He kissed the top of her head, and I rubbed my suddenly aching chest. “Now quit stalling and say the spell.”
“Fine. Here goes nothing.” Willow chanted the spell in a low, singsong voice. “We go to the land of souls to find an innocent lost. All realms to be reclaimed and an evil deceit stopped.”
I blinked and held on to the table, willing them to reappear, safe and sound, but the souls got in the way, bouncing and crowding together as the orbs pressed against the glass.
I did something I hadn’t done since I was a very young demon.
I prayed.
Please keep my family safe . . .
Buy Links:
What’s your current WIP?
I’m currently in the process of plotting two stories. One is the first book in an historical western series about the Arizona rangers. The second book is the 3rd book in my Flight of the Night Witches series and is a WWII paranormal/fantasy alternative reality romance. The WWII books are the hardest stories I have ever written and take me double the time to write because of the alternative events I have to create then somehow get the characters back to what happened historically.
 I sympathize. I am working on a time travel about a real person fron the 1840's time travelling to 1940. The research is fun and geeting it completely believeable was a challenge.But so much fun.
And finally, where can we find you?
Website:  heidivanlandingham.com

Thank you for being here, Heidi. Happy reading to all of you and may you all find your comfort zone in thi crazy time.


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