Thursday, March 8, 2018

Review: Dark Guardian trilogy Interview: I. T. Lucas

I. T. (Isabell) Lucas became a favorite new author to me because of a suggestion from a friend who knows I like the Paranormal Romance genre and since I'm always looking for the next big thing I gave her a try and fell into a rabbit hole and have devoured everything she's written ever since.
Her Children of the Gods series is amazing, refreshing and unique and flips a genre that has sometimes gone flat on its head. This is not a series you can play around with as each novel builds on the one before. And another unique thing about this series is that she devotes at least 3 books to each love story. (I know right)
In this post I'm featuring her Dark Guardian trilogy which is the 4th couple's story in the series
Plus my curiosity led me to reach out to Isabell and beg her to do a Q&A with me which you will also find below.
Dark Guardian
Buy on Amazon
Found                                 Craved                               Mate

Interview with I. T. Lucas
Isabell hi! Welcome to The Reading Frenzy.
1. I am absolutely loving and devouring your Children of the Gods series. It’s so refreshingly unique in a genre that is gotten somewhat stale.
Are they based on any certain culture’s mythologies?
Thank you. I still get giddy with excitement reading comments like yours. It gives me so much pleasure knowing that people connect with my stories.

Reflecting upon the mythologies of the Sumerians, the Egyptians, the Assyrians, Greeks, Romans, and Norse, it struck me that their pantheons bore remarkable similarities. It got me thinking, what if at the source of those myths were events and personalities that left an impact so profound that their echoes could be heard in the mythologies of civilizations continents and millennia apart. 
The most fascinating were the original, the Sumerians, and yet they're not as well known as the others. More than seven thousand years ago, the Sumerian civilization had been more advanced – socially as well as scientifically – than those that came much later. The records found in archeological digs tell the story of an advanced society that knew all about our solar system and placed the sun in its center, with schools for children, both girls and boys, laws that protected personal property and afforded women the kind of rights they hadn't enjoyed since Sumer's decline and up until modern times. 
The Sumerians accredited their gods with providing them with not only the blueprints for their civilization, and their advanced scientific knowledge, but with the creation of humankind itself – a hybrid they engineered for menial labor, combining the genetic material of a god and a less advanced creature. The abbreviated version of their creation myth isn't the only one to find its way into the Bible, modified of course to fit its monotheistic agenda. Adam and Eve and the garden of Eden, the garden of the gods, are there as well. Though in the Sumerian version, the snake is a sympathetic god who decides to grant them knowledge of a carnal nature (which is the way the term knowledge, or to know is used throughout the Bible), giving humans the ability to procreate, which as hybrids they previously lacked.  Another god, the head of the Sumerian pantheon, throws them out of the gods' garden, worried that he humans would rapidly multiply and pose a threat to the gods (implying that the gods were not as fruitful). The biblical story of the gods taking human mates, and the many children born from these unions – the near-immortals as I call them in my series – is also an abbreviated version of the Sumerian original. There are many more examples, in stories adapted for other mythologies as well as the bible, in which the Sumerian original makes much more sense, portraying the gods not as capricious and callous, but mostly as judicious and well meaning.

2. I also love the fact that you dedicate 3 and sometimes 4 books per couple, it makes it a bit harder to review which is why I do it by mini series instead of by book but it also gives readers a real feel for these characters.
Was this a conscience decision or did you just find that after the first book the couple’s story wasn’t done?
The first trilogy, Dark Stranger, started out as one book. It took almost three years to write and grew into a monster. The size posed several challenges for me. As a new author, I doubted readers would take a chance on such a long novel for their first taste of my work. In addition, I wanted to offer readers that first taste for the lowest possible price. Also, since this was my first foray into publishing, I was learning how to do everything from scratch and dividing the book into more manageable chunks made it much easier for me.
The downside was that the division lines between the three sections had not been planned, and by the time I decided to limit the size of each book to what I could handle, I had already written two-thirds of Dark Enemy.
With Dark Warrior, I planned ahead, so the breaks between the books made more sense. Except, I had only three books planned, not four, but the story refused to fit into the original mold.

3. I also love your world building and how you broaden the scope, increasing the variables and constantly changing the landscape by bringing in more characters.
Did you realize when you first started writing this series the enormity of it?
I knew from the start that I'm creating a wide canvas to draw on. I think most fiction authors write the kind of books they like to read, and my love of fiction started with fantasy and science fiction. Both genres tend to go for extensive world-building and multiple characters.
Later in life, I discovered paranormal romance and fell in love. Unlike fantasy, romance focuses not so much on the outside world as on the characters' inner world, and it usually involves only one or two points of view.
I strived for a hybrid.
As an independent author, I have the freedom to break the lines of convention and create the kind of story that resonates with me. I want the extensive world building, I want the multiple points of view, and I also want to explore the inner workings of human (and immortal) minds. No two characters are alike, no love story follows the same path as another, and no one is perfect. Kian has a bad temper, Syssi suffers from debilitating shyness, Amanda is the ultimate extrovert who thrives on drama, and so on. I believe the inner landscape is more diverse than the outer one.

4. From visiting your website it looks like this is your first foray into being an author.
Would you have done anything differently if you could turn back time?
As I mentioned before, Dark Stranger was my first writing attempt. It was a steep learning curve, and I was close to abandoning it several times. I have my family to thank for pushing me to keep going.
Before publishing, I read everything I could find on the subject from books to online articles and took extensive notes. Most of it was either outdated or misleading, but I got two great pieces of advice out of all that reading—to build a website and create a mailing list before hitting that publish button.
My biggest mistake was not realizing how many sharks prey on novice authors. I hired the first proofreader I found online, publishing with the confidence that my books are clean. Imagine my horror when the bad reviews about grammar and typos started coming in. Since then I had the books proofread multiple times by several different professional proofreaders and spent thousands in the process of finally finding the one who did a decent job. No one can catch everything, it's humanly impossible, but at least now it is no more than three to five typos per book, which is acceptable.

5. What is your writing schedule like? Do you treat it like a 9 to 5 job, write whenever the muse hits you or something totally different?
Writing is not a job for me; it's an obsession. My writing schedule is from seven in the morning to ten at night seven days a week. Naturally, not all that time is spent writing. There is also plotting and editing.
I have a daily word count goal of 4000 words per day, which I rarely reach, but it's out there to keep me disciplined. My realistic average is about 2200 words a day.
Aside from the creative side, there is the business side of publishing and marketing, which is very time-consuming.

6. You are a brilliant Urban Fantasy/Paranormal romance author. Is there another genre you’ve thought about writing in?
I wrote a short contemporary romance story with a small science fiction element. It's about virtual wish fulfillment. My advance readers love it, but I got many comments about it being too short.
The love story happens inside the virtual world and ends with the couple meeting by chance outside of it, not knowing that they fell in love with that person's virtual avatar. Originally I planned to leave it to the readers' imaginations, but after the comments, I decided to add a second part with the couple's story continuing in the real world.

8. I read on your bio that your husband reads and sometimes helps edit the books.
Do you have many male fans?
Some of the reviews were posted by men, so I know I have male readers, but I don't think there are many. The word romance is enough to scare most guys away.

9. We’ve chatted with Isabelle the author now lets have some girl talk.
a. What is your favorite guilty pleasure?
Although I've been all over Europe and other popular travel destinations, my favorite vacation spot is Hawaii.
b. What do you enjoying reading?
Aside from reading paranormal romance, which is at the top of my guilty pleasures, I love French cheeses and cappuccinos. 

Isabell it’s my pleasure getting to know you a little better. Congratulations of the success of the series!

Dark Guardian:  Found – Craved – Mate
Books 11-13 The Children of The Gods Series
by I.T. Lucas 
Series Sumary:
From the beginning of time there have been near immortal beings who have molded humanity, been the object of worship but who as a race almost destroyed each other and human civilization.
Now only two Gods are left both sworn enemies:
The followers of Morta, the Doomers and the descendants of the Goddess Annani.
The Dark Guardian novels are Bathian and Eva’s story. We know Bathian from all the previous novels but until these books Eva is a stranger and only made reference to in Nathalie and Andrew’s Dark Warrior books. As well as telling Bathian and Eva’s story these set of novels will continue the investigation into other possible dormants as well as cultivating a delectable side love story.
The series continues to wow in its uniqueness, its inventiveness and its amazingly versatile characters and its amazing world building including how she injects brilliant 21st century technology into this clan of centuries to millennial aged immortals. Bathian and Eva have a history and it’s interesting to see how Lucas cultivates it because of that history. The Clan continues to prepare for some foreseen war between themselves and their mortal enemies, The Doomers and in the investigation into this enemy there are some revelations that will really have the pages flying. The dialogue is dark although there are many light-hearted moments and of course there are some piping hot love scenes. This series is addictive, fast paced and fun but they must be read in order.
Now that Bathian has found his daughter Nathalie and she is safely mated he is as determined as ever to find the one woman he never forgot, the only woman he ever loved, his true mate and Nathalie’s biological mother Eva. He hasn’t seen her since she told him she was pregnant over three decades earlier and since she’s an expert at hiding finding her won’t be easy, but he won’t give up until he succeeds.
Eva always thought her youthfulness was due to a government experiment gone bad as was afraid they may one day come looking for her so to save the daughter she loves more than life she disappeared without a trace. Then one day the one man she could never quite get out of her mind and her heart, Nathalie’s father tracks her down and tells her a story that is too fantastical to be made up.

 Connect with Isabelle - Website - Facebook - Twitter
Meet Isabelle:
I.T. Lucas, author of the Children of The Gods series, lives in Southern California with her five favorite guys. Ever since she'd met the love of her life at a high-school party, they've been doing everything together; from majoring in business and then starting and running their own, to raising four wonderful boys.
A voracious reader, her interests run the gamut from fantasy, sci-fi, and paranormal romance, to forays into the mythologies and histories of ancient civilizations, philosophy, the nature of the universe – physical and metaphysical, and more.
Still, if not for her sons' insistence, she would've never thought of incorporating this fascinating trove of information into fiction. Of course, what they had in mind were not the smart yet steamy paranormal-romance novels she ended up writing… which they can't read… Their dad, naturally, reads everything, offers suggestions, and with the right incentives, proofreads.


  1. This series sounds amazing Debbie. I adore anything that centers around a mythology theme, and this one certainly sounds like something I would love.

  2. 3 or 4 books per couple? Wow, that would really give time for a lot of character development.

    1. I know right. It really works as she's constantly building her world and character base

  3. OMG I love what I just learned. I only knew a few things from before

  4. Hmm down a rabbit hole! I think I need to look this series up and start off at the beginning to see how I go with it.

  5. This sounds really interesting. I do love books with mythologies in them. There are some mentioned here that I haven't read before. Great review and interview.

    Melanie @ Hot Listens & Books of My Heart

  6. These sound amazing. Thanks so much for sharing, I have never heard of these books before and I need to put these on my to read shelf ASAP!!! There are so many great books out there to read!!