Thursday, June 9, 2016

Interview with Kristal Hollis - Awakened By The Wolf - The Herd Presents blog tour

Hey Gang I'm so happy that today is my day on the Awakened by the Wolf blog tour, its a fantastic Harlequin Nocturne by debut author Kristal Hollis released just a few days ago.
Enjoy the showcase and my interview with Kristal!

Paranormal Romance, Wolves
Publisher: Harlequin Nocturne
Pages: 304
Release Date: June 1, 2016

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Who's been sleeping in the Alpha's bed?

Exiled from his pack by his father, Brice Walker has secretly come home to visit his ailing grandmother only to discover a human and very desirable female sleeping in his bed. Their attraction is instant. But his new bed buddy seems determined to resist his Southern charm and Alpha allure. 

For Brice, fiercely independent Cassie not only represents a chance to build a new life in Walker's Run but is also his one true mate. Cassie's reluctance dissolves when a rogue shifter kidnaps her, and now she and Brice must work together to save his pack. But once she witnesses the savagery of wolfan justice, can Cassie accept Brice as man, beast and her true love?

Read an excerpt:

  (language warning)

The mixed feelings Brice had about his homecoming knotted into concern. Granny knew wolfan law forbade adult males and females of blood relation to share bedding, so why had she fallen asleep in his room?

“Granny?” He eased onto the edge of the mattress and touched her leg.

An unfamiliar feminine gasp prickled the skin along his spine.
“Who the hell are you?” Brice didn’t mean to sound so rough and angry, but pain and exhaustion made him edgy and terse.

“Stay away from me!” The woman kicked out of bed and grappled with the bedside lamp.

“Fuck!” The sudden brightness stung like a fistful of sand slung in his face. Shielding his light-sensitive eyes behind his arm, Brice tuned into his other senses. The air thickened. He could almost taste the sharp tang of her fear. Her breaths came hard and fast.

“Get out before I call the cops,” she demanded.

“With what? Telepathy?” To his knowledge, Granny had one telephone. A landline in the kitchen.

“I have a cell phone.” The uncertainty in the woman’s voice said she didn’t.

“Nice try.” Swiping his eyes, Brice sensed a change in the air pressure, heard a hitch in her breathing. His instinct warned that she had inched to her right.

“I don’t need my eyes to track you.” He pointed to where he knew she stood.

The woman stopped moving and quite possibly stopped breathing. Nothing but howling silence filled the space between them. Any second she would hit the floor in a dead faint. Brice forced his eyes to open.

Not that he had any doubts, but the fragile-looking young woman pressed against the wall was definitely not his grandmother. Wild spirals of red hair gave her a sexy bed-head look regardless of the cornered animal glint in her cinnamon eyes.

She wore an old Maico High baseball jersey. Wait. That was his old baseball jersey.

His bed, his clothes. What else had she claimed that belonged to him?

And why?

She was human and likely unaware of the implications of marking a male Wahya’s belongings with her scent.

As if he could smell her anyway.

Still, that this small slip of a woman had claimed his discarded clothes and his abandoned bed sparked a possessive thump in his chest. His gaze prowled the small swell of her breasts and the narrow curve of her hips cloaked beneath his shirt.
She sported the longest legs he’d ever seen on someone so petite. Soft, toned legs that inspired steamy visions of them tangled around his hips as he moved inside her until she shattered in ecstasy, breaking him with her.

The full moon had passed, so his attraction was real. Not something prompted by primitive hormones riddling him to fuck the nearest willing female. That this one didn’t look so willing was like an ice dump on his stiffening cock.

Hi Kristal, welcome to The Reading Frenzy.
Thanks for inviting me. I’m delighted to be here today.

Tell my readers about your debut novel and Harlequin Nocturne release, Awakened by the Wolf.
AWAKENED BY THE WOLF is a shifter romance about a destitute heroine determined to build a stable life for herself. After a series of unfortunate circumstances, she meets a wealthy, irresistible werewolf who steals her heart, but she isn’t about to let him derail her plans for a better future. Unfortunately, when his past catches up to him, she may not live long enough to see her dreams fulfilled.
At its core, ABTW is a contemporary mix of the fairy tales, Cinderella and Little Red Riding Hood. What I found to be the most fun in writing this story is that the heroine does not want or need the hero to rescue her from her impoverished circumstances. She wants to prove to herself and all the naysayers that she can and will make a better life herself, all on her own.

Congratulations on Awakened by the Wolf being a 2015 Golden Heart finalist and selling the manuscript to Harlequin. 
Thank you so much! My author career took a huge leap forward after the Golden Heart finalists announcement last year. I’m deeply honored to have been included among so many talented writers.

I love hearing an author’s “The Call” stories, will you share yours with us please?
It was May 11, 2015 and one of those discombobulated days where it would’ve been better to have stayed in bed. I left the house before sunrise to get to my day job and was nearly there when I realized the car was running on fumes that were about to give up the ghost. I pulled into a gas station only to discover I had left my purse at home. I had no wallet with me but more importantly, I had no cell phone. I don’t go anywhere without my phone. Except that day. A day I had to spend nine and a half tedious hours without checking personal email, watching a cat video on Facebook, or sending one text message.
Despite the technological apocalypse, my guardian fairies refused to materialize my phone, no matter how much I begged through-out the excruciatingly long and boring day. When I finally left work, I thought, “Hahaha! Wouldn’t it be funny if today, of all days, was the day I got “The Call?” I laughed all the way home. (It could’ve been the gas fumes.)
In IM withdrawal, the first thing I did when I entered the house was treasure-hunt my phone. I might’ve hugged and kissed it, but I can’t be sure because I got distracted by the missed call from a strange number and the glaring voice mail alert. Thinking a telemarketer had called, I played the message and nearly dropped my Precious, errr my phone because Oh my freaking God! “Harlequin Nocturne’s Senior Editor called,” I screamed. Jumping around like a lizard had run up my pant leg, I knocked my husband on the shoulder hard enough to push him over and interrupt his livestream video game.

In my excitement, I couldn’t hear the call back number provided, so I needed to replay the message. Only, I deleted it by mistake.

Holy crap! I lost my very first CALL message. Running around the kitchen, I hollered, “What do I do? What do I do?” The hubster sagely suggested I press the call back button for the missed call.

Oh, yeah. I knew that.  Apparently unexpected excitement turns me stupid. Thankfully, I held it together long enough to return the call and immediately connected with Ann Leslie Tuttle, who offered me a Nocturne contract.

In the end, my day ended on a higher note than it had started. So, even bad starts can lead to big grins. And, I haven’t stopped grinning yet

People who know me know I LOVE Harlequin and think they make the world go round, I even review the Special Edition line presently and both SE and the Presents line in the past for RT magazine. What do you love about Harlequin?
As a reader, I love the Harlequin imprints. The stories are tightly focused on the hero and heroine’s romantic journey. The developing relationship between the characters, such as how they bring out the worst then the best of each other and how they help one another overcome personal obstacles to grab hold of their HEA is why I read romance.
As an author, I’m awed by the support and encouragement I’ve received. From incorporating detailed elements from the book into the cover (such as the scars on the hero’s throat) to helping me with edits, I’ve had a wonderful time interacting with the Harlequin team. I look forward to working with them on future projects.

Kristal I just retired and just rescued a 4.5 year-old Corgi/Papillon mix.
I see from your bio that you have two rescue dogs. Tell us about them and how you became a doggie mommy.
Congratulations on your retirement! I’ve heard friends say they are busier now that they’ve retired than when they were working full-time jobs. But, they’re busy with the things they love and that makes all the difference.
I’m so happy to hear you’ve become a doggie mommy. I’ve been a doggie mom for many years. The two furbabies with us now are affectionately called Brave Little Basset (obviously a basset hound) and Monster Puppy (likely mix of every breed except a basset hound). 
Monster Puppy was 10 weeks old when I picked him out through a rescue listed on Rambunctious, curious, and in need of a lot of stimulation, we eventually decided to give him a playmate, so we began volunteering as a foster home for rescues. The day Brave Little Basset came to us, it was evident he’d been through a lot. But, as soon as he and Monster Puppy darted into the backyard to play, they become inseparable best buds. A few months later, Brave Little Basset became a permanent member of our family.
Just like siblings, they tend to get on each other’s nerves, especially during car rides when one wants sit in the other’s spot. And when one gets his ears scratched or belly rubbed, the other squeezes in for his share just to make sure there’s enough love to go around. Of course, there always is.

Your bio says reading Johanna Lindsay’s Fires of Winter began your love affair with romance. Johanna is one of a very few historical romance authors I read and my love affair is with her Mallory family novels.
Oh, I loved the Mallory family series. TENDER REBEL and GENTLE ROGUE were among the first historical romances I read.

Why did your muse lead you to write paranormal romance?
I love fantastical stories. I grew up reading Beowulf, The Illiad and The Odysessy, and legends about the Greek gods and goddesses. But, my all around favorite book was the Reader’s Digest anthology of the World’s Greatest Fairy Tales. Dark, brooding, and captivating they were definitely not of the Disney variety.
When I decided to write my own stories, the only thing I knew for sure was that the stories had to be romances. Happily Ever After endings are a must for me. Considering the type of stories I naturally gravitate toward, penning paranormal romances seemed a natural fit.

Are your events listed on your website in case folks want to see if you’ll be in their area?
Absolutely. My events are listed on my website: I also have a Facebook and a Pinterest obsession, so I can be found hanging out on those sites.

Kristal thanks for answering my questions. Good luck with this book and all your future books too!
Thank you so much. I’ve enjoyed chatting with you and I appreciate your well wishes. Happy Tales to all!

Connect with Kristal - Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

MEET Kristal:
Southern born and bred, Kristal Hollis grew up amid cane fields and orange groves. Books fed her imagination, providing adventurous portals to ancient civilizations, medieval fiefdoms, alternate realities and futuristic worlds. Then, a friend gave her Johanna Lindsey’s FIRES OF WINTER, a historical romance which ignited a life-long love affair with romantic fiction.
 After earning a degree in psychology, Kristal has enjoyed career and volunteer endeavors that have included sales, banking, social services, and animal rescue. When a family medical situation required her to take a work sabbatical, she began penning deliciously dark paranormal romances as an escape from the real-life drama. Even though the crisis passed, her passion for writing continues.
 Currently, Kristal lives with her husband and two rescued dogs at the edge of the enchanted forest that inspires her stories.

Today's Gonereading item is:
Well of course a Virginia Woolf
Coffee Mug Click HERE for the buy page 


  1. Wonderful interview as always Debbie!

  2. Love her "The Call" day, sounds like a character out of Kristan Higgins book! While I haven't read all Johanna Lindsay's books I went through a stage where I read lots of them. Enjoyed the interview.

    1. Thank you Kathryn. I love Johanna's Mallory series, she's got such a way with words, I even enjoyed the heroine being 17 and the hero 30 LOL in many of them

  3. LOL I love "the call" stories. I'm totally giggling over that. Thanks so much for hosting Kristal, Debbie!

    1. It was my pleasure Anna you know I love both debut authors and Harlequin!!

  4. Oh this sounds fun, and the excerpt was great. I love that it has aspects of fairy tales!