World building and character evolution play large roles in Leigh Ann Edwards’ latest installment in her Witch and Demon Hunter series.

I’m happy to be on the Tule blog today to talk about Dark Knight’s Kiss, book three in my Witch and Demon Hunter series. I’ve been working toward meeting a deadline for the fourth book in this series and finally submitted the manuscript after having to get an extension. Phew! Now I wait to hear what my developmental editor thinks. No matter how many books an author writes (this is book 24 for me) that’s somewhat nerve-wracking. An editor can love it and think your manuscript requires minimal edits. But on occasion there are problems and major editing is necessary. 

I very much appreciated a quick Q&A topic for this blog. I have a definite case of what I call book-brain. (Where your mind has been maxed out and it’s sometimes hard to form full thoughts much less be creative.) 

What inspired the new direction or themes explored in this latest installment of your series?

I’m not sure it was an inspiration, but I’ve always loved Halloween. As a child, my mum made some great costumes for me and my three siblings. I was excited to carve pumpkins into jack-o-lanterns and go trick-or-treating in the town where I lived. It was so small. How small was it? Small enough you could go to every house in about an hour and that was back when people made you sing before you got the treat. Those popcorn balls and caramel apples were so worth it. Yes, I’m that old. 

I enjoyed hosting Halloween parties with my daughters when they were young. We decorated the whole house––even the bathroom. When they were teenagers we made the decorations and games a lot spookier. I still look forward to handing out treats, and seeing my grandchildren in their Halloween costumes. I don’t make anyone sing, but I also don’t make popcorn balls or caramel apples. 

Although Dark Knight’s Kiss isn’t being released in October, or a Halloween themed book per se, I thought it would be fun for Fiona and Lorcan, the main characters, to attend a company Halloween party. 

LAMB, the agency they work for (locating and assessing magical beings), employs people with supernatural abilities, thus everyone had to know it wouldn’t be a typical Halloween celebration. Especially during the night when the veil between worlds is thinnest and Fiona, a witch, and Lorcan, a half-demon, can both see ghosts. I haven’t even mentioned the venue is a remote historic inn near an old burial ground. 

Dark Knight’s Kiss begins at the Halloween party. They’re also celebrating Lorcan’s birthday. It turns out to be an interesting night and what happens there forms the plotlines for the entire story. 

Can you share any insights into the world-building process for this book? Were there any particular challenges or exciting discoveries along the way?

Because this is the third book in the series, a lot of the world-building has already been established. The main characters and most secondary characters have been introduced, with a few new people or magical beings added in each installment. 

Fiona and Lorcan also live in modern day Boston making it’s easier for readers to envision the world they live in. However, because they’re time travelers, I enjoy creating the places and times they visit. For this book some research regarding knights was required–– their armor, weapons and history. I also had to learn a little about medieval/gothic architecture.

One part of the story was particularly intriguing for me as Lorcan and Fiona journey to Camelot and meet Merlin, the magician. I wish I’d been able to write a longer storyline in Camelot but staying within allotted word count is always a struggle for me. 

How do the characters evolve or face new challenges in this book compared to previous instalments?

That’s a great question. One, that I’m trying to figure out how to answer without giving too much away. In book one, Dark Irish Demon, Fiona and Lorcan initially adamantly oppose being forced into a partnership. In book two, Highland Dark Magic, after a few bumps, they learn to work together. They’re now LAMB’s best team. Although they’re complete opposites in nearly every way imaginable (Fiona is more stand-offish and Lorcan’s the in-your-face type for starters) they’ve become close friends. 

Something happens in this book that turns everything around changing and challenging every aspect of their relationship. But it also moves it forward. 

In this instalment, readers also meet, or for those who’ve read my Witches of Time series, they are reunited with Cal and Ainsley, Fiona’s son and daughter-in-law. Fiona and Lorcan journey back to post Civil-War Boston where Cal, Ainsley and family live. 

Fiona is shocked to learn Cal and Lorcan have history and they are not on friendly terms. Since her family isn’t even aware Fiona works for LAMB (they think she runs an apothecary shop in twenty-first century Boston) a lot of secrets are revealed that create drama and more conflict. 

Are there any key plot points or character arcs in this book that you’re particularly proud of or excited for readers to experience?

Wow! Is that a loaded question and also one I have to tip-toe around not to give spoilers. I would never want to downplay the previous books in the series in any way, because they’re great stories and vital to how everything plays out, but the plot points and character arcs in this book are pivotal. 

I’m super excited for readers to experience what happens in this installment. ARC readers have been reaching out telling me their thoughts which is always rewarding to an author. I’m dying to say more, but I can’t. 

As far as character arcs, the hero and heroine have changed a lot, but Lorcan more noticeably. They grow immensely in Dark Knight’s Kiss, but I’m particularly proud of Lorcan’s character arc. 

Without giving away spoilers, can you tease any upcoming developments or hints about the future direction of the series that readers can look forward to?

I’ve struggled with possible spoilers in the previous questions so that might be a challenge. I’ll just say, Lorcan and Fiona’s relationship is constantly changing and will continue to surprise readers. 

It even surprised me, right from the beginning. I don’t believe I’ve ever written characters who simply ran with the storyline. I feel like I’m mostly just along for the ride. 

That said, I had to reel them in a little in the next book. Having magical abilities, going back in time, and dealing with often monstrous creatures is never smooth-sailing. But in Ghost Ship’s Dark Spell, Fiona and Lorcan are in for some rough seas. Is that enough of a tease?

I’m looking forward to being back here in September to talk more about book four and the Witch and Demon Hunter series. Until then have a wonderful summer making memories.

Magical wishes,

Leigh Ann

About the Author.

Leigh Ann Edwards’ fascination with history, romance, magic, fantasy, time-travel and Ireland sparked her interest in creating the Irish Witch Series and her growing collection of published novels. Growing up in a very small Manitoban village on the Canadian prairies left a lot of time to create stories and let her imagination soar.

An author for nearly thirty years, Leigh Ann has almost completed writing her fourth series with Tule Publishing and will soon begin a fifth. Besides writing, Leigh Ann loves spending time with her four grandchildren, reading, traveling, doing intuitive readings and reiki. Leigh Ann and her husband, their two cats, one large dog and their Boston Terrier puppy, live near Edmonton Alberta, Canada.

1 Comment

  1. This is a wonderful adventure. It is an inspiring read for woman over 30. I can’t wait to read her next book. Each of her adventures are wonderful ntrips for the imagination

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