Hi Lisa and welcome to HJ! We’re so excited to chat with you about your new release, New Moon!
Tell us about the book with this fun little challenge using the title of the book:
M is for a mate that seems
O is for Oaths of loyalty and love
O is for Old wounds not easily healed
N is for a New Life and New Chances to change your path.
Please share the opening lines of this book:
The bitter wind matched my mood. Snow still dusted the tops of the red mountains of Sedona, Arizona. Not my first choice of destinations, but Allen Caldwell was dead, and, sadly, my father’s desire to see the two werewolf Packs destroy each other hadn’t died with his old friend.
Please share a few Fun facts about this book…
- From the first book in the series, I had a clear picture in my head that the Nero Headquarters looked very similar to The Center from the TV show The Pretender. It was fun to finally get to go inside in this book.
- I was super nervous to write this book because Sebastian is the one character in the Moon Series that I get the most reader mail about, so to finally be inside his head made me nervous. I didn’t want to let anyone down. But once I wrote the first line, he really took over and I was shocked to see the world from his side of the chess board.
- This is the only book in the series where the hero isn’t a werewolf, so it was fun to play with the “mate” instinct, being the female’s problem this time…
- Isabelle was a blast for me to write because she says things I wish I would be brave enough to say in real life. LOL She comes from a tough background, curses like a sailor, and wasn’t afraid to call Sebastian out when he needed it. Loved writing her.
- Watching Sebastian finally find redemption was one of the coolest experiences I’ve ever had as a writer.
Was there a scene in this book that was harder to write than others?
Throughout the first 7 books of the Moon Series, Sebastian has been an enemy and also an occasional almost ally to the Pack in Reno. So being in his head, we finally got to see his true motivations and this particular scene came right after he had pointed a gun at the heroine. I almost took the scene out because I couldn’t figure out how to redeem that, but the next day I came back to the keyboard and this scene happened. I didn’t erase anything… ☺
I didn’t take the elevator down. The stairs were more private. That asshole had pointed a goddamn gun at me. He’d cocked it. And still my wolf was howling, crying out for her mate. I wanted to scream. The farther I got from him, the worse my heart ached.
Maybe the wolf would mellow out in time. I’d run back to my place, pack, and hit the road for Reno without ever looking back.
That was probably Sebastian’s plan from the beginning. He was a master manipulator. I had to give him that.
I hustled past the valet to the self-parking lot in the shadows. Inside my car, I blew out a pent-up breath and put the key in the ignition. Before I could start the engine, a hand tapped on my window.
There was Sebastian, shirtless, his dark eyes locked on mine. “Wait.”
He didn’t yell. He didn’t need to for my keen ears to hear him. Without moving a muscle, I asked, “Why? Give me one good reason.”
He put his hands up and slowly knelt to my level. “I don’t have one.”
I glared at him through the glass. “You’ll have to do better than that.”
He clenched his teeth but didn’t break eye contact. “I want…damn it.” He looked toward the back of the car.
I pressed the button, lowering my window, his scent intoxicating me. “You pulled your gun on me.”
His gaze snapped to my face. “And you didn’t defend yourself.”
“If you wanted me dead, you wouldn’t make a bloody mess in a hotel room, and besides, you didn’t have a silencer on it.” I shook my head slowly. “You’re too good to be sloppy.”
“How do you…”
I rolled my eyes. “How do I what?”
“Understand me.” He searched my face—for what, I had no clue. His voice was barely a whisper. “I was trying to protect you.”
“By aiming a gun at me?” I clucked my tongue. “That’s not usually how it works.”
He struggled to bite back a smile, and butterflies fluttered in my stomach. When he wasn’t a deadly asshole, he was way too handsome. He lifted his head, and his dark hair fell into his face. The smile was gone. Hunger burned in his eyes.
“My father ordered a hit on the last woman I cared about, simply to remind me he had the power.”
My heart thumped in my chest. “What does that have to do with pointing a loaded gun at me?”
“I was too weak to tell you to leave, so I let the gun do it for me. You’re in danger if you keep digging into Nero. I was trying to keep you safe.”
A laugh escaped my lips before I could stop it. “You’re obviously much better at killing than protecting.”
He nodded slowly. “True.”
“None of this explains why you’re out here shirtless asking me not to drive away.”
“Because…” He shook his head, staring at the pavement. “It doesn’t make sense.” He straightened up and took a step back from my car.
Damn, even in the dim lighting his muscled torso distracted me, the shadows accentuating every curve and angle.
“Until you stabbed me, I was excellent at”—he held up his right hand, extending a finger for each point—“lying, determining a course of action, and distancing myself from the job at hand.”
“And now?” I raised a brow.
“Now…” He groaned, cursing under his breath. His gaze met mine. “I’m confused and indecisive. I fucking hate it, and it could get us both killed.”
“I’m not sure what you want from me, but I’m not going to apologize.”
“An apology isn’t what I want.” He ground his teeth, his voice a hoarse whisper. “I’ve shielded you from my father for years, but now…I want you, Isabelle. And that could cost you your life. I came to say I lied to my father today, not to you. I couldn’t let you drive away without knowing. You were never a pawn. Not to me.”
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
What do you want people to take away from reading this book?
I want readers to believe there are always two sides to every story and that redemption doesn’t come easy, but it’s possible. And we all deserve it.
Thanks for blogging at HJ!
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Sometimes Fate plays dirty…
Jaguar shifter Sebastian Severino is an enigma. He lives alone, works alone, and will die alone. But the night he’s attacked by a female werewolf, nothing will ever be the same. And when his young niece is kidnapped, Sebastian, the deadliest assassin Nero has ever produced, will be forced to choose a side…
Isabelle Wood has never taken the easy path. As a bounty hunter and now a bitten werewolf without a mate, she’s searching for answers to her father’s disappearance while helping to lead an Alphaless Pack. The night she gets the opportunity to take out their enemy, with her blade at his throat, her wolf discovers her mate in the last person she can be with.
Meet the Author:
Lisa Kessler is an award winning author of dark paranormal fiction. Her debut novel, Night Walker, won a San Diego Book Award for Best Published Fantasy-Sci-fi-Horror as well as the Romance Through the Ages Award for Best Paranormal and Best First Book.
Her short stories have been published in print anthologies and magazines, and her vampire story, Immortal Beloved, was a finalist for a Bram Stoker award.