Wednesday, August 3, 2016

"Dreams in the Dark" by K. Margaret

Dreams in the Dark
(Dark Dreams Book 2)
by K. Margaret

Dreams in the Dark is the second book in the Dark Dreams series by K. Margaret. Also available: Dare to Dream (read my blog post) and Endless Nightmare.

Dreams in the Dark is currently on tour with Bewitching Book Tours. The tour stops here today for a guest post by the author, an excerpt, and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.

Whispers abound in Gehenna, Zeus knows the empusae is alive and he wants her dead. A war is coming, and a war is exactly what Empusa’s been training her pets for.
Deep down, Empusa only wants one thing - the demise of those who banished her to Hell, and she will stop at nothing to escape and exact her revenge. Traveling the Dream Realm, she spends countless hours searching for her ticket out, and she’s finally found him.
Krael Connolly, the Crown Prince of Gehenna, spends his days researching demons, particularly the elusive empusae, and his nights being visited by his Emmy in his dreams. As the Demon of Vengeance, he fights a battle with his inner demon every day, but his humanity continues to win out … although, the demon of his dreams is testing that control.
He endlessly fights against the dark, while she fights against the light. She calls to his demon as he struggles to bring out her humanity. She lives for chaos, blood and destruction, but he makes her experience something she'd never experienced before - emotions.
But ultimately, what will Empusa do?
Whatever hell she wants.

Book Video

Screams of torture and cries of agony surrounded Empusa. From her vantage point high atop a rock formation, inside her property line in the middle of Gehenna, the demoness looked out over the vast wasteland and liked what she saw. As far as the eye could see, numerous battles were taking place. Battles for food and power, and all of them to the death. The dark sky above shifted between varying shades of black, with a slight tint of red creating an eerie sight. The red grew thicker and darker by the minute, signaling the death of the demons below. As each one fell, the ground sought nourishment, inhaling the fallen’s essence and leaving behind a red mist. The sight comforted Empusa like a baby’s blanket would. She was raised on death and mayhem, became its lover until nothing was left of her soul but a darkened void that sought only one thing: the demise of those who banished her to the depths of Hell in the first place.
Another anguished cry split the air, causing a slow, devious smile to spread across the demoness’s blood red lips. By the gods, she loved the sound. The agonizing, helpless pleas of those of the damned who wouldn’t last another hour. Usually, Empusa forced such sounds from her fellow imprisoned demons, but she could be satisfied with someone else playing her a lullaby tonight.
Lowering herself against the hard, cold stone, Empusa stretched out on her back, one hand dangling over the edge into nothingness. She closed her eyes and allowed sleep to pull her into the Dream Realm.
Well over a century ago, Empusa had seduced the nightmare demon, Epiales, and stolen his powers, allowing her free reign over the realm. She could control it, manipulate it, and use it toward her advantage. For countless hours, she used it to search for the one who could free her from her prison. A prison her bitch of a mother tossed her into millennium ago when she was no more than a child.
Gehenna, the Demon Hell Realm, had been her home for so long, her childhood on Mt. Olympus became all but a distant memory. The sweet, loving child of her past got buried so deep, she no longer admitted to ever being such a creature. Living and surviving among the worst of the worst of the demon species, Empusa learned to become more than a survivor. She’d become the one demon all others feared, a force to be reckoned with. Not only did every being within the confines of Gehenna fear her, but they all wanted her. She’d become a legend amongst their kind. Living in a realm where once imprisoned you stayed for eternity, Empusa set her sights on the one thing no one before her ever accomplished. Escape.
The cries echoing through the night vanished the deeper into sleep she went. Soon she found herself standing in the center of a long, white hallway. Doors of the same nondescript color lined up on either side of her as far as the eye could see. She stood there for a moment, deciding on which direction she wanted to go. Epiales must seriously miss the power to control such a place. How lonely it must be to not be able to escape the prison he currently resided in. Not that Empusa cared of the hell she placed upon him. He’d possessed a power she needed, so she stole it. Out of all her weapons, it was possibly her favorite in the endless battle she fought.
The toe of her thigh-high black boot tapped with impatience against the white marble floor. The one man she wanted to be available to her wasn’t. Empusa didn’t know what time it was on the realm he resided in, but she didn’t care. She specifically came for him. The need to see him, to touch him, to taste him left her off kilter most of the day. Empusa did not appreciate the feeling. She didn’t like not having control over every aspect of her life. This particular male caused her to do the unexpected, like seek him out. The audacity of him not to be where she wanted him to be, when she wanted him to be there, grated on her nerves.
Her heart kicked in her chest as, one by one, each door around her vanished until only one remained. For a moment she thought she miscalculated and Krael would be available. Her body betrayed her with the mere thought, causing her heart to slam in her chest, but she knew right away it wasn’t Krael. The feeling in her chest changed, making it feel as if her heart plummeted to her feet signaling a disappointment she didn’t want or need. A snarl passed her lips and the urge to kill something invaded her thoughts. How dare he make her feel things? It was a good thing no one was around to witness her behavior. If there had been, she would have killed them. No way would she allow anyone to think of her as weak.

Guest Post by the Author
Writing a Series
On more than one occasion I have cursed myself an idiot. I mean what was I thinking when I decided to write a series? Then I remember, I’m crazy.
Dark Dreams started off as an idea of a short series, maybe three or four books that weaved around a handful of characters. I didn’t even have a series plot idea, I just knew I had voices in my head that wanted their stories told and their lives happened to overlap.
Then I started writing.
The short series has turned into at least ten books racing around in my head, with new characters popping up at the strangest moments demanding their stories be told. While each book will be a stand-alone read, a series plot also appeared, making me even more excited (and more petrified).
Writing a series has become one of the most challenging and rewarding things I have ever attempted. Not only do I need to keep track of all my characters and their interactions, I need to make sure there doesn’t end up being a plot hole so big you could flatten a tire on it, or worse, get sucked into oblivion never to return. One of my biggest pet peeves as a reader is when more questions get asked and none of the previous ones have been answered. I keep this in mind when I’m writing. If I don’t like something as a reader, I won’t put it out there as a writer.
Did I mention earlier that I’m crazy? Every character in the Dark Dreams series is connected in one way or another, either through family, relationships, or friendship. I think my brain might have exploded when I decided to make a string chart of all my characters. (Don’t worry, I introduce them slowly. Last thing I want is my readers’ brains to explode!)
One thing I love about a series is that, even when a character’s main story is over, it doesn’t mean it’s the last we see of them. As a reader, I get excited to see old characters come back in the picture. As a writer, it’s like getting to hang out with an old friend again. With the way my characters’ lives intersect, you’ll get to see a lot of familiar faces as the series goes on.
I currently have three books out in the Dark Dreams series: Dare to Dream (Book One), Endless Nightmare: The Origin of a Demon (which focuses on the origin story of Empusa), and Dreams in the Dark (Book Two and the continuation of Empusa’s story). I’m working on the third book now, Lost Dreams, and hope to have it out summer of 2017.

About the Author
K. Margaret is a paranormal romance author living in Georgia. Her love for words, storytelling, and mythology started as a teenager and continues to grow. When she isn’t sucking down pots of coffee and writing, or hanging out with her teenage daughter, she can usually be found in front of her TV watching football, her other obsession.

Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win one of two paperback copies of Dreams in the Dark by K. Margaret or a $10 Amazon gift card.