About the Book
“First, do no harm.” Blake Ryan swore that oath to become a doctor. Ironic, given that he spent most of his thousand year life sucking souls out of other immortals.
Things are different now. Using regular shots of morphine to keep his inner monster at bay, Ryan has led a quiet life since the Second World War. His thrills now come from saving lives, not taking them.
Until a plane crash brings Aleria into his hospital. Her life is vibrant. Crack to predators like him. She’s the exact sort of person they would hunt, and thanks to a severe case of amnesia, she’s all but defenseless.
Leaving Aleria vulnerable isn’t an option, but protecting her means unleashing his own inner monster. Which is a problem, because his inner monster wants her dead most of all.
About the Author
Misha Gerrick lives near Cape Town, South Africa, and can usually be found staring at her surroundings while figuring out her next book.
If you’d like to see what Misha’s up to at the moment, you can find her on these social networks:
This had to be what dying felt like. Floating outside my body, waiting for that final link to my life to be severed, only vaguely aware of indescribable pain. More screams than I could count rose up around me. Hundreds of footsteps beat against tiles. I couldn’t open my eyes if I wanted to. Not when it was easier to listen and wait. People shouted for a doctor or an IV, or a thousand other things that made no sense. I listened to all the chaos, trying to untangle it in my thoughts.
Soon, I could go. The peace around me was so relaxing, completely out of place in the clamor I heard. I wanted it. To rest forever in that peace. Why not? There was a very good reason, but I couldn’t call it to mind.
A numb buzz shot through my body and shattered my serenity.
It happened again. Only this time was more of a sharp pulse. The third time jolted like lightning. The fourth…Hell. Suddenly, the screams were coming from me. My heart’s relentless thundering added to my torment.
My chest burned like fire. It hurt to breathe. Cold air drove down my throat and into my lungs, amplifying the inferno in my chest. My skin felt scorched. It couldn’t be. It wasn’t right.
I had to see. I had to understand why pain dominated my existence like this. My eyes were fused shut. My breaths grew shallow, trying to draw air when there was none. I tried to clench my teeth. I bit hard plastic. A pipe. Cold air suddenly forced back into my lungs, out of time with my own breathing. This was wrong. It wasn’t safe. I had to see. The best I got was a little fluttering of my lashes.
A high-pitched beep shot through my head. It repeated again and again. I wanted to reach over and slam my fist into its source. My arm wouldn’t lift. Something kept it trapped. A scream rose up from the depths of my soul, but the pipe jammed inside my throat stifled the sound. I only managed a whimper, trying my best not to gag. More air blasted into my lungs against my will. What was going on? I was trapped in my own body, but why?
I needed to move. I had to move. Now. Before… Even… Even though… Panic gripped me. The beeps increased at a frenetic pace. I needed to move. To be gone. Didn’t matter where. Just not here. Not defenseless. Not trapped.
The air sucked out of my lungs. I gasped, choking on nothing, strangled by invisible fingers. I tried to convulse my body. To twist myself free of what’s holding me.
The air rushed back in a cold flood. Seconds later it left, only to return in the same amount of time.
There was a rhythm to the air. In… out… in… out… The breaths were slow—sleep-like. I concentrated on this rhythm, striving to clear my head. If I wanted out, I needed to think. Calmly. Clearly. Eventually, those irritating beeps slowed. I tried to focus past the sound.
Voices buzzed about me, adding to my need to see, to do something to protect myself. No one seemed to pay attention to me. Good. I could use that to my advantage.
I centered my every thought on moving my little finger. It finally jerked, but collided against something solid. So the thing trapping my arm was physical and too heavy for me to lift. It was better to be trapped than paralyzed. With luck I could escape my restraints. I tried my other hand, but it was cemented stuck as well. Right leg. Left leg. Damn it! Both trapped. I had to move!
No, I needed to stay calm. I tried to make larger movements, biting the pipe in my mouth against the urge to scream in pain. There was no wiggle room.
Fearing that I might be blindfolded, I focused on blinking. It worked. My eyes opened and the blur faded, revealing ceiling tiles. Why would there be tiles? Where was the canvas of hospital tents? The distant sounds of bombs dropping? The power of their explosions rushing through my blood?
No. That wasn’t right. I wasn’t there.
Where was I, then?
How often do you hear from your readers and what do they say?
I’m on Wattpad, so I do get comments from them every now and then. 90% of the comments will be about stuff they like, but there will always be trolls. I just ignore those.
Is there anything special readers might learn from reading this book?
Hmm… I didn’t really write with a particular message in mind, although I guess one theme that comes through in the book is the fact that everyone has a good side, even if they have to dig really deep to get there.
Is there any diversity or underrepresented ideas featured in your book?
At the moment, I’m not really trying to write any particular diversity into my books. As a white person, it’s really difficult for me to gain enough of an understanding of other cultures to do POCs justice. I just don’t want to go down the line where I invariably offend someone because I don’t understand.
If I offend someone, I prefer knowing what I was doing at the time.
However, racism does have a tendency to come out in my books in some form or the other. In The War of Six Crowns, it’s the elves thinking they’re like a master race or something. In the world Endless is set in, the griffons think they’re entitled to kill (called “hunting” in the book) phoenixes because phoenixes have something they need.
What is your best marketing tip?
Understand WHY you’re following a particular strategy before you do it. Yes, I know you’re doing everything you can to sell more books, but what’s the step in between? (Because if there isn’t one, odds are you’re hard selling, and hard selling doesn’t work.)
If I had to find your main character in big crowd, what descriptions would you use as clues to help me search?
If they’re all in perfect health (not amnesiac or anything like that), Aleria will the one people gravitate toward. Nick will be the guy smoking in the corner (whether or not it’s allowed), watching her from the distance. Ryan… that’s tricky, depending on whether he’s able to ignore his self-loathing at the particular moment. But he’ll either be next to Aleria (if he can) or Nick (if he can’t).
What is your protagonist’s favorite animal?
Aleria’s is a hedgehog.
Ryan likes eagles. (Yeah, I know it’s actually a bird.)
Actual wolves are Nick’s favorite. Lycan wolves… not so much.