Monday, November 7, 2011
Haunted on Bourbon Street by Deanna Chase
Kindle Price: $3.99
Barnes and Noble
Jade loves her new apartment—until a ghost joins her in the shower.
When empath Jade Calhoun moves into an apartment above a strip bar on Bourbon Street, she expects life to get interesting. What she doesn’t count on is making friends with an exotic dancer, attracting a powerful spirit, and developing feelings for Kane, her sexy landlord.
Being an empath has never been easy on Jade’s relationships. It’s no wonder she keeps her gift a secret. But when the ghost moves from spooking Jade, to terrorizing Pyper, the dancer, it’s up to Jade to use her unique ability to save her. Except she’ll need Kane’s help—and he’s betrayed her with a secret of his own—to do it. Can she find a way to trust him and herself before Pyper is lost?
Deanna is a native Californian, transplanted to the slower paced lifestyle of southeastern Louisiana. When she isn’t writing, she is often goofing off with her husband in New Orleans, playing with her two shih tzu dogs, making glass beads, or out hocking her wares at various bead shows across the country. For more information and updates on newest releases visit her blog at www.deannachase.com.
On moving day I walked the two blocks to The Herbal Connection. The front window housed an elaborate book display of the title, Vampires of New Orleans. To the right were neat rows of Suck It wine with blood-tinged fangs on the labels. I grimaced. All signs led to the likelihood of just another tourist shop. Still, it was possible they had basic supplies I could work with.
As soon as I walked in I knew I’d found the perfect shop. The sandalwood scent dissipated and a gentle, salt-filled sea breeze tickled my senses. My favorite place on earth was the beach. Whoever ran the place was doing an excellent job. It took a highly skilled practitioner to cast an illusion tailored to each individual patron.
“Can I help you?” A southern drawl floated from the back of the shop. As she stepped from behind a display, my eyes settled on a more expensive, classier version of my Aunt Gwen. The two could almost be twins, except the shop lady had salon-dyed auburn hair and wore white linen slacks, topped off with a coral blouse, while Gwen had natural gray curls and always wore her standard red T-shirt and coveralls. Of course, Gwen road her tractor daily, and I had no trouble picturing this woman sipping mint juleps on a veranda.
I smiled. “Hello. Yes, I need a sage and cedar smudge stick if you have it.”
“Of course we do, dear.” She crossed the room and held out her hand. “I’m Bea, owner of the shop.”
My sweaty hand met her cool grip. “Jade. Nice to meet you.”
“Cleansing negative energy?”
She grinned. “You must be new in town.”
Looking down at my faded jeans and simple cotton T-shirt, I wondered if I had a fresh-from-Idaho vibe radiating off me. It was possible. I’d only been in New Orleans for a month. “Is it that obvious?”
She laughed. “No. I would have remembered if you’d been here before.”
Why? Did she have a photographic memory? While I’d been told my willowy frame and long strawberry-blond hair combined with my pale Irish skin was striking, I hardly stood out in the sea of characters who wound their way through the French Quarter on a daily basis.
She rushed to explain. “Most people who come in here don’t know what they’re looking at. I know almost everyone in New Orleans who has knowledge of the craft.”
Oh. Doing a simple cleanse was miles from using craft. I didn’t particularly like being mistaken for one who manipulated spells.
She hummed softly as she packaged my items, and when I handed her my credit card she peered at me. The beach breeze vanished, replaced by the sandalwood scent. A warm sensation wrapped around me in a slow circle. It took me a moment to realize it was coming from Bea. She was reading me with a witch’s spell. Instantly I dropped my barriers and sent out my senses. If she could read me, I could do the same to her. Only, I wasn’t a witch. Empaths don’t need spells to read other people.
What will readers like about your book?
It's a paranormal romance set in the French Quarter of New Orleans. The heroine is an empath, and she's been burned in most of her past relationships because she can easily read people's emotions. The hero has a secret ability of his own, so it interesting to see how they connect and work through their trust issues. All the while there is a ghost haunting the heroine and he's pretty jealous of the hero.
Interview with Deanna Chase
Why did you self publish?
I've been told by a few editors ghost stories weren't selling well. Plus, I'm already a small business owner, so the idea that I could run my own publishing business was very appealing.
What is your writing process?
I write at night on a set schedule with a rough outline. I'm mostly a pantster, but I have to know where I'm going otherwise I just end up browsing Facebook at one in the morning.
How long does it take you to write your first draft?
Two or three months.
What inspired you to write this particular story?
One night my husband and I were spending time in the French Quarter and a ghost tour went rambling by. At that moment the seed was planted, and the story started to take shape.