For the Murder
(The Murder, #1)
Published by: City Owl Press
Publication date: February 22nd 2022
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy
A lone crow is a dead crow.
That’s what Diana Van Doren, exiled crow shifter, has always believed. The last murder of crow shifters known to exist wouldn’t accept her into the flock, leaving her vulnerable. Worse, her kleptomaniacal father’s schemes put them in a demon’s crosshairs. Without the support of the murder, Diana fears death will come all too quickly. So when an opportunity to steal a rare blade that can kill anything—even demons—crosses their path, she decides to play her father’s games one last time.
However, she isn’t the only one hoping to take the blade. Sasha Sokolov, a clairvoyant, has been forced from childhood to serve the very demon hunting Diana and her family. After two decades of service, his boss finally offers him what he can’t refuse: freedom. All he has to do is bring in the knife and the Van Dorens, and his bloodline will be free from serving the demon forever.
When Diana and Sasha meet at the auction, they strike an uneasy alliance. Diana sees a way to finally be welcomed into the murder. Sasha sees an opportunity to get his freedom. To get what they want, only one of them can walk away with the blade. But when their magic inexplicably links as they reluctantly work together to steal the knife, betraying each other for their own ends may no longer be an option.
Interview with Gabrielle Ash…
BCH: Thank you for joining us on the blog today. We’re so excited to have you! The cover for your book is so eye-catching! Do you know who the artist is?
GABRIELLE: Didn’t they do such a great job on it? MiblArt has done all of my covers so far. They also helped me design my bookmarks, and they were such a pleasure to work with.
BCH: So, urban fantasy… What led you to choose that genre? Do you write other genres as well?
GABRIELLE: The thing that drew me to urban fantasy initially was the whole ‘masquerade’ trope—the hidden world and magic beneath the world we know. Cell phones and social media have made this trope less popular, but there have been a lot of cool subversions of it where the magic is already part of the mundane. There are so many possibilities with magic in contemporary worlds, and I love playing with those possibilities!
BCH: When you switched from teaching to writing, was it a scary transition? What made you take the leap?
GABRIELLE: I had wanted to leave education for a couple of years before I actually left. So when my husband graduated from medical school and got into a residency program out of state, I decided to leave the profession when we moved. Since I was facing a lot of new things all at one time, leaving teaching for a writing career was actually a comfort instead of something scary because I love to write.
BCH: Can you tell us a little about the inspiration behind your latest book For the Murder?
GABRIELLE: There were a couple of things that inspired For the Murder, or at least things I wanted to do when I set out to write the book. Going into it, I knew I wanted to do a different take on the fated mates trope, and I knew I wanted crow shifters. I also wanted to explore what safety means, and what it means to truly feel not only physically safe, but emotionally safe.
BCH: How hard is it to name your characters?
GABRIELLE: I struggle hard with names. Most of my characters are [NAME] in my drafts for several weeks until I figure out what to call them. A few times a character has come to me with a name already, like Sasha and Diana, but most of the time, that isn’t the case.
BCH: Are you a plotter? Or do you write by the seat of your pants?
GABRIELLE: I am a plotter in that I have a vague outline with the big plot points mapped out before I write, but I leave how we get to the points up in the air.
BCH: Your bio says you have a dog. Does your pooch ever try lending a paw when it’s time to write?
GABRIELLE: I do! He is a shorkie named Maynard, and he’s 12 years old. He mainly sleeps on my feet when I’m working, and in that regard he does help because my feet are always cold.
BCH: Is there anything else you’d like to share with us about For the Murder or about writing?
GABRIELLE: While For the Murder is the start of a series that revolves around safety and what it means, it’s also about a lonely man, a reckless woman, and a teenage boy with a heart of gold trying to steal a knife, and I hope readers have fun.
Gabrielle Ash is an author and perpetually tired mom of four from the great state of Texas. Born into a family of mischievous storytellers, she grew up listening to tales of the chupacabra, ghosts, and other things that go bump in the night, never entirely confident that she wouldn’t get eaten if she went out to the creek after sunset.
She earned a Bachelor of Arts in English, which ultimately landed her in a high school classroom to teach writing and coach the debate team. Dismayed at her inability to wear sweatpants to work, she left the classroom and now dedicates her brain power to books and taking care of her daughters.
When not writing, she spends time with her husband, four daughters, and their dog. The Family Cross is her debut novel.
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