The Allure of Shadows


Hi Everyone!  Thanks so much to the Embrace the Shadows gals for inviting me to guest blog.  I love paranormal stories – I love reading them and I love writing them.  When Barbara asked me to blog here, I thought what a great opportunity to find out what lovers of the paranormal find so alluring about the shadows.


Is it the intriguing world-building and mythologies created to explain the world the characters inhabit?  As an ancient history buff, I love weaving real-life history into my stories to make a world I can lose myself in. 


Maybe it’s the intense emotional conflicts which usually revolve around life and death?  I’m fascinated by all the ways there are to tell the story of good battling evil.


Is it that paranormal stories push the boundaries and create that wonderful sense of escapism?  They have an edge of danger, and action and suspense that leaves our hearts thumping a little harder.  They’re scarier, more dangerous and always sexier.


Or is it just the larger than life characters?  Those sexy alpha males and the kick-butt heroines who love them.  Paranormal stories have characters that walk the fine line between good and so very, very bad, whether it’s a sexy, mysterious vampire or a wild werewolf.  Or maybe a hot-blooded dragon.  Both the heroine and hero in my soon-to-be-released paranormal short story are dragons.  I just have to share that my dragons are not shapeshifters – I couldn’t find a way to make scales sexy!


So, I’d love to hear what lures you most to the shadows?  And if it’s one or all of the above, I hope you’ll check out my Nocturne Bites, Savage Dragon.


Savage Dragon coming July 2009 from Silhouette Nocturne Bites:


They call him the Savage Dragon…

An implacable knight of the Order of the Dragon, holders of the ancient magic of Earth, Metal, Fire, Wood and Water, Rordan Sarkany is a legendary hunter of dragons gone wild. Burdened by years spent hunting friends who’ve let their magic, and the lure of immortality, change them into the untamed beast inside, he fears he’s close to succumbing to the darkness himself. Until, on the hunt for a vicious wild, he collides with tough female knight, Kira Bethlen.

A woman torn by sorrow and an irresistible fascination…

Wild with grief at the loss of her beloved brother, Kira Bethlen will not believe he turned and blames his death on the Order’s most merciless knight. All her life she has been drawn to Rordan, feels her dragon yearn for him, but she refuses to be attracted to her brother’s killer. As they reluctantly unite to bring down the wild, Kira is forced to see beyond her hatred, and Rordan’s fearsome reputation, to the man beneath. Trapped by their deadly foe, they will both learn what it takes to tame the Savage Dragon.


Anna Hackett

21 Responses to “The Allure of Shadows”
  1. Suzanne Rock says:

    Hi Anna! Great blog! Thanks so much for stopping by! Gosh, it’s so hard to pick one thing that I like most about paranormals. Hmmm…I think I have to go with the worldbuilding. For me, I love creating new worlds in my writing and really appreciate well crafted worlds in my reading. I love it when I can get lost in a different time and place – if only for a few hours. I tend to shy away from novels that are too “realistic”. When I read about different times/places/creatures it really adds to the whole book reading experience for me. I tend to lose myself more readily and am more satisfied when I’m done with the story.

  2. Welcome, Anna! I’ve loved dragons since I was a teen devouring Anne McCaffery’s Pern series. The twists you’ve used in your upcoming Bites sound so exciting. I can’t wait to read it!

  3. Natasha A. says:

    Hi Anne!
    I definitely read for the escapism! It doesn’t have to be paranormal, but I do love it! I love the imagination involved.

  4. Anna Hackett says:

    Hi Sue. Great job to you, Dawn and Barbara on Embrace the Shadows and thanks again for inviting me. I love worldbuilding too and when it’s done well, it really lets you escape. I think that’s why paranormal is so popular – you know you’ll be swept away somewhere completely different to everyday life.

  5. Anna Hackett says:

    Hi Barbara!
    Big thanks to you for asking me here today. I have to confess I’d never given dragons much thought and never guessed I’d never write a dragon story. Mostly because of that ‘couldn’t make them sexy’ thing. But then an idea popped into my head (as those pesky story ideas do) and I knew I wanted to put some twists on the regular dragon myths.

  6. Anna Hackett says:

    Howdy Natasha,
    I couldn’t agree more on the escapism. Paranormal stories are guaranteed to take you out of the ordinary. I get some of my escapism outside the paranormal genre as well – my second love is fast-paced action/adventure!

  7. Anna Hackett says:

    Me again. It is late Thrusday night here in Australia. I’m heading to bed, but in the morning I’ll be back to check out who else has stopped by.

  8. My father was an alcoholic and my childhood was spent worrying about what each day would bring. I discovered books were a wonderful escape and was rarely seen without a book in my hand. (Actually, I was rarely seen period if I could find a good hiding place!)

    I was drawn to fantasy first. That lead to romance, science fiction and even horror. When I discovered paranormal romance, I discovered a genre that managed to include all my interests in one!

  9. Vivi Anna says:

    Great post Anna!

    I love me some paranormal. It came from my love of horror as I grew up. I started reading Koontz and King when I was 12. I think for me it was to escape my boring, middle class upbringing. I wanted excitement and danger. As a teen I did seek out danger. LOL, I’m surprised my parents survived those times.

  10. Chandra Ryan says:

    Hi Ann,

    I’d have to go with the escapism as well. I love my life, but it’s nice to take small mental vacations now and then 🙂 And you can’t get farther away than dragons, vampires, and werewolves.

  11. Karyn D. says:

    Hi Anna,
    Great post! When I read a book, no matter the genre, I read it for all the reasons you stated. I love the worlds that authors are able to create and I love the larger than life heros and the strong women they love uniting to conquer the evils of the world. When you combine all these elements you have a fantastic escape from the mundane. Plus who doesn’t love page after page of searingly hot immortal beefcake. Am I right or what? I can’t wait for July, I am really looking forward to reading Savage Dragon.

  12. Susan Falk says:

    Hi Anna, thanks for blogging here! Your novella sounds intriguing as I admit I’m a sucker for the forced to be allies type of story.

    As far as reading, I read anything and everything to escape. I think with fantasy/paranormal/sci-fi it’s the worlds created along with the story that get me. There’s something about the danger, too, of something not human that attracts me to the paranormal genre.

  13. Hello Anna!

    For me, it’s the whole escapism thing that attracts me most to the paranormal. The worlds created in paranormal works are so completely different from the life I lead and world I live in. So it’s nice to read about a world that someone else created, something nothing like mine. Of course, that’s not the only thing that draws me to the paranormal. The danger, the characters, the situations, they’re all intriguing. There’s always something lurking in the shadows, and I always want to know what it is.

    I think I’ll enjoy Savage Dragon. I haven’t read that many books about dragons, so it’ll be fun to see how your story turns out.

  14. Anna Hackett says:

    Barbara –
    You are an inspiration for overcoming such a tough childhood. Mine was nothing like yours, but I too used books as an escape and was always with a book in hand (sometimes even at the dinner table!)

  15. Anna Hackett says:

    Hi Vivi –
    Thanks for stopping by. Koontz and King at 12! You started young. By the way, lovers of paranormal, if you haven’t checked out Vivi’s Nocturne series ‘Valorian Chronicles’ you should.

  16. Anna Hackett says:

    Hello to Chandra –
    Thanks fo visiting my personal blog and EtS. I love my life too (particularly my wonderful husband). Mini vacations – I like that!

  17. Anna Hackett says:

    Karyn –
    I hearing you on immortal beefcake. Did you check out some of the covers here at EtS? Hot, hot, hot. I don’t have the cover art yet for Savage Dragon – but some beefcake wouldn’t hurt (-: Thanks for looking forward to July!

  18. Anna Hackett says:

    Susan –
    Aren’t ‘force allies’ stories great? My heroine, Kira is not happy to have to work with Rordan and isn’t afraid to show it. Makes for some great conflict.

  19. Anna Hackett says:

    Nightdweller –
    Cool name, by the way. It sounds like ESCAPISM is a big reason everyone reads, and escapism with a touch of danger, why we like paranormal. I hope you enjoy Savage Dragon! I hadn’t read any dragons either, so was suprised when I started writing a story about them. But I took some traditional elements then mixed it up, and end up with some sexy, hot-blooded heroes and heroines.

  20. Hehehe, thanks. I like it too 😛

  21. elove says:

    Hi Anna, congrats on your guest gig – it’s a great post…

    I’m here a little late, but I love a paranormal for all of those reasons – but I really like the allure of a slightly naughty man. C’mon, those clean-shaven boys look nice, and might open the car door for you, but there’s something irresistable about a man who isn’t predictable, and rarely good.

    Well, I’m sure he’s VERY good at some things 🙂

    Can’t wait to grab Savage Dragon in July…

    E x

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