Interview & Giveaway: Karen Chance

January 4, 2010 Guests 41

Karen Chance was kind enough to stop by today and answer some questions about her upcoming urban fantasy anthology Inked (available January 5th) which I’ve been drooling over for months now (how gorgeous is that cover?) January 5th is a huge day for Karen because in addition to Inked, Death’s Mistress (Dorina Basarab, Book 2) is also releasing tomorrow and Karen has generously offered a copy of Death’s Mistress for one of you to win (see below for complete giveaway details).

image Karen Chance is the author of the Cassandra Palmer series and the Dorina Basarab series. She grew up in Orlando, Florida, the home of make-believe, which probably explains a lot. She has since resided in France, Great Britain, Hong Kong and New Orleans, mostly goofing off but occasionally teaching history. She is currently back in Florida where she plans to continue writing while dodging hurricanes (and occasionally drinking a few).




Book Description: Four of today’s hottest urban fantasy writers together for the first time! From today’s most provocative authors come four tales of urban fantasy and paranormal romance exploring body art that is more than it seems-in a world of magic and mayhem that always leaves its mark. This captivating tattoo theme surrounds each author’s popular characters and worlds: Karen Chance’s war mage Lia de Croissets, Marjorie M. Liu’s demon-hunter Maxine Kiss, Yasmine Galenorn’s Otherworld Intelligence Agency operative Camille D’Artigo, and Eileen Wilk’s Lupi world.


ATUF: “Skin Deep” is the title of your story in Inked. Can you give us a teaser of what it’s about?

KC: It’s about Lia de Croissets, a half-werewolf who works with the War Mage Corps, a kind of supernatural police force. Her boyfriend, a werewolf named Cyrus, goes missing about the same time that the corpses of other Weres start showing up having been skinned alive. The story is about her search for Cyrus while also attempting to find out who the killer is. I have the first chapter posted to my site at

Wolfesbane and MistletoeATUF: “Skin Deep” is a continuation of the characters you introduced in the Wolfsbane and Mistletoe anthology story “Rogue Elements” and the Strange Brew anthology story “Vegas Odds.”  What order should we read these in? Can “Skin Deep” be read as a stand alone?

KC: The order is “Rogue Elements”, “Vegas Odds” and “Skin Deep”, but I believe they all pretty much stand alone. I try to make all of my shorter pieces do so, as not everyone buys every anthology.



ATUF: “Skin Deep” is set in the same world as your Cassandra Palmer and Dorina Basarab series.  Any chance we’ll run into some familiar characters?

imageKC: Caleb crosses over, as does Sebastian. I think that’s all in this one, though. One of the things I like about doing the Lia stories is that they allow me to show a different side of the world I usually write. So while crossovers are possible, they probably won’t be frequent.

ATUF: How did you come up with the idea of the War Mage Corps?  And can you tell us a little about this supernatural police force?

KC: Every society of any complexity needs a peace keeping force of some kind, and it seemed reasonable that a magical community would need a strong one because of the abilities of the people they have to reign in. The War Mage Corps is therefore made up of mages with greater than usual powers, who are trained to keep the magical community safe and, as much as possible, law abiding. They tend to be a lot more autonomous than human police, with the ability to act in emergencies without direct orders from above. Think a bunch of supernatural James Bonds and you kind of have the idea. Of course, people with that kind of power can be dangerous if they get out of control themselves, which makes for some interesting story lines.

imageATUF: I loved the characters of Lia and Cyrus, any chance these two will eventually get their own full length novel? Or better yet their own series?

KC: Thank you, I enjoy writing both of them. As for their own novel, it’s something I would like to do, but that decision rests more with the powers that be at my publishing company than with me. I do plan to write more about them, though, in some format.

ATUF: What are some of the challenges unique to writing short stories/novellas as opposed to full length novels?  Do you have a preference?

KC: I vastly prefer writing novels. A short story has to incorporate all the aspects of a novel—characterization, plot, world building, etc.–in a much more compact form. I always find them far more challenging than doing longer works, although I always like my shorter pieces when they are finished.

ATUF: Do you have a favorite story in this anthology?

imageKC: I liked them all. I think it’s a very strong anthology with some great stories. And, no, I’m not just saying that because I’m in it!

ATUF: All of the stories in Inked involve tattoos. Do you have any tattoos, magical or otherwise, that you can share with us?

KC: No. I’m a certified coward. I’m afraid that the idea of getting stabbed by a needle several thousand times doesn’t appeal.

ATUF: I don’t think I’ve seen a cover for any of your books that aren’t gorgeous (the Cassandra Palmer covers are consistently stunning), but Inked has to be my favorite so far.  Did you have any influence on the final design?

KC: I have always been very fortunate in the cover art my books have received. And I was thrilled to discover that they’d decided to use Lia for the Inked cover. I hadn’t had any hints on that before I received it, so it was a very nice surprise. But other than for providing the subject, I can’t take any credit for the design.

ATUF: I love hearing about what my favorite authors are reading? Can you tell us some of your favorite urban fantasy books?

imageKC: Too many to name, really. There are some awesome authors out there right now. In paranormal romance, my favorite would have to be Nalini Singh, who does some great world building in her books (which is one of my favorite things). In UF, I’m enjoying Patricia Briggs Mercy Thompson series, which just seems to get better and better. And, of course, the ladies in the anthology with me—Marjorie Liu, Yasmine Galenorn and Eileen Wilkes—all rock!

ATUF: What projects do you have coming up next?

KC: Well, I’m not sure if “next” is the right word, as it’s coming out concurrently with Inked, but my second Dorina Basarab novel, Death’s Mistress, hits the shelves in January. I’ve also just finished a short story for the Chicks Kick Ass anthology, due out in 2011, and I’m currently working on the fifth Cassandra Palmer novel.

Thank you so much Karen for letting me pick your brain a little.  Come back anytime!

Books and anthologies by Karen Chance:

Cassandra Palmer series
1. Touch the Dark (2006)
2. Claimed By Shadow (2007)
3. Embrace the Night (2008)
4. Curse the Dawn (2009)

Touch the DarkClaimed By ShadowEmbrace the NightCurse the Dawn

Dorina Basarab, Dhampir series
1. Midnight’s Daughter (2008)
2. Death’s Mistress (2010)

Midnight's DaughterDeath's Mistress


On the Prowl coverWolfesbane and MistletoeMammoth Book of Vampire RomanceInked


Karen is giving away a copy of her new book: Death’s Mistress



Dorina Basarab is a dhampir—half-human, half-vampire. Subject to uncontrollable rages, most dhampirs live very short, very violent lives. So far, Dory has managed to maintain her sanity by unleashing her anger on those demons and vampires who deserve killing.

Back home in Brooklyn after the demise of her insane uncle Dracula, Dory’s hoping her life is about to calm down. But then she gets some visitors. A friend wants Dory’s help in finding a magical Fey relic, and the gorgeous vampire, Louis-Cesare, is desperate to find his former mistress Christine.

Dory and Louis-Cesare quickly discover that the same master vampire Christine is bound to is also rumored to be in possession of the relic. But when the master vampire turns up dead, they realize that there’s more at stake than a missing mistress. Someone is killing vampire Senate members, and if Dory and Louis-Cesare can’t stop the murderer, they may be next…

Read a sample chapter here. Look for Death’s Mistress on January 5, 2010!


  1. Open US residents only
  2. Must be a follower or subscribe via email (right sidebar)
  3. You must include your email – [at] is fine
  4. Leave a comment about this interview or answer the question: what would your magical tattoo look like?
  5. Entries must be received by Midnight MST on January 11th

41 Responses to “Interview & Giveaway: Karen Chance”

  1. Bethie

    Please count me in. Looks like a great read. I am a follower. My magical tatoo would be a unicorn. I have loved unicorns since I was a child.

    lizzi0915 at aol dot com

  2. jeanette8042

    I love Karen's books! Can't wait for her releases! All the covers look amazing!

    I'm a follower!

    lilazncutie1215 @

  3. Amanda Leigh

    I'm a follower and subscriber, and am from the US.
    This was a great interview. I love the Cassandra Palmer series. I haven't started the Dorina Basarab, Dhampir series yet, but I look forward to it!

    Amanda Leigh

  4. kalynnick

    I just became a follower!

    I finished reading the first book in the Dorina Basarab series a few days so I was very happy to hear there is a second book in the series. I'm glad Death's Mistress comes out tomorrow because I can't wait to get it!

    kalynnick AT yahoo DOT com

  5. CrystalGB

    Great interview. Death's mistress sounds wonderful. Love the cover.
    I am a follower.


  6. Sara M

    I already have five tattoos, so it would be cool if the blue stars on my wrists could have some powers. Since they're so close to my hands, maybe they could help me mold energy with my hands. If I had to get a new tattoo in order to have powers, I would get a lightning bolt filled in with the rainbow on the back of my neck to give me telekinetic powers.

    Sara M

    sara_UFblog [at] yahoo [dot] com

  7. jacabur1

    I am a US Follower and Email subscriber and am so stoked about the release of the new Dorina Basarab book by Karen. Thanks for allowing us to have this nice start to the New Year Abigail and Karen. I would have to say that am sorry could not have a magical tattoo because like Karen am too much not into pain on purpose and needles terrify me…. However if you let me use a temporary tat would be of a Ruby Ted Throated Hummingbird on my shoulder to signify that even though should not be able exist and thrive, like Dorina have learned to make the most of my strengths despite being abnormal in the scheme of things according to the rules of physics and mans laws….

    Jackie B Central Texas

  8. Danielle87

    Don't include me in the contest – not a US citizen.

    I just wanted to say how much I love Karen Chance & her 'Cassandra Palmer' series. So happy to read that she is currently writing the 5th book! YAY!

  9. Danielle87

    Don't include me in the contest – not a US citizen.

    I just wanted to say how much I love Karen Chance & her 'Cassandra Palmer' series. So happy to read that she is currently writing the 5th book! YAY!

  10. Tiah

    I would have a dragon on my back. I would gain strength from her and be able to kick some major booty. Plus she could jump off my back and turn into a real dragon in case I need some help. Oh and she would be holding some daisies, for no reason other than I am really girly and love flowers.

  11. donnas

    Great interview. Thanks Karen. I love the Cassie Palmer books and am glad to here theres a new one in process.

    bacchus76 at myself dot com

  12. Emily

    My magical tattoo would be an old style pistol crossed with a stick of dynamite (small arms and explosives.)

    whatbookisthat at gmail dot com

  13. Kate

    I love, love, love the Cassie Palmer series and Pritkin is my favorite!

    Seeing as how I have a Celtic sun tattoo on my lower back I would love a really cool crescent moon as well.
    [email protected]

  14. Hattie

    I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


  15. ck.twilighter


    # Must be a follower or subscribe via email (right sidebar)
    Yes to both!!=)

    # You must include your email – honu_369[at]yahoo[dot]

    # Leave a comment about this interview or answer the question: what would your magical tattoo look like?
    Karen Chance is genius and puts out great books!! If I had a magical tatt it would definitely be of Polynesian origin. I am Hawaiian and I have traveled to Aotearoa…. Thus, I have a great respect for the traditional tatts!!=) I wonder where I would have it placed!!=)

  16. Jen

    Thanks for a great interview Abigail. And thanks for stopping by Karen.

    Karen's books have been in my TBR pile for way too long. *kicks self* This is the motivation I needed to finally start reading.

    Please count me in.


  17. ParaJunkee

    Great interview hun. My magical tattoo would be some kind of wild cat – you know my totem or something.

    parajunkee at gmail dot com

  18. Sweet Vernal Zephyr

    Please include me, I am a follower.

    I think I would want my magical tattoo to be done in that new uv ink… and be a dragon that circles my waist so at my belly button he is licking his tail and his wings are spread across my lower back.

  19. van_pham

    Please enter me, i'm a follower and email subscriber.

    Great Interview! I read Midnight's Daughter and i loved it…can't wait to read Death's mistress.

    Van P.

  20. lingeorge

    I am so looking forward to continuing Dorina's story! I would have a Dragon on the outside of my left thigh. This would be because I am a dragon, and the tattoo appears in my human form.

    I subscribe at: linda [at} gordonvalley [dot] com

  21. Martha Lawson

    I don't care for tattoes on myself- so that's out for me!!

    Karen is a new author for me so I'd love to win!!

    I am a follower.

  22. misskallie2000

    I am not into tattoes, to old.LOL

    I have not read any of Karen's books but this sounds like a winner. The interview was really great. 4 great authors in one book.

    I am a google follower
    1 also subscribe via email

    misskallie2000 at yahoo do com

  23. Cathy M

    Hi Karen, I love your stories, and just finished reading Midnight's Daughter. My tattoo would be a hummingbird.

    a follower

    subscribe by email


  24. Daelith

    I'm looking forward to starting this series. I really enjoy the Cassandra Palmer series.

    My magical tattoo would be a Celtic dragon knot.

    I'm a follower.

    cheleooc at yahoo dot com

    Thank you

  25. trittn87

    I love the Cassandra Palmer series, so I have just recently bought Midnight's Daughter, which is currently in my "to be read" pile. I'm definately looking forward to the new series though!

    As for a tattoo, I love the idea of getting some giant wings on my back.

  26. Book Whisperer

    Mine would have to be a celtic knot…. I have been very anxiously awaiting reading this new release. So exciting… Thanks for the contest

  27. photoquest

    I would love to be a winner in this contest, this would be a new author for me. If i had a magical tatoo it would be a 1/2 moon and 1/2 sun.
    I am a follower and subscriber