Friday, December 23, 2011

Guest post and Review: Lady of the Drake by JV Altharas

Today I have a guest post by the fantastic author of Lady of the Drake, JV Altharas.  This is an exciting erotic tale of an ancient dragon and his newly discovered mate.  But more on that later.  Let's have a look at what J V has to say about how he creates his characters.  Take it away J V!!

I was recently asked how I create new characters. For me, the most important aspect is being able to relate to them. I need to be able to get inside their heads to make them compelling and realistic, and to do that I need to connect with some aspect of their personalities. Often, that means including a little slice of myself or someone I’ve known in life. That little bit might never make it on the page, but it needs to be there.

Then it’s time for some back story. We all have events that change the course of our lives or the way we look at the world. I like to add a few of those and use them to help shape the character’s personality and my understanding of their perspective.

Every character also has a job to do in the story, and that has to shape them as well. Whatever lewd or ludicrous situations I have in store for them, they need to be the kind of people who would do the kinds of things they’re going to do.

I’m also a big believer that every character needs a few negative qualities. It’s tempting to write the hero with a pure heart and honor that never wavers, but characters that are all good or evil feel like they’re made of cardboard to me. Real people are far more complicated than that, and I think fictional people have to be as well.

Top that off with a few key personality traits. Are they quiet or extroverted, passive or aggressive, dominant or submissive, greedy or charitable, honest or deceitful? Nobody is all one or the other, but these qualities define how people interact with others and really solidify the character for me. Hopefully they’re feeling fleshed out and realistic at this point, and it’s time to put them in the story.

Once I start writing a piece, I find the characters really take on lives of their own. I get to know them, and after a while I’m just putting them in situations and letting them react. They become more like actors who are playing the parts the way they choose. That’s the really fun part for me, because I get a shift in my perspective that really helps me make the story more dynamic. Put a given person in a given situation and there are only a few ways they’re going to react, and the choices the author makes for them are what breathe life into a story.

Every scene is a chance to get to know them better. When I’m writing a longer piece, I try to keep an open mind and only a loose idea of where the story is going. I can’t count how many times I’ve gotten a great idea for a twist from one of my characters.

Ok...I'm buried....literally under my TBR pile goodness for tour dates that have to be filled or my pile would just keep growing!  I'm not complaining though.  One of the wonderful benefits of blogging is getting to know great authors and great works, such as this book here.  I loved this book but I have a thing for dragons.  And this one was erotic, saucy, and beautifully written.  I was taken aback by the original concepts thrown at me from this unique novel.  Let's take a quick peek before my review.

Lana's village is being consumed by a devastating plague. The last hope for a cure lies in a forbidden forest claimed by dragons.
Deep in the woods she finds a breathtaking realm of sorcery and untamed passion. Alaron, the seductive keeper of the forest, offers what she seeks and more.
She’s swept up in the mysterious keeper’s world of secrets, lust and magic; but the entire kingdom is dying--and there may be no way to save it!
Lana heard the waterfall in the distance, speeding up with a second wind. The pool was as breathtaking as she remembered, a hundred feet across and fed by a spring flowing from a huge crack in the sheer cliff above. She dropped her pack on the shore and sat for a moment, bracing herself for the cold swim ahead. She took off her boots and breeches, letting down her fiery hair, catching sight of what looked like a pile of gear on the opposite shore. Her heart skipped a beat when a man burst from beneath the water with a handful of leafy, purple plants. Lana stood frozen in disbelief. In the middle of the wilderness, where she’d never seen another living soul, someone had beaten her to the dragon bane when she needed it most. She didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.
The man swam towards his gear, getting out of the water and laying the plants out to dry on a rock warmed by the sun. Lana stood silent and unnoticed, enjoying the view. Even at a distance her eyes caught the sunlight playing across his body, highlighting every ripple of flesh, allowing his thick cock to gleam in the sun. Perhaps this wouldn’t be a wasted trip, after all.
He noticed her as he turned and dove back in, swimming toward her. Lana was mesmerized as he cut through the water. Soon the man stood just off shore in water to his waist, matted dark hair showing a hint of curl, with a cockeyed smile that melted her. Lana was struck with the fact that she stood there wearing nothing but a tunic that barely reached mid-thigh.
He grinned. “Here to poach my garden again?”
She folded her arms. “Your garden? As far as I can see, this is open forest. Unless I’ve got my facts mixed up, only dragons claim these woods, and you seem a bit short on wings and scales.”
He laughed. “Ah, then you challenge my claim. Well then, I suppose it’s everyone for themselves. There’s more down there, but you’ll have to beat me to it.”
“Very well,” she replied. “Just turn around so I can finish undressing.”
“And if I don’t?”
Lana met his playful gaze, feeling a twinge between her legs, saying, “Then I’ll wonder if I can trust you to be a gentleman once I’m in the water.”
Stroking his chin, he said, “Hmm, I suppose that does present you with a choice to make. Still, the water is lovely. And who would expect to find a gentleman out here in the wilderness?” He made no move to turn away, daring her with his eyes.
Lana tested the water with a toe, shocked to find it as warm as a bath, wondering why she hadn’t noticed the steam rising from it earlier. The young healer decided she’d come too far to leave without her prize, and there were far worse things than a naked swim with a handsome stranger. Lana stripped off her loose tunic, revealing a toned body and a pair of firm breasts. She held his gaze, wading into the water to meet him, nipples constricting as she got a closer look.
If he wanted a race, he’d get one. She dove past him with a smirk and swam toward the falls, source of the turbulent water the plants required to thrive. It took a few dives to gather the dragon bane, and Lana grew more playful each time. The clear water gave her a shameless look at her rival, and she was more than a little distracted. Lana was tempted to throw herself at him without so much as exchanging names, a thought that was brazen even for her.
He laid the plants out to dry and rejoined her in the water, saying, “That’s four to you and six to me, I believe.” Four plants wouldn’t treat half the sick, but she had other needs to attend at the moment.
Lana took a handful of his cock, asking, “Is there anything I can do to thank the mysterious stranger for sharing?”
“That’s not very ladylike,” he said.
She responded with a kiss, feeling his cock begin to stiffen in her hand. It was big, maybe too big, but she wasn’t one to turn from a challenge. With a smile, she said, “A lady would have stayed on shore in the first place.”
A broad grin split his face as he beckoned her towards the falls, swimming away. The water was near scalding, steam bellowing out where cool mist should be spraying. Every nerve in her flesh was alive, screaming for his touch. Lana followed him through the curtain of water, secluded from the world around them, where he lifted her to sit on a rock ledge at the water line. Tired of waiting, she locked her ankles behind his back; squeezing him in a passionate embrace. For a long moment they tasted each other, his hands exploring her responsive flesh.
He teased an earlobe with his teeth, caressing her swollen mound with his fingers. “Is this what you had in mind?” he asked.
“Almost.” Lana grinned, leaning back on her hands. He sank into the water, kissing a meandering path down her body, rewarded with sighs and whimpers along the way. She felt lips on her thigh, a finger teasing her clit, and his eager tongue parting her labia. Lana moaned, bucking her hips, grinding herself into him, as the beat of her pounding heart grew louder than the water crashing around them. He slipped a finger inside her, then another, twisting them while his tongue abused her clit. His mouth played rough, and she loved it.
Lana’s breathing became ragged and her moans grew louder. She wove a hand through his hair, squealing when a third finger disappeared between her slippery lips. The stretching sensation pushed her over the edge, and her own cries of climax drowned out the falls. She collapsed against the rock as waves of pleasure washed over her; half-senseless, half-desperate for more. He stood between her legs, toying with her nipples while the last convulsions subsided.
He took Lana’s hands, pulling her into another embrace. She stroked the hard cock pressing into her belly, marveling at its girth, still wondering what it would do to her pussy but eager to find out. She rested back on the cliff, guiding his shaft toward the tight hole his fingers had stretched, but he resisted.
Lana shot him a confused glance, but the light in his eyes said he was teasing. She asked, “What do I have to do, beg for it?” His response was a slow, deliberate nod. She was willing to play his game. Lana batted her eyes, pleading for his cock. She clenched her teeth, bracing herself to take the pain she knew was coming. Lana grunted, and thrashed, feeling as if she was being split in two while he forced his way inside her. Short, gentle strokes soon had her squealing.
He picked her up, still impaled on his cock, carrying her into the falls. Hot water cascaded over them like liquid fire, splashing her pussy with each thrust, sending her mind reeling into the ether. Lana felt herself stretched to the limit in a tempest of pain and pleasure. She buried her head in his chest, reveling in the strong hands under her ass as she bounced on his cock, wishing the moment would never end. Time and again she came, each orgasm squeezing him tighter, until the pain was just a memory.
“Please fill me,” she begged.
“Come for me one more time,” he said. “I’ll join you.” Lana felt another climax building, as if on his command. Their eyes met as he exploded inside her, the fire in his gaze launching her into another powerful orgasm. Lana threw her arms around him, holding tight, waiting for the aftershocks to fade. She stirred when he carried her out of the falls, realizing she’d passed out for a moment. He set her back on the ledge, pulling out as her body shook one last time.
Lana was giggling, with a glassy-eyed grin, while he covered her face and chest in kisses. He said, “For the record, I consider myself thoroughly thanked.”

My Review

Lana is orphaned at a young age and ends up being raised by the town's midwife.  She is groomed in the arts of healing and childbirth. Lana likes her job because she isn't expected to marry and become some lucky man's brood mare, popping out a child every 10 to 12 months.  Lana wanted a little more out of her life.  She wanted what she remembered her parents having, love.  But wanting a special type of love didn't mean she didn't have cravings.  Hey, there were opportunities to explore while she waited for her version of mister forever to come knocking. So when a gorgeous naked man stepped out of a pool she was getting ready to dive into, she knew this was one of those opportunities!

Alaron was pleasantly pleased to finally get to meet his little thief.  Lana had been taking herbs and plants out of his forest for many years.  But the forest saw her as no threat, so he had allowed her to come and go as she pleased.  She took only what she needed and caused no harm to the animals.  This alone had intrigued him.  But seeing her strip and join him in the quest of diving for dragons bane at the bottom of the pool was more than he could resist.  It didn't help that Lana was tempting him with her movements and body language.  He was after all only human?

Let me start out by saying how much I enjoyed this book.  The beginning was something straight out of every naughty girls bondage fantasy. But the story line developed quite nicely around the fact that this town was dripping with sexual freedom.  It was an interesting mix of the old world and European morals.  Sex was freeing and celebrated, unlike here in the US where its not talked about and everyone's personal kinks and whims are locked up behind closed doors.  SO anything is possible in this book!  I loved Lana because she was fearless and went after what she wanted, even though there was a point when it almost cost her her life.  I loved the creation of the human Gods against Dragons, the myths about the creation of this author's world.  It was new and unique!!  My favorite part of the book was the birth of their first child.  It totally threw me for a loop, both the conception and the actual birthing!!  This book was hot, spicy, and unique.  I highly recommend this book to other dragon-shifter fans.  You will not be disappointed!!  I loved this book and look forward to reading more from this author!!

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