Monday, October 15, 2012

Interview and Giveaway: Kiss of Steel by Bec McMaster

 Today I'd like to welcome Bec McMaster, author of one of my favorite reads so far this year, KISS OF STEEL!

Kiss of Steel
(London Steampunk #1)

When Nowhere is Safe

Most people avoid the dreaded Whitecapel district. For Honoria Todd, it's the last safe haven. But at what price?

Blade is known as the master of the rookeries--no one dares cross him. It's been said he faced down the Echelon's army single-handedly, that ever since being infected by the blood-craving he's been quicker, stronger, and almost immortal.

When Honoria shows up at his door, his tenuous control comes close to snapping. She's so...innocent. He doesn't see her backbone of steel--or that she could be the very salvation he's been seeking.

Read my glowing review of KISS OF STEEL

Read on to learn a little more about Bec and what inspired her paranormal steampunk romance! Then enter to win a copy of KISS OF STEEL!

Goldilox: For readers who are unfamiliar with your (amazing) debut, Kiss of Steel, describe the alternate London that you've created.

Bec: Kiss of Steel is set in a steam-fuelled London in the 1870's - but a very different 1870's than what history remembers. After a mysterious virus came out of the Far East, infecting the majority of the aristocracy, London is divided into classes. The Echelon reign with an iron fist, hiding behind their automaton armies and drinking blood to survive. Their's is a dark, glittering world of silk and steel, where humans are thought of only as potential thralls - or slaves. The middle class is mostly comprised of humans who pander to the whims of their blue blood masters, or try to hide from them. And at the bottom of the classes are the mechs - those forced by necessity to replace their limbs with steel, who must work off the debt in the steamy Enclaves that are more prison than factory. Mechs are considered less than human, more machine than man. 

Goldilox: How would you describe the heroine, Honoria and our yummy hero Blade?

Bec: Honoria is a blue-stocking, forced out of her nice, safe world into the dangerous rookeries of Whitechapel. On the run from the Duke of Vickers with a secret he'd kill for, she is desperately trying to keep her brother and sister fed and safe. Family comes first for Honoria and she will fiercely battle anyone she thinks is a threat to them. She's not looking for romance, and indeed, Blade frightens her at first. He's a rogue blue blood and all of her experiences with them have been bad, so to say she is prejudiced against them is mild. 

Born in the gutters and raised in the streets, Blade was turned into a blue blood at a young age by the Duke of Vickers as an experiment. Stricken by the blood-lust, he blames Vickers for the death of his sister Emily and when Honoria comes into his life, Blade first sees a weapon to strike back at Vickers with. However, the stubborn beauty soon gets under his skin and he can't bear to let Vickers get his hands on her. Blade is illegitimate, illiterate and fiercely protective of his adopted 'family' and the people he protects. He knows exactly who and what he is, however, and he's not ashamed of any of it. Full of brash and swagger, with a love for gaudy velvet waistcoats and leather coats, Blade can be extremely dangerous - or the best ally a woman could have. 

Goldilox: Blade. -Sigh- Blade is that hot and rough Alpha male that we all love in our romances. Who are some other hot alpha males you've loved in books?

Bec: Where do I start? Clayton from Kelley Armstrong's Bitten, Rhys from Meljean Brook's The Iron Duke, Curran from Ilona Andrews Kate Daniels series, Rafael from Nalini Singh's Archangel series, or Judd from her Caressed by Ice. I absolutely love an alpha male, but one of the things I need to make me believe the romance is for the heroine to be strong enough to stand up to him, or to kick some butt of her own. Perhaps that's why I like the alpha's listed above. 

Goldilox: What inspired you to write a steampunk paranormal romance?

Bec: I don't know that I ever sat down and thought I'd like to write a steampunk paranormal romance as such, more that I saw a glimpse of an opening scene - a desperate woman in the streets of Whitechapel, looking over her shoulder for someone or something, and a man watching her from the shadows, smoking a cheroot - and the whole world grew from there. I've long been toying with the idea of an alternate version of the ton, where they were blood-drinkers instead, and ruled the City of London with an iron fist. The steampunk aspects came in when I started thinking about how they would keep this power - via an automaton army, and how the downtrodden humans could learn to fight - also by steampunk weapons. Kiss of Steel is more of an intro into the world than full-on steampunk (there was simply too much story to tell!) but things will shape up over the course of the books. 

When I write, I am more focused on the world-building than the particular genre. I've just finished playing with a dystopian set romance, that came about because that was the world I saw in my head rather than any particular desire to write in that sub-genre. I'm interested in all things of a spec-fic nature. 

Goldilox: Who are some authors that inspired you as a writer, or even just some authors you love to read?

Bec: Everything I read, watch or see inspires me in some way, so it's hard to say any particular writer. I'm like a sponge. I absorb. Writers I love to read: Ilona Andrews, Stacia Kane, Meljean Brooks, Zoe Archer, Nalini Singh, Linnea Sinclair, Kristen Callihan, Lilith Saintcrow... As you can see, a really eclectic bunch. 

Goldilox: What can we expect in the next book in this series?

Bec: Heart of Iron comes out in May 2013 and features Lena (Honoria's younger sister) and Will (Blade's verwulfen lieutenant). When Will finds a coded letter in Lena's possession - the same code he found on a man who burned down the Echelon's draining factories - he knows she's in trouble. After a kiss in which Will walked away from her, the last thing Lena wants is Will following her around, especially when she realises that the humanist cause she is secretly a member of, may not be quite as benign as they seem. Soon it becomes apparent that Will's protection may be the only thing that can save her life. But will he ever trust her again once he realises the secrets she's hiding? And when a humanist plot threatens the very Queen herself, will they be in time to stop it?

Fast Five:

1. Favorite snack: Strawberries

2. Guilty pleasure: BBQ Shapes (an Australian savoury biscuit)

3. Fictional hottie you'd most like to meet: Terrible from Stacia Kane's Downside Ghosts series. I don't know that you'd think him hot on first appearance, but I am so in love with that man.

4. Favorite place to visit: Russia

5. Best steampunk accessory: Corset

Thank you so much to Bec for joining me today!

I write romance novels featuring red-hot alphas, kick-ass heroines and edge-of-your-seat adventures. My debut steampunk, KISS OF STEEL, is available Sept, 2012, from Sourcebooks. Read more about me at Facebook or follow me on twitter @BecMcMaster.

Enter below for a chance to win your own copy of KISS OF STEEL!
As always, you must be 13 or older to enter. This giveaway is international folks!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Oh my gosh I freaking loved this book. I don't know if you saw but you are mentioned in my review. I was totally shocked by how much this book rocked my reading world. I can't wait for more!

  2. i would like to discover more paranormal steampunk so this book seems a perfect opportunity to do so

    thank you a lot for the international giveaway

    all the best

  3. I love steampunk....and this serie is intriguing me!!!

  4. I haven't read this yet but I love the setting, the character's names, especially Honoria, and her innocence.

  5. I haven't read the book yet but I'm really look forward to reading the steampunk paranormal aspect. Steampunk is so fascinating.

  6. I've heard some really good things about this books and would really like to read more paranormal steampunk.

  7. Umm, I don't know what I am looking forward to! All of it! :-)

  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. I haven't read it, but would like to read about the characters.

  10. I haven't read the book yet, but I'm looking forward to the romance in the novel if any!! Thanks for the giveaway!

  11. haven;t read the book..i'm looking forwatd adventure and romance in the book :)
    thx u...

  12. Thanks for sharing the post :)
    Adventerous Romance, LOL... Appears that it will be a very interesting book :)

  13. If I don't win I'm putting this on my Xmas wishlist.

  14. Love the cover. I'd be up for reading it just because you love all my favorite heroes so yours is probably just my kinda guy :)

    And LOVE Clayton! He's my fave thing about Armstrong's series!

    Thanks ladies :)

  15. I haven't read this one yet, but it's on my wishlist. I'm always a bit intrigued by steampunk. One of my goodreads friends recently raved about this book so that is another reason I'm dying to read it.

  16. I have not yet read Kiss of Steel and it looks like something totally different from my normal read and I find this intriguing. Thank you so much for sharing with us and for the lovely giveaway opportunity.

    1. OH! and I forgot to mention, I love, love, love the cover it is gorgeous.

  17. I look forward to reading Kiss of Steal because it sounds like it has a perfect balance of Dystopia, Steampunk, and romance. Three thing I love to read about!!!! Thanks for the giveaway.


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