2018 releases

Hell's Bell
Scent of the Jaguar
His Outback Nanny
The Queen's Game
366 Days of Flash Fiction
On the Horizon: Simple worlds of speculative adventure
Lusting the Enemy

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Magic Thursday--Darkness Unbound

Well, it's Magic Thursday, and I'm here to talk about my latest release--Darkness Unbound.

Which is kind-of appropriate, because Darkness Unbound—the first of the Dark Angels series--has somewhat magical beginnings. Why? Well, did you ever have a story where a very minor character leaps onto the page fully formed and threatens to take over the story? The main character in the Dark Angel series—Risa Jones—did just that. She was supposed to be a very minor side character in the Riley Jenson series, but the minute she appeared on the page choo-chooing her way around the living room I knew the muse had more in mind for her. By the time she'd become a Coke addicted, cake loving, sweet talking two year old, I'd already sold the first couple of books of her series.

But the other reason the series has somewhat magical beginnings is the first line in Darkness Unbound. I live in the hills, so there's lots of rain, fog and other weather unpleasantness that happens. And every morning, particularly in winter, I drive over the mountain through that unpleasantness to go the gym. On one particular morning we had a real pea souper. I'm talking fog so thick you couldn't see two inches in front of your nose let alone another car until you were almost on it. It felt surreal--almost like you were in another world--especially when cars went past, because you could barely see more than a dark blur that eddied the fog. It really did look like creatures in the fog—well, at least to someone with a writer's imagination :)

But that's how the first line of Darkness Unbound came to me—in that fog, with the shadows moving through it, I suddenly thought... I've always seen the reapers.

Of course, Risa isn't no ordinary woman, so her reaper is somewhat unusual too. He's a Mijai—a half naked, sword bearing dark warrior. But you'll have to read Darkness Unbound to find out more about him!

To celebrate Darkness Unbound's release this week, I'm giving away a signed copy of the book. All you have to do is comment about side characters that have captured your imagination—either in a book you're writing, or one that you're reading!


  1. I often find side character very interesting. Risa was one of the side characters that I wanted to learn more about and I am so glad that Keri has written her story.
    Can't wait to read
    Kelly M


  2. There have been so many 'side characters' that I have loved :) Risa and her mom were definitely 2 that caught my attention. I was so happy to hear that we would get more of her story :o)

  3. A side character that I think stole the show is Vlad in Jeaniene Frost's Night Huntress series. When you read about his character you know that there is just something there that you need to know and remember. That is how I felt about Risa as well. From the moment you meet the Starry eyed little girl running around the living room, I knew she would have an amazing future.

    Another author I must mention is J.R. Ward, the way she writes she always has a side character that almost steals the reader’s full attention. Whether it is a cat named Boo or the Scribe Virgin whom is such a big character that you forget that she is a side character.

    I think one of the things that makes an amazing writer is the ability to place a character in a book and in the 2 seconds that they are on the page they capture the audiences Full Attention.

    I have always loved your writing and I am really looking forward to reading the first Risa book.


  4. Richard Zeeman from the Anita Blake series always held my curiosity. I've learned a lot about him thru the seris but always felt there could be more and would love for him to have his story told. :)

  5. When reading the Flowers in the Attic series by V.C Andrews series, I always found the grandmother of the story to be very intriguing.

    When finally I came to her story, I was pulled into her world to finally be able to understand what turned her into a twisted, somewhat evil person, when before she had been loving of her children.

    The story pulled me in to where my imagination was able to run wild and feel as she did as she went through disappointment after disappointment to where she was turned into someone who had given up on love and had turned to religion that made her a strict and unforgiving person because of her past.

    I loved the story because of how it showed me how she developed into who she was and why.

    Of course the Riley Jensen series by Keri Arthur had so much more to let the imagination run wild with all the fiction and details. It will always be a story that sticks with me because of the vividness of her story. I have never been so captivated with a series such as that.

  6. Alex in Trent Jamieson's The Business Of Death series. I snap to attention when he appears and want to know more about him and his viewpoint.

  7. I was late to the Riley Jenson series, so I had the luxury and agony of devouring them all at once, obsessively. It wasn't until the third trip to the bookstore that I just bought the entire series and surrendered to it. I'm psyched for the new series!

    I'm a big Vlad fan. I can't wait to read his books.

  8. There are so many side characters that have really drawn me to them. Risa and her mom are among them. I loved how they interacted with Riley. Justin in Sands Argeneau series is also one I'm very interested in. As for Vlad, who wouldn't want more of him?
    Thank you for the giveaway.


  9. My favorite part about side characters these days is that they don't always STAY side characters. They may not get their own dedicated series or even a novel, but so often they turn up in anthologies or novellas on an author's website or blog. It fun to get into their heads, to see a different perspective on the world you thought you knew! Like when Quinn (who isn't EXACTLY a side character, I know) got to put in his two cents on his relationship with Riley in The Mammoth Book of Vampire Romance. I bought that book for that alone! JR Ward and Gena Showalter are great examples of authors who (seemingly) give every side character a chance to have their voice heard and what could be more fun!

    I've said it before and I'll say it again, I thank you Keri for sparking that love of books for me again, both reading and writing! Because of you I have discovered the aforementioned authors and so many more, simply because I gave this woman Riley a chance in an airport bookstore ;) I can't wait to see what trouble little Risa with her pigtails gets into now that she's all grown up! I'm sure she'll hold her own against all the other books I have on my (once again) overflowing bookshelf.

    You're Awesome Keri!

    Hugs and Love, Mimm

  10. One of my favorite side characters in the Riley Jenson series is Kade. Although I understand why he had to die, it was difficult to accept his passing.

    I'm a big fan of the urban fantasy genre. one of my favorite side characters of all time is Jenks of The Hollows series (Kim Harrison). He has such a smart mouth and is extremely funny.

  11. I found Armand from Interview with a vampire intriguing and was pleased that he got his own book so we could delve into his story more fully

  12. Hi Keri,

    it's Shannon here (Mel Teshco's daughter) I'm a BIG fan! One of my favorite secondary characters is the vampire Russell from Circle of Death. I'd love to see him in his own story. And I'd LOVE to win your book! :)

    Hope to see you at Supernova!

  13. Well you see there is this one character from Starline.....Jemma. A bookshop assistant from the past with a swagger and legs up to there....anyway she just kept pushing and pulling her way into the book...and the only way to tell her to stop was give her a book of her own.....

    Sigh then her book turned out to be so different to what I imagined in so many ways :) But she's great (in a not so great way of course)

  14. I have this spy informant character who is letting me know he'll be interested in his own book :))

    I love that JR Ward turned all the Brotherhood from secondary characters to have their own books and stories, and how main characters in the previous become secondary characters.

    Keri, I can't wait to read Risa's story. Her abilities have always been fascinating, so it's great to see where she is years down the track. Congrats on the release!

  15. Smartpeach, I loved Jenks! From the moment he appeared, he was one of my favs in that series. Didn't mind Trent, either.

    Yeah, Kade had to die, but his foals live on. One of them is in the new series--tho it hasn't come out in any of the books yet.

  16. Hi Shannon! I can't even remember that character in Circle of Death--it's been so long since I've been in that world. lol

    see you at supernova :)

  17. Oh, I love the sound of a spy informant, Eleni!

    and thanks for the congrats :)

  18. Hi Keri =)
    Sidekicks can make some pretty wonderful characters. In the Cassandra Palmer series by Karen Chance, Cassie's sidekick friend is annoying, pesky, snarky and oh so cool -Billy Joe.

    In other books the secondary characters eventually get their own stories, I love those too!

  19. The Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs, the character Warren is awesome I love him. He is the only Gay werewolf in the pack and he is dominant!!He is one of the best secondary characters I have ever met. :)

  20. I'm a huge fan of the mortal instruments series and a side character from those books that I always love seeing on pages is Magnus Bane. He is a very colorful personality and I'm sure he'd love his own book one day :)

  21. I love the idea of the reapers. I'm interested to see what you do with them.

  22. Firstly apologies for this long response. I’m one of my babbling moods - heaven help us!

    What’s a piece of steak without the mash, peas and gravy? Without all the extra elements a meal isn’t tasty, it’s bland and lacking. A side in story is much the same. The side is what helps make up the whole to give flavor, enhance and support the main character – much like our friends do in real life.

    One side that has stuck recently is Marco in Karen Chance’s “Hunt the Moon - A Cassie Palmer Novel.”

    In one scene Marco is trying to give Cassie some advice on some of the new guys guarding her. Just for fun it goes like this,

    “I nodded, but Marco just stood there, as if he expected some kind of answer. “Okay.”
    “It’s just…” He hesitated. “Try not to freak them out too much all right?”
    “I freak them out?”
    “You know what I mean. It’s those things you do.”
    “What things?”
    His eyes darted around the bathroom. “Talking-to-invisible-people kind of things.”
    “They’re ghosts, Marco.”
    “Yeah, only most of the guys don’t believe in ghosts, and they’ve started to think you’re a bit...strange.”
    “They’re vampires and they think I’m strange?”
    “And no popping out of nowhere in front of a guy. That takes some getting used to. I’ don’t think Sanchez has recovered yet.”

    There are so many moments with Marco as he helps bring out the irony in a situation. It’s a humorous and emphatic approach. What I ultimately love about side characters is that they have prospect, promise and the capability to be a whole other book or series.

    Naturally, I love all of Kerri’s books and loved Risa. When I read “Bound to Shadows,” I sat there after I finished and thought wow, I wonder how little Risa is going to turn out? Within those closing pages staring out at me was a little heroine larger than life and I really wanted to know what her story would be.

    It truly is rewarding when an author gives us what we wished for, can’t wait to sink my teeth in “Darkness Unbound.”

  23. I'm thrilled that Prince Thane from THE EDGE OF HONOR gets his own book - THE GLADIATOR PRINCE.


  24. Two side characters that have caught my attention are Qhuinn and Blay from J.R Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood series. The fact that they are going to end up together eventually really adds to the interest and I can't wait until they do! Then Qhuinn will stop being such a baby and wake up to himself.


  25. Hi,
    What an interesting question!
    Cassandra, the witch from the Jaz Parks series by Jennifer Rardin always intrigued me - she has a history that would be fascinating to explore. I also love Jenks from Kim Harrison's Hollows series and think a story just about him would be fun.

    Thanks for the giveaway! I'm a fellow Aussie fan and would love a signed copy of Darkness Unbound - I am sure you will find success with it!

    Shelleyrae @ Book'd Out
    bookd.out at gmail dot com

  26. This sounds fantastic! I've had characters do that to me before. A minor character in a novel I was writing - minor to the point of one line, maybe two - proudly declared that she had a fascinating back story, some very interesting connections to people in the laneways of Melbourne and a paranormal side just begging to be explored.