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Tell us about your current book in 10 words.
Snarky British mage/professor tracks missing girl, battles extradimensional bodysnatchers.
E-Reader or print? and why?
Both! I love technology and the ability to have hundreds of books in my pocket at all times, but I also love the feel of a hardcopy book in my hands. I enjoy studying the cover, turning the pages, having something tangible on my desk. But when I’m on a trip or caught out somewhere having to wait for something, having those books in my pocket is the best thing ever!
One book at a time or multiples?
I usually have multiple books going at once, though almost always one of them “breaks out” and becomes the one I end up finishing first. I drive my spouse crazy because I leave half-read books all over the house—and that’s not including all the ones I have on my phone.
Urban fantasy/supernatural thriller—specifically, those that are more adventure-oriented, rather than romance-oriented. I like books set in the modern day, with magic and at least a little bit of horror.
Do you loan your books?
Very, very rarely. I am extremely protective of my books, and I like to keep them looking like new. Bent spines on my formerly pristine books cause me physical distress! So I only lend them to good friends who’ve sat through my “training speech” about how if they don’t return them to me in the condition they got them in, they’ll never borrow another one. I have been known to buy a copy of a book for a friend who wants to borrow one, though!
Favorite book to recommend?
Either the Dresden Files series by Jim Butcher, or the Sime/Gen series by Jacqueline Lichtenberg and Jean Lorrah—I discovered the latter as a young teen and have loved them ever since. If the person is a horror fan I recommend various things by Graham Masterton, a favorite author who isn’t well known in the US.
How do you keep your books organized?
Er…badly! Seriously, my books are all over the house. I have shelves in hallways, shelves in rooms, shelves in the garage, in our storage unit…and the books aren’t organized in any logical way. That said, thought, I can put my hand on almost any book I own in less than 10 minutes. I can picture where each one is if I need to find it.
Re-reader or not?
Yep, but only favorites. I have “comfort food” books that I go back to often. A lot of them are collections of comic strips (Bloom County, Calvin and Hobbes, Peanuts, etc.) and children’s/teen books from my own youth. I reread my favorite horror authors (Stephen King and Graham Masterton) quite a bit. And I re-listen to Harry Potter and the Dresden Files series on audiobook.
What would make you not finish a book?
Mostly boredom. I’ll overlook some pretty bad writing if the book keeps me entertained, but I won’t overlook scads of dull backstory or info dumps, or writing that’s so in love with the sound of its own voice that it doesn’t advance the story. Life’s too short and there are too many good books out there to waste time on bad ones.
Keep books or give them away?
I joke that any book that enters my orbit is trapped there forever! I still own books that I got when I was in fourth grade. It’s extremely rare for me to get rid of a book, even if I don’t like it very much.
Dr. Alastair Stone, Occult Studies professor, powerful mage, and snarky British expat now based in Palo Alto, California, does his best to keep his academic and social lives separate from his increasingly frequent brushes with various malevolent forces from the supernatural side of the street. A little horror, a little humor, but mostly straight-up urban fantasy.
Stone and a Hard Place
Dr. Alastair Stone, Occult Studies professor and powerful mage, has his hands full trying to keep the two sides of his life separate as he trains a new apprentice, deals with a malevolent entity trapped in the basement of a wealthy old woman's massive home, and battles dark mages intent on enslaving it for their own ends.
Debut novel of the Alastair Stone Chronicles.
Dr. Alastair Stone is back, this time teaming up with Jason Thayer, a young man hunting for his missing sister. Embroiled in a web of odd homeless people, a growing conspiracy, and deadly danger, they soon realize that even if they find Jason's sister, they might not be able to help her.
What do you do when you discover an extradimensional plot that threatens the safety of the entire world, but you can't tell anyone about it because literally anyone on Earth could be part of it?
Book Two of the Alastair Stone Chronicles.
The voice was trembling, female, and sounded terrified. It took him a moment to identify it. He stared as Megan stirred again, draping her arm back over him. “Mrs.—Bonham?”
Whoever was on the other end sounded like they were on the verge of hysteria. “Dr. Stone, is that you?”
“It’s me, Mrs. Bonham. What’s wrong? Is something wrong?” He sat up a little, propping himself up on his pillows. Megan’s arm slid down over his stomach, but he didn’t even notice that she was there.
“Something’s here,” she quavered. “Something’s…happening.”
He was fully awake now. Carefully, he moved Megan’s arm and sat on the edge of the bed. “Calm down, Mrs. Bonham, please. I’ll help you if I can, but you have to tell me what’s happening.”
“I don’t know,” she sobbed. “It’s like the whole house hates me. Noises—cold winds—things slamming—”
“Is Iona there? Can you put her on for a moment?”
There was a shuffling sound and then a different voice spoke, sounding almost as frightened as Adelaide Bonham had. “Dr. Stone? This is Iona.”
He took a deep breath. “Iona. What’s going on? Is Mrs. Bonham—”
“She’s not imagining things, Dr. Stone,” the woman said. In addition to sounding frightened, she sounded like she couldn’t believe what was going on. “I can hear them too. The noises. The feelings. It’s horrible, Dr. Stone. Something’s going on.”
R. L. King is an award-winning author and game freelancer for Catalyst Game Labs, publisher of the popular roleplaying game Shadowrun. She has contributed fiction and game material to numerous sourcebooks, as well as one full-length adventure, "On the Run," included as part of the 2012 Origins-Award-winning "Runners' Toolkit."
Her first novel in the Shadowrun universe, Borrowed Time, was published in May 2015.
When not doing her best to make life difficult for her characters, King is a software technical writer for a large Silicon Valley database company. In her spare time (hah!) she enjoys hanging out with her very understanding spouse and her small herd of cats, watching way too much Doctor Who, and attending conventions when she can. She is an active member of the Horror Writers' Association and the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, and a member of the International Association of Media Tie-in Writers.
Author website: http://www.rlkingwriting.com
Publisher website: http://www.magespacepress.com
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/R.-L.-King/e/B0084QBKYC/
Buy Links: Stone and a Hard Place (book 1): http://www.amzn.to/1CFdTDi
The Forgotten (Book 2): http://www.amazon.com/Forgotten-Alastair-Stone-Chronicles-Book-ebook/dp/B0084O96RW.
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