Kirkus Reviews: “An impending apocalypse provides a compelling backdrop for romance in this page-turning first installment of a new YA series. Hopkins expertly weaves her plotlines together in this compulsively readable teen romance story…Hopkins delivers many successful elements of young-adult romance—appealing lead characters, high-voltage chemistry, repressed sexuality—which will win her ardent followers. A paranormal YA tale that’s highly recommended for fans of the Twilight series; move over, Bella and Edward, there’s a new set of kids on the block.”
Embers is an epic paranormal adventure/romance about an eighteen year old girl who discovers that she’s immune to fire and any other injury when she’s in a horrific car crash that kills her parents. Following a violent episode with her aunt’s boyfriend, Ember flees Ohio to live with an old relative in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee. Ember’s exuberance at escaping a bad home life soon turns to trepidation when she learns that she’s a Watcher, a descendant of angels.
While Ember is instructed about her heritage and the powers that go along with it, she strikes up friendships with two teenagers who live inside of a frightening walled compound in the forest. Inexplicitly drawn to one of the young men in particular, an impossible romance develops. But it’s cut short when Ember discovers that her new friends are fighting on the opposite side of a war that’s been raging between two factions of Watchers for thousands of years. When the compound’s inhabitants threaten the townspeople, Ember takes action, sealing her fate in the ancient battle of good versus evil, and the grayness in between.
Targeted Age Group:: Teens, Young Adults, New Adults
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
I’m the author of the Amish themed Harlequin Teen Temptation series and the Amish murder mysteries, Lamb to the Slaughter and Whispers From the Dead. Living in an Amish community inspired me to write Amish fiction and I was able to draw on my own personal interactions within the neighborhood and first-hand observations and interviews to write my books. Although, I love writing Amish, I really wanted to create a paranormal/supernatural angels and demons story that I’d been thinking about for years. After finishing up the Temptation series, I was ready for a change and wrote Embers.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
I knew that I wanted to write in both the good and the bad guys’ points of view in this apocalyptic story, so it felt perfect to have one of my lead characters be a girl who is descended from angels and the other be a boy who is actually a demon. The forbidden love aspect intrigued me, as did the question of what really makes a person “good” or “evil.”
“Garrett, our leader, awakened my true nature almost a hundred and fifty years ago. I’ve been a Demon ever since.”
Hearing him admit it caused a knot to form in my throat. I swallowed it down. “Do you know that we are both descended from angels?” he asked in a low voice.
I nodded my head. “It’s kind of hard to believe.”
“What, that we’re related?” he huffed out the words.
I shrugged. “Yeah that, and the fact that the angels are real, that they came down to earth to hook up with women. It’s kind of sick, if you ask me.”
He laughed and the hearty sound of it chased away the freaked out chill that I was experiencing. “This isn’t funny. You’re a Demon, you eat human souls,” I said.
Sawyer sobered quickly. The obvious hurt on his face made me regret my words. “You’re right. I’m a monster. I won’t argue on that account. But your kind isn’t squeaky clean either. Just because your ancestors were arch angels doesn’t give you the right to police the world.” His eyes narrowed. “Do you know how many humans have died from wars that Watchers caused?”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” I lied. I was already suspicious about Watchers. Ila scared the crap out of me sometimes with her demeanor and righteous words. But Sawyer didn’t need to know that I questioned the Watchers myself. His opinion didn’t count.
When I turned back to him, ready to change the subject, I wasn’t prepared for the darkening of his already almost black eyes. He leaned in closer and our breaths mingled. In and out I breathed, allowing his familiar woodsy scent to fill my nose. I know Sawyer. Oh, I know him.
Don’t do it, Ember. But I couldn’t stop.
When he kissed me, my lips parted automatically. Deep down, I wanted him, desired him madly, and had from the first time I’d seen him in my dreams.
And in that instant, I didn’t care that he was a Demon.
About the Author:
You can visit Karen Ann Hopkins at her website: www.karenannhopkins.com.
Karen Ann Hopkins resides in northern Kentucky with her family on a farm that boasts a menagerie of horses, goats, peacocks, chickens, ducks, rabbits, dogs and cats. Karen’s main job is home schooling the kids, but she finds time to give riding lessons, coach a youth equestrian drill team, and of course, write. She was inspired to create her first book, Temptation, by the Amish community she lived in. The experiential knowledge she gained through her interactions with her neighbors drove her to create the story of the star-crossed lovers, Rose and Noah.
Karen grew up about a mile from Lake Ontario in Upstate New York. She was bitten by the horse bug at the age of five, and after diligently taking riding lessons for several years, was rewarded with her first horse at the age of eleven. The feisty horse’s name was Lady, a Quarter Horse-Thoroughbred cross, who became Karen’s steadfast companion. Through the years, the constant force in her life was horses. Eventually, she found her place as a riding instructor herself. Before accepting her fate in the barnyard, she worked a short stint as a paralegal, traveled abroad, and guided tourists on horseback riding tours in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee.
Karen is currently working on her Amish mystery series, Serenity’s Plain Secrets, along with the YA paranormal/fantasy series, The Wings of War. Karen is also excited to announce the Temptation series has been optioned for TV by Pilgrim Studios and is available on Audible.
TEMPTATION,BELONGING, FOREVER: YA Temptation Series, Harlequin Teen, available in paperback and e-book everywhere books are sold
LAMB TO THE SLAUGHTER: Adult Mystery, Serenity’s Plain
Secrets Series No. 1
WHISPERS FROM THE DEAD: Adult Mystery, Serenity’s Plain
Secrets Series No. 2, Releases January 2014
EMBERS: YA Paranormal/Thriller, Wings
of War Series No. 1, Releases October 21, 2014
Have you read this book? Tell us what you thought!