Character notes on Barrons, Mac, V’Lane from KMM January 30, 2011Posted by Diana McCabe in Fun stuff, News.
Tags: Barrons, karen marie moning, Mac, Shadowfever, v'lane
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This might be my last post on Karen Marie Moning and the Fever series for a while! I’ll return to regular paranormal romance postings now that the SHADOWFEVER hoopla has sort of passed! But I wanted to pass along these character notes from KMM’s blog. (Some of these notes she discussed in previous Q&As and chats but she finally put these thoughts on her blog!) If you want to read more on how she wrote the series and more, go to her blog HERE.
Here’s what she wrote about Barrons, Mac and V’Lane:
• Jericho Z. Barrons: Barrons is hard, cold, brutally efficient killing machine, brilliant, cunning and utterly focused on what he wants at all times. He rarely smiles and if he does, it’s a brief softening, a faint uplifting of the corners of his mouth—never a full smile. Since he met Mac, he has smiled on several occasions. Once, he laughed out loud. JZB is not a man for expressions of happiness. At best he radiates self-satisfied calm, a big cat at rest. Harsh, forbidding, controlled, a man of intense discipline, he emotes anger, mockery, challenge, irony, raw sexuality, animalistic fury, but no tenderness. He’s a hard man. There are no cracks in his walls but the one Mac can slip through—and he hates that but he accepts it because it is the truth and to pretend otherwise would be an exercise in futility. Whether he likes it or not, she gets under his skin and makes his dick harder than any other woman ever has. He wastes no time examining the whys of it or resisting her effect on him. He focuses his energy like a laser, slicing and dicing, rearranging reality to suit what he wants the best way he can get it. Since the moment he met Mac and accepted that he wanted her, he has been ruthlessly altering her, making her ultimately suitable for him. The only question in his mind is: will she survive what he’s doing to her?
• MacKayla Lane: Mac is a woman on the verge of…everything: A complete psychotic episode, a life-changing epiphany, becoming something truly good or truly evil. She often feels bi-polar—because she is. A sweet, southern girl with refined taste and pretty manners, she’s a shining star with a great, sucking black-hole at the center. The evil she’s been hunting so assiduously, the mind-numbing, soul-crushing monster of twisted destructiveness she’s been tracking through the rain-slicked streets of Dublin—is her. Every dark spell, all the dangerous power, the vicious rage and hunger crouches inside her. It never intended to let her find it in the streets until she’d found it in herself.
• V’Lane: V ’lane had a lousy publicist. He’s the center-stage male character I gave a label: Seelie, shining death-by-sex Fae, erotic, brilliant, ballsy and no more sociopathic than Barrons. With V’lane, I can’t help but play the “what if” game: What if the night Mac rushed through the dark zone seeking sanctuary, Mac had found V’lane instead of Barrons Books & Baubles? What if he’d taken her to Faery and told her the truth, the full truth that very night? Would she have been swayed by his desire to save his trapped brothers? How different is he really from Barrons and his eight? V’lane may have rebelled against the Unseelie king’s wishes but he was only trying to set the rest of the Unseelie free. He was beautiful, powerful, he could have left the icy prison and abandoned them, and pursued his own pleasure. But he wanted all the Unseelie to have a chance in the sunshine and beauty of the world. He was a freedom fighter, a renegade, a determined, cunning, patient, valiant crusader. Doesn’t the world need War? Isn’t he the only reason tyrannies topple, empires fall and humans change? War is the catalyst, the means by which wrongs are righted, scales are balanced, and the world transformed. Isn’t V’lane the real hero?
Did you miss these?
A baby Barrons? What is JZB? KMM dishes with fans! January 23, 2011Posted by Diana McCabe in News.
Tags: Barrons, karen marie moning, Mac, Shadowfever
Karen Marie Moning hosted a fan chat on her website this morning to talk more about SHADOWFEVER. She’ll have the transcript of that posted on her site in a few days, and I’ll update here with that link. But until then, here are a few more insights into SHADOWFEVER and what’s next! It sounds like we have a lot to look forward to, and the Mac/Barrons story is far from over! (And if you haven’t finished the book, there are SPOILERS below!) These excerpts are in no order and I’ve paraphrased because it was really hard to follow the chat! UPDATE: Karen has posted her fan chat transcript so make sure to check out all of her answers! There are some good ones! CLICK HERE.
Who is Mac’s Dad? Look for more about him in future books.
Is there more to the V’lane/Cruce storyline? Wait until you see what happens to C/V. KMM says she’s not nearly done with him, but warns us it’s not going to be an easy read.
What is Barrons? KMM will only say that Barrons and his guys are all the same thing. She also said that when she started the book, the paranormal romance genre was filled with vampires, werewolves etc. She didn’t want her main male character to be defined by a label, so she didn’t say what he was exactly. And she wants us — just like Mac — to judge Barrons based on his actions — not a label. “I wanted my characters to love each other but never tell each other.”
Will Mac and Barrons have a baby? Here’s what KMM says: “Baby? Barrons have a baby? Gah! (Although she ended the book with him grilling steaks — so we know he can be domestic!)
Was anything in SHADOWFEVER different than your dream? (Because she based the series on a dream she had): Adam’s cameo and not killing Drustan.
Did Barrons ever love Fiona? No.
On Dani: Dani’s in a pretty bad point if Ryo has a job for her and Christian thinks she might be his redemption. “Can you imagine being stuck between these two men when you are 14? What if they hang around the next few years to watch over you with hawk eyes, making sure you become what they want you to become?” (KMM also said that the Dani book will not only be about Dani/Christian/Ryodan but also Dancer.)
Hardest scene for her to write in the series? “The end of FAEFEVER was awful for me to write. I got to that point and stopped writing for several weeks because I didn’t want to face it. But in the end, I wrote it exactly as it came to me. I cried.” KMM also says the Mac’s torture scenes with Malluce were difficult to write.
More on V’lane: KMM gave us some alternative thoughts on V’lane/Cruce. Might he be a real hero? What if he’d gotten to Mac before Barrons did? Yes, he betrayed the Unseelie King but he was fighting for his freedom and the freedom of the Unseelie. He would’ve made Mac his princess. (One fan said no way could V/C be a hero because he raped Mac.)
Possible books: KMM says it’s possible she would write something from Barrons’ POV. She also might write a prequel novella about Alina/Darroc.
Barrons/Mac relationship: KMM says since the moment Barrons met Mac and accepted that he wanted her, he has been “ruthlessly altering her, making her suitable for him … The only question is will she survive what he’s doing to her?”
Does KMM know what the Gray Woman will want from Mac? “Yes, I know what Mac will owe the Gray Woman.”
And then KMM closed with this thought: “In SHADOWFEVER, 2 Sinsar Dubhs are out there. What would happen if they both got loose?”
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Book pick: ‘Shadowfever’ an epic ending to the Mac & Barrons story January 22, 2011Posted by Diana McCabe in Reviews/summaries.
Tags: Barrons, karen marie moning, Mac, Shadowfever, v'lane
Karen Marie Moning wraps up her Fever series with a finale that whipsaws the reader in an oh-my-gosh page turner that never lets up until the last page. (And that would be page 594 — so if you haven’t finished it, be warned: This contains SPOILERS.)
After waiting two years for SHADOWFEVER and debating countless theories on Mac and Barrons, I wondered if KMM could deliver all of the answers her fans demanded. I’d say in some cases she did — and in others she left the door open.
SHADOWFEVER continues Mac’s dark journey of loss and self-discovery as she hunts her sister’s killer and is surrounded by the Fae and other monsters who are overtaking humankind. We quickly learn that the beast she stabs at the end of DREAMFEVER is Barrons. And this is where Mac starts to wonder if she’s evil and can’t figure out who or what she really is — beyond a sidhe-seer who can detect Fae objects and is immune to Fae glamour.
In her grief over killing Barrons, Mac decides to join forces with the Lord Master and hunt down the Sinsar Dubh. Once she has the book, she plans to use its magic to recreate time — a time where Barrons and her sister, Alina, exist.
Well — that was her plan. Through a series of plot and character twists, KMM moves Mac in a different direction though, and it’s one that leaves our heroine with a major identity crisis. Is she the reincarnation of the King’s concubine? And in an even more intriguing twist, is she the King? Or, is she a vessel holding a copy of the Sinsar Dubh?
I found this to be the most fascinating part of the story. KMM builds her own Fae lore about the queen, the King and the Fourth Prince as she guides Mac through the White Mansion and the Silvers for answers. This is good, creative story telling.
And Mac’s uncertainty about who she is — at times is touching and funny:
“Was I a woman, obsessed with the woman on the couch? Or was I the male King of the Fae, obsessed with Jericho? I consider myself open-minded about gender preference — love is love, and who’s to say how the body follows the heart? — but both of those scenarios were hard for me to accept for myself. Neither fit me like a glove, and sexuality should. When it’s right, it feels good on you, like your own skin, and the only thing that felt like skin to me was woman to man.”
The best parts of the book are reminiscent of the rest of the series: The witty banter that Mac and Barrons carry on without speaking; the eerie worlds KMM creates as Mac travels in the Silvers and White Mansion, and the development of V’lane — who isn’t exactly a nice Fae after all. (Not that any of us trusted him.) His role in all of this is perhaps the most shocking — and I was delighted to hear his story unfold in such a traitorous way! (I won’t spoil the rest on that story line, but it’s not over yet!)
It’s also clear early in the story that Barrons just won’t die. We still don’t know who or what he is — only that when he dies he returns to the place of his original death before coming back. That his heart doesn’t beat — until after he feeds. And that he has a son, who is hopelessly locked in his beast state. We also find out just how entangled he is with his men, how ticked off he is at Mac for consorting with the Lord Master and how much his beast really controls him.
Much as I liked large parts of the story, I often found myself reeling with the number of “Ah-ha” moments and characters who stand in Mac’s way. KMM ties up the Rowena story line, the Isla story, gives us more on Barrons, his men and Barrons’ child, has Dani deliver a whopper of a surprise to Mac, introduces us to K’Vruck (Death), leaves us wondering what the heck will happen to Christian and then includes a slew of characters from her HIGHLANDER series and even involve Mac’s adopted parents in the big final scene at the end. It was way too much. Toward the end, I almost felt as if I were watching a movie and the bad guys just wouldn’t die — but kept coming back to life!
The very end was a big nod to KMM fans who wanted that happy ending. It was a little too sweet for me, with Mac’s adoptive parents moving to Dublin and getting a house and everyone getting together for a party at Mac’s bookstore — with Barrons grilling steaks. It didn’t have the same fun, edgy tone I felt was the strong suit of the entire series.
In all fairness to KMM, she wanted to wrap this story up in five books. And despite some of my nits with the overabundance of changing story lines/characters, I still loved reading this story and will keep re-reading it.
We still have a lot of unanswered questions, including who and what is JZB. And we certainly still have questions about Mac, now that we know who and what she is. But KMM will slowly reveal more to us in her next series, which focuses on Dani, Ryodan and Christian.
But yes — when I look back at what KMM has done with the series and this last book, SHADOWFEVER does deliver an epic ending to a great urban-fantasy, which remains a favorite of mine.
So as KMM says on page 594: “The end ….” and on the next page “…. for now.”
DID YOU MISS THESE?
Q&A with Shadowfever’s Karen Marie Moning January 18, 2011Posted by Diana McCabe in News.
Tags: Jericho Barrons, karen marie moning, Mac, Shadowfever
After a marathon reading session, KMM fans gathered at the Le Pavillon in New Orleans for Q&A sessions with the author to talk about SHADOWFEVER and the other books in the Fever series. Karen Marie Moning, who apologized to fans because she wasn’t feeling well and hadn’t been able to engage in all of the weekend activities, took questions from readers in two different sessions. Here are excerpts from the noon session: (Some SPOILERS in here! So don’t read if you don’t wanna know! We were allowed to take photos but not video. Comments in parenthesis are mine.)
Q: Were Alina and Mac blood sisters?
A: Yes. No one knew that Isla was pregnant. (Of course, if you’ve read the book you know that the book “claimed” Mac when she was in Isla’s womb.)
Q: Why didn’t Barrons take Darroc’s mark off Mac?
A: Yeah, he left it on. We’ll see what happens.
Q: Will we ever know more about Barrons and his son?
A: I don’t know if I will ever go back to do that. KMM then explained how she wanted to move ahead with her characters’ story lines. She did say we’d see a lot more of Barrons and his boys in her subsequent series. (And maybe learn more about what he and the others are.)
Q: Who will the next series be about?
A: Dani, Christian and Ryodan. Also, you’ll see more of Mac and Barrons, too. She also said we’ll learn more about the Triton Corp. and Mac will meet Tellie.
Q: When will the next series come out?
A: She doesn’t know. KMM did say she is working on a graphic novel about the Fever series and also will publish The Lady Lies — an unpublished, unedited novel she was posting on her blog for readers.
Q: Did you have any second thoughts about Mac’s major identity crisis? At one point she thought she was the concubine, then the king and then she realized she had the book imprinted inside her.
A: No, that’s how I saw the story in my dream. Plot follows emotion. So you had to see the changes that Mac was going through when she kept wondering what the *^%@ she was.
Q: Your HIGHLANDER characters appeared a lot in this book. Do you think you’ll ever write another HIGHLANDER book?
A: She might. She thinks there is one more story to be told. (She says she doesn’t like many of her HIGHLANDER novels but thinks she started to hit her stride with KISS OF THE HIGHLANDER and TOUCH OF THE HIGHLANDER.)
Q: How much of the Fae world in the Fever series is based on lore and how much is your own creation?
A: Some of the world is based on the Celtic lore behind the Seelie and Unseelie courts. KMM says there’s a lot of that basic storyline out there and other writers have tapped into it. But what makes her story different: She has the story of the concubine and the intrigue of the prince (Cruce) vs the King etc in her storylines. So part is mythology and part is from her world building that came from her dream about the series.
Q: Tell us about the dream?
A: The whole Fever series came to KMM in one dream. She knew all of the plot twists, that the story would break into five books, the names of the characters, even the names of the books.
Q: Why didn’t you write it right away?
A: She was writing romance novels and this was a break from that. She knew she’d write in first person. The urban fantasy format really allowed her to explore these new worlds — something she couldn’t do in just a romance format. But she had to let go of that format to write the Fever series.
Q: What’s up with the movie?
A: The movie options have expired, so currently she has nothing cooking on that front. However, the Sy-Fy Network has expressed interest in a TV series, which KMM says is the format she favors. She would want to be heavily involved in the production though and knows that’s a difficult role to negotiate. So right now — nothing to report on the movie front.
Q. Who is ‘M’ in the dedication?
A: I won’t tell who the dedication is for. It’s part of a deal I made.
Q: How old will Dani be when you start her story?
A: KMM says she has a few options and she hasn’t decided yet. She could start the story when Dani is a few years older or she could start with her at her current age, which she thinks is more true to the character.
Q: Is she more like Mac or Barrons?
A: She says she has a little of both, but probably has more Barrons in her. KMM did say when she started the series that she saw herself start to dress more like Mac. She had her nails done and started to care about fashion. Of course, she finds it ironic that Mac is fashion-challenged now, not knowing what to wear so she mixes and matches her pink stuff with grunge stuff.
Throughout the Q&A, KMM had some interesting philosophical observations. She explained she had a dream where she saw herself die — really die — and a voice asked her what she’d done with her life. So she decided she wanted to write.
–On loss. She says her characters’ say it best and understands the pain Barrons goes through with the child when he says it’s easier when a person dies. But it’s hard to live and not be able to help that person who is in distress.
–On the start of SHADOWFEVER. She said when she first read what she wrote she said “Oh, this is horrible. It’s hard to go from having a pretty pink life to having everything broken.”
–On her characters: “I don’t feel there are any real heroes or villains in the Fever series. … I think everything has shades of gray in the series.”
–On her fans. At the end, KMM was gracious and got teary-eyed when she thanked readers for their patience and love of the series. She again said she wished she’d felt better and had been able to participate in the all-night reading and hoped fans understood.
And they did. They ended the Q&A with a standing ovation for KMM.
DID YOU MISS THESE?
On the eve of ‘Shadowfever’ release in NOLA January 16, 2011Posted by Diana McCabe in News.
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Blew into New Orleans less than 24 hours ago for the SHADOWFEVER book event Monday. Am here with the little sis from Philly. We have not spotted Karen Marie Moning — but we aren’t staying at the host hotel — Le Pavillion — which is one reason we missed the scavenger hunt today. (The winners are first in line at the book signing manana.)
We did scout out the hotel later to see where the book event would be held. The signing starts at 4 p.m. on the second floor. We are kind of wishing we’d been able to stay there because each night the hotel gives its guests PBJ sandwiches at 10, along with a glass of milk or hot chocolate! (That will come in handy Monday night during the marathon reading session!).
I saw one blog with an early review of SHADOWFEVER, but it also said “No spoilers.” This blogger’s copy of her book apparently arrived early? And she’s in the U.K.? Possible? Not sure what to think and she didn’t give anything away so wonder if she really did get the book early? Anyway — take a look if you want at her blog HERE. (It’s one of those racy blogs ….)
OK — more to come on Monday! (I’ll post a link of KMM’s TV interview if there is one and will take pics at the book signing etc.)
Yikes — this time tomorrow night I’ll have the book in my hot little hands and will be reading!!!
First 2 chapters of ‘Shadowfever’ leaked; KMM responds January 13, 2011Posted by Diana McCabe in News.
Tags: Barrons, Beast, karen marie moning, Mac, Shadowfever
UPDATE: Friday (Jan. 14)
On KMM’s blog: The retailer who posted the two chapters — Shelfari — didn’t do it on purpose, KMM says. It was an honest mistake. “As frustrated as it makes me, you should know it was an oversight,” she says on her blog. Also she says she’s not hiding a third chapter from us. She only saw two posted, but has had folks tell her as many as five were up. She only has a two chapter PDF so she can’t give her fans more right now.
Late Wednesday, Karen Marie Moning learned that a major retailer broke an embargo and posted the first two chapters of SHADOWFEVER online.
On her blog — CLICK HERE to get to her entry on this and to her link to the chapters — she explains that the first two chapters contain a “MAJOR SPOILER” and a lot of information. So for her fans — who KMM doesn’t want to get hit by all of this — she’s made the chapters available as a download for people who chose to read it.
More from KMM:
This isn’t how I wanted things to go. I had something special planned for you pre-release but the unauthorized posting blew it for us. Since it has been leaked, I’m giving you the choice. I’ve posted the PDF of the first two chapters at my website for those of you who want spoilers. IT WILL TELL YOU WHO THE BEAST WAS.
Simplified theories on Mac & Barrons January 10, 2011Posted by Diana McCabe in Fun stuff.
Tags: Barrons, karen marie moning, Mac, Shadowfever
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I’ve collected a few of the theories folks have posted here over the past year about Mac and Barrons. Of course, we’ll know the answer shortly with the release of SHADOWFEVER but until next Tuesday, here are a couple of theories to strain your brain. (I am headed to NOLA on Saturday for KMM’s book event on Jan. 17th! Will be posting from the Q&A session.) But try not to think too hard! None of these — if you take them together — adds up. But I thought they were fun, and I thank all of the folks who posted over the past year. (I’ve combined many of the key theories from various comments you left.) Later this week: Fever trivia!!
The beast Mac stabs at the end of DREAMFEVER is Barrons
Most people think Mac kills Barrons in his beast form but he’s not really dead, although Mac thinks he’s dead. (But he comes back or she brings him back somehow.)
Barrons is …
1. The Seelie King
2. The Unseelie King
3. The 4th Unseelie Prince (who everyone thinks is dead)
4. The son of the Seelie King and his concubine
The list goes on and on. But a lot of folks think Barrons is a super Druid or being who was one of the King’s mercenaries. He and his gang (the others who follow JZB) are of the same immortal race as the King, but are different. This race can kill the fae. In IMMORTAL HIGHLANDER, Darroc talks about the other races that chased them from Danu. Maybe this is that same race.(And we never saw JZB kill the princess but he apparently can kill ‘em.)
Others think JZB is the son of Adam Black (Adaman) and Morganna, which would imbue him with certain qualities and powers.
Why does Barrons want the book?
One of the many ideas posted here: The Seelie King’s concubine was Barron’s wife. She and Barrons had a son. But when Barrons’ wife was stolen by the king and made priyah, the child dies. Barrons wants the Sinsar Dubh to bring his son and wife back. (Of course, he’s torn between the love in his past life and his love for Mac.) Ummmmm — someone else thought that Barrons was one of the Kings. He started out as the Unseelie King but put all of his evil into the book. So what’s left right now is a “good King.” Dunno. He did tell Mac: “Evil is a completely different creature, Mac. Evil is bad that believes it’s good.”
Who killed Alina?
Love this theory: V’Lane. Some of you think that V’Lane was the fourth prince who raped Mac. Even though he is Seelie, he wants the Queen’s power and needs the book. So he’s made some sort of deal with Darroc. He believes Mac is the only one who can get him the book and therefore let him take power from the Queen. (Twisted, but could make some sense given fae history. What a bunch of backstabbers!)
Will Mac end the world?
According to a prophesy, Mac will bring about the end of the world. But what world? Many of you think it is the world dominated by the fae.
Why does Mac have special powers?
Either Mac’s mother or grandmother might have been the UK’s concubine. And that would explain some of her special powers. It would also explain her possible propensity toward evil. Now. the old woman calls Mac — Alina when she meets her. Perhaps their names got mixed up at birth and it was Alina who was cursed to doom the world and not Mac? (Perhaps that was why Alina was killed?) Is Mac some kind of super princess?
That’s it for short and sweet theories. To read the complete conversations, CLICK HERE.
And in case you need a refresher, here are the cast of characters, courtesy of KMM’s website:
- MacKayla Lane, reluctant sidhe-seer, a person who can see into the hidden world of the ancient, immortal Fae. Able to sense and hunt the Dark Book of Magic known as the Sinsar Dubh. (Shee-sa-doo)
- Alina Lane, Mac’s sister who was murdered while studying abroad at Trinity College.
- Jack and Rainey Lane, Mac and Alina’s parents. While in Dublin, Mac discovers they are not her biological parents. She and Alina were adopted and part of the adoption agreement was a promise that the girls never be allowed to return to Ireland.
- Jericho Barrons, bookstore owner, antiquities collector and not-quite human. Hunting the Sinsar Dubh.
- V’lane, Seelie Prince, Queen of the Fae’s high consort, extremely sexual and erotic. Hunting the Sinsar Dubh.
- Darroc, Lord Master, ex-Fae, liberator of the imprisoned Unseelie, the one who brings down the walls between Man and Fae. Hunting the Sinsar Dubh. Alina’s boyfriend. And murderer?
- Christian MacKeltar, twenty-ish Scottish student at Trinity College, who works in the Ancient Languages Department but is really stationed there to keep an eye on Jericho Barrons.
- Danielle Mega O’Malley, adolescent sidhe-seer with super-strength and speed. Outrageous, witty, resilient—and a stone-cold killer.
- Rowena, headmistress of the sidhe-seer organization. Protects the six major Irish sidhe-seer bloodlines, takes them in and trains them. She guarded the Sinsar Dubh, until it escaped.
- Fiona, aging beauty, runs Barrons Books and Baubles, is in love with Jericho Barrons.
- Rocky O’Bannion, black Irish mobster and ex-boxer. Religious fanatic and antiquities collector. Has the Spear of Destiny (aka the Spear of Longinus that pierced Christ’s side) until Mac takes it from him.
- Derek O’Bannion, Rocky’s younger brother who comes after Mac when she kills Rocky
- Mallucé, aka John Johnstone, Jr. geeky son of billionaire parents until he kills them and comes back as the steampunk vampire Mallucé.
- Concubine, The Unseelie King’s mortal lover.
- K’Vruck, the most ancient Royal Hunter
- Assorted sidhe-seers
- Inspector O’Duffy, initial Garda on Alina’s case
- Inspector Jayne, raw-boned Irishman that tails Mac and eventually joins the fight against the Fae.