It’s time for the October New Series Spotlight! If you love series books as much as we do, you’ll know that there are tons of them out there, and we don’t always find out about them right when they come out. So we are trying to help you find some new series reads. Each month we will feature a new up and coming series that we think you should know about!
*Authors: If you want your books to be featured, contact MinnChica*
Today we have with us today Jessica Sims (also known as Jill Myles) here to talk to us a little bit about her newest series: Midnight Liasions. Sims combines her hilarious writing style with the hilarious scenario of blind supernatural dating. It’s a must read for paranormal romance fans! Check back later today for MinnChica’s review of Beauty Dates the Beast!
New Series Description:
The series is about a dating agency that caters exclusively to the paranormal. While most of the dating agency employees are human, they tend to interact with a lot of the local supernaturals, especially the Alliance. The Alliance is a business membership – kind of like Triple A – that protects and gives advantages to non-pack supernaturals, like were-cougars and were-bears.
Like most of my ideas, this one is a mix of a lot of half-formed ideas I had rolling around in my head. This one is actually a mix of business concepts with standard paranormal tropes. I wanted to have a dating consultant for the paranormal, but I didn’t want the focus to automatically be vampires. So I thought about shifters, especially big-cat shifters. I love those. But the problem with big cat shifters is that they’re not really pack animals like wolves or hyena. And almost every single vampire in paranormal mythology seems to belong to a hierarchy, right? So I wondered how modern shifters would handle being loners, and how smart that would be. Clearly there had to be a business to cater to that, right? So that’s how the Alliance was born, and it just felt kind of natural that my dating agency would intersect with it.
I also wanted to set a series in a place I was familiar with – North Texas. I’m not talking about glamorous downtown Dallas where everything’s very urban. I’m talking about the small towns and strip malls that make up the suburbs, and small cities that seem a little too close for comfort. It’s not overwhelmingly Texas where everyone eats barbecue and wears cowboy boots, but it’s not slick and glamorous and urban like a lot of paranormals set in big cities.
Right now there are three books contracted, and even though these are written in first person, they’re romances through and through. Each book is going to focus on a new hero and heroine, and how they interact with the dating agency. Each book will also stand TOTALLY alone. Unlike my other series, you can truly pick up each book and understand what’s going on without having to play catch-up on the others.
Book one is about the office manager of Midnight Liaisons, a human woman named Bathsheba and a were-cougar named Beau. Bathsheba has a lot of secrets that she’s keeping, so she’s not a typical hapless human that just happens to get mixed up in the paranormal world. Beau’s the leader of the Paranormal Alliance and while they’re not really supposed to date humans, he’s determined to win Bathsheba.
The second book (which should be done by the time this interview posts!) is about Bathsheba’s sister Sara and a very large, very surly were-bear named Ramsey who’s forced into a fake relationship with Sara to protect her. Except after a while, they aren’t really faking!
The books have really been a ton of fun to write, and I’m thoroughly enjoying myself blending all the elements together. I’m not sure who the third book will be about – there’s about three or four different stories that I have working for this series and it could be about any of them. I’ll know when I get there.
Jessica Sims is an alias for Jill Myles. My publisher wanted me to ‘brand’ the new kind of paranormal with a big line in the sand, and so we picked a new name. It’s a little confusing for readers (I know!) but if you go to either of my websites (Jill Myles or Jessica Sims), I try to make it as easy as possible.
I’m really excited about this series! I gave myself a lot of canvas to play with and I’m definitely enjoying the results. The Alliance is all about equal opportunity for shifters, so you won’t just see big cats and things like that. There are were-foxes and naga and harpy playing at the fringes too. And vampires! But we haven’t ran into those yet.
My story in WILD & STEAMY (the anthology with Carolyn Crane and Meljean Brook) features a were-fox and a couple of cat shifters in this same sort of scenario, but isn’t an ‘official’ tie in to the series.