Thursday, December 5, 2013

Author Interview: Isabel Cooper

Enjoy our interview with author Isabel Cooper.  She is promoting her latest book,  Legend of the Highland Dragon.

Publisher: Sourcebooks
Date of publication: December 2013

He Guards a Ferocious Secret…
In Victorian England, gossip is often as precious as gold. But the Highlanders are a more mysterious bunch. And if anyone found out that Stephen MacAlasdair really was, he'd be hunted down, murdered, his clan wiped out. As he's called to London on business, he'll have to be extra vigilant—especially between sunset and the appearance of the first evening star.

Mina just wanted to find out more about the arrogant man who showed up in her employer's office. Some might say it was part of her job. She never thought the stranger would turn into a dragon right in front of her. Or that he'd then offer her an outrageous sum of money to serve as his personal secretary. Working together night and day to track a dangerous enemy, Mina comes to see a man in love is more powerful and determined than any dragon.

Kari& Autumn: What inspired you to become a writer?

Isabel:  As far as making up stories in my head, I’ve always done that. (My sister and I, playing with Barbies, alternated between Gossip Girl-style plots involving jealousy over friendships and attempted murder by jet-ski-tampering, and having the Dreamhouse be attacked by giant plastic dinosaurs. As you do.) I took a lot of car trips, had one of those post-hippie educations where they make you take a lot of nature walks, and had a fair amount of math class: it was bad mental novels or “accidentally” setting fire to something.

Somewhere along the line, I started writing things down. (Generally during class, yes.) (I wrote No Proper Lady while at my day job, so no, I have not grown any semblance of a Puritan-style work ethic between sixth grade and now.) Somewhere a lot further along the line, they started getting better. I hope. J At least they don’t involve me developing violet eyes and getting one of about fifty fantasy heroes as my avid-and-kinda-pathetic suitor. (And no, these heroes were not always from good fantasy novels, and yes, many of them had names with apostrophes in them. I WILL SAY NO MORE.)

Kari& Autumn: Where do you come up with the ideas for your books?

Isabel:  For me, sort of the same way I mix drinks when I’m at home. I’ve got tea, I’ve got milk, I’ve got sugar, I’ve got inexplicably cake-flavored vodka—why not see what happens? Likewise, I like fantasy and horror, I like romance plots and sexual tension, I like snappy banter with flirty overtones, so I tend to think of a lot of plots that are “X meets Y”, where “Y” is generally some vaguely classic romantic work and “X” involves explosions and holes in the fabric of space-time and maybe killer robots.  “Because what the hell?” is sort of my motto—for a lot of things, really.

Kari& Autumn: What exciting projects are waiting in the wings?

Isabel:  I’m currently working on the third novel in this series, about Stephen’s sister Judith. She’s hanging out in Scotland, being responsible and extremely world-weary,  when someone nearby starts doing a number of highly antisocial things. This attracts the attention of Her Majesty’s Government, who sends one of their best and coincidentally handsomest men to look into the situation. At the moment, he and Judith are doing the dance of you’re-hot-but-I’m-not-entirely-sure-you’re-not-some-kind-of-creepy-deathgod, as is so frequent in these situations.

Kari& Autumn: Who is your favorite literary character and why?

Isabel: Favorite ever? Hard to say. I have a strong vote for Susan Sto Helit or Granny Weatherwax. Both are from the Discworld novels; both are extremely practical; neither one is trying to hear anything about whatever drama you’ve got going on, buddy. I approve of that sort of thing.  Also, “If I catch you being twee again, I will knot your arms behind your head,” is a line that needs to see more use in today’s world. 

Kari& Autumn: Just for fun, if you could be any animal, what would it be and why?

Isabel: My inclination is to say a dog. But a really unhealthily pampered dog, the kind that gets way too many table scraps: that sounds like a good, relaxing sort of a life. Lots of sleep, lots of food,  mindless entertainment, no need to work for a living. (Not much in the way of romance, guests’ legs aside, but honestly, the animal kingdom kinda sucks that way in general unless you go bonobo, and…apes, meh. You *really* don’t want to be one of the big cats, from what I hear. Or poultry of any sort.)  Friends who know my eating habits would probably say “hummingbird”, so that’s likely valid too.

Isabel Cooper is the author paranormal historical romances No Proper Lady, a Publishers Weekly and a
Library Journal book of the year in 2011, and Lessons After Dark. Both titles were also nominated in the RT Book Reviews Reviewers Choice Awards. During the day, Isabel maintains her guise as a mild-mannered project manager working in legal publishing outside of Boston. For more, visit

To Purchase Legend of the Highland Dragon

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