Over a hundred years have passed since a group of violent killers went on the rampage, murdering innocent victims for fun. But even back then, sorcerer Nate Garrett, aka Hellequin, knew there was more to it than simple savage pleasure—souls were being stolen.
Nate’s discovery of the souls’ use, and of those supporting the group’s plan, made him question everything he believed.
Now the group Nate thought long dead is back. Violent, angry, and hell-bent on revenge, they have Hellequin firmly in their sights. And if he won’t come willingly, they’ll take those closest to him first.
The battle begins again.
I glanced past Grayson at the orange and black Fiat Panda on my drive. It was the newer version of the car, so it no longer looked like the world’s ugliest box. Instead it appeared like someone had taken a bigger car and squashed it. Then added chrome in an effort to make people forget it about the rest of it. In short, it wasn’t what I’d have called a looker. “Is that yours?”
“It’s my work car. You’d be surprised how easy it is to damage your car, working with injured werewolves and the like.”
“You want to follow me, so I can pretend I don’t know you? Or do you just want to take my car? I’ll drop you back here after.”
“It’s a very good car.”
“Okay, but it’s also a Fiat Panda.”
Grayson held my gaze for a short time. “You’re a bit of car snob, aren’t you?”
I nodded and clicked the button on the garage door opener. One of the three doors slowly moved up, revealing a Jaguar F-Type R, in British racing green. Otherwise known as dark green. It looked how a sports car should look: sleek, sophisticated, and sexy. Everything about it was as close to perfection as a car could be. It helped that it drove like a dream, as if the wide grille on the front of the car ate the road as it went.
I turned to Grayson as we reached the garage and he saw the Jaguar in all its glory. “Yes, I’m a bit of a car snob when given the option. You want to go out in your Panda, or in this?”
Grayson glanced over at his small car, and then back to the Jag. “Is it fast?”
I unlocked the car and we both got in, where I turned the engine on and allowed the sound of the V8 to wash over us. “Is it fast?” I asked. “A bit.”
What should readers expect when they pick up your book?
A fun, action-packed supernatural thriller. They should probably also expect several levels of craziness, and a lot of humor.
What was the hardest part to write in this book?
The first chapter is always the hardest to write for me. After that it gets easier. Trying to work out the best way to start the book and move things forward, while also trying to grab someone’s attention isn’t always the easiest.
What inspired you to write your first book?
I always enjoyed writing, even as a very young boy. But when I was about 12 or 13 my English teacher at school advised me to read books from various genres that I didn't normally read, so I went to the local library and picked up David Gemmell, Terry Pratchett and Stephen King. Once I finished them, I knew I wanted to do it myself.
But it was the birth of my first child 11 years ago, when I was 25, that made me want to take it seriously.
What sacrifices have you had to make to be a writer?
Lots of late nights, and staying in when I could have done other things, are probably the two biggest. My friends and family are very understanding and know that I need time to work, and time to be left in my own head.
Have you started your next project?
I’ve got plenty more Hellequin stories to tell, and I’ve started book 6 at the moment. After that, I’ve got an offshoot book about a supporting character I’d like to write. And then there’s my sci-fi epic, the first book of which is now with my agent. Basically I’m really busy and not going anywhere any time soon.
Do you have any unusual writing rituals?
No, and I really feel like I should, because people keep asking me this. I need to get some sort of weird thing I do before I start writing. My ritual is grab a cup of tea, sit down and start. It’s a bit dull.
Any last words?
If you decide to pick up any of my Hellequin Chronicles books, I hope you enjoy it.
Steve’s been writing from an early age, his first completed story was done in an English lesson. Unfortunately, after the teacher read it, he had to have a chat with the head of the year about the violent content and bad language. The follow up ‘One boy and his frog’ was less concerning to his teachers and got him an A.
It wasn’t for another decade that he would start work on a full-length novel that was publishable, the results of which was the action-packed Urban Fantasy, Crimes Against Magic.
Steve McHugh lives in Southampton on the south coast of England with his wife and three young daughters. When not writing or spending time with his kids, he enjoys watching movies, reading books and comics, and playing video games.
Steve McHugh will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.