Fun with Max and Save the Date by Susan Hanniford Crowley

New Cover

Old Cover

On the left is the new cover for Vampire King of New York. It is available at Amazon in Kindle and print. 

For the newly covered book (also the 2nd printing), I am doing a special called Matchbook with Amazon, where if you buy the print book, you can then buy the Kindle version for $.99

On the right is the book with the old cover. You can still find this at 3rd party/used bookstores. They usually run in the hundreds of dollars. I hope they are signed. I get asked this all the time: do I make money off that? No. Once a book is sold even to another bookstore, it becomes their property and they set the price and keep the money. It is the 1st printing of the book and is considered out of print.

Now for some fun with Max:

I’m going to share an excerpt from Vampire King of New York, specifically the Meet-Cute with Evelyn. Max has arrived arrived in New York after meeting with a Norse goddess concerning his destiny, which is looking bleak. After the deaths of her husband and son, Evelyn has lived for a year with her sister and brother-in-law. They are vampires.

*

Evelyn was glad David insisted on this dinner out. She’d been shaky all day. In two weeks she would be leaving her job at the New York City Public Library and going back to Connecticut. She nibbled on her shrimp cocktail. Even though she loved it, her mind just wasn’t on how delicious it was. It was almost the anniversary of the accident that took the lives of her husband and son. Just the thought of her little J.J. made her sniff holding back the tears. Taking a huge gulp of air, she tried to put on a happy face. Evelyn found living with the two vampires so amusing at times that it held her grief at bay.

Laura shucked off a shrimp tail and placed it on the little plate, then drowned the fish in shrimp sauce. Evelyn couldn’t help but giggle. How horrible it must be not to be able to eat a favorite food! She remembered how Laura loved shrimp growing up. She glanced over at David. He was doing the same thing. Pity. Laura had told Evelyn that David, being over one hundred, was capable of eating human food but made a promise not to eat until Laura could too. A promise of love. Evelyn enjoyed watching her sister and brother-in-law. Theirs was what marriage was supposed to be—filled with love, sharing, and humor.

Then, he walked into the restaurant.

Oh, my God, the Viking of my dreams is walking up to the table. This can’t be happening.

Part of her danced with excitement, when she should have been quaking in terror.

After dreaming of him every night for my entire life, how can he be flesh and blood?

She thrust her trembling hands under the table. Grief must have made her crazy. All she saw was the tall, blond, broad shouldered man, so handsome she could cry, towering over their table. All she could think about was running away. If she looked into his eyes, she would be trapped, and Evelyn didn’t want that. She’d felt trapped half her life, and this would be worse—to be trapped by an illusion of a man, a vampire.

“Max!” David jumped up and the two gripped each other’s arms in a kind of arm shake rather than a handshake.

Laura sipped her blood wine and smiled.

“Laura, you’re looking lovely.”

“Thank you, Max.” Looking in Evelyn’s direction, she added, “This is my sister, Evelyn.”

Max’s heart jumped in his chest. He was sure everyone saw it, but surveying David and Laura’s easy smiles of welcome, he realized they hadn’t. Fear roared like a fire through his veins. He wanted to rush to her and hold her, but experience, taught by time, held him restrained. David showed no indication of picking up his thoughts, and for that Max was grateful. In his dreams, he’d watched Svenna’s transformation into this modern woman, but part of him never believed it could be true—that she was out there somewhere waiting for him. He had made his petition to the goddess without believing. Only his pain made him say those words to Freya.

Evelyn was an exquisite human, and his stomach flip-flopped with the idea of talking to her. What if he said something wrong? What if she didn’t like him? Perhaps he should leave. This could be a deception by Loki playing on his desperate need. Evelyn was too beautiful, too delicate. Damn it, she was too human and didn’t want their lifestyle. A thousand questions popped into mind, mocking his insecurities. Her gaze slid to him and then away. Eyes the same brilliant summer blue as his lost love. She concealed her small hands at first, but now they emerged ripping her napkin into fine, long shreds. Concentrating to stop his shaking, he took her delicate hand and pressed her fingers to his lips. Her eyelashes fluttered, sending a tremor of excitement through him.

Evelyn couldn’t stop staring at him. He reached for her hand. The touch of his lips on her fingers and the ensuing exhale of warm air sent a shiver down to her toes right after he released her hand. Vampires were supposed to be cold. Whenever she hugged David and Laura goodnight, they were chilly.

“May I join you?”

“Of course,” David said.

Max took the seat beside her. She couldn’t breathe. Her mind shifted between grief for her lost family and the raw energy she felt from Max. His energy exhilarated her, leaving her breathless and hungry for more.

“Are you all right, Evie?” Laura placed her hand on her sister’s shoulder. Even through her light sweater, Evelyn felt her sister’s cool touch.

“Yes.” She shook herself. “I’ll be fine. I just got melancholy for a moment. Change is always hard for me.”

“David told me you were returning to Connecticut. Perhaps you’re not yet ready. Often the heart balks at change, when the mind is uncertain. Of course, that’s merely an observation of life. Being a vampire, I know change too well,” Max said.

“In my experience, change hurts. Does it always hurt?” She gazed into those wonderful glacier blue-gray eyes of his, and they weren’t cold at all, but deep, engulfing, welcoming.

“I am sad to say it does. However, the company we keep can sometimes diminish the pain and give us hope of happiness.”

Evelyn enjoyed looking at Max and found him strangely comforting.

David and Laura raised their glasses of blood wine. Max poured some Organa Wine, which Laura had explained to her was cow’s blood, into his glass then raised it as well. Evelyn raised her champagne flute.

“To Evelyn, may your new life bring you happiness,” David said.

It was a simple toast but appreciated. The four clinked glasses and drank. The champagne rushed down Evelyn’s throat, and a comforting warmth spread through her as her cheeks heated. Happiness could be a good thing. She could do with a little happiness. Or maybe a lot.

The waiter arrived and faced David. “Is it time, sir?”

David nodded and Max turned toward the man. “Yes, my good sir,” Max said, “the gentleman is ready for your excellent salmon entrée”

Laura, what’s this all about? Were they mindtalking? Evelyn thought to her sister.

Yes, Max mindtalked to David earlier, and David ordered for him so he wouldn’t have to wait long after arriving.

“Thank you, sir.” The waiter hurried off.

Evelyn could not hide her smile. She had a lot of questions and couldn’t ask them with another human around. Feelings bubbled up inside her right into words. “You can eat?”

“Yes.”

“Really eat human food, not just cut it up and move it around the plate?”

David shook his head and gave her a look. “Evie, it isn’t polite.”

“What? Vampires have a code of etiquette? Rules on what you can ask and what you can’t?”

Max laughed, but not in such a way that he offended her. She got the distinct impression that she delighted him and this spurred her on.

“Are you offended if I ask you questions, Max?”

“Not at all, Evelyn, ask what you wish.”

“There. See.” She scowled at David on purpose. He merely narrowed his eyes at her and sat back in his chair.

The waiter arrived with the salmon. Evelyn thought the least she could do was wait until he left, but the man was full of questions himself. “Is there anything else I can get you?”

“No, thank you,” Max said.

“Is everything to your satisfaction, sir?”

“Yes, thank you,” he replied.

Finally, the waiter left and she set her focus on Max, though that was difficult. The man was digging into his salmon with gusto.

“You really eat,” she said.

“I said I did.” He wiped his mouth with his napkin and then put it down. “You were saying?”

“If you are eating, you’re at least a hundred years old.”

“Evelyn, asking a person’s age is . . .” David started, but Max put up his hand.

“I don’t care if she asks my age.”

Targeting her with those gray, glacier blue eyes, he asked, “How old are you?”

“I’m thirty-two. I’m three years older than Laura. I figure you must have died when you were twenty?”

“Twenty-eight.”

“You look younger.”

“When you become a vampire, the process reverses the body to one’s prime.”

“That’s handy. So . . . ” She bit her lower lip in concentration. “How old are you?”

With his fork in his mouth, he sputtered. Taking a minute to chew and swallow, Max put down his fork. He smiled, gazed over at David and nodded. “Do you want only vampire years or combined with human years?”

“Both, I guess.”

“Hmm. I was made a vampire when I was twenty-eight years of age, and I have lived as a vampire for one thousand and seventy-eight years. That would make me . . . ”

“One thousand, one hundred and four.” Evelyn’s mouth dropped open at the realization. She blinked.

“Is there a problem?”

“No.” She was baffled by the amused look on his face.

“Am I too old?”

*
You’ll just have to read the book to find out if Max is too old. (Laughs) Let me put it this way. Not at all!

Now for the Save the Date regarding my upcoming contest:

 

Have a fun day!

-Susan
Susan Hanniford Crowley, Amazon Kindle Bestselling Author of Vampire Romance
www.susanhannifordcrowley.com
Where love burns eternal and whispers in the dark!

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About Susan Hanniford Crowley

Paranormal Romance, Fantasy, and Science Fiction Author
This entry was posted in A Vampire for Christmas, contest, Halloween, Halloween Bash, Halloween traditions, Holiday Posts, Inanna Arthen, Max Vander Meer, Mrs. Bright's Tea Room, mythology romance, Norse, paranormal, paranormal romance, romance, romance novels, Susan Hanniford Crowley, The Stormy Love Life of Laura Cordelais, vampire books, Vampire David Hilliard, Vampire King of New York, Vampire King of New York In Print, Vampire Maximillion Vander Meer, vampires, Viking, Weekly Paranormal-Scope, Yule and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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