Today I have the wonderful pleasure of welcoming rock star and author Juliana Stone to Reading Between the Wines for an interview! Juliana pens the wonderfully delicious Jaguar Warriors trilogy, which follows the lives of three jaguar shifter brothers and is full of danger and romance. His Darkest Hunger was published in March of 2010 and was the debut of the series, the second installment, His Darkest Embrace, was published that following October and her newest release, His Darkest Salvation, will be released July 26th, 2011. You can check out my reviews on each of these novels by clicking on the titles!
Hi, Juliana, thank you so much for joining us today!
Very happy to be here
! And I’ve got my glass of wine ready too! Crystal
Fantastic! Can you please start off with telling us a little something about yourself?
Well, I’m a Canadian and am lucky enough to be surrounded by a wonderful family, incredible friends and I have the most adorable golden retriever and a little devil cat! I love music, writing, baseball and hockey!
For someone who was unfamiliar with your dark & sexy Jaguar Warriors, how would you describe the series to them?
I would say that the Castille brothers are complex alpha males who will do whatever it takes to get the job done. The world I’ve created has all sorts of otherworld creatures which I love—I don’t focus solely on shifters—though my jaguars are at the heart of this three book story arc. There is the end of the world and all that to deal with!
At the end of His Darkest Embrace, Julian Castille and Declan O’Hara were thrown into Hell, leaving their fate unknown; which brings us to His Darkest Salvation. What can we look forward to seeing in your upcoming release?
His Darkest Salvation pretty much ties up most of the loose ends that began with His Darkest Hunger. Julian and Declan are very much changed after being in Hell for six months. They’re not puppies and rainbows (not that they ever were) but this book shows a huge transformation in regards to Julian. Cormac is dealt with, a lot of characters from the previous books make appearances and while the trilogy wraps up, new questions arise.
At the start of the series Julian was a bit of an outsider; a business man, not sharing the marks of a warrior like his brother’s Jaxon and Jagger, and rebelling against his animal side. But as the series progressed Julian grew into a formidable opponent and someone his brothers valued at their side. Can you share with us a little of his growth process? Has his character developed the way you originally planned it at the beginning? And what can we still expect to see from him?
Julian was such a tortured soul. He’s always been the conflicted brother but had been very good at hiding it. Where his brothers were fully embraced by their Jaguar heritage, Julian loathed it. He liked being in control…polished…and was a formidable businessman.
But as he became involved with Jaxon’s quest to find the answers about Libby’s kidnapping, he started to change. To evolve and bits of his jaguar heritage started to bleed through.
Now tell us a about the heroine of your story, Jaden DaCosta. Unbeknownst to Julian, Jaden is actually mated to him and not very happy about it. What about Jaden and her story do you think will draw readers to her?
Jaden was a wonderful character to write. She’s strong and kickass but not afraid of her feminine side—and she hides a lot of pain. I think her conflict with her family—her brothers and father is pretty intense. Her father has already broken her heart and though he’s a real nasty piece of work, it’s still her father, ya know and then she has to deal with Julian…a man she can’t forget and one who pushes a lot of her buttons.
I don’t think you’d ever catch Jaden kicking back watching “The Bachelor” and twittering about it!
No, I could not picture her ever doing that! LoL Besides the fact that Jaden’s jaguar calls to Julian’s, what about Julian and Jaden individually make them drawn to each other? Why do you think readers will fall in love with them as a couple?
They’re both headstrong alpha types who have a lot of issues between them, but I think because of each of their circumstances readers will be rooting heavily for an
HEA. Julian can be an ass for sure, but when put in context to what he’s been through it’s certainly understandable…while Jaden is more than a match for him in every way.
Was there a memorable or really emotional scene that stood out for you while writing His Darkest Salvation?
There are a couple. One is the first time Jaden and Julian have sex. He’s dealing with the fact that half of his soul is missing…he’s dead inside and even though he knows he’s not exactly a nice guy he can’t help it. She’s dealing with the fact that she’s mated to man who doesn’t want her and yet the animal that lives inside each of them, recognizes the mating bond. I wanted that particular scene to show just how empty sex without love is…and I think I did it. I felt bad for both of them, though I think this is where the relationship really starts to change.
Do you have a special process while writing your novels, or any kind of rituals that you do?
Nope, not really. I’m becoming much more of a plotter than I used to be. I’ve too many characters that pop up in several books. But as long as I have my laptop and total quiet I’m good to go.
I wouldn’t say harder…just different. One of my friends says that she thinks Declan is my favorite character…my editor says he ‘sounds’ the most like me which I find interesting.
Speaking of Declan, you know I cannot go without asking about my man!
I first became obsessed with We first met Declan O’Hara in His Darkest Hunger and he, along with his father, has played an integral part throughout the series. In April of 2012 we will finally get to read Declan’s story in Wicked Road to Hell, which is the start of a new series for you, the League of Guardians. Can you share with us a just little tiny tidbit about Declan’s book (I may be begging here) and the new series?
I can’t say too much yet about Declan’s book…I will tell you that it takes place 2 years after the events at the end of His Darkest Salvation. I can also tell you that Nico plays a key part as well! As for Ana….well, you’ll have to wait and see!
Here is the blurb for the League of Guardian Books:
-For millennia the struggle between light and dark, the upper and lower realms, has been policed by a secret group of warriors culled from every fabric of existence. They are both otherworld and human, male and female. They are light and dark themselves, known to each other as the League of Guardians. Their pledge, to protect the line between the two realms and make sure neither side grows too powerful. If they fall, so shall the earth, the heavens and hell. And there will be no more.
Sounds so good, I can't wait!
What’s next for you?
Right now I’m busy writing 2 novella’s for League of Guardians as well as the second full length book in this series. The first novella will release in February of 2012 and is tentatively entitled, Shades of Gray. It will bridge the gap between the events that happened at the end of Salvation and expand a bit more on the world building. My hero is a shapeshifting hellhound and I adore him!
I think a lot of people are waiting for Declan’s book and you guys will all have to wait until April of 2012 to see what happens with him! I can’t wait! I can tell you all that I’ve gotten a peek at his cover and um, it’s very, very hot!
Thank you again, Juliana, for stopping by and congrats on your upcoming release and new series! I’m looking forward to it!
Thanks for having me!
Don't forget, Juliana is celebrating the 10 days leading up to the release of His Darkest Salvation over at her blog with fabulous giveaways everyday and an awesome grand prize!
~*GIVEAWAY*~Juliana is graciously offering signed copies of the first two novels in her Jaguar Warrior trilogy, His Darkest Hunger and His Darkest Embrace, to one lucky reader! To enter, just leave a meaningful comment about this interview or a question for Juliana below. Don't forget to include your email address so that we can contact you if you're a winner! Open internationally, giveaway will end at 11:59pm on August 4th. One winner will then be chosen at random and contacted via email, then given 48 hours to respond. Good luck!