The Bad Guys of Blood Entangled – A Guest Post by Amber Belldene
Posted by What The Cat Read
We would like to thank Amber Belldene, author of Blood Entangled, and Pj Blog Tours for letting us participate in this wonderful event! Today Amber has written a fun guest post to share with you all. For a full list of all the blogs involved, please visit HERE! =^.^=
I have to confess I am nervous someone is going to get angry with me over Blood Entangled because both my bad guys are sadists. So let me just come out and say it: I know all sadists aren’t bad guys. Some of my very best friends are sadists. Yes, I know that is the universal defense made by stereotypers, but seriously, they are!
People who take pleasure in other people’s pain fascinate us, and so sadists can easily become the writer’s cop-out bad guy, with a convenient, superficial motivation. In reality, most sadists aren’t the uber gory frightening serial killer type we’ve all seen on T.V. Their kink is something more nuanced, consensual and intimate—when someone who likes to inflict pain meets someone who likes to receive it, the bond can be intense. When one of my antagonists discovers this intimacy in Blood Entangled, it’s an epiphany for him. And I confess I became fascinated with him in ways I did not expect in his journey of self-discovery.
Writing a realistic bad guy is one of the great challenges in fiction. Rarely are people (or even paranormal creatures) purely evil. Both the antagonists in Blood Entangled are motivated by power.
Ethan Bennett enjoys exercising all kinds of power over people—from torturing Pedro in Blood Vine to his ambitions of world domination. His brand of sadism was nurtured among Hunters—a tribe waging an ancient and global genocide against vampires. He never embraces their ideological hatred, but he takes satisfaction in the Hunter’s culture of cruelty.
I don’t want to tell you too much about the other antagonist in Blood Entangled because that would be a spoiler. Instead, I will say that this character developed out of my exploration of what happens when a person (or vampire) possesses great power. Vampire bites are an exquisite bliss in the Blood Vine world, and so I wondered what would happen if someone abused their ability to make others feel pleasure. It took me down some dark, fascinating roads.
The truth is, most sadists learn to manage their fetish within society and practice it with restraint. How that works is the subject of many very sexy BDSM novels. But the story of people who don’t reign in their desire to cause others pain is interesting too. In Blood Entangled I’ve tried to explore two of those antagonists with nuance, making them more than just superficially evil bad-guys, but complex characters in their own rights.
About the Book
KOS MARAS’s orderly life is in shambles—he must distribute Blood Vine to a population of ailing vampires, but Hunters block him at every turn. To make matters worse, each night he watches over a temptingly beautiful woman sleeping in his bed. He is convinced love cannot last a vampire-long lifetime and an entanglement will only cause them grief, but he doesn’t have the heart to send her away.
From a long line of blood servants, LENA ISAAKSON is destined to serve a vampire, but a string of humiliating rejections thwarts her pleasure. When Kos shows her kindness, she hopes he will claim her. Instead he proves himself a coward in the face of love and sends her to serve another.
Will the dark seduction of a rakish new vampire finally bring Lena the pleasure she desires or deliver her into the hands of Hunters who want to destroy everything the Maras family has worked for?
About the Author
Amber Belldene grew up on the Florida panhandle, swimming with alligators, climbing oak trees and diving for scallops…when she could pull herself away from a book. As a child, she hid her Nancy Drew novels inside the church bulletin and read mysteries during sermons—an irony that is not lost on her when she preaches these days.
Amber is an Episcopal Priest and student of religion. She believes stories are the best way to explore human truths. Some people think it is strange for a minister to write romance, but it is perfectly natural to her, because the human desire for love is at the heart of every romance novel and God made people with that desire. She lives with her husband and two children in San Francisco.