TDC: So tell us about Storm Angel. What's the book about?
When her sister is murdered, Alysse is set upon a quest for revenge--but her search leads her to a conspiracy that threatens the destruction of Southwatch itself.
Alysse has just been cast in the role of a lifetime—the lead in a famous opera. But when her sister Leonie dies, Alysse believes her sister was murdered, and vows revenge.
Kyria is an Angel of Steel, who works with Alysse to find the killer. They soon realize that Leonie's death was the opening gambit in a plan that reaches from the industrial districts to the palatial airships of the Aerie, and they need to find its source from the clues left behind.
But what do a dead courtesan, a Fae spy , a hidden cache of jewels, and a cadre of conniving conspirators have in common? Nothing less than a plot to control not only the political power of Southwatch, but that of the Caelimane Temple as well. Alysse and Kyria must find a way to stop them, even in the eye of the storm.
TDC: So you've used a lot of elements from the world--the Lyric Opera, the Dark Dryad tavern, the Angels of Steel and their compound, the Caelimane Temple, and even the airship of Thomas Amberville, the Baron of Southwatch. Was it hard to create the first elements of the world from the bible?
CAC: No, it wasn't hard. It was a little scary, because I knew a lot of what I wrote would become part of the canon. But the world was already so well defined and laid out that it wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. It was a lot of fun, actually.
TDC: So tell us about your protagonist.
CAC: I have two, actually, because I'm writing further books in the world. Alysse Castlemaine is the primary protagonist in Storm Angel. She's making the transition from student to prinicpal actress at the Lyric Opera house because she's proven that she sing a role originally only a Fae soprano could perform. But even her ambition takes second place to finding out who killed her sister, Leonie.
And then there's Kyria, who is the Angel of Steel who helps Alysse with her quest. She's young too, and idealistic, with a strong sense of loyalty to the Archangel and an even livelier curiosity.
When both girls begin to work together, they both change a little--just enough to collaborate very effectively against their common enemies.
TDC: And are there any romantic attachments for these characters?
CAC: No, not yet...or maybe I should say not exactly. Alysse has definitely caught the eye of a Fae prince, Brannar, and there may be a romance there in the future. But not quite yet.
TDC: What about Storm Angel is the most important part of the updated bible?
CAC: I'm most excited about establishing the political scene in Southwatch--the interplay between the government, the Temple, the Angels of Steel, and the Fae, who are more involved in Southwatch than it seems. Southwatch is an ancient city, with many political factions, and the higher you go in the city, the more convoluted the entanglements become. I think all the TDC writers will have fun exploring that.
TDC: Is there any event in Storm Angel that will affect all subsequent books?
CAC: Just one. In the bible, there's a section regarding the Pertcha holiday--an annual event that begins with a ceremony in the harbor. While the populace watches from the shore, the sun is eclipsed. In a normal year, the eclipse is partial--which brings good fortune to Southwatch. But if the Pertcha eclipse is a full eclipse, that's the first act in a year of disasters for the city and its citizens. In Storm Angel, the Pertcha eclipse is a full eclipse, and so all the characters know that the upcoming year is full of danger and uncertainty.
TDC: You say you're writing a second TDC novel?
CAC: Yes. I'm in the middle of Storm Song, which is the sequel to Storm Angel. The story will pick up right where Storm Angel left off, and will follow Alysse and Kyria on their further adventures.
TDC: So now that you're in the middle of it, what do you think of the world?
CAC: It's amazing! The details are rich and the canon is already extensive. I think that any reader (or writer) is going to love Southwatch, whether they're darksiders or sunsiders.
TDC: And which are you? Darksider or sunsider?
CAC: Like both Alysse and Kyria, I started out as a darksider. I think I'll always have a taint of the darkside, no matter how much time I spend writing about the sunside.
Storm Angel is the first book in the Darkside Codex. The second book, The Electro-Addicted Moth Flame by Daniel Ausema comes out on December 20. Stay tuned for an upcoming interview with this author here on the Darkside Codex blog!
But in the meantime, pick up a copy of Storm Angel and take your first steps into Southwatch.