Guest post with GA: Echo Island by Tempest C. Avery

I’ve always loved the idea of shape shifters! 
When I decided I wanted to make one as my main character in Echo Island, I realized that he had to embody someone I could see changing their personality just as easily as they did their form. I wanted the character to be adaptable, and quick witted. Someone who could think up a response within a second, and get along with virtually anybody with ease. Of course, there also had to be moments when this ability cracked slightly, where his emotions got the better of him and his real motives and feelings could be seen. Hence the creation of Harper Donnelly, one of the youngest Shapeshifters to gain ranks in their hierarchy. 

What I really like about Harp is his ability to make light out of every situation, even when in reality he’s completely freaking out. He has a tendency to push people’s buttons, but just enough to get them going. He’s also intensely loyal. Even though he has a flip sense of humor he takes his job very seriously, probably because of his young age. He wants to prove himself to everyone that he can handle anything that comes his way. Which is why he gets involved with Cassandra Anders, the Vampire. Of course, Cass is a big reason why I created Harp the way I did. I knew I needed someone who could easily keep up with her, help her make light of the situation when she needed it and ground her when she didn’t. Someone who would be just jealous enough of other males, but not go red with rage (too often at least). 

Everyone likes a little jealousy, it boosts the ego after all, but too much is just upsetting and sometimes scary. Because of his age he’s somewhat naïve. Despite all his talk a part of him secretly hopes for something more from Cassandra, which was important because Cass has spent the past seven hundred years running away from anything romantically serious. 

I tried to give Harper this playful personality which he uses on everyone he comes into contact with. In a way it’s his way of getting a feel for someone, seeing how much they’re able to lay back and let go. He tends to want to surround himself with those he thinks he can have fun with, be it on the job or else where. Personally, when I read a book a want to be able to relate to a character, but I also want them to be believable. 

When I think of Shapeshifters I think of beings able to morph themselves into something, or someone, else. That doesn’t just mean their outer appearance. Harper Donnelly is like a chameleon, able to blend into his surroundings by becoming anything/one he needs to be. 

Hopefully anyone who reads the book will be able to see that, and love it about him, as well.

Echo Island by Tempest C. Avery

Having been alive for seven hundred years, Cassandra Anders has made giving into her carnal needs a dirty habit. She’s been using men since the day she was turned, and loving every second of it. Known by most Mirror Warriors, or supernatural beings, as a bit of a party girl, it’s no surprise to anyone when she instantly starts up a new fling with a shapeshifter during this century’s Fundur, a meeting including members of all supernatural sects.

Harper Donnelly might just be in the market for a little pleasure himself, and he’s never been with a vampire before. But just as things are starting to heat up between the two of them, other Fundur attendees start disappearing, or worse. Now not only does he have to figure out his feelings, keep out of the way of a jealous demon, but also figure out whose attacking them all before he or Cass end up being next.

Can these two survive their trip to the island long enough to see if what’s between them is real? Or will they die before they ever get the chance?

Echo Island is book two in the Mirror Warrior series.

Buy Echo Island by Tempest C. Avery here:

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She wasn’t willing to admit that the second he’d shown up she’d forgotten all about her hunger.
“Nope, sad to say. I could go bear, if you’d like,” Harp said.
Not able to stop the onslaught of dirty visual images of him stripping bare, she shook her head trying to cover up a smirk. “From the looks of it you deff wouldn’t like. Though, I’ve never tried bear blood before…” she cocked her head. “Too bad your blood doesn’t change along with your form.”
“Know a lot about my people, huh?”
“Not really. Just the basics. So, how many forms can you hold anyway?” Leaning back against the tree she’d been hiding behind, Cass crossed her ankles and waited for him to respond.
He took a moment, watching for any sign that she was baiting him, trying to use him for information. Sure, they might be safe on the island, but what about once they got off? If she chose to, she could hunt him down and use what ever he told her now against him and his people.
The treaty discussion hadn’t yet occurred. The vampire’s goal could be to war against the Mimics.
Before he could stop himself however, his mouth opened and he was speaking in his rich whiskey voice. “Went to the zoo a few days ago and got to touch a tiger. That was pretty cool. Brought my number up to fifteen.”
Her eyes widened in appraisal. “Wow. That’s a lot for someone who only just came into their immortality a year ago. Were you reckless as a child?”
Harp shoved his hands into his pockets and rocked back onto his heels, taking a moment to think it over. “I wouldn’t say reckless… just ambitious. I wanted to be the best. I wanted as many forms as I could get so that I could prove myself.”
“Prove yourself… how? What for?”
He didn’t so much as blink when he changed the subject without answering. “What about you? Am I the first shifter you’ve asked, or do you say that to all the guys?”
Because he was being flirty, and she found she liked that, Cassandra let his diversion slide, however, two could play at that game. “Gabriel is older than you, right? Do you know how many forms he can take?”
“We’re partners, it’s procedure.” He didn’t sound too happy talking about another guy. “But you’re gonna have to ask him yourself.”
“Another rule?”
“Another one of mine. What about your partner?”
“What about her?”
“Does she have a thing for your contact? The guy in the suit?”
Cass rolled her eyes. “I told her she needed to be a little more subtle. It’s obvious, right? You’d think a five hundred some year old vampire would have better taste than dork in a sweater vest.”
“What? You own one?”
“A sweater vest?” Harper flung out his arms and glanced pointedly down at himself. “Do I look like the type of guy who’ll wear a vest?”
She pushed into a standing position and clasped her hands behind her back. No, he definitely did not. He was the type of guy who wore denim and leather. His hair was dishelved, and it wasn’t just because of his earlier fall. It was clear he got up in the morning, ran a hand through his pale locks and that was that.
A ray of sun was shooting through the leaves lighting the top of his head up so that the gold sparkled. His blue eyes held laughter, and something more, but she wasn’t willing to search too deeply into it right now. Already she’d let her guard down enough.
            Her breathing had become shallow, her hands clenching behind her. Ever since he’d made that comment about going “bear” she’d been struggling to hide her inner thoughts. Interspecies mixing wasn’t a problem with her, at least not as long as the other species were either human or Mirror—what the hell was wrong with people who had sex with sheep?—but that didn’t mean she slept around. Besides, even if she did now wouldn’t be the time. They were both here for a reason, an important one; distractions couldn’t be afforded.
            “You look like the type of guy I’d love to take a bite out of. However…”   
“Got to get back?”
“We shouldn’t.”
He made a face like he was asking if she were serious. “Come on. I’m sure you’ve done worse then flirt with a guy you’ve just met.”
She narrowed her eyes. “What’s that supposed to mean?”
“Not at all how it sounded, I swear.” He licked his lips. “All I’m saying is, I like you, and you clearly don’t find my outer appearance too disgusting so… why not push me up against that tree and make out?”
About the Author: 
Tempest C. Avery recently graduated from college with a creative writing degree. Along with the Mirror Warrior Novels, she has a trilogy that she’s been slaving away at. However, unlike with the M.W’s, these books are for young adults. She loves to read and write, and TALK about reading and writing, so if you’ve read any good books lately, drop her a line! Questions and comments about her work is always appreciated, though try and be gentle. Criticism is great, as long as it’s constructive. 

Find Tempest C. Avery here!