We've all met the forefathers of the paranormal world. Bram Stoker's Dracula, George Waggner's The Wolf Man, and other early prototypes of the much-maligned fur-and-fanged world have been ingrained in our racial memory almost as deeply as a fear/fascination of fire.
Think I'm joking? Don't worry, I am... mostly. While there is no (credible) evidence of fanged cavemen stalking the Neanderthals of ages past, there is, instead, a like fascination with the things that go bump in the night. We have loved to hate vampires who creep through bedroom windows, cheered when the werewolves have been put down by silver bullets (carefully crafted from one's father's melted down watch, natch), covered our eyes when the blood-bathing witch was burned at the stake and the souls of her cursed victims set free.
If you're here, then you share that love with me.
And perhaps you can answer a question that has always interested me: How, in all that is (un)holy, did vampires go from this unfortunate child of the night to this blessed hunk of blood-love? Where in our society did we decide that being stalked by furry-faced flesh-eaters was not nearly so fun as being seduced by them?
I have a theory, gentle (and not so gentle) readers. My theory is this: We as a species, a culture and a shared memory are routinely fascinated by the forbidden. From as majestic as the ancient tales of locked gateways to heaven to the mundane as being told we shouldn't touch the stove, we are drawn to that which we cannot have.
A creature of the night who is as likely to kill me as kiss me is about as forbidden fruit as I can get. Add in the most-certainly intimate trappings of blood, penetration of fang (hey, now!), and the invariable mechanics of dark nights and lonesome surroundings, and you have a recipe for one smoldering romance.
Aside from that whole "may possibly get killed by my fanged lover" bit... A tiny, insignificant detail, of course.
Does it stop with the traditional critters? Absolutely not! In this very blog, we have mermaids and dragons, vampires and gods; a veritable cornucopia of creatures, A to Z. (Do we have a Z, actually? What on earth—or beyond—starts with Z? Anyone? Anyone? ... Bueller?) And while modern fairy tales have been Disneyfied quite a bit, we all know that the old tales weren't nearly so light and happy (and only rarely featured a song and dance number).
Mermaids have been known to eat and drown thirsty men; sirens lured sailors to their deaths on craggy rocks. Gods have rarely been so kind as to help from the goodness of their hearts—most have been portrayed as selfish, flawed beings with phenomenal cosmic powers (and very large living spaces, to boot!). Vampires, as we mentioned, drink human blood, werewolves feast on human flesh; witches ate children and bathed in the blood of innocents.
And as if the natural state of their being wasn't enough, we humans have always hunted and destroyed (or captured!) what we don't understand. We have to quantify everything, and to do so we, we must pick it apart... Can you imagine a vampire in a laboratory?
So tell me your story. What draws you to these once-upon-a-time killing machines? Why do you read paranormal, and what makes you want them?
Hi, my name is Karina Cooper, and I'm addicted to paranormal romance.
In my debut novel, Blood of the Wicked, Silas Smith is not a man who is lured by the forbidden. In his line of work, the forbidden is executed, and he's one of the best witch hunters the Mission can claim—thorough, deadly, and most of all, dedicated. His task? Simple enough: use Jessie Leigh to hunt down the witch that is her baby brother, no matter how many lies it takes to force her hand. Unfortunately for him, Jessie's a witch, too, and she's not going to roll over without one hell of a fight. There's just one problem...
Like most of us, Jessie's got a thing for the forbidden. And the man who'll kill her if he learns the truth is about as forbidden as a witch can get.