Thursday, October 10, 2013


Hell's Belle
By Karen Greco
Genre: Urban Fantasy
ISBN: 1484830202
Number of pages: 238
Word Count: 74,722
Available Here: Amazon


Half-vampire, half-human, Nina Martinez spent most of her life underground as part of an elite secret team of government agents who quietly take down rogue monsters -- the human world none the wiser.

She moves back to her hometown of Providence, RI to keep an eye on the recent uptick in supernatural activity, and to help run the bar she co-owns with her aunt. Her attempt at a “regular” life, not to mention a budding relationship with smoking hot FBI agent Max, is cut short because of a string of ritual murders targeting the city's community of witches.

But Nina's investigation unearths deadly secrets from her long buried parents. Now the target of supernatural assassins, could Nina be the most dangerous vampire hybrid to ever exist? No wonder she can’t get a date.

An urban fantasy set in a decaying Providence, Rhode Island, HELL'S BELLE is a fast-paced, adrenaline-fueled roller-coaster ride through a city on the cusp of becoming an urban wasteland. An energetic, expansive, and cinematic, HELL'S BELLE was called "captivating" by Kirkus Reviews.

Book Chick City gave it 5-stars, calling it "one of the best urban fantasies I have read this year!"
Can you please share with us a little about yourself?
I grew up in Rhode Island and moved to NY to write plays. Life took me on a detour, and I spent the past 15 plus years doing entertainment PR. I am married to an awesome guy and a not so little girl who is my entire world. I owe her a book she can read.

Have you always wanted to be an author?
I wanted to be a playwright. I came to novel writing very late.

Can you share with us your typical writing day.  Is there anything you have to have while writing?
I wish I had a typical writing day, but with my day job, my schedule is anything but typical! I tend to steal time where I can to write, late at night, or while riding buses and subways. I just need my computer or my iPad (with bluetooth keyboard--I cannot stand writing on touch screen).
What would you say is the most challenging or rewarding part of writing?
I think what is most challenging is also most rewarding. I get to spend loads of time in my head, creating crazy characters and worlds that sometimes work, sometimes don't work. But being in your own head all the time is kind of crazy-making. Sometimes I wish I could retreat to water cooler talk, or have someone to bounce ideas off of. I try to pair up with friends who are working on their own projects when I am writing something new. It really helps to get perspective.

Can you please tell us about your latest book?
Hell's Belle is my first novel. It's about Nina Martinez, a half-vampire, half human who works for a secret Department of Defense program called Blood Ops. In the Hell's Belle world, which looks very much like our own, the supernatural exists, but humans have no idea. So Blood Ops polices rogue supernaturals, who could expose this shadowy underworld to the human population.

How did you come with the idea for this story?
I am really inspired by places, and Providence is a neat little city with loads of history that influenced the story. There is talk of hauntings all over Providence, and a strong supernatural element. There is also an unbelievable amount of political corruption, and it was a huge mafia strong hold for a very long time. There's a lot there that sparks the imagination.

Can you share with us your current work in progress?
Right now I am working on the 2nd book in the Hell's Belle series. It has Nina, Max, and Frankie working together again, with banshee Darcy now with them in Providence. Bertrand and Uncle Tavio have a request that throws Nina into a tailspin, and there is a new threat that is killing off the vampire population. 

Who are some of your favorite authors?
I love Richard Kadrey. He knows how to tell a great story, and is a very straightforward writer. His world building is terrific, and he has created a vision of LA (in his Sandman Slim books) that is believable but weird and awesome. He is probably my favorite writer.  

Do you feel that any of your favorite authors have inspired your writing style?
Absolutely. I try to emulate Kadrey's straightforward style.

Open your book to a random page and please reads us a few lines.
I had the heebie-jeebies.
Babe eased the Fiat into a spot across the street from the downtown botanica where I had trailed Max. In the shadows of the tall buildings, with the cold gray December morning light, the place was forbidding. But even on a bright summer day, the freaky clutter in the dusty front window -- filled with animal skulls, chicken feet, headdresses and other voodoo-like paraphernalia -- would give the best slayer chills.
Babe nonchalantly reapplied her lipstick. "Hey, if you are going to get hexed, may as well look good for it," she insisted.

What is in your To Read Pile that you are dying to start or upcoming release you can’t wait for?
I have had the newest Sandman Slim on my Kindle since the end of July (and I got it on pre-order), but I still have not read it. No idea what I am waiting for, but I don't want it to end. So I really like knowing it's there.

Have you ever used anyone from your real life encounters in any of your books?
Sure! I have a few characters that are composites of people that I know. Marcello, Uncle Tavio, Eva--they are all based on a few people that I know.

What was the most surprising thing you learned about yourself while you were writing?
That I had the patience to finish the novel! A friend once said writing a novel was like filling a swimming pool with a syringe. He was absolutely right. 

An award-winning playwright, Karen Greco has spent close to twenty years in New York City, working in publicity and marketing for the entertainment industry.

A life-long obsession with exorcists and Dracula drew her to urban fantasy, where she can decapitate characters with impunity. HELL'S BELLE is her first novel. 

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