Sunday, 18 January 2015

Featured Author - Chris Karlsen

Chris Karlsen is a history buff with a passion for traveling. She has traveled extensively across Europe, the Near East and Africa. A retired police detective (wow :-), Chris has spent 25 years in law enforcement. I had a quick chat with Chris and this is what she had to say. Enjoy! 

What do you write?
I write historical/paranormal romances, romantic thrillers and my latest is book one of a historical mystery/thriller series.

Which writers inspire you?
I'm inspired by Bernard Cornwell, John Sandford, J.R.R. Tolkien, Julie Anne Long, Julia Quinn, and Guy Gavriel Kay.

What is your favorite book and why?
My favorite book is: The Lions of Al-Rassan by Guy Gavriel Kay. It's a medieval fantasy that is clearly meant to be medieval Spain. The story is brilliant characterization of the two powerful male leads. The reader is as fascinated and empathetic to the antagonist as the protagonist. It's a most remarkable, moving, and exciting story.

What do you think is the easiest thing about writing? What is the most difficult?
The easiest thing is naming my characters and second most is choosing a setting. The most difficult, for me, is keeping the pace up in the middle and, feel free to laugh, sex scenes. They take me forever. I have a devil of a time making them sensual without being cliché or using too graphic language.

From books that have already been published by other authors, which book do you wish you had written? 
It's hard to pick one book that I'd wished I done. I'm inclined to choose a series like Cornwell's Saxon Tales. But one book would be the one I mentioned as my favorite, The Lions of Al-Rassan.

How do you market your books? 
I do a lot of tours to give my marketing a jump start and I buy a fair amount of ad space for Kindle oriented readers. I'm very picky though in the type of ads I do now. I don't do ads on sites that I'll be buried in with dozens of other authors. I look for mainly review tours now. I have done many tours that required posts and found them so time consuming that they became an drain on my writing. I've done a couple of FB parties, which went well, but I don't really know if they resulted in a lot of sales. I have a publicist that assists me with updating my website and getting my books posted on free sites. I make trailers and I do book boards with my "dream" casts on Pinterest. I do a lot of giveaways when I tour or do FB parties. I have enough books in release that I also have created a free promo book with excerpts, sample chapters, some reviews, and even a few recipes. I include this book in with swag bags I send out. It's offered for free on Amazon as well.

Any new release? If yes, what is it about?
My latest release is Silk. 

It's book one in the Bloodstone Series. It's set in Victorian London. Rudyard Bloodstone is a Detective Inspector with London Metropolitan Police Service. I had a lot of fun with him. There's a serial killer murdering woman in the gardens of the British Museum. Rudyard and his partner are the investigators. The clues lead them to a wealthy and powerful member of the nobility and House of Lords. Although under pressure from the man's influence, Rudyard presses ahead. I added several twists and turns that should surprise the reader.

Book blurb
Silk on the skin—luxurious, luscious..lethal.
London-Fall, 1888
The city is in a panic as Jack the Ripper continues his murderous spree. While the Whitechapel police struggle to find him, Detective Inspector Rudyard Bloodstone and his partner are working feverishly to find their own serial killer. The British Museum's beautiful gardens have become a killing ground for young women strangled as they stroll through.
Their investigation has them brushing up against Viscount Everhard, a powerful member of the House of Lords, and a friend to Queen Victoria. When the circumstantial evidence  points to him as a suspect, Rudyard must deal with the political blowback, and knows if they are going to go after the viscount, they'd better be right and have proof.
As the body count grows and the public clamor for the detectives to do more, inter-department rivalries complicate the already difficult case.

Book Excerpt – Silk
He wrapped an end in each hand and pulled. His fingers crept up the silk and he tugged a bit harder still. The material pressed deeper into the flesh of her neck. Bright pink dotted her cheeks and radiated down to her jaw. The veins in her temples popped out and pulsed in time to her heartbeat. She moaned, pushed her hips upward and writhed against him. Her soft pubic hair tickled his testicles. Isabeau’s unsubtle way of letting him know she wanted him inside her. He obliged.

Her hands encircled his wrists. She tugged hard outward, harder than usual. A choked sigh escaped her. He paid no attention. This was standard. Isabeau always insisted he maintain pressure until she signaled for him to release his hold. In the past, when she reached the edge of consciousness, she’d beat along his upper arms. This time she thrashed her head back and forth, something he hadn’t seen before. Her eyes bulged in an unattractive way and she clawed at him. Her nails gouged the skin on his hands, drawing blood.

She hurt him and he wanted to slap her. He almost let go of one end of the scarf to do that. Instead, he pulled tighter. Isabeau tried to insert her fingers into the spot where the material crossed over. Her mouth opened and shut, soundless and fishlike. She swatted at the mattress wildly. Red-faced to the point of being near purple, she bucked beneath him.

She fired his blood with her lack of inhibition. Never had she responded with such intensity. Raw power surged through him, primitive, animalistic. He pumped hard. Ready to climax, William clenched his fists, twisting the scarf one last turn. Odd, feathery touches tapped his biceps, feminine and subtle grazes, and then she went limp. Spent, he released his hold and collapsed on top of her, his heart pounding while he caught his breath.

Isabeau didn’t move and her head stayed turned to the side. She hadn’t cried out the way she normally did when sated. Perhaps she was disappointed with his effort. He gave the thought a mental shrug. At the end of the day, it really didn’t matter. He’d arrange for her departure first thing in the morning.

William rolled over and slung a sweaty arm over his eyes. He tried to decide which was worse, telling her tonight the affair was over or waiting until morning. The idea of doing it after such a rambunctious sexual endeavor seemed bad form, but he wanted to get it over with. He turned onto his side, prepared for histrionics, caterwauling, great tears and verbal abuse.

“Isabeau, look at me. I’ve come to a decision and it will likely distress you.” Nothing. She didn’t stir. “Isabeau?”

He shook her by the arm. Still no response. William let go and her arm dropped listless to the mattress. He raised her arm again and let go. Again, it fell listless. He straddled her and patted her cheeks. Nothing. Her head twisted without resistance first right then left depending on the direction of his pat. He slapped her harder. Nothing. Vacant eyes stared fixed on the ceiling. He bent an ear to her chest. Nothing. William leapt from the bed, snatched a silver mirror from the dressing table, and held it under her nose. Nothing.

“Bitch.” William hurled the mirror against the wall. “Bitch, whore,” he raged and paced along the side of the bed. “I will not allow you to make my life a nightmare. This was your doing. I told you to leave me alone.” 

Book Trailer - Silk 

You can also connect with Chris:
Author Page:
Good reads:

Book Links:


Boxed set Knights in Time-

Heroes Live Forever-

Journey in Time-

Knight Blindness-

Golden Chariot-

Byzantine Gold-


  1. Great interview! Congratulations on your new release Chris!

  2. Congrats... always a pleasure to stop by.

  3. Silk is the first book I've read by Chris Karlsen. I'm about half way through the book and feel like I know each of the main characters well. The setting is intriguing, the twists keep me guessing, and the Inspector Bloodstone is a delight. Can't wait to read the rest of the series.

  4. Great interview. I love the cover of Silk.