Winter Blogfest: Vanessa C. Hawkins

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This post is part of Long and Short Reviews’ Winter Blogfest. Leave a comment for a chance to win a Digital Copy of Ballroom Riot .

Recipe for a Merry Christmas

You’ll need lots of chocolate peppermint and gingerbread. If you don’t have any on hand, you can always substitute for eggnog, but it’s gotta be homemade.

Christmastime in my family is always a series of events that culminate in a merry holiday adventure. I’m lucky, my husband and I have been together since high school, so I grew up and likeincluding my in-laws. Now that we have a little one to come on the December adventure with us, we can all watch as she delights in the few traditional ingredients that make up our secret family recipe.

First in the bowl are gingerbread houses. We buy ‘em premade, struggle to glue them together with the cheap icing sugar included with the box and laugh at our failed attempt at creating something whimsical. Combine that with our annual cookie baking that leaves us stuffed with sugar and you’re on your way to a Merry Christmas!… or at least diabetes.

Add a pinch of snow, probably too little before the actual holiday though. We live in Eastern Canada so sometimes the wind bites us before our snowmen get the chance to.  After that, a dash to the store on Christmas Eve because you forgot that one thing on your Christmas list! Santa typically does the rest, but we open a gift the night before just so it’s that much harder to get to sleep from the excitement.

Bake for twenty-five days at negative ten degrees or so–we have always had advent calendars to help us keep the timing just right, though my daughter is like me and can’t wait to eat the chocolate—and you have a happy holiday! I suggest serving it with all your loved ones, of course. That’s what we do. Honestly, the ingredients are simple and easily replaced with other things, it’s the joy of the company that gives it taste. But I still maintain you’ll need lots of chocolate and peppermint.

And eggnog… but only if it’s homemade.

Scarlet Fortune has been watching the turmoil of Comero City since the start of prohibition. As the city’s first female copper, and one of the only vampires on the force, she’s eager to make a good impression with the brass. With goblin gangs stirring up trouble, a demon bar selling liquor to half the city, and every other officer on the take, a bust at the local docks seems like a good place to start. But it only puts her in the crosshairs of the city’s most powerful criminals, including local dragon Shad O’Rahin.

Disguised in human form, Shad’s been running a speakeasy and the last thing he needs is the law after him. When he approaches Scarlet to scare her off his tracks, he doesn’t expect to fall in love. Things seem to be looking up for both of them until the anti-monster organization, AMO, rolls into town ready to clean up Comero. Their first priority? Dragon-slaying.

Scarlet’s new beau isn’t prepared to confront the issue without his scales on. So what can she do? A vampire copper should be keeping her head down with monster hunters around… especially when her ex is leading the AMO task force.

Vanessa Hawkins resides in rural New Brunswick, Canada with her husband Brendon and daughter Bernie. A lifelong lover of horror, she wrote her first story in grade five. It was titled Mutilated and warranted a trip to the school guidance counsellor. With over a dozen works published in her name, since the birth of her daughter she’s fallen victim to hormones run amok. Finding solace in the world of urban fantasy romance, she hopes to slaughter again someday, but not before matchmaking a few hapless human beings and perhaps a dragon or two.

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