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Jane Kindred | Fresh Demons


One of the most frequent comments I hear about my recent release, THE FALLEN QUEEN, is "I was leery of reading another book about angels and demons, but this surprised me." I cringe when I hear people are coming to my book with trepidation and preconceived notions that it isn't going to be their cup of tea, but I'm gratified to find readers are enjoying it despite themselves.

The funny thing is that I somehow missed that angels and demons were becoming a trend in urban fantasy and paranormal romance when I began the House of Arkhangel'sk series. I guess I had my head too deeply buried in researching this world that had taken me over to notice what was going on around me in the world of publishing. It also wasn't meant to be an urban fantasy; in epic fantasy, the "Elysian field" seemed wide open. It was only after I started writing my demon hero that I realized he had ideas of his own. I had no choice but to follow him when he fell to the world of Man.

One of the things that makes my demons and angels different is that they have no religious origins. Heaven is simply a fantasy realm inspired by Imperial Russia. My angels are the nobility of this celestial empire and the demons are those without pedigree—a peasant class ripe for revolt. I also thought it would be interesting to have a Heaven in which the demons also lived, instead of relegating them to Hell. This was partly inspired by reading about the classical "Seven Heavens" (and their corresponding Earths). Many of these Heavens contain elements you wouldn't expect, such as the ever-circling river of fire and the realm of uninhabitable ice I chose to use as part of mine, but some also include areas of Heaven where the damned dwell, and I found the concept intriguing. The demon slum in my story, called Raqia, is based on one of these.

There are other things that make my fallen angels unique. The stereotypical fallen angel is either uptight and full of angst over his conflicted feelings about the angelic hierarchy to which he once belonged, or full of malice and driven by a desire to overthrow all that he deems unjust about the divisions between angels and demons, or between men and angels. My demons are just trying to get by, playing the hands they've been dealt. They couldn't care less about angelic hierarchy or celestial war, but they get dragged into it through circumstance and make the best of it. Finding themselves "babysitters" of an orphaned angelic grand duchess, they figure they can turn the situation to their advantage, but soon find out they've gotten in far over their heads, and will have to take sides.

Despite the departure my series takes from the usual fallen angel story, I have to confess to having a soft spot for the classic tropes. I've seen more movies than read books in this tradition, and I find an angelic or demonic storyline, even when it's everything you'd expect, rarely disappoints. The movie The Prophecy is one of my favorite fallen angel stories, with Christopher Walken's delightful take on an out-of-control Gabriel, and Viggo Mortensen's seductive and pragmatic Lucifer. I also absolutely adore Tilda Swinton's scene-stealing, androgynous Gabriel in Constantine. And Supernatural's Misha Collins as the worldly-naĂ¯ve, unintentionally deadpan funny skin-walker Castiel is one of my all-time favorites.

Are you a fan of the standard fallen angel mythos? Tell me about your favorite fallen angel or demon for a chance to win an ebook copy of THE FALLEN QUEEN.




22 comments posted.

Re: Jane Kindred | Fresh Demons

I am not a great fan of fallen angels. But, My sister-in-law is crazy for this type of book so it would be great to see what she thinks about your book. Congrats on the new book.
(Kathleen Yohanna 12:35pm January 20, 2012)

I don't think that I have ever read a book about a fallen angel....Will have to check some out...Thanks for sharing!
(Dawn Staniszeski 10:05am January 20, 2012)

I don't recall ever reading about a fallen angel. The one angel that does come to mind that I did enjoy, however, was the movie Michael, with John Travolta. I suppose he was a bit of a fallen angel, and the movie did pull at your heartstrings a bit. I am looking forward to reading your book, since your storyline is so different from the norm. It sounds like you did a bit of research to come up with your story.
(Peggy Roberson 10:26am January 20, 2012)

I absolutely love stories about fallen angels and that is why
I will continue to read - and write - them. My favorite fallen
angel is Azazel, which is probably why I wrote about him!
Jane, your book sounds fantastic and I would love a chance to
read it!
(Margay Roberge 10:33am January 20, 2012)

What an interesting take you bring to Angel/Demon stories. I have never seen anything but the traditional mythos so am very intrigued with the tale you tell. My favorite angel is actually the character Seth from the movie City of Angels where an angel decides to fall in order to be with the woman he loves.
(G. Bisbjerg 10:44am January 20, 2012)

My absolute favorite genre is paranormal. Give me demons,
vampires, angels-especially hunky males, can't get enough!
Thank you for the contest & I hope to read you soon!
(Barb Kettler 11:29am January 20, 2012)

Sounds like an interesting book, different concept.
(Wilma Frana 11:36am January 20, 2012)

I can understand the misunderstanding about the title. It makes you think of
serious historical novels that are more history than story. That said I have
never read or seen a fallen angel story. We don't have a TV (for almost 40
years) and read all the time. I find the idea intriguing and it sounds like you
did a lot of research without burdening your book(s) with unnecessary details.
That makes me want to try it. Thank you for all your hard work.
(Sandra Spilecki 11:49am January 20, 2012)

I have not actually read too many angel books... love paranormals... have to add more angels to my reading pile.
(Colleen Conklin 12:38pm January 20, 2012)

I've been reading several fallen angel PNR and UF series lately, and I've really enjoyed them. It does seem like all of a sudden they're very popular, but given the lengthy publishing process, that's to be expected. There are still lots fewer books about angels than vampires or werewolves, so there's definitely lots of room for more!
(Rebecca Whitehead-Schwarz 12:41pm January 20, 2012)

I much prefer the non-traditional angel/demon storylines.
(Lisa Elwood 1:34pm January 20, 2012)

Fallen angels are more intriguing.
(Alyson Widen 5:06pm January 20, 2012)

I don't think I have ever read a book about fallen angels.Your book sounds very interesting. Thanks for giving me a chance to win your book.
(Linda Hall 5:46pm January 20, 2012)

It must be quitting time. I read one that comes to mind and cannot think of the title which is not normal for me. Grrrr, now it's going to plague me until I remember it. Even so...sounds like a great read!
Good luck and happy writing!
(Tracie Travis 6:24pm January 20, 2012)

Sneaking away from the day job to say thanks for having me on Fresh Fiction today! Thanks for all the great comments, everyone. I'd forgotten about the movie Michael...will need to see that again. And yes, I totally loved Seth in City of Angels. (Then again, I love anything Nick Cage does. ;) )
(Jane Kindred 6:32pm January 20, 2012)

I love Nick in City of Angels thats one of my favs and the angel in Its a Wonderful Life. I never thought about demons being in heaven before. I bet they stir up a lot of trouble.
(Christina Vanderford 7:07pm January 20, 2012)

(Linda Bass 8:04pm January 20, 2012)

(Linda Bass 8:05pm January 20, 2012)

There is a book I've read about a fallen Angel: Angel of Darkness by Cynthia Eden; a very good book.
(Diane Sadler 8:09pm January 20, 2012)

Love these types of books! If I am not a winner, I will be buying it! Cant wait to read it!
(Stephanie Briggs 10:35pm January 20, 2012)

I enjoy the concept and this type of book, in the end the angels are always redeeming themselves so it is cool to follow their journey.
(Darci Paice 11:45pm January 20, 2012)

I guess I won't win any prize this time. I can't remember reading about any fallen angels yet. However, it's not that I'm in any way averse to doing so. I just have too many other books still waiting to be read.
(Sigrun Schulz 9:19pm January 21, 2012)

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