Authors: Adrian Phoenix
Praise for Adrian Phoenix and The Maker’s Song series
BENEATH THE SKIN
“Adrian Phoenix has done it again! Complex, lyrical, and beautifully written . . . another unique and compulsive page-turner.”
—Jenna Black, author of
Speak of the Devil
“In the burgeoning genre of urban fantasy, Adrian Phoenix’s world stands out as unique. . . . This violent, wrenching tale is something special. Readers have seen tortured heroes before, but young, almost androgynously beautiful Dante is a remarkable hero who bonds with Heather even as he struggles with his sanity.”
—Affaire de Coeur
“This darkly dramatic tale is one wild ride in a series that only promises to get better.”
“Phoenix transports the reader to another world comprised of both shimmering beauty and tactile violence. . . . Fusing and melding the worlds of angels, vampires, and mortals into a story where appearances hide greater truths ensures an engrossing and matchless reading experience.”
—Bitten By Books
IN THE BLOOD
“Phoenix trips the dark fantastic in this wild, bloody sequel. . . . She keeps the plot thick and the tension high.”
“The atmosphere is dark, and treachery abounds, making this story white-knuckle reading in the extreme.”
“Adrian Phoenix takes us into a world with tremendous passion and caring combined with evil beyond comprehension.
In the Blood
is a complex story that leaves you begging for more.”
“Filled with twisting plots, shadowy government agencies, conspiracies, and betrayals,
In the Blood
kept me hooked from page one. This dark urban fantasy is not only action-packed from beginning to end, but at its core, it is also a story of hope and love.”
A RUSH OF WINGS
“Hard-charging action sequences, steamy sex scenes, and a surprising government conspiracy make this debut, the first in a series, engrossingly fun.”
“Phoenix’s lively debut has it all . . . vampires and fallen angels and a slicing-dicing serial killer . . . Phoenix alternates romantic homages to gothdom and steamy blood-drinking threesomes with enough terse, fast-paced thriller scenes to satisfy even the most jaded fan.”
“Sharp, wicked, and hot as sin.”
New York Times
bestselling author Marjorie M. Liu
“Twisted science and the paranormal collide in this eerie new detective thriller that takes an intriguing slant on the supernatural. Phoenix’s gritty and original characters are instantly engaging, and the rapid pace keeps you glued to the pages.”
“A thrilling tale of lust and murder that will keep you turning the pages to see what happens next.
A Rush of Wings
joins the vampire romanticism of Anne Rice with the brutal intrigue of
Silence of the Lambs
“Ms. Phoenix spins a deliciously dark and seductive tale filled with sadistic serial killers, sexy vampires, powerful fallen angels and secret experiments. The fast pace and creative twists make this action-packed read one to remember, and the steamy romance will have readers eagerly looking for more of the same.”
“A complex, layered story filled with twists and turns . . . a dark, rich treat you won’t soon forget.”
—Romance Reviews Today
“This one pulled me in from the first page. Heather and Dante are among those rare characters readers so often look for and seldom find.”
New York Times
bestselling author Barb Hendee
“A Rush of Wings is a fast-paced ride, its New Orleans setting appropriately rich and gothic, its characters both real and surprising.”
New York Times
bestselling author Kristine Kathryn Rusch
A Rush of Wings
In the Blood
Beneath the Skin
Black Dust Mambo
A Division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.
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New York, NY 10020
This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
Copyright © 2011 by Adrian Phoenix
“End of Days” lyrics © Tommy Dark and Ruby Ruin, used with permission.
All rights reserved, including the right to reproduce this book or portions thereof in any form whatsoever. For information address Pocket Books Subsidiary Rights Department, 1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020
First Pocket Books paperback edition March 2011
POCKET and colophon are registered trademarks of Simon & Schuster, Inc.
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Cover illustration by Craig White
Manufactured in the United States of America
10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
ISBN 978-1-4391-9868-1 (ebook)
Dedicated to Sean and Rose Prescott,
the writer whisperers.
EARTFELT THANKS TO MY
incredible editor, Jen Heddle, for her insight, advice, understanding, and patience. I couldn’t do this without her! Special thanks also to Renee Huff and Erica Feldon at Pocket for their unflagging support and promotion; to Craig White for the beautiful covers and to Lisa Litwack for their design. I couldn’t be happier! I’m honored to work with each of you. And I’m also honored to be a part of Pocket. I’m deeply grateful to everyone involved with my books for your hard work, dedication, and support!
Big thanks to my agent, Matt Bialer, as always for your encouragement, friendship, and enthusiasm. You’ve made this wonderful journey even more so.
Special thanks to Paul Goat Allen at
for his unwavering support and promotion of the books, and for his love of the characters and their story. You rock! I can’t thank you enough. Gimme a devil sign, dude.
And to D.B. Reynolds for not only writing awesome and sexy books (check out her Vampires in America series), but for her friendship and support.
Monster thanks to: Mippy Carlson, Nate Gross, Sheila Dale, Louise Robson, Judi Szabo, Heather Lobdell, and all the members of Club Hell and my street team for your support, enthusiasm, and love for Dante and his world. He’s got a helluva lot of kisses to deliver.
To my friends and family: You know who you are. I love you all. You’re the flame that fuels my heart.
Thanks also to: Nine Inch Nails, Queens of the Stone Age, Anders Manga, Saints of Ruin, How to Destroy Angels, and Muse for the music.
And, last, but never least, Trent Reznor whose music always provides an emotional soundscape for Dante and his world and is always a source of inspiration.
And, always, thanks to you, the reader, for picking up this book and plunging back into Dante, Heather, and Lucien’s world. None of this could happen without you. If this is your first time,
Please visit me at
O MAKE THINGS AS
simple as possible, I’ve listed not only words, but phrases used in the story. Please keep in mind that Cajun is different from Parisian French and the French generally spoken in Europe. Different grammatically and even, sometimes, in pronunciation and spelling.
The French that Guy Mauvais and Justine Aucoin use is traditional French as opposed to Dante’s Cajun.
For the Irish and Welsh words—including the ones I’ve created—pronunciation is provided.
One final thing:
is pronounced PRAY-zhawn.
(AIN-gyahl), angel. Fallen/Elohim word.
, (m) friend, (f)
amie. Mon ami
, my friend.
(ann-HREVN-cathl), chaos song; the song of a Maker. Fallen/Elohim word.
, (pl) apprentices, (s)
, (Italian) absolutely.
, too, also.
, short for
, very, much, many, a great deal.
, well, very.
, good, nice, fine, kind.
, good luck.
, (Spanish) good evening.
, (Italian) good evening.
, good evening, beautiful.
, (Italian) good.
Ça fait pas rien
, you’re welcome. Also,
pas de quoi
Ça fini pas
, it never ends.
, (KAW-lawn-CUHV-aisle) bondmate, heart-mate.
, (f) doll, dear, sweetheart.
Ça va bien
, I’m fine, I’m good, okay.
Ça va pas du tout
, Things aren’t going well at all.
Cercle de Druide
, Circle of Druids, a sacred and select nightkind order.
, that’s good.
(chal-KOO-dree), winged serpentine demons of Sheol, subservient to the Elohim.
, (m) dear, beloved; (f)
, (m) my dear or my beloved.
Cher ami, mon
, (m) my dearest friend, my best friend; intimate, implying a special relationship. (f)
Chère ami, ma