Hi, I’m David B. Coe. I also write as D.B. Jackson. Under my own name, I am the author of The Case Files of Justis Fearsson, a contemporary urban fantasy set in modern day Phoenix. The newest book in this series, HIS FATHER’S EYES, will be released by Baen Books a week from today, on August 4. As D.B. Jackson, I write the Thieftaker Chronicles, a historical urban fantasy set in pre-Revolutionary Boston. The fourth and (for now) final Thieftaker book, DEAD MAN’S REACH, came out from Tor Books a week ago, on July 21.
I’m very excited to be here today, especially because I’m joined by my two protagonists from these series, Justis Fearsson and Ethan Kaille. I’m particularly pleased that Mister Kaille could join us, since he not only had to travel some distance, but also across nearly two and a half centuries. Gentlemen, welcome to you both.
Fearsson: Thanks, it’s good to be here.
Kaille: Aye, it is. Although I will admit to feeling a bit like a fish out of water. What is that contraption on which your fingers are tapping? For that matter how have you managed to illuminate this room without benefit of a single candle flame or hearth fire?
Well . . . You know, I’m afraid that in order to use our time most wisely, I’m going to have to skip the explanations. Suffice it to say that we’ve had a few technological breakthroughs in the years since the American Revolution.
Kaille: There’s been a revolution?!
Um . . . yeah. You and I can talk later. For now, allow me to ask the two of you some questions. I’d like to begin by asking how you enjoy being in my books.
Fearsson: You mind if I go first?
Kaille: Be my guest.
Fearsson: Frankly, it’s kind of a mixed bag. You’ve given me some nice stuff. Love the car. I mean LOVE it. A ‘77 280Z, and silver no less? That’s a sweet ride. And you’ve given me some nice weaponry, too. As a former cop, I appreciate that. On the other hand, I tend to get the crap beaten out of me on a pretty regular basis, and it’s starting to get a little old. Also, the moon phasings and the whole temporary insanity thing — that’s no picnic. I could have done without it.
Kaille: Moon phasings?
Fearsson: Yeah. I’m a weremyste, which means I’m a runecrafter; I can cast spells. But on the full moon, I lose my mind temporarily. My dad went through the same thing, and he’s insane now. You don’t have phasings?
Kaille: No. I, too, can cast spells, but I am unaffected by the waxing and waning of the moon. On the other hand, I live in constant terror of being hanged as a witch.
Fearsson: That doesn’t sound so good either. See, Coe, that’s my point. You seem to enjoy torturing us.
Kaille: Yes, I quite agree. I have no 280Z, whatever that is. I gather it is some mode of transportation. I wish I had something similar. A reliable horse would suffice. You have me do a great deal of walking, and with my limp that is something of a burden. But mostly I resent the beatings. I understand that because I live in the same town as Sephira Pryce, I am going to have my fair share of trouble. But must she have her toughs beat me so often?
Fearsson: Who is Pryce? Some sort of crime lord?
Kaille: The term is new to me, but it sounds accurate enough. She is a demon, bonny as the day is long, but cruel, capricious, ruthless, and an all ways wicked. She and her men have tormented me for years.
Well, I am sorry about all that. But what can I say? My readers like to see you suffer. At least you both have strong, smart, beautiful women in your lives.
Kaille: Aye, that is true. Kannice Lester is a dear to me as anyone in this world. Without her, my life would be unbearable.
Fearsson: And I love Billie Castle more than I can say. But I’m inclined to think that we found each other on our own. That wasn’t your doing.
Kaille: Yes, just so. You, Mister Jackson, cannot take credit for all.
Fine. My next question is this: You both are just beginning new adventures, and the people reading this are interested to know where things stand as the stories begin. Ethan?
Kaille: [Shaking his head.] Circumstances in Boston have grown quite dire in recent months. We are in the grip of a brutal winter. The city is blanketed with ice and snow. And yet passions burn all too bright. The occupation of the city by British soldiers continues to this day. Tensions between the uniformed regulars and Boston’s citizenry run high. Loyalists and patriots exchange insults in the streets, and at every turn this deepening enmity threatens to spill over into violence and bloodshed. Worse, just this night, I have had a magical encounter with Sephira and her men that I find both strange and disturbing. I do not know yet what it all means, but I fear some new conjuring threat looms over the lanes of Boston.
Fearsson: Well, at least in Phoenix it’s warm. Otherwise, things are no better here and now than they are in Colonial Boston. I had hoped that with the Blind Angel Killer gone, Phoenix might enjoy some quiet on the supernatural front. But no such luck. I’m hearing rumors of more dark magic — blood magic — spells that no runecrafter ought to be casting. There have been disappearances, ritual killings, and even an attempted bombing of a commercial airliner. I don’t understand any of it, at least not yet. But I’m most worried about my father, who seems to be under assault from powers I can’t see or hear. For all I know these attacks are all in his head. He’s a burned-out old weremyste, which means he might just be hallucinating. I don’t think so, though. I’ve seen what his delusions do to him. This strikes me as worse somehow, more serious, and all too real.
I see. Intriguing.
Fearsson: Cut it out. You know all of this. You did it to us, for God’s sake.
Let’s move on. You both can do magic. Do you have a favorite spell, one that you like to use more than the others?
Fearsson: I’ve become pretty attached to transporting spells. Being able to move myself short distances, or being able to take someone’s weapon away with a simple spell. That’s some handy magic. I will admit that for all the crap you throw at me, you have given me some fun tools for fighting back.
Kaille: Aye, I find my conjuring abilities most useful. I believe my favorite spell is the dormite conjuring I use to put enemies to sleep. All things being equal, I prefer not to harm my foes any more than I have to. I would rather escape to fight another day. And I do love the look on Sephira’s face when, with a single conjuring, I manage to render her behemoths as harmless as slumbering babes.
Of course you do. You see, all things considered neither of you minds being in my books all that much.
Well, those are all the questions we have time for today. My thanks to both of you for joining us.
Fearsson: No problem.
Kaille: It has been my pleasure.
David B. Coe/D.B. Jackson is the award-winning author of eighteen fantasy novels. Under the name D.B. Jackson, he writes the Thieftaker Chronicles, a historical urban fantasy from Tor Books that includes Thieftaker, Thieves’ Quarry, A Plunder of Souls, and, the newest volume, Dead Man’s Reach, which was released on July 21. Under his own name, he writes The Case Files of Justis Fearsson, a contemporary urban fantasy from Baen Books. The first volume, Spell Blind, debuted in January 2015. The newest book in the series, His Father’s Eyes, comes out on August 4. He lives on the Cumberland Plateau with his wife and two daughters. They’re all smarter and prettier than he is, but they keep him around because he makes a mean vegetarian fajita. When he’s not writing he likes to hike, play guitar, and stalk the perfect image with his camera.