I’m delighted to welcome Katherine McIntyre with a guest post and extract from her latest book, released today. Of Tinkers and Technomancers (The Whitfield Files Book One) is a steampunk romance—here’s the book info…
When technomancer Theo Whitfield joins forces with the insufferable, gorgeous Silas Kylock to find her missing sister, their heated exchanges turn from irritation to desire…
When technomancer Theo Whitfield’s sister goes missing, she’s forced to work alongside an arrogant prat she’s long despised, the tinker Silas Kylock. Her sister Ellie nicked his clockwork doll, and Theo needs his help to track the stolen merchandise and, by proxy, Ellie. However, the more time they spend together, the more she sees Silas as the man she’d run through the streets of Islington with and not the insufferable gentleman he’s become.
Theo’s not the only one afflicted. Silas never forgot the loyal, stubborn woman whose temper he can’t help but spark, and as their search grows more dire, her dedication to her family inspires him to make sacrifices of his own. So, when the hunt erupts into a deadly confrontation with the gangs of Islington, Theo and Silas aren’t just risking their hearts—their lives are on the line.
Now over to Katherine as she talks about infusing Paranormal with Steampunk….
While normally steampunk tends to blend science fiction and historical genres, one of the amazing things about the genre is versatility. Fantasy elements fit right in with steampunk books, which leaves the door wide open for the range of what you can explore. When I was beginning the Whitfield Files series, it was a joy to meld traditional steampunk elements of clockwork dolls, tinkers, and tech inventions with paranormal aspects like technomancy.
One of the reasons leading to something like technomancy versus the traditional sorts of elemental magic that tend to show up in regular paranormal romance and urban fantasy is due to the sheer amount of gadgetry and tech involved in steampunk books. One of the trademarks of the genre is the wild exploration into things that could’ve been, whether it’s steam-powered dirigibles, or clockwork automatons. In choosing technomancy for the lead’s main powers, it allowed all of the unique gadgets in the world to the forefront as she manipulated them throughout the story.
The wonderful thing about the steampunk genre is that you can mash it up with almost anything. The aesthetic is constantly evolving, and if you’ve ever gone to a steampunk event, you’ll see a wide variety of different costuming, not just neo-Victorian. Some people arrive as time travelers, others in their bustles and corsets. The community has widely embraced the creativity and openness of the genre, and they continue to foray into new territory with each new piece, work, or story created. As for me, my contribution is the foray into paranormal that is the first book in my Whitfield Files series, Of Tinkers and Technomancers.
Theo Whitfield had been dreading this visit before she entered the building. Any one of an assortment of grisly jobs sounded more appealing than the task she faced now, whether it be sucking down clouds of noxious black steam while repairing an airship vent, or tromping through the sewage and muck in the Underground. Blazes, she’d even rather devour her mother’s charred attempts at supper, a feat that caused even the most ironclad stomachs to falter.
Yet, her sister Ellie had never come home last night, and Theo needed answers.
Theo swallowed hard as she stepped to the storefront and rested her knuckles on the freshly painted door. The polished bronze sign of Kylock Industries glared down at her from the overhang, and she gritted her teeth while gathering her courage. Autocarts rattled behind her while they raced along the cobblestones, part of the average hustle of Barnsbury. Each one that passed elicited a stream of curses from the street thugs who were half-rats by noon and reeked of gin.
She gripped the knob and turned it, entering the business.
The dim gas lamps in the entryway flickered their sallow light onto the tarnished floorboards. A woman sitting behind a mahogany desk stationed in the front of a sprawling parlor startled in her seat as if she’d been caught napping. Even with the posh and polished entrance of the shop, the scents of iron, steel and copper tickled her nose and made her fingers itch. For a technomancer like herself, the contraptions devised in this place were rife for exploration.
“How may I help you?” the attendant asked, smoothing her skirts before she stood from her seat.
“I’m here to see Silas,” Theo said, slipping her hands into the pockets of her trousers.
She didn’t miss the way the woman stared her down, lingering on her shocking attire. With her long black curls left free and wild rather than pinned back, and the lack of a corset to give her an unrealistic waist, Theo would never be mistaken for a lady. Though the populace’s judgment didn’t matter. As a technomancer in a city of industry, she would always, always find employment, whether she followed social norms or not.
“Mr. Kylock is occupied. Did you want to make an appointment?” the woman replied as she forced a smile.
Theo lifted an eyebrow. The high-and-mighty bastard’s too busy playing with his toys to spare a second? As if I’m surprised.
“He’ll see me now,” she demanded, her fingers itching all the more. Whenever her temper sparked—which happened often—the magic tended to flow with it.
The attendant bristled at her demand. Based on the sharp glint in the woman’s eyes when she opened her mouth, another denial was about to follow.
~~About the Author~~
Strong women. Strong words.
Katherine McIntyre is a feisty chick with a big attitude despite her short stature. She writes stories featuring snarky women, ragtag crews, and men with bad attitudes—high chance for a passionate speech thrown into the mix. As an eternal geek and tomboy who’s always stepped to her own beat, she’s made it her mission to write stories that represent the broad spectrum of people out there, from different cultures and races to all varieties of men and women. Easily distracted by cats and sugar.