Trish McCallan Talking Alphas w Excerpt + Giveaway!!

>> Tuesday, September 20, 2011

I met Trish years ago when we critiqued for each other. I'm so very thrilled to have her here today as a guest, talking about her new release, FORGED IN FIRE. Zane is just as yummy as an alpha can get and Trish's writing is as deep as her characters and as visceral as the twists in her plots.  And, boy, oh boy, do I love what I see she's done with good ole Zane!!

Leave a comment to be entered for a chance at:
1) An ecopy of FORGED BY FIRE
2) 1 of 5 custom handmade bookmarks


Beth Brown doesn’t believe in premonitions until she dreams a sexy stranger is gunned down during the brutal hijacking of a commercial airliner. When events in her dream start coming true, she heads to the flight’s departure gate. To her shock, she recognizes the man she’d watched die the night before.

Lieutenant Commander Zane Winters comes from a bloodline of elite warriors with psychic abilities. When Zane and two of his platoon buddies arrive at Sea-Tac Airport, he has a vision of his teammates’ corpses. Then she arrives—a leggy blonde who sets off a different kind of alarm.

As Beth teams up with Zane, they discover the hijacking is the first step in a secret cartel’s deadly global agenda and that key personnel within the FBI are compromised. To survive the forces mobilizing against them, Beth will need to open herself to a psychic connection with the sexy SEAL who claims to be her soul mate.

The Protector by Trish McCallan

Hands down, my favorite romantic hero is the protector. I like them alpha too, dripping with testosterone. It doesn’t matter what the sub-genre is, as long as the book has a sexy, alpha protector for a hero.

Pretty much every sub-genre has this type of hero, although they are most common in romantic suspense, or romantic thrillers. In this sub-genre the hero is a usually in law enforcement, or perhaps a spy, sometimes a military man. They serve their city, or county or country and protect an unsuspecting and somewhat na├»ve population from everything from rapists to terrorists. Many of these heroes are gruff, often damaged by what they’ve seen during their forays into the seamier side of life. Or they can be tortured by past horrors, and past betrayals. Almost all of them are highly sexual, as though that alpha protectiveness goes hand in hand with a ramped up sex drive—which is no surprise really, when you consider all that testosterone. *BG*

The protector archetype thrives in romantic suspense and some of my favorite romantic suspense heroes fall within this archetype. Linda Howard excels at writing this kind of a hero. And I count several of her novels among my favorites. To Kill and Tell, Mackenzie’s Pleasure, Dream Man, Burn—these are all on my keeper shelf. And then we have Suzanne Brockmann’s Troubleshooter Series, sexy SEALs out to save the world. Maya Banks’ KGI Series and Stephanie Tyler’s Shadow Force Series both fall within the umbrella as well.

But the protector is just as popular in dark paranormal romance. In JR Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood, the entire reason behind the formation of the brotherhood was to produce a sub-species of vampire warriors capable of protecting their race from an ancient enemy determined to eradicate them. In Lara Adrian’s Midnight Breed Series, The Order formed to protect humans and vampires alike against their own kind who had been lost to blood lust. Elisabeth Naughton’s Eternal Guardians straddle and protect two worlds, both of which would face obliteration without them.

It’s no surprise, I suppose, that when I started writing my own heroes fell beneath this umbrella. In previous books my heroes have been homicide detective, but in my new series—The Forged Series—they are Navy SEALs.

Cool, controlled, deadly—the heroes of Forged in Fire are seasoned warriors who face death with without hesitation or blinking an eye. They do it because they are protectors. Each and everyone one of them. They’d give their life to protect this country and the citizens who inhabit it.

So what heroes do you have on your keeper shelf that would fall beneath this umbrella? Enquiring minds want to know, and my TBR shelf is looking for a couple of new series!

I’m including a short excerpt here of my protectors in action. I hope you enjoy!


“Let’s hope that woman of yours shows up ASAP. Much more of this drought and you won’t remember what to do with her.” With a flash of white teeth, Rawls reached over to punch Zane’s shoulder.

The moment Rawls’ fist made contact, every muscle in Zane’s body clenched. He froze, his breath locked in his throat. His vision blurred.


It was a subtle sound. A switch flipping inside his head. An image flashed through his mind. Quick. Brutal. Ugly.

Rawls sprawled across a bank of narrow seats. His blue t-shirt splotched with black. Blood dripping from limp fingers. A fixed stare glazing his blue eyes.

The vision vanished.

“Son of a bitch.” Sheer disgust vibrated in Cosky’s gritty voice. “We’re on stand-down. This is a civilian flight. Regardless of that all-too-familiar look on your face, we cannot be in any goddamn danger.”

But he didn’t dislodge the hand Zane clamped around his bicep.

This time Zane was expecting the vision. He tensed anyway, his body contracting into one giant charley horse.


He strained to capture as many details as possible as the new vision flashed through his mind.

Gray eyes locked and empty, already filming with the unmistakable haze of death. Black hair saturated with blood. Hands clenched. He was splayed across a narrow aisle, dark blue upholstered seats rising on either side of his head.

When the image vanished, he released Cosky’s arm and wrestled air back into his lungs.

“Tell me this is a joke,” Cosky demanded.

Zane shook his head and gripped the back of his neck with both hands.

“What did you see?” Rawls finally asked.

Zane drew a shallow breath. “You dead. Cosky dead.”

“From boredom?” Cosky asked dryly, one black-as-sin eyebrow arching. “We are going to a wedding.” A quick glance at Zane’s face, and a glint of steel darkened his gray eyes. “Where’s this going down?”

“On the bird.” Zane frowned. “Couldn’t tell whether she was in flight. Didn’t get a good enough look.”

Cosky turned to study the boisterous crowd. “When do you ever?”

“Which bird? Over or back?” Cosky braced his hands on his hips and studied Zane’s face. “Either fits the three-day window for those flashes of yours.”

“Today.” Zane nodded toward Rawls’ blue-clad chest. “Same clothes.”

Cosky grunted. “I don’t suppose you saw who killed us?”

“When have these damn things ever been that accommodating?”

“Fuck.” With a disgusted shake of his head, Cosky dropped his chin and scowled at the worn carpet. “What about the wounds?”

“Lots of blood. Could be a gun. Or a knife.”

“A crash?” Rawls broke in quietly.

“Doubtful. Neither of you were burned. We’re looking at some kind of weapon.”

Cosky frowned. “It would be easier to smuggle a blade through security, but few people are good enough to take us on with a knife. Chances are it’s a gun.”

Zane pushed away from the wall. “Whatever’s going to happen is bad enough to take the three of us out.” The flashes never centered on him, but if Cosky and Rawls were in danger, he was as well. “We need to get hold of Mac.”

As the OIC of SEAL Team 7, Commander Jace Mackenzie had the pull to get the plane grounded and the passengers searched.

“Question.” Cosky’s attention zeroed in on Zane’s face. “What are we going to tell him? We don’t know what’s going to happen, who’s behind it, or what kind of weapons will be used. If Mac gets this bird grounded, only to have nothing show during the search, the backlash is gonna be a bitch.”

“What are you suggesting?” Zane cocked an eyebrow. “That we skip the wedding, keep our mouths shut and let events play out?”

“Don’t be an ass. I’m saying it would be handy to have some solid intel to pass on for a change.”

FORGED BY FIRE is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords.

What's your favorite type of hero?
Leave a comment to be entered for a chance at:
1) An ecopy of FORGED BY FIRE
2) 1 of 5 custom handmade bookmarks


BookLover62,  4:51 AM  

Favorite hero? = alpha all the way!
This book sounds right up my alley - Alpha hero with a touch of paranormal. Enter me to win!


Angela Wise 4:51 AM  

My favorite heroes are bad boys that either find their compassionate side or finally let someone else see it

Anonymous,  5:15 AM  

Favorite hero all the way is those BA alpha males :) This book sounds intense and love it that it involves military men as the alphas.

Trish thanks for stopping by, your book sounds awesome! How many do you have planned for this series?

Thanks Joan for having such awesome prizes!!!


Trish 6:24 AM  


A HUGE Thank You!! For hosting me today. And I really appreciate all the time you put into those gorgeous bookmarks. Man they turned out so pretty, I could stare at them all day.


Kyla Holt 6:30 AM  

Woah...did someone say Navy Seal? Where? What? lol LOVE a protector. They get me all swoony! Sometimes they only protect a few, sometimes just their loved one, sometimes everyone. But they are all alpha hotness worthy of a good drool-fest.

Some great protectors I've read:
Southern Arcana series and the Red Rock Pass series from Moira Rogers (there's just about one or more in each book). That's where I go when I need a good alpha-male fix!

Enjoyed the post--love the bookmark. The gun just puts it over the top! Can't wait to read the book--I'm hoping there are some uniforms in this book too, but if not, I can visualize them anyways!


Trish 6:31 AM  


You just described my favorite kind of romantic suspense. Alpha heroes, romance, suspense, and paranormal-- for me its the perfect combination. *grin*

Throw in some steamy sex and we're golden!

Trish 6:38 AM  


You are not alone in your love of bad boys. Look at how popular Anne Stuart's heroes are?

In Forged in Fire, the commander of their team is a hardass called Mac. And I do mean he is a Hard-ASS. The first time he showed up on the page I just sat back and stared, thinking everyone is going to hate this guy. *lol*

As of right now, 90% of the readers who have emailed asking about the series want his story next. Go figure.

Trish 6:42 AM  


I have four books for sure already planned out. All the secondary heroes in Forged in Fire will get their own books.

The second book in the series is due out late next spring or early summer. The titles will be:

Forged in Ice
Forged in Fury
Forged in Betrayal

Trish 6:48 AM  


I get all swoony too at the thought of all that alpha hotness. lol

But alas, no uniforms in this book- the entire thing takes place while the guys are on leave. They get dragged into very ugly situation and because of that take charge, protective streak they step up and save the day.

Joan Swan 6:55 AM  

Love those titles, Trish! Can't wait!! XO

jmaxy619 7:48 AM  

I love alpha's, and if they're a little tortured that's just a little better!

ReneeRearden 7:49 AM  

Thank you for the awesome giveaway...the bookmarks are gorgeous and Forged In Fire is already on my TBR list!!!

Give me an alpha man every day of the week. All that energy and emotion makes for an explosive connection. Adding in the psychic talent for a paranormal factor screams bonus.

I can't wait to read Forged in Fire...and then the rest of the series! Congratulations and i wish you great success....


Karyn Good 8:05 AM  

Forged in Fire sounds like my kind of read!

D'Ann,  8:10 AM  

Zane is sex in a uniform. Yum!

I love alpha heroes, but mine always come off a little softer, for some reason.

Julie 8:14 AM  

Gruff alpha heroes are my favorite, especially when paired with a spunky heroine that they have no idea how to handle. It makes me laugh. :D

Michelle 8:40 AM  

I love protective hero's too. You mentioned some of my favourite series - have you tried Stephanie Tyler's Hold trilogy? They come before the Shadowforce books. Chris is my favourite of the brothers. And Stephanie & Larissa's ACRO series had some amazing examples of Alpha males!

I love the sound of this series. I'm a paranormal girl at heart but my Military men are a close second and I love it when both my loves combine! Looking forward to reading the series and loving the titles! Thanks for sharing!


Jennifer Lowery (Kamptner) 8:43 AM  

I'm reading this book right now and it rocks!! Trish, you are an awesome writer. Love alphas and that's why I write them too :) Nice post.

Liz 9:35 AM  

I love alphas. period. this sounds like a GREAT story!
congrats on all your successes
etcrowe (at) me (dot) com

Kristina Knight 10:21 AM  

I love alpha men - all sorts...although the swashbuckler type is very close to my heart. :)

Anonymous,  11:36 AM  

I love alpha males and my favorite is the reluctant hero; the man who feels he isn't worthy of love or forgiveness and is usually sarcastic and somewhat cruel. Just something about those tortured, emotionally and/or physically scarred, damaged men that drives me batty.

Christine Warner 11:45 AM  

Zane sounds DELISH!!! I have quite a stack of books on my 'to read list' and I've definately added this one. I love the alpha male too...moody, sure of himself, but with a soft side that only the heroine can reveal. YUMMY! Loved your excerpt...congrats on your release :)

Anonymous,  12:52 PM  

This book is perfect for me! Has all the elements I love in a book, great name for the hero, he's alpha and all about protecting family/friends, and he is military :) Shooting to win a copy of this but if I don't, I know what is next on my list of what I'm buying!!!


Jane 2:28 PM  

I'm a big fan of alpha heroes, too. It's comforting to know this person knows how to handle anything in any situation.

janie1215 AT excite DOT com

Heather 3:12 PM  

I love ALPHA heroes. There is something about them that makes me happy.

heatherlire at gmail dot com

Raonaid Luckwell 3:46 PM  

Alpha, sarcastic men are my type of heroes. Snark, gets me each and every time. I love a man that is snarky with a warped sense of humor.

Anonymous,  4:13 PM  


I love a good, strong alpha hero. The ones who are strong willed and when they fall, they really fall hard. Thanks for the giveaway. The bookmarks beautiful.

Trish 6:49 PM  


It took me almost as long to come up with those titles as it did to write to book. I'm so terrible with titles. Even worse with tag lines. I still don't have a series tag line.

Help, anyway??????

Trish 6:51 PM  


I love me some tortured alpha heroes. The hero in my next release (not of the Forged series)is about as tortured as a man can be.

Trish 6:56 PM  


I've always loved the combination of paranormal and suspense too. Which is why my favorite televisions shows have always been along those lines. Like X-Files, Twilight Zone, Fringe. My fiction has always followed my television taste.

Hope you enjoy the book!

Trish 6:57 PM  


Sure sounds like alot of people are a fan of the suspense/paranormal combination. We have excellent taste! *bg

Trish 6:59 PM  


I think you said "yum" the first time you met Zane. lol

And your heroes are hunky enough the way they are!

Trish 7:02 PM  


You are so right. It is always fun to watch a cool, capable man who has always handled every situation with confidence, lose the skirmish to his heroine. But then if the hero and heroine aren't evenly matched- the book would drag, wouldn't it?

Trish 7:09 PM  


I've got all of Stephanie Tyler's books on my TBR Shelf. Along with Christy Reece who I've been hearing great things about.

I'm a big paranormal fan too. Forged in Fire was actually inspired by a Black Dagger Brotherhood reading Binge, a bad cold, a bottle of NyQuil and a vivid dream. In a lot of ways the warriors of the BDB sparked this series.

Trish 7:10 PM  


Thank You!! I'm so glad you are enjoying it!

Trish 7:12 PM  


Thank you! So far the reception Forged has been getting from the readers has been wonderful. *fingers crossed it continues*

Trish 7:14 PM  


Now that you mention it, I haven't read a swashbuckler hero in ages. It's about time that hero swung back into favor. *g

Trish 7:24 PM  


The odd thing in the Forged Series, is that the hero you would least think of being tortured, is the one who is the most haunted and carries the most baggage. I think it's going to shock alot of people when his story unwinds, although there are hints in this book, and ever stronger hints in the next one.

Trish 7:25 PM  


Thank you! I hope Zane lives up to your expectations.

Trish 7:27 PM  


Your comment is music to my ears. I hope you enjoy the book, no matter how you end up getting hold of it. *bg

Trish 7:29 PM  


That cool confidence, and supreme capability is a huge part of what makes the Alpha hero so appealing. You know they have everything covered- from a mugger on a dark street, to chaperoning your teenager's first school dance.

Trish 7:32 PM  


They make me happy too. In fact, I would go so far as to say they make everyone commenting here today happy. lol

Trish 7:33 PM  

Raonaid Luckwell,

Yes!! lol

Snarky, snappy dialogue can be so much fun to read. (and write)

Trish 7:37 PM  


That is one of the things that makes an Alpha hero's love story so satisfying. When he falls, he falls hard, and it last forever. They are steadfast in their commitment, so we know its a happy-ever-after-forever!! With them.

Michelle 3:39 AM  


I haven't heard of Christy Reece before, I'll go check them out on Goodreads.

It must have been some dream! I'm a Zsadist girl myself although then there's Vishous... :)

pamerd 5:32 AM  


Love an alpha hero. The way they take charge of the

Your book looks great - adding this to my list to read.


Trish 6:42 AM  


I'm a V/Butch girl, myself ( I'm pretty equal in my devotion to those two, *g) But Z is a very close second. And I like his romance with Bella better than any others in the books.

Trish 6:44 AM  


Welcome to our Alpha Hero Party. If you love those Alpha heroes you have come to the right place. *g

Anonymous,  7:35 AM  

Hey Trish I'm back :)

I have a question for you about buying books. I went to your website last night and was reading your blog. I saw your post from September 12th and wow were my eyes opened on your observations from the sales of FORGED IN FIRE. Now as an author do you do better sales if your readers buy from Smashwords then sites like Amazon/Barnes and Noble?


Karen H 7:49 AM  

An Alpha who thinks he is beyond loving, something about a strong male with some flaws always gets my attention, also a sharp sense of humor.

claddagh64 at yahoo dot com

Anonymous,  10:46 AM  


I'm in the process of setting up a blog devoted to the self-publishing/business aspect so I can separate the business side of writing from my Website. I'm getting alot of reader traffic now, and I don't want to bore them into a coma. *bg

But to answer your question- while you get a tad bit more royalties through Smashwords, I think most authors would benefit more from the readers buying from Amazon. This is because buying through Amazon will decrease the book's Amazon ranking. From my research, the lower a book's Amazon ranking is, the better placement the book gets on the website. By this I mean if someone were to type in the key words alpha, sexy, romance, SEAL, warrior, brotherhood-- any book with these words tagged, would show up in the search window. But the books with the best rankings would be listed first.

There is an additional advantage if you can get a book's ranking low enough in its individual category. Then it will show up in the "people who bought this book bought these books as well" spot on the bottom of the page.

So for most authors it would benefit them to sell more on Amazon and get that ranking down as low as they possibly can.


Anonymous,  10:48 AM  


There is nothing sexier than a hot alpha male with a sense of humor. *g


Diane Story Romance Author 5:35 PM  

Ok, I'm game! No, really, I'll be his game anytime,, as long as my hubby says its ok,, :-)

Breezy1323 5:41 PM  

Here's hoping I'm lucky

Na 6:37 PM  

I would very much want to meet these warriors with psychic abilities :) Thank you for the giveaway.

Tory M 6:39 PM  

Hmmm, definitely the alpha type. I've apparently got a thing for the bad boy. And yet the hubby's about as far from a bad boy as can be.

Trish 7:57 PM  


You've definitely got game. I'm sure hubby will be just fine with this. *g

After all, most hubbys tend to reap the benefit from such games.

Trish 7:59 PM  


I'd cross my fingers for you, but that wouldn't be fair to the other people hoping to win. And I don't have enough fingers and toes to cross for everyone.

Trish 8:03 PM  

Na- I am lucky! I get to live with all these sexy, warriors. Although, it does get kind of crowded inside my brain. lol

Trish 8:05 PM  


That is the attraction of fiction. In real life, living with an alpha hero might make a woman rip all her hair out, and go hunting down a gun. *g

Joan Swan 10:32 PM  

Winners -- congrats ladies!!


Michelle: BOOKMARK

Trish 6:28 AM  

Congratulations to the winners.

Michelle: I'll email you with the download coupon code for Forged in Fire.

And Joan, thank you so much for the kickass hosting job you did. Those bookmarks are the perfect piece of swag to launch Forged in Fire's blog tour. And your effort on my behalf to get the news of my book out is genuinely and hugely appreciated!

You rock. Seriously!

Amelia 9:56 AM  

Loved Forged in Fire! I do love the alpha male and Zane is certainly that.

Can't wait for your next in the series. I want to see what happens with Cosky, Rawls and Mac.

Trish 6:52 PM  


I'm so happy you liked Forged in Fire, thanks for coming over to let me know. I think you're one of the readers on Goodread you gave Forged five stars, aren't you, if so the ranking is very much appreciated.

Cosky's book will be next. Then Rawls. Mac is last.

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