Our readers have a lot of appreciation for the dark side of life and for the things that go bump in the night, so a number of them have already discovered Kat Richardsonâ€™s Greywalker series. Those of you who have not are missing out on a real treat in paranormal mystery! (Special thanks to my dear friend and closet Goth, Esther Howard, for pointing me in the right direction with this series!)
If you are new to the series, Greywalker chronicles the first-person perspective of Seattle Private Investigator, Harper Blaine. After a catastrophic assault left Harper dead for two minutes, she came back with the ability to see into the Grey: the spectral realm that is the home of apparitions, wraiths, broken fragments of time, and a deadly monster called the Guardian, who helps make sure the two worlds donâ€™t intermingle (and, as it turns out, is Harperâ€™s boss). Because she can see things no one else can, spirits and other invisible â€œresidentsâ€ of Seattleâ€™s underworld often seek her out to solve mysteries for them or to seek resolution for things undone.
With the conclusion of her previous novel, Seawitch, Richardsonâ€™s lead protagonist has survived a vampire apocalypse that stretched over two continents, a zombie outbreak in Seattleâ€™s Underground, the attack of Irish Sea Dogs on Puget Sound, a war of witches in the Olympic peninsula, the discovering and uniting with her soul mate, and, most terrifying of all for the luddite heroine, the acceptance of modern cellular technology.
Next month, Richardson will move on to her 8th novel in the series with Possession, and she has graciously agreed to take time out of her busy schedule to talk to us at DGM.
In this first of a five part series with Ms. Richardson, we’ll find a bit about the new book.Â As you find more about her and this world, I think you’ll want to come back to discover more about the mysteries of the Grewalkers and the delightful perspective of their mistress!
First off, Kat, let me say that Seawitch was probably the best Harper Blaine novel Iâ€™ve read to date. Itâ€™s such a treat to see Harper finally at a place where the different parts of her life are in enough harmony that sheâ€™s got some stability, but where thereâ€™s plenty of tension for mystery and stories to come from.
I’m very pleased you think so. I always wanted to write a detective series, but the temptation is to write episodicallyâ€”as if it were an 80s TV seriesâ€”where there’s a new problem every week, but the essential situation and characters never really evolve. Or to go the other way and plunge into constant soap opera complications where the individual book’s plot is almost incidental to the long, angsty arc of the characters’ personal lives. Keeping the series interesting without either making the heroine into a superhero or putting her in a series of bad relationships to hold the tension level up has been… umm… challenging.
The New Book.
Obviously, Iâ€™m very excited about, Possession, thatâ€™s coming out next month. Why donâ€™t you tell our readers a bit about it and what some of the things they can expect from Harper Blaine in the midst of it?
Oh boy! I’m kind of in love with this bookâ€”but I usually am in love with the newest book. I kind of like putting Harper in the way of bigger trouble than she expects and forcing her to rise to the challenge. Possession is the eight book of the series and I found I was pining for more ghosts and I wanted to do something that was much more centered on traditional hauntings than any of the previous books had been. I’m also a huge history buff and I wanted to make sure this book was grounded in Seattle historyâ€”because history is the best source for great ghost stories and horrible crimes.
I did want to interrupt you for just a minute comment a bit on that fact about you, Kat! I personally love how you conclude each book with your â€œconfessionâ€ about where you got your material and where you took â€œliberties.â€ Itâ€™s wonderfully refreshing to see an author so honest and, being a history buff myself, as well as coming from Washington state, I love learning where you got the actual facts!! Now carry on with the upcoming book!
Well, thank you for that! Yes, well, since Harper is a detective, there had to be a crime of some kind or a threat of violence that was beyond the scope of the police. So, obviously, there have to be some very upset ghosts, a crime that the police can’t touch, and the threat of something really ghastly.
So Harper gets hired by a woman whose sister is in a persistent vegetative state (it’s a medical condition related to comas), but she appears to be possessed and is doing very strange things even though, medically speaking, she can’t do anything. And it turns out that the sister is not the only patient who’s manifesting old-fashioned sÃ©ance phenomena like automatic writing and painting, ghostly writing and drawings that appear on the skin, levitation of objects, and apparently speaking in tongues. Also throwing stuff. At the same time, Harper’s mate, Quinton, is having some problems with his father, who’s up to no good with some ghosts himself. Of course the cases will collide and involve the ghost of Washington’s first serial killer, Linda Burfield Hazzardâ€”I didn’t make her upâ€”and a reappearance by the vampires, especially Carlos, a ton of ghosts around Pike Place Market, and Quinton’s dad’s twisted government project toâ€”oh, but that would be a spoiler!
Iâ€™m glad Carlos is coming back, as heâ€™s my favorite Vampire necromancer in your series.
Duly noted! Anyhow, there will be sÃ©ances! Vampires! Fights with monsters! Tunnels! Archeology! Sex! Serial killers! Haunted saloons! Forgotten gods! Hearse (yes, hearse) races! Murder! Villainous plots to kill thousands of people! Ferrets! Giant Ferris wheels! And a little bit of detecting stuff.
I hope thereâ€™s a giant ferret to go with the giant Ferris wheel. It does seem like it would fit nicely!
Alas, no. But maybe in a future story….
Ah, well! Despite the lack of a giant ferret, I find that I am very excited to get my hands on your new book! Itâ€™s sounds like itâ€™s packed with lots of good fun supernatural mystery!
Thank you so much for coming in and sharing with us today.Â In our next interview, we’ll chat about your inspirations for the Greywalker series itself!Â Before we adjourn for today, would you mind sharing where our readers can find out more about Greywalker, Kat?