Nov 192012

Badass Book Reviews is so happy to have author Suzanne Johnson and her sexy pirate Jean Lafitte stopping by the blog today.  Jean has agreed to give us an exclusive interview about himself and his role in Suzanne’s Sentinels of New Orleans series, which includes Royal Street and the newly released River Road.  Jean has graciously offered to answer reader questions throughout the day.  Hit the comments section with any questions or comments that you want him to see.  You can also ask Suzanne questions.  She’s having to read them for Jean since he hasn’t figured out electricity, much less computers after all.  Be sure to check out our review of River Road and keep reading to find out how you can win your own signed copy! **Side note: please check Suzanne’s blog to see if you are a winner from last week’s River Road comment drawing.**

Badass Book Reviews: Welcome Jean!  Why don’t you start by telling our readers a little bit about yourself?  What was your life as a pirate like and how did things change after you died?

Jean Lafitte: Merci, mademoiselle. First, I must insist that I was not a pirate; I prefer the word “privateer” because I only apprehended the ships of the mongrel Spaniards, oui? Well, perhaps an occasional English vessel. I arrived in New Orleans from France in 1806 at the age of twenty-six, along with my brother Pierre. Pierre lived in the city and conducted our business while I commanded many ships and a thousand men in the area south of the city known as Barataria. I was quite the fashionable gentleman when I visited the city, however, and was able to accommodate many young women in their desire to spend time with me. I am a gracious man, after all, and dislike saying no to a beautiful woman. I have been told I am quite handsome, although I would not be so brazen as to say this of myself.

After my human life ended—at sea, in battle, as was only fitting—voila! What should happen but I live again! I am so well loved even today that I have gained immortality by the magic of human memory. Until the hurricane named Katrina tore down the borders between the Now and the Beyond, I was unable to spend much time in the city, but now I will be there more. The New Orleans of today I find a strange and noisy place, with many of what I’ve heard called “pickuptrucks” hurling themselves up and down the streets and, Mon Dieu, what clothing modern people wear! The city does smell better, however.

BaBR: Well, you gotta love modern sanitation efforts!  You mentioned the Beyond… You and DJ took a trip to Old Orleans in the Beyond in Royal Street.  You don’t seem too eager to stay there though; why is that?

JL: Old Orleans is a treacherous place. It is the layer of the vast world Beyond that lies closest to the modern city, with a mélange of species and things from different eras and no laws. Many of the Historical Undead such as myself spend time there—as well as a few renegades from tiresome species such as vampires and the treacherous elves. It is always night time in this part of the Beyond, and I wish to walk in sunlight and spend time on the water. To do this, I must come into the modern world. Plus, business between the modern world and the Beyond is proving quite profitable and, gold, I have learned in my long life, is powerful.

BaBR:  Speaking of your business dealings, how did you come to meet DJ?  It seems like a ghost, excuse me — historical undead, and a sentinel wouldn’t be on the best terms.

JL: Bah. It is true that most wizards are très difficile, and Drusilla can be quite spirited. She is not immune to the charms of the famous privateer Jean Lafitte, however, and I am most certain that in time she will see a partnership with me, in matters both business and private, to be desirable. Plus an ordinary ghost cannot fight and enjoy les relations sexuelles as a man, and these are things in which I assure you I am quite capable. Drusilla will learn this in time.

BaBR:  Hubba hubba!  I can see you have romance on the brain, but what about that intimidating partner of hers, Alex Warin?

JL: Mon Dieu, that murderous hound! Were it not for the trouble I should encounter with the wizarding Elders, I would flay him alive. I would not allow such insolence and disrespect among my men. I must move carefully, however, in order to protect my position with Drusilla. Her tolerance for the chien mauvais is a mystery to me, but in the end a common cur will prove no match for a man such as myself.

BaBR:  Okay okay, I’m sensing that Alex is a touchy subject.  Word on the street is that you have some kind of arrangement with the lovely sentinel.  What did you get DJ to agree to and how will you make use of it?

JL: *Smiles* Ah, mais oui. In exchange for my assistance after the hurricane named Katrina, during which I was gravely wounded in her defense, Drusilla promised me a number of things, including her help in establishing my business between the modern world and the Beyond, and a place in the modern world in which I might reside. I shall collect on these debts very shortly, and will suggest a much more pleasurable way in which she might repay me.

BaBR: After Hurricane Katrina, the borders between the worlds were very thin.  Do you have any idea what species of supernaturals came through… and stayed?

JL: Many from the Realm of Vampyre in the Beyond have moved into the modern city. My friend Etienne Boulard, a Regent of Vampyre, has opened a drinking establishment in the Vieux Carré known as L’Amour Sauvage. Some of my fellow members of the Historical Undead have come into the city for brief periods—William Faulkner, the man of letters, enjoys a drink at the Carousel Bar on occasion, for example. And of course there are many species already living undetected among the humans, such as my friends the merpeople. I also have several weregators among my associates.

BaBR: Wow, those certainly seem to be some… colorful characters; It seems that DJ is going to be a very busy girl.  Are you planning to lend her a hand?

JL: It is always desirable to have a wizard indebted to me, so I will certainly be willing to lend my assistance. I am a reasonable man, after all, and have many ideas on how debts might be repaid.

BaBR:  I bet your ideas are of the most intriguing sort.  Are there any juicy spoilers you can provide for our readers about River Road?  Can you give them a tease of what you’ve been up to until they get their hands on their own copy?

JL: I have found living in the modern city to be quite fascinating; in fact, I have had many new experiences. In River Road, you may join me as I steer an automobile, and enjoy an, um… “chocolatemilkshake”, I believe it was called. And I was of great assistance when Drusilla set the Louisiana wetlands afire while trying to stop merman fisticuffs. I have been quite useful, I think.

BaBR:  I’m sure that you are useful in all types of situations…  Jean, thank you for taking the time to talk to us and for providing the low down on magical New Orleans.  The Badass ladies are looking forward to reading about your further adventures!

JL: The pleasure was mine. However, might I ask a question in return? I am unfamiliar with the term “badass.” Qu’est-ce que c’est?

BaBR: I think all you have to do to understand that is to take a look at the lovely sentinel herself, Drusilla Jaco.  She is a representation of the word “badass.”

Suzanne Johnson, Author of River RoadAuthor Bio
Suzanne Johnson writes urban fantasy and paranormal romance from Auburn, Alabama, after a career in educational publishing that has spanned five states and six universities. She grew up halfway  between the Bear Bryant Museum and Elvis’ birthplace and lived in New Orleans for fifteen years, so she has a highly refined sense of the absurd and an ingrained love of SEC football and fried gator on a stick.  Suzanne is the author of the Sentinels of New Orleans series, published by Tor Books.  Visit her website, blog, facebook, or twitter.

We are lucky enough to have one (1) signed copy of River Road to give away, courtesy of Suzanne Johnson and her publisher, Tor Books. This giveaway is open to both US and International readers.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter below.  This giveaway will run from today through Saturday, 24 Nov.  Winner will be announced on Sunday, 25 Nov.

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ChristalHi everyone, I’m Christal. I am married to a wonderful guy and work in the education field. Reading is my preferred hobby and I never leave home without a book or my e-reader. I will read any book that catches my eye, but my favorite genres are urban fantasy, paranormal romance, fantasy, steam punk, historical fiction, and dystopian/post apocalyptic.
 Posted by on November 19, 2012 at 7:00 am

  41 Responses to “Guest Post and Giveaway: Suzanne Johnson, author of River Road”

Comments (40) Pingbacks (1)
  1. I loved the first book and can’t wait to read River Road. Great interview!

  2. Cool interview, I haven’t read this series, but I’m definitely interested now 🙂

  3. Great interview, Read alot of great things about this series. Looking forward to it

    bacchus76 at myself dot com

  4. Thanks for this lovely interview monsieur Lafitte. I guess having all those fans of Suzanne Johnson reading about you, makes it possible for you to come back even faster than last time. I hope you will get along with DJ a bit better though. Don’t force her.

  5. I’m excited because I want more of all Suzanne’s characters 😉 I love them all and the setting of this series is awesome. Finally an interview with Jean to see more of his personality. I’m definitely glad the border came down even though it means a lot of work for them but it’s more Jean as well. Thabnks so much for the chance to win.

  6. great interview I am looking forward to learning more about Jean.

  7. First… Bonjour Jean Lafitte! Je m’appell Maghon… I’m a Louisiana native 🙂 next, I need you to know that my heart belongs to Jake, Monsieur Chien’s cousin the Loup Garou… But I’ve gotta tell you, you give him a run for his money in your sex appeal, even I know you’re smoking hot, and that just means you’re very very attractive, not actually on fire 🙂 but my question for you is, at the end of River Road (yes I have read it and loved your parts) you got seriously sweet threatening to avenge DJ’s honor… Did you mean it because you think it’s the right thing to do as a chivalrous man, or did you mean it because you might love her… Just a little? 🙂 it’s ok, I love her too! I’m a big fan!!

    • Ah, bonjour, Maghon ma bien-aimee! I have a great respect for Monsieur Jacob Warin, as you will learn when le livre Elysian Fields is available. He is a fine man, unlike his treacherous cousin. As to your question…well, l’amour, c’est complique. I should not like to speak of my true feelings for the lovely Drusilla here. It might be that my offer to avenge her had to do with both love and business, yes?

  8. Ahh, Jean, I’ve always wanted to meet you. It sounds like you stay mainly on land these days. Have you had a chance to go out on one of our modern boats? What do you think of them?

  9. I’m new to this series and it sounds really interesting! I enjoyed the character interview very much – it was fun to read and Jean is a total charmer!

    Thanks for the giveaway! tess_halim(at)hotmail(dot)com

  10. I love books that take place in New Orleans. To me it seems like such a romantic city!! Your character,Jean sounds intriguing and I am looking forward to reading about him! Much success on your new book!

  11. I love character interviews.I can’t wait to read about Jean.

  12. *snort* The visual image of merman fisticuffs had me laughing! Bring on more Jean Lafitte. The world would be a less interesting place without him in it 😉

  13. Oh la la. Jean Lafitte you make my heart flutter! I would love to introduce you other wonders of the modern world – particularly rocky road ice cream! 🙂

    • I should enjoy this very much, Mademoiselle Mel. Q’uest-ce que c’est Rocky Road? (Suzanne explains it’s sort of like a “chocolatemilkshake,” only better.) Oui, I would greatly enjoy this!

  14. I actually never expected Jean to become a main character, but it seems he has pushed his way to the front stage (and who could expect less of him).

    • I had to insist upon such a thing, Mademoiselle Allison, for to have a New Orleans tale without the famous privateer Jean Lafitte would been most unsuitable. (Suzanne adds: And he’s a page hog.)

  15. I’m looking forward to reading River Road

  16. What a delightful surprise to see you today ^^ Un pur Bonheur.
    I was wondering: would you be interested to visit the modern France too?

    • Merci, Mademoiselle Miki! Ah, oui, I should most enjoy visiting my home country once more, to see once again the area of my birth, Pauillac, north of Bordeaux. Although it has likely changed much since I last sailed from there in 1805.

  17. Oh Jean, you make my heart flutter!!

    Out of all the other Historical Undead, who do you like the most? And why?

    Thank you Jean;)

    ccfioriole at gmail dot com

    • Ah, I am most pleased when I make a young woman’s heart flutter! I am very fond of the man of letters William Faulkner, as he often buys the tobacco and brandy I bring from the modern world into the Beyond.

  18. It would be my first signed book!

  19. Lovely interview – Lafitte is one of my favorite characters….

    Aside from modern day clothing, what surprises you most about New Orleans? Are there things that haven’t changed?

    • Bien. I believe the thing about the modern world that has most surprised me is the loss of manners. You might think this odd from one such as myself, but in my day we put great stock in how one spoke and behaved in polite company. I admonish the wizard Drusilla for her language and dress quite often, which she does not seem to appreciate. However, I must help her when I may. The nature of man, however, has not changed. Wealth is power today as it was in my time.

  20. Character interviews are always fun to read.

    I recall reading once about buried coins in a jar. Gold coins I believe.

    Jean, any more buried treasure I can go looking for?

    • Ah, Monsieur Roger, I do not believe you wish me to share with you the location of my buried gold. Men who know too much often meet with foul endings, yes? It might be most beneficial to you if you do not recall where the jar filled with coins was located.

      • Kathryn doesn’t remember either, Gerry took care of that. That was awhile ago. But I won’t tell anyone.