Interview: Susannah Sandlin author of Redemption


We have the lovely Susannah Sandlin of the Penton Legacy stopping by to chat with us today.

Susannah Sandlin is an author of paranormal romance set in the Deep South, where there are always things that go bump in the night!

A longtime journalist, Susannah grew up in Alabama reading the gothic novels of Susan Howatch, and always fancied herself living in Cornwall, although she’s never actually been there. Details, details. She also read a lot of Stephen King–the combination of Howatch and King probably explains a lot. Currently a resident of Auburn, Alabama, Susannah has also lived in Illinois, Texas, California, and Louisiana.

For more information on Susannah, visit her website.

You can also find her on Twitter and Facebook.


Let’s get the ball rolllin’!


How did the characters of Redemption come to you? Did you dream of them, see a picture of someone and it took on a personality of its own or are the characters inspired by people in your life?
The character of Aidan Murphy came first, and the rest of the characters developed from him. A couple of years ago, I got the H1N1 virus because the vaccines were late in being distributed and people weren’t able to find them. While I was sick, I got the idea of having a virus pandemic vaccine change blood chemistry to make human blood poisonous to vampires. (Yeah, I was probably feverish!) How would vampire society react if faced with virtual starvation by humans who didn’t even know they existed? I’d also been reading about the Irish Battle of Kinsale in 1601, about these poor Irish farmers that were freezing and barefoot in the snow, waiting for the Spanish to come and help them fight the English. So that’s how Aidan was born–he and his brother Owen had both been soldiers and were both turned vampire in 1601 in Ireland. The other main characters all spun off how I envisioned Aidan’s life playing out.


When you write, do you have pictures of your characters set out to use for reference, jot down ideas of what you’d like in the story and then make the story out of your notes or do you just sit down and come up with the story as you write it?
I do “cast” my major characters–it helps me to have a visual reference as I write. I am an outliner and plotter. I also write an urban fantasy series under another name and have a full-time “day job,” so I have to make the most of my limited writing time. I’ve only tried to write one novel without an outline and it was a nightmare–it took longer to revise than to write!

(From left to right, Aiden, Krystal and Mirren)

Redemption is done both in Krystal and Aiden’s point of view. Did you find it hard trying to get into a guy’s state of mind? 
When I started writing Redemption, it was the first time I’d ever tried writing multiple points of view–I think there are five POV characters in the novel–Aidan, Krys, Mirren, Matthias, and Owen. So four of the five POV characters are male. I didn’t find it hard to get into their heads except for the love scenes! I thought it was necessary to get in Matthias’ and Owen’s heads because they’re the bad guys and the reader needs to know their agendas. And it was important to get Aidan’s point of view because he’s a powerful vampire who is kidnapping a human woman, and the reader needs to see that he’s not a bad guy. He’s reacting to his circumstances as best he can, even though he doesn’t always make the best decisions.


The cover for book number two in The Penton Legacy is out. Can you tell us a little bit about Absolution?

Absolution is Mirren Kincaid’s story. He’s the big vampire introduced in Redemption who serves as Aidan’s second-in-command. Mirren was a gallowglass warrior in 17th-century Scotland and Ireland–he was basically a mercenary, or soldier for hire–very fierce. His social skills aren’t the best, and he likes to keep to himself. As the story that began in Redemption continues, with the vampire Tribunal trying to destroy Aidan’s community of Penton and turn Mirren back into a killing machine, he has to come to terms with who he is and who he wants to be–and finds love along the way, of course.


Our blog is called Book Sniffers Anonymous after all. So I must ask, are you a book sniffer?
LOL–totally. That’s one of the hardest things about ebooks. I love that smell of ink and paper and glue that lingers inside a new book. It’s like that new car smell, except you can carry it around with you!


Since we finish our reviews with our fave parts/quotes. What’s your fave part or quote from the book?
Ooh, that’s a hard one. One favorite is from a scene after Krys has been injured and Melissa, Aidan’s familiar (his unvaccinated human feeder), is trying to take care of her. She is barking orders at Aidan and Mirren to bring her blankets and water, because they’re just standing around watching her like idiots.
She thinks: “Honestly–men. Especially vampire males. Useless except when it came to political maneuvering and muscle. Well, and sex.


For vampire Aidan Murphy, life has never been so desperate. The vaccine used to treat a global pandemic has rendered human blood deadly to his kind, leaving them on the brink of starvation and civil war. In tiny Penton, Alabama, Aidan establishes a peaceful community of vampires and unvaccinated human donors. He dares to hope they can survive until his estranged brother descends upon Penton and begins killing the humans. Determined to save his town, Aidan kidnaps an unsuspecting human doctor and finds himself falling in love for the first time in nearly four centuries. Dr. Krystal Harris thought she was coming to Penton for a job interview, but Aidan Murphy has other plans. Infuriated by his high-handed scheme to imprison her in the small town, Krys can’t ignore the attraction between them. But is it love? Or does her dangerous, charismatic captor want only to bend her to his will?

Check out my review of Redemption HERE.


4 Thoughts on “Interview: Susannah Sandlin author of Redemption

  1. you did great with several pouint of view ^^

  2. Thanks for the interview and giveaway!

  3. Thanks for the comments, ladies! It was fun writing from that many points of view 🙂

  4. Sounds like my kind of reading, thanks for the giveaway!

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