A Hindu for Christmas
By Irene Preston & Liv Rancourt
Release Date: November 15, 2016
I’m so happy to be here today to talk about Bonfire.
Honestly, Liv doesn’t coax me out of my hermit cave to do these posts very often. Y’all will have to bear with me if I’m a little rusty.
So, yeah. This is a post about our fun Christmas novella with the vampire, the scary swamp lights, and the Hindu main character.
Or it was supposed to be.
As I write this, America has just elected to the presidency a man who has actively stoked bigotry and xenophobia in this country. I just finish watching Hasan Minhaj, one of my inspirations for Sara, explain that his mother, a U.S. citizen, is worried about being allowed back into the country. (Go ahead and click, y’all. It’s a comedy sketch. Really!)
And yes, Bonfire is a fun Christmas read with a sexy vampire and a light mystery. It was also intended to be a celebration of what I consider a very American way of celebrating the holidays. Thaddeus is Catholic and Christmas is traditionally a Christian holiday. But Sarasija was raised by a Hindu mother and an athiest father. His immigrant parents wanted their children to fit in, so they adopted Christmas trees and Santa Claus and mounds of presents – exactly the secular trappings of Christmas that Thaddeus disdains. Like so many American families, the new couple struggles to integrate their holiday traditions.
So that’s what I was going to write about. But as I watch Hasan, I realize that Bonfire is also about something else. It’s about fear. Fear of outsiders. Fear of being targeted because you’re different. Fear of your neighbors, the very people you should be able to turn to in a crisis.
Wow. I made it sound scary didn’t I? And not just the spooky swamp lights. Theoretically, the events in Bonfire take place the December after the 2016 election. I can’t help but wonder if some of Sara’s reactions would have been different in the current climate. I hope not. I hope he would be able to retain his optimism and positive outlook. I hope he would still see himself first and foremost as an American.
We really did write a fun Christmas novella with a sexy vampire, scary swamp lights, and Christmas light-loving Hindu hero. I love that Bonfire features a cover model with a permanent tan. Yes, the Hours of the Night world is an alternate universe, but it is also a mirror of our own society.
On reflection, I’m glad the book was finished before the election. Before I started wondering how deep our divides are. I want to think our nation will come together and heal in the same way Thad and Sara’s fictional community does.
Whatever your race, religion, gender, or orientation – Liv and I send our warmest wishes to you this holiday season.
Don’t forget to enter our giveaway for a chance at a $20 gift card. And if you like Cajun vampires, South Asian hotties, Christmas lights, and happy endings we hope you will pick up a copy of Bonfire!
About the Authors
About Irene Preston
Irene Preston has to write romances, after all she is living one. As a starving college student, she met her dream man who whisked her away on a romantic honeymoon across Europe. Today they live in the beautiful hill country outside of Austin, Texas where Dream Man is still working hard to make sure she never has to take off her rose-colored glasses.
Where to find Irene
About Liv Rancourt
I write romance: m/f, m/m, and v/h, where the h is for human and the v is for vampire … or sometimes demon … I lean more towards funny than angst. When I’m not writing I take care of tiny premature babies or teenagers, depending on whether I’m at home or at work. My husband is a soul of patience, my dog’s cuteness is legendary, and we share the homestead with three ferrets. Who steal things. Because they’re brats.
Where to find Liv