New York Times bestselling author Kyra Davis gives XOXOAD a behind-the-scenes peek at how she turned Book One in the Pure Sin series, Deceptive Innocence, into a thrilling three-part serialization.
When it was proposed that I write the first book in the Pure Sin series in three parts I was hesitant. I wasn’t sure that there was enough story in Deceptive Innocence to make that work.
In other words I completely underestimated my characters, particularly Bell. Unraveling her anger and discovering who she is has been both surprising and incredibly fun. Bell’s mother was falsely charged and convicted of a murder she did not commit and later died in prison. The arrest happened shortly before Bell’s eleventh birthday, right at that age when most of us start transitioning from childhood to adolescence. The shock of losing her mother, the only family she had and the only person who loved her, was more than jarring. Rather than transitioning out of childhood, her childhood was simply ripped away, pushing her into a path of rebellion and self-destructive behavior. Years later when she realizes that the powerful Gable family was most likely the ones behind the murder, she makes her whole life about revenge. She literally defines herself by her rage.
But when you look past that, you see that there’s part of her that’s still that little girl. The lost dreams that she mourns are not the dreams of career ambitions that didn’t pan out or dreams of marriage and family. Her lost dreams are of princesses and their Prince Charmings. Underneath all that anger and cynicism there’s a girl who still loves fairytales. And what’s interesting about Lander Gable, the rebellious youngest son of the Gable family, is that he speaks to both sides of her. He seems to appreciate her anger, relates to it, and even celebrates it. Sometimes, when they have sex it’s as if they’re daring the world to judge them. It almost serves as an outlet for all their pent up fury. But there are also moments of overwhelming tenderness between them: sometimes they don’t just have sex, they make love. And in those moments Lander is able to bring back all of Bell’s old princess dreams. More importantly, he forces her to remember that there’s more to her than anger—and that’s not something she knows how to deal with. Lander is subtly (and perhaps unintentionally) helping Bell find ways to balance and embrace both sides of her nature. Of course, if she succeeds in her pursuit of revenge, she will destroy Lander, and that might be the most self-destructive thing she has ever done.
It’s been a pleasure unraveling Bell’s complex psyche through the course of three novellas and letting Bell and Lander’s relationship grow at a realistic pace. I believe it’s a strong launching pad for the next book in the Pure Sin series, Dangerous Alliance, in which Bell and Lander take the game of passion and revenge to a whole new level. It’s definitely going to be a fun ride!