Sassa Daniels, one of the authors featured in Paranormal Unbound, tells us about her contribution to this anthology: Rejecting the Alpha
He thinks she’s his mate. She has other ideas.
Cast out from her pack after trying to frighten off her alpha’s mate, spoiled pack princess Francesca di Angelo is finally learning to stand on her own two feet.
When Russian alpha, Leonid Sobakhin shows up, insisting she will be his mate, Francesca is determined to defy him.
Will she be able to resist the raw, masculine charms of this alpha male and forge a path of independence? Only if she can hold her nerve.
Rejecting the Alpha is part of the Claimed Mates series. It is a prequel to The Alpha’s Prize, but can be read as a standalone.
Q: What book/movie was your “gateway drug” into paranormal romance?
It’s hard to remember. I watched loads of vampire and werewolf films when I was young but, if I had to choose one that really piqued my interest in the romantic aspect of the films, I’d have to say Bram Stoker’s Dracula. I really wanted Dracula to get the girl.
Q: Is your story in Paranormal Unbound a stand-alone or does it introduce readers to other characters/ worlds of yours?
It can be read on its own, and you can accept that the ending draws a line under events, but the characters do have their own story – The Alpha’s Prize
Q: IF it is a lead into another world please tell us about that world/those books.
The story fits into my Claimed Mates series. It starts with the MacDonald wolf-shifter pack, who are the last of their kind in Scotland. The first two books, The Alpha’s Mark and Marked by the Wolf take place in Scotland and feature shifter – non-shifter pairings. The third book, Claimed by the Alpha, moves to Italy, where Sadie MacDonald, of the Scottish pack, becomes mate to Italian alpha, Marco di Angelo. Book four in the series, Taken by the Wolves, sees Carolina di Angelo, of the Italian pack, becoming mate to Duncan and Neil Macdonald. It’s set in Scotland. The fifth book, The Alpha’s Prize, features Leonid and Francesca, from Rejecting the Alpha. There’s a sixth book currently being written, which will tell the story of Alessio di Angelo, from the Italian pack and a seventh novella will focus on Davide di Angelo, who pops up briefly in my story for the anthology.
Q: What other Shifters Unleashed anthologies have you participated in/ what stories?
I have a story, Claiming His Mate, in the Alpha Shifters Furever anthology. It tells the story of Christian Vukas, a Croatian alpha, and Erin Phelan, an Irish shifter who’s destined to be his mate, whether she likes it, or not.
Q: What up-coming anthologies can we find more from you? Please tell us about those stories.
I also have stories coming out in the Shifter’s Unleashed anthologies, Cocky Alpha Shifters and Shift Happens. For Cocky Alpha Shifters, I’ve written a story of an arrogant Russian tiger-shifter and a woman sent to research an article into his famous mother’s sudden disappearance from the limelight. I’ve had a lot of fun with this one, since the hero, Alexei, is a cocky swine and my heroine, Eleanor isn’t about to put up with any crap from him. For Shift Happens, I’ve got a couple of ideas I’m playing with, but it’s not due out until later in the year, so I haven’t finalized that one yet.
Q: When you write do you visually base your characters off actors/famous people? Please give some examples.
Sometimes. Gerard Butler was definitely who I had in mind when I wrote Finn MacDonald in The Alpha’s Mark. Michele Morrone, from 365 Days, is who I’ve been thinking about as I write Alessio di Angelo’s story.
Q: Why should we read short stories?
Because they give you a quick, satisfying glimpse at another world. They can also be a great introduction to a new-to-you author, giving you a taste of their style and the type of characters they create.
Q: Random party question: what’s your favorite pizza?
It’s a very specific pizza – the Pollo ad Astra from Pizza Express (a UK chain). It has a thin base, topped with chicken, sweet peppers, red onion, mozzarella, tomato and Cajun spices. But, really, I’ll eat anything as long as it doesn’t have pineapple on it.
Q: What’s coming next for your readers?
In the next month or so, I have the third novel in my Russian Bratva series, The Lenkov Dynasty coming out. I also have a dark fantasy story in the anthology, Captured by Darkness. I’m also finishing off my Claimed Mates wolf-shifter series.
Francesca gasped, her mouth falling open in apparent shock. “What?”
“Your cousin had finally consented to me taking you as my mate.”
Rage flashed in her eyes, the first sign of the temper she was well known for. “Marco has no say in what happens to me.”
Leonid shrugged lazily. “Doesn’t matter. I want you as my mate. I’ll do whatever it takes to make that happen.”
Taking advantage of her apparent speechlessness at his declaration, Leonid leaned in to kiss her. His lips hovered over hers but, before he could stake his claim, she shoved him away with surprising force. “Get away from me, you filthy mongrel.”Baring his teeth in anger, he grabbed her arm and pulled her up against him. “You are mine, Francesca. The sooner you accept it, the better.”
Sassa Daniels is a USA Today Bestselling Author of steamy romance. Writing across a range of genres including paranormal, sci-fi and contemporary romance, she loves to create strong, dominant heroes and the feisty heroines who’ll challenge them at every turn. Born and raised in the Scottish Highlands, she still lives there with her family. She recently quit the world of academia to focus on writing.