Darkness Calls (Excerpt)

Marjorie Liu

Who else do you know who can write suspenseful urban fantasy, timeless paranormal romance stories, and kick-ass action in comic-books—all at the same time? Oh yeah, and she’s also a lawyer!

Since Marjorie M. Liu has so many fans out there across different genres, she thought she’d give you a little treat with a special letter that comes out of her urban fantasy Hunter Kiss (Ace Books) series. It’s a letter you won’t be able to find in any of the books—instead it will be posted in four different sections on a few different websites. Check out the first half of the letter (both in prose and audio—Reading and recording by Rob DiCaterino, Web Manager at rtbookreviews.com) after the jump.

Marjorie says of the special letter—from the desk of Grant Cooperon to be only opened by his daughter: “I’m excited about this promotion because I love being able to reach out to you, my fans—in person at romance conventions, or ComicCon, or online through my blog or twitter. This summer is a busy one for me because I’ve got the new Dark Wolverine series and the special NYX: No Way Home collection, both from Marvel, coming out in the next two weeks, followed by Darkness Calls on June 30 and The Fire King at the end of July. I’d love to get all my characters at the same 4th of July BBQ and see what happens...but that’s not in this letter!”

You can also post a comment on this thread to be entered into a drawing for an iTunes gift certificate; you can enter to win a Darkness Calls-themed prize (one per day from June 15-30th: music, signed book, tote, etc.) by tweeting with the hash tag #darknesscalls

* * *

From the desk of Grant Cooperon, to be opened only by his daughter.

To my darling daughter,

You do not know me. Maybe you never will. You do not exist yet, but you are coming. You are part of me already.

I am going to be your father.

Maybe that is presumptuous of me, but in this I can be bold. I have no alternative left but certainty. I love your mother. I will always love her. Not with blind eyes, but with truth.

Because I can see her soul.

A long story, another letter. Maybe you will have the same gift. Maybe it would be better if you did not. It can be a burden, knowing the truth about people. Always seeing the truth, and the darkness.

You learn about yourself when you see the darkness. You learn what you can tolerate and what you can forgive, and what you cannot. You learn how dark your own heart is when you see the darkness in others, and you learn how strong your light can be, when confronted with the endlessness of human suffering. Everyone, baby, feels alone. Everyone aches for kindness.

Your mother is kind, though she would deny it. She would be embarrassed. But she is kind, and against the odds, sweet—and she is filled with that rarest form of compassion, a sympathy for the suffering of others demonstrated only by saints, and the fearless.


Don’t mistake me: Your mother is not fearless. But she is brave. Never doubt it. Your mother cannot walk away. You understand, baby? Your mother, when she sees something wrong, cannot walk away. No matter what. No matter who stands in her path, no matter how much she might want to. Your mother’s heart is relentless.

So let me tell you about your mother, because no one else will, certainly not her. She will never say these things out loud. Not because she doesn’t love you—because she will love you, she does love you, she will fight for you and die for you, and be your friend past death. But she will not tell you about herself—her real self—because she will never believe that there is anything worth telling. Because she does not see herself as I see her. Your mother is too close to her own life, as we all are too close to ourselves, but her burden is unique—and she is blinded by it, and the hard choices she has had to make.

Your mother saved my life. She might tell you that, I suppose. She saved me from being murdered, but that’s a story for another time. What I want to tell you is that she saved me, in more ways than one.

Section 3 of letter is now up on Smart Bitches, Trashy BooksBorders, B&N, and Ace/Penguin!

yea im so gonna buy this
2. dwndrgn
Another author introduced to me through Tor.com! I'm going to have to add the Hunter Kiss series to my TBR list.
3. maered
This looks very interesting. Definitely will be looking this up on release.
4. nedma1
I love this series. Can't wait for Darkness Calls. I am amazed that Ms Liu writes both this and the Dirk & Steele books they are so different and so good.
5. Victoria Yang
can't wait for the book to come out! going to see if i can pre-order for the kindle. :D
6. Deka
I loved the first book and I can't wait until Darkness Calls comes out. I am also very happy that a new Dirk&Steele novel is coming in July. I can't wait!
7. Elsa Lin
Great letter ... can't wait to read the rest. Love this series, but of course, everything she writes is fabulous and intense.
8. kylie
wow- i've been waiting for this book since, well, last year!
9. Danielle Dunivent
This is amazing... getting into the head of her father, allowing her to find out what he was like. I can't wait to read the next part of the letter.

and please...please sign me up for the I-tunes gift certificate give away.

Best of times

Judi Melcher
10. lauffy
It's always a race to the bookstore to pick up the latest by Ms Liu. Her books are one of the greatest escapes one can have.
11. Ann_a_reader
I'm interested and enjoying the build up to the release of Darkness Calls.
12. Renee Sweet
I love this letter. It's a wonderful gift for the fans. Thank you!! Can't wait for the next installment and especially for this summer's releases.
13. Erica Triebenbach
I'm excited to read this, I have the release marked on my calendar!
Erin Hartshorn
14. ErinMH
Such a wonderful letter, with lots of flavor of the world and characters. Ms. Liu, you've done it again.
15. Vorkosigrrl
Marjorie has so much heart! Please sign me up for the contest. Thanks.
cathy MacDonald
16. caitymack
I enhale everything you write, Marjorie, and this letter is just so perfect, I love it.
17. kellie va
Can't wait to read this installment in the series. I have read all your books and love them.
18. AnziaC
I ADORE these books. Thank you so much for being able to see our heroine through the man closest to her's eyes. It's great and incredibly sweet. Thank you so much!!
Sherrye Nichols
19. san301
I really enjoyed reading "The Iron Hunt" and "Darkness Calls." Hunter Kiss is somebody special, and so is Grant.
20. Debi Sullivan
If you have not bought this book, RUN - do not walk - to your nearest bookseller. Once this series is in your hands, it will never leave.

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