This short intro isn't enough to do Elisha Kemp justice—she's a wonderful author and friend, and I feel very fortunate to know her! Her latest series, Dying Gods, is a unique and unputdownable time-travel RH—an absolute must-read.
Let's get into the interview.
1. Tell us about yourself.
Originally from Hawaii, I live in a New Zealand seaside village with my partner and our two little kids. I’m also lawyer, and fortunate enough to work remotely and with flexible hours, leaving plenty of time to write! When I’m not writing, working, or running after small wild humans, I’m at the beach surfing tiny waves on a big board. I’m also constantly reading or listening to an audiobook, and can’t leave the house without a book.
2. How did you get into writing romance? Was it something you always wanted to do?
I’ve always loved writing – I think I was twelve when I tried to write my first novel - but romance as a genre is actually relatively new for me.
It was the pandemic that changed everything. In early 2020, I was locked in my London apartment with my toddler and husband, trying to balance childcare and full-time remote working, not really able to go outside, and I turned to fiction for an escape. My husband recommended I read Sarah J Maas (he read all her books years before I did), and that was the start of a spiral into the world of romance. Now I’m a complete romance addict, and it’s my favourite genre to read and write!
3. Tell us about your latest release!
Burn the Stars is the second book in the Dying Gods series, a reverse harem time travel romance set in the Bronze Age Mediterranean.
Out of everything I’ve written, this book is definitely my favourite child. As the second of three books, it’s got all the fun character arcs. Plus, it has some of the romance tropes I love the most, like forced proximity, “who did this to you?”, grovelling and redemption – all the good stuff!
4. The Dying Gods series takes place in Minoan civilization. What made you choose this era?
I fell in love with the Minoan civilization when I was fourteen and stumbled across some historical textbooks in a university library. I checked out every book I could find on the Minoans. I was totally enthralled by this advanced civilization that history had nearly forgotten, and especially by the city of Akrotiri on Santorini, which had been buried beneath volcanic ash and preserved for thousands of years. I loved imagining what it would be like to travel back in time to their world.
When I came back to the idea - many, many years later - the thing that captivated me the most was the fact that this incredibly advanced civilization, that ultimately controlled the most important trade routes, was a matriarchal society. I loved the idea of women leadership being something ancient, rather than something new to our society, and it seemed like the perfect setting for a reverse harem romance!
5. What are you reading right now?
I’m re-reading You & Me by Tal Bauer for the third time. It’s an incredibly sweet romance between two single dads who meet while volunteering for their sons’ high school football team, and it’s easily becoming one of my favourite comfort reads. I’ve also been binge reading sports romances as research for the next reverse harem series I have planned for after the Dying Gods series!
Burn the Stars
Burn the Stars, the second book in the Dying Gods series, is coming on 21 October! All pre-order proceeds will be donated to the Center for Reproductive Rights.
Get it here.
WHAT TO EXPECT
✨Time travel to a carefully crafted world in the Bronze Age Mediterranean
✨Powerful queens, sea-faring heroes, meddling gods and goddesses
✨ Slow-burn RH romance w/ mm (the spice ramps up quite a bit in Book 2)
✨Islands, parties, battles, ships and dangerous enemies
🌊 BLURB 🌊
Time-travelling to the Bronze Age Mediterranean was never part of Adrienne’s plans.
Adrienne has been doing her best to adapt to life among the Minoans. But the language barrier is nothing compared to the cultural divide – and the ensuing misunderstanding that results in Adrienne falling for a man already promised to another.
When Adrienne discovers that the famed Oracle on Crete might know how she can return home, she agrees to leave her newfound friends behind and embark on a dangerous journey.
Will the Oracle give her the answers she seeks … or will she find her destiny is already written in the stars?
Note: Burn the Stars is book two in the Dying Gods series. There will be a cliffhanger, and book three is expected in early 2023.