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It was 2011, I was walking with headphones in from my iPod knockoff and listening to Celldwellwe, while on my way to San Francisco to attend the Cybernet Expo as a presenter when the idea for book two came to me. Because they all happen like that, while on the go, walking, taking the BART, MUNI, or here, the MARTA, and that’s how writers get ideas! We pluck them from the bowels of shit of mass transit LOL!

Oh, the shit graffiti on the phone pole back in 2011, Oakland!

Seriously, I’d been batting the idea around with a heartmate who once edited for a decent publisher before they folded, about a bourbon drinking, shapeshifting puma who might be a former spy. When I finally set pen to paper, I came up with Protecting the Siren – my newest release. Derrick was my bourbon drinking puma who left the spook business but he needed a heroine. I’d recently been turned on to Devildriver, loved their version of melo-death and aggression, hence our heroine was born.

“Stay With Me (Unlikely) was playing in my AirPod knockoffs and I thought “This could be the idea to start the second book.”

Hence, Saint in Sinner’s Eyes, now titled…you’ll have to wait for it.

Fast forward well over ten years and I was told, “Sascha, if you wanna be ‘ard, Star, you need dem trilogies.”

Okay, to the British woman didn’t sound like Benji Webber of Skindred (mon!) but she did say I needed to consider completing this as a trilogy once we did the rebrand. And I had planned on a third book just in case. Which, as of this writing, I’m literally 10 days from finishing, or about 15,000 words left to complete this first draft. That’s on top of the next 15k I’m writing for you all as a bonus/thank you for being readers and signing up to my newsletter – which will start going out again soon.

Yup, old heart pills, a shitty ass old apartment with a shitty ass landlord who can rot…but damn, that wolf is a PIMP!

My music choices on the first two books consisted of Celldweller, James Labrie not Mullmuzer) Devildriver, Katatonia, and a few odd tracks from Cranes, Soilwork, but mostly Devildriver and Celldweller because that’s what I was heavily into at the time.

Like any good writer, something motivates me to a story idea and it gets thrown on repeat for EVER!

The third book?

Warforged, Infected Rain, Rogue, Loathe, Sentinels, Fit for an Autopsy, Vildhjarta, Werewolves, that’s the list. And honestly, the last Vildhjarta album and I: Voices by Warforged sometimes get thrown on from start to finish because of the aural atmosphere created by the masterpieces. Why the difference?

The older stuff kept with a theme in the first two novels back ten plus years ago. Now? Things have changed, I’ve changed, my characters have changed. Trying to re-capture that feeling didn’t quite work out with the old soundtracks. This book should be more about movement of the story since it HAS been ten years and I’ve grown as a writer. Hopefully, you’ll feel the same.

For now, let’s lean into Fall with something hot to read.

He wants a quiet life. She’s about to turn up the volume…

Puma-shifter Derrick is plagued by nightmares from his days as a spy. Still struggling to cope with the traumatic memories, he throws himself into work to stay sane. But his latest gig protecting a gorgeous death metal vocalist has all his worst demons screaming with desire.

Sonja is no stranger to ominous threats. With a voice that can control shifters and humans alike, she knows she’s a powerful weapon… in the wrong hands. And tired of always looking over her shoulder, she’s happy to put her trust in her sexy new guard and do her best to ignore their red-hot chemistry.

Intent on defending the stunning singer and her unique magic, Derrick’s past mistakes come back to haunt him when she is kidnapped. And when Sonja finds herself at the mercy of the dangerous Anti-Shifter League, her only way to save everyone’s skin could lie in the power of her magical songs.

Can Derrick and Sonja pick up the beat and drive hard to the ultimate happily ever after?

The Bodyguard is the thrilling first book in the Burning Desires paranormal romance series. If you like smoking-hot attractions, wild women, and broody heroes, then you’ll adore Sascha Illyvich’s luscious tale of unexpected love.

Buy The Bodyguard to rock out to passion’s power today!

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