Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Enter Siren

Oracle's been getting a lot of love lately, and I've been horrible about sharing the blog posts. And I know you want to read more praise that confirms your good opinion of Oracle while simultaneously supporting the bloggers who have been gracious enough to read it. So I'm going to share a bunch here and make a concerted effort to share the blog posts individually on facebook and twitter over the next week or so. S

"A great first book in a series with some memorable characters.  If you enjoy urban fantasy, give Oracle of Philadelphia a whirl." - Minding Spot

"In Corrigan's hands, [Oracle's premise] makes for some nicely enjoyable reading; the characters are interesting (particularly Bedlam, the demon of Chaos who's every bit as erratic as you might expect), the moral questions intriguing, and the power dynamics involving. It's a shame, then, that the book never comes up with a story that's as interesting as the world it depicts" - Umney's Alley

"This book was wonderful!  I loved Bedlam (seriously, cow tipping??), Gabriel was so nice and Carrie was doing what a girl has to do to get results." - Quilted Reviews

Great story, great characters and a great foundation for this series! Not too dark, or edgy, Oracle of Philadelphia was a pleasant surprise with some great lines, great moments!- Tome Tender

"I was surprised by some of the twists the story took and satisfied by the way it ended." - Sharon Stevenson

"I like when authors think of new ways to tell stories and describe places that we think we already know about. It shows a fun creativity and Corrigan impressed me with how thought out the world she built was." - Pink Fluffy Hearts

Okay, so now that I've let other people brag about me, let's talk about something else. Like, perhaps, what I wanted to talk about today.

Raising Chaos is coming out sometime in the next couple of weeks (eeeeeeee), and when I describe it to people, I say it is about Bedlam. I mean, he's on the cover and everything. But I hate lying, and I'm a compulsive confessor, so I feel the need to say that the book is also about Carrie and a new angel named Siren. Then I want to tell people about Siren, because she is one of my very favorite characters. But I don't want to give away any spoilers for book 2, and I'm actually curious to see what people think of Siren.

But then I realized I could tell (or show) people about Siren without having to say anything more about Chaos. Because one of my spare time hobbies is playing Pathfinder, which is basically open source D&D 3.75, which basically means sometimes I sit around a table with dice and minis and fight monsters with other people. And whenever I play a role-playing game, tabletop or computer, I make a character based on someone from one of my books. And in one of the stories I just joined, I am playing Siren the Inquisitor. Pathfinder Siren doesn't have exactly the same powers as Earthbound Angels Siren, but the two have much in common. And since I just love the way Pathfinder Siren was introduced to the other characters---it's so quintessentially Siren-y---I thought I would share it with you.

Siren is from a region called Mendev, where she works as an Inquisitor to stop evil outsiders from taking over the world. An inquisitor's job is to hunt down enemies of her faith with weapons and spells, and while they can be good, they are rarely nice. Siren and a team of inquisitors had tracked an enemy to a warehouse, and during the combat, someone lit a black candle and summoned demons. Siren and her team were able to defeat the demons, but two members of her team were killed. Had someone asked her, she would have acted like this was a mild annoyance, but inside she was upset. These demon summoners had killed her people, and she was responsible.

Siren tracks the masterminds behind this endeavor to a small visit in the River Kingdoms that may or may not have been a few weeks' journey away. She discovers that the two people she's after are staying at the local inn. She considers persuading the local innkeeper to let her into the room, but then she remembers that she has no diplomatic skills and decides to just scare the woman instead. Yes, the authorities would be called, but a.) she's actually a good guy and b.) she plans to get out of there before anyone shows up anyway. When she gets into the room, she discovers a dead woman on the bed---not the woman she's looking for---from whom growing maggoty demons erupt. Siren kills as many of the maggots as she can, but five of them grow into giant flying demons.

Swearing her head off, Siren runs out the door and slams it shut. Three of the demons fly out the window and attack the rest of the party, who just happen to be approaching the inn at that time. Siren lets one of the demons out with her, and after she has killed it, the other one breaks through the door. So she kills that one too. She looks out the broken window and sees that the local heroes/rules of the kingdom have arrived. Instead of going to meet them, she continues to search the room with the dead body in it. 

At least until the paladin duke of the area comes up to find out what was going on. Siren gives him a barely civil greeting and a cursory explanation of events. He insists she come down to the main room of the inn to discuss the issue with his cohorts, and she reluctantly agrees, on the condition that no one touch the body, because she needs to talk to it (Speak with dead is a useful spell). The party kinds of takes over her mission from there---sometimes excluding her---but she goes along with it because a.) they're doing what she wants and b.) the paladin seems to have a stick up his ass about people following his rules.

The crew gets some information and travels out to a town a ways to the east and finds the lair of the evil demon summoners. Siren gets to use some awesome spells---one where she rants at her enemies and they catch on fire, and one where she screams loud enough to do sonic damage. I can't tell you how the ultimate battle turned out, cuz it got called on account of people were tired and I had a three hour drive home. But I have faith we will save the day. And probably Siren will spend a lot more time hanging out with these people than she intended.

In updated baking news, the salted caramel pretzel brownies were highly disappointing. The recipe recommended 2 Tbsps of brewed coffee and 1 tsp instant espresso coffee granules, and... Hm. It's occurring to me that the problem may have been that I put it way too many coffee granules. I think I got the measures confused. That would explain a lot, because the recipe swore up and down that the brownies would not taste like coffee, and they totally did. 

In retribution, I made chocolate rolo bars, which came out quite delicious and went over very well at work, even though I didn't get a picture until they were almost gone. Actually, now that I look at them, they appear kind of gross. But they were, in fact, delicious. I also made cookie dough cheesecake bars, but though these were extremely delicious, they did not come out well enough to share. The top and bottom layers completely crumbled apart, so I have to eat them over a garbage can or get crumbs everywhere. I've found another recipe for brownie bottom cookie dough cheesecake bars that I'm going to have to try at some point. Cuz the concept is too awesome not to share. But next up are caramel surprise snickerdoodles and raspberry cheesecake brownies. I shall let you know how those go.

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