In Marianne de Pierres' Tara Sharp series the pet birds play a roll in the storyline. She also introduces us to Virgin's protector, an eagle named Aquila in Peacemaker. I have asked her to tell us a bit about her love for birds and their connection to her books.
I inherited a pink and grey galah from a friend ten years ago. I’d never owned a bird before and was not a fan of the whole cage thing.
But the circumstances were unexpected, and I felt an instant affection for the elderly cockatoo, and wanted to do my best for her. My best entailed finding her
a companion, and giving her regular outings so she could wander and graze. And of course, hundreds of head scratches.
Somehow, during our time together (she died from old age a few years later), I became a ‘bird person.’ This has led to some strange experiences, including being out for a walk one day and having a cockatiel land on top of my head, refusing to leave no matter how I tried to shoo her off. Now, not only do I own three pink and grey galahs, but I’ve found that birds keep
finding their way into my stories. When I began the Tara Sharp series (SHARP SHOOTER, SHARP TURN and STAGE FRIGHT) Brains (the inherited old bird) insisted that she should become one of the minor characters in the book and part of Tara’s crime fighting arsenal. I mean, you don’t argue with a galah; they can crush your bones with their beak. And if you’re not at risk from their deadly bite then watch out for the other end—they are ‘poop’ machines. They are also clever, fun loving, and full of life: the perfect companions for my slightly zany protagonist.
When I began writing PEACEMAKER, a wedge tail eagle flew into the story without warning. I’d never owned one, nor did I know a lot about them, other than admiring their majesty from afar. Yet it seemed terribly important to me that Virgin Jackson have a spirit guide that was an eagle. It’s as though birds have found their way into my subconscious and have become a symbol of protection. I have no idea why that is, but I’ll be watching with interest as I develop new stories, to see if the pattern repeats.
About this author
Marianne de Pierres is the award winning author of the acclaimed Parrish Plessis,Sentients of Orion and Peacemaker science fiction series. Marianne is an active supporter of genre fiction and has mentored many writers. She lives in Brisbane, Australia, with her husband, three sons and three galahs. Her Night Creatures series, Burn Bright, Angel Arias and Shine Light has been very popular among young adult fiction readers. Marianne is also the Davitt award-winning author of the Tara Sharp humourous crime series under the pseudonym Marianne Delacourt. Visit her websites at http://www.mariannedepierres.com http://www.tarasharp.com.au http://www.burnbright.com.au and http://glitterrose.wordpress.com
Peacemaker by Marianne de Pierres
When an imaginary animal from her troubled teenage years reappears, Virgin takes it to mean one of two things: a breakdown (hers!) or a warning. Dead bodies start piling up around her, so she decides on the latter. Something terrible is about to happen in the park and Virgin and her new partner, U.S. Marshall Nate Sixkiller, are standing in its path...
Virgin Jackson is the senior ranger in Birrimun Park - the world's last natural landscape, overshadowed though it is by a sprawling coastal megacity. She maintains public safety and order in the park, but her bosses have brought out a hotshot cowboy to help her catch some drug runners who are affecting tourism. She senses the company is holding something back from her, and she's not keen on working with an outsider like Nate Sixkiller.
Science Fiction,Fantasy, Australia Age 16+
In PEACEMAKER Marianne de Pierres has combined a futuristic world with a western feel. When park ranger Virgin Jackson witnesses a mysterious death in what she thought was a contained and locked park, her senses flare up. She has been assigned a new partner from the US Marshall, Nate Sixkiller. And unexpectedly, she is now seeing an imaginary animal from her childhood.
Being preoccupied with the park and the murder Virgin is not feeling up to being a babysitter to her new partner who seems to be hiding the true reason he has joined on at the park. But when he shows signs of being able to see her imaginary friend, things begin to get really crazy.
With the advanced technology set up at the park, all life within it should be able to be detected through the system. Things begin not making any sense and Virgin soon learns that her life is in danger. She gets some help from her best friend, and some relaxation time with her stripper lover, Heart.
The story goes back and forth between the park and the city scenes, as we follow Virgin through her home life as well as work life. Her romantic life as well as her professional. Virgin's character is a strong willed and determined. As the story progresses she slowly puts down some of her guards down and allows people in.
If you have read the Tara Sharp series from Marianne Delacourt you will enjoy this new series as well. She brings in a lot of similar characteristics in her main characters and her love for nature and especially birds really shows through her writing.
Peacemaker is a very imaginative and speculative read. I recommend this to readers who enjoy a strong lead female character.