Friday, October 17, 2014

Pippa Jay discusses her love of red hair & Hallow's Eve

Today, Pippa Jay is talking about her hair color.
 It will no doubt be fascinating, 
because it's Pippa Jay.
Without further ado, I give you Pippa Jay:

One thing a regular reader of my books might know is that, despite their rarity in the real world (just 2% of the world's population) I have several redheads in my stories. Why?

Well, red hair rocks. I should know. I have red hair myself (though I'm now sadly more blonde than auburn as age bleaches my natural colour away). My three little monsters have red hair. Even hubs (who is not a redhead) has red in his beard when it grows out.

Although I'll admit I haven't always loved it. As a kid I hated it, because like Hal, it got me the attention of pretty much every bully in the school. I was the only girl with red hair. Neither my parents or sister had red hair, all being brunette. Bizarrely, my mum hated the fact that she wasn’t a redhead, being the only brunette in a long line of redhaired women going back as far as she could remember. Yeah, I can appreciate the irony of that. She wished for a redhaired daughter, and she got one. And it took twenty years of old grannies telling me what beautiful hair I had to appreciate it. 

Then my obsession with genetics got me intrigued about it. So here are some facts about red hair.
There is no evolutionary reason for red hair. It serves no useful function. Pale skin allowed our European ancestors to absorb more sunlight in our less tropical climate, but that's it and is as true for blondes and brunettes who have pale skin.

Red haired slaves were the most sought after and expensive in the time of the Roman Empire. They were also highly valued in Egypt, where people would often dye their hair with henna to make it red.

Red dye is the most popular colour hair dye.
And people with red hair and green eyes were thought to be pixies. Or vampires. Or witches. Lots of excuses for bumping us off. But also the reason my character Hal has that colouring.

And rare? Yes. Yet where I live in the UK, we appear to have an unusually high number of redheads in the area. Last year there were six redheads living in my road of 30 houses. Every class at my kids' schools has at least 2 redheads in it, working out at 6.67% instead of the 2%. Both my besties have red hair. So I don't believe the recent claim that redheads could become extinct. Not when about 40% of the world's population carry the gene without even knowing it.

So yes, perhaps there are a lot of redheads in my story. But then, I know a lot in real life too. 

Liza: Oh look, two red heads!

Hallow’s Eve - when love comes home.

Twelve months ago, Hal’s world crashed and burned, taking the love of his life with it. He’s waited all year for that one special night when the souls of the departed come home, hoping his candle will summon back one in particular to heal his broken heart. But the forbidden knowledge he’s learned could call something far worse, and put more than his own soul at risk...

The thud and chink of beer bottles and glasses on the bar announced Dan’s return.


Hal shook his head. “Not tonight.”

“Oh, c’mon, man. Just one beer.”

Hal dropped his gaze to the glass he was still drying with a vehemence it didn’t deserve, avoiding his friend’s pleading stare. “Thanks, but I’m not in the mood.”

Dan made an exasperated sound. “Look, I know it’s nearly a year—”

Pain lanced into his chest. “Stop.” He looked up.

A frown creasing his tanned face, Dan glared back, but he shut up.

Hal sucked in a breath. He didn’t want to fight with Dan over this. The guy had stopped Hal’s life completely falling apart after last Halloween. “I know what you’re trying to do,” he murmured, and relief flickered in Dan’s brown eyes. “But I’m not ready to let it go.”

“I’m not saying you should, man. But how about getting back into some social interaction? You can’t spend the rest of your life as a recluse.”

“I won’t.” Hal smiled. Dan had no idea.

“Then come out for a beer.”

“Another time.”

“Tomorrow then. I know you’ve got the Halloween shift off.”

Hal put down the glass he’d abused. “I’m busy.”
“Oh, yeah? Doing what? Trick or treating?” Dan scoffed. “What is it with you and Halloween? You never struck me as religious enough to find it offensive, but you don’t go out and have any fun either. So how come you always take the night off?”

Hal looked around the bar at all the tawdry holiday decorations, and debated how to answer. Maybe Dan thought he was a closet Christian or something. The truth would shock the hell out of him. Especially with what Hal had planned this year. “ don’t see it as something to joke about.”

“Oh. Strict Catholic or something?”

“Something like that.” Hal smiled at the thought of his parents taking Holy Communion. But let Dan interpret it any way he liked.

I previously reviewed this book and gave it 5 stars. I'll put it here in small print in case you missed it the first time:

What I love about Pippa Jay’s books is that they
a) have unexpected endings and
b) make you think after the story is done.

Hal, a warlock, has fallen in love with a human, which is forbidden.

The night Hal tells Eve what he is, she panics, leaves in a rush, and dies in an automobile accident.

Now a year later, on Hallow’s Eve, he has the possibility of bringing her back, but not without great risk. A long list of horrors could occur if he tries to bring her back from death, which is why it’s against the rules of the Circle. But his love for Eve makes him push aside all the dangers and try to bring his love back to him.

This is a fabulous Hallow’s Eve story, with romance, magic, true love and a great deal of bravery in an impossible situation. It leaves me to ponder my own ending of their future.

Well written, well-paced, and a delightful treat.
I give it 5 stars


After spending twelve years working as an Analytical Chemist in a Metals and Minerals laboratory, Pippa Jay is now a stay-at-home mum who writes scifi and the supernatural. Somewhere along the way a touch of romance crept into her work and refused to leave. In between torturing her plethora of characters, she spends the odd free moment playing guitar very badly, punishing herself with freestyle street dance, and studying the Dark Side of the Force. Although happily settled in the historical town of Colchester in the UK with her husband of 21 years and three little monsters, she continues to roam the rest of the Universe in her head.

Pippa Jay is a dedicated member of the Science Fiction Romance Brigade, blogging at Spacefreighters Lounge, Adventures in Scifi, and Romancing the Genres. Her works include a YA science fiction novel—Gethyon—published through BURST (Champagne Books), a scifi romance novella—Tethered—published by Breathless Press, a YA paranormal romance—Restless In Peaceville—published by Lycaon Press, four self-published short stories (Terms & Conditions Apply, The Bones of the Sea, Reboot and Hallows Eve), and she’s one of eight authors included in a science fiction romance anthology—Tales from the SFR Brigade. She’s also a double SFR Galaxy Award winner, been a finalist in the Heart of Denver RWA Aspen Gold Contest (3rd place), and the GCC RWA Silken Sands Star Awards (2nd place).
You can stalk her at her website, or at her blog, but without doubt her favorite place to hang around and chat is on Twitter as @pippajaygreen.
You can also find her on Facebook, Pinterest, Google+, and Wattpad

Don't forget Pippa's


1 Pentagram necklace 

6 jasmine scented glitter tealights, 
open internationally, 1st-31st October, 
(no cash or other alternative)


All spammers will be shot with a plasma gun.