Today I am interviewing Nathan Crowder, author of the new novel, Ride Like the Devil, second book in the De la Vega Mysteries series.
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DJ: Hi Nathan! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!
For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?
Nathan Crowder: I’m a child of the deserts of the southwest, living I exile in the Pacific Northwest. My love of music, books, film, and history are all intermingled into a huge stew of influences that has driven my writing. Another huge influence is gaming. I started playing D&D when I was twelve, and it has taught me a lot about compelling story structure, and has helped inspire several of my more memorable characters. Though many of my novels take place in the Cobalt City universe of superheroes that I created, my better known novels are more traditional contemporary or Gothic high fantasy, and my short fiction tends towards horror.
DJ: What is Ride Like the Devil and then the De la Vega Mysteries series about?
Nathan: The De la Vega Mysteries follow former homicide detective Manuel de la Vega and Snowflake, his panda sidekick, as they leave the stability of Cobalt City to travel the backroads of North America fixing problems. Manuel had been a motorcycle-riding vigilante named Gato Loco before an accident savaged his legs a year earlier, leaving him with a long period of rehab. This series gives him a reluctant second act to reinvent who he is both as Manuel de la Vega, but also as his mysterious alter ego.
DJ: What were some of your influences for the De la Vega Mysteries series?
Nathan: The huge central influences on de la Vega himself would be Zorro by way of Batman in many ways, with the motorcycle out of Akira and smart-assed panda sidekick to give him someone to talk to. As for the series, I’m heavily influenced by a lot of the episodic hero television programming of my youth, like the A-Team, Knight Rider, the Incredible Hulk, and Kung Fu, where someone goes from place to place righting wrongs around the country. It’s a fun formula that lets me tell all kinds of stories wherever I want without being tied down to a single location. Continue reading