Elements of Submission from Karissa Knight is an erotic thriller following Wilhelmina Green, the hottest legal star of Chicago, as she takes on her riskiest case yet.
When a powerful young billionaire hires Chicago’s hottest legal star, she must decide whether he’s a killer or the man to unlock her most private fantasies.
Wilhelmina Green is the lawyer of choice for sexual predators and murderers. Her latest victory, the acquittal of a U.S. senator, has made Mina a media sensation. Escaping the attention, she secretly takes her next tombstoning dive into Australian waters. The risk of a solo jump at dawn serves as her punishment and atonement for releasing guilty men into the world.
CEO Jonathon Thomas Heun, suspected of a brutal murder, hires Mina to represent him. His seductive world of wealth and power soon draws her in as they work to uncover evidence of Jonathon’s innocence. Mina senses he’s keeping part of himself closed off from the world. And from her.
Dark fantasies of fear, pain and passion haunt Mina’s dreams and leave her breathless. No man has ever seemed capable of having her—possessing her—in this way. Until Jonathon.
Is he a killer? Or the one she’s been waiting for?
ELEMENTS OF SUBMISSION is a story of dark romantic suspense.
From Karissa Knight
Hi, I’m the author of Elements of Submission and I’m so happy to be here at the Authors’ Lounge with you. When I first began writing just over ten years ago, I learned the many paths to publishing. At the time, I decided to go the traditional route and pitch to agents and editors. My first book Best Kept Secrets (by Tracey S. Phillips) was picked up by a publisher through the Twitter event, #Pitmad where you pitch your work to agents and publishers in the Twitter-sphere. Since that release in 2019, I wrote a romantic suspense book that I’ve independently published under the pseudonym, Karissa Knight.
The decision to use a pseudonym was difficult, but necessary for many reasons. For one, the pandemic was a bit of a wakeup call for my career. With the rest of the world, I watched wide-eyed as the publishing market crashed. I still didn’t have an agent (that’s another story) and my debut was not selling even with the help of my publisher. I decided it was time to blow the dust off a romance manuscript I’d written years ago.
My friends encouraged me with their successes. It took years of trial and error—and even a traditional publishing contract—to make the decision to self-publish Elements of Submission. By then I founded my own network of authors, many of whom have become Indie published themselves. We fly under the name Blackbird Writers.
Thrillers are my game and ultimately, despite the romantic tag and pseudonym, suspense is what I write. I love creating a plot that makes my heart race! Thriller and romantic suspense are not so different. The main identifying features of romantic suspense are the suspense story—something criminal—and the arc of the couple. Romance readers want their guy (or girl) to be a handsome devil, and they demand heat between the two main characters. I don’t find it difficult to weave this added relationship into the story. Even with thrillers, there are relationships that evolve and devolve. To me, it’s just another aspect of the book, an added character trait, a friendship or love to deepen the story.
When psychology and science explain human behavior magic happens for me. Did you know that falling in love causes the human brain to produce three chemicals, dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin? Dopamine, a known feel-good chemical, floods the body when we’re first falling in love. Norepinephrine, a related chemical, can make us feel giddy and even euphoric. Adding to this cocktail, serotonin shifts put us on high-alert whenever we’re near our true love, so that we pay close attention to each detail of their body, their movements, and actions.
Dopamine is also responsible for the pleasure you feel while you’re entertained by your favorite scary movie. Seated in the cerebral cortex, your amygdala, gets involved whenever fear or perceived fear is present. Our brains can’t tell the difference. The amygdala then pumps stress hormones that make our eyes go wide and our hearts race.
Hopefully, I’ve put these elements together in a heart-pounding, goose-bump raising romantic thriller. Though I love the rush that comes with reading thrillers and I’m also Jane Austin’s biggest fan. In Elements of Submission, I tried to incorporate both the exhilaration of falling in love with the adrenaline that makes you want to run.
ELEMENTS OF SUBMISSION is the first book in the Elements of Power Series. The series follows Mina’s dark journey into sexual submission, as Jonathon’s past catches up with him.
Not sure? Watch the book trailer on YouTube:
Read an excerpt from, Elements of Submission on Amazon.