Top 5 famous phoenixes

To celebrate the release of her second book, PHOENIX (A Black City Novel), Elizabeth Richards lists the top five famous phoenixes that have inspired her!


Dumbledore’s pet is unquestionably the most famous phoenix in children’s literature, and one of my all-time favorite Harry Potter characters. Not only does this loyal bird have killer eye-gouging abilities and magical tears (how cool!), but both Harry Potter and Voldemort’s wands contain one of Fawke’s tail feathers, which plays a vital role in the series. Plus, he’s named after Guy Fawkes—the man responsible for the Gunpowder Plot of 1605—which, if you’re British like me, is sort of amusing!


Jean Grey, AKA Phoenix, is probably my favorite character from X-Men. Not only does she have cool telekinetic and telepathic powers, but as Phoenix she’s able to control matter at a subatomic level, fly through space, create stargates that transport her anywhere in the universe…basically she’s just bad ass. Oh, and she gets to snog Cyclops and Wolverine.


When I was a teenager in the 90s (omg, showing my age there!), one of the movies I watched over-and-over with my twin sister was Demolition Man, starring Sylvester Stallone and Wesley Snipes. Snipes played this over-the-top villain called Simon Phoenix, and I have to admit I rooted for him to win! I loved the dystopian vibe of Demolition Man, and that’s certainly carried through into my adult life.


Another blast from my past is the late, great, River Phoenix. He was the James Dean of the grunge generation—talented, beautiful, damaged, and unfortunately he also died tragically young. He starred in several of my favorite movies growing up, including My Own Private Idaho and Stand By Me, and my MC, Ash, is based on him.


As any Twilight fan knows, Phoenix is where perpetually blushing Bella Swan used to live with her mom, RenĂ©e. I don’t know about you, but I’d rather live in sunny Phoenix than constantly-rainy Forks (I get enough rain here in the UK, thanks!). Then again, I wouldn’t get to meet Edward…mmm, okay, I’ll put up with a little bit of rain.

About PHOENIX (A Black City Novel)

Engaged to be married, Ash and Natalie are just starting to build a life together when things in the United Sentry States go from bad to worse. Ash and Natalie find themselves at the center of turmoil when dictator Purian Rose threatens Natalie’s life unless Ash votes in favor of Rose’s Law—a law that will send Darklings and other dissenters to a deadly concentration camp known as the Tenth.

When Ash can’t bring himself to trade Natalie’s life for those of millions of Darklings, her fate is sealed. Enter Elijah Theroux, the handsome Bastet boy Natalie once saved from her mother’s labs, where he’d been experimented on and tortured. It was his venom the Sentry used to create the lethal Golden Haze, the heart of the government conspiracy that led to Black City’s uprising and Ash’s rebirth as the Phoenix, the face of the rebellion. Elijah is back and Ash doesn’t like him; it’s clear he’s taken with Natalie, and Ash fears she may have feelings for him as well.

But Elijah also may have the answer to taking down Purian Rose for good—a powerful weapon called the Ora. Ash, Natalie and Elijah just have to escape Black City undetected to find it. But fleeing the city and finding this weapon (if it even exists) are easier said than done, and the quest could tear Ash and Natalie apart, even pushing them into the arms of others.

This enthralling sequel to Black City is just as absorbing, delicious and steamy as the first book, leaving readers hungry for the series conclusion.
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