Melissa Marr writes fiction for adults, teens, and children. Her books have been translated into 30 languages and been bestsellers in the US (NY Times, LA Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal) as well as overseas. Wicked Lovely, her debut novel, was an instant New York Times bestseller and internationally bestselling series with a myriad of accolades. Her current releases include Remedial Magic (Bramble), a witchy lesbian fantasy-romance, and the 2024 graphic novel The Strange Case of Harleen and Harley (D.C. Comics). If she's not writing, you can find her in a kayak or on a trail with her wife.

The Fanged & the Fae by Melissa Marr

The three Faery Bargains novellas in a book length collection.

"Blood Martinis & Mistletoe"

Half-dead witch Geneviève Crowe makes her living beheading the dead—and spends her free time trying not to get too attached to her business partner, Eli Stonecroft, a faery prince in self-imposed exile in New Orleans. When a walking-dead relative and a deadly but well-paying job make the holidays a lot more complicated than anyone needs, Geneviève accepts what seems like a straight-forward faery bargain. Eli's terms might make the holidays a little more bearable, but if she can't figure out a way to escape this faery bargain, she'll be planning a wedding soon.

"Daiquiris & Daggers"

A fun spa weekend away with friends in a city free of monsters, what could be better? Gen's necromancy had been on the fritz, so a recharge sounds perfect–until she arrives in San Diego to discover that either the spa is too steps beyond weird or there's magic afoot

"Champagne & Commitments"

Half-dead witch Geneviève Crowe recently ended up bonded to Eli Stonecroft, a faery prince in self-imposed exile in New Orleans. But bonded for eternity isn't enough for family and friends—of her future citizens. It's time to plan a wedding ceremony. Unfortunately there isn't enough champagne available to deal with an undead-great-grandmother, a faery king who's trying to romance Gen's assistant, and a city where Halloween is a holiday worth dying to enjoy.


Melissa has a well-deserved reputation for brilliantly bringing her in-depth knowledge of traditional faerie lore into her books. I'm thrilled she's joining this bundle! Many fans know her from her bestselling Wicked Lovely series, but her newer series continue to deliver the great stories readers expect, interwoven with folklore and magic. Her Faery Bargains series is no exception. Prepare to be captivated by the three novellas in this collection. – Anthea Sharp



  • "Marr ensconces beloved genre tropes in refreshing worldbuilding, offering a sly, never self-serious take on faery bargains and the walking dead.... Readers will be hooked."

    – Publishers Weekly on The Wicked & The Dead
  • "A sassy, ass-kicking heroine, a deliciously mysterious fae hero, and a wonderful mix of action and romance."

    – Jeaniene Frost, NYT Bestselling Author on The Wicked & The Dead
  • "I especially loved the tension between Gen and Eli—sometimes she wants to kill him and others, she has to do everything in her power not to fall helplessly into his arms... Melissa Marr does a brilliant job of weaving obscure folklore into a modern story."

    – Staff Pick, Lafourche Public Library (Lafourche, Louisiana) on The Wicked & The Dead



Giant aluminum balls hung around me even though I was standing in the cemetery not long before dawn. I didn't know who hung the balls, but I wasn't too bothered.

Winter in New Orleans was festive. We might have draugr and a higher than reasonable crime rate, but damn it, we had festivities for every possible occasion. Gold, silver, red, blue, purple, and green balls hung from the tree. Samhain had passed, and it was time to ramp up for the winter holidays.

November—the month after Samhain—was uncommonly active for necromancy calls. Unfortunately, a certain sort of person thought it was festive to summon the body and spirit of Dear Uncle Phil or Aunt Marie. Sometimes the relatives were maudlin, and sometimes they were thinking about the afterlife.

Now, the dead don't tell tales about the things after death. They can't. I warn folks, but they don't believe me. They pay me a fair amount to summon their dead, so I always stress that the "what happens after we die" questions are forbidden. Few people believe me.

Tonight, I had summoned Alphard Cormier to speak to his widow and assorted relatives or friends who accompanied her. I didn't ask who they were. One proven relation was all I needed. Family wasn't always just the folks who shared your blood.

Case in point, the faery beside me. Eli of Stonecroft was one of the people I trusted most in this world—or in any other. I closed my eyes for a moment, which I could do because he was at my side. I was tired constantly, so much so that only willpower kept me upright.

"Bonbon," Eli whispered. His worried tone made clear that a question or three hid in that absurd pet name.

Was I going to be able to control my magic? Did he need to brace for draugr inbound? Were we good on time?

"It's good." I opened my eyes, muffled a yawn, and met his gaze. "I'm still fine."

Eli nodded, but he still scanned the graves. He was increasingly cautious since my near-brush-with-death a couple months ago.

My partner stood at my side as we waited in the cemetery while the widow, her daughter, and two men spoke to their reanimated relative. Mr. Alphard Cormier was wearing a suit that was in fashion sometime in the last thirty years.

Why rouse him now? I didn't know and wasn't asking.

"Twenty minutes," I called out. I could feel the sun coming; I'd always been able to do so—call it in an internal sundial, or call it bad genes. Either way, my body was attuned to the rising and falling of the sun.

"When he is entombed, we could—"

"No." I couldn't force myself to glance at him again.

I was bone-tired, which made me more affectionate, and Eli was my weakness. Cut-glass features, bee-stung lips, and enough strength to fight at my side, even against draugr, Eli was built for fantasy. His ability to destroy my self-control was remarkable—and no, it wasn't because he was fae.

That part was why I wasn't going home with him. Trusting him, wanting him, caring for him, none of that was enough to overcome the complications of falling into his bed. Sleeping with a faery prince had a list of complications that no amount of lust or affection overcame.

"I won't get married," I reminded him. Sex would mean marriage to him.

"Are you sure that's a good idea?" Mr. Cormier asked, voice carrying over the soft sobbing women.

The man with them handed Cormier something metallic.

I felt as much as saw the dead man look my way, and then his arm raised with a gun in hand. The relatives parted, and there was a dead man with a gun aimed at me.

"Fuck a duck. Move!" I darted to the side.

Eli was already beside me, hand holding his pretty bronze-coated sword that I hadn't even known he owned until the last month. "Geneviève?"

"On it." I jerked the magic away from Mr. Comier.

It was my magic that made him stand, so I wasn't going to let him stand and shoot me.

REST, I ordered the dead man.

"I'm sorry, ma'am. They made me. Threatened my Suzette if I didn't . . ." His words faded as my shove of magic sent him back to his tomb.

I could hear the widow, presumably Suzette, sobbing.

"I do not believe those gentlemen are Mr. Cormier's relations." Eli glared in the direction of the men who had hired me to raise a dead man to kill me. They'd grabbed the two women and ducked behind mausoleums.


"They seem to want you dead, buttercream," Eli said. "If they were his family, that's an odd response."

A bullet hit the stone across from me. Shards of gravestone pelted me. Oddly the adrenaline surge was welcome, even if the bullets weren't. Nothing like a shot of rage to get the sleepiness out.

"Not why that." I nodded toward the men who were staying crouched behind graves. "Why go through the hassle? Why not simply shoot me themselves?"

"Dearest, can we ponder that after they are not shooting at you?"

I felt my eyes change. As my rage boiled over, my eyes reflected it. They were my father's reptilian eyes, draugr eyes. The only useful thing he'd ever done was accidentally augment the magic I inherited from my mother. Unfortunately, the extra juice came with a foul temper—one that was even worse the last few weeks. After I'd been injected by venom, my moods were increasingly intense.

I wanted to rip limbs off.

I wanted to shove my thumbs into their eye sockets and keep going until I felt brain matter.

Before the urges were more than images, I was moving from one spot to the next.

I could flow like a draugr. I could move quickly enough that to the mortal eye it looked like teleportation. I flowed to the side of the shooter and grabbed his wrist.

Eli was not far behind. He didn't flow, but he was used to my movements and impulses. He had his sword to the shooter's throat a moment after I jerked the gun away from the man.

"Dearest?" Eli said, his voice tethering me sanity.

I concentrated on his voice, his calm, and I punched the other shooter rather than removing his eyes. Then I let out a scream of frustration and shoved my magic into the soil like a seismic force.

The dead answered.

Dozens of voices answered my call. Hands reknitted. Flesh was regrown from the magic that flowed from my body into the graves. Mouths reformed, as if I was a sculptor of man.

"You do not wake the dead without reason," I growled at the now-unarmed man who dared to try to shoot me.

Here, of all places. He tried to spill my blood into these graves.

I stepped over the man I'd punched and ignored the cringing, sobbing widow and the other woman who was trying to convince her mother to leave.

And I stalked toward the shooter in Eli's grip.

"Bonbon, you have a scratch." Eli nodded toward my throat.

"Shit." I felt my neck where Eli had indicated. Blood slid into my collar.

I stepped closer to the shooter. "What were you thinking, Weasel Nuts?"

"Would you mind covering the wound?" Eli asked, forcing me to focus again.

His voice was calm, but we both knew that I could not shed blood in a space where graves were so plentiful. I'd accidentally bound two draugr so far, and blood was a binding agent in necromancy. Unless I wanted to bring home a few reanimated servants, my blood couldn't spill here.

I had to focus. And I didn't need an army of undead soldiers.

"Take this." Eli pulled off his shirt with one hand, switching the hilt between hands to keep the sword to Weasel Nuts' throat.

I stared. Not the time.

Eli's lips quirked in a half-smile, and then he pressed the blade just a bit. "And, I believe you need to answer my lady."

I shot Eli a look—his lady? What year did he think this was?—but I pressed his shirt against my throat. I did not, absolutely did not, take a deep breath because the shirt smelled like Eli.

Eli smiled as I took another quick extra breath.

"Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live." Weasel Nuts spat in my direction. "Foul thing."

I opened my mouth to reply, but Eli removed his sword blade and in a blink turned it so he could bash the pommel into the man's mouth.

Weasel Nuts dropped to his knees, and this time when he spat, he spat out his own teeth and blood.

If I were the swooning sort, this would be such a moment. Something about defending me always did good things to my libido.

"Geneviève, would you be so kind as to call the police?" Eli motioned toward the women. "And escort the ladies away from this unpleasant man?"

It sounded chivalrous—or chauvinistic—but it was actually an excuse. I needed to get my ass outside the cemetery before I dripped blood. Eli had provided a way to do so gracefully.