blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: Wicked Little Deeds – Kat Ellis*

From its creepy town mascot to the story of its cursed waterfall, Burden Falls is a small town dripping with superstition. Ava Thorn knows this well – since the horrific accident she witnessed a year ago, she’s been plagued by nightmares.

But when her school nemesis is brutally murdered and Ava is the primary suspect, she starts to wonder if the legends surrounding the town are more fact than fiction.

Whatever secrets Burden Falls is hiding, there’s a killer on the loose, and they have a vendetta against the Thorns…

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Kat Ellis is a young adult author whose novels include Wicked Little Deeds/Burden Falls (August 2021), Harrow Lake (July 2020), Purge (September 2016), Breaker (May 2016), and Blackfin Sky (May 2014). She is a fan of all things horror and sci-fi, and a keen explorer of ruins, castles and cemeteries – all of which are plentiful in North Wales, where Kat lives with her husband.

You can find out more about Kat at http://www.katelliswrites.com or connect with her on social media. 

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My thoughts: this was an interesting read with murders, ghosts, family curses and social media (which is its own kind of curse). Ava has to move out of her beloved ancestral home – only to find out the man she blames for her parents’ deaths has bought it.

She’s convinced Dead-Eyed Sadie is haunting her – a family ghost story says that Thorns see Sadie before they die. Then people start dying, first the girl who now lives in her house – and who she can’t stand.

As things get worse and Ava gets close to Dominic – the dead girl’s brother – Ava becomes convinced something terrible is about to happen and that Sadie is coming for her.

Twisted and tragic, this is a clever and fun horror, as Ava struggles to come to terms with her family’s change in fortunes and wants to stop being one of the “Bloody Thorns” and step out from the sinister stories surrounding her family.

The ending is shocking but ultimately redemptive, as Ava gets answers, even if they aren’t necessarily the ones she wanted.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

blog tour, books

Blog Tour: What Remains – An Anthology by Inked in Grey

Whatremains

If you’re not into warm and fuzzy beach reads, What Remains is a great book for you this Summer! Check out this amazing anthology by several talented authors. Guaranteed to bring a chill to your hot days!

What Remains

What Remains: An Anthology by Inked in Gray

Publication Date: July 26th, 2021

Genre: Anthology/ Short Stories/ Fantasy/ Sci-Fi/ Horror

Publisher: Inked in Gray

Victory at all costs. Even at the price of our own life, the desire to survive transcends all rational thought.

What Remains brings together fifteen tales of horror, fantasy, and science fiction. From sacrificing loved ones or oneself, to doing what it takes to keep them alive, these stories shake the soul, rip out its insecurities and flay them on the page.

Careful who you trust. Some quandaries have no right answer when we cannot save what we love most—or when isolation, desperation, and betrayal leave you no choice.

Take the journey with us to see What Remains when civility, decency, and sanity have all but fled.

Add to Goodreads

Available on Amazon!

Win a copy here

Authors:

R.A. Busby

About the Author: An award-winning literature teacher and die-hard horror fan, R. A. Busby is also the author of “Bits” (Short Sharp Shocks #45), “Street View” (Collective Realms #2), “Not the Man I Married” (Black Petals #93), “Holes” (Graveyard Smash, Women of Horror Anthology, Vol. 2), and “Cactusland” (34 Orchard, forthcoming).

“I was always instructed to write about what I know,” she states, “and I know what scares me.” In her spare time, R.A. Busby watches cheesy Gothic movies and goes running in the desert with her dog.

She can be found on Twitter and at RABusbybooks.weebly.com

David-Christopher Harris

About the Author: David-Christopher Harris’ fantasy publications include “Olam Ha-Ba” in speculative fiction and poetry magazine Arsenika, “Last Call” in The Arcanist Magazine, “Falselight” on PageHabit, and “Children of Ozymandias” in 50WordStories, among others. He received his M.A. in Medieval Literature, which he uses exclusively to teach his cat Latin. He is currently querying.

He can be found on Twitter and at www.dcharriswriting.com

Andy Dibble

About the Author: Andy Dibble is a healthcare IT consultant who lives in Madison, Wisconsin. He has supported the electronic medical record of healthcare systems in six countries. His work appears or is forthcoming in Writers of the Future, Star*Line, Sci Phi Journal, and others. He is Articles Editor for Speculative North magazine.

He can be found on Twitter, Facebook, and andydibble.com.

LT Ward

About the Author: LT writes mostly speculative fiction shorts and novels while spending her days raising her children and satisfying her never-ending thirst for knowledge through reading, meeting people, and first-hand life experiences. She has short story publications with Dancing Lemur Press, Me First Magazine, Jazz House Press, and forthcoming with Black Hare Press and Cardigan Press. She currently volunteers with WriteHive, a nonprofit literary organization.

She can be found on Twitter, Instagram, and at ltwardwriter.com.

Ben Armstrong

About the Author: Ben is a young author who has been writing stories for over six years now. Recently he has been published in his town’s newspaper.

Maxwell I Gold

About the Author: Maxwell I. Gold is a Rhysling Award nominated prose poet, focusing on weird and cosmic fiction. He is a regular contributor to Spectral Realms, edited by Lovecraft scholar S.T. Joshi and his work has also appeared in Weirdbook Magazine, Space and Time Magazine, Startling Stories, Baffling Magazine, and many others.

His debut prose poetry collection, Oblivion in Flux: A Collection of Cyber Prose is forthcoming this August from Crystal Lake Publishing.

Maxwell can be found on Facebook, Instagram, Amazon, and at www.thewellsoftheweird.com

Damir Salkovic

About the Author: Damir Salkovic is the author of novels Kill Zone and Always Beside You. His shorter work has been featured in the Lovecraft eZine, Dimension6 Annual Collection 2020, and in multiple horror, science and speculative fiction anthologies.

Find him on Goodreads and at his blog, Darker Realities.

Lawrence West

About the Author: Lawrence J West has been on his writing journey since he was fourteen years old and has always been drawn to fantasy, sci-fi, and horror because of the way these genres allow for the exploration of human experience in unique ways. Since becoming a husband and father he has also found that his writing has a greater degree of empathy and insight.

Lawrence can be found on Twitter.

Sharon Frame Gay

About the Author: Sharon Frame Gay is an award winning author whose work has appeared in many anthologies and magazines, including Chicken Soup For The Soul, Typehouse, Fiction on the Web, Literally Stories, Lowestoft Chronicle, Thrice Fiction, Saddlebag Dispatches, Crannog, and others. She is a Pushcart Prize nominee.

A collection of her short stories, Song of the Highway, was released in August, 2020.

Sharon can be found on Twitter and Amazon.

Timothy Johnson

About the Author: Timothy Johnson is a writer and editor living outside of Washington, D.C. His published work includes the novels The Pillars of Dawn and Carrier as well as short fiction appearing in various professional and semi-professional markets. He is an MFA candidate in George Mason University’s creative writing program and an affiliate member of the HWA.

Find Timothy on Twitter and at timothyjohnsonfiction.com.

DL Shirey

About the Author: DL Shirey lives in Portland, Oregon, where it’s probably raining. Luckily, water is beer’s primary ingredient. His stories and non-fiction appear in 60 publications, including Confingo, Page & Spine, Zetetic and Wild Musette.

You can find more of DL Shirey on Twitter and at www.dlshirey.com.

Dan Eveloff

About the Author: Dan Eveloff is a lawyer and sports agent living in Chicago, Illinois with his dog, Reuben. He studied accounting at the University of Kansas, and subsequently earned his law degree from Northwestern University. His short fiction “The Price of Recompense” has appeared in AHF Magazine,Shakespearean Justice” in Aphelion Webzine, and “Prevenge” can be found in Close to the Bone Magazine.

His social media presence can be found on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter

Valerie Hunter

About the Author: Valerie Hunter teaches high school English and has an MFA in writing for children and young adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Her stories and poems have appeared in publications including Cicada, Storyteller, Edison Literary Review, Other Voices, Room, and Wizards in Space.

Find Valerie on Instagram.

Nicholas Barner

About the Author: Nicholas Barner has farmed, cooked, and written variously in Oakland, Chicago, Maine, and Los Angeles. He lives with his partner, Shelby, and their Dog, Nuni.

He can be found online at nicholasbarner.com.

Thomas Canfield

About the Author: Thomas Canfield lives in the mountains of North Carolina. His phobias run to politicians, lawyers and TV pitchmen. He is still trying to plumb the logic of the sales pitch; The more you buy, the more you save. It never quite seems to work out that way in the real world. Canfield occasionally reviews books on Goodreads.

Among Tall Trees Excerpt

The young boy races for the ridge, a good twenty feet ahead of Jeff. With every painful breath, the distance between them grows. If the boy wanted to, he could already be out of his sight, halfway up the mountain that rises ahead of them, a blue-gray bulk topped with first snow, deep into the thick evergreens. But the child is holding back, glancing over his shoulder every now and then without missing a beat, without interrupting the purposeful elegance of his stride.

Save yourself. Go.

Jeff shouts none of this to the boy, whose thin arms are pumping up and down, skinny legs effortlessly swallowing the punishing grade of the mountain as if unfettered by gravity. Jeff is too busy wheezing, hauling in lungfuls of frosty air, trying to hear his own frenetic thoughts over the pounding of his out-of-shape heart and the tidal roar of blood in his ears. Trying to keep his burning lungs from falling out and keep his feet, clumsy in heavy boots, trudging one in front of the other. Every misstep, every stumble and pause for breath, erodes their already thin lead on the men who hunt them.

They are slow, too, these others: some weighed down with age, like Judge Crenshaw, who is eighty if a day. Some by sloth and neglect, like Big Mike Bragg, who weighs well north of three hundred pounds. Fear herds them together, and a mob is only as fast as its slowest man. But determination drives them, a remorseless singularity of purpose.

Although Jeff can’t see them, they aren’t far behind, marching through the leafless, scattered hardwoods down by the road, fanning out in a rough semicircle to cover as much killing ground as possible. So after a too-brief break, the boy catches Jeff’s eye—he has an uncanny way of looking up at just the right time, or somehow making Jeff do so—and flicks his head.

He doesn’t speak, but Jeff understands. Up. Up the mountain, into the pines. Their mad scramble resumes. Down here there are gaps in the treeline, patches of open ground between thickets and dense scrub, and open ground spells trouble.

Not that the boy seems concerned. Or what to all intents and purposes resembles a boy: a pale, scrawny slip of a kid, eight- or nine-years-old, maybe a small ten. Scabbed knees and elbows and bright green eyes, dirty blond hair cut in an unfashionable bowl around a pinched face. He bounds up the slope in easy strides, each as long as two of Jeff’s faltering steps, looking to the rest of the world—if there was anyone up here to see him—like any one of hundreds of identical, small-town American kids indulging in a bit of horseplay before going inside for dinner.

Except Jeff has seen those arms lock around Clyde Garver. Good old Clyde who Jeff had played high school football with and who fixed cars at Dan Laurie’s garage in town. The boy had grabbed Clyde and wrenched his head clean off his shoulders like a papier-mâché piñata, with no more effort than Jeff twisting a cap off a bottle of Miller High Life.

Except it’s late November in the Great Smoky Mountains. Snow weighs over the town like a judgement, but the boy’s wearing nothing but pants and a thin T-shirt and his feet are bare, and he’s giving no sign of feeling the cold.

Except the horseplay they’re indulging in will end in death. They can cheat it for a while, draw out the inevitable, but the men behind them aren’t about to give up. Good men, or so Jeff used to think. Men he’s known all his life—fathers and husbands and brothers. Men who piled into their trucks and four-wheel-drives without hesitation to hunt Jeff and the child. Men who are not going back down without their prize.

There’s only one end Jeff can see. But he keeps running, up toward the trees under the lowering sky.

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Blog Tour: The Crimson Countess – Brynn Myers*

When a god and a vampire queen desire you, things can get complicated.

Nola Blair is a free-spirited artist who’s been offered a hefty sum to create a unique piece for a party at Elizabeth Bathory’s ruined castle. It’s an assignment she declined––twice. However, at the behest of her sister and her best friend, she finally gave in, choosing her career over her annoyance with the misogynist ass trying to secure her services.

Erzsebet Bathory has been trapped for centuries and would do anything to escape, including using her own son, Paul, to do her bidding. Soon she’ll be free and take her place among the ferals as their queen.

Andrik Kane had no idea his life would change when he saved Nola from a band of rogue vampires. Charged with the hunting of ferals and their creators, one broken rule and the blood of a beautiful brunette in distress ends up giving him more than he ever bargained for.

One wants her blood, the other wants her to be his. Who will decide Nola’s fate?

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Brynn Myers is a paranormal romance author. After considering writing a hobby for years, she finally turned her passion and talent into a career. She came into the paranormal genre later than most but has always loved fairy-tales and all things magical. Using that love, she creates charmed worlds by writing stories involving passionate, strong willed characters with something to discover.

Brynn lives with her family in Central Florida.

Website | Instagram | Goodreads | Twitter

INTL Blog Tour Giveaway!

Enter the rafflecopter here

Grand Prize:
– An autographed copy of The Crimson Countess, TCC swag, and a $10 Amazon gift card.

Runner-Up Prize:
– 10 readers will win a digital copy of The Crimson Countess!

This is open internationally & it ends on June 26th, 2021 at 11:59pm EST.

EXTRACT

Blood ran like a river through the streets as Reese and Andrik fought the mob of ferals clamoring out of the blind spots in an alley near the harbor.
“If we don’t annihilate them all, the humans will surely get involved, and this situation will soon be even more out of control,” Andrik shouted.
“I know!” Reese replied as she continued to slash through the half a dozen ferals in front of them.
Andrik smiled. This wasn’t the first time he and Reese had fought side by side. He had trained her soon after she was turned, and she fought a lot like him, but still had her own personal flair. Andrik always used to tease her about wanting to play with her prey. She was the only warrior he knew who could stun a feral long enough to not only set up her next move, but to make her victims happy to die by her hand. They were simply caught off guard by her due to her gift. They knew she was a vampire, but she was also something else––something they couldn’t resist.
Reese was over six feet tall, with short, spiky black hair, and a muscular build that was always wrapped in leather; but that wasn’t what halted them, no, it was her light silver eyes, a gift from Manya during her transition that made the ferals stop in their tracks. They wanted, no needed, to take in her appearance. Their mistake. It gave her the chance to kill them quick, but she loved to savor their need to admire her and waited until they snapped out of it before striking the final blow.
As Reese dropped her last feral, Andrik looked around to confirm they’d taken them all out. The area was clear except for a few faint footsteps in the distance which were human. The ferals were gone––for now at least.
“That was a little too easy, don’t you think?” Reese said as she cracked her knuckles.
“They were young and untrained.”
“Yes, but still,” she retorted.
Andrik flicked his dagger and watched as the blood splattered onto the ground. It, along with the dead bodies began to shift and change into the black mist associated with their makers. As the swirls of dust dissipated into the air, Andrik smiled, pleased as usual. The humans would be left none the wiser.
“Do you think the ferals are innocent in this?” Reese, too, flicked her blade to clear the black blood.
“I don’t know. That remains to be seen. Either way, their end will be the same,” Andrik said despondently. “You know as well as I that ferals have no place in this world. They’re dangerous to pure-bloods and to the humans, not to mention an abomination.” As the last feral dissipated, another band came down the opening of the alleyway. “Where do they keep coming from?” Andrik snarled.
Reese started to respond but was forced to fight instead. This group was more savage than the last. Reese and Andrik fought with epic skill, but these ferals managed to get some hits in too. This horde had been trained to fight and battled for their lives. In the end, Andrik and Reese prevailed, but they both were rough around the edges and confused by this new breed.
“We have to figure this shit out and fast,” Reese huffed. “If this keeps up, we’ll need more than the two of us fighting.”
Andrik nodded as he watched this last set of ferals diffuse. “I want to know where they are coming from.”
“Thea will be pissed we weren’t able to bring her a live one to read.”
“It’s not as if we had a choice. These ferals are not what we’re used to. We need a new plan.”

My thoughts: I really liked this take on the myths that surround the real Countess Bathory – the vampirism, the bathing in the blood of young virgins, and giving it all a new spin. It’s well written and nicely paced, gripping and enjoyable. I liked Nola too and felt a bit sorry for her as fate has taken some rather mean twists with her life, and safety, at risk.

🧛‍♂️Taking it back to the classics – the vampire in literature.🧛

Vampires are pretty old, myths about monstrous blood drinkers have been around for centuries, and real people like Erzabet (sometimes anglicised to Elizabeth) Bathory are all part of this. But there are some truly classic literary vampires that you should check out.

🧛The Vampyre – John Polidori – Dr Polidori was a guest at the Swiss chateau where Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein was born and this slim but still creepy tale was his contribution. Tragically he would die very young and without having written anything else.

🧛‍♀️Carmilla – Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu – believed to be the inspiration behind the granddaddy of all vampire stories, this is another slim volume with a creepy side. The titular vampire (who might be modelled on Bathory) preys on a young girl, Laura, but the two find themselves drawn to each other before Laura’s father ends the monster to save his daughter.

🧛Dracula – Bram Stoker – this is the most famous bloodsucker out there and while his many incarnations might colour your perception, this is a seriously weird book. Comprised of diary entries and letters, it chronicles Jonathan Harker’s experiences at Castle Dracula in Transylvania, again inspired by real places and Vlad the Impaler, and those of his wife Mina and her friend Lucy after the Count brings his reign of horror to Whitby.

🧛Interview With a Vampire – Anne Rice – Lestat, Rice’s most famous creation, has seen it and lived (or un-deaded?) it all and here he tells a foolish reporter all about it. The others in the series are good but this is probably the best one.

🧛‍♀️Lost Souls – Poppy Z. Brite – something a bit more modern in this 90s vampire Road trip novel. Molochai, Twig and Zillah are out for blood, literally, when they meet Nothing and Ann, and take them off to New Orleans, with hero Ghost in hot pursuit.

What are your favourite vampire stories? Fan of the Gothic? Tell me all in the comments.🦇🦇🧛‍♂️

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

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Blog Tour: It Calls From the Sea – An Eerie River Publishing Anthology*

Prepare to die. The sea awakens.

Within the Mariana Trench, a research vessel’s crew is threatened by a mysterious force. A father and daughter’s holiday by the ocean turns deadly as a sinister creature stalks them. A group of friends learn that some things should remain in the ocean. Filled with a sense of wonder, a young biologist discovers a new species of kelp, but with disastrous consequences.

It Calls From the Sea is an all-original anthology of twenty brutal tales of horror from the deep blue sea.

Eerie River brings you another round of insatiable horror. There is no end to the terrors we have in store and there is nowhere left to hide. Get comfy, this is going to be a wild ride.

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Available on Amazon

Featuring Stories By:

Chris Bannor“Euphoria”, Chris Hewitt “Reef Encounter” Christopher Bond “The Ocean Sings Softly”, Dan Le Fever “Xook” David Green “Into The Depths”, Georgia Cook “Dead Ships”, Holley Cornetto “Heaven’s Lake”, Julie Sevens “Shoney’s Revenge”, Lin Darrow “Cry of the Hunger Fish”, M.B.Vujacic “Jelly”, Mason Gallaway, “The Sea Reaches Up”
McKenzie Richardson “The Hunter and the Prey”, R. L. Meza “Long Pork”, S.O. Green “The Shadow Over Innsmouth High”, Steve Neal “Hostile Territory”, T. M. Brown “Buoy 21415”, Tim Mendees “Fronds”, Trey Dowell “Abyssal Horror”, Watt Morgan “Please Leave”

Win a $25 Amazon gift card – open internationally.

My thoughts: this collection of creepy and weird stories about creatures from the deep was enjoyable and suitably unnerving. Considering our planet is 70% water we know surprisingly little about what lives in our deeps. So we created stories about the things we saw as we sailed across it. From sirens and giant squid, mermaids and kraken, these stories draw on our earliest stories – Homer’s Odyssey features plenty of sea monsters, in contemporary settings, fishing trawlers and tourist boats.

I may never go swimming again!

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

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Cover Reveal: What Remains – An Anthology by Inked in Gray

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What Remains

Check out the cover for upcoming release of What Remains! A chilling collection of Horror, Sci-Fi, and Fantasy!

What Remains: An Anthology by Inked in Gray

Expected Publication Date: Summer 2021

Genre: Anthology/ Short Stories/ Fantasy/ Sci-Fi/ Horror

Publisher: Inked in Gray

Victory at all costs. Even at the price of our own life, the desire to survive transcends all rational thought. 

What Remains brings together fifteen tales of horror, fantasy, and science fiction. From sacrificing loved ones or oneself, to doing what it takes to keep them alive, these stories shake the soul, rip out its insecurities and flay them on the page. 

Careful who you trust. Some quandaries have no right answer when we cannot save what we love most—or when isolation, desperation, and betrayal leave you no choice.

Take the journey with us to see What Remains when civility, decency, and sanity have all but fled.

Coming Soon!

Authors:

R.A. Busby 

About the Author: An award-winning literature teacher and die-hard horror fan, R. A. Busby is also the author of “Bits” (Short Sharp Shocks #45), “Street View” (Collective Realms #2), “Not the Man I Married” (Black Petals #93), “Holes” (Graveyard Smash, Women of Horror Anthology, Vol. 2), and “Cactusland” (34 Orchard, forthcoming). 

“I was always instructed to write about what I know,” she states, “and I know what scares me.”  In her spare time, R.A. Busby watches cheesy Gothic movies and goes running in the desert with her dog. 

She can be found on Twitter and at  RABusbybooks.weebly.com

David-Christopher Harris

About the Author: David-Christopher Harris’ fantasy publications include “Olam Ha-Ba” in speculative fiction and poetry magazine Arsenika, “Last Call”  in The Arcanist Magazine, “Falselight”  on PageHabit, and “Children of Ozymandias” in 50WordStories,  among others. He received his M.A. in Medieval Literature, which he uses exclusively to teach his cat Latin. He is currently querying.

He can be found on Twitter and at www.dcharriswriting.com

Andy Dibble

About the Author: Andy Dibble is a healthcare IT consultant who lives in Madison, Wisconsin. He has supported the electronic medical record of healthcare systems in six countries.  His work appears or is forthcoming in Writers of the Future, Star*Line, Sci Phi Journal, and others.  He is Articles Editor for Speculative North magazine.

He can be found on TwitterFacebook, and andydibble.com.

LT Ward 

About the Author: LT writes mostly speculative fiction shorts and novels while spending her days raising her children and satisfying her never-ending thirst for knowledge through reading, meeting people, and first-hand life experiences. She has short story publications with Dancing Lemur Press, Me First Magazine, Jazz House Press, and forthcoming with Black Hare Press and Cardigan Press. She currently volunteers with WriteHive, a nonprofit literary organization. 

She can be found on TwitterInstagram, and at ltwardwriter.com.

Ben Armstrong

About the Author: Ben is a young author who has been writing stories for over six years now. Recently he has been published in his town’s newspaper.

Maxwell I Gold

About the Author: Maxwell I. Gold is a Rhysling Award nominated prose poet, focusing on weird and cosmic fiction. He is a regular contributor to Spectral Realms, edited by Lovecraft scholar S.T. Joshi and his work has also appeared in Weirdbook MagazineSpace and Time MagazineStartling StoriesBaffling Magazine, and many others.

His debut prose poetry collection, Oblivion in Flux: A Collection of Cyber Prose is forthcoming this August from Crystal Lake Publishing.

Maxwell can be found on Facebook, Instagram, Amazon, and at www.thewellsoftheweird.com

Damir Salkovic

About the Author: Damir Salkovic is the author of novels Kill Zone and Always Beside You. His shorter work has been featured in the Lovecraft eZine, Dimension6 Annual Collection 2020, and in multiple horror, science and speculative fiction anthologies.

Find him on Goodreads and at his blog, Darker Realities.

Lawrence West

About the Author: Lawrence J West has been on his writing journey since he was fourteen years old and has always been drawn to fantasy, sci-fi, and horror because of the way these genres allow for the exploration of human experience in unique ways. Since becoming a husband and father he has also found that his writing has a greater degree of empathy and insight. 

Lawrence can be found on Twitter.

Sharon Frame Gay

About the Author: Sharon Frame Gay is an award winning author whose work has appeared in many anthologies and magazines, including Chicken Soup For The Soul, Typehouse, Fiction on the Web, Literally Stories, Lowestoft Chronicle, Thrice Fiction, Saddlebag Dispatches, Crannog, and others. She is a Pushcart Prize nominee. 

A collection of her short stories, Song of the Highway, was released in August, 2020.

Sharon can be found on Twitter and Amazon.

Timothy Johnson

About the Author: Timothy Johnson is a writer and editor living outside of Washington, D.C. His published work includes the novels The Pillars of Dawn and Carrier as well as short fiction appearing in various professional and semi-professional markets. He is an MFA candidate in George Mason University’s creative writing program and an affiliate member of the HWA. 

Find Timothy on Twitter and at timothyjohnsonfiction.com.

DL Shirey

About the Author: DL Shirey lives in Portland, Oregon, where it’s probably raining. Luckily, water is beer’s primary ingredient. His stories and non-fiction appear in 60 publications, including Confingo, Page & Spine, Zetetic and Wild Musette. 

You can find more of DL Shirey on Twitter and at www.dlshirey.com.

Dan Eveloff

About the Author: Dan Eveloff is a lawyer and sports agent living in Chicago, Illinois with his dog, Reuben. He studied accounting at the University of Kansas, and subsequently earned his law degree from Northwestern University. His short fiction “The Price of Recompense” has appeared in AHF Magazine, “Shakespearean Justice” in Aphelion Webzine, and “Prevenge” can be found in Close to the Bone Magazine

His social media presence can be found on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter 

Valerie Hunter

About the Author: Valerie Hunter teaches high school English and has an MFA in writing for children and young adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Her stories and poems have appeared in publications including Cicada, Storyteller, Edison Literary ReviewOther VoicesRoom, and Wizards in Space.

Find Valerie on Instagram.

Nicholas Barner

About the Author: Nicholas Barner has farmed, cooked, and written variously in Oakland, Chicago, Maine, and Los Angeles. He lives with his partner, Shelby, and their Dog, Nuni.

He can be found online at nicholasbarner.com

Thomas Canfield

About the Author: Thomas Canfield lives in the mountains of North Carolina. His phobias run to politicians, lawyers and TV pitchmen. He is still trying to plumb the logic of the sales pitch; The more you buy, the more you save. It never quite seems to work out that way in the real world. Canfield occasionally reviews books on Goodreads.

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Blog Tour: Deep Level – Richard E. Rock*

When Rich stumbles upon a secret Victorian underground network, he sees not only a great historical discovery, but also a way out of his humdrum life. He convinces three of his friends to join him, and together they venture deep into the maze of tunnels beneath London’s bustling streets.

A rude girl made good. An aspiring writer. A cinema usher from Wales. A bookseller who dreams of being an urban explorer. Four friends trapped together in one nightmarish situation as they realise some things are kept secret for a reason.
Will any of them manage to escape the horror that lurks in the DEEP LEVEL?

Amazon UK
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By day, Richard E. Rock works as a commercial scriptwriter for radio and contributes ideas to Viz Comic. But by night…he writes horror.
He was inspired to do this after experiencing a series of particularly ferocious nightmares. After waking up and realising he could turn these into utterly horrible stories, he started deliberately inducing them.

Based in Wales, he lives with his girlfriend and their cat. If you’re looking for him, you’ll probably find
him wedged up against the barrier at a heavy metal gig, for that is his natural habitat.

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My thoughts:

As someone who’s fascinated by the layers and layers of history buried beneath London’s streets this sounded fascinating. And it was, then it was really, really creepy. In the best way, where you get a shiver down your spine and you are really pleased you’re safely in your home reading and not wandering around in the dark being terrorised by monsters.

Truly sinister and unnerving, this is a great book for those who like their horror malevolent and greedy.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

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Blog Tour: The Haunting of Gallagher Hotel – K.T. Rose*

Pride and greed infect the soul, anchoring the dead to Gallagher Hotel.

When Chris, a master thief, and Riley, a contract waitress, get mysterious invites to an exclusive party at the haunted Gallagher Hotel, they discover that there is more at play than simple celebrations.

Hidden truths are revealed, and all hell breaks loose. But the “party” has just begun.

Now, Chris and Riley face their demons as they fight to survive a hellish nightmare full of spoiled secrets, carnage, and vengeful spirits lost to the hotel dating back to the turn of the 20th century.

Will they survive the night? Or will their souls be devoured by the most haunted building in Michigan?

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Chapter One

She’ll never forget the day she died.

Torches lit up the town square, illuminating scowling and shouting faces. The townspeople launched stones and spit, pegging Trudy’s arms and face as she trudged through the abhorrent mob. She cringed when a pebble struck her cheek. Pain erupted, shooting through her face like lightning striking the earth.

Deputy Hill yanked her arm, leading her through the narrow path the townspeople created. Fists balled, Trudy groaned as the rope around her wrists dug into her skin. Her bare feet picked up glass shards and debris from the cobblestone path as she shuffled along.

She glared around at the angry faces and recognized the men, women, and children of Holloway. She’d done more for them than any God before her. Many of those people owned the very businesses that lined the stone slab she marched across that night. Building and financing the rows of wooden businesses lining the town’s square accounted for half the things she’d done for Holloway. She fed the hungry, made clothes for cold children, and taught woman’s independence. The ever-growing list of the townspeople’s wants was endless. At one point, she didn’t mind the busy work. Fulfilling dreams of the once poor town kept her boisterous and distracted from her bitter reality. Trudy was Holloway’s personal shepherd, making the people her needy sheep.

Hands snagged at her lavender tea gown, adding dirty prints to the blood drops and grime from the beatings in that putrid cell. She glared at the bare-faced man towering over her. The brim of his deputy hat cast a thick shadow, hiding his dark eyes and pale face.

Deputy would miss her. She was sure of it. He got off on the assaults that bruised her face. His heavy fists pounded her bones and scraped her skin until she confessed. And even after her confession, he continued with his evening visits, slamming her body into cinder block walls and passing off open-handed blows to her nose, cheeks, and eyes.

Trudy sighed. A bath with lavender and Epsom salt sounded good for the swelling. She didn’t realize how bloated and purple her once beautiful, fairly smooth skin had become until she passed by the picture window in front of the town’s jail just before they began her walk of shame. Her dark hair matted to her forehead, washed by sweat and blood. Her plump lips were chapped and bloated with bruises.

Even then, her face pulsed with intense hurt. Pain shot through it whenever she winced.

The sea of convictions roared, growing louder as she drew closer to the opposite end of the square.

“Adulterer,” yelled a woman.

“Traitor,” screeched a boy.

“Murderer,” said a pot-bellied man.

Their accusations sent a sickening jolt through her bones. She watched the path underneath her slowing feet, fighting back the tears.

How could they turn on me like this?

K.T. Rose is a horror, thriller, and dark fiction writer from Detroit, Michigan. She posts suspense and horror flash fiction on her blog at kyrobooks.com and is the author of a suspenseful short story series titled Trinity of Horror, an erotic thriller novel titled When We Swing, and A Dark Web Horror Series. She also writes supernatural and paranormal horror novels and short stories.

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My thoughts:

This was a strange and creepy/weird story of a hotel that says it’s haunted but is actually a portal to Hell. It’s not ghosts you have to be wary of, but demonic beings looking to send you straight down to their boss.

Riley is hired as a waitress for a special event at the hotel, but really she’s been lured there as the only innocent soul among a very bad bunch. It will take everything she has to escape the nightmarish establishment and return to her life.

Weird, twisted and gory, the guests all go to suitably macabre ends, as their crimes and sins come to collect on them.

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Blog Tour: The Forger & the Thief – Kirsten McKenzie*

FIVE STRANGERS IN FLORENCE, EACH WITH A DANGEROUS SECRET. AND AN APOCALYPTIC FLOOD
THREATENING TO REVEAL EVERYTHING.

A wife on the run, a student searching for stolen art, a cleaner who has lined more than his pockets, a policeman whose career is almost over, and a guest who should never have received a wedding invite. Five strangers, entangled in the forger’s wicked web, amidst Florence’s devastating flood of November 1966.

In a race against time, and desperate to save themselves and all they hold dear, will their secrets prove more treacherous than the ominous floodwaters swallowing the historic city?

Dive into a world of lies and deceit, where nothing is as it seems on the surface…

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A full time author, Kirsten is a former customs officer and antiques dealer, and who has also dabbled
in film and television.

Her historical time-slip series – The Old Curiosity Shop Series, has been described as ‘Time Travellers Wife meets Far Pavilions’, an ‘Antiques Roadshow gone viral’.

Kirsten released her bestselling gothic horror novel Painted in 2017, with her medical thriller – Doctor Perry, following in 2018.
Her latest thriller – The Forger and the Thief, is set in 1966 Florence, Italy, amidst the devastating floods. Kirsten lives in New Zealand with her husband, her daughters, two rescue cats.

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My thoughts:

In the terrible flood of Florence, a disparate group of strangers fight for their lives and freedom, as the Arno pours her rage into the ancient streets.

I’ve been to Florence, a long time ago, and it is a beautiful city, but one that clearly needs better flood defences, as both Da Vinci and Michaelangelo told the authorities.

The characters in this novel are not all good people, and don’t necessarily deserve good things. But for most of them the flood offers a chance of redemption in some form or another.

It gets pretty dark and there’s a rather creepy killer/artist making girls disappear as well, adding a supernatural element to the apocalyptic drowning of the city of the Medicis.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

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Blog Tour: The Nesting – C.J. Cooke*

The grieving widower. The motherless daughters. A beautiful house in the woods. And a nanny come to save the day….

So what if Lexi isn’t telling the truth about who she is? Escaping to the remote snows of Norway was her lifeline. And all she wanted was to be a part of their lives.

But soon, isolated in that cold, creaking house in the middle of ancient, whispering woods, Lexi’s fairytale starts to turn into a nightmare. With darkness creeping in from the outside, Lexi’s fears are deepening.

Lexi knows she needs to protect the children in her care. But protect them from what?

C.J. Cooke is an acclaimed, award-winning poet, novelist and academic with numerous other publications under the name of Carolyn Jess-Cooke.

Born in Belfast, she has a PhD in Literature from Queen’s University, Belfast, and is currently Lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Glasgow, where she researches creative writing interventions for mental health.

She also founded the Stay-At-Home Festival.

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My thoughts:

I love weird Gothic novels with creepy houses, sinister trees and monsters so this book really appealed to me. It’s also a really good example of how to do Gothic horror in the 21st Century. While all the characters have mobile phones and WiFi etc, the terrifying apparition and the way the forest seems to fold in on people defy the rational technology we all hold so dear. You can look things up but an ipad won’t stop a ghost or in this case a nokk (a Norwegian water spirit and not a friendly one).

Reeling from his wife’s sudden death and the literal collapse of his previous dream house, Tom has thrown himself into building an architectural masterpiece hanging from a cliff in the Norwegian forest. His two young daughters are being taken care of by Sophie, who isn’t who she says she is at all. There’s an unhappy housekeeper (shades of Mrs Danvers), a creepy basement, an elk that seems to be entering the house, a frustrated business partner and his exercise obsessed wife. Throw all these things together and it’s a wonder anyone makes it out alive.

I thoroughly enjoyed this creepy book, although I will be avoiding houses built on fjords for good, they don’t seem entirely safe or friendly.


*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: The Haunted Shore – Neil Spring*

A CHILLING GHOST STORY SET IN THE HAUNTING WILDERNESS OF SUFFOLK
When Lizzy moves to a desolate shore to escape her past, she hopes to find sanctuary. But a mysterious stranger is waiting for her, her father’s carer, and when darkness falls, something roams this wild stretch of beach, urging Lizzy to investigate its past. The longer she stays, the more the shore’s secrets begin to stir. Secrets of a sea that burned, of bodies washed ashore — and a family’s buried past reaching into the present.
And when Lizzy begins to suspect that her father’s carer is a dangerous imposter with sinister motives, a new darkness rises. What happens next is everyone’s living nightmare . . .

From the bestselling author of The Ghost Hunters and The Lost Village, The Haunted Shore is a terrifying tale of suspense that does not let up until the last page is turned.

My thoughts:

Well this was suitably weird and creepy.

I’ve read a few books now set on Orford Ness, which is a former military base on the Suffolk coast, it was a secret base and not declassified til the 1970s so lots of stories and rumours persist about it.

This book dips into some of the rumours and mysteries surrounding the area, now a bird reserve, as well as mentioning some of the wider Suffolkian stories.

The Ness is remote and I imagine quite eery, especially in bad weather, making it the perfect setting for this story of regret and revenge.

Lizzy has made a serious mistake at work and having been fired she flees back to the family home, a converted tower on the Ness. Her father is suffering from dementia and her brother has hired the rather unpleasant Hazel to look after him.

Lizzy takes an instant dislike to her, and as events start to spin out of control, she becomes more and more afraid of Hazel and the amount of control she has over her dad, Cliff.

This book was really sinister and I could imagine all the strange noises and creepy things Lizzy thinks she’s experienced, the desolate shoreline slowly revealing its secrets.

The ending has so many twists and turns that I just couldn’t believe what was real and what the characters were imagining, which I think is the point.

It was really, really good and perfect for the short days and gathering nights of autumn. Plus, my husband, a Suffolk native, is going to take me to see the Ness for myself, so I can soak up the atmosphere for myself.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.