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  1. Review: Blood in the Woods by Joe Willie

    Continuing my horror novel reviews, I’m delighted to share my thoughts on J.P. Willie’s Blood in the Woods. Horror fiction comes in many forms and this is a novel with broad appeal far beyond horror fans.

    “For Jody, growing up in the late eighties and early nineties in the small Louisiana town of Hammond with his best friend Jack was filled with wonderful childhood memories.  Time spent playing in the woods, shooting pellet guns, blowing up mailboxes, fighting at school and upon the dawning of interest in the fairer sex, their carefree lives typical of children with few responsibilities and no worries beyond ...
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  2. In conversation with Donna Maria McCarthy on Gothic fiction

    When I decided to review Biddy Trotta gothic novella by Donna Maria McCarthy, I had no idea what I was in for. I haven’t read gothic fiction in a long while and I certainly didn’t anticipate coming across a work as much subtle as it is absurd, as much vivid as it is dark and dense, a work profoundly evocative and masterful in its execution. An accidental find I made as I walk the path of dark fiction.

    It was a discovery that led me to ponder many things. So I invited Donna Maria McCarthy to chat with me about gothic fiction, as I prepare to write my debut in the genre, and am immersed in studying the form. I hope ...
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  3. La Mareta signed to Odyssey Books!

    What an incredible start to 2018! I have just signed a publishing deal with Odyssey Books for La Mareta, a cosy mystery crime novel set on Lanzarote, Canary Islands, Spain. La Mareta is the sequel to The Drago Tree and continues my literary love affair with the islands that captured my heart long ago.

    Big thanks to Michelle Lovi, publisher at Odyssey Books, for believing in my work and for travelling to the island with me in 2016 to assist me with the research. We had a fascinating time and we both adored the gorgeous farmhouse we rented in Maguez. The front door opened onto a volcano! That house is one of the ...
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  4. A stunning review of A Perfect Square by Rachel Nightingale!

    You pour your heart and soul into a work, slave away for a year, maybe two, and if you are very lucky, a publisher sees merit in it. Then you hope that readers will as well. Sometimes your book finds its way into the hands of the perfect reader. This is one of those times. I am so grateful to receive this review of A Perfect Square.

    “When pianist Ginny Smith moves back to her mother’s house in Sassafras after her breakup with the degenerate Garth, synaesthetic and eccentric artist Harriet Brassington-Smythe is beside herself and contrives a creative collaboration to lift her daughter’s spirits: an exhibition of paintings and songs. ...
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  5. Artist Spotlight: Gabrielle Powell

    I have a lifelong passion for all the Arts, and especially visual art. I like to buy artworks when I can afford them, and I often include art and artists in my writing. So it was no stretch on my part to decide to run a series of artist spotlights. Here’s my first!
    I’m delighted to welcome Gabrielle Powell onto my blog. Gabrielle lives on the far south coast of New South Wales, Australia. I’ve long been in admiration of her work and also her values and vision. I’ve often wondered what makes an artist tick, so I asked Gabrielle some questions.

    What was the initial spark that turned you to pursue the creative ...
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  6. The Legacy of Old Gran Parks signed to HellBound Books!

    I’m delighted to announce I have just signed my comedy horror novel, The Legacy of old Gran Parks, to HellBound Books! Scheduled for release in April 2018.

    This is a story that has its genesis in a Facebook conversation I had with a friend and former neighbour in early 2017. This friend helped me with the research and gave me oodles of encouragement.  The result is a story that told itself. Thank you, Cassarndra!
    I’ll be revealing the story behind the story later. For now, I simply wanted to share how thrilled I am that before long this cracking tale will be available for all to enjoy.
    My eternal gratitude to my ...
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  7. Review: Biddy Trott by Donna Maria McCarthy

    Continuing my journey into the realm of horror fiction, I am thrilled to share my review of Biddy Trott, a fine novella composed by talented author, Donna Maria McCarthy.

    “‘If Biddy knows no rest, then none shall…’ A tragedy born of malice and evil, a tortured body and soul. The townsfolk of Royal Rumney have a conscience, a secret that tears away at their sanity. Any soul shall be offered up in place of the damned; ‘And ever the church bells tell a lie, is Biddy who comes and another will die. Set in eighteenth century England in the small market town of Royal Rumny, Biddy Trott is a Gothic Horror novella with tragedy at its core. ...
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  8. Review: The Pleasure Hunt by Jacob Floyd

    I’m delighted to share my review of Jacob Floyd’s The Pleasure Hunt, a work of paranormal horror.

    “After meeting the mysterious Dark Dance on the casual encounters website, The Pleasure Hunters Club, Sexy Cupid finds himself enchanted by an enigmatic seductress – Dark Dance.
    After experiencing bizarre, nightmarish visions during their first physical liaison, Cupid awakes on a bench somewhere in Louisville, unable to get the mystifying creature off his mind. As he begins to search both online and through the seedy streets of the city for her, he uncovers harrowing truths about the object of his obsession, truths which fill him ...
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  9. The Good Life: 27 Nov 2017

    I’m delighted to share Ann Creber’s reflections on The Cabin Sessions!

    Ann Creber Collections
    Hello Good Lifers,
    We ran out of time yesterday to remind you of so many interesting events that are happening between now and Christmas (sooooo close!) but I will list as many as I can at the end of this waffle. ……………………………
    For weeks – longer! – Isobel Blackthorn has been teasing us with promises of her new book CABIN SESSIONS and I finally received my awaited copy Saturday afternoon! This did not allow very much time to read it before we had our interview on Monday’s program, but I dived in to absorb as much as possible. ...
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  10. The Cabin Sessions book launch wrap up!

    The launch of The Cabin Sessions proved to be a night beyond my wildest expectations!  The Alex Legg Memorial Foundation gave over the last Leggacy Sessions of the year, and I played host to a fine collection of musicians taking on the parts of various characters in my book.
    Barbara Jeffrey and Jose Garcia as Rebekah and David Fisher.

    Phil Lester and Neesy Smith as Joshua Thorne and Hannah Fisher

    Dave Wolfe as Ed Smedley

    Max Less and Annie Dixon as Philip Stone and Cynthia Morgan

    Fred ...
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  11. Review: Demons, Devils and Denizens of Hell: Vol 2

    I’m thrilled to share my review of Demons, Devils and Denizens of Hell: Vol 2, and anthology of horror stories compiled by P. Mattern, edited by Ztina Marie and published by HellBound Books.

    “Another anthology of otherworldy delights, tales of horror, dread and hellish inhabitants, – all lovingly compiled by award-winning author P. Mattern.
    Our second journey into the darkest recesses of Satan’s pit has superlative tales of nefarious delight by: Andrew MacKay, Ryan Woods, PC3, Richard Raven, Dante Crossroad, Josh Schlossberg, Brianna M. Fenty, Paul Lubaczewski, Marcus Mattern, R.L. Chambers, Gerri R Grayson, John ...
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  12. Review: Kentucky’s Haunted Mansions by Jacob and Jenny Floyd

    When I purchased my copy of Kentucky’s Haunted Mansions I didn’t know what to expect. I knew it was a book grounded in history and fact and that was about it.

    Kentucky’s Haunted Mansions, from paranormal authors Jacob and Jenny Floyd, will take you into the homes of the dignitaries and luminaries that made Kentucky industrious through business, bureaucracy, and bloodshed. Beyond the rich, sweeping history that these men wrote, there lies the spiritual energy their lives left behind. Some of these mansions are alleged to be haunted, and many ghostly reports have come out of them. Read about phantoms such as the angry young girl at Griffin ...
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  13. Review: On the Job by Sandi Wallace

    I’m delighted to present my review of On The Job by Australian crime author, Sandi Wallace.

    “The highs and lows of cops on the job. The cases that make them, break them, bring them laughs, maybe even love. Police on the beat, working one-officer shops and seasoned detectives pursue a cunning home intruder, a full-moon prankster, false friends, vengeful partners. Adrenaline-charged car chases, unsanctioned surveillance, intense interrogation. The impact of a child’s tragic death. The import of unearthing what happened to an infant and her mother. Lives saved and crooks captured. This gripping collection of Sandi Wallace’s ...
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  14. Shopping List 2

    About a year ago I signed up for a free online creative writing course as research for running my own. In those ten weeks participants were invited to write the bones of a short story. I came up with plain Jane on a train. Yeah, I guess I was feeling a bit cynical and detached as I was really just being a spy, but I jumped through the hoops and engaged anyway.

    Then I tinkered with this Jane and her train journey, and the more I did, the darker the story became. The result is ‘Ignominy’, a dark tale about a train journey, describing where Jane has been, who she meets, and what happens as a result.
    I ended up loving Jane ...
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  15. On horror, dark fiction and The Cabin Sessions

    When author Elizabeth Jane Corbett (The Tides Between) invited me to onto her site for an in-depth interview, I must have answered with my morning coffee on my desk. Her questions stimulated some detailed answers. I am no horror-genre expert, far from it, but I do have some thoughts about the genre and I am happy that through The Cabin Sessions, readers who would not normally go near a horror novel, are taking an interest.

    “This is a must read for all who like to be profoundly disturbed by their reading. Or for others, like me, who are simply keen to see the best of what this genre can hold.” – ...
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