Tag Archive | horror

Books I Read in July ’17

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Thief of the Night Guild

by Andy Peloquin

35281158The first book of Queen of Thieves (Child of the Night Guild) was “an edge of your seat, fast-moving and unforgettable read” and I was eager to read this second book.

Thief of the Night Guild is everything I hoped it would be, and much more!

Ilanna is now a strong and determined journeyman, a professional thief and a woman in what is mainly a mans world. She wants to secure her freedom from the guild and protect her son from its clutches.

The characters were so skilfully drawn that I felt as though I was living along side them.
So I joined Ilanna and her accomplices as they strived to pull off the greatest heist in Praamis.
Andy Peloquin’s fluent and descriptive writing ensured that I felt the joy of friendship and suffered heartache and pain from the betrayal and loss of our friends.

Illana’s story – so far – is one that will stay with me for a very long time.
And I am now waiting on tenterhooks for the next book in the series.

 
“I am Ilanna, Journeyman of House Hawk. I do the impossible.”

A cunning thief of unrivaled ingenuity, Ilanna is determined to secure her freedom. Nothing will prevent her escape from the Night Guild’s callous cruelty, not even the most powerful man in Praamis, Duke Phonnis.

Commanding a crew of pickpockets, bounty hunters, poisoners, and assassins, Ilanna schemes to disgrace the Duke. She must survive blackmail, a bloodthirsty rival syndicate, and enemies within her own House to claim her spoils: vengeance for the deaths of her friends and gold to buy independence.

But all Ilanna’s skill may not suffice to protect the one person who matters most: her son.

***

Flirting With Time: A Charlie McClung Mystery

by Mary Anne Edwards

35555087 Another wonderful and entertaining mystery in the Charlie McClung series.

Mary Anne Edwards’ books go from strength to strength. The characters continue to develop and the mysteries get more intriguing and suspenseful.

I’ll be looking forward to the next instalment in Charlie, Marian and their friends lives.

To get the best out of this series the books should be read in order.

 
Detective Charlie McClung is haunted by someone leaving mysterious paper hearts in odd places for his bride, Marian. Any thought that this is the work of a harmless prankster quickly vanishes when his men are attacked and people begin to die. The stalker is growing bolder and Charlie knows he needs to act quickly but there are too many suspects, too many alibis, and too much at stake.

***

Wolf Bride: The Tale of Ailis and Eoghan

by C.D. Gorri

35222715C.D. Gorri takes us back to a time before the formation of the Macconwood Pack.

It’s a well written and fascinating, historical look at Macconwoods first Alpha and his mate. The story pulls you in and doesn’t let go.

Another superb book from this talented author.

The path to true love is often rocky, especially for Werewolves Eoghan MacContire and Ailis Dungannon in 16th Century Ireland.

Find out how it all began in this prequel to the Macconwood Pack Series.

***

The Hunger Within

by Lily Luchesi

35510557 The Hunger Within is not your customary stereotypical vampire story…. It’s a heck of a lot steamier!

There’s a lot of action and intrigue packed into this short story from Lily Luchesi, as Bec starts her new life alongside her dominating sire and fathoms out how to deal with all the complications that go with it.

 
Newly turned vampire Rebecca Renfield is about to discover that there is much more to the world of the Undead than sex, blood, and handcuffs. Her sire and Mistress is the direct descendant of Count Dracula, and that means she has a reputation to uphold. Meetings with vampiric dignitaries, secret blood and bondage dungeons, and vampire hunters now fill the couple’s nights. is this world everything Bec thought it would be, or will she fall under the pressure of what it means to be the submissive to the most powerful vampiress in the world?

***

Crane

by Stacey Rourke

35222715Crane is an entertaining and (in parts) amusing story. I liked how the author blended the ‘historic’ tale with the modern day twist on the retelling of ‘The Legend of Sleepy Hollow’.

Although I thought the characters could do with a bit more developing, the story was well written and kept me turning the pages to see what would happen next.

 
The Horseman is unending,
his presence shan’t lessen.
If you break the curse,
you become the legend.

Washington Irving and Rip Van Winkle had no choice but to cover up the deadly truth behind Ichabod Crane’s disappearance. Centuries later, a Crane returns to Sleepy Hollow awakening macabre secrets once believed to be buried deep.

What if the monster that spawned the legend lived within you?

Now, Ireland Crane, reeling from a break-up and seeking a fresh start, must rely on the newly awakened Rip Van Winkle to discover the key to channeling the darkness swirling within her. Bodies are piling high and Ireland is the only one that can save Sleepy Hollow by embracing her own damning curse.

But is anyone truly safe when the Horseman rides?

***

The Blood of the Infected Series

by Antony J Stanton

The Blood of the Infected Banner

Series: The Blood of the Infected
Author: Antony J. Stanton
Genre: post-apocalyptic/thriller/horror

Once Bitten, Twice Die

Book One

OBTD High Contrast 2017The end of the world was just the beginning.

A cure for dementia has disastrously failed. Patients are left crazed, infectious and enraged. The ensuing carnage quickly spreads the disease, and civilisation is decimated.

On London’s outskirts a military base shelters some survivors. The soldiers within must battle against the infected who now roam unchallenged. Tensions are high, relationships fraught, death commonplace.

But if they thought the end of the world was bad enough, their troubles have only just begun…

An ancient menace has long existed in secret alongside humanity – a vampire clan, which has recently encountered the soldiers. Now is their time to emerge from the shadows. First though they have to overcome their own problems. They too have to fight for survival against the infected, and they violently disagree on their approach towards the humans.

Hostilities are rising. It’s only a matter of time now…

Amazon

 

Once Bitten, Twice Live

Book Two

9780993428531When death is the best option, survival is no longer enough…

With a growing realization that their continued existence bestows upon them a debt to humanity, the survivors look to create a cure for the insanity that has brought civilization to its knees. But that only encourages disagreement and infighting, and comes at a heavy price, bringing various shocks and surprises.

Tensions amongst the vampires are escalating, jeopardizing the very existence of the clan itself. A battle for supremacy seems inevitable and their future is in the balance. How far will Farzin go to achieve his aims – domination of the vampires and humans alike? And how terrible will his vengeance be against any who stand in his path? Their interaction with the humans threatens to increase and not necessarily for the benefit of either group.

Meanwhile the wrathful infected grow ever hungrier…

When every day is a struggle to stay alive, survival of the fittest is never guaranteed.

Amazon

 

Twice Bitten, Twice Die

Book Three

TBTD front-hiWhen there’s no one left to hear you scream…

Deaths amongst the survivors are occurring at an unsustainable rate. Numbers are rapidly dwindling. Morale is plummeting. Soon they will be beyond salvation, yet their real task has only just begun. But will anyone remain alive to complete it? Nothing could have prepared the soldiers for what lies ahead. If they thought life was brutal already, they had absolutely no idea…

The vampires are in disarray. Their relationships are becoming blurred, confused and violent. A titanic clash between soldiers and vampires seems imminent but no one’s survival is assured.

In a world where life is unpredictable, the threat from the infected suddenly becomes even more unexpected and menacing. Hostilities are inevitable. Only one thing is certain: there will be blood!

Amazon

 

 

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Author Bio:

AntonyStanton was born in London in 1970. Even as a child he always dreamed of becoming a published author, and he started to write a book. But, having watched the film ‘Top Gun,’ he was swayed into a becoming a military pilot. After no more than a glancing blow of a career in the British Royal Air Force he decided that his long term future lay elsewhere and he became a commercial pilot and remains thus to this day. Hence much of this trilogy was written all around the world, generally at unsociable times when jet-lag meant that normal people were asleep.

During a holiday with three friends, a bet was made amongst them. Each had a task to fulfil within the year – Stanton’s was to write a book. A little late, but five years on and his challenge has been completed. Three times.

His period spent in the RAF helped him write the military survival aspects of this book, and a kidnapping incident in Kazakhstan (*see guest post) and shooting in Ghana, amongst other ‘adventures’, provided him with a dark well of experience to draw from. Life is, after all, one big adventure. A combination of the aforementioned, along with his love of the darker sides of literature, and the results are this novel and the next two in the trilogy.

And all it took was the impetus of a friendly challenge to spur him on to his creative dream… He still lives in South London and is very much looking forward to watching his friend fulfilling his part of the challenge: demonstrating his (not-so) newly acquired break-dancing skills, surely a sight to behold

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon

 

Guest Post:

There is an incident that happened to me a few years ago, that I thought might be of interest. I love travel and have been fortunate to visit over 100 countries. You get to meet all kinds of fascinating people and as often as not it is the people who either make or break a trip.

I found the people of Kazakhstan to be incredibly warm and friendly on the whole – that is, when they are not trying to kidnap you. They are hospitable and open their arms and their houses readily to foreigners and strangers in a way that puts us in the West to shame. This part of the world really is the kind of place where intrigue and exploits abound. Anyone with the slightest inkling for adventure can find it without searching too hard. However, there is also this darker side that exists in their society; the ever-present undercurrent of corruption and bribery and, in my case, kidnapping.


It wasn’t my writing that took me to Kazakhstan back in 1999. It was my primary job as a commercial airline pilot for British Airways. We had a training contract to teach the Kazakhstanis to fly the Boeing 757, a most interesting experience in itself. When my work finished, I went travelling for a while, and that was when I had my little ‘adventure’. A lot happened. Even before I was abducted I had already had a fascinating time most worthy of narrating. I will write of that in another article as you really should know how all this began. But for now, I must tell you of the kidnapping itself, so I will jump right into the midst of the whirlwind.


I awoke at the border. The vodka was still heavy on my breath but I was sober enough to realise that I was the last person on the bus, and that it was now night-time. Alas, I was not sharp enough to understand the significance of this. I really had drunk a lot. Not my fault. The bus driver was shooing me off his bus, so I collected my day-sack and climbed down.


As the bus pulled away I realised that the border, which was rather inconveniently situated in the middle of nowhere, was well and truly closed. However, there was a car waiting. In Kazakhstan there were not many proper, bonafide taxis. If one wanted to go somewhere one hailed private cars as they went by. Someone would swerve to a halt with the screech of dodgy brakes and one could barter with the man. Well, here was a car that was ready and waiting for me. Perfect. And this one had, not one man, but two.


Soon I found myself on my way. I had told the driver and his friend that I wanted to cross the border from Kazakhstan, and go to Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan. ‘Dah, dah,’ they had assured me. I settled back into the seat but immediately something seemed wrong. Nothing definite, just an uneasy feeling. After a short while I leaned forwards.


“Tashkent?” I asked, making sure they knew where I wanted to go.


“Dah, dah,” they again said.


I left it for a minute or so, but it was clear that Tashkent was across the border and we were heading away from the border. Away from Tashkent. Away from any signs of other people and into the bleak and barren countryside.


It is amazing how sobering fear can be. Instantly I was alert. The lurch in my stomach was not due to the alcohol but to the sudden realisation of how my stupidity had actually put me in a VERY dangerous position. I repeated my request to be taken to Tashkent. Again, they tried to convince me that all was okay. But all was most definitely not okay. And if I did not do something soon, then quite possibly all would not ever be okay for me again. I leaned forward and demanded that they stop. They did not speak English but they understood well enough. And they ignored me. I was shocked at how fast the day had gone from one amazing and joyous experience to a complete nightmare.


“Tashkent, Tashkent, okay,” they said, but this was not okay and I was not okay. They were driving me further from the border, further from any semblance of civilisation and further from safety. I looked all around, and realised that I had only one option…


On these unkempt, remote gravel roads the car had slowed to take a bend. Now was my chance. Now was my only chance. Without considering the danger, I opened the door and dived out. I do not remember how quickly we were travelling, but it can’t have been very fast as I did not seem to injure myself – or maybe that was the vodka’s protective embrace. The car screeched and complained to a halt some twenty yards away. Still close, but far enough for me to be able to affect my escape. The men were shouting at me, ‘Tashkent, Tashkent, no problem.’ Only I knew that there most definitely was a problem. And now here I was, in the middle of no-man’s land, nobody else in sight in the enfolding darkness, and my options very limited.


They were clearly as surprised by my actions as I was. I guess nobody had escaped from them in such a drastic manner before. I now had to decide. I could run back to the border, and by the time they turned the car I could probably be long gone and it would be easy to hide. If they chased me on foot I was confident I could outpace them. But either way I would be without my rucksack that I had foolishly put in the car boot. Not ideal.


Alternatively, I could dash back to the car and try to open the boot and grab my rucksack before they grabbed hold of me, but that would almost certainly end in a fight. Not good.


Or I could get back in and, fingers crossed, all would be ok. I tend to have a very positive attitude to life in general. Things just seem to work out, at least that’s how it seems in my naivety. So, I dusted myself off and chose option three.


‘Tashkent? Well why didn’t you say my good man?’ Having just dived out of a moving car I have no idea what they must have been thinking as I climbed back in. Lunatic!


For the rest of the journey I was completely awake and aware of my surroundings, keenly watching where we were going, looking out for signs of civilisation or habitation (none), noting the route, and mentally preparing myself for action. They no longer tried to convince me we were heading for Tashkent. The charade was over. Finally, we arrived at a lone farmhouse where there were two more kind-hearted men, ready to assist me with my luggage, just like a first rate, international hotel. ‘Why thank you sir, so kind. Please take my bag. Oh, and my wallet too? Be my guest…’


They escorted me into the abandoned building. I noted there were no other houses around. Inside there was no furniture or decoration to speak of. Clearly it was long-since abandoned. Just a table in a rear room, a bare light-bulb swinging, and a single chair into which I was ‘ushered’. Images of the film ‘Midnight Express’ flooded my mind. I realised if I lived to see sunrise I would be extremely lucky. They took my rucksack and ripped it open it, tipping its contents onto the cold floor like spilled intestines. I started to complain but the largest of them raised a threatening fist. I saw no weapons but who’s to know whether they had knives or not. And besides, there were four of them, after all.


They spoke no English, but I understood there was some kind of hierarchy, as though they were in the military or the police. I also understood that the best thing was to comply. Comply with their every request. Comply, right up until that moment when I thought I was about to die. And then I would fight for my life. When it was clear that I was in mortal danger then I would have nothing more to lose.


They all stood over me as I sat. I reasoned, if I acted suddenly I could probably strike one or two before they would have a chance to react. I started to plan what I would do, who I would attack first, where I would hit them as I sprang into action. If I was lucky and decisive, maybe that would swing things in my favour. Maybe I would avoid death. Maybe I could facilitate an escape. But this really was a very, VERY last resort. Until then, comply.


They went through my rucksack fairly thoroughly and found my money, which they took. Obviously. They ignored my camera, passport and sunglasses which surprised me. It was only money they wanted. However, they did not search me, so they did not find the money belt I wore. I started to think they were nervous and unprofessional. I was not sure if that made them less dangerous or more.


Time passed, and they started to argue amongst themselves. I will never know what they were discussing, but the scowls, gesticulations and glances in my direction made me think they were arguing about me. And specifically, what to do with me. Do they kill me and dump my body? Or do they let me go and risk being identified? I knew that the border here was real bandit country. I knew that my chances were not exactly great. I was preparing myself for action. If it was going to happen, then surely it would be soon. I had to be ready. Complete surprise, just like my exiting their car like James Bond (or perhaps more Jonny English), was my only chance, and a slight one at that.


I had heard of the Stockholm Syndrome – where feelings of trust or affection develop in a victim towards their captor. I wondered if I could use this to my advantage, by developing some sort of positive relationship with them. To make them see me as a person, and ultimately to set me free. I hung my head and tried to look downcast, to prompt feelings of sympathy. I sighed deeply and wrung my hands in despair, and it seemed to work, with one or two of them at least. They were all smoking, so I asked for a cigarette. One of the more apparently empathic men gave me one. It felt like a condemned man’s last cigarette in a black and white film. I looked around my grim surroundings taking it all in. The bare floorboards, the peeling wallpaper, the damp stains on the ceiling, all the while drawing on my last cigarette. This shared cigarette gave us all something in common, some form of bond; I hoped. It was the oddest experience for me. I felt detached from myself, as though I was watching a movie from above. I was curious to see how it would end. Would the luckless traveller escape? Would he be set free? Or would this be his gruesome end?


The arguing amongst them continued, for a while. Fists were shaken and voices raised. The one who seemed to be in charge was still angry, but the two empathic ones definitely seemed to be fighting my corner. Or so I hoped. Finally, they handed me my rucksack, and $20, (which they then changed to $10). To me this meant life. They were not going to kill me. I felt indescribably elated. I had a rush of warmth – maybe some of that Stockholm Syndrome flooding in. I figured the money must be to pay a taxi to take me away from them. At this, the feeling of the night changed for me. If I was not going to die then this had gone from being the worst (and last) night of my life, to possibly the most fascinating adventure. I had $10 and a pack of cards in my backpack. Suddenly there were possibilities.


What if I could entice them to play poker and I was able to gamble all of my money back…? How cool would that be! What an ending to my initially unfortunate incident. I had visions of myself and my captors-turned poker friends, sitting in the smoke filled room, perhaps sharing a tot of whiskey while I hustled them and shared jokes through the international language of alcohol. But they weren’t for playing, alas. Undeterred, I thought that I really should have a photo of the event. Nobody’s gonna believe this has happened otherwise, I thought. They said no. Unsurprisingly. But wait – I wasn’t deterred. Like those books one sees written by ex-SAS soldiers with photos of troops with blacked out eyes to preserve their identities, I tried to mime to them that they could cover their eyes. Imagine, a photo of me posing with my captors, beaming at the camera with pockets stuffed full of my poker earnings, arms on their shoulders as they cover their faces. This time the leader thumped his fist on the table when he almost shouted at me. Ok, time to stop treating it like a game. Time to get away. And live.


A car finally arrived. I was ushered outside, and my captors bade me an ‘emotional’ farewell. This car had only one driver – I checked carefully this time. He whisked me away from the house, into the night. I looked back but they were quickly lost in the darkness. After all, there aren’t exactly any streetlights in that part of the world. He drove me back to the border, to the Uzbekistani side. I was alive. I was free. I was euphoric.


The driver, a grizzled and rough man who stank of cigarettes, probably in his fifties, then turned around to face me. He held out his hand, demanding money. Adrenaline had been coursing through my body for several hours now and I was still fairly pumped for action. This was just too much for me. It really was taking the mickey. They had had quite enough from me, thanks. Now I was sober and it was one against one, mano a mano. I swore at him in no uncertain terms. Despite our lack of a common tongue, he most definitely got my meaning. It would have been hard to misinterpret me. I got out and think I may even have slammed the door. This time however, I remembered my rucksack. I had been kidnapped for a few hours. It was now early morning. I was tired, cold and thirsty, and stuck at the border. What now? I may have been free, but unbeknownst to me my ordeal was far from over…


For some reason there were three other cars at the border. They seemed to have nothing to do with the kidnappers although I still have no clue what they were doing there at that time. I approached them and asked for a cigarette (they were smoking – obviously). One spoke a little English so I explained my situation to him and asked for help. Kindly he agreed to take me to Tashkent. When they’re not abducting you and threatening your life, they really are very decent people. I checked into the Sheraton, absolutely amazed that I was not dead and feeling extremely happy with life. I went straight to the bar – still open – and had the best beer of my life, whilst telling the barmaid, ‘I’ve just been kidnapped, don’t you know!’


The fact that I was now in Uzbekistan without actually crossing the border and without having my passport checked, did not register as important. Not yet, anyway!

 

 

The Knowing by David Graham

TheKnowing_zpsvw30mekb
 
Genre: Dark Fantasy, Thriller, Horror
Date Published: March 2017
 
The KnowingUnited by destiny, they must stand together to face an ancient evil…..

Ceri Edwards and two school friends lift the lid on an ancient book of recipes belonging to Betty Williams, a volunteer at the local hospital in Pontypridd, South Wales. Two Kansas City cops step off a flight at London Heathrow and one of them falls to the ground with a painful conviction that there’s something evil in the air.

United in their destinies, Ceri and the police officers are drawn into a world where prophecies are pitted against invisible forces planning to raze London to the ground and bring down the Royal Family.

It all rests with Dai Williams, recently knighted MI5 agent and reluctant hero, to bring some order to the improbable events and to ensure that afternoon tea at The Ritz continues for another hundred years.

A great cross between Kim Newman and Ben Aaranovitch and a thrill for any fan of contemporary urban horror.

Amazon

Available on NetGalley until May 15th

 

Excerpt:

A decent, pot-bellied, cast iron cauldron usually sold for a hundred pounds. One that was antique and appropriately fire-tarnished doubled the sum. Use by an accredited witch—specifically a member of the Dynion Mwyn tradition—could nudge that figure into the stratosphere. That was because a well-used cauldron was believed to absorb spells into the metalwork, supposedly making incantations more effective. Debunking that idea was as fruitless as rubbishing homeopathy—particularly now that Welsh folklore remedies had royal approval and were being marketed under the Cymry Originals brand, with a crest of giant leeks crossed like swords under a flying harp.


None of that was of the slightest interest to the three girls peering into the bubbling contents of the vessel. Ceri, Dilys and Bronwen liked to imagine their Celtic magick delivered with Grimm determination and lashings of David Giuntoli whom they had already accorded the title of ‘Honorary Welshman’. He would know a good potion if he saw one and would have no time for fictional fripperies like wands. They were for stupid kids who knocked themselves out walking into the wall between platforms at railway stations. Owls were cool, though, although they were far too self-important to be used as posties.


All three would-be witches were outfitted courtesy of Georgio @ Asda. ‘Gold Witch’ was an absolute steal at three pounds—if zero carat bling rocks your cwch. They had also considered the ‘Mental Patient’ blood-spattered straitjacket costume, but Bronwen’s mum was a social worker and thought the mentally ill deserved more respect than a few pence-worth of garish polyester. A gorily-streaked, plastic meat cleaver was an optional extra and she thought it was very realistic.


It was all for show, of course. They had no need of such embellishments, but it kept their mothers happy—and, hopefully, ignorant of what they were up to. The fact that Halloween—or, more accurately, All Hallows’ Eve—was just around the corner, provided the perfect smokescreen for their activities. There was always the chance Ceri’s mum might enter the room while they were in the middle of adding an eye or two of newt, so they had the music system turned up loud and playing Super Furry Animals. Actually, newt eyes were so yesterday. They’d read that modern witchery had honed the ingredients down to essences of magic which could be bought over the internet if you knew where to look. Currently, they had no internet thanks to the stupid British government, so they’d had to improvise— after tossing salt over their left shoulders, crossing their fingers and reciting a hundred Hail Marys.

The Knowing with Author Photo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Other Books by David Graham:

The Screaming

Genre: Horror, Supernatural, Thriller, Crime
Published: July 2015

The ScreamingWhat causes an adolescent – straight A student Brandon P Marshall – to walk downstairs naked, armed with a pair of Glocks, and go all Charles Manson on his family? This is only one in the horrifying trail of incidents that brings together Detective Sergeant Dale Franklin of the Kansas City Police Department and his poster-boy rookie, Steve Abrams. Meanwhile, across the pond, Dai Williams, in Battersea London, safe inside his improvised Faraday cage, is coming to terms with his special talents – talents that will take ‘getting-into-the-mind-of-the-killer’ to a whole new level. Al-Qaeda? Drugs Cartels? Internet freaks? David Graham’s The Screaming leaves no possibility untouched as Dai enters a bizarre and horrifying world where kids scream.

Amazon

 
  

The Author:

The Knowing Author David Graham.jpgDavid Graham lives in an ostensibly carbon zero house in rural Kent with his partner and cat amidst fields of maize and poly-tunnels of strawberries. Previously, he lived and worked in London as a consultant in the National Health Service.

His previous non-fiction titles include: Medical Computing and Applications, Creative Sound and Computer-Assisted Medical Learning: Clinical Anatomy. David turned his attention to writing fiction in 2012. Since then, he has written one self-published novel (Looks Could Kill) and two traditionally published novels (Captive and Wet & Wild) under the name David Ellis.

Looks Could Kill was in the Amazon Kindle Top 10 of spy thrillers and was downloaded more than 3,000 times. Captive was nominated for a Lambda Literary Award. He has also written two romance novellas under the name Richard Longfellow. His horror thriller The Screaming was published by Frostbite Publishing in the US in 2014, and by Austin Macauley in the UK in 2015. His new book The Knowing is the sequel to The Screaming and was published by Urbane Publications.

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Blood Phoenix: Imprinted by Alisha Costanzo

BloodPhoenixBlitz_zpsunjejslz

Genre: Urban Fantasy with satirical, horror, and romantic elements
Date Published: May 9, 2017
Publisher: Transmundane Press, LLC

imprinted20offical20coverWith an old war raging between vampires and shifters, Ria must learn to refocus her life if she’s going to survive.

Her renegade fight was just the beginning. The queen is recruiting new soldiers. Ria’s going on vicious missions with her battle buddy. And her explosive abilities are malfunctioning at inopportune moments.

So now, Ria must forgo her selfish desires to compartmentalize her life, but what’s she to do when she can’t save everyone she wants to? One girl may not be capable of taking down an empire. Good thing Ria’s got help.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Transmundane Store

 

 

 

 
Giveaway:

Glow-in-the-dark necklace (photo attached), $10 giftcard, e-copy of LOVING RED, and choice of signature scent essential oil.lubingshine-wishing-ball-dry-flower-charm-dandelion-pendant-necklace-glowing-in-the-dark-necklace-for-women

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The Author:

costanzo20author20picAlisha Costanzo is from a Syracuse suburb. She earned her MFA in creative writing from the University of Central Oklahoma, where she currently teaches English. She’s the author of BLOOD PHOENIX: REBIRTH, BLOOD PHOENIX: CLAIMED, BLOOD PHOENIX: IMPRINTED, and LOVING RED, and co-editor of DISTORTED. UNDERWATER, and AFTER THE HAPPILY EVER AFTER. She’s currently editing her new 2017 fire-themed anthology, writing about Ria’s father, and crafting her new YA novel for its 2018 release. In the meantime, she will continue to corrupt young minds, rant about the government, and daydream about her all around nasty creatures.

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Books I Read in February ’17

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The Last City (The Last City #1)

by Logan Keys

33968428Until nearly the end of the book, you go back and forth between two stories, told side by side from the point of view of two people, leading totally separate lives. You know they are going to link up, but you don’t know how.

There’s mystery, suspense, action and romance. Real characters with depth and emotions. Some amazing world-building and a unique plot.

There are some ‘slow’ moments, but that just gives you chance to breath.
All in all it’s a well paced page turner.

The ending leaves a lot of questions unanswered, which sets you up for the next book.

I can’t wait for the sequel!

 
Sixteen-year-old Liza was prepared to die from cancer, but instead she’s been gifted super-strength. Since the undead plague, the world’s gone crazy: Evil dictators, mad scientists, sick kids imprisoned on an island, and experiments that have created the stuff of myths and legends.

When Liza meets Jeremy Writer, an anarchist rousting the people to revolt, she has a choice to make. Risk imprisonment, or join the rebellion. And she finds she has a talent for enlisting allies to their cause.

Tommy’s a normal seventeen-year-old boy, that is, until he’s angry. The Underground’s created super-soldiers to fight the regime holding the last city. But he struggles to contain his monster more and more, and Tommy wonders how much of himself will be left when they arrive. He’s got too many who rely on him, to give up now.

If Liza can’t help spark an uprising, and Tommy loses control before victory, then the last of the population will be purged, and freedom will be nothing but a memory.

Grab your copy, and join the resistance today.

The Last City (Formerly Gods of Anthem) is a young adult zombie dystopian tale that faces all odds in a post-apocalyptic world. Fans of The Walking Dead, The Hunger Games, and Divergent will devour this thrilling series.

***

La La Land (The Last City #2)

by Logan Keys

33229910Wow!

I might’ve had to wait a while for the second installment in The Last City series, but it was totally worth it.

This epic story continues in the same style as the first book, with different points of view and separate story lines that keep you wondering how and when they will join up.

The characters (new and old) are still ‘real’ with depth and emotions, and the world building is superb. The pages are filled with non-stop action and suspense, twists and turns, love and hate, and happiness and heartbreak.

The unique and engaging plot kept me on the edge of my seat from start to finish, and left me wanting more!

 
A rebel who’s been revived to save the world. A soldier with a monster locked inside.

Liza and Tommy return to a destroyed America, continuing their fight for freedom, only this time, their search for allies will end with the same madmen and women who’ve engineered new monsters in an attempt to create the perfect soldier.

Faster. Smarter. Hungrier.

These rejects from the special program have replaced the undead at the top of the food chain.

Blood suckers roam the wilds, while brutal youths trap unsuspecting travelers.

No place is safe.

If Tommy and Liza can’t stop the warmongering council that rules the new fortress, they might not get a chance at freedom again.

Grab your copy today.

Following the best-selling novel The Last City (Gods of Anthem), La La Land is a must-read for fans of dystopian zombie books, and young adult fiction. Those who enjoyed The Walking Dead, Divergent, or Hunger Games, will love this sequel that delivers an epic tale of survival until the heart-stopping finale.

***

Right to Silence (Paranormal Detectives #4)

by Lily Luchesi

33871964 Another great book in the Paranormal Detectives series.

This one is a book of two halves, so you get two amazing stories for the price of one!

The first half follows Brighton and Mark’s relationship through both lives, past and present, and is an emotional story, with a heartbreaking ending.

The second half picks up where Life Sentence left off, with Angelica still ‘missing’ and Danny trying to make a life away from her and the P.I.D. Add in multiple murders, a kidnapping, an ancient prophecy and some trips into hell and you have a book filled with action and surprising twists.

This book is somewhat darker than the previous ones in this awesome series…
…and I can’t wait for the next one.

 
The truth can be deadly.
In the first of this two-part novel, we learn the history of hunters Brighton Sands and Mark Evans in their two lifetimes, culminating in their final battle with the insane vampire they have been hunting for centuries.
In the second part, with Angelica Cross still on the run, multiple vampiric murders lead to the kidnapping of a famous vamp. Detective Danny Mancini must drag a mortal into the bowels of Hell in order to rescue her.
But why does Leander Price want her so badly, and what does she have to do with an ancient vampire prophecy?

***

The Storm Creature

by Maria Gibbs

29508156An intriguing short story that hooked me on page one and kept my attention to the end. I was glad to be able to read it in one sitting, as I didn’t want to put it down.

The descriptive, and almost poetic, writing created a creepy and tense atmosphere. It was an emotional book, with a tragic ending, and I enjoyed every minute of it.

This is the first book by Maria Gibbs that I’ve read and I’m certain it won’t be the last

 
At eighteen, Lucy had everything going for her: a supportive family, a rapt audience, and her dream of becoming a published author about to be realized.
A single moment in time on a dark, rainy road changes things forever.
That was then, but this is now. Lucy has suffered through eight years of haunting visions and thoughts with every raging storm thanks to a tempestuous storm creature who torments her. What does the baleful creature want with Lucy? Will the troubled woman ever be able to let go of the past and forgive herself?
Or will she sacrifice everything she holds dear?

***

The Ceiling Man

by Patricia Lillie

33825471The Ceiling Man is a great psychological horror novel. I enjoyed this well-written and gripping book.

Told from various points of view, the characters are believable and get under your skin.

I’m still unsure who or what the “Ceiling Man” was, but I wouldn’t want to meet him.

I received this book for free via Kindle Scout.

 
A novel of slow burn horror.

Carole knows there can be no tie between her autistic daughter and the strange events in Port Massasauga. It’s not logical. It’s not possible.

The Ceiling Man has picked up other watchers in his travels, but they all dismissed him as a nightmare. The girl is different. She knows he’s real.

Teenage Abby is an innocent. The stranger only she sees and hears introduces her to evil. When Carole falls under the stranger’s sway, Abby must solve the puzzle of The Ceiling Man and save them both.

***

The Him Deep Down

by Chad Lutzke & Terry M. West

26248542A dark and twisted “zombie novelette”.
The zombies play second fiddle to the darker horror contained in this well-written short story.

 
In a decaying world that’s lost its battle against the undead, a group of desperate survivors search for shelter deep in the Texas woods. But they discover something far worse than the dead that command the earth. Prepare to meet the Him Deep Down! Authors Chad Lutzke (Night as a Catalyst) and Terry M. West (What Price Gory?) team together to offer a zombie story with a different kind of bite.

***

Choice Cuts by Michael J. Elliott

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Author gives readers something new to sink their teeth into.

On Halloween 2015, Aussie horror writer, Michael J. Elliott, launched his first collection of shorts, Portraits Of Dread. His first work was very well received and gained him some very favourable reviews. Now, exactly a year later, Michael is set to chill his readers again with his new collection, Choice Cuts-A Bite From The Dark Realm.

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As Michael explained:

“This is another eclectic mix of stories, from dystopia, to good old fashioned horror. I hope I’ve created a nice mix for my readers. I’ve tried to add that unexpected twist and the wry humour which readers have told me they enjoyed in my first collection.”

 

 

STORIES INCLUDE:

PENANCE
Deep within the bowels of an ancient mountside convent, Sister Elizabeta is locked away praying for forgiveness while the Council of Elders decide on a horrific punishment for her sins. What was Sister Elizabeta’s transgression and what is the punishment she is about to undergo?

picture1A BITE FROM THE DARK REALM.
Something is eating the food at a suburban London supermarket. When his overbearing boss tells Allan to rid the store of whatever is infesting the store, he discovers something far more terrifying than rats and mice.

BLACK SILK PANTIES.
Jacob O’Halloran is a sexually repressed bachelor. He gains his fulfillment by stealing women’s panties from suburban clothes lines. When he tries to steal from Audrey he is going to be plunged into a nightmare because Audrey has some issues of her own.

CHOICE CUTS ALSO INCLUDES:
Upon A Dark Horseman
Choice Cuts
Farewell Dear Friend
Brood Mother
And more.

Choice Cuts was released this Halloween and you can get your copy  by clicking on the following links.

Amazon | Smashwords

 
The Author:

11130284_449191385244010_5513577484407463000_nMichael J Elliott was writing stories since his early schooldays and was described by his school principal as “A Second Alfred Hitchcock”. Michael continued his love of writing in high school where he wrote and acted in films for his Media Studies class. He went on to study Media briefly at College, writing film scripts and radio ads. As a member of a community social theatre club, Michael wrote many of the sketches and routines that were performed for the benefit of senior citizens clubs. His most notable writing success was having one of his previously written comedy sketches chosen for a television comedy special.

Michael lives in a bayside suburb in the State of Victoria, Australia. When he isn’t writing tales to terrify readers he enjoys drawing, golden era hollywood movies, reading and cooking as well as looking after his two ‘best mates’, his cats Charlie and Smokey.

 

Michael loves connecting with book lovers and readers from around the world.
Feel free to ask him about his work or just say G’day at any of the following.

Facebook | TwitterOfficial Web Page

 

Life Sentence By Lily Luchesi

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Title: Life Sentence
Series: Paranormal Detectives – Book Three
Author: Lily Luchesi
Release Date: August 2nd, 2016
Genre: Paranormal, horror, mystery
Publisher: Vamptasy Publishing

 

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She can fight evil, but can she fight the darkness in her own blood?
After the disastrous events with Miranda have subsided, Danny and Angelica have to adjust to a new kind of life at the Paranormal Investigative Division.
Fiona is still on the loose, and she has all of Hell on her side. Danny begins to enhance his psychic abilities with the help of a soul just like his. Angelica is caught between a rock and a very dark place.
Can their love survive these new trials, or will the past tear them apart?

Read Stake-Out and Miranda’s Rights by clicking HERE.

Join the release day event for fun, games, and prizes!

Support Life Sentence on Thunderclap

Watch the official trailer featuring the song “Together” by Matt Lande.