32468428  Bad Wolf (Bad Wolf Chronicles Book 1) by [McGregor, Tim]

Welcome to Freakin Fridays, where I share my reviews of books that scare you, thrill you, and get those endorphins pumping.

Oh yeah, have I got some good ones to share today!

B & B

by Amy Cross

32468428

Genre: Horror / Paranormal

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My Review

Que to the opening of The Twilight Zone. This one gave me the willies.

Bobbie’s done something unforgivable. Now on the run, in the middle of cold winter’s night, she seeks refuge at an old B & B. But this isn’t your normal bed and breakfast. The woman who checks her in barely speaks a word and her face is covered in gauze and the other guests are odd and won’t let her sleep.

She’s stuck between a rock and a hard place. Stay at the Inn with it’s creepy guests and mysterious goings on, or face the killer stalking the snowy streets outside. He likes to kill when the pristine snow covers everything in shining white. The blood looks so red then.

From the beginning, you are pulled into this mystery, and when the weird stuff starts happening, you won’t want to stop until you get answers.

This was creepy on so many levels. A pleasant surprise for this horror fan.

4 Stars

~~~~~

Synopsis

A girl on the run, hiding from a terrible crime.

An old B&B in a snowy city.

A hidden figure lurking in the streets, waiting for his next victim.

When Bobbie takes a room at the rundown Castle Crown B&B, all she wants is to get some sleep and make a tough decision about her future. Unfortunately, the B&B’s other guests won’t give her any peace, and Bobbie soon realizes that she’s stumbled into a world with its own rules. Who is the mysterious bandaged woman? Why is there a dead man in the bathtub? And is something deadly lurking in the basement?

Before she can leave, however, Bobbie learns that the city of Canterbury is being terrorized by a mysterious figure. Every time snow comes, the Snowman claims another victim, leaving their blood sinking into the ice. If Bobbie leaves the B&B and ventures out into the empty streets, she risks becoming his next target. But if she stays, her soul might be claimed by something even more deadly.

B&B is a horror story about a girl with a secret, and a building with a past.

Amazon

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I grabbed this one free on Amazon. Click on the cover to get your free copy.

Bad Wolf

Bad Wolf Chronicles #1

by Tim McGregor

Bad Wolf (Bad Wolf Chronicles Book 1) by [McGregor, Tim]

Genre: Horror / Paranormal

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My Review

Two hardened detectives, a rampaging pack of wild dogs, and a killer who believes he’s a werewolf. I don’t know about you, but this sounds too good to pass up.

I enjoy police stories. There’s always that one guy no one wants to work with. John is just that guy. Tons of baggage and an eat shit attitude. Partnered with Detective Lara Mendez, neither ones happy about it.

As much as I loved the idea of the werewolf using his pack of wild dogs to kill, the dynamics between the two detectives was even better.

Lara wasn’t a pushover. She’d put up with lots of crap to make it to Detective. She wasn’t going to take any from John. How these two navigated around each other was a whole lot of fun. I wondered if they might actually end up being good together and kept my fingers crossed.

The killer and his dogs were super bad ass. Was he a werewolf? You’ll have to read it to find out.

And watch out for the ending. It’s a twister and I sure loved it. It wraps up this chapter and leaves things open for more.  A little birdie told me there is.

4 Stars

~~~~~

Synopsis

Detective Lara Mendes’s hard work pays off when she finally gets to join the homicide detail. There’s only one catch; she has to partner up with a cop no one wants to work with.

John Gallagher is a veteran homicide detective who wants nothing more than to work alone. When the Lieutenant partners him with Lara Mendes, his first reaction is to ditch her but a call comes in about a body on the river bank and the rotation says they’re up.

What they find are human remains, mutilated and partially devoured. Their investigation reveals a killer stalking the city with a pack of vicious, feral dogs.
And the suspect believes he is a werewolf.

But this is Portland, where crazy bastards outnumber normal ones ten to one. Except there’s another catch. The crazy werewolf guy? He isn’t crazy…

Author’s note: Bad Wolf is my first novel and remains a favourite. This free full-length novel is the first in the Bad Wolf series about two homicide detectives trying to stop a monster. A murder mystery and police procedural, it’s premise is simple; cops versus werewolves. I had an absolute blast writing this series. Now that’s it’s done, I miss these characters. The books, in order, are:

1 Bad Wolf
2 Pale Wolf
3 Last Wolf

This free book is the gateway to a world of monsters, gritty detectives and the werewolves that haunt the moonlit night.

Amazon

This is the cover on Goodreads. The one I used is from Amazon.

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Which do you like most?

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways click on the lucky horseshoe below!

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Welcome to The Friday 56 hosted by Freda’s Voice.

 

This is a really fun meme!

The only rules are to grab a book (any book), turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader and find a sentence or a few (no spoilers) that grabs you and post it.

Then go over to Freda’s Voice and leave your link so we can visit your 56!

My 56 for this week is from:

 The Breedling & The City In The Garden

The Element Odysseys #1

by Kimberlee Ann Bastian

31287004

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Genre: YA Historical Fantasy

From page 56 in the paperback.

He was not surprised to see them loitering, for nothing happened on Morgan Street without Frankenstein knowing about it. He cringed at the thought of what  story they might tell, his friendly exchange with the kid and the bird attack noteworthy news.

~~~~~

Read on if you want to know more.

Synopsis

Absolute obedience, servitude, neutrality.

These were the laws that once governed Bartholomew, an immortal soulcatcher, until one ill-fated night when he was forced to make a choice: rebel against his masters or reveal an ancient, dangerous secret.

He chose defiance.

Imprisoned for centuries as punishment for his decision, Bartholomew wastes away—until he creates an opportunity to escape. By a stroke of chance, Bartholomew finds himself in the human world and soon learns that breaking his bonds does not come without a price. Cut off from the grace that once ruled him, he must discover a new magic in 1930s Chicago.

Armed with only a cryptic message to give him direction, Bartholomew desperately tries to resume the mission he had started so long ago. Relying on the unlikely guidance of the streetwise orphan Charlie Reese, Bartholomew must navigate the depressed streets of the City in the Garden. But in order to solve this riddle, he must first discover if choice and fate are one in the same.

AMAZON

~~~~~

Leave your link and I’ll drop by your 56.

Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew!

You can find a list of my reviews HERE.

For a list of free eBooks go HERE

To see all of my giveaways click on the lucky horseshoe below!

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Today R.M. Clark and Month9Books are
revealing the cover and first chapter for THE TICK TOCK MAN which releases May
2, 2017! Check out the gorgeous cover and enter to be one of the first readers
to receive a eGalley!!


A quick note from the author:

 

The Tick Tock Man is my
first foray into the world of speculative fiction. Here in New England, we are
fortunate to have many wonderful clocks around. We have clocks in church
steeples, parks, above banks and other locations. My idea for this story came from
a simple “what if”. What if there were a community of “clock
people” who kept all these great clocks running? Furthermore, what could
go wrong? Then I made something go wrong and the story “clicked.” The
Tick Tock Man takes place primarily in this fictional clock world, but the
issues, conflicts and resolutions are not unlike those in the real world.

 

 
Title: THE TICK TOCK MAN
Author: R.M. Clark
Pub. Date: May 2, 2017
Publisher: TantrumBooks
Format: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 237
Find it: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | TBD
.
When the clocks in town stop,
thirteen-year-old CJ discovers an unusual “clock world” where most of
the citizens are clock parts, tasked with keeping the big clocks running. But
soon the seemingly peaceful world is divided between warring factions with CJ instructed
to find the only person who can help: the elusive Tick Tock Man.

With the aid of Fuzee, a partly-human
girl, he battles gear-headed extremists and razor-sharp pendulums in order to
restore order before this world of chimes, springs, and clock people dissolves
into a massive time warp, taking CJ’s quiet New England town with it.

 

Excerpt

Chapter OneSomething wasn’t right.

I’d planned on sleeping in Thanksgiving morning because, hey, it was Thanksgiving, and that meant no school and no stupid alarm to wake me up. Well, that was the plan.

At precisely eight a.m., the clock sitting a mere two feet from my head wailed.

Thunka thunka thunka thunka.

Stupid clock. That wasn’t even a real alarm sound. It was just an invented strange noise to annoy me. I checked the buttons on top. No alarm set and no radio. Maybe it was a dream? Just to be sure, I gave the clock a good whack.

All was well. Back to sleep.

Bonka bonka bonka bonka.

Now it was nine o’clock. I sat up and grabbed the clock with every intention of tossing it against the back wall. What a pleasure it would have been to see it smash into a million pieces. I win!

But, this clock was a birthday present from Uncle Artie. He’d said it was “a special clock for a special kid.” I didn’t like being called “special” because that had a different meaning at school. But it was a cool clock.

Until now. I mean, what kind of noise was that? Certainly not the alarm sound I was used to.

I tried to go back to sleep, but I couldn’t help but wonder what crazy not-real-clock noise Uncle Artie’s “special” clock would make next. So I got out of bed.

Since it was Thanksgiving, I was not at all surprised to see my mom up and in the kitchen. The turkey was on the counter in a large pan. Her arm was halfway up the turkey’s you-know-what. Not what I wanted to see this early in the morning, thank you very much.

“Good morning,” Mom said. “You’re up early.”

“Couldn’t sleep.” I wanted to mention the special-but-stupid clock that made strange noises at weird times, but she had grabbed another handful of stuffing and stuffed it “up there.”

“We’ll need a few guest chairs from the basement when you get a chance. Nana and Papa are coming over, of course. Plus Grandma and Grandpa Boyce. And Uncle Artie too.”

“Sure thing, Mom.” I was barely awake and she was already asking me to do math. Nobody was coming over for quite a while, so I wouldn’t need the, let’s see, two-plus-two-plus-one chairs for several hours. I had tons of time.

What better way to spend it than on the couch watching TV? It would probably be the most fun I would have all day, with both sets of grandparents coming over. It was annoying enough that they had different titles: “Nana and Papa” on the Barnes side, “Grandma and Grandpa” on the Boyce side.

Then there was Uncle Artie. He wasn’t really an uncle but that’s what we always called him. I’ve also heard him called a “distant cousin,” whatever that means. He said his job as an “importer” took him around the world to some pretty exotic places such as Vienna and Timbuktu and South America. No matter what faraway land he went to, he almost always brought us back a clock. We had wooden clocks, metal clocks, cuckoo clocks, and some that were just too odd to describe. Mom would open a package from him and say, “Hey, look. It’s a clock. Imagine that.”

Each clock came with a wonderful story, so my parents loved to get them for just that reason. Unfortunately, both of them hated having all those clocks, with their constant ticking and chiming, so we kept them stashed away in the spare room upstairs until Uncle Artie came to visit. And since he was on his way, I sat up, knowing what was coming next. In three … two … one.

“CJ! Your Uncle Artie’s coming over, so you’ll need to set the clocks out.” Mom could sure belt it out when she needed to.

I knew the drill. I went to the spare room, pulled the special box out of the closet, and lugged it down the stairs. The crescent moon clock went in the living room, replacing a family portrait, which was fine with me since I looked like a dork in that picture, anyway. There was a special cuckoo clock for the bathroom that was pretty cool. The doors on the upper level opened at the top of the hour, revealing either a boy dancer or girl dancer. I set the correct time and adjusted the weights at the end of a long chain to keep the gears going. Six clocks later, I had completed the task, finishing it off in Dad’s basement shop with a clock made from a circular saw blade.

Uncle Artie’s favorite saying was, “You can never have too many clocks.” On this Thanksgiving Day, it was certainly true, even though I was sure my parents would disagree. Not me. Although I never paid a lot of attention to the clocks, I felt something strange as I took each one from the box and hung it in its rightful spot. The crescent moon clock had two huge eyes, one on the crescent side and the other on the orange side that completed the circle. The eyes were painted on but I swear they followed me as I moved around the room.

I double-checked the time on the cuckoo clock in the bathroom and admired the details in it. The entire clock was a house from a German village, with people dressed in lederhosen on the lower level. Lucky for me it was the top of the hour and the clock chimed, revealing the bird from a door at the top and children dancing in the two small doors just below it. Why hadn’t I noticed that before? What awesome detail!

I completed the clock replacement task, storing the non-clock items in the same box and returning it to the spare bedroom. That practically wore me out, so it was back to the couch. The smell from the great stuff Mom was cooking drifted into the room, reminding me I hadn’t eaten yet.

“I made you some scrambled eggs.” Mom smiled as I entered the kitchen.

“Thanks. I’m starving.”

She held out a plate then pulled it back, still smiling. “Just as soon as you bring up the chairs from the basement.”

This wasn’t fair, but it was the second time she’d asked. The third time would not be as charmed. On my way to the basement, I realized my early morning math was wrong. There were four chairs already in the dining room, so I only needed four more. I could easily get them all in one trip.

I passed Dad’s shop right at 10:30 and the heard the blade clock begin to make noise. I turned on the shop light to get a good look and, sure enough, the blade was slowly turning. Clockwise, not surprisingly. Even stranger was that the numbers never moved as the blade turned. A few seconds later, it stopped and went back to normal. Another clock I had never paid much attention to was suddenly freaking out. I hurried back upstairs with two chairs on each arm.

I got my scrambled eggs, finally.

***

At 11:00, things got even weirder. Dad was up by now, sitting in front of his computer, but that wasn’t the weird part. When the hour struck, the crescent moon clock made a strange clicking noise, and those crazy eyes began to wink at me. The painted-on lips between the four and eight went from a Mona Lisa smile to a full-blown grin. I wanted to say something to Mom or Dad, but who would believe me? I went into the bathroom, and the boy and girl dancers in the German village twirled next to each other while the bird stayed home. This was quickly moving into “bizarre” territory. It didn’t help when my watch—another gift from Uncle Artie—started chiming a sound I had never heard before. I took it off and stuffed it in my pocket. Problem solved.

***

I played video games in the back room, trying my best not to look at or listen to any of the suddenly crazy clocks in the house. It was working too, as I finished off another level of Mortal Warfare IV.

“CJ,” my mom called. “Please set the table.”

“Okay. Just one more level.” I sat up as the battle intensified.

“Now would be better. They’ll be here in less than an hour to watch the football game.”

“I’m on it.” I made it past the gatekeeper to complete the level, which allowed me to save my spot in the game.

I grabbed plates and set them out on the table. I took one plate and placed it on the TV tray next to the window. That’s where I would sit. The rule was: adults at the big table and kids somewhere else. Sometimes it was a card table when my cousins showed up. Since I was the only kid this year, I would have to settle for a TV tray.

My mom’s cell phone rang, and she talked with the phone squeezed against her shoulder as she mixed something in a large bowl. She stopped mid-mix and put the bowl down. “I’m sorry to hear that.” Her voice was all serious. She walked out of the room before I could hear any more of it.

I returned to my table-setting duties, grabbing forks, knives, and napkins. The smell of turkey and all the fixings hit me hard as I placed the silverware around the table. Maybe all this work would be worth it. I took another whiff. Maybe.

Mom returned to the kitchen, put the phone down, and stopped stirring.

“Mom, you okay?”

She looked up at me with moist eyes. “Uncle Artie is in the hospital and can’t make it for Thanksgiving. He hasn’t missed one since your dad and I have been married.” She dabbed her eyes with her apron. “Fortunately, it’s nothing serious and my parents are heading there right now, so they can’t make it until the weekend. I’d better go tell your father. Looks like we’ll only need five plates at the table.”

No Nana and Papa Barnes? No Uncle Artie? I truly hoped Uncle Artie was okay, but this was my big chance to sit at the head of the table, something I’ve always wanted to do. The head chair was bigger and had arms, and it felt like a throne. Uncle Artie always got the honors while I was stuck with the TV tray under the window.

I followed Mom out to the garage where Dad was cleaning out the van, getting it ready for our traditional late-afternoon drive. Dad didn’t seem too bummed to hear the news about Uncle Artie or his in-laws. He barely looked up as he polished the dashboard. “Yeah, well, sorry to hear about Uncle Artie. He’s never down for very long.”

The time was right to pounce. “Mom? Dad?”

Dad turned toward me and nearly bumped his head on the visor. “Yes?”

“I wish Uncle Artie was coming today, I really do.” I tried my best to act like I was crying. It must have worked because I felt my throat tightening. “His are some tough shoes to fill, but I bet he’d want me to sit in his spot at the head of table. After all, he gave me this watch for my birthday last year.” I pulled it out of my pocket to show them. “And we have the same middle name and everything.” I, Carlton James Boyce, was merely guessing at his middle name, hoping neither of my parents knew the truth. “Please? I think I’ve earned it.”

Neither of them thought about it for too long. “It’s all yours, kid,” Dad said as he leaned on the roof of the van.

“Remember your manners at the table,” Mom said. “Uncle Artie would want it that way.”

Manners? Oh, please. Uncle Artie smoked a lot, drank a lot, and sometimes swore a lot. In spite of all that, he was my favorite relative. Over the years, besides the watches and clocks, he had given me several toy cars, baseball cards, stuffed animals, and even a five-dollar bill. These gifts were always “our little secret.” Plus, he told the greatest stories.

Grandma and Grandpa Boyce arrived a little later, and each gave me a quick hug. It’s a terrible thing to say, and I know I’m supposed to love my grandparents without question, but Mom’s parents—the “good ones” who actually liked me—weren’t coming. If Mom and Dad ever found out I felt that way, I’d be grounded for a month—Dad’s typical punishment.

Dad and Grandpa went to the living room to watch the game while the women got the food prepared. I tried to help, but I mostly got in the way.

Everything was ready just before two o’clock, and I grabbed the spot at the head of the table, with Grandma and Grandpa to my right and Mom and Dad to my left. Everyone sat down except Grandpa. He placed his hands on the table and leaned toward my dad.

“I guess this doesn’t rate as a special occasion, eh, George?”

“How’s that, Pop?” Dad said.

“The Hoffhalder. It’s a Thanksgiving tradition, isn’t it?”

“You bet it is.”

The Hoffhalder was a large mantle clock that sat in the corner of the dining room on what mom called the buffet. The Hoffhalder had been in the family for decades, and Dad would only wind it on special occasions. Uncle Artie always had the honors when he came over.

“I’ll do it, Dad,” I said.

“Can he handle it?” asked Grandpa. “He’s just a child.”

I’m right here! I thought. And I’m not a child anymore. I’m thirteen.

“Sure he can,” Grandma said. “Now, make Uncle Artie proud.” She gave me her patented don’t-screw-it-up look.

“CJ, just be careful, okay?” Dad said.

“Sure thing.” I had seen it wound a thousand times. I took the key from the drawer of the small desk nearby, carefully opened the glass in front, and put the key in the keyhole near the number four. There was another near the number eight. I knew it wound clockwise on the right and counterclockwise on the left.

“Whatever you do, don’t overwind it,” Grandpa said. He gave anyone who ever got near the clock got the same warning.

I started winding. One turn. Two turns. Then it started to get tight, so I stopped. I placed the key in the left hole and began to turn in the other direction with my left hand. One turn. Two turns. It wasn’t getting any tighter. Three turns. That was odd; it usually tightened up by now, but I figured it had just been a while. Four turns and still not tight. I switched to my right hand to finish it up. Five turns. Surely it would start to get tight. Then I heard a faint click, and the key wouldn’t move anymore. Uh-oh.

“Everything all right?” Dad asked.

I pulled the key out and put it back in the drawer. “Everything’s great.” I looked at my watch, and then spun the Hoffhalder’s minute hand around until the time was five minutes until two. After closing the glass, I gently moved the large pendulum at the bottom, and the Hoffhalder began to tick. Whew! All was well.

When the Hoffhalder chimed, it made a beautiful sound. In fact, it seemed to be the only clock sound my family liked. It was a perfect combination of bells and gears and springs working in harmony. We now had three minutes until it would chime on the hour, and everyone at the table waited patiently for the moment to arrive. As the last thirty seconds ticked off, Grandpa nudged Grandma. “Here it comes,” he said in a low voice.

The Hoffhalder struck two and began to chime. Once. Then another.

But the second chime lingered way too long and the pendulum began to swing wildly, knocking into the side walls. The chime sound turned into a grinding noise, and the pendulum stopped.

“CJ!” Dad yelled. “What have you done to my clock?”

“He overwound it,” Grandpa said while making a turning motion with hand.

“Clearly,” said Grandma. “And I’ll bet Uncle Artie is rolling over in his grave as we speak.”

“Artie’s not dead,” Mom said. “Just in the hospital.”

“I’m sorry, everyone,” I said. “I didn’t mean to. Honest. It was an accident.”

“You’re grounded,” Dad said.

“For how long?” I asked.

“A month.”

“A month? Mom?”

“Don’t you think that’s a little harsh?” she said.

I looked around the table, and three sets of eyes were on me. Mom reached out and touched my hand. At least someone was on my side.

“That clock’s been in the family for four generations,” Grandpa said. “Built by the finest clockmaker in Germany.”

“And smuggled out on a steamer ship during World War I,” Grandma added. “Truly one of a kind. Irreplaceable.”

I knew the details by heart, and it just made matters worse. “I’ll get it fixed, okay? I have some money saved up.”

“Sounds like you snapped the mainspring,” Grandpa said, adding a “break in half” motion with his hands.

Grandma leaned over and got as close to me as she could. “It’ll never be the same.”

“A month,” Dad said. He put a finger in my face to make his point. “For breaking my clock.”

He continued to glare at me as Mom began to serve the turkey. We ate in near silence.

I had ruined Thanksgiving.

.

.

 
R. M. Clark is a computer scientist for
the Dept. of Navy by day and children’s book writer by night. He lives in
Massachusetts with his wife and two sons.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

.

 
3 winners will receive an eGalley of THE
TICK TOCK MAN. International.
.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew and Good Luck!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

To see all of my giveaways click on the lucky horseshoe below!

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I’ve been reading Kathryn’s books for many years now and still have several to go. These two books, Vampire Blood and the sequel, Human No Longer, are among my favorites.

You’re lucky today! For the first time ever you can get Vampire Blood for FREE! And I’ve provided a purchase link for Human No Longer, just in case you want to grab them both.

Vampire Blood

by Kathryn Meyer Griffith

Genre: Horror / Paranormal

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Click HERE for my review.

Synopsis

For years the vampire family lived in the shadows, hidden by the night and people’s disbelief; feeding on animals or throw away people who would never be missed. But as the family moves into an old theater, and uses it to cover up their crimes, the youngest of them are restless and determined to live as they like. Recklessly. Killing and feeding when and where they want. Feeding on who they want.

Only the parent vampires have managed to keep them in check. But no longer.

Unaware of the night stalking menace, the townspeople of Summer Haven, Florida, blithely go about their daily lives until, one by one, they begin to disappear.  Screams are heard in the night. Fear grows. The lost are never found…alive.

But Jenny Lacey and her father, who are hired to renovate the old Grand Theater, can’t escape when they find themselves caught up in the middle of the vampire’s war. And, in the end, it’s up to Jenny, her brother, Joey, and her ex-husband, Jeff (who she still loves and reconnects with in this novel…happy ending there), to get rid of the bloodthirsty fiends that are destroying their town…if they can.

Get your free copy while it lasts!

Go HERE for more sites. Go HERE for Amazon.

~~~~~

The Backstory of Vampire Blood 2015

By Kathryn Meyer Griffith

In 1990 or so I’d just got done releasing my first three paperback novels with Leisure Books, a romantic historical (The Heart of the Rose 1985) and two romantic horror books (Evil Stalks the Night, 1984 and Blood Forge, 1989), and because I wasn’t making much money on them, was looking, as most so-called restless young authors were doing, to move up in the publishing industry.
So I wrote snail mail letters to three established authors of the day – Dean Koontz, Stephen King and Peter Straub-asking for a little advice and a little help. What do I do next? I want to be one of the big dogs running in the big races. I want to make the big bucks. Be famous like you. (Ha, ha. I was so naïve in those days!)
Well, Stephen King and Peter Straub never answered my letters but one rainy fall night I got a phone call from Gerda Koontz (Dean Koontz’s wife) and she said Dean had gotten my letter and wanted me to have a name of a brand new agent who I should call or write to and say I was recommended by him. If I thought it strange that Dean Koontz himself wasn’t actually talking to me I was told by Gerda that he was a shy man and had had a particularly hard couple of months because of family problems (I think it had something to do with his father in a nursing home or something, but can’t exactly recall now) and he’d asked her to call me. She often did that for him, as well as helping him with the business side of his writing career. He (through her…and I got the impression that he was actually nearby telling her what to say the whole time) said I had to have an agent (I didn’t have one) and then he gave me the name of an ambitious one, Lori Perkins, just starting out and his advice on what I should do to advance as a writer.

I do remember being incredibly touched that he, a famous busy novelist that I admired- I loved his Twilight Eyes – would take the time to talk to me, even though his wife.
I took their advice and contacted that agent and she agreed immediately to represent me on my fourth book, Vampire Blood, no doubt, because I said Dean Koontz had recommended her. But Vampire Blood was the reason I’d contacted those authors in the first place. I thought it was the best book I’d done so far and wanted it to go to a better publisher than Leisure, which hog-tied their writers with a horrible ‘potboiler’ one-size-fits-all ten year contract with 4% royalties. Yes, I got a whole whopping 14 cents a book in those days, but they did print thousands of paperbacks each run and had a huge distribution area. I thought I could do a lot better. Anyway, Lori Perkins eventually sold it, and then three others after, to Zebra at 6% royalties and double the advances. They slapped a sexy blond vampire with a low dress on the cover and a hazy theater behind her. Lovely colors. An eye-catching cover. I was so happy. I thought I’d made it! Again,naïve.

My husband and I lived in this small town at the time and there was the neatest little hole-in-the-wall theater in a shopping center we used to go to…run by a family of a sweet man, Terry, and his wife, Ann, and sometimes their children, two teenage boys and a girl named Irene. Such a friendly, but odd couple. The run-down theater was their whole world. The kids helped take in the tickets, pop the popcorn and sell the candy snacks.

Now the minute Terry and Ann found out I was a published novelist they were my greatest fans. Terry went right out and bought all my books and read them. Terry always thought they’d make great movies. Next time my husband and I went to the theater Terry and Ann greeted us like old friends, delighted to see us, and refused to take a dime from us for anything. We got in free whenever we went from then on. Now in those days my husband, my son, James, and I were pretty broke. I worked as a graphic designer at a big brokerage firm in downtown St. Louis but my husband was in between jobs. We lived on a shoestring. Hard times. So I always was so tickled that we could get into the local movies for free. We went a lot, too, as we loved movies, especially science fiction and horror films.

One night I was watching Terry and Ann and their joy in running that little theater, with the kids bustling around doing their jobs, and I got the idea for Vampire Blood. Just like that! Use them and the theater as a backdrop for a vampire novel. Hey, wouldn’t it be neat, I offhandedly mentioned to Terry one night, if I wrote a book about a family of vampires that was trying to pass as a real human family, the man and woman wanting so badly to fit in and lead a normal life for a while, renovating and then running a theater together…but the kids are wild and, as kids always do, make trouble for them in the town…killing people? Terry loved the idea and I asked him if it’d be all right to use him and his family as a template for the vampires. He was thrilled to be part of anything to do with my books and said yes. So…I wrote this book about them (sort of), the theater (making it much grander than it was, of course), a small town terrorized by cruel, powerful vampires who can change into wolves at will….and a saddened lonely woman, her brother, and her ex-husband (who she still loves and ultimately ends up with again after he saves her life) who finds herself again, but loses a lot, as well, fighting these vampires. Vampires she doesn’t believe in at first.

I was very happy with the book when it was done and dedicated it to Terry and Ann when it came out in 1991. Terry and Ann were thrilled, too.
So Vampire Blood came out and did very well for me, second only to my Zebra 1993 Witches. As the years went by it went out of print like many of my 1970 &80’s paperback books and in 2015, with my other 21 novels, I brought it out again. I’d begun self-publishing in 2012 and will never go back to the legacy publishers. I love having complete control over my books now!

So…here it is…Vampire Blood…twenty-three years later, alive again and better, I believe, than the original because my writing then was done on an electric typewriter, with gobs of White-Out and carbon paper (I couldn’t afford copies), using snail mail; all of which didn’t lend itself to much rewriting. And in those days, editors told an author what to change and then the writer only saw the manuscript once to final proof it. Who knew what those sneaky editors were slipping in in between and before the final book was in an author’s greedy little hands. Hey, and I was working full time, raising a son, living a life and caring for my big extended family in one way or another, too. Busy, exciting, loving, happy and sad times.

A lot has happened to me and my family in these twenty-three years, as well. Both my parents, and my beloved maternal grandmother, the storyteller of her generation, have since passed away. My sweet musician brother, Jim, too. Many people we used to know have. Old boyfriends, old friends and relatives. I miss them all! I no longer have that agent; she went on to bigger advances and bigger writers. I lost my good job at the brokerage firm, bumped around in lesser jobs for years, always writing in my spare time, and now, at long last, write full time while my husband works way too hard in a machine shop to support us.
The theater closed sixteen years ago. Terry and Ann, heartbroken, were never the same. Ann is still with us, but Terry died years ago. We lost contact once they stopped running the theater.

I fought to get all my full rights back on Vampire Blood and self-published it in 2015 (as well as all my other 23 novels) and now only self-publish…which has allowed me to finally make a living at my craft.
But I’ll never forget those early days and the stories that came with them. Days of high hopes and far distance future dreams…some of which have come true and some which haven’t.

So, all you writers out there…never give up and never stop writing.***

Kathryn Meyer Griffith

Author Links

Twitter / Blog  / Author’s Den / Facebook / Goodreads / Amazon

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After reading Vampire Blood you may find you want more! Go HERE to purchase a copy of the sequel!

Human No Longer

Sequel To Vampire Blood

Genre: Horror / Paranormal

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Click HERE for my review.

Synopsis

Jenny and Jeff Sanders become victims of a bizarre crime; leaving Jeff dead and Jenny in a temporary coma. She returns to her children. With Jeff’s death she must move back to her childhood home, a haunted farmhouse, in Summer Haven, Florida, where once they destroyed a family of vampires.

Jenny has no appetite. She’s edgy. Her eyes hurt. She thinks it could be trauma or grief. Until one night she can’t resist the night woods or the overpowering urge to drink warm animals’ blood–and accepts the truth. Her attackers were vampires.

Now she’s becoming what she once reviled. She can’t abandon her children but must find a way to live in the human world. At night she hunts, hides what she’s becoming and attempts to fit in.

Then townspeople begin dying. Like years before. With her blackouts, she fears she may be the killer, or is it her vampire attackers? They find her and demand she joins them–or her family will die. She resists until they kidnap her children. Then she has to find a way to outwit and ultimately destroy them.

Amazon

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Blackwell

Magnus Blackwell Series

Book One

Alexandrea Weis with Lucas Astor

Genre: Paranormal thriller.

Publisher: Vesuvian Books

Date of Publication: 1/17/17

ISBN: 978-1944109240

ASIN: B01M7T4NQT

Number of pages: 300

Word Count: 71, 800

Cover Artist: Sam Shearon

Book Description:

Hell has a new master

In the late 1800s, handsome, wealthy New Englander, Magnus Blackwell, is the envy of all.

When Magnus meets Jacob O’Conner—a Harvard student from the working class—an unlikely friendship is forged. But their close bond is soon challenged by a captivating woman; a woman Magnus wants, but Jacob gets.

Devastated, Magnus seeks solace in a trip to New Orleans. After a chance meeting with Oscar Wilde, he becomes immersed in a world of depravity and brutality, inevitably becoming the inspiration for Dorian Gray. Armed with the forbidden magic of voodoo, he sets his sights on winning back the woman Jacob stole from him.

Amid the trappings of Victorian society, two men, bent on revenge, will lay the foundation for a curse that will forever alter their destinies.

Amazon     Kobo      Apple      BN

Enjoy this glimpse inside.

Leaving the firelight, he headed toward the water, eager to learn more about the woman. Beyond the glare of the bonfire, his eyes were better able to take in her figure. Her nightdress was torn in places and had dark splotches on it in others. She stood at the water’s edge, her feet hidden below the surface of the bayou. As he drew closer, Magnus got a better view of her exquisite face. Her pale, snowy skin glowed in the darkness, and her features were perfect except for a scar above her right lip. He ached to help her, to guide her from the water and back to the warmth of the fire.

“Are you all right?”

She titled her head to the side as she examined him. Then without saying anything, she held out her hand to him.

Magnus could hear a woman’s voice saying, Magnus, come with me, in his head, but her lips never moved. He was entranced, drawn to her, and just as he was raising his hand to take hers, another hand clamped down on his wrist.

“Magnus, no, don’t touch her,” Madam Simone called out.

The spell was broken, and the woman in the water faded away.

Magnus gawked at the water. “What?”

“I told you to stay close to the fire,” she admonished.

He pointed to the water. “You saw her? Who was that?”

Madam Simone let go of his arm. “You mean what was that, don’t you?”

“I don’t understand.”

She waved her long stick out over the water. “That was a spirit called by the ceremony. She often appears when we perform our rituals on the bayou.”

“You know her?” The shock was evident in his voice.

“She’s the spirit of one who sacrificed herself for love many years ago. She was the quadroon mistress of a wealthy white man who spurned her and her unborn child.”

Magnus removed his hat and wiped his hand over his brow, feeling shaky. “So you are telling me I just saw a ghost?”

Madam Simone chuckled at his reaction. “The world is not everything you see, Magnus. Ghosts are as real as you or I. They are the impression left behind by a life ended in misery, pain, or confusion. The spirits trapped or bound to earth are the ones who haunt. The ones who have found peace are the ones who leave.”

“Where do they go?”

She gave him a sad smile. “That all depends on what you believe. Heaven, hell, paradise—take your pick. We have more names for the world that comes after than we do for the one we currently inhabit. I think that speaks volumes about our capacity for hope.”

Magnus took an unsteady breath as his eyes returned to the water. “What about her? The girl in the water? Will she ever find peace and move on?”

“No.” Madam Simone shook her head and, gathering up her skirt, took a step away from the shore. “She has chosen to remain here.”

“Chosen?” he shouted. “Are you telling me she had a choice?”

“We all choose in life and in death, Magnus.” She glanced back at him. “That is why we have souls—to make that choice.”

Magnus could still hear the voice of the spirit calling to him in his head. “I think she spoke to me. She knew my name.”

 “Spirits often bring messages from the dead. Do you know anyone who has recently died?”

He shook his head. “No, no one.”

Madam Simone motioned ahead to the bonfire. “Let’s get back to the fire.”

Returning his hat to his head, Magnus followed her up the bank. “I’m not sure what I witnessed, Madam Simone, but I no longer think I’m a skeptic.”

She grinned as they walked along. “Good. Then the ceremony served its purpose.”

“What purpose?”

Madam Simone kept her eyes focused on the firelight. “To prepare your soul for what is to come.”

 

About the Author:

From New Orleans, Alexandrea Weis was raised in the motion picture industry and began writing stories at the age of eight. In college, she studied nursing. After finishing her PhD, she decided to pick up the pen once again and begin her first novel. Since that time, she has published many novels and won several national writing awards for fiction. Infusing the rich tapestry of her hometown into her bestselling books, she believes that creating vivid characters makes a story memorable.

Alexandrea Weis is also a certified/permitted wildlife rehabber with the La. Wildlife and Fisheries. When she is not writing, she rescues orphaned and injured wildlife. She is married; they live in New Orleans.

Facebook / Webpage / Twitter / Instagram / Amazon / Goodreads

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Tour giveaway

3 hardbacked copies, US and Canada only please.

Click HERE to enter.

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Sekkol
Lara Larue
(Galaxy Alien Warriors, #2)
Publication date: January 18th 2017
Genres: Adult, Romance, Science Fiction

She’s a captive. He wants her to be a queen. Will his passion be enough to change her mind?

Keira wishes she could return home. After being kidnapped from Earth by aliens, she’s fiercely determined to make it back to her planet. The absolute last thing she needs is a love interest. What Keira wants is an ally…

Sekkol is heir to the throne of Jupiter. As a highly-trained alien warrior, he’s probably the last creature in the universe who should help Keira. But when he lays eyes on her, he knows: she is his mate, and he’ll do anything to protect her.

As Keira warms to Sekkol’s presence, she wonders if her own feelings will keep her from returning home. Sekkol remains patient, protecting Keira from his own mating urges… until she’s ready to let him in.

Sekkol is the standalone second book in a series of sexy sci-fi alien romance novels. If you like feisty heroines, intense action, and sexy romance, then you’ll love Lara LaRue’s Galaxy Alien Warriors series.

Goodreads / Amazon

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Author Lara LaRue

Lara LaRue is a romance author who lives in New York City. She loves writing sizzling, sexy stories.
To learn more about Lara LaRue and her collection of romance novels, visit her at www.laralarue.com.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook

 

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Welcome to Teaser Tuesday hosted by Ambrosia  @ The Purple Booker.

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
• Grab your current read.
• Open to a random page.
•Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

 

My Teaser for this week is from

 Sweet Lake

by  Christine Nolfi

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Genre: Contemporary / Romance / Humor

My Teaser from page 7 in the paperback.

“Sylvia, when your dander’s up, you display the warmth of a Russian winter. How does Marco put up with your tantrums?”

“I’d explain, but there are children present.”

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Synopsis

Linnie Wayfair knows just how many people are counting on her. But knowing doesn’t make doing any easier.

Everyone in Sweet Lake, Ohio, wants her to muster all her business sense and return the Wayfair Inn to its former glory. Her parents hope she’ll forgive her scoundrel of a brother and reconcile the family. The eccentric Sweet Lake Sirens want her to open the inn—and her heart—to new possibilities. And her hilarious lifelong friends Jada and Cat are dropping none-too-subtle hints for her to ignite a romance with Daniel Kettering, the sexy attorney who’s been pining for her for years…

Now a shocking turn of events will open old wounds and upend the world Linnie has carefully built. She has to make changes quickly—and the results, though not entirely what she expected, might be what she’s been yearning for all along.

Amazon

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How about you? Got a tease? Tell me!

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Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew!

For a list of my reviews go HERE.

For a list of free eBooks updated daily go HERE

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