Wednesday, August 16, 2017

PROMO Blitz: Holy by @AbbieKrupnick #excerpt #horror #darkfantasy



Horror /contemporary dark fantasy
Date Published: April 15, 2017
Publisher: Darkwater Syndicate, Inc.

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Gus Stevens has the worst of both worlds. By night, he resides in the Dream World, a place steeped in magic and exotic dangers. By day, a giant snow-lizard stalks him in the Real World, looking to make Gus its next meal. In order to regain control of his life, young Gus must undergo a psychoanalytic exorcism. But this comes with a high price—he must break away from everything he has ever thought was real. Author Abbie Krupnick blends the magical and the mundane in this avant-garde dark fantasy where nothing is as it seems.



Excerpt

The high-pitched scream of a predatory bird echoed from the direction of the Valley. The eagle was approaching at break-neck speed, a maroon streak under the stars. Then it braked and circled lazily overhead a few times before alighting opposite Gus, talons gripping the edge. Gus heard the volcano groan, its anger filling him. The mountain shuddered, its sides growing warm. He slipped out of his cocoon of heat, felt naked without it in front of the bird.
“Hello,” the Magician said, examining him with green eyes. “Why don’t you come down and we’ll talk about things in the grove.”
Gus wondered how much he had overheard.
The mountain was heating up by the second. In a few minutes the smooth stone would scald his feet. A pale orange glow flashed briefly at the bottom of the vent, then colored to yellows and reds too fast, too soon.
“Whenever you’re ready,” Language whispered.
“Don’t listen to him, Gus,” the Magician said. So the Magician could hear, too. What an unsurprising comfort that was.
“Boy, in a few moments, I’m going to flood the whole World with molten rock. Make your choice quickly, because this is the only chance you’ll get.”
“Gus Stevens, you get down from the volcano this instant!” the Magician ordered sternly. Gus couldn’t help snickering at that.
“What are you going to choose, a lifetime of pain here, pretending you’re happy when you can’t even talk about your sham of happiness?”
“I’ll give you a nice, relaxed ride down to the grove. Your Mothers will make your favorite foods. I’ll even make Spear Mother take off her helmet for you.” The last offer disgusted him.
“Gus, he’s a monster.”
“This renegade spirit is crazy.”
“He’s whoring out Spear Mother.”
“I would do no such thing. I’m simply explaining to my son—”
“Boy, friend, vessel, host, house, my stronghold, listen to me: Which do you want? The misery this poor excuse for a Person offers you or freedom?”
I don’t know! I don’t know! I don’t know! I don’t know!
“Easy, Gus, easy,” the Magician murmured. Gus shot him a poisonous look, took several deep breaths while staring at the rising column of magma. A despairing question anchored him.
I’m going to suffer whether or not I’m free, right? he asked the rock illuminated like a burning mineshaft. The magma rose higher. The Dream World will go under and I’ll be the same?
The magma’s rise halted as Language stopped to think.
“Well,” it replied. “You’ll have me.”
What difference will that make?
“Do you promise not to be angry if I tell you?”
Sure.
“The truth is, I don’t know,” it said, and the magma resumed its journey upwards. It had to be less than seventy feet away. Sixty-five. Sixty. It stopped again. “I don’t know what the Waking World is like except through what I’ve overheard you say.”
So how do you know you’re important there? You don’t even know if it exists.
“I don’t. But I trust Mathis. You do, too, don’t you?”
Dumbstruck, Gus replied, I guess.
“And he told you the mountain would explain everything?”
Yes. He didn’t tell me that the mountain was possessed by a crazy spirit calling itself Language incarnate.
“Exactly, Gus! Well done!” the Magician wheedled, “Don’t trust it. Trust ME. I’ll give you all the knowledge you’ve ever wanted from me if you return to the grove.”
The magma hadn’t started to rise again but its heat was baking his face.
Please, Language begged, now inside his head. Please.
You don’t care what happens to me. So what if I kill myself, right? You lose your chains. I’m still screwed.
I’ll be trapped in your soul again, but YOU will be free to use me. Which is how it should be.
Then you’re exchanging one prison for another.
If you were in my place, you’d be right, but the rules are different for me. Please, Gus. Let me go.
He had nothing to say to it.
Please, Gus. Please. PLEASE.
It was hysterical, its voice rising higher and higher with the magma. His ears were ringing again.
PLEASE. PLEASE. Let me go. Let me go. Let me go. LET ME GO.
Its hysteria was getting to him. He couldn’t stop his own tears from leaking.
Please, Gus. Please let me out. LET ME OUT! LET ME OUT! LET ME OUT!
It was screaming bloody murder. He covered his ears as though this would muffle the sound inside his head. He was ready to smash the sound out of his skull on the vent but Language stopped him with a whimpering, Please.
“Please please please please please!” the Magician mocked, voice muffled. He kept chanting “please please please” as he cleaned his feathers. Gus tuned him out, waited until the bird had finished so he could see the hate on Gus’s face. Long-hidden vows to repay the suffering his mentor had caused him boiled to the surface. He chewed them all into a simple order to Language.
Now.



About the Author


Abbie Krupnick lives in Summit, New Jersey. When she’s not writing, she trains Brazilian jiu-jitsu and makes explosive quantities of visual art.

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PROMO Blitz: The Man in the Forest by @mwarriner2 #excerpt #paranormal #horror


Paranormal Horror
Date Published: May 31, 2017
Publisher: Darkwater Syndicate, Inc.

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Vincent, a musical prodigy, is caught up in a concert rivalry with a former student. He travels to Romania to settle the score, but what he discovers is the horrific true story behind the song his protégé wrote, “The Man in the Forest.” Supernatural phenomena and horrific sights abound, but the locals are tight-lipped about the mysterious goings-on. Can Vincent and his group upstage their rival, or will they fall prey to the curse of the man in the forest?



Excerpt

Behind him, in the hallway leading to the front door, he heard a light pattering of footsteps. He looked over his shoulder. The footsteps stopped, but he couldn’t see anyone in the doorway. Out of the corner of his eye he detected movement in the hall, but turned in time only to catch a shadow scurry away.
It had been a small shadow—a child perhaps? But what would children be doing so far out in the forest without their parents, and this late at night?
Vincent chased after the shadow, but when he got to the hall, nothing was there. Just then he heard something behind him. He quickly turned and caught a glimpse of what looked like the ventriloquist’s dummy—what was his name? Johnny Nelson—skipping to the stairs and out of sight. Vincent’s eyes grew wide.
Vincent ran through the living room to the stairs. He froze upon hearing a childlike laugh and looked up. The puppet stood at the balcony with its face in between the rails, leering at him. It looked exactly like the one in the painting.
First taking a breath to steady himself, Vincent climbed the stairs, the doll watching him all the while with tiny, creaking movements of its wooden eyes.
All at once the lights in the cabin went out, blanketing the house in shadow. He heard the pattering of small feet run down the second story hall. Vincent halted midway up the stairs and listened… nothing.
Then the lights blinked back on. Vincent ascended the rest of the stairs to the second story balcony. Johnny Nelson was gone without a trace.
Further down the hall, Vincent noticed the door to Mary’s bedroom was ajar. The lights inside her bedroom flickered as though the electrical wiring had gone bad. He went to the door and pushed it open.
It was dark when he stepped inside, the light mounted in the fan providing only sporadic bursts of light. He reached up and flicked the light bulb, and it steadied. As he lowered his gaze, he caught sight of Johnny Nelson in the reflection in the mirror atop the dresser. Before Vincent could even react, there was a muffled pop and crunching of glass. He dove to the floor as shards of the light bulb in the fan rained down around him. “Vince!” Mary shrieked. “Are you okay?”
He looked over his shoulder from the ground. Mary and Tyler stood in the doorway.
Vincent got to his feet, but didn’t answer right away. The mirror in the dresser was little more than an empty frame with a wood backing, its glass having burst all over the dresser’s surface and the floor. On the backing, in red letters that looked too much like blood for Vincent’s liking, was written: “Johnny Wants To Play!”


About the Author


Born and raised in Central Florida, Michael Warriner pursued an early interest in learning music and creating characters in hand-drawn comic books. He began his career working simultaneously in the mental health industry and as a character performer at his local theme park. It was while pursuing his degree in Psychology that he began writing stories “just to kill time.” Before long, he had written two manuscripts. This developing interest in telling stories was further driven by his fascination with amateur filmmaking. By day, Michael now applies his education and training to assist clients diagnosed with mental illness. By night, he writes novels, and in his free time he composes music. He draws upon these varied interests to create unique characters and thrust them into memorable stories.

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Thursday, August 10, 2017

Blog Tour: Wish I Were Here by Erin Lavan with my #review



Contemporary Fiction
Date Published: 5/15/2017

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Savannah Waters never expected to ride through the Alps on the back of her rugged doctor’s Harley in pursuit of her stolen nude self-portrait, when her world was turned upside down. After sinking to rock bottom following her ex-boyfriend’s drug overdose, Savannah is dragged to jail, a nauseating intervention, and AA meetings. Finally, she is introduced to an intriguing psychiatrist who sees her as more than a patient. A trip to Europe with the gorgeous Jake would be a dream come true – were it not for the wacky gang of wealthy weirdos they’re traveling with. Europe is invigorating, the food and wine delectable and the company stimulating to say the least – but how can Savannah get closer to her dream Doc while they’re surrounded by so many people who need his curative touch? To top it all, her deeply personal (and very nude) artwork lies in wait on Isle de Brêhat, tantalizingly close to the end of her European odyssey… From the feisty pen of debut author Erin Lavan, WISH I WERE HERE is an irresistible modern-day romance that will put a smile on your face and leave you hungry for a taste of adventure.


Review

Light and Fun, Erin Lavan's novel Wish I Were Here will have readers captivated by her characters. 

The characters are real and very well developed, they make it easy for you as the reader to be drawn into. 

This novel was very easy to follow. There was something wonderful about how simple it was. I didn't have to overthink things. There was plenty of comic relief in it to lighten any of the deeper moments.

I never felt confused and that is a great testament when you are introducing readers to new characters and issues.

About the Author


Erin Lavan is currently based out of Miami Beach, and the owner of her own Restaurant PR Firm. She has been an associate publisher of DiningOut Magazine, Certified Sommelier, Restaurant Consultant, Published Writer, and Foodie in her 15 years in Miami. "Wish I Were Here" is hardly her first soirée with professional writing, but it is her first published personal novel.

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