Monday, July 31, 2017

SPOTLIGHT: REX by CODY B. STEWART, MARK ROGERS, and ADAM ROCKE




Rex
Cody B. Stewart, Mark Rogers,
and Adam Rocke

Genre: Middle Grade

Publisher: Common Deer Press

Date of Publication: October 5, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-9959729-1-6
ASIN: B06ZZS4ZRT

Number of pages: 320 pages

Cover Artist: Common Deer Press, Ellie Sipal

Book Description:

When eleven-year-old TJ finds a weird looking egg in the Florida Everglades after a tropical storm rips through, naturally he takes it home for identification. It could be the egg of a mutant duck or something, which would be awesome.

Problem is, the egg doesn’t look like it came from a mallard, even a mutated one—it’s too big and heavy and…strange. So he hides it away in his closet and continues on with his life as usual, doing his best to ignore the creepy men constantly banging at his front door and the significant rise in military helicopter sightings in his typically quiet neighbourhood. Then one day he comes home from school and it’s as though a cyclone has gone through his bedroom.

Suddenly, TJ knows he’s dealing with something a little more interesting—and a little more deadly—than a duck.


Excerpt:
TJ and Sam stood silent and still, too afraid to move or make a sound. “Wait a second,” TJ finally said. “Mess downstairs? We weren’t downstairs.”
          Their eyes met and they shared the same thought. They darted into TJ’s room, emerging a moment later, sufficiently rearmed with the slingshot and bat. Then, they snuck downstairs to assess the damage.
          When TJ saw the extent of the wreckage, he almost let another marble rip. His heart sank when he spotted the demolished cherry pie.
          “Hell-o Kitty,” Sam uttered, marveling at the mess. “I think your house is haunted, TJ. You have one of those polter-geese.”
          “Geist,” TJ corrected. “Poltergeist. Do you think a ghost hatched out of that egg?”
          “I don’t know what it was that came out of that thing, but I know it’s a huge pain in my butt. Since you found it, I’ve almost been eaten by an alligator, shot by a swamp cowboy, and now I’m stuck cleaning up its mess.”
          Sam and TJ grumbled at each other, and ghosts, and the whole world as they scrubbed the floors, wiped the counters, and picked up bits of broken plate and other unidentifiable things. Once the kitchen sparkled, Sam threw her dirty rag at TJ.
          “Not that this wasn’t a fun night or anything, but I’m going home before the ground splits open and we get attacked by mole people.”
          “You’re leaving?” TJ shrieked. “While there’s still a possible ghost goblin poltergeist thingy stalking around my house?”
          Sam shrugged. “Ghost goblin poltergeist thingies got nothing on my dad when I miss curfew. Call me if something tries to eat you.”

***** ***** *****

Fatigue hit TJ hard. He yawned and didn’t stop yawning until he reached his bedroom door. His mind raced in circles. He couldn’t focus on any one thing long enough to even care about poltergeists or alligators or whatever. All he wanted to do was go to sleep with the hope that he’d wake up in the morning with all of his limbs still attached.
          Luckily, TJ’s reflexes were working just fine despite his mostly asleep brain. He opened the door and ducked just in time to avoid getting hit square in the face with a flying sneaker. He dropped to the floor and covered his head with his arms. He peeked up when he was sure the other sneaker wasn’t going to follow. He instantly wished he had his helmet—and the swamp cowboy—because standing on his bed was the thing that had destroyed his room and the kitchen…
A one-foot tall Tyrannosaurus Rex.



About the Authors:

Cody B. Stewart was born in the Adirondacks, in Upstate New York. His love of stories began in those mountains as he vanquished trolls, fought in the American Revolution and discovered his latent mutant powers. Stories have continued to consume his life, but he now plucks them out of his head and puts them down on paper in the form of novels and comic books. He left the Adirondacks to grow into a man, did so, and has since returned with a wonderfully supportive wife and two sons.




Mark Rogers’ career as a travel journalist has brought him to 56 countries and counting. These trips have fed his imagination while at the same time provided authentic experiences and sensory detail that find their way into his novels and screenplays. Mark’s won multiple awards for his travel writing, including an award for his Hurricane Ivan coverage in Jamaica. His work regularly appears in USA Todayand other media outlets. Mark lives in Baja California with his Sinaloa-born wife, Sophy, where they recently built a rock house overlooking the sea.


Adam Rocke never met an adventure he didn’t love. From swimming with great white sharks without a cage, to jumping out of a plane without a parachute, Adam’s adrenaline junkie tendencies play a major role in his writing.Throw in a secondary degree in CryptoZoology, and it’s anyone’s guess where Adam’s literary travels will take him.

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YOUR SUPERNATURAL CENTRAL WEEK AHEAD beginning July 31, 2017


Hello and welcome to Monday, fray. I have drawn three cards from my deck to inspire all of us in this group for the week ahead. The meanings are open for interpretations beyond my own, so please feel free to comment as your week unfolds.
There are no major arcana cards in our forecast, so expect minor distractions over the next seven days.

Gabriel wants to guide us both at the beginning and the end of the week. Perhaps telling us she's watching us the whole time. The beginning of the week sees… "A great deal of activity. Sudden and immediate results, important communications."  There's a whole lot of talking going on, for certain. All those balls you have in the air are starting to land, and they're not crashing down with a thud. Good for you! Gabriel represents creativity, and this week we have lots of it.
The Nine of Raphael card wants us to "Make a Wish! Dreams become reality. A joyful time of life." So take a deep breath come hump day, and give yourself a little treat. You've earned it. Feed yourself with positive energy to head into the weekend. Raphael can be filled with emotion, but you've got it under control.

Gabriel comes back a the end of the week to tell us whatever you are concerned about is… "A challenge you can resolve. Withdraw from the drama of others. Have patience with yourself and those around you." Rome wasn't built in a day, as they say. Those balls we talked about earlier? They're rolling along their natural course at their own pace, but take comfort in the fact that they are not stuck in traffic.
Sounds like "I Don't Like Mondays," will turn into "Shiney Happy People Holding Hands" by the end of the week. Have a great one.

INTERVIEW WITH CHRISTOPHER DRAVEN (Jonathan Harker novels)



 
Are you enjoying your summer? Everyone is coming and going all over the planet. We were lucky that Christopher Draven decided to have a little chat with us here at Supernatural Central.
 
SC: Tell me a little bit about your main character of this book.
CD: Well, the main character in Hunted: A Jonathan Harker Novel, is an itinerant mage who hunts demons.

SC: Demons. Never a fun group of people. Do you believe in the paranormal and if so, do you have an experience you can share?
CD: It would be impertinent of me, or any person, to fully dismiss the paranormal. Most world religions are filled with stories of paranormal happenings. Human history is rife with subjects that extended beyond conventional wisdom, which were then explained through science, mathematics, or other means.

SC: What titles are you working on now that you can tell us about?
CD: I am currently work on book two of the Jonathan Harker Novels series. The book is due out in October, 2017.

SC: Then we won't keep you any longer. Thanks for stopping by. We're going to take a look at your novel HUNTED now.




Hunted: A Jonathan Harker Novel
Christopher Draven

Genre: Supernatural Thriller/Urban Fantasy

Date of Publication: May 14th, 2017

ISBN: 978-1547126866
ASIN: B071NZC3Z9

Number of pages: 270
Word Count: 55,000

Book Description:

Slinging Spells with Broken Ribs Isn't Easy

Jonathan Harker, mage and life-long demon hunter, wakes to find himself tied to a chair and severely wounded. His captor, a demon in service to a summoner who wants Harker alive.

Armed with impossibly powerful magic and a gang of demon toughs, the summoner has snared Harker in a deadly trap. Nothing is ever easy, and being new in town has left Harker with few allies. However, with help from a Fortune-Teller named Clover and a self-described "Kitchen Witch" named Momma Dee, Harker fights back.

To prevail, Harker must walk unprepared into a pit of demons and black magic - and come out alive on the other side.





Excerpt:

My brain righted itself, and I could pull my thoughts together.
Neither demon seemed to possess magic. Instead, the creatures relied on their strength and speed. There was no matching those physical attributes. To survive, I would need to use a different tactic. Direct confrontation had failed, twice. My next trick was misdirection.
“Tell me,” I said. “How did a low-powered summoner rank high enough to afford two Demon Nobles?”
Both demons, who were whispering to one another across the room, turned to face me.
“You know us,” Cresh said with a tone of surprise. The demon still pressed one hand tightly against his wounded side.
“Yes,” I said.
“You knew and you still entered to battle?”
“To be fair,” I said. “I had no idea who was waiting.”
Cresh huffed a small laugh; Mindal growled.
Well, I thought. I know which one is the smart one.

About the Author:

Christopher Draven has worked as an instructional designer, newspaper journalist, and ghost writer.

One soggy Monday morning, he committed to leaving behind the soul-stealing work of corporate puppetry and escaped to a meadow where he could concentrate on his passion. Since that fateful day, Christopher has focused on learning the craft of fiction.

Hunted: A Jonathan Harker Novel was Christopher’s debut, and his best friend said it was swell.


Twitter: @writerdraven





SPOTLIGHT: THE DRAGON'S PLAYLIST by LAURA BICKLE





The Dragon’s Playlist
Laura Bickle

Genre: Contemporary Fantasy

ISBN: 9781537891965

From the author of THE HALLOWED ONES and NINE OF STARS comes a new novel blending the magical and the real…

“This is war,” the dragon said. And she believed him.

Di fled rural West Virginia to study music and pursue a bright future as a violinist. But when a mining accident nearly kills her father, she is summoned back home to support her family. Old ghosts and an old flame emerge from the past. When Di gets a job as a bookkeeper at the same mine where her father worked, she is drawn into a conflict pitting neighbor against neighbor as the mine plans an expansion to an untouched mountain.

If the mining company’s operation goes forward, there will be more at stake than livelihoods or the pollution of the land: Di has discovered a dragon lives deep within Sawtooth Mountain, and he is not happy with this encroachment upon his lair. When catastrophe strikes, Di must choose between her family’s best interests and protecting the dragon – the last surviving bit of magic in Di’s shrinking world.

In every fight, sides are chosen. And there can be no yearning for what has been left behind.

Read 2 New Chapters Free Each Week Starting June 1
at
and

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About the Author:

Laura Bickle grew up in rural Ohio, reading entirely too many comic books out loud to her favorite Wonder Woman doll. After graduating with an MA in Sociology-Criminology from Ohio State University and an MLIS in Library Science from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, she patrolled the stacks at the public library and worked with data systems in criminal justice. She now dreams up stories about the monsters under the stairs. Her work has been included in the ALA’s Amelia Bloomer Project 2013 reading list and the State Library of Ohio’s Choose to Read Ohio reading list for 2015-2016.

More information about Laura’s work can be found at 



Wednesday, July 26, 2017

SPOTLIGHT: TARNISHED BEGINNINGS SOUL DANCE BOOK ONE by Ann Gimpel




Tarnished Beginnings
Soul Dance
Book One
Ann Gimpel

Book Description:

Tairin’s wolf is more than just a dream creature. She hates it, but it’s also her only friend.

1700s Egypt is a haven for magic-wielders of all kinds. Vampires hold court, staying one step ahead of the priests and priestesses who want them dead. Gypsy caravans roam the Nile from north to south and back again, plying their wares, telling fortunes, casting Tarot cards, and stealing from the gadjos.

Tairin Jabari was born in a caravan and has always believed she’s Romani. Why wouldn’t she? Her mother and father never suggested otherwise. The Rom have harsh rules. When Tairin’s first shift catches her unaware at thirteen, her father disappears, and the elders move with deadly speed to punish her mother for mating outside the blood.

Hurt, lost, confused, and fearing for her own life, Tairin runs away, leaving her mother’s smoking funeral pyre behind. If she could only find her father, he’d welcome her. He’s always loved her, hasn’t he? Only problem is he’s in a shifter settlement. With her mixed blood, they won’t welcome her any more warmly than the Romani. It doesn’t take long before Tairin discovers how desperately unprepared she is for life outside her protected caravan. With her survival on the line every single day, she and her wolf have some hard choices to make.

Tarnished Beginnings, the prequel to the Soul Dance books is only available in the Magic After Dark Boxed set.

Amazon    BN    Google Play    iTunes     Kobo





About the Box Set

Journey from the hills of Ireland to Victorian England, from medieval Italy to eighteenth century Egypt, from the United States to the sand-baked Middle East and beyond to explore forbidden magic, meet exotic gypsy lovers, navigate the pitfalls of ancient prophecies, battle vampires and shifters, and defeat evil sorcerers and hellish demons.

This unique collection, inspired by the rich and varied history of gypsies from all over the world, contains over one million words of captivating urban fantasy and paranormal romance fiction that’s guaranteed to keep you up long after dark.

Discover gypsy worlds where heroes roam and magic reigns with twenty-five brand new works from today’s New York Times, USA Today, and international bestselling authors.

Each book within this collection is exclusive to the set and can’t be found anywhere else. Preorder now for a future filled with romance, mystery, adventure, and magical thrills!



*** Contributing Authors ***

New York Times bestselling author Rebecca Hamilton
USA Today bestselling author Caryse Locke
New York Times bestselling author Margo Bond Collins
USA Today bestselling author Ann Gimpel
USA Today bestselling author J.L. Weil
USA Today bestselling author J.A. Culican
New York Times bestselling author Tom Shutt
Melle Amade
USA Today bestselling author T.F. Walsh
Dean F. Wilson
Miranda Hardy
Award-Winning author D.N. Leo
David J. Normoyle
Megan J. Parker
Monica Leonelle
P.E. Padilla
Ainsley Shay
Megan Linski
Award-Winning author Julie Morgan
Cait Reynolds
Chloe Garner
Paris Andren
Cate Farren
Felicia Starr
Award-Winning author Nathan Squiers

Tarnished Legacy
Soul Dance
Book Two
Ann Gimpel

Germany, 1940

Half Romani, Tairin’s no stranger to hiding her mixed blood from gypsy caravans. What she can’t hide is her perpetual youth, courtesy of her shifter heritage. Every few years, she drops out of sight, resurfacing in a new country to join a caravan where no one knows her. She’s overstayed her welcome where she is, but Germany is at war, and travel has become all but impossible for everyone targeted by the Reich.

Elliott’s clairvoyance is strong, even for a Romani. Seer for all the caravans in Germany, he catches Tairin eavesdropping outside their leader’s wagon one night. He should turn her in, but it would mean her execution, and he can’t bring himself to do that. Instead, he interrogates her. Her magic is different, but he can’t figure out quite what she is.

Any association between Romani and shifters is forbidden, and Tairin shields herself from Elliott’s probing. She should leave right now, tonight. It would be easy enough. Shift to her wolf form and run, keeping out of hunters’ gunsights. She’s on the edge of flight when Elliott suggests a covert task to prove her loyalty. Tairin agrees immediately, kicking herself for being weak where he’s concerned. Shifters and Romani have no future together. Zero. Zilch.

She should be smart about this and vanish into the night—before he discovers what she is and destroys her.

Ann Gimpel     Amazon    BN    iTunes    Google Play     Kobo




Tarnished Prophecy
Soul Dance
Book Three
Ann Gimpel

Germany, 1940

Magic runs strong in Ilona, a gypsy seer. Powerful ability isn’t valued in Romani women, so she focuses her fortunetelling on inconsequential details. Nothing that could come back to haunt her caravan if a prediction went bad. Rounded up and dumped in Dachau prison camp, she has plenty of time to rue her decision to downplay her ability. If she’d taken the time to scry her own future, she’d still be free.

A wolf shifter, Jamal made the mistake of wedding a Romani woman centuries ago. His arrogance caused both death and heartache, and he’s been alone ever since. The recent threat of vampires joining the Third Reich has provided ample reason for shifters and Rom to lay their ancient enmity aside and work together, but their d├ętente is fragile.

Jamal and a group of shifters come across Ilona after her escape from Dachau. Vulnerable, terrified, she’s fully prepared to fight. Her courage and mettle touch places in him he’d thought were dead, but she’s Romani. His last relationship ended so badly, the last thing he needs is to fall for another gypsy woman. He wrestles his tumbling emotions into submission, but when she trains her enigmatic, gray gaze on him, his resolve first weakens and then vanishes entirely.

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About the Author:

Ann Gimpel is a mountaineer at heart. Recently retired from a long career as a psychologist, she remembers many hours at her desk where her body may have been stuck inside four walls, but her soul was planning yet one more trip to the backcountry. Around the turn of the last century (that would be 2000, not 1900!), she managed to finagle moving to the Eastern Sierra, a mecca for those in love with the mountains. It was during long backcountry treks that Ann’s writing evolved. Unlike some who see the backcountry as an excuse to drag friends and relatives along, Ann prefers solitude. Stories always ran around in her head on those journeys, sometimes as a hedge against abject terror when challenging conditions made her fear for her life, sometimes for company. Eventually, she returned from a trip and sat down at the computer. Three months later, a five hundred page novel emerged. Oh, it wasn’t very good, but it was a beginning. And, she learned a lot between writing that novel and its sequel.

Around that time, a friend of hers suggested she try her hand at short stories. It didn’t take long before that first story found its way into print and they’ve been accepted pretty regularly since then. One of Ann’s passions has always been ecology, so her tales often have a green twist.

In addition to writing, Ann enjoys wilderness photography. She lugs pounds of camera equipment in her backpack to distant locales every year. A standing joke is that over ten percent of her pack weight is camera gear which means someone else has to carry the food! That someone is her husband. They’ve shared a life together for a very long time. Children, grandchildren and three wolf hybrids round out their family.

Find Ann At:








Friday, July 21, 2017

SPOTLIGHT: REVENANT: BLOOD JUSTICE by LESLIE J LINDER


Revenant: Blood Justice
Leslie J Linder

Genre: Horror

Publisher: Black Rose Writing

Date of Publication: May 26, 2017

ISBN:  1612968759
ASIN:  B071W8WSSC

Number of pages:  283
Word Count: about 93,000

Cover Artist: Layton Washburn

Tagline:  Justice is always on the menu.

Book Description:

You have probably heard a lot about vampires. The bloodthirsty prowling, the rapacious sex—the bats, mist, and mind control. Enid has heard it all too. And since she is an actual vampire, she could tell you which rumors are true. But the first thing that Enid would want you to know is that you humans really have it all wrong. To her, being a Chosen One is all about the distribution of justice. And right now, trouble is brewing.

Any vamp who has been undead for longer than a heartbeat can tell you, when Countess Erzsabet Bathory is in town, things are going to get messy. Enid knows what she would do to a human predator, but has never fought another vampire before.

It is against the old laws. But when the blood starts to boil and their feud breaks wide open, there may literally be hell to pay.

Amazon      BN     Black Rose Writing      



Excerpt:

Prologue

It was a dark and stormy night. That’s how these things are supposed to start, right? Well, you can forget that shit. This isn’t your average monster story.
Humans use monsters to help them understand what is monstrous within them. For instance, they clutch crosses and run home at sunset, in fear of vampires. They say vamps are former humans who traded their souls for the immortal power to become rapists, killers and child-stealers. But the real rapists, killers and child-stealers are usually waiting for them around their kitchen tables.     
They tell themselves disturbing tales about normal, innocent humans who are bitten by infected animals and cursed to become nocturnal, amnesiac killers. Then in real life whatever or whoever they do when they get black-out drunk seems vanilla by comparison.
Sometimes bad things happen to good people, is how it goes. Sometimes those good people turn into something even worse than anything lurking in the shadows. This can’t be helped. Evil is something that happens to humans, not something that humans do. Talk about a fairy tale.
The roster of monsters, as humans understand them, goes on and on. It scintillates as well as terrifies. It’s a cabinet of curiosities in which to keep those predatory desires. Human vices become something outside the human realm, as well as outside the individual ability to control. Convenient, right?
This is how humans see monsters. But how do monsters see humans? How do monsters see themselves?
These are foolish questions, you may say. Monsters aren’t real. They are a human invention; an entertainment, a release. You wish.
Listen, how humans understand things is not necessarily the truth. The planet Earth isn’t a rec-room. Trees aren’t fences. Pigs aren’t bacon. Rats aren’t a Petri dish meant for studying infections, or testing shampoo. Similarly, monsters are not archetypes for humans to use as sexual and predatory catharsis.
Pay attention to this bit—especially if you are human. What I’m telling you is that monsters are real.
You knew it when you were a child. You still know it when the lights go off, the moon waxes full, or someone you fear moves into the house next door.
Like a deer that catches the scent of a lion, you know it in your bones. Your technology, your bombs, your medicine don’t matter. You still aren’t the top of the food chain. There is no top, because life and death are a circle. Ashes, ashes, we all fall down.
I know this shit may scare you. That’s a good thing. That fear is the birthplace of stories, and you need stories. They were meant to protect you. Even if most stories are wrong.
But hey, even a broken clock is right twice a day. Your stories have their place.
The boogie man teaches children to obey their parents. The werewolf teaches parents to keep those children close and protected. The vampire teaches men and women to keep on the paths of righteousness, and to always safeguard their souls.
Knowledge is power. This is how a species endures. Understanding the beasts of the world can be the key to survival.
But there’s an important detail to remember. Stories tend to be diluted over time. True monsters may be missed while you focus on mere prejudice. What was once encoded with arcane information may now be nothing but soft porn. Especially if you’ve seen it on cable.
Pay attention to this part. It’s important. It’s the moral of the story you are about to read.
Understanding the true nature of vampires can mean the difference between life and death. Knowledge is power, because no one is off the menu.


About the Author:

Leslie Joan Linder, M.Div. lives and works in Downeast Maine. Her nonfiction work has appeared in Circle Sanctuary Magazine, SageWoman Magazine, and the Project Intersect Journal. Her poetry has appeared in publications like Wicked Banshee, Forage Poetry, and Rat’s Ass Review.

Leslie is a member of the Horror Writer’s Association, Horror Writers of Maine, and New England Horror Writers. Recent horror publications include the short story, “Catharine Hill,” in the “Northern Frights” anthology at Grinning Skull Press. Leslie’s debut horror novel, “Revenant: Blood Justice,” is available from Black Rose Writing.






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