Friday, November 26, 2021

INTERVIEW with B.C. HARRIS (Conspiracy of Cats)



As we head into the last few days of November, we're going to put our feet up for a bit and sit and chat with author B C Harris.

SC: Tell me a little bit about your main character of this book.

BCH: There are two main characters.

Jos Ferguson is a directionless young woman who hasn’t adequately dealt with the loss of her parents when she was fifteen. Since then she’s lived with her widowed Aunt Jude and, due to Jude’s almost cloistered existence, Jos lacks basic confidence as well as any social life. When an opportunity to travel to Africa arises, she goes for it despite her anxieties. Having traded in the stagnant security of life in Edinburgh for the wilds of Tanzania, Jos is able to grow as a woman. She meets a lot of characters as she journeys through the story, finding herself as surely as she finds the killer responsible for her uncle’s death.

Peter Sinclair is Jos’ dead uncle. He built the white house; where she lives during her stay in Tanzania. But Peter isn’t as dead as he should be. He’s been waiting for Jos to catch him up so she can help exact revenge upon his killer. But their relationship develops in ways Peter hasn’t foreseen, and he and Jos have a lot of fun exploring their new arrangement as the Jos Peter combo.

SC: Do you believe in the paranormal and if so, do you have an experience you can share?

BCH: A friend died too young. We’ll call him Frank. Frank was a big man with a voice to match. Frank liked to show up uninvited around dinner time and eat us out of house and home. Frank liked hot, spicy food and was very proud of his farts. Frank was older than me, overweight, and already worked backstage in the theatre I also ended up working in for many years.

A year or so after Frank’s death, I had swapped working on stage for working at stage door. One night… or very early one morning, after a Lets Zep gig (a Led Zeppelin tribute band), I was doing my rounds, locking up and putting lights off. At this point there was just me and the stage manager in the entire building.

I had just come through from front of house and entered the level 2 corridor through the fire doors at one end. As I entered the long carpeted hallway, I saw Frank at the other end, as if he’d just walked through the fire doors there. He looked absolutely real… looking exactly as he had when we first met. His hair was much longer then, and he was a tad thinner.

I stopped in my tracks, just watching him as he took a few steps towards me and then turned into one of the toilets. This is significant because Frank was a flyman. He would normally have used the toilets on level six or seven. However, whenever someone Frank didn’t like was appearing at the theatre, he would make a point of using the toilets on level 2 which were adjacent to the star dressing rooms. Frank was famous for producing some truly noxious aromas. His nuclear waste. One time, a Hollywood standard movie star that Frank really didn’t like, got the nuclear treatment. Within a few days she had demanded that he be officially barred from using those same toilets for the duration of her run. Frank’s work was done.

Anyway, as soon as he disappeared into the toilet… closing the door behind him, I got on my radio and spoke to the stage manager. I told him who I’d seen. His office wasn’t far from where I was still standing, and he joined me to check out the toilet in question. The door was still closed so you can imagine two adults creeping up on that door like it was a dangerous beast, and then touching it like it was burning hot, both of us ready to run for the hills at the drop of a hat. But Frank wasn’t in there. Of course he wasn’t; he was long past the need for toilet facilities. But the stage manager said it made sense to him, because Frank had always hated Led Zeppelin. If he’d been alive, Frank would no doubt have come down from the fly floor to drop off his nuclear waste in that same toilet.

I remember this like it was yesterday, and feel honoured that Frank showed himself to me. I know very little of the paranormal, but I do believe there’s something in it. It may simply be that we living humans just haven’t worked out why these things happen and, when we do, there will be some science and nature explanation. Until then, I’m a believer in a lot of things that defy explanation.

SC: Thanks for sharing that with us.  What titles are you working on now that you can tell us about?

BAH: I very recently submitted Making Sacrifices for consideration. This is another supernatural murder mystery.  It splits its time between Edinburgh, Scotland and Simonsbath, a village high up on Exmoor in the south west of England. This is a darker tale than Conspiracy of Cats. It deals with some of the issues facing young girls trafficked as part of the global sex trade. Research was difficult at best, heartbreaking at worst. I hope to hear back from my publisher before Christmas. In the meantime I’m working on manuscript number three.

The Accidental Assassin is in an advanced stage. A young woman, a professional carer with an abusive boyfriend. She sort of murders one of her clients, definitely murders her boyfriend, and then embarks upon a new career as a contract killer. There’s quite a bit of comedy in this one, despite the domestic violence and the often dangerous situations my fledgling killer finds herself in.

Meat Raffle is in its earliest stages. A murdered prog rocker, a haunted guitar, a modern function band. The search is on for the all elusive recording contract, a long lost sister and revenge for that murder.

SC: Thanks for joining us. Let's take a look at your novel now. 

Conspiracy of Cats
B C Harris

Genre: Contemporary fiction, paranormal, murder mystery
Publisher: Olympia Publishers, London
Date of Publication: 26th August 2021
ISBN: 978-1-80074-032-7
Number of pages: 325
Word Count: 123,121
Cover Artist: Olympia Publishers, London

Tagline: A Beautiful House, A Horrible Death, A Brilliant Revenge

Book Description: 

CONSPIRACY OF CATS… a supernatural murder mystery.

An apprehensive Jos Ferguson travels from Edinburgh to Northern Tanzania to visit the house her Uncle Peter built before he died. But Peter isn’t as dead as he should be… he was murdered, and he wants his niece to help him exact revenge upon his killer. With a little Maasai magic and a conspiracy of cats, Jos sets out to do exactly that.

A beautiful house. A horrible death. A brilliant revenge.

Who knew death could be so lively?


Looking back, it was as if Peter had known that he was going to die.  

It was as if all of them had known, because the Maasai came prepared for their ritual even though their little brother died only a few hours before they arrived. It was the largest group of Maasai Beola had ever encountered at the white house. At least fifty men, most of them warriors, all carrying their weapons and their shields. Their chests and faces and arms painted as if they were going into battle. She watched them from the master bedroom window, just as she’d watched the police arrive, having gone back up to finish changing the bed so it would be clean and ready when Jude returned. They arrived on foot just before sunset, and it would have taken all day to walk from their village on the western side of Mount Kilimanjaro all the way to the white house.  

Some of the warriors carried armfuls of wood, and immediately began building a large fire in the middle of the lawn. The elders, including their bearded laibon, sat down on the porch steps to rest and, when Beola went out to meet them, they asked only for water. When she offered food they politely refused. When Beola moved to go back inside to fetch the water, a young warrior stopped her. ‘We must leave the white house in peace, little sister,’ he told her, and then he and several of his fellow warriors guided her towards the lodge where they fetched enough water for all. When that was done, the young warrior told her, ‘Word has been sent into the park so your husband and your son will come home soon. When they do, you must be ready to leave.’

‘But why?’  

‘The laibon wishes to cleanse the white house of sorrow.’

Beola knew better than to argue with the wishes of a laibon, and so she nodded, resigned.

‘How long must we stay away?’

‘Moon die and come back again, man die and stay away. Come back with the new moon, sister.’  

Back inside the lodge Beola began to pack, without any clear idea of where her family would go or who they would stay with. By then it was full dark, and the fire was burning so brightly she could see its orange glow above the garage blocking her direct view. Kissi and Ben arrived while she was still packing, in shock at both the death of their friend and the large gathering on the white house lawn. The evening breeze was becoming a wind by then, and the stars were obscured by gathering clouds. The warriors had begun to sing a sorrowful sounding song, their beautiful voices competing with the mounting voice of the wind.  

By the time the Nyerere’s were readying to leave, a storm was in full flow.  

The perimeter of trees bent and swayed in the wind that had initially made their leaves whisper. That wind was howling and shrilling by then, a tempest that thrashed and whipped the leaves and branches. Storm clouds had gathered so close, they were piled on top of one another, grumbling, rumbling, crashing with thunder directly overhead. Lightening split the night over and over. Up on the roof garden, a solitary figure braved the onslaught. The old laibon was yelling into the night, his spells snatched away by the wind that seemed, in turns, to want to blow him away and push him down. Rain pelted down upon him, it blinded his eyes, dripped from his beard, soaked his shuka and chilled his bones. He fought against it, at the same time as he embraced it, arms stretched wide and high. Calling out, over and over, to the spirit of his friend.

As the Nyerere’s were loading up their jeep, another vehicle arrived, lights sweeping across the scene as it circled the lawn. Beola thought that it must be Jude, but it was Henk de Vries, pulling up in his flatbed truck. She assumed he’d heard the news and had come to pay his respects. She ran towards him, but half a dozen warriors barred Beola’s way. They told her to go, to never speak of this night to anyone. Beola struggled against them, and called out to Henk in some distress, but either the wind stole her voice, or the Dutchman chose to ignore her. Kissi was next to her by then and had to impel his wife bodily into the back of his Land Rover as Ben sat quietly weeping in the front. He then got in himself and set off for his father’s home in Arusha, having called ahead to stay there were sanitation issues at their home, so they needed a place to say for a while. As they were moving around the lawn towards the drive, Beola watched Henk lower the tail gate of his truck and saw two warriors lift and carry something towards the fire. Meat for the funeral feast, he told her much later.  

When Kissi’s Land Rover reached the foot of the hill, he turned north towards the main road that would take them to Arusha. They left the storm behind almost immediately. When they reached the top of the escarpment, he stopped and got out. Ben and Beola joined him. Together they stood atop the ridge, watching a small storm rage over the white house.  

About the Author: 

B C Harris is a Scot who, at the time of writing, had just finished renovating a farmhouse in France. A labour of love that began from first sight back in 2016. No sooner had the final length of flooring been laid and the last paintbrush dried, than disaster struck in the form of pandemic. France went into a strict lockdown and, with time to do more than simply daydream about writing books, a new project began to take shape.

Writing began as an escape from the fear and isolation that was soon affecting us all, and quickly flourished to become ‘Conspiracy of Cats'. The global pandemic seems to be receding now, but the passion for writing has taken root. Find out more about B C Harris online.

Article About Author: 

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Hey, author Lucius Beauchamp just left us a little note with some excerpts from the book! Have a read...

Hello, I’m Lucius Beauchamp and I’ve written a fast-paced fantasy novel, called ‘Beyond Atlantis: An Epic Of The Ancient Americas’. Right now, I’m discussing seers and seeing.


     “Seth was beside her, ‘Pity there isn’t any left. I just bought the last tubs.’

     ‘Salt and Genko honey. It must be good.’ She turned to Seth, smiling. ‘Seth, next time you’re this way, drop in.’ Then she lowered her voice so only he could hear, having just seen something. ‘And, please, make sure, very sure, you’re near a village in…’ Zithia looked harder behind him, ‘three months’ time.’ He began to laugh. ‘Don’t, there’s a dark shadow at your back;’ Seth’s lips lost the smile, ‘it worries me.’ It was in fact a cloud, and a death, if he were alone then.

     Seth stopped laughing. He gave Zithia a look which was hard to read. Finally, with deepening gravity, ‘I’ll bring truffles for you next year.’”



     “Whirling around and simultaneously stepping back, Zithia bumped into a young Phoenician. A brick wall! She’d felt a solid wall where the normal tunnel of years should be. He had no future at all. Gulping, Zithia swayed and the Phoenician took hold of her bare arm to steady her. There it was again, a threat so amorphous it was inescapable. His life would end within months. No seer could point a way beyond that wall. Rare, so very rare. Both apologising, Zithia watched his retreating back, and badly needed a drink. “Too much… too much… to do.” Zithia thought, then steeled her mind, putting this pain away for another time.”

Seers are with us from the time of fables and myths of the gods. The Emperor Tiberius of ancient Rome had a true seer, Thrasyllus. Yet even he couldn’t always satisfy his erratically dangerous patron and was scheduled, by that monster, to be thrown down a Capri cliff for not coming-up with the goods. Thrasyllus had come up with a right prophecy, in the nick of time.

Then there was poor Nostradamus, terrified of The Spanish Inquisition. Who wouldn’t have been? Seeing into his own future, Nostradamus saw death at the hands of The Inquisition. Hence, his throwing all the single-quatrains in his Book of Prophecies up into the air, then collecting the pages up randomly. Nostradamus then looked, once more, into his future. The burning death was still there; without benefit of smoky wood. So, he tossed his quatrains up into the air a second time, and he saw a better death; a natural death.            

Of course, we can’t forget the legendary Cassandra, of Troy. Legendary for being somewhat foolhardy. I mean, you don’t make a deal with the god Apollo to have his child in exchange for the gift of prophecy, then renege on the deal. It’s not going to end well. And it didn’t. Apollo arranged that no one ever believed Cassandras’ prophecies; so, she took to drink.

To summarise, being a seer has always been a complicated issue. And, whether a seer can truly tell the future, isn’t as important as whether or not he can survive being able to tell the future. What are your thoughts on this?  

Beyond Atlantis: An Epic of The Ancient Americas
Lucius Beauchamp

Genre: Fiction, Fantasy, Adventure
ISBN: Paperback 978-0-6488929-0-8  
ISBN: E-book 978-0-6488929-1-5
ASIN: 0648892905 
Number of pages: 448
Word Count: 158,240 
Cover Artist: Flametree Creative

Tagline: Greater Atlantis, where The Guardian Tribe roam

Book Description: 

10,000 years ago, ancient Atlantian Tribes of magicians flourished in the lower Americas and along the Mississippi. 

Galen, an Atlantian magician priest is locked in a relentless power struggle with an envious sorceress who blackmails, lies, and manipulates. A prince of the blood, Galen is determined that nothing will stop his becoming an Archpriest.

Eten, blackest witch and high priestess sees angels and seeks a forbidden treasure. She finds Galen’s curse of having a soulmate particularly helpful. 

Half a millennia ago the Island of Atlantis sank off the Biminis, the 13th Tribe was held responsible for the demise of Atlantis. The surviving Atlantians stripped the 13th of all technology and exiled them. 

Vengeful, the 13th Tribe wishes to return but the 13th’s warlocks fear crossing into Greater Older Atlantis. They do not dare set foot on the Guardian-protected land. The great Guardian Tribe possess a formidable circle of psychics who roam North America keeping constant vigil to keep Greater Older Atlantis safe for all Atlantians. 


    With lightning rushing to greet the barbarians, not only sulphur made their guts wrench. That most feared God, the God of lightning, was among them. Sheets of power forked across the ground, felling dozens of the pure race. Repeatedly, the riverbed exploded and sprayed molten sand. Dripping glass sculptures remained and pressure waves threw barbarians into the glowing glass pools. Where some lay stuck, in death or dying.
     The false day reached the refugees, the sky pulsing green. From the Safety of the hillside they saw it all, with deafening thunder rocking them. Dodging lightning bolts, the barbarians ran when they could to slid into super-hot streams of glass where their flesh seared so completely that bare-bones were exposed among living tissue. There was screaming at newly blackened limbs and sizzling holes within a shoulder or thigh, created by actual lightning strikes. And then more astral screams as the black shadows of the underworld chased and fell upon the freshly dead. Only a handful survived. It was another mist-night.


Tancah. Ten ships comprising another fleet had landed. Gold. Mounds of gold was being turned into ingots for shipment to the Far World.
     The gangplanks were sunk into the pink sand by the tread of disembarking
     The scarred pyramids were towers with large stone tablets standing
on top. Not very wide, with ladder-like stairs, each had an almost sheer
drop at the back. Saplings burst forth in unexpected places among the ruins.
     The seventh ship to dock was grander than the others. Its occupants always liked to be seventh, from superstition. Rhaim, the commander-in-chief hurried to meet these new arrivals. They were the main reason he’d come back to Tancah. After all, he didn’t want their leader to take offense. In black clothing with wide purple edging, the thirteen glided down the gangplank. Weary soldiers made hasty signs in the group’s direction while dropping their eyes. Even with a close trimmed mustache, the outlines of the first face were a death mask. Udo, the leader. Tall, white-haired and eyes robin’s-egg blue. The whole group was from similar molds.
     Not on land yet, Udo glanced at Tancah. A connoisseur, he breathed
deeply of the destruction. Then he put a foot hard on the sand and dogs began to howl. A flock of monarch butterflies, resting on their way to their wintering ground, filled the air. Raising his hand to the sky, Udo cut a swath through the gossamer wings. The lovelies rained down among the pyramids, while the coven roared with laughter.
     Invisible to everyone, a watcher hovered over the beach within sight of the ships. As one, the black-garbed group turned to look at him, eyes burning. Languidly, Udo said, ‘Kill.’
     Two men vacated their flesh so utterly that their bodies fell to the ground. Their spirits were shadow hounds. Instantly the temple flyer telepathed the sight to his temple, then spirit claws were on him. Dying, screams filled the heads of other flyers.
     The murdered watcher’s body, seated in the temple chamber, spasmed and went limp. A high priest wiped the corpse’s brow, ‘Where is the other?’
     Simultaneously, Udo’s face was in the room, hanging in mid-space.
Gloating, he disappeared. Then he was back at the beachfront. ‘Find the other watched.’
     The two dark hounds pounced forward, but Udo’s snarl sent them scurrying into their bodies. He believed in sharing and signaled a fresh pair.  


About the Author:

Like Plato, Lucius believed Atlantis existed. Interpreting Plato's description of location, backed up by Edgar Cayce's readings, the Island of Atlantis was off the Biminis. Therefore, for him, the Continent of Atlantis (Greater Older Atlantis) was North America.

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

INTERVIEW WITH JENNAE VALE (The Golden Hook: The Green Sky Series, Book Two)


Today we welcome author Jennae Vale to our page. Welcome, Jennae!

SC: Tell me a little bit about your main character of this book.

JV: Edward Sutherland is an English pirate aboard The Dagger, a ship captained by his best friend Jameson Mackall.  He’s charming, handsome, enjoys a good time and is pretty full of himself. Unexpectedly he finds he has traveled through time to the 21st century, but despite all of the oddities of this strange new world he finds himself in Edward considers it an adventure that he’s happy to be on, especially after meeting a woman who can challenge him at every turn.

SC: Ooh! We love pirates, especially time travelling ones. Do you believe in the paranormal and if so do you have an experience you can share?

JV: I most definitely believe in the paranormal and I’ve had plenty of experiences that might make you a believer too.  I’ll share one with you that was especially unnerving. Many years ago my older brother passed away. I was devastated to lose him and was upset that I hadn’t been able to say goodbye. It was all I could think about. Then one night, something woke me from a sound sleep. My eyes were drawn to my bedroom door where a bluish purple light buzzed into my room landing next to my bed. Much to my surprise a sofa appeared and on that sofa sat my brother. He asked me what it was that I’d wanted to tell him. I couldn’t speak. Instead I sat up and reached out to touch him (something I’ve since been told you should never do) but it was as if my body was frozen in place. I struggled to free myself and was finally able to reach him. The entire right side of my body began to vibrate. I felt as though I was being electrocuted. Now, instead of trying to touch my brother I was trying to pull back away from him. When I finally was able to break free, the vibration stopped and my brother was gone. I fell back asleep and the next day when I woke I was physically ill. I don’t know for sure if the vibration had caused my fever and achiness, but I think that it did.  I learned my lesson though. Don’t touch those visiting from the spirit world no matter how much you might want to.

SC: Thanks for sharing that with us. It must have been very emotional for you. What titles are you working on now that you can tell us about?

JV: I’ve got more than one book in the planning stages. I have a spin off series planned for a character from my Thistle & Hive Series. There will be more books in The Green Sky Series and The Delight Series, but the book I’m most excited about will take me out of my comfort zone of time travel romance. I’m currently researching a book that will be historical fiction set in Victoria Chicago. I can’t say much more than that, but it should be a fun book to write.

SC: You'll have to come back another time and tell us more. Let's take a look at today's novel now.

The Golden Hook  
The Green Sky Series
Book Two 
Jennae Vale

Genre: Time Travel Romance
Date of Publication: October 12, 2021
Number of pages:190
Word Count: 57,000
Cover Artist: Sheri McGathy

Tagline: Swashbuckling pirates plus time travel equals adventure and romance on the high seas.

Book Description: 

What happens when a swashbuckling pirate meets a time traveling twenty-first century woman?
Edward Sutherland has always been a self-assured and confident man of the sea. He’s spent years alongside his friend and captain Jameson Mackall and until now has only ever wanted to find treasure and retire a wealthy man. He wasn’t expecting to travel through time and he certainly wasn’t expecting to meet a woman who would challenge and impress him at every turn.
Susanna Cole has lost her best friend in a boating accident. In a deep state of grief she is about to close her once thriving business when a stranger walks through her door with a letter from her friend. A letter dated 1724. Can she believe this man? Or is he playing some cruel joke?
Two strangers with one goal, to get back to the year 1724. There are plans to be made, treasure to be found and most importantly they must locate the one woman who can possibly help them in their quest. The feelings they are developing for one another will be put to the test when history, as it is written, comes into play and the life of Edward Sutherland is on the line.


Boxes were piled high around the offices of NYC Party Planning, crowding in on the desk where Susanna Cole sat going through emails and messages from friends and business acquaintances.

This had been one of the hardest times of her life.

Life wasn’t the same without Danielle. She’d lost her best friend and business partner. They worked together and lived together. She was completely alone now and more depressed than she’d ever been in her life.

Her head popped up as there was a knock at the door. “Come in.”

The door opened and the sight in front of her was like a slap in the face. Some idiot had decided it would be a good idea to remind her of her loss by showing up in pirate costume. “Was there a costume party someone forgot to tell me about?” she snapped.

“I’m sorry. Costume party?” the man asked.

“I’m not in the mood right now. What can I do for you?” Maybe if she sounded cranky enough he’d just turn around and leave.

“I need your help,” he said, stepping closer.

“You’ve come to the wrong place. I’m no longer accepting new clients. The business is closing for the foreseeable future.” That should do it. There was nothing more to be said. If he was looking for a party planner he was going to have to go elsewhere.

“But this is the right address. You’re Susanna Cole, am I correct?” He raised his eyebrows and offered a questioning gaze.

His surly English accent was not charming her. The more she looked at him the more irritated she became. Seeing him was like rubbing salt into her wound. “Seriously, what’s with the outfit?” Whoever this guy was, he was definitely in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Reaching into his jacket pocket, the man pulled out an envelope and looked at it. “I was directed here by the people on board the ship. This is NYC Party Planning, Brooklyn, New York, isn’t it?” He straightened his coat and stood at attention.

Susanna noted his height. Easily over six feet tall, very handsome and from the way he stood it seemed he might be in the military. No matter. She’d had enough of being toyed with.  “I don’t know what cruel joke you’re playing, but it is not appreciated. My friend recently drowned on a pirate cruise to Bermuda and I’m, I’m…” She wasn’t going to cry. Not in front of this stranger. She took in a deep breath, held her head high and stood up.

“I know the whole of it. Your friend Danielle fell overboard.” His voice was soft and low, filled with understanding.

Was he purposely trying to upset her? How did he know who Danielle was? “I’m going to have to ask you to leave.”

He threw his head back in apparent exasperation before inhaling deeply and looking at her.

“Please don’t. I’m sorry. I understand you’re upset, but do let me finish what I have to say.” He paused, gazing at her with what seemed an impatient glare.

She kept silent.

“Thank you. I’ve a letter here for you from Danielle. It will explain everything.” He held the letter out for her to take.

Susanna’s hands shook as she took it from him. She couldn’t help but feel skeptical. She’d seen Danielle go overboard and disappear beneath the waves. They’d searched for her for days, as had the Coast Guard and they found nothing.

“Did she give this to you before we went on the cruise?” She glanced down at the letter. It was Danielle’s handwriting. There was no mistaking it. Everything down to the little heart she used to dot the letter I.

“No. She gave it to me yesterday morning.” He seemed to be watching and waiting for her reaction.

“This better be good,” she said. At this point, she was ready to throw him out the door and lock it behind him. If that didn’t work, she’d call the police, but her curiosity was piqued. She opened the letter and read.

About the Author:

Jennae Vale is a best selling author of romance with a touch of magic.  As a history buff from an early age, Jennae often found herself day-dreaming in history class and wondering what it would be like to live in the places and time periods she was learning about.  Writing time travel romance has given her an opportunity to take those daydreams and turn them into stories to share with readers everywhere.

Originally from the Boston area, Jennae now lives in the San Francisco Bay area, where some of her characters also reside.  When Jennae isn’t writing, she enjoys spending time with her family and her pets, and daydreaming, of course.

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