I Am Margaret Moore by Hannah Capin #bookreview #YA #paranormalthriller

Hannah Capin’s I Am Margaret Moore is a paranormal thriller that tests the hold of sisterhood and truth.

I am a girl. I am a monster, too.

Each summer the girls of Deck Five come back to Marshall Naval School. They sail on jewel-blue waters; they march on green drill-fields; they earn sunburns and honors. They push until they break apart and heal again, stronger.

Each summer Margaret and Rose and Flor and Nisreen come back to the place where they are girls, safe away from the world: sisters bound by something more than blood.

But this summer everything has changed. Girls are missing and a boy is dead. It’s because of Margaret Moore, the boys say. It’s because of what happened that night in the storm.

Margaret’s friends vanish one by one, swallowed up into the lies she has told about what happened between her and a boy with the world at his feet. Can she unravel the secrets of this summer and last, or will she be pulled under by the place she once called home?

I struggled with this book. Some things I liked and some not so much. The strong friendships between Margaret, Rose, Flor, and Nisreen are a bright point. Although they’re only together during the summers at Marshall Naval School, they have much to bond over and will defend each other til the end. Everyone should have those kinds of friendships. Margaret is betrayed in the worst way and in a horrendous situation that made me want to reach into the pages and throttle some characters. You can’t help but feel for her.

My biggest struggle was with the writing style. While prose-like, it was confounding at times and the time jumps between summers only added to my confusion. One reviewer said she felt like she was following a stream of consciousness, and I can agree with that. At around the 60% mark, the clouds shift and it all makes sense. The twist is brilliant, nothing I suspected, and also makes the story easier to follow until the end – which I loved.

Reviews are all over the place with this novel, and I suppose it comes down to if you’re a fan of this writing style. It’s a relatively quick read, and if you can hang in there for the slow reveal and muddle your way through the time shifts, a shiny reward awaits.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

The Ravenous Dead (Gravekeeper #2) by Darcy Coates #bookreview #horror #paranormal

He’ll never let go…

Keira, hired as Blighty Graveyard’s new groundskeeper, lives surrounded by the dead. They watch her through the fog. They wordlessly cry out. They’ve been desperately waiting for help moving on—and only Keira can hear them. But not every restless spirit wants to be saved.

Sometimes the dead hate the living too much to find peace.

As Keira struggles to uncover the tangled histories of some of the graveyard’s oldest denizens, danger seeps from the darkest edges of the forest. A vicious serial killer was interred among the trees decades before, his spirit twisted by his violent nature. He’s furious. Ravenous. And when Keira unwittingly answers his call, she may just seal her fate as his final intended victim.

I’ve read several Darcy Coates novels and always feel a thrill of excitement when I see one come up for review on NetGalley. Of course I snagged this one – what a cover!

As with all Coates books I’ve read, an eerie atmosphere cloaks the story, along with some goosebump-worthy moments that may make you leery of graveyards at night. Keira has the power to see and speak to ghosts. While trying to figure out who she is (because of amnesia), she takes a job as a groundskeeper at a cemetery. Part of her job description includes helping the lingering spirits to move on. Some of the ghosts she encounters are amusing (one man insists on being proudly naked), others are confused about what happened to them, and some have unfinished business. But one is extremely violent and a danger not only to Keira, but also to the spirits she’s trying to help. He was a serial killer when alive and isn’t finished claiming victims.

Along with new friends Mason and Zoe, the three of them set out to learn about the killer’s past so Keira can send him away from this plane for good. They’re assisted by someone smarter than the three of them put together – Daisy the cat (don’t all cats assume they’re smarter than humans?). She seems to understand what’s going on around her and helps Keira out of sticky situations more than once. She also knows ways to get in and out of the house without being seen. Made me wonder if she had some kind of supernatural power herself.

Nothing on NetGalley indicated this was the second book in a series. When I started reading it, I felt like I’d walked into a room in the middle of a conversation and missed some important information. Upon checking Goodreads, I learned this was book two. Backstory is mentioned, but I never felt like I really knew these characters very well. I prefer to read a series in order – that’s just me – but other reviewers have mentioned these can be standalones. It all depends on your preference.

Although it’s not my favorite book by this author, I still enjoyed the read, and it’s sure to give horror and paranormal fans thrills and chills.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Things Old and Forgotten by Mae Clair #bookreview #shortstories #paranormal #TuesdayBookBlog

A man keeping King Arthur’s dream of Camelot alive.
A Robin Hood battling in a drastically different Sherwood.
A young man facing eternity in the desert.
A genteel southern lady besting a powerful order of genies.
A woman meeting her father decades after his death.

These are but a few of the intriguing tales waiting to be discovered in Things Old and Forgotten. Prepare to be transported to realms of folklore and legend, where magic and wonder linger around every corner, and fantastic possibilities are limited only by imagination.

What a wonderful, eclectic collection of short stories wrapped inside a beautiful cover!

I’ve read several other titles by Mae Clair, and I’ve always been a fan of her brand of paranormal blended with mystery and suspense. To have this many of her stories in one book was like a gift box of dark chocolate with an edible bow (peanut butter would be perfect) on top.

While I was captivated by all fifteen offerings, I had some favorites. As a Robin Hood fan, I especially enjoyed the unique spin on this tale. I’ll read anything involving King Arthur and Camelot, so there was no doubt it would be at the top of my list of favs. Kin-Slayer has a jarring twist I didn’t see coming. Father’s Day is heart-warming and of personal significance to the author. Miss Lily Makes a Wish left me laughing – never underestimate a genteel, southern lady.

Filled with action, ghosts, monsters, genies, and memorable characters, this collection offers tales guaranteed to provide hours of entertaining reading.

Year of the Reaper by Makiia Lucier #bookreview #YA #fantasy

The past never forgets…

Before an ambush by enemy soldiers, Lord Cassia was an engineer’s apprentice on a mission entrusted by the king. But when plague sweeps over the land, leaving countless dead and devastating the kingdom, even Cas’ title cannot save him from a rotting prison cell and a merciless sickness.

Three years later, Cas wants only to return to his home in the mountains and forget past horrors. But home is not what he remembers. His castle has become a refuge for the royal court. And they have brought their enemies with them.

When an assassin targets those closest to the queen, Cas is drawn into a search for a killer… one that leads him to form an unexpected bond with a brilliant young historian named Lena. Cas and Lena soon realize that who is behind the attacks is far less important than why. They must look to the past, following the trail of a terrible secret—one that could threaten the kingdom’s newfound peace and plunge it back into war. 

With Cas returning home after being imprisoned and presumed dead for so many years, this description gave me The Count of Monte Cristo vibes. I also liked that it’s a standalone.

This book sneaked up and put a bear hug on me. With characters I loved, others I loved to hate, and the mystery of who was behind the attacks, I wanted to plow through it in one sitting. After three years of prison beatings and torture, surviving the plague, and witnessing so much death, Cas has a dark side to him. He’s not the person who disappeared three years ago, and his struggle to control that part of him is a challenge. I immediately liked Lena. She’s disguised as a royal messenger and steals Cas’s horse the first time they meet. She loves books and isn’t a fan of the rule requiring her to be in the company of male escorts/chaperones most of the time. I’m always a fond of rebellious characters.

The mystery of the assassin is full of red herrings and plot twists that lead Cas and Lena on a perplexing journey. It kept me guessing, but by the big reveal (and it’s a good one), I’d guessed the culprit. There’s a paranormal element I didn’t expect, but it adds a nice angle to the story. The supporting cast is also strong, but Bittor is a standout for me with his humorous lines and big heart.

Although the story is complete without it, I’d hoped for an epilogue set five years in the future, but I won’t go into detail about that date – no spoilers. With compelling characters, a gripping mystery, paranormal flair, and a sprinkling of humor, Year of the Reaper enthralled me from beginning to end.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley.  Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

#BadMoonRising Dead of Winter series by Teagan Riordain Geneviene #paranormal #supernatural

Happy Halloween Weekend! It’s a rainy Friday morning here, but today’s guest is sure to brighten up any day. Whenever I hear the word whimsical, I immediately this of this author’s books. She can put her own spin on anything and “Teaganize” it. Her featured series takes a different path and has received nothing but outstanding reviews. See figures in your peripheral vision? You might want to consider what she says about it. Welcome Teagan Riordain Geneviene!

Friday, October 29, 2021

Dead of Winter 8 Characters promo by Teagan
Dead of Winter Featured Characters, image by Teagan R. Geneviene

Hi Teri. Thanks for letting me bring my monthly series, Dead of Winter, to Bad Moon Rising. I love your questions. Here are the ones I chose, and my answers.

Have you ever had a tarot card reading?

Oh, yes. Actually, I’ve also done tarot and other card readings for decades. From November 2019 and all through 2020 I worked on an urban fantasy/atom-punk duology where tarot cards are prominently worked into the story. Unfortunately, I gave the heroine too many of my own problems, and I haven’t been able to finish it. Maybe next year…

Wheel of Fortune by Teagan Rirodain Geneviene, Copyright 2019
Wheel of Fortune by Teagan Rirodain Geneviene, Copyright 2019

Would you rather dunk for apples or carve a Jack o’ lantern?

I’d better bob for apples. I really can’t be trusted with a knife, especially on something hard like a pumpkin. I’m way too clumsy.

In “Dead of Winter” the heroine’s homeland celebrates a holiday similar to Halloween. It also marks the new year in her country. I named the day Galan’gaeaf. Here’s a snippet.

After her errand, Emlyn wandered down to the outskirts of Llyn Coombe. She walked past the village green where in years past people would have begun putting up decorations for Galan’gaeaf, the cross-quarter day that marked the midpoint between autumn and winter, as well as the beginning of the New Year. It was a holiday that was celebrated in nearly every land.

Legends said that spirits were abroad at that time of year. Emlyn wondered if other people might share her strange ability during Galan’gaeaf. She fantasized about how it would be if everyone could interact with the dead, and she didn’t need to hide her ability. She might be normal.

Do you ever see figures in your peripheral vision?

OMG, all the time! I also see them in reflections, like tile or chrome. Back in my days of metaphysical explorations/education, I was taught that when you frequently see them in a certain spot or area, it means that place is a place where spirits and entities can easily come and go.

Dead of winter characters banner 05-30-2021

If you decided to write a spinoff of a side character, who would you choose?

Gethin, the horse whisperer, has an exciting backstory of swordplay and heroics. However, I would choose Zasha and Tajín. They have interesting backstories individually, and the story of how they came together is exciting. All these are revealed as Dead of Winter progresses through the monthly novelettes, but not in great detail. I’ve always wanted to expand on it.

Which book have you read more than once?

Pride and Prejudice is one. Incidentally, I’ve been doing a takeoff or re-telling of it for Amazon Vella serials called “Pride and Flowers, Prejudice and Dirigibles.” (Sorry, Amazon only has that available in the USA.) It has a combination steampunk-Regency ascetic, with lots of “Teaganization.” The setting is a cloud city, and all the characters have flower and plant names.

Universal Link: Pride and Flowers, Prejudice and Dirigibles | Kindle Vella (amazon.com)

Pride n Flowers Amazon Promo
Image by Teagan R. Geneviene

What are you working on now?

I continue to work on editing “Dead of Winter” into novelette-sized books. I call them “Journeys,” since the characters travel their complex world. Although I’m not certain how many there will be, I expect 12 to 14 in total. When this post goes live, I will probably be on Journey 10.

Here’s a narration of the initial prologue.

I also have my blog serial, which is free to read at www.teagansbooks.com. It’s a zany atom-punk story, told in my “interactive” three things method of storytelling.

The Series Blurb

Dead of Winter cover A
Series cover by Teagan R. Geneviene

Dead of Winter Is a high fantasy, published monthly in novelette-sized installments. The serial will take approximately a year to complete.

It takes place in a world that resembles some lands in the past of our own world. The heroine, Emlyn, is a 12-year-old girl who sees and hears spirits.

The religious fanatics who took over Emlyn’s homeland say she is an abomination. She escapes, and is taken in by travelers belonging to the Deae Matres — a society of intelligent women who travel the world, seeking out and preserving knowledge.

Meanwhile, Emlyn’s encounters with spirits become more frequent, because the Veil, which separates the world of the living from the realm of the dead has become dangerously thin. As the Veil deteriorates, chaos ensues when the dead begin to cross into the living world. Journey with Emlyn as she explores her world in Dead of Winter.

Author Bio

Dead of Winter is a departure from Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene’s usual all-out whimsy. The whimsical nature is there, but it’s expressed in a more serious way. Like her other work it is colored by the experiences of her early life in the southern states and later in the southwest, as well as a decade in Washington, DC.

The tale of the tale is here: Wednesday Writing — Winter’s Nightmare or Why It Took 10 Years – Teagan’s Books (teagansbooks.com)

After a successful career as an editor and writer in the information technology field, Teagan is now devoted to writing fiction fulltime. She also makes book covers and promotional images. In free time she enjoys conversations with friends, painting, and playing her piano.

Teagan’s work is colored by the experiences of her early life in the southern states and later in the southwest, as well as a decade in Washington, DC.

You can also visit me at:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Teagan-Riordain-Geneviene/e/B00HHDXHVM
Twitter: https://twitter.com/teagangeneviene
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TeagansBooks
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/teagangeneviene/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoM-z7_iH5t2_7aNpy3vG-Q
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/teagangeneviene/

Dead of Winter — All the Journeys

Universal Purchase Links

Amazon Author Page relinks.me/TeaganRiordainGeneviene

Series Link (Kindle): relinks.me/B09C94FB2M

Journey 9, Doors of Attunement

Kindle: relinks.me/B09F8Y5DML

Paperback: relinks.me/B09F1BB9RW

Journey 8, The Lost Library

Kindle: relinks.me/B09C6MPTYT

Paperback: relinks.me/B09C34XR7P

Journey 7, Revenant Pass

Kindle: relinks.me/B098MS8P48

Paperback: relinks.me/B098GV1G5V

Journey 6, The Fluting Fell

Kindle: relinks.me/B096CPJNSX

Paperback: relinks.me/B096CPJNSX

Journey 5, Llyn Pistyll Falls

Kindle: relinks.me/B09431TD6G

Paperback: relinks.me/B0942KC471

Journey 4, The Old Road

Kindle: relinks.me/B092G5LB7R

Paperback: relinks.me/B092M51Y88

Journey 3, the Fever Field

Kindle: elinks.me/B08XTNZ9M8

Paperback: relinks.me/B08XXY3JXF

Journey 2, Penllyn

Kindle: relinks.me/B08VMNSF97

Paperback: relinks.me/B08VLMR2KD

Journey 1, Forlorn Peak

Kindle: relinks.me/B08RBBVRGX


#BadMoonRising Glimpses by Hugh W. Roberts #shortstories #paranormal #supernatural

Only three more days until Halloween – are you ready? I read the second volume of short stories in this series and described the tales as chilling, humorous, and unpredictable. It’s an eclectic collection that offers something for everyone, and I have no doubt this first volume is the same. This author’s tarot card reading hit the bullseye, and a prediction came true that same night – but in the very best way. Trust me when I say it’s swoon-worthy. Welcome Hugh W. Roberts!

Have you ever had a tarot card reading?

Yes, I’ve had several and have always been amazed by what the cards have told me. The most memorable reading happened on September 18th, 1993, on the pier at Brighton in England. The reader told me several things; the most important was that a new love was about to enter my life. That evening, it did and twenty-eight years later, that love is still in my life.

Was there a horror movie you refused to watch because the previews were too scary?

Yes, the 1999 movie ‘The Blair Witch Project.’

What scared me more than anything else was that I was reading that some people who had seen the film at the cinema were dying a few days later, usually under mysterious circumstances. I remember many people talking about it, and some media channels also ran the stories. Even today, I still don’t know if the reports are accurate, but I still have never watched the movie and never will. 

If you watch horror movies, are you the person who yells at the characters, covers your eyes, or falls asleep?

If you had asked me this question forty years ago, I’d have said ‘yells at the characters.’

Now, I find myself covering my eyes, even if I’ve watched the movie before. My days of loving lots of blood and gore in horror movies have long left me. Now, I find it difficult to watch any horror movie without covering my eyes at least 20 times or finding an excuse to go and make more popcorn.

However, I often find myself still shouting, ‘why are you going down in the cellar when all the lights have gone off, and there’s a strange noise coming from down there?! For goodness’ sake, go out the front door and call for help!’ 

If you decided to write a spinoff of a side character, who would you choose?

Jennie Savage from my short story ‘The Truth App.’ Jennie is a passionate blogger, and although she’s not the main character of the story, there was something about her that screamed out she wanted a spinoff about what she does to specific unexpected followers of her blog. It all sounds rather nasty, but Jenny could well have been the person who saved victims of ‘The Truth App’ (that is if she wanted to). You’ll have to read the story to find out more about her.

What do you do to get inside your characters’ heads?

I pretend that I am them and put myself in their shoes. I find that placing them on the television screen in the situation I’ve placed them in also helps. It may sound crazy, but I will sit in front of a blank television screen, close my eyes, and watch what they do and say. Does that make me sound weird? 

If you could spend the day with another famous author, who would you choose?

Rod Serling. He’s my writing hero. Most famous for bringing ‘The Twilight Zone’ to our screens, he’s the master of twists in storytelling. Ever since I watched the first episode of ‘The Twilight Zone’, I wanted to write like Rod. I loved how he could turn any everyday object into something that either scared me witless or made me think even deeper about its purpose for being in our lives. His writing, although not always scary, sends shivers down my spine.  

After publishing some of his short stories on his blog, Hugh W. Roberts, who suffers from dyslexia, received numerous requests to publish his short stories in a book.

Here, at last, are 28 short stories that will take your mind on a rollercoaster of a ride into worlds that conceal unexpected twists and turns.

‘GLIMPSES’ allows the reader a peek into the lives of everyday people who are about to have life lead them on an unpredicted path. From a mysterious deadly iPad app to a hole in the fence that is not all it seems, to a strange lipstick that appears to have a life of its own, you will encounter terror, laughter, sadness, shock and many other emotions on journeys which promise a thrilling and gripping climax.

If you are a lover of shows such as ‘the twilight zone’ and ‘tales of the unexpected’, then you’re in for a real treat with this first collection of short stories from Hugh.

Universal Link for buying Glimpses

Universal Link for buying More Glimpses

Author Bio and Social Media

Hugh W. Roberts lives in Swansea, South Wales, in the United Kingdom.

Hugh gets his inspiration for writing from various avenues including writing prompts, photos, eavesdropping and while out walking his dogs, Toby and Austin. Although he was born in Wales, he has lived around various parts of the United Kingdom, including London where he lived and worked for 27 years.

Hugh suffers from a mild form of dyslexia but, after discovering blogging, decided not to allow the condition to stop his passion for writing. Since creating his blog ‘Hugh’s Views & News’ in February 2014, he has built up a strong following and now writes every day. Always keen to promote other bloggers, authors and writers, Hugh enjoys the interaction blogging brings and has built up a group of online friends he considers as an ‘everyday essential.’

His short stories have become well known for the unexpected twists they contain in taking the reader up a completely different path to one they think they are on. One of the best compliments a reader can give Hugh is “I never saw that ending coming.”

Having published his first book of short stories, Glimpses, in December 2016, his second collection of short stories, More Glimpses, was released in March 2019.

A keen photographer, he also enjoys cycling, walking, reading, watching television, and enjoys relaxing with a glass of red wine and sweet popcorn.

Hugh shares his life with John, his civil-partner, and Toby and Austin, their Cardigan Welsh Corgis.

Blog: Hugh’s Views and News

Twitter: @HughRoberts05


Amazon Author Page


#BadMoonRising The Ferryman and the Sea Witch by D. Wallace Peach #paranormal #mermaids #TuesdayBookBlog

This author is known for her beautiful prose and imagery, whether in poetry or her fiction books. I’ve reread passages in several of her novels because of their lyrical quality. Talk about eerie – her tarot card reading from many years ago may have predicted something that didn’t turn up until decades later in her life. Welcome D. Wallace Peach!

Have you ever had a tarot card reading?

Of course, Teri. And thanks for the fun questions. I’m delighted to be visiting during this bad, bad moon. I’ve had many tarot readings, and for a while I became absorbed in giving them too. The most unusual one I received was when I first married my husband. We both had children from a previous marriage, and the reader said I shouldn’t have more kids because it could damage my heart. We never did have more children (for various reasons) and my heart was fine… until my fifties. I wonder sometimes whether the tarot cards knew something that I didn’t discover until twenty years later.

Was there a horror movie you refused to watch because the previews were too scary?

I had to ask my husband the name of the movie because, of course, I never watched it. Hellraiser. That was a bazillion years ago in 1987, so I don’t know if I’d feel the same way now. He watched it with our kids when the tykes were about ten years old, and they all loved it. Now it’s the twisted psychopaths that totally creep me out because they could be REAL.

Do you ever see figures in your peripheral vision?

Oh yeah. My youngest brother was murdered in 2003 (my own little horror story), and after his death, I saw him everywhere. I’d pull over in the car, stare at people, follow them like a stalker. I’m surprised I didn’t get a crick in my neck from all the doubletakes. It was very disorienting. And eventually it stopped. Apparently, this happens to a lot of people. I wonder… is it wishful thinking or is the person’s soul making its presence known?

Would you and your main character get along?

That depends on the book. My main characters tend to live hard lives, and they take everything so seriously. They’re usually honorable people at the core, but who needs all that drama? Not me. The exception may be Madlyn in the Sorcerer’s Garden. She’s self-deprecating and snarky, two qualities that I find irresistible, especially the snark. It’s my lightest book, and I think she’d be fun to hang out with around a fire pit and drink wine.

If you decided to write a spinoff of a side character, who would you choose?

I have a lot of side characters that I think might have a good story inside them, usually from stand-alone books where there’s more story to explore. In my recent high seas fantasy, The Ferryman and the Sea Witch, there’s been some reader interest in Grier. He’s lazy, sarcastic, self-serving, and at times, remarkably noble. Who know? He may get his own book someday.

What do you do to get inside your characters’ heads?

I write extensive bios on my main and secondary characters before I ever start writing. I know everything about them from their hobbies down to their fears, hopes, and deep dark secrets. They’re fully formed before I write my first sentence. I was also a mental health clinician in the real world, and I think those years exploring people’s emotional lives helped. My husband can always tell what type of scene I’m writing by the look on my face. His frequent question: “Are you okay?”

Thanks for the fun Teri. Happy October!

The merror rule the sea. Slender creatures, fair of face, with silver scales and the graceful tails of angelfish. Caught in a Brid Clarion net, the daughter of the sea witch perishes in the sunlit air.

The queen of the sea bares her sharp teeth and, in a fury of wind and waves, cleanses the brine of ships and men. But she spares a boy for his single act of kindness. Callum becomes the Ferryman, and until Brid Clarion pays its debt with royal blood, only his sails may cross the Deep.

Two warring nations, separated by the merrow’s trench, trade infant hostages in a commitment to peace. Now, the time has come for the heirs to return home. The Ferryman alone can undertake the exchange.

Yet, animosities are far from assuaged. While Brid Clarion’s islands bask in prosperity, Haf Killick, a floating city of derelict ships, rots and rusts and sinks into the reefs. Its ruler has other designs.

And the sea witch crafts dark bargains with all sides.

Callum is caught in the breach with a long-held bargain of his own which, once discovered, will shatter this life.

Buy Links

Amazon global link: http://a-fwd.com/asin=B095J5X8DW

Amazon Author’s page: https://www.amazon.com/D-Wallace-Peach/e/B00CLKLXP8

Author Bio:

A long-time reader, best-selling author D. Wallace Peach started writing later in life after the kids were grown and a move left her with hours to fill. Years of working in business surrendered to a full-time indulgence in the imaginative world of books, and when she started writing, she was instantly hooked.

In addition to fantasy books, Peach’s publishing career includes participation in various anthologies featuring short stories, flash fiction, and poetry. She’s an avid supporter of the arts in her local community, organizing and publishing annual anthologies of Oregon prose, poetry, and photography.

Peach lives in a log cabin amongst the tall evergreens and emerald moss of Oregon’s rainforest with her husband, two owls, a horde of bats, and the occasional family of coyotes.

Social Media Links

Author’s website: https://dwallacepeachbooks.com

Authors blog: https://mythsofthemirror.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Dwallacepeach

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DWPeachBooks/

#BadMoonRising Things Old and Forgotten by Mae Clair #paranormal #supernatural #magic

Mention cryptids and I immediately think of this author’s intense and thrilling Point Pleasant series featuring the Mothman (if you haven’t read it, you’re depriving yourself – trust me on this). She’s here today with her new release, and the excerpts I’ve read during her blog tour have me wanting to drop everything, curl up on the couch with it, and dive in. Welcome Mae Clair!

Hi, Teri! I’m delighted to be a guest on Bad Moon Rising yet again. I look forward to this event every year—not only as an author, but also as a reader looking for new and riveting reads. I’ve discovered several, thanks to your yearly Halloween Festival, and have even made a good friend as a result. Thank you for putting this together. I wish you and your readers a happy October and a Happy Halloween. You had some intriguing questions this year, a few that really made me think.

Which urban legend scares you most?

The first one that stuck with/terrified me, I heard when I was six years old. There was an upscale park not far from where I lived, tucked next to a neighborhood of elite homes. In the version of “the hook” I was told, two high school kids were cuddling in a car when they heard a scratching noise on the roof. Of course it was late at night—pitch black, moonless. The guy got out to investigate. Minutes passed, stretching longer and longer. The scratching noise stopped, then after a span, grew louder. Worried, when her boyfriend didn’t return, the girl got out of the car. She found his lifeless body hanging upside down from a tree, his fingernails scratching against the roof as he swayed back and forth. It still gives me shivers when I think of it!

Candy apple or candy corn?

Change “candy” to “caramel” and this is a tough one, because I love both. Candy corn is the ultimate Halloween treat. That said, I don’t have to buy it every year, but I almost always buy caramel apples coated with nuts. I love them! Even more, there is one Halloween treat I absolutely/positively must buy each October – Sweetzels Spiced Wafers. They are the ultimate ginger snap cookie! I’ve been eating them each year since I was a kid.

Do you ever see figures in your peripheral vision?

I have memories from when I was a kid. I was six and terrified of “someone” behind a blind in my bedroom. The room had a row of four windows covered with venetian blinds. I swear I saw “something/someone” behind the last blind. My older sister tried to calm my fears by raising the blind on each window to show me no one was there. She did that to all four windows. But I distinctly remember thinking “why didn’t she raise the blind on the fifth?” There was no fifth window, but I can still see it clearly in my head. Weird, I know. That was just one of my “peripheral encounters.”

How do you celebrate when you finish writing a book?

I treat myself to something fun. That’s usually a shopping spree for clothes, jewelry, shoes, or books, but definitely something that makes me happy. In the past, when sales were good, I’ve also treated myself to a new iPhone, MacBook, and Bulova watch at different times. I miss those fabulous days of sales!

Which book have you read more than once?

There have been so many! When I really love a book, it’s nothing for me to go back and read it again and again. Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring is probably the one I’ve read the most. I’ve also reread Black Sun Rising (a fantasy novel) by C.S. Friedman, Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury, and Still Life with Crows and Fever Dream, both by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child. These are just a few, but there are many I cherish and have read multiple times.

If you could spend the day with another popular author, who would you choose?

Oh, my! I have so many wonderful writing friends online who I would love to meet. I would choose so many of them. I would so love to sit down in a coffee house to chat writing, books, and reading. We talk online but meeting face-to-face would be phenomenal! One can only hope.

A man keeping King Arthur’s dream of Camelot alive.
A Robin Hood battling a drastically different Sherwood.
A young man facing eternity in the desert.
A genteel southern lady besting a powerful order of genies.
A woman meeting her father decades after his death.

These are but a few of the intriguing tales waiting to be discovered in Things Old and Forgotten. Prepare to be transported to realms of folklore and legend, where magic and wonder linger around every corner, and fantastic possibilities are limited only by imagination.

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Author Bio and Social Media

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#BadMoonRising A Ghost and His Gold by Roberta Eaton Cheadle #supernatural #paranormal #ghosts

Poetry, children’s books, young adult, cookbooks, adult – today’s author writes in all of these genres. She also works in a demanding profession, is raising a family, and maintains several blogs. Makes you wonder if she ever sleeps. She learned about tarot cards from a fellow blogger (bet I know who) and incorporated them into her featured novel. Welcome Robbie Cheadle!

Have you ever had a tarot card reading?

I have never had a tarot card reading. I don’t know where you would go to get one here in South Africa. I learned about tarot cards through a series of posts by a fellow blogger and found them fascinating. They interested me so much that I researched the meanings of all the different tarot cards and wove them into my book, A Ghost and His Gold.

My main character, Michelle’s, best friend reads tarot cards and I have a few scenes with readings. I also closed out the tarot card readings as part of the conclusion of the story.

Here is a short extract:

“Alice turns over the card on the left. It’s the Moon. Paling slightly, she draws in a deep breath.

“The Moon in the past position, as it relates to romance, could mean that you have an inaccurate perception of your partner. It is possible that your partner has not been completely honest with you and has hidden secrets.”

Michelle grimaces, “That is rather concerning, especially considering the poltergeist, or whatever she is, said he was a lying cheat and that I was a traitor to my sex for marrying him. What can it all mean?”

“I’m not sure, Michelle, but it may not mean what you think it does. Let’s consider the next card and what it tells us about your relationship?”

Alice flips over the middle card and reveals the Ten of Swords.

Starting visibly, Michelle sucks in air through gritted teeth. “That’s not a good card in the context of a relationship,” she hisses.”

Would you rather dunk for apples or carve a Jack o’ lantern?

I have never dunked for apples but have read about it. I have actually assisted my dad with carving a Jack o’ lantern. Halloween is not celebrated much here in South Africa although in the past 10 years, a few people have parties on 31 October. I have always enjoyed the idea of Halloween and loved horror stories from a young age.

A few years ago, our local grocery store got carving pumpkins and we bought few to make Jack o’ Lanterns. They came out well, but sadly, I forgot to take a picture.

As you can see from this picture, our local pumpkins aren’t suitable for carving due to their thin skins and flat shape. When I was a girl, I used to wonder how on earth anyone managed to carve a pumpkin, I didn’t know there were different types of pumpkins.

Do you ever see figures in your peripheral vision?

I have seen figures in my peripheral vision, but sadly they are not ever ghosts or spirits, but usually my cat who likes to slink up behind me.

My character, Michelle, on the other hand, does see otherworldly shadows in her peripheral vision. This is evidenced in the following short extract:

“She inspected the board and, after removing the plastic covering, the planchette. There were no instructions on how it should be used. “I must look up how it works,” she murmured to herself.

A shadow shifted on the far wall of her office and an unexpected cold draft made her shiver. Glimpsing a subtle movement out of the corner of her eye, she swung around quickly, but saw nothing at all. There was no shadow on the wall.

Michelle picked up the Ouija board and planchette and placed them next to her laptop. As soon as I finish my work, I’ll do some research on these and how they work.”

Would you and your main character get along?

My main character, Michelle, shares similar characteristics to me in many ways. She is a chartered accountant [just like me] who has elected to leave full time employment and run her own small accounting business so that she can develop her career as a writer [I haven’t done exactly this but I do work reduced hours – in theory anyway]. Michelle’s husband is a chartered accountant [just like mine], but unlike my husband, Tom is the personification of everything I dislike in select individuals in the profession who participate in excessive drinking and extra marital affairs and who become the target of office gossip and speculation.

I think that Michelle is probably nicer and softer than I am. I don’t know if I would be able to forgive my partner misleading me and telling outright lies. I think, when I created Michelle, I made her a better version of me.

If you decided to write a spinoff of a side character, who would you choose?

Hmmmm! For me this question should be could you write a spinoff of a side character. I am not sure I could for the simple reason that, for me, when a book is finished and I sign off for the publisher to go ahead, all the characters disappear out of my head. So far, none of them have returned to tickle my writing fancy again. I only have three novels though so there is still time for it to happen. Somehow, I don’t think it will though. I am not a person who ever looks back or who is good at staying in contact with colleagues and acquaintances from the past. It is always about the future and something new and exciting for me. I’m even like this with baking, never creating the exact same cake or dish twice.

What are you working on now?

That is an interesting question, Teri. I seem to be having a bit of trouble settling on one idea at the moment, so I am working on five books at the same time. I like to write sections in my books from the perspective of different characters and so I am finishing a piece by a character or a chapter, as relevant, and then moving to another WIP.

The one I am currently progressing is called The Soldier and the Radium Girl and is a historical paranormal book about the First World War. I am writing from the American perspective which is quite interesting for me. I have to make sure I don’t slip into language like bloody which is not a term an American would use. I have an American Beta reader who is checking this for me. I am currently at 15,000 words with this story.

I am also working on the first book in a series about climate change and the fourth industrial revolution. This is a sci fi book, but it is heavily entrenched in reality and real future predictions for mankind. I am doing a lot of research for this book too, as I need to get the details of genetic engineering, climate change, pollution, and the future of the pandemic correct and then extrapolate these predictions forward. The writing and research for this book are quite intense which is why I need to take breaks from it. This book is approximately 45,000 words to date.

I am working on the sequel to While the Bombs Fell, a historical novel for teenagers about my mother’s life growing up in a small British town during WWII. I have progressed this document to about 15,000 words.

I am also writing a biography of my own childhood growing up in South Africa in the 80’s. It is stilled along the lines of My Naughty Little Sister by Dorothy Edwards and is called The Girl Who Loved Dolls. This one is approximately 10,000 words to date.

Finally, I am working on a new Sir Chocolate book called Chocolate Fudge saves the sugar dog story and cookbook which is due out before Christmas. All the artwork is finished and I am just finalizing the recipes before it goes to my publisher.

After Tom and Michelle Cleveland move into their recently built, modern townhouse, their housewarming party is disrupted when a drunken game with an Ouija board goes wrong and summonses a sinister poltergeist, Estelle, who died in 1904.

Estelle makes her presence known in a series of terrifying events, culminating in her attacking Tom in his sleep with a knife. But, Estelle isn’t alone. Who are the shadows lurking in the background – one in an old-fashioned slouch hat and the other, a soldier, carrying a rifle? 

After discovering their house has been built on the site of one of the original farms in Irene, Michelle becomes convinced that the answer to her horrifying visions lies in the past. She must unravel the stories of the three phantoms’ lives, and the circumstances surrounding their untimely deaths during the Second Anglo Boer War, in order to understand how they are tied together and why they are trapped in the world of ghosts between life and death. As the reasons behind Estelle’s malevolent behaviour towards Tom unfold, Michelle’s marriage comes under severe pressure and both their lives are threatened.

Purchase Roberta Eaton Cheadle’s books

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A Ghost and His Gold: https://www.lulu.com/en/us/shop/robert-eaton-cheadle/a-ghost-and-his-gold/ebook/product-d858km.html?page=1&pageSize=4

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Roberta Eaton Cheadle author biography

Roberta Eaton Cheadle is a South African writer and poet specialising in historical, paranormal, and horror novels and short stories. She is an avid reader in these genres and her writing has been influenced by famous authors including Bram Stoker, Edgar Allan Poe, Amor Towles, Stephen Crane, Enrich Maria Remarque, George Orwell, Stephen King, and Colleen McCullough.

 Roberta has short stories and poems in several anthologies and has 2 published novels, Through the Nethergate, a historical supernatural fantasy, and A Ghost and His Gold, a historical paranormal novel set in South Africa.

Roberta has 9 children’s books published under the name Robbie Cheadle.

Roberta was educated at the University of South Africa where she achieved a Bachelor of Accounting Science in 1996 and a Honours Bachelor of Accounting Science in 1997. She was admitted as a member of The South African Institute of Chartered Accountants in 2000. Roberta has worked in corporate finance from 2001 until the present date and has written 7 publications relating to investing in Africa. She has won several awards over her 20-year career in the category of Transactional Support Services.

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#BadMoonRising The Things in Heaven and Earth by Michael Scott Hopkins #paranormal #supernatural #horror

Ghosts, demons, possession – all of these words excite me when any are mentioned in a book description, so you can imagine how thrilled I was when all three popped up in the blurb of today’s featured novel. It’s his first time at BMR, so let’s give a big welcome to Michael Scott Hopkins!

Have you ever had a tarot card reading?

Lots of times. When I was a kid, my parents had friends who claimed to be psychics. I had lots of readings, not one of which has come true yet. But it was fascinating at the time.

Would you rather dunk for apples or carve a Jack o’ lantern?

Carve a Jack o’ lantern. I completely lack the artistic skills to make one that looks good, but I hate pumpkin so much there’s a certain satisfaction that comes with plunging a knife into one. There is considerably less chance of drowning as well.

Do you ever see figures in your peripheral vision?

When I was a kid, I did. Quite often. This was when I had a paper route (tells you how old I am), and the paper deliveries had to be made at four or five a.m. It was still dark outside, and the streets were deserted. I was literally the only soul around. But I would see movement out of the corner of my eye, look fast to try to catch whatever it was, scared as heck, and then there was nothing there. But I had a sense that something was always there and following me. That’s why I seldom managed to actually hit the porches when I threw the papers.

Would you and your main character get along?

We would unless he was on one of his murder rampages, since he kills people he likes.

What do you do to get inside your characters’ heads?

I run. It’s a great way to clear your mind of the usual distractions and work out who your characters are, their backstories and motivation. I mean, aside from sweating, what else are you going to do?

How would you describe your book’s ideal reader?

Hopefully, everyone. However, the novel is meant for readers who want to be challenged a bit, to engage with uncertainty of what is happening to the main character along his journey and his emotional growth.

“…plenty of the unpredictable chills and excitement horror thriller fans appreciate.” -Kirkus Reviews

Nash Baxter is a liar.

He’s the famous skeptic who rides his motorcycle across the country debunking hauntings everywhere he goes. Yet he knows ghosts are real – suffering remnants of the departed, held fast to this world and tormented by demons. Hell, it seems, exists all across the land, side-by-side with the living world. Nash has the power to see into that hell and destroy the demons by a force of will.

But sometimes demons fight back…

When they do, they possess Nash and force him to commit murder. Not that Nash minds. He does not feel emotions. Not fear. Not horror. That is until a mysterious woman comes into his life and convinces him nothing was ever as it seemed. He has one purpose in life – to save the world from the truest evil, an evil that lives and breathes inside of Nash Baxter himself. 

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Author Bio and Social Media

Michael Scott Hopkins grew up on San Leandro, California. He joined the United States Air Force out of high school and served for eight years, working as an avionics technician on F-4 Phantom aircraft. After being honorably discharged, he worked as a mechanic for the U.S. Postal Service. While working for the Postal Service, he earned a BA in English and went on to graduate studies, earning his master’s degree from Governors State University.

After earning his MA, Hopkins started a career in public relations and as a speechwriter. He also taught English literature as an adjunct professor for his alma mater, GSU. While working in public relations, Hopkins started law school, graduating cum laude from The John Marshall Law School, where he was a member of The John Marshall Law Review.

He lives in Joliet, Illinois, with his wife of more than 30 thirty years, Carla, his golden retriever, Charlie, and two black cats named Lolli and Pop.

He and Carla have three grown sons, Tyler, Kyle, and Eric.