#BadMoonRising: The Beast Within by Jacquie Biggar #paranormal #thriller

If you’re not superstitious, this featured author may change your mind.  She also confirms why basements in haunted houses aren’t a place you want to hang out.  Welcome Jacquie Biggar!

You’re in a horror movie.  Are you the final person, the first to die, the comic relief, the skeptic, the smart one, or the killer?

I would be the skeptic saying, “Yeah, sure that’s a real chainsaw with blood dripping all over my clean floor. When you’re done goofing off, I hope you plan on cleaning that mess up!”

Creepiest thing that’s ever happened while you were alone?

We lived in a haunted house when I was growing up. My bedroom was in the basement and normally the streetlight would shine through the three windows and provide plenty of light. But, once in a while I’d wake up and literally not be able to see my hand in front of my face. There’d also be a strong, malevolent presence (or maybe that was because I was scared witless!). I’d bang against walls and furniture to get upstairs, my heart drumming right out of my chest, and the light would be on outside. I could see it through the bay window and its glow lit up the kitchen.

Most scared I’ve ever been.

Are you superstitious?

Isn’t everyone? J I won’t walk under a ladder. If a black cat crosses my path, I’ll figure a way around it (tricky since we owned black cats!). If I spill salt, I don’t just throw some from the shaker over my shoulder, I scoop up the spill and throw it too. (Sorry, guy in the next booth!) Friday the 13th is the worst. I’m always waiting for something bad to happen. Some events from history include: Buckingham Palace bombed Sept 13th, 1940, a thirteen-year-old was struck by lightning Friday the 13th at 13:13, a cruise ship ran aground off the coast of Italy, and Flight 571 crashed in the Andes leaving its survivors to commit cannibalism.

What is the hardest part of writing?

Focusing!

No really, between social media, my pets needing attention (I have a calico and a German Shepherd), watering my plants because we’re under drought conditions and I can’t stand to see them die, visiting my mom each day, cleaning the house (if I have to J), making DH dinner and packing his lunch, and watching my favorite TV shows (There’s at least one each night) I have to force myself to sit down and concentrate on the book. And that’s not counting promo stuff.

Writing IS a full-time job and it’s important to slot out a timeframe that works- for you. Just because Betty-Lou has great success writing at 5 am (Oh, my gosh!) it doesn’t mean that will be your productive time. Heck, I don’t even function until I’ve downed three or four cups of coffee. Some write every day, and others only on the weekend. It’s all about finding the lane that works for you, and then sticking to it because you’re the only one who can create the magic.

Who or what has influenced your writing, and in what way?

My critique groups have changed my way of writing. I belong to two fantastic groups. A local one where we share our work via email and meet once a month for an exchange of ideas, industry information, and gossip. J And an online group through the Kiss of Death RWA Chapter called Lethal Ladies. I’ve been the coordinator there for two years and value their insights immeasurably.

I feel critique groups and beta readers together make for stronger, cleaner storylines. After all, you want your book baby to be all that it can be, right?

What’s your work schedule like when you’re writing?

I’m lucky enough to be able to work full-time towards a successful writing career, which means I can spread my jobs throughout the day. I start by reading and commenting on my blog and those that I follow (don’t take this lightly, the blogging community is huge and they can help you if you’re willing to put in some effort), then I move on to Facebook, Twitter and my emails. After that, I take a break for family and pet-time.

The bulk of my writing takes place in the evening. The house is quiet and I can concentrate on my work. It drives me nuts to have the television on while I’m writing. I guess I’m an all or nothing kind of gal, lol.

Now on #Audiobook https://www.amazon.com/Beast-Within-Mended-Souls-Book/dp/B07BX446YX

 Haven’t joined the latest craze yet? Join here and get a free book- https://www.audible.com/pd/B07BWTYQK2/?source_code=AUDFPWS0223189MWT-BK-ACX0-112815&ref=acx_bty_BK_ACX0_112815_rh_us

And check out my other #audiobooks here: https://www.audible.com/author/Jacquie-Biggar/B00MSIJQBG

The Beast Within

Book 2 Mended Souls Series

She didn’t expect to land in the crosshairs of a serial killer.

Can two displaced angels save a woman from the clutches of a vicious psychopath?

 When Julie Crenshaw is offered a news reporter’s job on beautiful Vancouver Island she didn’t expect to land in the crosshairs of a serial killer.

Connor O’Rourke has seen his share of human depravities during his fourteen years as a homicide detective, but is still sickened by the murderer terrorizing his island shores.

And threatening his key witness.

As the stakes rise, can two people get a second chance at love?

Or will a killer be the winner?

Excerpt

Julie pulled into the paved driveway and parked in front of the single car garage just as the school bus stopped down the street and let off a rag-tag bunch of laughing, talking kids. All except her boys, last to step down from the vehicle. They barely glanced up from their inspection of the sidewalk when the doors slid closed and the bus signaled away from the curb.

She sighed and waited while they trudged the half block to their front gate. There were no waves or yelled plans to join the other kids in a game of street hockey after their dinner. No suggestions of an impromptu basketball match using the hoop above the garage door, or a bike ride to the nearby park. Nothing at all. In fact, Dustin looked like he had another of his perpetual mad-ons happening, with hunched shoulders and downcast expression. Meanwhile, Freddie tagged along behind, casting envious glances at the neighbor boy running down the street toward the others setting up for the hockey game.

“Why can’t we, Dusty?” Freddie tugged on his older brother’s jacket, barely slowing him down. “I want to play.”

Dustin stopped short, glaring at the laughing kids down the block. “They’re a big bunch of dummies.” He kicked at a stray pebble, sending it skittering down the walk.

Julie hiked her satchel higher on her shoulder and closed the car door. Dustin glanced her way, then trudged into the house without a word.

Julie’s welcoming smile flat-lined, her son’s continuing anger creating a hard ball of tension in her gut. She’d taken him to counselling after his father’s death, but it hadn’t done much to alleviate the guilt he carried. He felt the accident was his fault and nothing Julie could say would change his mind.

“Mom, can I go play?” Freddie giggled as the neighbor’s dog dropped a beat up ball glove at his feet.

She forced a cheerful expression and held out her arms. “Do I get a cuddle first?”

Young enough not to care who might be watching, he ran into her embrace, his chubby arms wrapping her waist in a bear hug. She held on a moment too long, reluctant to give up the scent of bubblegum and sun that clung to his soft skin.

“Mom, you’re squeezing me to death,” he laughed into her chest.

She gave one last clench, half teasing, half desperation, and let him go. “Be back in an hour, and watch out for traffic.”

“Okay, love you, Mom,” he said, grabbing the glove and heading for the street, his attention already half a block away.

“Love you, son,” she answered, and he was gone. Leaving her alone. Deflated.

She turned for the house, coming to a halt when she noticed Dustin standing on the other side of the screen. There was that knot again. Much as she loved her eldest son, Julie hated the undercurrents that ran between them like a tide of noxious gas. He’d been daddy’s boy, had followed Mike wherever he went, questions flying a-mile-a-minute. They’d often joked that the only time Dusty was quiet was when he was asleep.

Mike.

She missed her husband every day.

 

 Amazon- https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MQEVI55

Goodreads- https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32879778-the-beast-within

International linkhttp://books2read.com/TheBeastWithin

Author Bio

JACQUIE BIGGAR  is a USA Today bestselling author of Romantic Suspense who loves to write about tough, alpha males and strong, contemporary women willing to show their men that true power comes from love.

Free reads, excerpts, author news, and contests can be found on her web site:

http://jacqbiggar.com

You can follow her on at http://Facebook.com/jacqbiggar, http://Twitter.com/jacqbiggar

Or email her via her web site. Jacquie lives on Vancouver Island with her husband and loves to hear from readers all over the world!

You can also join her street team on Facebook: Biggar’s Book Buddies

Or her exclusive Review Crew: https://jacqbiggar.com/join-my-review-crew/

And sign up for her newsletter-

http://www.subscribepage.com/jacqbiggar

Ghosts of Manor House by Matt Powers #bookreview #RBRT #horror #TuesdayBookBlog

Edmund and Mary Wilder are very much in love. But the death of their young son, Tommy, has shattered their family. Edmund is determined to bring them back together, drawing on the only bit of strength he has left—his love for Mary and their daughter, Stephanie. But Mary sinks deeper into depression while little Stephanie’s anger grows. Edmund flounders in his attempts to rescue his family from the brink of collapse and doesn’t know where to turn.

Then Mary receives an invitation for the family to become guests at Manor House, a seemingly quaint Bed and Breakfast. This, she assures her husband, is the answer to all their troubles.

Edmund arrives ahead of his family to spend a couple days working on his long-delayed novel. But his growing curiosity about the old house leads Edmund to an encounter that will change him forever.

What will you sacrifice for love?

An old fashioned psychological thriller with a nod to Stephen King, Manor House will keep you guessing and compel you to turn the page to the very end.

A mother will sacrifice anything for her children. A husband will risk everything to save his wife. Manor House will take them all. – Goodreads.com

Give me a book featuring an eerie house and I’m a happy reader.  Ghosts of Manor House appealed to me based on the title alone.

The author does a wonderful job at conveying the emotions of grieving parents who’ve lost a child – my heart broke for them.  I also liked how the gruesome history of the tree was established in the prologue and gives a foundation for the mysterious happenings.  Once the family arrives at the house, you just know nothing good is going to happen.

After the first few chapters, there’s a sudden shift and for a while, it allows the reader to feel disoriented along with Edmund.  It’s easy to predict the path this story will take, but there are some tense, chilling moments along the way.

The book contains some formatting errors here and there, with two different characters speaking and the dialogue on the same line (which can be a little confusing), and sentences split between paragraphs.  Occasionally, the dialogue is somewhat repetitious.

This book doesn’t contain gore – it’s more atmospheric, with almost a gothic feel, so if you’re not a horror fan, don’t let that deter you from reading.  Although a quick read, Ghosts of Manor House contains powerful, heavy emotions and is a haunting, grim tale.

I received a copy of this book through Rosie’s Book Review Team.

This Darkness Mine by Mindy McGinnis #bookreview #YA #thriller

Sasha Stone knows her place—first-chair clarinet, top of her class, and at the side of her oxford-wearing boyfriend. She’s worked her entire life to ensure that her path to Oberlin Conservatory as a star musician is perfectly paved.

But suddenly there’s a fork in the road, in the shape of Isaac Harver. Her body shifts toward him when he walks by, her skin misses his touch even though she’s never known it, and she relishes the smell of him—smoke, beer, and trouble—all the things she’s avoided to get where she is. Even worse, every time he’s near Sasha, her heart stops, literally. Why does he know her so well—too well—and she doesn’t know him at all?

Sasha discovers that her by-the-book life began by ending another’s: the twin sister she absorbed in the womb. But that doesn’t explain the gaps of missing time in her practice schedule or the memories she has of things she certainly never did with Isaac. As Sasha loses her much-cherished control, her life—and heart—become more entangled with Isaac. Armed with the knowledge that her heart might not be hers alone, Sasha must decide what she’s willing to do—and who she’s willing to hurt—to take it back.

Edgar Award–winning author Mindy McGinnis delivers a dark and gripping psychological thriller about a girl at war with herself, and what it really means to be good or bad. – Goodreads.com

In another review of one of this author’s books, I mentioned I’d read anything she wrote, because she’s just that good.  After reading This Darkness Mine, I firmly, concretely, couldn’t move me with a wrecking ball, stand by that statement.  This is one of those reviews where I can’t say much in order to avoid spoilers – pretty sure you’ll understand how I felt about it.

This novel is fabulously dark and disturbing, wonderfully twisted, and entirely unpredictable – it’s impossible to look away.  Sasha is blunt, manipulative, ambitious, cunning – and a highly unreliable narrator.  Or is she?  The supporting characters are incredible and the dialogue between them is clever and amusing – I’m such a fan of McGinnis’s writing style.

Block out a chunk of time to read this – then leave yourself some time upon completion to deal with the aftereffects.  You’ll need it.  This Darkness Mine takes complex psychological thrillers to a whole new level – and I’d love to sit down with this author and ask her how such an original concept was born.  This book is scheduled for publication October 10th, 2017.

Thanks to the publisher and Edelweiss for the digital ARC.

#BadMoonRising Day 2 Cristina by Jake Parent #IndieAuthor #Thriller

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Welcome Jake Parent to Day 2 of Bad Moon Rising!  The description of his psychological thriller, Cristina, brings to mind the phrase “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.”

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Driven by a desperate need to escape her past, Cristina Rodriguez moves into a picturesque hilltop home with an ocean view. The same place where, four years earlier, a young girl was kidnapped and murdered.

At first, both the house and the scenic California beach town seem perfect. Fresh air. Fresh faces. And the ocean is just ten minutes away. But as Cristina and her daughter set about rebuilding their lives, they soon discover that the past is not about to let go so easily.

A gripping psychological thriller by a #1 Amazon bestselling author, Cristina will grab you from the first page and keep you guessing until the very end.

What’s the first story you ever wrote?

The first story I ever wrote was called “The Ball.” A fantasy tale about a glowing gold ball that floated in front of the story’s hero and led him on a quest to save a princess. I was six.

Which fictional character would you most like to meet and have a drink with?

Definitely “The Hound” (AKA Sandor Clegane) from George R.R. Martin’s “A Song of Ice and Fire” series. He would probably end up stabbing me in the face or something, but it’s hard to imagine a cooler way to go!

In the spirit of Halloween, what scares you?

Man’s inhumanity toward man.

Favorite hero and villain in a book/movie?

My favorite hero is probably Winston Smith from George Orwell’s 1984. It takes real guts for a person to question things that every other person accepts as “the way the world is.”

And favorite villain has to be Darth Vader. I don’t think a bad guy could be any more perfect.

What do you consider the hardest part of writing?

Having faith in the process. It’s so easy to sit there with a rough draft of a great story and start comparing the cleanness of the writing to a finished product. You have to constantly remind yourself that what you’ve got will be just as clean once it has gone through as much polishing.

What are you working on now?

I’ve got another book done, which is in the editing process. And I’m just getting started on my first series – a detective story starring a female cop set in a gritty agricultural city not far from where Cristina takes place.

Author Bio

Jake Parent is the author of Cristina, a new psychological suspense novel. His first book, Only the Devil Tells the unnamed-2Truth, was a #1 Amazon Bestseller. His influences include Charles Bukowski, Stephen King, Maya Angelou, John Steinbeck, Honoré de Balzac, Ella Fitzgerald, John Sanford, Jimi Hendrix, Ernest Hemingway, Greg Graffin, Pablo Picasso, Rickey Henderson, and Mac Dre. He grew up in San Jose, CA but now lives in the Washington, DC area. Sign up to receive alerts about new releases: http://eepurl.com/bXzepr

Where To Find Jake

Website: http://www.jakedparent.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/jakedparent
Amazon: http://amazon.com/author/jakedparent
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jakedparentwrites/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/GhostOfChinaski

Buy Links

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2bvMmTc
Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/649111

Brother by Ania Ahlborn #bookreviews @aniaahlborn

From the bestselling horror author of Within These Walls and The Bird Eater comes a 23492624brand-new novel of terror that follows a teenager determined to break from his family’s unconventional—and deeply disturbing—traditions.

Deep in the heart of Appalachia stands a crooked farmhouse miles from any road. The Morrows keep to themselves, and it’s served them well so far. When girls go missing off the side of the highway, the cops don’t knock on their door. Which is a good thing, seeing as to what’s buried in the Morrows’ backyard.

But nineteen-year-old Michael Morrow isn’t like the rest of his family. He doesn’t take pleasure in the screams that echo through the trees. Michael pines for normalcy, and he’s sure that someday he’ll see the world beyond West Virginia. When he meets Alice, a pretty girl working at a record shop in the small nearby town of Dahlia, he’s immediately smitten. For a moment, he nearly forgets about the monster he’s become. But his brother, Rebel, is all too eager to remind Michael of his place… – Goodreads.com

If any of you believe your family wins the dysfunctional crown, I invite you to meet the Morrows and reconsider your situation.  This is the second book I’ve read by Ania Ahlborn and she has earned a permanent place on my list of favorite horror authors.

Ms. Ahlborn reveals through alternating past and present chapters how Michael came to be in his hellish situation and establishes the twisted family dynamics.  Although my suspicions about where this book might be headed were confirmed, the final reveal was no less disturbing, unsettling and masterful.  I’d love to say more about this book, but don’t want to wander into spoiler territory.

Brother is an extremely dark, gruesome, and emotional read, so be warned, but I couldn’t tear myself away from it.  I strongly recommend this for horror/psychological thriller fans.

This book is scheduled for publication September 29, 2015.  This review is based on a digital ARC from the publisher through NetGalley.

Black Chalk by Christopher J. Yates

One game. Six students. Five survivors.   17316561

It was only ever meant to be a game.

A game of consequences, of silly forfeits, childish dares. A game to be played by six best friends in their first year at Oxford University. But then the game changed: the stakes grew higher and the dares more personal, more humiliating, finally evolving into a vicious struggle with unpredictable and tragic results.

Now, fourteen years later, the remaining players must meet again for the final round. – Goodreads.com

This was a difficult book for me to read.  Not because I don’t enjoy dark, psychological thrillers, but because the tone was so heavy throughout the majority of the story, it almost became a chore to finish.

The description caught my interest immediately – six best friends, implying they obviously know each other well, inventing dares that become more personal and humiliating throughout the game.  Interesting concept, although none of the characters were particularly likable, making it nearly impossible to find anyone to cheer for.  At the beginning, they seemed so young and naive, full of themselves, living in a bubble.  It was hard to watch them spiral from friendship into what they eventually became, although the group dynamics were fascinating at times.  It’s very true that those closest to you can do the most damage.

There were a couple of major twists in the book, one closer to the beginning and one near the end, that made the story more interesting, but I guessed them both ahead of time.  The writing flowed pretty well, but with the narrative switching between first person to third person and present day to past, occasionally I wondered who was talking and in what year.

I also struggled with the character development.  The students all had their own distinct personalities established early on; however, it seemed as if they suddenly turned into someone else during the game, with no natural progression.  In one paragraph they underwent an abrupt transformation into a different character.  The explanation of who the three game “moderators” really were was completely unsatisfying and I just couldn’t buy into it.

Parts of this book were enjoyable and I’m glad I read it, but I felt as if some of the story line didn’t play out as the author intended.  Black Chalk is scheduled for publication April 1, 2014.

This review is based on a digital ARC from the publisher through NetGalley.