Monday, May 27, 2013

Sinister Entity by Hunter Shea: Blog Tour and Review

Sinister Entity
Sequel to Forest of Shadows
Hunter Shea

Genre: Horror

Publisher: Samhain Publishing

ISBN10: 1619212331 
ISBN 13: 978-1619212336

Number of pages: 264
Word Count: 90,000

Cover Artist: Angela Waters

Amazon   BN   Samhain

Book Description:

How can you escape the ghost of yourself?

The Leigh family is terrified. They’ve been haunted by the ghostly image of their young daughter, Selena. But how can that be, when Selena is alive and well, and as frightened as her parents?

With nowhere else to turn, the Leighs place their hopes in Jessica Backman, who has dedicated her life to investigating paranormal activity.

Accompanied by a new partner who claims to be able to speak to the dead, Jessica will soon encounter an entity that scares even her. And a terror far worse than she imagined.

“Kitchen drawer just closed so hard, the wood cracked. Time is two-forty-eight a.m. I dared the EB to be more demonstrative and it’s taking up the challenge. The air smells funky, like burning wires. No signs of smoke.” She stopped. Something started tapping on the walls around her.
Tap-tap, pause, tap-tap-tap, pause, tap.
Jessica continued, using meditative breathing exercises to calm herself, “I hope I caught that. It’s tapping out in a sequence.” Tap-tap. “Two taps, followed by three, then one. I’m not sure if it’s some form of Morse code or the beat to a song or what. It just keeps tapping, and the burning smell is getting stronger,” she whispered into the audio recorder. Then, much louder, “Are you trying to tell me something? If you speak into this recorder in my hand, I may be able to hear you. What does the tapping mean? Or are you just trying to scare me?”
A heavy rumble shook the floor beneath her feet.
Jessica put the recorder close to her lips. “I’m going to have to check the outlets. The burning smell is getting intense. Something ˗ whoa!”
The recorder was knocked from her hand and skidded across the linoleum floor. The hand that had been holding the recorder felt like it had been dipped in a tub of ice. She gave it a few sharp shakes to halt the pins and needles sensation that followed.
The house was once again silent and the darkness seemed to intensify. Even though her eyes had acclimated to the night, she was finding it harder to make out the shapes of the furniture around her. It was as if a heavy, black gauze had oozed throughout the house like an obsidian blob.
She took a few tentative steps towards where she assumed her digital recorder lay. The air itself was heavy and she knew she was far from alone. She fought hard to fight back the tingling dread that threatened to dance up her spine. A part of her was sure that something was very close behind her. Silently, it approached with arms wide open, edging closer with each deliberate step. If she were to turn around now, she would come face to face with all of her worst nightmares brought to life.
If only she dared to take one simple peek.
In the dark.
So close she could feel the ripples of its intrusive essence caressing the back of her neck.
Jessica stopped when she reached the threshold of the dining room and closed her eyes. She felt like a blind person in a crowded room of silent guests, no one daring to breathe lest they reveal their presence to the woman in their midst, yet eager to pounce if she gave the slightest inkling that she was aware of their proximity. Her heart skipped a beat as she breathed deep. The fight or flight instinct was battling for control. Her body was in the throes of the primal, physical ache to flee. It would be so easy to run now. The front door was only twenty feet away. Just turn a couple of locks and she could be outside.
The floorboards creaked behind her, a slight groan of wood protesting the weight of a single, heavy footstep.
Three more breaths. Her heart rate slowed to a steady rhythm.
Another creak, this time to her right, near the breakfront.
Jessica smiled and she felt the tension release its grip from her shoulders.
Breathe in, hold, breathe out.
Something hard and small smacked into the glass top of the coffee table.
Breathe in, hold, breathe out.
The sound of glass under stress, spider cracks crunching their way across the surface of the table.
Jessica turned quickly and shouted “Boo!”
The coffee table top exploded in a shower of glass pebbles as she faced the empty darkness behind her. Bits of glass bounced harmlessly off her leather jacket. A picture frame flew from the fireplace mantle and crashed into the opposite wall. All of the kitchen chairs slid out from under the table at once, one of them falling completely backwards. Jessica turned back towards the living room in time to see the blinds on the front window part as if someone ran a finger from top to bottom. Upstairs, it sounded as if a brawl had broken out. The ceiling fan shook under the pounding of footsteps and falling objects.
The house was alive and it was not happy.

Why Ghosts Scare the Hell out of Me

Did you know that almost half the people living in the US believe in ghosts? In a recent Huffington Post/You Gov poll, they found that 45% of Americans believe that ghosts are as real as Walmart and the deficit. Other polls have shown that 60-70% believe in life-after-death. Sure, not all of that ‘living’ entails becoming a shadow haunting their former house, but it is staggering to see how many of us feel that our souls live on after our bodies have given up the….well, ghost.
Right now, zombies are the talk of the town, just like supernatural serial killers (Jason & Michael Meyers), vampires and werewolves were the rage in eras past. Some great books and movies have come out of those subgenres of the horror world. But here’s the thing. They’re all make believe. I know when I go to sleep, Freddie Krueger is not going to slink into my dreams and choke me to death with Obama’s dirty socks. If you dropped me in the Transylvanian forest today, the last thing I would be worried about was blood thirsty vampires. I do see zombies when I go to the supermarket at 2pm on a Tuesday, but most don’t have teeth and none try to bite me.
Now ghosts, they’re another story altogether. I’ve seen one numerous times in my house, as have others. I was once grabbed by a phantom hand in an empty hotel room. No matter what their origin, I know they exist. Are they the dead, a product of a collective unconscious, inter-dimensional travelers? I have no clue. Like half the people living with me here in America, I do believe. And when the house is dark and quiet and I get that feeling that something is standing right behind me, I wish they were as fabricated as the Mummy.
So, I write about ghosts. My ghosts. Your ghosts. The spirits you walk through unawares when you enter your bedroom or head to the deli for a cup of coffee. Because they are all around you, watching, listening, judging, interacting, maybe even reading over your shoulder as you consider whether or not to leave the light on tonight. 


I have had and will not have much sleep until I get this book read. Just saying it right now. From page one, it grabs you by the throat and keeps you reading into the night. I love Jessica and her ghost hunting  habits and combined with the other elements in the book (not saying-not going to spoil it for you!) it has been a roller coaster ride that I have no intent of stopping. If I was off tomorrow and didn't have a million writing deadlines of my own this week, you can bet I would be holed up with a bucket of movie theater popcorn and a 2 liter Mountain Dew reading my way through this baby. I was to page 54 last night without hardly noticing the time. When I actually looked up, it was 2am and I remembered I had to work in the morning. So, yes. This one is a paranormal drama with multiple elements and a great scare factor that will have you looking a little harder at the dark corners in your house.

5/5 For a great suspenseful read, paranormal elements that wouldn't let go and characters that feel so alive, they have become people I might actually want to know in real life. Dialog and action are perfect! I will be looking for more from Hunter Shea you can bet on that. 

I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

About the Author :

Hunter Shea is the author of the novels Sinister Entity, Forest of Shadows Swamp Monster Massacre and Evil Eternal. His stories have appeared in numerous magazines, including Dark Moon Digest, Morpheus Tales and the Cemetery Dance anthology, Shocklines : Fresh Voices in Terror. His obsession with all things horrific has led him to real life exploration of the paranormal, interviews with exorcists and other things that would keep most people awake with the lights on. He lives in New York with his family and vindictive cat. He waits with Biblical patience for the Mets to win a World Series.

You can read about his latest travails and communicate with him at

Want a chance to win a copy? Make sure you follow the blog and enter the form below!

Tour wide Giveaway

5 ebook copies of Forest of  Shadows

1 signed copy of Sinister Entity open to US Shipping

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Influential Magic: The Blog Tour

Influential Magic
Crescent City Fae Book 1
Deanna Chase
Genre: Urban Fantasy 

ISBN: 978-0983797876
Number of pages: 318
Word Count: 95,000 words
Cover Artist: Art by PhatPuppy
BN   Kobo   Smashwords  
Book Description:

It’s tough being a faery in New Orleans, a city fraught with vampires… especially when their very existence drains your life-force.

Willow Rhoswen, owner of The Fated Cupcake and part-time vampire hunter for the Void is having a rough week. Four years after her twin brother’s mysterious death, Willow’s life is threatened and the director saddles her with a new partner—her ex-boyfriend, David. To her horror, he’s turned vamp, which causes her physical pain whenever she touches him… and any other specimen of the undead.

In order to save Willow’s life, David agrees to turn double agent against the most powerful vampire organization in New Orleans. Or so he says. And she’s convinced they know something about her brother’s death. Unsure where David’s loyalties lie, she turns to Talisen, her childhood crush, to help her solve the mystery.

Caught between two gorgeous men and a director who’ll stop at nothing to control Willow’s gifts, she’ll have to follow her instincts and learn who to trust.

Otherwise, she risks losing more than just her life. 

About the Author 

Deanna is a native Californian, transplanted to the slower paced lifestyle of southeastern Louisiana.

When she isn't writing, she is often goofing off with her husband in New Orleans, playing with her two shih tzu dogs, making glass beads, or out hocking her wares at various bead shows across the country.

For more information and updates on newest releases visit her website at

Thursday, May 9, 2013

How Not To Train a Zombie: The Virtual Book Tour

by Annie Rachel Cole



How does a thirteen-year old become the most popular kid in 8th grade? He trains a zombie to be a pet... And that's exactly what Max Taylor plans to do, even if he had to lie, steal, and lose his best friend in the process.

“Training a zombie is not a stupid idea. Everyone will be so jealous and they’ll want one. But we’ll be the only ones who can train them. Not only will we be popular, but we’ll be rich,” said Max, quickly changing the conversation away from Kelly’s pool party as fast as he could. It irked him that Eddy Pratt, the geekiest kid in school got invited to the party and he, Kelly’s soon-to-be boyfriend, didn’t. How could Eddy Pratt be ranked higher than him on the school social ladder? How could Chad get invited and not him? It didn’t make any sense.

Max banged his fist against his head. It did too make sense. Eddy didn’t get invited because he was cool or anything like that. He got invited because his dad’s a zombie exterminator.

“Training a zombie like it’s some sort of pet is not only the most stupid idea I’ve ever heard, it won’t work. No way!” Chad opened his locker and put several books inside. “All you’re gonna do is break a whole lot of laws. Besides, I’ve already told Mr. Carter we’re doing an experiment to show how volcanos create islands.”

“And how is showing how volcanos create islands going to make up popular?”

“It’ll win us the science fair.”

“But if we train a zombie, we’ll not only win the science fair, we’ll be doing the town a huge favor.”

“How? By getting ourselves put in jail or worse like—you know—infected? No! Thank! You! There are rules about zombies for a reason. They are extremely infectious…”

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

I live in Texas with my husband, son, and two cats who think they run the place. I read, write, play Texas Hold’em poker (I'm actually part of a local league), and occasionally I compete in BBQ competitions with my husband. Our team name is Outcast Cookers. I also teach in a public school.

My likes include: a wide variety of music (see my play list for book 2 on my blog), Star Trek (My son got me a signed picture of Patrick Stewart which sits on my desk.), Star Wars, Grimm (TV series), winter (though we don’t have snow), the holiday season, coffee, hot tea (with cream and sweetener), pizza (no anchovies though), puzzles, Edgar Allan Poe, Ray Bradbury, and JK Rowling.

Buy Links

Want to win a $25 Gift card? Leave a comment with your email address and follow this blog for a chance to win!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

London Falling: Paul Cornell the Interview

A writer of the acclaimed modern incarnation of Doctor Who
begins a nail-biting contemporary dark fantasy series with

“Featuring an assemblage of super-natural baddies and two terrifying villains,
Cornell’s foray into dark fantasy isn’t for the faint of heart, but it’s one absorbing, brilliant read. Even with four principal characters, Cornell knows how to go deep with each, switching among their perspectives and steadily building the reader’s emotional investment. If this is just the series opener, I can’t wait to see what’s coming in book two.”
-- RT book review, 4 ½ stars and Top Pick!

Paul Cornell is a British writer best known for his work on the television show Doctor Who, most notably for penning three Hugo Award-nominated episodes, as well as several spinoff novels. This is why TOR is proud to announce the release of Cornell’s latest fantasy novel LONDON FALLING (A Tor Hardcover; On Sale: April 16, 2013)!

Police officers Quill, Costain, Sefton, and Ross know the worst of London—or they think they do. While investigating a mobster's mysterious death, they come into contact with a strange artifact and accidentally develop the Sight. Suddenly they can see the true evil haunting London’s streets.

Armed with police instincts and procedures, the four officers take on the otherworldly creatures secretly prowling London. Football lore and the tragic history of a Tudor queen become entwined in their pursuit of an age-old witch with a penchant for child sacrifice. But when London’s monsters become aware of their meddling, the officers must decide what they are willing to sacrifice to clean up their city. 

The Interview:

1. What inspired you to write London Falling?

I wanted to write something set in the modern world, with a group of professionals (in this case undercover police officers), encountering the supernatural.  The way their procedures and tactics help them get past their shock and terror is what interested me most. 

2. Are you a panster or a plotter?

I don't know what a panster is, but I assume it's a sort of cook.  I do all the cooking for my family.  And I'm going to call it that now.  I'm going to say 'well, I'm not much of a panster, but I can make a great jambalaya'.  I actually plot in vast, enormous detail before writing a book, then have to horrifyingly revise it when the writing of that plots unravels it.  But I do have a sheet showing what I'm meant to be doing at all times. 

3. Open your book to any page and tell us what is happening.

Okay, randomly, page 232 of the UK edition: my broken genius of an intelligence analyst, Lisa Ross, has just learned something terrible from a woman in the remains of a Victorian dress at a New Age fair, having had the 'Tarot of London' read for her.  While her boss, Detective Inspector Quill, is having a punch up outside with a man who can use vanes to make the winds hit him. 

4. If you were going to take your characters out to dinner, where would they like to go and what would they eat?

A police pub near Gipsy Hill police station, where they're based, like The Black Sheep.  They'd have pub grub, heavy on the carbs, and three or four 'pints of therapy'.

5. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

I'm lactose intolerant, but I will risk the wrath of my stomach for a Raspberry Ripple. 

6. Do you have any hobbies for when you are not chained to the computer?

I love cricket, and run a fantasy cricket league, so I follow the scores avidly.  I don't get to watch as often as I'd like, because we have a six month old baby, and our lives are not our own.  (What did I do with all that spare time?!)

7. If you have pets, tell us about them.

I don't!  Erm, sorry. 

8. What has been the toughest part about being a writer and do you try to balance your writing life with a day job?

I'm a full time writer.  The toughest bit is actually the plotting.  If you get that right, then everything else is easy.  I've just had to write two plots for two different things in a week, and after that I felt like I'd been attacked with hammers.  (Without wanting to belittle the experiences of those who've actually been attacked with hammers.  Our thoughts and prayers are with you.)

9. What advice would you give someone who is trying to write a novel length piece for the first time?

It's about memory.  It's remembering what everyone's motivation was the last time you saw them.  It's about remembering how the whole thing feels while you're writing a small piece of it.  If you get an awful feeling, like you're a terrible writer (some people call this 'writer's block', but I don't believe in that, because this is an alarm, not an off switch), then read back, not the bit you're on now, but from a few pages back.  Your brain is telling you you've done something wrong, and you've been building on top of it for a little while.  Or maybe that's just me.  

10. What is on your writing horizon?

I've just delivered the sequel to London Falling, which is called The Severed Streets ('Jack the Ripper is back, and this time he's only killing rich white men'), and I write the Wolverine comic for Marvel every month.  Apart from that, there are a few lovely things I can't talk about, and my new Wild Cards story, 'The Elephant in the Room' will be on next month. 

Stay tuned for a review of this awesome book. I have started it and don't anticipate much sleep in the next few days! :)

Night Hawk by J. E. Taylor

Night Hawk        
Book One – Night Hawk Series
J.E. Taylor

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Publisher: Novel Concept Publishing, LLC

Cover Artist:

Book Description:

Selling your soul has never been so charming and Mark throws in a little something to sweeten the pot, his girlfriend Naomi.

Sentenced to death at the hands of a demon, Naomi Hawk has a firsthand lesson in despair and betrayal in Mark’s deal for fame with all the trimmings. Deep in the clutches of the underground brotherhood, Naomi's light is coveted for the Master's gain.

When she slips and falls eighty stories from a precarious ledge, Naomi resigns herself to the inevitable impact and death by shattered bones. Before she can escape her demons in eternal slumber, something sinister plucks her from the plummet, stealing her out of the night to sacrifice her forever to the shadows.

Imprisoned in bottomless darkness, Naomi thirsts for justice…and revenge.

Short Excerpt

“You’re more than welcome to join me,” I said when she showed no signs of moving.
Her mouth opened and she glanced back toward the living room. “When?”
“Right now,” I said, knowing she wasn’t referring to my offer.
She rolled her eyes. “When did you paint that mural?”
“A long time ago,” I said. “Now, are you going to join me or not?” This time I turned toward her, giving her the full view and I smiled at the way her gaze bounced, her eyes widening a fraction before inching their way back up my chest to my face. Her cheeks bloomed and I cocked an eyebrow at her.
She pressed her lips together and slammed the door, marching out of the room in a huff.
I chuckled and ran the soap over my chest, running my fingers over what was left of the welt on my skin. The vampiric healing powers still amazed me enough that I missed the shift in the air around me.
Nails scraped my back and I jumped, swinging my head in the direction of the disturbance. Her wide eyes met mine and I turned, drinking her in from head to toe. Exquisite was the only word that popped into mind and when her fingers touched my chest I reached, covering her hand and holding it against my skin.
“What are you doing?” I whispered because having her undressed and this close put me at a major disadvantage.
“I’m saying thank you,” she said and her hands moved lower.
Catching her wrists, I warned, “Naomi, don’t start something you can’t finish.” My body responded anyway and she closed the distance. Her lips grazed my chest and I closed my eyes, releasing her and surrendering to her exploration.
When her tongue trailed lower, I recalled the memories of her ex and my eyes snapped open. As much as the thought of her taking me in her mouth thrilled me, I didn’t want to be that memory and I grabbed her by the shoulders, pulling her up to face me. She wasn’t one of the common harlots from my past that I let drop to their knees before me.
No, Naomi was different and I wanted more.
“You do not have to do this just because you aren’t ready for anything else.”
Her dark eyes met mine and I traced the frame of her face with my fingertips, studying every curve. Leaning down, I took her lower lip in my mouth, sucking gently before shifting and delivering a kiss that started as tender and rich as her blood, but it soon escalated into an all-consuming heat and I could envision living in this bliss for the rest of eternity.
I had lied to her today.
Fear wasn’t the only deep emotion I had encountered since I plucked her out of the sky, this need to connect, to love again overwhelmed me. The irony of her name and the form she turned into added to the feel that fate had prepared this feast just for me.

Zombie versus Vampires Guest Post:

My Night Hawk blog tour is winding down and in looking at Zombiegirl's blog, I figured I'd take the time to lament on what would happen to the vampire if a zombie apocalypse occurred. 
Which would you want to be in the fight for world domination?
Me, I'd opt for the vampire, especially those outlined in Night Hawk, because, while they crave blood, they are still alive.  A zombie is an animated corpse and that just gives me the willies.  However, in this "what if" scenario, the vampires would be another food source for the zombies. 
The vampires in my Night Hawk series are fast and strong and don't age because their cells are frozen by the shadow virus.  They heal within minutes and my main characters have another special ability that would aid in their survival against a zombie attack.  However, they have the drawback of being highly allergic to the sun, so if a zombie found them during daylight hours, they might not fare so well.
In Night Hawk, a vampire bite is toxic, but the ingredient needed to pass on the shadow virus is the vampire's blood, not his bite. 
Before I explore that, let's take a look at zombies in recent literature and entertainment.  The old school zombie from Dawn of the Dead were slow moving and clumsy.  However, if you look at the more recent renderings: Zombieland, The Walking Dead, Hollowland and even a much scarier brand - the ones from I am Legend -  these suckers move fast, but they're limited to the speed and strength they had as humans.  
Now, in all of these instances, a zombie bite turns you into the walking dead.  So, it's easy to surmise that a zombie bite is just as toxic as a vampire bite.  The only difference is that a vampire bite won't turn you into a vampire, it will just kill you.  Whereas a zombie bite not only kills you but turns you into a mindless monster. 
So if a zombie did get a bite in against my breed of vampire, that could potentially create a new and extremely deadly species...the Zompire.  A zombie-vampire hybrid.  The entertaining thought here isn't what would happen to the zombie, but what would happen to the vampire. 
It's one thing to think of a mindless killing machine now armed with inhuman strength and speed, but imagine the same bloodlust armed with intelligence?
The human race would perish in no time.
Hmmm,  I think I just found an interesting plot line for a future novel. 
In the meantime, check out my current novel Night Hawk:
Selling your soul has never been so charming and Mark throws in a little something to sweeten the pot, his girlfriend Naomi.

Sentenced to death at the hands of a demon, Naomi Hawk has a firsthand lesson in despair and betrayal in Mark’s deal for fame with all the trimmings. Deep in the clutches of the underground brotherhood, Naomi's light is coveted for the Master's gain.

When she slips and falls eighty stories from a precarious ledge, Naomi resigns herself to the inevitable impact and death by shattered bones. Before she can escape her demons in eternal slumber, something sinister plucks her from the plummet, stealing her out of the night to sacrifice her forever to the shadows.

Imprisoned in bottomless darkness, Naomi thirsts for justice…and revenge.


Amazon Link:

Barnes & Noble Link:

Kobo Link:

Smashwords Link:

Thank you for swinging by Zombiegirl Shambling and listening to my ramblings.
Until next time,


This book is a romp through the darkness that dwells in the deepest shadows of the night. It was a fun read with some dangerous twists and turns. The blend of vampires and demons battling it out was harrowing and made for an enjoyable afternoon read.


About the Author:
J.E. Taylor is a writer, a publisher, an editor, a manuscript formatter, a mother, a wife and a business analyst, not necessarily in that order.  She first sat down to seriously write in February of 2007 after her daughter asked:

“Mom, if you could do anything, what would you do?”

From that moment on, she hasn’t looked back and now her writing resume includes a more than a dozen published novels along with several short stories on the virtual shelves including a few within eXcessica anthologies.

In addition to being co-owner of Novel Concept Publishing
(www.novelconceptpublishing), Ms. Taylor also moonlights as a Senior Editor of Allegory (, an online venue for Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror. She has been known to edit a book or two and also offers her services judging writing contests for various RWA chapters.

She lives in Connecticut with her husband and two children and during the summer months enjoys her weekends on the shore in southern Maine. 

Visit her at

Want to win a PDF or e-pub copy of Night Hawk? Leave me a comment and your email and follow this blog for a chance to win!