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Hello, my name is Valorie. I have a Master's Degree in History and a license to teach-- I have been both university professor and public school teacher. Currently, I am a middle school social studies teacher. I love horror movies and spooky things. Every day is Halloween. I am also a passionate book blogger.

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Thursday, August 17, 2017

Promo Blitz: Slasher Sam by Simon Petersen





Horror
Date Published: March 31, 2017
Publisher: Darkwater Syndicate, Inc.

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Beware: this book is not for the faint of heart, the weak of stomach, or the soft of bowels. In these pages are the blog entries of one of the most depraved serial killers of the 21st century—Slasher Sam.

Taking inspiration from several generations of horror films, Sam guts countless victims in creative ways, and posts these exploits to SlasherSam.com for the world to see, putting readers so close to the action that they’re practically in the splash zone when the blood goes flying.

And is there ever blood—Sam’s a savvy killer, too well-versed in horror film lore to make rookie mistakes, which is why the kill count scores well into the double digits.

Visit www.SlasherSam.com if you dare, just remember: in cyberspace, everyone can hear you scream...


Excerpt

A snap of a twig, a rustle of leaves, her head spins around in fright.
“Who’s there?” she says. “Randy, is that you?”
Silly girl. She’s just signed her own death warrant—as if she hadn’t already when I caught her and her boyfriend smoking weed a few moments ago. I’ve been stalking these two for about half an hour, and now he’s gone off to piss somewhere and she’s about to be offed in the opening scene.
To be fair, she’s exactly the sort of girl you hate to see get killed off so early in a slasher movie. Long blonde hair pours out of a red beanie, framing a face so pretty it could sell moisturiser. A tight white puffer jacket hugs her fantastic figure, and skinny jeans accentuate her long legs and ample ass.
I think I’m in love. But rules are rules. I don’t make them; I just enforce them, and she’s going to die tonight.
“It’s not funny anymore, Randy. I mean it. Quit clowning around and get back here right now. I’m really scared.”
I fight the urge to call back, “You should be.” Instead, the rustle of the bush is her only answer as I move out from my hiding place behind a large evergreen and walk back to the well-worn hiking trail where she’s standing, flaring her flashlight in all directions for any sign of her loser boyfriend.
When she sees me, her eyes grow so wide that it’s comical. Rendered immobile by fright, we both just stand and look at each other for a moment or two—her on the verge of a nervous breakdown, me on the verge of killing her. The tension between us is so thick that you could cut it with my machete. I try. What I cut instead is her head open.
It’s like one of Thomas Savini’s finest special effects, but, oddly, less messy. Blood and brain matter abound, of course, but it’s really more like piercing a coconut than splitting an overripe melon. Either way, the blade makes a satisfyingly heavy thunk sound as it punctures the cerebrum, ensuring that she’ll never get to learn French, read another book, or do anything ever again.
When I pull the machete out of her skull, she plummets like the quality of the Friday the 13th film franchise after Part VII: The New Blood. But I don’t have time to dwell on the disappointing Jason Takes Manhattan or the frankly unwatchable Jason Goes to Hell right now; I shouldn’t have even brought them up, because I’ve got a boyfriend to kill. He’s not my boyfriend, asshole. I mean the boyfriend of the girl I just killed. He’ll be back here at any moment.
Propping the girl up against a nearby tree, I pull the hood of her coat up over her bloody beanie and the gaping wound in her head. Even in death, she’s lovely. Now it looks like she’s just having a wee rest. Well, if you’re stoned or stupid anyway.
Fortunately, the boyfriend is a potent mixture of both. I hear him tearing through the jungle and spouting inane babble and sexual innuendo long before I see him from my hiding place in the black forest, opposite the sleeping dead girl.
“Hey babe, I just saw a really big snake,” he says while he’s still out of view. “Oh wait, it was only my penis. False alarm.” He laughs at his own lame joke. “I’m really horny. We should fuck again, if you’re interested. Seriously, you don’t have a choice, let’s do it.”
Wait, didn’t she call this guy Randy a minute ago? That’s a bit on the nose, don’t you think? It’s like a guy called Bob who can’t swim well, a dick called Richard, or if the parents of that blowhard politician who wants to build a wall to keep the Mexicans out and likes wearing a bad toupee had christened him ‘Racist Asshole’.
When I finally get a visual on this walking-talking meat puppet, he’s strutting up the track like a man relieved. Dressed in a black puffer jacket and a trucker cap—in spite of the fact that it’s the middle of the Goddamn night—he proudly wears a shit-eating grin through a stubbly beard like he won it in a contest. I just can’t wait to end him.
“You sleeping babe?” he says, bending over the resting corpse of his dead girlfriend. “Come on, rise and shine sleepyhead. I’m horny.” When she doesn’t reply, he shakes her. “Come on babe, I’m not kidding around. You need to wake up right now.”
Frustrated, he gives her a short, sharp shove and she flops over.
Impatience vanishes and terror takes control now. Whimpering like a sad puppy whose owners have abandoned it next to a busy highway, he slowly peels back her hood to see exactly the sort of damage that a sharp machete will render to a person’s forehead. He lets out a prodigious scream that’ll continue to ring in my ears a number of hours later, and then flurries around in fright when he feels a soft tap on his shoulder.
It’s me, lumbering behind him in my very best Jason Voorhees impression.
Shock, horror and frank disbelief are plastered all over Randy’s terrified face; for all intents and purposes he is face to face right now with the hockey mask-wearing psycho from the Friday the 13th series. What do you do in that situation? What do you even say?
“What the actual fu—”
But I guess we’ll never know his final words, because I cut him off mid-sentence with a swing of my machete and punt his head away like a soccer ball.

About the Author


Simon Petersen is an experienced journalist and popular blogger from Auckland, New Zealand. By day he writes about craft beer, world travel, and professional sport; by night he dreams up horror movie scenarios that’d scare the striped sweater off Freddy Krueger. Visit him at www.SlasherSam.com.









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Amazon Review Tour & Excerpt: Breathe In by Michelle Bellon


Title: Breathe In
Author: Michelle Bellon
Genre: Thriller/Suspense
Published: June 27, 2017
Publisher: Limitless Publishing


“If you like dark thrillers THIS book is right up your alley! If you've never read a Michelle Bellon book-this one is, seriously, her best book yet! I have loved them all, but this one ..WOW!” - 5 Star Amazon Review
“I couldn't set it down!!” - 5 Star Amazon review



Breathe in, breathe out. This mantra gets Tessa Benson through the day.

The man she loves walks all over her, and she just wants to get by without her heart shattering to pieces. If she could find her voice, she’d scream.

Everything changes in one night, when she’s snatched from the streets and tied to a bed, a camera set up to capture her dying moment. And the person who paid to watch her die...is still out there somewhere.

Tessa prowls dark neighborhoods in a quest for justice, but she doesn’t find the killer. Not until they strike again…in the place Tessa is least expecting, and where it hurts worst.


Warning.  This book contains some major triggers.  It contains violence, sexual assault, and scenes of PTSD.  

Tessa has a complicated love life.  The man she likes, Tom, wants nothing to do with her.  The man who likes her, Gerald, she wants nothing to do with.  To unwind from her troubled life, Tessa goes out with a friend.  What started as a fun night ends up in violent despair.  Tessa is taken by two men, kidnapped and held hostage in a lone cabin.  They videotape the mental and physical torture she experiences.  Sure that she will not make it out alive, Tessa fights back and escapes.  Yet the pain of her experience lingers—she suffers from serious PTSD, often turning violent herself.  Determined to find out who orchestrated the kidnapping, Tessa and a cop Tobin, whom she begins to develop feelings for, seek out answers.

Breathe In is definitely not a novel for the faint of heart.  Tessa endures things that take her to the very brink of a dangerous edge.  It was hard to read what her kidnappers put it through.  The process of her grief and anger was realistic and heartbreaking.  The inner psychology of being the survivor of extreme abuse is well written and very emotional.  It is hard not to feel for Tessa.  And her anger?  You don’t dislike her for what she does because you sympathize and understand her pain.  The end came as a surprise, and the victory much needed.  I can’t say she that her pain was assuaged, but the cathartic revenge at the end was enough to satisfy the need for resolution.







Blindly, I run across the lot. As I round the corner, I run smack into someone as they are coming the opposite direction.  

“Tessa? Are you okay?”

I glance up through the stream of tears to see a blurry image of Gerald. “No, no. I just want to go home.” I push off his chest and stumble backward, then turn and flee the opposite direction without saying a word, ignoring Gerald’s plea of confusion as the distance between us widens. I pray he won’t follow. I just want to get away from this place. 

I keep running until I’m at least a few blocks away. Winded, fatigued, and little sick to my stomach, I stop. I lean against the wall of a building, taking in sharp gasps of air, and look around. Thankfully, Gerald didn’t follow. Where am I? Terin. I left Terin back at the club. I can’t go back there. I’ll have to call her and let her know I’ve gone home. She’ll be fine. 

My phone? Where is my phone? It was in my handbag. I had my handbag when I left the club with Tom. Shit. It must be in his car. Fear, pain, shame, anger, guilt, all well up tight within my chest and rise until I feel as if I will go mad. I run my fingers through my hair and cry so hard I start to gag again. I want to puke. Get that man out of me. Get him out!

“Can I help you? Are you okay?”

Startled, I spin around. The man from the library is standing at the corner, maybe fifteen feet away. My crying wanes as muddled thoughts spin around in my mind, trying to make sense of it all. Why is he here? Did he follow me from the club? His brow is pinched with a look of concern. He takes a step forward. “Are you okay?”

My knees and hands are trembling violently. “I’m…I’m fine.” I drag both hands across my face, swiping away the tears.

He takes another step forward. “Are you sure? You seem upset. Are you ill?”

I take a step back. I don’t want any further interaction tonight. I’ve had more than enough. All I want to do is go home. And this guy…he seems friendly, but he freaks me out. “No, really. I’m fine. I’m just on my way home.”

Another step forward. “Do you need a ride?”

Another step back. Why won’t anyone listen to me? “No. I’m fi…”

Something is pulled over my head from behind. The world is dark and muffled. I scream. Hands go around my waist. My arms arc outward, side to side, hoping to hit anything in my path. What is happening? Fear, stark and white, drains the blood from my head to my toes. I’m dizzy. 

Voices bark out sharp orders but I’m flailing about and screaming so I can’t make out what they’re saying. Another set of hands grab my legs and pull them out from under me so now I’m being carried by two men…one by my waist and the other by my legs. I writhe and twist. I have to get out of this. I need to get away. What is happening? My breath plumes in and out in short, hot gasps inside the small bag over my head. Claustrophobia flares up. A stronger wave of panic follows. I’m…going…to pass…out.


Michelle Bellon lives in the Pacific Northwest with her four quirky and beautiful children. She loves coffee, Superman, rollercoasters, and has an addiction to chapstick.


She works as a registered nurse and in her spare time writes novels. As a multi-genre author, she has written in the categories of romance suspense, young adult, women’s fiction, and literary fiction. She has won four literary awards. You can visit Michelle’s website at http://www.michellebellonauthor.com/





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Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Book Blitz & Giveaway: Peculiar Country by Stuart R. West




Peculiar County


Genre: YA Paranormal/Ghost Mystery

Release Date: July 30th 2017

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Summary:




Growing up in Peculiar County, Kansas, is a mighty...well, peculiar experience. In 1965, things get even stranger for Dibby Caldwell, the mortician's fifteen year old daughter. A young boy's ghost haunts Dibby into unearthing the circumstances of his death. 




Nobody—living or dead—wants her to succeed. James, the new mop-topped, bad boy at school doesn’t help. Dibby can’t get him out of her head, even though she doesn’t trust him. No, sir, there's nothing much more peculiar than life in Peculiar County…except maybe death in Peculiar County.



Buy Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo



EXCERPT:

I pushed through the doors. They swat at my backside, squeaking with mischief. Eee-hee, eee-hee
Down in the workshop, the cold really packed a wallop. I rubbed my arms, stamped my feet. I rode my hand along the wall, searching for the light switch.
Tik…tek…tik
Fluorescent ceiling lamps sprung to life, duller, deader than usual. Instead of providing warm luminescence, they cast everything in an odd light, everything touched in artificial tints.
Immediately, the strong, familiar odor of ammonia enveloped me. But I couldn’t place the other smell, couldn’t describe it. If pressed, I suppose I’d catalog it somewhere between sweet and metallic. Sorta the way blood tastes when you prick your finger and suck on it. I’d never smelled anything like it before, not in Dad’s workshop or elsewhere.
An overriding smell rode in like fog. A strong, wrong odor that brought to mind mold and rot. A primal scent from a different time or place.
Ching! Ding! Ting-a-ling!
Impatient as a hungry baby, the bell-ringer called.
Click.
The walk-in refrigerator door handle swung up.
Chumpf!
The door released its seal and opened, just a few inches. A pale blue—hardly blue, more like moon-white—cone of light fell across the floor. A swirl of frost slivered out, twirled in the bare luminescence.
Ding! Ding! Ching! Ting-a-ling-aling
Cut off in mid-ring, the bell silenced. Everything hushed. No sound, not a peep, a tick, a drop. Just the silent shroud of death.
Slowly, I crept toward the refrigerator. Which didn’t make a lick of sense as I knew Hettie waited for me. There didn’t seem to be any real sense in maintaining silence either. But any noise—even my own—made me want to scream.
Above me, the light flickered off, on, then sizzled like bacon before settling on dark.
My hand gripped the handle. Arctic cold, I wrenched my hand back. I flagged it ‘till the stabbing needles of cold left. With my shoulder, I nudged the door. It pushed open half-way, then stopped. I followed with a mighty mule kick.
The door opened about as far as its hinges would allow.
I took a deep breath, held it. When I exhaled, I spouted out a frozen, visible vapor.
“Hettie?” I whispered.
I entered. To the left, the metal shelves on the wall were unoccupied. On the opposite side, all but one sat empty. A rumpled plastic cloth lay across the bottom shelf.
The eerie blue light had no visible source, but it provided ample light to see by. Maybe too much, considering.
“Hettie?” I repeated a little louder.
In the back of the unit, where Dad housed his supplies, a hanging shower curtain billowed out. Plastic crinkled. Something moved, fluid behind the curtain’s rippling waves. Not exactly flesh-colored, not much of anything.
Tinggg!
My heart urged me to turn back. Traitorous feet wouldn’t comply.
White snails of fingers crawled around the plastic and gripped it. Slowly, the curtain pulled back. Rusty rings on a rustier rod squealed screeeeeee.
Hettie stood exposed, naked. Except for the black “X” stitching up her innards. Varicose veins twined her legs. Toes exploded into corns the size of thumbs. Her scrubbing pad of hair stood up on end, a static raised brush of black and white.
Clouds had moved into her eyes, milkier than when I’d found her, yet intently focused on me. She showed that awful cavernous smile again. Barnacle-like teeth jabbed out of her gums.
Her lower jaw wobbled, then dropped ajar. Not an involuntary movement caused by gas either, the way sometimes happened to corpses. She gasped, a hissing radiator.
She took a doddering step toward me.
Ding!
The bell tied to her toe tolled.
Ding-a-ling!
Each step forward took great effort. A kind of ghostly arthritis hampered her dead limbs, encased them in cement. When she moved, wood cracked. More wood splintered, her body falling apart. She raised an arm. Dark veins spiraled around it, swimming upstream with determination. They rode toward her sagging bosom, traveled north up her neck, snaked beneath her chin, and set up house on her face.

And still she kept coming.

About the Author
Stuart R. West is a lifelong resident of Kansas, which he considers both a curse and a blessing. It's a curse because...well, it's Kansas. But it's great because…well, it’s Kansas. Lots of cool, strange and creepy things happen in the Midwest, and Stuart takes advantage of them in his workCall it “Kansas Noir.” Stuart writes thrillers and mysteries usually tinged with humor, both for adult and young adult audiences.
Stuart spent 25 years in the corporate sector and now writes full time. He’s married to a professor of pharmacy (who greatly appreciates the fact he cooks dinner for her every night) and has a 25 year old daughter who’s dabbling in the nefarious world of banking.


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Promo Blitz: Holy by Abbie Krupnick






Horror /contemporary dark fantasy
Date Published: April 15, 2017
Publisher: Darkwater Syndicate, Inc.

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Gus Stevens has the worst of both worlds. By night, he resides in the Dream World, a place steeped in magic and exotic dangers. By day, a giant snow-lizard stalks him in the Real World, looking to make Gus its next meal. In order to regain control of his life, young Gus must undergo a psychoanalytic exorcism. But this comes with a high price—he must break away from everything he has ever thought was real. Author Abbie Krupnick blends the magical and the mundane in this avant-garde dark fantasy where nothing is as it seems.




Excerpt

The high-pitched scream of a predatory bird echoed from the direction of the Valley. The eagle was approaching at break-neck speed, a maroon streak under the stars. Then it braked and circled lazily overhead a few times before alighting opposite Gus, talons gripping the edge. Gus heard the volcano groan, its anger filling him. The mountain shuddered, its sides growing warm. He slipped out of his cocoon of heat, felt naked without it in front of the bird.
“Hello,” the Magician said, examining him with green eyes. “Why don’t you come down and we’ll talk about things in the grove.”
Gus wondered how much he had overheard.
The mountain was heating up by the second. In a few minutes the smooth stone would scald his feet. A pale orange glow flashed briefly at the bottom of the vent, then colored to yellows and reds too fast, too soon.
“Whenever you’re ready,” Language whispered.
“Don’t listen to him, Gus,” the Magician said. So the Magician could hear, too. What an unsurprising comfort that was.
“Boy, in a few moments, I’m going to flood the whole World with molten rock. Make your choice quickly, because this is the only chance you’ll get.”
“Gus Stevens, you get down from the volcano this instant!” the Magician ordered sternly. Gus couldn’t help snickering at that.
“What are you going to choose, a lifetime of pain here, pretending you’re happy when you can’t even talk about your sham of happiness?”
“I’ll give you a nice, relaxed ride down to the grove. Your Mothers will make your favorite foods. I’ll even make Spear Mother take off her helmet for you.” The last offer disgusted him.
“Gus, he’s a monster.”
“This renegade spirit is crazy.”
“He’s whoring out Spear Mother.”
“I would do no such thing. I’m simply explaining to my son—”
“Boy, friend, vessel, host, house, my stronghold, listen to me: Which do you want? The misery this poor excuse for a Person offers you or freedom?”
I don’t know! I don’t know! I don’t know! I don’t know!
“Easy, Gus, easy,” the Magician murmured. Gus shot him a poisonous look, took several deep breaths while staring at the rising column of magma. A despairing question anchored him.
I’m going to suffer whether or not I’m free, right? he asked the rock illuminated like a burning mineshaft. The magma rose higher. The Dream World will go under and I’ll be the same?
The magma’s rise halted as Language stopped to think.
“Well,” it replied. “You’ll have me.”
What difference will that make?
“Do you promise not to be angry if I tell you?”
Sure.
“The truth is, I don’t know,” it said, and the magma resumed its journey upwards. It had to be less than seventy feet away. Sixty-five. Sixty. It stopped again. “I don’t know what the Waking World is like except through what I’ve overheard you say.”
So how do you know you’re important there? You don’t even know if it exists.
“I don’t. But I trust Mathis. You do, too, don’t you?”
Dumbstruck, Gus replied, I guess.
“And he told you the mountain would explain everything?”
Yes. He didn’t tell me that the mountain was possessed by a crazy spirit calling itself Language incarnate.
“Exactly, Gus! Well done!” the Magician wheedled, “Don’t trust it. Trust ME. I’ll give you all the knowledge you’ve ever wanted from me if you return to the grove.”
The magma hadn’t started to rise again but its heat was baking his face.
Please, Language begged, now inside his head. Please.
You don’t care what happens to me. So what if I kill myself, right? You lose your chains. I’m still screwed.
I’ll be trapped in your soul again, but YOU will be free to use me. Which is how it should be.
Then you’re exchanging one prison for another.
If you were in my place, you’d be right, but the rules are different for me. Please, Gus. Let me go.
He had nothing to say to it.
Please, Gus. Please. PLEASE.
It was hysterical, its voice rising higher and higher with the magma. His ears were ringing again.
PLEASE. PLEASE. Let me go. Let me go. Let me go. LET ME GO.
Its hysteria was getting to him. He couldn’t stop his own tears from leaking.
Please, Gus. Please let me out. LET ME OUT! LET ME OUT! LET ME OUT!
It was screaming bloody murder. He covered his ears as though this would muffle the sound inside his head. He was ready to smash the sound out of his skull on the vent but Language stopped him with a whimpering, Please.
“Please please please please please!” the Magician mocked, voice muffled. He kept chanting “please please please” as he cleaned his feathers. Gus tuned him out, waited until the bird had finished so he could see the hate on Gus’s face. Long-hidden vows to repay the suffering his mentor had caused him boiled to the surface. He chewed them all into a simple order to Language.
Now.



About the Author



Abbie Krupnick lives in Summit, New Jersey. When she’s not writing, she trains Brazilian jiu-jitsu and makes explosive quantities of visual art.











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Pre-Order Blitz & Giveaway: Rose De Muerte by Natalie Bennett


Title: Rose De Muerte
Author: Natalie Bennett
Genre: Dark Erotic Romance
Release Date: October 16, 2017
Covers by: Covers by Combs




NOTE: ROSE DE MUERTE WILL NOT BE AVAILABLE ON BARNES & NOBLE, KOBO, OR ITUNES AFTER RELEASE




Roselynn ‘Rose' Morgue is in love. 

That sounds good on the surface, but nothing about Rose’s life is ever simple. 

The object of her affection is not only her stalker, he’s also supposed to be dead, and that little fact throws a wrench in her plan to reinvent herself. 

You see, Rose is far more twisted than anyone would ever believe, and will do whatever it takes to ensure no one ever finds out the truth about her past. But when a series of murders begin, Rose’s secrets rise to the surface, and one extremely pissed off secret can’t wait for her to get what she deserves. 

*Trigger Warning* 
Bad Sh*t happens. 
This book will not entice warm fuzzy feelings. 
(This book is a standalone prequel that sets the stage for Pernicious Red)



a Rafflecopter giveaway






Natalie Bennett is the creator of erotic stories that always come with a warning label. She writes about depraved alpha a**holes and women that love to hate them. Her books don't follow any specific tropes, have no set word counts, and tend to deviate from traditional HEA's.


When she isn't in front of her computer she's spending time with her husband and their three little boys.

Natalie is an avid fan of caramel frappes, horror movies, Shameless, and of course, reading.

You can find Natalie on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.



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