Tag Archives: suspense

Liquid Friday with author Reyna Favis

This week we are featuring  fantasy/supernatural suspense  author Reyna Favis and her novel Soul Scent: A Zackie Story.

But before we venture into the Halloween spirit of her supernatural world, lets enjoy a drink that Reyna personally recommends:

The Drink:  Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster

I first encountered this drink reading Douglas Adams’s “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” and I was smitten. It was described as “like having your brains smashed out by a slice of lemon, wrapped ’round a large gold brick.” It has also been described in the novel as “the alcoholic equivalent to a mugging; expensive and bad for the head.” Yum.

Ingredients and Instructions:

Fill a 28-oz. hurricane glass with crushed ice. Add the following in order:

1 oz. Everclear® (The ice should sizzle.)

1 oz. Bacardi® 151

1 oz. apricot-flavored brandy

1 oz. triple sec

1 oz. lemon juice

1 oz. orange juice

1 oz. pineapple juice

1 oz. Tom Collins mix

Stir, then top off the glass with ice. Drink. Slowly.

WOW!  My only comment is that if I were to drink this slowly, I’ll never get to check out Rayna’s book.  So how about grabbing a  Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster, kicking back and relaxing with her book in hand.  Now we can start indulging!

The Book Blurb: 

Troubled psychic Fia leads a double life. As a ground pounder for Search And Rescue, she finds the lost and vulnerable living and brings them to safety. As a servant to an ancient and indifferent Psychopomp, her mission is no less crucial – to help the suffering dead cross over to the afterlife. Her worlds collide after a distraught woman with a gun disappears into the woods and the rescue becomes a body recovery.

When a frantic hammering erupts from the empty SAR team trailer, Fia appeals for help to Cam, irascible Brit, mentor and Psychopomp aficionado. But nothing is what it seems and a straightforward case soon goes sideways. Will Fia and Cam be able to uncover the shocking truth behind the final act of a desperate woman and free her tortured earthbound spirit?

Book Excerpt:

“Can you tell me about the baby?”

Cam lifted a shoulder and then stared at the bottle in his hands. “Not much to tell, really. It was 1975 and I was working a job in Kings Worthy.” Glancing at me, he elaborated. “That’s in England. It’s a very old place. It was listed in the Domesday Book – you know, the survey taken in 1066?”

I bristled a little. “By William the Conqueror after the Norman Conquest. I know. I was a history major, remember?”

Nodding, Cam took up the story again. “Anyway, I was busy trying to lay the ghost of a Victorian clergyman who had taken up residence in the old church. At the same time, there was an archaeological dig taking place in the churchyard. They were interested in the old Anglo-Saxon burials and they eventually unearthed the skeletal remains of a young woman.” He took another drink and affected nonchalance as he continued the story. “Lying between the long bones of her legs, they found the skull of a full-term infant, but the fetal leg bones were still clearly within her pelvic cavity.”

“A coffin birth?” My eyes went wide at this thought.

Cam nodded again. “It happens. A pregnant woman dies and is buried and because of pressure from the gases that build up during decomposition, the dead fetus is expelled from the equally dead mother.” Looking down at his hands again, Cam picked at the label on the bottle. “Anyway, shortly after this find, the cries of a baby could be heard coming from the graveyard. It so disturbed the archaeological team that no one wanted to dig anymore and the work came to a grinding halt.”

“And did it also disturb you? Cam, I can tell this is difficult to talk about.”

Cam rolled his eyes and exhaled deeply, his words were clipped. “Yes, right. It bothered me a great deal. The baby was an innocent and completely blameless, yet she was left to suffer horribly for centuries.”

“But wasn’t the mother with the baby? How did you finally help her to move on?”

“I went into the churchyard with Zackie late one night to find the baby. The mother was nowhere to be found, so I assume she crossed over shortly after her death.”

“She left the baby?” My mouth hung open, aghast at the thought of just taking off and leaving an infant.

“She probably didn’t know the baby remained. In her time, the belief was that unbaptized infants went to Limbo, so in all likelihood, she died assuming that the baby would find its way and be taken care of.” Cam shrugged again. “Who knows? All I know is that earthbound souls of infants are a rarity, so most of the time, they move on with no difficulties. Something went wrong for this one.” Cam frowned as he stared into the middle distance for a beat. “But, you know, as soon as she saw Zackie, she quieted and stopped crying. Getting her to go through the portal was a breeze compared to the clergyman. I had to work another two weeks before the clergyman moved on.”

About Reyna:

REYNA FAVIS holds a Ph.D. in biology and brings a scientist’s critical eye to the unseen world, imposing logical consistency and mechanistic detail to the unexplained. A proud and militant introvert, Reyna exerts her power as mistress of the dark arts of introversion through her blog, Introvert Broadcasting Network. When not writing, she responds to callouts as a canine handler for search and rescue. She lives in Warren County New Jersey with her husband, a search dog and a coterie of pets.

Click on the Social media links to follow Reyna:

 

Liquid Friday with author Brian McKinley

This week we are featuring  paranormal suspense author Brian McKinley and his  Authors Talk About It 2016 Horror Novel Contest Grand Prize Winning novel :  Drawing Dead.  We will also take a look at Ancient Blood: A Novel of the Hegemony (Order Saga Book 1)

But before we indulge in the succulent pages of his books, let us find out what drink does Brian recommend for our readers on Friday night.

My favorite drink is Diet Mt. Dew mt-dew

but Faolan’s favorite drink is a blood-and-scotch, no ice. The scotch acts as an anti-coagulant for the blood, which needs to be in there. When vampyrs drink straight alcohol, it is too astringent and leads to dehydration. 

scotch

As good as Foalan’s drink sounds, we suggest not to use “real” blood, as some of us are only part-time Vampires.  A good substitute for this occasion is Blood & Sand Cocktail thought to be named for a 1922 silent film starring Rudolph Valentino.

Ingredients:

  • Scotch 3/4 oz.
  • Cherry Liqueur 3/4 oz.
  • Juice from Blood Oranges 3/4 oz.
  • Sweet Vermouth 3/4 oz.
  • Ice

Preparation:

Pour all blood-and-sandingredients into cocktail shaker filled with ice cubes. Shake well. Strain into Cocktail glass. Flame orange zest over the top of the glass.

So let us kick back relaxing with this delicious beverage in hand and get a little nibble of  Brian’s books.  What am I saying?  Lets go full force an bite right into them, just like Faolan would have.

 

Drawing Dead: A Faolan O’Connor novel (Book 1).

Faolan O’Connor spent his life killing for men like Legs Diamond and Lucky Luciano, and now it’s his turn to face the music. But when drawing-dead-9-bwvampire Darcy Killian offers him immortality, Faolan enters a world of violence, wealth, and power beyond anything he’s ever imagined.

Driven by ambition and guilt, Faolan fights his way up the ranks in a battle to justify his sins with success. He’s learned the hard way that relationships are vulnerabilities and friends are just enemies in disguise, but he also knows that he can’t conquer a city alone.

Aided by an emotionally-crippled genius and a warm-hearted call girl, Faolan builds a loyal crew with which to challenge the tyrannical Killian s rule. However, will this re-awakened humanity prove a fatal flaw or his ace in the hole? With his life and the future of the city he loves at stake, can Faolan play his cards right or is he drawing dead?

Drawing Dead is the Grand Prize winner of the Authors Talk About It 2016 Horror Novel Contest.

Brian McKinley

When your dreams all fail
And the ones we hail 
Are the worst of all 
And the blood’s run stale

I wanna hide the truth 
I wanna shelter you 
But with the beast inside 
There’s nowhere we can hide

– Imagine Dragons, “Demons”

 

Blurb from Ancient Blood: A Novel of the Hegemony (Order Saga Book 1) 

Avery Doyle loves vampires; he’s read every novel, seen all the movies, and researched the folklore. When his first one-night-stand, Caroline, turns out to be a true vampire on the run, he jumps at the chance to leave his ordinary life and join her as a “child of the night.” The honeymoon ends, however, when Caroline’s brutal Creator ancient-blood-2Sebastian enslaves them on his island estate and Avery must confront the dehumanizing reality behind his dreams.
In order to survive, Caroline and Avery take their place as servants in Sebastian’s household during a gathering of the most powerful vampires on Earth, the Hegemony, and soon find themselves involved in the myriad intrigues and deceptions that form the night-to-night existence of The Order.
A society of wealth, power, and inhuman decadence whose existence is protected by human complicity and disbelief, The Order is the immortal aristocracy hidden behind the giant corporations and political leaders of the world. Sebastian, however, has a plan that will change The Order forever and shatter human civilization.
To avoid this terrible fate, Avery and Caroline will not only have to defy the most powerful creatures on Earth, but also confront the darkest aspects of themselves. For in the world of the Hegemony, even victory may cost them their souls . . .
A fast-paced thriller that both re-imagines and pays tribute to the traditional vampire, Ancient Blood is a story of love, ambition, sacrifice, and betrayal that is frighteningly human.

About the Author

Brian McKinley doesn’t really exist. He’s a constructed mortal brianmckinleyidentity used by a relatively young Vampyr in order to publish the truth about The Order. Due to the world-wide influence of The Order and its minions, these accounts must all be published as fiction; however, they are all very real and actually happened. Sometimes the names and sequence of events have been changed to protect the innocent, the guilty, and to keep from getting sued.

Brian is no longer a typical Vampyr and, for this reason, lives in hiding and writes from a secret location. The real “Brian” lives a life of danger and excitement; he loves Star Trek, Game of Thrones, and Boardwalk Empire as much as he loves Chicken Fried Steak. He’s a reader, a role-player, and a dreamer who doesn’t believe that “liberal” is a dirty word. He’s lived many lifetimes and is eager to share as many of them as possible with his readers.

You can follow Brian  on Twitter: @BPMcKinley

You can also follow this link for his Facebook page.

Liquid Friday with author Alice Orr

This week we are featuring a romantic suspense author Alice Orr and her book A Villain For Vanessa, (Riverton Road Romantic Suspense Series Book 4)

But before we venture into her books, let us find out what cocktail is Alice’s favorite for a Friday night.

My favorite cocktail is a Cosmopolitan on the sweet side. I’ve been informed that Cosmos are no longer in vogue, but I’ll take the chance of being un-chic because I like the way they taste.

800px-CosmopolitanIngredients:

  • 1/2 oz Fresh lime juice,
  • 1 oz Cranberry juice,
  • 1/2 oz Triple Sec,
  • 1 1/2 oz Citrus-flavored Vodka.

Preparation:

Mix all the ingredient in a shaker with ice.  Strain into cocktail glasses.  You can garnish with a lime wheel.

A Villain for Vanessa by Alice Orr

A story of tangled roots and tormented love.                                

Two families are shaken to their roots. Vanessa Westerlo must find her roots. Bobby Rizzo aliceis torn between Vanessa and his true roots. They are all tormented by love – past and too present.  Meanwhile a man has been murdered. And that is the most tormented tangle of all.

Alice Orr is known for “Delicious suspense spiced with a love story.”  She does it again in A Villain for Vanessa.

A Villain for Vanessa is Book 4 of the Riverton Road Romantic Suspense series set in Riverton, New York. This book features the Kalli family and the fortunate people who find safety and welcome at the Kalli homestead on Riverton Road. A Wrong Way Home is Book 1 of the series and A Year of Summer Shadows is Book 2. A Vacancy at the Inn is Book 3 and introduces the Miller family of Riverton Road Hill.

A Villain for Vanessa – Riverton Road Romantic Suspense Book 4

 

An Excerpt by Alice Orr

Suddenly, after two and a half decades of silence, Angela Kalli’s niece had decided to reappear. Bobby Rizzo’s legal training and life experience had taught him to ask one question when a person acts in an inexplicable way. What does she want? Whatever the answer might be, Vanessa Westerlo’s agenda was far down his list of priorities. He was here to protect Angela, even though experience had taught him something else too.

Family history is a tangled story with the truth nearly impossible to unwind. Many of those tangles had a secret at the center, like the secret at the center of today. He was the only person Angela had told about her niece’s arrival. She’d arrived at Bobby’s office a few days ago, more unhinged than he’d ever seen her.

“Why are you so upset?” he’d asked.

“You have to swear you’ll never breathe a word to anybody. Otherwise I’ll walk out now, and you can forget I was ever here.”

Angela perched on the edge of the chair by his desk like a frightened bird. He’d never seen her frightened, and he certainly didn’t think of her as a bird.

“If you are here as my client, I’m obligated to keep everything you say confidential.”

Talking like a lawyer to someone he cared so deeply about felt awkward, but it put her at ease.

“Then I am your client,” Angela said, settling down a little. “I need your help to bring my niece back into my life, whatever the cost may be.”

Bobby didn’t like the sound of that.

“What is it you want me to do?” he asked.

Throughout the conversation that followed, the voices of his common sense and legal judgement had screamed through his gut like a freight train telling him he was on a dangerous track. That train continued to roar as he paced the narrow airport terminal now, waiting for Angela’s niece to arrive.

alice-booksWas she coming to Riverton to continue the feud he’d heard about that day between her mother and Angela? Was Vanessa Westerlo here to take revenge? Or could she be motivated by idle curiosity? Angela cared so much. What if her niece didn’t care at all? Indifference would be the worst kind of wound to a heart as open as Angela’s.

“I won’t let that happen,” he said aloud to the empty terminal.

By the time the plane landed and taxied down the short runway, Bobby was on the tarmac and ready, his resolve as unshakable as if he were in front of the toughest jury of his career in a case he absolutely had to win. Then he saw her and something unfamiliar and unwelcome happened.

Bobby experienced a powerful ripple, like a seismic shift along a crucial fault line far beneath his controlled surface, threatening to rise and turn him suddenly less resolute. All because of a resemblance that couldn’t have been more obvious between the aunt he represented and loved like a mother, and the niece this young woman had to be.

Thick, dark hair was the first thing he saw, with a kind of life that seemed to spring from a vibrancy at the center of her. She was halfway across the distance from the plane when she turned her head quickly. Angela made that same move when she was impatient, as she could often be, even with him.

More often though, she’d been his encourager, the person who scolded him back on track when he strayed off course. Without her, he would not have won scholarships to college and law school. Without her, he wouldn’t be what he had become. He steeled himself against his first startling reaction to the striking young woman headed toward him now, who was so capable of causing Angela pain.

“Excuse me. Are you Robert Rizzo?”

ALICE ORR is the author of 15 novels, 3 novellas, a memoir and No More Rejections: 50 alice-pixSecrets to Writing a Manuscript that Sells. A former book editor and literary agent, she now follows her dream as a full-time writer. A Villain for Vanessa – Riverton Road Romantic Suspense Book 4 is Alice’s latest novel. Here’s what readers say. “I was gripped before I was off the first page.” “After this story, I have become an Alice Orr fan.” Alice is known for “Delicious suspense spiced with a love story.” She does it again in A Villain for Vanessa.

Find out more about Alice at her website http://www.aliceorrbooks.com/.

Buy Alice’s Books at https://www.amazon.com/B000APC22E.

Follow Alice on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/aliceorrwriter.

And Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/AliceOrrBooks.

Liquid Friday with author Lynn Marron

This week we are featuring mystery and suspense author Lynn Marron and her book ORR: Fatal DNA (A Grace Farrington Mystery Book 2)

But before we venture into her book, let us hear from Lynn, what drink does she recommend for Friday night to go with our reading.

Drink? Usually cherry brandy when I’ve got cramps or can’t sleep. Otherwise, when I’m out, I love something sweet. And being a chocolate person and more of a sweet craver than brandyanything I love a Brandy Alexander. Yeah, these days it’s hard to find a bartender that can mix them, but they are an absolute dream, a chocolate soda  that gives you angel wings! (It goes down real easy, so be careful you won’t realize how powerful it is) The recipe on line says a Brandy Alexander, (served straight up without ice!), grated nutmeg, 3 cl (1 part) Cognac and 3 cl (1 part) brown Creme de cacao, 3 cl (1 part) Fresh cream. (If you are making it at home around Yule, try substituting eggnog for the cream). Shake and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.(The recipe I found didn’t say it, but I think there should be crushed ice in the mixing cup, that’s what you strain out). Sprinkle with fresh ground nutmeg. And the place to drink it is Cobbs Mill Restaurant, it was originally a prerevolutionary grain mill in Weston, Connecticut. It is my favorite restaurant in all the world and shows up in my novels occasionally. Upstairs you sit and look out over the mill pond, but go down to the downstairs dining, to the small bar tables right alongside the waterfall. Sit at the little table, if you aren’t love, you will be soon. (Cobbs Mill closed, reopened–I was there with my husband and sons for my birthday this year–then closed again. Watch the website, they say its getting ready to reopen! Go, and you may see me there, holding a cream colored cocktail glass up high in celebration of all that is warming and sweet in life!

Blurb:

In ORR: FATAL DNA  I combine my love of seance and history with a hidden treasure that orr-fatal-dna-front-cover-023has been lost since the Revolutionary War, and a present day murder of a billionaire patron at Oyster River Research. Although Grace Farrington only wants to continue her pioneering research, one of her on again off again lovers is accused of murder, but in this book she had three intriguing men pursuing her. However, she also is the being persued by a cold blooded murderer. Finally the puzzles–two sets–are ultimately solved with some clever DNA sleuthing, psychic adventures, her cast of New England eccentrics.

Excerpt:

Oyster River Harbor, King’s Colony of Connecticut

July 15, 1778

Captain Elijah Dell squinted at the thunder clouds closing in over the slate-gray sound. Hours till sunset but rolling fog already obscured distant Long Island, an evil omen for this day’s work. White caps foaming the crests of growing waves that now pounded the beach sand. Standing closer to the sea, his daughter-in-law Rebecca stared out, paying no heed as the advancing yellow foam lapped over her boot tips. With such a Devil’s storm brewing, would Christopher dare it in only a two man sloop? Instead, should they take Elijah’s fishing boat tied back in the harbor? It would handle the waves but stand out in Wallabout bay causing the British to question. Nay. Elijah shifted his left arm again, orr-fatal-dna-023must’ve hurt it when the sail shifted, now it was numb and that added misery to the cold that sat on his chest, making breathing painful. Getting old, when all a man wanted was to be home soaking up warmth before his hearth fire.  But there was Eli– his youngest boy and Mae’s last living child. Now Eli suffered with the rest in that hell hole of prison ship under the decks, in stinking July heat: Eli, Samuel, Willy, and Jacob. If Christopher would sail to Wallabout this day, and he would for enough coin, then Elijah must crew no matter how badly he felt. Did they have enough to ransom Eli and the others? Elijah turned his eyes from the surf. Now in these times, he had to watch for dangers from the land too as his own former friends and neighbors might turn him over to the British as a traitor. Movement. He squinted, now he could see two figures coming out of the trees, down to the beach, two women in blowing capes. One unnaturally tall, Long Liz, his sister, her blonde hair streamingwith gray, and beside her trudging in the sand, that brown faced servant, Posey. Liz was his sister, but her husband Seth was a wealthy Loyalist, siding with King George, who would have them all hanged. Elijah sneaked a look to the whitening sea and curse softly. Over the dark, rolling water he could see the top of a sloop’s gray canvas sail. Better get Loyalist Liz out of here, before Christopher makes land. Elijah turned suddenly and felt dizzy, he had to stop and catch a painful breath, before he trod forward in the deep sand. Rebecca was hanging back as cold Liz’s imperial manner always cowed her. His sister waited above the black-green sodden mounds of seaweed at the high water line not wanting her fine linen cloak to get stained. As he approached, she looked directly in his eyes. Most women he always had to look down to, but Liz was his equal in ungainly height.

She spoke first. “Storm coming in.”

“Hear the red coats will be getting here first,” he said a bit coldly.

“Our King’s soldiers protect us.” Her voice lost some of its hauteur and held sisterly concern when she said, “You look terrible, Elijah, your face is gray.”

“Tis the poor light.”

“You’re an old man, who should be home before your firestead.”

“Even the flames are cold without my Mae.”

Liz looked away in shame. “I was not there when you laid your wife to rest.”

“Half the town of Oyster River was not there,” he said bitterly. “None of your good King’s friends showed up to respect a woman they’d known their whole lives.”

“They know your son for a rebel.” There was a silence, then Liz said painfully. “I should have been there…but Seth forbid it.”

Elijah nodded. “The Lord God has ordained that a wife must obey her husband. Mae would have understood that.”

Looking pained she said, “What would the Lord think of our town splitting so?”

“I seek no war with King or Rebel. I only wish to fish and be left alone.”

“But your son…”

scull“Eli listened to his fine friends. They joined a militia to battle the injustices of freeborn Englishmen not allowed to speak on their destiny, but a Connecticut Colony man should not have been fighting in New Jersey! Now Eli pays for his folly, rotting in a prison ship.”

“Then you know where he is?”

“Perhaps imprisoned in Wallabout bay with Jacob Hoyt , Samuel Chapel, and Willy Jamison. That’s where we think they took them after the battle.”

“Seth says the military will subdue Connecticut, as they have Boston and New York. When that happens, the rebels–or anyone who treated with them–will be expelled. Where will you go? The Indies? Not west into the dark forests with the painted savages…” She actually sounded pained…..

About the Author:

Lynn lives in Connecticut and has written radio and television scripts and texts for comic lynnbooks.  She lives in the woods… often avoids writing by talking to friends.  She talks to chipmunks, the squirrels, robins (spring), raccoons  (night),  frogs (summer), fish (fast), deer (seldom), tulip trees and occasionally large, intelligent rocks.

She can be contacted at lynn@lynnmarron.com