Tag Archives: ghosts

I cannot wait for more after the jaw-dropper Louisa left here!

62798838._SY475_Conduit Crisis by Louisa Masters

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Holy cliffhanger paranormal fans!

Totally expected as this is a series with an ongoing story arc, but even so, the twisty in the tale here came as a surprise and I loved it.

Just like I loved seeing Skye get his man as Daniel realised that the reason he’d always been drawn to him was more than just friendship.

This is a generally low angst – demonic threats aside – romance in which the guy who’s been in love with his ‘straight’ friend gets the best kind of surprise when it turns out he’s actually crushing on him too.

With the same humorous element that’s been present throughout this series so far, we get a plot that develops more about Skye’s ability to interact with spirits from the otherworld and that sees him facing his past when his mother returned to town after deserting him when he was only seven.

When he and Skye end up in a fake boyfriend situation after Skye’s mother confronts him and pairs scorn on his small town life, it doesn’t take him long to discover he likes the thought of being able to kiss Skye.

Surprisingly, we don’t actually get much on page exploration but there is a super hot frotting scene before Skye plucks up the courage to ask Daniel of he’s just an experiment.

Skye and Daniel are incredibly sweet together, I loved how Daniel was so chill about realising he was bisexual and had been attracted to men before without really understanding his feeling.

By the time we reach the end of this book, there’s been all kinds of excitement, not least the discovery of a demon plot with the potential to end the world!

Roll on June for the final book, which will be The Collective’s Gatekeeper Gabe and Skye’s best friend Tom, whose ghostly Nonna haunts his taxi cab passing judgement on everything!

I can’t wait for it.

#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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Blog Tour: The Southern Magicks by Ashton K. Rose

The Southern Magicks | Ashton K. Rose

The Southern Magicks #1

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Release Date: August 24th, 2022

Cover Artist: Fantasy & Coffee Design

Word Count: 80,000

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COVER - The Southern Magicks

Blurb

How do you prove your innocence when you don’t even remember whether you did it or not?

After a demon attack reveals Dexter’s secret – that his Gran taught him magic – the twenty-three-year-old librarian is forced to work for the local magical law enforcement agency in order to prove his loyalty, and hopefully save his grandmother from execution.

However, when someone tries to frame him for crimes he doesn’t remember committing, Dexter realizes he’ll have to start an investigation of his own. Joined by his beloved husband Eli, their best friend June, and his journalist cousin Kat, he desperately tries to prove his innocence…which is kind of difficult when gaps in his memory make him doubt everything he thinks he knows about himself.

The race against time begins. Can Dexter and his team uncover the criminals weaving the web of guilt around him before it’s too late, or is he going to lose everything and everyone he cares about?

Warnings: Assault, violent imagery, panic attack on page, police brutality

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Excerpt

Chapter 1, Scene 1:

I knew Nora Rowe had died in her home without anyone telling me.

I unlocked the door and my stomach dropped as I took in the sight of the small dim living room of her kit home, filled with books and old newspapers. The acrid smell of cigarettes and wood fire smoke filled my nose as I weaved my way through the stacks. Mismatched flatpack bookshelves that warped under the strain of thousands of books lined the walls. Her living room held no other furniture apart from an old TV and a worn leather armchair—the carpet covered by stained, threadbare rugs.

I flicked the first light switch I saw twice.

Why had I expected the power to work?

I walked over to the windows and pushed the dust-caked lace curtains aside.

My eyes watered as the sun poured into the room.

In the kitchen, the doors of the cupboards hung open. The only things left behind were a few cheap plastic items scattered across the scratched lino.

I stepped on a plastic cup on the floor. I wobbled on my feet for a few sick seconds before I grabbed the counter to steady myself. The sharp aluminium edge bit into the skin of my hand.

This place was a death trap!

She had over twenty library books I had to separate from the donations. My legs shook as I walked to the shelves closest to the door.

I ignored the erratic beating of my heart and the part of my brain telling me to run and pulled out my keys to flick the small key chain light on. I placed it between my teeth and examined the spines for library tags.

When the light hit the grimy glass of a small photo frame on the shelf, I saw something move behind me. I kept my eyes fixed on the glass and used my thumb to clear a spot of dust.

If it hadn’t moved, I could have ignored the human-shaped shadow reflected in the glass.

As a kid, I’d been hassled about seeing things and having an overactive imagination. When I was seven, Gran told me the truth. I shared her secret ability to see ghosts.

I turned to look at the woman who sat in the armchair.

This Nora was a couple of years older than the one who celebrated her birthday in the photo. Her gaze focused on the TV, which would have been new the year Queen Elizabeth was coronated.

I kept my gaze locked on her, blinking one eye at a time.

I slowed my breath and took a careful step backwards to the door. The back of my calf hit something that drove several points of pain into my skin.

The stack of books I knocked over sliced through my composure just as easily as it did the silence in the room,  the hard covers and spines slapping against each other as they hit the floor.

“What the fuck are you doing in my house?” Nora stood and turned to face me.

I knew I’d given the game away when I jumped out of my skin and almost dropped my keys.

I made a noise like a dying rat.

She knew I could hear her.

The first thing Gran had taught me was not to let a ghost realise you could sense them. It was dangerous—a trigger for the ire of a vengeful spirit.

“I’m sorry,” I said. “Your son gave us the key.”

“Worthless piece of shit. Letting strangers into my house. He stole my grandma’s dinner set for drug money before my body was cold. I saw him put it in his car before he called someone to deal with the mess.”

“I’ll just be going now.”

“Actually, I’ll be going.”

I felt a sharp pain in my chest.

I tried to breathe, but my lungs refused to move.

I couldn’t breathe!

The edge of my vision went black as I gasped for air. I fell flat on my front. I was so focused on trying to breathe, I almost missed the presence pushing at the back of my mind. It started small, a hint of a suggestion. The temptation to give in grew. This was her body. I was nothing but a figment of her imagination. Dexter wasn’t real. Nothing more than a thought exercise to see what it’d be like to be a man her grandson’s age. With each second, it pressed harder, and the urge to give in grew.

Forget.

It would be easy to give in and never have another worry again. All the pain and pressure of life could vanish if I relaxed and let her take control.

No!

I shivered as I tried to move my arms to push myself onto my hands and knees. I focused on the door. It was only a short crawl. I had to do it. For a second, my vision went entirely black.

No!

I gathered all the strength I had and screamed. The remaining air expelled from my lungs. I took a sharp breath. I moved my stiff arms and pushed myself onto my hands and knees.

I was Dexter; I was real, and this was my body. Nothing would take that away from me.

I closed my eyes and pushed back the ghost. I wrapped a mental net around the invasive presence in my mind and forced it back through the hole where it had entered. A hole it had dug in a part of my mind I didn’t even know existed.

One arm forwards, one leg forwards, and breathe.

Move. Breathe. Move. Breathe.

I made it to the threshold and pulled the door open. I slid headfirst down the concrete stairs to lie on my back.

The pressure in my mind slowly vanished as I fell.

I opened my eyes.

Pale blue sky, almost cloudless

My eyes watered from the bright light.

The perfect day was oblivious to my plight. The mid-autumn day was hardly different from late summer. I could’ve laid there for hours, but the hot concrete felt like it was melting the skin off my back where my shirt had ridden up. I rolled onto the dead grass beside the cracked front path.

Sweat ran into my eyes as I sat up. I squeezed my eyes shut to clear my vision.

I could still feel the cold air wafting from the open door. I had to shut it. Mrs Gregory was looking for any excuse to fire me. I stood and walked to the threshold.

All I had to do was grab the handle, pull it closed, remove my hand from the handle and step back.

One quick movement.

I could do it.

As I stared, my eyes adjusted to the dim. She stood just inside, her hard eyes focused on me.

She smiled.

I stepped forwards and grabbed the door handle. Her hand shot out towards my arm.

Her pale, icy fingers clamped around my left wrist. I tightened the grip of my right hand around the door handle. I tucked my chin to my chest and threw myself backwards down the stairs, using the weight of my body to swing the door closed. My shirt ripped as I fell backwards; the sleeve stayed in her hand as my arm slipped free.

The air expelled from my lungs as I hit the ground.

I lay on my back and my lungs refused to work. Fixed to the spot in terror, I gasped for air as my body refused to perform. A function that was usually thoughtless had become my only thought, the pinpoint the world had narrowed to.

There was a dizzy relief as I breathed again, and after a few minutes I slowly stood.

Blood ran down my exposed arm, the only part of my body that had hit the thin concrete path.

Ghosts could touch me! Physically hurt me!

I closed my eyes and concentrated on my breathing, forcing back the panic attack that bubbled in the back of my mind. I knew about the possession, but the touch? Why hadn’t Gran told me? I needed to call Gran, but I knew she couldn’t help me. She hadn’t talked to me about magic since her accident when I was seventeen.

I suspected the accident was magic-related, but she’d kept silent about it.

She’d looked at me sceptically any time I’d mentioned magic afterwards, as though I spoke of childish whimsy and needed to grow up.

So I had.

I’d left Dunn and become a librarian, a nice stable job for a responsible young man who liked books.

A normal young man who had resigned himself to a life of pretending he couldn’t see the dead.

I’d somehow ended up with nowhere else to turn and ended up back in this town.

Now Gran was in America with Aunt Myrtle, so it was hard to get help.

I drove back to the library to pretend I’d been out for my lunch break.

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About The Author

AUTHOR PIC - The Southern Magicks - Ashton K. Rose

Ashton K. Rose (They/Them) is a Queer author who writes Australian paranormal, urban fantasy and mystery fiction filled with LGBTQIA+ characters.

Ashton currently lives in sunny Queensland able to enjoy the best of the Australian bush and beach. Ashton spent their first fourteen years being raised on a remote farm shaped around the remains of an old mining town. Surrounded by the skeletons of past lives and their matching ghost stories, Ashton developed a love for fantasy, horror, and dark fairy tales from a young age.

Carrying a love of ghost stories into adulthood Ashton started writing novels about magic, vampires and ghosts. Ashton decided to set The Southern Magicks in a world heavily inspired by the backdrop of the Australia bush/beach and the speculative fiction Ashton has consumed over a lifetime.

Social Media

Website: https://www.geekaflame.com/

Author Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100086363208232

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Geek_Aflame

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/geek_aflame/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/21982765.Ashton_K_Rose

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/author/ashtonkrose

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Giveaway

Ashton is giving away a $20 Amazon gift card with this tour 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Release Blitz: Dead Serious Case #2: Mrs Delores Abernathy by Vawn Cassidy

Dead Serious Case #2: Mrs Delores Abernathy | Vawn Cassidy

Crawshank’s Guide to the Recently Departed #2

DS RB Banner

Release Date: October 31st, 2022

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Dead Serious 2 Cover

Blurb

In the business of unfinished business…

It’s been over six months since a freak accident left pathologist Tristan Everett able to see ghosts, something he has yet to confess to his boyfriend. Instead, he now has a new calling, one he’s not entirely happy about… help the dead resolve their unfinished business so they can pass into the light, sounds simple right?

Wrong…

When the spirit of a sweet old lady follows him home he has no idea how to help her. When he finds out she’s been murdered by arsenic poisoning, a curiously outdated murder weapon, he once again finds himself tangled up in a murder investigation.

For Inspector Danny Hayes of New Scotland Yard, life couldn’t be better. After moving to London and meeting Tristan he’s ready to move their relationship to the next level, but something weird is going on with Tristan, he’s acting very strangely and with a killer on the loose he’s not taking any chances. He’s determined to discover whatever it is Tristan’s hiding from him.

Surrounded by a bunch of potentially murderous old ladies and aided by his sidekick, deceased drag queen and spirit guide in training, Dusty, Tristan must unravel the mystery of Mrs Delores Abernathy’s unfinished business and find the courage to share his deepest secret with the man he loves.

From author Wendy Saunders writing as Vawn Cassidy, comes the second book in this funny and touching paranormal MM romance/dark comedy suspense series.

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Excerpt

Shoving the shower curtain aside roughly, I let loose a rather unmanly scream as my eyes land on a strange person standing in front of the closed door of the bathroom. I grab the shower curtain as my feet slip out from under me on the wet ceramic bathtub. I roll into the shower curtain, clutching on tightly as I lose my balance and go down, sending the plastic clips pinging off in all directions like tiny missiles knocking bottles off shelves and cracking the corner of the bathroom mirror. Pain clangs through my elbow and vibrates up my arm as, cocooned in clear plastic, I slide into the bath, breathing heavily and looking like I’ve been gift wrapped by a serial killer.

“Owwww,” I croak slowly to no one in particular.

Reaching one arm over the edge of the bath, my body follows and I flop ungraciously onto the rug like a newborn baby seal. Squinting without my glasses on I can just about make out the still figure standing in front of the bathroom door clutching a handbag.

Mrs Abernathy, I realise with a groan of resignation. What is it with ghosts? First Dusty and now the old lady. What part of the bathroom is off limits do they not understand? Is nothing sacred anymore?

I’m about to open my mouth when the bathroom door swings open and Danny strides in, passing straight through Mrs Abernathy and making her disappear into a thin vaporous mist.

“I heard a crash.” Danny’s eyes land on me sprawled out on the floor. “You okay?” His brow quirks as he takes in the assortment of displaced bottles and small plastic shower curtain clips everywhere.

“Slight shower malfunction.” I release a winded breath. “A little help, please.”

He strides toward me and effortlessly scoops me off the floor. His hands are gentle, his eyes filled with concern.

“Did you hurt yourself?” He frowns. “Maybe we should get you looked at, you might have a concussion.”

“I’m fine,” I manage.

“We could call 111.” He turns me slowly, peeling me out of the shower curtain like he’s un-bandaging The Mummy in a Lon Chaney movie.

“I wouldn’t even call 111 for advice on how to remove a splinter.” I wrinkle my nose. “Honestly, I’m fine.”

He wraps the towel around me, pinning my arms to my sides as he drops a kiss on my nose. “Be more careful, I have plans for this gorgeous body later.” He smiles, kissing my lips softly.

IG Sized DS2 Teaser 2

Start The Series

Dead Serious Case #1: Miz Dusty Le Frey

Dead Serious 1 Cover

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Blurb

Tristan Everett had always preferred the company of the dead because they were quiet and didn’t talk back. As a slightly awkward introvert working as a pathologist at the Hackney Public Mortuary suited him just fine. That is, until a freak accident with a rogue ice cube and suddenly he can see ghosts. No longer content to just lie on the table and let him figure out how they died, they’re now peering over his shoulder critiquing his work and confessing their most lascivious sins before skipping off merrily into the afterlife.

Just when he thought his life couldn’t get any weirder, London’s most infamous drag queen, Miz Dusty Le Frey, is wheeled in with a toe tag and she’s not prepared to go quietly into the light. Not only is she furious at the prospect of spending eternity in last season’s gold lamé, she’s determined that he help her solve her murder.

Suddenly Tristan finds himself thrown into a world of sequins and fake eyelashes, and worse still, he may have developed a crush on Scotland Yard’s brand new drool-worthy detective, Inspector Danny Hayes, who’s been assigned to Dusty’s murder. Oh, and the killer now wants him dead too…

All he ever wanted was a simple life but suddenly he’s juggling work, a deliciously sexy detective, a stubborn ghost and a relentless murderer… and things have just gotten dead serious….

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About the Author

vawn-cassidy-eclipse-vc-logo

Vawn Cassidy is the MM pen name of British author Wendy Saunders, she lives in the UK with her husband and children. She loves all things MM and is an avid reader herself.

As Vawn Cassidy she writes Paranormal/Dark Comedy/Mystery and Contemporary Romance and more recently is branching out into Historical & Supernatural MM/LGBTQ+ Fiction with her upcoming London Gothic series.

She also has an insane love of Lego and pop culture.

Social Media

Website: www.vawncassidy.com

Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/VawnCassidyAuthor

Facebook Group: www.facebook.com/group/cassidysbayboys

Instagram: www.instagram.com/vawncassidyauthor

Twitter: www.twitter.com/VawnCassidy

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/vawncassidy

Bookbub: www.bookbub.com/profile/vawn-cassidy

Amazon: www.amazon.com/~/e/B098XMW7M1

Giveaway

To celebrate the release of Dead Serious 2, Vawn is giving away a signed paperback of Crawshanks Guide to the Recently Deceased Book #2

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