Black Heart Boys Choir – Blog tour

Black Heart Boys’ Choir
by Curtis M. Lawson
Genre: Horror
Great art demands sacrifice.
Lucien Beaumont is a teenage misfit and musical prodigy ostracized by his peers and haunted by familial tragedy. When he discovers an unfinished song composed by his dead father—a song that holds terrible power—Lucien becomes obsessed. As he chases after the secret nature of his father’s music, the line between gruesome fantasy and real life violence begins to blur.
To complete his father’s work Lucien believes that he and his group of outcast friends must appease a demonic force trapped within the music with increasingly sadistic offerings. As things spiral out of control he finds that the cost of his art will be the lives of everyone around him, and perhaps his very soul.
Curtis M. Lawson is a writer of unapologetically weird, dark fiction and poetry. His work includes Black Heart Boys’ Choir, It’s a Bad, Bad, Bad, Bad World, and The Devoured.
Curtis is a member of the Horror Writer’s Association, and the organizer of the Wyrd live horror reading series. He lives in Salem, MA with his wife and their son. When he is not writing, Curtis enjoys tabletop RPGs, underground music, playing guitar, and the ocean
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Follow the tour HERE for special content and a giveaway!

 

Hell Week 2018 – Lady Gemini/Andrew Weston

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Who are/were you?

I am the Lady Gemini, Daemon Grim’s newest Hell Hound. In life, people knew me as Marie-Anne Charlotte de Corday d’Armont, (l’ ange de l’assassinat) – or simply, Charlotte Corday – the assassins angel. Born 1768, in France to a minor aristocratic family, I was executed by guillotine while still only twenty-four years old for the murder of Jacobin leader, Jean-Paul Marat.

Who is your ‘lover’ in Hell?

Though it’s unrequited, I’ve fallen for my boss, Daemon Grim. A bit of a sticky dilemma as he’s only recently lost his soul mate, Strawberry Fields, who he destroyed utterly in self defense.

Love in hell, isn’t that a contradiction? How does this work?

In a nutshell? It doesn’t! Not for the damned masses, anyway. But now I’ve risen to the ranks of the elite, I’ve been told I may express my desires in any way I see fit . . . so long as it’s away from the public eye and knowledge of such freedom isn’t bandied about for all and sundry to hear.

Many of the denizens of His Satanic Majesty’s realm have a curse – what is yours?

Though I have a nubile form, exquisite grace and speed, and am extremely athletic, I’ll never be beautiful again. Before my elevation, I complained once too often and am condemned for all eternity to wear a face of two distinct halves . . . as you can see in my picture.

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It makes smiling quite a chore, I can tell you. (And helps explain the ingenious name I’ve been labeled with)

Who are your friends/allies here?

I have very few, but they all count. After my fall from grace, I became an assassin of some repute throughout all the levels of infernity. That put me much in demand, at the cost of acquaintances. Regardless, since my inauguration into the Ancient Disorder of Hell Hounds, I’ve gained the closest thing you can get to family, and am determined to protect that treasure with all my strength.

Describe your home/environment in Hell.

I live in a suite situated on one of the top floors of Black Tower, in what you mortals would call the Tower of London. Here in the underverse, we called that ancient edifice the Den of Iniquity—or the Den for short. As with your topside version, it’s located at the center of the sprawling slum that was Olde London Town. By hell’s standards, it’s abject luxury. But we’re expected to get results. If not, well . . . what happened to the previous Lead Hound – Nimrod, and the former Chief Inquisitor – Strawberry, serves as a stark reminder how easy it is for the most privileged of the damned to fall again.

Hell covers all eras and technologies, there are many hells within Hell. How have you adjusted to this strange world?

I’ve been very lucky. As an assassin, I was allowed access to all sorts of weaponry and technology, and I didn’t really have to pay a diablo. Those who commissioned my services often footed the bill for the gadgets I needed. Gadgets I got to keep as part of the successful conclusion of a contract. Needless to say, that involved travelling to some of the remotest, most backward parts of the underworld. I got used to it pretty quickly. And when I became a Hell Hound? Wow! You ought to see the crazy stuff we have hidden away in the dungeons here at the Den.

What is/are your greatest fears here?

To fail. I’ve witnessed firsthand what happens to the privileged elite who do.

 

Author Spotlight

Name and bio.

Andrew P. Weston

Andrew P. Weston is a Royal Marine and Police veteran from the UK who now lives on the beautiful Greek island of Kos with his wife, Annette, and their growing family of rescue cats.
As creator of the critically acclaimed IX Series, and Hell Bound & Hell Hounds, (novels forming part of Janet Morris’ Heroes in Hell universe), Andrew also has the privilege of being a member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, the British Fantasy Society, and the International Association of Media Tie-in Writers.
When not working, Andrew devotes some of his spare time to assisting NASA with one of their remote research projects and supporting charities. He also writes educational articles for Astronaut.com and Amazing Stories.

Tell us about your story for this edition.

In The Devil’s Trull, Daemon Grim and the Lady Gemini travel to the Kigali homeland, Ki-gal, in search of information pertaining to the machinations of two of the biggest thorns in the flesh ever to cross the Reaper’s path: the infamous scientist, Nikola Tesla; and the renowned composer, Frédéric Chopin, who it is feared have trespassed upon Kigali territory in order to further their revolutionary aspirations.

Along the way, they discover just how ingenious the diabolical duo have been in fomenting rebellion, and how too the Sibitti have been at play, sowing seeds of doubt and mayhem in preparation for their final play against latterday hell’s most potent champion.

What inspired you to use the character(s) you’ve chosen?

It was twofold really. My contribution to the shared universe involves leapfrogging my individual novels regarding Daemon Grim’s adventures with the anthologies. This story is a natural progression of a bigger picture. However, it gives me an opportunity to peel open a particular juicy segment of Daemon Grim’s personal life. As fans of Satan’s Reaper will know, he recently lost two of the closest souls to him: Nimrod – his best friend; and Strawberry – his long-time lover.

Their relationship had been rather complicated in the events leading up to The Devil’s Trull. Because of Grim’s inability to bring all the fugitives from injustice to heel, Satan had punished Grim. Firstly by denying him a corporeal form, and secondly, by stripping him of the privilege of intimate contact with the only one he has ever loved. Grim couldn’t even touch Strawberry without her suffering the fate of the masses – who succumb instantly to the Reaper’s “death touch.”

At the end of Hell Hounds (the novel preceding this particular anthology), Grim was forced to execute both Nimrod and Strawberry, actually obliterating them from existence. So he’s hurting. Not only does he have to contend with deep personal anguish and hurt feelings, but he’s battling to hold his head above water against an ever-increasing tide.

Gemini is the only suitable candidate he could find to offset the shortfall in his ranks. And sure enough, because of her own demons, Gemini has also been denied the comfort of companionship too. Just look at her face! In such a close-knit, high-pressure environment – one in which Daemon Grim has been returned to his devilishly handsome pseudo-human form – romance was bound to blossom.

And of course, the phantoms of past relationships and failures loom large . . . compounded by the fact that Tesla and Chopin seemed determined to stick the knife in. And of course, there are the Sibitti. . .

How did you become involved with this project?

Like everyone else, I was invited to write by Janet Morris a few years back. And I haven’t stopped enjoying myself since.

What are you currently working on?

I’m just rounding off the third and final book in the Author’s Cut version of a new supernatural action-thriller series – The Cambion Journals (The Rage of Augustus; The Kiss of the Succubus; and – just completed, The Embrace of the Incubus). I can’t wait to find out what people think of the series, as Augustus Thorne is bound to be popular with the ladies.

Name the last two books you’ve read – tell us about them.

I’ve not long finished Cruiser Dreams by Janet Morris, and Convergence, by Matthew S. Cox, in collaboration with J.R. Rain.
The blurbs for the books are as follows:

Cruiser Dreams. . .

She is heir to an empire beyond all imagining, where interstellar cruisers have become increasingly sentient and man’s role among the stars is transformed.

In this epic of political treachery, interstellar security, human passion, and artificial intelligence, Morris continues the saga of the fiery girl Shebat, stolen away from a decaying and primitive Earth to be the adoptive heir to the Kerrion Empire. Moulded to serve the designs of the Kerrion state, Shebat instead becomes the harbinger of change sweeping the civilized stars.

Against the chaotic background of simultaneous social and technological revolutions, Shebat finds that the man she loves is her implacable enemy, that the man she reluctantly married is perhaps her single ally, and that her space-faring cruiser may be her only true friend.

***I really enjoyed this story, as it explores the minefield of human relationships and especially – if it can be imagined – the relationship between man and machine . . . ‘machine’ with an ever-evolving artificial sentience. If you want to find out more, see my blog for a more in-depth review. It’s a truly thought-provoking read. ***

Convergence. . .

Intrepid reporter Solstice Winters has spent most of her life halfway between normal society and that of her magical parents. However, when getting caught between two worlds becomes more than metaphorical, being able to summon light or open locks might not be enough.

Neither her love life nor her professional life are going anywhere in a hurry. Her boyfriend is successful and handsome, but she constantly has to compete with his job for affection. At thirty-two, she works as a photojournalist for The Spiritualist, a small paper dedicated to magic and the supernatural―that most people regard as a tabloid. Desperate for that ‘one break,’ she’ll do almost anything to get that big story and get into a ‘real’ media outlet.

Years of always not quite fitting in begin to make sense after an error at a particle physics laboratory alters the dimensional alignment of the world, strengthening magic and revealing an unexpected truth to Solstice: She’s not even human.

*** This was an entertaining little journey into relationships of another kind. Magical beings are suddenly appearing all over the Earth, and Solstice doesn’t even realize she’s one of them until it’s too late! Of course, she ends up in the middle of a monumental mess that makes her wish that ‘big story’ she’s been after all her life would just go away. Fun. Down-to-earth. And thoroughly entertaining. ***

If you could pick any quote about Hell which would be your favourite?

I like Daemon Grim’s quote: “Your life has been a stage, and hell is the curtain call.”

 

Dirty Dozen Character Interviews – Dani Erikson – Bundle/Fantasy/Paranormal/Monsters

Welcome to DANI ERICKSON

  • Tell us a little about yourself.

I’m the seventh child of a seventh child, which makes me a hereditary demon hunter. I’m actually the answer to my grandpa’s dream, but he doesn’t know it. See, he set out to create a legendary seventh son of a seventh son – probably drove my grandmother to an early grave in the attempt. As far as he’s concerned, he failed. He got his seven sons, and six daughters as well, but his seventh son, my Uncle Gus, failed him. You see, Uncle Gus and Aunt Ellen weren’t able to have kids.

Grandpa had ignored Mom and Dad until it became clear that Aunt Ellen wasn’t going to give him any grandsons. After all, Dad was only son #5. But then Grandpa realized that Mom and Dad had six little boys, and there was another baby on the way! Mom wasn’t thrilled when Gramps turned his obsessive attention on her, but there wasn’t much she could do about it. Then the worst happened – at least from Grandpa’s point of view. I was born. A girl. Can anyone say, “Major disappointment”?

But the laugh’s on Grandpa, because gender doesn’t matter to a demon hunter. It’s all about the numbers. See, Dad was only the fifth son, but he was the seventh child. Making me the seventh child of a seventh child. I came into my powers on fourteenth birthday, but I’m not admitting any of this to my family. At least, not yet.

And Grandpa? Maybe I’ll tell him his plan succeeded … someday … if I’m feeling generous.

  • What is your world like? How does it differ to mine?

I live in Longmont, Colorado, in the here and now. My world is exactly like yours, except I can see the demons who walk right beside us, and you can’t. That’s not necessarily a good thing. Trust me. You’re lucky you can’t see them!

  • Is your world populated by different races? How do they get along?

How do demons and humans get along? Depends on who you ask. Normal people don’t believe demons exist. Demons are perfectly happy with that since they feed off of us. Since normals don’t believe in them, they’re easy prey.

Me? I don’t get along with demons at all. I hunt them, with the help of my guardian and trainer. Wick can see them too, and he can fight them, he just can’t kill them. Killing demons is reserved for the hereditary demon hunters of the world. And in this age of birth control and smaller families, there just aren’t enough of us to protect humanity.

  • Tell us about your family?

Well, I already told you about Grandpa and his obsessive desire for a seventh-seventh, so let’s concentrate on my immediate family.

I’m the youngest, and only girl, of seven kids. My brothers are Mike, Pat, Evan, Seth, Brent, and Jamie. Mike is in medical school at the Unversity of Colorado, Boulder. Pat just graduated with a degree in engineering. Evan is a senior at CU, studying urban planning, while Seth is a junior, but he hasn’t declared a major yet. Can’t make up his mind. Brent and Jamie are still in high school, a senior and a junior, while I’m just starting my freshman year.

Dad’s an architect with a firm in Boulder, and Mom is a stay-at-home mom. Trust me, with six sons and one daughter, she has a full-time job!

  • What is your greatest skill/asset

I have mad skills with knives and swords, and all forms of fighting (from street fighting to martial arts) come as naturally to me as walking. Wick has to teach me the basics, but I catch on faster than Jamie can inhale French fries!

  • What is your greatest weakness (we won’t tell).

I am a complete failure at lady-like behaviour. Seriously. Fancy dresses, make-up and batting eyelashes? Gag!

  • How would you describe yourself?

I’m okay looking, if you like athletic girls. I have long, dark blonde hair with a hint of red, and I typically wear it in a ponytail or a ponytail braid. I’m 5’10” with light brown eyes and I’m a lean, mean, fighting machine!

  • How do you think others see you?

Well, my family, especially my brothers, see a helpless little girl. They all want me to act like a girl. After all, we have enough boys in the family.

  • What is your greatest fear?

My greatest fear isn’t that a demon will kill or maim me, it’s that my family will figure out that I have more in common with an Amazon queen than with a fairy-tale princess – that I’m more of a Rottweiler than the pampered Pomeranian they like to think I am.

  • If you could have three wishes what would they be?
  • My family would recognize me and accept me for who – and what – I am!
  • To rid my high school and my town of all the demons infecting them. I’ll worry about the rest of the country when I’m older.
  • I wish I could find a couple more demon hunters to help me. Sometimes the job feels pretty overwhelming

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  • Do you believe in magic?

Well, duh! I fight demons, remember?

  • Tell us about your greatest achievement

I’m a kick-ass demon hunter, and my parents even named me appropriately. I’m Dani Heleen Erickson, which makes my initials D.H.E. – Demon Hunter Extraordinaire!

Demon Daze (Dani Erickson Book 1) by [Logan, Deb]

For the author

Books in which this character appears:

Demon Daze

School Daze 

Family Daze

Challenging Daze

Demon Daze appears in Here Be Monsters

Short author bio:

Deb Logan writes children’s, tween, and young adult fantasy. Her stories are light-hearted tales for the younger set — or ageless folk who remain young at heart. She’s published numerous titles, including short stories, collections, and novels. Her work has been published in multiple volumes of Fiction River: An Original Anthology Magazine, as well as in The Young Explorer’s Adventure Guide series. Author of the popular “Dani Erickson” series, Deb loves dragons and faeries and all things unexplained.

 

Links:

Newsletter: https://landing.mailerlite.com/webforms/landing/l9m2v4

Website: http://debloganwrites.com

Facebook: @DebLoganWrites

 

 

 

 

Good Cop/Bad Cop Interview – Daemon Grim & The Angel Grislington #Fantasy #Paranormal

#Meetacharacter #fantasy #Heroesinhell

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Name of characters: Daemon Grim & The Angel Grislington

(Short intro about each of the characters.)

Daemon Grim: Satan’s Reaper of souls and Pack Leader of the Hell Hounds (His Infernal Majesty’s Ancient Disorder of bounty hunters) and the Inquisitors (Royal interrogators).

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The Angel Grislington.
Captive cherub of the Most High, taken prisoner during the final battle at the Time of Sundering. (Current unlawfully at large within the realms of latterday hell).

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Q1 Daemon, why are you on this adventure? 

I’ve got to track down the angelic retard sat opposite me. He seems to think he can abscond from unlawful custody with impunity and spread his holier than thou platitudes without repercussions. Think again sucker!

Q2 Grislington, who is your nemesis? Why is this?

That misguided fool on the opposite side of the table. If he’d just let me be, I’d while away my time among the masses without drawing attention to myself. This is hell, after all, and there must be plenty of things to keep an inquisitive chap occupied while he decides what to do in the long-term?

Q3 Daemon, at your final showdown what are your plans (promise we won’t tell)?

I don’t care if you do tell? In fact, I want you to shout it from the rooftops, because when I do catch up with this…this shiney whitey, sitting on a cloud all day yanking his own chain tosspot, I’ll rub his face so far into the dirt, he’ll be spitting out dog turds for what’s left of his incredibly short lifespan.

Q4 As an angel of God, it’ll be interesting to see how you’d define a hero?

 My dear, that’s an easy one to answer. A hero is anyone who has to listen to Grim’s infernal rhetoric for more than a few minutes at a time. Honestly, could you think of anything worse? “I’m gonna cut you up – kill you – give you one hell of a Chinese burn for daring to do the slightest thing that doesn’t fit with Lucifer’s petty prince of darkness politicking.” Blah, blah, blah…For goodness sake, change the record. Can’t you think of anything original to say?

Q5 Daemon, you work for the Prince of Darkness. So how would you define a villain?

 Anyone who dares question the tenets by which I lead my unlife. As the pack leader of the Hell Hounds, we are bound by ancient decree to always be guided by the Laws of Lucifer, and to protect and defend his most despicable doctrines. We will pursue all enemies of the state – without mercy – throughout the length and breadth of the Sheolspace continuum until they are brought to heel and subjected to injustice’s purifying scales.

Q6 Grislington, why do you think Daemon is on the path he or she is?

 Because the poor boy hasn’t really got a choice. He has serious daddy issues that require the pandering of a constant urge to seek Lucifer’s approval on absolutely everything; from what he thinks to how he acts; who he sees and where he lives; he can’t even take a dump without fretting it might not fit into his regimented, regulated little world. Hand on heart, his path is leading him right down the toilet, but he’s too blinded by a false sense of loyalty to see.

Q7 Daemon, what are your feelings about God’s holy angel?

I don’t have feelings. I don’t experience love or hatred; joy or remorse; hope or despair. I’m merely possessed by the overwhelming, overriding urge to detach his head from his scrawny body and present it on a platter for my Dark Father to use as a toasting cup…a very small toasting cup. Perhaps something for pre-dinner aperitifs?

Q8 Grislington, where will you be 10 years from now?

I haven’t really decided yet. I might stay and savor the dark delights the damned have to offer or I might reach out and try for home again. It all depends if I can collect my wits – and my wings – from wherever it is they’ve been scattered.

Q9 Daemon, why should readers believe YOU are right?

Because as everyone in the underworld knows, I never lie. And I promise you, I’m gonna castrate this dick from the neck down the first chance I get.

Q10 This final question is to you both. Do you have anything you’d like to say to each other that you may not get the chance to say when you meet?

 Daemon Grim: Not really, I’ll let my scythe do the talking.

The Angel Grislington: Good luck with that…Remember, I’m not just any old angel. I’m a cherub of the holy court, and unhinged or not, I just might surprise you.

 

Book Spotlight – Shadow Wings – Paranormal Romance Prerelease

Kindle Pre-Order:  http://a.co/91NYVWB

Myra Dean thought she escaped the tragedy that pushed her to the new town. However, when her boss’ son rides in on his Harley, she finds herself wondering who he truly was. Was he the man of her dreams or was it his motorcycle brother, the golden eyed detective who melts her heart?
Cross and Blaze come from two different backgrounds but their duty is to protect Myra. She was born with the blood of two different species running through her veins making her a target for the demon, Malach. With the taste of her blood, he can do what no other demon could do, return to heaven.
Will Cross and Blaze figure out how to control their jealousy over Myra so they can protect her or will she have to save them instead?

 

Out June 20th 2017

Swift Six Character Interview – Estella Delcour – Dark Fantasy

Swift Six Character Interview

Character Name: Estella Delcour

Which book/world do you live in? The Shadow Crucible, set in medieval London.

Tell us about yourself

I am the person you least suspect, they deem me holy yet I am not.  I inspire love and hatred in equal measure.  My manor is empty of guests, it is a court for demonic fiends you will never see.  I hold audiences with demons more than the living.  I delight in walking among the Templars, the Clergy, and the Royal Courts hearing their barren truths; for those who speak do not know, whilst those who know do not speak.  How they would love to burn me at the stake.  A dark trail follows me and it will follow you, if you betray my name or the words I now share with you.   I am a seer, not the mediocre kind, I see beyond the heavens into the macabre game between Samael and the Throne.  I have been hither to an unsuspected spectator, until the blind one finds out I have been watching all along.  I am hunted, to be a precious cog in his dark machinations

 

What are your greatest strengths and weaknesses? My greatest strength is my magic, I am strong enough to hold back from giving into the demons that plagued me all my life, and stubborn enough to stand up to Lucifer. I am my own person and I do not let society dictate to me. I am very resourceful and know how to play the social games that allow me to hide in plain sight. I am ready to sacrifice everything not to give in to an evil master, I am determined to break free of the chessboard of the Gods.

My greatest weakness is my confusion of the meaning of my life; the fact that I feel that I am a pawn in other people’s game renders me bitter and unpredictable, prone to rash decisions. Anything that threatens my sense of identity makes me flee.

Name three important people/creatures/institutions in your world (such as lovers, pets, government institutions, leaders, gods etc).

The Crone is dear to me, she is the facet of the Goddess that I cherish the most, comforting and austere, she is the strength I seek to emulate.

The Horned God: who gave me a higher purpose and my freedom.

Mikhail, I knew he was a product of his upbringing but he has the same spirit as me, the same need to defy the establishment on earth and heaven.

What does ‘heroism’ mean to you?

Making the tough decisions that no one else wants to make, often forcing their hand for the greater good. It’s the ability to foresee the outcomes and make sacrifices for the sake of humanity. But it is also overrated; people are dying for meaning and would often throw their lives away for recognition. Heroism is a form of leadership, where you take the initiative and forge the destiny of others. But for me it also means taking the blame and the risks that nobody wants to undertake.

What do you think of your ‘creator’?

I think she sees the world around her as a dark place and if she could, she would disappear into the worlds she creates. She is disenchanted with humanity and seeks the sublime truths and answers to ancient enigmas. The lack of magic in her world saddens her and she wishes she could pull back the veil and see what lies beyond, for she believes the ancient myths and stories hold a grain of truth and there is more to the universe than everyone sees.

Give us your favourite piece of advice: Everyone is seeking recognition and a sense of purpose, you take that away from them, you undo them and make of them an enemy, the meaningless of life terrifies people. So, if you want to make friends with them, attune your purpose to theirs and suddenly they are your best friend.

 Links to book

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Shadow-Crucible-Blind-God/dp/1590794141

Waterstones: https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-shadow-crucible/t-m-lakomy/9781590794142

Barnes&Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-shadow-crucible-t-m-lakomy/1124245404?ean=9781590794142

Swift Six Author Interview- TM Lakomy- Fantasy

 

Name: T. M. Lakomy (Tamara Lakomy)

What attracts you to the genre in which you write? I was always attracted to the darker aspects of fantasy, the fabric of our dreams and nightmares, where our wildest imaginations often have free rein. I find that this genre allows the story to be raw and cutting to the bone, with a realistic touch, lending fantasy a feel of authenticity. It makes it easier to believe as it reflects the darker aspects of human nature and existence.

What piece of writing advice do you wish you’d known when you started your writing adventures? That the amount of rejection has nothing to do with the quality of your work but rather a reflection on whether someone thinks they can sell and market it, it is nothing personal but rather a business transaction. So basically, keep pushing and don’t be discouraged, write for yourself, pour your heart into it and someone will see the merit eventually. It takes time but perseverance pays off.

If you could have dinner with any famous person or character who would you chose? Tolkien, I would love to hear him describe his own works, and hear his opinion on current events and literature. I am sure he had such a wealth of wisdom exceeding what he bequeathed to his books and I would have loved to have seen his writing through his own eyes.

Who has been the greatest influence on your own work? William Blake. His poetry touched me very deeply, especially the religious/spiritual streak in it. I am deeply spiritual and most of my writings have some sort of message, questioning and seeking answers to divine enigmas. Poetry has always been my weakest spot, the outpouring of the soul in its most poignant form.

 Do you think the e-book revolution will do away with print? No, I think people will always treasure a beautiful library and collect their favourite and previous books, but as we have hectic lives and schedules, it is easier to transport all your books in one small device and read them at leisure. It is a question of convenience. We like that which simplifies our lives.

Which 3 books would you take to a desert island and why?

  • The Silmarillion: that book deeply influenced me, it helped me through some dark times in my teenage years. It was pure escapism into a wondrous world that allowed me to develop and discover my own literary talents.
  • Any book by Mircea Eliade: I was fascinated with shamanism while studying archaeology. I was mostly enamoured with the occult and the spiritual and Eliade’s books are an amazing source of knowledge.
  • “A collection of works” by Guy de Maupassant; I grew up in a francophone environment, exposed to French literature, and his writings deeply marked me, the morality behind his stories are quite striking and often bitter. I learned a lot and became enriched by his style.

 

Author bio and book synopsis

Please introduce yourself (250 words or so): I am T. M Lakomy (Tamara Lakomy).  I was born in London, but grew up as a tribal girl in a North African repressive regime. I spent my childhood between the slums of Mellasine and the affluent neighbourhoods in Tunis.

I studied archaeology and became enamoured with the shamanistic practices of indigenous people.

I am an author and poet who seeks to challenge our notions of reality, and see life with a different perspective.

I work in East Africa with indigenous tribes studying the origins of mankind and the salient golden thread in the tapestry of humanity’s beliefs.

Tell us about your book(s) – title, genre etc (short) My novel is called “The Shadow Crucible: The Blind God”, it’s Dark Fantasy.

Synopsis: in a world where angels, demons, and gods fight over the possession of mortal souls, two conflicted pawns are ensnared in a cruel game. The enigmatic seer Estella finds herself thrown together with Count Mikhail, a dogmatic Templar dedicated to subjugating her kind. But when a corrupted cardinal and puppet king begin a systematic genocide of her people, the two become unlikely allies.

Taking humanity back to their primordial beliefs and fears, Estella confronts Mikhail’s faith by revealing the true horror of the lucrative trade in human souls. All organized religions are shops orchestrated to consume mankind. Every deity, religion, and spiritual guide has been corrupted, and each claims to have the monopoly on truth and salvation.

In a perilous game where the truth is distorted and meddling ancient deities converge to partake of the unseen battle, Estella unwittingly finds herself hunted by Lucifer. Traversing the edge of hell’s precipice, Estella and Mikhail are reduced to mere instruments. Their only means to overcome is through courting the Threefold Death, the ancient ritual of apotheosis—of man becoming God.

 

Links

Social media  Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/RedFernManor/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/Shadow_Crucible?lang=en

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Book Spotlight – The Shadow Crucible – Dark Fantasy

Title: The Shadow Crucible: the Blind God

Author: T.M Lakomy (Tamara Lakomy)

Genre: Dark Fantasy

Main character description. Estella Delcour (Tsura) A seer and the Lady of Redfern Manor. She is the most far-seeing of all the Twilit folk, who sees the divine game played between Samael (the blind god) and the Goddess.

Synopsis:

In a world where angels, demons, and gods fight over the possession of mortal souls, two conflicted pawns are ensnared in a cruel game. The enigmatic seer Estella finds herself thrown together with Count Mikhail, a dogmatic Templar dedicated to subjugating her kind. But when a corrupted cardinal and puppet king begin a systematic genocide of her people, the two become unlikely allies.

Taking humanity back to their primordial beliefs and fears, Estella confronts Mikhail’s faith by revealing the true horror of the lucrative trade in human souls. All organized religions are shops orchestrated to consume mankind. Every deity, religion, and spiritual guide has been corrupted, and each claims to have the monopoly on truth and salvation.

In a perilous game where the truth is distorted and meddling ancient deities converge to partake of the unseen battle, Estella unwittingly finds herself hunted by Lucifer. Traversing the edge of hell’s precipice, Estella and Mikhail are reduced to mere instruments. Their only means to overcome is through courting the Threefold Death, the ancient ritual of apotheosis—of man becoming God.

Brief Excerpt 250 words:

“I want to liberate you from your thraldom,” he said. “I have watched over you all, my tender flock. I am Lucifer, the morning star, the first to greet you with my love into this life, and the last to claim you on my dark stallion of death. I have come to free you.” His persuasive voice was soothing and nurturing, like a gentle river rippling mildly over soft bedrock. The cardinal found himself in a daze of awe, and within him woke his longing for power and lust for dominion. “Come to me, let me free you, and we shall destroy the Twilit world that has robbed you of the gifts that you so deserved.” The fatherly voice of the angel was indignant yet gentle, and he beamed at the cardinal who nodded back eagerly. “Let me into your heart, then. Lead me into your house, in this false edifice erected in the name of God, and let us together find the lost sheep in the house of God. I am his true son, after all, prince of the world.” He glided towards the cardinal, his numerous nacre wings extending into the chamber. They shed their own pearly light, and it seemed he floated like a silver vision. The angel knelt beside the cardinal, gazing into his watery eyes. “Let me into his house.” The voice was slightly more pressing now. The cardinal, dazed, nodded in agreement. With a satisfied smile, the angel touched the cardinal’s chest with a slender finger, right at his heart, and breathed over him. The cardinal groaned, falling instantly asleep

Why should readers buy this book (50 words max)?

The novel challenges the reader to examine the roots of their beliefs and explore the other aspects of the Abrahamic faiths that are seldom discussed. It questions the disparity between paganism and current religions, finding the salient thread that connects our subconscious thinking. It also interprets Gnosticism in a modern way specifically the topic of apotheosis.

 

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Links etc.

Amazon

Waterstones

Barnes and Noble

 

www.blueprints.org

Book Spotlight – In the Bonds of Earth – Paranormal Romance

Coming Soon – In Bonds of the Earth, the second Book of the Watchers by Janine Ashbless (@sinfulpress)

 Would you defy God, for love?

 In Bonds of the Earth is the new paranormal erotic romance by Janine Ashbless, and is the second in the Book of the Watchers trilogy.

Broad at the shoulders and lean at the hips, six foot-and-then-something of ropey muscle, he looks like a Spartan god who got lost in a thrift store. He moves like ink through water. And his eyes, when you get a good look at them, are silver. Not gray. Silver. You might take their inhuman shine for fancy contact lenses. Youd be wrong.

 Janine Ashbless is back with the second in her Book of the Watchers trilogy, In Bonds of the Earth.

Milja Patek’s bloodline were sworn to guard the fallen angel imprisoned beneath their family church, until Milja fell in love and set him free. Now she has to learn to navigate her new life as wife and plaything to Azazel.

Angel or demon, protector or tyrant, right or wrong, Everything Milja once knew has been flipped upside down and all she can do is follow her heart, even if that means waging war against Heaven and releasing the rest of the fallen.

Unafraid to tackle the more complex issues surrounding good and evil in mainstream religion, Janine has created a thought-provoking and immersive novel which sets a new standard for paranormal erotic romance. The first in the series, Cover Him With Darkness, was released in 2014 by Cleis Press and received outstanding reviews.

In Bonds of the Earth is published by Sinful Press and is due for release on March 1st, 2017.

Amazon (universal link): http://mybook.to/IBOTE

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32996475-in-bonds-of-the-earth

Paperback – support your small publishers and order direct. Paperback will be posted 3 weeks before release date: https://sinfulpress.co.uk/product/in-bonds-of-the-earth-by-janine-ashbless/

Blurb:

“I will free them all.”

When Milja Petak released the fallen angel Azazel from five thousand years of imprisonment, she did it out of love and pity. She found herself in a passionate sexual relationship beyond her imagining and control – the beloved plaything of a dark and furious demon who takes what he wants, when he wants, and submits to no restraint. But what she hasn’t bargained on is being drawn into his plan to free all his incarcerated brothers and wage a war against the Powers of Heaven.

As Azazel drags Milja across the globe in search of his fellow rebel angels, Milja fights to hold her own in a situation where every decision has dire consequences. Pursued by the loyal Archangels, she is forced to make alliances with those she cannot trust: the mysterious Roshana Veisi, who has designs of her own upon Azazel; and Egan Kansky, special forces agent of the Vatican – the man who once saved then betrayed her, who loves her, and who will do anything he can to imprison Azazel for all eternity.

Torn every way by love, by conflicting loyalties and by her own passions, Milja finds that she too is changing – and that she must do things she could not previously have dreamt of in order to save those who matter to her.

In Bonds of the Earth is the second in the Book of the Watchers trilogy and the sequel to Cover Him With Darkness.

Excerpt from In Bonds of the Earth:

I was giving my long-dreaded presentation on the anniversary footbridge to Misters Ellis, Singh, Constanzo and Mackenzie…when Azazel walked in.

Oh hell.

“Excuse me, gentlemen,” I said loudly, lurching around from behind my desk, grabbing Azazel’s arm and spinning him back to face the door. “Not here, come on, please,” I implored through clenched teeth.

If there was one thing I’d learned by then, it was to not ignore warning dreams. If I’d paid them more attention from the start, things between me and Egan might have gone very differently back in Montenegro…

No, better not to think of Egan, not when Azazel was around. One guy at a time was quite enough to wrap my head around. Especially this guy.

He humored me though, this time, letting me pull him out of the meeting room and through the open plan office without resistance. We attracted a lot of stares, but there was nothing I could do about that except hold my head high.

“Where are we going?” he asked.

“Out. Anywhere.”

“You’re so impetuous.”

I didn’t need to glance up at his wicked smirk. I could feel it burning its way into my breast.

Bryce, the beardy guy in my new team who’d shown me the ropes of the job and seemed just a tiny bit too eager to talk every morning, stood up from his cubicle to intercept us. “Milja, is everything okay?”

“It’s just fine,” I rasped, towing Azazel faster.

“She’s insatiable,” my demon lover confided with a helpless shrug to my colleague as we swept past.

Bryce stared, mouth open.

“Goddamnit,” I muttered, and Azazel chuckled.

Sometimes it was hard to remember that he’d risked everything to save me.

We reached the doors at the end of the room and I pushed through, past the lobby with the elevators and into the concrete stairwell of the emergency stairs beyond. The only people who came here were smokers on their way to the roof, and it looked empty for now. My panicky momentum fizzled away and I swung to face him.

“What are you doing here?”

“What do you think?” he countered, taking my face in his hands.

“Azazel—” But he cut off my protests with his hungry kiss; a kiss that lanced through me all the way to my core. I gave up resisting, and speaking, and almost breathing, as his lust rolled over me in a hot wet wave. I slid my hands around his neck and tangled my fingers in his messy hair, pulling myself into his embrace. His body was hard as rock, his hands heavy on my waist and hips. The yearning for his touch that smoldered in my flesh day and night woke to a roaring heat.

I’d missed him. His skin, his smile, the peppery scent and salt taste of him. The sweetness of his lips and the harsh rasp of his stubbled chin. I’d missed him so much. Like an addict missing her hit.

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Author bio:

Janine Ashbless is a writer of fantasy erotica and steamy romantic adventure. She likes to write about magic and myth and mystery, dangerous power dynamics, borderline terror, and the not-quite-human.

Buyer beware! If you like dark romance and a hard-won Happily Ever After, try “Cover Him with Darkness,” “Heart of Flame,” or “The King’s Viper.” If you prefer challenging erotica, go for “Red Grow the Roses” or “Named and Shamed” instead. All her other books lie somewhere on the spectrum between.

Janine has been seeing her books in print ever since 2000. She’s also had numerous short stories published by Black Lace, Nexus, Cleis Press, Ravenous Romance, Harlequin Spice, Storm Moon, Xcite, Mischief Books, and Ellora’s Cave among others. She is co-editor of the nerd erotica anthology ‘Geek Love’.

Born in Wales, Janine now lives in the North of England with her husband and two rescued greyhounds. She has worked as a cleaner, library assistant, computer programmer, local government tree officer, and – for five years of muddy feet and shouting – as a full-time costumed Viking. Janine loves goatee beards, ancient ruins, minotaurs, trees, mummies, having her cake and eating it, and holidaying in countries with really bad public sewerage.

Her work has been described as:

“Hardcore and literate” (Madeline Moore) and “Vivid and tempestuous and dangerous, and bursting with sacrifice, death and love.” (Portia Da Costa)

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Links:

Janine Ashbless website: http://www.janineashbless.com/

Janine Ashbless on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/janineashbless

Sinful Press website: https://www.sinfulpress.co.uk

Pre-order blitz organized by Writer Marketing Services.

Prophet of Chaos Tour – Spotlight and Character Interview

Chaos 3D
Tell Us About Yourself

Name
Amy Reese, Acolyte of, well, I suppose I should say both Lord Hate and Lady Lust, but I do a lot of work for all of Hell’s Pit Lords. We’ll just stick with Amy, I guess.

Please tell us a little about yourself.
It may sound like a cliché, but I grew up in a really religious family. My parents were hugely active in the church, I was in the youth group too. Then there was, well, something really terrible happening with our youth pastor. I won’t go into details, but the whole church imploded after that. It set me out looking for something different, something that spoke to me. That was when I heard the good news about our Dark Lord! Some would say I’m bad, that I’m evil. I’d challenge them to check their perspective. I’m evil according to who, the Bible? Everyone’s evil according to that. That’s how they get you and control you.

Describe your appearance in 10 words or less.
Some say I’m like an alt-model, but that’s pretty reductivist.

Do you have a moral code? If so what is it?
I’d say moral codes are the whole problem with humanity right now. It has us all as slaves to Heaven’s endless rulebook, and it’s so arbitrary! Well, I shouldn’t say arbitrary. It’s really about God and all of his prudish angels trying to control our bodies and our minds like good little sheep. I don’t buy into any of that. I look out for my fellow acolytes, but if I have an ethos I would say it’s all about liberating humanity from those oppressive bible-thumpers. That’s my cause. Morality doesn’t necessarily enter into it, because it’s really more about the objective. If you want to liberate people, sometimes that means getting your hands dirty, and that’s something I’ve shown I’m totally willing to do. It’s all for the greater good.

Would you kill for those you love?
I’ve done more than my share of wetwork for my church and for my fellow acolytes. It’s all part of serving the Dark Lord’s cause. People who stand in the way often deserve what’s coming to them. I’ve even had to do some of the other acolytes in. Reverend Matt has sent me after members of our church that have turned their back on us. Those have been the hardest. Not that I don’t understand that we have to get rid of traitors, they pose the biggest threat to us since they know too much, but because knowing they were so close to really living for themselves. They almost broke Heaven’s hold over their mind and body. It’s always a shame, but I suppose I’m doing them a service.

Would you die for those you love?
There was a man named Ethan, he was a Hell of a Necromancer. He almost brought Heaven to its knees. I didn’t know him for very long, but I wish I’d been there when he made his last stand fighting by his side. I would’ve died for him, but he turned me away. He said I could do more, inspire more if I stayed alive. He might’ve been right, but it would’ve been amazing to go out in a blaze of glory with him.

Do you have a family? Tell us about them.
I don’t really talk to them anymore. After my Betrayal Rite, the thing I had to do to join my church and become an acolyte, it caused a big public scandal. They disowned me. My fellow acolytes and Reverend Matt, my Sorcerer, they’re my family now. And I’m always out recruiting, bringing more people into the fold. Reverend Matt says I’m one of the best in his entire flock.

Tell Us About Your World

Please give us a little information about the world in which you live.
Well, I’m from the DC suburbs. I suppose that is like a whole separate world. So much politics, news, and media. I follow all of it, but it’s more like a disease. The whole system sickens me, because in the end it’s nothing but a big web of oppression designed to keep us all in line and marching to Heaven’s drum.

Do you travel in the course of your adventures? If so where?
Occasionally I go out of town to pick up relics, network with other acolytes, and even recruit some out-of-towners that can be helpful to our cause. Sometimes I go to less normal places, I’ve even seen parts of Hell in visions. Mostly I stay around the DC area. That’s where Reverend Matt and the Pit Lords need me.

Does your world have magic? If so how is it viewed in your world?
You know, most people don’t know about it, but magic’s kinda common. Well, not that common, but it’s certainly out there. Most people think it’s not real, but it’s all around them. Maybe not one in a hundred, or even one in a thousand, but at least one in every ten thousand either has some innate power or has figured out how to claim some for themselves. Those of us that serve Hell can get it even if we don’t have any innate talents by forming a Covenant with a Demon (“selling your soul” like most people say really dumbs down the significance of the bond it forms) or, how I’ve gotten most of my powers, by bringing people into the fold. The more souls we turn to Hell’s cause, the greater our power grows. That’s why Reverend Matt is so strong, he’s done both and brought countless souls over to the service of the Dark Lord.

Others, of course, get their powers from different places. The churchies get it through praying, following the rules, doing the bidding of the Seraphim, whatever it is that earns them God’s favor with its accompanying blessings and consecrations. The Grays, though? The people that serve Limbo? I honestly have to admit I don’t understand how their power works. There’s a reason people call the Demigod running the whole show “Chaos.” From what I understand, it’s just sort of available to them? Where’s the fun in that? It sounds like cheating, but I understand it’s much harder to call on and control than the uncut stuff we get from Hell.

Does your world have different races of people? If so do they get on with one another?
Race is a social construct, like religion. Something the powers that be have created to keep us fighting among each other instead of uniting and overthrowing our real oppressors. At least, that’s if you consider people, or humanity alone. There are people out there that are not quite human, I guess. I recently met a Defiler, someone who’s kept alive by having Demon blood injected into them. He certainly doesn’t look very human any more, he’s all mutated. Then there are the other hybrids. There are half-Demons, you may have heard of them. The ignorant call them Devilkin. They look mostly human but typically have a lot of arcane power with them. Then there’s the Nephilim, what’s born when a human and an Angel have carnal relations. That’s naturally frowned upon, by almost everyone. The right way for an Angel and a human to have children creates an Archon. They conceive it via immaculate conception, like Jesus, I guess. They, I don’t know, hold hands in a church for awhile until it just happens? I’m no expert on that stuff.

Does your world have any supernatural/mystical beings? Please tell us about some.
There are countless! So many different flavors of Demons, Angels and celestial creatures, and then there’s all the other stuff that comes from Limbo. I’ve gotten to know a lot of the Demons, though. Since Reverend Matt is a Summoner, he can pull them from Hell to our world. It really comes in handy when we have to deal with hostiles from Heaven or Limbo. I’ve seen Cerberi, those cute and vicious three-headed dogs that roam all of Hell’s Circles. I’ve also spoken with a Malthus, the pink bird-man sorcerors of Hate’s Circle. I’ve even beheld the beauty of a Sitri, the seductive life-draining Demons that wander Lust’s Circle. I’ve also seen an Astaroth, another of Hate’s creatures with it’s spiny arms and body. I never care for those, though. I’m always worried I’m going to trip and kill myself just running into it. They’re seriously sharp, with those knife-like quills popping out of all of its body.

Within your civilisation what do you think is the most important discovery/invention?
I don’t know how any of us would do what we do without the internet, particularly the Deep Web. It’s where I can connect to so many other servants of Hell, meet the disaffected, rejected people that are ripe for hearing the good news of our Dark Lord. It’s how I found Reverend Matt and his flock, after all. The possibilities for connecting with like-minded or susceptible people are endless . . .

Author notes:
Book(s) in which this character appears plus links
Hand of Chaos – https://amzn.com/B00F64S25A
Prophet of Chaos – https://amzn.com/B01D8RE7DW

Author name – J. Hamlet

Website/Blog/Author pages etc. – http://www.jchamlet.com, http://www.twitter.com/jayhamlet

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Synopsis

Nathaniel is a man of many gifts. First and foremost is the power of Prophecy. Whenever he sleeps, he dreams of triumphs and tragedies alike, and how to either make them happen or prevent them. With that knowledge, he’s thwarted the world-shaking schemes of Angels and Demons alike. Not surprisingly, every elite agent of both Heaven and Hell are always hunting him, wanting to be the one to take down the notorious man known to most as The Prophet. He’s spent most of his life as a homeless drifter: hiding, dreaming, and passing along the intel from his revelations to those who can take actions, be they government agents, freelance wizards, or less savory occult figures.

Recently, he’s been plagued by a series of recurring visions that threaten to force him out of his shadowy life and into the spotlight. He’s seen the world ready to plummet into a new dark ages. A Senator with presidential aspirations is on one side, backed by the most ruthless of Heaven’s forces and seeking to transform the world into a brutal theocracy. A church of Demon-worshipping terrorists also stand ready to launch a bloody revolution through mass murders, demonic possession, and civil war that will literally bring about Hell on earth. Nathaniel stands in the middle, struggling to stop both sides from realizing their chosen versions of humanity’s future with everything in his mystical arsenal. And he can’t do it alone.

 
 
Author Bio

J. Hamlet has made what you might call a career out of being a red tape slinger and beltway bandit and has lived in and around Washington, DC for most of his adult life. Originally from the dirty sands of Chesapeake, VA, he’s been writing to pass the time and exorcise his demons since he was a teenager. He wrote many horrible books back then. These are better, at least he hopes so. His writing blends many different genres: spy thriller, supernatural thriller, and philosophy into an intoxicating and original mash. He also enjoys nerding out about food, baking, beer, homebrewing, and taking too many pictures of his dog.

 
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Giveaway:  There is a giveaway for this tour. One (1) $25 Amazon giftcard and five (5) $10 Amazon giftcards. Ends 6/17. Open Internationally. Void where prohibited.