Tag Archive | thriller

The Haunting of Cragg Hill House – A Kelsey Porter novel

4 Book Thriller series

I’m so excited to announce that Book #4 in my Kelsey Porter thriller series is now live! I wanted to do something a little different with this novel. In the past three books, I have my characters constantly moving all around the globe, and this time I wanted them to simply “stay put” someplace. So much has happened to them over the past year, I just wanted to give them a little peace and quiet. I thought they deserved it after the last novel! So I plopped Kelsey and Desmond in a luxurious, secluded mountain resort for a little weekend get-away. But, of course, the universe does not let Kelsey ever rest… ever.

All she wanted was a weekend away…

“Kelsey and Desmond escape to a Gothic Victorian mountain resort for the weekend, but when they arrive, their idyllic plans begin to unravel fast. Kelsey feels a sinister, dark presence pervading the hotel, and with a snowstorm raging, they are stranded with an evil she cannot name. A fleeting figure screaming down the hallway, staff with missing body parts, and then Desmond disappears, leaving behind a trail of blood. Kelsey soon discovers she’s fighting a deep magic she hasn’t seen in eons and she must figure out what is happening at Cragg Hill House… before it is too late.”

While keeping the book steeped in the Buddhist thriller theme, I wanted to also add a little twist to this. I love horror and all things creepy, so I interweaved a little of that into this novel as well. If you liked my horror anthology, RICKET ROW, you’ll be sure to like the surprises I added to this particular tale.

If you’re interested in picking it up, or any in the series, please see below:

Book #1 THE HUNT FOR XANADU
AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1CEvEab
UK Amazon: http://amzn.to/1Cp2awz

Book #2 THE QUEST OF THE EMPTY TOMB
US AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1EvXExO
UK AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1JSRNqT

Book #3 THE CALL OF MOUNT SUMERU
US AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1SUskAv
UK AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1nPF6TO

Book #4 THE HAUNTING OF CRAGG HILL HOUSE:
US AMAZON: http://amzn.to/2pb1HyT
UK AMAZON: http://amzn.to/2pVJLGB

Love to hear what everyone thinks!

“Coincidences? She doesn’t believe in coincidences… not even for a second.”

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How would you like to win one of 5 signed copies of THE QUEST OF THE EMPTY TOMB?

The Hunt for Xanadu - Book #1 in the Kelsey Porter Series

The Hunt for Xanadu – Book #1 in the Kelsey Porter Series

Hello lovely readers,

Here’s something totally fun! How would you like to be one of five lucky winners to win a signed hard copy of Book #2 in the Kelsey Porter series? I’m launching THE QUEST OF THE EMPTY TOMB on February 28th and doing my first Instagram/Twitter contest to kick it off. All you have to do is upload a snapshot of yourself holding a copy of THE HUNT FOR XANADU, or of you with the cover showing on your Ipad or Phone and UPLOAD it to Instagram and/or Twitter with the Hashtag #xanaduquest Don’t forget the hashtag #xanaduquest as that’s how I’ll find you. I’ll keep a record of all the names and FIVE people will win a signed hard copy of THE QUEST OF THE EMPTY TOMB in a random drawing. Contest ends on 2/21/15.

Don’t have an instagram or twitter acct? Then feel free to flood my Facebook author page at http://www.facebook.com/elysesalpeterauthor with the photo and hashtag and TAG me! Good Luck! (and yes, I’ll ship to any winner, wherever they live throughout the world)

Want your photo up on my website at http://www.elysesalpeter.com? Check out my “FAN SHOUT OUT” of folks who have already given me their approval to put their photos up. Let me know if it’s cool for you and you, too, can be on my webpage.

Don’t have a hard copy or ebook yet of THE HUNT FOR XANADU? Come on over and grab one here on amazon at:

US AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1CEvEab
UK Amazon: http://amzn.to/1Cp2awz

Twenty-two year old Kelsey Porter has dedicated her life to avenging the death of her parents, murdered in their quest to find the mystical land of Xanadu. Before she can locate the murderers, she has to discover their motives for the brutal crime and finds herself at the epicenter of a Buddhist mystery as old as time. With the help of her companion, Detective Desmond Gisborne, she hunts the killers across the globe and discovers a darkness in her spiritual past that tests the very limits of her soul. Soon she realizes that it is not she who is doing the hunting, but the one being hunted. Kelsey must find a way to survive, while ancient demons attempt to destroy her.

Come join the fun, I’d love to see you and feel free to follow me here:

Twitter: @elysesalpeter

Instagram: elysesalpeter

http://www.facebook.com/elysesalpeterauthor (give a like to the page)

http://www.elysesalpeter.com for more details.

Soooo, want to hear what THE QUEST OF THE EMPTY TOMB is about? Where XANADU took you to Tibet, QUEST is taking you to…. EGYPT!

On the heels of THE HUNT FOR XANADU, Kelsey returns from Tibet with Desmond to begin a new life in New York City. But peace is not to come to her. One night, a stranger appears at her door with a note from a man from her past, begging for her aid. It involves her parents and Kelsey leaves for Egypt to learn the truth. But the truth is more than she bargained for. What secrets did her parents hide? Why is she now plagued with odd aches and pains and why is she having nightmares again? Kelsey must find answers and the only way to get them is to confront her demons and solve the ultimate mystery: The Quest of the Empty Tomb.

See you all on social media!

First Chapter of THE HUNT FOR XANADU

THE HUNT FOR XANADU Final CoverI’ve decided that it might be fun to post first chapters of fantasy books, flash fiction, or even poetry on this blog for the next two months. It will give everyone a taste of my writing, along with some other fine authors, and offer some fun “reading escape” time. So, without further ado, if you’re interested in a brand new contemporary fantasy thriller series, with a super new heroine, I give you Chapter #1 of THE HUNT FOR XANADU. This is not the chapter where you will find the fantasy, but the thrill, and will give you the flavor of the novel. Enjoy!

THE HUNT FOR XANADU
Chapter 1

Present Day

Hidden in the security camera’s blind spot, she sucked in her gut, closed her eyes and listened intently. “Come on, already,” she thought, drumming her fingertips rapidly against the brick wall. She heard the dogs panting now. This sound had replaced the earlier frenzy of them tearing into the drugged raw hamburger she had thrown over the fence just twenty minutes before. She’d crushed thirty-six Acepromozin tablets into the ground meat, reckoning it would enough to knock out the four guard dogs, if not kill them outright.

She glanced at her watch and waited. This is taking so long. Five more minutes passed, with nothing sounding except the soft, rotating click of the camera. Abruptly, she yanked down the protective goggles resting on her head and placed them over her eyes. The clicking now echoed loudly, indicating the camera was once more faced in her direction. Brazenly she stood, aimed her laser gun and pointed it directly into the lens. The high tech, silicon-based CCD camera had an impressive wavelength sensitivity. The laser’s high-powered emitter instantly saturated the pixels of the camera’s CCD sensor and burned the chip out instantly.

Ricardo Perez thought he protected himself with the best of everything. He’d under-estimated meeting an assassin so invested in seeing him dead.

Hooking the laser into her belt loop, she flung her knapsack over her shoulders and scaled the wall in a practiced leap. She balanced delicately on the edge to prevent being punctured by the barbed wire and slipped on a pair of leather gloves, grabbed the wire cutters hanging from her backpack and snipped her way through. In less than twenty seconds, she was inside the backyard of the compound. Three of the dogs lay unconscious in the grass nearby, but their twitching feet told her they were still alive. Where is the other one?

A deep, menacing growl came from behind her and she whirled to face the remaining Doberman. She had just enough time to register the bits of bloody hamburger still clinging to its snout before it lunged. Her instincts kicked in and she did the only thing she could remember. She punched the animal savagely in its throat like she’d been taught, and it fell to the ground, dead.

Breathing hard, she turned back to the house where Ricardo had hoped to escape from her. Her body shook and she took a deep breath, trying to keep her anger in check. This man couldn’t expect to destroy her family and get away with it. He was going to pay.

She moved past the koi pond, stopping only to disable the second security camera with her laser.
She passed the kidney-shaped pool and skirted around the cabana, her eyes never leaving the house. Shadows moved behind the curtained windows on the second floor. At the sound of a sliding door opening, she dove behind a hedge. A well-muscled guard moved onto the balcony and lit a cigarillo. Its smell traveled to her in the gentle breeze. She held back a cough and brushed a wayward blond strand out of her face.

The guard scanned the perimeters, then took out his cell phone and sat back on a lounge chair to make a call. Sweet nothings floated down to her and she took that moment to leap across the hedge and race to the side of the house, hiding herself in the back door portico. She edged around the building until she located the final camera attached to the roof above a spare bedroom. Too far for her laser’s range.

She waited until the camera scanned another part of the property and then got to work. She pulled out a long rope from her backpack which she attached to a grappling hook. With a precision borne from hours upon hours of practice, she tossed up the hook and snagged the end over the bedroom’s balcony railing. With a jerk, the rope pulled taut and the hook locked in place. Fifteen seconds later she was standing on the terrace.

The clicking camera indicated it was again in range. She leaned around the corner of the wall, aimed her laser and disabled it.

She left her bag and goggles on the terrace and moved to the sliding door leading into the bedroom. It was locked, which wasn’t a surprise. The girl leaned her head against the glass, her breath fogging the window, and noticed there was no security bar holding it shut. That was a mistake, Ricardo. She removed a set of lock picks from her pack and sixty seconds later broke in.

The house was quiet. With infinite care, she made her way across the room to the bedroom door. She cracked it open, pulling her pistol and stun gun from their holsters. She already knew the layout of the house from her research. There were four bedrooms and two bathrooms on the second floor with a wide hallway opening over the front foyer downstairs. The plush, cream-colored wall-to-wall carpeting, that stretched through every room, was an added benefit. Now she wouldn’t have to worry about her footsteps making any noise. The lighting was good, too. An enormous, glittering chandelier hung from the foyer ceiling and lit the entire area with a yellow glow. She peered into Ricardo’s bedroom and heard him speak to one of his guards. The sound of his voice made goosebumps on her arms.

“Pablo, go get us a couple of beers.”

The guard came out of the bedroom and as he passed her room, she jumped on him and released the stun gun. He barely had time to cry out before she hit him violently in the side of his head with the butt of her gun, silencing him. He fell unconscious to the floor. With great effort, she dragged him by his feet into the bedroom. Thankfully, he wasn’t as large as the first guard she had seen or it would have been much harder. In less than a minute, he was trussed up like a Thanksgiving turkey.

She moved quickly down the hall towards Ricardo’s room, her pistol in one hand, the stun gun in the other.
She peeked inside. Ricardo had moved to the balcony.

What happened next came down fast.

“The dogs are too quiet,” the remaining bodyguard said. A whistle sounded and when none of the Dobermans responded, she could distinctly hear him click his gun’s safety. “The cameras are dark, too. Ricardo, stay here.”

The guard moved across the room and out into the hallway, shocked to see her simply standing there. With a startled shout, he fired at her, but she feinted to the right and fired back. Her heel slipped slightly on the carpet and messed up her aim. She hit him in his hip, rather than his chest. Dammit to hell.

The guard fell to the floor with a yell, but fired again, the bullet ricocheting off the wall behind her. She took that moment to pounce upon him, kneeing him fiercely in his groin. He tried to hit her with the butt of his gun and she delivered a brutal elbow strike to his cheek, shattering it. He shrieked, bringing his gun up again. She shoved the stun gun in his side and fired the full voltage.

A bullet whisked by her head, shattering the picture frame on the wall next to her. She flinched and glimpsed Ricardo shooting wildly from behind the door. Their gazes met and fear filled his eyes. With a squeal, he ran back into his bedroom and disappeared from view.

Her adrenaline pumped through her veins and his fear spurred her on. Run and hide, you coward. With a savage smile, she raced after him.

The hunt was on.

If you’re interested in purchasing the entire novel, it is available on Amazon here: http://amzn.to/1ixAnkP

FLYING TO THE FIRE… it’s coming March 2013!

Well, I’m starting to get excited. FLYING TO THE LIGHT, my first YA novel with Cool Well Press, has been out for over a year and I’ve had such a great response to it. I’ve been able to visit a bunch of schools, did some library chats and was hosted on a bunch of different websites and blogs. It’s been a lot of fun.

the world of karov AaThen, I decided to self publish my dark fantasy tale, THE WORLD OF KAROV. Hey, it’s been sitting in my computer for years, the sequel is also written, so why not? I figured it would force me to really immerse myself in social media and the experience has been great. I did a free promo of the book and over 450 people downloaded it! It was very exciting.

But, the newest news is the March 2013 release of my upcoming thriller, FLYING TO THE FIRE. It is the sequel to FLYING TO THE LIGHT and takes our main character, Danny Anderson, who was only 6 in the first book, and now he’s 13. Here’s the teaser and blurb:

One looks up… and the other looks down…
An evil black mass is attacking Danny Anderson in his dreams and in his waking life. Attacks so vicious that if it weren’t for his birds, he would have died. Danny soon realizes that this monster is not coming for him, but for his little sister-because while he can see up to the place of light and peace, Katie can see down into the realm of darkness and cruelty. Danny must fight to save Katie before the creature steals her away… and she is lost to him forever.

Yep, there’s now a little sister. But don’t worry, Michael, Gary and Maddy are there too… along with a few surprises! FLYING TO THE LIGHT
If you’d like to read FLYING TO THE LIGHT, please feel free to get it here: http://www.amazon.com/Flying-to-the-Light-ebook/dp/B00666JMOM/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1360790495&sr=8-2&keywords=flying+to+the+light

Thanks everyone! Happy Reading!

Author Interview with Jocelynn Drake

How many times do you read a stand-alone novel and wish it were a series? Well, I was given a copy of Jocelynn Drake’s NIGHTWALKER and absolutely loved it. What’s not to love? I’m a vampire fan and appreciate books with strong female characters, lots of fighting and oozing tension on all levels. This book fit the bill to a “T”. When I finished the novel, I actually went and found her on Twitter and Goodreads because I just wanted to tell her how much I loved the book and give her a review. To my surprise, other fans of hers tweeted me that this was actually a series and there were five more novels! I raced through each one of THE DARK DAYS SERIES and was just so impressed with the quality of the writing and the intricacies of the characters and worlds she created. The books were fun, action-packed and at times quite “saucy!” I truly enjoyed them.

So, since I’m not shy and love interviewing authors, I took a chance and asked Jocelynn if I could interview her for my blog and she graciously said yes. So without further ado, please let me introduce you to a native Cincinnatian who is a devoted fan of the Reds and Bengals, (and strangely not a Skyline Chili fan, but we’ll let that slide because her books are so amazing),  Ms. Jocelynn Drake…

1) Let’s talk about writing a series. When you first set out to write the Dark Days novels, did you already envision it as a series from the “get-go?” What was your process like?

Funny enough, when I started writing Mira and Danaus, I was intending to create only a short story. I handed the story off to a friend to read. He returned it demanding I write more. By the time I was halfway through the first book, I realized I had enough material rattling around in my imagination to write several books. The original first book ended up being split into three books and expanded. And then when I was working on the second book, my publisher indicated that they wanted to do a total of six books.

The entire process of plotting/outlining the series has been very fluid, requiring I be flexible. From day one, I knew how the series was going to end; I just tweaked how Mira and Danaus got there. I didn’t plan on readers meeting Mira’s real father, even though I always knew who he was. I had always planned on Danaus getting his own book, but I thought it was going to be the second or third rather than the fourth. Some people died that I hadn’t planned on, which was as heartbreaking for me as it was for the readers.

When I worked on the series, I always had a goal in sight that I was working toward. I just didn’t always know how I was going to get there and who was going to survive the journey.

When I sat down for each book, I made plans for that particular book, listing problems and questions which needed to be addressed. I also tried to make notes of ideas of I had for future books. For several years, I had Mira constantly whispering in my ear as I worked.

2) There were a tremendous amount of plot lines and rules for all the different beings in these novels. How did you keep track of everything? Are you a big outliner or are you a panster, letting things develop as they go along?

I am something of a mix. For the main plot of the book, I am a serious outliner. The entire book has to be outlined before I am allowed to start working. I have to know where I am headed so my characters don’t get sidetracked. However, the character development and the personal moments develop more organically as I am working on a scene. I can’t plan those things. Sometimes a character will open his/her mouth and say something I wasn’t expecting, and the whole scene shifts to something wonderful and new. My outline is like a skeleton which supports the story and the story grows out from that structure. It demands flexibility. I can’t be locked to my outline, unwilling to change if I want the characters to be true and convincing

To keep up with it all, I make extensive notes. I have world-building notes. I have several different versions of characters lists so I know who’s alive, who’s dead, and when/how they died. I have several interviews of my major characters as well as essays written from the point of view of a character. Some of this I share with readers and some never sees the light of day. These notes help me understand the world I’ve created, keep details straight, and help develop new plot ideas.

3) I don’t think readers realize how much work goes into the telling of a story – they simply just get lost in the tale, which is what we want to happen. That’s probably the greatest gift for an author. So please, tell us about the new series you’re working on.

The Asylum Tales is a completely new and strange world. Humans live in a world surrounded by every magical and mythical creature we’ve ever run across in a story. Your next-door neighbor may be a werewolf, your office cube mate could be an ogre, your dentist is a siren, and your favorite bartender is a minotaur. And the strange thing? This is normal for you. In this world, everyone needs a little help every once in a while. Maybe it’s some good luck? Maybe your love life needs a boost? That is where a good tattoo artist comes in handy. With a magic potion added to the ink, the tattoo artist can help you woo your sweetheart or maybe hex your ex.

The series focuses on Gage Powell, owner and tattoo artist at Asylum Tattoo Parlor in Low Town. Gage, along with fellow tattoo artists Bronx (a troll) and Trixie (an elf), help people with their troubles while trying to stay out of trouble as well. Unfortunately, that’s not very easy for Gage, because he’s a former warlock from the Ivory Towers – the dark rulers of this world. The members of the Towers are still hunting for Gage because he left them. Dodging witches and warlocks, Gage tries to help his friends without losing his own head in the process.

4) Was it hard writing a whole new set of characters? Did you set out to make the book completely different than your previous work?

When I started working on the Asylum Tales, I set out to make it as different from the Dark Days series as possible. The new series involves vampires and shifters, but right now they have been relegated to smaller side characters. The new series is told from a guy’s point of view and Gage is very different from Mira, even though he does have a similar fast, hot temper. I tried to inject a little more humor into this new series. The new series isn’t as dark, but it does have its serious moments. I also wanted all the paranormal creatures out in the open. I didn’t want to worry about protecting anyone’s identity because humans didn’t know about vampires or faeries or trolls etc. Funny enough, it turns out that Gage is the one in hiding.

It actually wasn’t hard to work with an entirely new set of characters. I guess my mind was ready for the change of pace, because I found myself easily slipping into this world so I was mentally kicking back at Asylum with Gage and the gang. Gage’s voice reminds me of all the male friends I’ve had over the years, and he definitely has the potential to be just as crass. I think the hardest thing is balancing this large ensemble cast of characters. I’ve just finished the second book and the character list keeps growing. I’m struggling to find ways to work everyone into a book because they are all so fun to play with. I look forward to Gage’s visits to Chang’s black market because the wily old man is hilarious. I love visiting Jack because Jack hates Gage. I love working with Bronx because he’s so even and steady amid the chaos.

5) It sounds like you’re having wonderful fun with these books, so congratulations! So please, tell me what advice can you offer new writers who are struggling to receive recognition for their work? And how do you personally gauge success?

The best advice I can give is that as a writer, you should only focus on writing the best book you can possibly write. You should think only about that. Don’t worry about marketing, social media, publishers, and all the rest. Write the book. Finish the book. Revise the book. The rest will come later. The best way to get the attention of readers and publishers is to write a good book.

At first I thought success was measured by how many books were sold or whether I was offered another contract from my publisher. I’ve now been in this business for a few years and I think the best measure of success are the little notes and comments I get from readers saying they enjoyed the book. I love hearing someone loved a book or cried in reaction to an event in a book. I love hearing they’re looking forward to the next book or sad the series is over. I spent close to seven years working with Mira and Danaus. They were a big part of my life and it’s nice to know other people loved them as well. If I can entertain someone for a few hours, help them escape into another world, then I’ve accomplished my goal and that is the greatest feeling in the world.

6) It really is a wonderful feeling. And I love to ask this last question: Tell us something we don’t know about you.

I didn’t set out to be an author. It was never a goal. When I started college, I was actually an engineering major. Oh, I started writing stories when I was 12 and I wrote stories all through high school and college, but I was also aware of how hard it was to get published. I knew it was a long shot. I just wanted to write stories. I wasn’t concerned with anyone actually reading them. It wasn’t until I had been out of college (with my English/Journalism degree because I hate calculus) that I started working on Nightwalker. It wasn’t until I finished writing the book that I thought it might be good enough for publication. It took two years and countless revisions, but I sold the book and several others.

If I couldn’t be a writer, I think my only option would be for me to be a cat. Yes, I will be a cat if I can’t be a writer.

Jocelynn, thank you so much for your time and allowing us a glimpse into your writing world.

If you’d like to learn more about Jocelynn Drake and her breadth of work, please feel free to locate her at the following addresses:

Website: www.JocelynnDrake.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JocelynnDrake
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/jocelynn.drake
Blog: http://jocelynndrake.blogspot.com/
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Jocelynn-Drake/e/B001RXUEXW/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1345144382&sr=8-2-ent