Bewitching Book Tours: The Necromancer’s Betrayal by Mimi Sebastian

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Tour giveaway

1 prize pack which will include a print copy of Necromancer’s Betrayal, the booklet The Werewolf’s Devotion (a Necromancer Books short story), $15 Amazon giftcard, and skull bracelet. Open to US Shipping.

Rafflecopter for entry is at the bottom of the post.

NecromancersBetrayalCoverThe Necromancer’s Betrayal
The Necromancer Series
Book 2
Mimi Sebastian

Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance

Publisher: ImaJinn/Belle Books
ISBN: 978-1611945119
Number of pages: 226

Cover Artist: Debra Dixon

Book Description:

Her powers have been hobbled. Her enemies are growing stronger.

Old loves challenge her. And her worst betrayer may be herself.

Necromancer Ruby Montagne is battling for her life in the realm of demons. Unfairly branded for the death of a fellow necromancer, she’s got to prove her innocence without the full use of her magic. And the real culprit is still on the loose.

While someone is stalking her friends among the witches, Ruby searches for answers inside the dark intrigues of both the demon and necromancer worlds. Ruby must confront this new, sinister threat while reconciling her feelings for her former lover, a demon warrior. Only it’s difficult . . . because a sexy vampire is making it clear that he’d like to be a lot more than just friends.

The competition for Ruby’s trust heats up as the enemy pushes her toward a dark side that could threaten the entire realm. Yet what can Ruby do when she’s not even sure what she is? With the fabric separating the realms at stake, she must decide whom to trust. But will the ultimate betrayal be her own?

About the Author:

MimiSebastianMimi Sebastian raised herself on books and the strange and unusual, and an unhealthy dose of comics and movies. When a career as a punk guitarist failed to materialize, she completed her degree in urban planning, spent two years in the Ivory Coast with the Peace Corps, and another three years in Brazil. By day, she debates the merits of transport oriented development, by night she writes about necromancers and pirates. She’s convinced she could live off coffee, ice cream, and comic books, but is sure only one of those is good for her health.

She’s a member of Romance Writers of America and the Fantasy, Futuristic and Paranormal chapter of RWA. A transplant from the beaches of Florida, Mimi now wanders the desert in Phoenix, AZ, and attempts to balance writing with a day career, fantastic family, and household diva: her Amazon parrot.

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Bewitching Book Tours: The Sexy and The Undead by Charity Parkerson

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Book Spotlight


TheSexyandTheUndeadThe Sexy and The Undead
Sexy Witches Series Book One
by Charity Parkerson

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Publisher: Punk and Sissy Publications
Date of Publication: May 1, 2013

Number of pages: 156
Word Count: 25,769

Cover Artist: Designs by Charity

Book Description

A potion gone wrong, or right?

Single, unemployed, and in charge of her very own pet zombie, Ella Perry is cooking up trouble, and it’s raining men.

Ella has spent years searching for a cure for a zombie named Freddie. However, when an experimental concoction takes an unexpected turn, she gets a glimpse of the life she’s been missing by hanging out with the undead.

Zombies, Angels, and Pixies. Oh my! Don’t miss out on the first book in the new “Sexy Witches” series by Bestselling Author Charity Parkerson.



About the Author:

CharityParkersonCharity Parkerson was born in Tennessee, where she still lives with her husband and two sons. She is the author of several books including fifteen Amazon bestsellers.

Her “Sinners series” was voted one of the top ten best books by an Indie author in 2011- Paranormal Romance Reads Her book “The Danger with Sinners” was named “Best Book of 2012” by Paranormal Reads Reviews and was a finalist in the 2012 Australian Romance Reader’s Awards for Favorite Paranormal Romance.

She was named as one of the top three Indie authors of 2012- EbookBuilders She is a member of The Paranormal Romance Guild, is a Goodreads moderator, a member of Coffee Time Romance, and co-host of The Melissa Craig and Charity Parkerson show.

She won author of the week in August of 2011, and is a five-time winner of The Mistress of the Darkpath.

The Sexy and The Undead Links:

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes & Noble | All Romance eBooks | Smashwords

Charity Parkerson Links:

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Bewitching Book Tours: Dead Girl by Stavros

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DeadGirlCoverDead Girl: A Romantic Zombie Tale of Revenge
Written by Stavros
Illustrated by Charles Hearn

Genre: Horror/Thriller

Publisher: Crazy Duck Press (CDP)
Date of Publication: August 2011
ISBN: 9780982812198

Number of pages: 266

Book Description:

“…Death was a dream of sleep where the eternally dying dream the sleep of death. The undeniable evidence in the stillness of her being, the stark paleness of her complexion, and the lack of blood pooling from her cuts after climbing through the window whispered dark truths in her ears. Rigor Mortis. There was nothing familiar to Jamie about her skin. Time and time again, she found herself asking what had happened, only to arrive at the hard won conclusion that she, Jamie Lund, wasn’t alive anymore. Somehow in the foolhardy night, she’d been a dumb girl. She’d gotten herself killed…”

From the mind of Stavros, the critically acclaimed author of Blood Junky, comes a new twisted tale of horror and adventure. An average girl, living in the city is murdered. Nothing new, right? It happens every day. Just another statistic. That is…until she woke up dead.

Trapped within her own decaying shell, the dead girl struggles to piece together the awful events of her untimely death and hunt down the man responsible. Armed only with a kiss from an ancient Egyptian God, a pockmarked memory, her ex-boyfriend, and a murder of crows Jamie Lund comes face to face with something more terrifying and real than mere death…she suffers the agony of being undead!

With twelve black & white illustrations and a full colored cover from tattoo artist, Charles Hearn, this sardonic tale comes alive like no other zombie story, popping from the page with stunning, unnatural brilliance. Dead Girl: A Romantic Zombie Tale of Revenge will keep the reader on the edge of their seat suspended in this unique supernatural thriller.

Sounds super cool, right? Let’s get to know a little more about the author, Stavros.


  1. When did you first begin writing, and what inspired you to write your first book?
    • I wrote my first poem when I was in seventh grade. And it’s been downhill ever since. As writing became more and more of a thing in my life – song lyrics, short stories, short scripts, etc – I dreamed that dream of “The Novel” that seems lure young men to the siren shores of pencil pushing. Even tried to write my first one before I was twenty, though I failed miserably at it. I still have it in a filing cabinet with a pencil sketch cover.
  2. What books and authors have most influenced your life?
    • Kurt Vonnegut – Slaughterhouse 5, Oscar Wilde – The Portrait of Dorian Gray, Federico Garcia Lorca – Everything! , Pablo Neruda – Everything! , Sylvia Plath – Her poetry, Frank Herbert – The Dune Series, especially God Emperor of Dune, Isaac Asimov – The Foundation Series, Patrick Suskind – Perfume, Frank Zappa – Real Frank Zappa Book, The poetry of Rumi and Hafiz; and just straight books – The Destroyer Series, The Human Zoo & The Tao of Physics all had major influences
  3. Tell us a little about Jamie Lund. What is she like before she wakes up dead? What sets her on her revengeful quest?
    • I tend to think of Jamie as a normal, modern gal. She liked Lady Gaga, shoes, shopping for expensive things – was a cheerleader; worked in an office building, climbed the social ladder, and had a circle of friends who would hold her hair when she drank too much. I even imagined that she had a faux rhinestone cell phone protector, though I never mentioned it. What sets her on the path of revenge is coming to the drastic realization that she’s dead, yet alive. She only vaguely remembers being murdered. So, in grieving for the loss of her own life she tends to hit the anger button a couple extra times.
  4. Faced with a world infested with flesh-eating biters, what would be your go-to method of defense and why?
    • Katana. No reloading. And leather Biker boots, pants, and jacket (and sometimes the helmet) because it’s too tough to chew through!
  5. In this ever-changing world, it behooves us to be prepared for disaster to happen at any moment. The Zombie Survival Crew members have a “go-bag” filled with items essential for their survival should disaster strike and they must flee to survive. What are the most essential items for your go-bag and why?
    • Besides grabbing the afford-mentioned Katana and a long rifle for clearing paths at a distance, in a backpack is: 1 pair of clothing, extra socks, water bottle filled with water, Swiss army knife, hunting knife, 9mm and 12 clips, assorted MREs, a med kit with antibiotics, duct tape, bottle of Motrin, rope, flint, chlorine tablets for water purification, and a small plastic tarp. Everything else can be foraged.
  6. How did you come up with the premise for Dead Girl? And what do you feel makes your book stand out in the zombie lit world?
    • It originally came to me as a comic book. And Jamie was going to be more of a sword-totting vengeful decayer taking on the mob. But that all changed once I started writing it. What makes Dead Girl different from traditional zombie fair is that she is the only zombie in the story and is basically, for the most part, cognitive. Dead Girl is more of a murder mystery that is solved by the victim before she decays. I love zombie tales, and have a traditional type of story that I am working on called, The Cure. So I felt free to take DG in a completely different direction. Also, at the time that I was writing it and publishing, zombies weren’t as big as they are now, and the idea of making it “Romantic” had not even ventured into the apocalypse. Basically, I just wanted to play in uncharted territory
  7. Is there anything you find particularly challenging in writing for a horror audience?
    • Oh God, Yes. Horror fans have seen it all, read it all, or are thinking about it in a way that I never will. When I actually think about the amount of horror that is out there I get weak in the knees. Just contemplating that I’m going to throw my meager attempts into the fray is foolhardy. Which is part of the reason why I’m so damn anal in my research and development. That coupled with my drive to push the envelope to create something unique for the reader to experience gives me the illusion that I can hang with the big boys and girls.
  8. What made you decide to team up with a tattoo artist to do the illustrations?
    • I had met Charles at my first horror convention in Gettysburg, PA when I released Blood Junky, back in 2010. He had always wanted to do comic books and his panels were amazing. We stayed in touch after the event and as DG took shape I contacted him. He was interested and we made it happen.
  9. Tell us a little bit about your music. What types of music do your write? What instruments do you play? What drives your musical passion?
    • I play drums – kit and afro-cuban styled percussion, guitar, bass, and been known to sing. Mostly, I’ve been working on electronica, due to a heavy road life, though I’ve been writing some new songs on the acoustic. Honestly, music has had to take a backseat to publishing and getting Kaos Kustom Fangs off the ground. But I still tinker and play to relax. I even have a few hardcore acoustic pieces that I want to record with bass and drums to scream or whisper political poetry over. I think the juxtaposition will be hilarious.
  10. What are you working on now? Can you tell us your latest news?
    • I’m working with Sweet Revolt to get the adaptation of my novel Love in Vein funded as a feature film, as well as, penning book three of the One Blood Series. In addition to that, Charles and I are working out the details to bring DG to life as a fully fledged comic book and motion comic.
  11. Is there anything you would like to say to your readers?
    • Yes. Buy the book. You won’t be disappointed. And if you are…it makes for great target practice! After all, gotta keep your aim sharp and there’s a zombie on the cover.

About the Author:

StavrosNotorious Poet. Fool. Born in Washington DC. Stavros was a writer and editor for The Independent Underground Magazine. Raised in Southern Maryland, he fled the Chesapeake Bay to the wilds of the New Mexican desert. He is a single father of two, whose poetic works have been published in several online and print publications, including Central Avenue, The Sword That Cuts Through Stone, Poets Against The War, Conceptions Southwest, The Mynd, Imagine: Creative Arts Journal, and Bartleby, where he won a specialty award for his poem, Blackbird.

In 1999, he won an Official Selection into the Writer’s on the Edge Festival for his play, The Redline. In 2001, he created the Poetry Television Project for public cable access in Albuquerque, NM. All eight volumes of Ptv’s ground-breaking show were broadcast to over 100,000 viewers on a network of regional PAC channels throughout the Southwest and Baltimore. He helped to launch Unpublished Magazine, sponsored the monthly poetry series, The Word Café, in the Duke city, and produced a political compilation, Poetic Democracy. In 2007, he released the award-winning documentary film, Committing Poetry in Times of War.

In 2010, he launched the production management company, Organic Ghetto, and released its first imprint, Crazy Duck Press, with his first novel, Blood Junky. Blood Junky received exceptional praise and review, even being called “one of the best vampire novels ever written,” by Living Dead Media. The following year he helped to launch BioGamer Girl, undertook a bigger East coast tour where he began selling his original photographic art, and released two new novels through Crazy Duck Press. Dead Girl: A Romantic Zombie Tale of Revenge features a stunning full-color cover and twelve black and white illustrations from tattoo artist, Charles Hearn. Blood Junky’s sequel, Love in Vein, cemented the One Blood series with its continuation of the story, garnering such review as to claim that the book and the series is “comparable with, and at times surpasses, the ‘Vampire Chronicles’ by Anne Rice.”

In 2012, Stavros joined forces with the Vampire Professor, Bertena Varney, M.A.M.Ed, to co-create the nonfiction annual anthology, Vampire News, and officially became a Fangsmith with the creation of Organic Ghetto’s second imprint, Kaos Kustom Fangs. He rounded out the year by writing and editing screenplays for the One Blood Transmedia Project, recording Dead Girl as an audio book, and undertaking his biggest national marketing campaign, The Book & Fang Tour.

In 2013, he and the Vampire Professor released the second volume of Vampire News: The (not so) End Times Edition and is currently working on writing and growing his imprints. Stavros is also a musician who has scored commercials, film shorts, documentaries, and television programs.


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Dead Girl / Crazy Duck Press:

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Bewitching Book Tours: The Zombie Story by M.M. Shelley

MMShelley_TheZombieStory_HRHi Everyone! I’m M.M. Shelley and I’d like to give a BIG thanks to The Zombie Survival Crew for having me today so that I can share my novella:

The Zombie Story

My story is about Magick and Zombies, a little different take on the Zombie genre and follows the adventures of Orlando as he arrives in a new city.

Ruben Juarez has always been careful; he’s had no choice not to be. Orphaned at a young age it has been just him and Elodie, his younger sister, they avoided the foster system by staying anonymous. It hasn’t been easy and it has made him feel disconnected.

To make money he became involved with underground fighting and he has become quite good at it. He can detect someone’s weak spot just by watching how they carry themselves. Ruben has never boasted about the number of wins he has on his belt or about anything else for that matter. Boxing has always been a way for him to burn off steam, a way to forget about everything and just live in the moment.

He didn’t begin hunting zombies until he learned that he could make money at it. He was approached by a man named Maxwell who made him a generous offer if he would agree to train Orlando Drake.

It was an odd offer, but the money was good so he didn’t question it. Maybe he should have questioned it and just maybe he should have walked away. If he had not felt a deep responsibility to look out for his sister he just might have walked away.

His dream would be to just ride on his motorcycle from town to town, nowhere in particular–just far away from everyone who knows him. Ruben has never been one to run away from his responsibility but if it wasn’t for Elodie he just might decide to up and leave.

Thanks again for hosting this stop on my tour!

About the Book:

The Zombie Story is the first novella in a young adult series.

Unfolding on the streets of Los Angeles is a new breed of monster…

Orlando, fresh from the mid west, arrives at his new high school on his Harley Davidson.

All he wants is to make it through the day, and begin his training as a Zombie Hunter.

But someone has different plans for him.

Currently free for your Kindle


* * * * * * * * * *

Dead Relatives
Book 2

After discovering what was hidden in Mexico and having to sneak back across the border Orlando returns to Los Angeles, but is unable to return to his home.

Instead of hunting Zombies he is now hunted.

Betrayed by those he thought he could trust, Orlando must keep the truth of what he knows to himself.

That is until dead relatives return with dire warnings.


* * * * * * * * * *

About the Author:

M.M. Shelley is a storyteller, word smith and dreamer. She has traveled the world extensively in search of the magic which is often overlooked in every day life. M.M. Shelley is a native of southern California, and a student of mythology from which she gets much inspiration.

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Bewitching Book Tours: The Necromancer’s Seduction by Mimi Sebastian

We’re happy to give our crew a special Valentine’s Day treat and give you a sneak preview of an upcoming book featuring Necromancer, Ruby Montagne. What could go wrong on the day of love between a necromancer and her demon warrior… especially when you throw in an alliance with a witch and a zombie? And we have an interview with author Mimi Sebastian and have included the book trailer below, so don’t miss out.

the-necromancer's-seduction-cleanThe Necromancer’s Seduction
The Necromancer Series, Book One
Mimi Sebastian

Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: ImaJinn Books

Cover Artist: Patricia Lazarus

Book Description:

She has never feared the walking dead. It’s the power required to reanimate the dead that startles her, seduces her. The power that dwells inside her…and is growing.

For Professor Ruby Montagne, being a necromancer has brought her nothing but heartache, and she walked away from that part of her life long ago. However, her quiet existence in San Francisco is shattered when she stumbles upon the body of a slain witch, and the supernatural community insists she transform him into a revenant to track the killer. But his murder was just the beginning, and Ruby soon realizes that the stakes are higher than anyone can imagine—and that revenants have nasty minds of their own.

Now demonic creatures have escaped into the human world, and zombies once again walk the streets. For humanity’s sake, Ruby forms an unlikely alliance with a witch, a zombie, and Ewan March, a demon warrior who sets her senses on fire.

She’s always distrusted demons and Ewan is no exception, but circumstances push them closer together, and Ruby not only finds it harder to resist him, she isn’t sure she even wants to. But she suspects his job of patrolling the portal separating humans and demons conceals a dark and deadly past that may consume them both.

With events spiraling out of control, Ruby unravels a plot that not only threatens the human and demon realms, but puts Ruby’s very soul in jeopardy. Because when the dead walk, no one is safe. Especially Ruby.

Interview with Mimi Sebastian

  1. When did you first begin writing, and what inspired you to write your first book?
    • I have journals starting back from when I was ten or twelve years old. I used to write a lot of poetry and short stories. Writing has always been a part of me, but I never sat down to write a book until a couple of years ago.

      Ruby, the necromancer, inspired me. Her story kept knocking around in my head, telling me about her power, control of the dead, and how that affects her humanity. Ruby’s power almost has a mind of its own and influences her in negative ways. And there are definitely limits set, lines that a necromancer should never cross, because it warps them, so it’s fun to explore what happens to her when she crosses those lines. In my mythology, without giving too much away, necromancers were born from the interference of the demons in the human realm. They have the ability to reanimate the dead, create zombies and revenants. Those are the basic powers, but I expand beyond those abilities, which plays into the necromancer/demon mythology, but that’s about all I can say.

  2. What books and authors have most influenced your life?
    • Mark Twain because he was so funny, irreverent, but cared enough to write some of the most wonderful political satire ever, and along those lines, Kurt Vonnegut. I saw him speak once and things he said about life and writing still resonate with me. Dracula influenced the horror buff in me, because I love the atmosphere Stoker created and the way he wrote Dracula. Dracula is a horrible creature that eats babies, but Stoker still makes him appealing. Poets have also inspired me, like Lawrence Ferlinghetti and T.S. Eliot. Eliot’s Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock is one of the most amazing poems ever, and I still reference it in my head. Oh, Ray Bradbury. I don’t know if he influenced my life, because that might scare me a little to explore that, but his writing has definitely inspired me.
  3. Tell us a little about your main characters. How has being a necromancer brought nothing but heartache for Professor Ruby Montagne? And how did she become embroiled with Ewan March, the demon warrior?
    • Well, Ruby’s mom and grandmother died tragic deaths as a result of their ability. Her identity keeps her from developing close relationships with men or non-supernatural people, so she has actually lived a pretty isolated life, especially after her grandmother’s death. Her only supernatural friend is a witch, but mostly, she avoids the supe community, avoids using her power as a result of what happened to her mother, etc. (Can’t tell you that, sorry.) Ewan March has kind of watched her from afar, kept his distance because he understands her trepidation, but lots of unsavory things hit the fan, and they wind up working together and he takes full advantage of that situation. Ruby is not prudish or sexually immature, but her past and her powers have isolated her, despite her best efforts. She’s attracted to Ewan, but doesn’t want to get involved with a demon, but he has his own dark past (of course), and that intrigues Ruby so she begins letting down her guard to understand him better.

      One of the things I’ve enjoyed doing with my characters is to not make them black or white, but to explore the gray areas. They all have to make horrible choices based their allegiances to their own supernatural race and past events.

  4. Faced with a world infested with flesh-eating biters, what would be your go-to method of defense and why?
    • Gosh, plants, lots of plants. Especially watermelons and cherry bombs. They seem to work very well. (I just couldn’t resist. I love Plants vs. Zombies and they are coming out with Part Two this year.) World infested? Even Canada? My thought was in taking off to Canada. Canada never seems to suffer from plagues, asteroids, or nuclear attacks. I like road trips, so maybe staying on the road in a Zombieland way.
  5. In this ever-changing world, it behooves us to be prepared for disaster to happen at any moment. The Zombie Survival Crew members have a “go-bag” filled with items essential for their survival should disaster strike and they must flee to survive. What are the most essential items for your go-bag and why?
    • sells tactical canned bacon. Toss them out to the zombies as a distraction, or snack food when in a pinch. Underwear. A flame thrower. And fake blood and torn clothes in case you have to pull a Shaun of the Dead type zombie impersonation.
  6. How did you come up with the premise for The Necromancer’s Seduction? And what do you feel makes your book stand out in the zombie lit world?
    • It goes back to my necromancer and telling her story, and because of the necromancer angle, my zombies are not disease zombies, but are brought to life by the necromancer. One of the main characters in the book is Adam, who she raises as a revenant, basically a zombie with his soul restored. He is bound to the necromancer. Her power is the only thing keeping him from launching into a Night of the Living Dead frenzy. The interplay between them was great to write because Adam struggles between remembering his human side and human emotions and his craving for flesh and urge to free himself from the bond with Ruby. There are moments when he attacks Ruby and, while she must work with him, she’s always wary of him.

      I have zombie demon creatures and zombie rats. Actually, the rats come out in the second book. I live in an old house and a couple of years ago had to deal with a rat nest in the crawlspace of the house. Although they are gone (thankfully), they still haunt me, and I decided they needed to haunt my necromancer as well. When we were dealing with the infestation, I’d wake in the middle of the night and hear the faint patter of paws in the wall behind my bed. Nuts! Sorry, I digress.

  7. Is there anything you find particularly challenging in writing for a horror audience?
    • Well, I can’t say my book is geared toward the horror audience, but I tried to include elements of horror because zombies are horrifying, even if Shaun of the Dead convinced us a zombie might make a good videogame partner. I’m not buying it. I think the challenge with horror is imparting fear through mood and atmosphere and not simply writing gore. I’ve read lots of classic and contemporary horror and, I like when authors build suspense slowly and carefully, and use sound description well. One of the things I never forgot about reading The Hellbound Heart by Clive Barker and seeing the movie Hellraiser is the damned bell described in the book and used in the movie to announce the arrival of the Cenobites the first time. Bells in general kind of creep me out.
  8. Tell us a little bit about your years in the Ivory Coast with the Peace Corps. Are there things we could use come the dawn of the zombie apocalypse?
    • West Africa is fantastic. There’s a saying in the Peace Corps: a volunteer goes to East Africa for nature, South America for politics, and West Africa to smile, or something like that. I was doing urban environmental management, and unlike many volunteers in the villages, my site was a small town, about 50,000 population. I had running water, electricity, a toilet in my house. We are talking luxury digs! I had to learn to completely change my understanding of cultural norms and boundaries. Kids used to show up at my house and hang out. At first, it rubbed my American sense of personal space, but once I made the mental shift, I began looking forward to the visits. They’d come over and I didn’t have to entertain them. They just wanted to hang, make tea, whatever. (Most people did not have tvs) And this is a key aspect of West African culture. Very social. Very community. Little kids ran around the neighborhood naked and everyone knew who that kid was, so it was okay, and if the kid had a problem or needed help, whoever was around, took him home. I often just sat with some of the woman in my neighborhood who sold street food. See, they’d often give me freebies. But it was that type of integration and just taking the time to sit with people that built the strongest relationships. I’m just as caught up in the rat race as the next person, but I wish we would just sit with people more.

      We could learn a lot from the Africans to confront the zombie apocalypse. Every household had a machete or some type of sharp tool they used to kill live animals purchased in the market because a home cooked meal often required home butchering. If zombies showed up, the sense of community and butchering skills would serve them well, and I imagine the people would band together to take down the offending horde. And, talk about women kicking ass, women did most of the cooking and butchering, so they would probably lead the charge.

  9. What are you working on now? Can you tell us your latest news?
    • My book comes out July 15! I’m currently editing the second book, The Necromancer’s Betrayal, and am trying to find time to edit a pirate book I wrote. The pirate book does not have zombies, but the beginning does start with a hanging.
  10. Is there anything you would like to say to your readers?
    • Still being an avid reader myself, I appreciate good characters, and I hope that’s what people take from my stories. This has been a fun interview. Thanks!

MimiSebastianAbout the Author:

Noemi Ghirghi writes as Mimi Sebastian and raised herself on books and the strange and unusual with an unhealthy dose of comics and Scooby Doo. Loving angst-filled romance thrown in the mix, she decided to blend all those elements in a steamy mix in her first Urban Fantasy series, the Necromancer Books. The first book, The Necromancer’s Seduction, debuts July 15, 2013, with ImaJinn Books.

Noemi spent two years in the Ivory Coast with the Peace Corps and loves to introduce tid-bits from her experiences in her writing. She’s a member of Romance Writers of America and the Fantasy, Futuristic and Paranormal chapter of RWA. A transplant from the beaches of Florida, Noemi now wanders the desert in Phoenix, AZ, and attempts to balance writing with a day career, fantastic family, and household diva: her Amazon parrot.

Don’t forget to check out the book trailer below!!

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Bewitching Book Tours: Mama Lona’s Man by Brett O’Neal Davis

MamaLonasManWe had the pleasure of catching up with Brett Davis on his web-wide tour of Mama Lona’s Man a zombie/voodoo thriller, and he was kind enough to answer a few questions we felt our Zombie Survival Crew brigadiers would be interested in.

Mama Lona’s Man
The Straw Man Series, Book One
by Brett O’Neal Davis

Genre: Paranormal Romance
Number of pages: 219
Word Count: 74,000
Cover Artist: Cate Meyers

Book Description:

Mama Lona’s Man combines a Caribbean love story with a zombie thriller. It’s a bit James Bond, a bit “How Stella Got Her Groove Back” and a dash of “Night of the Living Dead.

The leading man is an ex-Navy SEAL controlled by a witch doctor. When he meets an American girl caught up in island intrigue, they fall in love even though he’s been dead longer than she’s been alive.

  1. When did you first begin writing, and what inspired you to write your first book?

    • I have been writing my whole life, although I didn’t start trying seriously to write a novel until I was 21 years old. I have always enjoyed reading, mainly novels, so at some point it seemed natural to try to create one of my own. I have nothing against short stories—they are very hard to do well—I just have always tended to think in terms of longer stories, so novel writing was more natural to me. And, this is going to sound bad, but when I was younger I read “Less than Zero” and thought, I could do that. So I tried.

  2. What books and authors have most influenced your life?

    • I have always been most impressed, I think, by authors whose work I find very difficult at first. I am a huge fan of the poet Dylan Thomas, whose imagery can be very dense and hard to tease apart. I am amazed at the career of William T. Vollmann, whose “You Bright and Risen Angels” blew me away, although I still don’t think I quite understand it. I also admire J.R.R. Tolkein. I got through “The Hobbit” easily enough as a kid, but it took me a lot longer to be able to tackle “Lord of the Rings.” I am envious of the ability to create a world that people can inhabit as if it’s real, and someday maybe I’ll achieve something like that. And, although he’s largely forgotten as a writer per se, I’ll add Ian Fleming to this list. My zombie character was greatly inspired by the James Bond series. Not the movies, but the books.

  3. Tell us a little about your main characters. How easy/difficult was it for you to write a 20-year-old college girl and at the same time climb into the head of a dead ex-Navy Seal?

    • Abigail Callisto is a troubled but brilliant young college student whose father works for the government in a very hush-hush intelligence role. Her mother died when she was young and she doesn’t remember much about her. She’s very self-reliant and couples an artistic temperament with a real genius for electronics. Randy Straw, short for Ravinell, is a young SEAL who was killed in the invasion of Grenada in 1983. For reasons that are detailed in the book, he’s brought back to life as the slave of a witch doctor. He’s a young man removed from the effects of time, kind of like a more muscular Peter Pan.

      Each character presented a unique challenge. I have been privileged to know a lot of smart, strong women in my life and I drew upon all of them in creating the character of Abigail. The toughest part was writing about her computer hacking ability. She’s much, much smarter than I am. As for Randy, I did a fair amount of research on Navy SEALS but the hardest part was trying to cast my mind back to the world of 1983, which is the last time he was really connected to the world of the living. He has no idea what a cell phone is and the hottest computer of his day was probably a Commodore 64.

  4. Faced with a world infested with flesh-eating biters, what would be your go-to method of defense and why?

    • I admire Daryl Dixon’s work with the crossbow, so I’m going to have to go with that. It’s quick and quiet and doesn’t attract more biters. Maybe if I really wanted a good workout I would switch to a regular bow, and if I were being truly he-man I would make my own bow from a tree that I chopped down, with maybe zombie gut for string.

  5. In this ever-changing world, it behooves us to be prepared for disaster to happen at any moment. The Zombie Survival Crew members have a “go-bag” filled with items essential for their survival should disaster strike and they must flee to survive. What are the most essential items for your go-bag and why?

    • A bunch of contact lenses and fluid so I could see (I really need to get Lasik done before the apocalypse arrives). A digital camera and a laptop. Once the plague passes, people are going to want a record of what happened and I intend to corner that market. A solar charger, so the laptop and camera won’t die. Some clean underwear. Coffee beans, and some kind of coffee-making device, maybe one of those little French-press things. Because without caffeine, I just wouldn’t care.

  6. How did you come up with the premise for Mama Lona’s Man? And what do you feel makes your book stand out in the zombie and voodoo lit world?

    • I got the general idea for “Mama Lona’s Man” quite a long time ago, when my uncle gave me a cool set of original edition James Bond books that were published in the late 1950s and early 1960s. The books have a different vibe from the movies … they’re almost as much travelogue as adventure, because Bond goes to fun places and Fleming liked to describe them at some length. And, of course, Bond never gets killed. So I started thinking about having a secret agent type who cannot be killed, which led me to make him a zombie, and I wanted the setting to be a Bond-like romp in the Caribbean, and the rest started to fall into place. It took a long time, though. It wasn’t until I focused the book around my lead female character, Abigail Callisto, instead of my zombie hero, Randy Straw, that it fell into place and really became something that could sustain a short series.

      As for what makes it stand out, I think it’s the sort-of return to the classic Haitian zombie model of old. I say “sort of” because I play pretty fast and loose with actual historical Voodoo practice, and I just flat out made up some things to suit my story, which calls for the zombie man to be truly dead but not in an icky way. There are some other sexy zombies out there, but they are in the minority, and I think the way I created mine is unique.

  7. Is there anything you find particularly challenging in writing for a horror audience?

    • Being scary is the hardest thing for me. Even though there are some pretty horrific scenes in the book, in the main it’s not particularly scary. In general I find movies to be more effective in actually scaring people than books, because if you’re reading a book and get creeped out you can always look at your cat or something to reassure yourself, but you can’t really do that if you’re in a dark theater.

  8. Tell us a little bit about your work with robotics. Are there things we could use come the dawn of the zombie apocalypse?

    • I edit a magazine, published by a trade association, that covers unmanned systems and robotics. I couldn’t put a robot together if you gave me a Lego kit and built half of it in advance, but I like to talk to people who can. And, yes, there are many systems that would come in handy when the end times begin. Any kind of far-seeing sensor that would tell you where the shambling hordes are at any given time would be handy, and there are a lot of those out there. The forward-looking infrared sensors that can detect body heat would probably not be of much use against zombies, but a ground robot with a machine gun on top would be just the thing.

  9. What are you working on now? Can you tell us your latest news?

    • I am plotting out more adventures for Abigail Callisto and Randy Straw, the heroes of “Mama Lona’s Man.” I’m picturing a five-story arc. I already know how it’s going to end, just am not positive yet how I’m going to get there. Also, I spent a big chunk of last summer shooting a (very) low-budget vampire movie with some great actors from the DC area. I’m just beginning the editing on that, which will take a while, but should be a lot of fun. I hope it will show up on a screen near you at some point in 2013. It may be an iPad screen, but that’s still a screen.

  10. Is there anything you would like to say to your readers?

    • Yes … please give me feedback on my zombie man and his brainy gal as their adventures progress. I want their adventures to span the globe, so please contact me via my blog and let me know where you’d like them to go. Don’t just read the adventures, help direct them. And, pay attention to the advice you get from the Zombie Survival Crew. You just might need it!

BrettDavisAbout the Author:

Brett O’Neal Davis is a native of Florence, Ala., and attended the same high school as Sam Phillips, who discovered Elvis Presley. He studied journalism at the University of North Alabama and the University of Missouri, writing about music whenever possible. He also briefly “fronted” the one-man punk band Screwhead. Despite clearing $1.50 in profit on consignment sales of the band’s lone album at Salt of the Earth Records in Columbia, Mo., he turned to the slightly more stable world of aerospace and defense journalism, working today in the field of unmanned systems and robotics in Washington, D.C.

He is the author of four science fiction and fantasy novels, all published by Baen Books. The first, The Faery Convention, was listed among the best fantasy novels for 1995 by Science Fiction Chronicle, and Two Tiny Claws was named to the 2000 Books for the Teen Age List by the New York Public Library. An occasional panelist at area science fiction conventions, he also has discussed fiction writing at National Press Club events and at literary festivals, including the annual T.S. Stribling celebration at the University of North Alabama. Mama Lona’s Man is his first foray into paranormal romance, but it won’t be the last.

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Bewitching Book Tours: Perseverance by James Lacey

The Zombie Survival Crew is happy to welcome James Lacey, author of Perseverance: A Zombie Tale today. First we’ll start of with a little bit about the book, and then we’ll get some insight from James on the pending zombiepocalypse.

Perseverance: A Zombie Tale
James Lacey

Publisher: 23 House Publishing
Pages: 324


It didn’t happen the way it was supposed to …

I am a teacher. At least, I was before it all happened, before I was forced to survive. I taught social studies at the high school. I was also the coach of the school’s successful debate team. It was a cold Saturday in January when I heard the first rumor of trouble …

You know, pop culture had defined the zombie apocalypse time and time again, all coming from the minds of horror writers, film producers, and video game designers. Who knew that when it really happened, it wouldn’t be anything like they all predicted. Oh sure, the dead reanimated, and they were certainly hungry for living flesh…but what were the mysterious red-eyes, zombies that moved faster than their stumbling counterparts and seemed to not only communicate, but to exert some kind of control over the others.

The Oracle managed to catch up with James on his blog tour and was able to get some valuable insights from someone forecasting about the zombieapocalypse. And you’ll definitely want to check out the video at the bottom of this post.

  1. When did you first begin writing, and what inspired you to write your first book?
    • I began writing when I was very young. I remember handwriting little stories while other kids would color. I remember being really excited when we got our first family computer and I could type them out in a text file and print them on our old dot matrix printer. Writing my first full-length novel was just the natural progression of a life-long passion.
  2. What books and authors have most influenced your life?
    • I was a huge fan of classical literature. Still am. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes is by far my favorite literary character. As far as the zombie lore goes, I have to give a lot of influential credit to Max Brooks, who I think redefined what the genre means by going so in-depth with the individual character stories and different perspectives in World War Z.
  3. Tell us a little about your main character. How does a social studies teacher develop the necessary skills to survive a zombie apocalypse?
    • When the apocalypse comes, you do what you have to do. He adapts quickly and lives in a somewhat rural area at the beginning of the story. People in areas like that have this ingrained rustic quality that will go a long way in the apocalypse. But most importantly, as much as possible, he thinks before he does anything. You have to keep a level head if you want to survive, even if a zombie is about to bite your face off.
  4. Faced with a world infested with flesh-eating biters, what would be your go-to method of defense and why?
    • Right away I’m grabbing my own leather jacket, like the main character wears, and a good sturdy knife. Wearing a leather jacket in the story wasn’t an accident and is something I thought about hard when outfitting my character. Leather is lightweight, usually somewhat waterproof and very tough to bite through. That’s why dog-training gloves are made of leather. You’ll certainly feel pain and a pinch of something biting you, but it takes a lot to gnaw through it. And, leather is easy to find if you don’t have it already. Most people I know have a leather jacket (and some have leather pants, but I won’t judge). Tell me how many people you know own lightweight Kevlar you could take after they turn?
  5. In this ever-changing world, it behooves us to be prepared for disaster to happen at any moment. The Zombie Survival Crew members have a “go-bag” filled with items essential for their survival should disaster strike and they must flee to survive. What are the most essential items for your go-bag and why?
    • My go bag has the following: a clean pair of socks to alternate with the ones I’ll be wearing when it’s time to go. You can’t flee zombies if you develop a nasty fungus infection on your feet. Flint and tinder and dryer lint to start a fire when it’s safe or necessary (I picked that up in the scouts when I was younger). A good multi-tool or swiss army knife probably doesn’t need an explanation. At least six feet of parachute cord can be used for a multitude of things. And lastly, my pistol, because if I have it I’ll use it, but that doesn’t mean I need it.
  6. How did you come up with the premise for Perseverance? And what do you feel makes your book stand out in the zombie lit world?
    • When I sat down a few years ago to write Perseverance I had no intention of writing a full-length novel. It started as a short-story that I was writing one night when I was bored. Just a few pages about the beginning of the apocalypse from a regular guy’s perspective. And then I gave it to a friend who thought it was really good and asked what would happen next, so I wrote the next part. From there it just kept growing and growing and about eight months later the first draft was done. I think it stands out because of the twists to the lore that are in there, and because you never really know what’s going to happen next. Oh and the ending. Everyone tells me the ending is really good and I’ve been getting demands for a sequel already.
  7. Is there anything you find particularly challenging in writing for a horror audience?
    • Real horror fans are not scared by what they are reading. They are curious. Think about it like watching a horror movie, you keep watching because you need to know what’s going to happen next. Horror book fans are the same way, just with a different medium; they want to know just how far a character or antagonist will go to push the human condition. I tried to do that in my book. Yeah, the action is there along with the blood, guts and gore, but they’re never the focus in a really good horror story.
  8. Tell us a little bit about your work with disabled adults and children.
    • My other passion when I’m not writing. My “9 to 5” job is working with disabled adults and trying to teach them job skills to use when they graduate high school. Outside of work I’m a Special Olympic coach for track and field events, as well as basketball. My basketball team has won the county competition 3 years in a row and many of my athletes have come back with medals after the Pennsylvania State Special Olympic Competition at Penn State University. And anyone who has ever seen these competitions know that it is no joke, the athletes are incredibly talented. Two years ago our county program named me “Coach of the Year” and it’s one of the biggest honors I’ve ever received. Working with these individuals has been a huge influence on my life, so much so that I’ve made a pledge on my blog to donate a percentage of my personal royalties from Perseverance back to the program.
  9. What are you working on now? Can you tell us your latest news?
    • A few things, actually. If you’ve been to my website you’ve seen the zombie-themed “Call Me, Maybe” parody that I shot with my friends to help promote the book. We’re working on another one now (Zombie-themed Christmas…all I’m going to say), which should be a lot of fun. Also, I’m writing a new short story that features a special needs individual during the zombie apocalypse because I don’t think that’s been done before. And I have some long-term plans to expand the website and the content there, but that’s a little ways done the road.
  10. Is there anything you would like to say to your readers?
    • Thanks so much for the opportunity to talk to you today. I hope that you check out the website and, if you haven’t already, pick up a copy of Perseverance. Oh, and remember to aim for the head.

About the Author:

James Lacey lives in the Pocono Mountains of Northeastern Pennsylvania. When not writing, he works with disabled adults and children as a paraprofessional and Special Olympics coach. James also enjoys hiking, camping and watching football.

Endorsement: “James Lacey takes the classic zombie story that we all know and love, and then twists it off into the new directions and unexplored territory. Perseverance is fresh, exciting, and edge-of-the-seat spell-binding.”

– Samantha Murphy, 13 Nights of Blood: Legends of the Vampire

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Check out the video spoof James did called It’s a Zombie, Baby!

Bewitching Book Tours: Life After the Undead by Pembroke Sinclair

Today, the Zombie Survival Crew welcomes Pembroke Sinclair and a peek at her book, Life After the Undead. It’s a pleasure to have someone stop by who knows her zombies and isn’t afraid to express her views. Take it away Pembroke.

I was on a panel at a convention recently with Life After the Undead on display, and one of the guests from the audience asked about the book. He said, “Is that vampires?”

“No,” I responded. “Zombies.”

“Oh.” The man raised his eyebrows. “Are they sparkly zombies?”

I was taken aback and slightly shocked. I was the only female on the panel with five males, but why would he assume I would make my zombies sparkly? Was he trying to be funny? If so, I wasn’t amused. Just because I’m female and the book is YA doesn’t mean I can’t write blood and gore.

I snorted and said, “Absolutely not. They are regular, evil zombies.”

Later, the encounter got me thinking about how traditional “bad” guys have been redefined and altered for modern audiences. Obviously, the most apparent example here is the Twilight series. It changed our view of vampires. Other stories and movies have altered how we look at werewolves. But nothing has come out yet that redefined the zombie. Granted, shows like 28 Days Later and the sequels introduced a fast zombie, but I know many people who would argue that they aren’t actually zombies. Many people still believe that the Romero Zombie, or shambler, are the only true zombies.

IronE Singleton

I’m a purist. I believe that zombies are slow moving and rotting. They are dead humans that have returned to life to feed upon the living. They are absolutely not shiny, and they have no thoughts in their vacant minds except to eat. But having the same old story over and over can get a little boring, the convention can get stale, so I made a few changes to the traditional zombie. For one, I made them aware that if they stay in a humid environment for too long, they will deteriorate faster. Therefore, the zombies in Life After the Undead have migrated to more dry climates to survive. They still crave human flesh and can change the living into the undead through a bite, but they are just a little more aware of how quickly they are falling apart.

For me, it was important to stick to the accepted definitions of what constitutes a zombie. I remember watching Night of the Living Dead when I was 15 and not being scared but utterly creeped out by what I saw. I wanted to recreate that feeling for a new audience, but I didn’t want it to feel stale or like I was rewriting the same story, hence the small change. It’s good every now and then to change a traditional monster to make it appeal to a new audience. It perpetuates the myths and introduces them to a new generation. However, I’m pretty sure sparkly zombies will be a sign of the apocalypse.

Life After the Undead by Pembroke Sinclair

Genre: YA Horror | Publisher: eTreasures Publishing | Length: 356 pages | Cover Artist: Jerrod Brown

Madison Lintz

Book Description:

The world has come to an end. It doesn’t go out with a bang, or even a whimper. It goes out in an orgy of blood and the dead rising from their graves to feast on living flesh. As democracy crumples and the world melts into anarchy, five families in the U.S. rise to protect the survivors.

The undead hate a humid environment, so they are migrating westward to escape its deteriorating effects. The survivors are constructing a wall in North Platte to keep the zombie threat to the west, while tyranny rules among the humans to the east.

Capable but naïve Krista is 15 when the first attacks occur, and she loses her family and barely escapes with her life. She makes her way to the wall and begins a new life. But, as the undead threat grows and dictators brainwash those she cares about, Krista must fight not only to survive but also to defend everything she holds dear—her country, her freedom, and ultimately those she loves.

Pembroke Sinclair

About the Author:

Pembroke Sinclair has had several short stories published. Her story, “Sohei,” was named one of the Best Stories of 2008 by The Cynic Online Magazine. She has novellas and a short story collection available from Musa Publishing and eTreasures Publishing. Her two novels, Coming from Nowhere (adult, sci fi) and Life After the Undead (YA, horror), are available from eTreasures Publishing, as well as Death to the Undead (YA, sequel to Life After the Undead), which is forthcoming. Life After the Undead was a Top Ten Finisher in the Preditors and Editors Reader’s Poll in the YA category and the cover art category.

As Jessica Robinson, from March 2008 to January 2011, she wrote scientific articles for Western Farmer-Stockman. Her nonfiction book, Life Lessons from Slasher Films, is available from Scarecrow Publishing (an imprint of Rowman and Littlefield).

Jessica/Pembroke received her Master’s in English, and she is a freelance content editor for Musa Publishing, as well as a former content and line editor for eTreasures Publishing.

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Book Trailer:


And now to help you get a little Halloween freak on, an excerpt from Life After the Undead:


I will never understand peoples’ fascination with the apocalypse. Why would you waste so much time and energy worrying about something you can’t change? Besides, most of the time, it never comes to fruition anyway. Remember Y2K? What a hullabaloo that was. People were so afraid computers were going to fail and throw society back into the Dark Ages that they were stockpiling supplies and moving into the wilderness so they could get away from technology. Why would they move to the wilderness? If technology was going to fail, wouldn’t they be just as safe in a city? I guess they were afraid when technology failed, everyone would go crazy and start killing each other. Either way, it didn’t happen. I wonder how those people felt afterward.
     Then, there was the whole 2012 scare. This one was supposedly based on ancient prediction, so you know it was reliable. Are you kidding? Even the Mayans didn’t believe their own ancestors‟ “vision.” What happened was there had been a tablet that had the Mayan calendar carved into it. The end was broken and faded, so no one knew what it said. Our culture, being the pessimistic lot that we are, automatically assumed it was an end-of-the-world warning. But, again, nothing happened on December 21, 2012. Christmas came and went, and I think everyone, everywhere, even the skeptics, had a little something more to be thankful for. Life went on as usual, and all those doomsayers faded into obscurity.
     The day the world did end was pretty nondescript. By that I mean there was no nuclear explosion or asteroid or monumental natural disaster. There weren’t even any horseman or plagues to announce the end was coming. The world ended fairly quietly. I couldn’t even give you a date because it happened at different times depending on where you were. It was never predicted, and I’m sure a scenario that no one even considered. Who really thinks the dead are going to rise from the grave and destroy the majority of the population? No one but Hollywood, and we all know those are just movies. But that is exactly what happened. Those of us that survived were left wide-eyed, mouth agape, trying to figure out what to do next.
     There were a few who were able to pull their heads out and organize those left behind. They made sure the populace had food, shelter, and protection. They were saviors, the United States’ heroes. Life wouldn’t have gone on without them, and it was pretty difficult those first few years after the zompocalypse.
     Sometimes it’s difficult for me to remember what life was like before the rise of the undead. I was a teenager, though I hesitate to say normal. I wasn’t deformed or anything, but my classmates thought I was strange. I had a fascination with the dark, the macabre, but I wasn’t a Goth or Emo. I read books and magazines about serial killers. I didn’t idolize them or want to be like them—hell no—but I was fascinated with how evil and black a human’s soul could get.
     I wanted to be a psychologist and work with the criminally insane, maybe figure out why they did what they did. Apparently, when you’re 15, your friends think you’re weird if you have desires to help someone other than yourself. While they were worried about becoming popular and getting the right boyfriend, I was trying to figure out how to make society better.
     Of course, those dreams will never come true. Society doesn’t exist. Everything I once held dear is gone. I lost my parents to the horde, like a lot of kids. Unlike some of the others, mine weren’t taken by surprise or in some freak accident; they were taken because of their own stupidity. Some days I miss them a lot, but others I believe they got what they deserved. I might sound callous and uncaring, but what about them? Why would they abandon their 15 year old daughter? It used to keep me up at night, trying to find the answer to that question, but I’ve given up asking it. No reason wasting time on things that could’ve or should’ve been.

Kevin Galbraith

     As I stare out the passenger side window of the semi, I’m reminded how bleak the future has become. The truck rolls down a once heavily traveled highway that has been reduced to a cracked trail. Gas stations and towns dotting the landscape have been abandoned and are crumpling into the weeds that are taking them over. There are a few areas that still resemble pre-zombie destruction, and these are the military outposts set up along the road, used for protection and refueling. I use the term “military” loosely because there is no formal military anymore. It’s a rag-tag group of men and women who were lucky enough to get guns. I chuckle to myself. It’s been two years since I was last out in the world, and a lot has changed since then. I still remember the day the zombies attacked. It’s as clear as if it happened yesterday.

Bewitching Book Tours: Mad World: Sanctuary by Samaire Provost

Mad World Book 2
Samaire Provost

Genre:YA Paranormal
212 pages
Word Count: 59,780

Book Description:

The year is 2017, and the Black Plague infection has swept across most of the United States, leaving death and chaos in its wake. Martial law is the rule rather than the exception, with outbreaks cropping up when they’re least expected. Alyssa and her friends must not only battle outbreaks of the disease, but also find themselves pursued by government agents – men and women determined to track them down at any cost.

Fleeing north to the fabled Sanctuary, Alyssa, Jacob, DeAndre, Caitlyn, Risa and Luke face disturbing ordeals and terrible tragedy as they encounter unbelievable situations in their struggle to reach safety. Using their skills and wits in their fight to survive against ever worsening odds, they weather hardship, betrayal, and the ever-present specter of death as they flee north, all the while vowing to protect one another – and most of all their precious 5-year-old Luke, from a world gone mad.

Sanctuary, the second installment in the Mad World series, is a heart-rending adventure of astonishing revelations, tragic discoveries, agonizing separations and devastating losses that test these friends to their limits. With heart-pounding, edge-of-your-seat suspense at every turn, this is a story you will not be able to put down.

Find out what happens next.

About the Author:

Samaire Provost lives in California with her husband and son. Her love of paranormal stories, odd plots, and unique tales as well as the works of Neil Gaiman, Terry Pratchett, Susan Cooper, Madeleine L’Engle and Stephen King has deeply influenced her writing.

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Kindle | Paperback


We were about 50 feet from the barn when suddenly the lights inside went out.
     “Oh, that is so not good,” I said under my breath.
     Risa stopped completely and stared, trying to see any danger before she got to it. I stopped, too, and we just stood there for the space of a few heartbeats. This night was getting creepier by the hour. After a minute, Risa shrugged and said, “Well, whatever. I can’t just sit here waiting. Let’s go see what scary horrors lie in wait for us in there.”
     At this I burst out laughing, and hung my arm over her shoulders. She had broken the tension, and I felt immensely better. Laughing together we walked toward the now dark barn.
     We got to the barn door and peered in. It was pitch dark, so we switched our flashlights on and tried to illuminate the massive interior.
     “Hmmmm,” I said, trying to see in the darkness beyond the twin beams of light. The barn was too big to see; there was nothing for it, we would have to search the dark expanse cubic yard by cubic yard.
     We split up and began searching and calling every few minutes. I heard a snuffling in the dark reaches, but it was Risa who said, “Awww, hi there little guy.” And then, “Alyssa, come look at this.”
     I trotted over to where Risa was standing at a stall door, shining her flashlight on the interior. Peering over the tall wooden door, I looked inside the stall and saw a mare with what appeared to be her newborn foal. The baby teetered over to its mother on long legs and then ducked its head under and began to nurse.
     “Awww,” I said softly, smiling. We watched the two for a while, marveling at the wonderful sight. It was so adorable. A reminded that life goes on, that the plague hadn’t affected this little family one bit.
     We didn’t hear what had just entered the barn until it was almost upon us. As we watched the mother and baby, the mare’s head shot up and she snorted nervously. At the same time, we heard the low growls, several of them, coming from the direction of the door we’d just come in not five minutes ago.
     “Oh, crud,” Risa said as she turned. The hairs on the back of my neck rose as they did every time I heard those growls when I wasn’t expecting them.
     “Quick, switch off your flashlight,” I whispered. “Maybe it’ll help.” I switched mine off as I said it, and then ducked and ran softly on the hay-covered floor to the far end of the huge barn. Risa followed me, making hardly any sound. We tiptoed along the side of the stalls and tried to make ourselves as small as possible. After we got to the last of the doors, we crouched there in the darkness. I was unwilling to go inside a stall to hide; I didn’t want to be caught in one, with no way out.
     The growling became intermittent, and I thought I could make out at least three different voices. So, at least three zombies now shared this barn with Risa and me, and the mare and her foal. Somehow, I didn’t think the horses had much to worry about.
     In the five-plus years since the epidemic began, scientists had been studying the problem and testing different theories. In the process, they had discovered a few interesting facts about the people infected by the plague. The zombies. First of all, they didn’t seem to be attracted to animals. Lucky for us people, they seemed to only want to taste us. Great, huh?
     Second. They seemed to have very poor vision. Guess that might have had something to do with the way their eyes quickly went milky, as if they had cataracts. Gross. Anyway, they seemed to hunt by smell mostly, and also used their sense of hearing to find their prey. Speaking of prey, we were it. That’s right, our own people, who had been ravished and zombie-fied by this terrible plague, turned back on us and hunted the humans who had yet to be infected.
     Smell. Sounds. These things were on our minds as we huddled there in the dark in the corner of that strange barn. We knew the zombies acted mostly on instinct; they weren’t too smart. But then again, they weren’t too dumb, either. We’d seem zombies duck shots fired at them, and think things through in their seemingly insatiable quest for human flesh. They would attack strategically, looking for any weakness. If we were barricaded in the van, locking the doors on one side, they’d come around to the other side of a car to try the windows there. Luckily, the barn we were in was full of smells other than ourselves. The big pile of horse manure in the corner, for instance.
     We had no choice but to try to find a way out of our predicament, while making as little noise as possible. The three zombies we knew of were growling and shuffling around toward the front of the barn again, while we crouched in the back. I began searching for any back door or window we could use as an escape route, and Risa, seeing what I was doing, began looking with me. We must have been about 8 feet apart, at the back wall of the barn, when the zombie we didn’t know was there jumped down from the loft and onto … me.
     “AHHHHH!!!!!!” I yelled, startled, as I tumbled to the ground. Luckily, the zombie had fallen more than ten feet, so when it landed on me, it rolled off to the side and was momentarily stunned. I quickly scrambled to my feet and unholstered my shotgun, bringing it forward and leveling it at the figure on the ground.
     Risa reacted quickly as well, bringing her the .33 up and training it on the creature. One thing we had learned fast in the last five years was not to hesitate. So I walked up to the figure that was starting to rise, and I fired at its head, the muzzle of my sawed off not a foot away. It quickly dropped to the ground and was still, but the shot, that had been deafening in the closed area, had alerted the other zombies to our presence.
     We both looked up toward the barn door and heard the low growling become even more menacing, if that were at all possible.
     “Oh, to heck with this,” I mumbled, and turning behind me, I shot out the nearest wooden board in the wall of the barn. With Risa covering me, I kicked out a hole large enough so we could get through. I scrambled through the 2-by-3-foot hole I’d made, and Risa emerged after me, with a zombie hot on her heels. The thing actually stuck its head through the hole, and stretched an arm out too, reaching. Big mistake. Huge.
     Quickly holstering my shotgun, I brought my bowie knife up and then down, slashing the thing trying to eat us. The sharp blade sliced cleanly through its neck, and its head rolled free at Risa’s feet, dripping black blood. Hey, what can I say? I liked to keep my blades razor sharp.
     “Oh, gross,” Risa said softly.
     Laughing, I quickly switched back to my shotgun, reloading it in less than 30 seconds. “We need the men here,” I said, pointing my shotgun to the sky. I let off three rounds, at five second intervals. POP!! POP!! POP!! The shots echoed across the farmyard. We heard the growls stop on the other side of the barn wall, and then resume, sounding angrier than ever.
     Looking around, I saw a small water tower on stilts, about three stories tall. We could climb the ladder and, if the zombies came, we’d be able to pick them off one by one. We’d be safe up there. Indicating it with a tilt of my head, I holstered my shotgun and we both trotted over to the ladder.
     “Up you go,” I said, boosting her up. The water tower ladder started about 5 feet off the ground so we had to scramble a bit. The growls had faded away, but I was worried the zombies were going to come around the corner any minute. Boosting the skinny teenager up, I prepared to hoist myself up after her.
     Then I heard the zombies growls, much closer than before. Without stopping to look around at the direction they were coming from, I jumped and grabbed the third rung and hoisted myself up, my foot catching the bottom rung on the first try. There was nothing like being hunted by zombies to hasten your climb up a ladder, I tell ya.
     Risa and I clambered up to the ledge on the bottom of the large, barreled, wooden structure; it was 10-12 feet up. We stood on it, we didn’t want to sit and then have our legs dangling off the end out into possible grab territory. We waited.
     We didn’t have long to wait. It was less than a minute after I started up the ladder that the first zombie shambled into view. It was a female, in an old housecoat that had seen better, non-zombie, days. It walked out into the open, not sure where we were, but definitely smelling us. It was followed by two more zombies, both male, one looked to be an old man and the other a middle aged man. It was almost funny to watch, because the old man zombie appeared to have been a bit crippled by old age before being infected, turned and subsequently infused with zombie strength. So what we were watching was a crooked old zombie that look arthritic, but moving pretty fast and not appearing in pain at all. These three zombies began a zigzag pattern, using their noses to find us.
     They were about twenty feet away when things got really nasty. And by really nasty I mean that a dozen or more young zombies, of varying ages, came to join the adult zombies in their hunt for us humans. Apparently, this had been a pretty large family. It looked like a grandfather, a great grandfather, a mother, and at least a dozen youths ranging in age from around ten all the way up to early twenties. I suspected the father might have been one of the two I’d killed by the barn, but I wasn’t sure. Trying to count these things was useless, plus in the end, we couldn’t know how big the family had been, how many members there were. Heck, we could try to mentally calculate the whole family only to miss the Uncle Bob zombie or the Auntie Tweedie zombie or something. In this situation you just had to assess the threat as best you could and meet the danger head on as it came to you. Deal with the zombies you knew about, and never let down your guard.
     “Shoot, where’s my extra ammo?” Risa said, fumbling in her side bag.
     “I put it in the back pocket, there,” I pointed. I fumbled for my own ammo – we were going to need it. I located the box of cartridges in my side pouch and checked my shotgun. I was ready.
     “Okay, hold my belt,” I said, and after Risa hooked her arm around the wooden structure and grabbed hold of the back of my belt, I leaned over and shot out the ladder. Good. Now they had no way of climbing up to us, I hoped.
     We watched them come, both of us calm, holding our firearms at the ready. We’d been through over five years of this so we were somewhat used to it. This wasn’t even Risa’s first situation of this type. Three other times, we’d been trapped and either holed up or treed like cats and had to pick off zombies one by one to free ourselves. But this was the first time Risa and I had done it alone. I was really counting on her. Glancing sideways I asked, “You okay?”
     Risa looked at me and nodded her head, a look of calm determination on her face. “Absolutely,” she said, then looked down on the advancing horde.
     We later learned that Jacob had heard my three shots and had begun jogging through the trees toward our location. He was almost a mile and a half away, and there was underbrush to deal with, but he made pretty good time. He had slung his shotgun over his shoulder and was trotting steadily, zigzagging through the trees, following the sound of the shots.
     DeAndre had heard the shots, too, but was a bit farther away – over the low hills and south of the water tower. The shots I’d fired sounded faint, but it was closing in on midnight and the night was very quiet and peaceful. The stars were brilliant, and together with the quarter moon, they stood watch as D hiked up through the foothills toward our location.
     Risa and I stood there, waiting for the zombies to wander closer. My shotgun needed to be fired at close range to knock one out for good. I’d shot from several dozen feet away, and you just got a wide spread. The result was a zombie with a pitted, icky, gross, dripping-with-goo face. No, I would need to wait until they had closed within about 6 feet or less. But that was okay, we were up high. I figured we could pick them off one at a time. Unless by some miracle they decided to work together. I’d heard of this happening sometimes. I hoped it didn’t happen tonight.
     “Here comes the first one,” Risa said, taking aim. The zombie shambled up to the water tower and looked up, its eyes all milky and its scalp shredded where it had apparently been bitten when it was a human. It looked like it had once been a teenage girl, maybe 16 or 17. It still wore pedal pushers and a flowery sweater. Growling at us, it stretched its arms upward and jumped, trying to catch the ledge we were on. Risa steadied her .33 and shot off a round: *POP* The bullet caught the zombie right in the temple; it dropped heavily to the ground and was still.
     “Good shot!” I said. And then, “uh, oh,” as three more zombies began jumping for the ledge.
     POP! I knocked another zombie down. It was taller than the first and had actually been able to slap its fingers to the edge of the wood when it jumped. Now it was slumped against one of the wooden stilts that supported the water tower. It would never jump again.
     Risa tried to shoot a third zombie, but it was moving around more erratically and it was harder for her to get a bead on it. It took her four shots, but she finally nailed it in the head, and it fell to the ground.
     The third of the closest zombies just growled and moaned as it looked up at us. I had no pity for the thing. If we were within reach it would not hesitate to attack us. And I did not hesitate. Lowering my shotgun muzzle and sighting down at it, I pulled the trigger and blasted the thing’s face off. It fell backward onto the ground and lay still.
     I looked up to get an idea of what to expect next, and my eyes found the old man zombie approaching. It moved pretty fast – it probably hadn’t moved that fast when it was alive, for several decades. But now, in its crooked, arthritic, sideways shamble-hop, it was fast. And shrewd as well. Looking up at us and staying back a ways, it seemed to study us. Its eyes had not gone completely milky yet, and apparently it could see us. It was kind of creepy in a way, almost as if it was actually sentient.
     “Will you look at that,” I said softly. At the sound of my voice, its gaze focused on me, and it cocked its head.
     “Whoa!” I said, nearly losing my footing in surprise. The old man zombie seemed to notice this, and then it dropped its eyes down to study the area under our feet.
     “I really don’t like the looks of that one,” Risa said. “It’s giving me the creeps.” I nodded. I didn’t like the looks of it either. But my attention was drawn to another wave of zombies trying to get at us. I blew three of them away in quick succession and then leaned back to reload. Risa was getting better with her .33, which was good. That gun was not terribly accurate at greater distances, so you had to wait until you had a clear shot at a zombie no more than ten feet away to have a really good chance of hitting it in the head and stopping it.
     I finished reloading and covered Risa as she also reloaded. Sighting down the muzzle of my shotgun, I picked off two more zombies, then stopped to look up. The grandfather zombie had moved back a bit and was now about a dozen feet away from the base of the water tower. As I watched him, he all of a sudden let out a huge roar that made all the zombies stop all of a sudden. Then it grunted and growled and gestured and OH MY GOD IT WAS COMMUNICATING WITH THE OTHER ZOMBIES.
     “Oh, this is not good,” I said.
     “Oh my God. Oh my ever-loving God, what is happening?” Risa said.
     There were maybe six zombies left, including the old man zombie and, believe it or not, they were in an informal huddle, looking like an amateur football team. Those zombies were concentrating their attention on the old man zombie, and he seemed to somehow be GIVING THEM INSTRUCTIONS.
     “I don’t believe this,” I said. Looking around us, I saw that we were trapped like treed cats. “Listen, Risa. If this situation starts to go south, I want you to make a break for it, okay?”
     “I won’t leave you, Alyssa,” Risa said.
     “I’m not planning on becoming a martyr or anything, but I have a bad feeling about this and I …,” I said.
     “Alyssa, don’t even think that way. We will come out of this alive and we will find Luke,” Risa said.
     Looking around again, I once again pointed my shotgun at the sky and let off three rounds about five seconds apart. I nodded to Risa and reloaded again. Risa nudged my arm, and when I looked up she gestured to the zombies. They were breaking apart slowly and something was happening.
     They seemed to be a bit confused I thought, but then the old man zombie let out another loud roar and then hobble-charged right at us!
     The other zombies followed him, and all of a sudden we had a small mob of half a dozen zombies rushing at our water tower. Risa and I could only watch as they came. Our guns pointed down, we wondered what was going on. This was not a good scenario at all. When dealing with zombies, I had always preferred to be on the side making the active decisions and controlling the game. Now they were calling the shots, executing some bizarre strategy from their zombie playbook.
     We fired as they ran toward us. POP! POP!! POPPOPPOP!!
     Two of the zombies fell to the ground, but four others just kept charging, in fact, they ran right under our ledge.
     A split-second later we felt the water tower shudder and lean slightly before righting itself again. The zombies had hit the stilts holding us up. I couldn’t believe it. They had launched a coordinated attack and were trying to knock the water tower over to get at us.
     “How on earth…?” I said. I didn’t have time to finish my sentence. They were still directly under us, pushing at the stilts in an effort to finish the job.
     We teetered as the zombies below us pushed at the stilts. The water tower swung back and forth several times as we hung on to the wooden planks. Then for a few seconds, it stopped moving to the side and I thought perhaps the zombies had given up. But apparently they had just stepped back to gather their strength for another push, because all of a sudden the movement started again and it was worse than before. We hung on tightly to anything we could grab, but it was no use.
     “Oh! OH!!” Risa said, as the water tower leaned alarmingly to the side.
     “We’re going to have to jump! Come on!” I said, as the thing began to topple over.

Bewitching Book Tours: Corpse Days by Jonathon Kane

The Zombie Survival Crew welcomes Jonathon Kane and a peek at his debut novel, Corpse Days

Corpse Days
Jonathon Kane

Genre: Horror
Cover Artist: Steven Novak

Number of pages: 169
Word Count: Approx. 53,000

Book Description:

Is this the end of the world? Is the Rapture upon us? Has a Zombie Apocalypse arrived? That’s a matter of opinion, but it doesn’t hurt to be a licensed Shooter in these uncertain times.

Meet Stan Norton – a middle-aged Shooter with a haunting past. He wants little to do with the living dead and less to do with the living, until that is, a mysterious young woman with an affinity for guns and martial arts enters his life. An adventure begins and the hunt is on for a reclusive enemy, as the clock ticks down toward a full-blown resurgence of the Corpse Days.

The Zombie Survival Crew had a chance to catch up with Jonathon on his tour and ask him a few questions.

  1. ZSC: When did you first begin writing, and what inspired you to write your first book?
    Jonathon Kane: I began writing in high school. However, Corpse Days was my first book. I was inspired a little by The Walking Dead. I say ‘a little’ because I’ve honestly only watched an episode or two. I liked what I saw, but never had the time to get into it. I have to list the original Night of the Living Dead as an inspiration as well.

  2. ZSC: What books and authors have most influenced your life?
    Jonathon Kane: Ender’s Game – Orson Scott Card. I’ve never read a book faster. It got me excited about writing again after taking a long time off.

  3. ZSC: Tell us a little about your main character, Heather Brewer. Is she based on any real-life person, or entirely from your imagination?
    Jonathon Kane: (Heather Storm) In general, Heather is entirely made up. I’ve known some strong-willed women in my life, but I didn’t pull anything specific from them.

  4. ZSC: Faced with a world infested with flesh-eating biters, what would be your go-to method of defense and why?
    Jonathon Kane: I’d probably go with a Samurai sword. You could keep a good, safe distance with a gun, but you’d constantly have to worry about running out of ammo.

  5. ZSC: In this ever-changing world, it behooves us to be prepared for disaster to happen at any moment. The Zombie Survival Crew members have a “go-bag” filled with items essential for their survival should disaster strike and they must flee to survive. What are the most essential items for your go-bag and why?
    Jonathon Kane: Water, multi-tool, hunting knife, warm clothes for when the temperature drops at night, and a bag of Apple Jacks to munch on.

  6. ZSC: What are the major differences between Heather and Stan’s survival tactics? Which do you feel are the most successful and why?
    Jonathon Kane: Stan is kind of a loner. Part of his survival strategy is to not be brought down by other people’s mistakes. Heather, on the other hand, is a people person. She finds use in those around her and tries to bring out the best in people. I feel like Heather has an advantage. When faced with a horde of hungry brain-eaters, you don’t want to find yourself alone.

  7. ZSC: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in writing for a horror audience?
    Jonathon Kane: I love the horror genre and I think it can be fun. The challenge was writing something that was fun in that weird, sick, messed up kind of way. I hope I’ve achieved that.

  8. ZSC: Since Corpse Days is your debut novel, and men writing female main characters is not as common as females writing male main characters, we’d be interested to hear how it was developing a female main character. What were the biggest challenges for you?
    Jonathon Kane: If Heather had been a girly-girl, I couldn’t have done it. I wouldn’t have done it. The fact that she’s a tough chick is what made it workable for me. Of course, she has feelings and emotions, but so do male characters.

  9. ZSC: What are you working on now? Can you tell us your latest news?
    Jonathon Kane: Right now, I’m working on a collaboration project with another person. It’s going to fall in the horror genre, but it’s not about zombies. Don’t worry, it’s not about werewolves or vampires either. Hopefully, it will be completed in six to eight months.

  10. ZSC: Is there anything you would like to say to your readers?
    Jonathon Kane: Thank you for taking the time to read this. Keep the horde at bay.

About the Author:

Corpse Days is Jonathon Kane’s debut novel. A zombie story was a natural fit for him, as he loves all things Halloween. He felt he could bring human emotions other than just fear into this corner of the horror genre. In high school, he began writing short stories. However, only when Heather Storm came along—the main character of Corpse Days —did he realize a novel was possible. Jonathon has recently finished the sequel to Corpse Days, titled The Calm Before.

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