Tag Archives: Paranormal Fiction

Feature & Giveaway: Ghost Town by Jason Hawes & Grant Wilson

  “WELCOME TO EXETER, THE “MOST HAUNTED TOWN IN AMERICA,” thanks to a deadly flood that unleashed an army of ghosts decades ago. And when ghost trackers Amber, Drew, and Trevor attend a conference during Exeter’s spookiest week of the year, the ghouls grow restless. First, an innocent bookstore worker is mysteriously killed, setting off a string of strange deaths that point to a shadowy spirit known as the Dark Lady.

With a paranormal revolution ensuing, the team must stop the twisted bloodbath. But a past horror involving the death of a former teammate has them spinning faster than a specter in a storm, especially when they learn that it’s his ghost who awakened the Dark Lady. Now, with their lives on the line and the entire town at stake, the three must decide whether to trust the spirit of their old friend or to finally put a stake through his heart.”

Just in time for some great Halloween related reading comes the release of Ghost Town, the second book from Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson who head up TAPS, The Atlantic Paranormal Society—built on Jason and Grant’s interest in getting to the bottom of everyday, paranormal occurrences.  TAPS has developed an impressive reputation for helping people with “unusual domestic problems.”  It has been more than a decade since Jason and Grant first met, and since then TAPS has grown in size and scope to become one of the most respected paranormal-investigation groups in America.  It now has branches across the United States and affiliates in 12 other countries. You may know them best from their hit TV show on SyFy Ghost Hunters.

As many of you know I am always on the look out for books that can strike a little fear especially during the festive Halloween season. However in the past the list of books that have been able to actually scare me to any degree have been few and far between. When approached to be a part of the Ghost Town promotion I was very much excited, not only to have a new book to give a try for that special fear factor but to also very excited be working with the creators of TAPS since I am a big fan of the show. I was especially interested to read the book knowing of the team’s approach to the paranormal in that they are very reserved and take a scientific approach until they simply have no other explanation for what could be paranormal phenomenon. I wondered how that would affect the crafting of a book that is primarily paranormal in nature and most undoubtedly designed to strike fear in the heart of it’s readers?

Ghost Town is definitely a little different from what I would have expected but it did not disappoint in it’s creep factor. The book really is a never-ending ride into all aspects of the paranormal and the things that go creep in the night. While at times I found the books to be a little unbelievable and therefore not really frightening…there were other times where the spook factor was undeniable. I’m not gonna lie. There was a point when I quit reading the book late into the night with the pitch dark surrounding me and only my tiny book light creating a small glow with the surrounding shadows beyond. The crafting of the story is definitely eerie and will leave you a little uneasy as you slip off into sleep at night. It’s perfect for this Halloween season and for any reader wanting a little scare…including those who might be skeptical and thinking a true fright from literature might be impossible. Unafraid? Skeptical? Non-Believer? Give it a try. I dare you.

Ultimate Paranormal Book Pack Giveaway

Now just in time for Halloween  you too can stock up on some great spooky reading to get you in the mood for the upcoming season. Thanks to the generous folks at Gallery Books I am pleased to be able to giveaway two great titles to two very lucky readers here at Stiletto Storytime. Not only will readers receive a copy of Ghost Town by it’s release date on October 9, 2012 but they will also receive a copy of Jason and Grant’s first book Ghost Trackers as well. But you have to act quick!

Giveaway ends at noon EST on  October 4, 2012. US address only please. The winners will be chosen by random number generator and contacted by e-mail. To enter just comment below. Good Luck to all and Happy Reading!

Want extra entries? You can get an extra entry by doing any of the following:

Be/Become a Follower of Stiletto Storytime

Be/Become a Follower of Stiletto Storytime on Twitter

Be/Become a Follower of (any/all) Ghost Hunters Jason Hawes Grant Wilson on Twitter

“Like” Jason Hawes and/or Ghost Hunters on Facebook

Tweet or Blog about this Giveaway (Please leave link in comments)


Wow…thanks for all the great response to this very short giveaway! I know everyone is very excited to get a hold of Jason & Grant’s newest book so in the interest of getting it to you as soon as possible- let’s announce our winners! Congrats to Paxton Walker and Margay! You’ve both won a copy of both “Ghost Trackers” and “Ghost Town”. Enjoy and as always enjoy “Ghost Hunters” as well especially now during the festive Halloween season!


Filed under Adult Books, Books to TV, Contests, New Books, Paranormal

Blog Tour: The Girl Below by Bianca Zander

    “Suki Piper is a stranger in her hometown. . . .

After ten years in New Zealand, Suki returns to London, to a city that won’t let her in. However, a chance visit with Peggy—an old family friend who still lives in the building where she grew up—convinces Suki that there is a way to reconnect with the life she left behind a decade earlier. But the more involved she becomes with Peggy’s dysfunctional family, including Peggy’s wayward sixteen-year-old grandson, the more Suki finds herself mysteriously slipping back in time—to the night of a party her parents threw in their garden more than twenty years ago, when something happened in an old, long-unused air-raid shelter. . . .”

Sometimes contemporary fiction can run a bit dry…or at least predictable in it’s plot and characters. However The Girl Below is anything but your average contemporary novel as it winds serpentine like through the present, past and even at times…the paranormal. Following a disheveled and down on her luck Suki as she returns to a city she once knew as home, readers will find themselves within an unpredictable world where reality at times-especially that of the past becomes not only questionable but un-trustable even.

It’s a book that transcends time and the real world while still managing to remain in reality enough to be considered realistic fiction. Unexplainably eerie at times and full of quirky little asides…it’s definitively different from most. Full of childhood recollections, odd characters and an un-assuming leading lady, the book is if anything a mystery within a mystery at times.

All in all it’s a pleasant surprise and a book that will leave you guessing…even perhaps at the very end. If you’re looking for a taste of something different in the vast word of new releases…take a chance on The Girl Below and see where it and your mind will take you. It’s a great one for discussion since it seems to affect different people in vastly different ways. Everyone seems to pull away with something different in the end which can be fascinating when readers compare.

So make sure to check out the tour schedule for The Girl Below here and see what everyone thought. If you read the book I would also love to know your opinion as well. Comments are always welcome and cherished.

Author Bianca Zander can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.


Filed under Adult Books, Blog Tour, New Books, Paranormal

Review & Giveaway: The Taker by Alma Katsu

   “True love can last an eternity . . . but immortality comes at a price. . . .

On the midnight shift at a hospital in rural Maine, Dr. Luke Findley is expecting another quiet evening of frostbite and the occasional domestic dispute. But the minute Lanore McIlvrae—Lanny—walks into his ER, she changes his life forever. A mysterious woman with a past and plenty of dark secrets, Lanny is unlike anyone Luke has ever met. He is inexplicably drawn to her . . . despite the fact that she is a murder suspect with a police escort. And as she begins to tell her story, a story of enduring love and consummate betrayal that transcends time and mortality, Luke finds himself utterly captivated.

Her impassioned account begins at the turn of the nineteenth century in the same small town of St. Andrew, Maine, back when it was a Puritan settlement. Consumed as a child by her love for the son of the town’s founder, Lanny will do anything to be with him forever. But the price she pays is steep—an immortal bond that chains her to a terrible fate for all eternity. And now, two centuries later, the key to her healing and her salvation lies with Dr. Luke Findley.

Part historical novel, part supernatural page-turner, The Taker is an unforgettable tale about the power of unrequited love not only to elevate and sustain, but also to blind and ultimately destroy, and how each of us is responsible for finding our own path to redemption.”

 We all have them. The titles may be different but the existence of the books are all the same for each of us. There are those books that you mean to read. Often times they are books that have received a large amount of attention or even praise and as a reader you truly mean to read them, you make the mental note again and again but somehow never seem to get around to it. It’s almost as if you are saving those titles for a reader’s rainy day perhaps? Confession time..The Taker has long been one of mine. Saved for who knows what reason and then eventually devoured in almost one single sitting. I honestly did not put it down for two solid days. Leaving me wondering: why on earth did I wait to read this?

What can I say? This book really hit all the right notes for so many reasons. There is almost nothing about it that I didn’t truly, deeply enjoy. Dipping between modern day and a time long ago, the telling is pitch perfect for both which I think is a tricky thing within itself for a writer to accomplish but Alma Katsu proves it can be done and done well.

The core of the novel is the love that Lanny feels for Luke. It’s that kind of love that is so powerful that you know it will either redeem or destroy. Love is the driving force in this novel and I think the author did a great job of making it feel both believable and real. It was essential that the reader understand and in some ways be able to relate to how a person that deeply in love would actually feel. The author did a splendid job of building and establishing that intoxication. As she describes it at one point…

“It was like being in love with the sun: brilliant and intoxicating to be near, but impossible to keep to oneself. It was hopeless to love him and yet it was hopeless to not to.” 

In the end the only positive thing I can glean from waiting so long to indulge in this book is that now I have a shorter wait time than everyone else for the next book to continue this addictive series. The Reckoning releases June 19, 2012 and I can promise I will not be waiting one day to dive deep within it’s pages.

 Gallery Books Book Giveaway

 I so love being able to give away books that I honestly thoroughly enjoyed reading.  Thanks to the generous folks at Gallery Books I am very pleased to be able to provide a brand new paperback copy of The Taker  to one lucky reader at Stiletto Storytime. This giveaway will end midnight EST May 18, 2012 and is available to a US address only. The lucky winner will be chosen by random number generator and contacted by e-mail. Want a sneak peek at a scene? You can check out The Taker for yourself here.

To enter just comment below and share what books you have saved in the past or are “saving” for your reader’s guilty pleasure? What is that book you keep meaning to read but just never seem to get around to?

Want extra entries? You can get an extra entry by doing any of the following:

Be/Become a Follower of Stiletto Storytime

Be/Become a Follower of Stiletto Storytime on Twitter

Be/Become a Follower of Gallery Books on Twitter

“Like” Gallery Books on Facebook

Tweet or Blog about this Giveaway (Please leave link in comments)


Filed under Adult Books, historical fiction, Paranormal

Review: Deadlocked by Charlaine Harris

    Everything and everyone seem to suddenly be veering completely out of control and as usual the quirky Sookie Stackhouse is front and center of it all. It seems she just can’t keep her sweet southern self safe from the interactions of those pesky supernatural beings and who can blame her seeing that she is married to the powerful vampire Eric Northman(at least for the time being that is) and part other-worldly being herself.

Since that tiny bit of faery blood runs through her veins allowing her to read the minds of others telepathically, she seems to always be caught up in the machinations of those that surround her whether she joins willingly or not. In that respect within the somewhat poetic pages of Deadlocked not much has changed. Whether the world of Faery, the kingdoms of the vampires or the restless packs of were Sookie seems to be ever in demand. However suddenly her relationships to this out of this world collection of creatures have converged into one and it is a convergence of danger rather than safety.

The killing of the powerful vampire Victor in the former book Dead Reckoning has come back to haunt all who were involved both human and vampire alike. Unwelcome visitors have arrived including a vamp queen seductress intent upon luring Eric away from Sookie with promises and a pledge of power and wealth. As Eric is made vulnerable after an unfortunate feeding incident, the ever-loyal Sookie sets out to help in his exoneration with an array of characters against and at her side including her former lover Bill Compton.

But as the clues fall into place Sookie soon finds betrayal may surround her in the places she suspected it least and the very foundations of her life may be shaken to their very roots. As the otherworldly seem to come together in a plot designed to take everything Sookie holds dear, she must decide whether to fight or become resigned to the fate the supernaturals have decreed. A powerful object could answer all her prayers but only if she has the true sight to see what means the most and use it correctly. Will she lose Eric forever or find that the love she has long sought has been by her side all along?

In the latest suspenseful installment of the supernatural world of Bon Temps, Louisiana; worlds collide setting up the perfect stage for Charlaine Harris’ final words and her ultimate plans for the future of her dear Sookie. With only one book remaining it’s never been more important for Sookie Stackhouse to follow her heart and discover the path and being that she’s destined for. Unfortunately for the eager readers and die-hard fans alike they will have to wait a whole year to learn just who that being is.


Filed under Adult Books, Charlaine Harris, New Books, Paranormal

Review: Throat by R. A. Nelson

Seventeen-year-old Emma seems like your average teenage girl except for the fact that she considers herself cursed. A sufferer of epilepsy she has had to sacrifice many of the normal teen joys to her disease. Since the seizures began even the simplest pleasures such as driving a car, getting the attention of a boy or keeping a friend she can trust, have been lost to her.  But the complications of epilepsy are nothing compared to what she must face after a supernatural being changes her life forever.

After the attack of a vampire Emma must face the uniqueness of what she has become. Epilepsy once seemed a curse but it might have been the only thing keeping her from becoming one of the truly undead. While Emma has been given some attributes of a vampire many more seem to not apply to her such as an allergy to sunlight and a need for blood.  However the danger of her situation is all too real and she must find a way to save her immortal life and the mortal lives of those she loves. Pursued by her creator Emma searches for a way to defeat him while also learning the ins and outs of her new life. As she sets out on her own she soon finds a friend in the most unlikely of places as she prepares for battle at a NASA research facility. But while Emma left home to protect those she loved, she might have only brought danger to one she might be falling in love with.

In a young adult literary scene filled with vampire novels it can be difficult to stand out.  It seems as if every other book published for teens has a supernatural element hiding between its covers. However Throat manages to make itself new if only because of its realistic style. Nelson writes in a manner that feels like real life despite the fact that his main character is a vampire hybrid engaging in a fight for her life against her more powerful maker.  Enriching the story with Emma’s medical condition and the connected complications during her transformation Nelson has created a character unlike any other. Add in the world of NASA and some well researched vampire lore and readers will find a new take that will appeal to more that just paranormal fans.

Unfortunately while Throat may draw in some more reluctant readers it may also deter others with its length and somewhat drawn out storyline. Attention to detail is obvious but might be overwhelming to those looking for a strictly paranormal based story. Those readers who do connect and stick with it could find themselves intrigued and possibly hungering for more.

Throat by R.A. Nelson will be released January 25, 2011.

Think realistic vampire fiction might whet your thirst? Try a recent adult release: The Radleys by Matt Haig


Filed under New Books, Paranormal, Young Adult Books

Review: Torment by Lauren Kate


Torment is the much-anticipated second book to Fallen, the novel sensation by author Lauren Kate and the first book in the Fallen series. A story of the world on the brink of war, the book straddles the world of Angels and mortals and many other creatures in between such as demons, outcasts and Nephilim. Nephilim are the offspring of Angels and mortals, they are also with whom the Angel Daniel has chosen to hide his mortal love Luce. Tucked away at a school on the California coastline, Luce awaits Daniel while searching for her own meaning in her past and the lives she once lived.  As her education continues into things beyond her mortal world. Luce finds that perhaps she is not so normal at all.

Unlike Fallen, Torment allows readers much more insight into the humanness of the original equation set forth by Daniel and Luce’s relationship.  Doomed to fall for Daniel again and again through each life, Luce never lives past the age of seventeen when her and Daniel kiss, thereby ending her mortal life until her next reincarnation where she will remember nothing. But Luce now beings to wonder about her human self each time and the families and lives she was forced to leave behind. While she did not know what falling for Daniel would mean each time, he did. He knew that by being with her he was in fact ending her life. And yet he chose to do so.

While her feelings for Daniel still feel like the world may depend upon them Luce finds herself wondering if Daniel really cares for her the way she once thought, as she truly is, just another mortal girl? If so why sacrifice her life each time?  Doubts boil to the surface and the idea of a normal relationship begins to look attractive as Luce learns more and more about her past lives through what she once called “shadows” but now knows as Announcers. As a truce comes to an end, and a war of epic proportions approaches everyone must choose a side. What side will Luce choose and will it be with Daniel?

The second book in the Fallen series is even stronger than the first. It delves into the feelings of Luce and the questions that arise when the first book is really considered. It’s a book of much more maturity and less action but one that leaves readers satisfied in a different way and eagerly awaiting the next.

~Torment by Lauren Kate will be released tomorrow September 28, 2010.~

* While I must admit I love the covers chosen for this series and the consistency, it did bother me slightly that the cover of the second book does not accurately portray certain physical aspects of Luce for most of the book. However as a cover in general it is gorgeous.


Filed under New Books, Paranormal, Young Adult Books

Review: Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

https://i0.wp.com/2.bp.blogspot.com/_eO9x8ffzhyc/TBmKbx7zCJI/AAAAAAAAAq8/mgmc2n_ceM4/s1600/Paranormalcy_KierstenWhite2.jpg The genre of paranormal literature in the young adult book world has exploded in the last year. It almost seems as if every book has at least one werewolf, vampire or rogue faery running around between its covers. Sometimes it feels like they all begin to blur together in one endless stream of the supernatural. Amazingly author Kiersten White has found a way to not only make paranormal new but to create a story that goes beyond just the paranormal creatures themselves. In her new book Paranormalcy she creates a world that is full of the paranormal but not over-run by them. It’s the story of your average teen girl who’s not really average at all.

Paranormalcy is a book that will grab you from the very first chapter. It’s different, it’s new and it’s a keeper.  Evie is your everyday teenager except for one thing, she works for the IPCA (International Paranormal Containment Agency) meaning she spends a large amount of time hunting and tagging paranormal beings in the real world. You see Evie is unique, she can see through the glamours of any creature meaning none can hide from her “special” eyes; she is one of a kind. However in other ways she is just like most teen girls, she yearns to experience a real high school life, she’s addicted to a teen TV drama and she dreams of the day she will receive her first kiss. While yearning for a more normal life, Evie has learned to adapt to her world as she knows it until events begin that make her question whether she is an employee of the IPCA or one of it’s prisoners. Who can she really trust, who is the real enemy in the struggle between humans and paranormals?

Throw in a dash of true teen love, a hunky supernatural and the possible end of the paranormal world and you have a non-stop thrill ride into an inventive and unique story.  Adults and teens alike will devour this fresh perspective and hunger for more after the last page has turned. Kiersten White has created a work that has exceeded it’s hype, Paranormalcy is a must read not only for lovers of the supernatural but for anyone who enjoys a good read.


Filed under Girly Books, Paranormal, Young Adult Books

Review: Nevermore by Kelly Creagh


Edgar Allen Poe, high school cheerleading and true love, not three subjects you might think would naturally work together to create a richly crafted love story. Especially not a tale of two teens fighting against not only the world we live in but one beyond.  And yet it works and beautifully so, Kelly Creagh has created a magically engrossing novel in her debut work Nevermore.  Knocking down the barriers of social stereotypes and crossing lines long drawn, Creagh has presented a story unique in its combination of a classical literature figure and the modern young adult novel.  The author shows an amazing scope of Knowledge of the great poet himself and high school life with added in dashes of paranormal in a twist that makes the work wonderfully dark in it’s own special way.

When assigned to partner with the high school’s infamous “King of the Goths” in her English class, the popular Isobel Lanley is horrified as her journey into another world begins. Being the top flyer on the cheerleading team, her star football playing boyfriend Brad and “the crew” all used to fill her days but now she finds herself mysteriously drawn to Varen Nethers and his dark looks and jade eyes.

However soon her life begins to fall to pieces around her as another world appears in her dreams. Edgar Allen Poe once just the subject of their English project now takes on a new light, as visions and a mysterious figure named Reynolds appear to warn of dangers ahead in what is surely just an imaginary place. As Isobel fights to keep control of her life, she is also losing her heart to Varen who himself is a swirl of secrets and mysteries. Whoever said that opposites attract might have been right but in the end it’s the person that matters and Isobel and Varen find themselves clinging to each other as other forces try to force them apart.

Nevermore is a book that keeps you guessing until the very end and opens the door for more from Creagh in the future. With characters such as Isobel and Varen who are so vividly imagined and realistically crafted, the next book will be highly anticipated for sure. Always once step ahead of the reader Nevermore is a book to engage with, wonder over and leave the troubles of your world behind if only for a little while.

As a librarian and former Kentuckian myself I was so excited to learn more about Kelly Creagh after reading this amazing book. I truly enjoyed all 541 pages and cannot wait to see what comes next!

The Raven by Edgar Allen Poe

Leave a comment

Filed under Classic Literature, Library Fun, New Books, Paranormal, Young Adult Books

Review: Insatiable by Meg Cabot

https://i0.wp.com/www2.2space.net/images/upl_newsImage/1276826433.jpg“Sick of hearing about vampires? So is Meena Harper. But her bosses are making her write about them anyway, even though Meena doesn’t believe in them. Not that Meena isn’t familiar with the supernatural. See, Meena Harper knows how you’re going to die. (Not that you’re going to believe her. No one ever does.)  But not even Meena’s precognition can prepare her for what happens when she meets—then makes the mistake of falling in love with—Lucien Antonescu, a modern-day prince with a bit of a dark side. It’s a dark side a lot of people, like an ancient society of vampire hunters, would prefer to see him dead for.

The problem is, Lucien’s already dead. Maybe that’s why he’s the first guy Meena’s ever met whom she could see herself having a future with. See, while Meena’s always been able to see everyone else’s future, she’s never been able look into her own.  And while Lucien seems like everything Meena has ever dreamed of in a boyfriend, he might turn out to be more like a nightmare.  Now might be a good time for Meena to start learning to predict her own future…If she even has one.

Meena Harper is absolutely one of Meg Cabot’s best characters to date. She’s not your conventional anything and yet she winds up being a fantastic heroine who readers will not only pull for and but also find irresistible. Of late I have had a busy reviewing schedule which in some ways had put me in a funk…I needed something fun, something witty, something with spunk to make me laugh…and of course Cabot did it! With her fantastical plot twists, hilarious pop culture references, purse obsessed antics and of course one heck of delicious Prince of Darkness who could resist this book? It’s a wonderful read to get lost in and to have fun with…vampires have taken over but Cabot shows they can still take and make a joke. However Insatiable is not just another beach read, there is enough classical literature built in to make readers of Dracula giggle at certain allusions and references. ( Yes, we lovers of classical literature do giggle but only on occasion and never in public). Fans of 24 and fashionistas will also feel “in”…as always Cabot has a little bit for everyone. All around Insatiable was home run for me…the perfect book at the perfect time!

Reading Insatiable also reminded me of one of my favorite lines from Interview with a Vampire:

“Vampires who pretend to be humans pretending to be vampires…..How avant-garde.”.

Indeed. Ms. Cabot…Bravo!


Filed under Adult Books, Chick Lit, Meg Cabot, New Books, Paranormal

Review: Death’s Excellent Vacation

https://i0.wp.com/2.bp.blogspot.com/_RX9KFt4q6Bc/SuEjpMPaMWI/AAAAAAAAAcg/xJBFPp5QzhI/s320/deathsvacation.jpgEveryone needs a vacation, even the undead and especially the immortal wouldn’t you say?  With Death’s Excellent Vacation, editors Charlaine Harris and Toni L. P. Kelner have presented readers with thirteen out of this world stories from some of today’s best-known and beloved paranormal writers including the editors themselves. Authors such as Jeff Abbott, L.A. Banks, Sarah Smith and Daniel Stashower all contribute stories to the collection including many others of paranormal notoriety. Ranging from eerie to intellectual and down right hilarious the anthology has something for everyone and a little bit of everything included.

Vampires, ghouls, ghosts and demons all make appearances in this collection of stories about what the supernatural do when they’re off the clock. This newest compilation proves to be a wild ride on the supernatural side ranging from a brand new sexy Sookie Stackhouse story to the out of this world tale of one demon dog’s unique European tour. Each story while not involving what one may consider a typical vacation does ring true to the theme “because everyone-and-everything needs a break from the routine”, whatever said routine might be.

Lovers of the genre will enjoy the uniqueness of each story and the variations in writing style and characterization woven into one book. However those not familiar with paranormal literature and its peculiarities may find themselves confused by the changing personas created by each writer. Vampires for instance take on different characteristics and weaknesses depending on their creator in each story. Some writers allow their vampires the joy of the sun during their vacas while others keep them far away within the confines of darkness for fear of absolute death. While sometimes difficult to follow this varying outlook is one of the things that makes this work a interesting resource for seeking out new paranormal writers and helping reader’s find their own niche and personal favorites.

In the end die hard readers of the paranormal and newbies will all find a story to perfectly fit their vacation reading within its magical pages. And as with any short story collection one can sit down and read straight through or pick and choose when the moment is right. Some ups and some downs between stories may be felt due to personal writing tastes of the reader but still a spooky addition to any reader’s reading list just in time for summer.
And did I mention it includes a new Sookie Stackhouse story?
Death’s Excellent Vacation will be released tomorrow August 3, 2010.
Also coming February 2011 is The Sookie Stackhouse Companion Book.


Filed under Adult Books, Charlaine Harris, New Books, Paranormal, Short Story Collections