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Spirits of Vengeance

Spirits of Vengeance by Rob J. Hayes

SPFBO8

He'll die as many times as it takes. The Ipian Empire was once a land that welcomed dragons and spirits alike, but a century of war and bloodshed saw them all but vanish. Now, the lost things are returning and the Onryo have gathered. Five legendary spirits with mysterious powers, bent on freeing an ancient evil that would wreak havoc on humanity. Haruto swore his soul to the God of Death for the chance to hunt down the vengeful ghost of his wife. Now an onmyoji, he’s tasked by the Imperial Throne to hunt down monsters and malicious spirits. But he knows not all spirits are evil and not all deserve the peace of the sword. Kira is a student at Heiwa, an academy for children with dangerous techniques. But she has a secret, she’s not like the other students. When the school is attacked, she flees with one of the tutors, determined to hide both from those who would kill her, and those who would use her. As a plague of spirits sweeps across the land, the Onryo leave a bloody trail for Haruto to follow. But who’s hunting who? The Mortal Techniques novels are a series of stand-alone stories that can be read entirely independently, set in the award-winning Mortal Techniques universe.


Lesser Known Monsters

Lesser Known Monsters by Rory Michaelson

Being the chosen one isn’t always a good thing. Oscar Tundale is useless, or at least that's what he's always thought. He and his friends are about to discover that not only are monsters real, but some of them are very interested in Oscar. Now, they must find out what the monsters want, before something terrible happens to London; or worse yet, the world. Lesser Known Monsters is an own voices queer dark fantasy featuring diverse characters on a found family adventure. Perfect for fans of action and paranormal romance seeking LGBTQ+ heroes. This is the first book in the Lesser Known Monsters series.


The Price of Power

The Price of Power by Michael Michel

SPFBO9

Prince Barodane could not hold back the darkness. Not even in himself. He laid an innocent city in its grave and then died a hero. In his absence, war whispers across the land. Power-hungry highborn dispatch spies and assassins to the shadows as they maneuver for the throne, while an even greater threat rises in the South. Monsters and cultists flock to the banners of a mad prophet determined to control reality…and then shatter it. Destiny stalks three to the brink of oblivion. A dead prince that isn’t actually dead. Barodane buried his shameful past in a stupor of drugs, drink, and crime, and now, he’d rather watch the world fall apart than wear a crown again. An orphan with hero’s blood who is forced to make a harrowing choice: betray her country or sacrifice her first love. And a powerful seer who has no choice at all–her grandson must die. If any of them fails to pay the price… The cost will be the world’s complete annihilation. "This book feels like a worthy successor to some of the greats of fiction, including Malazan, A Song of Ice and Fire, and Wheel of Time." - Andy Peloquin, Amazon #1 bestseller of the Darkblade series.


Death of a Christmas Tree Salesman

Death of a Christmas Tree Salesman by Patricia Meredith

Sam Shovel only comes to life for twelve days a year at Christmastime, and this year, he's in time to solve a murder mystery at the North Pole. O. Tannenbaum—the world's largest supplier of Christmas trees—has been murdered, and although Nick and Nora Claus are too busy to solve the mystery, Sam has enough time on his branchy hands to take a stab at it. Woven with enough Christmas references to choke a reindeer, find out if he succeeds in Death of a Christmas Tree Salesman. "Patricia Meredith's recipe for a perfect Christmas mystery? Magic with a dash of murder." —Jess Brady, @jess.literarylife, Bookstagram Reviewer “I see Sam Shovel right up there with Frosty and Rudolph—he'll go down in history!” — Kathy Buckmaster "Cookies, candy, presents...and murder! A holiday mystery that will leave you questioning...and craving sweets!" —Niko Sollazzo, @nikosbookreviews, BookTuber


Devil’s Hill II

Devil’s Hill II by E. Reyes

Welcome back to Devil’s Hill, AZ, where reality distorts, and nightmares walk in E. Reyes’ latest collection of terrifying tales. A séance to contact a deceased horror author unleashes chaos. A girl works with ghosts to stop kidnappings and murders on Halloween night. A group of teens are attacked by wolf-like creatures in the desert. The jack-o’-lantern-headed “Pumpkin Man” goes on a rampage collecting souls. These unnerving tales and others each draw you one step closer to becoming a permanent resident of Devil's Hill!


The 5-Day Plan

The 5-Day Plan by Ashish Rastogi

Curly-haired, bespectacled, Dr. Akhil can replace your hip without a sweat, but he is a rambling, fidgeting fool outside the operation room. The worst qualifications to have for a man in search of love. However, one can overcome any obstacle with a bit of planning. Right? Plan A is simple. Unfortunately, the heart-to-heart blows up in shouting hysterics, tears, and abandonment. Worry not; time for Plan B. A year in London, and Plan B goes belly up. All because of a reality dating show. Anyway, who cares. Akhil has his plant babies. They are not traitors like the stars that Akhil loves gazing at night. The twinklers conspire to bring the dark enemy back into his orbit. Nope, not happening. Akhil has a plan. This time a three-letter one. Plan KDA- Keep Dan Away. But it is not easy blocking "the player" hell-bent on dribbling his way past Akhil's defences one accident at a time- ready to score. Add the nosy Keely matriarch and her two sidekick clowns to flying forks, tripping legs, and an accomplished kiss coach; our Akhil is in deep trouble.


Dragon Mage

Dragon Mage by ML Spencer

SPFBO7

Aram Raythe has the power to challenge the gods. He just doesn't know it yet. Aram thinks he's nothing but a misfit from a small fishing village in a dark corner of the world. As far as Aram knows, he has nothing, with hardly a possession to his name other than a desire to make friends and be accepted by those around him, which is something he's never known. But Aram is more. Much, much more. Unknown to him, Aram bears within him a gift so old and rare that many people would kill him for it, and there are others who would twist him to use for their own sinister purposes. These magics are so potent that Aram earns a place at an academy for warrior mages training to earn for themselves the greatest place of honor among the armies of men: dragon riders. Aram will have to fight for respect by becoming not just a dragon rider, but a Champion, the caliber of mage that hasn't existed in the world for hundreds of years. And the land needs a Champion. Because when a dark god out of ancient myth arises to threaten the world of magic, it is Aram the world will turn to in its hour of need.


Heart, Haunt, Havoc

Heart, Haunt, Havoc by Freydís Moon

Laced with romance, gothic imagery, Catholic mysticism, diaspora, and horror… When lonely transgender exorcist, Colin Hart, finds himself challenged by an unruly haunted house in Gideon, Colorado, he’s kept awake by ghosts, demons, ghouls, and the handsome nonbinary owner of the house, Bishop Martínez. Unlike the simple hauntings Colin is accustomed to, Bishop’s house is a living beacon, attracting a plethora of inhuman creatures, including a vengeful wolf-headed spirit who might be the key to quieting their sleepless nights. But as a heartbreaking mystery unravels, Colin comes face-to-face with the past Bishop tried to bury, opens a closet full of bloody skeletons, and trips into an accidental romance. As paranormally skilled as Colin might be, this particular haunting may be too messy for him to handle…


Prince of the Sorrows

Prince of the Sorrows by Kellen Graves

Without an academic endorsement to make him valuable to the high fey, Saffron will be sent back through the veil to the human world. The place he was traded from as a changeling-baby, and a place he is terrified of. And while getting an endorsement shouldn't be impossible, it's hindered by the fact his literacy is self-taught, using books stolen off of Morrígan Academy's campus of high fey students. When mistaken identity leads to Saffron learning the true name of brooding, self-centered, high fey Prince Cylvan, what begins as a risk of losing his life (or his tongue) becomes an opportunity to earn the future he wants. In exchange for an endorsement, he and Cylvan form a geis where Saffron agrees to find a spell to strip power from Cylvan's true name. While Prince Cylvan doesn't know Saffron can barely read, Saffron is determined to meet his end of the deal in order to remain in Alfidel—or, maybe, just to remain by Cylvan's side, as affections grow stronger every night they spend alone in the library together. But as other human servants soon fall victim to a beast known only as “the wolf”, Saffron realizes he has embroiled himself in a manipulative reach for power like he never anticipated—and even Prince Cylvan cannot be trusted. Between the wolf, uncovering forbidden magic, and his growing feelings for the prince, Saffron will have to decide which is most important to him—his endorsement, the lives of his friends, or the prince’s life and wellbeing.


Eldritch Sparks: Shadows of Otherside Book 2

Eldritch Sparks: Shadows of Otherside Book 2 by Whitney Hill

The deal that secured Arden Finch a measure of freedom came with strings, and now everybody wants to pull them. Arden has carved out a place for herself in Otherside—at a price. Pressure mounts as she juggles her day job as a private investigator with her new obligations, fraying relationships, and growing elemental powers. If that wasn't enough, a lich has appeared in the Triangle, sowing violence and raising zombies. Everyone wants Arden to get rid of it⁠, including the gods. But the lich offers something Arden has always wanted: enough power to stand alone. All she has to do is put herself first for once...and betray everyone she cares about. Urban fantasy and paranormal fans of Kim Harrison, Faith Hunter, Seanan McGuire, and the early Anita Blake series will find a kick-ass heroine in Arden. Praise for Eldritch Sparks: Shadows of Otherside Book 2 "A compelling book of Otherside that goes from strength to strength." - Kirkus Reviews (starred review)


Isla's Reach

Isla's Reach by Francisca Liliana

One catastrophe is all it takes. The world of Iona has forgotten the time when dragons ruled the skies and their Viden riders controlled the wind. The Evandis War, started by the long dead Cinaed the Decayed was won, but at the extermination of every dragon and their Viden riders. Evelyn, the last Viden, has been in hiding for her entire life, but no more. Once she bonds with Oretem, the last dragon, her purpose quickly turns from being the shield for those she loves, to the blade that fights to survive. A Reticent assassin haunts her steps, one who has his own demons to battle. They both seek a single person--Meric, a bounty hunter Venandi, who the assassin endeavors to destroy and the Viden hopes to save. These three lives intertwine in ways that leave them questioning everything they've ever known. The roots of Isla's Reach burrow deep to carry the world, and it won't be long until they've broken entirely.


Tracker

Tracker by Bethany Votaw

A young detective desperate to fix his mistake. A recluse pulled from the woods. A murderer on the run. Detective Adam Reis has everything to prove and mistakes to fix. He enlists the help of local search and rescue and an unlikely tracker to help him find a murderer who fled into the winter Montana wilderness. An old recluse, Clay, comes out of the forest when asked to be a tracker. Clay has his own secrets to hide but reluctantly agrees to help the young detective. Will these two unlikely men work together to track a dangerous man through the fierce terrain and snow? Or will their own secrets be their downfall?


Nightmare Tenant

Nightmare Tenant by Richard Holliday

WHERE OCCUPANCY BECOMES POSSESSION… The chilling prologue left me hanging and I had no idea what was going on – so I just had to read on! I know the world, I spent most of my life driving past those flats, so I totally get the inspiration! Top notch horror with some brutal but satisfying scenes. Really enjoyed it, didn’t see some of the twists coming! Very effective! Loved the setting and reasons behind its hauntedness. I finished reading Nightmare Tenant in one sitting. That’s one block I wouldn’t want to live in! For years, Chivron Tower was abandoned and left to rot as the world turned. It loomed in the skyline a desolate, abhorred ruin; a forgotten relic of the past. That was how it should have stayed. But now, the Tower has been resurrected and shown a renewed lease of life, ready for a new generation of families to move in. Everyone in the community is celebrating this achievement. Councillors, developers, residents all applaud the regeneration of this unloved eyesore. Except for one member of the community. The one who still lives in Chivron Tower, unknown to all. The one who never left. The lone occupant’s way of life is under threat by these new invaders with their new ideas – sullying their idea of urban perfection cast in steel and concrete. Great hope for this restoration is soon to be extinguished. The mysterious tenant is angry, is without mercy and is hungry. It feeds on suffering, making things go bump in the night. It brings more victims to its lair. The warnings it gives turn to torment it revels in. Joel Barton and his family find they are trapped, with the last remaining residents, good and bad, as they realise escape means confronting a… NIGHTMARE TENANT


We Men of Ash and Shadows

We Men of Ash and Shadows by HL Tinsley

SPFBO7 SPFBO Finalist

‘We Men of Ash and Shadow’ is the first book in the Vanguard Series and follows the journey of protagonist, John Vanguard, through the dark and corrupt city of D’Orsee. A Grimdark gas lamp novel, ‘We Men of Ash and Shadow’ explores themes of redemption, loyalty, and betrayal against the backdrop of a world where survival often means compromising your values. Amidst the gas lamp shadows former soldier-turned-mercenary John Vanguard hunts criminals at the behest of his corrupt employer, Captain Felix Sanquain. Shamed by his deserter past and seeking to make amends for his many misdeeds, a chance encounter with Tarryn Leersac – a skilled young would-be-assassin fallen from the graces of high society – leads Vanguard to become an unlikely mentor. Charged with hunting down the killer of two guards left washed up on the banks of the canal, the further Vanguard delves into the underbelly of the city the more he finds himself entangled in a web of secrets and lies. A prominent aristocrat is missing. Crime lords, con men and harlots run amok and the city teeters on the brink of another revolution. With his already precarious reputation hanging by a thread, Vanguard must piece together how and why the last war came to pass, find a way to earn redemption for his mistakes and come to terms with the past in a city where few survive, and even fewer can be trusted.


The Wife in the Attic

The Wife in the Attic by Rose Lerner

Goldengrove’s towers and twisted chimneys rose at the very edge of the peaceful Weald, a stone’s throw from the poisonous marshes and merciless waters of Rye Bay. Young Tabby Palethorp had been running wild there, ever since her mother grew too ill to leave her room. I was the perfect choice to give Tabby a good English education: thoroughly respectable and far too plain to tempt her lonely father, Sir Kit, to indiscretion. I knew better than to trust my new employer with the truth about my past. But knowing better couldn’t stop me from yearning for impossible things: to be Tabby’s mother, Sir Kit’s companion, Goldengrove’s new mistress. All that belonged to poor Lady Palethorp. Most of all, I burned to finally catch a glimpse of her. Surely she could tell me who had viciously defaced the exquisite guitar in the music room, why all the doors in the house were locked after dark, and whose footsteps I heard in the night…


Sons of Darkness

Sons of Darkness by Gourav Mohanty

SOME BALLADS ARE INKED IN BLOOD. Bled dry by violent confrontations with the Magadhan Empire, the Mathuran Republic simmers on the brink of oblivion. Krishna and Satyabhama have put their plans in motion within and beyond the Republic's blood-soaked borders to protect it from annihilation. But they will soon discover that neither gold nor alliances last forever. They are however not alone in this game. Mati, Pirate-Princess of Kalinga, has decided to mend her ways to be a good wife. But old habits die hard, especially when one habitually uses murder to settle old scores. Brooding but beautiful Karna hopes to bury his brutal past but finds that destiny is a miser when it comes to giving second chances. The crippled hero-turned-torturer Shakuni limps through the path of daggers that is politics only to find his foes multiply, leaving little time for vengeance. Their lives are about to become very difficult for a cast of sinister queens, naive kings, pious assassins and ravenous priests are converging where the Son of Darkness is prophesied to rise, even as forgotten Gods prepare to play their hand


Ascendant (Songs of Chaos #1)

Ascendant (Songs of Chaos #1) by Michael R. Miller

SPFBO7

The start of a new dragon rider epic combining the best of Eragon and Pern with the hard magic of Brandon Sanderson and Will Wight. Holt Cook was never meant to be a dragon rider. He has always served the Order Hall of the Crag dutifully, keeping their kitchen pots clean. Until he discovers a dark secret: dragons do not tolerate weakness among their kin, killing the young they deem flawed. Moved by pity, Holt defies the Order, rescues a doomed egg and vows to protect the blind dragon within. But the Scourge is rising. Undead hordes roam the land, spreading the blight and leaving destruction in their wake. The dragon riders are being slaughtered and betrayal lurks in the shadows. Holt has one chance to survive. He must cultivate the mysterious power of his dragon's magical core. A unique energy which may tip the balance in the battles to come, and prove to the world that a servant is worthy after all.


When Stars Become Shadows

When Stars Become Shadows by Emmie Hamilton

For the past seven years, Emersyn Jane Merona had been owned by a deadly mob boss and forced to service any lonely soul who found their way to Skarsrowe, a shady port town on the edge of the Baronian Sea. When Syn commits a murder and initiates a daring escape, she finds herself in the arms of her boss’ archrival, the legendary Captain Killian O’Donnell. After seeking refuge on his mysterious ship, Syn soon realizes that she may have traded one form of danger for another. Desperate to regain her freedom, she falls back on all the old tricks she used to survive her indentured servitude. Just when she is ready to give up, a murdered siren changes her fate and the Lord of Lost Souls, Malakai Barron, drags her down into the underworld. Through a deal brokered by someone from her past, Syn now has to try to earn her freedom from not one, but two key players in the dark underworld. Though it seems impossible, opportunity strikes when Malakai’s missing sirens reappear and Syn is given the chance to investigate. Who is taking the sirens? And why does their song haunt her dreams? As Emersyn uncovers the demons of her past, will the monsters of her future be kept at bay, or will she become another lost soul anchored to the bottom of the sea? Please note: This is an adult dark fantasy intended for 18+ only. Please check for content warnings before purchasing.


Bad Grains

Bad Grains by Susanne Schmidt

SFINCS

Eleven-year-old Jo loves Halloween and all things horror, but she doesn't believe anything bad could ever happen in Fels, her small German hometown. When Hektor, her annoying older brother, disappears on his way home from school, Jo assumes he is playing a prank on her. But then both her father and grandma forget Hektor's name, and his stuff mysteriously disappears from his room. With the adults of no help whatsoever, Jo starts an investigation of her own, uncovering an old legend that has haunted the children of Fels for centuries. A monster lives in the rye fields, and draws children into its world under the roots. With two days until the gate between their worlds closes, and only Hektor's obnoxious best friend to help her, Jo must figure out a way to rescue her brother, or lose him forever.


The Black Sun (Tales of Askalon #1)

The Black Sun (Tales of Askalon #1) by Sebastian P. Melang

"—when found, the bodies bore no signs of injuries, other than the eyes that appeared as if they had burned out from the inside and turned into stone; dark, black, like obsidian." So reads the report, which Lorian holds in his hands. As an inquisitor and servant to the aristoi—noble and sublime beings revered by the mortals of Askalon—he had taken an oath to uphold their sacred law, to uncover any forbidden magic, and to hunt those who dared to cast it. Gruesome as these words are, they also remind him of another murder that happened so long ago. And a woman; a woman who seems to have left a mark on his very soul and has not granted him peace to this day. And so Lorian sets out, through the stormy sea to the north, to the frozen continent, to investigate the murder of two young boys who were killed by a form of magic about which the Inquisition knows almost nothing. He does not yet suspect the great forces that will soon confront him, nor how the fate of Askalon and all mortals is about to be decided; for the black sun has awakened.


A Sea of Cinders

A Sea of Cinders by Adam R. Bishop

SPFBO8

In Cellagor—a land segregated between humans and Elves—fear, manipulation and war are inevitable. Nearly one hundred years have passed since the War of the Fallen, a cataclysmic battle between human and Elf which left both races teetering on the brink of extinction. Now, the Age of Tranquility is finally nearing its end, and the northern King of Havelmir is hungry for power and revenge. The Elven peace of mind remains unchanged—that is, until the Kingdom of Rhan is threatened by unknown forces. Soon it becomes clear that the tranquil Elven existence is once again at risk of crumbling. However, even with the element of surprise, the road to victory is not as smooth as it may seem. Ulterior motives are afoot, ancient magic is resurfacing, and an unlikely friendship between two young men may just pose the biggest threat of them all.


Never Die (Mortal Techniques #1)

Never Die (Mortal Techniques #1) by Rob J. Hayes

SPFBO Finalist

Samurai, shinigami, vengeful spirits, and an impossible quest. Itami Cho has earned the name Whispering Blade. She is a Shintei warrior, sworn to the path of oaths and honour. But keeping her oaths has always been more difficult than taking them. When Flaming Fist and his bandits attack the city of Kaishi, Itami swears one last oath: she will protect the city and its people at any cost. Ein has spent his life dreaming of being a hero, and now the God of Death has given him a chance. The Reaper has set him an impossible quest: an eight-year-old boy sent to stop an immortal Emperor. Never Die is a stand alone set in the world of Mortal Techniques. It’s a wuxia adventure filled with samurai, shinigami, heroes, and vengeful spirits.


Arcranium

Arcranium by Mark Towse, Daemon Manx

Four horror authors with four vulnerable egos, square off against one another, in the virtual world, to find out who is the scariest. Welcome to Arcranium™, a powerful technology that fuses with the author's mind to stimulate their best possible creation, immersing other participants in the narrative. It's all in good fun, but with so much pride at stake, things are bound to get a little bumpy once the gloves come off. So, strap your headset on and don't forget the safe word. The future of literature is about to get an upgrade. The future is … Arcranium™


Starbinder: An Eye of Eternity Novella (The Eye of Eternity)

Starbinder: An Eye of Eternity Novella (The Eye of Eternity) by Mark Timmony

SFINCS

Forged in betrayal. Tempered by the stellar winds. Chosen by the stars. For five hundred years since the Sundering, the order of the Shaluay Starbinders has been dwindling. With their Starwells lying dormant, key artefacts of their order lost and their seers driven mad by the powers that broke the world, only one hope remains to the man who leads them; a fifteen year old girl. Born to a clan of Wanderers, Reiana has been raised by a harsh grandmother who blames her for the death of her daughter, Reiana's own mother. When bandits attack the clan's camp, Reiana leaves the safety of the caravans to pursue the abductor of her younger cousin, heedless of the dangers. But when a creature of the Void takes notice can Reiana's own untapped abilities save her, or will the truth of a betrayal see her lost forever? Starbinder is an action-packed prequel novella to The Blood of the Spear. If you like flawed heroes, fast-paced storytelling, and intricate world-building, then you'll Love Mark Timmony's character-driven introduction to the epic fantasy series, The Eye of Eternity.


The Ghosts of Thorwald Place

The Ghosts of Thorwald Place by Helen Power

A Mystery Scene Magazine 2021 Editor's Pick Trust No One. Especially Your Neighbors. Rachel Drake is on the run from the man who killed her husband. She never leaves her safe haven in an anonymous doorman building, until one night a phone call sends her running. On her way to the garage, she is murdered in the elevator. But her story doesn’t end there. She finds herself in the afterlife, tethered to her death spot, her reach tied to the adjacent apartments. As she rides the elevator up and down, the lives of the residents intertwine. Every one of them has a dark secret. An aging trophy wife whose husband strays. A surgeon guarding a locked room. A TV medium who may be a fraud. An ordinary man with a mysterious hobby. Compelled to spend eternity observing her neighbors, she realizes that any one of them could be her killer.


Jack Forest, Soul Collector

Jack Forest, Soul Collector by E. Reyes

In the gripping novelette Jack Forest, Soul Collector, the town of Devil’s Hill, Arizona, becomes the stage for a chilling and morally complex tale. Jack Forest, a man returned from the dead on Halloween night, is compelled to serve as a soul collector for Hell. Tasked with branding the souls of woman abusers, he embarks on a haunting mission. As Jack navigates the shadowy realm between the living and the dead, he is torn between the ruthless directives of Hell and his own sense of justice. The line blurs when faced with a momentous decision that challenges his very nature. This gripping narrative explores themes of redemption, the consequences of one’s actions, and the power of individual choice. Jack Forest, Soul Collector delves into the darkness of the human soul and the depths of compassion that may yet emerge from the most unlikely circumstances.


The Yellow Oak

The Yellow Oak by Victor Vahl

Trapped in never-ending terror. Isolated from the outside world, with mysterious beings feasting on their sanity. How can they survive long enough to find their escape? Find out in this thrilling psychological tale. Rye Davidson, a third-generation woodworker, relocated his family to a small town near the dense forests of Oregon in the 1980s to make a better life and escape his troubled history. Starting a new job at an old factory, he meets Spencer Mills, a veteran worker who's isolated himself from the rest of the town. When Rye is sent out on his first job with Spencer, they're transported to an unknown forest far unlike their normal reality. Soon, they realize there's no path out, and the path they stumbled through has disappeared. Their job is now a journey of survival. A journey quickly spiraling into psychological suspense, mystery, and horror. The odds to stay alive are slim. The odds to escape are even slimmer. Discover the enigmas and tap into the fears buried within...The Yellow Oak. The Yellow Oak is Victor Vahl's sophomore novel, a psychological thriller inspired by the mind-bending essence of Lovecraftian horror, the bone-chilling atmosphere of Robert Egger's films, and heart-pounding scenarios. If you like The Lighthouse, House of Leaves, Lovecraftian horror, and The Shining, then you'll love Victor Vahl's psychological thriller. Order your copy today!


One Road In

One Road In by Hannah R. Palmer

'Some say, at night, you can see glowing eyes of fire between the trees, watching. Waiting...' Sadie’s younger brother Ben went missing 5 years ago. No one knows where he went. No one knows who, or what, took him. So explain the look of guilt on Sadie’s face when her mother called with the best news possible: Ben has come home. What does Sadie know about his disappearance? And what has her brother brought home with him? There’s something on the small island off the coast of Rose Bay, and its glowing amber eyes are making its presence known. Sadie needs to reconcile what happened all those years ago with where she finds herself now, before it has the chance to tear her family, and her hometown, apart again.


A Canticle of Two Souls

A Canticle of Two Souls by Steven Raaymakers

A magic sword forged of a demon. A broken boy seeking revenge. A grim coming-of-age tale with a Sanderson-esque magic system. Raziel watched the Rhotian Empire slaughter his family. When a sentient sword promises him the head of the emperor, Raziel carves a bloody path in an epic journey across a land filled with banshees and mercenaries in pursuit of his revenge. But forced to travel with a strange young woman with a dark past, will Raziel even reach his destination? Alicia has plans of her own. Gifted with a terrible magic that can bend others to her will, she also has revenge on her mind and Raziel in her sights. Can two enemies put aside their differences to seek a higher goal, or will mistrust and inner-demons condemn their fates? Magic is a dangerous thing. So is hope. The ‘Aria of Steel Trilogy’ is a heavy-metal power ballad of clashing blades, blood-soaked betrayal, and sweet revenge. Will you walk away or join the fight?


The Worthy

The Worthy by Anna K Moss

Blood is thicker than water. Tell that to Prince Barsten, betrayed and abandoned on foreign soil. His sister is intent on claiming the throne and he’s intent on stealing it back. One of them might succeed, if it weren’t for a sacred creature infecting people with its emotions. Rage, fear, paranoia, despair. As their country collapses, the royal siblings must stay true to themselves or find out just how thick their blood really is. Moss’s compelling debut novel dives into a desperate kingdom, full of intrigue, treachery and sapphic-longing. Fast-paced and awash with sinful characters and fetid settings, The Worthy is a must-read for all lovers of dark fantasy. Content warning: This novel contains scenes of violence, assault and occasional dialogue of a homophobic and racist nature. The opinions of the awful characters herein are not the authors own.


Trail Markers

Trail Markers by Cym Aros

Indie Recs Indie

This tale - the first in a series of three - opens in the summer of 1874, in a prison camp south of Carson City. Falsely accused and incarcerated, two half-brothers find themselves in a losing battle to survive corrupt and brutal conditions. Cole Franklin, twenty-nine, is the privileged scion of the late, much-lionized patriarch of a wealthy California family. Jesse, twenty-four, is that patriarch's bastard son, a fact unknown to Jesse or the surviving Franklins until a scant year and a half before. Jesse had come to the Franklins as an itinerant cowboy. He is the younger of the two men, but he had ridden a long, hard trail of poverty, prejudice, and violence in his few years. Jesse had grown up a dirt-poor, hard-working, fatherless boy in a dying Sierra mining town; by age sixteen, he had seen three years of combat as a scout and sharpshooter for the Union Army, and spent the last eight months of the war interred in a Confederate prisoner-of-war camp. Cole is a strong man, and brave, but their current predicament is unlike any battlefield he has ever faced. Jesse understands too well where they are, and what might lie ahead. He takes desperate action to ensure Cole's freedom. The consequences of that action, for Jesse and the Franklin family, are severe and far-reaching. Trail Markers begins with the brothers' struggle against raw criminality - first, for simple survival; ultimately, for justice. Jesse faces bigotry, mob violence, and the shattering of his own mental health as he battles to regain his freedom and find an honorable path home to family and to the woman he loves.


Blades of the Ice: Age of Rekindling: A Prequel

Blades of the Ice: Age of Rekindling: A Prequel by Luis Falcao De Magalhaes

SFINCS

In a land ruled by patriarchy, an assassin sisterhood delivers justice from the shadows. Now, their mysterious patron has charged burly fighter Erika Langeshen and lithe shadow-stalker Annah Barksdottir with uncovering a plot against the very rulers that have mistreated and oppressed them their whole lives. Their quest will take them to a faraway village on the borders of the Razor Teeth Woods, where they will need to use all the tricks of their trade to build a base of power and expose the machinations of the local lord and his allies. But before they do, they must break into one of the Patriarchate's fortresses and retrieve an unlikely ally… Blades of the Ice is the prequel novella to The Daughter of The Ice, the first book in the Legends of Elessia: Age of Rekindling series. Expect a fast-paced sword & sorcery adventure in the style of R.A Salvatore and an homage to the Forgotten Realms fantasy series. Readers and reviewers alike have compared it to The Witcher and The Wheel of Time


Devil’s Hill: Stories

Devil’s Hill: Stories by E. Reyes

Stephen King has Castle Rock. R. L. Stine has Fear Street. E. Reyes has Devil’s Hill. Welcome to Devil’s Hill, Arizona; a place that runs rampant with the occult, paranormal, and supernatural. As Halloween approaches and a group of teenage witches inadvertently summon an ancient deity into a scarecrow, they set off a chain of events that unleashes true evil upon the town. In these interconnected stories, you’ll encounter ghostly spirits, killers, malevolent deities, and other unexplainable horrors as the town of Devil’s Hill is plunged into darkness. Don’t miss out on the terror that awaits in Devil’s Hill! Praise for Devil’s Hill: “Where do fans of R.L. Stine's Goosebumps go when we grow up? There's plenty of room in Devil's Hill, Arizona...if you dare.”—Julia DeBarrioz, author of Cazadora “Absolutely worth reading.”—Heather Miller, author of One Night Stand at the End of the World “I would FOR SURE recommend this book to horror lovers and horror newbies alike, and I will certainly be looking for more E. Reyes in the future!”—Spooky Octopus Reads


With a Blighted Touch

With a Blighted Touch by J. Todd Kingrea

In Scarburn County, Tennessee there is a small mountain community called Black Rock, known for its unusual and prevalent blight that affects all vegetation . . . When an unexpected death forces Christopher "Kit" McNeil to return to his small hometown in the Tennessee mountains after eighteen years, he must confront his past and a secret he's kept since he was twelve. A talented guitarist with a history of bad choices and even worse luck, Kit soon reunites with an old friend and learns about recent disappearances and mysterious deaths in the area. They begin to wonder if it's connected to what they witnessed in the woods when they were kids and if a creepy local family is involved. Stranger still, almost half of their high school graduating class has died. When more shredded bodies begin appearing, Kit becomes a suspect. But what he discovers is even more frightening-evil has set its sights on him and his friends and it won't stop until it gets what it needs. Can Kit and his friends band together in time to stop this ancient evil? Or will a new reign of terror that the Cherokee once called Uyaga be unleashed to roam the earth once more?


It Haunts the Mind and Other Stories

It Haunts the Mind and Other Stories by Nick Roberts

Nick Roberts delves into the darkest corners of the soul, where horror meets raw emotion. Dive into the chilling depths of the human psyche with Nick Roberts, the acclaimed author behind bestsellers like The Exorcist’s House and Anathema. Presenting a collection of fifteen tales, It Haunts the Mind masterfully weaves horror with raw emotion, leaving an indelible mark on the reader's soul. From the malevolent presence in “Sally Under the Bed” and the eponymous “It Haunts the Mind” to the raw brutality of “The Noose” and “The Bitter End,” Roberts showcases his unparalleled ability to terrify. Yet, it’s not just supernatural dread that lurks in these pages. Stories like “Thanks for Sharing” and “The Weeping Wind” delve into the very real horrors of addiction and grief, while “The Paperboy” and “Voodoo Bay” introduce monsters that defy reality. John Durgin, author of The Cursed Among Us and Inside The Devil’s Nest, praises the collection, stating, “Come for the horror, stay for the heartbreaking emotion that bleeds into every page... It Haunts The Mind is that damn good.” James Aquilone, a Bram Stoker Award-nominated editor and writer, warns of the collection's potency: “Nick Roberts has an uncanny ability to scare the bejesus out of readers... Highly recommended if you don’t want to sleep in the dark again.” Perfect for aficionados of horror short stories, suspenseful tales, and narratives that explore the human condition, It Haunts the Mind is a testament to the power of storytelling, blending supernatural terror with the very real demons that haunt our lives. Whether you're drawn to tales of possession, substance abuse, or coming-of-age horror, this collection promises to both terrify and move you in equal measure. Proudly represented by Crystal Lake Publishing—Tales from the Darkest Depths.


The Wildflowers at the Edge of the World

The Wildflowers at the Edge of the World by Shaylin Gandhi

Yukon Territories, 1898. When circus sharpshooter Sophia Bellerose flees from heartbreak in search of a new life, she doesn’t intend to find work in a Yukon brothel. But she's not the sort of woman to refuse that kind of cash—or the freedom that comes with it. ​ For Sophia, the remote wilds of Canada’s Far North provide the perfect setting to bury old heartbreaks. Up there, memories are short, days are long, and gold dust flows freely for any woman bold enough to make the trip. Even better? She gets to keep her guns. Yet when the warmth of her newfound sisterhood begins to thaw her icy heart, Sophia wonders if she’s stumbled across the perfect life—until she clashes with the local Reverend, whose angel face hides a dangerously devious mind. Not only is he conning the whole town, he’s after both the brothel and her, though she can't tell whether his interest is genuine or just another clever ploy to gain control of her earnings. Determined to preserve her newfound freedom—and ignore the Reverend’s devastating kissing in the process—Sophia unholsters her revolvers and takes aim, ready to do whatever it takes to keep her new life in one piece.


Gold, Lock and Key

Gold, Lock and Key by E J Doble

From grimdark author E J Doble, comes a fairytale with a dark twist... "All it needs, is a bit of tenacity... and three little bears." Goldie, an outlaw and contract hunter of the Baron's State, accepts a new assignment from her employer to find an old cabin in the woods, home to three 'shapeshifters' who can morph into bears. Considered to be little more than a myth, Goldie assumes at first that the shapeshifters are an exaggeration - but with the sizeable bounty her employer is offering, she soon realises there may be more truth in it than she realised. And that isn't the only thing on her mind: she discovers her main rival - a manipulative and incredibly cunning trapper named Southey - has also taken on the contract, and will be contending for the same bounty she so fervently desires. Having waited many long years to have her revenge and outsmart Southey for past mistakes, Goldie sees the new contract as a perfect opportunity to do so. All she has to do is play her cards just right. And kill three bears...


Christmas in the Empty Cabin

Christmas in the Empty Cabin by E. Reyes

Horror and the supernatural don’t take holiday vacations… Take a holiday trip with E. Reyes to the dark side of the most wonderful time of the year. While you’re there visit… A hot holiday toy that brings terror to a department store. A man caught in a blizzard as he searches for help for a dying friend. A girl who wakes up to surprise visitors on Día de los Muertos. A man who recounts a sick and twisted Thanksgiving. A boy who becomes intrigued by a mysterious house and the girl who resides there during fall break. A family man who struggles with a dilemma that may cost him his soul. “A beautifully written collection… a unique and creative delight… I devoured it and loved it!”—Julie Hiner, author of Final Track “A great collection of thrilling and shocking tales that will get your heart pounding!”—Eric Woods, author of Pummeled “A great range of short tales for anyone looking for a quick, mysterious read.”—M.E. Aster, author of Three Halves of a Whole “Captures the melancholy, dark side of the holidays.”—Elford Alley, author of Ash and Bone


The Wild Court

The Wild Court by E. G. Radcliff

SFFOasis

What perils await on the other side of the veil? In the seventh year of Áed's reign, night descends on the autumn festival. But a time of revelry turns into one of fiery destruction—as fae pour across the veil and the Gut becomes a battlefield in an otherworldly war. Determined to protect his kingdom and the people he loves, Áed finds himself catapulted into a realm as unfamiliar as it is dangerous, where magic is king and wild courts vie for supremacy. While the faerie Queen's missing consort holds the key to life and death, tenuous alliances raise questions about Áed’s connection to the mysterious Bone Court. His survival hinges on cunning as much as illusion. On a mission like no other, only one thing is certain: no one will survive unscathed.


Those Once Forgotten

Those Once Forgotten by N. C. Scrimgeour

They were a memory once forgotten. For millennia, they waited. Now, they are coming. The galaxy has been plunged into chaos, left reeling from the trap Alvera Renata triggered around the ancient alien waystations. As the leaders of the allied systems desperately try to prepare for what might be coming, Ridley and Kojan go on the hunt in search of answers. But the one person who might hold the key—the rogue starship captain who started it all—is missing in action, and her old friends aren’t the only ones looking for her… Meanwhile, tensions between the Coalition and the Idran-Var are at breaking point in the aftermath of a brutal attack. The only hope for peace may lie in a fragile alliance between Rivus and Niole, old enemies thrown unwillingly onto the same side. But even if they can bury their past, what will it take to overcome the centuries of bloodshed dividing their people? As the mysterious signal coming from the waystations counts down, only one thing is for certain: something is coming, and if the fractured factions of the galaxy can’t find a way to stand against it together, it may be the end for them all.


Foundations

Foundations by Richard Holliday

HOW DID STREETS IN THE SKY BECOME THE TOWER OF TERROR FEARED FOR DECADES? Foundations is yet another page turner that I simply couldn't put down. It brilliantly explored the origins of the world in which Nightmare Tenant is set, and the author has excelled at giving the reader another wonderful story. Foundations is a thrilling period tale setting up the origin story to the creepy psychological thriller, answering questions and leaving some lingering in the mind! An exciting and engaging precursor. If you enjoyed Nightmare Tenant, Foundations lays the groundwork in another exhilarating adventure! And if you've not yet read Nightmare Tenant, then Foundations is just the start of a thrilling and creepy story in an unusual and effective setting Stephen Norris is a young man in a new job with an almost-famous architect at the turn of the 1970s. Quickly immersed in the murky world of town planning, he finds the transition from drawings and blueprints to brick and mortar is night and day. A discovery of ruins on the site of a state-of-the-art new tower block brings him into conflict with the construction workers, in particular the foreman, Peterson. Lurking inside the ruins is an ancient power are lost spirits. They channel through Norris, imbuing him with power to do the right thing and save their legacy. Within the modern world of the 1970s, complexities of life cloud Norris’ judgment. Those closest to him – friends, family, even the girl he loves – are dragged with him into a whirlpool of mistrust, deceit, danger and lies. All seems lost when the forces of darkness – money and progress – appear to triumph and obliterate the past. Instead, the darkness unleashes the lost spirits who turn vengeful at this defilement of their mortal remains. Norris must battle these forces and save the woman he loves from being a prisoner of Chivron Tower’s new nightmare tenant… Foundations is the precursor to the novella Nightmare Tenantby Richard Holliday. Length: 20,000 words


Tolagon

Tolagon by Gregory Benson

The Oro system, ravaged by generations of war and oppressively ruled by the hammer of a mechanical force created to save them, is at the boiling point between extinction and rebellion. Now a new hero arises twenty years after the fall of the legendary Tolagons. Raised in secrecy among noble equine warriors of Troika, Crix's tranquil life is shattered when a mysterious woman (Kerriah) crashes nearby in a black ship that materializes out of thin air. His journey begins after he gives in to an irresistible urge to locate the ship in the forbidden boglands of Drisal. Little does Crix know that using the hidden power within him—the blue orb of the Tolagons—to aid Kerriah’s rescue will set off a chain of events. The Marcks, a brutal mechanized force, are alerted and hot on their trail. As they struggle to escape the clutches of the relentless Marcks, Crix discovers there’s a hidden menace controlling everything. Their only hope of survival is to find the remaining lost orbs, though he soon realizes it will cost him everything. Joined by Krath, the salty war veteran from the watery moon of Thale, and a budding romance with Kerriah, will he learn to harness his long-suppressed power and become the Tolagon they desperately need, or will the forces of darkness prevail? Discover the gripping tale of hidden powers, treacherous alliances, and a young hero's quest for truth in Gregory Benson's thrilling debut novel, Tolagon. Brace yourself for an unforgettable adventure that will leave you hungry for more. Order your copy now and get ready to be riveted to your seat until the last page! Learn more about the different species and locations in this story!


I Found Christmas Lights Slithering Up My Street

I Found Christmas Lights Slithering Up My Street by Ben Farthing

Something festive is growing in the sewer... After last year’s tragedy, Douglas’ parents are ignoring Christmas. But when Douglas finds an eerie strand of lights slithering through the sewer, he unwittingly unleashes merry terror upon his neighborhood’s tacky lights contest. String lights spread like invasive kudzu, turning festive decorations into surreal, predatory nightmares. Determined not to lose both Christmas and his family forever, Douglas gathers his courage to confront the source of the holiday horror: deep in the concrete pipes beneath the street. I Found Christmas Lights Slithering Up My Street is a horror tale from the “darkly inventive” purveyor of uncanny places and wondrous evils, Ben Farthing.


The Headsman

The Headsman by Christina Mîrzoi

Take a glimpse into the world of a headsman, a gloomy village in which each dweller has a secret: an evil witch, a shrewd florist, a naive young man, a foreign merchant, a dreadful husband, a mischievous maid, and a lustful duke. These stories are intertwined, weaving a dark narrative of love, trickery, brutality, and loss. Under the bleak aesthetic, raw human emotions unravel themselves in a gripping story about moral decay. In a world that belongs to the wicked, how far can one walk this path while keeping a clean conscience? The Headsman is a collection of short stories that focus on interconnected characters, sometimes looking at the same event from a different perspective. As a genre, it falls somewhere under dark fiction territory.


The Son of the Prophets

The Son of the Prophets by Bryan Wilson

"Those of white and those of flame will clash, and the universe will begin to shake." Colton's mission is straightforward: go home to Earth, wield the power of the stars for all to see, and seek the prophet his planet was named after. But nothing has come easy since he left his world. Traitors lurk in the shadows, causing chaos across the stars. War has begun, and with newfound responsibilities arising, those around Colton realize they will have to carry some of the burden if there's to be any hope of defeating the Army of Flame. Ace and Morris set out on their own course, hunting a rogue admiral down at Willick's side. Meanwhile, Violet Doku travels with her fellow soldiers of Vintara Company, sailing to the mysterious Forsaken Barrier, where the fight they have trained for lies in wait. Colton knows he will have to be quick with his tasks if he hopes to fulfill the prophecies and save mankind. But when age-old mysteries are answered, and past conflicts reemerge, he starts to question whether he can even save himself.


The Feast of the Innocents

The Feast of the Innocents by Colin Harker

In the spirit of Mary Shelley and Thomas Ligotti, a new novel that unites the charismatic, scheming villains and chilling atmosphere of classic Gothic horror with visceral, supernatural terrors and historical intrigue... Winter 1665. Cyrus flees England to escape the human monster who murdered his father, but the horrors of Laughlin Priory are as inescapable. Pursued by a mysterious killer from France — haunted by a one-eyed chimney sweeper with sinister motives and an insatiable curiosity — in the Priory, Cyrus learns some secrets are worse than death.


The Invisible Tether

The Invisible Tether by JP McDonald

Cooper Belrose and his friends gear up for a sporting tournament in tropical North Queensland (Australia) for a week of carefree fun. In an unnerving twist of fate, a cryptic flight attendant hijacks the plane, altering their lives forever. After surviving the plane crash, Cooper and his friends learn the flight attendant was part of a much larger threat, not only to their existence but to the entire human race. In their desperation to return home and find answers, they discover abnormal abilities within themselves activated by the crash and the threat of an opposing force. Will these newfound abilities wield an edge over their enemies? As they strive to combat each twist and turn, Cooper and his friends learn the value of teamwork by navigating the space between life and death. If faced with an imminent threat to the human race, would you and your friends take up the fight? "The Invisible Tether," is a story of love, adventure and the pursuit of truth.


A Circle of Stars

A Circle of Stars by Craig Montgomery

SPFBO10

Sometimes you have to leave home to find it… All Casper Bell has ever wanted is to belong. But now, abandoned by his friends and family after being outed, he has nothing left to lose when the people of Novilem abduct him. Except Earth. Teleported to a world where stars grant humans magic, Casper discovers he has the rare ability to draw power from all twelve astrological signs — a gift that makes him a political pawn for the Estellar Council. But Novilem’s inhabitants seem as hard and cold as the stone their city is carved from, and Casper’s new role leaves him more isolated than ever. Until he meets the grandson of the council’s most powerful woman. Helix is kind, playful, and heartbreakingly handsome, yet it’s how Helix makes him feel that gives Casper hope. As rebellion brinks in the city, even the Council starts to fracture, reaching for extreme measures that could cost Casper not only his newfound abilities, but the first place he has ever wanted to call home. Together with Helix, he must uncover the secrets of his full potential — because the survival of Novilem hinges on Casper’s powers, whether he’s using them or not. Set inside a hidden lunar city, where astrology is magic and your birth sign defines your social status, A Circle of Stars is a queer young adult fantasy filled with political intrigue and romance.


Elemental: Shadows of Otherside Book 1

Elemental: Shadows of Otherside Book 1 by Whitney Hill

Enter an urban fantasy world where elves, vampires, weres, djinn, and fae maintain a precarious balance of power in North Carolina. Welcome to Otherside. Private investigator and sylph Arden Finch is determined to come out of the shadows and practice her forbidden magic. There's just one problem: the elves have a bounty on elementals like her. When an elf hires Arden without realizing what she is, she seizes the chance to gain leverage in the dangerous world of Otherside⁠—even if it means risking exposure. But as the case grows more perilous, Arden draws the attention of the region's deadliest power players. Fans of Kim Harrison, Faith Hunter, and the early Anita Blake series will find a kick-ass heroine in Arden. Content warnings: swearing, light consensual sex, physical violence, death, slurs (not toward any real racial or ethnic group/identity), threat of sexual violence.


Elendil

Elendil by Andrea Rose Washington

I stood there, looking at this stranger with eyes like mine, hair like mine. It slowly dawned on me that it was her. After all these years...it was her. A wave of rage coursed over me as I stood there, staring at this woman. I couldn't bring myself to call her that because she was never that to me. Just an egg donor as far as I was concerned. Then my dad spoke."Abriana, I would like to introduce you to Acadia...your mother."Abriana was forced to deal with a lot of things over the short sixteen years of her life: adapting to a new neighborhood, the wondering eyes that fell on her when she was out with her father, the whispers of the town. But this - facing the woman who abandoned her at the tender age of three days old - was the one thing she wasn't prepared to deal with. When Abriana is forced to flee with this woman she barely knows, she soon realizes that her life will never be the same


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