Similar stories:


The Call for Finis: Pride by A.J. Torres

Seven sins. Seven hosts. One city purged. After everything you’ve learned, can you still stand with your faith, or finally rise up against it? Salvia VerdaderaFe has signed a pact with Ultor, a demon of Infernos, to enact the end of all and purge the world of sin. Ultor and six others were granted permission to enter the middle world of Eldara, bound to mortals by the Seraphim of Hevellum. Upon his arrival a messenger of Hevellum should have been waiting to assign him his task, unfortunately the messenger did not appear and thus his mission is a mystery. Along their journey through the country of Marlela, they are set upon by a group of Templar Equitums, bearers of virtue and enforcers of the Cirine faith. From their encounter their destination is revealed. Their journey to Lumen Magnum begins.


Red Right Hand: A Post-Apocalyptic Superhero Novel by Chris Tullbane

"If life’s taught me anything, it’s that you scrap and claw for every moment you can get. And if you’re a Crow like me, you don’t let a little thing like dying get in your way." Following the events of See These Bones, Damian is back at the Academy of Heroes as the Free States' most unlikely potential Cape. He has a new name, a new reputation, and a whole host of new questions about his own past. If he's going to find answers to those questions, let alone survive another year at the Academy, he'll need to learn a skill the orphanage never taught him: teamwork. Nothing's ever easy, is it?


Brightling by C.E. Page

The hunt for a cure led them right into the heart of the Between, but what price will they have to pay to secure it? Caught in a deadly trap made of their own memories, Nea and Garret must find their way out before it’s too late. But as they delve deeper into dangerous intrigues that cross realms, they are confronted with knowledge that changes everything. Can they overcome this new threat? Or will they lose themselves in the unfathomable wilds of the Between? Back in their home realm, Margot is desperate for a distraction from Nea and Garret’s prolonged absence. With mounting rumours of restless dead and a tangled web of secrets left behind by Nea, she goes on a quest for an explanation that will lead her all the way to the City of Stars. There awaits a revelation that could plunge the known realms into chaos. As they all close in on the answers they seek, will they persevere or be swept away by powers beyond any of their control?


Through Shadows by P.S. Livingstone, A.M. Justice, Alex McGilvery, J.E. Hannaford, Laura Shank, Liam Hogan, Anela Deen

A collection of award-winning speculative short fiction! QuaranCon's top entries from both the 2020 and 2021 short fiction contests, these six stories all deal with themes of isolation and innovation, and are sure to keep you entertained in bite sized moments of adventure.


Sour Candy by Kealan Patrick Burke

At first glance, Phil Pendleton and his son Adam are just an ordinary father and son, no different from any other. They take walks in the park together, visit county fairs, museums, and zoos, and eat together overlooking the lake. Some might say the father is a little too accommodating given the lack of discipline when the child loses his temper in public. Some might say he spoils his son by allowing him to eat candy whenever he wants and set his own bedtimes. Some might say that such leniency is starting to take its toll on the father, given how his health has declined. What no one knows is that Phil is a prisoner, and that up until a few weeks ago and a chance encounter at a grocery store, he had never seen the child before in his life. A new novella from the Bram Stoker Award-winning author of THE TURTLE BOY and KIN


The Sword in the Street by C.M. Caplan

SPFBO7

Trial by battle is a holy rite on Hillside. Hired blades bleed their foes in savage duels, settling everything from petty grievances to the corporate laws that keep their citizens in line. Embroiled in these cutthroat political games is John Chronicle, an impoverished swordsman with no better prospects, seeking the duel that will free him from the Dregs. Meanwhile, John’s boyfriend Edwin, an autistic university student, befriends a fellow scholar who claims to study the arcane art of thaumaturgy. When she offers to teach Edwin this subtle magic, he hopes that he can use it to bolster John’s skill with a blade. But thaumaturgy is a dangerous magic, and the forces that drive it have other plans. The couple soon find themselves entangled in the web of intrigue surrounding the swordsmen and their sponsors, and they’re forced to question how bloody they’re willing to get to escape poverty — and they don’t come away with the same answer.


Awakening: The Commune’s Curse Book 1 by Lucy A. McLaren

The Kingdom of Septima is ruled in all but name by the Commune, a ruthless cult that seeks control of an ancient power that has taken root in unsuspecting children in Septima. To maintain their hold on the kingdom, the Commune will stop at nothing to capture children who show signs of this power, to be weaponised or eliminated. 18-year-old Evelyn Folksman is in hiding. Taken in by a tavern-owner, she is haunted by the horrific events that drove her from her home years before. Evelyn is forced to face her past when two wayward children, Raif and Rose Huntsman, arrive at the tavern, pursued by Commune soldiers. The children fall under Evelyn’s reluctant care as the trio narrowly escape a raid. Relentlessly hunted by Commander Jonah Sulemon and Commune agent Lord Eirik Torrant, Evelyn and Raif cannot fathom why they pose such a threat to the Commune, until six-year-old Rose unwittingly reveals a terrible secret: she possesses powers more fearsome than any the Commune has unearthed in decades. There are only two options: to be captured and imprisoned, or to run for the rest of their lives.


EXODUS 20:3 by Freydís Moon

Religious eroticism and queer emancipation meet in a claustrophobic monster-romance about divinity, sexuality, and freedom. When Diego López is guilted by his mother into taking a low-key construction job in New Mexico, he doesn’t expect to be the only helping hand at Catedral de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe. But the church is abandoned, decrepit, and off the beaten path, and the only other person for miles is its handsome caretaker, Ariel Azevedo. Together, Diego and Ariel refurbish the old church, sharing stories of their heritage, experiences, and desires. But as the long days turn into longer nights, Diego begins to see past Ariel’s human mirage and finds himself falling into lust—and maybe something else—with one of God’s first creations.


Megalodon: Bloodbath by Michael Cole

A series of bizarre occurrences suddenly plague the island of Cielo Nublado. A dead whale washes ashore riddled with enormous bite marks. A fishing charter is reported missing, jet skiers vanish, and a yacht is found mysteriously ravaged after some kind of enormous impact. Chief of Police Nico Medrano tries to investigate the matter. His search for answers puts him on a collision course with an eighty-foot predator, long thought extinct. Violent and merciless, it has risen to the surface, and seeks to wreak havoc on the small island community. Things only get worse for Nico after he discovers that a ruthless band of criminals, responsible for the deaths of two Miami cops, are lurking on the island. As the body count mounts, Nico is forced to simultaneously battle two separate monsters: Man and Meg. The result is a bloodbath.


Rememory: A Science Fiction Novelette by Frasier Armitage

In the future, memory is currency. Felix is broke, on the run, with nothing in his head but a combination of numbers. Someone robbed him of his mind. Now it's time he took it back.


In Solitude's Shadow by David Green

Named #1 Book of 2021 - Magic Book Corner Review The tides of fate are shifting. The Banished have returned, and they have set their eyes on the walls of Solitude. Zanna Alpenwood, a powerful mage, and two hundred aged and forgotten Sparkers are all that stand between the Banished and the nation of Haltveldt. With time running out and the world at stake, Zanna is forced to reach out to her estranged daughter, Calene, and set her on an impossible quest. Calene quickly learns that enemies make unlikely allies as she teams up with both friend and foe on her journey to save her mother and Haltveldt. Forging their way over land and sea, uncovering dark plots and secret societies, Calene is forced to decide between her masters and her own conscience. Will they arrive in time to save the fortress of Solitude from destruction? Only one thing is certain; Ruin is assured if Solitude falls.


A Song for the Road by Catherine Labadie

An outcast in her tight-knit community, Larkspur endures her poor health with help neither from her family nor her fickle sweetheart. At a yearly moon festival she beseeches the spirits for better luck...but they lead her to a foundling elf child she did not want and a quest she did not ask for. Yet she and the mute spryte form a bond over their shared struggles. When danger arrives at their cottage, Larkspur sets out with the girl she's named Gentian from the country of her homefolk into the land of songs and tales itself. Through leagues of treacherous border woods lies miraculous Beledan, where dwarven chieftains quarrel amongst themselves and, far to the north, the mysterious elves marshal for war.


Thicker Than Blood (The Journey Missions Book 3) by Holly Ash

Teacup Dragon Coop

Lieutenant Commander Crystal Wolf's hatred of politics has never been a secret through her spotless military career. So why is she being sent to Earth to speak at a military hearing on behalf of The Lands and Waters of Neophia Organization? When Crystal's team is tasked with convincing the US military to continue the officer exchange program that first brought Lieutenant Desiree Flint and Ensign Justin Anderson to Neophia to serve on Journey’s first tour, the stakes are already high: if they fail their mission, Flint and Anderson won’t be able to return for the second tour. And to make matters worse, they arrive on Earth to find relations between the two planets are far worse than anyone let on. Things escalate when a terrorist group attacks a string of hospitals, demanding the US government acknowledge Neophia’s superiority. Divided from their team in the wake of a retaliatory order that detains anyone with Neophian blood, Flint and Anderson, the only two pure humans, must find a way to complete their mission--and get the rest of their team home in one piece.


Blood For Coins by Cam Wolfe

There is a popular expression among the sellswords of Koragrave. "Follow the coin." For the right price, Enzo & Rascal will handle any problem you have. Putting down monsters, transporting dangerous cargo, acquiring valuables, they do it all. The only problem...? One of them is locked away in the world's most notorious prison. It's time for a jailbreak.


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.


Duckett & Dyer: St. Nicks For Hire by G.M. Nair

In the midst of a historic blizzard, Michael and Stephanie have to beat the crap out of Santa Claus. That's it. That's the story. But, unlike some other Christmas Specials, this one is 100% canon. This case and others are included in Duckett & Dyer: The Mystery Of The Murdered Guy.


Evening of the Mutated Undead by E. Reyes

First, it was the UFO sightings. Then the monsoon began. And then residents of a shady neighborhood got what they never expected… Mutated zombies. Evening of the Mutated Undead is a heart-pounding survival horror novella centered around Jeff, a small-time drug dealer in Arizona. Chaos ensues on a seemingly ordinary evening as a horrifying zombie outbreak strikes during a relentless monsoon. To Jeff's horror, these undead creatures don't just eat their victims but mutate their bodies, leading to a gruesome blend of unworldly mutation and decomposition


See These Bones: A Post-Apocalyptic Superhero Novel by Chris Tullbane

Some superheroes want to save the world. Damian is just hoping to save himself. In the post-Break world of superpowers, necromancy is the one gift nobody wants. Everyone knows what happens to Crows; they go mad and they go bad. That's the story of infamous mass murderers like Crimson Death, Gravedigger, and Sally Cemetery. It's also the story of David Jameson, an otherwise unremarkable man who came home one day and killed his wife, orphaning their five-year-old son, Damian. Thirteen years later, Damian has inherited more than just grey eyes and a beak of a nose from his father. He too is a Crow, doomed to become a killer unless he can find a way to avoid the violent madness endemic to his powers. When a Finder offers enrollment at Los Angeles' Academy of Superheroes, he jumps at the chance, believing training could be the key to changing his fate. His classmates despise him, the majority of his teachers want him expelled, and his mom's ghost hasn't said a word since reappearing when he was nine, but Damian isn't the kind to give up. He's going to take control of his destiny or die in the process. It's that or end up like his father.


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.


Scorned by Joseph S Samaniego

Rowena was bred for war! Her stepmother, Queen Sirie, taught her everything that she knew about the deadly arts. Sirie wanted a weapon to ensure her own son's place upon the throne, and Rowena was that weapon.… for a time. A war hero, mercenary captain, mother, loving sister, and daughter. In her heart Rowena bled for her family. But was it ever enough? Her existence was an insult that would threaten the kingdom's roots, and future.


Mark’s Merry Mayhem by Mark Tufo

Most of you know I'm not known for my short stories; apparently I'm much too long-winded. But on occasion there are some things I just need to pull from my head and put out there. I hope you enjoy this small glimpse into the things that keep me up at night.


Santa Claus: The Beginning by Terry Broxson

On Christmas Eve 1839, an extraordinary young toy maker named John Nicholas is visited by his angelic best friend Ben and their mentor, Mr. Rudolph Stern. The angels present John with a mission: to embrace the role of Santa Claus and bring joy to children worldwide. Follow John as he encounters magical elves and meets Jessica, the manager of Santa's castle at the North Pole. Experience the excitement of Santa's first global trip on Christmas Eve, 1840, as the story reaches its heartwarming conclusion. This enchanting tale unveils the origins of a talented toy maker, his special abilities, the loyal reindeer by his side, and the devoted friendships that shape his destiny. Suitable for all ages, this classic story is a delightful adventure filled with magic, imagination, and the spirit of Christmas.


Heroes by Ashley Hutchison

When adversity strikes, we call upon heroes to save the day. In this anthology, talented writers retell the timeless tales of saviors from legend. Remaining true to their origins, this collection features 14 reimagined sagas of courage, strength, ingenuity, and most importantly, hope. You may know their stories… But not told like this. Featuring Works By: Daniel Quigley Jess L. Tong Laura McLoughlin Stephen Howard Chris Durston Madeline Dau Michael J. Mullen II Douglas Jern Matthew Siadak R. Raeta Jaecyn Boné Dina S. Dewi Hargreaves Carter Hutchison


Warlock of Muscovy by Brien Feathers

SPFBO9

When words fail, bring out the guns, swords, and death spells. Marina is the daughter of Tsar Alexander the Cruel, the most powerful warlock. She's also a princess of the Court of White Rose. The only problem is that she's mundane—she has no magic. On her sixteenth birthday Marina fled from her father's tsardom to the revolutionist side of Muscovy, and five years later she's doing all right, working as a seamstress in the United Workers' Factory. Despite the political police, the never-ending witch hunt, and her best friend living as an orange cat, she's happy. She gets along with her cottage mates and is even seeing a guy... until the city blows up, she's implied in the sabotage, her guy turns out to be an enemy, her friends are murdered, and an alchemist maniac hunts her down for a blood vendetta. With the Red Army and the Alchemist Federation on her heels, Marina runs back to the Court of White Rose, but when death follows her home she must uncover a prophecy, reconcile with the warlock, and stop an oncoming war. It's a tall order for a seamstress. The first book in the Sun War Trilogy, this intensely dark tale of magic and mayhem is full of grey characters that blur the line between good and evil. Content warning for strong language, graphic violence, and intimate situations.


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


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


Out on a Limb by Luis Paredes

"How many perverts d'ya think sucked on those toes before the police rolled in?" With that question, Out On a Limb kicks off an irreverent, foul-mouthed, and horrific urban fantasy noir series following the exploits of private occult investigators Rebecca Suarez and Peyton Marx. In this fast-paced novella that readers can devour in an afternoon, Rebecca and Peyton are stumped by their strangest case yet—a tree growing human legs. The dangling gams become the least of their concerns when nearby trees start consuming more than just carbon dioxide. Now the investigators must use their powers and the NYPD's magical tech to find the mage responsible for this heinous crime and stop a bloody disaster from creeping across the Empire State.


Dark Woods, Deep Water by Jelena Dunato

In the depths of a remote forest, an enchanted castle preys on unwary travellers. The servants of the Goddess Morana sacrifice to their dark mistress every soul who crosses its threshold . One terrible night, three people who should never have met find themselves trapped there: a spoiled lady escaping an unwanted marriage, an aging warrior-prince on a deadly mission, and a resourceful rogue caught up in a botched heist. As their destinies entwine and the dawn approaches, the solution to the castle’s riddle becomes clear: if they want to escape, one of them must die. A dark fantasy tale inspired by Slavic folklore, Dark Woods, Deep Water is the debut novel by Croatian author Jelena Dunato. Set in an intricately imagined world that staggers the line between fairytale and brutality, this novel will appeal to fans of Katherine Arden and Naomi Novik, as well as lovers of classic Gothic fiction.


A Gathering of Chaos by Cameron Hopkin

SPFBO8

The world of Asunder is dying. Its gods are long fled, and they took all the world's metal with them... but it all happened so long ago that not even legends remain. In the now, a country girl sails into port, the only survivor of a plague ship, and a scheming priestess takes charge of her. Far to the south, an aging warrior monk forcibly recruits one of the Beast Riders to be his tracker. A remarkable vision of a demon lord binds them all together, and they scramble to find a bit of Chaos, the raw energy of their world, to protect humanity against this new threat. It's too bad they're only going to make things worse.


Meshkwadoon by Alex Tilley

Meshkwadoon is a psychological, atmospheric experience, more focused on the individual perception of events rather than on the events themselves. As a perspective driven tale, it delves into the minds of a woman, a man, and a boy, as they are dragged through an experience of fear, obsession, trauma, and terror. Where the foundational spirit of the land seeks to fulfill its obligation to an exchange of life for the life of all. Discover the unspoken impact a melting pot society has on the folk lore and language of a land whose roots go deeper than 150 years. A world whose spirits carry on despite the hunger of the living. Genre: Fiction/ Thriller/ Folk Horror/ Magic Realism Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/alexander_tilley/


The Visitor by Sergio Gomez

On Christmas, during one of the worst snowstorms Indiana has ever seen, five strangers are forced to take shelter inside of a roadside diner. As the night progresses, the snowfall shows no signs of relenting, ice begins to build up on the roads, and the temperature seems to be dropping by the hour. But the worst has nothing to do with the weather, and everything to do with the sixth visitor coming to the diner.The jolliest time of the year quickly turns bloody as the diners find themselves fighting for their lives. This Christmas won’t just be white. It’ll be red, too


A Night at The King's Inn by Alec Arbogast

FIRST PLACE WINNER - 2021 ROYAL DRAGONFLY BOOK AWARDS: HISTORICAL FICTION CATEGORY AWARD-WINNING FINALIST - 2021 AMERICAN FICTION AWARDS Theodore is an introvert. Friends are a bother and being put in social situations is cruel and unusual punishment. Avoidance is the name of the game when it comes to relationships and he's adamant he wouldn't have it any other way. But deep inside he yearns for something...more. When his vivacious, thrill-seeking sister Alice invites him on another one at her atypical adventures, Theodore finds that his life predicated upon comfort is about to be turned on its head. They venture to an ultra-exclusive speakeasy in Manhattan's West Village, where he happens upon a vintage gramophone that does more than play a simple tune. He cranks the lever and a portal to another world snaps open. Before he can react, Theodore finds himself in a posh hotel, navigating a mysterious and menacing masquerade ball in 20th century London. In the maze-like halls of the hotel, he brushes shoulders with a coquettish young woman who, coupled with the mysterious allure of the masquerade, ensures he'll return to this foreign world to uncover more. But as he delves deeper, he finds himself in the middle of a socioeconomic conflict across a mercurial and hostile landscape where cocktails and charisma are more dangerous than loaded guns. If he wants to lead the substantive life a part of him has always known he deserves, he must not only outgrow his circumspect ways and face the dangers of a socially adept furtive society, he must also face the demons of his own past which crawl to the surface as he unravels the mysteries of a bygone world.


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.


Cruelty: Unmasked by Ellen Crosháin.

Henry used to be a god. Now, he’s just the gardener. Nearly twenty-five years have passed since the ancient Faroust fell in love with Eliza MacTir. Stripped of his powers and forced to work for the family he used to rule, he can’t avoid the woman who ruined him. But when a chance encounter brings him into contact with Eliza’s daughter Áine, a twenty-one year old student looking for a chance to explore herself, he sees a chance to exact revenge. The affair is sweet and Henry knows that when he finally reveals it to Eliza, it will be even sweeter. But Henry and Áine aren’t the only ones keeping secrets. Áine’s brother Caolán, sixteen and rebellious, has his share of demons and not all is well with Eliza and Cornelius. The veneer of the perfect family has cracks and once the truths start to spill, everything Eliza fought for will start to unravel. Secrets cannot be buried forever and the Veil won’t stay shut. Darker forces are watching and waiting…


Thresher by Michael Cole

In the aftermath of a hurricane, a series of strange events plague the coastal waters off Florida. People go into the water and never return. Corpses of killer whales drift ashore, ravaged from enormous bite marks. A fishing trawler is found adrift, with a mysterious gash in its hull. Transferred to the coastal town of Merit, police officer Leonard Riker uncovers the horrible reality of an enormous Thresher shark lurking off the coast. Forty feet in length, it has taken a territorial claim to the waters near the town harbor. Armed with three-inch teeth, a scythe-like caudal fin, and unmatched aggression, the beast seeks to kill anything sharing the waters.


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.


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.


Disseverment by Z.C. Krol

When Tyler receives a mysterious letter in the mail from a man claiming to be his stepfather, he is suddenly plunged back into the nightmares of his past, and has to make an important decision that will change him forever. Disseverment is a psychological horror story not for the squeamish. Z.C. Krol lives in Ohio with his wife and dogs, and is working on another project. When he's not writing, he's probably watching a bad horror movie or reading something creepy. You can email him at zckrol.writing@gmail.com and he'll absolutely respond to you. You can also find him on this new website called Facebook. Bonus points if you send him horror memes.


Rose's Gold by WB Welch

After waking up in a tower with no memory of events past her adolescence, Rose must examine every nook and cranny of her prison in the sky to solve the mystery of who brought her here and how she might escape. She soon realizes the contents of the room--clothing that fits perfectly, a hairbrush that rests naturally in her hand--are her own belongings, and as she starts to piece together her past, she discovers that an even greater mystery resides in her own identity. There’s a wedding band here, and a golden locket containing a photo of a family she’s convinced are her husband and children. But things aren’t always as they seem, and sometimes desire can send you plummeting mercilessly into the depths. Inspired by Rapunzel, Rose's Gold is a dark fantasy tale about hope, perseverance, and the preservation of love.


The Aqua Human by J. Elizaga

A teenager in the Pacific during World War II, evades capture by escaping to sea. She survives a tragedy and discovers new physical abilities underwater. Alone, she grapples to survive on land. But under the sea, she finds friendship from the most intelligent marine creatures. Over the decades, Amaya searches for the answer about her mysterious transformation while hiding her secret. But her secret may have finally been captured on film.


Wistful Ascending by JCM Berne

SPFBO8 SPSFC 2022 SPSFC 2023

A superhero space opera for grownups. For fans of Invincible and Marvel Cinematic Universe films who like a little hard science fiction in their superheroes.
If Thor and Harry Dresden combined in a transporter accident.


Miss Percy's Pocket Guide to the Care and Feeding of British Dragons by Quenby Olson

SPFBO8 SPFBO Finalist

Miss Mildred Percy inherits a dragon. Ah, but we’ve already got ahead of ourselves… Miss Mildred Percy is a spinster. She does not dance, she has long stopped dreaming, and she certainly does not have adventures. That is, until her great uncle has the audacity to leave her an inheritance, one that includes a dragon’s egg. The egg - as eggs are wont to do - decides to hatch, and Miss Mildred Percy is suddenly thrust out of the role of “spinster and general wallflower” and into the unprecedented position of “spinster and keeper of dragons.” But England has not seen a dragon since… well, ever. And now Mildred must contend with raising a dragon (that should not exist), kindling a romance (with a humble vicar), and embarking on an adventure she never thought could be hers for the taking.


Cthulhu's Car Park by D.S. Ritter

SFINCS

There's something creeping around in the parking structure. And this time it’s not one of Sam’s nightmare customers. Sam's job as a parking attendant has always been a drag. Until now. A hole straight to hell has opened up and evil lurks in the shadows of the garage. When management fails to help and her trainee gets possessed, Sam turns to her friends and coworkers. But, can a handful of burned out employees save a city? Especially when a tall handsome stranger is thrown into the mix who may know more than he’s letting on? If you’re brave enough to find out whether Sam will discover the secret of the parking garage without dying—or getting fired—get your copy of Cthulhu's Car Park today. Just so you know, this horror novella contains strong language and some violence. And, slime. Lots of slime.


Thief of Souls by Emma L. Adams

I'm Liv Cartwright, mage, thief, and unapologetic nerd. Magically talented people like me have two choices: use our powers at the beck and call of the Order of the Elements or be exiled to the realm of monsters. Sounds like an easy choice, right? Not so much. Since my mentor dabbled in forbidden spirit magic and left me to take the fall, I have to pay off his debts without using my magic. I'd rather spend my free time gaming than retrieving valuable objects for the Order, but my latest retrieval job goes from mundane to deadly when I end up on the wrong side of the terrifying King of the Dead. Turns out he doesn’t like thieves, and he likes the Order even less. To make things worse, I run into my ex-boyfriend, a fire mage who's carrying as many secrets as I am, and find my simple thieving job has landed me in the middle of a conspiracy. A second elemental war is brewing, and the key to stopping it lies in my long-buried memories of my mentor's lessons. The catch? If the Order finds out, they'll show me no mercy this time -- and everyone knows there's a good reason spirit magic was banned. People who use it tend to end up dead.


The Crowman by Gareth Clegg

In a dying world, one lone rider is the only hope for salvation.
 Some say the world is shattered, that our way of life is dying. Our sun fills half the sky and the scorched lands struggle to provide enough to sustain us. Still, there has always been hope. But as that fiery red orb descends below the rocky skyline, then comes the shadow: Dark spirits hell-bent on destroying what’s left of humanity, as if we needed any help. My name is Cheveyo Santiago. I cheated death as a child, but that trauma marked me, and now I sense the evil in others. So here I am, drawn like a moth to the flame. Though I carry a revolver, I’m no gunslinger, there are plenty faster on the draw than me. My real edge is knowledge. Old family recipes passed down through the ages – the secrets to banish the shadow back to the hells that spawned it. Salt, Brimstone, Silver and Tallow shall be my weapons.
 So, hear this, all creatures and spirits of evil. I know you. I see you. Prepare yourself for judgement. The Crowman is the first novella in a Weird West / Supernatural Western Horror series from Amazon best selling author Gareth Clegg.


Mary, Everything by Cassandra Yorke

A young woman born in the wrong reality. A destiny that will lead her into the past. And a love so enduring it reaches across time - and existence itself - to bring her home. A gripping tale of best friends and romance, sorcery and survival, at the dawn of the Roaring 20s. Courtney is a lonely undergrad at secluded Braddock College in 2004, working a drowsy summer job in the Archives. Assigned to a new project, she becomes haunted by a college yearbook from the 1920s - filled with familiar faces and memories of times she never experienced. A chance encounter with a mysterious girl named Sadie - dressed in long-outdated clothes - alters her reality. But if you were never meant to be born, that reality can expel you like an infection - or kill you outright. While Courtney struggles against forces she cannot comprehend, a psychopathic stalker smells blood and closes in for the kill. Sadie, now in 1921, races against the clock to save her friend, joined by some remarkable allies - an American combat sorceress and veteran of World War I, an enigmatic professor who specializes in piercing the veil between realities, and two young women who insist they’re Courtney’s oldest friends - one of them even claiming to be her truest love. Time is running out for Courtney, and a terrifying wilderness - haunted by the dead from centuries past - may hold the key to her salvation. But none who enter have ever returned... Cassandra Yorke's groundbreaking debut brings Magical Realism home to the Midwest in an explosive new style, blending Midwestern Gothic and historical fiction with a warm lesbian love story to create a riveting, deeply immersive epic you won't be able to put down. It's the world of Boardwalk Empire and Gatsby, with an urgent, immersive narrative about what it means to belong, what it means to be hated, what it means to be loved, and ultimately what it means to come home.


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.


Birth of the Storm by Valerie Storm

A bolt of lightning. And a dream of vengeance. For wolf-demon Kari, these define her every waking moment. Her parents are dead, slaughtered by human hands, forcing their only daughter to masquerade among their killers to save her own skin. Now she dwells among them, hiding her lightning-based abilities and plotting a terrible revenge, believing her schemes are all she's good for now. But when she discovers unexpected solace among a group of humans who look past her monstrous nature, Kari finds herself questioning everything. Her mission. Her dreams. Even the hatred festering in her heart. Is it possible for a creature like Kari to find happiness in a world that despises her? Or will the specters of her past force her down the path of vengeance in the end?


Why Odin Drinks by Bjørn Larssen

In the beginning there was confusion. Then Gods created people. Confusion was better. Well, have YOU ever woken up not knowing how to God properly? Poor Odin must restrain his brothers, who create offensive weapons such as mosquitoes and celery; placate his future-telling wife, Frigg, who demands sweatpants with pockets; listen to Loki’s Helpful Questions; hang himself from Yggdrasil for nine days with a spear through his side (as you do); teach everyone about nutritional values of kale (but NOT celery); meet a Wise Dom, Sir Daddy Mímir, in order to outwit those who outwit him; and, most importantly, prove he is The All-Father, while his brothers are, at best, Those-Uncles-We-Don’t-Talk-About. This nearly (except in Vanaheim) universally acclaimed retelling of the Gods’ first millennium answers way too many questions, including ones on Freyr’s entendre, horse designing… and why Odin drinks. 'So, I loved it! Here's my quote: "Funny, quirky and surreal, this is the Norse myth you've been craving." Will it do?' – Joanne Harris, author of The Gospel of Loki and Chocolat Why Odin Drinks, a Norse Mythology retelling for fans of Terry Pratchett, Douglas Adams, Jenny Lawson, and Calvin & Hobbes is suitable for readers aged 14+. The book features no graphic descriptions, although some characters wish it would.


Legacy of the Vermillion Blade by Jay Tallsquall

SPFBO9

Talon Cour-Vermane is not only the sole inheritor of his House’s lands, titles, and political power, but also of the pact his family has forged with darkness through countless generations. From birth, Talon’s father tethered his son’s life to the family’s bloodline and his own ambitions of power, but everything changes when a new blacksmith and his young apprentice, Richen, join the staff at the Cour-Vermane estate. With their fateful meeting, Talon’s life changes course forever, derailing the meticulously laid out existence planned for him. From his family’s estates and the countryside of Eleryon to the extents of the Xallian Empire and the dwarven kingdom of Lymehold, Talon discovers the different aspects of love, true family, and himself as he battles his cursed blood and the shackles to darkness his father bound him with. “I wanted to craft an epic fantasy story featuring the incredible diversity of love and relationships that span the asexual spectrum in my LGBTQIA+ inclusive world. The new continent of Rhymera acts as the backdrop for Talon’s story, and I’ve filled it with a rich tapestry of living characters and unique locations that followers have come to expect from my storytelling.” — Jay Tallsquall An accessible tale of high fantasy adventure for all of those who have yearned for love and felt the heartbreak of its loss, Legacy of the Vermillion Blade is for the hopeful broken-hearted and the broken hopeful-hearted in us all.


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