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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.


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.


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.


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.


A Dagger in the Dark

A Dagger in the Dark by Tom Dumbrell

Twenty years before the events of The Look of a King, in a world on the cusp of change, a young man dreams of a life far from the one he has known. Is he a captain in the making, or out of his depth? The stakes are high, and only time will tell if the spoils are worth the gamble. . .


Pawn's Gambit

Pawn's Gambit by Rob J. Hayes

SPFBO9

Yuu wants nothing more than to forget the mistakes of her past. The Gods have other plans. Once a renowned strategist and general, five years ago Yuu made a mistake that cost her everything. Now she is on the run, royal bounty hunters snapping at her heels. But what if there was a way to get back what she lost, a way to bring back a murdered prince? Every century, the gods hold a contest to choose who will rule from the Heavenly Jade Throne. Each god chooses a mortal champion, and the fate of all existence hangs in the balance. On a battlefield full of heroes, warriors, assassins, and thieves can Yuu survive long enough to learn the rules of the game, let alone master it? Pawn's Gambit is a stand alone story set in the award-winning Mortal Techniques universe. It's a wuxia adventure filled with heroes, gods, spirits, and magic.


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™


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


The Century Blade

The Century Blade by Rob J. Hayes

Orochi, the king of the dragons, has ordered his brothers and sisters to destroy humanity. It falls to a young hero to assemble a team and stop the dragons' rampage. It falls to the Century Blade. This is a short story set in the world of the award-winning Mortal Techniques. It is designed to be read as a standalone story, completely independent from the full length novels set in the same world.


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


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


El Jefe

El Jefe by Tiffany Christina Lewis

In this third installment of the series, Detective Michael Taylor of the Oakland PD has a decision to make: Should he begin an investigation against his corrupt lieutenant? After being given a file of evidence against him, Michael is expected to act. He knows that after multiple attempts on his own life, opening this investigation would put himself, all of his loved ones and his partner Det. Alex Jamison in danger. As Michael contemplates the case, he and Jamison get a late-night call to the residence of Mia McDowell, who is found assaulted and murdered. Although it initially looks like a breaking and entering, Michael can sense something isn’t right. Just as his momentum rises, Lt. Bruce Vega, the corrupt supervisor in question, arrives on the scene. As the two come head to head, Michael removes himself from the situation only to find that he has fueled Lt. Vega’s fire, and he is now under a month’s suspension. Now Michael has to make some choices: will he investigate Lt. Vega and risk everything or will he do nothing and risk losing himself?


The Demon's Dagger: A Noir Urban Fantasy Novella (Alexander Southerland, P.I.) P

The Demon's Dagger: A Noir Urban Fantasy Novella (Alexander Southerland, P.I.) P by Douglas Lumsden

SFINCS

Once he checked in, checking out became an obsession! Crawford the were-rat checks into a shady hotel and promptly stumbles over a dead man. A mysterious troll is obsessed with finding the dagger that killed him—a dagger possessed by a demon! The demon denies that he is a demon and is obsessed with regaining his freedom. Meanwhile, the hotel’s night clerk is obsessed with the hooker on the third floor. Crawford is obsessed with what’s in the hooker’s room: a solid gold statuette of a demon-slaying goddess! Crawford has checked in, but, when obsessions collide, does he have any hope of checking out? Content Advisory: This book is intended for a mature audience. It contains misogynistic characters, language, and acts. It also contains graphic violence (including violence against women), smoking, drinking, drug use, graphic sexual acts, and crude language and images.


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.


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.


She Is Coming

She Is Coming by Midori Anzai

Salt merchant Seijiro doesn't know how he ended up alone and far from the Japanese Salt Road... ...nor why a yuki-onna is hunting him. As Seijiro braves freezing temperatures, he must piece together what has happened to him if he is to escape the yuki-onna's clutches. But the truth might just be colder than the air he breathes.


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!


The Gatherings

The Gatherings by Jeremy Ray

The Gatherings were supposed to bring world peace. What they brought was the apocalypse. Celebrities, politicians, and other prominent figures put together The Gatherings, an event to be held worldwide promoting global peace. When a friend invites Emily to one of the gatherings in a secluded apple orchard, she obliges. Sure, she is an introverted writer, but the world is so fractured that The Gatherings are something even she can get behind. Everything is great until the dancing begins. Then it happens... In most apocalyptic tales, the end comes by way of viral plague, world war, or robot invasion. Never in a million years could Emily imagine it would be this way. Will Emily survive to see what happens after the end of the world?


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!


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.


The Queen Protocol

The Queen Protocol by Gregory Benson

They thought they were finally safe… How did they end up on Nathasia, a planet of horrors? A place haunted by the souls of billions murdered in war, its seas poisoned by toxins explicitly engineered to kill and mutate, infested with Thraxon breeding pits, and quarantined by the Marck fleet. Kerriah and her companions awaken with holes in their memories, and the young Tolagon is missing. However, there is a twist of fortune. The yellow orb, lost for decades and protected by the terrors of this world, is finally within their grasp. Now, the calculating Marck Queen, hidden away in an impenetrable fortress, unfolds her diabolical plot. Her order is clear: destroy all life within the Oro system. Crushing pressure, frozen death, and the sacrifice of heroes is the only path to defeat her. As she breaks from her protocol, the queen's protocol, the system falls into darkness. With the return of the Thraxons, bitter alliances have formed, and fate has opened its dark eyes. Learn more about the different species and locations in this story!


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


Where Shadows Lie

Where Shadows Lie by Allegra Pescatore

SPFBO6

The Chosen One Is Dead. Magic Is Going Haywire. Time Is Running Out. When the King of Lirin murders Elenor's brother during a failed coup attempt, she must choose between turning a blind eye to her people's suffering or joining the rebellion and helping bring down the tyrant king. There's only one problem--the king is her father. Helped along the way by a grouchy old doctor, a boisterous group of nobles, and a well-meaning assassin, Elenor is forced to dance between duty and defiance as she tries to save her kingdom. Meanwhile, from the rainy streets of Lirin to the scorching dunes of the Mondaer Desert, the ripples of her actions have inadvertently broken a chain of events five centuries in the making. Ancient forces move in the shadows, calling in debts and striking deals. A monster with a thousand faces fingers his knife, ready to kill, and a pair of fugitives run for their lives. Where Shadows Lie is a non-stop, epic fantasy ride featuring an lgbtq+ and disabled protagonist and filled with court intrigue, sizzling romance, adorable baby dragons, and the battle between oppression and freedom. Dive in and get swept away!


Stones of Light

Stones of Light by Zack Argyle

Stones of Light continues the story begun in Voice of War, the multi-award-winning start to the Threadlight series. FEAR THE ROSES. FEAR THE LIGHT. Chrys swore to never again let the Apogee take control but, in a moment of desperation, he gave in. Now, he will learn what the Apogee truly wants. In Alchea, Laurel will do anything to get her threadlight back, even if it means working for the leader of the Bloodthieves. But she has no choice...a life without threadlight is no life at all. To the west, Alverax travels with the Zeda people to the large port city of Felia, where they seek refuge after the fires in the Fairenwild. But he shattered the coreseal, and no one quite knows what the consequences will be. They only know it won't be good. Together, they changed the world—now, they must save it.


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


The Wolf in Me: Survive

The Wolf in Me: Survive by Alex Smith

The 23rd century is nearing its end. Having been treated as subhuman (and worse) for over 300 years, the Wolves - a race of wolf-human hybrids - have reached their breaking point. With a clear threat of war rising daily, the US Military devises a plan to destroy the beasts they helped create. However, utilizing their intelligence and raw bestial instincts, the Wolves hatch a plan of their own: plunge the entire world into a war to end all wars! In the aftermath of a deadly airship crash, Percy - a six-year-old human boy - finds himself behind enemy lines; in the claws of the creatures he's been taught to fear his entire life. Xander - a twenty-eight-year-old elite black ops Wolf, finds himself with a very difficult choice to make; kill the innocent child he has found, or be ostracized by his own kind and protect the boy? What is a small, frail, boy to do when surrounded by beasts fighting to end his very existence? Survive!


The Cavern

The Cavern by Alister Hodge

When a sink hole opens up near the Australian outback town of Pintalba, it uncovers a pristine cave system. Sam joins an expedition to explore the subterranean passages as paramedic support, hoping to remain unneeded at base camp. But, when one of the cavers is injured, he must overcome paralysing claustrophobia to dive pitch-black waters and squeeze through the bowels of the earth. Soon he will find there are fates worse than being buried alive, for in the abandoned mines and caves beneath Pintalba, there are ravenous teeth in the dark. As a savage predator targets the group with hideous ferocity, Sam and his friends must fight for their lives if they are ever to see the sun again. "The Cavern is a tense and compelling descent into subterranean horror, with characters you will care about in a setting unlike most fiction these days. I've never been a fan of caving, but having read this book, I'm staying above ground in the sunlight forever." - Alan Baxter, author of DEVOURING DARK and the ALEX CAINE SERIES


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 Fear of Moncroix

The Fear of Moncroix by Bryan Asher

SPFBO9

All the Waywards have Fallen… After a mission against the Royal Vampiric Court goes horribly wrong, all of the Waywards are slaughtered. All except one. Davion, the last surviving member, must consume potions to mask himself and hide amongst the very people who killed his brethren. After a decade of living this double-life, Davion has resigned himself to his new purgatory. But all will not remain calm for him or the Court. An unknown swordsman arrives, and after killing several Royal Vampires, rumor spreads that he’s searching for anyone still belonging to The Wayward order. Davion decides he must track down this mysterious swordsman. But will finding him bring freedom or his own demise.


Worse Than Dying

Worse Than Dying by Brett Van Valkenburg

After his father suffers a nervous breakdown, Noah Barnes is tasked with caring for his family in the midst of a zombie apocalypse. A dark novella about fight and family, as one survivor confronts untold loss and struggles with unimaginable choices. Worse Than Dying takes place in a small town in upstate New York toward the beginning of an inexplicable uprising of the living dead. This powerful story is a more adult take on the zombie horror genre with fast pacing, mature themes, and, of course, plenty of disfigured, flesh-eating corpses. "Beautiful. If a sequel isn't forthcoming, it's a shame." -talesofworldwarz.com


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...


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 Naughty or Nice Clause

The Naughty or Nice Clause by Kate Callaghan

Being Naughty Has Never Been So Nice! When Lyla's father retired as CEO of the toy company which has been in their family for generations, she was meant to receive his shares. Instead, she discovers the company is bankrupt and her father has given her shares to Mason Klaus, an investor known in the corporate world for his cold and callous nature. Much to Lyla's frustration, her only option is to run the company with him, despite their evident loathing for one another. When Mason cancels the annual Christmas party, Lyla throws it anyway - only for the event of the season to result in a terrible fire. With the offices and Lyla's credibility ruined, Mason offers her a deal: he'll forget her part in the disaster, but she must join his family for the twelve days of their Christmas holidays. Taken to a fantastical winter wonderland, Lyla hopes that she might discover some of the secrets Mr Klaus is hiding, and maybe even a way to get her company back. However, when Mason introduces her to the secret village as his fiancée, she is horrified to realise she has no choice but to go along with the pretence - because the cost of bringing an outsider to their magical land is far too high. Can Lyla resist the devilishly handsome Mr Klaus and the enchanting village to win back her company, or will she give into temptation? Readers who fell in love with Yule: 'Definitely a must-read for anyone who likes Christmas books with a beautiful touch of fantasy.' ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 'Magical. Felt like stepping into a snow globe Christmas village.' ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 'I'm a sucker for cheesy hallmark Christmas movies, so if you're like me you'll love this book!' ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 'Adventure, romance, a bit of spice, and a sprinkle of gold dust to put you in the holiday spirit!' ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 'Workplace rivals featuring Santa's hot son and forced proximity in the North Pole? Count me in.' ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Tropes & Themes: Low-Fantasy Romance Workplace, Enemies to Lovers Fake Engagement Forced Proximity Cosy, Christmas feels


imPerfect Magic

imPerfect Magic by C.N. Rowan

SPFBO9

2023 FINALIST - FANTASY CATEGORY - INTERNATIONAL BOOK AWARDS


After hundreds of years of dying, you'd think I would've perfected it by now... 
One moment I'm a heretical priest in the twelfth century, hunted, hated...The next, I'm waking up in the nearest corpse. Stuck in a cycle of instant reincarnation, popping back up like a tarnished penny. Fast forward eight hundred years, and you might think I’ve learned a thing or two. Nope. All I've learned is how to die far too easily, far too often. Now my territory in the South of France is under threat and I find myself trapped by impossible angel-made runes. If the angels have gone full red lightsaber evil, it might not only be my territory in danger, but the whole of reality itself... I need to stop whoever is behind this, and now. After all, you can’t come back to life, if there’s nothing left to come back to. "imPerfect Magic" is the first book in "The imPerfect Cathar" series, a darkly funny supernatural suspense following a trio of immortal heretics. If you can't wisecrack while death is on the line? Well... perhaps you're not dying right. This book contains strong language, dark humour and graphic violence.

Click 'BUY NOW' to begin the award-winning, high-octane adventure today.


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 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.


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…


Cradle of Sea and Soil

Cradle of Sea and Soil by Bernie Anés Paz

Indie Recs Indie

The Primordial Wound has festered with corruption since the birth of the world. The island tribes have warred against its spawn for just as long—and they are losing. Burdened by the same spiritual affliction that drove the first Halfborn insane, Colibrí lives in exile with little more than her warrior oaths and her son. But when Colibrí discovers corrupted land hidden away by sorcery, those same oaths drive her to find answers in an effort to protect the very people who fear her. Narune dreams of earning enough glory to show that he and his mother Colibrí are nothing like the Halfborn that came before them. Becoming a mystic will give him the strength he needs, but first, Narune will need to prove himself worthy in a trial of skill and honor. Together, Colibrí and Narune must learn to become the champions their people need—and face the curse threatening to scour away their spirits with fury.


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.


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


Paternus: Rise of Gods (Paternus Trilogy #1)

Paternus: Rise of Gods (Paternus Trilogy #1) by Dyrk Ashton

SPFBO Finalist Indie Recs Indie

Described as American Gods meets The Avengers and Supernatural meets The Lord of the Rings, Paternus combines myths from around the world in a modern story of action and intrigue that is “urban fantasy on the surface, but so much more at its core!” Even myths have legends. And not all legends are myth. When a local hospital is attacked by strange and frightening men, Fiona Patterson and Zeke Prisco save a catatonic old man named Peter—and find themselves running for their lives with creatures beyond imagination hounding their every step. With nowhere else to turn, they seek out Fi’s enigmatic Uncle Edgar. But the more their questions are answered, the more they discover that nothing is what it seems--not Peter, not Edgar, perhaps not even themselves. The gods and monsters, heroes and villains of lore—they’re real. And now they’ve come out of hiding to hunt their own. In order to survive, Fi and Zeke must join up with powerful allies against an ancient evil that’s been known by many names and feared by all. The final battle of the world’s oldest war has begun. Paternus: Rise of Gods, is Dyrk Ashton’s critically acclaimed debut novel and the first book in The Paternus Trilogy. It has been compared to works by Neil Gaiman, Scott Hawkins, Roger Zelazny, China Miéville, Joss Whedon, and Kevin Hearne.


Of Honey and Wildfires (Songs of Sefate #1)

Of Honey and Wildfires (Songs of Sefate #1) by Sarah Chorn

SPFBO6 Indie Recs Indie SFFOasis

From the moment the first settler dug a well and struck a lode of shine, the world changed. Now, everything revolves around that magical oil. What began as a simple scouting expedition becomes a life-changing ordeal for Arlen Esco. The son of a powerful mogul, Arlen is kidnapped and forced to confront uncomfortable truths his father has kept hidden. In his hands lies a decision that will determine the fate of everyone he loves—and impact the lives of every person in Shine Territory. The daughter of an infamous saboteur and outlaw, Cassandra has her own dangerous secrets to protect. When the lives of those she loves are threatened, she realizes that she is uniquely placed to change the balance of power in Shine Territory once and for all. Secrets breed more secrets. Somehow, Arlen and Cassandra must find their own truths in the middle of a garden of lies.


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.


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.


Strange Cargo

Strange Cargo by Patrick Samphire

What do a smuggling gang, a curse that won't go away, and a frequently lost dog have to do with each other? Answer: they're all here to disrupt Mennik Thorn's hard-earned peace and quiet. As the sole freelance mage in the city of Agatos, Mennik is used to some odd clients and awful jobs. But this time, one of his clients isn't giving him a choice. Mennik might have forgotten about the smugglers whose operations he disrupted, but they haven't forgotten about him. Now he is faced with a simple ultimatum: help them smuggle in an unknown, dangerous cargo or flee the city he loves forever. Time is running out for Mennik to find an answer, and things are about to get completely out of control.


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.


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?


Blanky

Blanky by Kealan Patrick Burke

In the wake of his infant daughter's tragic death, Steve Brannigan is struggling to keep himself together. Estranged from his wife, who refuses to be inside the house where the unthinkable happened, and unable to work, he seeks solace in an endless parade of old sitcoms and a bottle of bourbon. Until one night he hears a sound from his daughter's old room, a room now stripped bare of anything that identified it as hers...except for her security blanket, affectionately known as Blanky. Blanky, old and frayed, with its antiquated patchwork of badly sewn rabbits with black button eyes, who appear to be staring at the viewer... Blanky, purchased from a strange old man at an antique stall selling "BABY CLOSE" at a discount. The presence of Blanky in his dead daughter's room heralds nothing short of an unspeakable nightmare that threatens to take away what little light remains in Steve's shattered world. Because his daughter loved Blanky so much, he buried her with it. A new novella from the Bram Stoker Award-Winning author of SOUR CANDY and KIN.


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 Children of Chaos (The Cruel Gods #2)

The Children of Chaos (The Cruel Gods #2) by Trudie Skies

WHEN THE SAINTS CALL, THE SINNERS ANSWER. Chaos stalks the steam-powered city of Chime and threatens the existence of the gods and their domains. Kayl swore to protect Chime's mortals from their gods' cruel whims, but when she agrees to represent the mortals of a god long thought dead, Kayl is thrust into a political role that goes against everything she's ever stood for. As the newly appointed ambassador to the god of time, Quen's goal is clear - protect Chime and the domains by any means necessary. But as the gods make their demands, Quen is caught between his loyalties and his conscience. To ensure a future for all mortals, Kayl and Quen must unite the gods against the threat of chaos and decide what they're willing to sacrifice for Chime - before the gods choose for them. For the gods are capricious and have their own divine plans. The Children of Chaos is the second book in The Cruel Gods series—a gaslamp fantasy featuring magical portals, gothic cosmic deities, quaint Britishisms, and steampunk vibes. This is an adult book containing strong language and mature themes that some readers may find disturbing. For a full list of content warnings, visit Trudie Skies's website.


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