Author Archive: SorchiaD

Novel Magic: Rule Breakers Soul Takers by Jacqueline Jayne

Happy Halloween, my darling Sorchialites! May your Samhain celebrations be enchanting and may your spells never backfire. (Seriously, let’s be careful out there. Nobody wants a repeat of the embarrassing toad debacle of ’07.)

Since Halloween falls on a Novel Magic Tuesday, we wanted to present something fitting for the season. And what’s better than a little trip through the Gates of Hell.

My guest, Jacqueline Jayne, explains the inspiration for her latest release. I hope you find it spookily intriguing.

Rule Breakers Soul Takers by Jacqueline Jayne.

Thanks so much for having me at Sorchia’s Universe to talk about my new release, RULE BREAKERS SOUL TAKERS, Book One of the Hell Runners Series.

The idea developed when I visited the Rodin Museum in Philadelphia. In the portico, before entering the museum, is the first bronze casting of Rodin’s Gates of Hell. Rodin based the Gates on Dante’s Inferno. The sculpture is huge, covered in suffering figures, writhing in agony.  At the top of the sculpture are miniatures of Rodin’s famous Three Shades and The Thinker staring down in judgment.

Dark and detailed, the hairs stood up on the back of my neck while staring at it. Part of me wanted to turn away, but I was too intrigued. Turns out the Gates in Philadelphia are just one set of seven placed all over the world. Heart and brain embraced both the history and the scare factor.

What if Rodin sculpted the Gates as portals into Hell? And what if humans could pass through the bronze structures in Philadelphia and exit in Paris, or Seoul, or Stanford? And what if the humans turned out to be so gifted they could rescue souls from Hell, veritably stealing from Satan? And what if there were hidden doors in Hell that were escape hatches to Heaven?

The story details formulated fast through these questions. So I sat down and composed my own strange fake-history of Rodin, complete with a secret Society gone south and a band of present-day heroes, trying to expose the Society’s corruption while searching for Heaven’s secret doors.

I’d have to say the hardest and scariest part of writing the story was “demon shopping.” I needed a good villain that could withstand at least a three book story arc, so I researched demon legends. In the beginning I couldn’t sleep, dreaming about horned critters from the depths, willing to torture abandoned souls and mortals alike.

But I got over it. The romance between the rough around the edges hero and a smarty-pants heroine wouldn’t work without a lot of edge and a big payoff. I like a little humor, too plus added some life lessons and hot sex.

I hope readers have as much fun on the journey as I did writing it. Did I mention hot sex?

Now that you know the genesis of the book, here’s a little taste.

 

“We’re leaving the mother’s soul,” Prudence said, with a catch in her voice. “We have no choice.”

 

“No choice?” The shade’s ghostly eyes sank deep into his head.

 

“We don’t need you. Not this time.”

 

“I see.” His voice hissed like a radiator ready to blow, but his face sagged as if he might weep. “You—”

 

“Follow orders. For the greater good.”

 

“Greater good?” Niall huffed and stepped back, his clothes dissolving with each step.

 

Without another word, she walked, death-march slow, up the sidewalk.

 

Shit. Jesse knew damn well his partner wouldn’t be able to live with her decision. Not to mention his long-standing grudge against Baalberith. He’d pay heavily for disobeying orders. But he’d deal with the consequences later.

 

If he survived.

 

Before Niall disappeared, he motioned for the shade to move in close.

 

“She’s hell bent on following the rules, but I’m not. Get Prudence down the rabbit hole,” he whispered. “No matter what. I’ll take care of the minion.”

 

“Jesse—”

 

“I know. Save your breath. The only way out of Hell tonight is the hard way.”

 

The shade placed a hand over his heart, sighing through a grin.

 

“Railing against authority. I’ve so missed that. I’ll stay close at hand. Be aware, my friend, the demon will be upon you as soon as you exit. Confuse him with speed, if you can. You won’t like it, but Prudence runs fastest, it would be best if she took the mother and led the beast away.”

 

“No.” He shook his head emphatically. “We don’t split up. Ever. Especially not now.”

 

“Might I remind you, the child is off-limits? He only wants the mother. Though out of sight, Swift and I will be with her. By the time he realizes he’s been chasing the wrong Runner, you’ll be gone. We’ll follow you once the demon is out of sight.”

 

A rumble, deeper than thunder, filled Jesse’s brain. His head snapped from side to side searching for the source.

 

Brazenly close, the demon shimmered like a hologram, rapidly changing shapes as if considering his best self for the job. A brutally scarred man morphed into a crimson-skinned demon with elephant tusks and a long tail whipping electric sparks. In a blink, he crouched into a muscular panther, as sleek and shiny as a Maserati with protruding fangs and huge claws curved like Death’s scythe.

More firepower than needed to extract the mother’s soul. A demon so determined wanted extra recognition.

 

Like the kind earned by delivering a live Hell Runner to his master.

His heart pounded hot fear into his veins, quickening his thought process.

 

If Prudence couldn’t ditch the beast, she’d have to take to the woods. She’d never outrun it on the straight way home. This time she didn’t have the advantage.

 

But he did. He could see the beast if it chose invisibility at any point.

Before he could change his mind and leave the mother behind, he stomped up the walk.

 

Niall’s plan belonged in the shitter. His partner was going into the fissure first, even if he had to toss her in.

 

With luck, he’d lose the beast in the maze of houses and follow them soon. Without luck, he’d have to stare down Baalberith for the third time in his life.

 

Third time was so not the charm.

 

RULE BREAKERS, SOUL TAKERS is published by Hartwood Publishing and is currently available in ebook with the paperback edition out in November.

Get your own copy  Here.

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2hsdHGG
Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/2fifOMK
Kobo: http://bit.ly/2hqN5WL

 

Follow Jacqueline at any of these places.

www.jacquelinejayneauthor.com

jacqueline.jayne.author@gmail.com

Facebook @jacquelinejayneauthor

 

Meet Jacqueline Jayne?

Jacqueline Jayne is a multi-award winning author of paranormal romance who writes what she loves to read—adventure laced with deep insights on the human condition and a hard-won happily-ever-after.

Her Hell Runners Series features fearless heroes and clever heroines determined to overthrow Hell’s demons while navigating the emotional ups and downs of falling in love.

Jacqueline enjoys everything paranormal and sci-fi, especially those Winchester Boys, Jon Snow and all things Star Trek. She loves spending time with her sports-crazy husband (even though she doesn’t get football or the infield fly rule) and their two sweet rescue cats.

Motivation for Murder

Happy Week before Halloween. I’ve got a morbid and disturbing post for your reading pleasure today but

First: the News

 

Zoraida Grey and the Family Stones is on sale for the ridiculous price of 99 Cents until November 3. GRAB IT NOW BECAUSE BOOK 2 WILL BE OUT SOON.

 

I’ve been blogging around this month. Here are links to massively entertaining posts.

 

 

Even Scottish Vampires Fall in Love

Frankenstein Characters

13 for Thursday

 

Three Zoraida Grey stories are finished and nearly ready to distribute FOR FREE. Look for an Email blast soon. Sign up for my newsletter so you won’t miss it.

Let’s talk about murder and the motives thereof,

shall we?

Love, lust, lucre, and loathing—These 4 motives would seem to cover a multitude of sins, right? Turns there are as many variations on the theme as there are murderers. Author John LesCroart boiled these variations down to 14.

As I contemplate a new book, I’m looking for motives that ring true. Do you have a favorite? What might drive you to add just a soupçon of arsenic to the scones?

Motives for Murder:
(love, lust, lucre, and loathing)

  • To keep a secret
  • Revenge
  • Frustration/hate
  • Money/Greed
  • Sex/Jealousy
  • Property Dispute
  • Personal Vendetta
  • Political
  • Class Conflict
  • Narcotics
  • Other Felonies
  • Urge to Protect

While my little murder will be solved in eighty-thousand words or less, real life murderers stray from the safe world of literary murders. If you’re up for a macabre study, here are a few motives of real life murderers to brighten your day.

Woman, Mystery, Suspense, Hidden, Smoke

  • Ted Bundy killed more than 20 young women between the years of 1974 and 1978. He was executed in Florida in 1989.
    • “I haven’t blocked out the past. I wouldn’t trade the person I am, or what I’ve done – or the people I’ve known – for anything. So I do think about it. And at times it’s a rather mellow trip to lay back and remember. I just liked to kill, I wanted to kill. I want to master life and death.” Ted Bundy
  • The Zodiac Killer operated in norther California during the late 60s and early 70s. This killer was never caught and is responsible for at least 7 deaths.
    • “I like killing people because it is so much fun. It is more fun than killing wild game in the forest because man is the most dangerous animal of them all.” Zodiac Killer in one of the letters he sent to taunt the police.
    • The Zodiac Killer is also responsible for one of the best excuses for not finishing a research paper I ever heard. A high school student who was researching the Zodiac Killer (yes, I was that teacher—the one who gave weird assignments) came to me one day during my office hours and told me he needed to change his topic. I was surprised because he had been researching steadily and, for once, had turned in all the precursor work on time and in good order. When I asked why, he became a little uncomfortable. “Turns out my dad was in northern California at that time and I can’t eliminate him as a suspect. He doesn’t have an alibi for any of the murders and when I ask him about it, he told me to mind my own business.” I allowed him to change his topic for the assignment to another serial killer and we both agreed we should never speak of this again.
  • Carl Panzram claimed to have committed over 20 murders and was executed in 1930.
    • “I have no conscience so that does not worry me. I don’t believe in man, God nor the Devil. I hate the whole damned human race including myself.”
  • Herbert Mullin killed thirteen people in California in the early 1970s. He confessed to the killings, which he claimed prevented earthquakes. He is currently serving a life sentence.
    • Satan gets into people and makes them do things they don’t want to.”
  • Jane Toppan nicknamed “Jolly Jane” confessed to 31 murders. She was determined  criminally insane and died in an asylum in 1938.
    • “That is my ambition, to have killed more people – more helpless people – than any man or woman who has ever lived.”
  • In 1979, 16-year-old Brenda Spencer killed two adults, and wounded 8 children and one police officer at an elementary school, later saying, “I don’t like Mondays. This livens up the day.”

 

  • John Hinckley Jr. attempted to assassinate Ronald Reagan in 1981 so he could get actress Jodie Foster’s attention.

 

  • Fergus Glen was mad that his brother didn’t thank him for making dinner, so he used an axe to hack him to death in 2003. The siblings didn’t get along very well, so that small perceived insult was apparently the last straw for the 36-year-old killer.

 

  • Tan Teck Soon pushed his girlfriend off a 12-story building over an argument about chopsticks and then jumped after her. He thought she was about to break up with him and that they should die together. Trouble is he survived and she did not.

 

  • Dennis Nilsen is one of Great Britain’s most prolific serial killers. He is also one of the most enigmatic. Between 1978 and 1983, Nilsen took 15 different men out on nice dates in which he treated them kindly and then murdered them. Similar to America’s Jeffrey Dahmer, loneliness was the motive.

 

Novel Magic: Karilyn Bentley’s Demon Lore

Demon Lore at www.sorchiadubois.com

Spooks and ghouls fall out of the woodwork in Sorchia’s Universe. This week, we even have a demon.  It’s my pleasure to welcome Karilyn Bentley with a SALE on her new book! Act now–the sale ends soon.

Demon Lore at www.sorchiadubois.com

 

Hi Sorchia! I’m excited to announce the first book, Demon Lore, in my urban fantasy series is on sale for 99 cents until Thursday, 10/26. I’m glad to be on your blog today to announce the sale! The series features Gin Crawford, an ER nurse who is also an empath, and her journey as she becomes the world’s newest demon huntress. Needless to say, she’s not too excited about her new job.

Gin has a twin brother who sees ghosts. I’m fascinated with ghost sightings. While I’ve never been ghost hunting, I have seen the ghost of my grandfather when I was twelve. For several months after he passed, he would visit me as I was going to sleep. The first night he visited, he started off sitting on the edge of the bed, but his proximity freaked me out so I made him go sit in the chair by the door. It comforted me to know he stayed until I fell asleep. Then one night he stopped coming and has never visited me again.

What about you? Have you seen a ghost? If so, tell me about it in the comments.

 

And check out the blurb and excerpt for Demon Lore:

Blurb:

Gin Crawford has enough problems dealing with her empath abilities. Finding out she’s the world’s newest demon-slayer is the last thing she needs. Unfortunately, when she slips on a mysterious bracelet she is given no other choice. On the plus side, her new gig comes with Tall, Dark and Handsome, a mage who may or may not have her best interests at heart. Thrust into a power-play between good and evil, Gin must choose a side before she becomes the next victim in the ongoing battle.

Excerpt:

     The evil man-thing stands on my porch, his lips turning in a menacing smile of death. I don’t need to touch him to know he wants me dead. Muscles freeze, trapping my breath in my lungs. Like a rabbit in view of a wolf, I’m immobilized, waiting for death’s blow. Time slows, his gaze locks on mine, trapping me in place.

 

     Move, move, move! My mind screams as the man’s fingers twitch.

 

     But the spike of adrenaline explodes into my limbs too late to stop the backhand blow slamming across my jaw.

 

     I superman it halfway across the living room. Land on the hardwood floor in a thud of pain-ridden limbs. My jaw morphs into a screaming ball of nerves. My head no sooner hits the floor than I hear the bracelet scream, a high-pitched wail quivering through my skin like vibrations from a tuning fork. The bracelet tightens around my wrist, cutting off the circulation, and then it loosens with a pop at the same time I hear the door click closed.

 

     Ohgodohgodohgod, I’m going to die. I don’t want to die. No, no, no, no, no. Pain and terror hold me crumpled on the floor as my mind crawls backward in time.

 

     But I’m no longer a child, fearful of fists and words, cowering on the ground.

 

     I’m a fighter.

 

     My head spins, but I refuse to lie on the floor waiting to be killed, so I attempt to stand. Evil Guy laughs as I ass-plant it. Laughs as a moan escapes my lips. He takes a step toward me, right arm drawn back for a hit. His fist hurls toward my face, but I manage to block it with my left arm. My right arm, the one with the bracelet, shoves forward, slamming into his chest.

 

     His black eyes widen, mouth open in surprise, his hands fluttering to his chest before dropping. I stare at my hand, stare hard, for I’m as surprised as Evil Guy. The bracelet had become a sword, a long, thin spike of metal extending from the silver links, straight into Evil Guy’s heart.

 

     A sword?

 

     Definitely a sword. The flat of the blade rests against the back of my hand, cool metal heating from the warmth of my skin. Small silver links circle around my palm, lending stability to the two-foot long sword.

 

     I’m not sure which scares me more, Evil Guy paying me a visit or the fact the bracelet performed a morphing trick.

Buy your own copy of Demon Lore:

Who is Karilyn

Karilyn Bentley’s love of reading stories and preference of sitting in front of a computer at home instead of in a cube, drove her to pen her own works, blending fantasy and romance mixed with a touch of funny.

Her paranormal romance novella, Werewolves in London, placed in the Got Wolf contest and started her writing career as an author of sexy heroes and lush fantasy worlds.

Karilyn lives in Colorado with her own hunky hero, a crazy dog nicknamed The Kraken, a silly not-quite-a-puppy, and a handful of colorful saltwater fish.

Where to find Karilyn

Website:

Facebook 

Twitter 

 Plotting Princesses Blog

Goodreads

Pinterest 

Newsletter

10 Modern Gothic Movies for a Dark and Stormy Night

As Halloween approaches and the veil thins, it seems appropriate to dig up something from last winter. So here is a list of some of my favorite spooky movies in a post from last February.

But first, the News

  1. I’m on the road this week with a guest post on Compelling Beasts Blog. Read all about Scottish Vampires HERE.
  2. Zoraida Grey and the Family Stones goes on Sale Oct. 20 through Nov. 3. If you have a Facebook or Twitter or Tumbler account, you can help me get the word out by supporting my Thunderclap campaign HERE.
  3. WHAT!! You haven’t read Zoraida Grey and the Family Stones? Well, now’s the time. Not only is she on sale, but book 2 in the series will soon follow. Pick up your own copy of this award-winning book at the reduced price HERE.

 

Winter is coming and no better time to binge on scary Gothic movies. Below, you’ll find a starter list guaranteed to chill you, thrill you, and send you screaming for a bracer of good Scotch whisky.

The 21st century, young as it is, has already produced a plethora of good old fashioned Gothic movies. Expect creepy locations, twisty plots, scary effects, and British accents. Some are gory and some are just delightfully disturbing. If these whet your appetite, stay tuned for next week’s post about classic Gothic movies.

 

Crimson Peak

In the aftermath of a family tragedy, an aspiring author is torn between love for her childhood friend and the temptation of a mysterious outsider. Trying to escape the ghosts of her past, she is swept away to a house that breathes, bleeds – and remembers.

Rated R for bloody violence, Crimson Peak is a throwback to the glory days of Gothic Romance. Lots of blood, lots of gore, lots or weirdness in a creepy old house. Their trailer is a great way to get your Gothic juices boiling:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oquZifON8Eg

 

The Others

A woman who lives in a darkened old house with her two photosensitive children becomes convinced that her family home is haunted.

And that’s all I can say about this until you watch it. Nicole Kidman is crazy good.

The Awakening

In 1921, England is overwhelmed by the loss and grief of World War I. Hoax exposer Florence Cathcart visits a boarding school to explain sightings of a child ghost. Everything she believes unravels as the ‘missing’ begin to show themselves.

This one has everything!  My favorite on this list. If you don’t enjoy the bloody carnage of Crimson Peak, The Awakening may be the movie for you. No gore, but lots of running around screaming—at least that’s what I do when I watch it.

The Raven

When a madman begins committing horrific murders inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s works, a young Baltimore detective joins forces with Poe to stop him from making his stories a reality.

While I don’t usually go along with rewritten history, this one is fun. John Cusack makes a great Poe.

From Hell

In 1888, a ruthless and cold-blooded killer begins hunting prostitutes in East London, and while the murderer’s work is savage, the mutilation of his victims suggests the fiend has an extensive medical background. Amidst a background of political unrest and barely contained scandal among the royal family, the murderer’s grisly exploits shock and frighten all of England, and one of Scotland Yard’s top inspectors, Fred Abberline (Johnny Depp), is put on the case, along with his partner, Peter Godley (Robbie Coltrane).

Any Jack the Ripper movie is fine with me. (I still think the Prince did it.) and I’ll watch Johnny Depp do opium all day long. But that may be just me.

1408

A man who specializes in debunking paranormal occurrences checks into the fabled room 1408 in the Dolphin Hotel. Soon after settling in, he confronts genuine terror.

Samuel L. Jackson and John Cusack in a scary story that still makes me double check hotel room numbers. Hint that you probably don’t need: 1 + 4 + 8 = 13

Sweeney Todd

Unjustly sent to prison, a man vows revenge, not only for that cruel punishment, but for the devastating consequences of what happened to his wife and daughter. When he returns to reopen his barber shop, he becomes Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street, who “shaved the faces of gentlemen who never thereafter were heard of again.” Sweeney’s amorous accomplice, Mrs. Lovett, creates diabolical meat pies.

Incredibly freaky. On the Freakometer, this one scores ten skulls.

The Woman in Black

A young solicitor travels to a remote village where he discovers the vengeful ghost of a scorned woman is terrorizing the locals.

Nice and freaky and bleak with the added feature of little Harry Potter all grown up and acting.

Corpse Bride

When a shy groom practices his wedding vows in the inadvertent presence of a deceased young woman, she rises from the grave assuming he has married her.

Tim Burton’s best in my humble opinion.

Darkness Falls

A vengeful spirit takes the form of the Tooth Fairy to exact vengeance on the town that lynched her 150 years earlier. Her only opposition is the one child, now grown up, who survived her before.

Yes, yes, there are plot holes, but the intense action is lots of fun.

 

Did I miss your favorite? Post it in the comments.

Make sure you don’t miss a post. Sign up for my newsletter.

Join Sorchia’s Universe