Random Book Review-Church Mouse: Memoir of a vampire’s servant by R.H. Hale

Halloween is almost here and what better way to celebrate than with vampires and creepiness lurking in the dead of night! I recently finished R.H. Hale’s book, Church Mouse: Memoir of a vampire’s servant and left a review. If you like creepy, supernatural, and horror in a collective swirl of spooky goodness give it a shot, but don’t blame me if fear sets in and you wake up at 3am thinking someone is watching you, they very well may be! 😀

Posted below is my review posted on both Amazon and Goodreads!


5 out of 5 stars!

In R.H. Hale’s novel, vampires are reimagined in a gripping supernatural tale that haunts long after the final page is turned. With Hale’s mastery, this offering explores the darker side of life and the creepier side of our greatest fears, all with fangs and shadows aplenty. It’s seen as human frailty meets immortal hunger when needs and wants blend flawlessly with desires and cravings.

In, Church Mouse, readers are presented with the main character of Rona Dean, a child lost, an adult even more so as we bear witness to the world through her eyes thus setting the stage for the darkness that soon follows. Down on her luck and forced to reevaluate her entire life, Rona will soon find that the one place she always felt the safest will be the one place she struggles to escape alive. Blending the past and present in expert memoir detail, Hale takes her readers deep inside Rona’s driving forces while gently offering whispers and hints at the human condition evident in her main character and within ourselves.

Joining Rona as she lives in and explores the shadowy confines of a large and very old church, we are introduced to several characters all with different personalities and weaknesses. Hale masterfully showcases each character as having more than one side, a skill that increases the tension throughout her work. Friend or foe weave together with each addition to Rona’s life as caring becomes cruelty and, much like in our own private world, what one sees is not always the truth.

Love them one minute, hate them the next as we are treated to a game of cat and mouse with no clear winners, no safe players. Hale purposefully baits and switches her characters traits, views, and overall personalities creating an atmosphere of light and dark, confusion and compassion much like the world Rona finds herself in that mirrors our own daily lives. How do you trust when switches continuously flip and the game constantly changes?

Dripping with historical references amid some modern surroundings, Hale takes her readers on a slow-burning vision of supernatural shadows and the creatures that fairytales warn us are lurking deep within the darkness, some even more ferocious within the light. Staring deeply into troubled souls and understanding the plight of mere mortals, Hale exposes the fears and shortcomings of more than just the characters she has created. Expertly detailed, she brings the haunts with penetrating effectiveness that seem to sink their teeth into flesh keeping everyone on edge before her prose allows the creepy to rush readers headlong into horror.

While not a quick read, Hale’s work will engross many a reader long after the sun sets and darkness rises across the land. Her in-depth descriptions and tightrope walking of characters and their well-being within a creepy world of shadowy danger will entice throughout. Considered a tale of horror, readers will no doubt find that beyond the bloodshed there is hope, beyond the examination of the psychological constructs of human nature comes a glimpse of the metaphysical, and beyond the grip of death a spark of life. Highly recommend!

Random Image Day!-#36

It’s almost that time! I would say I’m excited and I am, however, I also want to hang onto the massive collection of Halloween treats I bought with the intention of handing out to all the little ghosts and ghouls. Is it wrong to spend all that cash on candy only to turn off the walkway light Halloween night and giggle maniacally behind my front door while eating copious amounts of sugary treats? I’ll let you know how it feels…(insert villainous laugh/fade to dark)

As we approach the fateful evening when the supernatural veil thins and the hidden haunts climb from the shadows to dance in the pale moonlight, we need to savor the build-up, the fun, the festiveness of the season. Much like during Thanksgiving, I am thankful for many things and this season is one of them. I am thankful for the rotating amount of scary horror scream-filled movies playing on numerous channels. I am thankful for the hint of cooler air and the dryness that comes with it. (It’s Florida, we’ll take what we can get!) I’m also thankful for friends and family who share in the fun and most importantly, my writing career and all that it has brought my way.

I may not always bang out gazillions in words every week but I do enjoy writing, more importantly, being a part of the world of indie authors. There is some great work out there that begs to be read in every genre imaginable and I feel blessed to be able to have access to it through social media knowledge and random searches. There are people out there writing because they love it, writing because they want to share, and writing because they are about as crazy as I am, some even more. We owe it to them to read their work, to wade into the pool of creative processes and enjoy the swim.

As I’m getting ready to scare the kids from the lawn so I can pass out in bed surrounded by the discarded wrappers of hundreds of pieces of candy while some vintage horror film plays in the background, I will give thanks to the readers and writers out there! The next morning when I’m falling over myself with a headache and a stomach full of Laffy Taffy and peanut butter cups, I will sit in front of my computer and begin the next chapter, the next sentence, the next creation. I’ve recently started Book 4 of The Keeper Chronicles and after about 45 pages in so far, I can say I’m moving along as best as I can. Doing what I love, enjoying how I do it and supporting my brothers and sisters out there in the big writing world by reading their offerings.

As I write, I’ll leave Halloween and the spirit it entails stashed in the closet next to lawn decorations and carry on towards the inevitable dental appointment from Sweet Tart overload and Heath bars. I’ll continue to write as I leave the ghosts of another holiday behind me while embracing the ones resting comfortably in my mind.


Photo Credit: Joel Robison. Nov. 2nd, 2012. Website: http://joelrobison.com/october-monthly-recap/


Enjoy the season and have fun, save me some candy…just in case! 😀




Son of the Serpent, on #LisaBurtonRadio — The Writer Next Door|Vashti Q

Originally posted on Entertaining Stories: Welcome all you demonologists, and exorcists. You’ve landed on Lisa Burton Radio, the only show that brings you the characters from the books you love. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and have I got a seasonal treat for you today. “Welcome to the show, Dracúl.” “I’m not sure…

via Son of the Serpent, on #LisaBurtonRadio — The Writer Next Door|Vashti Q

“Art.” A #Paranormal short story for Halloween #RRBC @pursoot #IARTG #Romance

Welcome to the World of Suzanne Burke.


Hi again and thanks so much for stopping by! Here’s another Paranormal short story to help celebrate Halloween. I do hope you enjoy it.



Suzanne Burke

The mood on the boardwalk screamed summer.  Laughing, flirting teens and hand-holding couples walked in the early morning sunlight, the waves in their perpetual season of change pounded the golden sand along the shoreline.  It was easy to believe that this had once been my lifestyle, to pretend for a short while that I could still be in that life.

Summer was a blessing; I had no need to remain behind closed doors.  I was free to enjoy the warmth and fresh salt in the air.  It was of my own doing, the isolation.  I chose to separate myself from the proximity of human company. I no longer had a tolerance for it.  I remained closeted away, watching from a distance.  It…

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Random Book Review!-The Dead Undone by Ellie Douglas

What better way to celebrate Halloween then with zombies and bloodshed!! I recently read Ellie Douglas’s, “The Dead Undone” and my review is listed below. Highly recommend if you like your horror with a side of arterial spray!


Taken from my Amazon review and also posted on Goodreads!–4 out of 5 Stars. 😀


Ellie Douglas’s, “The Dead Undone” will let you know right from the book’s ominous opening that this read will not end well for many characters within its pages. Douglas’s ability to expertly detail horrific scenes like a masterful director will leave horror loving readers gagging and wanting more as you buckle up for a wild ride through sheer terror and gruesome carnage.

In “The Dead Undone” readers are given the opportunity to meet and relate to many of her characters as she details their daily lives nestled within the confines of a tiny island some distance away from the main town. Given enough information to set the stage, readers will no doubt form opinions and choose their favorites such as Willa, a soft-hearted nurse at the island’s insane asylum and Wiremu an elderly man with some seriously strong survival instincts.

The townspeople and their interactions, coupled with Douglas’s ability to make each character completely different and play off each other flawlessly, makes the gore go down easier when the lights go out and the bloodshed reaches the maximum. The attention to detail concerning the island and specific locales, including each floor and the surrounding grounds of the Tui Asylum adds an additional level of creepiness to Douglas’s already gut ripping and spurting blood coated horror tale.

Douglas peppers her macabre approach to storytelling with tender moments of human interaction and the overarching struggle to survive against all odds. These quieter moments flows nicely against the backdrop of severed limbs, innards, and splattering bits which is horror maven Douglas’s claim to fame and why many of her readers enjoy testing their gag reflexes with every page. The horror is finely detailed and, at times, is almost too perfectly defined as every tooth gnash, head bash, and skin rip is not only explained in graphic detail but done in a way that pushes the envelope on more common and simpler zombie books and movies and how the undead horde is handled.

The setting is beautifully described and, as each chapter focuses on another section of the island until they slowly but surely combine, readers will feel the dread, the fear, and the inescapable creeping in with every page as the undead began their hungering assault. Though Douglas doesn’t break new ground on the zombie genre, it’s her attention to horror scenes, the dark setting, and the interaction of the world around and with her created characters that will leave readers fully engrossed in her work, some may even need to leave a few lights on after the final pages glide past their shaking fingers. Something tells me Douglas wouldn’t have it any other way, and after reading “The Dead Undone”, I’d almost guarantee it.