Hunter Shea is quickly climbing the ranks of not only one of my favorite horror authors but also one of my favorite people. Period. Not only does he write spine-chilling books with bad ass heroines that I’m always making grabby hands at, but he also likes cats. You already know how I feel about felines. So Hunter, like I always whisper to my own cat, “You’re my favorite.”
Now that everyone’s thoroughly creeped out, I have all sorts of goodies in this blog post: First a guest post from Hunter on, you guessed it, cats! Second, information on his newest release, Island of the Forbidden, including a giveaway!!! And third, my review of IOTF!
I dig cats.
And not because Hemingway was a cat person. I’ve just always liked them. They can be affectionate and funny to watch, but independent enough to walk away when fun time is over. They are the very opposite of the clinging, needy ex that made your life a living hell.
As they get older and settle into lap cat status (if you’re lucky), they keep you warm in winter. Or they could morph into the under-the-bed type cat, in which case you see them at feeding time and when they do their litter box soft shoe.
We have two cats. One is eight, a rescue cat that we brought home 7 years ago. Iris spent the first few years attacking us like a damn Predator, leaving our legs battle scarred. Now that she’s older, she loves being around people and is a soft, furry lump on the chair.
We recently brought home a kitten from the shelter, a black cat my daughter named Salem. This cat is nuts. He’s skittish, but he loves people. We truly believe Salem is turning the clock back for Iris, who has become livelier than ever, though she attacks Salem now instead of us.
I enjoy watching them. Iris is regal, self-assured and in charge. Salem is scatter brained, clumsy and bursting with energy.
My favorite moments are the ones that give me pause. Like when Iris will be plodding along into the dark kitchen and suddenly stops and stares at a blank space on the wall. Her hackles rise and she crouches into a fighting stance. I look and there’s nothing there. What the hell is she seeing?
Or when Salem is running around at full speed and suddenly slams the brakes. His wide, orange eyes see something we can’t. Sometimes it keeps him frozen in wonder, other times it literally flips him out. He can’t run away fast enough after his initial back flip.
I like to think cats have the ability to see other dimensions. It might be something with the construction of their eyes or the wiring of their brains. A day doesn’t go by when Iris or Salem don’t stop to peer at the unknown. What I wouldn’t give to plug into their little minds and read their thoughts, feel their emotions.
If they can see what’s in our house, can it see them too? Do the cats keep the ‘bad man’ away as much as they do the mice? Dogs are great for keeping out physical intruders, but cats, I think they hold sway over something much bigger, and at times, darker.
It’s too bad that Hemingway’s felines couldn’t keep the madness from claiming him. Perhaps they protected him from something much worse.
So I surround myself with cats, sleek sentinels that watch over me as I write stories that sometimes even give me the goose bumps.
I loooove this post! When my cat gets the crazies, we call them Vietnam flashbacks. Unfortunately, I don’t live somewhere haunted like Hunter does, so my cat doesn’t appear to see things I can’t.
Island of the Forbidden by Hunter Shea continues the story of Jessica Bockman, the ghost-hunting heroine who has appeared in Forest of Shadows, The Graveyard Speaks and Sinister Entity, all published by Samhain Horror.
To read more about the series and Jessica Bockman, read Hunter’s recent article.
Island of the Forbidden Synopsis
Sometimes, the dead are best left in peace.
Jessica Backman has been called to help a strange family living on a haunted island in Charleston Harbor. Ormsby Island was the site of a brutal massacre two decades ago, and now the mysterious Harper family needs someone to exorcise the ghosts that still call it home. The phantoms of over one hundred children cannot rest.
But something far more insidious is living on the island. When the living and the dead guard their true intentions, how can Jessica discover just what sort of evil lurks on Ormsby Island? And why is Jessica the only one who can plumb its dark depths?
Enter to win one of five Hunter Shea books being given away! Two signed copies of Montauk Monster, one signed copy of Sinister Entity, and two e-books of choice of his titles are up for grabs! One book to each winner, given in order of random drawing. Enter to win at the Rafflecopter link. Must use valid email that winners can be contacted by. Print books are U.S. residents only. Contest ends Feb. 28, 2015. Any questions, contact Erin Al-Mehairi, Publicist, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Barnes and Noble:
Raves for Hunter Shea
Forest of Shadows
“A frightening, gripping story that left me too frightened to sleep with the lights off. This novel scared the hell out of me and it is definitely a creepy ghost story I won’t soon forget.” —Night Owl Reviews
“This is the real deal. The fear is palpable. Horror novels don’t get much better than this.” —Literal Remains
“. . .Culminates in a climactic showdown between human and spirit that keeps you glued to the pages!” —Horror Novel Reviews
“Hunter Shea has crafted another knockout. At turns epic and intimate, both savage and elegant. . .a harrowing, blood-soaked nightmare.” –Jonathan Janz, author of The Sorrows
Swamp Monster Massacre
“If you’re craving an old-school creature-feature that has excessive gore. . .B-horror movie fans rejoice, Hunter Shea is here to bring you the ultimate tale of terror!” —Horror Novel Reviews
Hunter Shea, Biography
Hunter Shea is the author of paranormal and horror novels Forest of Shadows, Swamp Monster Massacre, Evil Eternal, Sinister Entity, HellHole and Island of the Forbidden, which are all published by Samhain Horror.
The June 3, 2014 release of his horrifying thriller Montauk Monster was published by Kensington/Pinnacle. His second Kensington novel, Tortures of the Damned, will be published later this year.
He has also written a short story to be read prior to Sinister Entity, called The Graveyard Speaks (it’s free, go download!), and a book of stories called Asylum Scrawls.
His work has appeared in numerous magazines, including Dark Moon Digest, Morpheus Tales, and the upcoming anthology, Shocklines : Fresh Voices in Terror. His obsession with all things horrific has led him to real life exploration of the paranormal, interviews with exorcists, and other things that would keep most people awake with the lights on.
He is also half of the two men show, Monster Men, which is a video podcast that takes a fun look at the world of horror. You can read about his latest travails and communicate with him at www.huntershea.com, on Twitter @HunterShea1, Facebook fan page at Hunter Shea or the Monster Men 13 channel on YouTube.
I was salivating to get my hands on this book, and it sure didn’t take me long to tear through it!
After the events in Sinister Entity, it makes sense that Jessica and Eddie have a lot to work through in terms of their own mental well-being and relationships with others. It’s a struggle for both of them, which paints this book a darker color. But when Hunter Shea throws these two in a haunted house on a deserted island, the book gets super creepy.
I loved the character arcs of both Jessica and Eddie. Hunter writes these characters with such intelligence and heart (not to mention a large dose of kick-ass) that they leap off the pages.
While not as scary as Sinister Entity, the story still gave me chills in some parts. Even though I wasn’t a huge fan of the very, very end (it was so abrupt!), I’ll continue to stalk Hunter Shea across the interwebs.