Lindsey R. Loucks

Untangle Your Heart

Category: Hunter Shea

.@huntershea1 Talks #IslandoftheForbidden & Cats (Maybe He’s a Fellow Cat Whisker Collector!)

Island of the forbidden tour logo

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!

Let’s go!

Cats

 

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.

 

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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?

 

Giveaway

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 hookofabook@hotmail.com.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Purchase Links

GoodReads:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23622071-island-of-the-forbidden

Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/Island-Forbidden-Hunter-Shea-ebook/dp/B00PDJV156/

Samhain Horror:

https://www.samhainpublishing.com/book/5298/island-of-the-forbidden

Barnes and Noble:

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/island-of-the-forbidden-hunter-shea/1120724210?ean=9781619226906

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

Sinister Entity

“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

Evil Eternal

“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

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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.

 

My Review:

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.

A Great Halloween Read: Hell Hole by @huntershea1

I don’t really do book reviews on my blog anymore, but for Hunter Shea, I made an exception for his blog tour for Hell Hole. He’s quickly becoming one of my favorite horror authors, and not just because he’s a genuinely nice person either. Although, yes, there is that, too. See, I was becoming frustrated with the books I’d read because the females in them were weak and vapid lumps. Then I read Hunter’s Sinister Entity about a kick-ass female ghost-hunter, and I was so thankful, I actually sent Hunter an email professing my gratefulness. And he wrote me back!

 

Anyway, Hunter agreed to answer some of my wacky questions for your reading enjoyment, and I promise you’ll actually enjoy reading his thoughtful and creative answers!

 

Here we go!

 

Me: The zombie apocalypse is here. You’re going to fight them off with the first thing you see on your left. What is it?

 Hunter: That would be the water bottle I got at this year’s Warped Tour. It is pretty sturdy. I think I could knock a few brains out with it. And it’s handy to keep me hydrated while I make myself through the zombie horde.

 

 

Me: Did you learn anything today? If so, what?

Hunter: I learned that the cemetery I grew up across the street from in the Bronx, Woodlawn Cemetery, was involved in the Lindbergh baby kidnapping case. I was listening to Jim Harold’s Paranormal Podcast and he had on someone that’s been investigating the case for years. Some pretty nefarious stuff went down in my so-called home cemetery. So glad I spent my childhood staring at those tombstones outside my window.

 

Me: Oh, cool! What’s something about yourself that really annoys you?

Hunter: No matter how hard I try, I just can’t pick the right numbers to win the damn lottery. It won’t take much to make me happy. I don’t need Power Ball returns. I wouldn’t say no to them, either. I can also be a sarcastic pain in the butt. Wait, I like that part about myself.

 

Me: What scares you?

Hunter: Oh Lord, how much time do you have? Illness. Without your health and the health of the people you love, life can be a misery. People breaking in to the house. Flying. The more flying I’ve done, the worse my fear gets. Our political system here in Amercia. It’s so fundamentally broken, I don’t think it can be fixed.

 

Me: Why do you write?

Hunter: I just love telling a good story. Even if I was writing for an audience of one, I’d still sit my butt down and write every day. I am not a numbers guy and pay little attention to them. Being able to weave a story that will entertain someone, and if I’m lucky, scare them, is what I feel I was born to do.

 

Me: And you do it so well! What’s the last song you listened to on purpose?

Hunter: I just listened to Prince’s Raspberry Beret on my iPod here at work. I think his musical genius – and that’s no exaggeration – is underappreciated because of all the strange things he’s said and done over the years. I used to be a Prince fanatic. Not so much now that I’m older with a thousand distractions. I got to see him once and it was the closest thing to a religious experience a person can have outside of church.

 

Me: I’ve had some musical religious experiences myself! What’s the scariest thing you’ve ever done?

Hunter: Easy. I stood watching a man have a shootout with a moving car as they went past me, bullets whizzing by. I didn’t even duck. I was mesmerized by the insanity unfolding right in front of my eyes. It wasn’t until they turned the corner that I fully realized what had happened and how I’d almost gotten shot.

 

Me: WOW! That’s crazy! You just walked in the door after a long day. What do you do first?

Hunter: Say hi to my wife and kids. Ask the girls how school went. From that point, nothing is ever the same twice.

 

Me: What’s the one physical object you can’t live without?

Hunter: It’s amazing how much my iPod Nano has become a part of my life. Aside from being a music lover, I’m a podcast junkie. That iPod is either plugged into headphones while I’m home, in my car or on the iHome in my office. I never cease to be amazed by how much I can store on something smaller then the palm of my hand.

 

Me: Would you rather be a vampire or a werewolf? Why?

Hunter: I’ll go with the werewolf. I’m already a hairy dude, so I’m halfway there. Plus, I’d like to just let the animalistic side take over from time to time. No second thoughts, no regrets. Just see and do.

 

Me: Fair enough. What are you going to do right after you finish this interview?

Hunter: I’m heading to the dentist to get nice new pics of my teeth. Cool part is, the office is a few houses away from one of the most haunted houses in the county. I plan to go have a look-see. Hmmm, I wonder if the owners will let me inside?

 

Me: That sounds amazing! Not the dentist part, the haunted house part. 😉 Do you have any strange writing quirks?

Hunter: This is a really weird one. Every time I sit down to write, I’m hit with an overwhelming urge to pee. Before I’m finished booting up my computer, I’d heading for the bathroom. I guess its all part of ‘getting everything out there’ for the story.

 

Me: You got to do what you got to do! Would you consider yourself a pioneer or a settler? Why?

Hunter: I’m in the pioneer camp, solely because I hate going down easily trodden paths. Or better yet, I have to do everything the hard way. I could have had inside contacts help me with my early writing career, but I flatly refused, wanting to do it my way or no way at all. In college, I could have pledged a fraternity. But no, I had to start my own with a few guys and grow it into the biggest, and friendliest, frat on campus. I’m not a joiner. I either have to start things or just go it alone. I think I would have been very happy in the woods in a new continent, working all day to create a new life for myself and my family. Plus, I wouldn’t have to shave or cut my hair. Wild man of the untamed frontier!

 

 

Awesome! Now that you’ve seen the awesomeness that is Hunter Shea, here’s my review of Hell Hole!

 

hellhole

Ever since I read Hunter Shea’s Sinister Entity, I’ve become a creepy fan girl and have vowed to read everything he ever writes. He already knows I’m stalking him, so it’s all good! *insert evil laugh*

As with all of Hunter’s books, one of Hell Hole‘s strengths is its characters. They’re living, breathing people with back stories that make them three dimensional. Nat and Teta’s personalities, as well as their unbreakable friendship, solidified both of them inside my head, even long after the story ended. Witnessing them deal with some of the horrific twists and turns in the book sped my heart rate since I’d come to care about them.

And speaking of the horrific twists and turns, there were plenty of WTF moments and bursts of speed-reading to quickly find out what happened next. The very beginning, however, plodded along for several chapters, and I while I understand the need to give the story a foundation to stand on, there were several instances where I wondered if this scene or that progressed the story and if it was really needed. But when Nat and Teta finally reach their destination, the book really got moving.

If you’re in the mood for a creepy story to put you in the Halloween mood (which should be celebrated all year long), this would be a good place to start. Then you can be a Hunter Shea creepy fan girl with me!

 

Rating – 4 stars

 

Find out more about Hunter and his books at his website!

 

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