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Cradle by Joshua Skye

October 30, 2015 2 comments

Hello everyone,

I am happy to be hosting a blog tour stop for Joshua Skye and his new book, Cradle. I am lucky to have the last of a five part series of letters about the story. You can find the other letters, in order, at ArmandRosamilia.com, Shah Wharton WordsinSync, The Sirens Song and The Road to Nowhere.

JoshuaSkye_Cradle_FrontCover_promotional

The Cornelius Correspondence: Letter #5 of 5

Dear Cornelius,

It was beautifully unpleasant to read of your unnerving predicament. Have you dared venture from your dreary room to discover the origin of your scratching nocturnal visitations? I imagine you cautiously slipping your letters to me under your chamber door to your mother for her to mail for you. How long do you plan on dwelling in her basement, le sous-sol de la mère crédule? Even Shadows need to get out every once in a while, if nothing more than to avoid going stir-crazy. Perhaps she’s the one scratching at the door in some misguided attempt to get you out from in front of your video games and conspiracy theory websites. We all have our “mommy issues.” You know what the proverbial they say. If it’s not one thing, it’s the mother. Beware, my friend, there’s no scorn like… well, you get my point.

Of Monsters and Angels

What goes bump in the night has many different ethnicities, so to speak. The creatures in Cradle are not so far removed from the entities in Angels. Though not necessarily born of the same nocturnal or maternal cavity, they are siblings. The depths of the darkness from whence they all come unites them. They trick ‘r treat together, the cold fiends beneath their various guises share a common loathing of mankind. It’s not just because we’ve taken what they rightfully believe is theirs, this world such as it is. They all have individual hungers they seek to satiate as they lurk among us. Who better to feed upon than us? We offer a diverse flesh-bound buffet to a sundry of thirsty pallets. Man, woman, child. White, black, brown and every tone in between. Sectarian and secularist. Straight, gay, bisexual. Saint and sinner. There’s something for every fang to sink into, someone for every wicked desire.

I told you before that I love all the characters in my writings, even the evil doers, but that’s not necessarily true. There is something in Cradle so wicked only the vilest soul could find it unobjectionable in any possible way, and it is perhaps the hungriest of all the demons residing in Wren Township. It slithers with the devils in Angels, writhes in perverse tandem with them in their iniquitous ways. Just knowing it, stains you, not dissimilarly to the ways it stains the other characters in the book, my flawed angels Radley and Scotty. My heart goes out to them just as it does to my dearest Kincaid. Ah, Kincaid. How I love him so. He’s in Cradle too, you know? No one has heard the last of him, I assure you.

Eternally,

Joshua Skye

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Cradle

In the deepest vale of Crepuscule’s Cradle, in the cul-de-sac at the end of Direful Hollow Road, is a once grand Folk-Victorian home known as The Habersham House. It’s a place haunted by far more than rot and neglect – evil dwells here, an evil that craves children.

Eight-year-old Scott Michaels-Greene has a fascination for tales of the strange and unusual, especially local folklore. His favorite story is the one about Habersham House; a ruined old place where many curious children have disappeared.

Hours away from Crepuscule’s Cradle, in Philadelphia, author Radley Barrette has just lost the love of his life to a random act of violence. Amongst his endowments from Danny’s estate is an old house in the backwoods of Pennsylvania, Habersham House. Though grief stricken at leaving behind the only home he and Danny had ever known, he knows he cannot remain in the city. Besides, the isolation may be just what he needs to clear his mind of the writer’s block he’s suffering from.

Crepuscule’s Cradle is not as he imagined. The locals are inhospitable. The skeletal forest surrounding it is as unwelcoming as the town. And the house itself – there is something menacing, something angry inhabiting it with him, and it’s hungry. Radley’s world slowly begins to unravel; the fringes of his reality begin to fray. In the midst of his breakdown, a local boy with an unhealthy fascination for Habersham House begins sneaking around and the evil residing within has taken notice.

Blending fantasy with horror, Crepuscule’s Cradle is the darkest of fairy tales. The morbidity of classic folklore and contemporary style weaves a web of slowly encroaching unease. Radley Barrette’ winter bound home is more than a haunted house, and Crepuscule’s Cradle is more than a mere horror tale. It’s a bedtime story that will pull you into its icy embrace, lull you into a disquiet state, and leave you shivering in the dark.

Cradle is available online at:

Amazon: US | UK | Australia | Canada | Germany | Italy | France | Spain | Japan | Mexico | Brazil | India | The Netherlands

Amazon Print: US | UK | Canada | Germany | Italy | France | Spain | Japan | Mexico | Brazil | India

Barnes & Noble (Print & eBook)

Kobo

iTunes

Smashwords

Josh

About the Author – Award winning, bestselling author Joshua Skye was born in Jamestown, New York. Growing up, he split his time between Pennsylvania and Texas. Ultimately he settled in the DFW area with his partner, Ray – of nearly two decades, and their son Syrian. They share their lives with two dogs, Gizmo and Gypsy, and a chinchilla named Bella. Skye’s short fiction has appeared in numerous anthologies including Childhood Nightmares: Under the Bed, and periodicals such as The Sirens Call. He is the author of over ten critically acclaimed novels, among them The Angels of Autumn that takes place in the same nightmarish universe as Cradle.

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Whistle While You Work #12

October 28, 2015 Leave a comment

Tomas opened his eyes, looking up at the ceiling of his room in confusion. He was confused, but the memory of the ebony woman was clear. The memory of the runners chasing him was clear.

How he had ended up in his bed with Maleena’s body pressed against him was not clear.

She shifted and moved, the sensation of her hot skin rubbing against his painting a smile on his face. Tomas felt twinges of pain from the scrapes and bruises he received trying to escape the runners, but the feeling of his wife lying beside him chased the aches away.

Tomas wound his arm around her and she made a purring sound. He closed his eyes again and traced a line down her back. She placed her palm on his chest and slid her hand over his body until he groaned.

“You are awake and well.”

His eyes snapped back open and Tomas gasped.

Lady JoTaugh sat up. Tomas stared at her with his mouth open.

“How?”

She smiled. “I have returned you to your bed after you fell.”

“But?”

The creature smiled. “Shhhh. I will return to you soon. We have a great number of things to discuss.”

“What?”

She traced her fingers over his chest. “All wizards are made with training. I heard you whistle, you can do it. I wish to help you.” She leaned forward and placed a kiss on his chest.

Tomas’s mouth moved, but no words came out.

When the door latch clicked, Tomas jumped into a sitting position. He squeaked out a sound of terror as Maleena walked in, but his wife just looked at him in confusion before rushing to him.

“What happened? How did you get hurt?”

Tomas looked beside him, but the bed was empty.

Categories: Fantasy, serial Tags:

Whistle While You Work #11

October 21, 2015 Leave a comment

Lady JoTaugh bent at the waist and reached under the runner bird’s corpse. She gripped the Tomas by the front of his tunic, and dragged him out. He stared up at her with wide eyes while his lips trembled.

After a moment, with him saying nothing, she checked her appearance. She wore only one set of eyes, so that couldn’t be it. She had hair, and it only reached to her shoulders. She turned to look behind her, checking to be sure the wings and tail were gone; then she turned back to him. “Are you uninjured?” she asked.

He nodded, but still made no noise.

The demon followed his eyes to her chest before remembering the mortal tendency for clothing. “Damn the stones.” She muttered the curse in her native tongue while straightening up. She hummed a few soft notes, willing a thin shirt into existence. “Will you be able to speak now?”

The man swallowed and nodded.

“Will you be able to speak now?”

“Yes,” Thomas stammered. “Yes.”

“Good.” Lady JoTaugh offered the carpenter her hand.

“Thank you.”

“Are you uninjured?”

Tomas nodded and turned his attention to the surrounding woods. At least a half dozen runner birds were scattered around. Most had their heads ripped off, but one looked like it had exploded. He turned back to the demon and asked. “Who are you?”

“I am Lady JoTaugh.”

Tomas stared at her, opened his mouth and then shut it again.

“What?” she asked. “You may ask any question you wish.”

“What,” Tomas began, stopped and licked his lips, then said, “What are you?”

“I am of the elements. I am a child of the shadows.”

Tomas’s eyes went wide and he grew pale. “How did you come to be here?”

“I was following you.”

She watched his eyes roll up into his head the moment before he fell. She hated it when they passed out like this. It was a sign of weakness. For this to work, he would have to be strong, not weak.

Categories: Fantasy, serial Tags:

Whistle While You Work #10

October 14, 2015 Leave a comment

The runner above Tomas slammed its foot down on his chest. The weight took his breath and he tensed up, waiting for the bird to strike. He heard a sound of tearing but felt no pain. Then, the bird’s weight shifted, allowing him to breathe. Hot liquid sprayed him and he assumed it was his blood spraying from a wound. He was dying, but not hurting.

Tomas offered his thanks to the heavens, assuming that his prayers for a painless death had been answered. He squeezed his eyes tighter as the runners squawked and fought for position.

Another heavy form fell on top of his face and it hurt. A sudden, sharp pain shot out from his nose and Tomas couldn’t help but to lift his hands up.

He had to turn his head and struggle with the body on top of him. Now Tomas opened his eyes, but he could see nothing beyond the feathers on the corpse which lay on top of him.

In front of him, a rain of black blood fell on last year’s leaves. After a moment, a few runners shot off into the forest away from him. The clearing grew quiet and the man took a deep, shuddering breath.

Then a small, black boot crunched down in front of him.

Categories: Fantasy, serial Tags:

Whistle While You Work #9

October 7, 2015 Leave a comment

Back at it after a nice vacation. This is when something like this really helps. A schedule and a deadline to get things back on track.

L. E. White

#9

Tomas lunged to his right grabbing a small tree and using it to whip his body to the side. Burning pain shot through his shoulder, but he ignored it as the sound of a runner bird crashing into the thorns told him just how close he had come to death.

Again.

The race of runners was bearing down on him, fanning out through the forest to box him in. He hadn’t had time to climb. They were too close for him to be able to get high enough to be out of reach for a jump. He was desperate, and he was scared.

He was running out of breath, but the race wasn’t.

Three trees stood in a rough line in front of him. Each had limbs that spread out low to the ground. If he could jump onto one of the low ones and then vault up to another, Tomas thought he might be able to lift himself up enough to wait the birds out.

A loud snap to his side spurred him to even greater speed. The carpenter’s legs and lungs both burned. Sharp pains in his side screamed at him to stop running, so he headed straight for the tree.

He leapt from the ground. As his lead foot came dawn on a limb that was no more than three feet above the forest floor, a blur of motion caused him to turn his head and look into the smooth black eye of another runner.

His next step planted his foot on the limb of the second tree. With his boots almost six feet off the ground, Tomas began to stretch towards a limb that was still above his head.

His mind did not register the snapping of the limb. He did notice that the limb seemed to be getting further away, but he just stretched, trying to reach further, unwilling to let go of the idea of his salvation being just ahead.

Tomas’s feet touched the ground, and tangled in the fallen limbs. His body pitched forward, slamming his face into the leaves. His breath blasted out as he came to a stop and he remained still for a second.

With a groan, Tomas rolled over, blinking his eyes to try and clear the spots away. When his mind caught back up to him, he looked up in horror. A runner bird stood above him, its head cocked to the side while it made a clicking sound.

Tomas could hear leaves rustle and limbs snap as others walked closer.

He closed his eyes and prayed that it would be quick.

Categories: Fantasy, serial Tags:

Calvin and Hobbes Comic Strip on GoComics.com

October 2, 2015 Leave a comment

Deep in many different ways. Today’s comic makes a point that we should try to remember every day.

Source: Calvin and Hobbes Comic Strip on GoComics.com

Categories: Uncategorized