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👻 Samhain / Halloween 🎃
THE SMALL TOWN OF HULIS, MISSOURI
HAS A KILLER CHRISTMAS SPIRIT…
… AND IT’S HIDING A KILLER SECRET.
In 1975 the small town of Hulis was ground zero in a frantic search for 10 year-old Merrie Frances Callahan, as well as an intense manhunt for her abductor.
35 years later, it seems the FBI would like to pretend it never happened.
Special Agent Constance Mandalay didn’t get that memo…
IN THE BLEAK MIDWINTER is based on the short teaser novella MERRIE AXEMAS: A Killer Holiday Tale, (see below) but it tells the whole story of ten-year-old Merrie Frances Callahan’s 1975 abduction, and the present day murders that are somehow intricately linked to that event.
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5/5 Holiday Stars
I’ve been a Rowan Gant fan since I picked up my first copy of HARM NONE (I got it autographed, too – teehee), and I am so happy that SA Constance Mandalay got her own story! (soon-to-be-series 🙂 I can’t wait for Book 2: INTO THE LAKE OF FIRE!!). ITBM is going to impact the rest of the RGI Series for me. Constance was already growing on me, but I like her character much more now. Getting to go along with her on this investigation, and see how she handles the (I’m quoting Ben here…) “Twilight Zone” stuff without Rowan being there is eye-opening. I definitely see her a little differently, and have more respect for her. She has earned her place in The Ghoul Squad, haha! I would LOVE to see both Constance and Ben shake off their traditional beliefs and… well… a girl can dream. ♥ Blessed Be!
SA Constance Mandalay is assigned what appears to be a 7-year-old cold case that echos the events of the 35-year-old child abduction. Unfortunately for all involved, the case heats up for a short time each year with a brutal murder that appears eerily staged, and occurs under impossible circumstances.
Undaunted, she faces the task with no backup, a mysteriously redacted case file, and the inevitable murder fast approaching.
Mandalay’s experience as the ‘handler’ for an FBI occult/paranormal expert (Rowan Gant) makes her the perfect choice for this investigation. However, even her brushes with the unexplained still cannot prepare her for the answer she was not supposed to discover…
You can find In The Bleak Midwinter: A Special Agent Constance Mandalay Novel @
You can find Merrie Axemas: A Killer Holiday Tale (#FREE) @
Where to find M. R. Sellars online:
M. R. Land, Amazon, Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Smashwords, YouTube, StoryFind, and if he ever decides to get back to pinning – Pintrest. I’m still trying to recruit all you horror lovers to switch to SlashBoard instead – it’s Pintrest for Horror Lovers! Maybe we can follow him there soon series 😉
Merrie Axemas – Book 0.5 of the Constance Mandalay Series
LITTLE MERRIE CALLAHAN MAY BE ALL GROWN UP, BUT SHE STILL HAS AN AXE TO GRIND WITH THE MAN IN THE RED SUIT…
INTO THE LAKE OF FIRE: Book 2 of the Constance Mandalay series
THE END IS NEAR, IT JUST NEEDS A LITTLE PUSH…
Check out the entire Rowan Gant Investigation [RGI] series – I highly recommend the books I’ve read so far, and I’ll bet I say the same as I finish the rest of them.
My autographed copy of HARM NONE can’t be replaced, so I was especially giddy when I saw that M. R. Sellars uses AuthorGraph! Now my ebooks are virtually signed 🙂 Stop by and get your new M. R. Sellars ebooks personalized, too!
Be sure to check out all of the M. R. Sellars and other WillowTree Press Author logo-ed swag available @ On The Edge Graphics: Purveyors Of Official Author Swag & Other Graphical Oddities http://www.cafepress.com/otegraphics
Witches’ hats and harvest moon
Ghosts that dance to haunted tune
Apples, goodies, food galore
Halloween has this and more!
I know that there are a lot of haters when it comes to Silver’s books, but I’m never ashamed to admit that I’ve loved her writing since I picked up my copy of To Ride a Silver Broomstick: New Generation Witchcraft all those years ago.
HALLOWEEN: SPELLS, RECIPES & CUSTOMS is a very fun book, as well as informative. She does most of her own illustrations, and they mesh with her writing beautifully. As much as you think you know about Halloween / Samhain, I’ll bet that you’ll still learn something new here. A bit of history, a yummy new recipe, or maybe even a new way to to try that spell you just can’t get to take!
It’s a great book for everybody, Christian or Pagan.
5 of 5 stars
Blessed Be )0(
Soon you may find me, in a dark alley behind a bookstore or a library, wearing a trench-coat and sunglasses, whispering to passers-by… “psst.. hey man, yeah, you…. ‘mere… wanna read a book?”
YES, you read that correctly.
According to the American Library Association, the Harry Potter series has now not just joined the ranks of such classics as as The Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger, The Lord of the Flies, by William Golding, & 1984, by George Orwell, but has passed them all to become The Most Banned Book in America. That puts J.K. Rowling arm in arm with Mark Twain, Harper Lee, and Maya Angelou!
How messed up is that?
“It is undeniable that themes of death and resurrection abound in the stories, as well as detailed depictions of potions and other hocus pocus. But while there are Christians who decry the celebration of witchcraft, there are other Christians who consider Harry’s journey an edifying allegory for Jesus Christ.” (O.o What!?)
I’m a filthy, dirty, hellbound pagan, and loved these books – not because I learned to point a tree branch and fix my glasses, or because they were a covert way to teach my son about my religious beliefs. But, for the same reason I enjoyed any other fictional book, for the characters I fell in love with, for the stories I got lost in, for the joy of reading a phenomenal story!
As much as I want to rant & rave about the people who believe that these books are anything other than fictional novels, I’m trying to hold my tongue. But, they’re the same people who banned Captain Underpants.
“That is another problem with banning books: it obscures the diversity of viewpoints within its potential readership.” Once they’re banned, the only people who discuss their viewpoints – are the narrow-minded one-way thinkers.
Thankfully at least 450 million copies have been sold, so there is little danger that an eager reader will not be able to drudge up a copy. But, this wasn’t always the case!
Yet me ask you this, with fanatics such as Fred Phelps (for example), who twist around the words in that all holy book to fit their way of bigotry and hatred… why hasn’t The Holy Bible been banned every hotel in America?
About a decade ago, PEN joined with the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression to support an initiative called KidSpeak, a website designed to encourage kids to debate free expression issues and, at least initially, to debate whether J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series should be censored. The conversation had been prompted by a number of religious groups that claimed the fantasy series about young wizards promoted occultism and paganism, thereby undermining Christian values. Here is a response from a fifth grader: “I think the Harry Potter case is just crazy. I have an idea that kids seven and under need a permission slip to see if it’s okay for seven and under to read Harry Potter books. If parents of kids eight and older complain, the principal should just talk to them and tell them that it’s just fantasy.”
How are kids so intelligent & well spoken?
OH! That’s right…
What stands out about this student’s response, and the response from the rest of the elementary school classroom, is not just her indignation at the idea of censoring the Potter books — she crafted a policy that would protect younger children. The discussion prompted the student to think about free expression and also to develop her own creative solutions to address the concerns of others who held views different from her own.
Since the publication of The Sorcerer’s Stone in 1997, kids have discussed, dissected and debated the books with a critical eye. Anyone who has listened to Mugglecast, a podcast for Harry Potter lovers, must acknowledge the close textual reading of every single chapter of the series, and fan fiction sites abound in an efflorescence of, albeit channeled, creativity. These books have taught children to read, to think, to write and to criticize, all hallmarks of free expression! How can that be a bad thing?
It’s these kids, the ones who learned to think critically & write creatively, who will soon be flooding the literary world with their ideas. These are also the ones who will probably be on a banned list of their own. And, that, is what gives me hope.
What has been your favorite book that has ended up on the BANNED LIST?
What do you think is the craziest book to end up in the BANNED LIST has been?
by Whitley Strieber
Barry, a practicing witch, [Wiccan] has collaborated with well-known SF and horror writer Strieber in CAT MAGIC. A story about Witchcraft and Wicca, written in 1986 – before the New Age wave hit hard and Wicca as a religion was still a taboo. The book helped keep the focus away from “black magic” nonsense that the movies of the same period were trying to hype. It became a sort of ‘spokespiece’ for Witchcraft, relying on the ancient wisdom of worshipping the earth and the seasons, of living with and respecting nature and the holy in people and animals.
The story focuses on young Amanda Walker, who has come to rural Maywell to work with Constance Collier on her latest book. But Constance is really a witch, the spiritual leader of a large coven, and unbeknownst to Amanda she has picked the girl to be her successor. To complicate matters, Amanda’s eccentric uncle George, who is involved in research in resuscitating the dead, has finally gone over the edge and is looking for a healthy young woman as his next subject. And Brother Simon Pierce, local fundamentalist preacher, himself quite mad, is determined to enforce the Biblical injunction, “Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.”
• I’ve read this four times now, and I love it a little more each time. There are times when the story tries to incorporate ancient Witchcraft myth & legend into a book that is trying to portray Wiccans in a positive light. While that does help the author weave a more fascinating web, it actually casts a shadow over the overall effect. I loved the fey, shown as a race which can be elusive and enduring, as well as dangerous and a little frightening. The Wild Hunt is exciting, proving Amanda to be the person everyone hopes she is, and where she begins to realize it herself.
There is a part, in the lab with George, where he is performing an experiment on a frog. It’s told from the frog’s perspective (as odd as that may sound – it’s really not). That part breaks my heart every time I read it. Feelings going from confusion to pain, back and forth – until, finally… the pain is gone, Summerland is within reach. Everything is finally ‘right’. Then it’s ripped away & it makes me curse life.
I really hope you’ll try to find a copy of this book. It’s a story I’d love to discuss with you. I’m interested to hear the views from Christians AND Pagans, I’m curious to see how different one view is from the other.
P, L, & N ♥
This was a Facebook post I saw on my friend ‘Cherie’s’ timeline a little bit ago, and I want to share the message. The number of suicides caused by bullying is heart-breaking. To name just one person, to put a face to this epidemic, please remember Tempest Smith.
A teacher in New York was teaching her class about bullying and gave them the following exercise to perform. She had the children take a piece of paper and told them to crumple it up, stamp on it and really mess it up but do not rip it. Then she had them unfold the paper, smooth it out and look at how scarred and dirty is was. She then told them to tell it they’re sorry. Now even though they said they were sorry and tried to fix the paper, she pointed out all the scars they left behind. And that those scars will never go away no matter how hard they tried to fix it. That is what happens when a child bully’s another child, they may say they’re sorry but the scars are there forever. The looks on the faces of the children in the classroom told her the message hit home. Pass it on or better yet, if you’re a parent or a teacher, do it with your child/children.