As I walked up the hill, the gum trees loomed tall and dark on the roadside, casting weird shadows in the light from the full moon. Suddenly something caught the corner of my eye and I swept my flashlight in wide arcs around me, wondering if the moonlight was playing tricks on me. It did that sometimes, made me imagine things that weren’t there.
Caught in the beam was a large, furry moth. As it flew closer to my face I swiped at it, feeling its soft body flutter against the palm of my hand. I stifled a scream. I should be used to them by now; I often saw them around the graveyard, moving clumsily through the air, and wondered if they bred in the gum trees. They were bigger than any moths I had ever seen, their wings dull shades of brown, with two iridescent blue circles, one on each wing. Sometimes I would find their dead bodies on the gravestones and I would sweep them up and deposit them in the cemetery bin, while saying a little prayer for the lives short-lived.
From Where the Moths Dance
Images from Pixabay
Gum Tree Hill Cemetery in the small township of Quindlan.
Midnight Max has lived in the graveyard all his life. He knows every gravestone and every tree. He takes shelter from the bad weather in the caretaker’s shed, and he knows the best places to hide when strangers come up the hill in their loud cars and invade his territory. He lives his life by the moon phases and the seasons, taking comfort in all that is familiar.
His friends are the crows that live in the gum trees, and Jessie, the girl who moved into the old caretaker’s cottage down the hill. Jessie spends a lot of time in the graveyard talking to herself, and sometimes she brings him a saucer of milk or a tasty morsel to eat. At first he was wary of her, but now he trusts her and senses that, like him, she just wants a quiet place to hang out, away from the rest of the world.
He is a loner and a hunter, and he loves to explore, although he never ventures far outside the perimeter of the graveyard. Fiercely protective of his territory, he is more than capable of defending himself if need be.
I am excited to announce that Enchanted Book Promotions has organised a virtual book tour for my young adult, paranormal novel, Where the Moths Dance. The tour runs for the month of August and includes book excerpts, author interviews, book reviews, and a giveaway for a signed paperback copy of the book. I’ve posted the tour schedule below and hope that you will check out these great book blogs!
August 1st: Starter Day Party @ I Heart Reading
August 1st: Book Excerpt @ Sylv Jenkins’ Blog
August 2nd: Promo Post @ I’m an Eclectic Reader
August 3rd: Book Excerpt @ Ashley’s Paranormal Book Blog
August 5th: Promo Post @ The Reading Guru
August 7th: Author Interview @ Majanka’s Blog
August 9th: Promo Post @ Rose Shadow Ink
August 11th: Book Review @ Forever Book Lover
August 13th: Book Excerpt @ Realm Tramper
August 15th: Promo Post @ Editor Charlene’s Blog
August 16th: Book Excerpt @ Hollow Readers
August 17th: Author Interview @ Cassidy Crimson’s Blog
August 18th: Book Review @ Endazzled Reading
August 19th: Promo Post @ The Book Daily
August 21st: Book Review @ I Heart Reading
August 23rd: Book Excerpt @ Books Direct
August 24th: Book Review @ Books, Books and More Books
August 25th: Author Interview @ The Single Librarian
August 26th: Book Excerpt @ Fantasy Book Lane
August 28th: Promo Post @ Bookaholic Ramblings
August 30th: Book Review @ Paranormal Romance and Authors That Rock
September 1st: Book Review and Book Excerpt @ Dalene’s Book Reviews
As the car engine grew louder, the sound of raised voices echoed across the graveyard and I realized it was too late to make it over to the gum trees. So, grabbing my iPod, I headed for the grave of Charlotte Pyke, who had passed away in 1876. Although the weathered stone angel on top of her headstone had lost one of its wings long ago, the stone statue was the tallest in the graveyard and I figured it would be plenty tall enough to keep me hidden from view. Sinking down onto the cold concrete, I turned up the collar of my coat and prayed that my black hair and dark clothes would help me blend into the night.
From Where the Moths Dance
There is something about angel headstones that draw me to them when wandering around old graveyards.
In the nineteenth century, when elaborate headstones became popular, beautiful angels were carved by skilled, local stonemasons. By the late nineteenth century, however, headstones were being mass-produced and, sadly, the services of the local stonemasons were no longer required.
With their heads bowed, these stone angels portray a strong sense of loss and sorrow,
While angels looking skyward are seen to be guiding the deceased to heaven.
The most elaborately carved angels that we see are very old, covered with moss and cobwebs, some with broken wings
It is amazing how these carved pieces of gray stone can evoke such strong feelings, especially when they mark the burial place of a young child.
I am excited to reveal the cover for my new book, which will be out in the next few weeks. Where the Moths Dance is a paranormal ghost story, and my first novel for young adults. The design is by Heather McCorkle of McCorkle Creations who, as well as designing fantastic covers, is an author of fantasy novels for young adults and adults.
This is the full front and back cover, which I am thrilled with!
About The Book
Sixteen-year-old Jessie Hale lives in the caretaker’s cottage at the bottom of Gum Tree Hill Cemetery. She feels more comfortable surrounded by the dead than the living, and the graveyard is her sanctuary, a place to escape from her troubled home life and from her mother’s despicable boyfriend, Conrad.
Elliott Rossi has found a way to come back from the dead. He needs to warn Jessie about a demon who can also access the living world and has his new prey firmly in his grasp.
When Jessie learns who has become the demon’s latest victim, she must enlist the help of her friends to battle the evil that has invaded her sanctuary, turning her life upside down and threatening to destroy everything she cares about.
Then there is the small matter of falling in love with a dead boy.
Stay tuned for news of the book’s release!