Witch’s Tail by Melanie Snow #paranormal #cozymystery



Witch’s Tail
The Spellwood Witches
Book One
Melanie Snow

Genre: Paranormal Cozy Mystery
Publisher: Spirit Paw Press, LLC
Date of Publication: September 8, 2020
ISBN: 978-1-7324375-6-2
Number of pages: 220
Word Count: 46,311
Cover Artist: Molly Burton

Tagline: Her mentor died fighting to save an enchanted forest. Can she solve his murder before she’s bewitched?

Book Description:

Can she awaken her dormant powers and stop a desperate killer destroying the forest?

Sarah Spellwood feels she’s hit bottom. Divorced and jobless, she relocates to the enchanting village of Witchland intent on solving the murder of her late mentor. But as she pursues clues buried in the man’s fight to save the endangered forest-dwelling lynx, she makes an enemy of a ruthless land developer.

Encountering fairies in the woods, Sarah discovers she’s been repressing unique gifts passed down from her ancestor and founding witch, Lativia Spellwood. But though she can now hear her deceased friend’s dog speak, she isn’t sure her abilities are enough to expose the greed and corruption covering a killer’s lies.

Can Sarah work with the magical beings to bring a murderer to justice?

Witch’s Tail is the charming first book in the light-hearted The Spellwood Witches cozy mystery series. If you like paranormal puzzles, delightful canine companions, and environmental enlightenment, then you’ll love Melaine Snow’s wagging-ly fun whodunit.

Buy Witch’s Tail to set a snare for an assassin today!



Prologue
Lativia Spellwood sat on her ghostly throne of branches on the summit of Mount Katribus, with many other ghosts swarming around her reminiscing about life and drinking wine.
The ghosts of Witchland residents always came to this clearing after they died to stay near Lativia for guidance and to wait until they were ready to pass on to the afterlife. Lativia had been dead for hundreds of years but had still not passed on, for her work overlooking Witchland and its forest was not yet done. One day, it would be, and she was beginning to welcome that time, for she was growing very tired.
A tiny troop of Leekin faeries moved about the arms and legs of Lativia’s throne, placing flowers into the holes between the woven boughs. They did that every day, as a way to honor her as Queen of the Forest.
Lativia sipped from a goblet of ghost wine, enjoying the blue fire as it spread down her throat, engulfing her in tingly warmth. Being a ghost was always cold; the magic wine was one of the few momentary sources of warmth that she could cherish.
“What else do you need, my queen?” chirped one of the Leekins, buzzing on tiny brown wings before her nose.
Lativia smiled. “I think it’s time I checked on Sarah, don’t you agree?”
The Leekin nodded excitedly and flew off into the woods. A huge bunch of Leekins soon returned, flying in formation to carry the weight of a glowing crystal ball. They lowered it to Lativia’s lap, where it sank through the spectral outlines of her legs. Lativia could pass through things, and things could pass through her, for her physical body was long gone and all that remained was her powerful soul
Lativia smiled even more broadly and began to draw her transparent ghostly hands over the ball, summoning the blood bond she shared with her descendent, Sarah Spellwood.
Gradually, the fog inside the ball began to clear and an image of Sarah’s frizzy explosion of red curls filled it. Lativia drew back a few feet with her mind and saw Sarah was at a coffee shop ordering a vegan sandwich. Sarah’s love and respect for animals always made Lativia proud. She noticed there was a conspicuous pale and indented band of skin on Sarah’s ring finger where her huge diamond wedding ring had once been. “That no-good husband of hers is finally gone!” Lativia crowed with delight. But then she noticed that there were bags under Sarah’s eyes, the bags of someone who had been up all night crying. Sarah must be heartbroken, Lativia thought with a heavy heart.
           
The barista serving Sarah froze when she saw Sarah’s last name on the credit card receipt. “Um, are you related to . . . ?”
Sarah drearily raised her hand. “Yep, I’m descended from Lativa Spellwood.”
“That’s amazing! I mean, have you ever been to Witchland and looked at the Lativia memorabilia?” The barista’s pigtails wiggled with her excited body language, and Lativia felt a swell of pride that people still remembered and even revered her. It had been four centuries and she was still honored as the greatest witch of New England, the one who had turned into a wolf and fought her way free of her captors at the Salem Witch Trials!
“Yep,” Sarah said, her voice full of annoyance. It was clear she was ready to dash out of the coffee shop.
As good of a lawyer as Sarah was, Lativia noticed how awkward she was around most people, and how little she liked to disclose personal details, especially of her magical ancestry.
Sarah was a woman of facts and logic, which is why she fought the magical powers pulsing through her like a current, trying to pull her back to her destiny. Her resistance to her true self and her stubborn adherence to logical facts made her unpopular with many people. Lativia yearned to watch Sarah blossom into her beautiful potential.
“Don’t you see?” Lativia cried. “You are not meant to be in New York! You should be here, following your calling, completing my work as a witch! You’re not happy there!” But Sarah couldn’t hear these words.
“Yes, yes,” several Leekins agreed. A ghost who was standing near Lativia also nodded his head.
Sarah trudged out of the coffee shop, carrying her drink and the sandwich in a paper bag. A man in a trench coat bumped into her, and she hastily checked her pockets to ensure he had not pickpocketed anything. Then she continued on to her office, a massive steel gray prison with spikes in the window ledges to repel pigeons. There was no sign of life anywhere but for the scraggly maple planted out front of the building and a few waxy tropical plants blooming inside the lobby. Lativia groaned, feeling the despair and coldness of the place.
“It’s time for you to come here, to your destined home,” Lativia declared. “My Leekins have told me about the Hunter tracking lynx and the land surveyors, and I sense that there is about to be trouble in the forest.”
At the mention of the Hunter, the Leekins gathered around her throne began to turn blue and tremble in terror.
“I am not strong enough to fight these battles much longer, so I need you to come home, to come into your true self. Your marriage fell apart of its own accord, and I sense your job is about to unravel on its own, too. You can’t fight destiny,” Lativia said, giving the group of hovering Leekins their crystal ball back and shutting her eyes. “I could use magic to bring you to your destiny sooner, but it is evil to interfere with one’s life that way. I can only hope you don’t take much longer.”
She opened her eyes as the Leekins cried, “We need her!”

About the Author:

Melanie Snow is the pen name for Wendy Van de Poll, a bestselling author, pet loss grief coach, and animal medium. She is the author of The Spellwood Witches, a paranormal cozy mystery series.


Her books weave together positive magic, snarky forest faeries, and insightful animals with fun and eclectic humor. True life adventures and intuition are woven into her stories laced with unbridled imagination.

She has been followed by wild wolves in minus 60 degrees, hissed at by a mama bobcat, and played ball with a wild owl—among other animal encounters.

Find out more about her work:






a Rafflecopter giveaway

Cabin Fever Anthology



Excerpt UNEXPECTED FAMILY – Roxi St. James

There she was again.  His mystery girl.  His pulse quickened.  What was it about her that was so appealing?  She was beautiful, yes, but what gave her the aurora of magic that drew him in?  He took another sip of his drink.  He must be going crazy.  Or he was getting drunker than he thought he was.  He hadn’t even spoken to her yet.
He glanced back up in her direction.  Something upstairs had definitely upset her.  She paced back and forth from the bar like a caged tiger.  Anxious energy that didn’t have an outlet.  He could only imagine what that energy might feel like if she directed it toward him.  He cleared his throat and readjusted himself on the stool.  He didn’t need to obsess about her.  He should probably just head home and start working on one of his briefs waiting on him.
She found a seat at the other end of the bar.  One hand tapped the bar while with the other she threw back a shot, downing it in one go .  She said something to the bartender, and he refilled her glass.  She downed that one too.  She better watch out at the rate she was going.  He knew that kind of mood and it usually led to no good.
Just as she signaled the bartender for another refill, a movement out of the corner of his eye caught his attention.  A man was approached.  Grant’s muscles tightened, but he forced them to relax. 
He couldn’t keep from watching, as the guy leaned on the bar, invading her space.  She shook her head and leaned away.  Clear signs she wasn’t interested, but the guy didn’t get the message.  The closer he leaned in, the more she leaned away.
Without thinking, Grant stood and walked around the bar towards them.  His brain told him to leave it be, but his legs had other plans.  He was just going to scare the jerk away and that was it.  As he approached them, he could hear the wanna-be Casanova trying his hardest.
“Come on, baby, you look like you could use a good time,” he crooned.
Grant smirked as he approached them.  “Sweetheart, there you are!  Did you start without me?”  He stepped up behind her and put his hands on her shoulders.  She jumped and he leaned down to give her a kiss on the cheek.  “Just go along with it,” he whispered into her ear before standing back up.
The man just looked at Grant and sneered.  “You can’t be with her.  You’re old enough to be her father.”
Grant straightened to his full 6’2” and peered down at the player.  “Who says I’m not?  Be gone, kid.”
After a moment’s hesitation, he turned and walked off muttering, “Her loss.” 
Grant took the seat beside her.  “On behalf of my sex, I am sorry you have to deal with jackasses like that.”
She sat and stared at him for a minute, wide-eyed.  “Thank you.”  Her quiet voice was sweet and musical.  “It’s not the first time, but it’s nice to be rescued by someone so…” Her brows drew together in concentration.
“Old?” he offered with a smile.
She returned it with a little chuckle.  “Tall.”
He grinned.  “Well, you got me there.  Now, you have a decision to make.”
Her smile started to fade.  “I do?”
“Yep.  I can sit here and deter other hunters for you, or I can bid you good evening and be on my way.  Totally up to you since I’ve succeeded in my act of gallantry.”
Her smile bloomed again.  “You can stay.  If you want.”


Cabin Fever Anthology

Genre: Romance/Love stories
Publisher:  Indie Amazon
Date of Publication:  Aug 7, 2020
ASIN:  B08FGGGWDF
Number of pages:  347
Word Count:  89,119
Cover Artist:  Donna Parrish
@ DJASP Book Covers


REWRITE – Renee Pellegrino

Savannah Giuseppe, best-selling author is summoned home. She returned to the cabin remembering the magic of Earth Day and the man who broke her heart.

WORTH IT! – Stephanie Spicer

High school sweethearts, Robin and Cody Carmichael thought their marriage could overcome any obstacle. The only problem is Robin doesn’t remember this hurdle.

HALLOWEEN MASQUERADE – Cynthia Carver

Every Friday night, tarot reader Selena is at Nettie’s Diner. Steven visits her for a reading about his son. Fate intervenes in their destinies.

UNEXPECTED FAMILY – Roxi St. James

After a special night with a handsome stranger, Piper Kendrick is shocked when she discovers his identity and he is closer than she ever expected.

LIAR IN THE CABIN – Sunny Abernathy

In 1908 Beth is expected to look forward to marriage. She’d rather be independent, which means staying away from Benjamin.




About Renee Pellegrino:

From the author of Because of You and co-author on the Missing Locket

Born in a small-town Pennsylvania town called Altoona with five German shepherds, August, Roman, Rey, Tori and Sophia. After Covid – 19, she hopes to return to the dog show world.

Storytelling first stated when a priest asked everyone if they had something to say.
Renee told everyone about her brother peeing like a Shamu. Laughter filled the church, but her la Nonna not so much.






About Stephanie Spicer:

Stephanie Spicer is from a military family which meant she spent the majority of her life traveling. She has since made Atlanta, Ga her home and is raising her three kids with her husband who has been the love of her life for over seventeen years.

She’s always been an avid reader, finding romance novels when she was fifteen and promptly falling in love. She reads most anything she can get her hands on and when she couldn’t find books that matched the stories in her head she decided to start writing her own. Once she did, it was like a light had gone off.

She hopes you enjoy her stories as much as she enjoys writing them.






About Cynthia Carver:

Cynthia Carver, born in Dayton, Ohio to Métis parents and a veteran of the US Navy, puts a paranormal spin on everything she does whether it is ghost hunting or camping. Often the photos she takes and shares on her website have images of other-dimensional beings. Her failure in life is cooking. At her family’s request, she brings items such as paper plates, napkins, and utensils to family gatherings.

Her dyslexia leaks into all phases of her life including her published work. She released the second story featuring her main character, Tracy Richards first. Meet Tracy Richards in Tracy’s debut novella, ‘The Missing Locket.’

On a timeline, ‘Small Bit of Justice’ happened to Tracy Richards before ‘Missing Locket.’ Each novelette, novella, and novel are stand-alone stories.

Each November, Cynthia accepts the NaNoWriMo.org challenge of writing a 50,000-word novel within thirty days. She is a cheerleader for those in the writer’s facebook group ‘Writing Support Sisters’ who have joined her in the writing madness.

Visit Cynthia’s website to keep up to date about future novels, book signings, and travels https://CynthiaCarver.com










Rosa Pearl – Realities of the Paranormal


About Roxie St. James:

Roxi St. James was born and raised in Georgia, but has traveled all over the country.  She has read every romance novel she could get her hands on for her entire life.  After writing privately for just as long, she is excited to make this her debut as a published author.




About Sunny Abernathy:

An overly caffeinated Author and Artist who believes one can never have enough cats or books. Writes “Red Flag” Love stories in historical and contemporary settings. She sometimes gives her characters a Happily Ever After as she did in Cabin Fever Anthology.







Below Dark Waters by Katie Zaber #fantasy


Below Dark Waters
Dalya Series
Book Two
Katie Zaber

Genre: Fantasy
Date of Publication: Sept 17th
ISBN: 9781005138066
ASIN:  B08GTX3MFP
Word Count: 85,997

Cover Artist: Agata Bukovero

Tagline: A wayward princess, a lethal woman, and a madam trained in espionage—all strangers to each other, but their fates are entwined. Each choice they make will impact the world of Dalya greater than any man’s decision.

Book Description:

Princess Megan, who never had a reason to assume she was anything but human, has been on the run, protected by her friends. With each step toward the city of Delmont, she hopes they will have time to regroup before setting sail to the Ka’Pamau Islands, their final destination.  Instead, her bad luck shadows her and chaos continues to ensue everywhere she goes—including a new part of the world that most air breathers have yet to explore. Confronted with another royal family and a smitten prince whose advances turn cold, she faces another life-altering decision with ramifications she can’t possibly begin to guess at.

Back on land, Lilly reveals more of her secrets, her story, and her goals. Monumental changes and challenges are headed her way as she embraces her new role in life.

On the sea, Aunt Carmia is stirring up trouble while continuing her hunt for the treasure she most desires. She experiences upheavals, but she is always prepared for the unknown.

As their stories unfold, they remain unaware how fate connects them in the world of Dalya.

Amazon     Smashwords     BN     Kobo
Excerpt:

Megan

There’s no point in me lying in bed all night. It’s not like I’m trapped in a Dalya dome. At least there’s a bar for me to sit at while I can’t sleep. Moving as quietly as possible, I change and sneak out of the room. Kilyn is fast asleep and Mana is either asleep or is pretending to be. The hallway is still. There are no voices coming from the other rooms, so I’m going to assume everyone else is asleep.
Downstairs, Meeka sits at a table, chatting with another white-haired man. Two other tables are occupied, but there are at least ten empty tables to choose from. By the fireplace, a low fire crackles and I decide that a seat by the fire is not what I want. It looks inviting but reminds me of too many dark things. I shudder and take a seat on a stool at the driftwood bar. There’s one other man at the far end of the bar, cloaked in shadow, not bothering to look up from his drink as I sit down.
Heda comes from the back of the kitchen with a mug in her hands. She takes a sip before setting it down on the counter. “Can’t sleep, dear?”
“No. Can’t remember when I did,” I say. “Got anything to help with that?”
She gives me a sly smile. “I think I can help.”
Heda slides bottles out from under the counter and starts pouring them into a glass. Most of them are clear, except two. She adds a drop of amber and green liquid. I can’t say if it’s alcohol or not. Last, she takes out a glass jar and takes out a pinch of ground orange powder.
I’m not sure if I should drink this otherworldly concoction.
“Here you go. You’ll sleep till sunrise and feel refreshed, guaranteed.”
I stare down at the eight-ounce glass of mystery. “What’s in it?”
“A bit of everything, plus a little something extra. I make it for Meeka when he can’t sleep.”
“Are you normally this busy at night?” I ask.
“Sometimes. Sometimes busier. The regulars are here, plus an unfamiliar face or two.” She scans the room, glancing over at the two I suspect are new.
The one man her eyes stop on has long, scraggly black hair past his chin and an unkempt beard. He is wearing a hat that reminds me of a witch; it even has a pointy top and wide brim. With his back to us, he faces the fireplace with his shoulders hunched. The other man is the one at the other end of the bar. Neither looks talkative. Good. I’m not in the mood for a conversation either.
The door swings open. A scowling human woman stands in the threshold wearing a brown buttoned-down blouse and pants tucked into calf-high boots. At her hip is a dagger, on her back is a quiver secured tightly to a harness, in her hand an unstrung shortbow. Strands of messy brown hair unravel from a semicontained braid that I’d guess hasn’t been paid attention to in at least a week. Her clothes also reveal that she hasn’t changed them, and the smell confirms she hasn’t bathed. She searches the bar and lands on me.
She dashes across the tavern and my heart pounds. This is it. My father sent her to kill me. I made it easier for her by coming down here all by myself. I have no clue if Mana can sense what’s happening or if I’m too far away from him. I’m not sure if he cares right now.
However, she steps past me and gawks at Heda, who is already mixing another drink. In the few seconds that passed, I didn’t realize that I had held my breath. I let out a lengthy sigh of relief and inhale fresh air that tastes slightly sweeter than before. Relief will do that, especially when moments ago, death seemed so imminent. To help calm myself, I decide to take a sip of the strange drink Heda made me. Surprisingly, it has a peach sangria flavor, like a fruity, potent wine, with maybe a shot or two of something stronger. I could get used to having a drink of this at night, if it helps me get some sleep.
Heda leans across the bar, passing the traveler a drink. “Rough journey?” she asks. “Where are you going?”
“Nowhere fast,” the woman replies. Her scowl melts away as she cracks open a smile and laughs full-heartedly, throwing her head back.

Carmia

I watch groups of gulls fly back out to sea among the masts, warbling above the crew. They float adrift on the breeze. Their wings don’t pound against the unforeseen air but glide on invisible currents, as my ship does on the waves. Smart birds know when to flap, when to spend their resources, and how to manipulate the world to make their journey easier. They can glide for hours without movement. I crave their knowledge.
To know when to use my strength and when to be weak. When to be bold or meek. When to strike or anticipate.
The birds know. We are so stupid. Driven by destructive emotional impulses and not natural instinct. Once you calm the voices, quiet the bitter arguments feuding from within, becoming deaf to all the voices internal and external, all that’s left is a sensation. A feeling. A truth buried deep inside. A spoken language no one can utter aloud. A forgotten language. One so primal, it is impossible to speak or interpret in any other capacity besides a sense. Born with us, but slowly forgotten when we learn to utter our first words. Almost as if when we learn the spoken tongue, we forfeit our instinctual one.
What makes us so different from the birds? How did our minds become cluttered with pointless information that nags us to change our minds or relinquish a thought?
Gods, I want to be a bird. Free my mind and body of stupidity. Let me base my life on instinct, not sentiment.

Lilly

I walk these city tunnels every day. It keeps me sane, besides healthy. Sometimes, I even run. I haven’t left Uamh, or Capo’s Secret, in decades. The last time I was above ground, not including my job, was well over thirty years ago. I long for the opportunity to run through the fields of flowers that flourish outside the town’s walls. But the woman who I portray to the citizens of Capo doesn’t do such things. Lilly would never frolic through the meadow and pick wildflowers to weave into her hair. She wouldn’t dance in the river, splashing the cool water over her naked body, and then let the sun’s heat dry the water off her skin. No, she wouldn’t behave in such childish ways.
Nirva would. She would run free in the woods barefoot. Feel Dalya breathe life back into her soul. Nirva would climb the tallest tree and gaze upon the town below, pretending she was a bird, soaring high above the forest. She’d hunt alongside the nunda and sleep in their den, her body and soul free to swim with the fish and river bears in the morning, and flutter on the breeze with the glow bugs at night.
Not now. No, she is locked up for safekeeping. There will be a time and place to bring Nirva back to the light of day. Until then, she must continue to be patient. Our job isn’t done. It’s only begun.


About the Author:

Katie Zaber knows the best way to decide who is cooking dinner is with a Nerf gun fight in the living room. Her boyfriend is an exceptional cook. When she isn’t baking, going to wine tastings, or reading, she’s busy planning her next trip to Six Flags Great Adventure or Long Beach Island, New Jersey. As a child, her mother would read stories about Atlantis and other fictional places that she dreamed of exploring, fueling her love of history, adventure, and fantasy. After spending her days working in a coffee shop, she moved up the ladder getting an office job where she unfortunately was involved in a filing accident. Unable to move, bored out of her mind, and desperate for entertainment, she turned to her imagination and began writing. These days, she finds herself captivated by her many projects and enjoys quiet nights at home.








a Rafflecopter giveaway