Here it is! The Phobia blog tour stops by dear ol’ whoopeeyoo for a review and a little book excerpt to entice you guys. But I’m sure if you’re mystery/suspense/thriller buff, you’re gonna love this. So without further ado, here’s Phobia!
Ex-cop Artemis Herne thought he left the grit and crime of the city in the past when he moved to a small town in Pennsylvania. But the discovery of a woman’s dead body, bound and covered with snakes, sends panic through his community and ignites his investigative instincts.
As the serial killer continues to target his prey, Herne must confront his haunted past to uncover the pattern in the deaths. He soon discovers that every victim suffers from a phobia. And every murder transforms the victim’s worst fear into reality.
Tormented by his personal demons, Herne is forced to face his own fears as he hunts for a murderer who uses terror for a weapon.
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They stared at each other as memories flooded Herne’s mind like a scattering of photographs faded by sunlight. On summer break their freshmen year of college, they shared a bottle of illicit whiskey in Tucker’s basement. Best buddies having a little fun on a typical Saturday night. Walking a street in Hurricane, on their way to meet Tucker’s girlfriend—who would later become his wife—they saw the unmistakable glow of flames a few blocks away. The old brick bakery was on fire. They ran to it, knowing that the building was really a shelter for battered women. Once there they found a thin, long-haired man in the parking lot, holding a lit Molotov cocktail while screaming the name of his wife. Two more unlit homemade frags sat on the asphalt.
When the man saw them, he threw the bomb against the building and charged at Herne.
Herne pounded at the man’s face until his fist pulverized bone into tiny shards. Through a red haze of fury, Herne only saw the face of his sister—his sweet, young sister—beaten to death in her teenage years by a jealous boyfriend.
Tucker pulled him away into the night as sirens sounded in the distance. The man spent years in reconstructive surgery, and he never looked anything less than a monster. The brain damage he suffered made it impossible for him to identify his attackers.
By the number of mystery/thriller/suspense book blog tours I join, I guess you already know that I heart mystery and it’s actually my first love. Nancy Drew is a hero of mine. Haha! Moreover, I am in love with psychological thriller films so it was a sure thing that I’d sign up for this tour. And I was glad I did!
Surely, I figured out who’s the killer immediately but that’s my thing. Which is weird because how come I love mysteries when I always foresee who’s the killer? Whatever, still I love ’em mysteries.
The novel was told from multiple point of views but it was never confusing. I applaud Shives for making each character unique. The premise of the story was SO FREAKY. Imagine being killed by your greatest fear. Okay, I’m going to stop because I’m not sure which is my greatest fear, frogs or open waters. The plot had twists and turns as that’s characteristic of a mystery so it was a nice thriller ride but as I said, having guessed who the killer was resulted to no surprise factor at the end. Still, it was an enjoyable read and a page-turner. It started out a bit slow, building it up and once everything is in its place, there was no turning back. You’ll end up reading it page after page. So I enjoyed this one and I commend C.A. Shives as this is her debut novel. Can’t believe it! Such a strong novel this early.
About C.A. Shives
C.A. Shives is the author of PHOBIA, a suspense novel based in a small Pennsylvania town.
When not reading, writing, editing, or publishing, C.A. enjoys watching a good action movie. The author also spends time target shooting on the range and raising backyard chickens.
C.A. loves cheesy poofs, Bruce Willis movies, and wine (often simultaneously). The author is also a fan of Professional Competitive Eating.
A second book in the Artemis Herne series is scheduled for a winter 2012 release. C.A.’s upcoming novel weaves a dark tale of horrific vigilante justice tainted by the bitter taste of revenge.
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