Category Archives: #horrorbooks #thrillerbooks #bookreviews

Author Chit Chat: John Marrs (What Lies Between Us)

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Words cannot express how excited I am to have John Marrs on my blog today! After reading three of his brilliant novels, he’s hands down one of my favorite writers. One of my top thrillers this year was What Lies Between Us. The dark quality behind this twisted plot stands out like no other. I highly recommend you pick up any novel by John Marrs, he will never disappoint you! Thank you John for taking the time out of your busy schedule to partake in my interview feature.

1) What inspired you to write What Lies Between Us?

My last two books included a police procedural followed by a high-concept thriller, so this time, I wanted to write something very character-led and that encompassed a long period in two people’s lives. I wanted to come up with a dark, claustrophobic story with plenty of twists and turns and that kept readers on their toes. Some have compared this to a cross between Gillian Flynn’s Sharp Objects and Gail Honeyman’s Eleanor Olyphant Is Completely Fine. I find that very flattering.

2) When you first saw the cover for What Lies Between Us, what were your initial thoughts?

You normally receive a variety of cover concepts sent to you by your publisher and you tell them what you like and what you don’t like. I loved the vibe of this immediately. Earlier versions had no brickwork and it was my idea to have figures in the top and bottom windows and a window that lay between them. I’ve learned to be vocal about what I like. In the end, it’s my name going on the cover so I have to be confident that it looks good.

3) If you could re-name your book title, what would you choose?

The working title was The Woman Upstairs and that remained right up until we were in the editing stages. Then suddenly What Lies Between Us came to my mind and it worked perfectly. I think it’s my favourite of all my book titles. I actually prefer the original title of The One though. It was called A Thousand Small Explosions when it was self published and then became The One when a mainstream publisher approached me to take it on.

4) If you could hang out with one of your fictional characters, who would it be and why?

None of them – they’re all mad! Possibly Laura in The Good Samaritan. She’s a very, very dark character, possibly my darkest to date and it would be interesting to be around her, albeit briefly. You wouldn’t want to get sucked into her world for long though. Oh and Joe Russell in Her Last Move. He was a good guy.

5) Out of all the books you’ve written, which one is your favorite and why?

It depends on when you catch me. At the moment, it’s What Lies Between Us because it’s still new and interesting to me, but on other days, it might be my debut, When You Disappeared. Welcome To Wherever You Are is still my only book that is self-published, so I have a soft spot for that one.

6) Do you have any quirks or rituals during the writing phase of a novel?

When I’m writing, it’s always in silence. I can’t do background music. I always print the book out to do my edits, makes notes in coloured pens I buy from a shop called Muji and when I make the on-screen corrections, that’s when I’ll listen to my own playlists on Apple Music.

7) Last but not least, do you have anything you’d like to say to your current and future readers?

I welcome all readers – existing ones who have been there from the start and brand new ones who have only just hopped on board the crazy train. Without you, I wouldn’t be getting to spend all day living in my own imagination and trying to find ways to twist and turn you and lull you into a false sense of security. I am grateful to every last one of you.

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Buy the Book: Amazon / B&N 
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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John Marrs is an author and former journalist based in London and Northamptonshire. After spending his career interviewing celebrities from the worlds of television, film and music for numerous national newspapers and magazines, he is now a full-time author. What Lies Between Us is his seventh book.

Follow him on his Website, Twitter and Instagram

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Book Review: Seed by Ania Ahlborn

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Seed by Ania Ahlborn

Reading Level: Horror
Publisher: 47North – Amazon Publishing
Publication Date: July 17, 2012
Pages: 250

Book Summary: With nothing but the clothes on his back—and something horrific snapping at his heels—Jack Winter fled his rural Georgia home when he was still just a boy. Watching the world he knew vanish in a trucker’s rearview mirror, he thought he was leaving an unspeakable nightmare behind forever. But years later, the bright new future he’s built suddenly turns pitch black, as something fiendishly familiar looms dead ahead.

When Jack, his wife Aimee, and their two small children survive a violent car crash, it seems like a miracle. But Jack knows what he saw on the road that night, and it wasn’t divine intervention. The profound evil from his past won’t let them die…at least not quickly. It’s back, and it’s hungry; ready to make Jack pay for running, to work its malignant magic on his angelic youngest daughter, and to whisper a chilling promise: I’ve always been here, and I’ll never leave.

Country comfort is no match for spine-tingling Southern gothic suspense in Ania Ahlborn’s tale of an ordinary man with a demon on his back. Seed plants its page-turning terror deep in your soul, and lets it grow wild.

Book Review: Gritty, dark, and demonically delicious, Seed is yet another example of Ania’s notable artistic capability as a horror writer. Reading this creeptastic story late at night, I possessively became entranced at the darkness that lived within the pages.

Jack, ran away from his life in Georgia as a young child. He started fresh and created his pride and joy of a family with his wife and two beautiful girls. One day, his youngest, Charlie, started to portray erratic behavior. Jack started to remember his nightmarish experiences through his daughter’s unforseeable wickedness. From that point on, this family’s future would be changed forever. I don’t want to give away too much because the narrative speaks for itself.

The chill that ran up my spine as I read throughout the chapters undeniably surprised me. It takes a lot for an actual book to get under my skin, the way Seed did. And as for the finale! Oh my goodness. The ending had just the right shock factor and I couldn’t help wonder if maybe a sequel was underway?

All in all, Seed would appeal to any horror reader or for anyone looking to step away from the infamous Stephen King and try a female horror writer for a change. In my eyes, Ania is the queen of horror, no ifs, ands or buts! The woman is such a masterful storyteller that formulates each and every grain of a book. The intense plot, and well-developed characters devised a perfectly executed horror! I will continue to storm through all her works until she releases fresh material.

My Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

About The Author

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Born in Ciechanow Poland, Ania has always been drawn to the darker, mysterious, and sometimes morbid sides of life. Her earliest childhood memory is of crawling through a hole in the chain link fence that separated her family home from the large wooded cemetery. She’d spend hours among the headstones, breaking up bouquets of silk flowers so that everyone had their equal share.

Ania’s first novel, SEED, was self-published. It clawed its way up the Amazon charts to the number one horror spot, earning her a multi-book deal and a key to the kingdom of the macabre. Seven years later, her work has been lauded by the likes of Publishers Weekly, New York Daily News, and the New York Times.

She hopes to one day be invited to dinner at Stephen King’s place, where she will immediately be crushed beneath the weight of her imposter syndrome.

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