Bleu’s Reviews: Conjure Women

Conjure Women focuses on three very different women of the same plantation. Told primarily from the perspective of Rue, daughter of esteemed conjure woman and favorite of Marse Charles Miss May Belle. Rue also happens to be trusted friend and confidant of the master’s daughter Varina. As the story swings from the past during May Belle’s reign as Queen of conjure on the plantation to present day Rue who has taken on the mantle as healer in the Resurrection – era village that is all that remains of their old home. Following the birth of “Bean”;  a child with unusual eyes, and the seasonal appearance of a traveling preacher, a sickness takes hold of the towns children. The townspeople are ready to turn their backs on Rue and towards their faith. As Rue works to find a cure, she begins a path at uncovering everyone’s secrets including her own.

Post – read I still can’t pinpoint exactly where this is located and I’m perfectly okay with that. Every main location was so well crafted I feel like I was blended into the story with them. My favorite would be Atakora’s description of the woods, the darkness of it how the fog seemed to emanate from it. The woods in post civil war village became a character in itself. I also loved how Rue interacted with the land itself, hiding coins in trees as she’d seen her mother do. How she often crouched low to the earth to pick flowers and herbs even the detail in which she described finding the herbs from different spots. I absolutely love a well built world and this book has it in spades.

The story is more about Rue than anyone else but seems to focus on Rue and how she maneuvers around other people. She is often measuring herself against her mother’s accomplishments. She feels a weighty responsible to look after the town and its children despite a clear and present threat to herself and yet she persists to ensure the people who live there are looked after and well cared for. Just as she had always served and cared for Varina throughout their upbringing. She often lets Varina lure her into mischief and I only say let because I feel like Rue at times doesn’t even attempt to speak up. The relationship she shares with Varina is a complex one that seems more maternal at times than what it truly is. The rivalries between a lot of the characters twists the theories of faith, magic and deception. What is illusion when belief becomes a tangible thing? Each of the characters in the book seem to be holding a secret and as the story progressed Atakora peeled back another layer until the final secret was brought to the light and true freedom could finally come.

 

Overall I 100% loved this book!

 

Its my first 5-star read of the year and I have loads more reading to do. As a debut novel I’d have to say Afia Atakora should be super proud of herself. Conjure Women was an amazign read. It was well written, i was into the story and genuinely felt something from start to finish. My goodreads feed was flooded with updates and I was able to finish this beauty in about three days.

 

I will be doing a live zoom discussion with #ALLTHINGSLIT Book Club to discuss Conjure Women be sure to check my social media for more information about that ❤ Can’t wait to chat with everyone soon.

 

What Did You Think Of Conjure Women?

Leave A Comment Below!

You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com

Bleu’s Reviews: A Discovery of Witches

bea3f7f05bccbf7b6b2cf106e37002ef5721044790384047149.jpg

 

It begins with a book recommendation and a purchase

It begins with a TV show and a binge session

It begins with a discovery of witches … book review

 

Rating: 5 out of 5

I am kicking myself for not having read this book sooner. I originally heard of the All Souls Trilogy  back when i worked for a company that won’t be named because they don’t sponsor me. LOL.

My coworker, another book fan soul sister recommended I check out the series. I made sure to buy all three of the books in the series and added them to my collection, TBR and c7e7739a729e409a46fa5fe50cb8aa4f328589467160928262.jpglong list of books I’d been planning to read.

I’d even attempted reading the book on two separate occasions the last of which was a month long maternity leave when I couldn’t be bothered to do much of anything, especially reading.

This year however, I made it my first book of the reading season and despite a shaky start while trying to find time to read with a growing toddler attempting to crawl everywhere, I picked up a rhythm and finished the book in about three weeks.

Alchemical historian and Oxford resident Diana Bishop, descendant of the Salem Bishop’s has shut herself off form her magic. Until she requests a not so ordinary book from the Bodlien library one day.  This book, Ashmole 782, will bring a host of magical creatures she never expected to socialize with and unravel a secret engrained in the fabric of her life…and then there are vampires.

My first impressions of the book…

I absolutely loved this book. At it’s core it’s a pretty standard formula. Matthew is the tortured hero who falls in love with our female protagonist. That Matthew follows the tropes of all vampires is a bonus, he is brooding and secretive with a killer temper, but 20200115_124316.jpghe loves fiercely and his love for Diana though sudden is unbreakable. Diana for her part plays the typical female lead in a YA love story, though she possesses great strength and abilities that rival those around her, she is fearful of her power, spends most of the book being coddled and cared for and only begins to step into her own towards the final stages of the story.

It usually annoys me while i’m reading, and I won’t lie some of the ways Matthew condescended to Diana and left her out of things irritated me a lot. However, Harkness did something few people have dared to do form what I’ve read. She gave Diana her strength back.

The best part of the story for me was “watching” Diana go through a literal transformation. At the start of the book she is completely closed off from her magic. Her past fears and an unknown spell only allow her to do tiny tasks like grabbing a book or fixing the washer. By the final pages Diana is hopeful of what she can do with her d33bfe4e23d3e4982f9b79fb20fdf4a7945846634189835100.jpgpowers and is able to control them to some small degree.

I do frequently enjoy a good vampire love story and Matthew and Diana’s forbidden love gives me all types of squishy feelings.  Their relationship mirrors that of mixed race couples during the civil rights era. Simply because they are different they are forbidden to be together and by defying this law they are putting themselves and their families in danger. They will do it for LOVE. The fear some of the characters have for their children and the support Matthew and Diana get from friends, family other people who are like them is reminiscent of the real life struggles mixed couples faced.

It’s great when a story has a deeper meaning. As a person of color, whether Deborah Harkness intended for this to be the theme or not, what stuck out most for me in this story were the ways it portrayed the downside of generational racial inequality and prejudice. Matthew and Diana are two different races of creatures and because of that they are forbidden to be together.

In a society where the hierarchy of magical creatures places value on lineage and supernatural ability Witches and Vampires are at the top and Daemons are at the bottom, Daemons aren’t even allowed to congregate together.  The way Harkness developed the society and culture of the characters in the world of All Souls is one of my favorite parts. I absolutely love a well built world.

The characters in the A Discovery of Witches  really moved the story along for me. I’d watched season one of the tv show beforehand so I was able to actually envision the cast for the first few chapters. Once I really got into the story though, the characters became more alive and no longer seemed remotely close to the way the actors portrayed them.3a956443b3e15ec5a9e1f9c7e43d8fb26087554198723611023.jpg

Diana can be annoyingly meek at times but has a resilient spirit. Her dedication to Matthew is on the one hand the stuff of feminist nightmares while the relationship as a whole draws you in. I root for this old fashioned chivalrous relationship despite being completely aware that he patronizes her and lies repeatedly. Because he’s a vampire? At one point it gets so annoying in the book I physically rolled my eyes. He eventually comes to respect her after she nearly dies trying to save his life and frequently blames himself for not being able to protect her. Even though she doesn’t seem to be able to protect herself either. Matthew’s decision  to aide her in learning her magic wins him brownie points in my book. His cute little French pet names for her makes my heart go fuzzy.

The way magic, magical creatures and the supernatural are sorted in this world is why A Discovery of Witches  is becoming one of my favorite series to read. Harkness took the c0ce585322590a49e08b7290e633998e901557597508079403.jpgconcept of the magical community and broke it down in a way that I’ve often thought about for my own writing.  Vampires long since believed to be “dead” are merely beings with an alternative metabolism that slows their heart rates and reserves energy. The term, sleep like the dead, was used as the explanation for why people thought these beings were in fact deceased.

Experiencing magic through Diana’s eyes as she finally learns to wield and control it is what kept me reading through the book. More than I wanted to know how the lovers would fair against their adversaries, more than I enjoyed meeting each new character that showed 9c005c70f2392849b97d083135c169496164085333605234820.jpgup at Sept-Tours and later the bewitched house in Madison. I enjoyed the magic and the history that was entertwined within the magic.

I guess that’s my reasoning for why I’m shirking my 2020 TBR and jumping right into Shadow of Night. I’ll be reading this along with a few shorter e-books I’ve promised to review from some lesser known authors so keep your eyes on the blog for a lot of new content.

My goal at the start of my read was to complete the first book of the All SOuls Trilogy  before season 2 of A Discovery of Witches started back on BBC. As I was checking my email this morning, sneek-peeks of the cast of season 2 are just being released, so I think I beat my deadline.

 

67b47f2c1d365ec6ebe6d1cf858ad13a3526889674511976082.jpg

 

What Was Your Favorite Part of A Discovery of Witches?

You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com

Harriet’s BookShop Opening!

 

I’d walked into Harriet’s bookshop on Saturday to the sound of African drums and a historic tale of Henry’s freedom box. The mixed crowd that spanned age groups 20200201_1157026340525499668199545.jpgsqueezed into the cozy space of Harriet’s to check out some books and experience a little of the culture this new bookshop is cultivating.

I enjoy a good bookstore. In fact I joke, every time a new bookstore opens a fan girl gets her wings, so my excitement was piqued when I got the Facebook event update that a new bookstore would be opening on 258 E Girard Ave.

Owned by local writer, Jeannine A. Cook, the journey from vision to Harriet’s wasn’t an easy road. She’d overcome the tragic set-back of losing her first bookstore 20200201_1151514109939006323868881.jpgto a fire.

I’m gonna be honest here guys. I’m a west Philly girl through and through so I’m not that familiar with the area. I can tell you that the bookstore offers a variety of books written by black authors and catered to people of color.

My favorite feature was the nook by the register. It’s set up with art work and flanked by gorgeous bookshelves. The children’s books also found right by the counter feature a variety of books for children. I even picked up one for baby Bleu.

I’ll absolutely be heading back to Harriet’s. I have a few books on my tbr that I spotted on her shelves. If you’re looking for a few new reads head over too, tell me what you think of the nook. 😁 Head over to the Blu Moon Fiction Facebook page to check out some of the books I’ll be adding to my #BookCollection!

 

20200202_0216195278947663378639622.jpg

 

I caught up with one local shopper who stocked up on tons of books for his kids. His daughter is an avid reader. 🙂 

 

Have You Been Down To Harriet’s? What’d You Think? Leave A Comment Below!

 

You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com

 

 

Bleu’s Reviews: Mirror, Mirror

11806a55fe107a2b94a6ce9d9d6121398479350815735507757.jpg

Rating: 3 out of 5

Gregory Maguire is still one of my favorite authors but Mirror, Mirror is sadly one of my least favorite books by this author. It’s tragic because I really wanted to love this book as much as I love much of his other works. Mirror, Mirror wasn’t a poorly written book but it definitely didn’t inspire me to read on.

As far as his body of work goes, the same tools and tricks he uses to craft and ensnare us with his other stories are utilized here. Maguire infuses reality and history into a fairytale as old as time itself, while finding a way to draw forth a deeper moral to the screenshot_20190124-220719_chrome4007441423460780054.jpgoverall concept, making us look closer at our childhood bedtime stories.

This time however, I found the story weighed down with too much historical context. This time around I felt sequestered on an island. It dragged on like the years Vicente spent in prison. I too was trapped, between my desire to finish the book and my inability to completely buy into the history lesson.

Maguire’s retelling of the Grimm’s classic Snow White, takes us to Montefiore. A luxurious farm nestled high above the rolling hills and valleys of Tuscany and Umbria. We meet our main character, seven – year – old Bianca de Nevada and her doting father Don Vicente.

Vicente is sent on a religious quest by the unscrupulous Cesare Borgia and his sister, Lucrezia leaving innocent Bianca at the mercy of the two wicked children of the corrupt political family.

96700515d6979b8a8e4dc940e9856c4f6444981157864553769.jpgSnow White’s tale has always been about purity and innocence and this version was no different. Maguire’s Mirror, Mirror added another layer of depth toying with the theme of influence and how influence can effect and alter another’s existence.
We saw how the influence of Pope Alexander VI shaped his children and led them ultimately to their demises.

How Vicente’s influence kept Bianca on Montefiore, how Primavera and Fra Ludovico were able to protect the young girl with whatever little influence they had. How Bianca’s mere presence was enough to change the dwarves.

We watched the transformations of each main character in the book as the story crept on at it’s snails pace. The intention seemed to be to give context. Snow White’s was a slow systematic manipulation at the hands of Lucrezia. A years long evolution in what seemed like a chrysalis stage ending the final if not abrupt emergence as a fully physical formed young woman, gullible but seemingly of age.

Vicente’s evolution was more a literal withering of his body and at times his mind. He remained determined to her back to his daughter despite the challenges he’d faced.

Lucrezia Borgia’s evolution was more a literal transformation, when we are introduced to her she is at the height of her power both physically and politically but gradually falls away. In time Lucrezia’s own vanity strips her of everything and her relentlessness drives her to her death.

Maguire’s interpretation of Snow White showed a young girl who was always isolated. Shyer than most, she possessed a curiosity that was often outweighed by her meekness. I rooted for our heroin to some day be rejoined with her father but even more than that I fc624855b3c17871e57bfcfe49791c892177338806584808463.jpgrooted for our heroin to save herself.

This Snow White didn’t seem like the main character at all. The action happened around her or to her but never as a direct result of her. In fact the entire catalyst of her story was in reaction Cesare Borgia and not the young girl directly.

This may be why the book dragged on for ages. It took me about four months to finish reading it in its entirety, partly because I knew how the story would end. I wasn’t waiting for some great plot twist or any alterations to the basic story line. There was instead a more pensive waiting to see how the author would unfold the common tropes of Snow White.

His delivery though overwhelmed with backstory and scenery did not disappoint. We witnessed Maguire masterfully craft the magic mirror, then shatter it’s magic with science before shrouding it with myth again. Maguire unpeeled the layers of the queen’s depravity and her spell-craft and even gave meaning to the high position the apple screenshot_20190124-220930_google2242974854855260815.jpgplayed in the story. The apple which has always been a symbol of purity and wisdom. A religious scion to relate to, a means of temptation especially when paired with the feminine mystique.

Maguire’s apple served as not only a means to begin the story but a common thread tying all the tales loose ends together. The apple which once tempted Eve in her garden drove Lucrezia to insanity and murder. A nod at how even the semblance of influence is enough to alter one’s behavior.

Overall I did enjoy the book. I’m rating it 3/5 because I wouldn’t force myself to endure it a second time but definitely would recommend reading it if you’re a fan of Maguire’s books. If you enjoy a good fairy tale or like adult adaptation’s of children’s stories than this book is great to add to the list.

For me I get to scratch it off my Gregory Maguire bucket – list and move on to my new read.

 

749a7d0d007183a029f3f7ba87d5e9541499451612295408644.jpg

 

What Is Your Favorite Snow White Re-Telling?

You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com

Jodi’s Kill – An excerpt from the Novel Globes Disease

By: Lance Oliver Keeble
Jodi Sakarui considered herself a bit of a rebel. Her family were conformists, at least that’s how Jodi saw it. Compared to her family and their traditions, she was a black sheep. Even though there were better, more positive words in Japanese for rebel, she often heard the word “Gaijin” (foreigner). It was a terrible name to call a Japanese person. That, among other words she preferred not to think of, only inspired her to rebel that much more. Her family lived in a two story Victorian in La Mort Douce. The exterior looked like a traditional home from those stupid black and white movies she had seen on TNT. The moment you walk in, the looks and smells were that of any from the Homeland. Which homeland? Japan? As far as Jodi was concerned, Japan was not her home.

 “Why should I follow tradition?” Jodi mulled, “For fuck sakes we have been in America for four generations. Grand-Dad was put in the American camps, what? Like a million years ago? Back in 1942 or some shit like that, right? For all intents and purposes, I am an American now. Shit! Who am I kidding, who looks at my round face, yellow tinged skin and almond shaped eyes and thinks American? I am no more a Japanese than I am American. How many Asian women have been crowned Ms. America? Two?” Jodi thought sarcastically.

At 16, Jodi looked 13 and often dressed a lot younger. Imagine a gothic catholic schoolgirl. She often wore pigtails captured in red bows, black pleated skirts, patent leather boots, leggings, her arms covered in torn lace and uniform shirts in whatever color fit her mood. Jodi smoked cigarettes and marijuana, drank beer, cut up in school, and fought regularly. All in rebellion against her buttoned down upbringing. Her mother refused to give her a car like the rest of her friend’s parents, so she rode her skateboard wherever she was inclined to go. She found it funny to show up at family functions, dressed like a punk rocker or a Goth-Girl. In fact, she had even considered being a Suicide Girl, but even that seemed conformist at present, beside, it wasn’t as if she would make the Showtime special.

She scoured the web site and became elated by what she read. She saw every color, every hue and every size girl you could imagine. When the two TV specials came out, she freaked. She was beyond excited, she TiVo’d both of them, waited until her mother was asleep and watched them back-to-back. What a fucking surprise; they were all white and skinny on the show! ‘Oh God! Jodi’s thinking was excessively negative, and her thoughts were making her want to throw up. 

“Fuck this!” she thought, “It’s time to get out”. Night skating wasn’t new to Jodi. She did it all the time. In fact, the night she got attacked was a night she had climbed out the window and headed to the skate park. That didn’t stop her though. The weather was just beginning to warm up, spring was approaching and the moon lit up everything like the overhead lights at the basketball court opposite where she skated. It certainly was easier than trying to skate during the day and having to fight with the other kids who asked her questions like, why she was there or if she was waiting for her boyfriend. When they found out she was a Bowl Rider, she was cool until, they realized she could out skate them. Then they wanted to kick her ass or told her to, Fuck Off! Mostly they just assumed she played for the “other team” and shunned her completely and called her a dyke.

Jodi didn’t like being discriminated against. Especially by people who had no more claim to the sport of skating and surfing than she did. Jodi remembered once being told that California skaters were inspired by surfing and surfing is Hawaiian. Jodi didn’t even know if that was true, but it fueled her indignation. She told herself to, “Snap out of it! Concentrate, open the window and bail quietly.” All this thinking was a distraction, it caused her to feel worse. Jodi resolved to revel in being an outsider. Jodi collected herself, grabbed her board and her backpack and climbed out of her window into a night lit by a perfectly round moon.

All the dogs in the neighborhood were howling as she made her escape. She closed the window quickly so the sounds wouldn’t carry through the house. Jodi never considered that the howling could have been a warning of danger or anything else; she was intent on her mission tonight. She had been on her computer all day waiting to see if any sexual deviants would hit her up. Finally, some old pervert did. She was going to exact justice like that TV show, but she would do it better than Chris Hansen and with no budget or studio backing. 

Jodi recalled the night of her accident. She remembered skating through the tunnel, on her way home from the park, when she’d seen this rad looking guy smoking a joint. The hairs on the back of her neck had tingled a bit, but Jodi ignored the feeling because the guy seemed so cool. He’d worn a long, dark coat, like those guys in old black and white movies or those vampires in movies where the super-hero guy with a sword hunts them. He was sexy, dangerous looking and strangely inviting with the aura of a man who could sweep a girl off her feet. She had wanted to see more of this man’s face. So she thought, “What the hell”. Jodi slowed down, picked up her board, and walked over to him; swaying her hips in an oft practiced sexy walk. She quietly cleared her throat and in her most seductive voice, asked him if he had any matches.

Instead of reaching in his pocket for a light, the mystery man had grabbed her with a smooth swiftness that completely startled her. Initially Jodi had frozen, but then her survival instincts kicked in. She’d hit him with her board, elbowed his throat, and given him every move that had saved her before with guys who’d gotten out of line. “Shit!” He was the strongest person she had ever encountered. When she finally saw his face, all she could focus on was his eyes. They were dark, cold and deadly staring back at her. The veins in the whites of his eyes had appeared to grow with every pulse of her heart. With no effort at all, he’d lifted her, embraced her like a child and moved to lay her down. Jodi had thought then that it was all over. She’d be raped then killed and her body left in that tunnel. Fear consumed her. She thought about all the stupid things she had done; defying her parents, skating through that tunnel, talking to the gorgeous killer. She’d wiggled and squirmed, but nothing had freed her from his grasp.

Her heart had raced, adrenaline had made her temples ache and she’d squeezed her eyes shut; tight enough to add to the throbbing pain in her skull. She had known her life was over but she could neither face her killer nor certain demise. She had realized pretty quickly that she was his prey and he would never let her go. Jodi’s heart had beat double-time as his cold, stale breath moved closer. Directly over her, she had heard the most guttural, unholy growl she’d ever heard in her short life. Her attacker had looked up, snarled and hissed in response. She’d dared to open her eyes when his grip loosened. In an instant, things had changed. Suddenly, Jodi’s attacker had become the prey.

The impact of what hit them had tossed her into a wall. Jodi had lain there with cuts and bruises from head to toe; bleeding through her clothes onto the cold concrete. Her pain had somehow overcome her delirium and kept her awake long enough to smell the oddest scent she had ever inhaled. Not simply animal yet not simply man, but a raw, metallic mixture of both. The tunnels fluorescent lighting had been poor, so she had only seen shadowy forms dancing in a deadly whirl of snarls and violence. The battling figures had resembled a scene from Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah. “Stupid movie, why in the hell would that come to mind?” Jodi wondered just before she blacked out.

The rest of that experience remained foggy. When had the ambulance come? Who’d called them? Why wasn’t she dead? While the rape kit hadn’t shown signs of sexual assault, Jodi had still felt violated. She never understood why the doctors and nurses repeatedly said she only had bumps and bruises, “How the hell did I heal so fast?” she wondered, “I was shredded”. She remembered looking up inside the ambulance when she’d heard the sirens; she had been bleeding from cuts, bites and scratches over her entire body. Jodi still felt the scars, even after the physical evidence had disappeared. 

Jodi was already harboring anger and the attack served only to fuel her fire. She continued to channel her anger by combing the Internet looking for him and predators like him. Jodi overwelhmingly felt the need to get even. 

The cold night air shook her from her memories and puckered her skin. Parts of her that weren’t covered with clothing seemed more sensitive to the frosty air. The click clack of the wheels from her board bounced off the concrete. Night was so much more still than day to her. Jodi could tell Indian Summer was almost over; the air felt crisper, cooler. Jodi felt alive at night, even more so after the attack. She seemed more sensitive to everything. She found herself picking up a cacophony of sounds from traffic, sirens, street voices, wind, rustling leaves and so much more. All of them seemed to assault her hearing.

All those sounds together resembled the hushed murmur often heard during a school play. It had been a little less than a year since that frightful night. While Jodi had survived the experience, she was worse off for it, as she had become even angrier. She thrived in the night and enjoyed the potential danger. In fact, Jodi welcomed it. 

Jodi turned in at the park, headed over towards the swings, and carelessly kicked the dew dampened sand around, keeping her eyes out for needles and doggie bombs left by the local addicts and yuppy puppies. She settled onto a damp plastic swing in her punk skirt and kicked herself back and forth for a while. Eventually she stopped her momentum with her feet, reached in her jacket pocket and pulled out some envelopes wrapped in old rubber bands. Out fell a carefully torn advertisement she’d found in the back of the free newspaper. It read, “Globes Disease, do you have it? Do you black out? Do you wake up in strange places? Do you have unexplained fits of rage? Do you heal faster than normal? If you answered yes to these questions, you may have Globes Disease. Call us, direct or collect, at 1-518-555-9653 or visit our website at WWW.GlobesDisease.com.” 

Jodi picked up the crumpled ad and put it back in her pocket. She unbound and examined the letters. All had return addresses from Japan. Most of the letters were in Kanji, except the envelopes themselves. Some pages were in English and those were for her. They were all from Jon Ichiban Sakarui. Jodi was annoyed. Her mother neither said anything positive about her father nor let on that he even cared enough to make contact. She realized he wasn’t perfect or as buttoned down as her mother’s family. He was like her, Next-Gen Japanese. For the first time in her life, Jodi didn’t feel as different after reading the letters. She was not in search of validation through older men. She had a father; she did not need a perv to be her daddy figure. Jodi felt anger and resentment for her mother gaining ground inside her.  

When Jodi found the letters earlier that day and confronted her mother about them, it did not go well. Her mother threw out words like Haji, which means shame, claiming she was trying to save her from the influence by the new ways of western culture. “That is such bullshit! Isn’t pinning all your unrealized hopes and dreams on your children some kind of child abuse?” Jodi was furious and didn’t want anything to do with her family. She hated them almost as much as she hated the crusty old fucks that derived pleasure from feeling up young girls. “HAH! My mother wants to protect me from the new ways, but the old ways are fucking me up more than western culture ever could.” Jodi’s thoughts drifted again. She told herself, “They will all pay.” She was gonna take out this one last pervert, then her family and when she was done she would call and find out about this Globes Disease thing.

With luck, being a minor would keep her from the electric chair. Telling the authorities about her affliction might get her labeled crazy and earn her a stay in the loony bin for a while. Nevertheless, at 18, she could claim she’d been cured of her psychoses and be released with her records sealed. When all this was over, she would go to Japan, seek out her father, start a new life and finally be happy. She understood many Japanese left Japan for smaller towns and rural areas, because the big cities in Japan had caught up with the western world and their modern ways. Many of those cities had become so modern, there was no way the residents could live life in the old way. Cities like Osaka, which is where she would go.

A sedan pulled up and ended her daydreaming. A businessman exited the vehicle, approached her quietly and sat on the swing adjacent to her. Jodi’s rage began to build, bubbling like an ancient volcano. She would use her entire teenage lifetime and focus it on this moment. She held herself in check for this purpose. She needed to maintain control. Jodi felt his excitement grow as she acknowledged him with a nod. The night air was thick with tension. Jodi’s skin heated, causing steam to rise from her skin. She held back just a bit longer, like a child who desperately had to pee, but had to finish the next level of a video game before going. She needed that ache, that urging pain before she could issue her brand of judgment. The man leaned closer; a buttoned-up wolf in sheep’s clothing. He would soon discover who the real wolf was. She reminded herself to lock into her mind that while she was in her mindless rage to be sure to visit her mother. The time had arrived and this creep was the catalyst Jodi required. Jodi was ready to rid herself of all the adults who would do her harm. As she readied her mind and stoked her rage, Jodi could hear the thump of her own heartbeat. The last thing Jodi remembered feeling was the stranger touching her leg; the last thing Jodi heard was this perverted stranger’s scream…

Terry’s Dillemma – An excerpt from the Novel Globes Disease

Terrys_Biforcation

By: Lance Oliver Keeble

When Terry Andersen was first told of his disease he didn’t know what to do. How could this happen to him? How could this type of thing even exist? La Mort Douce had a sordid past for sure, but damn, who names a place “The Sweet Death” anyway? Located between Quebec and the States, hardly anyone knew where it was for a few hundred years, allowing countless atrocities to go unnoticed. However, since the 70s, all manner of people had begun to move here. As long as they could afford to. Some Native Americans and Native Canadians returned, most from “The Seven Nations” tribes, including the Iroquois and the Mohawk. “Don’t let that melting pot ideal fool you.” Terry had a professor who once said, “We should stop saying melting pot, because melting pot implies we all ceased being who we were and all became the same; a collective.” She thought we resembled a salad. Well, if this town was a salad, the lettuce ran the show and the rest of us have to be croutons.

Well, now the dark crouton had something he hadn’t even known existed. Something he once thought couldn’t be real, and yet it was. He had IT now. Terry looked into his bathroom mirror. Staring back at him was the early morning malaise that normally overcame him before heading off to work. This morning was different. Terry’s reflection, a dark man in his 40’s with deep dimples, strong cheek bones and what he thought was a friendly face, seemed extremely tense. A woman he dated once told him she thought him to be clean cut and intensely appealing. His eyes however, she said, “Were severely serious.” “Interesting description,” he thought. He wasn’t sure if it was his color or height that caused many at work to call him “Intimidating.” The description felt suspect all the same.

Terry’s thoughts often wandered in strange directions, generally away from what bothered him most, yet his mind eventually came back to it, without fail. He sighed, a single encounter, one bullshit incident and he now had IT; his destiny had been redirected. Terry figured there would be legitimate literature on this, but dammit-to-hell, no medical book he’d picked up covered the combination of symptoms he had: Unexplained lapses in time, increased hunger and metabolism, irritability, high sex drive, unexplained bruises and wounds that healed more quickly than normal. Terry also struggled with being exhausted during the day from bouts of insomnia.

All of these were symptoms recognized by the doctor he’d called on the card that strange visitor gave to him in the hospital. He realized later on that the same number was in newspaper ads he’d seen as well. What was it called again? Globes Disease? Apparently, it was a fluid borne illness passed from carrier to carrier. Shoot, he had tried looking it up with no success. Maybe it was covered under some other subject. Maybe it was biblical, myth or folklore. What little he did know, didn’t make any sense to him.

The Ache – An excerpt from the Novel Globes Disease

Quake_and_Diana_GD_the_AcheQuake & Diana Ragnorock

Author: Lance Oliver Keeble

Quake woke up sweaty. His pajama bottoms were drenched and stuck to his skin. The fire in his lungs felt like the first drag on a cigarette. He had awakened in a panic, gasping for air. He inhaled slowly and deeply, in an effort to cool the inferno in his chest. The desire was overwhelming, and his whole body ached with the need for satisfaction. He could feel the pull of the moon and his humanity fighting against it. His brain throbbed from the rush of testosterone and adrenaline. There was a burning in his chest and the heat raced through the chambers of his heart. He was exhausted, fatigued and jittery all at the same time. He felt excruciating pain and uncontrollable lust from lungs to loins. Quake’s nerves sparked and he hungered for flesh. His skin was pyretic to the touch. The cravings, which resembled what an addict might feel after days of sobriety, were primal, sexual and untamed. Quake concentrated on his breathing and held on to himself through the fervor, trying to control it. Quake looked at his beautiful wife as she slept. Usually she was up when he had these moments. “She must be as exhausted as I am,” thought Quake. Obviously, she had watched over him the whole night. He thought, as she lay there with bed covers haphazardly exposing all his favorite parts, “For a woman just over 50 she rivals any of the Pixie’s tempting me at the electronics stores”. To Quake, Diana was sexier and far more gorgeous. His body could not resist her and watching her sleep increased his desire for her. Quake knew that sex would delay his impending transformation. The Institute told him it had something to do with hormones or something like that. Hell, all that mumbo jumbo was too complicated. Quake did not want to think, He wanted to bury himself in Diana, flesh-to-flesh.

Diana felt Quake’s eyes on her and rolled over to look at him. She could see the turmoil raging in him; she anticipated and cherished these moments. Diana loved it rough every now and again. She smiled and thought, “Well, it is for the sake of science”. The big lummox was the love of her life. Through thick and thin, good and bad, she believed they would survive it all. They had so far. His blondish red hair was always a mess. He was a broad, solid man and handsome in a Nordic God kind of way. She loved every inch of him and most of the time he was romantic and sweet. However, during the gibbous moons, she welcomed the galvanizing variation from his usual tenderness. It took her days to heal, but it was oh so worth it. She leaned in and kissed him. “You have a rough night, Quake? It’s early and breakfast needs to be made, but we could work up a big hunger”, Diana purred. Diana climbed on top of him, letting her gown fall off her shoulder. She gave him a half smile, leaned in and kissed him again.