Friday, June 12, 2015

Featured Guest Author: KJ Charles on The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal, includes Giveaway

KJ Charles

We are huge fans of KJ Charles here at Sinfully, so we were delighted she had the time to pop in and chat to us on the tour for her upcoming novel The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal, which is due for release on the 16th June. KJ is also gifting three e-copies of the book, so be sure to enter the giveaway for your chance to win.

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Wild Geese and Ghost Stories

My new book, The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal, is a bit unusual: it’s written in the form of ten individual stories that make up the full history of the romance. (There’s a good reason for this: Simon the grumpy ghost-hunter and Robert the curious writer are a sort of occult Holmes and Watson, and each tale hangs round a case or puzzle.)

Almost all the tales are based round English folklore. This is a very old country with a lot of history and some really weird ideas. There are stories that repeat all over the country (the bride lost playing hide and seek on her wedding day, the Black Dog, the king under the hill) and stories that only come up in one place, long winding anecdotes, and snippets that go nowhere with a disturbing, worrying purposelessness.

I don’t want to spoiler my stories in The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal (I included a list of folklore at the end for the curious) but here’s a few examples.

One of the stories features the Wild Hunt. This is a recurring legend: a hunt, rider on horseback and pack of dogs in full cry, streaming across the sky. Sometimes it’s led by the Devil, sometimes by a damned soul, sometimes by Herne the Hunter as deity, and sometimes by Herne in his early form as a murdered forester. But it comes up pretty much anywhere in England with empty skies and wild geese. Why wild geese? Well, imagine yourself alone on a bleak moor with twilight closing in, listen to this noise coming up behind you, and try not to panic.

English folklore also has a habit of seizing on real people and turning them into myths. For example, Sir Francis Drake, the great Elizabethan privateer and sea captain, owned a drum which is said to beat when England is in danger; if it is ever played, Drake himself will return. The last time it’s said to have played was during the rescue of stranded soldiers from the beaches at Dunkirk.

I didn’t want to use Drake’s drum, but I did want Dr Dee’s mirror. Dr John Dee was an adviser to Queen Elizabeth I, a self-declared alchemist who used an obsidian mirror to seek spirits. (Folklore didn’t have a lot of extra work with Dr Dee.) The Gothic novelist Horace Walpole bought Dee’s mirror (or something claimed to be it: Walpole was a few points short of a pentacle sometimes), and it is now in the British Museum. You can go and see it. I’ve seen it. I didn’t see any spirits, as such, just my own reflection, but I figured it would need a bit of ceremony…and that’s what I gave a scrying glass of Dee’s special design in one of my Casebook stories.

I hope you enjoy the book: why not enter the Rafflecopter to win one of three free copies across the tour?

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­The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal

SecretCasebookOfSimonFeximal-The300

Publisher ~ Samhain Publishing

Due for Release ~ 16th June 2015

Genre ~ Fantasy, Paranormal, M/M Romance

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Synopsis

A story too secret, too terrifying—and too shockingly intimate—for Victorian eyes.

A note to the Editor

Dear Henry,

I have been Simon Feximal’s companion, assistant and chronicler for twenty years now, and during that time my Casebooks of Feximal the Ghost-Hunter have spread the reputation of this most accomplished of ghost-hunters far and wide.
You have asked me often for the tale of our first meeting, and how my association with Feximal came about. I have always declined, because it is a story too private to be truthfully recounted, and a memory too precious to be falsified. But none knows better than I that stories must be told.
So here is it, Henry, a full and accurate account of how I met Simon Feximal, which I shall leave with my solicitor to pass to you after my death.
I dare say it may not be quite what you expect.

Robert Caldwell
September 1914

Pre-Order Links

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AMAZON GLOBAL LINK | ARe

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Meet KJ Charles

KJ Charles is a Rainbow Award-winning romance writer and freelance editor. She blogs about writing and publishing, spends too much time on Twitter, and has a Facebook group for book chat and sneak peeks. Her next book is The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal, a Victorian occult m/m romance, coming from Samhain on 16 June.

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Giveaway

Three e-copies of The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal, by KJ Charles

a Rafflecopter giveaway

32 comments:

  1. I agree with you completely. Wild geese are scary! I saw them attack a grown man and still his dinner... The poor guy ran away... Anyhow, I'm really looking forward to reading The Secret Case of Simon Feximal. I loved Butterflies and Remnant, and I'm eager to find out their whole story.
    Thank you for an interesting post.

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  2. Can't wait to find out more about this couple.

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  3. I love the English folklore - hubby has me writing a story on the Devon Hairy Hands myth :). Congrats on the new release!

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  4. Feels like I've been waiting for this forever! Can't wait to read more about Robert and Simon, and I love folk myths

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  5. Interesting concept! Can't wait to find out more about this book... Thanks for the chance at the giveaway ;-)

    foebz@hotmail.com

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  6. I'm always excited to read KJ Charles' work!

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  7. Sounds awesome.

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  8. Waiting patiently (NOT) for the release of this one...

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  9. why oh why won't samhain do early release?
    -kkm

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  10. Awesome writing; awesome covers -love the scrying glass look. KJ always gives us something to look forward to -everytime.
    ~av~

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  11. This sounds absolutely fascinating, its amazing how often the same legends pop up all over Britain (and Europe)

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  12. I will read it anyway, I've enjoyed your Charm of Magpies short stories, I like your style in a shorter form.

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  13. So excited! I've read one of Simon and Henry's stories, and I loved it!

    ashley.vanburen[at]gmail[dot]com

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  14. Totally looking forward to reading this, thanks for the giveaway!

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  15. Started your Charm of Magpies series, and need to block time to finish! Would love to win The Secret Casebook of Simon Feximal, but if I don't I'll purchase it. I love folklore. Thank you for the giveaway. Judy jDOTstonewrightATgmailDOTcom

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  16. Never mind on a bleak moor, my friend and I were cornered in a teepee by geese at Barnes Wetland centre while my brother had fled to safety as they herded us to our doom.
    bibliophiloscifi(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Maybe I should have abandoned the whole Wild Hunt thing and just focused on the geese! Blasted things they are...

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  17. Blurb sounds great!

    sionedkla@gmail.com

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  18. The book looks great, very different!
    Oceanakers @ aol.com

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  19. Excited to read any and everything by K. J. This one sounds extremely intriguing! Great post.

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  20. Oh, wow! This one seems tailor made for me! I'm such a huge history geek, my family always threatens to duct tape my mouth when we watch period dramas (I may have a slight tendency to correct historical facts or comment on the accuracy of their custom designer - well, you get the idea). My particular area of study in college was Tudor England, so your use of John Dee's mirror is inspired! I'm so excited to see what you'll do with it. And I'm fascinated with tales of the Fae, of which the Wild Hunt is one of the most popular. In short, the only one of my obsessions you haven't included is a dragon, so, yeah, I'm going to love this collection.Like pretty much everyone else, I'm a fan of the Magpie series. After I read the short story Remnant, from the Casebook of Simon Feximel, I hungered for more, and it looks like this book will deliver in ways I hadn't dared to hope. And it's only two days after my birthday, so that's like a super cool gift! Thank you!

    Quick question, though: I found Butterflies on Smashwords, but I can't find The Caldwell Ghost anywhere. Is it out of print? :(

    kshugrue(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Caldwell Ghost is not available separately now, it's the first story in this collection. Caldwell Ghost and Butterflies for those who haven't encountered Robert & Simon yet, then eight brand new stories.

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  21. book sounds great and havent read anything from this author yet
    jmarinich33@aol.com

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  22. This sounds amazing. Love the cover too.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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  23. ghost I love stories about ghost

    jeaninebeaulieu@hotmail.ca

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  24. I love KJ Charles! Looking forward to reading Secret Casebook> :-)
    aelnova@aol.com

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  25. Can't wait to find out more about this couple.

    parisfan_ca@yahoo.com

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  26. This sounds really good!
    annmarief115 at gmail dot com

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  27. Thanks for all the background, very interesting!

    aahickmanathotmaildotcom

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  28. I am looking forward to reading this. I also had a traumatic experience with a wild goose. We always went to the park with a pond near my aunt's home to fee the ducks and geese and a goose started chasing me. I was little so it was as bigger than I was! Luckily my dad got between us and saved me! I remember that day and I know I had to be tiny if that bird seemed like a giant to me!

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    1. I got attacked by a swan as a full grown teenager and it was absolutely terrifying...

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