It’s new release time, gang!
Today, I’ve got Story Empire colleague, D.L. Finn on my blog with her latest collection of short stories. No matter what Denise writes—novel-length fiction, short stories, poetry, or tales for children—she keeps her readers enthralled. In the Tree’s Shadow is no exception (see my review at the end of this post). In the meantime… are you ready for goose bumps?
Take it away, Denise!
Thank you, Mae, for having me here today to share the release of my short story collection, In the Tree’s Shadow.
“When the Lights Go Out” is a story I started writing while sitting on the deck during one of our power shutdowns for fire protection. Those shutdowns have slowed down, and the fires weren’t as bad last year, but each year provides its own challenge.
During one of these outages, with only the rumble of generators, my mind wanders. Like Bea in the story, I don’t like the dark. There is always a night light to counter the darkness and the perceived evil within it. Not wanting to waste batteries or leave candles unattended with curious cats around, it is completely dark in the house during these times.
As Bea discovers, when her generator doesn’t work, things that live in these shadows have an agenda. But as I have learned, where there is evil, good is somewhere nearby.
Knowing evil lurks, Bea has some choices to make to survive.
A collection of short stories where dreams and nightmares coexist.
Nestled inside these pages, you’ll meet a couple in their golden years who take a trip with an unexpected detour, a boy desperate to give his brother the Christmas gift he asked for, a girl with a small glass dragon who is at the mercy of her cruel uncles, and a young mother who has a recurring dream about murder. You’ll be introduced to worlds where people get second chances and monsters might be allowed their desires, while angels and dragons try to help. Happy endings occur, but perspective can blur the line between good and evil in these twenty-seven tales. Since the stories vary between 99 and 12,000 words, whether you have only five minutes or an entire evening to settle into reading, there is something that will suit your time and taste.
People will tell you that fiction is only make-believe. Don’t let them fool you. Some of it is real. But maybe if you knew the truth, you’d never sleep again. Right now, I’m resting but hooked on monitors and medication, with a different perspective on life.
Sleep has been hard for a long time because fantasy has become a reality for me. Oddly, they have always been okay with me discussing them as fiction. I would have gone crazy if I hadn’t written it down. They were so confident that no one would believe me. I think it amused them that my stories talked about the cliché things that go bump in the night.
What I’m about to tell you is not a fictional story. Whether or not you believe me, I can do nothing about it. I hope that those who have seen what I have will be comforted by my words.
Some of our darkest nightmares and things we imagine in the shadows are real. This knowledge prevented me from leaving my home at night. I stayed safely inside my brightly lit house. Could they get in? Of course, but it was the best I could do. Luckily, they preferred the darkness. I knew I was being watched whenever I fell asleep, even with all the lights on. Illumination only encouraged them to keep their distance. Still, I never understood what they were waiting for until that night. Before that moment, I figured they enjoyed the hunt or just liked observing.
FUN FINN FACTS:
- Two black cats, Luna and Coco, and two tiger-striped, Zuzu and Chester, share our house.
- I saw spin dolphins jumping around our boat in Hawaii. Amazing.
D. L. Finn is an independent California local who encourages everyone to embrace their inner child. She was born and raised in the foggy Bay Area, but in 1990 she relocated with her husband, kids, dogs, and cats to Nevada City, in the Sierra foothills. She immersed herself in reading all types of books but especially loved romance, horror, and fantasy. She always treasured creating her own reality on paper. Finally, surrounded by towering pines, oaks, and cedars, her creativity was nurtured until it bloomed. Her creations include children’s books, adult fiction, a unique autobiography, and poetry. She continues on her adventure with an open invitation to all readers to join her.
D.L. Finn Links:
Twitter | Bookbub | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | D.L. Finn blog | Amazon Page
Now that you’ve enjoyed this wonderful GOOSE BUMP ALERT, I hope you’ll take a moment to drop Denise a comment below and join in her release celebration. Please use the sharing buttons to help spread the word about In the Tree’s Shadow, then don’t forget to grab your own copy from AMAZON.
I thoroughly enjoyed this collection of stories that run the gamut from mild horror, slice-of-life, and sci-fi, to fantasy and paranormal. Creatures, angels, and animals populate the pages along with protagonists and villains. There is darkness, but also whimsy and plenty of hope. With a variety of micro-fics, shorts, and one novella-length work, the mixture will keep you flipping pages.
My favorite stories included Old Gray Cat, In That Moment, Effervescent Potion, Bonsai, and most especially, The Bike. In many places, I had to pause to savor the author’s deft turn of phrase. These are but a few that stood out for me:
“The other man, dressed all in black that matched his mesmerizing night eyes, had a voice like a bass guitar.”
“The dragon’s red eyes softly glowed like an autumn-toned sunset.”
“Tears mixed with her blood in a tie-dye swirl of insanity.”
If you enjoy speculative fiction that straddles lines of peril and hope, shadows and light, this is a collection that checks all the boxes.