ON A DARK TIDE by Naomi Clark @naomi_jay @evernightpub

Please welcome Naomi Clark to my blog who brings us her new FF Romance on the Go from Evernight Publishing!

Thanks for having me here today! I’m excited to share my latest Romance on the Go, ON A DARK TIDE, a story I constantly (and probably annoyingly) referred to as the Creepy Ocean Story whilst writing it. I’m a mermaid at heart. I love the ocean, whatever the season, whatever the weather. Nothing makes me feel as at peace or inspired as sitting by the shore. ON A DARK TIDE is one of several stories and books I’ve written with the ocean at its heart, and it won’t be the last.

My jokey reference to it as the Creepy Ocean Story got me thinking about other creepy ocean stories. ON A DARK TIDE was partially inspired by that idea that the deep, vast ocean is concealing a very alien and inhospitable world from us – and that maybe we don’t want to uncover it’s secrets.

These three books share that theme, and were all incredibly formative reads for me growing up. Enjoy!

1. DAGON
 

DAGON was one of the first stories Lovecraft wrote as an adult, back in 1917. Told from the point of view of a morphine addict recounting a horrific experience he had as a merchant marine, it’s classic Lovecraft, encapsulated into a short but striking story. Adrift in an unknown region of the ocean, he finds “a slimy expanse of hellish black mire” thrown to the ocean’s surface by a volcanic upheaval. Upon exploring the landmass, he discovers an inhumanly large monolith covered in hieroglyphics that suggest a terrifying truth about humanity. As he studies the monolith, an enormous creature emerges from the waters. Insane with fear, the man escapes, but is cursed to madness as fear of the creature consumes him.This was the first Lovecraft story I ever read! It set me on a long and happy path of trying to make everyone I knew read Lovecraft (only partially succeeding). It’s short enough that his sometimes purple prose doesn’t grate on you, and leaves enough to the imagination that you can’t help being fascinated by his submerged civilisations and cold, distant gods.

 
2. TELLING THE SEA
 
On a rather different note, we have TELLING THE SEA by Pauline Fisk. I must have read this dozens of times as a child. It’s the story of Nona, who moves with her mother to a coastal village in Wales to escape an abusive partner. Isolated and lonely, Nona deals with her troubles by sharing them with the sea. But as life grows more complicated and no answers seem to be in sight, Nona does more than just talk to the sea…And soon her life is danger as the waters lure her in.This is a YA book dealing with some heavy topics – domestic abuse and suicide, chiefly. I don’t think I truly appreciated as a child how well those topics were addressed, but it’s a book that’s stayed in my memory my whole life. The setting and Nona’s strange, difficult relationships, and her sanctuary in the sea, make this a one-of-a-kind book.



3. SEA DRAGON HEIR

Oh man. If you want your high fantasy ripe with incest, have I got a book for you. Twins Valraven and Pharinet are heirs of a royal family cursed many hundreds of years before. Any woman married to Valraven was destined to become the Sea Wife, a being capable of commanding the vast powers of the sea dragons. Growing up, Val and Pharinet become lovers, and an intricate web of magic and betrayal engulfs them and everyone around them. 


I love this book, but it’s definitely not for everyone. The nature of the sea dragons (are they real or just metaphors for the family’s magic?) and the complex political intrigue make this an outstanding first book in the series. The rest of the trilogy drifts away from the ocean and the incredibly sinister dragons, sadly.



Of course, I’d be remiss if I didn’t share a snippet of my own Creepy Ocean Story with you now…

 

 

True crime podcasters Piper and Cam have travelled to the sleepy seaside
town of Findlay to investigate the disappearance of a woman nearly a
decade ago. The theories are wild—everything from murder to mermaids,
and Piper is determined to get to the truth. Battling her fear of the
ocean, Piper soon realizes Findlay has deeper, darker secrets than she
could ever have believed. As she struggles to master her fear and deal
with her unrequited love for Cam, Piper is lured into perilous waters.
The truth waits beneath the waves—and Piper’s fate waits with it.

 

 *Be Warned: f/f sex *


Excerpt:

           “Cam,” Piper said again, almost wailing it as Cam took off back up the shore toward the town. Piper started after her, got her feet tangled in those grabby strands of seaweed, and toppled over. She landed face-first in the sand, grit and water-worn stones digging into her palms. “Shit!”

            She lay there for a few seconds, berating herself for being so stupidly tongue-tied. Then she picked herself up and hugged herself against the bitter cold wind rushing off the waves. She could fix this.

            All she had to do was run after Cam and say … something. She didn’t know what, though. She still wasn’t sure what the hell had just happened. What Cam had expected to happen.

            But she wouldn’t find out hanging around on the beach, would she?

            She started walking, the distant lights of the town guiding her. She and Cam had come further than she realized, and night had swept in while they walked. She couldn’t even see Cam’s silhouette up ahead. But she couldn’t have gotten far, surely. Piper had only been down a minute. Piper cupped her hands to her mouth. “Cam? Cameron!”

            There was no answer. The wind shrieked down the bay, suddenly wild, and Piper flashed back vividly to her dream last night. She wondered if that’s all it had been, a howling gale invading her dreams. She glanced out across the ink-dark waters of the bay, watching the white caps rise and fall as the tide drove in. It was too easy to imagine being tossed around in those wild waves, mouth full of salt, lungs burning, body sinking and rising at the will of the water. It was too easy to imagine Dina Mackay walking into the sea…

            Piper shivered, unsure where the idea came from. The wind rose and fell in strange harmony, filling her head with shipwrecks and yellowed bones polished by centuries of sand and water. She stopped looking for Cam, entranced and disturbed by the song of the bay. It did sound like voices, eerily so. Sweet, inhuman singing as the wind ripped through hidden caves and over knee-high banks of marram grass.

            Dina could have heard that beautiful, awful music the night she went missing. She could have walked out of the Lobster Pot, just like Piper had tonight, pleasantly buzzed, and thought she heard voices down on the shore, out in the water.

            Piper didn’t remember moving, but the water lapped at her feet now, so either she’d moved or the tide had. She wasn’t sure. It didn’t matter. The singing swirled around her, warming her where the wind had chilled her. The water washed over her canvas shoes, soaking in and anchoring her to the shore. The singing pulled at her, dragged at her, as inexorable as the ocean.


Available now from:

Evernight Publishing

Amazon US

Amazon UK 

About the Author
Naomi likes writing, perfume, fancy tea, and unfathomable monsters from the dark spaces between the
stars, not necessarily in that order. She has been writing stories
ever since she learned how to write, but is still trying to master
the art of biography writing. When she’s not dealing with werewolves,
demons, or sea monsters, she’s hanging out with her cat and probably
watching a documentary about Bigfoot. If the cat isn’t available,
she’s with her fiancé watching cookery shows and silently plotting
her next book.
 

Find me online:

 
Twitter – @naomi_jay

LICH QUEEN by Naomi Clark @evernightpub @naomi_jay

Thanks for having me today!
I’m so excited to be sharing my new release, LICH QUEEN, book three in
the Blood Canticles series. Anyone who had to deal with me while I was writing
this book (friends, family, co-workers) will know I was completely obsessed with
it. I love writing Dawn, and her story has so many elements I just love writing
in general – ghosts, private eyes, and creepy shenanigans! And anyone who had
to deal with me while I was waiting to hear if the book had been accepted,
knows I was a total bundle of nerves the whole time (my fiancé is a patient
man). For some reason I was convinced I’d get a “no” on this one. Don’t ask me
why. It just seemed like maybe Dawn’s story, which gets bleak, might not be a
good fit.
 
But it’s not just
bleak! Like the other Blood Canticles books, there’s friendship, mystery,
action, and a lot of coffee. If you like your urban fantasy filled with those
things (and a side order of zombies, vampires, and demons), you’re going to
love LICH QUEEN just as much as I do 😉
 
You can find the
complete Blood Canticles series,
in reading order, at my blog here.

Blurb

Magic has ruined Detective Dawn Hardy’s life.
 
Her partner is dead, her career is on the rocks, and Dawn fears she herself may no longer be human.
 
While she struggles with the aftermath of a vampire attack, dead bodies are going missing around Fort
Rosser. A demonic plot is brewing, and Dawn and her friends may be the only ones who can stop it. If they can stop fighting each other. And if Dawn can conquer the growing darkness inside herself.
 
Vampires and demons were just the beginning.
 
 

Excerpt

They had to press themselves to the wall to get around the zombie. Dawn kept her gun
trained on it the whole time, just in case, but it didn’t so much as twitch. It
felt like stopping it had been too easy. Her nerves were singing by the time
they reached the landing. Another dark hallway stretched out before them,
dented metal doors on either side. Dawn noticed with a chill that a lot of the
doors looked like the damage had come from the inside.
“There’s an open unit up ahead,” she told Rhys, watching Eddie drift along, leaving
a trail of caramel-tobacco in his wake. “They let some of the less dangerous patients mix freely during the day.”
They’d been in there, on that long-ago murder investigation. It was a big enough room,
still lined with basic tables and chairs where patients could sit and read, or
play card games, or just … sit. It was a favorite spot for urban explorers to
visit, because the masonry was still pretty sound, but the room itself was a
wreck, offering the right balance of damage and security for would-be YouTube
stars.
“Bet you ten dollars that’s where she is, then,” Rhys said. “I can feel
it. You?”
Was she supposed to? Seeing ghosts was bad enough, Eddie excluded. She didn’t want
to start ‘feeling’ zombies. She shook her head, focusing on Eddie again.
Sure enough, he stopped by the door to the open unit. Those demonic symbols were
gouged into the door, deeply scarring the metal. Her pulse raced as adrenaline
flooded her. She could hear something on the other side of the door – a muffled
mix of footsteps and low, strained voices. She adjusted her grip on her gun,
palms sweaty. She carried a standard-issue Glock, six rounds. It had always
felt like enough before tonight. Now she was down to three.
“Any last minute advice on dealing with the undead?” she whispered to Rhys.
“Don’t,” he said.
She wished he didn’t think he was so funny. Eddie beckoned her to the door, giving
her a look she knew well. Caution, mixed with determination. She didn’t need to
hear him speak to know what he was thinking. Go time, Dawn.
She nodded at him.
Isaiah’s mocking laughter filled her head.
The way into my parlor is up a winding stair…
“So cliché,” she said, earning a strange look from Rhys. She answered him with
a smile that felt unpleasant. “Go time,” she said, and eased the door open.
 

Buy Links

 
 
About the Author
Naomi likes writing, perfume,
fancy tea, and unfathomable monsters from the dark spaces between the stars,
not necessarily in that order. She has been writing stories ever since she
learned how to write, but is still trying to master the art of biography
writing. When she’s not dealing with werewolves, demons, or sea monsters, she’s
hanging out with her cat and probably watching a documentary about Bigfoot. If
the cat isn’t available, she’s with her fiancé watching cookery shows and
silently plotting her next book.
 
Find me online:
 
Twitter – @naomi_jay

 

IN COLD BLOOD by Naomi Clark @naomi_jay @evernightpub

In Cold Blood

By Naomi Clark

Hi there! Thanks for having me today and letting me share a bit about my new release, IN COLD BLOOD. This is a spin-off from my Urban Wolf series, set in the same world but featuring new characters. My goal with every entry in the Urban Wolf series is to open the world up a little bit more. SILVER KISS gives us a good, solid starting point with werewolves. BLOOD HUNT introduces vampires. PHANTON FEARS teases the idea of ghosts, and COLD NIGHT MOON gives us fae creatures (or one, at any rate). With IN COLD BLOOD, my idea was that, well, someone had to be noticing all these weird and wonderful creepy beasties. And someone would be keeping notes…

This will tie directly into the plot of the next Urban Wolf book, which will take us back to Ayla and Shannon. The circle of life, etc.

IN COLD BLOOD is the first of a planned trilogy about Phoebe, Aisling, and the Luporum. I already have book 2 mostly planned out (in my head, anyway), but my aim is write that Ayla and Shannon book first. So if you enjoy IN COLD BLOOD, rest assured that there’ll be more from my socially awkward werewolves in love – and the Urban Wolf series in general! – in the future 🙂 Happy reading!

You can find the complete Urban Wolf series, in reading order, at my blog here.

Blurb:

Phoebe Fairley wanted to be a librarian. Somehow, she’s become a vampire hunter. Women are dying across the country and the police are baffled. Phoebe’s just supposed to be gathering information on the deaths, but as the body count mounts, she can’t help but break the rules and get involved. She knows what the killer is—and catching and containing it is vital. If she can persuade the police to believe her, and keep her secretive bosses happy, she stands a chance of capturing a very real, very deadly vampire. Not bad for a werewolf who can’t shapeshift.

Aisling is happy living as a feral wolf. She’s got no time for human affairs, until a mysterious creature attacks her and leaves her in human hands. Now, if she wants her life back, she’ll have to join Phoebe’s hunt. There are just a couple of snags. One, she hates humans. And two, she’s falling hard for Phoebe. With a monster to catch and her own past to protect, will Aisling trust her head or her heart? 

 

 

Excerpt

The scene inside the barn was surreal. Two big floodlights overhead lit
the barn in glaring white. Half the huge space was taken up with
sheep, penned off from the drama but still hysterically bleating and
milling together. A grizzled man in a tattered dressing gown and
Wellington boots – surely the farmer – leaned into the pen,
talking non-stop to the frightened animals. Bales of hay were piled
high around the rest of the barn, looking to Phoebe like they might
come toppling down any second. They formed a rough arena for the main
drama. Two more men held down a naked woman. She thrashed in their
grip, tossing her matted red hair and snarling with a viciousness
that made Phoebe’s wolf cower. This was their victim, this mad,
wild thing?
 
Spalding hurried over to the farmer and Gibbs ran to the paramedics. They had
to be wolves, from the strength they were displaying, but the woman
was making them work to keep her still. Phoebe hesitated before
following Gibbs – at a distance. Observe, Spalding had said. That
was fine. Observing was all she was meant to do. The question was,
what exactly was she seeing? The victim of a vampire attack or a
feral wolf gone mad? She couldn’t help but lean towards the latter.
Perhaps the woman thought the sheep would be easy pickings, but
something had gone wrong. Maybe she’d been startled by the farmer
or a guard dog. Phoebe had noticed a kennel outside the barn,
although there was no sign of a dog now.
 
As she got closer, she saw the woman’s hands and feet were caked in
mud, and there were thin red scratches all over her pale skin. Dried
blood on her chest, too, although her endless thrashing made it hard
to see where the original wound was. She stopped a few feet away,
watching as Gibbs crouched down before the woman and – daringly,
Phoebe thought – gripped her chin firmly. She was surprised he
didn’t get his fingers bitten off.
 
The woman growled but couldn’t pull free of Gibbs’ hold. He growled
right back, with a force and venom that made Phoebe quake. Did they
teach that in training?
 
For a minute, the pair seemed locked in battle, the woman struggling
against all three men in vain while she snarled at Gibbs. He didn’t
flinch or loosen his grip, and kept his own domineering growl
rumbling on, rising in pitch. The sheep grew more frantic and both
the farmer and Spalding yelled at them with a mixture of anger and
desperation. Phoebe felt battered, all the noise and tumultuous
emotion like an assault. She wanted to run. She forced herself to
stay, watching as Gibbs tried to inflict his will on the woman.
 
As much as pop culture got muddled with myth, some things were always
true, just as much for wolves as humans. Some people were simply more
dominant than others. Gibbs’ laid-back, clownish persona was all
gone now as he pinned the woman down with both his body and his eyes.
Phoebe would have caved already, if she’d even had it in her to
resist. The woman, whatever her mental state might be, was not so
easily dominated. But after what felt like an age, she slumped,
stopped fighting, and went still.

 

Buy Links 

Evernight
Amazon US
Amazon UK

 

About the Author

Naomi likes writing, perfume, fancy tea, and unfathomable monsters from the dark spaces between the stars, not necessarily in that order. She has been writing stories ever since she learned how to write, but is still trying to master the art of biography writing. When she’s not dealing with werewolves, demons, or sea monsters, she’s hanging out with her cat and probably watching a documentary about Bigfoot. If the cat isn’t available, she’s with her fiancé watching cookery shows and silently plotting her next book.

Find me online

 

Blog
Facebook
Twitter – @naomi_jay