Wednesday, November 14, 2018


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Loretta Marion will be awarding a $50 mazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Thirty-seven-year-old painter Cassandra Mitchell is fourth-generation to live in the majestic Battersea Bluffs, a brooding Queen Anne home originally built by her great-grandparents, Percy and Celeste Mitchell, and still standing despite tragedies that have swept the generations. Local lore has it that there was a curse placed on the family and the house is haunted, though opinions are divided on whether it's by malicious or benevolent spirits. Cassie believes the latter―but now she stands to lose her beloved home to mounting debt and the machinations of her dream-weaving ex-husband.

Salvation seems to arrive when a nomadic young couple wanders onto the property with the promise of companionship and much-needed help―until they vanish without a trace, leaving behind no clue to their identities. Cassie is devastated, but determined to discover what's happened to the young couple...even as digging into their disappearance starts to uncover family secrets of her own. Despite warnings from her childhood friend, now the local Chief of Police―as well as an FBI agent who pushes the boundaries of professionalism―Cassie can't help following the trail of clues (and eerie signals from the old house itself) to unravel the mystery. But can she do so before her family's dark curse destroys everything in its path?

Read an Excerpt

Eighty years ago ~ Whale Rock, Massachusetts ~ Cape Cod Bay
Friday, December 13th

The fire bell was ringing, and someone yelled in through the tavern door, “There’s a fire up on the north end! Battersea Bluffs. We need all the hands we can get!”

“No, it can’t be,” Percy whispered. The Bluffs was his home. He leapt from the barstool and ran for the street, bumping into a stranger as he passed through the tavern door. The man’s eyes were ominously familiar to him, but with more pressing concerns, there was no time to bring to memory why. He had to get home to Celeste.

It sickened him to see the flames as his Ford pickup rounded the top of Lavender Hill. How hard he and Celeste had worked to build this house, a grand Victorian with a widow’s walk and a proud front porch facing out to sea. Fire trucks were already there, and men he’d known these many years were working hard to contain the blaze.

As he ran toward the house, it came to him who the stranger in the tavern had been, and later one of the firefighters would recount that Percy had screamed: “Damn that lighterman’s curse. Damn you to hell, Robert Toomey!” Nobody was quick enough to keep Percy Mitchell from entering the inferno.

Moments later he emerged, his clothing and hair afire, carrying a charred human form. Any man would have been delirious from the pain, but as the firefighters looked on in shocked disbelief, Percy walked with a purposeful bearing and a swift gait toward the bluffs. A few men chased after their friend, but before anyone could stop him, Percy reached the ledge and cried out, “I am not finished!”

And then, with his already dead wife in his arms, he hurled them both into Cape Cod Bay.

About the Author

A true bibliophile, Loretta Marion's affection for the written word began in childhood and followed her like a shadow throughout her life as she crafted award winning marketing and advertising copy and educational brochures. She then applied her writing skills as a volunteer, establishing a Legacy Story program for hospice patients, which inspired her to create her own fictional stories. Her debut novel, The Fool's Truth, was a twisty mystery with whispers of romance. Her newest novel, HOUSE OF ASHES – A Haunted Bluffs Mystery, is the first in a series published by Crooked Lane Books.

When not whipping out words on her laptop, she is traveling, enjoying outdoor pursuits, or is curled up with a delicious new book. Loretta lives in Rhode Island with her husband, Geoffrey, and their beloved Mr. Peabody, a sweet, devoted and amusing “Corgador”.







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Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thanks for hosting!

Loretta Marion said...

Thank you for taking part in the Goddess Fish Book Blast, Caroline! I look forward to connecting with readers and answering any questions about HOUSE OF ASHES!

James Robert said...

Good Morning! Thank you for the book description.These tours are great and we have found some terrific books so thanks so much.

Loretta Marion said...

Good morning to you, James. I'm glad you are enjoying the tour. I'm finding it's great fun to meet readers!

Victoria Alexander said...

Great excerpt, I'll definitely be checking this one out :)

Mary Preston said...

The cover gives me such a great sense of the story.

Loretta Marion said...

Thank you, Mary. The cover designer did a wonderful job capturing what was in my mind.

Loretta Marion said...

I hope you do, Victoria!

diannekc said...

I really enjoyed the description and excerpt from the book. It sounds like a fascinating story and I'm looking forward to reading the book.

Loretta Marion said...

Thank you Dianne! I hope you enjoy your visit to Whale Rock!

slehan said...

Looks like an interesting book. Thanks for the review.

starzine said...

I like mystery.

slehan said...

Do you listen to music when you write?

Loretta Marion said...

Thank you for the question. I prefer peaceful surroundings for my writing and can only listen to light classical music. Anything with lyrics is too distracting.

slehan said...

Do you write every day?

Loretta Marion said...

I write most days. It's important to keep that writing muscle toned. However, there are days when my brain needs a break to air out with mindless activities. Thank you for your interest!

slehan said...

What author do you most admire?

slehan said...

Do you have any pets?

Loretta Marion said...

A very good question - there are so many authors I admire, it would be hard to list. I would say that any writer who sticks with it and brings a polished novel to the public has done something admirable. It is not an easy task.

As for pets - for almost my entire life I have had a dog or dogs in my world. Sadly, we recently lost our beloved Mr. Peabody and the house is quiet and lonely without him.