Thursday, April 2, 2015

Leinster Gardens and other subleties by Jan Edwards

Release date: March 14, 2015
Subgenre: Ghost stories, short fiction

About Leinster Gardens and other subtleties:

“A family divided by civil war -  a girl’s obsession for the carven effigy of a long dead knight - bomber pilots – Otter hunt saboteurs - Tudor prisons - graveyard vigils” – just a few of the ghostly inspirations for supernatural tales that are as many and various as the stories themselves. Fourteen chilling tales of ghosts and hauntings!  Including the BFS award short-listed  ‘Otterburn’!

“As a fan Algernon Blackwood, I loved this collection. I do not know the exact dividing line between fiction and literature, but this work is approaching literature if not already there. A collection of short British ghost stories by Jan Edwards. Haunting, romantic, timeless, sad, and eerie: these are all adjectives that come to mind when I read this ... ghost stories you can sink your teeth into! ”  (Dunwich Review)

“Ghost stories, adeptly told, with a sense of locale and time neatly placed within the narratives. Her family history informs and inspires some of her stories. Folklore figures as a focus in more than one story, whether urban myth or historical lore. But ghostly they are and deceptively disturbing.” ...David A Sutton.

Excerpt from The Ballad of Lucy Lightfoot:

Only one remained on the Isle of Wight who remembered Lucy Lightfoot. He was the reason she had returned, and the reason she stood in the church porch, debating on whether seven hundred years was long enough.
She hesitated, glancing toward the setting sun, and then retreated to her house, just along the street. She wondered yet again why returning to her old home, and this island, was so important. She had prepared well, and she felt she had a very good chance of success, but the stakes were so damned high.
Lucy headed straight for the study, sloshed a large measure of brandy into a waiting snifter, and knocked it back in one. She stood motionless for several seconds whilst the alcohol seared its path, and her eyes watered momentarily.
What a waste of good liquor, she thought. Father would be horrified, despite all of those casks he slid past the Excise. ‘Brandy was fer gentry’ he’d say. Father would be surprised at a lot of the things I get up to now.
She lowered herself into a chair, as the drink finally hit, and poured another good measure. Sobriety didn't appeal so much, today.
She set a decorated box on the desk and stared at it; and took another mouthful of liquid courage before she prised up the lid. She lifted out a small goat-skin pouch, fingering its contents through the hide, remembering where each lump came from, and when. A wrinkled sliver of dried gristle, cut from the umbilicus of her first child; a small chunk of dried flesh from her stillborn second son; a snip of cloth, brown with the first blood of her eldest daughter’s womanhood; a small human bone that she preferred not to name even to herself; two gold coins and a short length of coffin wood. All were powerful mementos of those who had been closest to her during her long life. The pouch leaked fine dust onto her fingers. Grave dirt – from her first husband’s resting place. That would've amused him, she thought, using his death to facilitate his own teachings.
This had been in the planning for a very long time, for centuries – to the where and the when that the Wite had sent her to join her soldier knight. Across an entire continent to the edges of the Ottoman lands, to a place and time long before the Lightfoot name had ever begun. Her children, and her children’s children, for more generations than she could count, were dust. Only she remained.
Fondling the familial talismans a final time she tightened the bag’s ragged strings, and returned it to the box. Soon she would use its collected power to break the binding.

To view the YouTube promo for Leinster Gardens and Other Subtleties click HERE - “A stretch of elegant Regency housing – in reality little more than a façade...” 

About Jan Edwards:

Born in Sussex, now living in Staffs Moorlands with 3 cats and husband Peter Coleborn.
Writer of fantasy fiction, freelance editor, reiki master.
Founder member of Renegade Writers

Twitter: @jancoled
Alchemy Press 
Current titles:
Co-editor: The Alchemy Press Book of Urban Mythic (vols 1 & 2)
                    Wicked Women with Fox Spirit
Novel: Sussex Tales (non-genre) with Penkhull Press

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