Prism Book Alliance® would like to thank FE Feeley Jr. for taking the time to talk with us today.
Title: Still Waters
Author: FE Feeley Jr.
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Paul Richmond
Genre/Sub-Genre: Gay, Gay Fiction, Horror, M/M Romance, Paranormal
Memoirs of the Human Wraiths
Promise, Michigan is very much like every other small town across the state. Built on the edge of a lake, the homes sit in neat little rows in cute little neighborhoods. During the summer Promise bustles with tourists who come to spend their vacation dollars and enjoy the lake’s refreshingly cold water. But Promise holds a terrible secret. In the center of the lake is an abandoned island where a curse is rumored to wait for victims, unabated and deadly. Most think it’s just a story, something used to keep kids out of trouble. Still, everyone gives it a wide berth. Everyone except Bret and Adam. They dare to venture out the night of Bret’s birthday. When they declared their love and promise to get married, they believe no one else heard their whispered words—but they are wrong.
Five years after Adam dies, Bret returns to his family to heal. But someone is killing the people of Promise in random acts of violence. Bret, with the help of FBI agent Jeff McAllister, must discover the identity of a murderer with death on his mind and revenge in his heart.
Prism Book Alliance® recently reviewed Still Waters. You can find the review here.
We are here today to talk about Still Waters. What can you tell us about it?
First of all, I want to thank you for Beta’ing this book. We tossed it back and forth at each other and I listened to your advice. And each and every time you read it. That was awesome.
There is so much going on this book, theme wise. A lot of real world issues at play and of course, it has a paranormal background so it makes it easier to swallow, a bit. This is the third, stand alone, novel in the Memoirs of the Human Wraiths series and I am intrigued as to which direction this series is going to go.
Tell us more about Bret, Adam, and Jeff?
Bret and Adam are high school sweethearts who ran out on the night of Bret’s birthday to some tribal land and in hushed whispers, promised each other forever. They didn’t think anyone was listening. They were wrong.
Five years after Adam’s Death, FBI special agent Jeff McAlister comes into Promise to investigate the first of a series of strange deaths. Bret’s world was rocked with the death of Adam but Jeff’s world will be rocked by Bret and Bret’s secret.
What about Still Waters makes you proudest?
I am proud of the content of this book. The criss crossing themes going on here and the way it came together. I write about what scares me and in this world, there is a lot to be afraid of and I hope I interpreted my fears into this novel. I have developed a personal rule since I started writing three years ago. I’ll get you to your happy ever after. But the reader is gonna earn it. And in this book, I make you earn it.
The town, and more importantly the island and lake in the town of Promise play an important role in Still Waters. What can you tell us about these three entities?
Promise is your everyday American town, a picture of the modern Gilded Age we live in, where everything looks beautiful on the surface, but scratch a little bit and you’ll find weird dynamics where power is king.
The Island in the middle of the lake is sacred Indian ground that, overtime has developed a bad reputation and is feared haunted. It’s there that Bret and Adam make their promise to marry after school.
The lake is a tourist destination for many people in the area. Its water is icy cold even in August. But it’s the lifeblood of the town. And its also symbolic, its surface is beautiful, glassy, but the lake is very very deep and still waters being what they are….
Anything else you want to tell our readers about Still Waters?
The stories you read from me are not easy. I deal with some tough stuff. Nina Simone said, An Artists responsibility is to speak about the world in which they live. There is a lot of that in this book.
If you could give one piece of advice to aspiring writers, what would it be?
Some would say read. Others would say write. I say watch. Watch the world around you. Observe it. Listen to it. Learn from it. Nina Simone said it is the artist’s responsibility to reflect the world around them. And Dr. Maya Angelou said when you get, give. When you learn, teach.
When you put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard, you’ll be surprised what you feel about certain things. Don’t be frightened to speak. The world of writing isn’t for the faint of heart. Be bold. Be brazen. Pour your heart into it and be prepared to bleed. You, me, and the world will be better for it.
Will we be seeing more from these characters in the future?
I have no earthly Idea. No clue.
What are you reading right now and what is next on your to-be-read list?
Hard winter Rain by John Inman. That dude’s a beast.
Rapid Fire Time
- Flowers or Candy? Flowers.
- Paper or Plastic? Plastic
- Trees or Flowers? Flowers
- Hats or Fascinators? I have no idea what a fascinator is so I’ll go with hats.
- Disney or Nick? Pssssh. Disney all day long.
- Waxed or Furry? Furry
- Swimming or skiing (variation on the beach/mountains)? Swimming
- Twinks or bears? Bears
- Whips or Chains? Both?
- Vanilla or Chocolate? Vanilla.
What are you working on?
I am thinking about a contemporary twist on The Phantom of the Opera. I’d like you to beta if you wouldn’t mind.
She loathed Adam. Loathed what Adam meant to him, who they’d been, what they were. Bret felt the anger rise like bile in him, but he just shook his head as Kaiser nudged at his hand, feeling the tension in the room.
“Well, I’m sure he’ll turn up just fine,” she said. “Your father will be home in a few days. You may want to get a head start finding campus housing. I mean, the fall is coming quickly, and it’ll take your mind off your friend.”
“Fiancé,” Bret replied.
“Excuse me?” she asked, her eyes narrowing.
“Fiancé, Mother. I am not leaving behind someone I love because—”
“Please, don’t try to dignify what the both of you do as love.”
“Oh, right. Because that’s what you and Dad have? Tell me, when Dad had his affair with—what was her name… Jessica?—was that love as well?” Bret fired back with a smile on his lips. His mother’s lips puckered, and he watched as her fury grew.
“You little son of a bitch, how dare you—” she said, growing furious, but Bret put up a hand.
“Tell the truth? Look, let’s just keep from jumping on the merry-go-round of knives, shall we? Stay out of my way, and I’ll stay out of yours. Deal?” he asked.
“Fine. But I will be telling your father when he gets back,” she sniffed, putting her hands on her hips and then dropping them in outrage as Bret suddenly burst into laughter.
“Oh no,” he said, grabbing his heart. “Oh, please don’t tell Daddy. What will I do with his disapproval?”
“Oh, you don’t care much about his approval, I know. Your father cheated on me because he couldn’t handle having a gay son. It disgusted him,” she said venomously.
The statement would have hurt him if he hadn’t turned her off a long time ago. He still wanted to slap her. But instead, he decided he’d hit another way.
“Mother, your husband cheated on you because when we moved here, his wife became Queen Ice Bitch of Promise Lake. That, and Jessica was twenty-three. So don’t put your Stepford bullshit on me,” he fired back.
She took an angry step forward, and Kaiser let out a menacing growl that caused her to hesitate. However, the look of fury on her face was replaced with one of stone calm, something that scared Bret even more than their heated war of words.
She was beginning another “how dare you” statement, which had become common since her discovery of Bret’s sexuality, when Kaiser let out a series of very loud barks that caused them both to jump. The reflection of two lights across the kitchen wall caused Bret to turn as a car pulled into the driveway.
“Kaiser, come on,” he said, snapping his fingers.
The dog turned from the window and looked at Bret before wagging his tail and following him on his way to the stairs that led up to his room.
“Where are you going?” his mother demanded, and Bret turned and was about to respond when a car door slammed and a voice tore through the night—and right into his heart.
“Bret! Bret!” The voice sobbed and broke the second time.
The tortured sound hit him like a truck. His heart skipped, and the truth he was yet to discover, the hand fate had held, was shown for the first time. Bret’s mouth went dry as his throat constricted, and he swore if he were to try to step forward, he would fall flat, but with another shout of “Bret!” he ran forward. He knew the voice, and Kaiser was hot on his heels while his mother complained about the racket they were causing.
Bret hit the door, his heart lodged in his throat and his knees trembling. Kaiser rushed between his legs to the person standing in the light of the car. Bret’s view was obscured as the beams from the headlights stole his night vision, but Kaiser knew the newcomer and got out of their way as they came into focus.
It was Timmy, Adam’s older brother, and the look on his face screamed through Bret’s body like electricity as realization dawned horribly in his mind. The cards were being laid out on the table.
“No.” Bret sobbed, shook his head, and brought his hand up to his mouth. As if shaking his head would somehow slay the dragon, he reached out for Timmy as his knees finally gave out on him. Timmy fell too as he gathered Bret in his arms, as Adam’s mother and father shrouded both boys in grief.
Kaiser, unsure of what was happening, raised his head toward the sky and let out his own mournful wail as they wept, their tears soaking the parched concrete driveway with the truth.
Adam wouldn’t be coming home.
About the Author:
I was born and raised in the city of Detroit where I graduated from high school. Afterward, I joined the military and now am a published author here at Dreamspinner Press. Married to the love of my life (John) who lets me write horror novels. I write about ghosts and things that go bump in the night. Well, the other things that go bump in the night. So, if you’re not too scared of the dark, check out my books, I’m sure you’ll like ’em.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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