Enjoy the eerie sights.
Beware of the dark nights.
Once you retire to your bed,
don’t fall prey to The Dead.
They come on a soft breeze
to do as they please.
THE DEAD GAME
If you’re stuck at home
when you want to roam,
then read a book with me.
PREY FOR THE DEAD
Susanne Leist is my Woman In Horror today! I run into Susanne and her marvelous books in many places. She is a tireless worker and a wonderful supporter of other authors.
Susanne has a different approach to writing Vampire tales. I will present some highlights to that in the posts about her books below.
About Susanne Leist
“I have always loved to read. Agatha Christie, Alistair Maclean, Robert Ludlum, and many other authors filled my young imagination with intrigue and mystery. When I wasn’t reading late into the night, the TV shows–Murder She Wrote and Columbo–entertained me with tales of murder and suspense.
Over the years, my taste in TV expanded to include such shows as Supernatural and The Originals. I searched for paranormal, murder mysteries but found few at the library or bookstore. So, I wrote one.
The Dead Game, Book One of The Dead Game series, brings fantasy and the surreal to the classic murder mystery with dead bodies, suspects, and clues. It offers vampires, vampire derivatives, and a touch of romance to spice the motley mix.
The story continues in Book Two, Prey for The Dead, as The Dead vampires use an exclusive club in Disney World to infiltrate the rich and famous. As The Dead grow in power, not even the bright sunshine of Florida can weaken them. Linda, my main character, and her friends join forces with human vampires–known as hybrids–to defeat the evil threatening to control Oasis. A masquerade ball and a romp through the tunnels beneath the town lead to a showdown in the swamps of southern Florida.
A career in writing has been a big leap for me. Accustomed to the number-crunching field of budgeting and the hectic commodity markets, I left my first career and M.B.A. in Finance behind to pursue my dream. I do not regret my foray into literature for one moment. Fellow authors helped me make my way through the competitive field. I write every day and even tried my hand at poetry. If someone tells you it’s too late in life to try something different, they are wrong. It is never too late to follow your heart.”
On to Susanne’s great books.
Linda Bennett moves from New York to Florida to live a quieter life. Life is peaceful until the dead body washes up onshore. She learns that dead bodies and disappearing tourists are typical for the coastal town.
Linda and her friends receive an invitation to a party at End House, a deserted house overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. The group arrives, but no one is there to greet them. The house has a sinister life of its own where horror follows their every step. Traps, illusions, and revolving rooms add to their growing fear. A bloody skeleton sleeps in an upstairs’ bedroom, and body parts fall from the chimney into the living room’s fireplace. Wild animals escape their cages in the basement. The young residents flee for their lives.
They embark on a harrowing journey, not knowing whom to trust, to uncover the one controlling the evil game.
Who are The Dead?
Are they humans or vampires?
Will Linda lose her heart to Todd, who knows more than he admits?
Will her best friend, Shana, fall in love with Sheriff Sam?
The Dead Game has begun.
Do not turn off the lights.Ted Top 1000 ReviewerThe author has crafted herself a town that is bipolar in its nature. By day it pretends to be a bright seaside destination where youth collects to begin their adult lives; make friends, start businesses and parties. By night, the town closes ranks to all newbies and becomes a creepy destination for elites to ply their generational customs that include preying on the innocent. Linda and her friends will experience horror, shock, and disbelief as they attempt to get to the bottom of the macabre events in one of the historical mansions. The mansion was my favorite part as all senses of reality disappeared upon entering. The Dead Game by Susanne Leist is a mysterious supernatural thriller with plenty of twists and turns that is well-written and keeps you turning the page. From the first page you start a wild ride and just when you think all is well, she throws in another twist.
Rhonda Cratty, Parenting & Education Examiner
I was absolutely surprised by this book! I knew it had some enigmatic mystery and some dark action, but the author set up the story so well I was happily amazed. It starts with a very engaging character, a young woman who is very well portrayed in a community, Oasis, Florida. The town’s mysteries are maze-like and become deeper and more sinister as the book progresses. This is a very original approach to the concept of vampires and their existence.
Ray Miller “Relevant Reviewer”
The Dead Game by Susanne Leist is a top-notch haunted house horror thriller. The author excels at spooky descriptions, terrifying scenarios like opening a door and stepping into a black abyss or forever trapped in a dark maze with endless rooms stretching into infinity. Her characters are perfect and the reader can easily connect with them.
Simon Okill, Simon’s Phantom Blog
A beachfront town, a haunted mansion, people disappearing or turning up dead–these are the elements of gothic horror, but this unique novel has a more than a few twists. The writing is first-rate, and the pace is fast. The characters are well-defined, and the plot is imaginative and unpredictable…
Howard Lipman, pen name PanOrpheus, author
Susanne’s take on vampires is fresh and new but you’ll have to read to know. She takes the age-old vampire legend and turns it into something I’ve never read before…
Elle Klass, Author of As Snow Falls
From the Author
Nothing can be as fine
as the dear book of mine.
It might not be sold in a big bookstore,
but you will not find one to offer more.
It was created with much love and hope,
even though it wasn’t blessed by a Pope.
It has my blood, sweat, and tears.
Might raise many of your fears.
It has action, murder, and romance.
It can even do a little dance.
Please try it, and you’ll see
it has the best of me.
Linda Bennett’s dreams of happiness have always eluded her. Five years ago, she moved to Florida from New York to escape heartache. The Dead, an evil group of vampires, ruined any hope of peace for her and the small town of Oasis. Since then, Linda has learned to live among vampires and human-vampires, finding finds solace in her bookshop. Then one morning, Oasis goes dark, and an explosion rocks her store and any future dreams for a happy ending.
News of a vampire presence at an exclusive club in Disney World prompts Todd and Sam, hybrids, to go undercover as members. Linda and her best friend, Shana, join them as their trophy wives. Disaster follows in their wake as vampires fight for control. A devastating surprise waits for them in the tunnels beneath Oasis.
Can Oasis survive the battle between good and evil?
Will Linda find her happy ending?
“Set five years after the events in Leist’s (The Dead Game, 2013) previous novel, this sequel aims to expand on the threat of Wolf and explore romance among the vamps. Readers will also enjoy a touch of mystery when they discover that Wolf’s spirit has migrated into a new body… The Florida coast is beautifully evoked by water that “shimmered in alternating shades of azure and cerulean blue” and “the scent of zinnias and lavender” that “permeated the gentle wind.” Most of the violence isn’t the traditional vampire neck biting but more in tune with battlefield carnage (“A body hung from the chandelier–a headless form–still wearing his shirt and pants, now saturated with blood”).” — Kirkus Reviews
About the Author
A career in writing has been a giant leap for me. Accustomed to the number-crunching field of budgeting and the hectic commodity markets, I left my first career and M.B.A. in Finance behind to pursue my dream. I do not regret my foray into literature for one moment. Fellow authors helped me make my way through the competitive field. I write every day and even tried my hand at poetry. Don’t listen if someone tells you it’s too late to try something different. It is never too late to follow your heart.
The Dead Game, the first book of The Dead Game Series, brings fantasy and surrealism to the classic murder mystery with dead bodies, suspects, and clues. It offers vampires, vampire derivatives, and a touch of romance to spice the motley mix.
The story continues in Prey for The Dead as The Dead vampires use an exclusive club in Disney World to infiltrate the rich and famous, a club based on Walt Disney’s Club 33. As The Dead grow in power, not even the bright sunshine of Florida can weaken them. Linda and her friends join forces with human vampires–known as hybrids–to defeat the evil threatening to control their coastal town. A masquerade ball and a romp through the tunnels beneath Oasis lead to a showdown in Florida’s swamps.
The Dead At Heart, the last book in the series, is Shana’s love story. When Linda moves into Gregg’s mansion, she suggests Shana bring William with her as he recuperates from his last battle. While Gregg, a vampire, has learned to live with humans, Shana doubts whether William can mend his evil ways. Shana watches the engaged couple with dismay as her arguments with William mount. After werewolves kidnap Linda, Shana flees with Sam, who believes William has been plotting with vampires and werewolves to overthrow the upcoming vampire summit in Quebec.
I am working on my fourth book. A seaside town in Maine provides the backdrop for murder, mystery, and romance. Will this book become a series? I don’t know yet. But I’m eager to begin the journey.
As Oasis is under attack, Shana must choose between a vampire and a human-vampire…
Late at night, werewolves swarm Gregg’s estate and kidnap Linda. Gregg gathers his men and races after his fiancee. Alone in a mansion filled with vampires, Shana flees, afraid William, her vampire boyfriend, has returned to his evil ways.
Sheriff Sam asks Shana to help him track the rogue vampires and werewolves. She follows him to Florida’s swampland, where The Watchers live in luxury. While proclaiming their innocence, the vampire leaders force them to board a plane to Quebec, capturing William along the way.
Once Linda is freed from the werewolves, she heads to Quebec in search of Shana. Meanwhile, trapped in a building sealed as tight as a tomb, Gregg outsmarts the computer-activated house and escapes his tormentor.
As the opposing vampire sects arrive at Chateau Frontenac, the boardwalk erupts in flames. The battle for control has begun. Torn between William and Sam, Shana must pick the right side since any mistake can become a deadly one.
5.0 out of 5 stars True love conquers allThis book finds Linda & her friends back in trouble in their quest to protect Oasis and one another. We learn more about the depths of Linda and Greg’s love and commitment to one another while William and Sam battle to prove their love for Shauna. Heather D
Susanne Leist writes of Vampires in a whole new light. No wonder she’s a Woman In Horror!
But never ever
THE DEAD GAME
by Susanne Leist
Round and round we must go.
Our fantasies take us higher.
Will we meet friend or foe?
Take the ride and face the fire.
♦THE DEAD GAME♦
by Susanne Leist
The mind can be a strange place.
It can create dark stories.
With monsters and demons.
A little murder and mayhem.
Skulls and bones for decoration.
Maybe your cup of tea is blood.
Your coffee carries poison.
Let your mind roam the darkness.
And maybe beyond.
A waitress with a name tag that read “Rose” came over to serve them. She looked friendly with her bright-red hair and snapping gum. She took their order and then asked if she could assist them with anything else.
Linda decided to come straight out with what they wanted to know. She began by explaining their situation. “Two of our friends disappeared from a party given at End House this past Friday night. We suspect that the people who reside on the hill are the ones responsible. Do you know anything about them that can help us?”
Rose called over two men. “Hey! Rob and Joe! We need help here!” Linda and Shana, becoming frightened, began to stand up. Then they noticed that the two old men, who were coming over to them, had big smiles on their wrinkled faces. They joined them at their booth.
Rose said to the men, “These women were at that party and they think that the hill people had something to do with the disappearances.”
The one called Joe, who had a full head of white hair and a long white beard, nodded his head in agreement. “We have always suspected that those people were evil. Tourists disappear every year and nothing is ever done about it. The sheriff seems to be in cahoots with them. Parties are given on the hill on the same two nights each year. On these nights, shadows can be seen creeping around the deserted streets of town.”
Rob, who wore very thick glasses and had curly grey hair, added, “The parties look like secret meetings of some society. Everything is always done after dark.”
Rose spoke up. “We never see these people until the sun goes down. They don’t bother talking to us. I’ve been living here thirty years and I’ve spoken to only a few of them.”
“Our town doesn’t go out after dark; we steer clear of the hill people. There have been many legends, but we don’t know if any are true,” Joe said.
Shana asked, “What are some of the legends?”
“One legend describes the hill people as vampires in hiding. They meet with the rest of the vampires in the world twice a year. These meetings are planning sessions on how to keep their species alive,” Joe said.
“Another legend has the hill people as good vampires that are trying to rid the world of The Dead, a sect of evil vampires who enjoy killing people—just for fun. The Dead have greater powers than regular vampires and are led by a strong and malicious head vampire. The good vampires meet twice a year to plan the defense of their slowly diminishing group,” Rob explained.
“How can you remain living here if you believe the worst of the people in town?” Linda asked. She didn’t believe in vampires, but if these people thought so poorly of the townspeople, then why didn’t they just leave?
Rose answered for them, “We don’t know if the legends are true. We’ve been living here unhurt all these years. Maybe the tourists disappearing are just coincidences. We can’t pack up our whole village and leave. We need the income from the ocean: the fishing has been very profitable.”
“Maybe they want you to remain living here for some sinister purpose,” Shana said.
“If you find out anything, please let us know,” said Rose, with concern beginning to dawn in her eyes.
“Don’t worry. We’ll let you know of any new developments. We’ll figure this out and find our friends,” Linda replied, trying to downplay Shana’s dire warning.
The village looked lovely and peaceful on the surface, but Linda was afraid that there was much more brewing beneath the surface. As she ate her lunch, she tried to be as cheerful as possible so that Shana wouldn’t notice her rising fears and suspicions.
The Dead Game by Susanne Leist