Read on to learn more about some of the fiction authors that will be at Book Fest!

Philomena (P.) Anastasia is the voice talent and author of the sci-fi tetralogy, Fluorescence. Her prose resonates with darkness and passion—the embodiment of her unique storytelling style.

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Forbidden romance in the vein of classics like Wuthering Heights, frosted with the seductive allure of the original Dark Shadows, Dark Diary documents a pair torn apart by time. More human than vampire, it is a quaint, sophisticated romance following two lovers who have paid the ultimate price.

David Bell is an associate professor of English and the the director of the MFA program in creative writing at Western Kentucky University. He is also the author of eight novels—The Condemned (2008), The Girl in the Woods (2009), Cemetery Girl (2011), The Hiding Place (2012), Never Come Back (2013), The Forgotten Girl (2014), Somebody I Used to Know (2015), and Since She Went Away (2016), which Publishers Weekly calls a “tantalizing thriller.” His ninth novel—Bring Her Home—will be published with Berkley Publishing, an imprint of Penguin USA, in July of 2018. His third novel, Cemetery Girl, won the Prix Polar de Cognac, and his work has been translated into seven languages.

When he is not teaching or writing, David watches lots and lots of movies and reads lots and lots of books. He also enjoys walking in the cemetery near his house with his wife, writer and blogger Molly McCaffrey.

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Three months earlier, Jenna Barton was supposed to meet her lifelong best friend Celia. But when Jenna arrived late, she found that Celia had disappeared—and hasn’t been seen again. Jenna has blamed herself for her friend’s disappearance every single day since then.
The only piece of evidence is a lone diamond earring found where Celia and Jenna were planning to meet, leading the national media to dub Celia “The Diamond Mom.” And even though Jenna has obsessively surfed message boards devoted to missing persons cases, she is no closer to finding any answers—or easing her guilt.
But when her son’s new girlfriend—who suddenly arrived in town without a past—disappears, a stricken Jenna begins to unwind the tangled truth behind Celia’s tragedy. And as long-buried secrets finally come to light, she discovers how completely lives can be shattered by a few simple lies.

Laura Benedict is the author six novels of dark suspense, including the Bliss House gothic trilogy: The Abandoned Heart, Charlotte’s Story (Booklist starred review), and Bliss House. Her short fiction has appeared in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, PANK, on NPR, and in numerous anthologies like Thrillers: 100 Must-Reads, The Lineup: 20 Provocative Women Writers, and St. Louis Noir.

A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, she grew up in Louisville, Kentucky and claims both as hometowns.

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There is no bliss to be found in Bliss House.
In Old Gate, Virginia, stands a grand house built by Randolph Bliss, a charming New York carpetbagger who, in 1878, shook off dire warnings to build his home elsewhere. For the ground beneath Bliss House is tainted with the kind of tragedy that curses generations, seeping through the foundation and sowing madness in its wake. His first and second wives, and his young Japanese mistress, Kiku, bear witness to Randolph’s growing insanity with stories of his cruel manipulations and their desperate struggles to find happiness for themselves and their children.
Their desire to live and love and even take revenge also fills the house, triumphing even over death. Spanning half a century, The Abandoned Heart is the prequel to Charlotte’s Story and Bliss House, forming a trilogy of southern Gothic novels in which one haunted house begets haunted lives that echo over centuries. A haunting so powerful that even Bliss House’s destruction cannot kill it.

Susan Boles calls McNairy County, TN her home ground even though she now lives in North Mississippi. Reading has been a passion since she was very young. As a toddler, her mother read to her from her ‘baby books’ and her Mother tells a story about her holding one of them upsidedown and ‘reading’ by repeating the story verbatim from memory.

She writes mysteries set in the big city of Memphis, TN and the small fictional town of Mercy, Mississippi.

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Quicker than she can stitch together the threads of a genealogy project she’s just signed on to research, Lily Gayle Lambert finds herself embroiled in investigating the murder of a stranger who suffers from ‘wolfman syndrome’. And, when a member of a prominent family turns up dead soon after the ‘wolfman’, Lily Gayle must find the link between the two and solve the mystery before she becomes the next target.
Escaping from a trailer in the woods owned by two good ole boys and a confrontation with the eldest son of the town’s wealthiest family have Lily Gayle hot on the trail of the killer…much to the consternation of her cousin. Who just happens to be the County Sheriff. With the help of her lifelong best friend, Dixie, and town busybody, Miss Edna, she pieces together the clues leading to a conclusion that shocks the entire town.

Crystal Bowling aims to tell the stories of the best friend so often overlooked. She enjoys breakfast food, puns, and spouting off movie fun facts.

She grew up in a small town in Kentucky and enjoyed the aspects that come with small town life.

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Evie Duvall just wants to see her best friend get down the aisle. And for the guy she’s seeing to commit. Her own fashion line would be fine too. Most importantly, however, she never wants to see Adam Iberico ever again. Will Evie ever get the last word in on what her life should be?

Lynn Cahoon is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Tourist Trap mystery series —Guidebook to Murder, Mission to Murder, A Shoe to Kill, Dressed to Kill, Killer Run, Murder on Wheels, and Tea Cups and Carnage. Hospitality and Homicide will release in May 2017. Guidebook to Murder won the 2015 Reader’s Crown for Mystery Fiction. She’s also the author of the Cat Latimer mystery series with the first book, A Story to Kill out now and Fatality by Firelight releasing in February 2017. She’s an active member of MORWA (the St. Louis area RWA chapter), MWA, and International Thriller Writers.

Lynn’s contemporary romance books includes The Bull Rider Series -The Bull Rider’s Brother, The Bull Rider’s Manager, and The Bull Rider’s Keeper (a 2015 RONE finalist.) She is also the author of The Council Series — A Member of the Council, Return of the Fae (a 2014 RONE finalist), and The Salem Gathering.
Her new Idaho set Castle View series, includes Wild Hearts, Roadside Attraction and Project Detour.

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To kick off a winter writing retreat, Cat and her handyman boyfriend, Seth, escort the aspiring authors to a nearby ski resort, hoping some fresh cold air will wake up their creative muses. But instead of hitting the slopes, they hit the bar—and before long, a tipsy romance novelist named Christina is keeping herself warm with a local ski bum who might have neglected to tell her about his upcoming wedding.
Next thing Cat knows, her uncle, the town sheriff, informs her that the young man’s been found dead in a hot tub—and Christina shows up crying and covered in blood. Now, between a murder mystery, the theft of a rare Hemingway edition, and the arrival of a black-clad stranger in snowy Aspen Hills, Cat’s afraid everything’s going downhill . . .

Kristy Cambron has a background in art and design, but she fancies life as a vintage-inspired storyteller. She is the bestselling author of The Ringmaster’s Wife, named to Publishers Weekly Spring 2016 Religion & Spirituality TOP 10. Her novels have been named to Library Journal Reviews’ Best Books and RT Reviewers’ Choice Awards Best lists for 2014 & 2015, and received a 2015 INSPY Awards nomination for best debut novel. The Illusionist’s Apprentice (HarperCollins, 2017) is her fourth novel. Her first Bible study DVD and study guides, The Verse Mapping series, will release in 2018.

Kristy holds a degree in Art History from Indiana University, and has 15 years experience in education and leadership development for a Fortune-100 Corporation. She loves storytelling from the stage and travels to speak about her love for Bible Verse Mapping throughout the year. Kristy lives in Indiana with her husband and three sons, where she can probably be bribed with a coconut mocha latte and a good read.

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Harry Houdini’s one-time apprentice holds fantastic secrets about the greatest illusionist in the world. But someone wants to claim them . . . or silence her before she can reveal them on her own.
Boston, 1926. Jenny “Wren” Lockhart is a bold eccentric—even for a female vaudevillian. As notorious for her inherited wealth and gentleman’s dress as she is for her unsavory upbringing in the back halls of a vaudeville theater, Wren lives in a world that challenges all manner of conventions.
In the months following Houdini’s death, Wren is drawn into a web of mystery surrounding a spiritualist by the name of Horace Stapleton, a man defamed by Houdini’s ardent debunking of fraudulent mystics in the years leading up to his death. But in a public illusion that goes terribly wrong, one man is dead and another stands charged with his murder. Though he’s known as one of her teacher’s greatest critics, Wren must decide to become the one thing she never wanted to be: Stapleton’s defender.
Forced to team up with the newly formed FBI, Wren races against time and an unknown enemy, all to prove the innocence of a hated man. In a world of illusion, of the vaudeville halls that showcase the flamboyant and the strange, Wren’s carefully constructed world threatens to collapse around her. Layered with mystery, illusion, and the artistry of the Jazz Age’s bygone vaudeville era, The Illusionist’s Apprentice is a journey through love and loss and the underpinnings of faith on each life’s stage.

Tobias Carroll is the author of the novel Reel and the collection Transitory. His writing has been published by Tin House, Hazlitt, Rolling Stone, Men’s Journal, Joyland, and elsewhere.

He lives in Brooklyn, New York, where he is the managing editor of Vol.1 Brooklyn.

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Reel follows two lives that collide at a Seattle punk show, and the way that that chance meeting alters the paths of both. Timon serves as the western outpost of his family’s business verifying the authenticity of historical objects. Hyperobservant to a fault, he spends his days and nights losing himself in deafening music and isolation. After years spent moving from one city to another, Marianne fears stagnation, and has begun to seek out methods of creative expression and avenues of escape.
Each embarks on a series of encounters that force them to confront their own fears and anxieties. Timon is drawn into the orbit of an enigmatic client who needs his assistance analyzing a mysterious object found in the walls of a building thousands of miles away. Marianne is haunted by her own restlessness, and pushes herself to make peace with her past, even as her desire to make art threatens the life that she’s established for herself. Throughout, both are drawn towards a fundamental reckoning with the worlds that they’ve created.
Set against a backdrop of DIY music, road trips, bad tattoos, and strange art, Reel explores questions of family, history, and identity. As both Timon and Marianne are drawn towards decisions that will reshape their worlds, they must confront the consequences of their actions to themselves and those around them.

 

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