Today I have the pleasure of introducing a new release by one of my favourite authors: Hunter S Jones. Ever since I came across her “September” Series I’ve been a declared fan and have seen her writing across several genres, including historical fiction. This is another brilliant looking creation of hers.
So without further ado, here is the
Where do dreams end and reality begin?
Sexy rock star James van Lee and Dr. Maggie Pickett meet in Atlanta, at an encounter unknowingly arranged by Rhett Turnquest and Natasha. This complex story continues, taking it’s intriguing cast of characters from the Reconstruction South of 1873 into contemporary 2016. Past, Darkly blends historical fantasy, fairytales, and a dash of Victoriana into an enchanting read. This version includes Story 1 & 2 in The Dreams Series.
Please note: The story from 1873 is written in a southern US dialect used in the late 1800s. For historical accuracy, this book includes exclusive photographs and maps shared by permission of the Library of Congress.
Bonus: this version includes Story 1 & 2
The story from 1873 is written in a southeastern US dialect used in the late 1800s. For even more historical accuracy, this book includes exclusive, never seen photographs and maps shared by permission of the Library of Congress.
|Character List||Where do dreams end and reality begin?|
|James van Lee||Rock star, Jago||Real name of traveling medicine man Dr. Garrett Cleighton|
|Dr. Maggie Pickett||Emory University professor||Lost waif found by James in Chickamauga, Georgia|
|Rhett Turnquest||Med student and lifelong love of Maggie||Performer in the traveling show, spice trader and notorious womanizer|
|Natasha||Rock wannabe and lifelong seductress of Rhett. Maggie’s best childhood friend.||Rhett’s favorite prostitute during the Civil War, now a dancer in ‘Dr. Cleighton’s show|
|Frank Veltzen||James best friend and lover||Primary investor in Cleighton’s Original Kaleidoscopic Elixir and the traveling show which sells it.|
|Sugar||Frank’s protegy and European actress; ménage partner of Frank & James||Widow with a small farm who sells herbs to the show in order to make the elixir|
|Aunt Charlotte||The fairy godmother and Maggie’s aunt||French wife of the owner of the Stanton Hotel in Chattanooga, Tennessee|
|Moz Art||Guitarist in James’ band, TASTE.||Bearded lady in Dr. Cleighton’s traveling show|
|Philancie Soulurge||Natasha’s psychic||Psychic medium in the show; possibly Natasha’s pimp|
Hunter S. Jones publishes historical works and fiction independently as well as through traditional platforms. She is a direct descendent of Joseph Cookson, who is listed on the Cherokee Henderson Roll of 1835, which is also called the Trail of Tears Roll. The Cookson Hills in Oklahoma are named for the family.
She is a member of the American Historical Association, Organization of American Historians, Royal Historical Society, the Society of Authors founded by Lord Tennyson, Atlanta Historical Society, Dangerous Women Project (University of Edinburgh), Society of Civil War Historians (US), Historical Writers Association, Historical Novel Society, English Historical Fiction Authors, Atlanta Writers Club, Atlanta Writers Conference, and Rivendell Writers Colony which is associated with The University of the South. She is a regular contributor to History.Net and is a presenter for Past Preservers Casting. Originally from Tennessee, she now lives in Atlanta, Georgia with her Scottish born husband.
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PAST, DARKLY EXCERPT
Hunter S. Jones
Rhett whispered into the phone, “She wants us both to be there. We are all lifelong friends, Maggie. This is huge for her.”
“For her? Why should I care about what happens to her?” Maggie screamed before she realized what she was saying, a lone tear escaping down her cheek as he broke her heart yet again.
After a pause in which Maggie heard Rhett tap a pen against a tabletop, he said, “Look, Maggie. I meant everything I told you. I love you and I always will. But Natasha and I have a history and she needs me. Please do this. We’ve all three been friends since we were kids.” She heard him breathe deeply and he continued, “Besides, if we aren’t there, she’ll make our lives a living hell. You know how vindictive she is. Just go to the after party. You don’t have to go with us, or even see the show. Simply be there, even if it’s for a few minutes, and let her have her moment of glory.”
Maggie couldn’t breathe. She believed she would pass out. Seeing a bench nearby, she made her way to it and sat on the cold concrete before she said anything. This was all Natasha’s revenge. She knew we were happy and now she wants to gloat. This is her way of proving to me that Rhett is her boyfriend, once and for all. The tears fell down her face, landing on her lap.
“Maggie, Maggie? Are you okay? Please say something,” Rhett whispered in his velvet bass voice.
She wiped the tears away with her left hand. “I’m fine and I’ll be there. When is it?”
She heard the sigh of relief from the other end of the phone. “Mark your calendar for the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. The after party starts at 11:00 p.m. in the Grand Salon, which is upstairs, next to the Egyptian Ballroom. I’ll get the pass to you.”
She paused, not really wanting to let him go, yet knowing she had to do it. “That’s great, Rhett. Send it to my email or text it to me. I’ve got to get to my next class.”
The pause on the line let her know that Rhett felt the same as she did. “Thank you, Maggie. This means a lot to me.” She heard his voice tremble as he continued, “I can’t wait to see you.”
“I’ve got to go, Rhett. This call is over.” With that, she clicked the phone, feeling as if her heart would never recover, and knowing her body would never forget the way he felt when they were lying in bed together. No one should ever feel that good. It was more like an addiction and she would never be cured of him. She simply had to endure the absence of him and accept it.
By the next morning, Maggie knew what she had to do. First, she called Salon Vis a Vis and booked a cut and color. By the end of the day, she had a platinum-blonde bob. She knew Natasha would dress in black—it was her trademark, at least when she did wear clothes. Maggie knew from pictures that she now had long black extensions, and Maggie was determined to be the diametrical opposite of her.
She called Neiman Marcus and booked an appointment on Sunday with Paul, her favorite stylist. Explaining the event to him and giving him the date she needed everything, he asked, “Do you want me to get some of our latest looks together for you? Something edgy, maybe?”
“No. I want to be a princess.