Are you scared of the dark? Do lunatics give you the creeps? Well, then, you might want to skip the book at the top of today’s Buffet. Because it’s Forsaken – A Novel of Art, Evil, and Insanity.

andrewThe book was written and published by Andrew Van Wey. And it’s one of few self-published horror books I can think of that’s consistently drawn rave reviews from nearly everyone who’s read it. A rare bird, indeed.

“I wanted to create a suburban horror story, something like if The Overlook Hotel in The Shining was right next door in your average, medium-sized American town,” Andrew told me yesterday. “I set out to create something that was haunted, that would have personality, and be able to change and grow as the story progressed. And what better thing for that than a haunted painting?”

Yes, the painting. That’s the scariest part. The story has this central, untitled painting. A cursed canvas that begins to devour the lives of everyone who gazes its way. A bit like The Ring meets The Picture of Dorian Gray.

Where did this sick, twisted tale come from, you ask? Andrew’s influences run the gamut, from H.P. Lovecraft to Stephen King, from horror films of the 1960s and 70s, to such gems as Angel Heart and Jacob’s Ladder. Like all ambitious writers, Andrew believes there’s something in his book for virtually everyone who reads. Yes, most people enjoy an occasional scare. And Andrew is not a fan of gore simply for the sake of soaking his pages red. But he does splash some here and there. And if Forsaken is ever made into a film, it’s going to have a solid R rating. No doubt there.

Anyone can break a character down to nothing. But to make horror become a transformative, even cathartic act? Those are the kind of stories that stick with Andrew, and that’s what he aims for in writing his novels.

Forsaken is an indie book, just like all of Andrew’s other works. Not that he’s opposed to working with a big publisher, he’s just never found time to reach out to one, nor does he see a need for it.

“I feel that eBooks and print on demand allow readers and writers to find each other in new ways,” he told me. “Frankly, I can’t justify spending years of my life writing queries to all the publishers out there. I would prefer to spend that time interacting with readers and providing more stories.”

His goal is fairly simple: provide his readers with an experience every bit as good as reading a book churned out by the well-oiled machine of a massive publishing corporation. Simple idea, huh? Actually doing it, though, is another story.

Do you think you’re brave enough to download this book? If so, there’s just a bit more you should know: Lock your door. Turn on the lights. And don’t read Forsaken late at night.

Forsaken – A Novel of Art, Evil, and Insanity

Horror
Author: Andrew Van Wey
Forsaken - A Novel of Art, Evil, and Insanity

You’re living the dream life. A beautiful house, a loving wife. Two kids, a dog, and a professorship teaching art restoration at the local university. Your name is Dan Rineheart. You’ve got it all.

But all dreams must end.

On the cusp of autumn, a mysterious painting arrives. No name. No date. No signature or frame. Only a note that reads: Here in art, denial. It’s a disturbing work of grotesque perfection. Two children with cruel eyes, a window onto an endless field, and a dying tree on top of a hill. A work of art… that changes with each viewing.

So begins the nightmare. Where wretched children crawl from a canvas prison to stalk the quiet halls of this happy home.

…Where painted clocks tick-tock away in the dark hours before dawn, and a missing dog whimpers from between the walls.

…Where all answers lead to a dark artist and an impossible creation, a cursed canvas with a twisted past…
… and a horror that will devour all.

Origin

Action & Adventure
Author: J.A. Konrath, Jack Kilborn
Origin

When linguist Andrew Dennison is yanked from his bed by the Secret Service and taken to a top secret facility in the desert , he has no idea he’s been brought there to translate the words of an ancient demon.

He joins pretty but cold veterinarian Sun Jones, eccentric molecular biologist Dr. Frank Belgium, and a hodge-podge of religious, military, and science personnel to try and figure out if the creature is, indeed, Satan.

But things quickly go bad, and very soon Andy isn’t just fighting for his life, but the lives of everyone on earth…

The Ugly Stepsister Strikes Back

Humor & Entertainment
Author: Sariah Wilson
The Ugly Stepsister Strikes Back

Everyone knows how all those fairy tales go. The princess gets beautiful, nabs her prince, falls instantly in love, lives happily ever after and leaves her evil stepsisters in the dust.

But what happens when you’re the ugly stepsister and your obnoxiously perfect—read pretty, smart, and, worst of all, sickeningly nice—stepsister is dating the charming, tall, devastatingly handsome guy you’ve had a thing for since you were nine years old?

Quirky, artistic and snarky Mattie Lowe does not lead a charmed life. Her mother is constantly belittling her on Skype. Mercedes, the school mean girl, has made it her personal mission to torment Mattie. But worst of all? Her stepsister Ella is the most beautiful, popular girl in school and is dating Mattie’s secret longtime crush, Jake Kingston.

Tired of being left out and done with waiting for her own stupid fairy godmother to show up, Mattie decides to change her life. She’ll start by running for senior class president against wildly popular Jake.

Dancing in the Arms of God: Discover Your Cinderella Story

Advice & How-to
Author: Connie Neal, Casey Neal
Dancing in the Arms of God: Discover Your Cinderella Story

Do you long for your own Cinderella story? Who doesn’t long to rise from her humble past, discover the best in herself, and be appreciated by a true, lasting love. Yet, her own efforts to fill the yearning often end in tatters. And no man can rescue her. In Dancing in the Arms of God, the Cinderella fairy tale provides a powerful allegory for women’s deepest hopes and dreams and the God who longs to fill them. It’s a message proved true in the life of author Connie Neal. For all of us who have wrestled with disillusionment, abandonment, our own limitations, and the lies that whisper we’re not beautiful, Connie’s true-life insights reveal what it means to dance with God . . . following his lead until every promise he’s ever made proves true.

Bloody Murdock (A Matt Murdock Murder Mystery)

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
Author: Robert J. Ray
Bloody Murdock (A Matt Murdock Murder Mystery)

PI and ex-cop Matt Murdock is picky about the cases he takes on. Being a bodyguard isn’t his favorite gig, especially when the client is a high-handed number-cruncher like Ellis Dean. But Murdock is short on funds, and the case is a puzzler. It doesn’t hurt that it features the death, accidental or otherwise, of a beautiful woman. Murdock has a weakness for damsels in distress, even after it’s a little late for rescue. Gayla Jean Kirkwood, killed in a car wreck on the Pacific Coast Highway, was a good-time girl, high-class waitress and wannabe starlet.

Cold Open, A Sam North Mystery

Action & Adventure

Author: Greg Clarkin
Cold Open, A Sam North Mystery

When the nation’s number one cable news anchor, turns up floating in the East River, the cops label it a suicide. But his gorgeous widow is convinced he was killed and carries a secret that proves it.

Now she has Sam North believing it. The story-hungry TV reporter starts nosing around and discovers what Jack Steele found out the hard way…asking questions can get you disturbing answers, maybe even killed.

Jesus in the Present Tense: The I AM Statements of Christ

Religion & Spirituality
Author: Warren W. Wiersbe
Jesus in the Present Tense: The I AM Statements of Christ

Dr. Warren W. Wiersbe explores the “I AM” statements of God—from His burning bush conversation with Moses, to His powerful reassurances to the Israelites, to Jesus’s startling claim to be the Light of the World. Many Christians find themselves mired in past regrets or future fears, but the name of God itself reminds readers that God wants them to live in the present. The more readers understand and apply God’s I AM statements from the Old and New Testaments, the more they will realize God’s peace and joy. Then they will be free to live, serve, and know God more richly in the present tense—which is just where He wants them to be.

Kidowed

Biographies & Memoirs

Author: Jessica Kenley
Kidowed

In this book you’ll find the the struggles, sorrows, and triumphs of the author after she has two children with a rare and universally fatal genetic disease. As she travels through her hellish journey, you will experience unexpected humor, endless love, and learn how strong one family can be while they walk beside her.

The Mind-Made Prison: Radical Self Help and Personal Transformation

Advice & How-to

Author: Mateo Tabatabai
The Mind-Made Prison: Radical Self Help and Personal Transformation

How much would the quality of your life improve if you could learn to let go of everything that is holding you back?

The Mind-Made prison is a must-read for anyone interested in the areas of self development and self esteem. By using the author’s proven techniques of personal transformation, you can literally learn to design your life in any way you want.

This book will save you from going through life without ever truly tapping into your full potential…

The Mind-Made prison is one that we are all caught in, either knowingly or unknowingly, and this comprehensive guide explains how you can finally escape the iron grip of this prison.

The Five Mouse Brothers (A Beautifully Illustrated Children Picture Book Adapted From a Classic Chinese Folktale; Perfect Bedtime Story)

Children’s eBooks
Author: Rachel Yu
The Five Mouse Brothers (A Beautifully Illustrated Children Picture Book Adapted From a Classic Chinese Folktale; Perfect Bedtime Story)

Five mouse brothers live happily in Bok Tong Goh Village. But then…

One brother, falsely accused of thievery, must face the “Wheel of Doom.” What will they do to rescue him from his fate? Fortunately, an ingenious plan with the help of their family secret may just save the day. Join the mouse brothers on this fun and entertaining adventure, adapted from a classic Chinese folktale.

If you enjoyed The Five Mouse Brothers, then check out The Five Mouse Sisters, now available.

Archangels: Rise of the Jesuits

Action & Adventure
Author: Janet M. Tavakoli
Archangels: Rise of the Jesuits

Italian intelligence specialist Michael Visconte is shocked by the brutal murder of a Jesuit priest, who turns out to be a hedge fund manager for the Vatican. The victim, Father Matteo Pintozzi, achieved an unblemished record of extraordinary returns.

The next day, Michael is visited by two Jesuits who ask him to investigate the murder, and Michael soon finds himself in the middle of a struggle for power and control over the finances of the Vatican. Unfortunately, his lucky break—one that should provide critical evidence—blurs the line between good and evil and not only endangers the lives of Michael and the Jesuits, but also imperils the lives of his wife and children.

How To Be A Super Villain (A Fun Illustrated Children’s Picture Book)

Comics & Graphic Novels
Author: Rachel Yu
How To Be A Super Villain (A Fun Illustrated Children's Picture Book)

Every kid dreams of being a superhero, but according to the “Supreme Master of Awesomeness”, it’s the super villain that rocks.

This fun, witty, humorous story will point you in the right, or you can say, BAD, direction. For all you hopeful apprentices, this entertaining guide will guarantee loads of fun and laughter.

Cloak

Fantasy
Author: James Gough
Cloak

Thirteen-year-old bubble boy Will Tuttle lives a boring, friendless life trapped in a sterile Bronxville mansion, suffering from mysterious allergies no doctor can explain. Fed up with his pointless existence he breaks free of his bubble to explore New York City, not expecting to return alive. Along the way, Will discovers that his myriad allergies have a single, bizarre source.

Suddenly Will is a target. When he’s chased through Central Park by a cloaked assailant, a misfit team of bodyguards shows up to keep Will Tuttle alive. . . . And teach him how to blend into a society that isn’t supposed to exist.

PLUMMET: A Novel

Drama
Author: MICHAEL ZAROCOSTAS
PLUMMET: A Novel

Micah Grayson is an eager rookie fresh out of law school. Raphael Bianco is a degenerate senior associate who’s never met a temptation he could resist. Gabe Weiss is a millionaire senior partner who has a dream life. All three are litigators at Sullivan & Adler, the most powerful law firm in Manhattan. Two of them share a lover. One of them will kill in cold blood. But who is his victim? A dark why-dun-it set in the backstabbing conference rooms of corporate law.

The Girl From Long Guyland

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
Author: Lara Reznik
The Girl From Long Guyland

Laila Levin enjoys a successful marriage and a thriving career as an I.T. executive in Austin, Texas, but she can’t quite shake her lifelong sense of not truly belonging anywhere.
When her company announces a major layoff, Laila finds herself caught between an unscrupulous CEO and her promiscuous boss. Then news of her college roommate’s suicide stirs up a dark secret involving three devious friends from her past. One has betrayed a vow, another wants to rekindle their romance, and the third is out for revenge.

Suddenly for Laila, it’s 1969 again. She’s only seventeen, and she’s left her sheltered home in Long Island for college in Connecticut. Amid protests of the Vietnam War, she’s tempted by the sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll that rule her generation. Laila gets swept up in a deceptive love triangle with two older locals and initiated into their unethical hippie family. Too late she realizes her search to belong has led to tragedy.

Demon Possession (Shadow Quest Book 1)

Romance
Author: Kiersten Fay
Demon Possession (Shadow Quest Book 1)

After being enslaved on the spaceship Extarga for most of her life Analia has no memory of her life before, and has lost all knowledge of her people. Her mysterious gift and pointed ears are the only indication that she is different.

Analia is alone, and for all she knows, she’s the last of her kind. By chance Analia escapes her captors, and hides herself on the merchant ship Marada, planning to get off at the very next stop.

Unfortunately for her, there is no next stop. The crew is planning a delivery that could take months, and according to a stipulation in the newly signed contract, no one is allowed on or off the ship until the package is delivered.

Divine Intervention (Divine series)

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
Author: Cheryl Kaye Tardif
Divine Intervention (Divine series)

Jasi and her team members–Psychometric Empath and profiler Ben Roberst and Victim Empath Natassia Prushenko–are joined by Brandon Walsh, the handsome but skeptical Chief of Arson Investigations. In a manhunt that takes them from Vancouver to Kelowna, Penticton and Victoria, they are led down a twisting path of sinister secrets.

Sifting through ashes and clues, Jasi realizes that there is more to the third victim than meets the eye. Perhaps not all the victims were that innocent. The hunt intensifies when she learns that someone they know is next on the arsonist’s list.

Unleashing her gift as a Pyro-Psychic, Jasi is compelled toward smoldering ashes and enters the killer’s mind–a mind bent on destruction and revenge. And in the heat of early summer, Jasi discovers that a murderer lies in wait…much closer than she ever imagined.

Redemption Song

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
Author: Derick Parsons
Redemption Song

Who is murdering black men in Dublin, and why? Is it a racist, anti-immigrant group or are there other, hidden reasons for the killings? These are some of the questions that washed-up detective Jack O’Neill must answer in order to stop the carnage and salvage his ruined career. As the pressure -and the body count- mounts Jack finds that he must solve the case to save not just his job but his life as he becomes the killer’s next target.

But Jack also has inner demons of his own to contend with, and a past that may yet destroy his last shot at redemption.

Superior Justice (Lake Superior Mysteries)

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
Author: Tom Hilpert
Superior Justice (Lake Superior Mysteries)

Jonah Borden is not your typical Lutheran pastor, and he takes pains to make sure everyone knows it. He’s a tough-guy, thinks-he’s-funny, rock-music-playing, gourmet-cooking, painfully-moderate-drinking, hard-boiled man of the cloth. He is even available for a bit of romance, under the right circumstances.

Doug Norstad, a member of Jonah Borden’s church, is arrested for a vigilante killing. Norstad shares his true alibi with Borden, under the privileged status of religious confession. Knowing now that the man is innocent, Borden must prove it somehow, without divulging his secret. Along the way he uncovers a twisted series of murders and cover ups. Before it is all over, Borden himself has been bribed, beaten, shot, and arrested for murder. Even worse, he may be falling in love.

Set in the midst of the striking beauty of Minnesota’s Lake Superior Coastline, Superior Justice will draw you in with its unique and quirky characters, and keep you guessing until the end.

Gone For a Soldier (Gone For Soldiers – Volume 1)

Historical Fiction
Author: Jeffry S. Hepple
Gone For a Soldier (Gone For Soldiers - Volume 1)

Divided by loyalty to the King of England and the idea of democracy, the Van Buskirk family struggles from the Boston Tea Party to the Battle of Yorktown to preserve a way of life or forge a new nation.

This novel includes descriptions of major battles, transcriptions of letters from George Washington, John Adams, Benedict Arnold and many other prominent figures of the American Revolution as well as important documents such as the Declaration of Independence and articles by Thomas Paine.

Divided by loyalty to the King of England and the idea of democracy, the Van Buskirk family struggles from the Boston Tea Party to the Battle of Yorktown to preserve a way of life or forge a new nation.

Jared’s Island

Action & Adventure
Author: John Thayer
Jared's Island

Jared is an 11 year old boy who has bounced around between foster homes his whole life. After his current fosters abandon him, he decides to set out on the adventure of a lifetime and see where he ends up. He borrows a small boat and ends up on a mysterious island with a caretaker who has many secrets. Jared has to deal with much more than rough seas in getting to the island. Once he arrives he is confronted with puzzling questions that the man will not answer.

Soul Search (A Soul Thieves Book)

Romance
Author: Amber Scott
Soul Search (A Soul Thieves Book)

Three years ago, one horrific night changed his life forever. And now the wolf soul that was invoked to save him is taking over his body, day by day.

Can he master his animal instincts in time to discover who is stealing children’s souls before the delicate balance we all depend upon is shattered?

Or will he reject the one woman who can help heal his body and his soul?

Teleport This (Small Universe)

Humor & Entertainment
Author: Christopher M. Daniels
Teleport This (Small Universe)

Teleport This is a fast paced, comedy adventure that is literally out of this world. It’s science fiction without the extra heavy baggage found in hardcore space operas or the ultra-wackiness found in satirical sci-fi novels. An enjoyable read not only for sci-fi fans, but for anyone that likes witty dialogue and interesting characters coupled with an absorbing storyline.

“Not only is your entire premise beyond belief, but not even you would be presumptuous enough to contact extraterrestrial life as the sole representative of all mankind.” “Sure, I already did. They sent me an application starter kit.”

And with that, Simon and Gilbert, two terrestrial physicists, leave Earth and stumble into and across a larger universe, trying desperately to find their way back to Earth and possibly purchase a working lightsaber or two along the way…

I’m Only Human After All

Advice & How-to
Author: Alex Rogers
I'm Only Human After All

What do you do if you find yourself suddenly, and without provocation, the target of high school aggression, relentless insults, and painful isolation? Such is the dilemma of teenager Alex Rogers, the main character in I’m Only Human After All, the thought-provoking, absorbing novel inspired by the real-life trials of the author by the same name. Rogers draws from his personal experiences to offer invaluable insight to students, teachers, and parents everywhere on today’s increasingly common, and highly damaging, instances of bullying and cyber-bullying. The novel’s poignant, reflective first-person narrative details all that bullied young adults confront, casting crucial new light on this timely topic to enable individuals to cope with this pervasive problem.

Surrendered Hearts

Religious Fiction
Author: Carrie Turansky
Surrendered Hearts

A gas pipeline explosion and fire destroy Jennifer Evan’s apartment and change her life forever. Not only does she lose her home and beloved dog, the ugly scars that cover her arm, neck and shoulder steal her confidence and cause her fiancé to desert her. With her funds depleted and her job on hold, she heads for Vermont where she hopes to reconnect with her brother and find a way to rebuild her shattered life.

Bill Morgan, head naturalist at the Wild River Nature Center and her brother’s roommate, is a strong quiet man whose faith runs deep. He and Jenn’s brother determine to help Jenn make a new start in Vermont. Bill’s stumbling attempts to share his faith with Jenn seem to fall flat and push her farther away, but she can see the difference his faith makes in his life, and her heart is still drawn to him. Will she hold on to the pain of her past, or will she surrender her heart and finally find the faith and love she longs for?

Ted and Ann – The Mystery of a Missing Child and Her Neighbor Ted Bundy

True Accounts
Author: Rebecca Morris
Ted and Ann - The Mystery of a Missing Child and Her Neighbor Ted Bundy

At age three he was using knives to frighten his teenage aunt. By fourteen he was a thief, animal abuser, and peeping tom who liked to pull little girls into the woods to scare them. Ted Bundy killed at least thirty-five girls and women, and possibly hundreds. Was his first victim eight-year-old Ann Marie Burr who disappeared from their Tacoma, Washington neighborhood in 1961?

Her body was never found and there were no clues, just two tenacious detectives who spent the rest of their lives trying to solve the case. Was Bundy telling the truth when he told a hypothetical story about killing Ann and dumping her into a muddy pit? With new information about Ted Bundy’s childhood, interviews with those who knew him best, and the memories of the Burr family, Ted and Ann – The Mystery of a Missing Child and Her Neighbor Ted Bundy, by Rebecca Morris, is the story of one the 20th century’s most fascinating cold cases.

The Book of Sylvia

Contemporary Fiction
Author: Michael Scott Miller
The Book of Sylvia

Unwittingly pulled into a high profile crime by her client, London call girl Sylvia Smith doesn’t know where to turn. Frightened and alone, she seeks solace at a rural church, where she meets Father Christopher, a priest consumed with his own set of struggles. Father Christopher takes her in, reluctantly, but is soon drawn into Sylvia’s obsession with the cryptic message that the client left behind. In this journey of self-discovery cloaked in a mystery, Sylvia and the priest grapple with the police, their demons, and temptation.

The Quest for Forgiveness: She was on a collision course with her past

Contemporary Fiction
Author: J. L. Rothdiener
The Quest for Forgiveness: She was on a collision course with her past

Singer-songwriter Briana Bays rose from obscurity to the center spotlight. She had everything… fame, talent, beauty, and one of the most successful music careers in history. The world was her stage, but the screaming adulation of her fans could not fill the hole in her heart. Her past was shrouded in shadows, some of her own making, and some of which she was trying desperately to pierce.
No amount of success could bring her the one thing she needed most… forgiveness…

Blood Red Turns Dollar Green

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
Author: Paul O’Brien
Blood Red Turns Dollar Green

1972 New York City and a dazed Lenny Long walks away from a crash carrying someone’s foot in his hand. He is also searching for the VIP passenger who has somehow disappeared from the back of his overturned van. It’s the first day of his new promotion and Lenny has less than twenty minutes to deliver the missing person or a lot of people are going to get badly hurt.

Danno Garland is in Shea Stadium trying to avoid a riot. He’s coming to the end of the most successful wrestling card of all time but he’s also coming to the realisation that he might not be able to deliver his widely hyped main event. He knows there’s more than the eyes of the arena on him and if Lenny doesn’t arrive soon, blood is going to be sought. Probably his.

INVISIBLE PRISON (INVISIBLE RECRUITS)

Fantasy
Author: Mary Buckham
INVISIBLE PRISON (INVISIBLE RECRUITS)

Magic is the last gift Alex Noziak wants but she must embrace it to gain her freedom. Alex Noziak, part-witch, part-shaman is dumped into the middle of four hostile non-human females and expected to train as a team to protect humans from preternatural threats. Prison never looked so good in comparison.

Vestige (Book #1)

Teens
Author: Deb Hanrahan
Vestige (Book #1)

In the Midwestern suburb of LaGrange, something is amiss. Over a twenty-four-hour period, all the children under the age of thirteen along with many adults have disappeared without explanation. It doesn’t take long for those left behind to learn that this tragedy is part of a global event. As people panic, civilization begins to crumble. Luckily, the Secretary of Homeland Security, Daniel Grimshaw, has a plan to restore order. But first, every remaining person must be accounted for and tagged with a mark on their right hand.

The Warrior’s Wife

Historical Fiction
Author: Denise Domning
The Warrior's Wife

Two warring families, one widow who has forgotten her family’s hatred, one powerful knight determined to reclaim his family’s castle and a wife to rule it beside him. No one will stop him not her father, his king or the lady herself.

School Is A Nightmare #3 Shocktober

Children’s eBooks
Author: Raymond Bean
School Is A Nightmare #3 Shocktober

Justin is a huge fan of Halloween, and it’s the first one that his Mom is allowing him to wear a cool costume: a Clone Trooper. Unfortunately, he can’t seem to stay out of trouble, and his parents have threatened to keep him home while the other kids go trick-or-treat if he can’t get his act together.

His teacher took away his recess for the entire month, and he’s been grounded every weekend. If that’s not bad enough, the rest of the classes at school are busy planning fun parties and activities, and his teacher has him doing research.

Brave Bill & Brave Bob – A Children’s Picture Book (Sweet Dreams Bedtime Stories, book 3)

Children’s eBooks
Author: Michael Yu, Rachel Yu
Brave Bill & Brave Bob - A Children's Picture Book (Sweet Dreams Bedtime Stories, book 3)

Brave Bill is the bravest little boy in the whole world, except when it comes to dragons. Brave Bob is the bravest dragon in the whole world, except when it comes to little boys. Find out what happens when the two finally meet.

 

… See the rest of today’s Editor’s Picks and the Kindle Daily Deal here on page 2