18 February 2012

A Snippet from THE DEVIL AND PRESTON BLACK

My second snippet for Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday is taken from my Appalachian dark fantasy novel, THE DEVIL AND PRESTON BLACK (Raw Dog Screaming Press).

Description:Preston Black has a nasty habit of falling in love with the wrong type of woman. But girls who don't play nice are the least of his problems. This handsome bar band guitarist isn't washed-up, but he's about to be. He's broke, he's tired of playing covers and he's obsessed with the Curse of 27.

He's about to add 'deal with the devil' to his list.

Lucky for Preston, he has help. Like the angelic beauty who picks him up when he's down. And the university professor who helps him sort through old Appalachian hexes and curses to find the song that may be his only shot at redemption. And when things get real bad, he has the ghost of John Lennon to remind him that "nothing is real."

Let Raw Dog Screaming Press author Jason Jack Miller take you to a place where love is forever even when death isn't, where magic doesn't have to be seen to be believed, where a song might be the only thing that saves your soul.

MURDER BALLADS AND WHISKEY is a unique blend of dark fiction, urban fantasy and horror. It's Appalachian Gothic, Alt.Magical.Realism, Hillbilly Horror. It's AMERICAN GODS meets JUSTIFIED. TRUE BLOOD with witches. It's Johnny Cash with a fistful of copperheads singing the devil right back to hell.

     Most people didn't have to dig as deep as me to find something they recognized in an old record or song.
     And digging deeper was pretty much what I was doing the day I found my LP misplaced behind Blizzard of Oz. On my way to return it to the BLUEGRASS section the most beautiful woman I'd ever seen stepped out of the stacks. She smiled. I smiled back. She asked what I had in my hand. On the album cover a bunch of anonymous pickers sat in front of an old log cabin. The back of the record said Uncle Mason's Front Porch: Best of the Blackwater Sessions.
And on the track list, between "Pretty Polly" and "Hangman's Reel" was a song called "The Sad Ballad of Preston Black," written by E. Black.
     I knew right then and there that if I could ever find the man who'd written that song, I'd have found my dad. 

Check out other author snippets at the official site: Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday

27 comments:

  1. Wow. What a snip. Beautiful mystery woman - and a long lost father. What more can we ask!

    Awesome.

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  2. Yeah, a good mystery woman makes everything better, or so I've heard. Thanks for stopping by, Cary.

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  3. I love this scene--it sets up the whole book so well. Poor Preston has no idea what's ahead for him...including that mystery woman.

    ;)

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  4. Poor Preston, indeed! Just so you know, I expect something awesome to happen every time I go into a record store now too.

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  5. I love how you set this up. You pack a lot of info into a little snippet while keeping it moving. Great stuff here! I especially like the details about the picture. My husband is a great fan of roots music and this sounds like just the kind of record he'd go ape over.

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    1. Thank you! So happy to hear that. This book kind of ended up being my love letter to music. I get a lot of people asking about the song/record and that probably means I need to get to work on it.

      I really appreciate you taking the time to stop by and comment.

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  6. Love love the description of this book...."Johnny Cash with a fistful of copperheads singing the devil right back to hell..." *gasp* Incredible.

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    1. How could I go wrong by invoking the late, great JC? I figured I needed to go a little over the top to let people know what they were getting into.

      Thanks so much for stopping by.

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  7. Love your writing style! Great build up...can't wait to dig into it! (Good thing I got it sitting in my TBR pile up) ;)

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    1. PRESTON is a little looser than HELLBENDER--a lot of fun to write. It means a great deal to me that you got the books. I can't say thanks enough. And thank you for stopping by too!

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  8. There is so much going on in this snippet. It was so simple and still captured the sexual tension between the male and female characters. There was so much emotion in just these few sentences. I'll have to put this book on my TBR list. Great job! Looking forward to more!

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    1. Thank you! This was my first post-Seton Hill book. I put all that tuition to good use. And sexual tension... You just wait.

      Thanks for stopping by! It's greatly appreciated.

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  9. I love your style! It blends all of the elements together so well and gives us a great sample of JJM gumbo. I want seconds!

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    1. That's a great compliment and I truly appreciate it. I was really proud of my style in this book too. I felt like it was the first thing I'd written that was 100% in the voice and tone I wanted. I really appreciate you taking the time to stop by and read.

      (I actually made the first 100 pages free via the link at the top http://jasonjackmiller.blogspot.com/p/devil-and-preston-black.html)

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  10. I love the description of the book, too! Especially the mention of John Lennon. :D

    Wonderful snippet! Can't wait to read more!

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    1. I really appreciate that! Lennon is a bit of a personal hero, so why shouldn't he be Preston's too?

      Many thanks for stopping by.

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  11. A great snippet--a woman and a clue to his past!

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  12. Great snippet - love the tone. And Yikes re the song ... Poor Preston ...

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    1. Poor Preston is right. What is it they say about making your characters suffer? Oh, yeah, it's 'make your characters suffer.'

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  13. Nice snippet. Sounds like an intersting book.

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    1. Many thanks. 'Interesting' is just one of the many things that can be said about this book.

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  14. Wow, that's one way to track down your parents. Music records instead of genealogy records.

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