RRBC “Spotlight” Author Blog Tour ~ Charles W. Jones

7 May

Hi, everyone! Welcome to my blog.

 

I am a member of the Rave Reviews Book Club (#RRBC) and every month a “Spotlight” author is selected. I am thrilled to host this month’s “Spotlight” Author, so please welcome Charles W. Jones

Today Charles is sharing an excerpt from his horror book, Circus Tarot. I hope you enjoy it.

 

 

author-charles w jones-blog tour-RRBC-Rave Reviews Book Club-Vashti Quiroz Vega-the writer next door-Vashti Q-spotlight_author-book club

 

 

BIO:

Charles W. Jones grew up in the small town Shoshoni, WY, and he managed to break free from its grasp with his soul intact. Growing up in a small town scared him to death most of the time. It’s very dark at night – really dark. To top it off, it is full of ghosts; well, that’s what Charles thought when he was a kid. Turns out it was just the constant wind blowing dirt and tumbleweeds. Two of Charles’ novels are set in Shoshoni, Dreamwalker: The Second Plain and HOME A Novel.

There isn’t a part of the horror genre Charles doesn’t like. He likes it creepy, filled with suspense, or even brutal with intense torture scenes. His favorite horror movies have always been the slasher movies; give him the gore. Clive Barker is Charles’ greatest influence but is also inspired by Lewis Carroll, Stephen King, and Frank Beddor. Real life is a large contributor to his writing, where he finds beauty in the most unexpected places.

Music has always been a great contributor to Charles’ life, by means of not only entertainment but the personal soundtrack. When he writes, he listens to different types of music to set the mood of the scene he is writing. Eurythmics will always be at the top of his playlist, but many other bands and genres occupy his mind.

 

 

About Circus Tarot

In the strange land of World Circus, Mary and Darrin discover they aren’t in their safe, dull life any longer, but have taken the identity of one of the cards from the Circus Tarot. After a terrorizing encounter, resulting in death, they learn the bizarre rules of the land and discover that the denizens of the sinister World Circus want more than to entertain them.

 

RRBC-Rave Reviews Book Club-blog tour-Charles Jones-vashti quiroz vega-Vashti Q-author-book

 

I think there’s something special about Circus Tarot. Not only did I create a world, but I also created 78 cards to represent everything and everyone in it. Each has two personalities, depending on whether they are “flipped” or not. Some changes aren’t physically noticeable, like Moon when is present, you wouldn’t know from looking at him, but you’d feel insecure or unsure or even terrified. Flip him, and you find your way through the chaos without trouble. The following excerpt is about Nine of Buckets, the “wish card.”

 

Chapter 17

Mary pinned her hair into a tight bun. She was excited to have a full house tonight after only having the Midgets and Poles the previous night. Muffled applause wafted on the breeze to her trailer, alerting her Magician’s act was coming to a close. An elephant let off a trumpet, intensifying her titillation for Darrin to see her under the silvery light of Star. The elephants led the Wild Animal Extravaganza. After the animals came Empress and Emperor on the trapeze covered in Star’s inspiring illumination, then her magnificent performance. The Clowns closed the show.

Once again, after the Ladies and Gentlemen returned to their castle, the performers were allowed to do whatever they chose now that the curfew and treaty had been lifted, and she and Darrin had the chance to spend the night however they wished.

She heard whispering and lewd giggles outside her trailer. She leaned to the side to look through the window slats. A few Clowns passed the window. They acted stranger than usual this afternoon. She wrinkled her nose, looking back into the mirror; her hair looked fantastic.

Scraping at the end of the trailer distracted her from her reflection. She turned her head, wondering what it was. She stood and went to the door. Outside, the Clowns had become restless. They were flipped, and no longer forced to maintain control of their primal needs. Mary hoped they held back until after the show, but it seemed they wanted to play now.

Nine of Buckets walked around the trailer. His thick fingernails scraped the pink paint from the walls. He smelled High Priestess, and it hungered him. The Ace had said she and Knight of Foils were his. It wasn’t fair, why did he get first dibs? Besides, didn’t she belong to Devil? He stopped at the door, seeing her silhouette in the frosted glass slats of the jalousie window. His swollen lips formed into a pucker, and he whistled.

“Don’t be a pervo, Nine,” she said, rolling her eyes. “I’m not ready for you to take me to World Tent yet.”

The sound of her voice made his hunger grow. Licking his full lips, he thought of his teeth nibbling her supple flesh, then ripping and pulling it from the bone.

“I thought you’d wish to see your fantabulous man before you performed.” He laughed.

“What a marvelous idea,” she replied to the happy thought. “Let me grab my wrap, and we’ll go.”

Nine of Buckets mocked her, mouthing back what she had said, tilting his head side-to-side, then muttered, “Stupid bitch.”

She turned the knob. He licked his lips. Her eyebrow pencil rolled across the vanity, then fell to the floor. She turned her head, watching it roll toward her. She released the doorknob, squatting to take the pencil. With the pencil back in the cup with make-up brushes and combs, the door slowly swung open.

Nine of Buckets watched the door move toward him and stepped back. His heart accelerated with anticipation, expecting her to step outside. Any second now. He squinted. Why hadn’t she come out of her trailer? He waited another second. Confused, he eased himself to the door and peered in. Gone. Where was she? He looked around spastically.

“What is the meaning of this, Magician?” she demanded outside World Tent.

“The House of Buckets is completely flipped,” he warned. “And I’m afraid they meant you harm, High Priestess.”

“Oh, well, I see. Thank you.”

“No need to thank me,” he replied. “Devil sent me to check on you.”

She stared at him without further word, and he vanished in a puff of smoke. Pulling open the side of World Tent, she peered in. He had delivered her to the First Ring entrance while her horses were at the Center Ring entrance. She saw the side of the risers and turned heads watching the lions and tigers and…she smirked.

Following the corridor behind the grandstands toward the Center Ring entrance, she watched pieces of popcorn fall like snow. Shadows jumped and bounced around her from the Ladies and Gentlemen above.

“Fab-u-rific to see you, High Priestess,” the Clown said.

She froze in her tracks. In the lattice of the grandstands’ under-workings, an exuberant Clown smiled at her. She squeaked.

“Oh, how horrific of me to startle you,” Fool apologized. “I must be a sight, what with the House of Buckets being flipped and all.”

“It’s OK. I just didn’t expect anyone to be back here.” She paused, looking him over. The dancing shadows made his orange and purple striped pajamas pulsate. “What are you doing in there?”

“I’m rehearsing my tightrope routine,” he replied in a stern Clown tone.

She looked down at the pink-fuzzy slippers on his feet balancing on a rope: his white-with-pink, polka-dot parasol dangled from his left hand.

“Why don’t you do it in the rehearsal arena?”

He looked at her with disappointed disbelief.

“What?”

“You want me dead.”

“No, I—”

“If I were to fall from this height,” he interrupted. “It’d be certain death for me.” Her eyes returned to the tightrope. It stood no more than a foot from the ground. “In here, if I feel woe-belly, I can grab hold of the rails or crossbars.”

“Uh, all right,” she said, shaking her head. “Well, carry on then.”

“Thank you, High Priestess.” Fool grinned. “Have a funnerific night.”

She smiled back at him, continuing her journey. A partially eaten fluff of cotton candy floated down in front of her. She looked up to see a small girl glaring down. She winked, putting her finger to her mouth to keep the girl quiet.

She looked behind her at the curve of the grandstand’s backside, never realizing how far it was to the Center Ring entrance. I haven’t passed it, have I? She thought. Nine of Buckets stepped from the folds of World Tent a short distance away. She stopped, fear attacking her. His hands twitched at his sides.

“There you are,” he said, his puffy lips barely moving when he spoke. “I thought you wished for me to be your escort as always.”

“Well, I thought so, too,” she replied, looking for a way to get past him. “Then Magician whisked me away without my consent.” She choked out a laugh.

She saw his demeanor was not his usual joviality. He appeared tense. His eyes were dark. The puffiness of his full lips was taught, making the red grease paint crack. The Clown shook as though he were detoxing. She swallowed hard.

“It’s OK, High Priestess.” His voice cracked. “I can take you the rest of the way. Your wish is my command.”

She forced a smile. “Since I’m almost there already, you don’t need to.”

“I insist.” He quivered.

She stared at him without moving. His pink tongue slipped between his lips, quickly, sweeping across them. He shuffled toward her. Her pulse quickened. She willed her legs to move, but they did not respond. He came closer, his breath harsh and body shaking.

Finally, her legs realized the urgency of flight, and she turned, running. The layers of her sheer dress ruffled in her propulsion. She reached the First Ring entrance in no time, and without looking back to see where Nine of Buckets was, she shot into the Circus grounds at the back of World Tent.

She hoped for a chance to stop and catch her breath once she had made it outside, but to her dismay, other Buckets were lurking there. Deciding her trailer to be safest place wait out the Clown revolt, she kept up her pace. Possessed laughter followed as she ran to the trailers. Ahead, Knight of Tokens glared up at Knight of Buckets.

“Stop it now and get ready for your act,” the Token yelled with a gravelly voice.

She skidded to a stop in the gravel, her shoes erupting a dust cloud. The Knights looked in her direction. Her eyes bounced around as she decided what to do. She ran towards the main Circus entrance, then veered back towards the area where the high fence opened to the Poles area. Wicked laughter pushed her to move faster. Running past the House of Poles’ campfire, she shot into the woods. Moon’s reflection glittered in Meeting of Wood Lake, but she didn’t stop to take in the sights.

 

Don’t forget to get your copy of Circus Tarot at Amazon.

 

Connect with Charles W. Jones on social media:

TWITTER

FACEBOOK

WEBSITE

 

Thank you for stopping by and have a great day!

 

56 Responses to “RRBC “Spotlight” Author Blog Tour ~ Charles W. Jones”

  1. Soooz May 8, 2019 at 1:38 am #

    Another intriguing excerpt, Charles! Thanks so much for sharing Charles’s time in that marvelous spotlight, Vashti!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. D.L. Finn, Author May 8, 2019 at 2:15 am #

    I enjoyed the post and excerpt, Charles where a card turned. Thanks for hosting, Vashti:)

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Priscilla Bettis May 8, 2019 at 8:11 am #

    What a unique and totally cool premise. Thanks for the excerpt, Charles.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Charles W. Jones May 8, 2019 at 11:40 am #

      Thanks for stopping by Priscilla.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Vashti Q May 8, 2019 at 4:21 pm #

      I thought the same, Priscilla. I know nothing of tarot cards but I’m intrigued. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by and for your comment!

      Like

  4. John W. Howell May 8, 2019 at 10:09 am #

    Super excerpt, Charles. Congratulations and thanks to Denise for hosting today.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Charles W. Jones May 8, 2019 at 11:37 am #

    Thanks for hosting, Vashti.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vashti Q May 8, 2019 at 6:23 pm #

      It’s my pleasure, Charles! Congratulations again on being selected “Spotlight” Author this month! I hope you’re enjoying your time in the spotlight. 😀 xo

      Like

  6. Rhani D'Chae May 8, 2019 at 12:03 pm #

    Another interesting post, Charles. Thank you for sharing it.
    Thank you for hosting, Vashti. 😃

    Liked by 2 people

  7. rijanjks May 8, 2019 at 12:15 pm #

    Whew! What a chilling segment you chose to share here, Charles! I felt every ounce of her fear! I hope you are enjoying your tour! Thanks for hosting, Vashti!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. lauralibricz May 8, 2019 at 2:56 pm #

    I love this. And I love the tarot cards. I’m enjoying your tour, Charles! Thanks for hosting, Vashti!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Bette A. Stevens May 8, 2019 at 4:21 pm #

    Great excerpt, Charles! 🙂 Sharing….

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Jill Weatherholt May 8, 2019 at 5:46 pm #

    Thanks for hosting Charles, Vashti. Such an enjoyable excerpt!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. balroop2013 May 8, 2019 at 10:03 pm #

    Quite a scary excerpt! Thanks for sharing it Charles and Vashti is such wonderful host!

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Natalie Ducey May 9, 2019 at 9:36 am #

    So thrilled to see Charles in the Spotlight! Wishing you a fabulous month, Charles.
    Many thanks for hosting, Vashti, as always.
    Cheers to you both! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Guy Worthey May 9, 2019 at 3:43 pm #

    WHAT an imagination!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vashti Q May 10, 2019 at 1:57 pm #

      I agree, Guy! Super creative! Thanks for stopping by and for your comment. 😀

      Like

  14. dgkaye May 9, 2019 at 9:30 pm #

    Intriguing excerpt. Thanks for the introduction to Charles and his book. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vashti Q May 10, 2019 at 1:58 pm #

      Hi, Debby! You’re very welcome, my friend. Thanks for your visit and comment. ❤ xo

      Liked by 1 person

  15. jinlobify May 10, 2019 at 2:38 pm #

    Hi, Charles, you must have had a lot of Circus experience to pull this story off. I never saw a Circus where I come from and to tell you the truth, I am afraid of Clowns! 😩Thank you, Vashti, for hosting.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vashti Q May 11, 2019 at 12:33 pm #

      Clowns give me the creeps too, Joy! There are different types of circuses now. 🙂 Thanks for the comment and visit!

      Like

  16. beemweeks May 10, 2019 at 5:26 pm #

    Fantastic excerpt, Charles. I hope your time in the spotlight gains you many new fans!

    Thanks for hosting, Vashti!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vashti Q May 11, 2019 at 12:35 pm #

      It’s my pleasure, Beem! Thank you for the great comment and visit. 😀

      Like

  17. Gwen Plano May 11, 2019 at 7:04 am #

    Fascinating! What a premise! Thank you for sharing, Charles, and thank you, Vashti, for hosting.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vashti Q May 11, 2019 at 12:36 pm #

      Happy to do it, Gwen. Thanks for stopping by and your comment. 🙂

      Like

  18. Wendy Scott May 14, 2019 at 12:09 am #

    Gave me chills, Charles!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vashti Q May 15, 2019 at 8:35 pm #

      Thank you for the visit and comment, Wendy! Happy to see you here.
      😀 xo

      Like

  19. ~Mar May 14, 2019 at 3:05 pm #

    Excerpts are the best!! Such a great blog tour, Charles!! Thank you for hosting on your beautiful site, Vashti!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vashti Q May 14, 2019 at 8:53 pm #

      It’s been a pleasure, Marlena! Thank you for the visit and sweet comment! ❤ xo

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Robert Matthew Goldstein May 20, 2019 at 6:32 pm #

    I loved the excerpt. The writing is clean and the characters are interesting. I’ve added this book to my list.

    Liked by 1 person

If you comment you'll put a big smile on my face.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s