Tag Archives: Sarah Bromley

8 Frightful Books to get your SCARE ON!

As the bewitching night approaches, it’s the perfect time to heat a mug of cider and curl up under a fuzzy cover with something truly horrifying–a book!

Here are some suggestions from BookYArd authors of reads that get them spooked–plus a few spooky books from the YArd itself!

GHOST STORY by Peter Straub

For four aging men in the terror-stricken town of Milburn, New York, an act inadvertently carried out in their youth has come back to haunt them. Now they are about to learn what happens to those who believe they can bury the past — and get away with murder.

— recommended by Rin Chupeco, author of THE GIRL FROM THE WELL

Here’s why Rin loves Straub’s GHOST STORY: “Creepy girls, grotesque deaths, and insanity are my preferred trifecta!”

And here’s why you’ll want to check out THE GIRL FROM THE WELL:

girlfromthewellA dead girl walks the streets.

She hunts murderers. Child killers, much like the man who threw her body down a well three hundred years ago.

And when a strange boy bearing stranger tattoos moves into the neighborhood so, she discovers, does something else. And soon both will be drawn into the world of eerie doll rituals and dark Shinto exorcisms that will take them from American suburbia to the remote valleys and shrines of Aomori, Japan.


“BOOGEYMAN” — a shortstory in the NIGHTSHIFT collection by Stephen King

You can hear it here:

— recommended by Trisha Leaver, coauthor of CREED

What Trisha says about THE BOOGEYMAN: “The word terrifying doesn’t do this story justice. The hint of insanity and fathers rather disturbing choice make this one of the few horror stories that continues to plague my mind twenty years after I read it!”

Creed final coverCREED by Trisha Leaver and Lindsay Currie

Three went in. Three came out. None even a shadow of who they once were.

When their car breaks down, Dee, her boyfriend Luke, and his brother Mike walk through a winter storm to take refuge in a nearby town called Purity Springs. When they arrive, the emergency sirens are blaring and the small farming town seems abandoned. With no other shelter, they spend the night in an empty house….


MARY – THE SUMMONING by Hillary Monahan

There is a right way and a wrong way to summon her.

Jess had done the research. Success requires precision: a dark room, a mirror, a candle, salt, and four teenage girls. Each of them–Jess, Shauna, Kitty, and Anna–must link hands, follow the rules . . . and never let go.

— recommended by Sarah Bromely, author of A MURDER OF MAGPIES

What Sarah says about MARY: “I’ve read Hillary Monahan’s book several times. Still hate mirrors at night.” –

A MURDER OF MAGPIES by Sarah Bromley

murdermagpies500pxWinter in Black Orchard, Wisconsin, is long and dark, and sixteen-year-old Vayda Silver prays the snow will keep the truth and secrecy of the last two years buried. Hiding from the past with her father and twin brother, Vayda knows the rules: never return to the town of her mother’s murder, and never work a Mind Game where someone might see.




IN COLD BLOOD by Truman Capote

On November 15, 1959, in the small town of Holcomb, Kansas, four members of the Clutter family were savagely murdered by blasts from a shotgun held a few inches from their faces. There was no apparent motive for the crime, and there were almost no clues.

— recommended by Mary Crockett, coauthor of DREAM BOY

Why Mary thinks you should read Capote’s novel: “The real horror here is that In Cold Blood is a true story. The senselessness of murder, the randomness of it–the savage caprice–makes this book bone-chilling.”

DREAM BOY by Mary Crockett and Madelyn Rosenberg

DREAM BOY by Mary Crockett & Madelyn Rosenberg

Perfect and REAL. The boy of her dreams. And when he brushes past her, he whispers her name.

Annabelle Manning spends her nights with a blue-eyed boy who consumes her dreams – then vanishes each morning as she wakes. He’s everything she’s every wanted, but even she never expected to find him in her chemistry class the next day.

Now she’s got a gorgeous guy who’s totally into her, whispering the most ridiculously romantic things in her ear. Her life is a dream come true – until her dreams stop and the nightmares begin.



Which BookYArd Character Are You Most Like?

We’ve created a fun personality quiz for you to determine which character from our books you may be most like. Although, you might find that you want to play this personality quiz more than once!

Tell us in the comments section which character popped up for you!

Click here to take the QUIZ.

14 Facts with Sarah Bromley

I’m not good at talking about myself. It’s this little thing called shyness. As a writer, I’m REALLY good at gushing over other peoples’ books but don’t really know what to say when it comes to my own.

That said, I messed up and forgot to introduce A MURDER OF MAGPIES and myself to all of you. So here’s a quick 14 things about MAGPIES and me.

  1. My great-aunt owned a funeral home, and my father was a church organist. Because of this, any time I was home sick from school as a child, I almost always had to go to a funeral. I am sure this warped me in some fashion.
  2. The main character of A MURDER OF MAGPIES, Vayda, got her name from a friend’s daughter because I loved it. I’d first heard it in the movie, “My Girl,” but had no idea how to spell it.
  3. My great-uncle, “Snowshoe” Al, was an author. He published a few collections of short stories. They are rather bawdy and off-color and not at all the kinds of books that children should read.
  4. In A MURDER OF MAGPIES, Ward loves the Velvet Underground. When my husband and I first began dating, he gave me a cassette (yes, it was that long ago) with a recording of “The Velvet Underground & Nico.”
  5. I am ambidextrous and need to work with my hands or I get fidgety. I play several instruments and am frequently found in jeans splattered with paint from various projects or dirt from gardening.
  6. I met my husband when I was a baby. Our mothers were best friends, and I have known him my entire life. We have been together longer than we haven’t.
  7. Like Jonah and Vayda in A MURDER OF MAGPIES, I have a strange, somewhat telepathic link with my sister. We always know what the other is thinking and can tell when something good or bad has happened to the other. I also frequently have recurring or intuitive dreams and experience deja vu.
  8. Different careers I entertained because my funeral home-owning aunt insisted I needed a real job and not a fantasy: special education teacher, forensic analyst, graphic designer, hospice nurse. Different jobs I actually held: activities person in a home for severally developmentally impaired children, video store clerk, restaurant hostess, and library assistant at an art museum. In addition to being a writer, I also stay home with my three children and three dogs.
  9. I am 4’10” and because of this, I was often put inside lockers and even once set on top of a vending machine by taller classmates. I am highly skilled with getting things off high shelves using a pair of tongs.
  10. The book that made me decide to be a writer was THE SILVER KISS by Annette Curtis Klaus.
  11. I listened to countless versions of the old Santo & Johnny song, “Sleepwalk,” when I wrote A MURDER OF MAGPIES.
  12. Vayda’s mother has a bit of classic Hollywood actress Vivien Leigh in her.
  13. I am one heck of a cook. I can throw down like no one’s business.
  14. I wrote my first short story when I was about nine years old. A MURDER OF MAGPIES will come out when I’m thirty-four. Never let go of your dreams.

Writer’s Block Got You Blue?

Life was a lot less complicated back in 2008 when I was first drafting A MURDER OF MAGPIES. Oh, I’d known I wanted to be published since high school (we won’t go into how long ago that was), and I knew that I wanted to secure a literary agent and sign a book deal. Okay, done and done. While I still write new stories, something’s happened. I’ve gotten in my own way.

What’s the deal? Well, I’m not adept at shutting off my internal—nay, infernal—editor. I am also a certified worrier. Between three kids and three dogs, my house is one of perpetual interruption, and sometimes there is nothing more daunting than a blank screen with a flashing cursor that mocks you. So what helps when the words won’t come?

Here are some of the ways I try to beat writer’s block:

*Turn off the Internet on the computer. I do this all the time. Just shut off my Wi-Fi and don’t give in to the temptation to check Twitter, Facebook, any of my other online haunts until I’ve written at least a thousand words. I set a timer for twenty minutes, and then I’m done. No more online playground until more of the story is on the page. Those little bursts of online activity are my Scooby Snacks and keep me going until I can power through more words.

*Remember it doesn’t have to be perfect this time around. First drafts are first drafts. Second drafts are second. Final drafts . . . well, I think some of us could edit the same book continually. But there does come a point where you know it’s ready.

*Read other books. Honestly, if I’m in a dry spell, I will read other works, mostly outside of my genre. Books are fuel for your own creativity.

*Brainstorm. Got critique partners? Yes? Good. Now talk to them about what’s holding you up. I’m on good enough terms with my agent that we’ll talk about what I’m writing as well, and she’ll put in her two cents for what she’d like to see happen in the story. Sometimes a good conversation where you lay out the story is all you need to get over what seems like a massive obstacle.

*Relax. Eventually, the story will make sense to you and you’ll be drawn into writing again. Unknotting the threads of any given story happens to me in the strangest places: walking the light bulb aisle at Target, waiting in the preschool pick-up line, standing in the shower. Sometimes if you think about something too much, your brain revolts and you can’t do it anymore. And then it will come to you later when you thought it couldn’t be further from your thoughts. Let your subconscious handle your writing woes for a while.

Granted, there are times when a project does have to be shelved for whatever reason. Sometimes you’re just not that into it. It doesn’t mean it was all bad. It can be a learning experience. There may even be scenes or characters that you copy into another story. I do think that some of the best advice I was ever given to get through a dry spell was to write every day. No matter what. Writing is an exercise, and the more you do it the easier the words will come.

 Anyone else have a surefire cure for writer’s block? Leave a comment and tell us!