Monday, April 27, 2015




When John was seven, he found Candy dancing in the neighboring yard wearing a yellow polka-dot bikini and red rain galoshes, splashing and dancing and singing at the top of her lungs. She saved his throat from getting ripped out by her grandma’s guard dog. Good thing she did, too. It was John who raised the alarm that day, when the man who smiled with his mouth but not his eyes drove off with Candy in a cloud of dust. The police stopped whatever might have happened next in a seedy motel—a place Candy doesn’t dare remember. John rescued her, creating a bond between two friends strong enough to awaken…something. 
That something has haunted the southern mountain town of Shirley since a time before stories were written, in a cycle that has spun for centuries. 
Years later, John and Candy begin to suspect something more sinister lurking amidst the days of football glory and the nights of clandestine rendezvous. John discovers disturbing symbols from the ancient tribes indigenous to the area in his history textbook, in a local cave system, and in his very dreams. Candy uncovers a family history that is more colorful than she knew. If shades of black are colorful. 
If only the two friends could foresee the danger looming before them. For another something, one much more dangerous than the first, is waking up to continue the cycle. 
And this something is bent on revenge…again. 
Murder forces everyone out of sunny valley torpor, and Candy realizes that more than acquaintance connects her with the killer. When a corpse is found, gutted as if for ritual, she knows that whatever evil has overtaken her hometown is moving forward. She will have to exorcise the haunting herself—though she has no idea how—and she will need John’s predestined help to do it. Candy will have to face the memories of that seedy motel room first. At least she finally understands the power she never knew she had—a link to her departed mother and a line of healers shrouded in pre-history.

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Sarah Wathen is an artist, author, and founder of the independent publishing house, LayerCake Productions. She was trained in Classical Painting at the University of Central Florida, and then received her Master's in Fine Art from Parsons School of Design in New York City. If Florida was where she discovered her passion, New York was the place she found her voice. "Writing a book was my obvious next step, once I realized I'd been trying to tell stories with pictures for years," Sarah says about transitioning from visual artist to novelist. "Painting with words is even more fun than painting with oil." She describes world-building with language--developing characters, constructing settings and plots, and inventing history--as a power trip that everyone should try at least once.
If only she had as much control over her Bichon Frisées as she does over her narratives. A devoted animal lover, she populates every story with at least one of her pets--especially the dearly departed ones, as therapy for an aching heart.
Sarah lives in Florida with her husband, son, and at least a dozen imaginary friends from her two novels, The Tramp and Catchpenny.

Reeking sulfur from the Blue Spring guided Charlotte in the right direction.
“The only time I’ve been thankful for that smell.”
Her voice seemed too loud, the leaves crunching under her shoes as raucous as an alarm, and she slowed her pace, feeling the urge for stealth. A monotonous hum began to register in her ears. The tone flew to a higher pitch, like a wail, and then picked up the hum once again.
Not a bird chirped, not a bug buzzed, not a squirrel scurried. The woods were silent, except for the human voice coming from the direction of the spring. As she got closer to the sound, she sidled up next to the mountainside and slinked along as quietly as she could. The foul smell was overpowering.
She peeked around the side of a boulder, into the little inlet where the spring lay, and gasped at what she saw.
Her cousin was crouched at the edge of the water, naked. Guttural sounds were coming from his throat, his head fallen back at an impossible angle. She wondered if she should help him, but then his head snapped forward revealing a face twisted into a blind snarl, his eyes rolled back into his skull. The noises from his mouth coalesced into the unintelligible chant again.
Charlotte fell back behind the boulder, unable to watch. She tried to slow her breathing, wishing more than anything to remain unnoticed. What the hell is going on?
The sounds by the spring became more frantic and she risked a look. She had to see. At first, she thought Tyler was masturbating, bouncing up and down on his haunches, his hands hidden between his legs. But then he began to retch and a stream of something flowed out of his mouth. Or was it flowing into his mouth? Charlotte felt like she might be sick herself.
She pressed her lips with her fingers and slid back along the face of the overhanging cliff, promising herself not to look again. How fast could she get back to her car? What if Tyler heard her? She couldn’t risk that.
A crackling sound—like something electric—erupted around the bend. There was a flash of blue light from the rocky inlet. Then silence fell so loud it was deafening. As she knelt down in the dirt and tried to regain composure, her mind raced. What was that? After a few minutes, her curiosity overwhelmed her fear. She had to go back and see what was over there at that damned spring.
Charlotte listened, barely daring to breath. Gradually, sounds of normalcy resumed around her. An owl hooted. The crickets began to sing again. The wind picked up and rustled the branches overhead. Heavy boots scuffed through the underbrush and disappeared on the other side of the spring, and she knew Tyler was gone.
She emerged from her hiding spot and edged toward the spring. Had the smell of sulfur vanished, or was she just growing accustomed to it? The night was heavy and dark. She considered going back to the car for her cellphone light; that cold Blue Spring was creepy in the daylight, even on a normal day. But, as she got closer, she saw…there was nothing to see. A bird was drinking from the spring and took flight as she approached. She didn’t know what she expected, but there was only plain old rocks and water in front of her.
Thought the water was murky before. A weird blue. She shrugged. “Looks clear now. Maybe you just can’t see it in the dark.” She leaned over and saw her reflection looking back at her and dipped her finger into the pool to disrupt the mirror. The water wasn’t cold anymore.


My rating: 5 of 5 stars
The Tramp is the kind of book that makes your heart beat fast all through the reading. As soon as I started, I felt fear, I can't explain why, but it was real, it had me on the edge of my seat till the end.

The plot is full of suspense, mystery, some paranormal, twists and turns, and OMG that town!! Creepy. The characters are complex, the writing is excellent and the situations are very well developed. And I can't not say anything about the art cover, isn't beautiful??

I don't like to copy and paste the synopsis, and hate the reviews full of spoilers, I can only say to you, Go! Go, and grab a copy, you'll not regret it.

*I received a Free copy in exchange for an Honest Review*


The author is giving away the following gifts to one winner of the Rafflecopter.
1.       Signed print copy of the book + Kindle download
2.       MP3 download of The Tramp theme song, "Bound Hearts"
3.       Cover art T-shirt