Just in time for Halloween, from debut author Corey J. Popp, comes a young adult, supernatural thriller that will keep readers guessing until its shocking conclusion.
Sixteen-year-old Claire Young is tormented by a recurring, prophetic nightmare and visitations from gruesome, mutilated ghosts. She's convinced the apparitions intend to harm her widowed father, but there's little she can do locked away in Saint Thomas Psychiatric Hospital. Her situation is hopeless until a mysterious priest delivers the name of a man who may be the only one willing to help. Claire launches a daring scheme that leads her and her best friend to a former paranormal investigator.
But the matter is complicated by Claire's own father. Convinced his daughter is schizophrenic, he'll send Claire back to Saint Thomas permanently if he discovers she’s still clinging to her delusions. Claire and her friends must tread lightly to complete the investigation, but amid bizarre twists and chilling encounters, she’ll discover her home's basement is hiding something far more sinister than just ghosts.
And now for a bit about the author.
Corey J. Popp began writing technology and human interest articles for Gannett Company following the 2008 stock market crash and recession. Initially rebuked by the editor due to budget constraints, Corey offered him an article at no cost in exchange for a byline. The article was immediately published as a feature, and, over the next two years, Corey went on to sell and publish articles in various Gannett publications throughout Northeast Wisconsin.
In 2010, Corey transitioned to fiction and began work on his first novel, Beneath Claire's House. Corey is a member of the Wisconsin Writers Association, and he holds two undergraduate degrees in information technology--a convenient education in the world of independent, digital publishing. Check him out online at Website
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B015YNJMCE
Goodreads Author Page: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14430053.Corey_J_Popp
Here's a little snippet:
He set the old, iron toolbox down in the hall near the basement door, swung open the lid, and removed a hammer and screwdriver. Placing the tip of the screwdriver under the lowest hinge of the basement door, he began to tap out the hinge pin with the hammer.
“The door opens outward,” Spencer said. “As long as the hinges are on this side, that padlock can’t stop us.”
Spencer tapped out the remaining two hinges. Afterwards, the two men shook and wiggled the basement door until they secured an opening large enough for everyone to fit through, including Cooper. The padlock remained firmly attached in the upper corner of the door, acting like a new, yet makeshift hinge.
“Grab the stuff,” Spencer told Cooper.
Cooper nodded and headed for the dining room. I stepped toward the edge of the stairway and peered into the ominous passage. A cool, gentle, almost indiscernible puff of cool air brushed past my skin. Five narrow, slatted steps led down to a small wooden landing where a decaying dead women stood staring back at me.
Horror plundered the air from my lungs. I sighed deeply then said, “There’s a ghost here.”
Emma froze, becoming abruptly slack-jawed and glass-eyed. Spencer looked around as if he stood a chance of seeing the apparition. “Where, Claire?” he asked.
“On the landing. Five steps down.”
Spencer gave a quick tug on a chain hanging just inside the doorway. A dim bulb cast a dull, yellow light onto the dark, stone walls of the staircase.
Spencer surveyed the staircase and landing. “Do you see it, Emma?”
“No,” Emma said, her voice as soft as a breath.
His speech steady and commanding, Spencer said, “Tell me what you see, Claire. Describe the apparition to me.”
I choked down the fear caught in my throat. I allowed Spencer’s mettle to buoy my own courage. “Her skin is thin and white. I can see through it; her bones; her organs. Her heart’s not beating.”
“Stay calm. She’s trying to communicate with you visually. It’s the only method she knows right now. She may not be trying to scare you.”
The statement was absurd. “If she’s not trying to scare me, she’s failing miserably.”
“Can you see her eyes?”
“What color are they?”
“Not her eyeballs. What color are the irises?”
“She’s coming up the stairs,” I said, my voice trembling.
Emma muttered something I couldn’t distinguish.
Spencer’s voice returned stern and confident. “Steady, Claire. This is important.”
“She’s having trouble on the stairs. She’s missing her left foot. She’s walking on a stump. She’s gurgling. I think, I think she wants to kill me.”
Spencer’s unyielding hand clutched my upper arm. “I won’t let that happen.”
“We’re face to face, now. I can smell her. She’s—” I gagged on her putrid smell. “She’s rotting.”
“What color are her eyes, Claire?”
Through the thickness of the terror enveloping me, I peered into the bloodshot, yellow abyss of the dead woman’s eyeballs. I mentally peeled away her stench like the layers of a rotten onion. When the dead woman tipped her head to the side, I found, somewhere through the haze of death and hatred peering back at me, the information Spencer wanted.
“They’re green. Her eyes are green.”
I felt bile rise in my throat. I became dizzy. I heard someone call my name, and my knees buckled.
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