Pine Tree Mary

It’s time for a lesson in Scandinavian folklore…though to be honest to untangle all the different names and descriptions is close to impossible.

On October 5th, my story Pine Tree Mary will be released. Hush, one of the main characters, is a hulder or a pine tree Mary if you like. But depending on what story you read, a pine tree Mary can also be called a skogsrå or a forest spirit or the mistress of the forest or a vittra (though a vittra can also be something completely different) or the lady in the forest. And while all these names can mean the same thing, there can also mean different creatures.

In the olden days, huntsmen and wanderers would walk into the forests and never come out again, or they’d come back changed men, all quiet and introverted. This was because they’d met and been seduced by a hulder. She would ensnare them with her beauty and if the men stayed loyal to her she’d blow into the pipe of their rifles and they’d never miss an animal while hunting again – unless they were aiming at one of the moose she rides on, of course. Hulders are often seen riding on moose.

There are many tales about what a wife could do if she suspected her husband had fallen victim of a pine tree Mary. Personally, I believe the hulder simply was an excuse used by cheating husbands once they were caught, but what do I know.

Anyway, a pine tree Mary is very beautiful if you see the front of her, should she turn around you’d see that she has a tail and a back like a rotting tree. She’s tantalizing, seductive, and is the ruler of the animals in the forest. So if you happened to piss off a hulder, you’d go hungry because no game would come close enough to catch.

If you stayed on her good side she’d help you, though. Many stories talk about how hulders helped charcoal burners when they’d fallen asleep and there’d been danger of a fire spreading.

But, according to legend, Odin hated the hulder and chased her like an animal in The Wild Chase.

I kinda like the pine tree Marys, they’re powerful female creatures from a time when women didn’t have much power. Too bad she’s the one most likely to steal your man.

Pine Tree Mary is an M/M romance story, so I’ve cheated and made Hush the one and only male hulder in the world LOL.

Pine Tree Mary

Detective Quinn Manning wants nothing more than to see Diamond Dace, one of Fagerdal’s most notorious drug lords, behind bars. After years of the man eluding the authorities, when Manning accidentally stumbles onto an opportunity to catch the powerful dealer red-handed, he doesn’t hesitate. But what should be a simple tail, instead drops Manning into a real-life world of myth and legend.

Hush is a hulder, a forest spirit also known as a pine tree Mary. Since the beginning of time, his people have lived in the forest, feeding off the energy they derive from the lust and desires of passing hunters. But Hush is an abomination, the only male of his kind.

After a lifetime of starvation, Hush has struck a deal with a human. A simple trade that will give the human what he desires and keep Hush from wasting away completely.

When Manning saves a young man from Diamond and one of his men, his view of reality is altered forever. And Hush, who has never met anyone like Manning, finds the man’s attraction to him enough to finally stave off his constant hunger.

When together they set out to rescue Manning’s partner, their connection to one another grows. But can a human detective have a future with a creature of the forest, a creature who isn’t supposed to exist?

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Just Desserts

The yakuza!!!!

OMG, I loved this. I was in the mood for Mary Calmes but I didn’t know I’d get tattoos, yakuza and an adorable chef as well.

Okay….so I’ve read Just Desserts (Tales of the Curious Cookbook #5) by Mary Calmes.  A little while back I read Lost Along the Way by Marie Sexton, that’s book #3 in the series of the Curious Cookbook, but since they’re standalone I don’t think it matters in what order you read them.

Boone, an art gallery owner, was raised in Japan but has tried hard to leave his past behind him. His best friend Scott is a chef who works hard every night in his restaurant. Boone does everything he can to make Scott’s life easier – he fix things, makes sure Scott eats and sleeps as he needs.

The only thing Boone doesn’t do is sleep with Scott. Not because he doesn’t want to, he does, but…

Boone is all tattooed growliness and Scott is a hardworking flirt and yet they fit together like two pieces of a puzzle. They love each other but no one puts words on what they feel, not until a certain dessert brings out the possessiveness in them.

But this story is so much more than dessert, it has a dark past, lots of grief, and it has a ghost. They’re in New Orleans so there has to be a ghost, right? LOL

A lovely friends to lovers book.

Just DessertsBoone Walton has tried hard to create some distance between himself and his past. He’s invested in his new life, his New Orleans art gallery, and his friendship with Scott Wren. Things finally seem to be settling down to normal, and Boone couldn’t be happier.

Chef Scott Wren wants much more than normal with Boone. He wants to raise things to the next level, but Boone is terrified—and not because of the ghost in Scott’s apartment or Scott’s relatives. No, Boone’s past is about to pay him a visit, and the only thing that can get between Boone, Scott, and a hinky recipe for chocolate mousse found in a curious cookbook is the river of pain Boone had to swim across to get to this side of The Big Easy. There’s a secret behind the ingredients, though—one that might reveal the trust and love that have been missing from Boone’s life.

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Acronym – A Tattooed Corpse Story

It has finally happened! For more than a year it’s been on my to-do list to switch out the story I give my readers once they’ve joined my Reader Group (mailing list) and now I have.

Amy Spector and I have a series going called the Tattooed Corpse Stories. It’s a series of short stories and novelettes with nothing in common except for one thing – the body. At some point in each of these stories a dead body with a snake tattoo appears.

Acronym is the third Tattooed Corpse Story I’ve written, and it’s about Detective Lars Horn who’s called down to the morgue because the body he found at a crime scene a few weeks ago had been brought in again – same body, same fingerprints, just as fresh.

The first Tattooed Corpse Story I wrote was Worth His Salt which is a ghost story. Eldred Henstare is a witch who’s job is to rid his city of lingering spirits, it just this spirit doesn’t want to leave, not until it’s had its revenge.

The second story I wrote was It Doesn’t Translate which might be one of my favourites. Max is a human who moves to the Luna Terminal where he opens a hamburger bar. It isn’t until space pirates make his restaurant their favourite hangout place he realises humans don’t have it easy in space.

And then we have Acronym. All of these stories are standalone, and there is no reading order that should be followed. So if you want to read Acronym, sign up for my Reader Group, and you’ll get a copy.

Cover Acronym

Detective Lars Horn is called down to the morgue when a body he retrieved from a crime scene a couple of weeks ago is brought in again. No one had noticed it had gone missing, and it looks just as fresh as it did the first time Horn saw it.

Disappearing bodies is not his responsibility, but when it goes missing a second time, he can’t help but get involved. And to make matters worse, he glimpses a guy at the local pub who looks just like the lost body.

Maybe he’s overworked and maybe he had a little too much to drink, but he can’t let it go until he finds the man from the pub and makes sure he isn’t seeing dead people.

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