Tuesday, September 16, 2014

RELEASE DAY: Kathy Bosman "His Halloween Kisses"


Ali’s never been so scared. She’s housesitting for a colleague on Halloween night, but the lights have gone out, and terrible noises and crashes send her imagination into overdrive. When her brother’s friend comes to her rescue, he kisses her in the dark three times. Once back in the light, Ali is embarrassed at allowing him to kiss her. Byron tries to ignore his strong attraction for Ali, especially seeing he’s not ready for a relationship. When Ali finds out why, she runs away, but life has other plans. What can bring them together? Fate, faith, or the memory of his Halloween kisses?



Kathy loves reading and writing even more. She homeschools her three kids, so in between unsuccessfully explaining the difference between subject and predicate or how to divide fractions, she enters an imaginary world of troubled and passionate characters whose stories take over the page. Kathy lives in Kwazulu Natal, South Africa, where the summers are hot, the winters cool, and bugs thrive. Her first published novel, Wedding Gown Girl, came out in 2012 with Astraea Press. She belongs to the Romance Writers of South Africa Group (ROSA) which has been her greatest support and inspiration the last few years.



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Chapter One

Ali Micklejohn heaved a large two-seater couch in front of the door and sat down on the expansive three-seater to watch TV. Tonight was going to be a long night.

The wind blew in eerie echoes through the house she stayed in, knocking the loose window clasps like horror music with its squeaks, creaks, and sighs. The elements weren’t worth being scared of though. They were just sounds. No, this was South Africa, and even though she stayed in a fairly safe area, couldn’t someone be lurking in the shadows? Especially since she couldn’t lock the door. That was reason to be scared, she told herself, not all the strange creaking noises and “haunted” thoughts. The lock on the front door had given out on her this evening when she came home after struggling to turn the key for about an hour. The couch across the door provided her only way to feel a measure of safety.

Whines seared through the room; long, sad sounds that pierced into her gut. She shivered slightly and pulled her thin jacket closer to her chest.

Tonight was the 31st October. Halloween. And really, so what?

She’d never believed in Halloween, never celebrated it. Growing up in South Africa, Halloween had only taken off the last few years. Most of the older generation didn’t celebrate it at all. Some kids dressed up in outfits and went to parties. It hadn’t spread to the more serious generation yet.

Trick or treating wasn’t safe in a country where kids dare not walk the streets at night and knock on strangers’ doors. But decorations were all over the shops and even graced the school where Ali worked as a secretary. Spiders, witches’ hats, orange pumpkins, and zombie masks. Dark, sombre colours, which she actually liked in a perverse way. So, to a degree, she’d been immersed in the feeling of scariness, a feeling she normally found funny and wacky.

Not tonight for some reason.

She wasn’t the fearful type, never had been. Having survived being hijacked outside her parents’ gate, she’d learnt to appreciate every day, every moment, and she felt like a survivor. She was one.

The wooden front door creaked and groaned with the vicious spring winds. Why did spring always have to be so windy in Newcastle? She turned the TV up to drown out the sounds. She switched the channel to a comedy show and settled down with her large slab of hazelnut chocolate and a packet of crisps. Oh, the joys of living on her own for a change—she could have the whole bag to herself.

That’s why she’d decided to house-sit a few nights for a teacher at the school where she worked. And to get some time to think.

Besides, all her roommates were going out to a party with their boyfriends. Definitely not fun for the only single one left of the tight-knit group.

The TV made a fizz, and the light from its screen compressed into a small dot. All the lights in the house went out.

A power failure.

She sat frozen for a moment, unsure what to do next. This wasn’t her own home. Where did they keep candles and torches? At her place, she stored them in the kitchen drawer, and so did her parents in her childhood house. Wouldn’t that be the logical place? Blinking furiously, she hoped to find a light somewhere to guide her to the kitchen without bumping into something. Nothing. She couldn’t see a single thing. There was no moon tonight. Probably as overcast as it had been the whole miserable, rainy, windy afternoon. She spread out her hands in front of her and walked slowly, one awkward, terrifying step at a time.

In the darkness, the sounds were magnified. Wind whined like a strangled prisoner through every window, door crack, and ceiling board. Something tapped at one of the windows from the dining room. Tap…tap…tap. Probably just a branch from a nearby bush. It couldn’t be a ghost or a zombie, could it? Her quickened pulse didn’t believe any logical arguments tonight.

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