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The Tragedy Man: An Occult Serial Killer Thriller Kindle Edition
When his boss was murdered, Cary Bouchard’s life began.
For years, timid Cary toiled away in a cold cubicle. He had dreams, but not the courage to pursue them. That is, until he lost his job and found his fortune in a most unexpected way.
Nothing could have prepared Cary for how his life changes: love, money, and fame come to him all too easily. Soon he’s on TV, signing autographs for legions of fans, in love with a beautiful woman, and buying a Manhattan penthouse. Cary’s newfound confidence and cachet elevates him higher and higher.
But what goes up, must come down. Someone is out for blood. When unspeakable horrors and death start to befall everyone around Cary, everything slips from his grasp. His girlfriend, his fame, and finally… his sanity. All gone. A broken man, Cary has nothing to lose as he faces complete oblivion head-on. He does everything he must do in order to uncover the truth about the murder that led to his great fortune. But even if he does, will anyone believe him? And can he even trust himself?
“First-class storyteller Staci Layne Wilson has a style that is all her own: from her wicked tongue-and-cheek insider play on words and names to the heart she puts into the tale. She evokes the reader's compassion for her mild-mannered main character—from being publicly dissected by a talk show host, to his mounting terror at the long string of grisly murders that keep mysteriously finding their way to him. It’s got an ending so tightly twisted that it fits perfectly!” -- TM Gray, Dark Wisdom Magazine
“Staci Layne Wilson will have you sitting on the edge of your seat while you read how she tells the tale of The Tragedy Man. You will be turning page after page right up until the end. You are taken on this journey of a non-stop ride with plenty of twists and turns. It will amaze you how believable this story is! The description of her characters are so real, they’re almost too real! You haven’t read a good horror story until you’ve read The Tragedy Man. It is one you will not forget for a very long time.” – Kimberly Leslie, The R Studio
“Wilson has written a very engaging novel of suspense and horror. Her writing style flows, and the book is very easy to read. It starts strong and ends even stronger. It is a beautiful story in the style of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Cary is an excellent protagonist. Following him through the story allows us to follow ourselves--who doesn’t want to be a writer, after all?--and question our own motives and thoughts about the people in our lives.” – Jeremy Hoover, Blue Iris Reviews
Take a look inside the book now or listen to an audio sample!
Like some bizarre ménage à trois between Stephen King, Candace Bushnell, and Sarah Silverman, Wilson's fiction explores every aspect of the Forbidden. (Peter Atkins, screenwriter of the Hellraiser and Wishmaster films, author of Morningstar)
Staci Layne Wilson is an expert at creating believable characters [and a] chilling scenario. (James Newman, author of Holy Rollers and The Wicked)
Staci Layne Wilson's phrases [send] shudders of guilty pleasure across the raised skin on your back as you absorb them one delightful word at a time. (Michael Laimo, author of Atmosphere and Dregs Of Society)
Treat yourself to a masterfully written mind-tweak, haunting descriptions and an ending that screams, 'Move over, Rod Serling!' (Cass Andre, author of El Chupacabra)
A rousing good tale, full of atmosphere and suspense. (Joseph Nassise, author of Riverwatch
From the Publisher
Cary's fingers fairly flew over the keys of his old Corona, and he had finished several pages before dragging himself onto his bed and falling into an exhausted sleep, fully clothed and on top of the covers.
When the dreary gray sunlight found his eyelids the next morning, Cary's first thought was to read what he had written the night before.
The ghost stared at her with opaque, jaundiced eyes that were yellowed from the pus that filled them and oozed at the crusty corners. The ghost had the semblance of a face, but it was so rotted that one only saw the mold and maggots that clung to it. It wore pieces of a garment that had long since decomposed in the grave, and its moldering chest was nearly all eaten away from whatever bugs or mice had crawled into it and found their final resting place.
Hey, that wasn't right. He didn't remember writing that. Cary's eyes bulged as he read more...
- ASIN : B07D4FWPNQ
- Publisher : Excessive Nuance (May 31, 2018)
- Publication date : May 31, 2018
- Language : English
- File size : 1009 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Sticky notes : On Kindle Scribe
- Print length : 308 pages
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,903,695 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
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And boy does Cary’s life fall apart! The Tragedy Man starts with a murder in the first chapter and keeps building from there, with things at first getting better then much, much worse for its hero. The urban setting and slow descent into madness and horror merit a comparison with Rosemary’s Baby, but at the same time The Tragedy Man is nothing like that at all. Nothing in the story goes the way you would expect and the ending will floor you the way only true originality can. What makes this book even more impressive is that Wilson is not just a writer: she’s also a filmmaker, a producer, a documentarian, a film critic, and an entertainment reporter who has interviewed many a celebrity. How she finds the time to do all these things so well I have no idea. If there’s truly a renaissance woman of the 21st century, it’s Staci Layne Wilson.
Wannabe “Great American Novelist” Cary Bouchard “slums it”, signs a contract with Old Scratch Press, then becomes an overnight sensation with the release of two Stephen King-esque novels. And my first assumption was that this was going to be another Faustian / SCREWTAPE LETTERS-like supernatural thriller. But, as the story progresses, there’s mounting evidence of a more naturalistic PSYCHO II / JENNIFER 8-like psychological game wherein a crazed individual may be gaslighting our protagonist into appearing guilty of a series of sex murders. The third possibility is a Stevenson-inspired JEKYLL / HYDE scenario wherein Bouchard – who is as appalled as everyone else – may be in denial that he is the twisted killer.
The appearance of a ‘mysterious visitor’ in the final act tips the scales (for me personally perhaps a little too obviously and too soon), but this seems intentional as one of THE TRAGEDY MAN’s greatest strengths remains its insistence in making the horror thriller fun again; and not just humorous or pun laden. Many so-called thrillers of late – both novels and films (Eli Roth, THE PURGE and SAW anyone?) – are effectively grim and creepy, but not “fun“. Whereas say THE EXORCIST, TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE and even Dario Argento’s SUSPIRIA (hardly light or jokey) possess a rollercoaster glee in taking the audience on a macabre ride. From Poe to King to Clive Barker (some of them getting fictitious shout-outs in THE TRAGEDY MAN), great horror fiction accomplishes this. Wilson’s novel does the same.
While the audiobook version features a deceptively soothing read by actor Andy Garrison (“deceptive” because somewhere in that mellifluous voice one can detect a diabolical wink), I’ve always been more a fan of readable text, especially when it comes to thrillers. It’s often not just the story, but the manner in which the story is laid out on the page which accounts for so much of it’s effectiveness. In this regard, Wilson keeps things lively by occasionally altering her story’s “voice” via textual presentation. And this by extension controls the pace at which the eye glides down the page; it encourages the reader to take timed breaths, which carries a great deal of emotional / psychological weight. Y’know, that old saying about “silences speaking as loudly as music”. The opening chapters with Cary’s dead-end job read like a prisoner’s journal, while the excerpts from his first Gothic success VENGEFUL GHOST captures the elegance of Shirley Jackson; and his THE BRANDIE KILLER has the rat-tat-tat visceral-ness of King’s CUJO. All things considered Wilson’s THE TRAGEDY MAN (equal parts Clive Barker and Nathaniel Hawthorne) is one of the most enjoyable reads I’ve experience in some time. Kudos!
I have always enjoyed it when a writer tells a tale and the main character is a writer. Its makes you wonder how much of the author is in that character. Our main character Cary in a introvert. He works a job he hates for a boss he loathes, and spends the rest of his time at home in his small apartment with his only companion, his bird Tweetie, and his love of writing. He works on his novel, a ghost story, that he just can't seem to nail down. Its hard to write horror when that is a genre he hates and the thought of blood makes him squeamish. But when an opportunity comes along for him to be published, he starts down a road that will raise him up to the ranks of the best sellers, before events spiral out of control and his life descends into confusion, heart break and terror.
Staci Layne Wilson has crafted a fast-paced narrative that build as the story progresses. Her characters are well developed and some you will love, some hate and some get a small chuckle from (Steve Prince or Cleve Barkland, anyone). The story may revolve around one of the oldest tropes used in horror, but the author gives us enough twists and turns to keep it enjoyable.
Overall this is a great story that keeps you hooked from the first page until the shocking finale.