To celebrate Halloween, I’m posting an exclusive section of Vacant, the fourth Mindspace Investigations novel out December 2nd. One lucky person who comments below (or posts on Twitter including @ahugheswriter so I see you) will receive his/her choice of an audiobook in the series OR an *early* copy of Vacant when I receive it more than two weeks prior to publication date. So you’ll want to make sure to comment or Tweet!
Make sure to keep reading after the excerpt for a list of other blogs to visit for spooky words and fun giveaways.
We drove through several streets in Savannah until we ended up at a long concrete box with bars on the window, what looked much more rough than the one and only gun shop and range Cherabino had taken me to a few months ago. One lone street light sputtered overhead, a half-dead biolumescent bush in a median in the cracked parking lot looking like it hadn’t had any water in years.
The sign above the concrete front said Hard Knocks in harsh lettering, with a single painted gun shot hole, with a ragged edge.
Mendez and Jarrod went ahead, to introduce themselves to the gun shop owner; I collected myself, finally getting out once I was sure there was no minds around likely to be an issue for Tommy. The surroundings felt… too empty, actually. Much too empty, though I couldn’t put my finger on any particular reason why.
My feet weren’t used to dress shoes, and so the blisters of the day rubbed as I walked across the parking lot, low-level distracting pain. I’d had to learn to ignore much worse as part of my Guild training, so it wasn’t a deal breaker. But I’d have to peel off the socks and treat the things so they didn’t get infected later.
I felt Tommy’s impatience a step behind me. And a sudden burst of emotion from Jarrod in Mindspace ahead, tamped down all too suddenly. I walked in the front door, which they’d already opened, and saw why.
Lying on the floor was someone I presumed was the gun shop owner, shot in the chest at least twice, blood bloomed on his shirt already drying into that funny brown-red, limps already stiffening in rigor mortis.
“I take it you did not expect a crime scene in here?” I asked Jarrod, blocking Tommy’s view of the scene with my body. Just in time, felt like.
“Hey, I want to see,” he said.
“No you don’t,” I said.
Jarrod sighed, and walked over to the wall where a phone hung.
Ah, murder and mayhem in the world of telepathy. Gotta love it.
Need more spooky reads & giveaways? Check out my fellow blog hop writers in the list below.
Lisa Alber – a copy of the Kilmoon mystery book and an Irish gift
Heather Webb – signed books or chocolate
Anna Lee Huber – giving away audiobooks for the Lady Darby Mysteries
Jennifer Delamere – advanced copy of “A Bride for the Season”
Kerry Schafer – signed copy of Wakeworld
Stacy Lee – advanced copy of Under the Painted Sky
Janet B Taylor – $15 Amazon gift card and some chocolate goodies
Hazel Gaynor – advanced copy of The Memory of Violets
Susan Emans says
I am so excited! And a little sad because we will have to wait longer for the next Mindspace book. But I’m still *flailing* about the chance to win an early copy of Vacant. Thank you!!
Well, December 2nd is not so long 🙂 Thanks for commenting!
Yeah I’m giving this a shot to win cause I’m loving the Mindspace novels
Thanks! That means a lot 🙂
Ooooh…we’re heading to Savannah in this one? I can’t wait!
Juanita Decuir says
Wow! this excerpt is unbelievable…and so is this Spooky Halloween Blog Hop…I am enjoying myself immensely, finding new authors!
Robert Grieco says
Hard Knocks is the place to be. 🙂
Glad you liked the name! Thank you all for commenting, and for reading. 🙂 I’ll close the contest tomorrow morning and inform the winner then. Good luck all!
Tara Day says
Hello again! I can’t wait for the release of Vacant.
Giveaways are nice! I’d suggest doing lots of those to help spread the word, even if you don’t always use your own book in the giveaway. People love lots of urban fantasy! Maybe include one with Kerry Schafer’s series and/or Jennifer Estep’s latest novels?
I also love your “three-word-contests” and stories. Things like that are fun to read and get into.
Happy future release day Alex!
Those are great ideas! Thanks 🙂
I would love to get my hands on book four early. Following a book series teaches you patience, but early is always better.
Alexander R. says
New characters! Dead gun shop owner! Adam in dress shoes???
Sounds like fun. Bring it on, Ms. Hughes! Can’t wait.
Laughed out loud. Adam in dress shoes is *totally* the jaw dropper in this scene, you’re right!
Alexander R. says
It is both true and not true that dress shoes are remnants of the Spanish Inquisition. At least I think that’s the language I’m cursing in when forced to wear said devices.
Dave Gilbert says
Funny to read about this now. I only just finished re-reading the entire series this week (including the novellas) and now I hear the next one is coming! So, you know, perfect timing. I look forward to reading it. Two weeks early or not!
Mat Hudson says
I look forward to seeing how you combine the Mindspace world we love with the classic Old South of Savannah. It’s got to be beautiful!
Carlos Ovalle says
Happy Halloween, and I’m looking forward to checking out your new works! ^_^
Happy Halloween to you as well!
Kristen Heyl says
I can’t wait for vacant to come out. I have been devouring the series from the start.
Christopher Macy says
Good to hear that the new book is coming out soon. I caught the SDCC panel on ways to kill your characters that you were on in July and have been waiting for something new to read ever since.
Oh, that was such a fun panel! Glad you were able to come, and that you liked the books. 🙂
….And the contest is closed officially as of now.
I just generated a random number from Random.org and the commenter/Tweeter that it corresponded to was Christopher Macy. Congrats Christopher! You should have an email from me in your box now so we can figure out how to get you the prize.
Thanks to all who entered! You guys rock.
Alexander R. says
Thank you, Alex, for doing this.
Very excited for Vacant.