Thursday, May 2, 2013

VBT ~ Author Post, Spotlight, & Giveaway: Paranormal Properties (Paranormal Properties, Book One) by Tracy Lane (Presented by Bewitching Book Tours)

Jake Weir, while on the set of his parents ghost hunting TV show, agrees to help a ghost investigate a 61 year-old murder. 

Jake Weir is not like the other kids in Dusk, North Carolina. Then again, Dusk, North Carolina is not like other cities. Known as one of the most haunted cities in America, behind Salem, Massachusetts and New Orleans, Louisiana, Dusk is ground zero for Jake's ghost hunting parents. 

The Weir family has arrived in Dusk eager to scope out some of the town's 127 reported "paranormal properties," which just happens to be the name of their own ghost hunting show: Paranormal Properties. What Jake doesn't know, and what his parents could never imagine, is that Jake can see ghosts! And hear them. And talk back to them! This talent comes in handy when he runs into Dusk's oldest, most famous ghost: one Frank Barrone, a one-time lounge singer made famous by his booze-soaked ballad, "Barroom Eyes." 

Frank was gunned down by a local mobster in 1951 and has been searching for his killer ever since. When he learns that Jake can see and hear him, Frank makes young Jake a deal: if Jake will help Frank find his killer, Frank will help his parents find a ghost to film for their upcoming Halloween Special on Public Access Channel #319. Jake enlists the only friend he's made in Dusk, an overweight tomboy nicknamed "Tank," to help him track down Frank's killer. As clues emerge and old leads heat up, Frank and Jake learn they make quite a team. But will Jake find Frank's killer? And will Frank find a real haunted house in time for Halloween?

Saph would like to extend a warm welcome to Tracy Lane as she joins Sapphyria's Book Reviews:

Hello!  My name is Tracy Lane and I am the crazy mind behind Paranormal Properties. Please bear with me, this is my very first guest blog and I am not too sure how to proceed, but I am going to give a try.
My first goal was to be a published writer and I have succeeded at that. My next goal is to make a living off of my writing and I am working on that. Paranormal Properties is my first novel. The process of writing it was very slow at first. I tried for 5 years to get this book written. I just didn’t have the confidence that I could do it and do it well. One day I jus t noticed my children had grown up, the last two were teenagers and just seemed not to need me as much, and since my husband had died a few years before in a car wreck, I was basically alone.  So, once again, I picked up my pen and tried to write my story. I was so frustrated; I just could not seem to get it out. Then I read somewhere that if you write 5 to 10 minutes a day and just try to get one page out, you will end up with a book in one year. Not wanting to be someone who, late in life, ended up saying they wished they had done what they always dreamed to do, I wanted to be that person who actually did it.
It actually worked! I found that my writing time was early morning when I made coffee and sat down to type a page before getting the kids up for school.  Soon it became a habit. I found myself during the day looking forward to the next morning and even thinking about what would happen next. After it all was written, next came hiring an editor to clean it up so it could be submitted. The editor is actually a writer too, knew about submitting to publishers, and offered to do it for me. That took a lot of worry off my shoulders; I had never submitted anything before and was not sure how to go about it.
Here’s the crazy part, two weeks after submitting Paranormal Properties to a few publishers, I had a contract in hand from Pants on Fire Press.  My first novel, that took years to get written, only took two weeks to find a publisher. And even now that it is published, I am still pinching myself to see if it is real. I really don’t want to wake up and find out it isn’t.
Everyone seems to love Paranormal Properties. It’s a book for all ages that is not scary; it’s more of a Scooby Doo or Goosebumps. Several people have asked me if it will be a series, because they want to read more of Jake and Frank. I say sure, why not! I have started another book called Entwined Courage. It is a young adult romance story but after this one is done, I will start on the Paranormal Properties sequel. I did leave it off in case I wanted to keep writing them. Now I am so glad I decided to do that. Jake and Frank are characters that everyone falls in love with. And isn’t that what a book is suppose to do?
Tracy Lane

Thank you so much for stopping by today, Tracy!!  Your book sounds absolute fantastic!  ~~Saph

Book Details:

Paranormal Properties
Paranormal Properties Book One 

Tracy Lane

Genre: YA Paranormal 

Publisher: Pants on Fire Press 

ISBN: 978-0982727171 

Number of pages: 192 
Word Count: 33,000 

Purchase Links:





The voice was eerie, barely above a whisper. Jake paused, his sneaker poised above a grave as he stood in the middle of Dusk Cemetery. 

It was nearly midnight and he’d grabbed the wrong flashlight before sneaking out of his bedroom window. It had run out of juice halfway through the graveyard, and he’d been blindly stumbling around ever since. 

The moon was full, but it was frequently obscured by heavy cloud cover and he had to wait until another patch moved through to see very well. 

He wasn’t scared, so much. Jake had a special relationship with graveyards, and this was far from his first time at the rodeo. Still, it was the first time a headstone had ever talked to him. 

The voice grew louder. 


It was a female voice, sounding dark in a way a ghost might: dark and deep and frosty. 

He risked another step, letting the moonlight guide his path. It was a big cemetery, and well-maintained as cemeteries go. There were headstones everywhere, some leaning, some taller than Jake. 


Jake turned to the left to follow the sound. It was coming from a massive tombstone two feet taller than he was, and three feet wider. He pointed the flashlight at it, but the beacon was dim, even after he banged it three times on the palm of his hand. 

Then, suddenly, it lit, falling upon the dead soul’s name: “Rose Colder.” 

It was there on the grave stone, but the flashlight flickered out just before he could read the dates. 

“Silas…” came the eerie voice again, so close he could hear the ghost’s lips smacking. 

But, wait. Did ghosts really have lips to smack? 

Jake parted his own lips and spoke for the first time since walking into the graveyard. “R-R-Rose?” 

He hadn’t meant to stutter, but he couldn’t help it. He heard a rasp, or a cough, and then the crunch of dry leaves behind the headstone. 

“Silas?” was the reply, and then the rustling of cheap plastic against flesh. The clouds broke, the moon shone down, and a giant, yellow monster reared from behind the headstone, smiling. 


“Gotcha!” said the beast, in a boastful, girlish voice. It was a girl, a giant girl, a living girl in a big, yellow raincoat. 

“W— who are you?” Jake stammered, trying to hold his ground. He had to look up a good four inches to see her face. 

Her eyes glittered beneath her short, greasy hair. She was heavy, but with her big smile and that cheerful way about her, she looked more nice than scary. 

“I’m Tank,” she said proudly, inching closer to him with big black and white sneakers crunching over dry, dead leaves. “Who are you?” 

“Jake Weir,” he said, relieved he didn’t stammer that time. “And who…who’s Silas?” 

“Don’t you know?” she asked, sitting down on one of the large marble slabs that surrounded Rose Colder’s grave. She patted the one next to him, and he sat, too. 

He didn’t know why, but even in a graveyard, even after pranking him in her big, yellow raincoat that made her look like a linebacker for an NFL team, this “Tank” girl didn’t scare him. 


“No,” he replied. 

Tank frowned. “Rose Colder,” she explained, “snuck out at midnight to meet her boyfriend, Silas Miner, in this very cemetery over a hundred years ago. But Silas’s Dad didn’t approve of his son dating a commoner, so he kept Silas from seeing her and sent a couple of local thugs to teach Rose a lesson. When the thugs showed up, Rose fought back…and lost. They buried her here, and legend has it that every night, at midnight, she rises from her grave to take revenge on the men who ended her life.” 

“So…so that’s why you were calling me Silas?” 

Tank nodded, and then slugged him on the shoulder. “What are you doing here, anyway?” Jake shrugged. He didn’t really want to tell her. 

She pulled a flashlight from her raincoat pocket and flicked it on, right in his eyes. “Hey!” He held up a hand to shield his face. 

“Wait, hold up.” Tank pointed the beam up. “What’s that on your hat?” 

Jake blushed. He’d grabbed the hat at the last minute, not thinking about it. He had so many of them, and they all looked alike: black ball cap, neon green writing that spelled “Paranormal Properties.” 

“You…you work for that TV show? The ghost hunting one?” 

“You know about it?” Jake was surprised. They’d just gotten into town, and his parents hadn’t even filmed an episode here yet. That’s what he was doing out in the graveyard at midnight, trying to find something extra special for a new episode. 

Of course, they’d kill him if they found out, but he figured it would be worth it if they finally got more than a handful of people to watch. 

“Know about it?” Tank shouted. “I watch it every week! You know, the live feed on the web page. We don’t have any local channels that play it.” 

Jake beamed in appreciation. “Cool,” he said. 

“So,” Tank urged, nudging his knee with her own. He noticed she was wearing plaid pants under her yellow rain coat. “Do you work for it or what?” 

“My Mom is the host. My Dad is the cameraman.” 

Tank gasped and shoved Jake with each word. “No. Way! Get. Out. Of. Town!” 

She stopped shoving him and stood up instead, yanking him by the sleeve of his T-shirt. Dragging him from the cemetery, she said, “I love your Mom. You have to tell me all about her.” 

“Where are we going?” he asked, finally regaining use of his feet and catching up to her. 

She saw him at her side, looked down and let him go. “There’s a diner around the corner, open all night. I’m buying you a hot fudge sundae and you’re going to tell me all about what it’s like to have famous parents.” 

“Famous?” he chuckled as he followed her past the cemetery gate. His Mongoose bike was sitting there, dry and rusty, just where he’d left it. 

“Sure thing.” She reached behind some bushes and lifted out a green ten speed with just one hand. 

They mounted their bikes and, now that he was looking for it, Jake saw the neon sign for the Dusk Diner just around the corner. Yet, something was still bugging him. “Hey,” he said, “what were you doing in the graveyard at midnight?” 

Tank shrugged. “Couldn’t sleep.” 

“So you went to a cemetery?” 

She shrugged again, pedaling off. While struggling to catch up, Jake heard her say, “Hey, I met you, didn’t I?”

“Paranormal Properties is a great, family-friendly Young Adult novel about a boy who can talk to ghosts. Equal parts Scooby-Doo, CSI and the Hardy Boys, you will enjoy getting to know Jake, Frank and Tank as much as I did. Now, if only ‘Paranormal Properties’ was a real show I could watch on TV every week…” ~ Rusty Fischer, author of Zombies Don’t Cry

About the Author: 

I was fascinated with the paranormal when I was very young. I always felt like someone was around me even when I was alone. It caused me to be inspired to write a paranormal book where a teenager can see and hear ghosts and actually makes friends with one. 

I use to love to write short stories in school and always wanted to be a writer. But raising children and working jobs I just could not find the time to indulge my passion. Then my children grew up and I ended up having two teenagers at home who did not need as much attention from me. I started toying with the idea of writing once again. So setting aside 5 to 10 minutes per day to write at least one page I could end up with a book a year. Now Paranormal Properties is published and I have a list of 8 more books to write. I don't think I"ll be slowing down anytime soon. 



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Sapphyria said...

You're welcome :)