Archive for the All Hallows Read Category

Now Available — Descendant: A Novel of the Liber Monstrorum

Posted in All Hallows Read, Horror, Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice on October 31, 2019 by Occult Detective

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Available now in trade paperback and kindle on Amazon and Amazon UK, Descendant: A Novel of the Liber Monstrorum is my love letter to the occult detective genre. I think it’s pretty good… but don’t take my word for it —

“Descendant is like the bastard lovechild of The X-Files, H.P. Lovecraft, and Doctor Strange; and I mean that in the most loving way possible.”

— Erik Smith, The Monster Librarian

“Descendant is up there at the top my favourite paranormal investigation novels… the depth of occult knowledge that has been intertwined into the story is vast.”

— Jim McLeod, Ginger Nuts of Horror

“Bob weaves an excellent tale here, moody and at times grim, but never dull. The characters made me give a flying dang about them and I found myself smiling at turns in the dialogue & plot. Executed with precision, I really enjoyed this book and look forward to more from Mr. Freeman. This stuff should be on TV.”

— Steven L. Shrewsbury, author of Mojo Hand

“Between ancient bloodlines, unholy alliances and magical orders of great power, Freeman’s knowledge of dark magic and its history shows throughout every page.”

— Rodney Carlstrom, The Sci Fi Guys Book Review

“…Agents Wolfe and Crowe, are colorful, smart, emotionally driven, wise-cracking, resourceful, tough and just plain fun to watch. Er, I mean to read. Well, that’s just the thing. I always had the impression that I was actually seeing them, like watching a movie. Man, I love these two characters! They each have very distinct personalities that play off each other extremely well. If this was a movie, I’d have to say the casting was perfect. Wolfe and Crowe have a terrific chemistry going on.”

— Gary Val Tenuta, author of Ash: Return of the Beast

“This is not a story with an occult theme; this is a fictional storyline based on Freeman’s detailed knowledge of the occult, with extensive terminology and background information. While this novel could be a stand-alone – no wicked cliff-hanger or blatantly open-ending – it is the first in a series, and I am looking forward to the sequel.”

— Ursula K. Raphael

Descendant will be released tomorrow

Posted in All Hallows Read, Horror, Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice on October 30, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge

Tomorrow’s a double your pleasure kind of day: Hallowe’en reaches its zenith and Descendant reenters the world.

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I’m extremely proud of Descendant. I think you’ll more than like it. If occult detectives or horror or even just a good mystery yarn is your thing, then this one’s for you. It twists and turns in all the right places…

You’ll be able to find it on Amazon tomorrow. Don’t worry. I’ll point you to it.

Three days till Hallowe’en? Maybe so, but it’s already Occult Detective Season.

Posted in All Hallows Read, Occult Detective: The Roleplaying Game, Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice on October 28, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge

Hallowe’en is always a special time for me, but this year it is even more exciting. Why? Well, let’s take a quick rundown of what lies ahead.

First, of course, there’s All Hallow’s Eve itself. Let’s just underline that one.

What else?

First Born will be released as an audiobook.

Descendant drops in trade paperback and ebook.

Our final round of playtesting the Occult Detective RPG begins.

My Parker Brothers short story “Nos Galan Gaeaf” made Horror Delve’s annual Halloween Suggested Reading List. You should check it out. Heck, read every story on Matt’s list. It’s a good one.

And, last but by no means least, The Bookhouse, the pallet shack Connor and I have been working on all summer, will finally be unveiled.

I’m planning on uploading a video tour, so stay tuned…

Speaking of tours, do you want to host me on your blog? I’m doing a blog tour in November and would love to stop by your place for a chat. Sign up HERE if you’re interested.

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All Hallow’s Read 2019

Posted in All Hallows Read, Horror on October 15, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge

We’re just 16 days away from the sacred night… As I’ve said in years past, Hallowe’en is all about the masquerade, all of us behind masks, but when the masks come off, the real monsters are revealed. Or so it seems, especially these days…

And yet, 2019’s Hallowe’en season has been as magical as any from seasons past. Perhaps this one seems a tad bit busier, or maybe I’m getting older and it’s all a bit more…well, more everything.

But there is one tradition still to come that takes precedent over all others and that’s All Hallow’s Read.

“I propose that, on Hallowe’en or during the week of Hallowe’en,
we give each other scary books… Who’s with me?” — Neil Gaiman

Conceived of by Neil Gaiman in 2010, All Hallow’s Read really is the perfect way to celebrate All Hallow’s Eve. At the heart of it, Hallowe’en has always been about the stories… be they told around a campfire or read from an overstuffed chair. Poe. Lovecraft. Howard. Machen. Blackwood… and so many more.

It’s become a tradition very important to me and I hope you embrace it too.

Here’s my “Pumpkin King” poster for this year:

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93rd & Blackstone? An excerpt from Descendant, for your reading pleasure.

Posted in All Hallows Read, Horror, Magick by Trial & Error, Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice on October 8, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge

As the release of Descendant is fast approaching, just 23 days out, I thought another glimpse inside its pages was due:

frraineyRainey stepped out of the Yellow Cab on the corner of 93rd and Blackstone in front of the dark Victorian that set nestled in a copse of ancient ash and oak. Time had taken its toll on the Star & Garter, but its reputation alone drew the knowledgeably curious, as well as the serious student of the esoteric. The priest knew that if he were to unravel the mystery that was born this night, born upon a bloody Catholic altar, the road to understanding would begin here. He made his way across the uneven walk, climbed the porch stair and knocked upon the faded door.

“Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law,” a frail man, bent and twisted, welcomed.

“Love is the law,” Rainey responded, finding the discourse distasteful. “Love under will.” The traditional Thelemic greeting was required to gain entry and each time he was forced to say it, he felt that a little piece of his soul were dragged into Hell.

The attendant took the priest’s hat and coat and hung them within the coatroom, just off the small foyer. The priest waited impatiently for the old retainer, eager to put this night’s dark work behind him. With a wave of a withered hand the old one directed Rainey toward the Drawing Room where the sounds of animated discussion emanated.

The room was filled with a magical blend of exotic aromas. Three men sat in Elizabethan chairs drawn together in a semi-circle about the fireplace. The stream of smoke from their pipes mingling with the cedar logs in the hearth; it was a scene that could have been cut from the eighteenth century. Their period dress was perfect in every detail, as were their accessories. A fourth gentleman, the proprietor of the Star & Garter, stood above the others, a cryptic tome held in his well-manicured hands.

middle pillar“Rubbish,” the largest of the three seated gentlemen bellowed, “there has never been an exact Thelemic equivalent to the Middle Pillar Rite as conducted by the Golden Dawn.”

“Surely you’d agree, Kline,” another responded indignantly, “that the vertical and horizontal enchantments of Reguli seem to be a form of it.”

“Feh,” the large man huffed, “then why is Nuit attributed to Kether in the vertical enchantment? I know, I know “lady of the stars”, etc., but in the Star Ruby, Nuit is used in the North and attributed to Earth. In Reguli, Nuit is again found in the North but attributed to Air, while Kether is traditionally associated with the fifth element of Spirit.”

“That would lead one to believe,” the third man, a bookish twenty-something who had probably not grown his first beard, sat forward and stated, “that the vertical enchantment component is to be conceptualized from a solar perspective.”

Rainey shook his head. “Excuse me, gentlemen,” he interrupted, “but who says that Nuit is equivalent to Earth in the Star Ruby? In the original version of the ritual, as found in The Book of Lies, the direction of North is attributed to Water.”

“Father Rainey,” the proprietor said, turning to greet the priest, “welcome to the Star & Garter. It has been too long.”

“Indeed, Mr. Buckland,” Rainey responded, accepting the hand offered, “it has been far too long.”

“What is this about the original version of the Star Ruby?” Kline demanded.

“Oh, Father Rainey is quite correct,” Buckland replied to the larger man’s query, “Around the same time that Crowley wrote Reguli he edited the Star Ruby. It makes sense that the elemental directions follow the same scheme.”

starruby“It’s interesting to note that in both versions of the Star Ruby,” Rainey added, “the position of the guardians stays the same.”

“But that would mean,” the young scholar mused, “that they are not elemental.”

“Precisely,” the priest quipped, impressed by the young man’s deduction.

“As always, Father Rainey,” Buckland said, placing a hand on the priest’s shoulder, “you are a fount of wisdom. Come… let us talk. These gentlemen can continue their discourse without further interruption by us. We have some catching up to do.”

The youngest of the three men rose and offered a hand to the priest.

“My thanks to you Father,” he said with a soft boyish voice, “it is rare to be in the company of one so well versed in the esoteric. I am in your debt. You have given me much to think about.”

“I am glad that I could shed some light on your discussion, Mister…?”

“J’Adoube… Andre J’Adoube, Father. And it my pleasure to make your acquaintance.”

“The pleasure is mine,” the priest responded. “God be with you.”

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There are a lot of Easter Eggs to unpack in this excerpt, many that will be revealed later in the text, but I thought I should clarify that there is a corner of 93rd and Blackstone in Chicago, but you’re not likely to find the Star & Garter there, any more than Dr. Strange’s Sanctum Sanctorum is to be addressed at the actual 177A Bleecker Street.

Or is it?

To be honest, when I wrote the address for the Star & Garter I had no idea these two streets existed within the confines of the Windy City. let alone actually converged.

The 93, as reference to Crowley, was obvious enough, while Blackstone was an allusion to one of my favorite Robert E. Howard stories, The Black Stone.

It was only mush later that google maps showed me that such a place existed, albeit in a far different form from that found in my imagination.

93rd and Blackstone

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Descendant: A Novel of the Liber Monstrorum is available in trade paperback and ebook on Hallowe’en, October 31. You can preorder the kindle version now via amazon.com.

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Coming Soon to a Blog Near You

Posted in All Hallows Read, Horror, Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice on October 4, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge

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In support of my latest novel, Descendant, I will be embarking on a blog tour that will run from November 18-25. There will be feature reviews, interviews, guest posts, and top ten lists, spread out all across the internet.

If you’d like to have me as a guest, click on the following link to sign up:

Bob Freeman’s Descendant Blog Tour

Available in trade paperback and ebook on October 31, Descendant is a supernatural thriller filled with daring action, adventure, and artifice set against the backdrop of a very familiar world – but it is a world in which preternatural entities, clandestine magical orders, ancient bloodlines, and unholy alliances converge within the shadowed recesses of our darkest imaginings.

Federal Agents Selina Wolfe and Martin Crowe are called in to investigate a series of bizarre deaths in a small rural community. What first seems to be a misadventure involving black magic and satanic ritual soon takes on even more deleterious overtones, as the agents become embroiled in a plot by a sinister cabal intent on unleashing Hell on Earth.

Day 2 of the 31 Day Hallowe’en Blog Challenge: Favorite Horror Film

Posted in All Hallows Read, Horror, Media Macabre, Occult Detectives on October 2, 2019 by Occult Detective

31 day blog challenge

Today’s blog is a divergence as I look to finish up some All Hallow’s related things, but it’s a pleasant divergence. As I mentioned yesterday, this blog is shining a spotlight on my favorite ‘horror‘ film.

Now, that gets a bit tricky, because horror is so subjective.

Let’s face it, most of us grew up on scary movies (that’s why you’re here, no?). Being of a certain age, that meant watching black & white films at the drive-in or on late night tv hosted by Sammy Terry.

wolfmanAs a little kid, my favorite was The Wolf Man with Lon Chaney Jr. I watched it over and over again, enthralled by the magic and folklore of it all.

As I grew older, a number of films captured my imagination — but we’re here for me to draw the proverbial line in the sand.

What one movie, barring all others is my favorite horror film. Obviously it must have heavy occult overtones, with an occult detective of sorts involved in the mystery.

I can narrow it down to two.

On the one hand, The Devil Rides Out is such a near perfect picture, and Christopher Lee is a marvel to watch in it. It’s hard not to settle on it as my favorite…

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But alas, after much soul searching, another film nudges it out of the hallowed spot. The film I declare as my favorite horror film is an occult detective classic. It stars award winning actors, is beautifully directed, and ticks all the right boxes for me.

It also has the distinction of being adapted from one of my favorite novels and yet has the distinction of actually being better than the book from which it is derived.

The film is Angel Heart, the 1987 adaptation of William Hjortsberg’s novel Falling Angel. It was written and directed by Alan Parker (of Pink Floyd’s The Wall fame), and starred Mickey Rourke, Robert De Niro, Lisa Bonet, Charlotte Rampling, Dann Florek, and Pruitt Taylor Vince.

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Angel Heart is a visual masterpiece with an intriguing mystery wrapped up in a psychological thriller with noir sensibilities. This is a quintessential occult detective film, with plenty of twists and strange magics sprinkled throughout.

If you’ve not had the pleasure, rectify that at your earliest convenience.

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Don’t forget, I’ll be giving away some spooky books come Hallowe’en, including a signed copy of Descendant, which you can pre-order the ebook right HERE. If you prefer the trade you’ll have to wait till All Hallow’s Eve.

To have a chance at winning the frightfully delicious prizes all you need do is tag me (twitter.com/OccultDetective) and use the hashtags #Descendant and #Halloween together on Facebook and Twitter and you’re entered to win

Tune in tomorrow and I just might offer up some magical book reviews more than fitting for this Hallowe’en season…

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