Chill Out On St. Simons Island. Creepy St. Simons Island is the setting with the live oaks with drooping moss and big roots that jut up out of the ground and look three hundred years old. Mosquitoes the size of your fist buzz near your leg and vampire-like drive you back into your car. Alligators with yellow eyes spy you from the nearest swamp, and this is the land of swamps. You won’t be able to find your way around the black water with reeds growing out of it any time soon.
Judy has the creeps. Nothing like this brutal stabbing and strangling has ever happened on St. Simons, a peaceful island off the coast of southeast Georgia. She’s seen such things only on TV. But here it is, staring straight back at her from her iPad!
There’s been an attack on a teenage girl her own age at Dunbar Creek, near Ebo Landing in the swamps. It’s a site often visited by ghost tours because of its ghoulish history. Legend has it that a girl from plantation days often appears with a lantern in hand searching for her lost love.
Whether there’s a ghost or not in Mary’s Gone, Judy has no idea. All she knows is that she’d better figure out what’s really going on. The voice that calls her on her cell phone, the one claiming to be the girl from long ago named Margaret the Wanderer, promises that Judy will be her very next victim.
In Demon From Egypt Cheryl must spend the summer cleaning the beach house and collecting mail for the new tenant. The only problem, he doesn’t seem to be anywhere. There is no food in his refrigerator. He has no mail to bring in. When she tries to clean the basement, the door is padlocked and bolted.
What kind of weirdo is this? He paid for his whole year lease upfront with cash sent from a rental agency that doesn’t even exist. Is he a criminal of some kind?
Cheryl need only turn to her cat. He likes to prowl around the place at night. He discovers wild goings on in the basement of the supernatural kind. The place is haunted to say the least by not by anything ordinary. An ancient evil inhabits the place. From the days of ancient Egypt and Greece comes a monster. If Cheryl doesn’t watch out, she soon will be dead.
Demon From Egypt was originally published in German by Cora Verlag. If you liked Demon From Egypt you will enjoy Dora Benley’s other ancient thrillers including Caesar and Cleopatra, Minotaur, Book of the Dead, Cleopatra’s Stone, and Helen of Troy.
Edith can’t go to school without finding Stripes. She and her lab, Tricks, search through the backyard with no luck. She sees a van parked in front of her driveway. The dog dashes aboard. She follows. The door slams behind them. They are headed up the road and out of town past her grocery store and even her high school where she was supposed to take a math exam today. She screams and yells but the driver won’t stop.
As the van drives farther and farther north, only gradually does it dawn on Edith that she’s been kidnapped. It doesn’t make any sense to her that the girl in the cab is Eliza Fitzhugh, her next door neighbor from up the street. It makes even less sense that the driver looks just like some guy that she saw.
She finds herself transported all the way to a place she has never heard about before called Spirit Island. What do people there want with her? Edith had better figure it all out soon, or she might end up dead.
Bianca mourns for her old friend Doc who helped her overcome her fear of the dark after being the only witness to a brutal murder on St. Simons Island. He was driven out of town two years ago when the locals concluded that he must be the killer. She last saw him parachuting from a plane escaping from the law, a fall he couldn’t have survived. She’s moved to California with her employers, the Shipleys, and taken on a permanent babysitting position with Little Katie. Suddenly there’s a kidnapping attempt on the rich little heiress that Bianca is employed to protect. To the rescue comes a tall, dark young man who reminds her of somebody she’s lost. But it just couldn’t be . . . After all, he’s dead. And after all . . . he’s supposed to be the bad guy.
Dark 3 concludes the Dark Series for young adults, first published by Scholastic UK. It also ties into and concludes the Edward Ware Thriller Series of historical novels about World War 1 and World War 2 with the biggest surprise ending of all time. The novel will be published by Cheops Books LLC on September 15.
Teens rarely need an excuse to stay up late, but The Dark by Dora Benley would give pause for thought to even the most steely nerved youngster. A genuinely gripping horror story. Approach with caution.
The Sunday Independent, Dublin, Ireland
Back to Venice Through A Time Tunnel:
Eighteen year old Alexandra Banks yawns and stretches as she asks her chauffeur where they are. Charles says the Coronado Bay Resort in San Diego. Alexandra thinks it looks like Venice with all the canals, gondolas, and gondeliers in Italian Renaissance and medieval costumes. They were there just last week with her high roller parents. Charles tells her it is California make believe like Disneyland. He points out at sign that advertises gondola rides on the Coronado Cays. But Alexandra isn’t sure when the costumed gondeliers begin to stare at her.
She knows something very strange is going on when she takes a ride in a gondola and steps out into what is obviously Venice. But it is not the Venice of today but of hundreds of years ago. Passers by gawk at her. They are suspicious of her twenty-first century clothes and her cell phone. She is quickly arrested and put on trial for her life as a witch. How did Alexandra get into such a fix to begin with? What is going on? How does she escape? She had better figure it out soon or she may never emerge from the nightmarish Middle Ages and get back to her real life again.
If you liked Back to Venice you will enjoy other young adult thrillers by Dora Benley such as Mary’s Gone, King Richard 1: A Novel, Julia: A Novel, Livia: A Novel, and Doom of Egypt.
Lenore Rawlings has always been a loner in the new YA novel Curse of the Pharaoh. She has a pet cat, a dog, and even as snake which is appropriate considering that she has recently moved to Arizona. Today she must drive her boyfriend and a teacher who is also an archaeologist to the new museum in town. The newest pharaoh from Egypt, his queen, and the court are on display, on loan from Egypt. But little does Lenore realize that waiting for her at the museum is a boy named Seti, whom she can’t even see because he is invisible. The ghost lingers by the museum exhibit waiting for his lost love with long red hair and green eyes, the very image of Lenore. When he sees Lenore he thinks she is the reincarnation of his lover from thousands of years before and turns out the lights. Lenore feels a hand on her shoulder. She has better figure out what to do fast or she might well end up kidnapped by a wraith from ancient times.
If you liked Curse of the Pharaoh, you will like other young adult thrillers and supernatural novels by Dora Benley including Curse of Egypt, Doom of Egypt, Book of the Dead, Julia: A Novel, and Livia: A Novel.
June is turning eighteen, but her father can’t be there. He is excavating the Tomb of the Unknown Princess in Egypt. He sends her a card with a necklace of red jewels instead. When she looks into the mirror she thinks she sees eyes staring at her.
For her birthday her boyfriend, Andy, takes her to the museum to see artifacts from the excavation that her father has sent back from Egypt. She feels drawn to a room that is shut off, not yet open to the public. Andy can’t stop her in time. The statue inside stares back at her. Her red eyes light up just as on the necklace. She sighs, “At last, my daughter, you’ve come home!” June had better figure out what is going on or she might become stone cold dead like the statue soon.
If you enjoyed Doom of Egypt you will like Dora Benley’s other young adult thrillers and supernatural novels such as Curse of Egypt, Book of the Dead, Medea the Witch, Mary’s Gone, and Cleopatra’s Stone.
Sondra returns from a day out with her Dad in Charlottesville, Virginia where she lives with her mother and grandmother. Her dad asks her as always if she wants to come and live with him in Tucson. She says as usual that her mother and grandmother depend on her. They discuss why her parents got divorced. Her father confesses as usual that he doesn’t know. Her mother just left one day without explanation and took Sondra with her.
Sondra rushes into the house to plant a bare root rose. Her mother and grandmother depend on her to do the yardwork, too. But while she is digging in the backyard she comes upon a strange golden object. Her next door neighbor, Stew Hoolihan, says it looks like a museum piece and they ought to call the police.
Immediately when she goes inside her mother says that she has called her father and agreed that Sondra should indeed live with him in Tucson. Sondra cannot figure out why. Does it have to do with the golden object found in the backyard? What do her mother and grandmother know about it? What are they concealing from her? Sondra had better find out. It soon becomes a matter of life and death. Ancient civilizations from long before she was born are helping to determine her fate.
If you liked Curse of Egypt you will enjoy other novels by Dora Benley such as Cleopatra’s Stone, Caesar and Cleopatra: A Novel, Medea: the Witch, Minotaur, and Helen of Troy.
Elizabeth is a lady in waiting to Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine during the time of her confinement at Salisbury Castle. Queen Eleanor is a woman of remarkable powers, some say dark powers. Elizabeth learns to be a witch from her and takes up the lore of gathering herbs in the woods. The Queen then directs her to accompany her newly crowned son, King Richard I, to the Holy Land on the Third Crusade. She is to protect him against all evil, especially the scheming of Prince John, the new king’s brother, who wants to crown himself in his stead.
Elizabeth sails to the Holy Land to take up battle with the infidel. But she finds herself in an unexpected quandary. Instead of King John the enemy kidnaps her and threatens to put her into a Middle Eastern harem. They threaten to take her away from the man, King Richard I, whom she is sworn to protect and defend. But in the oddest fashion of all, she finds herself falling in love with her captor, a Saracen. What is Elizabeth to do? She cannot forget her oath to the Queen. But she also cannot betray her own heart.
If you enjoyed Richard 1: A Novel you will like other young adult novels by Dora Benley including Livia: A Novel, Julia: A Novel, Julius Caesar : A Novel, Book of the Dead, Minotaur, and Helen of Troy.
Livia: A Novel
Livia has just returned from her search to find her fiance, Octavius, heir of Julius Casesar, in the wake of Caesar’s assassination. Octavius has fled Rome, and she was trying to save his life. She gets captured by pirates for all her trouble. When she finally catches up with her fiance she can no longer marry him. She learns that her own family, the Claudians, were behind Julius Caesar’s assassination. She can be Octavius’s mistress and nothing more. A proud girl, she spurns the thought and figure she must give him up for good.
Livia describes herself in her diary at this sad impasse:
“I can just imagine what I looked like: long coils of black hair curled in ringlets plastered all over my face, my neck, my bosom, and my shoulders — pasted on by dried salt and brine. A red silk dress clinging to my figure and slipping down over one shoulder a bit too far. Here and there still a jeweled earring or ankle bracelet poking through as a sad legacy from my other life. Looking all together like a prow ornament that had been fished up from the depths after some long ago shipwreck.”
At this low point of her life Livia would be surprised to learn that she will somebody marry the man she loves and stay married to him for 52 years. It will become one of the most legendary matches in Roman history and one of the most historically important, too. Just how this comes about is the story of this piece of fiction: Livia: A Novel by Dora Benley, another one of this author’s ancient Greek and Roman novels. If you liked this story about ancient Rome for young adults, this novel about Livia and Augustus, you will also like Book of the Dead, Helen of Troy, Cleopatra’s Stone, Caesar and Cleopatra: A Novel, Julia: A Novel, Julius Caesar: A Novel, Medea the Witch, and Jason and Medea: A Novel.
Jason and Medea: A Novel
Princess Medea lives in the dream-like Kingdom of Colchis along the Black Sea. It is the richest land in the world presided over by a gift from the gods, the Golden Fleece. Gold is as plentiful in this land as the sands on the beach. She and her sister go to do the palace laundry one day and discover a strange ship from a foreign land coming ashore along the Phasis River. Her father holds a banquet, and Medea meets a golden-haired prince from far away. Jason claims he has come here to win the Golden Fleece to take home to Greece with him. He is willing to fight for the Colchians or to buy the Fleece outright.
Medea’s father, King Aeetes, at once summons his guards and warriors and throws the foreigner and his sailors in jail. Medea knows she must save this foreign prince or no one else will. But in order to save him she must betray her father and her people. It is a hard choice for one so young to make. But for Medea there is no turning back.
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Julia: A Novel
Julia has every reason to wish that she had not been born the daughter of a Roman senator during the Roman Civil Wars of Marius and Sulla. Her father, Rufus, is trying to escape the proscriptions lists and save his life by betrothing his only daughter in marriage to Marcus Sisenna. Marcus Sisenna is the right hand man of Marcus Sulla, one of the leading men of Rome of the day. Rufus needs his armies and the protection both Sulla and Sisenna can provide. But Julia does not want to marry a man who has already had five wives and who is just marrying her for her father’s money and estates. She does not want to be added to his collection of trophies. Julia wants personal happiness despite the time period into which she has been born. Her father thinks only of keeping his wealth and estates together. Her divorced mother is interested only in her own lovers. To whom shall Julia turn for assistance? The answer may surprise you. For it is obviously just the opposite of what the desperate Julia might expect.
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This historical thriller by Dora Benley opens with Queen Cleopatra in exile roaming about the Sahara Desert with her serving women trying to survive. She is at war with her brother, King Ptolemy. Suddenly the famous Roman general, Julius Caesar, arrives in town and summons Cleopatra to Alexandria. The well educated, clever Cleopatra wants to make the best of a dangerous mission where she risks arrest and execution by her brother’s guards. She wants to make sure that the Great Man from Rome, Julius Caesar, Conqueror of half the world, is on her side before her brother Ptolemy can grab his ear.
The seventeen year old teenager concocts a scheme that will awaken Caesar’s sensibilities and appeal to him directly for his protection. She orders one of her servants to spirit her into Alexandria wrapped in a carpet. She is put down on the floor before Caesar.
“Very well, Queen Cleopatra, you can come out now,” Caesar commands.
With a spring of the wrist, Caesar unrolls the carpets. She finds herself sitting on the floor gazing up into the blue-gray eyes of the Roman conqueror. Cleopatra imagined he would be a colossus with giant sinews and great stature like Hercules. But he is a tall man on the thinnish side with a balding head and goiter in late middle age with a perfectly proportioned bone structure and an aristocratic, firm mouth.
So begins the adventure of Caesar and Cleopatra.
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Julius Caesar: A Novel
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