I read “The Dead Game” several months ago with my review and interview with its author, Susanne Leist, elsewhere on this blog site. I’m not usually a horror or vampire fan but I thoroughly enjoyed Susanne’s story with its vivid imagery and convincing characters to say nothing of its well-sustained suspense. I am thus more than happy to participate in this blog tour where you will find an excerpt from the book, a fictitious interview with one of the characters whom I found particularly interesting due to our shared interest in astrology, and a short biographical sketch of Susanne. Those of you who are into astrology yourself will undoubtedly enjoy Shana’s “natal chart” and the “transit chart” for the party at End House. 🙂
EXCERPT FROM “THE DEAD GAME”
Their car neared the house. A stunning sight unfolded before their eyes. Encased in a tight circle of trees, shimmering from the lights strung through their heavy branches, the glass house sparkled against the dark night sky: a huge glass ball shooting green sparks of light from within its rounded walls. Its great dome twinkled as radiantly as the multitude of stars shining down from above.
Todd left the car with the valet and led the way up the marble stairs to the rounded front door. Two armed men, dressed in tuxedos, guarded the door, their holstered guns only slightly marring the fantasy image running through Linda’s vivid imagination: for as soon as she turned away to admire the scenery, she was once again in fantasyland.
The panorama facing her was doused in white. Gleaming white snow caps covered the tops of the tall trees and the great dome of the house. Snow was falling on them from somewhere. She could feel snowflakes melting on her lips. They felt wet, like real snowflakes. She touched her face and hair. Her hand came away wet. She had snow on her fingertips. She searched the grounds for a snow machine, but couldn’t locate anything—not on the glass domed roof or in any of the trees. She couldn’t believe that genuine snow was falling on them from the dark sky. The landscape resembled a winter wonderland despite it being fall in Florida.
Todd placed his hand against her back to escort her into the house. The others followed them into the glowing green ball that was alive with dazzling lights, music, and laughter.
Once inside, Linda was mesmerized by the glittering glass walls that mirrored the dancing images of the guests twirling around the marble dance floor. These images were cast in bright halos of light reflected from the myriad of crystal chandeliers hanging throughout the room.
Soft candlelight from mounted crystal sconces flickered across the intricate patterns carved into the green walls. It was the most beautiful and fascinating house that she had ever seen. She glanced back and watched Shana’s mouth drop open. She was certain that Shana would agree that the house appeared simply magical.
Couples were swirling around the immense dance floor. They were dancing in a large studio between Diane’s life-sized statues. Each sculpture was carved from clear glass: each one revealing a full-sized person. Linda found them to be too lifelike. She stood next to one and stared into it frozen face. She was startled by a fleeting expression of horror that seemed to cross over its features; as if a real person was trapped inside, staring out at her from within his glass tomb. Then the look was gone and the statue appeared lifeless once again.
BARNES & NOBLE: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-dead-game-susanne-leist/1116825442
Shana Logan is a close friend of “The Dead Game’s” main character, Linda. She is a Tarot reader and astrologer so of course she’s my favorite since I’m also an astrologer. I had fun with Shana talking about astrology, her Aries Sun Sign and the astrology in effect for the infamous party at End House.
INTERVIEW WITH “Dead Game” character, Shana Logan
MF: As an astrologer I get the impression that you have strong Aries influences based on your red hair, natural curiosity, competitive spirit and sometimes impulsive behavior. Have I guessed correctly?
SL: Yes, I have an Aries Sun plus a Leo ascendant and Sagittarius Moon so my “big three” form a Grand Fire Trine. Needless to say I have a rather generous helping of Fire in my chart which gives me a lot of spunk and energy. I love nice things and always dress in pretty, bright colors, which is obviously my Leo ascendant. My curiosity is greatly enhanced as well as my interest in so many different things derives from my Sag Moon.
MF: Aries typically love sports. Besides volleyball, which are your favorites?
SL: I have my sign ruler, Mars, in the 11th house of groups so I love team sports of all kinds. One of my favorites in high school was track, as you would expect with these long legs of mine. I could compete with the others in my team while helping the team as a whole by doing well. As you know, Aries don’t like to lose. I love tennis, too, both singles and doubles. I’ve played in a couple tournaments and had a blast.
MF: What sets off your temper the fastest? In other words, what’s your pet peeve?
SL: Hahaha! I hate being told what to do. Like that time when Sam called me “sweetheart” and accused me of being too independent. Of course I am, and proud of it, and that’s the very reason I like to make my own decisions. I admit sometimes I react too quickly and get into trouble but then I have no one to blame but myself.
MF: What is the most interesting thing you’ve discovered while doing an astrological reading?
SL: When there’s an accident, destructive storm or major event I always like to check the chart and see what was going on in the heavens. I found it fascinating that for the Boston Marathon bombing a few years ago that the asteroid named Marathon was in a key place of the chart, right on the Midheaven, which suggested it would be in the news. There was also a massive tornado, the one that killed some professional storm chasers, which occurred when an asteroid did a fly-by of Earth.
I don’t believe in coincidences and find these show that something is definitely going on astrologically. Also, with all that fuss about December 21, 2012, I could tell by the chart that the world wasn’t going to end. It implied a shift in consciousness, which seems to apply since things have been a bit different since then. Probably because everyone thought they were going to die. An 8th house experience for the world, where the 8th house includes transformations, death, intense experiences and so forth.
MF: You did a Tarot reading for the party at End House. Did you run an astrological chart as well? If so, how did that correlate with the cards?
SL: They complemented each other in a very scary way. For one thing, it had a Cardinal Grand Cross which usually is a bad sign, anyway. Deception was clearly part of the event as well as potentially lethal aggression with Mars ruling the chart and the 8th house of death. Pluto was on the Midheaven opposing Jupiter in the 4th showing a public display of power and control taking place in someone’s home. The only favorable aspect in the entire chart was a trine between Saturn and Neptune which of course wasn’t fortunate but indicated further the dissolving of boundaries with Neptune conjunct the 12th house cusp, more indication of hidden enemies.
MF: How much does your ability to read people relate to reading their horoscope?
SL: Of course I gather people’s birth data whenever I can get it out of them but needless to say the people in Oasis, at least the old-timers, weren’t very willing to share theirs since the date alone would have been very telling. It’s no wonder they were trying to drive me out of town. Astrology can reveal all sorts of things besides a person’s natural inclinations, however. Going into property records and obtaining the date when people closed on their store or property revealed a lot as well. At least when I could get it. Sometimes it went back so far I couldn’t ever track it down.
My friends are usually more than willing to provide their information to me in return for a free reading. I don’t mind because it’s fun to get to know them at that level and help them understand themselves a little better. I did a compatibility analysis for Mike and David which was hilarious. It totally showed why those two are always butting heads as well as why they are partners in an antique store.
MF: Are you psychic in addition to doing astrology and card readings?
SL: A little bit. I get strong impressions which I’ve learned the hard way that I should pay attention to. My independent and sometimes stubborn nature can bite me sometimes when I have a bad feeling but then someone tells me to be careful, which of course I can’t listen to! LOL! Usually when I get a bad feeling I turn to the cards or a horoscope and take it from there. I probably should have done a horary reading on the party and whether or not we should go. I’m less inclined to cut off my nose to spite my face when the advice comes from a chart!
MF: When your shop was ransacked did you check your transits to see what was going on?
SL: Of course! And there was all sorts of 12th house stuff which indicated an attack by a hidden enemy. Lots of this is apparent until after-the-fact because any astrological aspect has numerous interpretations and I try not to be totally paranoid about this place. Nonetheless, I’m paying more attention to my own transits than I did before after what has been going on here lately.
MF: Do you plan to stay in Oasis for the long haul? Or will you be leaving as a result of some of the unpleasant situations and strange characters you have for neighbors?
SL: My sense of adventure will probably keep me here unless things get a lot worse. I’ll keep an eye on that, needless to say, and pay close attention to what my transits and solar return has to say. I haven’t looked at it yet because I don’t mind a few surprises and don’t want to let my curiosity ruin my fun. I love to live each day as it comes and in most cases the more excitement the better. But even I have my limits and in spite of my Aries nature know when it gets to the point it’s time to turn tail and run. But not yet. There are too many unanswered questions I’m dying to find the answer to. Hopefully not literally. LOL.
SHANA’S NATAL CHART (Just for fun for the benefit of any other astrologers out there)
TRANSIT CHART FOR THE PARTY AT END HOUSE
Susanne Leist graduated with an M.B.A. in Finance. Wherever life has led her, through the hectic commodities’ markets or the number-crunching field of budgeting, she’s continued to read and daydream. Unbeknownst to her, she had been pursuing her dream all along, her dream of putting her words down on paper for everyone to enjoy. She currently resides on Long Island with her husband, two daughters, and Maltese.
Her first book, The Dead Game, is a paranormal thriller with humans, vampires, and vampire derivatives. Her goal has been to write a book different than the usual vampire story or murder mystery. She wanted a murder mystery with victims, clues, and suspects. She created that and much more. The book has revolving rooms, traps, falling cages, and anything her active imagination could create. The Dead Game is a fun ride into the realms of the supernatural.
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Thank you so much for the in-depth analysis of Shana. You captured her nature perfectly: her impulsiveness and her love of life. I couldn’t have said it better. Susanne
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I had a whole lot of fun putting this together. Your character development was so well done it was easy to feel as if I knew her. When I first “met” her in “The Dead Game” my first thought was that she was a total Aries! LOL!
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