Hello everyone! Welcome to the Halloween edition of Colleen’s Coffee Klatch. Since at least 2016, C. S. Boyack has spent every Halloween with me on the blog. He usually has a new book to discuss, and this year is no different.
Before I go on, please know the Coffee Klatch posts have moved to my author blog HERE, but I’m posting on wordcraftpoetry.com as well until I get my followers built up on colleenmchesebro.com. Thanks for reading twice. Please follow me.
Thanks so much for stopping by to share a cup of coffee and a chat. Whenever I can, I like to reconnect with my favorite authors to catch up and see what’s new in their writing world.
This week I’m thrilled to introduce my friend & author, Craig (C.S.) Boyack.
I was born in a town called Elko, Nevada. I like to tell everyone I was born in a small town in the 1940s. I’m not quite that old, but Elko has always been a little behind the times. This gives me a unique perspective of earlier times and other ways of getting by. Some of this bleeds through into my fiction.
I moved to Idaho right after the turn of the century and never looked back. My writing career was born here, with access to other writers and critique groups I jumped in with both feet.
I like to write about things that have something unusual. My works are in the realm of science fiction, paranormal, and fantasy. The goal is to entertain you for a few hours. I hope you enjoy the ride.Amazon.com Author Page
Hi, Colleen. It’s great to share a cup of coffee with you!
Hi Craig. Happy Halloween! I can’t believe another year has passed. I’m glad you’re here today. How exciting!
So cool to be invited back here again. I’ve lost track of how many Halloweens we’ve spent together, but we ought to keep doing it. It’s also pretty normal for me to be wrapping up a blog tour, and 2022 is no different. I recently published the sixth volume in The Hat Series, and I don’t see an end in sight. They’re just too much fun.
Oh, and I read this new book, Craig! It’s perfect for Halloween. Check out the cover, everyone. I’ll review it later in the post…
In the meantime… Let’s start at the beginning…
It was Colleen’s idea to talk about the series instead of a single volume, so let’s get into the shtick. (So glad she asked. Who am I to refuse?)
Once upon a time, a Greek warrior found himself between wars when the City States were going at it. It dawned on him that he was one of very few remaining older warriors and he needed an edge. He visited a young witch seeking a way to have eyes in the back of his head. (As one does.)
The witch was inexperienced and very powerful. She summoned a creature from an alternate dimension to take the form of his helmet. They formed a symbiotic relationship that would allow the soldier to see, not only with his eyes, but those of the hat and it could be alternate directions from where he was facing.
However, the hat also had a few other tricks. He can transport someone to a place they’d been before, but with a limitation of the last place they transported. He can help wipe someone else’s mind in a pinch, find people he’s met before, and move his partner’s body with permission. He’s also a shapeshifter, but is limited to headwear of some kind.
Last names come and go, bloodlines merge and fade. Enter the modern era. Lizzie St. Laurent inherits (steals) the hat from her grandmother’s estate. She becomes embroiled in a world of monsters, witches, and things that go bump in the night. With the help of the hat, she’s the one who defends us against them.
As a form of relaxation, the hat likes to play the upright bass. He does this by manipulating his host’s hands and fingers. Turns out Lizzie is a pretty good vocalist, so they form a small cover band. Gig work is a great way to get my fledgling monster hunter out after the bars close.
End of shtick.
These books are an older kind of series in that each volume can standalone. Sherlock Holmes, Perry Mason, and a bunch of others who did this inspired me. I drop enough data that new readers won’t feel lost. I also make them short novels to accommodate modern readers and the time crunches we all have.
While these books have their blood and guts moments, I also fill them with humor. I haven’t given myself any limitations on that front. The stories are peppered with silly graphics as section breaks. Lizzie and the hat argue like an old married couple. (My wife and I are an old married couple.) I also try to add situations that are more mortifying for Lizzie to have to deal with. I think these two have a lot of character.
Lizzie also has to deal with life as a young adult. Money is always tight. She works multiple jobs to pay the rent, and deals with issues more relevant to modern society.
I’ve tried to put a fresh spin on monsters and they aren’t always the bad guys. I’ve also tried to paint a fresh face on witchcraft, something I know Colleen loves.
If this sounds like something you might enjoy reading, I hope you’ll pick one up. The dream is that you like it, maybe you pick up another one. I have tons of ideas for this series and intend to keep them coming.
The newest volume is called “The Midnight Rambler.” Rather than share the purchase link for it, I’m going to drop the series link here today. I hope everyone will give it a chance.
Click here to find the Hat Series
The Hat is back with another fun book called “The Midnight Rambler.” When Lizzie and the Hat stop at a roadside fruit stand to buy fruit, the fruit attacks them! It doesn’t take long for the Hat to realize that his nemesis, the midnight rambler, is after him once again.
The devious rambler knows how to get to the Hat, so he kidnaps the professor, a friend of Lizzie’s. Of course, the professor is the only that one that can make a special medicine for Ray, a Frankenstein-ish monster friend to Lizzie… well, let’s say they’re friends with benefits.
Ray is a welcome addition to the crew of monsters this series has hosted. The book is lighthearted, and just fun. I love the banter between Lizzie and the Hat. If you’re looking for a fun read, this is one I recommend.
⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️
P.S. The witches are always the best characters in these books…
Here’s how to connect with Craig, just click on the links below:
Would you like to stop by for coffee and a chat? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and pitch me your news. I can’t wait to hear what’s new in your world! 💜 🦄 🧹