Tarot Guest Blog & Bewitching Book Tour In The Pines by Mariah Stillbrook #ParanormalFantasy

Tarot Talk with Mariah Stillbrook

I’ve been reading tarot for a few years now. I wouldn’t call myself a professional—I’m far from it! I still must look up the meanings most of the time. But I do feel a connection with most of my decks, and when I do a reading for myself or someone else, I typically feel led by images or thoughts that come to mind while pulling a card, or cards. 

As a writer, I often use tarot in my storytelling. The main characters from In the Pines, sisters—Olivia and Ellie—do a reading at some point to help clear their heads. Interestingly enough, I did the reading for them before I wrote it, and I didn’t have to change a single card. The reading came out exactly as it should’ve for what they were going through. Additionally, my first horror that releases in November 2024, The Hall of Shadows, is a young adult book that has divination throughout. It's about a cursed deck of oracle cards that leads the card reader into thirteen different dimensions of shadow work. Before my main character, Tess finds herself amidst the unescapable Hall of Shadows, she pulls a card for herself—The Three of Swords. She knows from the picture alone that she’s facing either heartbreak or betrayal . . . or both. She must work through her shadows to find the answers.

Tarot and writing go together so well. I love having an outlet to help me through the blockages. If I’m ever in a rut, I can pull a few cards for either a single character, a situation, or the world I’m creating. It’s a strategy that guarantees answers. But as any divinator knows, it requires interpretation. 

That’s my take on tarot! You can find me from time to time pulling a card for anyone who needs it on TikTok and Instagram. You can find my handles for those platforms as well as all the others in my Linktree: https://linktr.ee/mariahstillbrook.

In The Pines
Mariah Stillbrook

Genre: Paranormal Fantasy
Publisher: Creative James Media
Date of Publication: November 14, 2023
ISBN: 978-1-956183-50-4
Number of pages: 374
Word Count: 110,334
Cover Artist: Triumph Covers

Tagline: These witches have one month to end the spiritual threat to their bloodline. And not kill each other.

Book Description:

Two witches, two secrets, and a curse that could tear a family apart.

Olivia and Ellie have lived their lives knowing a dark entity is stalking their family, determined to kill them all. After the death of Olivia's son, she abandons her magic and her family, leaving Ellie in a nightmare of heartbreak, her marriage crumbling and her sister gone. 

Determined to save their mother Arianna from a spell that left her comatose, the two sisters must come together to unravel the riddle of the curse that has haunted their family for generations.

But as they delve into the past, the truth they uncover is more twisted and treacherous than they ever could have imagined. Will they be able to break the curse, or will it consume them all?

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The sound of the waves crashing down below, the impending fog rolling in, the wind sending curses past my cheeks, streaked with salt water—all of it seemed to have been put into slow motion as I stood there, full of rage and powerless against this demon as she held my daughter’s life in her tainted, dead hands. Eight words were all I was afforded in the two seconds that followed. “You were the one who let me in.”

And then it all happened at once. There was a "uttering of feathers, the sensation of a stick being forced into my hand, and the sound of my own screams as my daughter’s body fell; but then I just as quickly lunged forward, standing on air and pointing my bit of willow down at her body just before it was about to make contact with the jagged rocks below.

Maddie, now in possession of her own body, stared up at me with wide eyes and a gaping mouth as I floated over her like the witch I once was. And before she could utter a single word, before I could make out the laughter that seemed to be drifting back into the fog, I used my wand to lift her back up to the cliff and set her down before landing back on solid earth myself.

About the Author:

Mariah Stillbrook, originally from Iowa, lives in Colorado with her white German shepherd, husband, and little girl. She graduated from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. She spends most of her days writing, reading, and enjoying the occasional hike. In her late twenties she realized that her writing was missing something, magic. She now focuses her writing on horror and urban fantasy in both adult and young adult genres.

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