Patricia La Barbera
When her mother dies, Tala returns to her New Hampshire hometown, and violent memories assault her. She struggles against supernatural powers to save her former high-school boyfriend, Matt. Tala stays alone in the family’s bleak house, next door to a cemetery. She finds amulets, macabre newspaper photos, and her grandmother’s diary, all hinting at an animalistic strain, for which a remedy may or may not exist. She must prevent her enemy, Willis Sharp, from obtaining an amulet, which would increase his power and his danger to Tala and Matt. In her grandmother’s diary, she reads about a man accused of revolting brutality and discovers he’s the only one who can help her. But she has to risk confronting him by traveling through the wilderness of wolf territory.
Interview with Tala and Matt
Tala: (Smiling at Matt) I can answer that one. My house is next door to a cemetery, and as a child I always played in it. Even when I was a teenager, it was a peaceful place to take a walk. That is until… (Glances at Matt) Well, you asked about the inscriptions, so I’ll tell you. One man’s epitaph is “Till we meet again.” That’s Matt’s favorite. Thirteen years after her husband died, his wife died, and her epitaph is “We meet again.” That’s my favorite.
Patricia: Hmm. That does show devotion. Well, on to some more questions. I have e-mail messages here. This one is for Matt from Jennifer in Portland, Oregon. “When Tala left Wolfeboro ten years ago, did you ever think you’d see her again?”
Matt: No, never in my wildest dreams. When Vanessa told me she was coming back to town, I couldn’t believe my ears. I’d been seeing someone for several months, but as soon as I heard the news, I broke up with her.
Matt: (Reaches for Tala’s hand) We broke up under horrible circumstances. I still have nightmares about it. I know Tala does, too. (Matt frowns and then smiles at her). But I’m an optimist.
Patricia: Here’s a question for Tala from Stephanie in Bismarck, North Dakota. “How has it been since you’ve been back in town other than getting back with Matt?”
Tala: (Sighs) Well, I’ve had some trouble with someone who’s harassing me. I even had the locks changed because my mother had given him a key. He claims my mother sold him the contents of the house. He’s been threatening me, and I don’t think he’s just warning me about legal proceedings.
Matt: If he ever—
Tala: (Gives him a worried look and puts her arm around his shoulder) It’s okay, Matt. Calm down. You don’t want to get upset, remember? (He looks away from her).
Patricia: We have time for one more question. This one is addressed to both of you from Katie right here in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire. “Stories have always been told, mostly in whispers, about both your families having different kinds of so-called strains. People with one type have some kind of violent effect on people with the other one. Could you once and for all settle the rumors?”
Matt: (Shaking his head) That’s not something I’m willing to talk about.
Tala: (Glancing at Matt) I’d rather not address that, either.
Patricia: Well, thank you, Matt and Tala, for sharing with us. And Jennifer, Stephanie, and Katie, we appreciate your questions.
Author Bio: Patricia La Barbera, MFA, is an author and editor, who specializes in genre categories. She’s an active member of the Horror Writers Association and a member of Mystery Writers of America. Various magazines and anthologies have featured her work. She’s also the organizer of the Sarasota Editors Association.
The next book in her series, The Tala Chronicles, is The Wolf’s Revenge. Its release is upcoming. She lives in the Sarasota, Florida, area with her husband, Bob, and an adored black psycho kitty named Maeve.
Visit Patricia at: