Book Title: Glow Grass and Other Tales
Book Genre: Crime Fiction Anthology
Release Date: November 6, 2016
Synopsis: Revenge, guide dogs, cats big and small, beleaguered ladies of a certain age, a cop with a tarnished heart – the characters in these seven tales and two novellas must fight for justice even if that justice is warped. More often they must fight to save someone they love – or to survive.
Many of the stories in this anthology are finalists or winners of major awards such as the Arthur Ellis, Derringer and Bony Pete.
Excerpt: This excerpt is from my suspense novella, Glow Grass.
Paula took the path to the right.
It led into the shadows of the now-towering cedar trees. A short distance along, she spotted a soft green light: glow grass growing into the trail.
It spilled out from a tiny track that branched away through a clump of alders. Dodging the leafless bushes, she followed it into a small clearing.
There a stone garden bench rested in a soft carpet of glow grass. Several small stones bordered its circular edge. On closer inspection, the stones proved to be store-bought garden ornaments, inscribed with a single word like “Forever” or “Remember”. Between the stones stood small plaster statues of angels holding soiled plastic flowers or soggy, bedraggled ribbons. One angel held a glass engraving of the poem, Desiderata, the relic cracked and damaged by the weather. Votive candles in red glass holders lay scattered among the stones, most burned down to the end.
This was a memorial garden. But for whom?
She sank down on the bench. The tiny monuments were cheap: she’d seen them for sale in dollar stores. None bore a date or name. Perhaps the strange garden was an amateurish, heartfelt tribute to a family pet.
But what if it wasn’t?
She shivered. Who built the garden? Why hide it in the woods away from prying eyes? Was it the unknown owner of the beaver pond?
Over the years, she and Dad had found evidence of strangers round the pond: cigarette butts, fish line and hooks, empty beer cans… Anyone could pass through their cottage property when she and Dad weren’t there.
The mysterious gardener had taken glow grass from the cottage and replanted it here. That felt like a warning, a challenge even. As if the unknown gardener was telling her: You abandoned the cottage. Now it’s mine to do with as I like.
The woods were deathly silent. Yet she had an uneasy sense that someone lurked in the shadows. Watching, waiting, matching her breath for breath. She felt in her jacket for her phone and remembered she’d left it in the car.
About the author: M.H. Callway’s crime fiction has won or been short-listed for several major awards including the Arthur Ellis and Debut Dagger. Her debut novel, Windigo Fire, was a finalist for the Arthur Ellis Best First Novel Award. Margaret Cannon of the Globe and Mail called her “a writer to watch”. Glow Grass and Other Tales is a collection of her published novellas and short fiction.
In 2013, she founded The Mesdames of Mayhem, a group of established Canadian crime writers and editors. The Mesdames have produced two critically acclaimed anthologies, Thirteen and 13 O’clock. The third, 13 Claws, will be published September, 2017. Find out more about M.H. Calloway on her website.