Category: Classic Motion Pictures

Audiobook Review | “Halfway Dead: Halfway Witchy, No.1” by Terry Maggert, narrated by Erin Spencer

Posted Wednesday, 11 January, 2017 by jorielov , , , , 0 Comments

Audiobook Review Badge made by Jorie in Canva.

Acquired Digital Audiobook by: I am a new blog tour hostess with Audiobookworm Promotions wherein I have the opportunity to receive audiobooks for review or adoption (reviews outside of organised blog tours) and host guest features on behalf of authors and narrators alike. I started hosting for Audiobookworm Promotions at the end of [2016] during “The Cryptic Lines” tour wherein I became quite happily surprised how much I am now keen on listening to books in lieu of reading them in print. My journey into audiobooks was prompted by a return of my chronic migraines wherein I want to offset my readings with listening to the audio versions.

I received a complimentary audiobook copy of “Halfway Dead” via the publicist at Audiobookworm Promotions (of whom was working directly with the author Terry Maggert) in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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Why I am so wicked happy about tucking into a Paranormal Suspense:

I have the tendency to appreciate certain Paranormal Suspense, Mystery and Thrillers which are just this side of Cosy Horror but occasionally push the envelope to take me straight out of my personal comfort zones. This began when I was a teenager who would try to blink away the grittier scenes attached to The X-Files, smiled at the irony of enjoying Buffy the Vampire Slayer and happily enjoyed most of the Charmed series before the serial took off into a tangent of nonsense that truly was utterly pointless.

As a reader, it’s quite a hard needle to thread – which Paranormal novelists are curating stories I can handle or even find  pleasure in reading when my bookish heart is quite sensitive to most overtly horrific and grisly scenes too oft found inside the genre itself!? This is why I have the tendency to lean more towards PNR (or Paranormal Romance) but even then, I am quite particularly particular; seeking out the stories where the relationships and the paranormal elements can walk hand in hand without giving me that jolt of something quite horrific or a nightmaric ghoulish feast that would leave me wrecked for dreamscapes afterwards.

The balance of course, is one part world-building to where setting, texture and sound of a narrative can fully immerse me into an ‘other place’ for the spell I send inside it but not overtly dark or without light, because I am not entirely the kind of reader who can cosy up into a Dystopian-esque world either. I like sophisticated layers and humour that is not in the gutter whilst the scenes where something quite fowl takes place can have the ability to pull-back and off-set the reality of that moment with either compassion, mercy or a somberness that befits the scene. Strong characters and a cheeky inclusion of wit or banterment would be most ideal; but I also, happen to love the ‘unexpected’. The moments you cannot foresee coming ahead of time and how the psychological suspenseful bits also can encourage you to get properly lost in the story.

Whatever it is I’m seeking as it depends on the sub-genre, the premise and the overall conjecture of what a story could elude to including – I like to seek out unique voices in fiction. I prefer to find the writers who have something intrinsically their own and a way of crafting a story that is both informative (for whichever sub-focus they include) and wicked entertaining on the other end! I like to rally behind characters who are in the middle of their journey and of whom interact with an eclectic supporting cast of people or creatures you might never suspect would become such a crucial point of the story itself.

Thus, I decided to take a chance on the Halfway Witchy series; as the author originally found me on Twitter whilst he was promoting another novel of his (Heartborn) which I was on the fence about for nearly the duration of it’s blog tour. It was only after following the tour route and reading a few incredibly personal reviews of it’s contents, I realised I was most intrigued by this author! I ended up adopting a copy of the audiobook (of which I will be featuring in a few short weeks) for review consideration and found myself pulled into the orbit of this universe – the Witchy world of Carlie.

I originally began listening to this audiobook soon after I received it and a few moments whilst my Dad was first brought home recovering from his stroke. As I mentioned on Twitter to the author, finding this series was a lovely blessing of joy; and as I move through the series, I look forward to exploring what I like about this curious section of literature which continues to draw my eye. As sometimes what appeals to me to read (or listen too) isn’t quite what you might think would be on my palette of stories but has something contained within it’s chapters that is wholly original and happily consumed. Sometimes we all have to embrace our quirky natures and as readers, I think we’re naturally quirky!

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Audiobook Review | “Halfway Dead: Halfway Witchy, No.1” by Terry Maggert, narrated by Erin SpencerHalfway Dead
Subtitle: Come for the waffles, stay for the magic
by Terry Maggert
Source: Audiobook via Audiobookworm Promotions
Narrator: Erin Spencer

Carlie McEwan loves many things. She loves being a witch. She loves her town of Halfway, NY - a tourist destination nestled on the shores of an Adirondack lake. Carlie loves her enormous familiar, Gus, who is 25 pounds of judgmental Maine Coon cat, and she positively worships her grandmother, a witch of incredible power and wisdom. Carlie spends her days cooking at the finest - and only - real diner in town, and her life is a balance between magic and the mundane, just as she likes it.

When a blond stranger sits at the diner counter and calls her by name, that balance is gone. Major Pickford asks Carlie to lead him into the deepest shadows of the forest to find a mythical circle of chestnut trees, thought lost to forever to mankind. There are ghosts in the forest, and one of them cries out to Carlie across the years. Come find me.

Danger, like the shadowed pools of the forest, can run deep. The danger is real, but Carlie's magic is born of a pure spirit. With the help of Gus, and Gran, and a rugged cop who really does want to save the world, she'll fight to bring a ghost home, and deliver justice to a murderer who hides in the cool, mysterious green of a forest gone mad with magic.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ASIN: B013KLF9HO

Also by this author: Halfway Bitten, Heartborn, , Halfway Hunted

Also in this series: Halfway Bitten, Halfway Hunted


Genres: Cosy Horror, Ghost Story, Sci-Fantasy, YA Fantasy, YA Paranormal Suspense, Young Adult Fiction


Published by Terry Maggert

on 7th August, 2015

Format: Audiobook | Digital

Length: 7 hours and 15 minutes (unabridged)

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the halfway witchy series:

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A photo posted by Terry Maggert (@terrymaggert) on

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About Terry Maggert

Terry Maggert

Left-handed. Father of an apparent nudist. Husband to a half-Norwegian. Herder of cats and dogs. Lover of pie. I write books. I've had an unhealthy fascination with dragons since the age of-- well, for a while. Native Floridian. Current Tennessean. Location subject to change based on insurrection, upheaval, or availability of coffee. Nine books and counting, with no end in sight. You've been warned.

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Posted Wednesday, 11 January, 2017 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, 21st Century, Animals in Fiction & Non-Fiction, Apothecary, ArchDemons or Demonic Entities, Audiobook, Audiobookworm Promotions, Author Found me On Twitter, Balance of Faith whilst Living, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Cats and Kittens, Charmed, Classic Motion Pictures, Clever Turns of Phrase, Coming-Of Age, Conservation, Cosy Horror, Cosy Horror Suspense, Dreams & Dreamscapes, Earthen Magic, Earthen Spirituality, Environmental Activism, Environmental Advocacy, Environmental Conscience, Environmental Science, Equality In Literature, Faeries & the Fey, Fantasy Fiction, Folklore and Mythology, Ghost Story, Ghosts & the Supernatural, Good vs. Evil, Gothic Literature, Gothic Mystery, Horror-Lite, Humour & Satire in Fiction / Non Fiction, Immortals, Indie Author, Light vs Dark, Methodology of Writing Science Fiction & Fantasy, Modern Day, Nature & Wildlife, Parapsychological Gifts, Parapsychological Suspense, Philosophical Intuitiveness, Political Narrative & Modern Topics, Premonition-Precognitive Visions, Preservation, Realistic Fiction, Seclusion in the Natural World, Shapeshifters, Small Towne USA, Sociology, Speculative Fiction, Spirituality & Metaphysics, Supernatural Creatures & Beings, Suspense, Sustainability & Ecological Preservation, The Natural World, Upper YA Fiction, Urban Fantasy, Vampires, Vulgarity in Literature, Walking & Hiking Trails, Werewolves, Witches and Warlocks, Writing Style & Voice, YA Fantasy, YA Paranormal &/or Paranormal Romance, Young Adult Fiction

List | Top Favourite Classic Horror Films {#OTBHorrorOctober}

Posted Sunday, 19 October, 2014 by jorielov , , , , , , , 2 Comments

Horror October 2014

List | Top Favourite Classic Horror Films

Selection One:

Dr. Jeykll & Mr. Hyde (1941) Original Film Trailer starring Spencer Tracy via TCM

The uncanny part of watching Tracy in this role is how well he absorbed himself into the role itself and conveyed such a primal transformation as to capture the pure horror and terror of being ‘other’ than himself within those seconds of where Hyde took over his life. I can still remember being glued to my seat whilst transfixed on his emotional conveyance of the character! Tracy had this uncanny ability to delve so deeply into his role as to bring out the raw connective tissues that stitched his essence into the heartbeat of Jekyll & Hyde; he was so tied into this role, the most chilling aspect for me was reminding myself *he!* was Spencer Tracy! The atmospheric intensity of the set decoration, the period costumes, and the elemental eerie effects of how they produced this particular version of the story solidified this as one of my favourite Tracy pictures! I also realised whilst watching this film how much I appreciate psychological suspense bordering on the horrific — as this short clip from Turner Classic demonstrates, there is quite a unique transmorphication to the Jekyll & Hyde story itself.

I can only watch this every so many Halloween’s due to the performance of Tracy and due to the intensity of how Jekyll & Hyde fit into the era in whence they lived. My goal is to read the novel and then watch the film; I had given the thought to doing this for the 2014 Horror October event but methinks it would be wiser to schedule that for 2015!

Adding to the joy for me was the inclusion of Ingrid Bergman, of whom, I had originally discovered in the film Intermezzo and lateron in Notorious & Gaslight. Her performances are golden as they are innocently natural with a gentleness of intelligence. I love watching her perform, she gave it a certain type of artistry that is also reflective and reminiscent of Spencer Tracy. For me, they were two equals who shared the screen and gave performances that never leave you!

Selection Two: 

The Haunting (1963) Original Film Trailer starring via TCM

I found this film quite by accident, as I had taken a fancy to watching Turner Classic on *Halloween!* for a few years as I wanted to expand my viewings of classic films set against the backdrop of the holiday itself! I knew this would involve Classic Horror, Film Noir, Psychological Suspense, & Gothic Lit entries, but that was part of the appeal for me! What I hadn’t expected is to become so fully entertained on Classic Horror films! With each startling discovery whilst I watched one film after another per each Halloween I had tuned in, I was fascinated by everything the film-makers had used to create the appeal of creating a suspenseful night of fright! In this one, *everything!* is simply perceived and unseen – the mind of the characters in the film have convinced themselves of what they fear the most, thus giving the plot the deadliest thread of narrative! I enjoyed watching each of their technique of how they brought their characters to life and even though there is a death in the story; it is how the death occurs & why it occurs that left me full of museful thoughts on the haunted and the hauntings themselves.

Selection Three: 

Mystery at the Wax Museum (1933):

I still remember being a bit creeped out about the entire premise surrounding the Wax Museum plot, but what drew me into the film itself was the original spin on it! I have this film on dvd and thus, it is one of the only Horror films I actually own! I have a small collection of Halloween & Classic Horror films on dvd, but this most definitely one of my favourites! The very nature of how the museum is curated with new ‘pieces of art’ is enough to make your hand stand on end and your stomach to flip into somersaults! There are some key comical moments, but not due to the vein of action or dialogue but due to the nature of how they filmed certain sequences — especially when they are say transporting a body? I caught myself in a near-fit of giggles, because the time of when this film was produced, they made a few gaffes as far as how they sorted out a few of the filming locations & scenes! Needless, it did not take long to feel the full breath of danger, horror, and intrigue! I nearly closed my eyes — I wasn’t sure how this one was going to end, and even though I braced myself for the worst, I admit it — I was a bit of a chicken! If Mum wasn’t watching this with me for the first time, I seriously doubt I would know the ENDING at all! Laughs. No, seriously,… I’d be in the dark! Yet. Yes. It is still a bonefide favourite!

Selection Four:

Gaslight (1944) Re-Issue Film Trailer starring Ingrid Bergman via TCM:

I hadn’t realised that Angela Lansbury had her start in motion pictures within this particular film, as I was keen on watching it after a dear friend of mine in California mentioned to me by letter how much I’d fall over the moon in LOVE with this film! She not only was quite right in that pre-assessment of my reaction, but it has become a beloved movie for me to watch around Halloween! I love everything about this film, most especially watching Ingrid Bergman’s character descend into madness & emerge out of the darkness of that plight into a stronger, braver, and very sane woman whose heart led her astray but her fortitude of strength gave her the courage to survive! I loved the details of this film, as it isn’t something you can understand completely the first time you see it; my second viewing was a full year after I had seen it originally, and I was still picking up subtle clues and little bits of foreshadowing strokes of genius! Not too many, mind you, this is a very tightly writ screenplay!

Hearing Lansbury’s cockney voice throughout the film was a pure delight for me, as I’ve been fascinated by how the words & rhymes sound out loud! You can tell even within this film the dexterity of performance Lansbury would use throughout her career! She was so young, yet held such a pose of presence as to belie her age! She would endear me years (decades, really!) lateron in her career with Murder, She Wrote as I grew up watching her sleuth her way through Cabot Cove! To go backwards in time, seeing the roots of her filmography knit together has been an absolute joy!

Selection Five:

Rear Window (1954) Re-Issue Film Trailer starring James Stewart via TCM

I wanted to focus on bonefide Horror films before shifting into straight-up Psychological Suspense films but in many ways I think the two merged together irregardless of my intentions! Hitch has been in my life for as long as I can remember, as there was something innately wicked about his films – he had this intricate way of telling a story through camera, performance, atmosphere, and that line between what is real and what is imagined real; he bridged the art of film-making with the art of story-telling with precision! Rear Window never fails to keep me on the edge of my seat, even though out of all his films, I have seen this repeatedly throughout my life! I cannot remember how old I was when I first watched an Alfred Hitchcock movie, but I believe I was at least in middle school at the time!?

James Stewart had already captured my heart from It’s A Wonderful Life (my joy of seeing a Capra film is intense!) yet in Hitchcock’s films, Stewart steps out of the warm & cosy settings of the family stories providing such a convicting performance as to make me wonder each & everytime I see this particular film if he will come out alright in the end! I kid you not, I’m always curious, will they solve this in time? Will there be enough evidence?! And, of course, I had to sort of resolve the fact the villain is Raymond Burr (my beloved Perry Mason!) of whom I wish was NOT cast in this role! Talk about giving you shivers! I never like seeing actors I appreciate in strong lead roles go ‘over to the dark side of the screen’ and this is one moment where I truly wished another actor could have played the part! I love the rest of the supporting cast, especially Thelma Ritter as Stella!

Selection Six:

Vertigo (1958) Movie Clip from the Opening Credits via TCM:

Out of all the films I could have picked as my second favourite Hitchcock, I went with Vertigo over The Lady Vanishes (1938) for the simple reason that I am never quite certain if I have sorted out the plot and by the time I realise that I know *exactly!* which way is up in this film, I find myself completely captured by the suspense of not knowing all over again! I love how I continue to watch this film in enough intervals of time as to forget half of it — which is unique considering I have a solid memory for films & books, but in this particular case, I nearly try to forget the pieces of the puzzle, because I want that ‘first  look’ experience where I was wholly captured by the gravity of truth as equally as Stewart’s character was himself! Not to mention the fact, I found it incredible how Kim Novak played her role as both Madeleine & Judy!

Selection Seven:

Cape Fear (1991)

I can honestly say after I saw this film, I purged it out of my memory, it was THAT terrifying! To this day, I cannot and will not watch it for a second time! Yet, the main reason I am placing it on this list is simply because it captured what I felt the genre of Horror Films would always contain; hence the reason I made the choice to stay within the fringes of horror rather than to crossover completely into it full throttle. To say this is a favourite of mine is not as accurate as saying it was one of the most mind-numbing films I ever survived watching! I cannot deny that whilst I watched the film, it not only held my nerves in suspense but it quite literally nearly choked me into a fit of nightmares! Oy vie!

This feature post is part of my participation in:

#OTBHorrorOctober badge created by Jorie in Canva

Reader Interactive Question:

Your turn! :) What are your Top Favourite Horror Films & why!? Do you lean towards psychological suspense, thriller, & the more atmospheric side of the Horror Film genre like me? OR are you a bonefide Horror lass or bloke, who is only entertained by the harder hitting films full-on with gore & violence? List the films that captured you & the film-makers and/or studios that hold your attention the most! All answers are acceptable – even if your interests do not run parallel to mine! Speak openly! :)

{SOURCES: Horror October banner provided by Oh! The Books for participants to promote the event on their book blogs; used with permission. #OTBHorrorOctober badge for Jorie created by Jorie in Canva. Film Trailers &/or Film Clips for Classic Movies embedded due to codes provided by Turner Classic Movies. Tweets embedded due to the codes provided by Twitter.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2014.

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Posted Sunday, 19 October, 2014 by jorielov in #HorrorOctober, Bookish Films, Classic Motion Pictures, Cosy Horror, Cosy Horror Suspense, Good vs. Evil, Gothic Mystery, Haunting & Ethereal, Horror, Horror-Lite, Motion Picture Inter-related to Bookish Topic, Psychological Suspense, Superstitions & Old World Beliefs, TV Serials & Motion Pictures