I asked author Cynthia Tottleben to give us some background to her motivations for writing this unique story. Here's what she said:
As a lover of all things creepy and horrific, I personally am not afraid of dark spaces, monsters, aliens, or even rabid dogs. I do, however, have a lingering fear of giant killer bunny rabbits left over from a B-movie I watched when I was but six years old. Not something I’ve shared with a lot of people, but at some point in life we all have to come clean. This is my moment.
I can’t tell you the title of the film. Nor anything about the plot, except that the rabbits must have been in a rural area tormenting farmers while they tried to sleep. I relive my childhood horror each time I visit my aunt’s house, when the quiet countryside is bathed in darkness, and I have to brave the walk from my car to her front porch with nothing to stave off the vicious bunnies but the little lamp leaking a path of light across the yard. Thirty-seven years after watching this movie, I still hesitate when gripping the door handle, my heart leaping a bit in my chest, as I scan the blackness for the horrible creatures I know it hides.
This is what I hope to achieve as an author.
Not to terrify young girls, but to skulk around in someone’s mind for decades. To make the most irrational thought- that the sweetest creatures roaming my aunt’s yard will eat me as I sprint to the safety of her house- a complete and utter truth. Because who’s to say it isn’t?
In THE EYE UNSEEN, I play with this concept and layer delicious delusions through a thick sauce of insanity, which I like to feed my readers raw. My two main characters, Lucy and her mother, Joan, struggle with madness. They each approach it from a different direction. But they also share commonalities, such as their interaction with the same redheaded man, that cement their story on the last bit of good road just north of the abyss. Perhaps neither of them are crazy after all.
Perhaps everything they experience is reality, naked and screaming and vicious as it is. And like the cute rabbits that torment me thirty-seven years later, I hope every time my readers encounter a chicken they stop and take a second or third look at it and wonder, will I wake up and find you in my room? Where will you be hiding? And what will happen if I eat you for dinner????
Now here's a taste of what to expect from The Eye Unseen:
Lucy Tew's life is a labyrinth of darkness. She has no food, no water, and a mother who can't wait to test her axe on Lucy's neck. Locked in her room for weeks on end, with only her dog Tippy for companionship, Lucy faces hours stacked like corpses as days dwindle to little more than watching corn wither in the fields and animals stir within it. But they aren't the only ones aware of Lucy's predicament. Inside the house, the very walls come alive as Lucy flounders with sanity. A stranger appears to lead Lucy through her darkest days, but is he the savior she craves? He revels in the turmoil that shadows him. His old relationship with her mother will soon rekindle. And his name is so obscene, no one dares utter it. Except for the one that calls him Father.
Just published, you can buy The Eye Unseen in Kindle and paperback here:
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