COVER The Stoker Connection

 

 

Book Info

Title: The Stoker Connection

Series: --

Author:  Jackson Marsh

Publisher: Self published (James Collins)

Published:  Saturday, June 23 2018

Cover Design: Andjela K

Length: 95,000

Genre: Mystery, Romance, Teen (coming out), Thriller, Treasure Hunt

 

 

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 COVER 3D The Stoker Connection

 

 

BLURB

 

 

What if you could prove that the greatest Gothic horror novel of all time was a true story?

Dexter and Morgan meet on their eighteenth birthday. The attraction is instant but confusing. As they deal with coming out, they are bound together by more than first love.

Both keep diaries, and each has the same goal - to prove that Stoker didn't write 'Dracula'. They are convinced that Harker, Van Helsing and the others existed and wrote the novel's journals themselves. If Dex and Morgan can prove it, they will blow the lid off the vampire myth: Dracula existed.

As the two teenagers fall in love, so they fall into an adventure as thrilling as it is dangerous. They are being watched, and someone is willing to kill to stop them from making 'The Stoker Connection.'

The Stoker Connection is an MM Romance treasure hunt thriller. It draws on the original text of 'Dracula', but it is not a story about vampires. It is a story of first love and the power of friendship. Sometimes funny, it is an intriguing and honest account compiled from Dex and Morgan's original diaries.

 

 

Exclusive Chat

Tell us more about 'The Stoker Connection.'

 

The cover tells me 'The Stoker Connection' is going to be mysterious and a little bit Gothic, is it an adventure perhaps?

'The Stoker Connection' is all of those things, but primarily it is about two 18-year-old boys falling in love and discovering the value of friendship. There is an action plot that builds steadily, bringing mystery with it until it speeds up to its climax. Under that, there are the love story and a few emotional subplots as the two main characters, Dexter and Morgan, and their two best friends, Tim and Simon come to accept each other.

 

The word 'Stoker' suggests Bram Stoker. Is there anything to do with Dracula in the story?

You're right, but Bram Stoker didn't just write 'Dracula' though. He also wrote several other novels including the first 'mummy' novel, 'The Jewel Of Seven Stars', one of the earliest 'locked room' mysteries. That story and 'Dracula' play big parts in 'The Stoker Connection,' My two main characters believe there is a link between the two books and clues that will lead them to prove a shattering theory. That Stoker didn't write 'Dracula', but merely compiled papers from living people's diaries, therefore it was fact, not fiction.

 

So, is it about vampires?

No, it's not a vampire MM Romance. It is, though, an MM romance-mystery-thriller-young adult-coming-out novel; a gay teen treasure hunt romance you might say. It all happens in the real world (assuming that vampires don't live in our real world) and it isn't a fantasy. Well, only in the sense of, "I wish that happened to me when I was eighteen."

 

Any steamy parts?

Not as you might expect them. I do write sex scenes in my other novels, and I've won an award for erotic gay stories, but this novel is comprised of diaries written by two eighteen-year-olds. Dexter is more inclined to talk about sex in his diary, but he doesn't go into graphic detail. He describes his first sexual experiences glibly, because that's how he is, but becomes slightly more serious when talking about his first time with Morgan, because that was love and not just the usual teenage fumbling.

 

Can you describe Dexter and Morgan a little more?

Dexter Aaron Mitchell was born on November 11th, 1999 in Ashford Hospital, Kent. He is 17 when the story starts and is looking forward to being 18 in a few days. Dexter has a sense of humour, writes as he speaks and is often humorous. He's an intelligent guy, studying for his A-levels in English, Sociology and Music. He plays the piano and is about to sit his final grade 8 exam, he also plays a few other instruments. He's fit and is a rock climber and hiker, loves camping and outdoor pursuits. He has very dark blond hair which you could mistake for brown or even deep red in certain light, blue eyes and doesn't need to shave very often. He wouldn't mind me telling you he's also got an average, six-inch dick, uncut.

 

Morgan Davis was born on November 11th, 1999, in Chippenham, Wiltshire. His mother is a sex therapist, and his father died when Morgan was 16. He's also 17 when the story starts but soon turns 18 and, on that day, meets Dexter. His world changes from then on. He's closeted when at school, but out when at home. He's far more serious that Dexter, writes in a more contemplative style, but can be witty in a cutting way. He's studying for a place at Oxford University (English Literature and Classics), and when he's not studying, he is researching for his theory that he calls 'The Stoker Connection.' Morgan is the same height as Dexter, five-nine/ten, but darker, with brown eyes and a serious expression. He's slim but not very active (only in bed), more of an academic than a sportsman. He would hate me telling you this, but his dick is big, seven-inches, uncut and when he was fourteen, it was hard for the whole year, he says.

 

Finally, what's the next publication going to be? Are you working on anything?

I am always working on something, and I have a couple of stories on the go.

I am working on a gay, young adult novel set in Dexter's school, one year after 'The Stoker Connection' happens. This one is about a group of teens putting on a gay musical, and it's going to be more of a YA romance than an erotic one.

And then there's another for my older-with-younger romance novels, similar to 'The Mentor of Barrenmoor Ridge', my May/September romance set in the world of mountaineering. That's still in the planning stage because I like to have one being drafted and one being plotted so that no-one has to wait very long for the next Jackson Marsh.

 

 

 

 Excerpt

 

CHAPTER V

Dexter Mitchel's Diary

8 November (written on 9th). — Continued. And then there was his face, and his build, his clothes and something else that started to nag at my lust-muscles, whatever they are.

I knew I had to say something. He was looking expectantly at me, and to ignore him would be rude. I stuck out my hand on impulse.

'Great questions,' I said, my throat dry.

He took my hand, damp with sweat, and shook it.

'What a let-down,' he said, jerking his head towards the stage.

'Hell, yes. Not what I wanted to hear.'

'I know the play wasn't about Arnold's theory, but she must have looked into it.'

'Apparently not.'

'Phoney.'

'Yeah.'

We were still shaking hands.

'You've read the book?' he asked.

'Loads of times. You?'

He nodded. 'You're the only person I've met who's even heard of it.'

'Ditto. You believe it? His theory?'

Hands still being shaken, voices enthusiastic, my lust-muscles now in hopeful overdrive.

'I do, but I have one of my own.'

I grinned. 'Me too.'

I was aware that my palm was wet, and I glanced down. It was a bit embarrassing to still be holding hands now, so I opened my fingers to release him. He didn't open his. OMG, was that a signal of some sort? He was gorgeous. A moment of social 'What do I do?' and I gripped his hand again, sending my own signal.

'Sorry you didn't get to ask anything,' he said as if it was his fault.

'I didn't need to. You did it for me.'

He looked surprised and then impressed. We were the same height, more or less, so I was able to look right into his eyes. I saw something there. Something that I couldn't quite grasp at first.

'Would you…? No, forget it,' he said, and let go of my hand.

'What?' I continued to grip his.

'Just a thought.' He pulled his hand away.

That was that, then.

'Dexter, are you ready?'

Mum was at the door. I don't know how long she'd been there, but she would have been there long enough to see us holding hands.

'You have to go,' he said, a matter of fact rather than a disappointed enquiry. 'Yeah.' He received a disappointed reply. 'Birthday dinner with family.' 'Dexter?' Mum insisted.

I told her I would be there in five minutes and she made it clear it had to be two, which made me feel ten years old, but at least she left us alone.

'Look,' he said, as soon as she had gone. 'I'd like to talk more, about Arnold's theory, and about my own. If you're interested?'

'Yes please,' I blurted, sounding lame. I recovered. 'Dexter Mitchel.' Except I tapped my chest like I was Tarzan when I said it.

'Me Morgan Davis.' He did the same, with a Tarzan voice, and I knew then that we were going to hit it off.

The question was, to what extent?

Actually, the pressing question was when? I fumbled for my notebook and tore out a page. 'My email,' I said, trying to write neatly (a gift I have yet to receive). I must have looked like a flustered waiter who's just been torn off a strip. I handed it to him so hurriedly I dropped my notebook.

'My card,' he said, coolly offering a white business card and taking my scrap of paper.

His name and email were all that were on it.

'I'll message you,' I said, picking up my book and noticing mum back at the door.

Upright again, I added, 'I'd invite you, but it's on the uncle and aunt.'

'You would invite me?' he said, eyebrows raised. 'How kind.'

Who says 'How kind' like that? Morgan, obviously. Perhaps he was much older than he looked.

'Yes, I would, but I can't. Let’s talk, yeah?' I had to move away from him, I had to go. I was desperate to stay and learn more. I mean, who else out there has even read this book, let alone had a theory about it?

'I'll write,' he said. 'Email me.'

A sudden thought attacked out of left field, and I don't know why I did it, but I took back the scrap of paper and wrote, 'I'm gay,' before handing it back and saying, 'Don't let that put you off. It's not why I want to write to you.'

'Dexter.' The last warning from mum.

'Tomorrow,' I said, suddenly sick inside. What the fuck had I just done? And why? Too late to worry now, I'd done it. 'I'll email you tomorrow…' I was heading for the gents so I could change, bright red and trembling.

'I won't, Dexter,' he called after me. 'And have a birthday drink for me too.'

It stopped me in my tracks. Sod the Adams family currently gathering at the Metropole. They could fester for another minute. I spun around to find him facing me. We were both grinning.

'For you?' Did he mean it was also his birthday?

'Today.' He made a small bow.

'Mum?' I pleaded towards the exit. She shook her head. Even randomly meeting a stranger who shares the same obscure interest and birthday was not enough to get him an invite.

'How old?' Morgan asked, and I didn't find it intrusive.

'Eighteen. You?' It was easy to ask.

He did that friendly wink again. 'Would you believe eighteen?'

No fucking way. 'Today?' I glared at mum again. We had to invite him.

No chance.

'We would invite you,' she told him. 'But it's not up to me.'

'No, no, of course not, don't worry,' he said, all smiles and thanks. 'I have a journal to write up in any case.'

'Fuck off!' That was out of my mouth before I knew it. 'I do that too.'

We stared at each other until he said, 'These coincidences are a veritable prison, and I am a prisoner.' An altered quote from the end of chapter two ('Dracula' obviously). He nodded to me. 'I'm away from my email until tomorrow night, but I'll be waiting to hear from you.'

'I'll write,' I stammered back.

He waved my piece of paper at me as he left. 'I do hope so.'

 

 

 

 Author Photo Jackson Marsh

 

 Author Bio

 

Hi. Jackson was born in 2017 as the penname for me (James) so that I could publish my new gay fiction independently from my other writing work. I was born on the south coast of England during a blizzard, but now like to warm thing up with MM romance novels, gay mysteries and some occasional erotica. In 2007 I was awarded and EGPA award for my erotic short stories, and in 2018 I won a Best Screenplay award for one of my films. I am a diverse writer with thrillers, comedies and horror stories under my James belt, and now romance and mystery under my Jackson belt.

At the moment I am concentrating on two genres: older/younger MM romance, and youth mysteries with early 20s main characters and a love story included.

I live on a Greek island with my husband. My interests outside of writing and reading are outdoor pursuits, traveling, piano and genealogy. That's probably why my books tend to involve characters who are musicians, writers, mystery-solvers and rock climbers; there's a bit of me in every one.

 

 

 

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