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Readers who have enjoyed our good friend Blair MacKenzie Blake’s esoteric explorations in our Darklore anthology series, and/or the sumptuous wordplay in his book of occult prose Ijynxwill surely enjoy The Othering, his debut novel, which is now available to purchase at DannyCarey.org (limited copies available, see below for details)!

Firmly rooted in the esoteric themes he has explored in his previous non-fiction writings (and, I suspect, perhaps at least partly autobiographical), The Othering tells the story of an American boy growing up in a small town in the 60s, whose eyes (or is that third eye?) are slowly opened to another, hidden world beyond mundane ‘consensus reality’:

Growing up in Southern Illinois in the 1960s, Addison Albright appears to be a typical mischievous teen – even though the manner in which birds flit from branch to branch in the placid suburb troubles him.  Oddities in his childhood memories also cause him to wonder if things are really as they seem in “Little Egypt”?  The one person who might know is the town villain, Maxx “Molewhisker” Schaufler – a former undertaker with a hotrod hearse who Addison encounters in a private cemetery with curious grave markers.  Not only is the old codger’s appearance unusual, there’s something peculiar about his ramshackle Victorian that Addison soon comes to realize.  As a series of perplexing events has him teetering on the brink of insanity, someone else is attracted to Molewhisker’s afflicted mirror: a scholarly biker named Zerrill who claims to be a member of an epigraphic society.  After involving himself in the strange relationship between the enigmatic Schaufler and the boy struggling to free himself from his mysterious control, his true agenda is called into question.  Exploiting the town folk to achieve his cryptic objective, the narrative darkens when Addison becomes infatuated with a gorgeous college girl with esoteric interests.  As the three match wits while attempting to unravel a local legend that could revise world history, their lives will be forever changed when they discover the shocking truth revealed in the othering.

The first printing of Blair’s novel is a collectable edition: a privately published true first edition, consisting of only 200 perfect bound soft cover copies (6 x 9 – 303 pages), of which only 140 are being sold in order to recoup some of the printing expense (the remaining copies will be given to family and friends. Additionally, the first 35 copies sold will include a sheet that contains some “hand-written text from the novel as originally written with a medium point PaperMate pen on Dollar Store yellow legal pads”. At just $19.99, it’s an absolute bargain for a first edition, so if interested go grab a copy via the store at DannyCarey.org.

(Full disclosure: I helped out with the editing and typesetting of The Othering, and received a complimentary copy of the book.)