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Science Fiction and Fantasy

This month, national best-selling author Chris Marie Green launches a new urban fantasy series—with a most unusual protagonist! Read what she has to say about her inspiration for the books—and the titles.

Do you love '80s slasher films as much as I do?

Killers in the woods, grotesque masks that hide a maniac's identity, screams in the night...I can watch flicks like the original Friday the 13th, Halloween, The Burning, and The New York Ripper for hours, knowing that they're not real...

Unfortunately for the main character in my new series Jensen Murphy, Ghost for Hire, horror movies are all too real. Back in the '80s, she was a victim of an ax-wielding, bloodthirsty serial killer in Elfin Forest, a genuinely haunted area in San Diego County. Over thirty years later, she comes back as a ghost who yearns to find her murderer—and to help a psychic/medium trap possible criminals by haunting confessions out of them. I wanted to bring my enthusiasm for scary movies to these books, along with creating a whole new paranormal world in the beyond.

And part of the fun was in building Boo World and meeting all the odd spirits in this dimension. One ghost is a World War II sailor who is perpetually drunk. Another is a hot-rod teenager from the '50s. But my favorite supporting ghost is a contemporary of Jensen's—a Valley Girl who died while experimenting with "her look," which is now forever half The Cure and half Cyndi Lauper. (By the way, she's not so happy about that.)

Jensen herself is more like the girl next door in those slasher movies—the person who usually ends up as "the final girl." You know—the one who always gets to "kill" Jason Voorhees or Michael Meyers before they somehow get resurrected. Too bad Jensen didn't live up to that trope, but luckily she's getting a second chance to "live" in Boo World.

There are other spirits around who aren't as "light" as Jensen and her friends, though. Some of these dark forces are in Elfin Forest (the Witch of the Woods, the White Lady)...and hiding around every corner in Boo World. There's even one cryptic, playful spirit who comes to Jensen disguised as her first love, Dean, and he's always trying to lure her to a strange plane so he can have her all to himself for some reason...

I also loved naming the books. It makes sense that each novel hearkens back to songs Jensen would've listened to when she was alive. The first book, Only the Good Die Young, comes from the bouncy Billy Joel song, but in Boo World, the meaning is much more sinister. The second book (out this October!) is called Another One Bites the Dust. Yeah, I totally couldn't resist that. You'll see what the third one is in the coming months, but let's just say it's in keeping with the '80s and the dead, too!

I hope you enjoy reading Only the Good Die Young. There's a lot more to come for Jensen and Boo World!

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