Southern Gothic Mystery by Susan Coryell–Beneath the Stones

beneath the stones coverAs a Virginian who enjoys Southern themes with mystery, romance, and a Gothic flavor, I’m pleased to have fellow Wild Rose Press Author, Susan Coryell, here to share her new release, BENEATH THE STONES, published in April, 2015,. The story is a standalone sequel to A Red, Red Rose. Both are cozy mystery/Southern Gothics.

From Susan: I wrote the sequel to A Red, Red Rose because so many reviewers asked for one. Much research was involved for Beneath the Stones since it is a contemporary setting with a Civil War background as a major theme: Unresolved issues from the past can literally haunt us in the present.

Civil War, American Civil War, War, Ghost, Armed Forces,The Civil War letters included in Beneath the Stones are based on actual letters written from battle fronts by family ancestors, Joseph Franklin Stover and John William Stover. After my mother-in-law’s death, the family found a nondescript box in her file cabinet. Inside we were amazed to find fifteen letters hand-written in beautiful, flowing script. Since this occurred as I was in the midst of writing Beneath the Stones, I immediately seized on the idea of using excerpts from the letters in the novel. Though, for practical reasons, I omitted many details, overall the letters reveal a haunting picture of life for the Confederate soldier. A final note: The flute mentioned in one of the letters is very likely the same flute on display at the Museum of the Confederacy in Appomattox, Virginia.~

Fascinating, Susan! I love the depth this gives your work. Our family also unearthed a treasure trove of letters from my great-great-grandfather George W. Finley who fought and was captured at Gettysburg and became one of the Immortal Six Hundred.. He’s one of the few surviving Confederates who not only lived to tell the tale, but wrote it all down. These connections with the past are so meaningful and moving. My brother, John Churchman, is doing a nonfiction book on Grandpa Finley.

southern-plantation-homeStory Blurb for Beneath the Stones:

Mystery, suspense and romance flourish against a backdrop of Civil War turmoil and ancestral strife–where immortality infiltrates the ancient air breathed by all who inhabit Overhome Estate.

Ashby Overton has everything to look forward to, including a promising writing career and her wedding at summer’s end. But, Overhome, her beloved historic family estate in Southern Virginia, is in financial peril and it is up to Ashby to find a solution.

Interfering with Ashby’s plans is a dark paranormal force that thwarts her every effort to save Overhome. Supernatural attacks emanate from an old stone cottage on the property rumored to be a slave overseer’s abode, prior to the Civil War. As the violence escalates, Ashby begins to fear for her life. Who is this angry spirit and why is his fury focused on her?

small pro photo of SusanLinks for Susan

Her Website:

Facebook page:

Amazon Buy links for Beneath the Stones: Paperback and Kindle 

18 responses to “Southern Gothic Mystery by Susan Coryell–Beneath the Stones

  1. Thanks for the opportunity to participate on your awesome blog, Beth. This is a Southern-gracious layout!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great article. Also, great book. I highly recommend it for it’s haunting Gothic quality.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Ashantay Peters

    I love learning the background of your latest book. What a fascinating history! Best wishes on a successful launch and many sales!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I LOVE that the letters were authentic. It does add a layer of depth to an already wonderful story. Congrats on the new release!

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Nancy–Thanks so much for your kind words!
    Ashantay–Yes–the history is fascinating in my part of America!


  6. The Civil War history is so fascinating. I’ve enjoyed the book, and this interview.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Hi, Susan and Beth,

    I enjoyed the novel very much but didn’t realize that there was so much actual family history involved.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Susan, this sounds like quite a story and I look forward to reading it. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Alicia, Heidi, Jacqueline and Caroline: Thanks to all of you for your comments and praise. The C.W. letters are amazing. I am now taking them with me for my signing/speaking events. The stones in the title and story are symbolic in various ways–stone wall, stone fireplace, stone cottage, grave stones–but all connect us to the solid memories of the past. So grateful to Beth for the chance to share!


  10. How fascinating, Susan. Makes me wish I could attend one of your speaking events so I can see the letters. Good luck with sales. I’m sure this book will sell well! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Thanks, Monique! I would love for folks in your country to hear about Beneath the Stones. I appreciate your support!


  12. Nice interview. The Civil War holds lots of secrets and I love plenty of history woven into a good romance. It’s first time I’ve been exposed to Susan Coryell. I’ll take a look at her series.


  13. Mark Anderson

    Great interview! I’m reading as fast as I can, and leafing back to Red Red Rose, too. Depth of research and precise narrative reflect top-of-game effort. I read at a glacial pace, but so far, I think of springtime warming when frost-frozen fields surge and heave up their fair share of stones, for all manner of use – houses, walls, a furnace or two in the woods. Solid stuff, and Susan gives us good history, character, and conflict, with an overlay of the ethereal which we cannot deny and will embellish in our own way.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Thanks, Eileen. Are you a writer, too? My cozy mystery/Southern Gothic books are long on mystery and short on gore and sex…the way I write and what I like to read. Hope you’ll agree when you check out my books!


  15. Mark: Love your comment! Yes, the fields heave up stones–they are everywhere in the ancient soil of Virginia. Ethereal overlay–so Southern! Thanks for your depth of thought.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.