Published: January 20, 2020 by Perfectly Poisoned
The year is 1890. The Barrow Haven Asylum is a private facility in rural England housing some of the country’s wealthiest insane. Some inmates are truly insane, some banished by family members, others perhaps feigning insanity and with questionable agendas.
Ten stories of shock and suspense brought to you by ten of your favorite authors.
STORIES & AUTHORS
INTRODUCING LILY SNOW
Doctor Jonathan Marsh is a professional success, but a personal failure. As lead physician at Barrow Haven Asylum, he is admired by many, but he resents the position was thrust upon him by his father and grandfather.
Desperate to strike out on his own, but burdened by family guilt, he remains at Barrow Haven year after year.
When a nameless mute woman arrives at the asylum, Jonathan fills himself being pulled in by the mysterious beauty. Suddenly, the doctor/patient relationship reverses itself. But who is the woman and what is her plan?
About Natalie-Nicole Bates
Natalie-Nicole Bates has worn all the hats in the publishing world – reader, reviewer, author, and now small publisher with Perfectly Poisoned Press. She has the ability to see the point of view of everyone involved with the love of books. With a taste for the darker side, Natalie-Nicole’s favorite genres are Dark Victorian, Steampunk, and Dark Paranormal. Her interests include collecting Victorian-era photographs, Frozen Charlotte Dolls (her latest batch was just delivered from a German excavation site after being buried underground since about 1860), and antique poison bottles. She loves exploring and photographing cemeteries – the older, the better!
Sarah Malone is sent to Barrow Haven Asylum for the murder of her husband, to live however long in privileged imprisonment. A series of patient deaths soon follows after her arrival, but surely that’s just coincidence. Isn’t it?
About Marie Sterling
Marie is a native Midwesterner who now resides in Florida. Her family and friends would probably describe her as sarcastic, but that’s not completely true. Sometimes she’s sleeping. Marie spent a good chunk of her life in the United States Army, several of those years working in Military Intelligence. She could tell you more but then she’d have to kill you. Marie is also a member of RomVets, a group of military women who have turned the sword to pen.
Asylum is the fourth anthology that Marie's writing has appeared in, and the third with Perfectly Poisoned Anthologies. She has stories in Grave Importance and Devious Ingénues (with PPA) and in Order Up: A Menu of Lesbian Romance and Erotica.
THE HARLOT SPY ESCAPES
Terri A. Wilson
After years of dedication to the Queen, England turned its back on Charlotte Jane Abercromby. Now she is taking her secrets and returning the favor. Her life as a Harlot Spy provided a lifestyle among the most elite of aristocracy. After years of gathering secrets for the Crown, some that may affect the queen herself, Queen Victoria will not let her easily escape. Hidden away in Barrow Haven Asylum, Charlotte must do the unthinkable or lose her mind forever.
About Terri A. Wilson
Terri considers herself a professional liar. That's right, she tells stories for a living. She creates worlds and brings dreams to life. She writes paranormal romance and contemporary romance with the hope that she will make others enjoy reading as much as she has. When she's not writing, she's staying connected to her inner hippie and searching the internet for funny memes. Her tribe includes a dog, two daughters, a ton of imaginary friends, and an incredible man who keeps her tethered to the ground while she flies.
Amanda J. Evans
Two different lives
Fated to help each other
But will they both survive?
Seventeen-year olds Emily Brown and Clara Brunsworth are from different worlds. One rich. One poor. While Emily is scouring the streets looking for a way to help feed her family, their two worlds collide.
As their friendship blossoms, Emily agrees to swap places with Clara for one evening. Unfortunately, fate has other plans and Emily ends up imprisoned in Barrow Haven Asylum where secrets and dark family history is revealed. Can Emily uncover the truth before it’s too late?
Can she become the girl she loathes, or will Barrow Haven and its tortures trap her forever?
Find out in this prince and the pauper style retelling from award winning author Amanda J Evans.
About Amanda J. Evans
Amanda J Evans is an award-winning Irish author of YA and Adult romance in paranormal and fantasy genres. Growing up with heroes like Luke Skywalker and Indiana Jones, her stories centre on good versus evil with a splice of love and magic thrown in too. Her books have all won awards and her latest novella, Hear Me Cry, won the Book of the Year Award at the Dublin Writers Conference 2018. Amanda has been featured in a number of poetry anthologies in 2017 and 2018 including A Bowl of Irish Stew, a charity anthology for Pieta House and her short story Moonlight Magic was included in the Owl Hollow Press Anthology, Under the Full Moon’s Light, published in October 2018. Amanda’s latest novel, Winterland, is currently on submission with agents and she is working on a number of anthology stories at present which will publish in 2019 and 2020. Amanda is also the author of Surviving Suicide: A Memoir from Those Death Left Behind, published in 2012.
Committed to Barrow Haven Asylum after a falling out with his well-to-do family, Harry William’s only escape is to write letters. But he’s not sure if he controls what ends up on the page or the pen commands him. Does the devil own his soul?
About Lisa Acerbo
Lisa Acerbo loves to stay up late reading scary stories. She is a high school teacher and adjunct faculty at a local community college. She lives in Connecticut with her husband, daughters, and two rescue dogs. When not writing, she hikes and helps foster dogs find their forever homes.
As a teen, Adeline Shaw’s morbid fascination with suspected murderer and radical scientist, Edgar Walker, his companion, Louisa Becker, and the investigating detective, Stanley Price, led her down a path of grief, denial, and self-destruction. Residing almost half of her five and thirty years in asylums since, along with her vivid imagination, and victim to experimental, atrocious procedures, Adeline can’t distinguish reality from fantasy.
Does she learn she never endured the worst alone?
Some individuals live within their own set of boundaries. “We do what we must for those we love.”
About Sheri Lynn
Sheri Lynn also writes as Sheridan Knight.
I grew up an Army brat, so my childhood involved moving every three years. However, truly a southern gal, I currently split my time in Alabama and Florida with my husband, two Chihuahuas, two Golden Retrievers, a mean cat, and a turtle. I have two sons, who live on their own, a daughter in college, and a stepson and stepdaughter.
Romance novels have always been my first reading choice. I'm a hopeless romantic, and that trait materializes in every aspect of my life. “Wearing your heart on your sleeve” has been a common phrase repeatedly heard throughout my life. Writing romance and happily ever afters comes naturally.
Whether a result of my childhood, or not, I love to travel. Warm weather and beautiful beaches are always my choice destination.
When a viscount’s daughter is admitted to Barrow Haven Asylum, only twelve years old but pregnant and raving about fallen angels, matron Catherine Mills suspects that more is at play than a teenager’s guilty delusions.
About J.A. Cummings
J. A. Cummings was born in Flint, Michigan and was raised in a nearby town called Clio. Appropriately enough for someone growing up in a place named for the Muse of history, she developed a passion for reading and the past that continues to this day. Her love of poetry and storytelling quickly followed.
Her life has been one of numerous false starts, unexpected endings and fascinating side trips that lasted far too long. All of that chaos has informed her writing and improved her understanding of what it means to be human, both the sorrow and the glory.
She still resides in Michigan and pays the bills by working as a paralegal and ghostwriter.
Jennie L. Morris
Luella Carey isn’t crazy, not really, not that anyone believes her. Sent to Barrow Haven Asylum for a melancholic nature, she’s locked away at the behest of her father and his new wife.
Grieving for her mother’s death, Luella finds comfortable solitude in the asylum until several anonymous letters appear. Mr. Winifred Carey’s new wife intends murder. She plans to claim the Carey fortune as her own.
Mere days to escape the asylum and warn her father, Luella turns to a new friend, Mr. Isaac McEwen. The clock ticking down the hour, Luella fears her final decision. A grave mistake, perhaps? But who can she trust?
About Jennie L. Morris
As a self-proclaimed Anglophile and research geek, it's no wonder Jennie L. Morris writes Romance and Historical Fiction with a flair for realism. Her love for learning led her to obtain degrees in Anthropology and Biology, which she often relies on during her writing process. Coming from NE Ohio, and raised on a small beef cattle farm, life was anything but ordinary growing up.
Jennie now resides in rural Kentucky, among the bluegrass and dazzling horse farms, with her amazing husband and their boxer Archie. When she isn’t reading or writing, she is feeding her tea obsession or perfume addiction, letting the scents and flavors fuel her creative fires.
THE VOICES OF REASON
Arabella Evans loved to read. So much so that it affected her ability to determine fantasy from reality. It was a means to escape the confines of her own mind that foraged a means where she could exist freely in this world and the other…or were they just the voices clouding her mind in madness? She arrived at Barrow Haven Asylum on behest of her husband, whose political ties would be tarnished by a mad wife. Two weeks in, she realizes a malevolent force was at play within the asylum. Determined to find the connection between a large blood stain hidden beneath a carpet in the common room with another oddity that struck her—Silas Brentwood a man with the mind of a child associated with every clue.
Voices lurk within the walls of the asylum, just as they had in her home—seemingly an integral piece to the puzzle of the asylum, Arabella finds herself face-to-face with a murderer who walks freely, to which the voices in her head concur—something sinister lay in wait for her, the voices warn, but is she the only one that can heed their warning? Will the voices lead to reason? Can her own mind help her uncover the truth or is the intrigue nothing but a fabrication of her mind?
About J.V. Stanley
J. V. Stanley is an award-winning author and holds a BA in English and Communication. Her debut novel, “Faces In Still Waters” and poetry collection, “Chasing The Red” won first and second place in the 2016 Summer Indie Book Awards by Metamorph Publishing. Some of her publication credits include “The Library”, “Siren’s Lullaby” by Enchanted Anthologies, “Devious Ingenues”by Perfectly Poisoned, Anthologies, and Crazy Ink Publishing’s “Beyond Atlantis” among others. She is an IDPA Nationally Ranked Pistol Competitor—thus making her a warrior poet. She loves to bake, knit, read, and study herbalism. She currently lives in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan with her son and daughter (who’s also a writer) and spends copious amounts of time drinking over-sugared coffee while daydreaming on her keyboard.
THE FASCINATION OF JEREMY FAIRWEATHER
Jeremy Fairweather’s ennui is killing him. The state of his country, or what little empathy men have for each other has almost broken him. The first son of a wealthy Viscount, Jeremy is both swathed in luxury and, thanks to his father’s influence, fettered to do anything about the world of poverty surrounding them. Needing a distraction, Jeremy concocts a mad idea to get himself committed for a few months. What could be madder than staying with the lions themselves? In seeking a cure for his ennui, the young lord discovers a new meaning for family, and the bonds of friendship that can’t be broken even by the greatest of sacrifices.
About Jo Seysener
Jo Seysener is a mum of three crazy kids and a rambunctious, 32kg lapdog. When she’s not exposing her kids to cult stories from her childhood, she can be found attempting to re-life browning herbs and tortured orchids. She writes picture books for children through Library for All – a non-profit organisation encouraging literacy in third world nations. She also writes speculative fiction for adults, collecting a growing number in anthologies. Jo lives with her husband near Brisbane, Australia. She adores alpacas.