Roberta Writes welcomes C.S. Boyack and his amazing The Hat series of books

Today, I am delighted to welcome fantasy and sci-fi author, C.S. Boyack, to Roberta Writes with a post about his amazingly imaginative The Hat series of books. I have read and enjoyed several of Craig’s book, including the first two books in this series.

Take it away, Craig!

Thanks for having me back, Robbie. This is kind of exciting, because I’ve never been able to do a series tour before. Now that I have enough volumes, I thought I’d give it a try. The goal is to discuss one volume per week. Here on week three it’s all about The Ballad of Mrs. Molony.

The Hat Series involve short novels you can read in an afternoon. I’ve also worked to make sure readers can tackle them out of order. If you pick up any volume, I don’t think you’ll feel lost.

In The Ballad of Mrs. Molony, the duo are hunting vampires. I designed my vamps after predators. I’ll use an African example to make my point. Lions tend to hang out in plain sight. Various herbivores seem to wander past with no worries. It’s when the lions aren’t in sight that the prey species need to worry.

Most of my vampires hide among the street people. We notice them, but try not to look as we go out for an evening. In this story, I took them to another level. I placed them among the rodeo circuit. These events have a lot of parties going on, and someone is going to drink a bit too much, or wander off alone for a smoke.

I also worked on the concept that vampires were people before the big change. I made some less threatening, but the targets of this story were monsters before they became vampires.

Good thing Lizzie and the hat have a small cover band. This gets them into the right places to stalk the killers. They just have to adapt to a different kind of music than they usually play. I worked some of this for humor, because it’s a new style for them.

It’s actually a vampire that tells Lizzie all about the current problem. Kevin Mugford has to be the worst vamp of all time. He has gnarly teeth to the point of deformity, a speech impediment, and is pretty cowardly. He needs Lizzie, because the vampires have taken his sister to use as livestock. They feed off her on slow nights when hunting hasn’t been productive.

Since this series is supposed to be somewhat comical, the hat doesn’t trust him. It could be a setup to jump Lizzie as she’s about to move in on them. Maybe the sister is a vampire, too. It leads to a few fun interactions between Lizzie and the hat.

The Ballad of Mrs. Molony is free today, and will be for a couple of days. You can’t beat that deal. Check out a fun supernatural romp during October, on me.

Since this is a series tour, I’m including the link to the whole series. http://mybook.to/The-Hat-Series

Blurb

The Hat Series is my opportunity to have a little fun, and readers seem to be enjoying themselves, too. The series fits into a variety of pigeonholes as all stories do. If you’re looking for supernatural, paranormal, or urban fantasy, with a dose of dark humor, this might be the series you’re looking for.

Lizzie St. Laurent is a hard working twenty-something. She’s struggling with the issues of being a young adult, but also dealing with the supernatural world. After her grandmother died, she tried to get a memento from the estate. Her greedy uncle refused to share, so in desperation, she stole a box from the moving van.

Her treasure turned out to be an old hat that belonged to her grandfather. Not exactly the knickknack she was hoping for. This isn’t any ordinary hat. He’s actually a being from another dimension who was brought here by witchcraft. He has a few magical skills, but also some more ordinary ones. He can transport her to a cabin, deep in the forest, among other things. A bit more ordinary is his ability to play the upright bass, but only if he has a human host to manipulate. He’s also a shapeshifter, but is limited to always being a hat of some kind.

The hat has been in Lizzie’s family for centuries, and all of his partners have been monster hunters. Their symbiotic relationship also created an additional income stream for Lizzie. They formed a small cover band, which tends gets them out at night when monster hunting is more productive.

I put all kinds of strange things into these stories to make them fun. My section breaks have all been replaced with a series of bass clefs. I also include silly graphics in various locations to enhance the tales. You’ll find tons of snark mixed in with your blood and adventure.

These are short novels, designed for a single afternoon. While it is a series, they can be read as stand-alone tales. If one of the other volumes is your entry-point, I don’t think you’ll feel lost.

If this sounds like something to make your October complete, I’d appreciate you checking it out.

My reviews of books in this series

The Hat

The Hat by C.S. Boyack is such a great read. The main characters are a young girl, Lizzie St Laurent, a twenty-one-year-old college dropout whose grandmother has died and who has been left to fend for herself in a city far from home and the Hat. Lizzie is working a couple of jobs to pay the bills and keep a roof over her head. She also has a deal with the landlord whereby she keeps the garden tidy and trim in return for free utilities. Lizzie is struggling and when her uncle doesn’t want to give her a keepsake from her grandmother’s estate, she helps herself to one from the back of the removal van. Boy, does she make a good choice. She ends up acquiring a hat that can communicate with her, transform its shape, transfer her to a “safe house’ built by her grandfather and teach her how to play a musical instrument. What is even better is that the Hat is magically bound to Lizzie’s family and is there to assist her out of tight spots in life. When the baby of a friend of Lizzie’s is stolen, the Hat is right there by her side to help her rescue the babies form a band of ruthless kidnappers.

Along the way, Lizzie will have some fun experimenting with great fashion items and meeting some interesting musicians. The Hat is a fast-paced novella which will keep you turning the pages, giving you lots of laughs along the way.

I rated this book five stars out of five.

The Hat by [C. S. Boyack]

Viral Blues

Viral Blues is a thrilling and fun second book in The Hat series. Someone or something evil has contaminated all the vaccinations being administered in the USA, with the result that horrible epidemics are breaking out in towns throughout the continent. Gupta and Gina Greybill are determined to find out who is behind the outbreaks and why. The gather a group of unusual heroes together to help them figure it all out, including, Lizzie and her paranormal hat, Clovid and his dog, Justine, a voodoo practitioner, Jason Fogg who can shape-change into fog, and Lisa, a robot girl.

This unlikely crew quickly realise that something malevolent and sinister is afoot and it involves zombies, the mafia, and unscrupulous scientists. The group must set aside their differences and utilise their different strengths to overcome the evil force behind the scheme.

C.S. Boyack is an author of unusual originality and his fantastic heroes are highly entertaining. Each character has useful talents but also has a weakness which needs to be overcome in order for the group to keep making progress in solving the case. The author also threads some excellent humour throughout his novel which makes for an even more entertaining and enthralling read.

Viral Blues (The Hat Book 2) by [C. S. Boyack]

My review of The Yak Guy Project

This is my personal favourite of C.S. Boyack’s books.

I have read a few of Craig Boyack’s books and I really enjoy his writing. I found this story particularly enjoyable.

The nameless hero of the story wakes up in the middle of a desert with a bullet in his head and no memory of what happened to him and how he got there. He is rescued by a talking Yak who is there to help him learn to become a useful part of society. Our unusual hero has lived a life of laziness and has spent his days sponging off his friends and anyone else who comes along.

Our hero sets off on an usual journey in a post apocalyptic world where war has destroyed the sophisticated and technologically advanced societies that lived there previously. The hero meets a prototype, a human like creature that teaches him a lot about the art of survival such as identifying edible plants and other useful natural resources. The prototypes salvage food and other recyclable materials from the remains of the destroyed cities, villages, aeroplanes and vehicles that scatter the country side. The prototype also teaches the hero the importance of reflection and thinking about what you want from life and how your individual actions impact on the natural world.

When the hero reaches a point in his emotional development where he is ready to re-join his own kind, the Yak reappears and they set off together to find one or other of the survivals who have formed themselves into rival groups. The hero still has lessons to learn about love, loyalty and teamwork.

I really enjoyed the hero and found his personal journey from a selfish and spoilt man-child to a reliable and resourceful man very interesting. The story was fast paced and entertaining and I enjoyed the fantasy world that the writer created.

The Yak Guy Project by [C. S. Boyack]

120 thoughts on “Roberta Writes welcomes C.S. Boyack and his amazing The Hat series of books

  1. I know that I have The Hat and The Yak Guy Project on my Kindle (not to mention 200 others, sigh), and I’ll get to them eventually.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Reblogged this on Entertaining Stories and commented:
    I’m visiting with Robbie Cheadle today. The Topic is The Ballad of Mrs. Molony. The book is free for a couple of days, so might make some fun Halloween reading. While you’re there, check out Robbie’s site. She’s a prolific author writing both children’s books and adult material.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Kevin, the vampire is one of my favorite characters in the Hat series. I have read all the books and enjoyed each and every one, but there’s something soooo entertaining about Kevin (especially when the Hat is around). With the vampire theme in Mrs. Molony, this book makes great Halloween reading.

    Craig, I really liked your comparison to lions in plain sight and hiding. Very clever!

    Thanks for hosting, Robbie!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. As a big fan of Lizzie and The Hat and I am happy to see Craig featured here. Kevin was a unique Vampire and I love that he showed up in more than one book. Thank you for hosting, Robbie, and best wishes to Craig!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Clever idea, Craig and Robbie, to do a series tour. I wouldn’t be surprised if you’ve started a trend! I love the idea of “short novels you can read in an afternoon” and out of order. Great ideas.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I have The Hat and will grab a copy of Mrs. Molony today. And now that fall is here, my TBR pile will be tackled. Looking forward to reading these books. Congratulations on being spotlighted here, Craig! Thanks for hosting, Robbie.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. These sound such fun! I’ve help myself to the offer, although I’m not sure I’ll get around to it this October. Thanks for the introduction to Craig and his books, Robbie! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Another great post. I liked this take on vampires and really enjoyed this series. Thanks for hosting the sharing your great reviews, Robbie!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Congrats to Craig for your wonderful reviews, Robbie. This series does sound like fun, and it’s good to know the books can be read out of order too. I don’t have a kindle, so I’ll add them to my paperback list. 🙂
    Thanks for hosting, Robbie. 🧡

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Great to see Craig getting some good press for this series. The books I’ve read to date have all been such fun, and as I often say, Craig’s creativity is off the charts! Keven, the lisping vampire? Hilarious! If you are looking for something new and different, you need look no further than The Hat series, and you’ll love The Ballad of Mrs. Maloney.

    Great post! Here’s to a ton of new readers coming your way, Craig! 😊

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Me too, Robbie. His mind is so inventive, isn’t it? To read one of Craig’s books is to go somewhere you’ve probably never visited before. And that’s a good thing! 😊

        Liked by 1 person

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