Wednesday, April 24, 2024

LEGACY OF THE WITCH by Kirsten Weiss ~ Guest Post, Excerpt & Giveaway

Legacy of the Witch (Mystery School, #1)
by: Kirsten Weiss
Series: Mystery School
Genre: Paranormal Women’s Fiction Mystery
Release Date: April 30, 2024
Publisher: Misterio Press

Seeker: As societies grow increasingly fragmented, hopelessness, nihilism, and division are on the rise. But there is another way—a way of mystery and magic, of wholeness and transformation. Do you dare take the first step? Our path is not for the faint-hearted, but for seekers of ancient truths...

All April wants is to start over after her husband’s sudden death. She’s conjuring a new path—finally getting her degree and planning her new business in bucolic Pennsylvania Dutch country. Joining an online mystery school seems like harmless fun.

But when a murdered man leaves her a cryptic message, she catches glimpses of another reality she’s unwilling to acknowledge. A reality where bygone enchantments cast cryptic shadows, and the present brims with unanswered questions.

As April works to unearth the mystery, every step brings her closer to a truth she’s been evading. And to a conspiracy of hexes that may end in her demise.

Legacy of the Witch is a spellbinding, interactive tale of a woman’s midlife quest to understand the complexities of her own heart. A paranormal women’s fiction murder mystery for anyone who’s wondered if there might be more to their own life than meets the eye…

Book 1 in the new Mystery School Series featuring the UnTarot, a deck of cards for meaning making. Start reading now!

UnTarot deck app included!

The Witch World of the Penn Dutch

On the surface, the world of Legacy of the Witch is the world of Pennsylvania Dutch country: Amish buggies, hex signs on faded red barns, ivy covered silos. I built my magical world on this real world intentionally. I think the literary magic that feels the most believable has some basis in reality.

The irony is that there’s a surprising vein of magic in Penn Dutch country. The Penn Dutch have their own brand of folk magic called braucherei, or powwow. There’s also a long history of Pennsylvania superstitions around evil witches. It’s not surprising considering how deep and dense and dangerous the Pennsylvania woods can get.

For the Penn Dutch, the dark shadows in those woods were populated with witches. In Berks County, PA there’s a Witch Road, which coils past Witch Hill. The history of the hill is murky. Some say it’s a hill where nothing grew, so rumors of it being cursed sprung up. Others say the German immigrants believed witches held their midnight rites there. And still others think it was named that because the good Brauchers who removed curses would cast the physical remnants of those curses into the hillside. Whatever the truth of the legend, it’s an eerie place.

Evidence strongly suggests the Penn Dutch hex signs had nothing to do with warding off Hexen (German for witches). But even today, many believe the signs ward off evil or bring good luck.

However, I dislike using real places for my stories. It’s too easy to mix up the location of a gas station or street and annoy the inhabitants. Not to mention, my stories are murder mysteries, and I don’t want to malign a perfectly nice little town. So I mashed up a region in Lebanon County with the legend of Witch Hill and created an imaginary town—Mt. Gretel.

Those in the know (or with a decent map) might be able to place Mt. Gretel’s true location. But mystery readers enjoy a good puzzle. I’ll maintain my cloak of secrecy and let them work it out.
And there was someone inside the yellow coat. A silver-haired man.

For a moment I thought it was a bad joke, he wasn’t real. Then, heart banging, I hopped over the stone ledge.

Heedless of the brambles tugging at my clothes, of the muck squelching beneath my shoes, I stumbled to the supine man. He lay staring with one broad hand pressed to his chest. Blood stained his neck and pooled in the hollows around him.

“Oh my God,” I breathed, fumbling for the phone in my jacket pocket.

His head turned toward me, and I yelped.

I dropped to my knees beside him. “You’re alive. It’s okay. I’m calling for help now.” What had happened to him? Had he tripped and fallen? But what had he been doing in the circle?

“Can you put pressure on the wound?” I asked. If he couldn’t, I’d need to. I’d need a cloth, something to staunch the flow.

But first, help. Hands shaking, I called 9-1-1.

He lifted a hand and pointed toward the trees. “Look beneath,” he whispered. “The brotherhood.”

“It’s okay,” I said. “I’m calling now.” I pressed the phone to my ear. “I’m calling...” My voice faded.

His blue eyes grew as cold and impersonal as the Atlantic, and he stared without seeing at the sky. A thick dullness fogged my chest. I was too late. He was dead.

Purchase Legacy of the Witch from:
Amazon | Paperback Coming Soon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | Google Play | Goodreads
(Affiliate Links Used)

I believe in free-will, and that we all can make a difference. I believe that beauty blossoms in the conscious life, particularly with friends, family, and strangers. I believe that genre fiction has become generic, and it doesn’t have to be.

My current focus is my new Mystery School series, starting with Legacy of the Witch. Traditionally, women’s fiction refers to fiction where a woman—usually in her midlife—is going through some sort of dramatic change. A lot of us do go through big transitions in midlife. We get divorced or remarried. The kids leave the nest. Our bodies change. The midlife crisis is real—though it manifests in different ways—as we look back on where we’ve been, where we’re going, and the time we have left.

Now in my mid-fifties, I’ve spent more time thinking about the big “meaning of life” issues. It seemed like approaching those issues through witch fiction, and through a fictional mystery school, would be a fun and a useful way for me to work out some of these ideas in my own head—about change and letting go, faith and fear, and love and longing.

After growing up on a diet of Nancy Drew, Sherlock Holmes, and Agatha Christie, I’ve published over 60 mysteries—from cozies to supernatural suspense, as well as an experimental fiction book on Tarot. Spending over 20 years working overseas in international development, I learned that perception is not reality, and things are often not what they seem—for better or worse.

There isn’t a winter holiday or a type of chocolate I don’t love, and some of my best friends are fictional.

Places to find Kirsten Weiss:

You can follow the Legacy of the Witch Blog Tour here.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Thank you so much for featuring LEGACY OF THE WITCH today.

  2. I like the excerpt. Sounds really good.

    1. I'm excited to read this novel. Thanks for sharing and hosting this tour.

  3. Replies
    1. You're welcome. Thank you for stopping by.

  4. If your book were a flavor of ice cream what would it taste like and why?

  5. Love the cover and think the book looks good.

  6. What a great mystery read with an amazing cover!
    Thank you for sharing this.

  7. Looks like a great mystery. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Love the excerpt. Thanks for the giveaway!

  9. I really like the cover art.

  10. Do you know the title when you start or does it come to you as you go along?

  11. What comes first the title or the storyline?

  12. Have you ever envisioned one of your books becoming a film?

  13. What kind of process and time management techniques do you use?

  14. How do you come up with your character names?

  15. I enjoyed the excerpt. Looking forward to reading the whole thing.

  16. Do you put "Easter Eggs" in your stories?

  17. Who serves as an inspiration towards your writing?

  18. If you do an audiobook, will you self-narrate?

  19. When did you decide you wanted to be a writer?

  20. Do you have an alternative career or are you primarily an author?

  21. What other authors have served as inspiration to your writing?

  22. Are you a cat person or a dog person?

  23. What is the favorite thing you have written

  24. Do you have a favorite film?

  25. Do you have a favorite period of time to write about?

  26. looks like a fun one

  27. How do you organize your ideas or future books?

  28. The Paranormal Women’s Fiction Mystery book looks fun to read.


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