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River of Ashes: New Southern Gothic

River of Ashes, one of Apple’s Most Anticipated Books for Summer in Mysteries & Thrillers

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River of Ashes

River of Ashes


Along the banks of the Bogue Falaya River, sits the abandoned St. Francis Seminary. Beneath a canopy of oaks, blocked from prying eyes, the teens of St. Benedict High gather here on Fridays. The rest of the week belongs to school and family—but weekends belong to the river. And the river belongs to Beau Devereaux. The only child of a powerful family, Beau can do no wrong. Star quarterback. Handsome. Charming. The “prince” of St. Benedict is the ultimate catch. He is also a psychopath.

A dirty family secret buried for years, Beau’s evil grows unchecked. In the shadows of the haunted abbey, he commits unspeakable acts on his victims and ensures their silence with threats and intimidation. Senior year, Beau sets his sights on his girlfriend’s headstrong twin sister, Leslie, who hates him. Everything he wants but cannot have, she will be his ultimate prize. As the victim toll mounts, it becomes clear that someone must stop Beau Devereaux. And that someone will pay with their life.

River of Ashes is a Southern Gothic, Psychological Thriller inspired by true events in the vein of V.C. Andrews with elements of Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn and You by Caroline Kepnes. River of Ashes addresses social issues including sexual violence and bullying.

Genre: Southern Gothic / Psychological Thriller / Coming-of-Age
Published by: Vesuvian Books
Publication Date: August 2nd 2022
Number of Pages: 284
ISBN: 1645480984 (ISBN13: 9781645480983)
Series: St. Benedict #1

To purchase River of Ashes, click on any of the following links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads | IndieBound

Excerpt River of Ashes

A howl came from the direction of The Abbey.

Andrea leaned away from him, listening. “What’s that?”

Beau nuzzled her neck. “Wild dogs. They live on The Abbey grounds. There’s a couple of legends about them.”

“What legends?” She stepped out of his embrace. 

He watched her hips beneath her coat. “They say the dogs stay around The Abbey waiting for the lady in white. She was a gamekeeper for the seminary school and a lover of one of the monks. She died on the grounds, betrayed by the man she loved. Her dogs were kept to manage the varmint population. The wild dogs are said to be their offspring.” 

Beau slipped the coat from her shoulders. “The gamekeeper was found hanging from a tree in a white hooded cloak. It was all kept very hush-hush at the time. After the woman’s death, the dogs roamed the grounds and lived off the land. They’re said to only appear when death is near.”

Beau looked at Andrea to see if she was sufficiently unnerved.

“That’s just creepy.” She glanced at his hands as he tugged at her jeans. “But a guy who brings girls to these abandoned cells is into creepy.”

He liked the image the cells portrayed. It was his laboratory, like he’d read about in Frankenstein, where he could experiment and create his own monsters.

Alexandrea Weis & Lucas Astor — Authors of River of Ashes

River of Ashes

Alexandrea Weis, RN-CS, PhD, is an IPPY Award-Winning author, advanced practice registered nurse, and wildlife rehabber who was born and raised in the French Quarter.

She has taught at major universities and worked with victims of sexual assault, abuse, and mental illness in a clinical setting at many New Orleans area hospitals. She is a member of the International Thriller Writers Organization and Horror Writers Association.

The Strand Magazine said, “Alexandrea Weis is one of the most talented authors around, and in a short time her novels are destined to stand along with authors such as Stephen King, Gillian Flynn, Joyce Carol Oates, and Jeffery Deaver.”

To learn more about Alexandrea, click on any of the following links:,, Goodreads, BookBub – @AlexandreaWeis, Instagram – @AlexandreaWeis, Twitter – @AlexandreaWeisFacebook – @AuthorAlexandreaWeis

Lucas Astor

Author Lucas Astor is an award-winning author and poet with a penchant for telling stories that delve into the dark side of the human psyche. He likes to explore the evil that exists, not just in the world, but next door behind a smiling face. Astor currently lives outside of Nashville, TN.

To learn more about Lucas click on either of the following links: LucasAstor.comInstagram – @lucasastorauthor

Visit all the Stops on the Tour!

River of Ashes

08/01 Guest post @ Novels Alive
08/02 Showcase @ BOOK REVIEWS by LINDA MOORE
08/04 Review @ addictedtobooks86
08/05 Review @ Lynchburg Reads
08/06 Showcase @ Nesies Place
08/08 Showcase @ Books, Ramblings, and Tea
08/09 Review @ Novels Alive
08/10 Review @ Lisa Wetzel
08/11 Interview @ I Read What You Write
08/12 Review @ tea. and. titles
08/13 Review @ sleeping. book. junkie
08/14 Review @ enjoyingbooksagain
08/15 Review @ Elaine Sapp (FB)
08/17 Review @ read_betweenthecovers
08/19 Review @ Urban Book Reviews
08/22 Guest post @ The Book Divas Reads
08/25 Review @ Geaux Get Lit
08/28 Review @ erikalaceyreads
08/29 Review @ Celticladys Reviews
08/30 Spotlight @ The Mystery of Writing
08/30 Interview @ Urban Book Reviews

Elena Taylor/Elena Hartwell

All We Buried, available now in print, eBook, and audio.

Silver Falchion Award Finalist, Best Investigator 2020

Foreword INDIE Award Finalist, Best Mystery 2020


The Foundation of Plot, a Wait, Wait, Don’t Query (Yet!)

Available in print (hardback and paperback) and eBook

Elena Hartwell

Author and developmental editor.

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