OS: Welcome to Ki Brightly author of The Paranaturalist. Thanks for stopping by!
Hello! My name is Ki Brightly. My most recent novel, The Paranaturalist, releases on June 27th. It’s a fast paced paranormal adventure romance. Joe, The Paranaturalist, and Owen, a Metaphyiscal Consultant (aka herb shop worker) both live in Erie, Pennsylvania. In fact, the entire story takes place in Pennsylvania…well, sort of, mostly. I grew up in Pennsylvania, with a minor break for New Orleans, so I felt comfortable writing there.
I thought you might enjoy taking a stroll through some important places in the book with me, learning a little about the places Joe and Owen visit.
First, Presque Isle, or just “the peninsula” to locals, is a large backdrop for the book. Several major scenes, including the ultimate “betrayal” take place here.
This is a photograph by Brian Fisher of the Presque Isle Lighthouse.
This is a photograph of Beach 7 by Anna Gregoroff, which features in the story in the scene where Joe rediscovers “Peter”.
This is a photo I took the other day at the “Kite Beach”.
The final scene in the book takes place at Frontier Park, which some of my readers may remember from The Shape of Honey. It’s the place where Dean works. It’s weird how that little park near my apartment sees so much paranormal action, isn’t it? (I think I’ve literally visited it every day for the past week because…why not?)
Of particular interest in The Paranaturalist, the Willow Grove.
The stream Joe and Owen cross during the final scene with the bad guy.
(All photos of Frontier Park and Arboretum were taken by Ki Brightly.)
Next take a look at Sara’s, the greasy spoon near the beach.
Even though this one says “Sally’s” they are actually right next to each other, and as far as I know, Sally’s is defunct and never open, more of a relic to look at near the functional Sara’s. (These photos came from Trip Advisor of all places.) During the summer, when it’s warm, those red wind breaks are removed and it’s all outdoor picnic seating. There’s a smaller indoor area as well with picnic tables.
Starting in may Sara’s is so packed with people from about noon on, almost every day of the week, you literally can’t find a parking spot.
Unfortunately, some of the more fun places in the book like Presque Isle Herbs and The Dew Drop Inn aren’t actual, factual buildings outside of my imagination. I really enjoyed creating Briony’s shop, which will crop up again in future stories I am sure. It’s kind of this magnificent jumble of herbs and candles and teas, the sweet love child of some of my actual favorite places to shop.
One of the places that happens to be real, sort of, is Owen’s apartment he shares with his friends. It’s actually modelled extremely closely from my own dwelling at this point in time, right down to the balcony, although we only have two “bedrooms” in my apartment, so in that regard Owen’s is bigger, nicer. Also, all of the furniture is different. I guess really, only the bones of the place are Owen’s apartment. I won’t lie. When I decided to make Owen’s apartment from my apartment I was having an epic lazy day, but then I ended up changing so much stuff I had to map it out and write it down anyway, so my laziness ended up backfiring.
Finally, I thought you might like to see the Allegheny River near the small town of Kittanning, Pennsylvania that figures so prominently in the pivotal moments of the story.
This is the Kittanning Citizens Bridge. When I was in high school the Mothman Prophecies was filmed there. It was a real stir in that small town, let me tell you. EVERYONE wanted to catch a glimpse of Richard Gere because the most interesting thing that normally happens there is someone occasionally gets drunk and causes a ruckus. Seriously, it’s the type of area where three men brawling gets written up in the newspaper as a “riot”. But it’s pretty. This is the bridge that Owen, Frank and Chad were fishing near.
Image is from BridgeMapper.
If you’re interested there are more pictures of Kittanning at this site. I have a real love/hate relationship with it since I grew up nearby, but I’m told it’s perfectly lovely by people who moved there after their formative years.
I hope you all enjoyed the visual tour through The Paranaturalist. If you’re reading the book now you can take a peek and have something to go along with my words in your mind.
OS: Thanks Ki, that was amazing!
Release date June 27th, 2016
As a kid, Joseph Appleyard saw things hidden from others. Now he is The Paranaturalist, an investigator and cohost of a television show that seeks to prove the existence of the paranormal. Some think Joe is crazy, but they don’t realize he knows firsthand there’s more to the world than what most perceive. The trouble is, somewhere along the way, Joe lost his vision and it left his world flat and dull. One night an investigation goes horribly wrong, and a powerful ghostly manifestation sends Joe tumbling into a river. Spirit worker Owen Watson saves Joe’s life, and once they are back on dry land, whatever has been blocking Joe’s vision has been washed away.
When a haunting goes from annoying to dangerous, people turn to Owen Watson. He hates those infuriating hacks from TV, but when he pulls Joe from the river, his mind begins to change. Joe is scared and confused, and Owen realizes he might just be the real thing. Together, they work to understand the part of Joe that has been shut away for so long. But just as Joe is reacclimating to his abilities, his career as a paranormal investigator is in danger of being ripped away. Owen would gladly battle a bloodthirsty spirit for Joe, but he’s out of his element in the world of reality television.
Ki grew up in small town nowhere pretending that meteor showers were aliens invading, turning wildflowers into magic potions, and reading more than was probably healthy. Ki had one amazing best friend, one endlessly out of grasp “true love”, and a personal vendetta against normalcy.
Now, as an adult, living in Erie, Pennsylvania, Ki enjoys the sandy beaches, frigid winters, and a wonderful fancy water addiction. Seriously, fancy waters…who knew there were so many different kinds? It’s just water…and yet…
Ki shares this life with a Muse, a Sugar Plum, and two wonderful children.