Posted in Guest Post on July 10, 2014

Today I would like to welcome author Steve Hockensmith to StoreyBook Reviews.  I just finished his book The White Magic Five & Dime and was very intrigued and enthralled with the book (review to follow!), so I was excited to be chosen for a guest post so that he could give us a little insight into how his mind works and if he believe in magic.


In the Cards


I’m not a very woo woo kind of guy. I like science. I like proof. I like facts. As for mysticism…hey, I know! Let’s ask our old friend the Magic 8 Ball.

Yo, M 8 B! Do I think “the paranormal” is mostly a bunch of hooey?

Shake shake shake.

Signs point to yes.

Yet here’s something even as gifted a seer and prognosticator as the Magic 8 Ball couldn’t have predicted: My newest novel just came out, and it’s about a woman who uses tarot readings to catch a murderer.

Does this make me (A) a huge hypocrite, (B) a savvy but scruple-free self-promoter who thinks he’s found a marketable new angle for a cozy mystery or (C) both?

Trick question, friends! The answer is (D) neither. (Well, I might actually be a huge hypocrite, but it wouldn’t be because of the tarot book. It would be because I love animals but can’t make myself give up hamburgers, pepperoni pizza and sausage gravy.)

Despite my skepticism about all things mystical or magical, I don’t throw tarot cards out with the supernatural bath water for a simple reason. I’ve seen the things in action. Not once, not twice, not thrice but…well, a bunch of times (I’ve lost count) I’ve received mind-blowingly insightful, accurate and even prophetic readings. And they were always from the same reader: my friend Lisa Falco – who also just happens to be my coauthor for the tarot book, The White Magic Five & Dime.

My cynical side is demanding to speak up here for some equal time, so here goes. On several occasions, I’ve paid for tarot readings as a lark, and the readers ran the gamut from sincere-but-clueless to creepy-and-devious. So by no means am I saying, “This tarot stuff is the real deal, so if you’ve got problems take your checkbook to Madame Horsehockey’s House of Cards and let her sort it all out.”

But I have learned to respect tarot cards (in the right hands!) as legitimate tools for self reflection and illumination. They’re like Rorschach tests, only with more color and a lot less likelihood that you’ll keep saying “Uhh…another butterfly?” every time you look at one. Spread them out, give them some thought, and you might just learn something about yourself or somebody else. Could you even use them to solve a mystery?

As the Magic 8 Ball also likes to say: As I see it, yes.


Steve HockensmithSteve Hockensmith is the author of the New York Times bestseller Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls. He also writes the Holmes on the Range mystery series and (with Science Bob Pflugfelder) a series of science-based middle-grade adventures. The White Magic Five & Dime is his 11th novel.

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