Richard Gazala was born in Ohio, in 1960. When he was very young, his family moved to Beirut, Lebanon, where he lived until forced out of the country in 1975 by the Lebanese Civil War. After leaving Beirut, he completed his secondary education in Boston, Massachusetts, and London, England. While residing in Lebanon and England he traveled extensively throughout the Middle East and Europe, learning Arabic and French. He attended Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, where he earned both a Bachelor of Arts in political science, and a Juris Doctorate. Gazala has practiced law for over thirty years in Tennessee, Washington, D.C., and Virginia, as both a trial and corporate attorney, and is a member of the bar of the United States Supreme Court. He currently lives in Virginia.
Blood of the Moon is set during the 2016 U.S. presidential election. The world is engulfed in wars over ever-dwindling oil reserves. Gas riots rip the streets of American cities from Washington D.C., to Portland, Oregon. Tanks rumble on Pennsylvania and Constitution Avenues to protect the White House. But Michael Rivers, the last Apollo astronaut to walk on the moon, brought something back to earth in 1972 that proves conventional wisdom about oil is a deliberate lie. Now Michael is confined to an assisted living facility, his mind slowly succumbing to the ravages of Alzheimer’s disease, as his son David is pulled into a deadly race to uncover Michael’s long-hidden secret. An ancient shadowy society of ruthless men does everything in its monstrous power to stop them, while a corrupted presidential election teeters in the balance.
From time to time when I take a break from researching and writing my thrillers, I write short stories such as the ones collected for the first time in this new anthology, Trust and Other Nightmares. Each of these stories has its germination in nights when my sleep was suddenly savaged by ethereal visions and sounds sufficiently disturbing to wrench me from tangled, sweat-drenched sheets. Some of them have seen a bit of daylight before now, and the last two debut here. All of them are spawned of the dancing skeletons and reanimated corpses that plague the bleakest, blackest hours preceding my blessed dawns. They include Trust, without which a murder-suicide pact is merely revenge’s favorite recipe; Rougarou, where a terrified boy learns it’s never easy to tell monsters from saviors in a desolate Louisiana swamp; Frankie’s Last Affair, where we’re taught that if a thing is truly art, someone has to suffer for it; Canis, a post-apocalyptic tale where the wolves in sheep’s clothing have no lock on cross-dressing, and Showtime, in which a famous television psychic medium’s dirty secret is he knows there’s no such thing as ghosts. I hope you enjoy this collection. If it scares you enough to keep you up a night or two, I know just how you feel. As this anthology demonstrates, I sleep well rarely.
For those among you who prefer to ingest chilling stories through your ears instead of your eyes, Trust and Other Nightmares is also available as an audiobook, narrated by Roberto Scarlato.
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