We have been sitting on this one for a while out of necessity, but are now cleared to reveal to you the full cover for When the Moon Shines, by John L. French, the premiere novella in our brand-new Systema Paradoxa series, which also launches our new imprint, NeoParadoxa, which will feature all things creepy, cryptid, and horror related. The series will be featured in the monthly subscription box Cryptid Crate four to six times a year. This new venture brings us much excitement, which we hope you will share.

SP - When the Moon Shines 6 x 9

Series design by Danielle McPhail, McP Digital Graphics
Cover art based on an illustration by Jason Whitley, Under Current Art

There are creatures lurking in our world. Obscure creatures long relegated to myth and legend. They have been sighted by a lucky—or unlucky—few, some have even been photographed, but their existence remains unproven and unrecognized by the scientific community.

These creatures, long thought gone, have somehow survived; creatures from our nightmares haunting the dark places. They swim in our lakes and bays, they soar the night skies, they hunt in the woods. Some are from our past, and some from other worlds, and others that have always been with us—watching us, fearing us, hunting us.

These are the cryptids, and Systema Paradoxa tells their tales.


In the dark days of Prohibition, in the wilderness just outside Harbor City, not all ‘monsters’ walk on two legs, and the ones that do aren’t all men up to no good. Creatures that long ago retreated into the venue of folklore have crept from their dark corners of the world to harry the ’Shiners minding their illicit business in the deep woods.

A faithful few recall the legends of the snallygasters and the dwayyo, and try their luck working for the roadhouses that seek to skirt the law. But life among the crime syndicate can be harrowing.

The wise get out, those that don’t, gamble their tomorrows against today…even before the Bosses get the idea to weaponize the living legends lurking in the heart of the forest in a bid to win their bootleg war.

Because when the moon shines, danger is afoot…or awing.

john-l-frenchJOHN L. FRENCH is a retired crime scene supervisor with forty years’ experience. He has seen more than his share of murders, shootings, and serious assaults. As a break from the realities of his job, he started writing science fiction, pulp, horror, fantasy, and, of course, crime fiction.

John’s first story “Past Sins” was published in Hardboiled Magazine and was cited as one of the best Hardboiled stories of 1993. More crime fiction followed, appearing in Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine, the Fading Shadows magazines and in collections by Barnes and Noble. Association with writers like James Chambers and the late, great C.J. Henderson led him to try horror fiction and to a still growing fascination with zombies and other undead things. His first horror story “The Right Solution” appeared in Marietta Publishing’s Lin Carter’s Anton Zarnak. Other horror stories followed in anthologies such as The Dead Walk and Dark Furies, both published by Die Monster Die Books. It was in Dark Furies that his character Bianca Jones made her literary debut in “21 Doors,” a story based on an old Baltimore legend and a creepy game his daughter used to play with her friends.

John’s first book was The Devil of Harbor City, a novel done in the old pulp style. Past Sins and Here There Be Monsters followed. John was also consulting editor for Chelsea House’s Criminal Investigation series. His other books include The Assassins’ Ball (written with Patrick Thomas), Souls on Fire, The Nightmare Strikes, Monsters Among Us, The Last Redhead, the Magic of Simon Tombs, and The Santa Heist (written with Patrick Thomas). John is the editor of To Hell in a Fast Car, Mermaids 13, C. J. Henderson’s Challenge of the Unknown, Camelot 13 (with Patrick Thomas), and (with Greg Schauer) With Great Power

 You can find John on Facebook or you can email him at him at

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