Category Archives: BOOKS

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The Legends of Ansu (Book 9)

Epic Fantasy

Date Published: July 16, 2020

 

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Jaran Saerk is an exile from the North, driven out of his homeland by a
sorceress who killed his family. Now serving as a warrior in the armies of
the Imperial Shen, he’s never forgotten his vow to avenge his family
and take back what is rightfully his.

Recently captured, Savarna hides a dark secret and doesn’t plan on
staying a slave for long. Once she’s escaped, she’ll slip inside
the Golden Palace and kill the Empress of Shen. When she meets the exiled
warrior from the North, she finally may have her chance.

Finvar the Droll is a retired thief who insists he can help Jaran in his
revenge against the witch. But whose side is he really on?

With enemies surrounding them on all sides, the trio must unite to stay
alive in a realm trapped between war and sorcery, and to take down the witch
Sheega before she destroys them all.

 

Excerpt

 

A huge figure knelt by a roaring blaze. A shaggy haired man he appeared,
with corded muscle and barrel-chest. He wore a kilt, but no cloak to cover
his naked torso. Like Jaran, the stranger bore many scars on that flesh. And
on closer inspection, he saw the man had only one arm. A distant memory
flickered through him. And a name.

Tyho.

The one-armed warrior. A god of the north. Jaran knew the god was testing
him. Despite his fear he stepped out, approached the crouched figure, who
looked up casually as he walked close.

“Your friends worry that you’ve left them, Jaran Saerk.”
The voice was a gravel-scrape and thunder boom, those eyes glints of blazing
sliver fire, the moonlight trapped inside.

“I needed time alone.” Jaran shoulder-tossed the elk in front
of the god as a gift. He heard it boded ill, meeting Tyho the War God alone
in the wild. “Time to think.”

“A gift for a gift.” Tyho rose to his feet, standing massive
before Jaran. He reached behind his back and produced a huge long-hafted
axe. “Your enemies are closing. You will need Griner to kill
them.”

Jaran felt uneasy. Why would Tyho want to help him? And what would he ask
for in return? Despite his misgivings, he gripped the weapon and thanked the
god. Tyho pinned him with that terrible gaze. “Use it well. Griner
belonged to Borian once, before that deity perished in the timeless wars. It
serves you now—in the new struggle.”

“You mean against the witch, Sheega?” Jaran hefted the axe. It
was heavy, the intricate rune markings glinted on its beard. He sensed power
in the weapon. Felt strength flowing into his arms. Strength and something
else. A slow burning rage. “I will avenge my father,” he told
the god.

“You had best go back,” Tyho said, his silver eyes blazing.
“Your little camp is under attack.”

 

 

 

About the Author

 J. W. Webb is an English writer living in Georgia. Mostly he writes
fantasy, though sometimes diverts in even stranger directions. His epic
saga, The Legends of Ansu, blends the mystic grandeur of J.R.R. Tolkien with
the gritty realism of George R.R. Martin. Webb’s characters are three
dimensional and flawed, their world a tapestry of vivid color and constant
motion. All the books feature beautiful sketches by the late Tolkien
illustrator, Roger Garland. When he’s not writing, he spends his time
in the garden or attending to the demands of his cat-overlords and dog
companions.

 

 

 

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Inferno of Silence Blitz

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Literary Fiction

Date Published: 08 May 2020

Publisher: The Roaring Lion Newcastle Ltd

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The first collection of short stories by this multitalented author entwines
everyday events that are articulated in excellent storytelling. The title
story “Inferno of Silence” portrays men’s societal challenges and
the unspoken truths and burdens that men bear. While “Black lives
Matter” shows the firsthand trauma of a man facing racism as a
footballer plying his trade in Europe.Stories range from “Return
Journey” where we encounter a techpreneur/ Poet/Serial Womanizer
confronting consequences of his past actions to “Blinded by
Silence” where a couple united by love must face a political upheaval
changing their fortune. Completed with stories of relationships:
“Trouble in Umudike” – family wealth and marriage, “Everybody
don Kolomental” where the main character deals with mental health
issues, and “In the Trap of Seers” when one’s life is on
auto-reverse and with the death of her confidante, her mother as she takes
us through her ordeal and journey to redemption. This is a broad and very
inclusive collection.

 

 About the Author

Tolu’ A. Akinyemi hails from Nigeria and lives in the UK where he has
been endorsed by the Arts Council England as a writer with
“exceptional talent”. Tolu is the author of seven outstanding
books, one of which is a collection of ‘short essays’
encouraging you to “Unravel Your Hidden Gems”. The five other
books form the basis of his poetry collection, ripe for future growth, and
which includes Dead Lions Don’t Roar, Dead Dogs Don’t Bark, Dead
Cats Don’t Meow, Never Play Games with the Devil and his latest
release, A Booktiful Love. He has also authored a widely acclaimed stellar
collection of Short stories titled “Inferno of Silence”.

A former headline act at Great Northern Slam, Crossing The Tyne Festival,
Feltonbury Arts and Music Festival, and featured in various Poetry
Festivals, Open Slam, Poetry Slam, Spoken Word and Open Mic events in and
outside the United Kingdom. His poems have been published in The Writers
Cafe Magazine Issue 18 and 57th issue (Volume 15, no 1) of the Wilderness
House Literary Review and many other literary outlets.

His books are based on a deep reality and often reflect relationships, life
and features people he has met in his journey as a writer. His books have
instilled many people to improve their performance and/or their
circumstances. Tolu’ has taken his poetry to the stage, performing his
written word at many events. Through his writing and these performances, he
supports business leaders, other aspiring authors and people of all ages
interested in reading and writing. Sales of the books have allowed
Tolu’ donate to charity, allowing him to make a difference where he
feels important, showing that he lives by the words he puts to page.

 

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Taking Time Tour

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Book 1, Physics, Lust and Greed Series
Humorous Science Fiction
Date Published: June 15, 2020
Publisher: Acorn Publishing
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The year is 2044. Housed in a secret complex beneath the eastern Arizona desert, a consortium of governments and corporations have undertaken a program on the scale of the Manhattan Project to bludgeon the laws of physics into submission and make time travel a reality.
 
            Fraught with insecurities, Marshall Grissom has spent his whole life trying not to call attention to himself, so he can’t imagine he would be remotely suited for the role of time travel pioneer. He’s even less enthusiastic about this corporate time-travel adventure when he learns that nudity is a job requirement. The task would better match the talents of candidates like the smart and beautiful Sheila Schuler, or the bristle-tough and rattlesnake-mean Marta Hamilton.
 
            As the project evolves into a clash between science and corporate greed, conflicts escalate. Those contributing the funding are mostly interested in manipulating time travel for profit, and will stop at nothing, including murder, to achieve their goals.
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EXCERPT

 

A HARD ROW TO HOE

October 2044
Global Research Consortium Projection Laboratory

“So, do you think they’re telling us the truth why some of the lemmings didn’t survive?” Sheila Schuler whispered from the side of her mouth.

“The . . . what?” Marshall had to replay Sheila’s comment one time before he could muster the concentration to make sense of it. As he scanned the computers, lights and lenses while he absorbed stares of scientists, engineers and technicians, though, a single thought consumed him.

We should have practiced naked.

The one time he’d suggested it, several female scientists and computer techs scowled as if Marshall personified the lowest bundle of perverse male hormonal scum on the planet.

The smart guys who represented the conglomeration of competing interests pursuing time travel had considered the question. Would nudity create such a distraction at a critical moment that the mission might be jeopardized?

Marshall recalled a couple of scientists insisting that, just as when the astronauts took man’s initial steps into space, everything should be rehearsed in precise detail. Every conceivable circumstance should be anticipated and practiced.

Within the Wormhole Project, Marshall now realized, this philosophy represented a distinctly minority position. Training is fine, conceded the folks putting up the money. As representatives of the various governments and corporations pointed out, however, unlike the swashbucklers over at the Light Speed Project, travelers here at the Wormhole Project didn’t fly anything, navigate anywhere, or even push any buttons. They only needed to stand there and live long enough to describe the experience.

As for nudity, any male who suggested some of the rehearsals should take place in the buff suffered an unspoken accusation that he just wanted to ogle a naked woman.

“The lemmings?” Marshall asked, shifting his gaze from computers and cameras to look directly at Sheila. He did his best to concentrate on her eyes, making a futile effort to ignore the spectacular and unambiguously nude body below her chin.

“It doesn’t bother you?”

“Um . . . but . . . but why would they lie?”

Sheila gave a quick shrug, which resulted in a corresponding jiggle.

Marshall understood unequivocally. They should have practiced naked.

Until this moment, with the platform beneath him beginning to hum and a plasma sort of ooze crawling across giant mirrored metal globes to each side of them, Marshall counted on the historical gravity of the occasion to block the male animal’s primordial response to the female body. He might have been okay if Marta Hamilton was the only naked lady he had to try and ignore. Attractive in her own way, Marta was relegated to something like optical background noise compared to Sheila. And none of Marshall’s carefully nurtured best intentions would pass this test.

When that awkward moment arrived for the six travelers to remove their robes, the men hesitated. Sheila and Marta exchanged an eye roll, shed their garments and stepped under spotlights illuminating the projection platform. Marshall felt his first warning tingles at the sight of Sheila from behind. When she turned to face the room, though, she eclipsed all the technological wonders surrounding them. Marshall took his place beside her, aware that he was doomed.

That’s when Sheila asked about the lemmings.

The first-time travelers were two lemmings wearing sensors and miniature video cameras and recording and tracking devices built into their tiny collars. The scientist’s first choice as test subjects had been dogs. Dog lovers among the technical staff had objected, though. Which set a precedent, and the scientists were forced to seek popular approval for the choice of test subject. The only two creatures to which staff people had no objections were lemmings, which are suicidal anyway, and African tree frogs. Because an African tree frog has nothing in common with mammalian anatomy, and because the collars kept slipping off over their little heads, the scientists went with lemmings.

When the scientists waved their wands and pushed their buttons, the lemmings went away—somewhere. The scientists waited a while, pushed the buttons again, and the lemmings returned. The fact of their decapitations, though, dampened any sense of triumph. Both lemming bodies and lemming heads were present, albeit neatly disconnected. The collars were conspicuously absent.

The second time around, someone suggested the issue, rather than fine-tuning all the calibrations and power settings, might be the collars. They put the instrumentation into lemming vests. This time a head and four legs were all that reappeared. So, the scientists said screw the popular sentiment and went with their original second choice, pigs. The pigs worked out better only because the researchers could barbecue the leftovers.

Finally, they attempted a projection without vests or collars. Both lemmings and pigs returned in good health. The process of time travel, though, acquired a completely unanticipated complication.

“N-naked?” one female traveler candidate stammered when Naomi Hu, the project’s chief medical officer, made the announcement.

“That is correct,” Naomi said, “Our physicists now believe only living organic matter can be transported through the wormhole. We can’t send devices crashing around through time and space to record things remotely. We can’t write notes to ourselves to warn of some impending doom. We can only project a living, breathing being, showered and scrubbed free of inorganic matter. And is completely naked.”

“In front of . . . people?” another weak query sounded from somewhere behind Marshall.

Half a dozen female candidates decided they could not abide the nudity and transferred to alternate duties. Marshall considered his options. None of the other male candidates appeared particularly concerned, though, so he felt he could not withdraw without seeming prudish or cowardly. And in truth, Marshall felt he could ultimately deal with the danger. He couldn’t, however, abide his fear of making a mistake that might jeopardize someone else.

Not to mention his other problem.

 

About the Author

Mike Murphey is a native of eastern New Mexico and spent almost thirty years as an award-winning newspaper journalist in the Southwest and Pacific Northwest. Following his retirement from the newspaper business, he and his wife Nancy entered in a seventeen-year partnership with the late Dave Henderson, all-star centerfielder for the Oakland Athletics, Boston Red Sox and Seattle Mariners. Their company produced the A’s and Mariners adult baseball Fantasy Camps. They also have a partnership with the Roy Hobbs adult baseball organization in Fort Myers, Florida. Mike loves fiction, cats, baseball and sailing. He splits his time between Spokane, Washington, and Phoenix, Arizona, where he enjoys life as a writer and old-man baseball player.
 
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Sneasy the Greasy Babysits Abigail Blitz

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Children’s Book

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Kind and gentle Abigail Gold needs a babysitter. In walks Sneasy the
Greasy. He wheezes, he sneezes and his hair is full of greases! But during
an afternoon with Abigail, Sneasy learns the meaning of true friendship,
honesty, and a life free of grease.

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 About the Authors

Michelle Birdsong is a songwriter and author, having worked with her late
husband Edwin on his albums ‘What it is” and “Super
Natural’. Michelle lives in NYC, finding the electric creativity of
the city streets mirrors her  neverending imagination. And she loves
collaborating with her daughter.

Robin currently lives in Hawaii, where the endless Summer light fills her
daydreams with stories. And she loves working with her Mother.

 

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The Dark That Dwells Blitz

 

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Science Fiction

Release Date: July 10, 2020

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THE DARK THAT DWELLS is a debut space opera novel featuring an
unforgettable ensemble cast, planet-hopping across an expansive galaxy on
the brink of war.

The story unfolds through the viewpoints of four characters: SIDNA ORIN, a
mercurial young arcanist, striving to gain the lost knowledge that could
save her people. FALL ARDEN, honorable sword-for-hire, working as a guide on
a dangerous expedition into an unexplored frontier. BAN MORGAN, disgraced
marine wielding high-tech weaponry, chained by remorse and the ghosts of his
past. TIEGER of WESTMARCH, fanatical zealot, empowered with the seemingly
divine technology of his overlord and a starship feared across
generations.

THE DARK THAT DWELLS holds virtual worlds lost in crystal relics, visceral
close-quarters combat, mysteries of the divine and the arcane, companionship
and bittersweet romance, insidious deception, and the looming threat of a
horror who hungers for the souls of mankind.

This story is essential for readers craving robust, character-driven
adventures on fantastic alien worlds, bullet-ridden spaceships barely held
together, and the expansive infinity of space-time itself.

 

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About the Authors

Matt Digman is exactly one half the creative force behind the epic fantasy
space opera novel, The Dark That Dwells. Born and raised in Arkansas, he
spent his free time studying Star Wars technical manuals, searching for his
next favorite RPG, and watching his Star Trek: TNG VHS tapes until they fell
apart. Basically, he was nerdy when nerdy wasn’t cool. He currently
works as a pediatric emergency medicine physician in Alabama and writes when
he ought to be sleeping.

Ryan Roddy grew up across the southeast, chasing her dream of becoming a
professional actress. Though she eventually traded the stage for a
stethoscope, she never gave up her love for great storytelling—or for
playing dress up as an adult. Now she works as a pediatric emergency
medicine physician to afford her cosplay and Disney obsessions. She loves
the characters she’s written for The Dark That Dwells with her husband
almost as much as she loves him and their four dogs.

 

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