Wednesday, 19 April 2017

The Redemption Games (A SciFi Thriller Short Story) by Renee Scattergood



Renee Scattergood lives in Australia with her husband, Nathan, and daughter, Taiya. She has always been a fan of fantasy and was inspired to become a story-teller by George Lucas, but didn't start considering writing down her stories until she reached her late twenties. Now she enjoys writing dark fantasy and paranormal thrillers.

She is currently publishing her monthly Shadow Stalker serial, and she has published a prequel novella to the series called, Demon Hunt. She is also working on a new series of novels, A God's Deception.

Aside from writing, she loves reading (fantasy, of course), watching movies with her family, and doing crafts and science experiments with her daughter. Visit her site for more information and a free copy of Shadow Stalker Part 1 (Episodes 1 – 6).

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About the Book


Jillian is a teenage runaway. She has survived on the streets for over a year, but when a man shows up promising her a better future, she ignores her instincts and goes with him. Now she finds herself on an alien world in a last-man-standing competition that she has no hope of winning, unless she can find an ally.

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Keep reading for an excerpt:


There was no sound. Jillian was sure she outran them this time. She was smart though. Too smart to move this early and give up her location. The last time she did that, they nearly got her. She crouched in the shadows of a dumpster and waited. About twenty minutes passed before she dared to move, and even then it was only to move further into the alley where she could eat in peace.

"All this for a box of cereal," Jillian whispered to herself. She squeezed through the small opening in the boarded up doorway of the abandoned building she called home. After climbing to the second floor, she barricaded herself in a small room that she was sure had once been an office. Probably where the boss sat in his cushy chair while the people worked their butts off in the sweat shop below.

After opening the box, she shoved handful after handful of cereal into her mouth until she couldn't swallow another bite. Leaning back she sighed. It had been days since she had a full belly.

Jillian didn't realize she had started dozing until a noise woke her. She wasn't alone in the building. She heard the soft clang of boots on the metal stairway. She was trapped. She hid behind some boxes and old furniture that had been left behind just in time for someone to force their way through her barricade. She froze. For a moment there was no sound.

"I know you're here," a male's voice called out.

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Nika by D.H. Gibbs

With an active imagination and a love of art D.H. Gibbs has chosen to combine her talents by writing and illustrating books. She weaves tales for both New and Young Adults and plans to publish more soon.

D.H. Gibbs hails from the Caribbean where in her free time she reads, paints and travel when she can.







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About the Book


Taken off the streets Nika is thrown into an unknown world where she’s held captive. As an orphan, she has been on the run and must find her way out before they discover her secret. But these people held the knowledge of her family and who she is. Will she be able to find out before her secret is reviled?

After hundreds of years, Demyan has finally found the rightful ruler of his race. Unfortunately, she doesn’t know who she is and is doing everything in her power to escape him. Time is running out and Demyan has to convince Nika to take her rightful place otherwise the battle will be lost and his race extinguished.

Get it today on Amazon!




Keep reading for an interview with Nika from the book:


Where were you born, and what was it like growing up there?


I was born on the Island of Seychatka but I did not grow up there. I grew up in the Regular's word.


What are your goals? What would you like to achieve?


I would like to bring peace to the two races on my island without blood shed.


What is the most important lesson you've learned about life?


That people fear what they don't understand.

What is the strangest situation you've ever found yourself in?


Kidnapped off of the streets, then to be told I'm not human.


Where is the best place to visit in your world? 


You would have to ask my cousin Alex. I have been stuck on the Konstantinos compound since I got here.

Do you have any hobbies?


I love swimming, horseback riding and learning about history.


Do you have a secret you've never told anyone? Would you tell us?


Yes I do and if I tell you then it wouldn't be a secret.


Have you ever been in love?


Yes I have and I wound up being experimented on. So I would have to say it didn't work out so well.


What kind of clothing do you prefer to wear?


Anything that's comfortable.


What do you regret most in your life?


I regret not knowing my mother because she would be a better Queen than I am. Being guided by her is something that's irreplaceable.

Would you ever or have you ever lied?


Oh I'm a terrible. My face or body language is a dead giveaway. And I hate when people lie to me, usually because when they do, they are up to no good.

If you had one day left to live, what would you do with your last day?


I would try to meet with my brother in the hopes of being a family again.

Saturday, 8 April 2017

Gnarled Bones and Other Stories by Tam May

Tam May was born in Israel but grew up in the America. She earned her college degree in English before returning to the States. She also has a Master's degree in English and worked as an English instructor and EFL teacher before she became a full-time writer. She started writing when she was 14 and writing became her voice. She writes psychological fiction that explores emotional realities informed by past experiences, dreams, feelings, fantasies, nightmares, imagination, and self-analysis.

Her first work, a short story collection titled Gnarled Bones And Other Stories is out now in paperback and ebook. She is currently working on a novella series set in a Northern California resort town. The series explores the crumbling relationships among the wealthy San Francisco Alderdice family.

She is also working on another book titled House of Masks about a woman who, mourning the death of her father, breaks free of isolation and loneliness when she is drawn into the lives of her two neighbors, one eccentric and one embittered. For more about Tam and her work, feel free to check out her website.

She currently lives in Texas but calls San Francisco and the Bay Area home. When she’s not writing, she’s reading classic literature and watching classic films.

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About the Book


Gnarled Bones and Other Stories explores five tales of loss, fear, and guilt where strange and spooky events impact people’s lives in ways that are profound and unchangeable.

In “Mother of Mischief”, a newly divorced woman goes back to school to begin a new chapter of her life only to find herself circling back to where she started. In “Bracelets”, childhood nostalgia mingles with brutal fear during a circus outing for a mailroom secretary and her friends. In “A First Saturday Outing”*, a lonely woman ventures out of her isolated apartment one quiet Saturday afternoon to an art exhibit that leaves an eerie impression on her psyche*. In “Broken Bows”, a middle-aged violinist reveals the mystery behind his declining artistic powers to a lonely woman on a train. And the title story, “Gnarled Bones”, paints a portrait of the complex bond between an orphaned sister and brother through journal entries and first-person narrative. For these characters, the past leaves its shadow on the present and future.

* This story was featured on Whimsy Gardener’s Storytime With Whimsey.


Get it today on Amazon and Createspace!




Keep reading for an interview with the author:


Why did you decide to be a writer?


I decided to become a writer because when I discovered writing at the age of 14, I had no real voice. I grew up in a very overprotected family and I was very shy and introverted. I was taught to keep my feelings hidden and my opinions to myself. I realized through starting a journal and writing fiction that my real voice could emerge through writing.

Do you have a "day job"?


I'm fortunate enough to have been able to quit my day job last year. I worked right out of college in clerical/administrative work and then went back to school to get my graduate degree. After that, I worked as a college English instructor and later, as an EFL (English as a Foreign Language) teacher and tutor.

What genres do you write?


I write psychological fiction, which is a subgenre of contemporary/literary fiction, as well as a subgenre of several other categories (like suspense, thriller, and horror). But the fiction that I write is more psychological drama. I wrote a guest post explaining what psychological fiction is and why I write it here.


What inspires you to write?


Everything! Seriously, if something seems out of place or curious or quirky, I can find inspiration in it. It could be a strange image I see on the internet, a character from a movie that intrigued me, a conversation that I overhear at Starbuck's. Anything.


Do you have a daily word or page count goal?


I don't do well with daily word or page count goals, as I always feel like I'm just writing to fill up space. The exception is when I participate in National Novel Writing Month :-). However, I do try to write for a certain amount of time most days. I have concentration issues so I can't sit for long stretches of time, but I sit for 45 minutes or 1 hour and write continuously during that space of time. If I'm lucky, I squeeze in two writing sessions during the day.

What authors/books have most influenced you?


The author that has most influenced me is Anais Nin and the book that really changed my entire view of fiction was her book of short stories, Under a Glass Bell. I discovered the book on a bookstore shelf in Israel among the eclectic books written in English. The book is quite experimental with lyrical prose and it was my first exposure to that kind of writing. I was amazed not only by the beauty of the language but also by the way Nin could take a character and completely turn him or her inside out. I wanted to do that with my fiction, but in my own way and my own style, of course.

When did you first consider yourself an author?


Honestly, I only began to consider myself an author when I got the proof copy of the paperback version of my book, Gnarled Bones and Other Stories, in November of last year. It was holding the book in my hand, seeing the cover and the words written inside that were mine that made me feel I was really an author. I was always a writer, but that was the first time I started identifying myself as an author.


What is the best compliment you've ever received as an author?


The best complement came from a woman in my critique group. She commented on my story "Gnarled Bones" that my writing always made her feel comforted, no matter what the context was. That was a huge thing for me because I do tend to write dark psychological fiction, so my stories and characters are definitely not shiny happy people in sunny situations. But I do try to offer rays of hope in my stories and redeeming characteristics for my characters.


What do you enjoy doing aside from writing?


I love reading, obviously! I've always been fascinated by the past so I love reading classic literature. I'm also a huge classic film fan. I love the black-and-whites!


What made you decide to self-publish?


I loved the idea of being master of my own career with self-publishing, even though I knew it would mean a lot more work and perhaps less respect from the so-called literary establishment. I also knew that what I was writing was going to be a hard sell to publishers and literary agents. My style is more character-based and I love writing shorter works, like novellas and short stories. Those aren't readily published by publishers.


What are you working on now?


Right now, I'm working on several different projects. I'm nearly finished with the first round of revisions for the first book of my Waxwood series, The Order of Acateon and I'm submitting chapters to my wonderful critique group to help me with round two of revisions. I'm just about to begin the first draft for Book 2 of the series, The Claustrophobic Heart. I'm also working on another book titled House of Masks which I started during NaNo last year.

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Shadow Stalker: The Beginning of the End (Episode 19) by Renee Scattergood



Renee Scattergood lives in Australia with her husband, Nathan, and daughter, Taiya. She has always been a fan of fantasy and was inspired to become a story-teller by George Lucas, but didn't start considering writing down her stories until she reached her late twenties. Now she enjoys writing dark fantasy and paranormal thrillers.

She is currently publishing her monthly Shadow Stalker serial, and she has published a prequel novella to the series called, Demon Hunt. She is also working on a new series of novels, A God's Deception.

Aside from writing, she loves reading (fantasy, of course), watching movies with her family, and doing crafts and science experiments with her daughter. Visit her site for more information and a free copy of Shadow Stalker Part 1 (Episodes 1 – 6).

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About the Book


Auren is coerced into returning to the Dark Isle, but when Makari is betrayed and forced into hiding, she knows she can’t stay. Will Kado stand in her way?

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Keep reading for an excerpt:


"Let's move," he whispered.

He turned towards the mountains to lead us on a more difficult path. So much for taking the easier route through the pass. It wouldn't likely slow the dogs, but it might slow their handlers and the dogs wouldn't stray far from them. By the time we started up the mountain, the dogs were getting closer.

"Keep going," Kado told me. "I'm going to lead them away from you and I'll catch up."

Kado strode off. Jade watched him with panic in her eyes.

"Don't worry. He'll be back soon," I assured her.

"Yeah, but what if they come after us?"

Sunday, 2 April 2017

11,984 by Scott T Evans

Author of Foxavier & Plinka


You can connect with the author on Facebook!


About the Book


Can a family of scientists from a totally peaceful society build a spaceship without killing each other?


Not Yet Released - Coming Later in 2017


Keep reading for an excerpt:


Warning: This material contains punctuation from the future.


It starts with an explosion so big, our puny minds cannot comprehend its size--millions of times larger than our entire planet It keeps erupting for billions of kilodays, over and over . . . blazing . . . flaring . . . giving all Burning so hot, matter disintegrates to the 14th subatomic level Do you have any freaking idea how hot that is?

It generates multitudes of electro-gravito-psychic particles and waves(such as alpha, gamma, photonic, subphotonic, limbaugh holes, and malala fields) which radiate out to the cosmos

And travel 95 million kiloflivvers, and cool 2 million degrees rambo, before reaching us

The earth rolls out of bed each morning, and showers in this cosmic bouillabaisse we call "day"

The sun rises today, as usual, but on this 93rd day of eightuary, in the kiloday 4377[year 11,984 in our system] it's red

As if it were pissed off about something

It lets loose like a dropped sack of flour and all is rosy Copper light spreads along the coast, that stretches like it has all the time in the world An army of rouge photons barrages the rolling hills, lush with trees, studded with emerald crystal boulders, beside the roaring waves, crashing an ecstatic symphony of white noise Seagulls provide entertainment, dive bombing fish, and squawking over scraps All of it, as if the paint from an amateur watercolor landscape bled

A dome sits on top of one nicely proportioned hill, breaking the natural asymmetry, as unnecessary as a pearl on a neck, peeking through the foliage, glassy as an eye, with a perfect view

This hemisphere, shiny and transparent as a soap bubble, can hold 500 comfortably, but has an occupancy of only 7 The floor reflects like a flat round mirror, composed of the same infinitely thin, smooth, and immovable material as the walls, plasticineum 293 Light bounces around it, making it sparkle like a ruby

Seven dark doorways line an inside length of the curved wall In each shadowed recess stands the shriveled remains of what appears to have been a person at one time The crimson gently caresses these warped cadavers, covered in dents, as if vacuum packed The cosmic color carves every wrinkle in their gnarled skins

The first mummy stands tall and calm in is cubby hole, with no distinguishing features except for a serious face, a bald head, and the general appearance of something that shriveled up and died a megaday ago

The second specimen towers over the first at 1.29 flivv (29% taller than average) and has more meat on er bones, for a corpse Er nerf ball of white hair shines bright

The third taxiderm crouches down in an eternal struggle with constipation Is stasis tube conforms to is short, skinny shape, rusty, somewhat normal looking, for a sarcophagus

The fourth mannequin has blue hair, which sprouts up and to the side Er petrified frame is petite, and thin as a starved carcass E holds both er arms forward, like frankenstein

Thursday, 30 March 2017

Angel Fire by M.G. Marshall

Mary Marshall has always loved story telling. She started in the second grade in Cincinnati, Ohio, inventing stories and telling them to her friends when bored during recess. By high school and college she had essays and book reviews published. Assuming “that no one can earn money as a writer”, she graduated from Xavier University with a degree in psychology.

Mary moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan after college, where she lives today with her husband and daughter. She finally succumbed to her passion for writing, soon after her daughter was born. Her professional work experience, in social work, as a hospice team member, and as a probation officer -- these experiences have all enriched her writing. Mary finds inspiration everywhere.

“Real life is often filled with suspense, love and hate, and people who surprise us by their acts of kindness, heroism in overcoming adversity, and sometimes by cruel betrayals," Mary says. "The joy of my life is writing fiction. Perhaps all readers love the places a writer can take us. Through fiction we escape ourselves and our limitations and can discover new realities where our spirits can explore, adventure, and even find the spiritual peace we crave.” Mary wants to entertain her readers with meaty characters and suspenseful plots. She says “The best stories reach us in our gut, beyond pricking our senses and imaginations.”

Her first novel, Angel Fire, was published as a print book and is now also sold as an eBook. The sequel is actually a whole series— Face the Lion Chronicles. Book One of Face the Lion will be published in 2017.

Mary loves one quote by George Bernard Shaw; “Some men see things as they are and ask ‘Why’? But I dream things that never were and ask ‘Why not”. Yes.

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About the Book


Richard Saxon-Sorn carries a secret with him that transcends both space and time. Through a desperate act of war 1400 light years away, he finds safe haven on a newly discovered planet named Earth.

His only real goal, save himself, mend his damaged starship, and return to his home planet, Tethra.

One sweet September night, he meets Selina, who pricks his aching loneliness. She seems beautiful and harmless, a young nursing student. He is smitten.

Selina is instantly drawn to him, tall, quietly handsome and endearing. He says he is a University professor.

A comet flashes by in the silent sky as nature notes the bond between them. Their relationship is destined for a purpose beyond either of their imaginations. They cannot know this in the beginning. But they quickly discover they are under attack by both human and demonic forces. ROSET (the Research Organization for the Study of Extra-Terrestrials), Natas, a powerful demon, Max Traytur, a pawn of both Natas and Selina’s father, Damien Devon, all of whom are bent on destroying Selina and Richard. Enemies seem to be everywhere. And the enemies often do not have names and faces.

But they are not alone.

Guided by the fierce mercy of angelic warriors, the two humans must risk their lives in a race against the future and the past-- to save two worlds, the one Saxon-Sorn just discovered and the one he left behind.

Get it today on Amazon!




Keep reading for an interview with the author:


How often do you write?


I would write every day if I didn't have a day job. I prefer to write in three hour time blocks. My writing process develops when I set aside at least three house so that I can become part of the characters and the stories. In this way I immerse myself in their worlds and can know what they are feeling, thinking, choosing. Otherwise my writing can be hollow. I can meet deadlines if I must. But if I don't have a deadline, I go with the flow.


What is your day job?


Most of my professional work has been in hospice and social work. I have also worked as a television writer. Television writers earn good pay but it is completely different than novel writing. TV is the final product of a thousand players. The TV writer positions taught me a lot but I found that I much prefer being the sole author by writing fiction novels.

Did you have a hard time sharing your work with the public? How did you build up the courage?


I started my story telling in the second grade when my friends and I got bored at recess. When I saw that friends loved my stories, it encouraged me to try to share them with teachers. My fourth grade teacher encouraged me to become a writer and so I gained more courage. I wrote book reviews and essays that were published in high school and college. I wrote my first novel several years ago and it took me six more years to find a book publisher. I am motivated by the stories and the fire inside that drives me to write. Trying to break into the big publisher's world was more frustrating and time consuming than the writing itself.

What is the quirkiest thing you've ever done while writing?


I have never been a smoker. But in the middle of writing one story, I bummed a few cigarettes from a friend and went outside to smoke a few times. It helped me to feel like my character and tapped into something unexplored inside myself. But I hate smoking and never developed the habit and didn't inhale.

If you could be one of your characters for a day, who would it be and why?


I would like to be each of my characters for a day, but I haven't tried that exercise. It would help me to get more deeply into their minds and skins and would probably be fantastic fun, though maybe dangerous.

What is the oddest thing you've ever researched for one of your books?


The daily life and times of an ant.

What is the most difficult thing you've ever researched?


Quantum theory, inter-planetary travel and the bureaucracy of the CIA

What authors and books have most influenced you?


William Shakespeare; The Bible; David Maine, especially his first novel, The Preservationist; Orson Scott Card's books especially the Wurthing Saga, Isaac Asimov, anything, Chaucer, etc. etc.

What is the best compliment you've ever received as an author?


"Your novel somehow changed my life."

What is the worst writing advice you've ever received?


"Writing is a waste of time and you won't earn any money at it."

What do you enjoy doing aside from writing?


Spending good times with friends and family. Praying. Swimming, walking, watching good movies, and of course, reading good books.

If you were stranded on a deserted island, and you could only have five books with you, what would they be?


Survivors Guide to Living on a Deserted Island, The Bible, The Complete works of William Shakespeare, two large blank books that I could write myself.

What made you decide to self-publish?


My first novel, Angel Fire, took me a year to write. It took over six years to find a commercial publisher who paid me a book advance. I decided it was time to self-publish the ebook version of my print book. I like the creative freedom of self-publishing. It bothers me that the aim of big publishers is to earn immense amounts of money quickly rather than look for excellent writers with great stories and ground breaking genre's. At least this is true with USA publishers, agents and editors. Self-publishing is the "new horizon" in publishing. Writers can create in ways that they have never been "allowed" to create at all, they can write their own stories and seek their own readers without needing to go through the big publisher route.

Would you recommend self-publishing to other authors? Why or why not?


If a person knows they have talent, has time and money to attend annual writer/editor/agent conferences and is really patient with waiting for agents, editors and publishers to read their books, they should try to find a publisher who is a match for them. If a person has talent, wants creative freedom, wants to invent new genres and frontiers and does not want to be squeezed into other people's boxes, they should self-publish and work really, really, hard at it.

What are you working on now?


I am working on writing and polishing three books in the FACE THE LION series. The first in the series. FACE THE LION Book One, will be published this year. The rough drafts for the other novels in the series need polishing. My first novel Angel Fire, is it's own story, but in many ways it is the "prequel" to this series.

Monday, 27 March 2017

Greg's Third Adventure in Time by C.M. Huddleston

Connie M. Huddleston loved history and dreamed of writing a book even as a child. However, she got sidetracked. She became an Army wife, a mother, an elementary school teacher, an archaeologist, and an historic preservation consultant, before publishing her first book! In 2016, she published her seventh and eighth volumes, all dealing with her first love, our nation’s past. While three are written for children under the name C.M. Huddleston, her other works are histories for adults on a variety of subjects. Currently she is researching and writing about President Theodore Roosevelt’s ancestors.

Connie resides in a log cabin near Crab Orchard, Kentucky, with her husband and their Australian Shepherd Katie. They all enjoy the quiet of rural Kentucky. Except when Katie barks at deer, turkeys, and of course, the UPS truck!


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About the Book


Greg’s time traveled twice before. In both adventures he met American Indians, some friendly and some not so friendly. Recently Greg’s learned his dad and several others are TTIs—time traveling individuals. Now an evil time traveler keeps threatening Greg’s family at their new home in North Dakota. Can Greg and Rose save his mother from the Pirate? Can a future President help?

This fun-filled third installment in C.M. Huddleston’s Adventures in Time series provides middle-grade readers and readers of all ages with an accurate romp through history while entertaining with humorous escapades and time jumps to remember! Come join Greg and Rose as they jump into the American Revolution, the 1904 St. Louis’ Louisiana Purchase Exposition, and have even more encounters with American Indians.


Get it today on Amazon!


Keep reading for an excerpt:


My name is Greg, and well, I’m sure I have mentioned it before. I talk. I talk all the time—when I’m awake and even sometimes in my sleep. Whatever runs through my head comes out my mouth in these long run-on sentences that force anyone unfortunate enough to be listening to concentrate to find the important part of what I have just said. Unless I am scared out of my gourd, then I become silent, almost mute. And I’ve been scared a lot in the last two years. You see, I time travel. Didn’t know I could time travel until I accidentally went back 3,000 years to prehistoric times and met prehistoric American Indians when I was twelve. I became really quiet during that adventure. The very next year, I time traveled again, back to 1778 in Kentucky—more Indians and this time they were NOT friendly.

I like to record my time travel adventures after I return to our time—you know now, today, 2015. But well, this time Dad showed up in Boonesborough in 1778, during my latest adventure, and well, I’ll simply tell you what happens as we go along.

Poor Dad, he was the only listener that day in September of 1778 when we rode out of Boonesborough. You must admit, I’d just been through a tremendous adventure involving a siege by hundreds of Indians and even a few French officers. I had fought in a frontier battle—you know, part of the Revolutionary War. Can you imagine? Me? A patriot? Anyway, Dad had to listen to my adventure, every single detail, and answer my questions. And I had one million questions, actually, truly, one million questions. Important questions. And I WANTED ANSWERS!

“Okay Dad, are we riding this one horse all the way to wherever we are going? Are we going home? Where is Mom? Why didn’t you ever tell me you could time travel? Why is Rose—she is my friend, who happens to be a girl, and was supposed to be in Idaho with her aunt and uncle—with Mom? Where have you been? What do you mean held up by history? (Held up by history had been Dad’s explanation of why he arrived in Boonesborough after the siege.) Really, what is that supposed to mean? Was that sarcasm? I don’t need that right now. I could have been killed because you forgot to tell me I could go home anytime I wanted. Really, really Dad? Start talking.” And I breathed.


Wednesday, 22 March 2017

DreaganGrey by Nan Klee

Nan Klee’s resume as a writer includes eight years as a weekly newspaper columnist, while she worked as a freelance writer, editor, reporter, photographer, and technical writer. She used her Navy flight simulator training and knowledge to become as a computer technician while working toward a Master’s degree in Writing and Rhetoric at San Diego State University. She has retired from her career as a technical writer and lives in eastern Tennessee with her kayak and her 4 computers.






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About the Book


The romance, suspense and adventure continue in the second installment of Nan Klee’s DreaganStar Trilogy. Doctor Samantha Alexander, Senior Psychologist of the five Dreagan Corporation lunar colonies, faces political and military challenges from Earth, oxygen thrives, a death in her family, and a colleague who just won’t take no for an answer.

DreaganGrey returns readers to the fascinating world of the first experimental faster-than-light (FTL) starship, the corporate-run moon and its the five colonies, DreaganGrey continues the romance and mad science surrounding the starship, its creator and corporation CEO, Jonathan Dreagan, and Luna’s lead psychologist, Dr. Samantha Alexander.

Get it today on Amazon!


Keep reading for an excerpt:


"No. I'm not afraid of people," he announced, keeping her left hand in his right. "I just don't like large doses of them for long periods of time."

"Neither do I, my friend," she sighed, becoming more relaxed in his presence.

"Well, at least we're back to being friends." He touched her chin, raising it so their eyes would meet. "I was hoping for a second chance."

"Is something stopping you?" she asked, not adding nothing had before.

"First, your chaperons might be back up here any moment," he admitted, glancing behind her at the open door.

"Is that all?"

"Well... My previous attempt ... er, at romance..." Dreagan began, but fell silent, looking away from her, embarrassed. “I got the distinct impression that you were a bit… annoyed?”

"There are several ways to get beyond that." She sighed at the unpleasant memory, and then slid her hands up and around his neck, startling him briefly.

Dreagan tightened the embrace, and brown eyes smiled down at her. He held her close -- as close as two people in p-suits can -- and she heard and felt his deep sigh. With one hand, he cupped the side of her head, and gently eased it to his chest. Sam felt his lips tenderly kiss her hair as he adapted his embrace to fit her.

"Samantha," Jon Dreagan whispered. "Do you know how much I --"

"Excuse me, Founder," a heavily accented male voice said. "Your limo is waiting."

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Chronicles of Rhodran by A.R. Brown

Self-published author with a B. A. in English Lit. and a love for fantasy and dragons.

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About the Book


In a time long after humans, where dragons reign supreme, five dragons embark on a quest to stop a re-arisen ancient enemy and his forces.

Get it today on Amazon and CreateSpace!


Keep reading for a guest post by the author:


Being an author, especially a first time author, can be daunting, but it doesn't have to be. All one needs is a little knowledge of how to go about it, and the writing process, even up through publication, can be easy.

On my blog, I've compiled a list of helpful links for authors, mostly geared towards new authors such as myself, but useful for old hands, too.


Peruse these links and you're sure to find some useful info!

Thursday, 16 March 2017

The Price For Harmony by Jeffrey M. Thompson Jr.

I was born and raised on oatmeal in the rubber capital of the world, Akron, Ohio, a city I hold near and dear. Although I now live in the Philippines, I'll never release Akron from my heart.

I'm the father of two young children, an archaeology junkie, and an initiated follower of Lord Sri Krishna. I dream of seeing the Himalayas in Nepal, taking a stroll on the Great Wall of China, watching the sunset over the pyramids and traveling through India visiting all of the holy temples and shrines.

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About the Book


For six years the murder of Harmony Bane has gone unsolved. A complicated Goth kid in the midst of a metamorphosis, Harmony was found gutted, hacked up, and branded with demonic symbols in the trunk of her abandoned car. After a lengthy and unproductive investigation, her case went cold and was nearly forgotten.

Until Duke Bradley, private eye, came across it.

Now Duke is running between an obsessive cult leader, a self-proclaimed vampire, and a disgraced dentist, all the while dodging legal prosecution and doing his damnedest to hold onto his relationship with Shriya.

In this second installment of the Duke Bradley mysteries, Duke and Special Agent Shriya Thakur of the FBI find themselves in the middle of Akron’s gritty subculture as they take on the cold case murder mystery of Harmony Bane.

Get it today on Amazon!


Keep reading for an excerpt:


Seven months after I shot and killed Vinnie Torlino in self-defense, the city of Akron got this new assistant chief prosecutor who had it in for me. Now this guy, Robert Wells, is a special kind of jerk. He convinced the suits in the ivory tower to let him reopen the investigation of the Torlino incident, even though I’d been cleared of any charges. He liked to toss around the term ‘Vigilante Justice’. Apparently he got wind of the medical examiner's opinion that Torlino would have sucked air for another twenty to thirty minutes after I stuck my slim jim in his throat. Plenty of time to get him to a hospital. And that he was probably no longer a threat before I plugged him with his own bullet. I told Wells to bring it on. Because I’m here to tell you that I’m not a vigilante. I’m a private eye. Duke Bradley, Private Eye.

I didn’t have time for that jerk. I had other balls in the air. The three-minute egg of fame I’d enjoyed after bringing down that human trafficking circus was gone, and the five grand reward I got from the FBI for solving the Karen Linford murder had already evaporated. Cases were tapering off and I’d just gotten stiffed on a skip trace by a landlord looking for a tenant who went on the lam. Found the guy in less than a day, then waited two to report it just to make it look good. Then all I got was stories and excuses instead of payment. Things were getting hairy in a hurry.

That's when I met Harmony Bane. She was young, Gothic, and dead. Just twenty years old, she’d been sliced up, gutted, and stuffed into the trunk of her own car like a hunted deer. The Harmony Bane murder is one of the strangest cases I’ve ever agreed to take on. And it taught me a little about acceptance.

It was 8:10 p.m. on a sticky-warm July night. I walked out of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, where I’d been attending my regular Thursday night AA meeting. I didn’t feel much like sticking around for punch and cookie time. With this new prosecutor looking up my dress and my lack of real cases, I wasn’t the greatest company.

The sun was just starting to set and the traffic on West Market Street was down to a trickle. Typical summer night in Akron, Ohio. One that hangs on to the heat of the day, but can still put a chill down your spine. I smoked half a cigarette, then hopped the bus going downtown. My Taurus was in the shop.

Monday, 13 March 2017

Chilled to the Bones by Linda Lee Kane

Linda L. Kane MA in Education, PPS, School Psychologist, and Learning Disability Specialist, is the author of The Black Madonna, Witch Number is Witch, Icelandia, Katterina Ballerina, Cowboy Jack and Buddy Save Santa, and Chilled to the Bones. The Daisy Murphy Mysteries. She lives with her husband and three dogs and six horses in California.


Connect with the Author on her Website!


The first 5 readers to contact Linda get a Free copy of Chilled to the Bones!


About the Book


"What's up, man?" Joe hollered.

"Something in your way?"

"Yeah, there's something in my way all right. I've uncovered a pile of bones."

"Bones? What kind of bones?"

"Bones, human bones with a skull."

"Oh, my God!" the workers yelled in unison as they scrambled off their paint buckets and slid down the embankment of the hole Warren was peering into.

"Should we move them?" Joe asked.

"Well, I can't dig with them there," was all Warren could muster.

Trevor picked up a long tree root and nudged the skull. It rolled over, and empty sockets stared back, vacant and weathered by time. The backhoe had cast the rest of the bones adrift in the dirt. They were a strange dirty tan color, and the hinges of the arms and legs were bulbous. He leaned down to investigate them more closely. Several hundred years and the right soil conditions for the fungus that had settled in the buried bones propagated a walking terror. Trevor was chosen as the new host for that terror. What was left of the other workers' bodies was disposed of, and darkness fell. Linda Kane takes her readers on an adventurous and chilling ride through the small town of Setauket, New York where four high school friends find themselves embroiled in a historical mystery more than a century old. Secret codes, murder, and lurking evil lead them to the point of almost no return. This page turner is just the beginning of a great series!

Get it today on Amazon!


Keep reading for an interview with the author:


Why did you decide to be a writer?


My mind doesn't seem to stop, and I thought that writing things that were of interest to me, while writing a captivating story would be an outlet as well as a way to share myself with others.

What genres do you write?


Speculative Fiction

If you could be one of your characters for a day, who would it be and why?


Luci de Foix, she was in my novel, The Black Madonna. She is a college professor who has panic attacks. She is requested by the director of the college to go to Europe, a diary is found from the 13th century. She goes after the diary with tenacity. She is chased by killers and she has no idea who to trust. Luci is brave, she gets what she wants, at an incredible cost.

What authors/books have most influenced you?


Truman Capote, Brad Metzler, Steve Berry, The Historian by Kosvo. Some of the authors create incredible imagery, you can't put the books down because each word, each paragraph is so beautifully written. The other two authors intrigue me. The mysteries, the intrigue, you just have to know who is doing what and its a race against time, action packed. love it.

If you could choose an author to be your mentor, who would it be?


Truman Capote, he writes each word with a specific intention in mind. I'm mesmerized by the emotions he evokes.

Are you a pantser or outliner?


I'm a combination of a pantser and an outliner. I start with researching what intrigues me, than i begin to write. I go back and work to put it all in an outline, because when your a pantser, editing is a battle.

Do you write about real life experiences, or does everything come from your imagination?


That's an excellent question. I fuse the two. Many things are from real life experiences but I couple that with my imagination. That's why I write in speculative fiction. In Chilled to the Bones, their is things that are a part of my experiences, but there is history about Agent 355, a real life female hero of the American Revolution that very few people know about. I couple that with my imagination about kids who encounter her.

What are you working on now?


I'm working on a historical speculative book regarding evil men from the past and how people stood by, let things happen without standing up, regardless of the consequences.

What inspired your current work?


The election

What was the hardest part about writing your latest book?


The hardest thing will be the backlash that could possibly come from it. I saw on facebook a woman skewer Meryl Streep for words that she spoke at the Golden Globe awards. the woman and Streep have every right to say what they feel, but to denigrate another person for standing up for their conviction to me is appalling.

How do you market/promote your work? Have you found something that works really well for you?


As a relatively new author its difficult to get your name out there. Social Media, books signings seems to work but I think its most important to write what you need to write and not go with the crowd. For example, Dan Brown's books are popular but you don't need to be another Dan Brown, be yourself.

Do you have any advice for other authors?


Never give up, never give in!

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

The Day My Fart Followed Me To Hockey by Ben Jackson

Ben lives in Tasmania, Australia. While working during the week as a Boiler Maker/Welder, specializing in Aluminium Welding, he also writes of a night as a Freelance Writer and Author.

Ben is in a Long Distance Relationship with his wife Sam, who lives in Canada, she works as a full-time formatting professional, publisher, and author.

Be sure to check out all of his books, there is definitely something there for everyone!

As Indie Authors, we rely on our valuable customers to write a review, if you could spare a minute to leave a review of one of our books, we would greatly appreciate it.

He has numerous books in progress so stay tuned for information on those by following this page, connecting with him on Facebook or Goodreads.

Remember, if you enjoyed one of his books, leave a review!

Connect with the Author



About the Book


Timmy and his best friend the Fart are back again!

If you and your child love to read together, then you are going to love reading along with Timmy and his Fart as they play hockey together!

The Day My Fart Followed Me To Hockey is a beautifully illustrated journey of Timmy and his best friend the Little Fart as they attend Timmy’s first hockey tryouts. Chaos and laughter ensue as the Fart attempts to help out his best friend the only way he knows how.

If you enjoy reading funny books with beautiful illustrations and love having your child read along with you, then make sure you grab The Day My Fart Followed Me To Hockey.

Discover and giggle along with Timmy and his best friend on their exciting day at the hockey arena!

Get it today on Amazon!


Keep reading for an interview with the author:


Why did you decide to be a writer?


On the spur of the moment! I've always been interested in reading and writing and finally had the opportunity to try it out.


Do you have a "day job"? If so, what do you do?


I'm a welder. I work in a large shipyard building large aluminum vehicle ferries for the international market.


What genres do you write?


Non-fiction, children's and dystopian fiction.

What inspires you to write?


I just come up with random ideas and then try and work out if there is a story in it that someone might be interested in reading.


What authors/books have most influenced you?


Wilbur Smith, Leon Uris definitely. James Patterson and Bernard Cornwall.


What are your goals as an author? Where do you see yourself in five years?


I would like to be living the dream and writing full-time.

What is the best compliment you've ever received as an author?


That someone loved one of my books is always a great compliment.

What do you enjoy doing aside from writing?


Fishing and hanging out with my wife. We live in a long distance relationship so all of our time together is precious.

If you were stranded on a deserted island, and you could only have five books with you, what would they be?


Ha ha! Five books about survival and how to build a raft!

What made you decide to self-publish?


I enjoy the self-publishing process.


What is your writing process?


Well, my first fiction book, The Before, I just sat down and started writing it. Now, I'm working on the second book in the series I came up with an outline and I'm trying to write 1,000 words a day.

How do you come up with the titles for your books? Do you find it difficult?


No, I normally come up with the title first!


Do you ever base your characters on people you know?


Not the characters, but I use names from people I know.

What are you working on now?


The next of the Little Fart series which is due for release in the next few days. It's a Little Fart and Santa Clause special event!


What was the hardest part about writing your latest book?


Keeping the amount of words down to work with the illustrations.


Do you have any advice for other authors?


Keep writing as much as you can and don't be put off if something doesn't work.

Do you have anything specific you'd like to say to your readers?


Go and check out The Little Fart! You'll love him!

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Untamed: Demon Soul by Julie Anne Addicott

As a child Julie Anne Addicott had a vivid imagination and always loved to read and write stories and poetry. After the tragic death of her mother in 1997, Julie Anne started dreaming of angels and demons. It wasn’t until after the birth of her fourth child that she rediscovered her love of writing and completed her first unpublished novel.

Over the past five years she has written over forty novels, and one thousand poems which she hopes to publish in the future. Her poetry can be found on Facebook where she has a large following of dedicated fans, but her first love will always be writing about the angels and demons in the paranormal world that exists only in her dreams. Julie Anne lives in Victoria, Australia with her husband Dean, her four children who also share her love of books, and her four dogs who keep her company during the day.

Author Julie Anne Addicott’s novels take the adult reader into a paranormal fantasy world where demons, angels, shifters and vampires dwell. The recurring theme throughout her novels is that balance is crucial for life, and where there is balance, there must surely be hope.

Each of her stories are as unique as the characters and written from various characters’ points of view, taking you into their thoughts, their worlds, and their emotions. If you’re a fan of the paranormal world, fantasy, action and passionate romance you’ll be sure to find something you love in the written worlds that belong to Julie Anne.

Connect with the Author




About the Book


Author Julie Anne Addicott's debut novel, Untamed: Demon Soul, takes you into a paranormal world with six immortal races created by Genesis, the overseer of both the immortal, and mortal worlds. With romance, passion, lust and sin, Julie Anne introduces the reader to an adult paranormal love story where dreams and reality collide into a fantasy world of angels, demons, shifters, and more.

Balance is crucial for life on earth, where there is balance, there must surely be hope.

Lola Thorne has spent almost ten years searching for answers to the brutal murder of her parents. Plagued by dreams of angels and demons she knows another world exists outside her own. The only problem is, no-one believes her, until in the middle of the night Lola is kidnapped by none other than the black winged demon of her dreams.

Lola's entire life has been one lie after another, all to protect her. But from what?
With courage, determination and hope, Lola's only goal is to stay alive and figure out what it is the demons and angels want from her. When Lola discovers she's the last remaining heir to the Throne of Arcadia, she's thrust into a world of immortals, where chaos and power reigns and the balance between heaven and hell is in her hands.

The one stone that controlled the balance between heaven and hell is missing. It belongs to Lola Thorne and she has no idea where it is.

Belial is a warrior. A trained hunter and the favourite son of Hades. He has one mission, to find and kill Lola Thorne. But the moment he sees her he knows there's something different about Lola. He's drawn to her, her eyes, her innocence and her ability to hold his attention like no other. When Belial discovers Hades' intentions are far more sinister than expected, he vows to protect Lola and find the truth about both their pasts.

Untamed: Demon Soul, contains adult themes and violence and is suitable for adults over 18 years of age.




Keep reading for an excerpt:


Chapter Twenty-Three
Lola.


I sit on a small velvet covered sofa in a bedroom that must have be designed for royalty. There’s a fluffy white rug on the floor and ornate white marble furniture against each wall. Above one chest of drawers is a large, ornate silver framed mirror that makes the entire room look much larger than it is. The furniture and fixings are luxurious and from the ceiling an elegant chandelier hangs with tear drop shaped crystals.

The angel sits beside me as a child runs in. I stare in awe at the little girl with golden curls and shimmering silver wings. Above her head a round silver halo sparkles, it seems to be suspended mid-air like magic and follows her every move.

She runs to the angel and stops in front of her. “Lani, Lani, is she da morrrtool?” the little girl asks, pointing a chubby finger at me.

The angel who I know now is Lani, nods and takes the little angel’s hands. “Sera, this is Lola, she will be staying with us for a little while.”

“Hello Lola,” the little angel says.

I smile and give her little wave. “Hello Sera, you have a pretty name and such pretty wings.”

“Fank you, Lola, but you be smelling of somefing I not like here,” Sera says, scrunching up her nose. I can’t help but smile at her cherubic face, tiny pink lips and sparkling blue eyes.

“Shh,” Lani says, putting her finger to Sera’s lips. The angel gasps putting her little hands on her cheeks, her mouth opens to a little ‘O’ and her blue eyes are wide.

“Oh, a bad one is here in dis heaven?” Her nose crinkles and her eyes become darker, like a cloud of sadness has washed over them.

Lani takes her hands and speaks quietly. “It is quite alright, Sera. Belial will not harm any angel within the walls of heaven, do not worry now, off you go to mother she is waiting for you to return,” Lani says, kissing her head.

Sear waves her hand. “Bye, bye Lola, I hope you have so many days left,” she giggles and runs out of the room leaving behind a trail of sparkling glitter that swirls around as if it’s still searching for her.

“She’s gorgeous, Lani.”

“Yes, my sister is a beautiful little angel with much to learn.”

I turn to Lani hoping she will tell me something. “Lani, I don’t know what to do,” I say.

She puts her hands over mine on my lap. “It is your choice Lola, here in heaven we cannot sway your path. It is something you must find within yourself.”

I let out a quiet sigh. “Do you know I’m a half-blood?”

“The scent of mortals, and half-bloods is strong in heaven. It cannot be masked by purity alone. But Lola, you are more than that. You are unique and when you discover your inner being and find your balance, you will come to understand yourself. Ayla will tell you more, I’m afraid I cannot,” she says.


Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Pearls of Time: Between Gods and Mortals by Whitney Rines



My name is Whitney Rines, I’m a writer and illustrator for both work and fun. I’m married to a wonderful guy, have a pet python and a needy cat. I live in Alaska. I enjoy telling a good story and aim to give as much enjoyment out of it as possible. Writing is my passion as is reading, so I have shelves and shelves of books both for reference/research and enjoyment. As something I enjoy doing as a hobby, I never thought I’d be doing it as my main source of work but, I’m having fun with it.

Connect with the Author



About the Book


Pearls of Time: Between Gods and Mortals is the first part of a story I’ve been working on for some time now. The story follows events after a sect of the Immortals’ race makes decisions that terrorize the mortal world in effort to become Gods over them. Their achievement of god status comes at a cost to each of them, as their punishment.

Between Gods and Mortals follows twins Lizia and Fayet in their experiences of redemption and a different view of mortals than what they had before. They both experience a different form of love for mortals. Lizia takes a more motherly and protective stance in general, and a special affection for those that arise ‘different’ from the others because of a choice she is forced to make.

Fayet falls in love with a specific mortal and eventually gains mortal form to be with her and create a family. With his family and his bond with Lizia, Fayet’s life would seem to be perfect but something else slowly becomes a dark and deadly part of his beloved reality as well. The road this leads to paves the family’s path into darkness, fear, and betrayal.

Get it today on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Lulu, Kobo, and iBooks!


Keep reading for an interview with Cabbah from Pearls of Time: Between Gods and Mortals:


Where were you born, and what was it like growing up there?


I wasn't, I personify Chaos so I've always existed in some form.

Who is your enemy? What makes you enemies?


Anyone who does anything to destroy what I have created is my enemy. Currently that includes Fayet, Lizia, Inihari, Jatal, and Ryasha. I will see if they remain my enemies or if they change.

Tell us a little about your world, and where you fit in?


I reside in the celestial part of Liansea, and keep the three forms of my world separated. I fill the role of Creator, Preserver, Judge, and Destroyer if need be, as well.

What are your goals? What would you like to achieve?


Uninterrupted balance and harmony between Immortals and Mortals, my two favorite creations.

Do you have a secret you've never told anyone? Would you tell us?


Of course, I believe everyone has their secrets but I can't share mine here...at least not yet.

Have you ever been in love? How did that work out for you?


Yes. They were horrendously jealous of each other and I ended up losing both of them for it.

What do you regret most in your life?


Sending my treasured one away. I didn't want to make the decision of his fate but for his crime an example had to be made.

If you could change something about yourself, what would it be?


To be free of my own bond, as my creations are.

Would you ever or have you ever lied? How do you feel about lying?


I do not lie, I see no reason to do it. I do not like the idea of hiding something from someone because of the fear of repercussions.

If you had one day left to live, what would you do with your last day?


See my treasured one and spend the time I had left with them.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

The Generalist - Taboo 0: Double Feature Show by Thomas Duder



Hello! Meet Thomas Duder, Author of the Things.

A citizen of Bellingham, WA by way of Southern California, Thomas Duder is a firm believer that a writer should write. "Forget the drama of writing, forget the politics of writing, forget even the rest of the industry. Writers should write, period."

An independent publisher and author, working in close collaboration with a fierce team assembled and hand-picked by he himself, Thomas Duder is a seasoned general of various projects beforehand, bringing those skills to the fore as The Crew plunges directly into the world of action-adventure literature!

His vanguard series, "The Generalist," is an action-adventure extravaganza, a veritable rollercoaster ride through a Neo-Los Angeles of the near future. Loaded with witty dialogue, fast-paced action and sequences of brilliant violence, you're sure to find plenty to keep you entertained for hours on end.


Connect with the Author



About the Book


Action. Adventure. Fist to face. The Generalist is a hard-hitting ride through the Los Angeles of tomorrow, stuffed to the brim with monster-gene humans turned cannibal, Artifacts of enormous strength warping the very fabric of reality itself, secret organizations seeking to out-maneuver each other for ultimate power, and every day a simple miracle just to survive.

And who's standing between the rest of us "mundane citizens" and the myriad forces that seek to devour and conquer this world and those beyond?

The two violence-prone action junkies of the Shop: Frank Todd, the Generalist, and Daniel "Dash" Hopkins, his troll-gened companion and partner-in-crime.

Taking on all foes and challenges no matter how great or small, the Shop will do the job, get the pay, and woe betide any and all who dare to thwart their will!

The Generalist! Because you simply cannot read about people getting punched in the face ENOUGH!

Get it today on Amazon, Smashwords, and Createspace!


Keep reading for an excerpt:


Tapping on his desk with a gloved finger, he growled, "No. By all means. I had a wonderful night and a delicious breakfast. Why would I want to not cap it off with this equally amazing cup of coffee? No, go ahead and regale me with your findings whythehellareyouhere?!"

Dawn looked about herself and drew a chair to the desk, setting down a series of notes and pouring over them as she spoke, "Oh, good! Thank you, Magus Todd. No, I was merely pondering the ramifications of how Obtenebration Magia specialists never seem to cast a Magic Circle. When a magic spell of exceptional quality or level is cast, known as Higher Works, then a Magic Circle is inscribed in base reality, one formed of naturally-formed energies - the proof of a magus' work spanning the Magical Realm and our own physical plane. Yes? Yet when an Obtenebration Specialist performs a Higher Work, the chance that they cast forth a circle is completely random, yet the Higher Work will still activate as if they had~! It seems to be a pattern amongst Shadow Magic users of the past, that even when performing a Higher Work they cast no Magic Circle upon activating the spell, thus it's harder to tell if they're casting a Higher Work and increasing their effectiveness in a duel or casting during combat. Magus Todd, can you tell me if there IS a pattern or not?"

Frank frowned deeply, pointing at her, "I know. Shut up," then swung his thick finger towards the door, "And get ou-huh?! Now what?!"

Filling the doorway with his mystical armor engaged, plate armor glowing and pauldrons large and bulky, Legatus Valken growled through the eldritch helmet adorning his head, "I have received your challenge. Outside. Now."

Frank grinned and stood up, going out of his way to push his chair in slowly as Dawn openly gawked at him, sputtering question after question at him concerning the challenge. Spinning at the doorway, he gently placed a finger against her lips and lifted his eyebrows.

"SHUUUUUUSH! Freakin' silence, just a little. This is part of today's plan, and I'm gonna want you to watch especially close, Miss Magicker. C'mon."

Turning, he stalked down the hallway, hands in his pockets as a wave of students gathered in his wake, Dawn at his side the entire time, attempting to appeal to his more civilized side.

Stopping at a clear-windowed quad, the outside world shining into the makeshift arena formed by the press of student bodies, Frank turned to her with an exaggerated grin and retorted, "In case you didn't notice, Officer-Magus Tanelin of the Special Jurisdiction Branch of the Order of Magi, I lack a civilized side to appeal to."

Thursday, 23 February 2017

The Cow in the Doorway by Gino Bardi

Gino B. Bardi was born in New York City in 1950, and lived on the South Shore of Long Island until he attended Cornell University in 1968, during the tumultuous era of Vietnam War protests. Armed with a degree in English/Creative Writing, he diligently sought work in his field and soon wound up doing everything but. For the next forty-four years he cranked out advertising copy, magazine articles, loan pitches and short stories while running a commercial printing company in Upstate New York. Along the way, he married his college girlfriend, became father to three lovely daughters and decided that winter was an unnecessary evil. In 2008 he sold the printing business, retired, and now writes humorous fiction in his home on the Gulf Coast of Florida. Two signs hang above his desk: "Bad decisions make good stories," and Mel Brooks' advice that "You only need to exaggerate a LITTLE BIT."

The Cow in the Doorway is his first full-length novel and won the statewide Royal Palm Literary Award for best unpublished New Adult novel for 2015.

Connect with the Author



About the Book


Cornell University, Ithaca New York, 1968: The barking megaphones of the antiwar protests never seem to shut up. The cafeteria food is awful and the coffee even worse. Tony Vitelli doesn't feel properly dressed without a STRIKE! T-shirt and an Iron Butterfly album under his arm. He can't see the top of his desk for all the books and papers. And his new roommate won't acknowledge his existence. Tony's first year at college is a complicated and bumpy ride. And very, very funny.

Get it today on Amazon!


Keep reading for an excerpt:


This education thing was not working out. The lousy weather, loneliness, crappy food and cranky roommate were ganging up on me. My Blonde on Blonde songbook rested beneath the big twelve-string. What should I play? What was the perfect song? The picture of Bob Dylan on the cover looked just like I felt. I turned the pages to Visions of Johanna, a song with about a hundred verses. Okay, it has five verses—but five long ones, about pain and loneliness and awkward silences—it matched my mood perfectly. There are only three chords, which you can learn to play the same day you get a guitar. I didn’t know anyone who could remember all the words. That’s why I had a songbook.

The twelve-string was a little out of tune, which was normal. It was impossible to tune perfectly. I got it close, then began to play, carefully fingerpicking each note, working myself up to a genuine plaintive Dylan wail. “Ain’t it just like the night?” I asked the ghosts in the empty room, “To play tricks when you’re trying to be so quiet?” My voice bounced back from the stone walls.

The oak door opened with an ancient creek followed by a blast of cold air sweeping in behind a girl I hadn’t seen before. She carried a guitar case. I stopped playing but she nodded and smiled as if she wanted me to keep going. She slipped off her fur coat, sat on the steps and took out her guitar, a well-worn Gibson, a vintage six string with an orange macramé guitar strap. She didn’t look anything like the hippie folksinger types who filled the Echo Chamber on a weekend. Small and compact, she had long, straight brown hair, the color of roasted chestnuts, perfectly brushed, flowing to the middle of her back. Dark eyes. Big silver hoop earrings, tailored store-bought bell bottoms, not homemade from an old pair of dungarees. A beige turtle neck sweater just the right amount too big.

She put her ear against her guitar and tuned it to mine, so quickly and quietly I didn’t believe it would be in tune, but it was. Then, she watched my hand form a chord and she began to play, her long fingernails striking the strings more clearly than any finger picks, hitting each note precisely. She played with me note for note, then strayed off the melody and played new ones, like little songs, melodies that worked like they were written for it. As if she had discovered the only copy of an unpublished Bob Dylan songbook.

Then she began to sing. And I stopped. My hand felt paralyzed. I couldn’t force a sound from my throat.

“What’s the matter?” she asked.

“You sing like an angel. I can’t sing with you. I’ll ruin it.”

“That’s silly. You sound fine. Keep playing. Please.” So I did.

She started to sing again, in a soaring voice that filled the room, a voice that didn’t need the echo. She never looked at the songbook. She knew all the words, the lyrics to all the verses, complicated obtuse poetry, that seemed to make perfect sense in her voice. Then a shudder went through me…for the first time, the lyrics made sense to me also, though I don’t think I could explain why. Somewhere deep in the song, I sang too, and we harmonized. I felt like I was auditioning for the Queen. Somehow it all worked.

I realized something, something big. I knew right away that everything had just changed: God had put me on this earth just to sing and play with this girl whose name I didn’t know—not yet. We rolled into the last verse. On the last line, she bent the note and her voiced sailed up the scale to land a full octave above mine...a full octave! The song ended and an icy chill ran down my back as if someone had dumped a bucket of Ithaca slush on me.

The echo took forever to fade. She sat, hugging the guitar across her knees and smiling, waiting for me to say something. I realized I was suddenly, desperately in love with her. I had never felt this way before. Not with anyone, not ever.

“What’s your name?” I finally managed.

“Melissa.”

For the first time since leaving home I knew exactly what I wanted.