“Perfection Challenged” Cover Reveal – Guest Post by Jade Kerrion

Perfection Challenged, the thrilling conclusion to Jade Kerrion’s multiple award-winning, bestselling DOUBLE HELIX series, will be released on September 17th and will be available in paperback and all electronic formats. Beta readers have declared Perfection Challenged “the best of the four books…the perfect ending to an amazing series.”

If you’ve never picked up the DOUBLE HELIX series, keep on reading for a special offer on Perfection Unleashed, the book that launched the DOUBLE HELIX series.

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perfection-challenged-600x800PERFECTION CHALLENGED

An alpha empath, Danyael Sabre has survived abominations and super soldiers, terrorists and assassins, but he cannot survive his failing body. He wants only to live out his final days in peace, but life and the woman he loves, the assassin Zara Itani, have other plans for him.

Galahad, the perfect human being created by Pioneer Labs, is branded an international threat, and Danyael is appointed his jury, judge, and executioner. Danyael alone believes that Galahad can be the salvation that the world needs, but is the empath blinded by the fact that Galahad shares his genes, and the hope that there is something of him in Galahad?

In a desperate race against time and his own dying body, Danyael struggles to find fragments of good in the perfect human being, and comes to the wrenching realization that his greatest battle will be a battle for the heart of the man who hates him.

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Perfection UnleashedPERFECTION UNLEASHED

Recipient of six literary awards, including first place in Science Fiction, Reader Views Literary Awards 2012 and Gold medal winner in Science Fiction, Readers Favorites 2013.

“Higher octane than Heroes. More heart than X-Men.”

Danyael Sabre spent sixteen years clawing out of the ruins of his childhood and finally has everything he wanted – a career, a home, and a trusted friend. To hold on to them, he keeps his head down and plays by the rules. An alpha empath, he is powerful in a world transformed by the Genetic Revolution, yet his experience has taught him to avoid attention.

When the perfect human being, Galahad, escapes from Pioneer Laboratories, the illusory peace between humans and their derivatives – the in vitros, clones, and mutants – collapses into social upheaval. The abominations, deformed and distorted mirrors of humanity, created unintentionally in Pioneer Lab’s search for perfection, descend upon Washington D.C. The first era of the Genetic Revolution was peaceful. The second is headed for open war.

Although the genetic future of the human race pivots on Galahad, Danyael does not feel compelled to get involved and risk his cover of anonymity, until he finds out that the perfect human being looks just like him.

FOR A LIMITED TIME, THE E-BOOKS ARE AVAILABLE FOR JUST $0.99 (Discounted from $2.99):
E-books available at Amazon.com / Amazon UK / Apple / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Smashwords
Paperbacks available at Amazon.com / Amazon UK / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository

To be the first to receive news of Jade Kerrion’s latest book releases, sign up for her New Release Mailing List. If Perfection Challenged makes it to the bookstores before September 17th, you’ll be among the first to know.

Connect with Jade Kerrion:

Website / Facebook / Twitter

Relaunch and Cover Reveal: “Shade of Evil”

Shade of Evil - 400x600 G1: The Guardians

This series began with the novelette, Shade of Evil, though I didn’t know then that it was going to lead where it has!  One thing I can assure you of is that I am delighted that it has grown into the series, and excited as to where it will go.

Shade of Evil Front Cover 02-smallBack in the beginning, Shade of Evil had a cover design meant to be very plain.  With later developments, however, that concept is no longer appropriate.  As a consequence, the book has a brand new cover.  This new cover features artwork by Chris Graham, and I hope that you’ll think it’s as great as I do!  I think Chris has captured the essence of the story superbly.  You can see the new cover better by clicking on the image.

In addition to the great new cover, the text has been revised, to eliminate some errors and to make the story fit later developments of G1: The Guardians better.  Unfortunately, that does mean that if you own a copy of the 1st Edition, it won’t tally with this version.  I believe that you get automatic updates from Amazon and some other sites, however, but if you don’t, please contact me before the end of this month (August 2013)!

The 2nd Edition of Shade of Evil is available as an ebook, or will be very shortly, through Amazon (stores worldwide) and Smashwords.  It will also be available from most other major online bookstores (including Barnes & Noble, kobo and Apple iTunes) and numerous other sites but I’m afraid I have no control over when!  Remember that Smashwords offers all major ebook formats.  The paperback will be available very soon, via skoobebooks.

If you read Shade of Evil, or have already read it it, I would be very pleased if you provided feedback as to your opinions about it!  Star ratings are okay, though limited when in isolation.  A brief comment on one of the bookstore sites that allow customer reviews to be placed, or a review of any length, would be even better!  Apple iBooks readers, specifically:  I would be thrilled if you could offer feedback on iTunes, which is one of the few major outlets where I don’t currently have any feedback on my books.  If you do leave feedback, I would appreciate you dropping me a line to let me know – sadly, only Smashwords actually notifies authors of reviews received!  If you belong to groups in networks like Google+ or Pinterest, especially where short reviews are posted, I’d be very happy to hear if you’ve posted about this or any of my books there.  Of course, you could leave a comment here, on the appropriate page, or even post a review on your own blog.

~ Steve

More information on G1: The Guardians 
Shade of Evil page with purchase links 

Wandering On Wednesday

The Delight of Unexpected Reviews

I was thrilled to discover that two of my books were reviewed and given 5 stars! Shade of Evil and Evil Under The Circle, Parts 1 and 2 of G1: The Guardians, were reviewed by Chris The Story Reading Ape and the reviews can be found on Goodreads, Barnes & Noble and Amazon.  You can find all of Chris’ reviews on Goodreads.  Of course, you can also find Chris’ reviews on his own blog.  I would like to express my sincere thanks to Chris for his kindness and honesty.  Having friends who understand fully that you only wish to receive absolutely genuine reviews of your works is beyond valuable.

I was further delighted to find a 5 star review of Intruder from the Thief series of free short stories!  The review, posted on Barnes & Noble is so heartening!  I quote it below:

This book kept me on the edge of my seat until the last word was read.

There is a serious threat that exudes evil and wants to claim the land in this sci-fi fantasy.  Mages, which this author describes as magicians of a sort, are sought to help go up against the evil.

Characters are richly described and likable and fascinating.  This is a novella which is a quick read but this reader did not want the story to end.  The author is a very talented and creative storyteller. I will be reading many more of his stories. This is an excellent choice of reading for YA.

Review by jesNH, 6th August, 2013.  5 stars awarded.

I would like to thank jesNH for such a glowing review!

Going for a New Look – Again!

Yes, I’m afraid I’m going to be tinkering again!  The main page of posts can be rather overwhelming, especially when the posts are long!  I’ve decided to try to improve things by making use of a WordPress post facility.  This will involve adding the codeword More to all long posts, which will mean that only part of the post will appear on the main page and you will need to click on the More… link in the post to read all of it.  One advantage of this is that it will give easier access to other facilities, such as commenting, sharing, rating and liking.  In respect of special days (Book Promo Day and Blog Browser Day), I will endeavour to place the codeword in such a place that the link has to be clicked or some of the detail information will be lost to the reader.  Obviously, this will be subject to any feedback – positive or negative – as to whether I continue to use the codeword.  Also, I will not be going back to posts already displayed.  I simply don’t have the time to edit all those posts (around 270 of them)!

If you wish to provide any feedback on this change, at any time, please  contact me using the contact form on the blog, or via email if you have my address.  I would suggest not using Facebook or Twitter, as messages are too easily lost unless the direct message system is used.

Uncovered: The Naked Manuscript

If by any remote chance you’re waiting for Part 4 of G1: The Guardians, which will also be the first novel I will have released, I’m afraid the waiting must continue.  It still lacks a cover.  My son is extraordinarily busy now, with negligible time for such extra projects.  My own attempts have been woeful, to say the least, and I simply can’t afford to pay anybody to provide a more professional cover.  I can assure you all that I am more frustrated than anybody else.  I even considered abandoning my original vision for the cover, even if only for the first edition, and going with an extremely simple cover.  So desperate have I become!  There has been a consequence to this situation, too, in that the work on Part 5 is crawling along.

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

No – they dream of having more storage space  built into their main circuitry!  How do I know?  Well, I have a Samsung Galaxy Ace S5830i and it is forever complaining that its built-in memory is almost or actually full!  The kind folk of Samsung allow the use of micro SD cards to obtain more space.  Unfortunately, that really doesn’t help because they have been so miserly as far as the built-in space is concerned!  Don’t misunderstand me.  This isn’t a problem unique to Samsung,  I had, for a short while, an Android tablet, and that suffered from exactly the same problem!  Sure, most apps are installed to the SD card, along with things that they handle – such as the Kindle app and the ebooks that you download for it.   I was amazed, having watched TV adverts talking about the vast number of available apps, that this ‘phone has so very little actual capacity.  Every app installed contributes to the space consumed in the ‘phone itself, regardless of where the app itself is installed to!  And even more annoying is the fact that there are pre-installed apps which you can’t uninstall!  Some of these are massive (‘bloatware’) and I know that I’ll never use them, but Samsung have decided that they should be locked in, untouchable.  I find it increasingly difficult to understand how Samsung, and most other Android device manufacturers, expect to compete with Apple’s devices!  For example, the internal, built-in storage of the iPod Touch is impressive.  Sure, you can’t expand it, but at least most of the storage is available without all the nonsense problems of the Android competition.  Yes, there are locked apps with Apple too, and yes, it would be hugely beneficial if we could remove them, but even then I can get loads more apps on the standard, basic iPod Touch than I can on the Android smartphone!

(Apologies to Philip K Dick, author of the book whose title I have stolen for this section!)

Regarding Reviews and Ratings

A Book Review

I was blown away!  Staggered!  Kandy Kay Scaramuzzo, who has delighted us all with the wisdom of her good friend Pie, posted a review of my book Evil Under The Circle (second in the G1: The Guardians series) that is truly humbling in its enthusiasm.  With her kind permission, I repeat the review below:

This is an absolutely amazing story. It has all the great elements, unknown monsters, mystery, special sources, wiccans, druids and dragons. Who could ask for anything more.? I love the way the Special Forces are really special with special powers. Even though they work for the government and have all resources at their disposal, it takes the ancient druid and his baby dragon to help them out. The evil is unknown and is about to break out of his prison of many years. I won’t ruin the story for anyone else, but the druid and the Wiccan are a force to be dealt with. This story starts out nicely and ramps up quite quickly. The characters are well developed and described. It gives you a head start on the series that looks truly fascinating from the beginning. The guardians are some forces that need to be checked out. This is a book that will appeal to people who like action stories, sci fi stories, or stories of the supernatural. I give this book 5 out of 5 stars.

(This review may be found on Barnes & Noble, Goodreads, Amazon* or Kandy’s own website.)

I can only express my deepest gratitude to Kandy.

* The review on Amazon doesn’t appear to have gone live as yet.

Regarding Reviews and Ratings

I should reiterate, here, that I am always happy to receive reviews, whatever the opinions expressed, though I do only pay heed to those which are polite even when being critical.  Failing a review, a star rating is fine, though I do have reservations about such.  To me, it is far too easy to hide behind anonymity when awarding star ratings, whether they be high or low.  Getting friends to apply positive ratings has, sadly, become commonplace, and is very unfair to those of us who don’t believe in begging for such artificial support.  Equally, malicious types can happily apply very low ratings knowing that they don’t have to worry about explaining themselves, which would often reveal their maliciousness with bad critiquing and, frequently, the kind of language which most review sites are happy to remove.

In recent times, I have been approached by several individuals and ‘companies’ on the question of reviews.  These offer, in various terms, reviews in return for remuneration from myself.  I can state that they are wasting their time!  Even if I could afford such things, I wouldn’t ever pay for reviews.  It is, without any shadow of a doubt, unethical in the extreme.  How could anybody, the writer or readers, trust such reviews to be honest?  A company willing to pay reviewers out of funds raised in other ways is fine.  That’s no different to other walks of life, such as film critics and restaurant critics.  If those were being paid, directly or indirectly, by the subjects of their critiques, I can just imagine the reaction of the general news media!  Why, then, do these people think that authors should behave any differently to film makers or top end chefs?  Or are they, perhaps, exploiting a certain gullibility?  If you’re a reviewer, and you receive payment from a ‘company’, I beg of you: check on where they get that money from!  Remember, it’s your reputation on the line, too.  If you, as an author, are approached by such a ‘company’ or individual: think before responding!  If all authors refuse to hand over money to these people, I seriously believe that we’ll all be better off!  Perhaps I’m misguided, or just plain wrong, of course.  You can always give me some idea of what you think about paying for reviews in the poll below (no, I’m afraid there’s no prize! LOL).

~ Steve

“Sunflower” Blog Tour

Sunflower by Cass J. McMain

Final Digital Cover Published June 15th 2013

Hardback (203 x 127mm):
£19.99 / USD $29.99
ISBN: 978-1-909374-44-7

Paperback (203 x 127mm):
£11.99 / USD $19.99
ISBN: 978-1-909374-45-4

Kindle
£3.99 / USD $5.99
ISBN: 978-1-909374-46-1

ePub
£3.99 / USD $5.99
ISBN: 978-1-909374-47-8

BIC Code: FA

Michael is a metalworker with a name for building good fences. He’s even known by some neighborhood kids as Mr. Fence Man. But he wants to be something more: an artist like his former business partner, Alex. An artist, like his girlfriend, Jess, wants him to be. The commissions are starting to come in, and along with steady work making fences, things are looking good. The only problem he has is with his closest neighbor, who won’t allow visitors to pass through a gate between their properties. This dispute becomes a fight and Michael, enraged, makes a wrong choice.

Haunted by the result of his choice, Michael starts to fall apart: a death weighs down on him, exposing the weaknesses in the persona he was creating for himself, the weaknesses at the heart of him.

Sunflower is a story about a man having a bad day and making one bad choice. But underneath that, it also about his coming to terms with himself: who he is – and who he is not. Ultimately, Sunflower is about how we define ourselves as people, and how we seek to be what we are not.

An extraordinary and beautiful novel.

Editor’s Review:

I was pointed in the direction of Sunflower by a friend who had seen it on a writing forum. Within a couple of pages I was sure that this was worth reading, and approached Cass through the mutual friend. She duly sent me the manuscript, apparently a little surprised at my interest.

I realised then how long it was – 140,000 words, a real epic. Too long, according to conventional wisdom – surely too long unless it contained suitably epic events and huge cast of characters.

One Saturday late morning I opened the Word document and, seated at my desk, began reading. I read straight through, stopping only for coffee. 140,000 words in one day. Very little happens in the book, to be truthful, and what there is doesn’t happen quickly. Characters? Well, there are maybe three or four who are central, and perhaps a dozen (including a waitress and a salesman who appear for a few lines) in all. The style is simple, and there are no great phrases, no extended analyses, no bravura passages. I felt as though I had read a brief, simple book, and as though I had been immersed in another life.

Above all I knew this should be published.

It is hard, though, to describe or characterise. If it was a painting it would undoubtedly be in the impressionist style – or some midway point between pointillism and the obsessive twisting strokes of Van Gogh. There is a rhythm and a repetition, an extraordinary care with each word, each sentence, each punctuation mark, but it is true art, for one is never aware of the effort nor of the innate skill.

The reader is taken into the lives of the characters, the life, above all, of Michael. Like most lives his is composed of small moments, small worries, and small ambitions; as with most lives there is a fragility to his. The fragility is in part due to a fault line in him – the kind of fault line we all have. One particular small moment has a butterfly effect on the whole; the structure begins to crumble, quietly, almost unnoticed, and a life of quiet desperation emerges.

Throughout there are those moments that strike home and for me there was one particular moment: a telephone call, innocuous and unimportant, that made me stop reading for a little while, so personal was the recognition. There is throughout a kind of gentle descent – and the most gentle dissection of a person one can imagine. Yet in the end this about strength and hope, about life-giving light as well as life-denying darkness.

It is indeed a story of small things and profound truths.

Robert Peett

image About the Author

Cass McMain was born in Albuquerque and raised in the far North Valley, among the cottonwoods. Her first love was always houseplants, and she now maintains a house full of them.

Her background as a greenhouse manager led to a long career in garden center management, but when the bottom fell out of the local industry, she took a new path. Or rather, an old path; Cass started writing at the age of six, knocking out stories on her typewriter.

While her love of nature came in part from her father, a man with the heart of a farmer and the soul of a philosopher, much of the writing Cass did as a child was done to please her mother, a woman with the heart of a philosopher, the soul of a demon and the unquenchable thirst of the mind reserved for the brilliant.

Recently, Cass’s writing muse has again been speaking to her: a voice she stopped paying attention to a long time ago. Her plants, some of which she has had since she was nine years old, remain the heart of her life, but now she has a desire to express herself in other ways.

Bowed, but not broken, Cass keeps her eye on the horizon, looking for a greenhouse to manage. Her favorite saying these days is “that was then; this is now.”

An Excerpt from Sunflower:

Michael got home late in the afternoon, and he was worn out. He didn’t feel like working on the Tragedie piece. But if he didn’t do anything on it, he knew Jess would nag at him. Maybe he could sort of review it, without a lot of work. Those guys had taken a lot of energy out of him. He mixed himself a gin and tonic and walked out to the shed.

The piece stared at him. He wondered again why the owner of this restaurant was so determined to have such a somber image as their icon. That reminded him about the curls he was going to try on the cheeks. He set his drink down and took up the coil he had experimented with before. The heat from the torch had definitely brought out some different coloring. Michael decided to give it a shot on a grander scale.

Working with a much larger strip of metal, Michael fashioned a coil about a foot across and two inches thick. To change the color of it he fired up his torch and played the flame across the metal. This gave the coil some irregular markings that brought out depth and made it more interesting. Michael ran his hand along the edge and realized it was dangerously sharp, so he ground down the edges and ran the torch over it again. He doubted anyone would be actually petting the artwork, but it wouldn’t be smart to take the risk.

Once the metal was curled, he welded it to the cheek of the mask, under the left eye. The mouth was unevenly curved by design and as Michael worked he came to the conclusion that the second curl should be placed lower, to follow the direction of the mouth. He stepped back to look at the piece from a distance, and bumped into the table which held his drink. Michael caught the drink before it spilled, and absent-mindedly swallowed it at a gulp. The ice had melted; he had not realized how much time had passed, and it was now after 5:00.

Michael set down the glass again. It can’t be that late, he was thinking, when he heard Jess pull into the driveway. It was indeed that late. He went out to meet her.

She stepped out of the car. Her cotton skirt blew out behind her as she moved toward him, making her look almost like she was floating.

“Hi sweetie,” he called to her. “How was your day?”

“Was OK, how about yours? Get anywhere on your mask?” She caught up to him and gave him a peck on the cheek.

“Yeah, come look at this idea I got,” Michael said enthusiastically. “I really think this helps the piece look less formidable.” He led Jess to the shed.

She looked in at the mask. “The curlicue?” she asked. When Michael nodded, she said “I like it. Doing another on the other side?”

“Yeah,” Michael said. “Down lower though, to keep with the mouth.” He pointed at the spot. “Think it helps?”

Jess agreed that it did make the mask less frightening. “But it still looks mean,” she said. “It isn’t supposed to look mean, it’s supposed to look sad.”

“Well, I don’t know what else I can do,” Michael said. He was irritated, but he tried not to let it show. Easy for her to say, he thought. “What do you think I was trying to do with the curls?”

“Honey, don’t get upset,” Jess replied. “I just mean—well here, why don’t you add some turned down eyebrows?” She took up a notepad nearby and sketched. “Like this.” She held the pad up for Michael to view.

It was perfect. It would only take a couple of hours to do, and it would completely change the piece. Michael was stunned and, he hated to admit, resentful. She did in three seconds what I couldn’t do in three weeks, Michael thought. Just like Alex.

Purchase Sunflower from:

http://bookShow.me/1909374458 (this is a new system that should allow whoever clicks on it to reach their local Amazon site)

Barnes & Noble
Waterstones
Foyles

News Roundup

I am delighted to tell you that I have had an article, or guest post, put on the Indies Unlimited site.  You may find it of some interest.  If you do, it would be great if you could make that known over there.

I have more news.  I now own a new Samsung Galaxy Ace Android smartphone, thanks to my eldest son!  I quite like Android as a system but this ‘phone suffers from what would appear to be a common problem with such devices.  The ‘phone itself has very limited storage and relies on you using a memory card.  Sounds okay, until you find the glitch in the system.  Basically, there’s a bunch of apps preloaded, many of which you probably won’t need, but which you can’t delete, so when you find apps you would like to use, you soon run out of space for them!  What happens is that the apps install to the ‘phone and not the memory card and you can’t move them across.  So you actually find yourself with a device with maybe four or five apps you chose and a mass that you didn’t.  I don’t wish to sound ungrateful, because I’m not, but it seems a very clumsy system…

Because of problems I was having with my health, I spent several weeks unable to go out of the house.  Needless to say, I started going just a little nuts.  In fact, it takes very little time for me to develop mild agoraphobia, which simply makes going out even harder, when it does become possible.  Well, yesterday’s lack of a blog post was a direct consequence of the fact that I managed to not only leave the house, but I travelled around 25 miles to my daughter’s!  It isn’t without a price, of course, as road conditions are such that I’ll probably need most  of this coming week to recover, and I got a whole 30 minutes sleep last night.  Still, I did go, and I even spent the day sat outside.  That’s how I discovered that I am distressingly pale.  My hands were amazingly white, and I’m used to them being quite brown long before this time of year.  All said and done, though, it was great to get out and to see my daughter and her family!  I even  got to see my eldest son and his kids en passant.  That was a touch amusing as he brought the kids out to the car to say hello.  Naturally, I opened my door.  The moment the youngest, a little girl, couldn’t retreat fast enough when she saw me and spent most of the time hiding behind her Dad’s leg.

There will be something of a delay in new books being published.  My younger son is absolutely swamped with work, which means that, between that and his family, he can’t devote time to producing the cover artworks.  Naturally, while this is immensely frustrating, I do fully understand.  It means, however, that the second edition of Shade of Evil and my novel, both from the G1: The Guardians series, will not be appearing for a while yet.  It may be of interest to you to know that I have gotten a fair way into the next tale in the series, too, which is showing every sign of being a second novel.  As a side issue, I’ll be posting another segment of background to the series this week, so keep an eye out for it!

And Finally…

I’m looking for willing volunteers!  I’d dearly  like to hear from anybody who would like to review the tales in the G1: The Guardians series.  Naturally, I am willing to provide free review copies, in whatever ebook format is required.  I am not looking for any ego massaging!  I would truly like some honest reviews.  It would also be fantastic if said interviews were published on the following:

  1. Amazon,
  2. The reviewer’s blog,
  3. any other bookstore site (kobo, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, etc.)

Obviously the review could be copied and pasted!  I would also like permission to include such reviews here, on this blog, and some might well be included in any advertising/marketing I do, and even potentially in the books themselves, or as part of the blurb!  I do not offer anything beyond a review copy of each ebook!  If you’re interested, please use the contact form below.  I will be extremely grateful for all reviews.

Please indicate sites you may be willing to submit your review(s) to in the “Remarks” field.

Book Promo Day – 19th June, 2013

Charlene from Barnes & Noble Charlene the Star by Deanie Humphrys-Dunne

Charlene the Star comes from a family of famous racehorses. But what if Charlene doesn’t like racing? Will she become a model instead?

Charlene goes to great lengths to show her trainers she’s not happy racing. Your child will love this funny, entertaining and educational story, told from Charlene’s point of view.

Purchase from:

Available on www.amazon.com and Barnes & Noble.com

Reviews:

Review on www.jemsbooks.wordpress.com

More information:

Author’s blog


Beyond the Camera by Joanne Jacquard

(Note that this book is for Adult readers!)

Bored with her elderly husband, Elise Harper leads a steamy life of sexual encounters through her legitimate photographic business. An erstwhile darkroom technician takes umbrage when she fires him for misuse of her equipment and his ensuing stalking behaviour leads Elise into many dangers from which she is eventually rescued though traumatized by an old flame with help from a new love. The plot examines the psychological impact of various normal events that also overtake Elise during these traumatic few years. There is a set of books in preparation that fleshes out many of the characters involved in this tale, all of whom had complicated personal tales to tell.

Purchase from:

Amazon.com

More information:

Author’s website
Author’s blog


The Sigil of Ahriman The Sigil of Ahriman by Steve K Smy

An artefact, which can be used to unlock great evil from antiquity, is in the hands of a madman, and only the Guardians can oppose his insane schemes – whatever they may prove to be!

Against all precedent, a stranger is allowed into the inner sanctum of the Guardians.  This man brings news of something that threatens the human race with eternal slavery.  An artefact has been stolen, the Sigil of Ahriman.  Now, it is in the possession of an unknown person, and there can few reasons for that – to tap its power, risking freeing Ahriman, or to deliberately bring the ancient god of Darkness into the world again.

The Guardians’ elite team, G1, despite having been decimated by their last mission, must face this new challenge and win. Defeat is unthinkable.

A novella, being Part 3 of G1: The Guardians.

More information:

Purchase links


Book Promo Day – 13th June, 2013

Dessi’s Romance by Goldie Alexander

Dessi’s Romance explores some of the choices these young people make. As the story continues, all have the value of their friendships confirmed, and learn that their adventures in life and love will help them mature.

End of school is a crucial time for life -making decisions.Eighteen year old best friends Dessi Cowan, Lilbet’s grandniece, and her best friend Emma Simpson have planned a celebratory trip to the Gold Coast. Emma is an artist, Dessi a poet; their mothers long term ‘best friends’.  In the past the girls have always been there for each other and this relationship is central to their lives. However, when Emma meets charming Abdul Malouf and Dessi is forced to stay in Melbourne to recover from a car accident, Emma asks her friend to look after Abdul while she is away.

More information:

Author’s Blog


The Eye-Dancers by Michael S. Fedison

Seventh-grader Mitchell Brant and three of his classmates inexplicably wake up at the back edge of a softball field to the sounds of a game, the cheering of the crowd.  None of them remembers coming here.  And as they soon learn, “here” is like no place they’ve ever seen.  Cars resemble antiques from the 1950s.  There are no cell phones, no PCs.  Even the spelling of words is slightly off.

A compulsive liar, constantly telling fantastic stories to garner attention and approval, Mitchell can only wish this were just one more of his tall tales.  But it isn’t.  It’s all too real.  Together, as they confront unexpected and life-threatening dangers, Mitchell and his friends must overcome their bickering and insecurities to learn what happened, where they are, and how to get back home.

The answers can be found only in the mysterious little girl with the blue, hypnotic eyes.  The one they had each dreamed of three nights in a row before arriving here.  She is their only hope.  And, as they eventually discover, they are her only hope.

And time is running out.

Current price:

ebook: $2.99

Purchase from:

Amazon.com
Barnes and Noble.com
Smashwords.com
Kobobooks.com

More information:

Author’s Blog


Charlie the Horse by Deanie Humphrys-Dunne

Charlie dreamed of becoming a famous racehorse like his dad, Charles the Great. But will he have the talent to succeed? Does Charlie focus on his work? What happens when Charlie encounters problems on the racetrack?

Charlie the Horse is a humorous, entertaining story that will delight your child, while teaching important lessons. Charlie the Horse has received several 5-star reviews, as well as a book of the week selection.

Recent review:

jemsbooks.wordpress.com

Purchase from:

Amazon.com (ebook or paperback)
Barnes & Noble

More information:

Author’s Website/Blog
Author’s Facebook Fan Page


I Was In Love With A Short Man Once by Kim Dalferes

Have you ever wondered if the life of the woman standing next to you in the check-out line is as weird as yours? Could it be possible that you are trapped in a bizarre reality show, where the object of the game is to get the crazy lady to flip-out; just one more time? If so, then this book confirms that you are in good company.

I Was In Love With a Short Man Once is a story collection written from the perspective of a crazy, southern, Irish gal. Follow her as she reflects on: growing up as a child of limited means in South Florida; managing a self-financed college education; balancing work as a federal official with the joys of single motherhood; and navigating the amusing challenges of being a second-time-around wife.

•       Coming Up Stories reflect the distinctive surroundings of South Florida through stories such as “Flagpole.”
•       Jimmy Stories illustrate the bond between mother and son.  Stories here include “Kool-aid Mom” and “Zamboni” and reveal the life lessons that our children teach us.
•       The Rest of the Stories round out the author’s quirky observations, including “Naked in a Hot Tub in Vegas” and “Crazy Virgo Tendencies.”

Available as an ebook, paperback or hardback.

More information:

Author’s Website


Book Promotion Day: 16th May, 2013

The Tattered Prayer Book by Becky Schastey The Tattered Prayer Book by Ellen Bari, illustrated by Avi Katz

The Tattered Prayer Book  is a gentle introduction to the Holocaust for children ages 6-10. Ruthie discovers a secret about her father, while looking through a box of mementos from the ‘old country.’ As her father tells his surprising story, Ruthie learns a piece of her father’s story, a slice of Jewish history and the circumstances under which the family fled Nazi Germany.  A burnt prayer book taken in secret from a destroyed synagogue after Kristallnacht offers solace to her father as a young boy, at the most difficult time in his life. Once safely settled in America, he tries to bury the prayer book along with his painful past.  Many years later, sharing the story with Ruthie, allows father to heal and daughter to grow.

Price:

$18.95 7” x 10” hard cover, 32 pages.  ISBN: 978-0-9819906-8-2

Purchase from:

Gihon River Press, Inc.

More information:

Gihon River Press, Inc.


CIty of the Gods - The Descendant by S J McMillan City of the Gods: The Descendant by S J McMillan

In 700 A.D. Teotihuacan, Mexico, the High Priest believed himself to be a powerful as the gods. He set a plague on the city as a demonstration of his power. The Gods took pity on the remaining loyal congregation. They granted each survivor immortality and an extraordinary ability. Three loyal survivors were given a mission of great importance: train the lone human descendant of their civilization to stop the evil from damning the rest of humanity.

Now in San Diego, California, the time has come to finally make Katalina Deckard aware of her destiny. Her life has been a constant struggle since the loss of her parents when she was young. These struggles have made her a fighter, but she doesn’t believe they have prepared her to save the world. Her friends, who have survived for so long, must convince her that she has what it takes to accept the mantle of the Redeemer.

City of the Gods: The Descendant is the first book in an urban fantasy trilogy. The second book, City of the Gods: The Betrayal will be released later this year.

Price and Purchase from:

Paperback is available on Amazon.com for $12.99 plus S&H.
E-book format is also available on Amazon for $6.99.
It is also available on Barnes & Noble.com and Kobobooks.com

More information:

Author Website: www.mcmillansj.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/mcmillansj
Twitter: www.twitter.com/mcmillansj


Culloo by Murielle Cyr

Tala can’t answer the door. The welfare officer is knocking and her father isn’t home again. She needs to find him before her and her young brother get placed in foster care. Their quest brings them to secluded woods where they discover bear poachers are responsible for their father’s disappearance.

Their adventures bring them in contact with the legendary woodland characters: the pipe-smoking frog-like people and the giant, ferocious black bird. Will they be able to survive the night alone with hungry bears and angry poachers and find their father before the hunters do?

Price:

$1.17 Kindle ebook

Purchase from:

Amazon.com

More information:

Author website: www.muriellerites.wordpress.com
Amazon Author Page: www.amazon.com/Murielle-Cyr/e/B00C4L464O


A Miscellanea Of Topics

Reviews Received and an Interview Posted

Shade of Evil

"Thief" by Steve K SmyI’ve received two very kind reviews.  One is for my novelette Shade of Evil (G1: The Guardians, #1), and appears on Julie’s Book Review, written by Wende Sheets.  Wende awards it 4 stars!  This review has also been posted to Amazon and Barnes & Noble.  The second is for Thief (The Thief Series, #1), and appears on Tracey Wickham’s blog.  Tracey gives the short story a glowing 4 stars!  The ebooks are available from most major online book stores in ebook form, though Thief isn’t available from Amazon.  There’s also a new interview that features myself on Book Goodies.

I would be very grateful if you could leave feedback on these on the appropriate sites.

New Tale Progressing

The third tale in the G1: The Guardians series is progressing nicely.  More, the cover is doing even better and has me very excited!  It is being created by my son, Reuben, who is a gifted artist.  In fact, the concept drawing is so incredibly impressive, I’ve decided to hold back on showing it!  I can’t wait to see the finished artwork.  I also decided that there will be a reduced copy of the image inside the book, in black and white.  I haven’t yet established whether this tale will be a novelette or a novella, though.

A Little Ditty

Yesterday, I was inexplicably moved to write a little ditty on Twitter.  It’s a tribute to my favourite beverage: Tea!

Is there anything better than tea?
A taste of heaven, don’t you see?
Dark leaves of exotic lands,
A little bit of India in your hands.

(Copyright © Steve K Smy, May 2013)

It’s just a little bit of fun, of course.

Book Cover Artists and Book Illustrators

I would like to add a new occasional feature to Imagineer-ing.  Are you a book cover artist or a book illustrator?  Do you use, or know, either of these?  I would really like to include interviews of these very important people to the blog!  The interview wouldn’t be arduous.  It would only involve responding to an interview questionnaire, and including some examples of some book artwork.  It is my hope that this would benefit the artist, by providing links to their sites.  Also, if any artist would like a special feature done on them, and they have the copy prepared, I’d be very interested in that too.  Finally, if you’re a client of an artist you cannot live without (as an author) and you want to brag about them on their behalf, please feel free to submit an article, remembering to include links to the artist’s presence online, and images of book covers or internal illustrations they’ve done for you.

So, artists, please contact me direct!  Authors, help spread the word – send them a link to this post!

~ Steve