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Archive for August, 2019

The Secrets of Hawthorne House
by Donald Firesmith
Genre: Teen Paranormal Mystery
Matt’s life changes forever when a family of druids moves into the
dilapidated Victorian mansion next door. The story of an unlikely
friendship, the clash of two completely different cultures, secret
magic, and a search for the lost Hawthorne treasure.
Fifteen-year-old Matt Mitchell was having the worst summer imaginable.
Matt’s misery started when a drunk driver killed his mother. Then his father moved
him and his twin sister to the small town of Hawthorne in rural
Indiana, as far as his grieving father could take from the ocean that
Matt’s mother had loved. At the new high school, three bullies are
determined to make Matt miserable. And to top it off, Matt learns
that the recluse who lives in the ‘haunted house” next door is
none other than Old Lady Hawthorne, the town’s infamous witch and
murderer. Matt’s terrible summer is turning into an awful autumn
when something quite unexpected happens. Old Lady Hawthorne’s niece
and her three children arrive, and Matt meets Gerallt.
**Only .99 cents!!**
A geek by day, Donald Firesmith works as a system and software engineer
helping the US Government acquire large, complex software-intensive
systems. In this guise, he has authored seven technical books,
written numerous software- and system-related articles and papers,
and spoken at more conferences than he can possibly remember. He’s
also proud to have been named a Distinguished Engineer by the
Association of Computing Machinery, although his pride is tempered
somewhat by his fear that the term “distinguished” makes
him sound like a graybeard academic rather than an active engineer
whose beard is still slightly more red than gray.
By night and on weekends, his alter ego writes modern paranormal
fantasy, apocalyptic science fiction, action and adventure novels and
relaxes by handcrafting magic wands from various magical woods and
mystical gemstones. His first foray into fiction is the book Magical
Wands: A Cornucopia of Wand Lore written under the pen name Wolfrick
Ignatius Feuerschmied. He lives in Crafton, Pennsylvania with his
wife Becky, and his son Dane, and varying numbers of dogs, cats, and birds.
My Review
5 Stars

Matt Mitchell has had a rough year. His mother died in a car accident and his father has moved him and his sister to a small town of Hawthorne in Indiana. Because Matt is the new kid there are a group of guys that have decided that they are going to bully him and make his life even more difficult. Then Matt learns that he lives next to the Old Lady Hawthorne, the towns witch. But when the woman’s niece and children move into the house Matt learns about their story. He makes a new friend and starts looking into the story of Hawthorne.

This is a great story. Matt is a great kid and just had his world turned upside down with the loss of his mother. Of course the sadness felt by everyone is just heartbreaking and I understand why his father moves them. Unfortunately this is not going to give the now new kid in town an easy time with other boys his age.

Gerallt is a great guy and the perfect friend for Matt. Add in a little magic and this book just keeps getting better and better. The rich history of Hawthorne also adds to this story. I love how the story goes into bullies, rumors, family, and magic. I recommend it to any child and adult that would like a little magic added to their world.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.

Follow the tour HERE
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An autographed copy of The Secrets of Hawthorne House , $25 Amazon
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I would like to thank Silver Dagger Book Tours for the opportunity to read and share this book.
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WildDarkTimes

WDTimes Digital coverWild, Dark Times

Expected Publication Date:July 23rd, 2019

Genre: Urban Fantasy/ Paranormal

It’s the summer of 2012 and Elizabeth Megalos is a disillusioned art-school grad getting by as a bank teller in St. Louis. One evening, she’s attacked by a possessed coworker and saved by a mysterious, wise-cracking sorcerer named Eddy. He drags Elizabeth and Hugh—a skeptical scholar of the occult—to Europe, where he introduces them to his three magical celebrity friends. Once there, Eddy explains the group’s mission: preventing a Demiurge—a creature out of Gnostic Christian mythology—from fulfilling the visions of doom in the Book of Revelation. The Demiurge has been drawing power from the misguided beliefs in the Mayan apocalypse and is set to start the destruction on Dec. 21st, 2012. Through ritual magic and a series of psychedelic experiences, the group learns that Elizabeth is the key to taking down the Demiurge, though she can’t imagine how she will be the one to stop Armageddon.

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Excerpt

“OK. Seriously. Please. Tell me exactly who you are, what you’re doing, how you made my phone fly into your hand, and why the fuck my co-worker just assaulted me,” said Elizabeth, the last of her patience dwindling.

“You can call me Eddy,” he said. “The milk is for the protection spirit I called to keep us safe for now. As for your coworker… well, she’s possessed by a qlippoth, which is pretty much a vampiric assemblage of cravings, guilt, self-loathing, and a whole other mess of nasty emotional energies. Most are made when the sad and pathetic losers of the world jerk off to some of the sickest porn the bowels of the Internet can shit out. Obviously, there’s a fair number of these icky beasties around. This particular one’s been coalescing around your back alley. Probably feeding off of your used tampons or something. They like those. Used condoms and jerk-off rags too. Genital fluids are like bonbons for these things. And sometimes they’re able to possess people with very little emotional control and/or intelligence during certain astronomical phases. My guess is your coworker wasn’t exactly a shining example of emotional stability. As for the phone: involving the cops would just complicate things, so I used a little arcane prestidigitation to take it from you for the moment.”

“What the fuck are you talking about?” asked Elizabeth.

“OK, we need to skip past the whole ‘Spirits? Magic? Are you crazy?’ shit because we’ve got a hungry, demon-possessed hippie trying to break in and drink our nether juices, and I for one don’t want that chick anywhere near my junk.”

Available on Amazon

About the Author

jason_gray-1-2 (1) (1).jpg

Austin Case received a Master’s Degree from the University of Amsterdam in Western Esotericism and Mysticism. His academic knowledge of the occult and other peripheral phenomena has given him a unique take on fantasy and speculative fiction.

Austin Case | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

WildDarkTimes

Blog Tour Schedule

August 26th

Reads & Reels (Spotlight)

Jessica Belmont (Review)

Entertainingly Nerdy (Spotlight)

I Smell Sheep (Spotlight)

Tranquil Dreams (Review)

August 27th

The Faerie Review (Review)

Breakeven Books (Spotlight)

Touch My Spine Book Reviews (Spotlight)

August 28th

My Bookish Bliss (Review)

Didi Oviatt (Spotlight)

Shalini’s Books and Reviews (Spotlight)

August 29th

Inked and Blonde (Review)

Just 4 My Books (Spotlight)

Scarlett Readz & Runz (Spotlight)

August 30th

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Interview)

J Bronder Book Reviews (Spotlight)

Blog Tour Organized By:

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R&R Book Tours

I would like to thank R&R Book Tours for the opportunity to share this book.

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Two Journeys

Adventure, Thriller
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A man left alone on earth.
Alan is visiting Japan on business. After the outbreak of a pandemic, he finds himself to be the single survivor. The viral disease has wiped away his past life: he must fear injury, loneliness and hunger. Yet, Alan decides to travel back to his family in Berlin, straight across Asia. An exciting, thought-provoking book, impossible to put down.
Praise for Two Journeys:
“Move over, Cormac McCarthy, another survivor is traveling the Armageddon road. Clemens P. Suter’s apocalyptic thriller grabs you in the first couple of pages and never lets go. The reader feels real empathy for the main character’s plight as he begins a seemingly impossible 9,000-mile trip to learn his family’s fate. The cause of the calamity is mysterious but clues are uncovered along the way causing tension to build until we reach the shattering climax. Two Journeys is not to be missed.” – G. Dedrick Robinson, author of Blood Scourge

 

Amazon    B&N    Kobo    iBooks    Smashwords    IndieBound

 
Excerpt
SAMPLE from the novel Two Journeys:
Then one morning, the barometer’s needle started to rise, and a few hours later the weather started to improve. A new, different kind of breeze came from the southeast, blowing most of the clouds away. The sun came out; I hadn’t realized how much I had actually missed it.
Suddenly a feeling of urgency came over me. The opportune moment for crossing the channel was rapidly approaching. I tried to resist it—after all, was I ready for it? Was all the equipment on board? Could I handle the boat? Then I decided to go with the flow and to set off the next morning shortly before daylight. I had plotted my course many times over. I would aim straight for the island of Iki, which was less than thirty miles away. Then I would pass on directly to Tsu and continue along its northern coast and then cross the final part of the strait and aim for the Korean city of Pusan. The course would be strictly northwest almost all the way.
According to the maps, it should be easy sailing. My interpretation of the manual and the other books that I had found suggested that the trip would probably last fifteen hours. The charts revealed that the islands in between had been (or even were?) inhabited, offering a fallback should anything go wrong. I decided against any voluntary stopover on one of the islands. After all, should the weather worsen again, I could get stuck there indefinitely.
The challenge was the gasoline. What would happen if I ran out of gas? I had calculated the total volume of the tanks several times and had tried to estimate the amount of fuel that I would need. I had once heard that a boat would use approximately one liter for every mile, but that depended on factors such as the strength of the wind, the size of the ship, and the weight that it was carrying. The boat had several tanks, all of which now filled to the rim with fuel that I had carried over from the other ships in the harbor.
The maps showed small villages on the islands, even an airport on the bigger one, so I thought there might be the possibility to get additional fuel there. At the very last moment, I decided to take a small life raft in tow.
I studied the controls again. I had completed some practice runs in the harbor and I had ceased hitting the docks. I wondered what the shore on the other side of the strait would look like. Flying an airplane wasn’t hard but landing was—I suspected the same applied to boating. I hoped that I could find an easy port in Korea.
That night I took my final walk through town. It was getting dark already, a beautiful subtropical evening, the sky aflame and hardly any wind. The two dogs walked along, barking when they saw another dog, protecting their own pack.
I needed to get an additional compass, some new clothing, a waterproof flashlight, and some batteries.
I wandered into a part of town where I hadn’t been before. The houses were small and painted in bright pink and orange colors. I passed a park, and in the fading daylight, I saw a young couple on a park bench, romantically hugging and protecting each other from the chill that had started to come in from the sea. She had her head on his shoulder, he his cheek on her hair. His arm was around her tiny body. Her pink handbag stood straight and orderly on the gravel next to the park bench.
My heart jumped, and I quickly walked up to them. As I came closer, I saw that they were dead and in an advanced stage of decomposition. Her dress was soiled with body fluids, and their hair was blowing away with the wind.
Loneliness came over me. I looked at them for a few minutes, speculating about their lives. Finally, I turned away and left them behind, forever frozen in their final embrace.
About the Author

Clemens P. Suter is the author of roaring adventure novels. Suter’s first novel “Two Journeys” was published in 2011, and describes the adventures of the sole survivor of a pandemic. Its sequel “Fields of Fire” appeared in 2016. “Celeterra” (2013) is a dystopian novel, centered around the theft of Charles Darwin’s testament. Suter’s novels are suited for all ages, combine straightforward adventure and philosophic elements. Although Suter’s topics are serious, romance and humor abound.
RABT Book Tours & PR
I would like to thank Reading Addiction Virtual Book Tours for the opportunity to share this book.

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The Experiment

The Experiment

by Robin Lamont

on Tour August 1-31, 2019

Synopsis:

The Experiment by Robin Lamont

Jude Brannock is a brash and single-minded female protagonist for today’s readers who believe that nature and animals deserve our respect and must be protected. In The Experiment, author Robin Lamont brings these forward-looking themes to her newest suspense novel.

Jude is an investigator for an animal protection organization. When the young man she has trained for an undercover job suddenly vanishes after a tantalizing text that he’s “on to something,” Jude rushes to the quiet, farming community of Half Moon, only to discover that her trainee might have perpetrated an elaborate con job on her. Determined to get to the truth, she unearths a biopharmaceutical company’s deadly secret, and in doing so, comes up against dark secrets of her own.

 

Book Details:

Genre: Suspense Published by: Grayling Press Publication Date: May 15th 2019 Number of Pages: 288 ISBN: 0985848588 (ISBN13: 9780985848583) Series: The Kinship Series Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Read an excerpt:

John Harbolt wasn’t easily shaken. With over forty years of medicine under his belt, there was hardly an injury, disease, or fatality he hadn’t seen, and he’d treated just about everyone in the small town of Half Moon at some time or other. But on that late summer day, young Tori Lacey showed him something that baffled him. Her symptoms were inexplicable and downright scary. She was his first patient of the day, a young woman who had battled her weight for years. In between the earaches and the sore throats, Harbolt had gently counseled her about diet and exercise. He hoped she wasn’t here to ask him about diet pills again, because as far as he was concerned, they were off the table. After removing her file from the plastic holder bolted to the outside of the examination room, he adjusted his wire rim glasses and straightened his lab coat. The younger doctors often wore khakis and a short-sleeved shirt at work, and maybe it put the kids more at ease. But Dr. Harbolt stuck with a freshly starched white coat, believing that it made his patients feel more confident in his abilities. And confidence in one’s doctor was important to the healing process. “Tori Ann Lacey,” he announced jovially as he shambled into the room. “Hi, Dr. Harbolt.” The morose girl before him sat on the table. She had taken off her running shoes but left her sweatshirt and shorts on. “I haven’t seen you for a while,” he said, noting with some surprise that she had slimmed considerably, her round face now leaner and more mature. “How is college life treating you?” “Ok, I guess.” Her voice and posture belied this. “What brings you here today, my dear.” “I don’t really know. But we thought you should look at these.” She pushed back the sleeve of her sweatshirt and held out her arm for inspection. There were several bruises that vandalized the translucent skin of her inner arm. Dr. Harbolt held her wrist and peering over his glasses, looked closely at the red and purple marks. He pressed lightly on one of them. “Does that hurt?” She shook her head no. “What happened?” “That’s the thing. Nothing happened. They just appeared.” She showed him another set of bruises on her other arm. “Did you fall?” “No.” “Knocked into something?” “No,” she exclaimed, as though he didn’t believe her. “My mom thinks it’s my diet. That I should be eating meat.” “And you’re not?” “No. I needed to lose five more pounds for the track team, which I was having a hard time doing, so I switched over to a raw food diet. And it really helped because I made my goal.” “And you were selected for the team?” She nodded, anxiously chewing on a nail. “Congratulations. You getting enough protein?” he asked, studying the bruising and letting her answer drift past him. This wasn’t because of her diet. She rambled for a moment about nuts and spinach, then peeled off her socks and lifted her bare feet to the end of the examination table. “And then yesterday after a run, I found this,” she said. “I didn’t even show my mom ’cause she’d freak out.” Dr. Harbolt caught his breath. It looked as though someone had taken a baseball bat to the soles of the girl’s feet. Fiery maroon blotches screamed out some kind of violence. Three of her toes had turned a dark purple. “Good Lord!” he blurted out. “What happened to you?” “Nothing! I’m telling you nothing happened,” wailed Tori. “They just … showed up.” *** Excerpt from The Experiment by Robin Lamont. Copyright © 2019 by Robin Lamont. Reproduced with permission from Robin Lamont. All rights reserved.

 

 

Author Bio:

Robin Lamont Before becoming a novelist, Robin was a popular Broadway actress and singer, turned private investigator, and then New York prosecutor. She draws on these diverse careers for her work, infusing suspenseful plots with character-driven drama. Robin’s prior work has garnered awards and recognition, including Suspense Magazine’s Best of the Indies and a Gold Medal in the Independent Publishers Book Awards for her novel If Thy Right Hand. Her book The Chain, which introduced Jude Brannock to readers, was a Foreword Reviews Book of the Year Finalist. Her screen adaptation of the book, Six Seconds, is currently under option.

 

Catch Up With Our Author On: thekinshipseries.com, Goodreads, BookBub, Twitter, & Facebook!

 

 

 

My Review

5 Stars

Jude Brannock is an investigative reporter for the animal protection group The Kinship. They are not as dramatic as other big name groups and prefer to work in the shadows. Jude is worried about the rookie reporter, Tim Mains was to go undercover as a vet tech for Amaethon Industries, a company using mice, rats, and dogs to test their new medicine. They have had a couple violations in the past and Tim was supposed to get evidence to get some serious attention on the company. Be he has disappeared.

Jude is very worried about Tim and goes to Vermont to find him. There she is surprised to learn that Tim was caught giving a sixteen year old girl heroine. But this doesn’t sound like Tim to Jude and she keeps digging. It seems there are a lot more secrets that Amaethon has been keeping from people and Jude is going to expose them, if they don’t stop her first.

This is the first book in the Kinship series that I have read and I instantly fell in love with it in the first chapter. Jude cares for animals, more than humans and is determined to stop their abuse. Against her common sense she falls for Tim and becomes very concerned about his disappearance. But she has her own problems that she is ignoring that may come to bit her at the wrong time.

As an animal lover I wanted to read this book but was hesitant because I knew I would have a hard time with the testing and treatment of animals. But this part was well written and portrayed. I loved the mystery and how this was so much bigger than just some testing of a new drug.

This book could have easily been a standalone novel instead of the third book in the series. I loved this book and can’t wait to read the first to books in the series to see what I missed. It’s definitely one that I recommend checking out.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.

Tour Participants:

Visit these other great hosts on this tour for more great reviews, interviews, guest posts, and giveaways!

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This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Robin Lamont. There will be 1 winner of one (1) Amazon.com Gift Card. The giveaway begins on August 1, 2019 and runs through September 2, 2019. Void where prohibited.

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Sapphire Flames
A Hidden Legacy Novel, Book 4
by Ilona Andrews
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance
From #1 New York Times bestselling
author Ilona Andrew comes an enthralling new trilogy set in the
Hidden Legacy world, where magic means power, and family bloodlines
are the new currency of society…
In a world where magic is the key to power and wealth, Catalina Baylor
is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, and the Head of her
House. Catalina has always been afraid to use her unique powers, but
when her friend’s mother and sister are murdered, Catalina
risks her reputation and safety to unravel the mystery.
But behind the scenes powerful forces are at work, and one of them
is Alessandro Sagredo, the Italian Prime who was once Catalina’s
teenage crush. Dangerous and unpredictable, Alessandro’s true
motives are unclear, but he’s drawn to Catalina like a moth to a flame.
To help her friend, Catalina must test the limits of her extraordinary
powers, but doing so may cost her both her House–and her heart.
“Ilona Andrews” is the pseudonym for a husband-and-wife writing team.
Ilona is a native-born Russian and Gordon is a former communications
sergeant in the U.S. Army. Contrary to popular belief, Gordon was
never an intelligence officer with a license to kill, and Ilona was
never the mysterious Russian spy who seduced him. They met in
college, in English Composition 101, where Ilona got a better grade.
(Gordon is still sore about that.)
Gordon and Ilona currently reside in Texas with their two
children and many dogs and cats.
They have co-authored several NYT and USAT bestselling series. They are
currently working on urban fantasy of Kate Daniels, the paranormal
romance of Hidden Legacy, and thjeir independently published series,
Innkeeper Chronicles.
Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive content and a giveaway!
Enter for your chance to win a $25 Amazon
I would like to thank Silver Dagger Book Tours for the opportunity to read and share this book.

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Reaper

Reaper

Who doesn’t love a good Boogeyman story? Well, I have a creepy little novella to share that will make you want to check your closet before bed!

Read on for more details about Reaper by Jonathan Pongratz, and a chance to win a signed copy of your own!

Reaper Cover Image.jpg

Reaper: A Horror Novella

Publication Date: April 19th, 2019

Genre: YA Horror/ Novella

THE BOOGEYMAN IS REAL

Gregory and his little sister Imogen love spending Halloween with their parents. But this year is different. If he proves he can take care of Imogen all by himself, he’ll finally have the allowance he’s dreamed of.

That was before the basement door opened on its own. Before the strange door appeared in the basement and Imogen was taken from him by the monster.

Now everyone in town is blaming him for her disappearance, but no one is listening to his story. Where did the door come from? What was that creature? And most of all, can he find his sister before it’s too late, or will he bury his memories of her along with his parents?

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Excerpt

Call me a scaredy cat all you want, but there was always something about the basement that I didn’t like. It always made me feel like I was being watched, like there was some

thing in the shadows just waiting for me to make a wrong move. Even now, the frigid air crept over me, creating more goosebumps on my arms and legs. I quickened my strides up the stairs, Imogen dragging behind.

We were halfway up the stairs when the knocks stopped. For a moment, I stopped my climb. The house was eerily quiet, and for reasons I can’t explain I felt a sudden urge to hurry back upstairs. I charged forward, trying to pull Immy along with me, but she resisted.

“Too fast!” she whined.

“If you hurry, we can play dress up sooner, now come on!” I yanked on Immy’s arm, practically lifting her into the air. Seven steps. Just seven more steps and we could look back on this night and laugh it off. Seven, six, five. Almost there.

I was just three steps away from the door when I leaped for the landing. I’ll never forget that jump. Time seemed to stand still, as if those cold icy fingers in the air had somehow found a way to slow time down. I remember that I had a smile on my face, a smile that disappeared when the door slammed shut in my face.

Available on Amazon and at Barnes & Noble

About the Author

054

Jonathan Pongratz is a writer and author of captivating horror, urban fantasy, and paranormal stories. When he’s not writing, he’s busy being a bookworm, video game junkie, and karaoke vocalist. A former resident of Dallas, he currently resides in Kansas City with his halloween cat Ajax. By day he works magic in finance, by night he creates dark and mesmerizing worlds.

Jonathan Pongratz | Facebook | Goodreads | Tublr

My Review

4 Stars

Gregory has been begging his parents to let him babysit his sister for a while. He gets his wish on Halloween when his parents go out. But things go wrong when Gregory is playing hide and seek with Imogen, his sister and she is taken into a hidden door in the basement. After his parents return home there is the initial search for Imogen but then they start acting like she was never around. Of course Gregory is not going to let the disappearance of Imogen go forgotten and discovers there is a lot more happening in his little town than he ever knew.

This is a great horror story that I think mid-grade readers would enjoy. Gregory was a great big brother that just gets the short end of the stick. He truly cares for Imogen and is determined to figure out what is going on and save his sister.

Reaper is a short read that left me wanting more. I really liked how the story ended, I was not expecting that. I can’t wait to read more from Jonathan Pongrantz.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.

Giveaway!!!

For your chance to win a signed copy of Reaper (North America), or a digital copy (International), click on the link below!

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Reaper

Blog Tour Schedule

August 26th

Reads & Reels (Review)

Jessica Belmont (Review)

Loopy Lou Laura (Review)

Dark Reads with Toni (Review)

August 27th

Misty’s Book Space (Review)

August 28th

B is for Book Review (Interview)

Reviews and Promos by Nyx (Review)

The Faerie Review (Review)

Breakeven Books (Spotlight)

August 29th

J Bronder Book Reviews (Review)

Musings of a Final Girl (Review)

The Bookworm Drinketh (Review)

August 30th

Entertainingly Nerdy (Review)

Shalini’s Books and Reviews (Review)

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Review)

Blog Tour Organized By:

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R&R Book Tours

I would like to thank R&R Book Tours for the opportunity to read and share this book.

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Victoria Blitz

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Victoria

By John Molik

Genre: Technothriller, Science Fiction, Action and Adventure

It’s the year AD 2430. Almost four hundred years earlier, humanity had barely survived a horrific near-extinction-level event: a solar micronova. Survivorship colonies set up by a cabal with advanced technologies eventually evolve into a global Perfect Society called the United Federation of Connectedness (UFC).

Initially based on co-ops, barter and trade, and equal access for all, a model that rose out of the ashes of the authoritarian governments of the past, humanity, bored and striving for more, eventually steers the planet to a balanced authoritarian model run by Victoria, a genetically engineered Master Server, implanted with artificial intelligence.

When the Animal Rights Act is introduced, the backward-looking religionists and many others think that Victoria has finally gone too far. Artificial love is the glue that keeps the heavily networked society together, but a radicalized religious cult, the MHs, who yearn for a natural connection to their God, reject technology and the electronic beasts who govern. Protected by the blood of their human messiah, they launch a terrorist attack to take down the Perfect Society and replace it with their own.

A top scientist, Claressa, who is loyal to Victoria, and her boyfriend, Pierre Lewalski, are summoned to UFC Capital City to thwart the attack.

Will they be successful? Should they be?

Amazon     Reader’s Favorite     askDavid     Barnes and Noble     Goodreads

John Molik

About the Author

John grew up in Rancho Palos Verdes, California, graduated from UC Davis with a bachelor’s degree in economics, and has worked in numerous corporate finance and project management positions in the consumer electronics and IT industries. In 1990, he took an extended backpacking trip of the South Pacific before attending graduate school. He met his future wife in New Zealand, and they were married in 1991. They settled in Laguna Niguel, California. In 2003, John and his family (now with two kids in tow) relocated to Christchurch, New Zealand.

John’s passion for writing began when he was a student at UC Davis and worked as a feature writer for the California Aggie newspaper. Having been nominated for a Hearst Journalism Award (1986) for a feature on genetic engineering, John later found the inspiration to write again. In 2013, he began outlining his first thriller, The Fiduciary Delusion, which became the first novel in the Horsemen trilogy. John loves to read techno-thrillers, science fiction, murder mysteries and action and suspense novels. Some of his favorite authors include: Philip K. Dick, Kurt Vonnegut, Lawrence Sanders, Isaac Asimov, Michael Faber and Clive Cussler.

John’s interests also include science, existential philosophy, health, and both Western and Eastern holistic medicine. John also plays guitar, piano, sings, and writes music. In addition, a self-confessed “gym rat,” John can be regularly found lifting weights, trudging up hills, sea kayaking, and getting out and about enjoying the beautiful wild outdoors.

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Excerpt

“Careful! If you don’t get this part right, you will blow us all to hell!”

Boniface Rotner faltered, shook his head, and aggressively ran his hands through his shoulder-length black hair.

Cornell Elam, a bald 54-year-old technician from the sect, leaned against the stainless steel railing which encircled the metal alloy chamber. Peering down, he glimpsed the top of Boniface’s mat of black hair. Cornell wiped sweat from his forehead with the back of his hand. He pleaded. “Come on! You can do this!”

Boniface Rotner gazed up through the metal tunnel and bit his lip. “Of course I can, Mr. Elam.”

Boniface, at only 15 years old, was far ahead of anyone in their sect in intelligence, creativity, and focus. Earlier, it was decided by sect leaders that he was the only one that could accomplish this critical mission. Not only was Boniface the only one who understood the technical complexity of this 398-year-old technology, he also had very small hands due to his age, which was a crucial job requirement for this particular task.

Having recently resurrected the bank of Moray generators using his keen intellect, time was of the essence.

Boniface grasped the magneto coil wand and carefully inserted it into the capacitance resonator of the high-voltage transformer. Mr. Elam is right. This goes wrong and this entire community will be enveloped in a ball of super-heated plasma.

Cornell’s breathing quickened and his palms were clammy. Fidgeting, he mindlessly looked right then left, and replied, “Alright, then! But, you got to hurry, lad! You got to hurry!” Cornell nervously glanced over his shoulder as if the empty ten-by-ten-foot, fully contained and impenetrable control room was suddenly being breached by a pack of rabid wolverines.

Sweat was pouring down the nape of Boniface’s neck, but he paid little attention to it. Busy concentrating on the task at hand, he knew that the magneto wand must not touch the quantum harmonic oscillator. The Moray generators were at full bore, producing over 5,000 kilowatts of raw electrical power, and were just one step away from being connected to the Tesla scalar interferometer which, when ignited, would produce a thin, impenetrable shell of electromagnetic energy hovering over the sect’s temple and surrounding area. No weapon, or even gamma radiation from an electromagnetic pulse, would be able to touch those living under it. But, if Boniface screwed this up and touched the oscillator, it was lights out for every living thing in a ten-mile radius.

Suddenly, the dead quiet of the sealed control room was interrupted by a strange, distant whirring sound.

Like a cocker spaniel sensing the scampering of a squirrel, Cornell jerked his head in the direction of the sound. “Shit! Those are fucking incomings!” He pounded the steel railing with both fists. “Hurry!”

Boniface squeezed his eyes tightly to assuage the anxiety and regain focus. Opening them slowly, he made sure his steady hand did not waver. The magneto wand just had to pass by the hidden oscillator and make contact with the bridging terminal.

The sound of the incoming missiles, likely all nuclear-tipped, grew louder and louder as their perilous cargos came closer to their target.

“For fuck’s sake, Rotner! It’s now or never!”

Boniface didn’t like swearing, as it was against their religion. Besides, it was Mr. Elam who had taught him acceptable words from the past to use as substitutes. Yet, he also realized that when your life and the lives of all your community looked like it was nearing their end, man’s evil tongue could sometimes release vulgarities, so he forgave Mr. Elam.

Figuring he had about five seconds, he quickened his pace. Biting his lip, he edged his hand forward through the small gap toward the contact plate.

A thin, shrill voice, like the cry of a dying mouse, emanated from Cornell Elam. He held his head in his hands.

Four inches to go. Boniface precisely guided the wand upward. The sonic roar of the incoming missiles was now vibrating the entire control room. It was now or never.

As soon as Boniface touched the plate, an ear-shattering electronic clang and hum assaulted their ears. The hair on his head stood on end as if he was grabbing the top of a Van de Graaff generator. The banks of LED lights on the control panels illuminated just before the entire room shook violently.

Cornell Elam was thrown from his perch into the steel chamber, landing on top of the 15-year-old.

Boniface’s face was red hot. This was the last thing he felt before his rapid descent into total darkness.

I would like to thank Sage Adderley-Knox for the opportunity to share this book.

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