Monthly Archives: November 2010

Book Spotlight: THE STAFF OF RAHGORRA by Mark Oetjens

Title: The Staff of Rahgorra
Author: Mark Oetjens
Publisher: Conquer Publishing
Publication Date: June 15, 2010
Paperback: 360 pages
ISBN: 0984119205
Genre: Science Fiction

PURCHASE HERE!

Another time, another galaxy. The mysterious crime lord Thrull has aspirations beyond controlling the underworld in a single corner of the galaxy.  Thrull wants to bring the galaxy under one rule and build a legitimate Galactic Empire.  For years he has been training an army of his followers and building his own private Armada.  But he knows he must also find the Staff of Rahgorra, a weapon of mythic power. To keep Thrull from finding the Staff the Galactic Security Bureau, peacekeepers of the galaxy, has pressed back into service a banished agent.  Chameleon Del Rey was expelled from the GSB for avenging the death of a friend and for practicing the forbidden art of Jai Kin.  Now he must train a young apprentice to use Jai Kin and find the Staff of Rahgorra before Thrull does in order to avoid a war that will stretch across the galaxy.

Excerpt

Thrull did not react as a side door of the observation lounge hissed open. He continued to watch the shuttle’s approach as the sound of boots striking the cool marble floor echoed through the lounge. His visitor finally came to a halt two meters behind and just to the left of him. After more than a minute, when the shuttle had almost reached the landing bay’s magnetic doors, he glanced up to see Tok’s reflection in the glass.

“You have news for me,” he said gruffly. It was not a question.

Tok seemed to stiffen his posture. “We just received word that the transport has arrived,” Tok said.

Thrull nodded. “Has the rest of the trap been set?” he asked. This he phrased as a question.

“Yes, Sire,” he said. “Linu contacted us an hour ago. She and the Talon should be here within the hour.”

Thrull turned to face Tok. “Good,” he said. “Tell her I want to see her as soon as she gets here.”

“Certainly, Sire.”

Thrull paused, looking the young man up and down. Hard to believe it was almost fifteen years ago that he had first taken them under his wing. Tok had been the youngest, only nine. He taught them everything he knew. They became his family, his thirty children. And now, after just fifteen years, he had gone from a mysterious upstart with a band of teenaged commandos to the verge of taking over the galaxy. “Would you please escort our guest up here. I’ll be in to see him shortly.”

“Yes, Sire,” Tok said, but Thrull was already halfway to a second side door.

“Ironically, I don’t read a lot of science fiction, so I couldn’t compare it to another book. I’m more of a sci-fi movie and TV buff. I guess The Staff of Rahgorra is sort of a mixture of Indiana Jones and Star wars.”

— Mark Oetjens

Mark Oetjens was born in 1971. He grew up in suburban Chicago. As a child he was diagnosed with Dystonia, a debilitating neuromuscular disorder. Though there is no cure for Dystonia, surgeries and rehabilitation allowed him to walk with only a slight limp by the time he started high school. He received a B.A. in English and an M.A. in Anthropology, both from Northern Illinois University. As an adult a brain tumor, completely unrelated to his Dystonia, threatened to disable him a second time. Thanks to radiation therapy the tumor has disappeared.  Mark currently lives in Phoenix, AZ.

Mark’s latest book is the science fiction novel, The Staff of Rahgorra.

You can visit his website at www.conquerpublishing.com.

Categories: Science Fiction | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Book Spotlight: WIG BEGONE by Robert Seymour

Title: Wig Begone
Author: Robert Seymour (aka Charles Courtley)
Publisher: Matador/Troubador
Publication Date: August 17, 2010
Paperback: 248 pages
ISBN: 1848761732
Genre: Humorous Fiction

PURCHASE HERE!

Charles, a newly qualified lawyer without a penny to his name, plunges into the archaic world of the Bar as it was thirty-five years ago. After a stroke of beginners’ luck – and a taste of good living – he soon becomes established in practice battling away in the criminal courts, conducting court-martials in Germany and on one horrifying occasion actually appearing in a commercial court, “winding up ” companies of which he knows nothing! He encounters a wide range of clients including an Italian motorist charged with assault, who claims to have been savagely attacked by an elderly lollipop man wielding his road sign. On top of that, there are instructing solicitors who never pay him and even one who has departed this world altogether yet still manages to operate on a shadowy basis from the vicinity of Bow Road in East London. Court-martials take Charles abroad where he encounters a German policeman’s dog whose canine expertise is deemed to be perfectly sound evidence and samples a night out on the other side of the infamous Berlin wall just making it back to the safety of the West. Wig Begone is an exhilarating tale of Charles’ early career with disaster often lurking round the corner and culminating in his own appearance in front of England’s most notorious judge!

Excerpt

‘Charles Courtley,’ declared the Treasurer of Galahad’s Inn, eighteen months before.  ‘You are hereby called to the Bar of England and Wales.’

That was it.  Finally, I had achieved my dream and become a barrister.  True, it had taken me some years to pass the exams but I had made it at last!  Now for the formal dinner in the grand surroundings of Hall and then the last bus home – I reckoned I had just about enough money on me for that.

Frankly, Andrea and I were still very hard up.  Married for three years, we were living in a dingy basement flat in Peckham; all we could afford.  Not only was it damp all the year round and freezing cold in winter but constant electrical shorts often announced themselves with a loud bang.  It was also miles away from the nearest tube.

The call ceremony took place in 1972 and I was about to eat the last dinner in Hall reuqired of me.  These twelve compulsory events were regarded as being equally important to passing the exams.  Nonetheless, it felt good to sit down at the hhigh table in Hall that night as a barrister and not a student.  For the first time, I wore my brand new bar robe over the pin-striped trousers and black jacket which would be my uniform from now in.  The fact that these items were bought second-hand from Moss Bros. worried me not at all.

“Even if one person only in 50 years time, were to read a copy of my book,long discarded but now rediscovered in somebody’s attic, I would be rewarded enough.”

— Robert Seymour

Robert Seymour, (under the pseudonym of Charles Courtley) is a retired judge who lives on the English coast with his wife, Jane, of 38 years, and a small dog called Phoebe.

He is the author of Wig Begone, a tale of a young barrister’s triumphs and tragedies. As well as adapting his novel into a screenplay and writing a sequel, he contributes to legal newsletters and blogs.

Find him online at http://courtleyprocedures.wordpress.com.

Categories: Fiction, Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Holiday Family Fiction Author Kristy Haile on virtual book tour Nov. 15

Kristy Haile 4Join Kristy Haile, author of the holiday family fiction novel, I Am Santa (Happy Bean Publishing), as she virtually tours the blogosphere November 15 – December 17 ‘10 on her first virtual book tour with Pump Up Your Book!

One day little Nicholas wandered away from his mom and his sister while they were out shopping because he has always felt mostly invisible in comparison to his sister Holly. Little Nicholas meets an old man sitting on a bench at the mall. This old man tells Nicholas he is Santa Claus and that he is very sick and dying. Santa Claus also tells Nicholas he will now be the new real Santa Claus and the elves would be in touch with him shortly. Little Nicholas believes this old man a hundred and ten percent that he is to become the new real Santa Claus. Enjoy this journey into a little boy’s imagination as he struggles in a world of doubt, continuously striving to turn non believers into believers. I believe my son is the new real Santa Claus no matter what other people may believe. The question is, do you believe?

I Am SantaThis is the delightful premise of Kristy Haile’s new holiday fiction novel, I am Santa.

Californian Kristy Haile earned an Associate’s degree in Dental Hygiene from Northeastern University in Boston and then worked as a hygienist in Massachusetts and California. She moved from her hometown of Turlock, CA to Los Angeles, where her two children became actors on TV (The Office, Criminal Minds, Desperate Housewives), movies (Chihuahua: The Movie) and in commercials. At age 4, son Ty came to believe he was Santa Claus. Haile kept a journal of the funny and unusual things her son said and did over the next two years, as well as of people’s reactions to his self-identification as the “new real Santa Claus.” That journal was the basis for her latest book, I Am Santa. You can visit the ‘I AM SANTA!’ website at www.iamsantabook.com to connect with Kristy.

To find out where Kristy will be appearing on her virtual book tour Nov. 15 – Dec. 17, 2010, visit her official tour page at Pump Up Your Book here.

Pump Up Your Book is an innovative public relations agency specializing in virtual book tours for authors looking for maximum online promotion to sell their books. Visit our website at www.pumpupyourbook.com to find out how we can take your book to the virtual level!

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Shelly Frome ‘The Twinning Murders’ on virtual book tour November 15 ’10

Shelly FromeJoin Shelly Frome, author of the murder mystery novel, The Twinning Murders (Beckham Publications), as he virtually tours the blogosphere November 15 – December 17 ‘10 on his first virtual book tour with Pump Up Your Book!

Shelly Frome is a Professor Emeritus of dramatic arts at the University of Connecticut. A former professional actor and theater director, his writing credits include a number of national and international articles on acting and theater, profiles of artists and notable figures in the arts, books on theater and film and mystery novels.

His books include The Art and Craft of Screenwriting, Tinseltown Riff, Lilac Moon, The Actors Studio, Sun Dance for Andy Horn, Playwriting: A Complete Guide to Creating Theater and his most recent, The Twinning Murders.

The Twinning MurdersThe Twinning Murders is a modern day classic mystery centering on the ventures of Emily Ryder, a thirty-something rambler and tour guide.

The story opens just before she embarks on this year’s Twinning ritual exchange. It’s between her historic New England home and its sister village deep in Dartmoor, a wild upland area in the west of the county of Devon, England. Emily becomes personally involved in a suspicious death..

A few days later, at the Twinning itself, her main client meets the same fate. As Emily’s world continues to unravel, and though she has little help, she finds herself compelled to piece together the games being played on both sides of the Atlantic.

To find out where Shelly will be appearing on his virtual book tour, visit his official tour page at Pump Up Your Book here.

Pump Up Your Book is an innovative public relations agency specializing in virtual book tours for authors looking for maximum online promotion to sell their books. Visit our website at www.pumpupyourbook.com to find out how we can take your book to the virtual level!

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Book Spotlight: TOTO’S TALE by K.D. Hays & Meg Weidman

Title: Toto’s Tale
Author: K.D. Hays & Meg Weidman
Publisher: Zumaya Thresholds
Publication Date: August 25, 2010
Paperback: 248 pages
ISBN: 1936144611
Genre: Children’s Middle Grade Fiction

PURCHASE HERE!

Toto the terrier and his pet girl Dorothy have their world turned upside down by a cyclone that rips their house from ground and spins it into the land of Oz. In this strange place, cats grow way bigger than they should and they speak the same language as Dorothy. So now Dorothy spends her time talking to a giant cat, a walking scarecrow, and a hollow man made of metal.

The five of them follow a brick road to see the Great Lizard who is supposed to give them something. Although Toto is hoping for a pork chop, he will settle for a trip back to Kansas. But when they reach the Great Lizard (who turns out to be a big human head), instead of helping them, he sends them out to kill a witch.

Toto enables them to survive attacks by killer bees and mad wolves, but the annoying monkeys with wings prove too much even for him, and the monkeys are able to carry him and Dorothy to the witch’s castle.

Once there, he realizes the witch is after the shoes that Dorothy picked up when they first landed in Oz. He also realizes that the witch can be destroyed with water. It becomes a race to see if the witch can trick Dorothy into giving up the shoes before Toto figures out how to melt her.

But even if he destroys the witch, they still have to figure out how to get home…

Excerpt

I’d smelled fear on the humans all morning, and the
stink was really getting on my nerves. I mean, we all
knew a windstorm was coming, and it was going to be
rough; but the humans didn’t have anything to worry
about. They’d just go down into The Hole and wait till
it was all over.
It was the chickens who should have been worried.
Their house was so flimsy it was likely to take off
and fly away in the next windstorm. But chickens are
too stupid to think about these things, so they weren’t
worried yet. Meanwhile, Auntem gave off enough
worry scent to cover every living thing in the entire
state of Kansas, and as I said, the smell was pretty
annoying.
So, yeah, I knew I wasn’t supposed to chase the
chickens, but I couldn’t help myself. When those lamebrained
layers started bragging about which one of
them could fly fastest, I decided to let them prove it.
I took off after Eggy, baring my teeth like I was
going to rip all the feathers out of her tail. It felt
really good to run. It also felt good to get some revenge
on the chickens. Ever since yesterday, when the
nasty old neighbor tried to stab me with a pitchfork
just for digging a little hole in her garden, everyone
here had teased me for running home with my tail
between my legs. They would have done the same
thing—it was a big sharp pitchfork, and the neighbor
is as mean as a wet cat.
The chickens, in particular, had acted like I was
the only one who had ever shown fear in the history of
forever. Now I decided I’d put a little fear in the
chickens so they could demonstrate why their name
means being a coward.
“Squahhhhh!” Eggy yelled as she ran across the
farmyard with me right on her tail. “That giant rodent
is going to eat me!” Her big fat feathered body
bounced ridiculously from side to side as she dashed
around on long spindly legs.
“I thought you could fly,” I barked. “And you know
I’m not a rodent.” I chased her into a corner between
the water trough and the barn.
“I can’t fly in this wind, you fool,” she squawked.
“Excuses, excuses.” I got ready to pounce on her,
but she turned fast and hopped out of the way. Then
she ran straight for the henhouse.
“Oh, no, you don’t,” I muttered as I shot after her.
She would have to pay for that rodent remark.
The other animals always make rude comments
about my size, but I think they’re just jealous because
I get to sleep in the house with the people. I’m small,
yeah, but I’m a lot bigger than a rat. And I have a
much nicer tail.
“He’s coming this—squaaah!—way,” one of the
other chickens shrieked.
They had been pecking in the yard, trying to eat
up all the loose bits of corn before they were blown
away by the storm coming across the plains. Now, instead
of eating, they scrambled frantically to get away
from me, squawking and flapping and looking about
as ruffled as they could possibly get. I loved it. I ran in
circles, snapping occasionally to keep them moving.
Then I saw one obnoxious old hen who had pecked
at Dorothy’s ankle last week. I really did want to bite
her. So, I opened my mouth extra-wide and headed
straight for her big fat chicken butt.
“Toto!”
I had to stop when I heard that voice. It was Dorothy,
my pet girl.
“Stop something chickens, Toto,” she said.
With her flat face and small mouth, she can’t
really talk properly, but I still love her. Auntem and
Unclehenry, the other people, are always making her
work when what she really wants to do is roam the
fields with me, chasing grasshoppers and digging for
shiny beetles. She needs me to protect her from work.
If you do too much work, you end up dull and sad like
Auntem, or pinched and mean like the mean neighbor
with the pitchfork.
I want to protect my girl and keep her just the
way she is. I love everything about my Dorothy, from
the smell of her shoes to her sloppy habit of throwing
things everywhere. She throws a stick or ball, and I
have to go pick it up for her. Then, instead of putting
it away, she just throws it someplace else, and I have
to pick it up again. It makes no sense at all, and
sometimes I get tired of cleaning up after her. Still, I
love her, and I’ll do anything she asks.
When I know what she’s asking, that is. I have to
pay attention really hard to understand human
speech, and usually, I don’t bother
Right now, though, even if she didn’t use many
real words, I could pretty much tell what she wanted
me to do just from the tone of her voice and the way
she looked at me, as if she wanted to tie me up like a
shock of wheat and throw me into the barn loft. She
was annoyed, and I could smell a little anger on her,
too. But underneath it all, there seemed to be more
fear than anything else.
Fear of the storm, probably.
With one last look at the fat old hen, I turned and
trotted over to Dorothy. I wagged my tail and hoped
she would pet me for a minute and that I could help
her forget her fears about the increasing wind and the
dark clouds growing like mountains in the sky. Maybe
she would also forget I’d been trying to scare the
chickens and that I’d chewed on one of her shoes this
morning before breakfast. She would forget it all, and
we’d just…
It didn’t happen.
She looked at me for a bit, like maybe she was
going to pet me, but when she bent down, it was just
so she could tuck a loose flap of leather back into her
shoe. That piece of leather is always coming loose and
tripping her, so she really should let me chew it off for
her, but whenever I try, someone always stops me.
“Dorothy!” Auntem barked as she stepped out of
the back door of the house, “Something up something
chickens.”
She can’t talk any better than Dorothy. They
practice a lot—it seems like they’re always barking
about something—but their language is so different
it’s difficult to translate into real words.
Anyway, I guess Auntem had just told Dorothy to
round up the hens, because that’s what she did. She
ran around waving her arms, herding them all into
the henhouse. I could have helped, but somehow I
didn’t think she wanted me to run around after them
again.
So, instead, I trotted over to the barn to watch
Unclehenry bring the cows and the horses inside. He
was having a hard time holding the door open because
the wind blew it closed. He kept turning to look over
his shoulder, as if there were a monster behind him.
But it was just dark clouds and grass bent low under
the weight of the coming storm. The wind moaned
almost like a voice as it gusted along the eaves of the
barn.
That sound made me shiver, and I had to admit I
couldn’t wait until it was time to go into The Hole.
The Hole is, well, a hole—dug out under the
house—and since the house is very small, The Hole is
even smaller. It’s not much bigger than the ones I dig
out in the yard to bury my pork chop bones. But it’s
deep and smells of worms and roots, a rich aroma that
reminds me of underwear. It’s a damp, comforting
place much more interesting than the hard dry
ground above. So, I never mind the wind and storms,
because I know they mean a visit to The Hole.
With a loud thud, Unclehenry slammed the barn
door shut and started toward the house with a lantern
and pail of water. Maybe it was time already! I hurried
to get Dorothy so we could go down into The Hole
together.
I couldn’t find her. The henhouse was closed up
tight and sounded and smelled full of hens. I could tell
Dorothy wasn’t in there. She couldn’t have gone into
the barn, or I would have seen her. So, she must be in
the people house. I pushed through the hole in the
screen door, ran inside and headed straight for the
door in the kitchen floor, expecting to see she was on
her way down into The Hole.
She wasn’t.


Can you tell us how long you’ve been writing and how your journey led to writing your latest book, Toto’s Tale?

Kate: I started writing fiction seriously in 1999 when Meg was a little over a year old. I finally had an idea for a book I thought I could finish! The first draft took about two years, written mostly at night when Meg and her brother were asleep. As the kids got older, it became easier to find time to write for a while, but now everyone’s schedules are so busy that it’s just as difficult to make time for writing as it was when they were small. I’ve written five historical novels and two contemporary mysteries – the historicals under my name, Kate Dolan, and the contemporaries under the pseudonym K.D. Hays. Toto’s Tale is my eighth book and my first children’s book. It’s also my first book with a partner.

Meg: It’s my first book, period.

About the Authors

K.D. Hays and Meg Weidman are a mother-daughter team who aspire to be professional roller coaster riders and who can tell you exactly what not to put in your pockets when you ride El Toro at Six Flags. Meg is studying art in a middle school magnet program. For fun, she jumps on a precision jump rope team and reads anything not associated with school work. K.D. Hays, who writes historical fiction under the name Kate Dolan, has been writing professionally since 1992. She holds a law degree from the University of Richmond and consequently hopes that her children will pursue studies in more prestigious fields such as plumbing or waste management. They live in a suburb of Baltimore where the weather is ideally suited for the four major seasons: riding roller coasters in the spring and fall, waterslides in the summer and snow tubes in the winter. Although Meg resents the fact that her mother has dragged her to every historical site within a 200-mile radius, she will consent to dress in colonial garb and participate in living history demonstrations if she is allowed to be a laundry thief.

Their latest collaboration is a wonderful book titled Toto’s Tale.

You can visit their website at www.totostale.com.

Categories: Children's | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Hidden Passages: Tales to Honor the Crones – Book Excerpt

Author: Vila Spider Hawk
Title: Hidden Passages: Tales to Honor the Crones
Publisher: Vanilla Heart Publishing
Genre: women’s fiction
Language: English
ISBN: 978-0-9796545-6-5
Softcover: 272 pages
Purchase Here at Amazon

Vila SpiderHawk is taking a different view on the aging of womankind. Hidden Passages: Tales to Honor the Crones is a collection of tales, some of which are interconnected, others which stand alone, all of which deal with women who are finding or already using the wisdom acquired from years of life experience.

Vila SpiderHawk and her husband share a log home of their design in the woods of Pennsylvania where they live with their five cats and enjoy frequent visits with their many woodland friends. SpiderHawk is an avid gardener and a gourmet vegan cook.
You can find Vila at www.vilaspiderhawk.com

Follow Vila’s Virtual Book Tour at Pump Up Your Book
http://www.pumpupyourbook.com/2010/10/17/hidden-passages-tales-to-honor-the-crones-virtual-book-tour-november-%E2%80%9810/

Watch the book video
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wmlz31q_ugQ

Vila reads from Hidden Passages: Tales to Honor the Crones
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXzvTLo71Ok

Read the Excerpt

Perhaps it is my own “crone years” creeping up on me, but there seems to be a healthy change in how we look at women in and beyond their midlife years. In a youth-obsessed society, at least in the United States, so much of the current dictates point towards a Quixotic pursuit of the impossible, that is, finding the fountain of youth through plastic and cosmetic surgery, an endless array of surely useless creams and lotions, Botox shots and facial peels, diets that lead to eating disorders, and a general wave of ensuing self-esteem problems. Someone is getting rich. No one, however, is getting any younger.

Vila SpiderHawk is taking a different view on the aging of womankind. Hidden Passages is a collection of tales, some of which are interconnected, others which stand alone, all of which deal with women who are finding or already using the wisdom acquired from years of life experience.

In the opening tale of Mima Po, a young girl overcomes her fear of a woman who is markedly different than the other women in the girl’s community. Gossiping women whisper that Mima Po is odd, perhaps a witch casting mysterious spells and incantations. Children are frightened of her. But little Kathleen is more intrigued than she is frightened, and she overcomes her fear to befriend the elderly woman, who turns out to be Czechoslovakian rather than demonic. The older woman teaches the girl something of her own beliefs and perspective, and the girl learns to “see with her heart.”

In Passages, a girl moves through a rites of passage into womanhood, both symbolic and literal, among her tribe of watching women, bonding with the other women as well as with the feminine in nature, bonding with the divine, and erasing boundaries between all.

In a trilogy of tales, Maiden, Mother, Crone, we see the passages of the girl-child, the adult woman who is her mother, and of the elderly woman, the grandmother. Each has her own unique perspective to offer the others.

Nanu’s Story illustrates the life-giving force in women, the biological drive, the unfaltering love of mother for child, unchangeable even by death. The woman, Tichu, is a kind of mother of all, teaching survival skills and passing on her wisdom to those who will accept it. Her femininity is lush and full, in all senses of the word, and she knows a pride in herself from which the modern woman could learn much.

Gita’s Journey delves deeper still into the mother-child connection, exploring the process of grief when one is lost to the other, from the deepest and darkest shadows of despair into the eventual light of acceptance.

Lavinia is something of a ghost story of women, where the reader wonders at times who is living and who is not.

What all these tales have in common, aside from the story of various life passages traveled by women over time and various cultures, is a language that is as vivid and rich as these women in their femininity. The author combines all the gentle kindness that is woman, unabashedly emotional, with the enduring strength and time-won wisdom that earns a woman the proud designation of “crone.” SpiderHawk makes a feminist statement in each one of her tales without being abrasive or didactic or challenging. Her women, her crones, simply are as they are, and by spending time with them in these tales, we realize ourselves enriched by the gentle strength of their distinctly feminine presence.

“Happiness spun in the chamber like witch grass smoke. I immediately found myself chuckling. I was so utterly pleased with myself and with everything around me that I broke into giggles and finally into riotous guffaws. Jubilant spirits frolicked around and through me, each one laughing with total abandon, and I thought, so this is where mirth is created! And, indeed, while I watched, the glittering laughter fed on itself, growing and twirling like a giant pinwheel and spangling showers of joy all over and through us. Some of it swirled into a small, dense ball, and we played with it, batting it to and through each other, laughing all the harder with the game… it splintered into tiny twinkling bits, showering over the earth like platinum rain. I was thrilled that my joy was mingled in the droplets, and I hoped that it would heal someone whose heart was sorrowing.”

These are women as women should be: unafraid of living, unafraid of expressing their femininity, unafraid of aging, unafraid of facing up to their own fears and weaknesses and transforming them into strengths, unafraid to confront those who would deny them their place, simply – unafraid. We should all wish to be such terrific crones.

Categories: Chick Lit | Tags: , , , , , , | 3 Comments

God’s Poor – Excerpt by Mike Manos

Click on the book cover to purchase

ISBN: 0-7414-5140-9
Genre: Fiction
Publisher: Infinity Publishing
Publication Date: June 2009
# of Pages: 307
Purchase Here at Amazon

About Mike Manos

Mike Manos is professor of Economics and a scholar of History and archaeology. He is also a poet and a freelance writer. God’s Poor is his first novel.

About God’s Poor

The sudden deaths of pregnant women rock the world.
A deadly virus causes world panic.
A dangerous heresy reemerges from the misty past.
The Catholic and Orthodox Christian Churches face an unknown enemy.
Mossant reveals dangerous secrets that threaten religious foundations.
The quest for immortality leads to the first Jerusalem and incredible revelations.
Finally an earthquake produced by HAARP gives a temporary solution.

Excerpt

MADRID

Jesus said,” Know what is in front of your face and what is hidden from you will be disclosed to you. For there is nothing hidden that will not be revealed.”
Gospel of Thomas, 5

Jorje Matanas woke up abruptly. His silky purple pajamas were soaked in sweat even though the climate control of his mansion kept the temperature steady at 21 Celsius all year round.
The dream seemed to him alive. He was inside a low stone cottage. In front of him stood an ascetic elongated monk of undeterminable age, dressed with a dark blue hooded cassock fastened around his waist with a rope. On the center of his cassock there was a white symbol, like a cross but with the upper line replaced by a circle. The monk had a light white beard, black charcoal eyes and hollow cheeks, like a figure painted by El Greco. A milky white light filled the cottage. A force pushed Matanas on his knees and he kissed the monk’s bare toes. The monk put his right hand on Matanas’ head and his caved voice echoed inside his mind.
“Welcome, my brother. I was waiting for you.”
The soft ring of the phone found Matanas sitting in the middle of the bed trying to get over the dream. He picked up the phone.
“Senor?” the old butler’s voice was heard on the other end of the line.
“What is it, Juan?”
“Senior, it is 6 in the morning and I ask you to forgive me. A monk is here and he insists that he has an appointment with you now. What should I do?”
Matanas was shaken and nearly dropped the phone. “Take him to the living room. I will be there in a minute.” Still soaked in sweat, he went to the bath off his bedroom, washed his face and neck, and wiped himself with a white towel monogrammed in dark blue thread with his initials. He took a silk burgundy robe from his closet, slid his feet into the matching slippers to the side of the door, and made his way down the marble staircase .On the ground floor he went to the open, hand-carved wooden door with its four impressive gold emblems and entered the huge royal living room, sumptuously decorated with thick blue-white rugs, red velvet sofas and heavy chandeliers.
A short, skinny monk with a long white beard stood next to the low marble table close to the door. He wore a plain grey hooded cassock fastened at the waist with a rope. Matanas was shocked when he saw on the left side of the cassock the white symbol of his dream.
He approached the monk and gave him a handshake, trying to hide his impatience. He was surprised that although the monk looked very old, his grip was quite strong. The monk smiled at Matanas.
“God is merciful. I am Friar Jose from the order of the Pure. Theophilus, our guide, sends me. You have already met him,” he said in a way that made Matanas shiver.
“But how?” Matanas whispered. “What’s happening?”
“Don’t ask. He is waiting for you. The flight for Salonica is scheduled for 10 a.m. You must not say a word to anyone about where you are going. There you will visit the Ministry of Northern Greece, where you will get a permit to visit Mount Athos, the Holy Mountain. You will arrive there by boat from Ouranoupolis. They will wait for you. Don’t bring anything with you, just some money for the trip and your passport.”
The monk paused and handed Matanas a small open grey envelope with the same white symbol on its left side. “All the instructions are written inside the envelope,” he continued. “God have mercy, my brother.”
The monk turned and walked towards the door. Matanas followed him, looking puzzled.
“But I don’t understand,” he stuttered. “I have to leave today at 10 a.m. for Salonica?”
The monk stood at the entrance to the living room. The old butler appeared to be trying to button his jacket. Without turning his head, the monk spoke again. “He is waiting for you tomorrow, you know that. Don’t delay.” He walked to the door without saying anything else.

Categories: Historical Fiction | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

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