Monday, December 30, 2013

Gumdrop Coal, PI!

I could NOT resist.
Down these mean streets a man must go who is not himself mean...and who wears jingle bells on his curly-toed shoes and stands about two-foot three. A man who is, in other words, an elf. But don't let the green tights and stocking cap fool you: Gumdrop Coal is the roughest, toughest punisher of the naughty since Mike Hammer, even if he does smell like peppermint and fresh-baked cookies.

Caught My Eye

Love this cover!

Friday, December 20, 2013

New Doc Savage

When a brazen adventuress tries to hire Doc Savage for a secret mission—but won’t tell him why—it lights the fuse for one of the most explosive exploits ever to involve the Man of Bronze.
Who is Hornetta Hale? Why does she need to rent Doc’s private submarine? And who is so determined to eliminate her that they destroy Doc Savage’s skyscraper headquarters in the process?
From Manhattan Island to the Caribbean Sea, Doc and his fighting crew chase the most violent gang of criminals they have ever encountered in a desperate race to unlock the secret of Phantom Lagoon. Or are they more than mere criminals?

Wednesday, December 18, 2013


I'm spending part of the winter break getting back in touch with my pulp roots.  I had forgotten how well written some of these were.  Read this Spider book, the third one Norvell W. Page wrote in the series and was blown away by how well-paced the story/action was.
I was not so happy with this one.  I'd waited a long time to see the Shadow reveal his true identity as Kent Allard, and it was all weird and convoluted.  I know Walter B. Gibson usually knocked these things out in a week, but I was really disappointed.  The plot was all over the place and there was no real build-up to this REAL identity.
If you haven't read Paul Malmont's brilliant novel about real-life writers Lester Dent (Kenneth Robeson, Doc Savage) and Walter B. Gibson (Maxwell Grant, The Shadow) you should.  H. P. Lovecraft (Cthulu), Ron L. Hubbard (Scientology), and Louis L'Amour (Sackett Family) are also in the pages.  I loved how Malmont brings those old pulp days to life and puts in a lot of the history at the same time.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

World of the Rover

I've lately been itching to return to the world of the Rover.  Edgewick Lamplighter, Wick to his friends, has got a rich and varied world, as well as an adventurous life (though he would never want to embrace that), and there are yet stories to be told about him.  How did he and Craugh the wizard become friends?  What was in that mysterious package the Warden carried off in the first book?  How was it that Wick rescued Juhg?  How did Wick help Brant reclaim his ancestral lands in the Sweetgrass Valley?  What became of that mysterious cap that Wick put on during the cemetery puzzle?

Well, you see what I mean.

One of my favorite stories I want to tell is about when Wick met the Embyr again.  You see, he was simply reading in Hralbomm's Wing, a Taurak Bleiyz romance if you must know, when the Embyr came calling on the Vault of All Known Knowledge...

The Rover

Friday, December 13, 2013

Jumping the Shark! Hoo-ahhh!

This one is FREE today at Amazon, and it made me think of my buddy, Bill Crider.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Tarzan by way of Avatar?

My buddy Bill Crider just posted about this movie, and I have to say that I'm underwhelmed.  This isn't the Tarzan that I grew up with, and if they're going to reinvent the character, why not just create a new one and be done with it?
Maybe no one really wants another Victorian era Tarzan besides me, but Tarzan, like Sherlock Holmes, occupies a certain time/space continuum.  I know Sherlock is enjoying success in the UK and in the US (and I'm enjoying both takes), but the convention there remains the same:  a guy smarter than the police and the bad guys he chases.  Is he really Sherlock?  No, not in my opinion because the Victorian era is missing in one, and the era and London is missing in the other.  But he's a good Sherlock in both places.
This might be a good Tarzan in the long run, but it's a take on Tarzan, not the original story.  Maybe the only true way to get Tarzan these days is by reading the books.


Friday, November 22, 2013

Trilogy Returns!

Gil Tyner has plans for the future: he’s going to be a computer programmer in the bustling technology Mecca of Silicon Valley. And as his 21st birthday approaches, he’s on the cusp of realizing his goals.

But fate has other plans. A note from his mother on his birthday propels Gil into The Buffer Zone, seven magical kingdoms that stand between our world and the realm of the immortal elves.

Gil’s about to learn that plans can change. When destiny calls, he’ll discover that the life he’d imagined and the life he’ll lead will be very different.

Friday, November 15, 2013


This is written by one of my OU students and is the launch of a new series.
Midterms, Martians and monsters.
Two student employees who work for the Campus Mail office of Paranormal University find a mysterious package that turns their world upside down. Collie and Drew are racing against the clock-- not just to deliver the mail on time, but to save the entire university as well.

Paperback edition coming soon!
You can catch short film episodes here.
And more info about the series here.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

This series sounds interesting

There are only three books out in this series and I snatched them all up to read over the holidays.

New Esther Diamond

Another series whose covers sell me, but Laura Resnick is a FUN author!

Caught my eye

Premise sounds intriguing, but the cover SOLD me.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Zombie Archie Comics?

Seriously -- they're out there.  And I'm insanely curious.  The first issue just hit the shelves!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Free for Kindle!

Ratfish is a classic tale of sex, violence, and mutated animal parts in a blender.

Dr. Dunwiddy's not a mad scientist, but he is an angry one. His daughter is a cripple, her wannabe boyfriend is a stalker, and he has been forced to conduct his genetic experiments in a cinder block lab on a backwater Caribbean island because of stringent laws on stem cell research in the United States.

Chico's just like any other local Caribbean Community College student, stalking the legless girl of his dreams from the cover of the jungle as she maneuvers her wheel-chair down the dirt road toward the homestead where her geneticist dad experiments with various animals with the power of regeneration.

Marinda has dreams like any other college girl. She dreams her father wasn't so over-protective. She dreams she had a normal social life. She dreams her dad wouldn't track blood into their pristine, clean home when he comes back from working in the lab. She dreams of having sex in the tub with a hunky college guy who treats her with respect. And she dreams she could walk again.

Tony is the big man on campus, even if he is a big fish in a very small, brackish pond with plenty of scum. He does whatever he pleases, whoever he pleases. He loves sex, violence, himself, and anything he can't have. If only his henchman and lackeys weren't so stupid, he would rule this island.

The Ratfish didn't ask to be here. But now that they are, they intend to spawn and mutate and kill and eat and spawn and multiply and chow down on the local population until they are the only local population. Then, they'll either turn on each other or conquer the world.

Sounds like a bitchin' weekend.

Ratfish is just one in a series of Schlock Zone Drive-In novellas, including: Worms, by J.E. Mooney; Stripper Pole at the End of the World, by Eric Beetner; Dawn of the Chupacabra, by Kyle Bergersen; American Slayers, by Sean Dalton; and Dead Records, by Steven Saville and Jordan Ellinger. More are on their way.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Kyle West Has A New Book Out

This is Kyle's fourth book in his series, so he's been staying busy!
Alex and friends return to a Wasteland in turmoil. The Raiders are scattered, the Exiles hunted, and the feuding Vegas gangs plot one another's destruction. Makara, head of the New Angels, has the difficult task of convincing disparate groups to work together before Emperor Augustus and his legions arrive.

But while humanity fights amongst itself, the Great Blight prepares its final onslaught - and at the center of it all, there is a secret that could spell the end of the invasion. It is a revelation only Alex can discover, and it might cost him everything.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Out Today

I enjoy these books a lot.  If you haven't read them, you're in for a treat.  You don't really have to read them in order.  Just jump in.
IS THIS THE END OF JAKE LASSITER? Jake's law practice is booming... He's crazy about the new woman in his life... His delinquent nephew Kip is getting A's in school... What can go wrong? about a charge of first degree murder? When money goes missing from client accounts, Jake confronts his banker, Pamela Baylins...who also happens to be his lover. She accuses Jake of skimming client funds and threatens to report him to the State Attorney...and within hours is killed. All the evidence points to Jake, who is charged with murder. Is this the end of the linebacker-turned-lawyer?  

Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Undying Fire

This is Steven's second book in the series!

After the traumatic events on Mithris, Natalie Bliss struggles to recover her memory and power. She returns to Arcadia, the planet of the gods, to reunite with the Phoenix Guardians.

Natalie’s peaceful homecoming is ruined by the alarming behavior of her golem housekeeper, Florentina. Obsessed with tales of the legendary Golem Army of Calypso, Florentina sends Natalie and her friends on a dangerous quest to find the army.

But they're not the only ones looking for this powerful force. A mysterious enemy is planning an attack on the capital city of Calypso, which is about to host the famous Arcadian Games.

Natalie’s worries intensify when something precious is stolen from her—a theft that could endanger not just her life, but her soul.

The seconds are counting down to the beginning of the Arcadian Games. Time is running out for Natalie and her friends to save the city from a monstrous threat.

But even if Natalie can save Calypso, it may be too late to save herself.


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

My buddy Phil Athans has a story out in this one.  Looks like great fun!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Friday, September 13, 2013

Rogue Angel: The Babel Codex

Currently free at Amazon!

And it's currently free at Barnes & Noble!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Caught My Eye

Don't know how I missed this one when it came out in 2011, but I did.  I have since added it to my eLibrary.  Hoping to get to it soon.
Bestselling romance editor Trisha Telep brings an exciting new element to the fast-growing sub-genre of steampunk, which bends and blends the old and the new in increasingly popular dark urban fantasies. Young heroes and heroines battle evil, in various forms with the help of super-technological or supernatural powers, while falling in and out of love. The contributors include: Ann Aguirre a bestselling author who writes urban fantasy (the "Corine Solomon" series from Roc), romantic science fiction (the "Jax" series from Ace), apocalyptic paranormal romance (as Ellen Connor, writing with Carrie Lofty, from Penguin), paranormal romantic suspense (as "Ava Gray from Berkley"), and post-apocalyptic dystopian young adult fiction ("Razorland and Wireville" coming in 2011 from Feiwel & Friends). Tessa Gratton, her debut novel "Blood Magic" arrives in 2011 from Random House Children's Books, followed by the companion "Crow Magic" in 2012. Jaclyn Dolamore is the debut author of "Magic Under Glass" from Bloomsbury USA. Lesley Livingston is the award-winning author of "Wondrous Strange and Darklight", the first two books in the bestselling trilogy from HarperCollins. Frewin Jones is the bestselling author of the "Faerie Path" series and the "Warrior Princess" books, among many others. Caitlin Kittredge is the author of the "Iron Codex" trilogy, a Lovecraftian steampunk adventure. Dru Pagliassotti's first novel "Clockwork Heart" was one of the first in the rising new genre of steampunk romance and was named by "Library Journal" as one of the five steampunk novels to read in 2009. Dia Reeves is the debut author of the critically acclaimed "YA Bleeding Violet". Michael Scott is the Irish-born, "New York Times" bestselling author of the six part epic fantasy series, "The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel". Maria V. Snyder is the "New York Times" bestselling author of the "Study" series ("Poison Study", "Magic Study", and "Fire Study") about a young woman forced to become a poison taster. Tiffany Trent the author of the acclaimed "YA" dark fantasy series "Hallowmere", which was an IndieBound Children's Pick and a New York Public Library Book of the Teen Age 2008. Kiersten White is the debut author of "Paranormalacy", the first book in a new trilogy, which was published by HarperTeen in August of 2010. Adrienne Kress, is the author of "Alex and the Ironic Gentleman" and "Timothy and the Dragon's Gate".

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

New Sheriff Dan Rhodes Mystery Out Today!

And my wife is happy!
Small-town Texas sheriff Dan Rhodes is in for another puzzling mystery in this next in the entertaining, award-winning series

Before classes start one morning, the body of English instructor Earl Wellington is found outside the building of the community college. Wellington was clearly involved in a struggle with someone and has died as a result. Sheriff Dan Rhodes pursues and arrests Ike Terrell, a student who was fleeing the campus. Ike's father is Able Terrell, a survivalist who has withdrawn from society and lives in a gated compound.  He’s not happy that his son has chosen to attend the college, and he's even less happy with the arrest.

Rhodes discovers that Wellington and Ike had had a confrontation over a paper that Wellington insisted Ike plagiarized. Wellington also had had a confrontation with the dean and was generally disliked by the students. As the number of suspects increases, it’s up to Rhodes to solve the murder while also dealing with an amusing but frustrating staff, a professor who wants to be a cop, and all the other normal occurrences that can wreak havoc in a small town.

Bill Crider's Compound Murder is an enjoyable police procedural filled with surprises, chuckles, and a quirky cast that will captivate mystery readers.


Thursday, August 08, 2013

Sharks In A Blender


Sharknado is one of the worst movies I have ever seen regarding plot structure, integrity of suspense, and characterization, but my fifteen year old and I LOVED it.  My wife, who was pretending to ignore us and our questionable taste in movies, even laughed a few times.  Sharknado is just so bad it’s great.  Can’t wait for the sequel.

This SyFy Channel original movie conceit that is at the core of the action is that sharks – ALL kinds of sharks, mind you – have gotten swept up in a monstrous hurricane (Sharkicane obviously doesn’t sound as cool as Sharknado) and drop onto the unsuspecting populace of Los Angeles.  Now, to accept that, you have to check all knowledge of meteorology at the door and ignore California’s history.  One, it would be classified as a hurricane coming in off the ocean, and two, there have never been any hurricanes that hit California.  They call it the “Pacific” Ocean because it’s so calm – except for those tsunamis that hit Japan, India, etc.  But that’s on the other side of the ocean.

The collection of characters is the usual ensemble.  The divorced father who has to go rescue his kids, who are rebellious snot rags in the beginning but become massively talented at battle sharks before the end of the movie.  Then there’s the best friend who gives his life fighting for our hero.  The young girl who’s maybe in love with our hero even though he’s twenty years older.  One of my favorite characters was John Heard, a millionaire drunk who carries his bar stool with him to fight the sharks with – until he meets his glorious demise.

Of course, one of these movies just wouldn’t be complete without obligatory other rescues that get in the way of the hero getting to his kids.  The school bus rescue would have taken WAAAY too much time, and you can’t help but notice that there isn’t any rain or aerial-borne water sluicing over our champions.

In fact, the whole movie gets way too dry at times.  I kept noticing those things, how it went from water running white caps in the street, yet there wasn’t a cloud in the sky so often.  My son and I kept pointing that out to each other, and I can see that maybe becoming part of a college drinking game – do a shot every time the weather changes.

Despite its many, MANY flaws, my son and I (and my wife to a degree), enjoyed Sharknado.  It’s not art, it’s not even a decent story, but it is a much-needed exercise in total hilarity – even if it isn’t supposed to be.

Monday, August 05, 2013

The Flashpoint Paradox


I read the original Flashpoint series by Geoff Johns and Andy Kubert and enjoyed it a lot.  At the time, I did not know that it was going to be the linchpin to change the entire DC Universe.

The Blu-ray version of the comic series/graphic novel/series is condensed a lot, but all of the major points of the story are intact.  Since the Blu-ray is out now and the stories were released a couple years ago, I’m not going to worry about spoilers.

My 15 year old watched the movie version with me and wasn’t familiar with the story.  He’s more into reading Deadpool these days.  Like me, he was in awe of all the ramifications of the changes in the characters.  Thomas Wayne presents a much different Batman than Bruce Wayne, and I can remember being shocked by that when I read the original issues as they were coming out.

The whole Wonder Woman/Aquaman war just never really worked for me.  I just couldn’t see those two characters being so radically different than the heroes I’d grown up with.  I think a lot of comics readers felt the same way I did.  The thing that really worked in the comics, and works again in the Blu-ray, is the friendship that develops between Thomas Wayne and Barry Allen.  I also loved the way Barry is presented, how human and how much of an everyman he is in spite of his superspeed.  His dedication to “recovering” his powers is testimony to the kind of man he is.

The Blu-ray version kind of falls apart in relaying what’s going on in the rest of the world.  There are almost too many jumps, too many characters introduced, killed, etc., but leaving them out would have been a mistake.  I think the video should have been longer to allow such a big story to breathe.

I also want to warn parents that even though this Blu-ray movie is rated PG-13, I think it should have been rated an R for the violence and content.  People are constantly dying, sex is heavily hinted at, and at one point Wonder Woman stabs a young boy with her sword.  Even though the last is off-screen, viewers know what’s going on.

The colors were well done, but I wasn’t all that happy with the character art.  Everyone tends to look the same with that weird triangular head and big jaws.  The characters almost look like caricatures of themselves.
enjoy the DC Universe on video a lot, and I enjoyed this latest release a lot as well, but it’s just not for kids and some parents may make a mistake in thinking that it is.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Science Fiction

A lot of today's science fiction is smart and action-filled, but not so much chockfull of wonder.  Part of that is my fault.  Along the way, made curious by all the science fiction I devoured as a kid, excited by the space program, I became too knowledgeable for the science fiction I grew up on.
I read stuff now, or watch my son play through immersive games like Mass Effect, and I just don't have that sense of wonder I used to have as a kid.  I weigh and measure every postulate that is presented.  I figure out for myself what scenarios are possible and what scenarios are not.  I'm too jaded, too much the cynic, and I no longer get totally wowed by the marvels that I see taking shape in books, movies, and games.
But every now and again, I see a cover like the one above, and I remember that twelve and thirteen year old boy that ventured out into worlds that will never be (Pluto isn't even a planet anymore) armed with a sword or a ray gun and a sense of adventure.  That boy had a great life that I realize my fifteen year old son never will have.  The bar for his sense of wonder is set much higher.
Even though I grew up without video games and television, and without a doting father who made sure I had plenty of games and books and watched Dr. Who with me, I think I had the better childhood.  And I regret that I can't give him that same sense of marvel and discovery.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

A Whole Lot of Disturbing!

I remember talking to Joe as they were getting ready to shoot this puppy.  Now it's out.

I Want To See This Movie!

I enjoyed DISTRICT 9 a lot and this has got a cool story as well as tech.  Matt Damon looks awesome in this one.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Caught My Eye

Just picked up the book on Kindle.
The latest Sword and Soul novel by Milton Davis returns to the land of Meji, the amazing world of Uhuru. It tells the story of Sadatina, a girl on the brink of becoming a woman living with her family in Adamusola, the land beyond the Old Men Mountains. But tragic events transpire that change her life forever, revealing a hidden past that leads her into the midst of a war between her people and those that would see them destroyed, the Mosele. Armed with a spiritual weapon and her feline 'sisters,' Sadatina becomes a Shosa, a warrior trained to fight the terrible nyokas, demon-like creatures that aid the Mosele in their war against her people.

Woman of the Woods is an action filled, emotionally charged adventure that expands the scope of the world of Uhuru and introduces another unforgettable character to its heroic legends.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Caught My Eye

Love this cover.  Have been picking up the series, but haven't had time to read them.  Soon...

Monday, July 15, 2013


Are you jonesing for more B-horror movie goodness after watching Sharknado?  Schlock Zone Drive-In has you covered!
WORMS!  Dig in!

Tuesday, July 09, 2013


Young mountain man Shooter York had been trapping with his cousin George Monk and returned to find his beloved Tennessee home in turmoil as the US Army enforced the Indian Removal Act in 1833.

Shooter hadn't agreed with the proposed action, but it hit even closer to home than he realized when a friend of his got caught up in the middle of it. Moon Bear was accused of killing an Army transport crew and of taking rifles.

After helping the Army find Moon Bear, Shooter learned that his friend was looking for his son, who was following Calling Owl, a renegade leader conducting raids on helpless settlers. Shooter and George had no choice but to free Moon Bear and take up the hunt. But with the US Army on their heels and riding into the teeth of dangerous renegades, Tennessee seemed more crowded than ever.

Sunday, July 07, 2013

Another Great Cover!

I love the way this looks monotone, yet all the details leap out.