STORYBOOKS AND OTHER WORKS OF FICTION

Saving Death by Angel Favazza
Jace’s home planet, Zar 5, was taken over by the Xon to control the galaxy's shipping trade. But ten thousand Kataree survived and fled to a planet several hundred light-years away. There they built a shanty town anomaly called, Cian. It was dirty and overcrowded. The adults wanted everyone to stay close together until the perimeters were locally secured.
As for Jace and his crew, well, they didn’t care about what the adults wanted. Not long ago after their arrival on Cian, Jace started the Kataree militia. The Kataree goal was simple: arm themselves, train and return back to Zar 5, find the annual historian, reclaim the data chips from the year of their evacuation and destroy it so that they can reset time. It was the ultimate time paradox: Would apprehending and then destroying the data restore them back to a time of peace or would it ruin them all? None of them knew for sure, but it was a cause they were willing to die for.
There were seven members. And they all know that Jace would die for any of them . . . except one.
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As The Crow Flies by Lorraine Brown
Sara's empathy with animals takes its cue from Francis of Assisi, but her husband Isaiah regards her as backward and in need of guidance--administered physically as often as necessary. Sara is a good witch with a good heart, and willing to tolerate Evil. But how much can she take?
Lorraine Brown's "As The Crow Flies" is a battle between the mundane and the arcane. Evil has the advantage of weapons and physical strength. But Sara has lots of little friends . . .
This story chapbook includes illustrations by Marge Simon.
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A Bag Full Of Eyes by Robert J. Krog
In a kingdom haunted by witches, where vampires hunt in the night, when there are murders but not witnesses, when the method of murder reveals the how but not the who, one calls upon the eye-man to help solve crimes. The eye-man has the answer. It can be found in a bag full of eyes, along with things one does not seek. What is a royal inspector to do? He does his duty of course, though duty can be such unpleasant work.
Here is the tale of Royal Inspector Sir Gordon spending a night as an old lady, of a night he didn’t live, of the eye-man and his methods, of a vampire and his victims, and of a bargain with a witch…
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The Battle for Newhome by Terry Hickman
The Battle For Newhome is a tale of heroism and conflict on a world inhabited by murderous creatures called slitters, whose very name says it all. This science fiction novella introduces the reader to Feren, the heroine of a terrible battle at Crippled Guard who must now find a way to forge an alliance between the human colonists and the slitters. Illustrations by Faith Taylor.
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Brain & Breakfast by Daniel Pearlman
Daniel Pearlman's novella, "Brain & Breakfast," centers around a detective, Merkouros, conducting an investigation in alternate realities. Here's a passage from the novella:
"You are detective, right?"asked the Russian cabbie. "You can't be husband or boyfriend, not of chick like that. I mean, pardon me, but you don't look like sugardaddy, and the hair you comb back is covering bald spot not too good. Is giving you middle-aged ratty look, know what I'm saying?"
"You're very observant," said Merkouros, looking at the broad-featured cabbie smiling at him in his mirror. "I'm a private detective," he added, only half lying. Could he tell him that he worked for the Federal Police, City of New York—but not of this New York? If that ex-Muscovite thought he had had a hard time landing on his feet in merely a different city of his own spatiotemporal framework, then what would he think of someone who'd had to relocate to a different dimension—from the New York of Plane 1 to this treacherously different "New York" of Plane 7—to a world where one's fundamental values were as untranslatable as one's money was inconvertible?
"That's her!" shouted Merkouros, pulling back from the window. "In that black dress half up her thighs. You see? She's looking this way. She sees this cab is taken. She'll go to the corner and pick up another cab. When she does, don't lose her."

 
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Charlotte Cauldron and the Prince of Nevermore by John M. Lance
What if you were the hero of a book and your author was kidnapped? Who would you turn to for help?
Charlotte Cauldron loves reading about Prince Peter’s adventures and knows everything there is to know about the Prince and his friends, the sorceress Juno Vanderspell and Frizzleroot the will-o-wisp. So when the Prince’s arch nemesis, Spartan Arrow, escapes the confines of the page and kidnaps the author, Horatio Alkazar, the Prince asks Charlotte to help rescue him. Now all they need to do is get some pirates’ cooperation, outwit goblins, slip past a dragon, and find Spartan’s tower (which would be a lot easier to do if he didn’t keep moving it).
Oh, and then there’s the little matter of defeating Spartan himself…
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Cloudburst by Tyree Campbell
In the future the Earth is warmer, and the oceans have all but dried up. In small settlements on the ocean floor, the remnants of humanity survive— traders and raiders. The few remaining books feed the campfires. Monstrous lungfish inhabit the salt marshes and snare the unwary. Saltstorms across the salt flats destroy everything in their paths. Social divisions remain intact— men hunt and steal, women breed and struggle to preserve what little knowledge remains— and act as translators for the traders.
The finest of the translators is Praise, a woman of the Scarpers. Centime, of the Dobers, is her student. If the Scarpers and Dobers unite, there will be no need for translators, and Praise will lose what little independence her abilities command. She would rather commit suicide and die free . . . but Centime has another idea: to return up to the land, and to the stars that had been humanity's destiny.
Thus begins an impossible journey, fighting the raging tribes and the fury of the elements . . . for the very Earth itself seems to oppose the two women and the little band they have gathered

 
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The Cold Ones by Elizabeth Donald
No, it has nothing to do with Miller Time. The Cold Ones is a novelette [perfect bound, trade paperback format] by Elizabeth Donald, and refers to [gasp!] zombies. It's not just very good, it's . . . well, here, read what James A. Moore had to say about it.
Elizabeth Donald's The Cold Ones stands out from the crowd. Zombie stories are easy. Good zombie stories are more challenging and great ones, well, those are damned hard to find. The good news is you don't have to look any further than The Cold Ones to find one of the greats. A damned fine read and highly recommended.
-- James A. Moore, author of Deeper and Blood Red
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The Curious Case Of The Jeweled Alicorn by Michael Merriam
Arkady Bloom, Agent of Her Majesty's Secret Service, Supernatural Division, becomes embroiled with a deadly Italian spy, Turkish airship pirates, rebels bent on freeing India from British rule, a cursed artifact, and a statuesque sorceress with a steam-powered dragonet. However, the greatest danger Bloom faces may be his own torn loyalties.
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The Curse of Blackhawk Bay by Erin Fanning
Around Lake Trillium strange events occur. Children disappear, ghosts appear, and a man bursts into flames. The lake itself is inhabited by something vast and dark. With each event there appears a crow--but what does it want? Who will be next to confront the secret of the lake and of Blackhawk Bay?
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Darkness, Darkness by Jane Gwaltney
They say you are what you eat. What if you are also what you read? And what if the one you love is a dead ringer for the author?
Jane Gwaltney’s novella takes you into a maelstrom of madness where, just as the singer becomes the song, so too does the writer become the story . . . and the story of madness becomes the writer. Heavy with the flavor of Poe, this tale is a must-read on a dark night.
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Death Metal by Armand Rosamilia
Death Metal is a dark fantasy/horror novella published in trade paperback format.
No one had ever connected Daniel as the brains behind seven brutal concept albums about Satanism and the dark figure Natas, but when a teenager quotes lyrics from his literary work, Daniel fears his 10-year old daughter, Missy, is in trouble. His fears are founded when she is kidnapped. The kidnappers want Daniel to complete the last three albums for his former band--and return him to the demons he had tried to escape. Daniel can save her, but can he save himself?
"Rosamilia jams the E-major of dark crime in Death Metal. That scream you hear is the electric-soaked feedback of scorching prose." ~ Scott Nicholson, author of Scattered Ashes and multiple Stoker winner
Death Metal is a sharply written tale that starts quick and works its way to an edge-of-the seat ending you won't forget. It's one of those stories you just can't stop reading. Bravo! Or should I say Rock and Roll! ~ Laura J. Underwood, Author of The King's Wind and The Green Women
With Death Metal, Rosamilia keeps you anxious to turn each page, and leaves you wanting more. A spectacular read that will not disappoint. ~ C. S. Johnson, author of The Watching
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Dragon Sight by Penny Lockwood Ehrenkranz Boy loathes girl. Girl avoids dragon. Dragon loves boy. Dragon loathes girl. Girl loves boy. Boy loves dragon. Consider the possibilities . . . oh, and did I mention the curse? "Dragon Sight" is illustrated by 7ARS.
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The Dragon's Dictionary by Marge Simon and Mary Turzillo
It's just what it says it is. If you like dragons, if you like tongue-in-cheek, if you like endearing, flying reptiles who read the morning paper before torching the knight errant, and lavish and endearing illustrations, this dictionary is for you. It's just that simple. So is ordering a copy.
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Egg of the Damned by April French
In the land of Alish, murder is illegal but assassination is not. Tarn seeks the Philosopher's Egg in a fantasy murder mystery. Highly, highly recommended reading, this original novella skillfully blends fantasy, Gothic horror, and murder mystery a la Conan Doyle. Published in magazine format, Egg Of The Damned is illustrated by Marcia A. Borell.
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Ewaipanoma by Mary Turzillo
Ellen Klages, Nebula award winner and author of The Green Glass Sea, says: "Mary Turzillo is a renaissance woman. Who else could pull off a tale of Elizabethan glory, forbidden love, and strange beings from beyond the stars! Prithee, reader! Take up this tale of forbidden love and alien visitors to the realm of the Virgin Queen. Thou shalt not put it down!"
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Family Tradition by Dev Jarrett
Horror stays in the family . . . a trip by Wes and Amy to "meet the folks" includes some very spooky rural denizens who have been subscribing to a magazine for quite a few years, have unusual dietary requirements, and seem to be fond of deadly hijinx, especially at the expense of Wes, the prospective son-in-law. Soon enough wes discovers the truth about Amy's family . . . but is it already too late?
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Feeding The Crows by Jude-Marie Green
Stephanie discovers that the ancient woman who has been funding her Avian influenza research has been trying to commit suicide in order to be reunited with her dead lover. She cannot die until all the crows are dead— thus the research. But there is an alternative . . . if Stephanie will cooperate.
Immortality comes with a price. Stephanie can afford it . . . but does she have a choice?
Jude-Marie Green's Feeding The Crows takes you into a state of existence where death is only an option . . .
Illustrated by Megan Stringfellow
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Flashing the Dark by Bruce Boston
Flashing The Dark is a collection of 40 short-short stories by Bruce Boston. This trade paperback features five years of Boston stories, from "The Telltale Stomach" to "The Final Fragrance," with stops in between to find out why Charles Dickens got replicated and why you should never trust a Spargan. If you like superb fiction in bite-sized format for easy assimilation, this book is for you. Cover illustration by Marge B. Simon.
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The Ghost People by James Steimle
What really happened to the Neanderthals? Were they replaced and killed off by modern man? Or are they still living among us, hidden in remote lands?
James Steimle's tale, written as H. G. Wells might have approached it, takes you into a world where the past is the present, if we could only recognize it for what it is...a world whose denizens are lavishly illustrated by David L. Transue. Turn these pages, and tumble into a new reality of evolution.
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The G.O.D. Factor a novella by Rachel V. Olivier
During one of Monica's shifts, a dormant A.I., part of an old starship class known as Galactic Orbital Dreadnaughts, or G.O.D., that Engineer Belukas thought was safely turned off, wakes up. After years of isolation and hibernation it is more insane and lonely than many of its cohorts had been during the era when they had been used in a galactic war. It truly thinks it is God. It takes over the ship and decides it's time to go bring order to the rest of the universe for the good of humankind. It's up to Monica to try to get her other crewmates out of an A.I.-imposed deep-freeze stasis, and together with them take back the ship and save themselves and known civilization.
If possible.
If it isn’t already too late.
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Gray World: Stealing Fire by Simon Vigneault
Faider unraveled the codes driving the whirling storms of an ancient artificial sun. He now spends his days in bitter self-destruction, staring at that arcane sun whose abundance is maddeningly out of reach, due to the blindness of the very people paying him to find access to it. Adriana hasn't given up on Faider. She silently rebels for them both, against the Sun Cage boxing in his spirit, is covertly bending its bars for him. But it's up to Faider to step through the gap.
In Westpoint, New Skye, on the dying hope of planet Skaha, a drunken Vagabond is lying unconscious in a park. Once a renowned waveseer, Vagabond has fallen to the depths, knows firsthand, as a failed hypocrite, the full range of human hypocrisy.
Shyfoil, true warrior daughter of Skaha, embraces and knights Vagabond for exactly his convoluted, compromised virtues. In the silence of his eyes she finds solace from the murder in her heart, and through his waveseer skill, which fuses quantum elegance with magical arts, she discovers he is also a worthy ally in espionage.
Together they must decide whether to trust an alien client who would charge them with stealing a most unusual, mathematical fire, and perhaps thereby honor the memory of a dead, gray world.
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Hellfire & Damnation by Connie Corcoran Wilson
Dante postulated nine circles of Hell. That was several centuries ago. We've come a long way since then. Where Dante wrote allegorically of politicians and religious leaders, Wilson creates rather more mundane characters and infuses them with some of the blackest secrets in the heart of humanity. From the Introduction by William F. Nolan [who wrote "Logan's Run" . . . you may recall the movie?] to the raw and bleak "An American Girl" in the 9th Circle, "Hellfire & Damnation" takes you on a tour you won't forget.
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The Herd Lord a novella by Beth Wheeler
These dark times find the esch peoples encroaching on centaur lands. The high centaur, Iffrix, sees no choice for the centaurs but to defend themselves and their lands, and issues a call to arms. But is there another solution? Niesha, a female, observes two stallions squabbling over a mare, and wonders whether the application of peace between them might serve as a guide in peace with the esch. But would the esch be willing to listen? And can Niesha persuade Iffrix to open negotiations?
And how many must die before peace breaks out?
Beth Hudson's novella of relationships between opposites leaves the reader on the edge of the seat, hoping against hope, but still wondering, for all of that, what is possible to the peoples of Hudson's world—and of Earth.
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Heroes Fall by Dylan Brody
Kelsey Darson falls from world to world doing what is needed of him in each new place. He meets a woman who tells him she is his lover, but he doesn't know this yet because they don't fall from world to world in the same order. He wonders why another man who falls from world to world keeps trying to kill him. He will find out in time that the strange man seeks revenge for a wrong not yet done by Kelsey, a wrong that Kelsey has done in revenge for an act the man does not yet know he is to carry out. Good, evil, love and vengeance play out in a complex, non-linear experience that reveals itself by the end to be elegant in its Moebius simplicity.
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High Kings by H. David Blalock
“We are taking Arthur to a place of safety, to care for him and give him rest."
“Where? We would like to honor him. We will bring tribute to his grave."
The old woman shook her head sadly. “You do not understand. Arthur will never die. When he is needed, he will return. We will care for him until then."
Parcival indicated the battlefield around him. “He is needed now! If you have the power to heal him, please send him back soon."
“Your need is not yet great enough," she said.
“Not great enough? Britain is in ruins. Camelot is no more. When will we be in greater need?"
Fire glinted in her eyes and an unaccountable thrill of fear struck Parcival. He shuddered but stood his ground. If there was a chance Arthur could be returned to them, his life was a small price to pay.
“Your land will see great wars, Parcival. Each will have its heroes. Arthur will return when he is most needed, have no fear."

Now fast-forward 2.000 years . . .
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Horror At Cold Springs by Michael Merriam
Michael Merriam's steampunk novelette [published in trade paperback format] begins with a bunch of Englishmen at a steam fair in New York City and takes the reader on a journey west toward California. Story notables include the Duke of Wellington, several British Lords, and a spymaster . . . but not everyone arrives alive, courtesy of the monstrosity they encounter.
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Humpback IV by Mark Anthony Brennan
What happens when whales have the right to bear arms? When dogs and monkeys are injected with gene-splices for intelligence? Find out how a lawyer and the mother of all whales resolve their differences in this exciting tale by one of the genre's fine crafters of science fiction. Humpback IV is a whale of a tale, and swimmingly illustrated by Marcia Borell and 7ARS.
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Jacinth by Uncle River
Jacinth is a perfect-bound book. Uncle River's novelette creates an all-too-possible future in which money is worthless and rocks from space are found to have magical properties coveted by all, including the authorities. In such a world, no one is safe, least of all the inhabitants of San Gordo and the denizens of the Endurance Cafe. Uncle River's tale hits hard and fast, mixing mystery and magic with glimpses of a future that could become colorless if we should lose our sense of wonder.
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The Janitors by David John
The Janitors were soldiers who got the dirty end of the stick during World War II. They were assigned to "clean up" Pacific islands after the Marines had gone through. On one of those islands, named Toji, the Janitors discovered that dead Japanese soldiers refused to remain dead, and indeed posed a grave threat to the living . . . and the Janitors were the only living beings on the island.
Just keep telling yourself: it's only a story.
Sure. That'll work.
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Jiang Li by Lenora Rain-Lee Good
Set in the Warring States period, Jiang Li, Warrior Woman of Yueh tells the story of one of the epic battles of Ancient China—between the enemy states of Yueh and Wu. Marked by the magic of White Tiger Mother and trained to use the staff by the great mountain ape, Grandfather Wang, Jiang Li grows into a beautiful woman, loved by all in Yueh who meet her. Faced with the choice of becoming concubine to the Prince whom she loves, or a warrior and savior of Yueh, she forfeits love of a man for love of her country. While Jiang Li trains to save the State of Yueh, another woman warrior, Brother Rat, trains to save her State of Wu. The two women meet in dreams, and by the time they meet in life, they have become friends who must fight to the death.
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Kella and the Dimensional Mirror by Gavin Salisbury
Kella is raised around a magic shop. She wants to know what happened to her parents, and she meets a few owls along the way. But the adventure begins when she meets her grandfather in the mirror.
Illustrated by 7ARS, Kella and the Dimensional Mirror is a rollicking fantasy adventure for the next generation of readers--and for this one, too.
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Living Stone by Edward Cox
When stones fall from the sky . . .
Old Herne is terrorising Forest Gate, and the London police are stumped. For three months his victims have been found dead at the church down Cernunnos Lane , their bodies brutalised beyond recognition. Leading the investigation is Oscar. He is yet to uncover one single clue that reveals the killer's identity or his motives. He does, however, have the prestigious honour of being the only person to have seen Old Herne and lived . . . trouble is, Oscar can't remember what he saw, and now he has been kicked off the case. However, Oscar isn't deterred. Dogged by nightmares and visions of shadowy monsters, he becomes obsessed in his pursuit of the killer and the truth behind his lost memories. But even he couldn't guess that Old Herne 's origins hark back to the turn of the first millennium, and a legacy left by the man who dared to meddle with stones from the sky.
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The Machine Man Letters by Monte Davis
He carries a 450in³ loaded with 850 Bubble Brights, and he means business! He foils a robbery with a gumball machine, lusts after a semi-colon, and swindles a Nigerian widow out of millions of dollars. Oh, and a page from his Tarzan book is missing.
Monte Davis's "The Machine Man Letters" gives us a glimpse of what it must be like to be sane in an asylum.
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The Martian Women by Tyree Campbell
Five generations of humans have settled on Mars. Society has passed through various stages: pioneer, settlement, and now industrial. Women, equals in society if not by law at the onset of colonization, are once again subservient.
Except Teresa Minerva Timberlake.
Born during a hellacious sandstorm, raised by a legendary woman, impulsive to a fault, Traci Timberlake discovers a way to travel to the distant stars, to free humanity to explore and seek its destiny. The corporations of the Inner Solar System are willing to kill Timberlake and her apprentice, Allan O'Toole, to suppress publication and prevent dissemination of this discovery.
But Traci is a fifth-generation Martian woman, and she has the history and the accomplishments of four female ancestors to call on for help, courage, and inspiration. The courtroom trial scene of Traci Timberlake is one you will never forget.
The Martian Women is a novella published in trade paperback format.
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Meet the Mercusons by Debby Feo
Yes, meet the Mercusons. They live on the planet Mercury. In many ways, they're just like you, if you wear space suits, and have a tail, and can dig holes with your tail. The Mercusons take vacations, go to school, and celebrate birthdays. Of course, because Mercury's year lasts only 88 days, the Mercusons celebrate birthdays very often.
Come inside and meet Eelo and Chite Jelo and Rela and Pelo. See what kind of trouble they can find to get into. Maybe you can help get them out of it.
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The Missionary by Sandra C. Stixrude
Father Gabriel arrives on Altair Tertia, where three previous missionaries have failed to do God's work, including Father Julius, whom the natives tried to stuff into a tree. The natives look like winged angels without reproductive organs. And they answer to an authority that may be higher than Father Gabriel's.
So what's a missionary to do when he has to convert an entire planet? Not just the people . . . but the actual, whole planet.
It's a question of authority . . .
Illustrated by 7ARS
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Needs Must When The Devil Drives: An Apocalyptic Romance by Rachel V. Olivier
Years ago, Kelly thought her life and acting career would take off when she left her hometown in Washington state for sunny Los Angeles, California; she had no idea the curves life would hurl her way. Now, back at home, working as a cashier and caring for her mother, she is taking the first weekend off she's had in three years. While her Aunt Jean takes care of her mother, Kelly and her dog Jake are getting away for a camp out in the mountains. No work, no demands, no cell phone. It's only a long weekend, what could go wrong?
How about the end of the world?
Now on her own, with the help of Jake and the mysterious stranger Dan, Kelly must learn how to put her world back together again. It's life or death, but she'll do what needs to be done, because needs must when the devil drives...
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A Night At Death's Door by Jimmy D. Gillentine
Death's Door is the club where all the vampires and hangers-on . . . er, hang out. To gain entrance, you have to be picked. Janet and Alice get picked, Curt arrives with a bowie knife, someone brings a crossbow, and the evening grows from there. Come see who's still standing after a night at Death's Door.
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Pretty by Philip S. Meckley
Alice travels to England to study English, meets a handsome stranger, and visits him in his manor. The place is so large that there is no end to its secrets, and Alice soon finds herself embroiled in the most sordid of them. It's best just to stay under the covers when things go bump in the night, but she can't do that.
Because she's the one that's going bump.
There's no rabbit hole at Ensleigh Manor, but Alice falls anyway, into a nightmare she cannot escape. Because, you see, it's not a nightmare that she has fallen into. It's reality.
Illustrated by 7ARS, Philip S. Meckley's tale of unimaginable horror takes the reader directly into a Wodehouse world with all the trappings of the English upper crust. Meckley, a collector of ghost stories, is always looking for the perfect scare. With "Pretty," perhaps he can stop looking.
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Pyra and the Tektites #1 by Tyree Campbell & 7ARS
Thirteen-year-old Pyra lives and goes to school on Ceres, the largest asteroid in the asteroid belt. Because she has received a couple of bad grades, she fears her parents may send her down to Mars to continue her education. Pyra, however, has other ideas. She runs away from home. She stows away aboard a cargo shuttle, falls asleep, and awakens in free fall. The shuttle has been stolen by a smuggler, and she is now in the O.S.*
But wait! It gets worse. The shuttle is captured by Tektites, space pirates who take it to their lair on Kublukan, where Pyra is sold as a servant . . .
This is Book #1 of Pyra and the Tektites. Come along with her on these adventures . . . and watch for Book #2 later in 2011.
* Outer Space
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Redgunk Tales: Tales from the Kudzu by William R. Eakin
Bill Eakin has created a real fantasy world, Redgunk, into which he has inserted science fiction events and fantasy happenings to create unforgettable stories and characters. In these pages of this trade paperback book you'll find out How Boy Howdy Saved The World, you'll learn The Secret of the Mummy's Brain, and you'll thrill and chill to the Miracle of Swamp Gas Jackson. And these are just for starters. Here's what some others have to say about Bill Eakin's work.
"Sort of like Thomas Wolfe on acid, or James Joyce on moonshine, Bill Eakin takes the words, the rhythms, the heat, the mud, the cicadas and the kudzu of the south and turns them into stories that touch your heart while messing with your brain stem and possibly tampering with your DNA. A truly original and unique voice...."
~ Shawna McCarthy, Realms of Fantasy
"Bill Eakin is one of the more inventive writers making a name for himself today…. His southern-fried narrative is (in the opinion of this Bama Boy) one-hundred percent faithful and twice as irreverent."
~ Kurt Roth, Tangent
"Eloquent and witty, thoughtful and even heart-rending. . . . Every time I’ve read a Redgunk story recently, I’ve come away thinking the most recent was better than what I had seen before. I’m coming to realize that it’s not a question of better; each one has been good on its own. . . Bill Eakin is a brilliant storyteller."
~ Kim Mohan, Amazing Stories
Yeh, Redgunk is irresistible . . . so don't resist!
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Redgunk Tales #2: UFOs Over Redgunk by William R. Eakin
This is the second in a series of science fiction and fantasy tales centered on the town of Redgunk, Mississippi. It's got mummies, puppies, saving the world, premature chili dogs, UFOs, plus denizens of this beloved town that you won't forget. Check it out.
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Redgunk #3: Bloody Redgunk by William R. Eakin
Redgunk #3: Bloody Redgunk is a collection of short dark fantasy stories that take place in the town of Redgunk, Mississippi. Like his previous two collections, with this one you think: Jeff Foxworthy meets Area 51 and Warehouse 13. Come meet the strange and wonderful denizens of this little town nestled among the friendly kudzu of Mississippi.
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Sabit the Sumerian by Tyree Campbell
Cursed and banished to the dung-filled streets of Uruk by the king for whom she was once a companion, Sabit must now sell herself in order to survive. Near starving, and bearing the mark of the lillu, or vampire, she is plagued by dreams of the ancient ones who dwell beyond the mountains of Elam.
And then Sabit meets a girl around her own age, a kind girl with brilliant blue eyes, who asks what no other woman has ever asked: “What are you selling?" That night, Sabit’s new friend comes to her in a dream, asking for that which cannot be taken, but freely given. The girl is Shala, Daughter of Ereshkigal, Goddess of the Underworld. Vampire.
Thousands of years pass. One night, Sabit, now known as Adrienne Bouchard, meets a man in a park, and her life is irrevocably changed once more. His name is Ian Cullen, a recently widowed archaeologist, with a young daughter auspiciously named Shala.
When the Daughter of Ereshkigal returns, she commands Adrienne to make a choice: Kill or turn Ian and his daughter. How will she choose? Will Adrienne sacrifice herself for two humans? Are they nothing but cattle after all?
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The Saint & the Robot by Gary Every
The Saint & the Robot is a medieval steampunk novella featuring Albertus Magnus, Thomas Aquinas, a trio of redheaded sisters [like the Mothra twins, only different], a laboratory of strange devices, a wife who's a robot, a philosopher's stone that grants visions of the future . . . and lots and lots of alchemy.
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Saint Nicole a novella by Jason D. Wittman
From the mind of Jason D. Wittman ("On Bookstores, Burners, and Origami," "Aftergame") comes this novella of epic fantasy that reads like "The Lord of the Rings" meets "T'was the Night Before Christmas" by way of "24."
For thirteen generations, the male descendants of Nicholas I have brought gifts to the children of the world, venturing forth once a year from the Northern Fortress in which the gifts are made, defying dark, terrifying forces to spread bounty and good will to the various peoples of the earth. But the time of these good deeds may be at an end: for Nicholas XIII has fallen in battle to his ancient foe, the dragon Furnaceheart. Since Nicholas is keeper of the enchanted sword Yulestar, his death means that the spells protecting the Northern Fortress from discovery will fade, unless his heir returns to use Yulestar to rekindle them.
And Nicholas XIII has no male heir. There is only his daughter, Nicole.
As Furnaceheart lays siege with his army of minions to the ice-gates of the Northern Fortress, Nicole is caught out in the wilderness, grieving over her father's death. Yet the blood of Nicholas runs as hot in her as anyone. Taking up Yulestar, she mounts Wotan, her winged reindeer, vowing to defeat Furnaceheart and continue her father's work.
Will the line of Nicholas end? Will the Northern Fortress finally fall to a dragon who apparently cannot die? And above all, will Nicole be too late in realizing the secret she does not know she knows?
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The Saucer Under My Bed and other stories by G.O. Clark
G. O. Clark takes you to the far side of science fiction and fantasy with this offbeat collection of stories. Come meet a dead man who has plans to continue catching up on his reading. Catch an interview with the monster in the closet, and learn that MICs have rules. Study the fellow who lives by the alphabet. Find out why there actually is a saucer under the bed, and what you can do about it if it visits you.
So buckle up and enjoy this tour of the far side.
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The Sea At Mughain by Jennifer Sparlin
“My lord king," said one, “I am Eunan son of Eunan. We captured this girl on a raid, and as she is no further use to us, we thought that your household might benefit – for a reasonable price – "
The girl was staring at the floor, as though she was past caring what happened to her.
The king sighed. “What’s your name, girl?" The girl looked up at him, but did not speak. Her eyes were a bright, forget-me-not blue. The king frowned at Eunan. “Is she deaf?"
“No – no, my lord," said Eunan. “She just doesn’t talk."
“She screams, though," said the other man.
Thus begins a Celtic tale featuring intrigue, romance, and magic people of the sea, all intertwined in a conflict between families, between parents and children, and between friends. There can be but one way to resolve it.
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Shades of Green by Rhonda Parrish
Set in an alien landscape, "Shades of Green" could be summed up as Cinderella meets Jurassic Park, or Reptarella. It's got all the ingredients of good SF: alien characters and culture, romance, servitude, courage, calamity, green stuff, and a plotline that will keep you turning the pages.
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TALES OF WEUPP: Little People Must Surrender by Ralan Conley, illustrated by Jesse Bunch
For all her young life Myla Trogsen has lived a lonely, isolated existence. Afflicted with a rare genetic disorder, she must use a wheelchair or motorized scooter to get around. Home schooled by her mother, she is constantly reminded by her that in times of trouble, "Little people must surrender."
Now, two years after her parents untimely deaths in a car crash, she sometimes feels the need to visit the nearby town, even though it almost always makes her feel embarrassed, frustrated, angry, and even lonelier. But this time a near accident with a truck literally blows her off the road and into another world.
The people she meets all look like her -- small, white-haired, and older than their age, in fact they see her as beautiful. Do they suffer from the same disease as she? The planet itself seems to be a living entity and may have summoned her for some reason. But what is it? The people of a remote village are being held captive by the Zyots, a hulking warrior race. How can she rescue them?
And weirdest of all, her motorized scooter now performs like a souped-up four-wheel-drive ATV. And doesn't seem to need a recharge -- but for how long?
Unlike her home world (or is it?) of Earth, in the magical world of Weupp, she fits right in ... and there's also a prince to rescue.

 
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The Token by Theodora Fair
Swans are one of the magic links between the mundane and the arcane, with beings able to shift from human form to swan and back again. As swans, they're in mortal danger from hunters. And if a hunter should inadvertently shoot the one he loves . . .
In either world there are always consequences when the two worlds mix. But Archer never expected this one . . .
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Walking Like Morpheus by Edward Cox
HYPNOS CORPORATION: the largest purveyor of dreamtime entertainment in the world. With a standard subscription you receive a state of the art isolation tank, and access to Hypnos’ theta slipstream: a magical dream world that knows no bounds, where professional dreamers are waiting to help you become anything you want, and go anywhere you can imagine. And if you are really lucky, your dreams will be assigned to Aidan Morrish.
Aidan is the best dream guide Hypnos has to offer. Life for him is the life of a superstar. But being the best has a downside; jealousy is everywhere, and many want to ruin Aidan’s reputation. So when his client inexplicably disappears mid-dream, Hypnos revokes Aidan’s lucrative dream contract, and it seems his enemies have succeeded. Aidan knows he is being victimised, but when he sets out to prove his innocence, he discovers a secret that runs far deeper than the envy of his peers
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Widdershins by Raymond Yeo
"Nicholas," said Elizabeth, stepping into the room, "do you remember what it was like when we had the upper hand?"
"I remember running from angry Christians who wanted to purify my soul with a wagon-load of kindling and a gallon of lamp oil."
Now the last two survivors of the Widdershins family join forces for one final plunge into the world of demons. Who will live, and who will die?
Illustrated by Marge B. Simon.
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The Wild Women of Redgunk by William R. Eakin
Sort of like Thomas Wolfe on acid, or James Joyce on moonshine, Bill Eakin takes the words, the rhythms, the heat, the mud, the cicadas and the kudzu of the south and turns them into stories that touch your heart while messing with your brain stem and possibly tampering with your DNA. A truly original and unique voice....
— Shawna McCarthy, Realms of Fantasy
Eloquent and witty, thoughtful and even heart-rending. . . . Every time I’ve read a Redgunk story recently, I’ve come away thinking the most recent was better than what I had seen before. I’m coming to realize that it’s not a question of better; each one has been good on its own. . . .Bill Eakin is a brilliant storyteller.
— Kim Mohan, Amazing Stories
Beautiful, ugly, wicked, twisted, healing, murderously dark, light as butterflies, the women of Redgunk, Mississippi, are one and all wild. They are among other things: witches serenading the moon and enticing Sunday School children to surprising and astonishing lives; the makers of unicorn stews that are both tragic and beautiful; 50-foot women breaking the laws of physics and love; mermaids lost in the swamps behind the tar paper shacks of Redgunk, who help old men learn they are in love with their own all-too-mortal wives. They are these wives, too, who know mortality. Some of them live in the house next door with the most gruesome secrets. Some run naked and free through the kudzu. They are despair and hope. They are our lifeblood. They rise, they fall, they flourish, they die, but all of them shine. They call us to our own wild depths. They call us to shine. These are the Wild Women of Redgunk!
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Winter by Rick Novy
Humans return to Earth after 20,000 years of time dilation. Cities are rubble. The Golden Gate Bridge is a pile of scrap metal. Hodges thinks he's going home. Yutiko, the winged alien, wishes he was going back home, for this is not the Earth he was promised. Earth has changed, yes, and the more things change . . .
Winter also includes the short story "The Adjoa Gambit," about the risks of gambling with the conquering aliens.
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Yadh the Ugly by Lenora Rain-Lee Good
First Community is not without their mythical tales and superstitions: that vamp birds, whose bites cause death and madness have been eradicated, that looking for dragons and their eggs is a fool’s errand, and that Yadh brings disaster in her wake.
From birth, Yadh has been considered to be an ugly throwback, and is shunned, ridiculed, and tormented by her pod mates and adults. While all around her have dark skin, blue or green eyes, and straight silver hair, Yadh has pale skin, brown eyes, and curly red hair. The sun also makes her ill.
First Community does not value ornament or beauty, but Yadh, a skilled carver, is drawn to both. Kitchen Mother Lally believes she is only fit for washing dishes, and is regularly shooed away to hunt for dragon eggs. Confused as to why she is different, Yadh struggles to not feel sorry for herself, and spends much of her solitude exploring nature.
Fearing the encroaching winter, Yadh ventures away from well-known trails and into the wilderness. Along the way, she is bitten and befriended by a vamp bird she names, Skaditch, who communicates with her telepathically. She narrowly misses being swept away by a raging river, before they begin their climb into the high desert region.
In this heroic quest, Yadh will be transformed from Yadh, the Ugly, to Yadh, the Beautiful, through love, friendship, and her new-found purpose.
For she is a chosen one.
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