Author Archives: Literary Titan

Voiceless: A Mermaid’s Tale

Like all merfolk, sixteen-year-old Moriah suffers the consequences of a curse bestowed by goddess Gaea. Living in a crumbling Zoara-Bela with little hope for the future, Moriah sprouts legs to observe the human realm. She encounters handsome, dark-eyed Michael Adams. Moriah feels connected to Michael and is happier than ever with him. However, when Michael intercedes in a domestic dispute, he is thrown into the ocean. Moriah dives after him and saves his life with a healing song. Yet, as she retreats into the ocean, there is a yearning in her heart. How can they possibly be together when their two worlds are so irrevocably different?

Voiceless by Anna Finch contains some imaginative scenes in this riveting fantasy novel. For example, I adored the scene in chapter five when Moriah explored the human world and asked people questions about everyday objects. Moriah’s excitement and charming naivete about everything is incredibly engaging and fun for the reader. However, this captivating exploration also helps to develop the distinction between humans and merfolk. I found this contrast incredibly important because it adds to Moriah’s sense of desperation as she tries to come to a solution.

This is a creative young adult fantasy novel, but I felt like much of the story is told to readers rather than shown. The prologue provides a lot of helpful information in this way. It provides the reader with basic information that’s necessary to understand the plot without descriptive and figurative language or dialogue.

The romance between Moriah and Michael is compelling and emotional. After Moriah returns to the sea, I was left wanting to see more of Michael as I thought his character was intriguing. As Moriah works with the sea witch, we move on from her romantic motivations and discover more depth to her character and the story that I think readers will find absorbing.

Voiceless: A Mermaid’s Tale is an enchanting coming-of-age young adult fantasy novel that has a sprightly protagonist and a fun storyline that fans of teen romance will find fresh and entertaining.

Pages: 326 | ASIN: B08HWZ4YJG

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It Was In Our Hands

It Was In Our Hands by M.C Ronen brings to an end an enlightening read of M.C Ronen’s ethical thrillers. Now a full-fledged activist, a far cry from the young enslaved escapee from Nature’s farm, Sunny takes the mantle of leadership at the Liberation Movement. Sunny and her activist friends are still working towards rescuing and rehabilitating enslaved persons, but they venture into the political scene with a twist. Now that Sunny has more people in her life to protect, the mission to change the status quo might be a massive step towards achieving total liberation or just another costly mistake.

The Liberation trilogy has been a roller coaster of events, and the final isn’t any different. This time Ronen tells the story from other characters’ points of view, including that of enslaved persons and reformed perpetrators. Her new approach is insightful, and once again, M.C Ronen has managed to convince readers about everything that is wrong with abusing other sensate creatures. M.C Ronen’s unique writing style always vividly represents her message and more so in the final book.

Unlike the earlier series, Ronen barely uses metaphors, and readers can get a clearer picture of the veganism message she’s trying to convey. However, the chapters are concise, containing bits and pieces of different soliloquies. Obviously, the author was trying to tie up all loose ends, giving readers closure on the future of all characters, both past, and present.

It Was In Our Hands by M.C Ronen was more thrilling than the two previous trilogy parts. Although, I wouldn’t recommend reading the third book in isolation from the previous two because it might be challenging to connect many dots. This suspenseful conclusion to the storyline is not one to miss and will leave readers with much to think about.

Pages: 259 | ASIN : B097SSCZCL

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Boone and Jacque: Cytrus Moonlight

Boone and Jacque are back again in Boone and Jacque: Cytrus Moonlight! It has been 15 years, and they are living their best lives. Boone got married to Shammy, and they have two amazing children together. Boone and Shammy just want to live a life of peace and quiet. Jacque, on the other hand has become a detective and loves his job and his woman named Xantia, who happens to be a detective as well. Boone and Jacque still have a very strong friendship, but their lives turn upside down when a new mysterious murder happens. This throws Jacque and Boone into a new quest that they never wanted. They just want to live their simple lives.

The new book in the Boone and Jacque series is stupendous! Readers that have enjoyed prior books in this series will be blown away by the new characters and adventures. AG Flitcher takes readers on a magical and fantastical adventure that surpasses prior novels, going in a completely different direction and showcasing the growth of Boone and Jacque. In addition, this an inclusive novel. Jacque, Xantia, and Coralie are all part of the LGBTQI+ community.

Jacque and Xantia are a wonderful couple. Xantia was a great addition to the group and is a strong woman. Her character is well developed and fits perfectly into the story. Coralie is new as well, and I learned a bit about her, but I do hope to learn more about her in the next book. Reading about Boone and Shammy’s children is delightful; they add a new demension to the storyline. Boone’s character is still growing and figuring himself out, but I can say he is a loving father. It made me happy to see his character get some happiness after the childhood readers learned about in past books. Having Shammy to share his life with gives his story the joyful component he had been missing.

I still have some questions, but I imagine the next book will answer them. AG Flitcher seems to be very good at wrapping up loose ends. The story overall was well written. While I have my questions about Dr. Button and Jacque’s aunt and uncle, I am sure I will get my answers over time.

I give Boone and Jacque: Cytrus Moonlight 5 out of 5 stars. This novel felt very different from the others, but I can tell it is leading up to similar adventures with an extra twist. I look forward to the next book in this amazing series!

Pages: 350 | ASIN : B0B5SBNQ27

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Ascension 

Ascension, by Marc R. Micciola, is the first book in the Age of Shadow Saga. This story follows the leaders of Midstad as they fight to gain control of the empire.

The novel begins with Otti and The Black Light. Otti is determined to get her beloved, Kemryr, back from imprisonment. She works with Iver to bring people to their forces, The Black Light, and gain control of the kingdom. Einar, Prince of Hestferd, and Elouera, the Queen of Skedia, work together to protect the kingdom from The Black Light. When Karina, Queen Eloueras’s daughter, is targeted by an assassin, the Hestferd rulers help the family hide with elves. Her family’s safety is instrumental in maintaining control of the kingdom and preventing The Black Light from taking over.

The writing style in this book is excellent throughout. Multiple POVs give depth to the story. Each character has its own development and storyline. Having numerous POVs allows the reader to understand the overall plot. The development behind Einar’s character was the most interesting to read and essential for the story to move forward.

This captivating book had a lot of varying elements for the first installment in an upcoming series. I wish there was more background information and world-building given to the reader so there is a better understanding of the world the author has built. There were bits and pieces of background given with each character’s POV, but it’s like putting together a puzzle.

Ascension is a riveting adventure and dark fantasy novel that gives readers a sense of nostalgia for similar worlds that are seen in Lord of the Rings or Wheel of Time. As the first book in the Age of Shadow Saga, it pulls the reader into the world created by Micciola, and they will be waiting for the next installment to see where the action leads next.

Pages: 303 | ASIN : B08BTMF46Z

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Sea Pay 

Sea Pay by Bob Dorgan is a rollicking tale of an enlisted sailor making the most of his time in the United States Navy during the late 70s and early 80s. The straightforward, autobiographical story follows Dorgan through his early years at Valley Forge Military Academy and then onto his Navy career stationed aboard the aircraft carrier the USS Midway. While bending some rules (and breaking others), Dorgan goes into great detail about his day-to-day duties and the wild adventures he and his fellow sailors went on during their precious time off-duty.

Sea Pay is an interesting read. Dorgan’s attention to detail is quite remarkable. As an electrician working in the E Division of the ship’s engineering department, the author’s duties amounted to more than mere grunt work. His descriptions of the internal workings of the Midway really paint quite a picture. I could imagine working in the bowels of a steam-powered aircraft carrier and just how exciting (or miserable) that could be.

As he familiarizes himself with his duties and the rest of his crew, Dorgan does get up to some unsavory practices to increase his “sea pay.” I’m not sure how many boy scouts would approve of his other enterprises. While Sea Pay is a nice slice of enlisted life, it does run aground on the technical side of things.

Bob Dorgan’s writing style is extremely literal. Almost every detail is specifically told, but little is shown. There’s a kind of emotional detachment. For example, after an entire chapter describing “wild” liberty in Thailand, he rather nonchalantly ends the chapter with, “We were sorry to hear that several of our shipmates did not make it back to the ship alive, victims of the big H—heroin. They were gone but not forgotten.” It’s a jarring end, and there is little to no reflection by the author.

Sea Pay is a fascinating depiction of Navy life from that particular time told from the viewpoint of someone that was living it. This true story account will give readers an inside look at life on an aircraft carrier.

Pages: 356 | ASIN : B0B23CJ8S7

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Family First And Foremost

Joe Clark Author Interview

The Walshes follows a housewife who’s given a writing assignment to go undercover to investigate the sex industry in DC and finds it’s harder to get out then in. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

As a young engineer back in the 70’s, I took a visiting contractor to dinner. At some point in our conversation he told me he was divorced and that he and his ex-wife had belonged to a group of swingers. The whole nine yards – porn, wife-swapping, etc. He ended by commenting that all of the couples in that group was divorced. That seemed like a good starting point for my second novel. But gentlemen’s clubs and prostitution seemed easier to deal with than a group of suburban swingers.

April Walsh is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some driving ideals behind her character’s development?

April is a writer, mother and a housewife in that order. She has enjoyed more success as a mother and wife partly because she has suppressed her drive to succeed as a writer. She is very intelligent, curious and extraordinarily verbal. Law and politics have always been part of her life. When she gets “to know people who are getting a raw deal … [she comes] out swinging.” When pushed, she pushes back – her husband’s high handed reaction to her first outing as a topless dancer stiffens her resolve to go through with the project.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

Family first and foremost. Joe and April’s marriage is the centerpiece but her large extended family plays a part. Her little brother Bill is her ally and best friend. Her mother is her rock. The family home is safe refuge. Mothers fighting for their children: Bridget is on a reform program so she can hang onto her children because her mother delivered an ultimatum. April let’s Joe have his divorce but she fights for custody of their children. Her mother proves formidable when she steps in to support April in the court battle. The questionable application of moral and ethical guidelines in borderline situations. Sexual conduct and misconduct are targets, of course, culminating with Eve declaring that she’s going to join the atheists so she doesn’t have to worry about Christian morals. Law and order in her debate with Jack over prostitution. Racist and sexist attitudes in our society. Attitudes toward guns.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I have just completed “MacGregor’s Final Battle” a fictionalized memoir. Mac gets a lot of history from my life but there are important differences. His wife has died and he has been informed that he has stage 4 brain cancer. He meets nurse Katherine Graham who decides that joining him will be a win-win situation. He needs her help and she will be able to escape her dead end life. Projected release date is early December 2022. I have started working on a Civil War Saga based on my great grandfather’s war experiences from 1861 thru June 1864. I would like to release the first volume in 2023.

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Attempted murders, intrigue, and scandal are all in a day’s work for Eve, one of DC’s most sought-after escorts. Her admirers include corporate executives, DC cops, and other smitten johns who have seen her dance at the Tahiti men’s club. None of them know her secret. She’s April Walsh, a housewife and writer who has gone deep undercover to investigate DC vice from the inside. Her first priority has always been her marriage. Her writing career has had to take a back seat. That changes when April is assigned to write a story about the sex industry. Her marching orders are to get inside and get the real story.

Exit April, and enter Eve. She’s a glamorous dancer and escort who won’t back down from a fight. Her wit and charm make her highly desired at the local men’s club. As April embraces her Eve persona, she finds more and more to like about the new life. She enjoys feeling sexy and wanted. She makes new friends: a former call girl, a wise cab driver, and a hard-nosed cop. Will she be able to find her way out, or is April destined to sacrifice herself and her family for the sake of a story? Will the good wife or the firebrand emerge victorious?

A Monopoly on Knowledge

Daniel G. Vintner Author Interview

Some Mistakes of Darwin and a Programmer’s Theory of Life explores through science the theory of evolution that Darwin started and explores the birth of genetics and molecular biology. Why was this an important book for you to write?

When in my youth I was confronted by pure accident with a criticism of evolution I realized that science could not support the theory as much as it was supposed to. This led me to research the subject and I’ve ultimately reached the conclusion that evolution was most likely not true. Given that I’ve never had to question my beliefs before or after, this event has profoundly shaped my views and I wanted to share with others a little bit of that experience.

What were some ideas that were important for you to share in this book?

The most important chapter in my book I believe is the one that discusses microbiology for the simple reason that life is far more interesting than any debate about we may have about its origin. In regards to my own ideas, sharing the views from software engineering of evolutionary arguments against design is I believe would be my most important contribution, as many of the claims about design are factually false, but not many know about if or why that is the case due to a simple lack of general knowledge of programming.

Did you find anything in your research of this book that surprised you?

The data my evolutionary algorithm produced was almost the same as the Long Term Evolutionary experiment. I did not expect such a strong correlation, although in retrospect I probably should have.

What do you hope is one thing readers take away from your book?

The most important thing is to question our beliefs and advance science if we can, and that nobody can or should have a monopoly on knowledge and truth.

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The evolution debate has been raging on the outskirts of academia for two centuries, and the sides have never been further apart than they are now. “Science versus religion” and “evolution versus creationism” was what the audience heard for a long time. In the twentieth century God was brought down into the fighting pits of scientific society, and for the longest time it seemed he had lost the fight for good. In recent times, though, God has put his gloves back on and seems to have managed to insert himself back into the debate.

Or has he? Has anything really changed in this debate? Did evolution change, or science, or God himself? What is true from the grandiose claims of those who claim to have resurrected God by virtue of their arguments? And what truth is there in the words of the scientists who claim to have buried him?

Some Mistakes of Darwin goes back to the beginning and verifies the claims made by Darwin and his successors. It travels from the birth of genetics and molecular biology, through the advances in software engineering, to the far ends of space and time and beyond, arguing from science, not from scripture, for a new theory of life.

When She Finally Took Flight

Alisa Wagner Author Interview

Gaining Her Strength follows a butterfly who learns that strength is more than just physical abilities, that everyone has different areas of strength to use. How did you come up with this idea and develop it into a story?

The first book in the series is about Laia’s birthmark. Laia, the Butterfly Princess, has a flame-like birth mark on her lavender wing. Her parents, King Papa and Queen Mama, were fearful that Swift Swallow would see her red birthmark and be tempted to gobble her up. So they pleaded with Laia to keep her wings shut tight. So for the first part of her life, Laia crawled along in the shadows, watching as all the other butterflies enjoyed flying in the meadow. Finally, one day, she decided that she did not want to hide in the forest anymore. She opened her wings and discovered that she rather liked her birthmark. When she finally took flight, Swift Swallow did not pursue her, for she was too quick for him. I, Alisa, have a red, flame-like birthmark on my right hand and arm. I used to be embarrassed by it, but I finally decided to see it in a different light. I realized that I, in fact, liked my birthmark because it made me unique. Once I wrote the story, I found out that my illustrator, Albert Morales, also has a dark birthmark on his right hand. It is interesting that the tools we use as creative people (our hands) have both been beautiful marked.

The art in this book is fantastic. What was the art collaboration process like with illustrator Albert Morales?

Albert Morales normally draws more masculine characters for comic books, like Wolverine, Spiderman, Venom, Fantastic Four, etc. However, we have known each other since we were kids, so I asked him if he could draw butterflies. Albert is an excellent artist who is always challenging his skills. He has illustrated numerous books for me, and he breathes life to my imagination with his art. I honestly think he can draw anything.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

The first two books of the Butterfly Princess Series, Spreading Her Wings and Finding Her Friends, tackle topics on body differences, accepting others, and embracing how God designed each of us. In the third book, I wanted to show how being smart, innovative and fearless can be just as or even more powerful than physical strength. My hope is to illustrate to children that they can overcome great obstacles by working with others and thinking outside the box.

Will there be another book with Laia the Butterfly Princess, and if so, when will it be available?

Yes, I am writing the next one, Freeing Her Crown, which is slated for Winter/Spring 2023.

Author Links: Amazon | GoodReads

The tale of Laia, the Butterfly Princess, is a body image parable for children inspiring them to appreciate the uniqueness of their design. Laia has overcome many obstacles, but now she wants to explore the world around her. As she soars into adventure, she runs into trouble when an angry alligator frustrates her plan to cross the river. Although Laia is small and not so strong, she faces her fears to help a new friend, and she gains an inner strength of compassion, smarts and grit.
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