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Seeking Social Justice

David Crane Author Interview

David Crane Author Interview

Swordpoint is a thrilling action adventure novel set against the chaos of the French Revolution. Why did you choose this time and place for your novel?

French Revolution and Napoleonic era always held a special fascination for me since I was a young and impressionable teenager. The French revolutionary period is unique, because it came as a result of people seeking social justice through extreme means and was largely an act of desperation against the over privileged French aristocracy. It was a time of great changes and political turmoil, where ancient royal institution was shaken and then toppled by the will of the common man. It was a phenomenon that shaped the history of the modern Europe and provided the background for this novel.

I enjoyed Vidocq’s character progression and overall development. What were some ideas that were important for you to capture in his character?

Vidocq is the main protagonist in this story and there were several important ideas in presenting him to the readers as a man of intelligence and action. The first idea in shaping his character came from reading his biography, because unlike many fictional characters he really existed. A man in trouble with the law who learns the hard way what it means to be an honest man is a strong idea and it shows in Vidocq’s actions as he navigates though obstacles in his turbulent life on his way to freedom and good reputation. The second idea in shaping his character came from his own decision
in changing his life using his experience as a master criminal to catch other criminals. What can be more exciting than an outlaw trying to catch other outlaws?

You highlight some important historical moments in the French Revolution. What kind of research did you undertake for this novel to get things right?

To be perfectly honest, I initially considered this writing project as too ambitious for me. I have never written a historical fiction novel before, and the desire to make it happen overcame my feelings of fear and doubt. My research was very thorough and it had to be right, because in order to convey the true historical setting of the period, I had to find out everything I could about French Revolution, the early reign of Napoleon, mannerisms, customs, speech, weapons and provide correct dates and the descriptions for every real historical event. It was time consuming, at times exhausting, but ultimately very enjoyable experience.

What is the next novel that you are writing and when will it be available?

I am currently working on a post-apocalyptic science fiction novel which is in the first draft stage. It involves humanity in its relationship with an artificial intelligence after an apocalyptic event that alters human evolution on a planetary scale. The novel should be available in about a year’s time give or take a few months for the final polishing. I enjoy writing very much and hope to produce many interesting novels.

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Swordpoint by [Crane, David]

David Crane’s historical novel, Swordpoint, transports the reader to late 18th-century France, a country gripped with the chaos, blood, and terror of the French Revolution. The novel will entertain you with its realistic settings, interesting historical references, passionate love affairs, duels, battles, betrayals, and narrow escapes.

Eugene Francois Vidocq was a thief, an adventurer, and a duelist who searched for his place in life with wit, sword, and passionate love affairs. Hunted by the police agents of revolutionary France and later the agents of Napoleon, he is forced to make the most important decision in his life to survive and become a man of respect. To achieve that, he must transform himself into a new man, an outlaw hunting the outlaws in the name of justice. The road to salvation is hard, but for a man like Vidocq, failure is not an option.

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The Oaths and Vows They Made

Timony McKeever Author Interview

Timony McKeever Author Interview

The Monk follows Detective Laskey and ex- detective Billy as they attempt to solve a murder while trying to overcome their past. What was the driving motivation behind this book?

The relationship between long time Police partners is unique. Only that between soldiers in combat is comparable. Investigation is far more interviewing, looking at crime scenes and bodies than it is portrayed on television. If you got in a shooting every week like on television, I can guarantee you a lot of Departmental therapy.

You never hear about all the men and women who put on the badge and hit the streets every night, often putting themselves in harms way for people they don’t even know and fulfilling the Oaths and Vows they made. These Officers never get any press and the “Bad Cops” get more press than they deserve.

I hope “The Monk Mysteries” will give more press to the “Good Cops” and provide the reader some insight as to the emotional battles that come with the job while trying to live a normal life.

I could really feel the old camaraderie between Laskey and Billy in this book. What served as sources of inspiration for you while creating their relationship?

Personal experience with longtime Partners. In particular, a guy named Jack, who passed away several years ago and far too soon. We were tight at work and off-duty for years. We worked Patrol, Narcotics and K-9 for years. However, there came a time when a similar situation as depicted in the book, as to a job change caused some friction. We went our separate ways but were able to re-connect before Jack passed away.

What has been the most surprising feedback you’ve gotten from your readers about the book?

Most often is how strong and independent the female characters are. This wasn’t a conscious act on my part rather, it is the type of women that are required to deal with the males in the book. They are also like so many of the women I have known and admired in my life.

This is book one in the Monk Series. Where will book two pick up and when will it be available?

“THE MONK Vol 1 Revised ed” is a revised version of The Monk I wrote ten years ago. After writing ‘The Gumdrop House Affair” Vol 2, of the Monk Mysteries, which has been on Kindle Best seller list for two years, I realized that I had become more confident in my writing and needed to revise the first version of the Monk. Same characters and on Capitol Hill but better and hopefully more entertaining for the Reader.

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The Monk (The Monk Series Book 1) by [McKeever, Timony]

A Catholic Priest talking about Evil is not unusual. However, a Catholic Priest looking directly into the eyes of “Evil” who the Monk calls “The Ugly” is unusual even for the Capitol Hill area of Denver and St. Benedict the Moor’s Church. This is just one of the “Spiritual Tests” the Monk faces as he attempts to solve the murder of Julia Lopez with his ex-Partner Det. Sgt. Jack Laskey.

With political pressure applied by the Governor, the Archbishop of Denver and the Franciscan Provincial, The Monk becomes a “Special Consultant” and helps Laskey solve the “Murder of the Decade” and save his position which was in jeopardy due to his inability to adjust to any Partner other than the Monk. During the course of the investigation the Monk faces the “Ugly” in many forms in the present and confrontations from the past. Those confrontations led the Monk to become a Priest and a “Spiritual Warrior” as well as a “Physical Warrior.” Leaving the and security of “Our Lady of the Rockies” Orphanage run by his Order, the Monk must return to the streets of Denver and find the killers with Laskey.

William Yeats Butler known as “The Monk” on Capitol Hill gave up a promising career in the NFL to become a Policeman. He had been an All-American at Notre Dame and was a local Hero and role model in Denver. Through 10 years with Laskey as his Partner, they worked Patrol, Narcotics and Homicide. They were the “Toughest Cops” on the streets of Denver. In their quest they are assisted by Irish/Japanese Officer Mai Li McDuff. Some would say she got the worst of both cultures; “Peaches” the transvestite hooker; “Popcan Charley” a resident of Cheeseman Park; “Mikey” the restaurant owner with Mob connections and “Frank” the only “Irish English Bulldog” in Colorado – all this under the watchful eyes of Father Ian Timony, Father Augustus O’Shea and Aunt Rhoda Williams.

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Lion – Escape from Russia

Lion - Escape from Russia by [Misquita, Douglas]

Thrilling from the first page to the last, I was instantly drawn into Lion’s vivid tale of unwavering action and adventure. Lion follows five individuals, brought together through intricate and overlapping incidents to pull off a prison break like no other.

The first scene unfolds with Aslan Terzi locked away and at death’s door when a timely turn of events has him reunited with the outside world. New and old acquaintances gravitate to combat and once again Aslan is thrown into the thick of the conflict, he so desperately tried to run from.

Misquita’s novel was an absolute thrill to read. His research is top notch and the flawless detailing shows for it. When I started the book, I did a double take just to make sure it was fiction! From the get-go we are thrown into the action; bloody, gut-wrenching, fist beating, action. And the pace does not let up. The character’s point of view switches frequently and subtly. You have to keep your eyes glued to the page to catch those quick changes. This is probably my only complaint, I got lost a few times because the narrative changed from one person to the next with little to no warning. However, I was impressed with Misquita’s smooth transitions and by the second half of the book, I got used to the speedy change of perspective.

The well-defined characters of Lion and descriptive action scenes are undoubtedly my favorite features. Each character begins with a defined personality that aids in the development throughout the book. The romantic, family and friendship relations among the characters appear as authentic and never fall into stereotypical roles. For such a short book all the characters portrayed a well-rounded arc. There were, of course, some individuals with a stronger narrative but I never felt there was a character lacking in explanation.

For a book of carnage and war as a backdrop, Misquita does not censor his readers from the gruesome battle scenes. Lion doesn’t pull its punches, with every fight scene emoting the overwhelming desire from the fighters to survive. As a reader, every do-or-die situation expressed the same sentiment as the real things; I had no idea what the outcome would be. The rich detail and graphic storytelling illustrate a gripping and awesome tale that Misquita beautifully crafted for his readers to enjoy, and enjoy it I did. This is my first book of Misquita’s but not my last.

Pages: 304 | ASIN: B07RTZ9JXX

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Avenge the Silenced

Avenge the Silenced (Reverence Book 8) by [Landeros, Joshua]

It has been a full trilogy of books, since we have come back to the main timeline of Joshua Landeros’ Reverence series. Having established an entire prequel series to flesh out his world, Landeros has come back to deal with the fallout and what is left of the UNR. Both sides have taken huge losses, but neither will retreat. And it will be up to the last Marconi, Damien, to rally the surviving UNR Cabinet to lead the country into this brave new future. Meanwhile, the Crimson Angels are in a difficult place, despite their successful strike on the International Summit. Gabriella will have to pick up these pieces and decide who she trusts more. All of this coming to a head to see who will end up in a grave or standing astride it, in this new installment of an epic military science fiction saga.

It is refreshing to be back in uncharted waters, having spent so long in the past, and Landeros ensures readers hit the ground running and wondering where all of our heroes of the past have landed after the last battle. The tension ramps up with little effort and with trademark pacing. The story unfolds with our cast of characters struggling against one another as they seek to either win the upper hand or to make sure they enforce justice.

Landeros’ prose continues to improve with each installment and his stories are becoming more and more complex, rather than a simple military sci-fi thriller they initial books were when the series began years ago. It is a pleasure to see how an author has not only grown, but developed his own flavor in the genre as well. This is another solid entry in the ongoing series and it shows little sign of slowing or stopping anytime soon!

Fans of military fiction or military science fiction should already have Avenge the Silenced on pre-order. Readers, who enjoy gritty action among thought provoking themes would also find themselves quite intrigued with this book.

Pages: 366 | ASIN:B07NNV7GKB

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Bloodfest

Bloodfest by [Grimbly, Ryan, Maddison, James]

Bloodfest by Ryan Grimbly is a paranovel set in Pacoven – an isolated island in the Pacific Ocean that the government uses to conduct social experiments. The story follows the activities of an elite squad of Hidden Government soldiers captained by Ace McDagger, aided by his childhood friend Shimon. The soldiers are sent to Pacoven in a shroud of mystery, not knowing why they are going there or what, or who lies in wait for them.

The plot is fast paced but easy to understand. There are a couple of flashbacks to Ace’s childhood, however they are easy to follow and add to the depth of his character. Some of the flashbacks include Ace’s friend Shimon, this builds up their relationship and explains there closeness even in the professional field. However, the loyalties of some of the characters are tested, and as they progress with their mission it becomes unclear whom can trust whom. As with any good tale there are several twists and turns to keep you guessing.

Bloodfest is filled with characters. Most of the characters belong to the Hidden Government Army and work with the main character Ace McDagger. Other less developed characters are the residents of Pacoven. The characters are easily distinguishable and are not hard to follow. Some of the characters are described physically, for example Ace’s eye patch is often referred to. Others have their skills (often magical) described – Shimon reads minds and sees the future, another character – Resh- erases memories. The dialogue is cleverly written, with each character having their own unique dialogue that aptly fits their character.

Of course, there are also the paranormal characters – zombies, warlords and man-made monsters. These characters are also cleverly and thoroughly described; “one of bones and loose red flesh”. The vivid descriptions had to the suspense of the story.

Adding to the suspense is the setting itself. Pacovern is an island like no other. Although it appears typical with streets, shops, nightclubs, buses and churches looks are deceiving. It is in fact full of trapdoors, an artificial church and a vortex. Just like the humans and monsters traversing the island itself is dangerous and unpredictable.

Bloodfest is a fast moving and gripping read. The characters and setting are described in graphic detail, creating a book that is hard to put down.

Pages: 538 | ASIN: B07GBZ5KHJ

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Literary Titan Book Awards June 2019

The Literary Titan Book Awards are awarded to books that have astounded and amazed us with unique writing styles, vivid worlds, complex characters, and original ideas. These books deserve extraordinary praise and we are proud to acknowledge the hard work, dedication, and imagination of these talented authors.

Literary Titan Gold Book Award

Gold Award Winners

Children of the Elements: A Steampunk Adventure by [Wanders, Ora]The Monk (The Monk Series Book 1) by [McKeever, Timony]Swordpoint by [Crane, David]

The Rhine (Harmony Book 1) by [Dean, R.L.]My Name is Erin, and My Mom's an Addict by [Voltaire, Amy]

Oink and Gobble and the 'No One Can Ever Know Secret' (Oink and Gobble Book Series 1) by [Whaler, Norman]

Literary Titan Silver Book Award

Silver Award Winners

Layers of Deception: An utterly gripping, international crime thriller. by [James, Leo]Destined To Date A Good Man: No More Counterfeits! by [Thomas, Daisy]

The Dark Age Chronicles: Eve of the Hunters by [Bailey, T. L.]The Obsession (Jackie Austin Mysteries Book 1) by [Brotherton, Dawn]The Love of Gods (The Legends of the Pale Series Book 1) by [Smith, Tarrant]

Infinity 7: Gods Among Men (Infinity Wars Book 1) by [Cosby, Braxton A., Dodds, Keshawn, Champion, Chayil]Traveller Inceptio by [Shackleford, Rob]

Image result for Kirby Lord MyrrendrylA Christmas Carol: (Retold by Norman Whaler and Illustrated by Bianca Milacic) by [Whaler, Norman]

The Silver Tabby by [Higgins, Rachael]Hurtsy the Harrowed Hedgehog: A Future Selves Series by [Graves, Cindy]

 

Visit the Literary Titan Book Awards page to see award information and see all award winners.

 

It Might Be Magical

Sherry Leclerc Author Interview

Sherry Leclerc Author Interview

The Dragon Shifters at Southgate is the second book in your Seer Series. Was this a natural continuation of the first book or did you want things to develop organically while writing?

All the novels in The Seers Series are part of the same over-arching story. While they each have a complete storyline in themselves, they leave a bigger question open to be answered down the road as the series ties up. They are all pieces of the puzzle that will come together to form a complete picture in the end. Readers will see this especially in the last planned book of the series.

That said, there are some things I don’t plan down to the minute details while I am outlining and planning, because there are aspects I want to occur more organically. This is especially true for conversations between main characters, for example. I know where I want a scene to go, but I try to let dialogue occur naturally, so to speak. How would this one character, for example, respond to what another character says of does? Obviously, there is “craft” in the formulation of every scene, but I don’t want to force words or actions on a character who wouldn’t naturally say or do them just for the sake of meeting a certain end.

The lore surrounding the ley lines and dragonkin is intricate and well developed. What is your strategy for building your world?

To bring it right down to the basics, it all needs to make sense to me. Even if the readers don’t get to see all the details or know all the background, I need to answer those questions for myself—the ones I wonder about when I read fantasy novels with different characters and magical systems.

I am a huge fan of J.R.R. Tolkien and the intricacies of his world-building. If you read his lesser known works, such as The Silmarillion, you can see the detail he goes into, right down to how/why Middle Earth was formed, why humans and elves are different, why elves are immortal and so on. The Silmarillion reads almost like a history book. While I don’t believe today’s readers need to know all the details and history of the world and the magic system you are building, if an author has a solid grasp on those elements themselves, they can create better and more realistic worlds—and with fewer plot holes. It might be a magical, impossible world, but if it makes a kind of logical sense then the reader will be more able to relate to it and it will feel more believable.

This was a belief I’d formed over time, being a fan of authors who themselves create well-developed and intricate worlds and magical systems, such as Tolkien and J.K. Rowling. Then, while I was writing The Dragon Shifters at Southgate, I came across Brandon Sanderson’s Laws of Magic. It was a concise way of verbalizing what makes a magical system work. I try to keep these laws—and all the lessons I’ve learned from the masters over time—in mind when I create my own worlds and their lore.

What served as sources of inspiration for you while writing?

Inspiration comes from all over, really. I write in the fantasy genre, but I am often inspired by real-world issues. For example, I try to make gender a non-issue in my books because I believe it should be a non-issue in the real world. Discrimination and segregation based on race is also an issue in my books, because I want to express my belief that we are all equal. Yes, people have differences, but people should be judged on their merits, not on some preconceived notions that don’t really have a place in our modern world. Yes, there may be differences, but why not look to how those differences can compliment each other and add strength to the whole?

If you’ve been following politics and have been active on social media at all, I’m sure you can see that there are a number of things that have taken place over the past couple of years—and things that are still taking place—that have inspired me to make that point even more.

I also find inspiration in books I read, interactions I see at home or on the street, music I hear and so on. Anything from the smallest little details to the largest world issues can be inspiration, really. You never know when inspiration will strike. You just have to be open to seeing it and to using it when it happens.

Where will book three in the series pickup and when will it be available?

Book three picks up with the third seer champion, Edan Carr, and his journeys and struggles as he attempts to fulfil his part and his responsibilities in preparing the realm for what’s to come. As the champion of Westgate, he will be traveling to that gate-town to protect it and its keystone, but he will get waylaid along the way.

There will be a lot of internal angst in this book, as there was in the first two books, but it will be of a different sort. We will meet shifter species that weren’t seen in the first two books. We will also see a lot more of the Dark Sorcerer and learn a lot more about him. We’ll see the beginnings of the “full” story and get a deeper peek into what drives him.

The third book, The Warrior of Westgate, will be available in the fall of 2019.

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The Dragon Shifters at Southgate: Book Two of the Seers Series by [Leclerc, Sherry]A Seer Champion sworn to protect Southgate. A Dragon Shifter Lord sworn to protect his clan. Can they bring their peoples together to defeat the evil forces that threaten to destroy them all?

Seer Champion Talwyn Sevi must protect Southgate and its keystone against the evil forces that threaten their destruction. Knowing she cannot do it alone, she seeks help from a group of reclusive Dragon Shifters. In return, she offers them information vital to their survival. Can Talwyn gain the Dragon Lord’s trust in time to save Southgate and the dragonkin?

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This Was My Mad Doctor

T.L. Bailey Author Interview

T.L. Bailey Author Interview

Eve of the Hunters finds Eve stranded on a jungle island fighting for her life while Nyx is releasing the Ancient Enemy. What were some themes you wanted to carry through from the other books in the series and what were some new ideas you wanted to introduce in this book?

I really wanted to show how far Nyx would go if he was unopposed, and that there were consequences to Eve and the others leaving to protect her. The whole idea for book two was that I had to bond these characters in a strong way, and fast. They all come from diverse backgrounds and had nothing in common with one another. I have learned from watching tragedy movies that a way to bond people is through surviving horrific ordeals together. It changes people. I wanted to see how my characters would act and how it would later change their views and their way of thinking.

I also was a big fan of the sci-fi movie, “The Island of Dr. Moreau” and I wanted to make a tribute to that movie. This was my mad doctor and his pets.

I enjoyed the prose and dialogue in this book. What is your writing process like in creating the interactions between characters?

I grew up watching “Abbot and Costello” movies and I have always loved the comedy/horror aspect. It was a touchy thing to do because everyone feels that horror has to be 100 percent serious and tense all the time. Yes. But we are human beings and unless this is planet Vulcan, we do have emotions. I think laughing or even making witty comebacks as you face down something atrocious, is simply masterful. I liked how I can do that through Rowan, he is my “Ichabod Crane” and I can use him to be witty and humorous. The interactions between Black slapping Roman when he says something stupid is my “Abbott and Costello” aspect. My whole love/hate between the good doctor and the pirate is my fondness of “Star Trek Bones and Spock” and their unspoken friendship.

What reader reactions have surprised you the most about your books?

This being a fantasy book I would have thought Argo or Lycaon being the top readers favorite character… but the pirate has won most readers hearts.

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

The third is The Dark Age Chronicles Eve of Destruction and will be available soon.

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Stranded on an elusive island in the middle of nowhere, Eve and the others try to survive the island’s thick jungle. As they explore their surroundings they find what looks like an Aztec pyramid built in the center of the island. They soon learn that the island’s inhabitants are far from what they think, and it sends them in their darkest fears as they race for their lives against creatures hell bent on consuming them alive, and a family of sadistic hunters out for fun. Together they must pit all their survival skills to outwit their newest prison: a Labyrinth full of deadly traps…….meanwhile, unopposed, Nyx unleashes mankind’s greatest foe….the Ancient Enemy.

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Stolen Time

Stolen Time (Community Chronicles Book Two) by Jenn Lees is a time travel fiction story about a dystopian future. The book begins in the Scottish Highlands in the year 2056, then jumps back to Present Day. After the U.S. Stock Market crash, plunging the world into chaos, Scott Campbell saves Caitlin Murray from a mob, but there’s something strange about him. He acts like he knows her, and he seems to know future events. He claims that he must protect her because she’s needed for her coming role as a great leader. Caitlin thinks he’s crazy, until he proves that everything he’s said is true. Will Scott be able to keep himself and Caitlin alive amid violence and the fall of human society? Or will his act of traveling to the past change everything about the future?

This book has an interesting premise and I enjoyed reading the story. Although it is Book Two in the Community Chronicles, this story can be read without reading the first book. The Glossary of Scottish Words at the end of the book is helpful for readers unfamiliar with some of the terms used by the characters.

The author’s descriptions of the chaos and struggles for immediate survival were vivid and I could picture what Caitlin and Scott were seeing and experiencing as they escaped from Edinburgh. But then the book got bogged down a bit by a slow pace when they hid out in a cabin in the Highlands, while Scott taught Caitlin survival and fighting skills. This section did not hold my interest as well as the rest of the story, when they were in constant danger.

The portions of the story that take place in Present Day were told primarily from Caitlin’s point of view. At the beginning, I felt just as confused as Caitlin since I didn’t have a clear idea of what was going on and I didn’t know why Scott acted like he knew her when she first meets him. It is only later that he tells her the details of their relationship. Once Scott revealed their connection in the future, I would have liked to see more glimpses into his “past” with scenes from his point of view. In either case, this slow build up and reveal was intriguing and, I thought, the best part of the novel.

I liked the interactions between Caitlin and Scott, and I enjoyed the romantic element in the story, which showed a love that spanned across different timelines. As soon as I finished the story, I immediately wanted to start reading Book Three in the series, Rory’s (Caitlin and Scott’s son) story.

Pages: 280 | ISBN: 0987644807

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What Is Their Endgame?

R.L. Dean Author Interview

R.L. Dean Author Interview

The Rhine is an exciting space opera following a dramatic chain of events set off by the Free Mars Now movement. What served as sources of inspiration for you while writing this book?

The Harmony series is based off of a 15 year old TV script that I wrote about Martian independence, the novel form is its third incarnation. That script was inspired by the TV show Babylon 5. I wanted to explore Mars more thoroughly; what is the impetus for the movement for independence, who are the leaders, what is their endgame?

We follow three very well developed characters in this story where their actions intertwine. What were some driving ideals behind their characters?

Mat is the ‘everyman’ or ‘average guy’ that suddenly finds himself in circumstances beyond his control, and in this capacity he is simply ‘reacting’ to what is happening. This was a deliberate design of character. Every one of us can relate to being ‘tossed’ into something that we must deal with- circumstances not of our own choosing. This also works as a forge for our own character, who we really are will come out. I think of all character archetypes, this is my favorite.

While it may be said that the UN (in my story) is the catalyst- their oppression of Mars setting everything in motion- the character of Alexandria is the one that sets the story off. She is my ‘grey’ character; a family woman, yet ambitious. In her case I wanted to explore those traits, how to balance ‘work’ and family. She loves her family, and seeing a world in the grip of government powers that live for greed, she decides to do something about it.

As the Governor of Mars, Shultz is completely dedicated to his people, but as the story progresses we see he’s in over his head. We hear so much about bad politicians, I thought I would shift the paradigm and make a good one.

You’ve built an intricate world in this book, between Earth and Mars and the corporations. What was the funnest part about building this world?

For me it’s the visualization. In a previous review of the book it was stated that I ‘lavish on detail’, and the reason for that is that I just write what I see. If Shultz and Jung are in his office talking, I imagine the office’s sights and sounds and smells. The same holds true for the Sadie’s corridors and cabins, or Apex’s boardroom.

This is book one in the Harmony series. Where will book two pick up and when will it be available?

Harmony Book 2: ‘Year of the Child’ picks up two months after the events in ‘The Rhine’, opening with Misaki. I expect it to be available by November 2019.

Author Links: Twitter | Facebook | Website

The colony depends on Earth businesses for goods, but Earth is run by an imperialistic United Nations whose regulations and sanctions are overbearing.

Increasing tensions are only exacerbated by suspicious pirate attacks in the Belt. It is rumored the attacks are the work of the Free Mars Now grassroots movement or privateers paid by the Martian government in defiance of the UN. Recent victims of a pirate attack, Mat and his crew aboard the Sadie, discover evidence that could prove the rumors true.

With the UN squeezing the colony for every dime they can get, and Shultz looking to better the Martian situation, there are deals to be made. No one knows that better than Apex Mining’s CEO, Alexandria Reinhardt, whose Board of Directors has ordered her to sell their ore to the Martians despite a UN embargo. Her plans are more ambitious than simply ignoring government decrees, though.

Will the Free Mars Now movement find a way to release the colony from their 100-year lease to Earth? Can Shultz find a way to work with Earth companies without angering their government? Does Mat possess enough evidence to prove Mars’ disloyalty? And … in the past what happens when you push a distant colony too far?

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