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Literary Titan Gold Book Award December 2022

Literary Titan Gold Book Award

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 writing talent of these brilliant authors.

Gold Award Recipients

Friends, Lovers, Enemies by Vera Zegarac

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

Challenge Their Paradigms

Lloyd Jeffries Author Interview

A Portion of Malice follows two men, one a journalist, the second an immortal looking to fulfill biblical prophecy, as the world prepares for the coming apocalypse. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

The story came from a contemplation concerning Cain murdering his brother, being marked, then cast out. My entire life I’ve contemplated God’s nature, the nature of Humanity (created in God’s image, yet imperfect), and the reasons why the modern world is so filled with mayhem, avarice and despair. From that, the idea sprang and became richer and more provident as I explored. Thus, A PORTION OF MALICE was born.

Was there anything from your own life that you put into the characters in your novel?

I think they all represent me in some way and were born from those facets.  Emery as long suffering, in over his head, a metaphor for how I’ve felt through so much of my life.  Cain for his dark side, his search for redemption while fulfilling a destiny even he can’t imagine. Longinus for his strength, his boldness, and the darkness that blooms when any single trait becomes too magnified.  Igneus for his fear, his confusion, his self-doubt, surprised when he rises above his flaws to become the man he never knew he was.  I am all of these and none of these. To me, that’s the thrill. 

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

It was important to explore the concepts of sin, redemption, religion, time, God, Man, history, legend, myth and folklore. Somewhere in there, truth lies (pun intended).

I wanted to write a story that challenges paradigms, that provokes thought and sparks curiosity about the world in which we live and how we all can improve that world.

I seek to give readers an abundance of fodder so they might discern, for themselves, their own truths, and challenge their own beliefs. 

Some of my readers are elated, some get angry, but all experience emotions that challenge their paradigms. That’s the reason I’m writing the AGES OF MALICE series, to provoke, to confront, to bend the trunk and strengthen the tree.

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

A MEASURE OF RHYME, book II of the AGES OF MALICE series, is complete and will release in spring of 2023. EMBERS OF SHADOW, book III, is complete and will release in fall of 2023. I’m currently working on Book IV, THE TEMPESTS OF TIME.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Website

A Thriller for Thinkers!
A brazen, edge of your seat tale of God, humanity, and the battle between good and evil.
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Emery Merrick presses a pistol to his temple. Then there’s a knock at the door. Billionaire Thaddeus Drake hires Emery to write his biography. But Drake has a dark secret, and Emery quickly discovers he heads an ancient, secret society which aims to fulfill prophecy and sacrifice the Earth to a bloodthirsty God. Deep and emotionally stirring, Emery finds himself plunged into an immortal world of darkness, deceit, and barbarity.
This thought-provoking thrill-ride chronicles one man’s explosive journey into the apocalypse and one man’s epic quest to confront God as an equal. A captivating odyssey through history and time, A Portion of Malice changes the conversation about spirituality, redemption, and the world in which we live.
If you enjoy works by Stephen King and Dan Brown, you’ll be blown away by A Portion of Malice’s controversial plot and surprise twist ending. It’s the first book in the epic series, Ages of Malice.
Humanity hangs by a slender thread!
Can one man make a difference?
Challenge your paradigms, buy your copy today!

The Orphan

The Orphan by James Lloyd is about a character called Omar, who is a man in his forties.  Within the first few pages of the book, Omar is introduced to the reader as a blunt character as he navigates through his professional life.  The reader soon finds out that Omar is not the most lovable character that one might expect from a protagonist.  As the plot develops, it becomes apparent that Omar’s character has more to it than meets the eye and has to learn the lesson that many people have to face: if you don’t reconcile with your past, it will show up in one shape or form.

This thought-provoking book is written in the third-person narrative, which further prevents the reader from becoming attached to Omar straight away.  I like how James Lloyd wrote the narrative, as it gives the reader the time to make up their own mind on how they want to view Omar.

The book contains a detailed plot that ties the story together intricately.  Although the novel falls into the drama genre, James Lloyd combines various elements of the mystery and detective genres which lead up to a suspenseful event.  James Lloyd explores Omar’s past through devices like flashbacks and through the curiosity of other characters.  Learning about Omar in this way pushes the reader to question who Omar really is, whether he is a product of his life experiences or using them as an excuse for his actions in the present.

The Orphan is a deeply thoughtful drama with Christian values intertwined. I would recommend this insightful book to anyone who enjoys complex storylines and reading texts by authors who do not share everything with the reader immediately, giving the reader time to think retrospectively.

Pages: 358 | ASIN : B0B7KNMSS3

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Sometimes Winning Isn’t Pretty

J.R. Lightfoot Author Interview

Reaper follows a warrior who is sent to find a demon trying to buy weapons of the Apocalypse and raise the Four Horsemen back to life. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

My inspiration for this story was simply my Christian walk everyday. As I was writing this story, I wanted to not only tell a good story but give a realistic metaphor for my walk in Christ. This is not a hip hip hooray story where the reader knows from the beginning that good will prevail, the hero stands over the vanquished monster. No, when the reader finishes this book, the reaction should be whew! He made it. Some good guys don’t make it in this story, Jaml is not always the victor and like our daily lives, we don’t always have a great ending. Sometimes the ending is simply survival. The action is fast and intense, I hope the reader can connect with this idea that life is a struggle and sometimes winning isn’t pretty.

Jaml is a reaper whose job is to fight demons and protect the human world. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

I wanted to create a superhero but in a Christian light. This meant no aliens, rich guys or gamma rays. What better way for a Christian superhero than to be able to use Divine power? Hence the ability to tap into the power of the Reaper Angel. After using the power, he would have to rest and rely on others to watch his back. The inner conflict he has to come to grips with is that he is a monk, a religious leader which means he is tasked with saving souls. Yet, he is a trained killer. The perfect fighting machine who can draw on the powers of an Angel. Complete opposite sides of life and he is faced with this dilemma several times in the book. He is tunnel visioned in his mission and only focused on the mission. no romance here (not yet)

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

A realistic Christian walk. That is the major theme that I wanted to get across. The walk is not easy and often not pretty. There are sacrifices and failures along the way. Like most of us, we come out of these situations bruised and bloody (emotionally and sometimes physically). We don’t have a huge party, we are just grateful to come out of it. Alongside that, he is faced with racism and how people feel about an African. Another theme is how easily man is led down the wrong path by people in authority. They see the evil but refuse to call it out. Easier to just follow along. Many humans know who the demons are but would rather just fit in.

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

I am working on the sequel to this book. The book will be called Reaper’s Sacrifice. It will introduce new takes on monsters. Fallen Angels will play a larger role in this book and the twist at the end will be mind blowing. I am hoping to have this book out by the summer of 2023.

Author Links: Twitter | Facebook

Before there were Superpowers-
There were Godpowers.
 
With the birth and death of Jesus Christ, the War of Hosts is complete and the Casting of the Fallen is finished. The war for mankind’s soul has shifted from Heavenly battles, to battles of men. With the coming of a new Era, Lucifer has infected the population of man with demons of all sorts. To combat these evil forces, God has charged his human warriors, Reapers, to root out and destroy the demons in order to pave the way for the first Apostles, who will cultivate the young Christianity religion.
 
Infused with the power of the Reaper Angel, these warriors roam across the land battling devilspawn, and restoring faith and hope during a fragile time in man’s existence. One such Reaper, Jaml, begins his mission searching for an unknown demon intent on buying the weapons of the Apocalypse to raise the Four Horsemen back to life. Jaml soon finds himself surrounded by an infestation of evil. With a battle monk, Kem, at his side and a weapon of the Apocalypse in his hands, Jaml races against time and the Fallen to recover all the weapons of the Apocalypse before the Book of Revelations is unleashed.

Reaper

Reaper, by J.R Lightfoot, follows Duke Jaml of Erdine, also known as the Reaper, as he fights in a war against demons. Jaml was sent by God to eradicate a hoard of demons, often called the Fallen, who are trying to take over the world. He understands the importance of his mission, and Jaml’s training by the angels is meant to prepare him for a dangerous world, where he must succeed as the great warrior, facing the King of the demons, Lucifer, with the help of Kem, who works alongside him to defeat the devil’s servants.

This action-packed story includes a religious theme, solid character development, and intense emotional depth. The author offers a unique twist on a common good-versus-evil storyline with intriguing character names and how quickly they reveal their alliances. It’s also a vivid and explicit story that isn’t afraid to dive into intense, intimate, descriptive scenes, piquing my curiosity for the story’s subsequent development or unexpected turn.

While this book may seem a bit intense for some readers, I enjoyed the narration’s expressive and sometimes shocking nature, which I found refreshing and daring. J.R. Lightfoot does not shy away from giving readers a clear picture of battles and the hunt for demons. While trying to stop the Apocalypse and prevent the foretold book of Revelations from coming true, Jaml will quickly become a reader favorite as he embarks on his monumental journey.

Reaper is an excellent book for readers who are fans of science-fiction and fantasy stories, focusing on well-defined heroes and villains and intense battle scenes. While this book is written as a Christian action and adventure novel, readers of all genres are in for an entertaining read.

Pages: 384 | ASIN :B0B4PCXFT5

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Icarus Never Flew ‘Round Here

Icarus Never Flew ‘Round Here is a literary fiction novel that follows the story of Dale Samuel, a lonely rancher who has isolated himself in Oregon’s High Desert. Dale’s only companion is his wife Janice and their farm animals. Isolation from the world has made Dale question the complexities of life as he often finds himself wondering how little he knows about existence. Dale talks to the horizon as if it contains all the answers that he seeks so desperately, the main one being as to whether he and his wife are just as cursed as the rest of mankind, or if they’re special. The mysteries of the universe, and his own curiosity, have a huge effect on Dale’s life as the story unfolds.

Icarus Never Flew ’round here by Matt Edwards is a thought-provoking novel that follows a contemplative protagonist on an intellectually invigorating journey. The novel slowly builds up the characters, giving you plenty of time to immerse yourself in the world. Before I knew it, I was engrossed and captivated by the character. Dale Samuel is a character that is relatable but still compelling. He is a lonely rancher who questions even the slightest details of existence, which I feel a lot of readers will be able to relate to. Readers will find themselves wondering the same things as readers realize how little they know of the universe and existence; and that philosophical meandering is intriguing. The author has written a novel that is bound to pique reader’s curiosity and leave them thinking about things long after they put the book down.

The southern accent of the characters was a nice touch and served to make the characters feel authentic and also gives readers a feel for the Oregon High Desert. Dale’s evident fascination and connection with the everlasting horizon is a beautiful aspect of the story. I really enjoyed the descriptions in this book as it painted a vivid visual of a beautiful place. Dale’s connection to nature really elevates the descriptions and makes the backdrop almost ethereal. At first, the extent of Dale’s curiosity is acceptable and seems normal for someone who is completely isolated. However, as time passes, we see that his curiosity begins to get threatening and maddening until eventually, it takes over his senses.

Icarus Never Flew ‘Round Here is a reflective coming-of-age novel that explores questions about life in an impassioned and potent way. If you’re looking for a meditative novel with a unique voice, then this is a book that will keep you thinking well after you put the book down.

Pages: 160 | ASIN: B0BG8Q9JKG

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Judgement Is Inevitable

Steve O’Dell Author Interview

The Nephilim Project follows a demon who exposes a demonic plan to impregnate the daughters of men to spawn the Nephilim. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

Jesus Christ said he would return when the days on earth will be like those Noah experienced. The giant Nephilim ruled the earth when Noah was building the ark. Could demons once again produce the Nephilim, and would it be a precursor for Jesus’ second coming? If I answered my own question, I would say probable not, but we need to take notice of another marker of the days of Noah. God said he destroyed mankind with a flood because the hearts of men were continually evil. Today we see the rise of evil in our lands and we should be watching for Jesus’ imminent return.

Utoneious is an intriguing character. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

Utoneious is a fallen angel, a demon if you will and he tells of his exploits in Heaven and on earth. He is perplexed and troubled over this gnawing question: Why does God give men multiple chances to change their evil ways and angels suffered God’s wrath for just one evil choice? Should Utonious be pitied, should the unrepentant human be pitied? Upon realizing both men and demons share the same fate, Utoneious begins to regret the choices he made and wants to make amends not knowing salvation is based on faith rather than works.

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

My first book was criticized for being too “preachy”. In this book I set out thinking; If I presented the Gospel through the voice of a demonic, no one could say it was too preachy and for years I thought that showing the Gospel in this way was the purpose of my book. Just recently, I realized the major theme of the book is not the Gospel, but rather, God’s judgement is inevitable, and it will be tragic for those who refuse to repent and believe in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

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

At this time, I don’t have any plans. I wrote my first book after being shunned from a Christian Church and that took a year. Writing “The Nephilim Project” took me two years. If a third book followed suit, such an endeavor would take three years to accomplish. I guess I should get started on the Nephilims’ sequel before I get any older.

P.S. I have an idea on how Utonious could escape the demon prison Tartarus.

Author Links: Amazon | Facebook

This award-winning book recently earned acclaim from the prestigious Next Generation Indie Book Awards and tells
of shadows encompassing the earth. In this darkness evil seeks obscurity. With effort it can be perceived by the human mind and those groping in the dark can be enlightened by a demon’s tale. Deep in the bowels of earth, wasting away in a prison called Tatarus, a demon named Utoneious remembers the days of Heaven and gives testimony of what it’s like to be Satan’s slave. He exposes a demonic plan to, once again, impregnate the daughters of men and from this union the Nephilim, as in the days of Noah, will be spawned. The devil plans to use these giants in a most insidious way, and as the overseer of the Nephilim Project, Utoneious is well aware of what lust for flesh can bring.
This fallen angel’s evil knew no bounds. Legends of old were targeted and Utoneious played his role to perfection. He brought the ruin of Nimrod at the tower of Babble and Pharaohs of Egypt knew his curses before they were buried in their pyramid tombs. All of mankind suffered Utoneious’ lies until one day something tempered his ways. Perhaps he tired of his deeds when he watched the Church put men, from the order of the Knights Templar, to the torch or he may have changed because of his love for a woman. Did this fallen angel try to redeem himself or was his rebellion against Satan a ruse. Whatever the case may be, his story begins before death was ever known and leads down a doomed path where his destiny is intricately interwoven with a relic of Satan’s design.
Life and death, Heaven or Hell—what is the truth? If an answer could be found in a story, there would be no beginning to such a tale as there could be no end. Nevertheless, many have tried to tell it. Know this and be forewarned: chronicles from the damned are a tragedy, telling lies meant to deceive the race of men to join an unholy alliance, sharing with Satan an antipathy toward God.

The Nephilim Project

The Nephilim Project: A Demon’s Chronicle is an intriguing historical/biblical fiction novel that focuses on demonic attempts to corrupt mankind throughout the ages. Starting at creation, we follow a servant of Satan, named Utoneious, as he records the events of early Old Testament figures like Noah and Moses, or more accurately, their less-famous family members who succumb to demonic temptation in one way or another. Over the course of Utoneious’s chronicles we are introduced to the Nephilim, creatures begotten by the mating of a demon and a human woman. The story eventually moves on to events of the New Testament, and then the Knights Templar of the Crusades.

The Nephilim Project is a visionary novel. The attitude of Utoneious is of someone who has a job to do, as opposed to someone hellbent on being evil for evil’s sake. As he observes mankind he also takes part in bureaucratic meetings with other demons, who are aptly described in horrific and beastly ways, but also have a certain diplomacy to them. The juxtaposition of the business-as-usual demonic conversations overlayed with something like the death of Christ is jarring, but amusing and entertaining.

I felt that author Steve O’Dell’s writing is a bit esoteric at times, but the story is still fascinating. The humans of the story are often driven by a loyalty or faith in God, but are corrupted through demonic interference, usually through an ancient relic. The demons themselves assail mankind with temptation rather than brute force more often than not, making their influence more subtle as man falls to greed, war, and other vices.

This is a spellbinding Christian fiction novel. I enjoyed the unique and fascinating mythology of this world and reveled in it’s creativity. Readers who enjoy historical fiction with a supernatural element, especially history centering on the time of the Crusades, will really enjoy The Nephilim Project.

Pages: 389 | ASIN: B01N2WJ4I9

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