Bullets and Bandages: Bond of Brothers is a thrilling action story following the true stories of a Vietnam veteran. What inspired you to write a book about Rob and his comrades?
This book was inspired by my older brother Patrick’s stories about his tour in Vietnam. Through his words, I was given a unique insight into what it was like for our men and the bond that grows between them as they struggled to survive.
The book is inspired by true events. What were some things you wanted to keep accurate and what were some things you took creative liberties with?
I tried to keep the battle scenes and the military logistics as close to his words as possible. Some of the non-combat scenes are from my own experiences growing up in that time in our history.
This was an overall a heartening story of friendship and faith. What were some driving ideals that guided your writing?
My love of country, my pride in my brother and our military motivated me; I had a story and it needed to be told.
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
I have a new thriller just out, and available titled Butterfly Lake. I also plan on continuing the Bond of Brothers line, with a new book about the war on Terrorism and the men and women who defend us from this evil threat.
Raw and Powerful! Bullets and Bandages, was inspired by the true stories of a US Army Field Medic, Vietnam 68-69. Through those stories, the author was given the unique insight into the Bullets and Bandages of war. Parts of this book are also about the author’s own experiences, and that time period in our history. The trails and victories of Rob and his comrades pull you into a world of survival through willpower, tenacity, and wit. Bullets and Bandages, a story of love, faith, friendship and humanity. What was it like for our military, and their time of war, as they fought together to survive in the Jungles of Vietnam.
Planet of Men follows Blackwood as he seeks the Heart of the Sun in an underground labyrinth protected by ancient monsters. Where did you want to take this novel that was different from book one?
Book One was designed to deal with Professor Peter Blackwood’s introduction to the world of planet Enigma, where he was delivered against his will by the powerful and mysterious alien intelligence, able to snatch the ships from hyperspace and use their crews for its strange and often dangerous experiments in human condition and survival. In the first book, Peter Blackwood becomes a stranger in the strange land, where he is forced to survive and adapt to the new environment until he gets to know the locals, the descendants of the people captured and exiled to planet Enigma centuries ago. In Book Two, informed by both the red cloud and the local rebels against the ruling tyrannical supermen, Blackwood once again has to go against his will to become a chosen messiah to fulfill the centuries old prophecy and eventually accepts this mantle in order to bring justice to the people he likes and wants to protect.
I enjoyed the imagination behind the weapons and battle methods used. What is your writing process like to come up with these ideas?
I am a huge fan of military history, and when I was working on the Book Two, I was inspired by the weapons and battle tactics used by the great generals from the ancient times to the present. My writing process included the detailed study of the applied military tactics depending on the situations Peter Blackwood has found himself in. In the book, Blackwood is not only a scholar, but also a former Space Marine officer with many years of experience in the field. I knew that this combination of knowledge and experience would greatly assist him in his survival and eventual defeat of his enemies who are very powerful and posses a great destructive potential. While working on this novel, I was trying to apply martial arts and military strategies of many talented battlefield commanders. There were three main principles of strategy and tactics that remain true from the ancient times to the present: concentration of force, deception and knowledge of the terrain. My greatest influence for this novel came from the Sun Tzu’s Art of War, which is still considered one of the greatest books on strategy and tactics ever written.
What were some surprising reader reactions you’ve had to book one, Planet of Gods?
Authors are often surprised by their reader’s reaction to their work, especially when the readers are introduced to the sequels. I was surprised a few times when some of my readers said that they had no idea which book they liked the most first or second. I realize that the readers have expectations, and many of them are realistic. Some of my fans were saddened by the death of Sachiko Nomura, while others have told me that as a main protagonist, Peter Blackwood could not love two women who were both dear to him and would have to make a choice. I was also surprised by the reader’s mentioning comic books and how my novel reads as a graphic novel where the readers have to visualize what is happening and imagine what the characters might look like form my descriptions. I do enjoy to surprise my readers when I can, whether by a plot twist or a powerful dramatic event that influences their feelings. Many readers get attached to certain characters and are sad to let them go, even if their sacrifice was necessary. I do get surprised a few times when I read novels written by other authors. Most of them are pleasant!
What can readers expect in book three in the Enigma series?
The Enigma series was planned as a two book series which clearly defined storyline, plot and structure. Initially, I considered to write it as a singe novel without breaking it into two parts. Back in 2013, when I was working on the first draft, I did not consider myself sufficiently experienced author to attempt the creation of a singular large novel in excess of four hundred pages. Breaking the storyline into two parts gave me enough space to maneuver without being overwhelmed. In the second installment of the Enigma series, Peter Blackwood fulfills the wishes of the mysterious alien red cloud, defeats the evil overlords and finds love of a beautiful woman on the planet he has come to love. Book Two marks the decisive and ultimately happy end for the main protagonist for everything he has endured. I am currently working on another science fiction novel whose main character is inspired by that of Peter Blackwood. Working on both novels was a great fun!
Professor Peter Blackwood has managed to escape the wrath of the powerful overlords. Brought back from the edge of death by the red cloud and assisted by the rebel smugglers, he finds refuge on exotic Freedom Island. Protected by the island’s magical soil that turns overlords into mortals, Blackwood should feel safe. But he cannot hide there forever.
Overlord Empress Yuka Sato and her chief henchman Edward Grant are preparing a massive invasion of Freedom Island. Torn between his love for his overlord mentor and lover Sachiko Nomura, and strong-willed and fierce tribal warrior Lita Sandir, Blackwood finds a new source of spiritual and physical strength to complete his mission. Now he is more than a man; he is a living and enduring symbol of revolution….
As the fate of planet Enigma hangs in the balance, Blackwood must fight for survival and the lives of all he holds dear. Deep under the island’s surface, inside an underground labyrinth protected by monsters of ancient legend, Blackwood must find and unleash the Heart of the Sun, an ancient super weapon that will end the rule of the overlords forever.
It’s time for Blackwood to finish the game and reveal his true destiny.
As you consider ordering this book you might be asking yourself why should the Vietnam War—which occurred a half-century ago—matter today? It matters because there are many disturbing things the US Government hasn’t told you about the Vietnam War and doesn’t want you to know because of events happening today? Things such as all the rainbow-colored pesticides and the disabling effect they had on US service personnel. Even today in 2020 the US military is still having problems with toxic chemical exposures. In fact, all you have to do is take a look at this recent news article, “On Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2020, Rep. Mark Green (R-Tenn.) and Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.) introduced H.R. 5957, the K2 Veterans Toxic Exposure Accountability Act of 2020”. Almost a half-century after the Vietnam War and our military leaders still haven’t gotten it right.
Silent Spring – Deadly Autumn of the Vietnam War may have been written too late to help Vietnam Veterans with their toxic exposures and illnesses, but it’s not too late to help future generations of military personnel from encountering the same fate.
The book you are considering is a real-life chronicle written in sorrow with hope for future generations of soldiers. It’s a surreal voyage into everything the US government hasn’t told you about the Vietnam War and doesn’t want you to know.
What happened in Vietnam … didn’t stay in Vietnam. It came home with us!
Skills of the Warramunga follows our well-known team on a mission to rescue an MI6 operative from bandits on the Malayan peninsula. How did the idea for this novel start and change as you wrote?
My third book, Skills of the Warramunga, takes place in Malaya, where I have worked during my career throughout the country. After my first book, The Warramunga’s War, where most of the action takes place during the Second World War, my novels have dealt with the consequences in the aftermath of war. After of World War II, in Malaya many different groups, including communists, bandits, Nazis and others, were trying to gain control of all or part of the Malayan Peninsular from the British. The novel deals with the period when the British created the Malayan Union in April 1946. It showcases the extraordinary tracking skills of the Warramunga aborigines, which I witnessed first-hand during my time at Tennant Creek.
This is the last novel in your Warramunga Trilogy. Did you accomplish everything you set out to do with this set of novels?
Yes, I did. Firstly, I intended to show the effects of war in countries where I had worked and am familiar with. Secondly, I planned to include some of the weird and wonderful people whom I worked with over the years as characters in the novels (with changed names, of course) and to use them to entertain the readers. Thirdly, I wanted to show case the incredible skills of the Warramunga aborigines as I knew them years ago. I think I have achieved all that.
What draws you to the military suspense genre?
I was drawn to the military suspense genre, largely as I had a lot of research and data about the Second World War. My father and his brothers fought in that war, so I have quite a lot of information from them. The war was a violent but intensely interesting time.
What is the next novel that you are working on and when will it be available?
After completing the original trilogy, I decided that I couldn’t let the principal characters just fade away, so I set their next adventure in China in which I have worked extensively over the years.
Early in 1946, former army officer, Jamie Munro, and his half-Aboriginal friend and colleague, Jack ‘Jacko’ O’Brien, who head the Commonwealth Investigation Service in Darwin, are called on to assist in the rescue of Colonel John Cook, a senior operative of MI6, who has been kidnapped by bandits and taken into the jungles of Malaya.
Jamie and Jacko had worked in intelligence operations with Colonel Cook during the desert campaign in North Africa in the Second World War, as the Afrika Corps threatened Egypt.
With Jacko’s half-sister, Sarah, a full-blood Aborigine from Tennant Creek, they arrive in Kuala Lumpur to find that they not only have to contend with the impenetrable jungle of the Malay peninsula, but also with a murderous and subversive organisation of Fascist criminals whose aim is to disrupt the creation of the Malayan Union by the British Military Authority, set to take place on 1st of April 1946, foment an uprising and take over control of the country.
All the inherent bushcraft skills of the Warramunga are needed to rescue Colonel Cook as well as prevent catastrophic mayhem on the Malayan peninsula.
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.
Gold Award Winners
Cuttle: A Novel by Chelsea Britain
Silver Award Winners
Posted in Literary Titan Book Award
Tags: action, adventure, author, author award, book, book award, book review, bookblogger, childrens book, ebook, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, historical, kindle, kobo, literary award, Literary Titan Book Award, literature, military, mystery, nonfiction, nook, novel, picture book, poetry, read, reader, reading, romance, science fiction, sports, story, suspense, thriller, war, writer, writing
This is the fourth book in the Warramunga series. We follow ex-army officer Jamie Munro, and his friend Jack O’Brien aka Jacko, an intelligent half aborigine as they go on a critical operation in Yangtze. Jamie Munro is his usual self. He is skilled, has a sharp eye and always ready to take risks. Jacko, on the other hand, is good at drawing plans and strategizing. The pair leads others as they head out to investigate and help stop an opium smuggling operation that is taking place around the Yangtze River.
The journey towards Yangtze River is risky. Not everyone supports Munro’s mission and this calls for attacks from criminals and other bad guys. Their junk boat gets attacked by bandits, the team gets shot at, and they sustain injuries and endure all forms or threats. Their grief does not end there as they encounter hostile people who constantly torment and harm them. They also come into contact with environmental hazards that slow their operations. Being the men they are, the two forge on with vigor. I like how they cooperated to finish set goals even when there were so many obstacles ahead of them.
Greg Kater is a deftly draws draws his characters, especially Jacko and Munro. It is great seeing how Jack can spot Munro’s weaknesses and vice versa. There can never be a Jamie Munro without Jacko. Colonel Cook was another great character. The man was not in action all the time but his wit and tactics came in handy. I enjoyed his conversations and loved every minute he held meetings with his people. Having Colonel Cook in charge meant that everyone was in capable hands.
Greg Kater has written an exciting military thriller that is packed with drama, intense action, perilous adventure, and peppered with some wild scenes. The plot thickens with every new move the main characters take. Reading Conflict on the Yangtze gives one the impression of being part of the action. I love the compelling the plot and the twists that kept me guessing. Fans of military action adventure stories will find plenty to love.
Pages: 362 | ASIN: B07TXR4MSF
Jack “Jacko” O’Brien and Jamie Munro have a challenging mission ahead of them. The two have been tasked with rescuing a top MI6 operative who has been taken hostage by a criminal gang. The operative’s name is Colonel John Cook. O’Brien and Munro go back in the day. They worked together on many missions and even captured targets together. They have extraordinary skills, given their experiences during World War II. The task at hand may seem simple, but the people involved in the rescue mission of Colonel Cook have to prepare for any danger they have to face in the jungles of Malaya, where Cook has been kidnapped.
Greg Kater takes you across the Malayan jungle and terrain as we follow Jacko and his friends as they go after a dangerous criminal organization. Reading about the tactics they use, how they strategize and how they deal with adversaries was a great experience. Even with the skills Jamie Munro possesses due to his service in the military, the journey to combat the criminal organization is not easy. The gangs are prepared to face Munro and his team. It is not just the men who are resourceful in this mission, Sarah, a full Aborigine from Tennant Creek, and also a half-sister to Jack Obrien helps the team on their mission.
The team’s time in Kuala Lumpur is adventurous. Wit and physical strength are essential for them to achieve their goals. Skills of the Warramunga is a compelling thriller that takes you through different exotic landscapes and treacherous terrain. You vividly experience every action on the ground through the author’s eloquent words. I like how the author introduced the conflict at the beginning of the book. The description gives one a back story and the context of the struggle. The urge to read more increases as the action in the plot intensifies.
Skills of the Warramunga is an edge of your seat thriller. The author is exceptional with plot pacing and character creation. The characters in the book are firm and fun to follow. I enjoyed their conversations and how they bonded over disputes and other issues. I recommend this book to readers that enjoy military thrillers and action stories.
Pages: 314 | ASIN: B07PJLLJXL
Tags: action, adventure, author, book, book review, bookblogger, ebook, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, Greg Kater, historical, kindle, kobo, literature, military, nook, novel, read, reader, reading, Skills of the Warramunga, story, suspense, thriller, writer, writing
Steel Reign: Flight of The Starship Concord by Braxton Cosby begins with an intriguing and haunting scene. The protagonist, Steel Reign is expressing his regret over a massive mistake that he has made. Just from this singular scene, it is clear that he will go to any means to bring back his lost sister, Olia. She is aboard the ship Eclipse and involved in a treacherous game under the space pirate, Forge. Reign does not have the means or credits to find her. His sole plan to acquire an artifact and exchange it for credits has fallen through. He keeps having to devise Plan Bs to reach his sister. Along the way he manages to acquire a ragtag bunch of friends and colleagues: nerdy Gifford, the novice Stink, and Sereas. On top of these struggles, he is also combatting the deadly virus DX that has practically taken his eyes.
Steel Reign: Flight of The Starship Concord manages to hold a quick-paced, thrilling tone, as Reign is thrown from one dangerous situation to another. The prologue also returns in a more meaningful way later in the story as Forge’s sick game becomes clearer.
Throughout the story, a lot of different species and creatures kept cropping up. At first it was a bit jarring and difficult to keep up with, but the descriptions were so fun that I couldn’t resist being drawn in anyway. Take for example the Donthras that are described as being “multi-sexual” and “open to trying anyone and anything” Although there was an underlying intense tone to the story, the moments of levity were perfectly captured and made me laugh out loud.
Reign himself isn’t infallible though- which I personally love in an action/adventure protagonist. So often they seem to fall prey to being all around superhumans (see: Jack Reacher, Stephanie Plum) but Reign knows his strengths and weaknesses. He even manages to acknowledge that he was the brawns in the sibling relationship and Olia the brains. The pair has had a difficult upbringing but share a very sweet and strong relationship. I felt immediately sympathetic and connected to Reign whenever he reminisced about his sister.
Steel Reign was a solidly entertaining novel- a strangely perfect amalgamation of science-fiction, revenge drama, and ensemble comedy. It hit all the right spots for me and was a great weekend read.
Pages: 337 | ASIN: B082S82S8P