Severe weather patterns - storms, floods and strong winds - are sweeping across planet Earth. Against this backdrop, three high school students, known and tormented for their strange abilities, fight their own battles against school bullies. The discovery of a strange key by their leader Chris Reynolds plunges all three through a portal into a sister world, Cathora, in another dimension. In this world, their behaviours, that labelled them as misfits on Earth, turn out to be the seeds of extraordinary powers.
They soon meet Batarr, the Guardian of the portal. He tells them they are not normal children, but are part of a group of six entities called Mytar who are periodically seeded throughout the dimensions to fight planetary invasions across these portals. Cathora has been invaded by an alien army, led by a creature known only as Zelnoff whose next target is Earth. The Mytar alone have the power to stop him if the other Mytar on Earth can be found. There ensues many struggles and battles as Chris, Susie and Joe seek to evade Zelnoff’s forces long enough for their powers to develop so they can detect the remaining Mytar back on Earth.
As the first rays of sun filtered through the tree canopy, Batarr’s forces assembled on the planet’s surface. They had emerged from a narrow, moss-lined tunnel had been chiselled between two sandstone rock outcrops. Compared to the underground complex, the surface was a cold and windy place. A light dusting of frost clung to the ground and the wind whistled and tore at the gathering company. To ward off the cold, the Mytar had been fitted with garments that had been soaked in oil derived from the boiled skins of warm-blooded fish. This oil was renowned for its unique properties. In the cold weather it solidified, sealing in the body’s warmth, while in hot weather it softened, allowing the skin to breathe.
Chris flexed his arms, twisted and crouched down into a squat. His clothes seemed to flex and mould themselves to fit the changing shape of his body. He pulled the hood of his jacket over his head and sniffed at the strange oily smell of the fabric.
“They’re made from the finest material in the land.” A deep, resonating voice jerked Chris out of his preoccupation with his clothes.
Chris looked up at a man over twice his size with dark, intense eyes buried above high cheek-bones and a long tapering jaw.
“I’m Altac, Leader of the Guard,” the man said.
Altac smiled, and Chris noticed a pink scar running from the side of his mouth to the corner of his jaw.
“I’m Chris,” he replied, feeling rather small and insignificant.
Altac brushed back some of the long curls of black hair that trailed down to his shoulder and bowed in what Chris assumed was this world’s version of a handshake.
“I believe you need no introduction,” he replied. “After all, aren’t you the reason we are embarking on this little errand?”
Chris smiled uncertainly, trying with his new found talents to catch something of Altac’s thoughts. He read admiration, mixed in with surprise at how young and small the Mytar were. Like so many of Batarr’s soldiers, Altac thought that the Mytar had volunteered to come and save Cathora from Zelnoff. Chris swallowed back some of his guilt, thankful that Altac hadn’t witnessed their behaviour when they first arrived.
Altac’s smile slid away. “I suggest yourself and your fellow Mytar travel in the centre of the company, where you will be best protected at all times,” he said, in a more solemn tone.
Chris nodded. Mingled with Altac’s admiration, he picked up the concern for their vulnerability.
By this time Susie and Joe had appeared. Chris noticed that both their eyes widened at the sight of this man. He wore what appeared to be a chest plate made of thick hide and metal, and a long dagger was strapped to his hip. Slung over his shoulder was the same weapon Chris had seen Zelnoff’s soldiers wearing in his vision. It looked a bit like a rifle, Chris thought, except it was shorter and bulkier. Altac greeted Susie and Joe with the same politeness he had shown Chris, bowing respectfully at each of them.
Joe circled Altac, paying particular attention to the weapon that hung by his side.
creature was gone.
Chris rolled onto his side. In front of him, the mountains towered into the clouds like a series of giant, white coated, metal spikes. The wind had dropped and the sun was beginning to break through the clouds. The warmth was magical. He crawled on his hands and knees higher up the beach, shivering uncontrollably in his wet clothes. Waves of exhaustion swept through him as he collapsed on his back. The rays of sun on his skin felt marvellous. He closed his eyes and thought he would sleep for just a moment.
About the Author
Robert Cole was born and grew up in Sydney, Australia. After achieving a Bachelor of Science (Honours) at the Australian National University he travelled extensively and returned to Sydney to complete a Doctor of Philosophy in Molecular Biology. Following a Post-Doctoral Fellowship at Sydney University, he worked in a number of biotech companies and has numerous scientific publications.
Robert has always had an interest in writing speculative fiction, particularly with themes related to social and political issues. Recently he has published an Apocalyptic novel called "Nuclear Midnight," that reached number one on Amazon UK. His other areas of interest lie in children and teenage fiction, generated while raising three children.
Publisher: 4-D Publishing
Roberta Sedgewick is stuck in a house that is too empty without her beloved Burton—the rat died and left her with his dog and rooms that rattle. She convinces her three golfing buddies, all in their seventies, to sell their homes and buy adjoining condos. The widows intend to spend the rest of their days golfing, gambling at the casino, and having fun. Oh, the heaven of it. But then they all hire the same maid who uncovers long-hidden criminal secrets kept by each woman. Oh, the horror of it. The reputations of their deceased husbands, a banker, a minister, and a respected farmer, will be tarnished forever. Three of the widows could face jail time, and the fourth fears for her life. Whatever will they do with the conniving, blackmailing maid?
I catch my breath. This could be it. To make sure, I draw the newspaper almost to my nose and read the listing again. Right here in the real estate section of the Vista Harbor Chronicle is the answer. The date in the corner reads July 7, only four days ago. A happy dance springs within me, but I control the urge. No customer sitting at a high table in a bistro needs to witness a lady past her prime make a fool of herself. Instead, I jig my fists below the table in a silent yes, yes, yes. I’ve found the condos. Life at age seventy-two is about to change. I slide from the stool and head for the door, hoping no one notices the newspaper tucked under my left arm.
“Thank you, Mrs. Sedgewick,” the coffee gal calls after me. She saw the paper, and that’s her way of letting me know. Without looking back, I waggle my right hand above my shoulder and push open the door.
Outside, I dig through my Gucci for my phone. I love my hobo bag, but don’t like searching for whatever drops to the bottom. I need to figure that out. I also don’t like the dark face of the phone in the bright sunlight. Phone people need to figure that out.
I move under the umbrella of a red maple. In filtered light, I send a text to my three buddies. Meet me at the clubhouse. I have a surprise. I shuffle a little smart-step, unable to hide my joy. I’m still light on my feet even though my hair has turned soft white. I avoid coloring it but fight other signs of aging with a diet pill once in a while and wrinkle cream rubbed in nightly. Like most Pisces, I’m proud, a bit vain, and not afraid to admit it. I hop into my reliable Subaru.
A hand grabs the top part of the car door.
I gasp and brace against the seat.
A careworn woman stands there like a waif. “I did naught mean to startle you. I noticed you did a jig step before getting into your car and wondered if you are from Scotland. I’m so homesick for the heather.” She’s medium height, medium weight—medium all the way around. Her flyaway hair is sandy, and her sad eyes show more burnished gold than green. She removes her hand from the top of the door. “I’m sorry for intruding.”
“No need to be. I’m not from Scotland, but some distant relatives were. They mixed with my English ancestors, so I’m blessed with a good dose of Highland merriment and English good sense that battle each other. I hope you find your way back to the heather.” I close the car door. It thuds softly, not a hard slam to show dismay. So often anymore I’m prone to sharpness and a quick tongue, followed by guilt. Or else I rattle on about nothing and don’t worry about it.
The Scottish woman walks away, spine stiff, head high. An odd, lonely woman, but likable.
A sense of uncertainty chases around my shoulders. I banish it with a glance at my watch. There’s enough time to run by Jones Realty and arrange for a showing of the condos this afternoon. I tilt the rearview mirror and apply a boost of blush, lip gloss, and a dab of liquid concealer by my left eyelid—the dang droopy thing. There. All is repaired well enough to see Ned Jones, the realtor.
Before I swing into the late morning traffic on Harbor Drive, a white-knuckle thought smacks into my gray matter. The newspaper is only a few days old, but what if someone already bought one of the units? What a terrible thought. I press harder on the accelerator and zip through Vista Harbor, the alpine resort community I call home. It’s a small town compared to Aspen or Big Sky, but it’s more than big enough to accommodate tourists and newcomers. I don’t mind sharing the beauty of my valley, my mountains, and my lakes. Sure, there’s room for all, and yes, I claim ownership. This part of Montana belongs to me.
Ten blocks later, after having to slam on the brakes to avoid the rear end of a showoff car, I park next to a chalet-style house with a readerboard announcing homes or acreage for folks to buy. Big black letters read, New on the Market. Four Single-Story Condominiums in the Harbor Hill Area. Perfect. And no more stairs to climb.
I straighten my skinny jeans, smooth my top, and walk inside the office. A clock chimes the half hour . . . plenty of time before lunch.
Behind a glass counter, inlaid with prize listings and a Sold banner across each, a young man thumbs through a stack of listings and thoroughly ignores me. He must be the new assistant, and the talk of the town, like any new buck. No cure for small towns and gossip.
“Is Ned in?”
“No.” The young squirt doesn’t bother to look up and continues to scan a paper, nimble finger flying down the page.
I lean a little onto my right side and place my jewel-covered fingers on the counter, thrumming them on the most expensive listing. “Just tell your boss our mom called from the nursing home and wants more money.”
The kid makes eye contact. “You’re his sista?”
“No, but you should treat me like I am. Do I hear Boston in your accent?”
“Moving to a small town is an adjustment. Attitude counts.”
Satisfied I have his attention, I say, “I would like to see those newly listed condos at 2:00 this afternoon.”
“The ones out on Harbor Hill?”
I nod. “The ones with the same name as the golf course, ski mountain, and every other place that isn’t called Alpine or Vista. What’s the street number?”
“101. Ned is showing a unit now.” The kid tries not to smirk. He doesn’t make it. His brown-flecked eyes shine with mischief. They probably always do. He’s a young devil, I can tell, and figure he’s teasing me.
“Please inform him Roberta Sedgewick will be at the condos at 2:00 this afternoon. If he can’t make it, have him call me. He has the number.” Halfway out the door, I lean back inside. “Oh, by the way, I’m interested in buying all four and may be interested in listing four pieces of prime property. Like the kind you have there under glass on your counter. Tell him not to sell any of the units until we talk. Understood?”
I chuckle to myself as the door closes. I’m bad.
About the Author
Marie F. Martin is the author of an intense vow in MATERAL HARBOR, surprising twists of a family’s past in HARBORED SECRETS, a grizzly attack and lover’s spat in RATHAM CREEK. Together her three thriller, mystery, or suspense novels have over 250,000 Kindle downloads and 613 five star reviews.
She now adds DON’T MESS WITH MRS. SEDGEWICK to her list of books.
Marie lives in a fertile valley at the base of the Rocky Mountains. She enjoys a quiet life where laughter comes easy, love easier. She invites you to join in her rich, rural memories on her website where she has posted a memoir of her early childhood and raising her family of four children.
Sale Price - $1.99!
Literary Fiction, Women’s Fiction, Family Drama
Date Published: May 2014
Winner. First Prize in Literary Fiction 2015 and Finalist in Cover Design 2015 -- Independent Publishers of New England.
Award-Winning Finalist in Fiction. 2015 USA Best Book Awards
Surviving family horror is one thing.
DJ Brava has the courage. She has the determination. She has friends covering her back. But when unearthing one secret leads to another and another...can she survive the fallout?
Some family members beg her to wait until they're dead. Has one of them gone too far in a misguided effort to protect someone -- or something?
This book is an entertaining page-turner for anyone who loves a good family drama full of secrets and intrigue. It has the social consciousness of a Picoult, the resonance of Sue Miller, the wit and tongue of Evanovich, the popular appeal of Anna Quindlen, and the female bonding of Thelma and Louise (without the drive off the cliff).
Praise for Wait Until I'm Dead!
“Wait Until I’m Dead! weaves a deeply personal issue with politics, complex family dynamics, and pushes the boundaries of our notions of right and wrong, good and bad. The depth and richness of Dawber’s characters feature some unusual individuals with relationships and points of view that stretch our minds to think in new ways. Using humor, Dawber’s own strong clinical experience, and a deep compassion for people, she provides twists and turns that keep us coming back for more.” Carol A. Plummer, Ph.D., Consultant, trauma therapist, author: Preventing Sexual Abuse.
“As both a long time trauma therapist and avid mystery reader, I highly recommend Wait Until I’m Dead! by Elda Dawber. Elda’s rich descriptions virtually pull the reader into a relationship with the main character. The unfolding of the character’s history is clever, seamlessly woven into the present. A must read!” Geraldine Crisci, MSW, trauma specialist, consultant, trainer; Toronto, Canada.
About the Author
Elda Dawber is a clinical social worker who has been working with abused and neglected children and their families for more than forty years. Her writing is informed by the trauma, grit, and struggle to survive witnessed in hundreds of remarkable children. This is their story, as well as the story of millions of adult survivors who will relate to its frank descriptions of the healing environment good therapy can provide. Elda lives in Rhode Island, surrounded by an amazingly loving and diverse family. It is her hope that this novel will find its way to the people who may need it most.
Police are People Too
“You experience the emotions, distractions, frustrations and successes of the characters in every chapter of In the Line of Duty. I found her heartfelt details to be spot on with a line-of-duty death. Being able to put such a tragic situation into words, is difficult in itself, but she does it with compassion, knowledge and respect for those in uniform who know what it is like to lose a brother or sister in blue.”
-- Carl J. Harper, Training Officer, ERT (SWAT)
Sadly, as humans, we tend to judge that which we don’t understand. And let’s be honest, most of us haven’t stood in the shoes of a police officer. We’ve never faced an armed subject at one o’clock in the morning or had to make life-and-death decisions on a daily basis. We’ve never had to focus in a traumatic situation and make a significant judgment call. We’ve never had to face families and friends who have been left behind and tell them that their loved one won’t be coming home.
In general, people either point fingers at the police or put them up on pedestals. No one is perfect, however, and sometimes that pedestal cracks. Instead of doing either of these things, though, I think it’s most important that we respect our law enforcement officers and accept that they are human, just like the rest of us. They have families and friends. They have feelings. They have hopes and dreams.
In the Line of Duty was inspired by my love of law enforcement, for those who serve and who have served, but I also wanted to write a book that showed the human side of policing. I wanted to paint a vivid picture that shows that police are people and illustrate how the loss of a brother in blue affects them—not only on a professional level but more importantly, on a personal one.
The characters in my book must carry on after a great loss to find the person who killed their fellow officer. Their grief tears apart relationships, changes people’s viewpoints, and has them acknowledging their own mortality, just as it would anyone.
So the next time you see a police officer, remind yourself that police are people, too, and deserve the same compassion and kindness as you or me.
Author of In the Line of Duty (Detective Madison Knight series)
Excerpt from In the Line of Duty, Chapter 3:
Troy gripped the sink in the men’s washroom at the Stiles police station with both hands and stared at himself in the mirror. He’d lost men close to him before. The last one was two years ago, and the officer had been killed in a car accident while off duty. He’d left behind two kids and a wife. But Barry…he was different. Life always equaled death, of course. It was a simple equation to accept until it touched close to home. And that’s what Barry’s death was for him--personal.
Losing Barry made it clear just how dangerous this job could be and how fragile life was. One minute here, the next gone. Barry had just been pumping gas, a routine thing, something people did all the time without any thought to their safety. Those on the outside would say that’s the risk he took being in law enforcement. Yes, there was the chance any one of them wouldn’t return home from a shift, but it wasn’t something Troy consciously thought about before heading to work.
In fact, when serving in a SWAT capacity, he’d say it was one of the safest positions within the Stiles PD. SWAT had the toys, and when they showed up to manage a situation, it was often brought under control rather quickly. Even the majority of criminals didn’t want to tango with an AR-15 and armored vehicles. Besides, dwelling on one’s mortality wasn’t healthy. But when something like this happened to one of their own, it spurred on such self-reflection. It could have easily been him in the morgue, or one of his team members. Or Madison…
His insides quivered with rage as his heartbeat slowed with his grief. He squeezed his eyes shut.
“I’ve got Dad’s car tonight,” Barry says. “We’ll take it out on the back roads and see what she’s really capable of.”
“Your dad’s a cop, Barry,” Troy reminds him.
“So? What he doesn’t know won’t hurt him.” Barry takes a few steps down the hall of their high school but stops and spins when Troy doesn’t follow. “Come on, man. Don’t make me take Lyman.”
Troy came back from his thoughts and opened his eyes to find himself staring at his reflection.
That night had been one of the best ever. Barry had sent the car airborne by racing over the railway tracks on the outskirts of the city. They’d even conned some seniors into getting beer for them and drank it by the tracks later that night.
Barry had made Troy feel alive…
Pain knotted in his chest, the regrets over skipping drinks with Barry last week paired with losing a part of his childhood somehow.
Troy pinched the bridge of his nose as the memories continued to rush over him.
“I just got my acceptance letter.” Barry holds the envelope in his hand. “This college has the hottest chicks… Not that it would matter to you.”
“What does that mean?”
“It’s Lauren and Troy sitting in a tree…” Barry sings.
“Seriously? You’re like a girl sometimes, you know that? A big, emotional girl.”
“Hey!” Barry punches him playfully in the arm.
Madison punched him in the arm sometimes, too…
God, what would he have done if Madison were the one who’d been killed?
You’ve reached the end of the excerpt, but In the Line of Duty is available in e-book, paperback, and hardcover from popular retailers.
About In the Line of Duty:
He devoted his life to seeking justice. But would she get any for him?
It was an ordinary day for police officer Barry Weir. It was the end of shift, he was tired, and he just wanted to get home to his wife and kids. But someone had other plans for him, shooting him down and forcing him to make the ultimate sacrifice.
When news of Weir’s murder reaches the precinct, it leaves Detective Madison Knight and every cop in the Stiles PD itching for revenge. It cuts Madison’s boyfriend, colleague, and Weir’s childhood friend, Troy Matthews, deepest of all, driving him away from everyone he loves just when they need one another the most.
With evidence pointing to a gang-related drive-by, Madison and her team investigate the town’s seedy underbelly in search of justice for their fallen brother. But the deeper they dig, the more convoluted the case becomes. Now they need to figure out if this was a random shooting as part of a gang initiation, a straight-up hate crime, or a targeted kill. But with members of the Stiles PD under attack, they have to do it fast…before more officers pay with their lives.
About the Detective Madison Knight Series:
Murder. Investigation. The pursuit of justice. Do you love trying to figure out whodunit? How about investigating alongside police detectives from the crime scene to the forensics lab and everywhere in between? Do you love a strong female lead? Then I invite you to meet Detective Madison Knight as she solves murders with her male partner, utilizing good old-fashioned investigative work aided by modern technology.
This is the perfect book series for fans of Law & Order, CSI, Blue Bloods, Rizzoli & Isles, Women’s Murder Club, and Hawaii Five-O.
Read in any order or follow the series from the beginning: Ties That Bind, Justified, Sacrifice, Found Innocent, Just Cause, Deadly Impulse, In the Line of Duty, Life Sentence (Bonus Prequel).
About the Author
Carolyn Arnold is an international bestselling and award-winning author, as well as a speaker, teacher, and inspirational mentor. She has four continuing fiction series and has written nearly thirty books. Both her female detective and FBI profiler series have been praised by those in law enforcement as being accurate and entertaining, leading her to adopt the trademark, POLICE PROCEDURALS RESPECTED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT™.
Connect with CAROLYN ARNOLD Online:
Website - http://carolynarnold.net/
Twitter - https://twitter.com/Carolyn_Arnold
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCarolynArnold
And don’t forget to sign up for her newsletter for up-to-date information on release and special offers at http://carolynarnold.net/newsletters.
Women’s Fiction, Drama, Family Saga
Date Published: June 2015
Since the horrific night a drunk driver slammed into their car during his driving lesson, young Teddy has had to live with the memory of seeing his beloved father, Stan, die. Now just sixteen, he carries both sorrow and survivor’s guilt.
Concerned for her grieving son, Mary decides to put as much distance as she can between Teddy and the nightmarish Phoenix intersection that claimed Stan’s life. She moves the family to Stan’s small Indiana hometown, a place of peace in which she hopes they can build new memories. There, Teddy finds inspiration in an old book his great-grandfather carried with him to America, a book Bulgarian fathers have always read to their sons.
Is Stan reaching out to his son from the grave?
Mary also makes an equally life-changing discovery in the small town—Rosetta, Stan’s high school sweetheart. The deeper Mary digs, the more she learns of the forbidden love Stan and Rosetta shared. During the Civil Rights Movement, they dared to reach out for love across racial lines.
Now as their three lives intertwine, Teddy, Mary, and Rosetta must make difficult choices. Will they choose happiness? Or will old pains cause them to live as victims of circumstances?
Beginning in 1912 on Ellis Island and told in three voices over four generations, I’ll Always Be with You is a profound celebration of the power of family.
Praise for I'll Always Be with You:
"A two-tissue tale about life after loss." Kirkus Review
"...a simple but engaging tale of life after loss. It never devolves into pointless melancholy, but simmers like a pot of family recipe chicken soup, goes down wonderfully, and warms from within." Clarion Review
"...a gem of a story that has heart, soul and empathetic insights and is potent in its small moments. This beautifully crafted, touching book offers tender wisdom that will draw a wide audience and could be especially appealing to young adults grappling with insecurities and difficult times." Blue Ink Review
About the Author
Violetta Armour is a first-generation American who cherishes her Bulgarian heritage. A former English teacher and independent bookstore owner in Arizona, she has written for Highlights for Children and Chicken Soup for the Soul.
She writes monthly book reviews for Ahwatukee Foothills News and Tempe Tribune in Arizona. Her debut novel received a Readers' Views Choice Award for Fiction 2016.
Literary Fiction, Paranormal Fiction, Historical Fiction, Metaphysical Fiction
Date Published: February 2016
If you could see the memories of every person you met would it be a blessing or a curse?
John Calabrace's life has been in havoc since he was a very small child. He spends his life fighting through a flood of memories, most of which are not his own. The second he is touched by another person, he knows every memory & feeling they have ever experienced, and those memories stay permanently etched in his head.
What might seem to be a wonderful gift to some, also has its dark sides. John flees college, finding solace in the Navy serving on a Navy ship and then aboard a nuclear submarine. That relative peace and isolation of submarine life is quickly taken away after being extracted and recruited into a world of espionage to unlock other secrets from around the world.
Is he an angel, is he a monster? Even the military men/ government handlers can't decide. While John may know everyone else's secrets, he also has secrets of his own. Those he feels, he can reveal to no one..
About the Author
John Tolliver has spent his career in the world of nuclear engineering.. After college John joined the Navy where he served aboard the fast attack submarine USS Jacksonville where he acquired his love of travel and adventure. John followed his Navy years with a 30+ year career in Nuclear chemistry. John also volunteers as an arbitrator and mediator in the New York State courts. His passions include writing, researching and travel. Having given up on submarine travel decades ago, John still enjoys the sea life with the grand modern luxury of the Celebrity Cruises fleet.