Here Be Monsters

The Here Be Monsters bundle is appropriately of a monstrous size—that is, it possesses 19 titles, which is huge for a bundle. Bundles usually have 10 – 12, at most.

I’m looking forward to Here Be Monsters myself, because I checked Amazon’s Look Inside for every story that had one, and nearly every title seems to be one I want to read! It will be a wonderful cornucopia for my summer.

Of course, one of the Monsters titles is my own, A Knot of Trolls. In previous posts about bundles, I’ve included a little bit about my own contribution, but I think I won’t this time. There are too many choices that aren’t mine that I want to feature, for me to spend space on Knot. If you want to learn more about Knot, check it out here. I will just mention that it’s a collection, with 7 shorts/novellas.

I did say that Monsters has a lot of reading, didn’t I? 😉 With 19 titles, one of which collects 7 titles together (mine), that’s 25 total, consisting of a mix of shorts, novellas, and novels. Perfect for a lazy day on the beach or lounging in a hammock in the shade or staying up too late of a summer night.

Edited to Add: No, I was wrong. A Murder of Crows is also a collection. Since it contains 16 tales, that makes 40 total in Here Be Monsters. Good grief! What are we waiting for?! Go click that buy button!

Check out the 8 titles below (of 40), and then go snap up your copy of Monsters. Links follow.

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A young woman discovers her own brand of magic in a pre-World War II Budapest teeming with monsters, vampires, and demons…

Eva Farkas has managed to survive in fascist Budapest despite her heritage and her congenital lack of magic. But after seeking the help of the Vampire Lord of Budapest, Eva comes to realize that mere survival isn’t enough. She must find the magic hidden inside of her, and not just survive, but fly.

The Magic of Fabulous is a novella set in the world of the Lady Lazarus historical fantasy series, and contains both an afterword by the author and excerpts from the other books in the series.

When the deck is stacked against you, how will you play the game?

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A collection of short horror, ghost, and dark fantasy stories for adults, woven together by a flock of crows, telling stories to entertain a girl trying to survive a tragedy…

“It was we crows who took your daughter, in case you were wondering. She didn’t run away. We had—I had—been watching her for some time, listening to her tell stories in the grass behind the house. She would sit near the chicken coop and watch the white chickens pick at the dirt, pulling up fat worms and clipping grasshoppers out of the air as they jumped toward the fields.

“Some of them were good stories. Some of them were bad. But that’s what decided it, even more than any issue of mercy or salvation or anything else. Crows are, for one, possessive of stories.”

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Reaper Hawk—mightiest warrior in all Lysandria—tells the true tale of the minotaur in this gripping adventure of sword and sorcery, monsters and mayhem. Questing for adventure in the far east, Reaper meets the minotaur and becomes embroiled in his quest to recover his stolen humanity and reunite with his lost love. Before they are done, they’ll have to fight wizards and wyrms and overcome their own greatest fears, but if they’re successful, they’ll turn back the tide of chaos and restore order to the world.
 
 
 

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Monsters hide among the suburbs. Roland McReedy knows because he works for one, under duress. “The Rajah.” Roland and his partner Nelson hunt down occult oddities under threat of death for themselves, and worse for their families. Roland and Nelson face the night with only their knives, billy clubs, and wits to protect them.

But the Rajah’s latest demand pits Roland and Nelson against the foulest creatures in the San Francisco Bay Area, including a horror older than time itself.

In a world full of monsters how can mere humans survive?

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Magic has a cost. Sarah Beauhall, blacksmith and dragon slayer doesn’t know just how high. Her lover, Katie Cornett, has finally been overwhelmed by this spiraling cost and her spirit is blasted from her body and flung into a world of nightmares and monsters.

As Katie’s coma deepens and her chances of survival fade, Sarah’s spirit must make a journey of its own through a world of crystalline eaters and malevolent spirits who exist only to hunt and to consume.

Night after night Sarah delves beyond the hidden paths, going from crystalline landscapes into the wild lands and lost worlds far beyond the great sea of dreams.

When the spirit of a long dead murderer—known only as the Bowler Hat man—begins gathering an army in the forgotten lands, Sarah discovers that more than eaters and feeders pursue her.

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Dani’s family is unusual. She’s the youngest—and only girl—of seven. Being the lone female, her family would like her to be all girly and sweet like her best friend Allie. But Dani is a tomboy born and bred, and on her fourteenth birthday she discovers why.

Life is about to get decidedly strange!

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Scylla is caught by surprise when her mother, the river nymph Crataeis, shows up unexpectedly. Mother’s infrequent visits are welcome, but also serve as a painful reminder of what Scylla’s life had been like before the evil witch Circe turned her into a hideous, people-eating monster.

The cliff Scylla lives on juts out into a narrow straight of water; an arrow-shot away lives the monster Charybdis, who sucks water – and any ships unfortunate enough to be close by – down a whirlpool and into her great maw several times a day. Mother asks Scylla to allow a ship that belongs to a young man named Odysseus to pass by unharmed a few days hence; that way his boat won’t have to venture too close to the whirlpool. Scylla agrees, on the condition that her mother go to Circe and plead with her to return Scylla to her normal human form.

But when Odysseus’ ship appears, Scylla realizes that perhaps things are not as they seem…

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Private eye Nick Beasley lives in a world where fairy tales ended a long time ago—where zeppelins now soar the skies instead of dragons, and where the first automobiles have taken the place of flying carpets. He’s made a name for himself across the Afterlands by debunking fake magicians and exposing fraudulent monsters. This is the modern age, after all. Magic and monsters are long gone.

At least, that’s what Nick believes. Until he gets magically transformed into a monster, that is.

The only person who may be able to help Nick is Lady Cordelia Beaumont, one of the last enchantresses in the Afterlands. But in order for her to cure him, they’ll have to retrieve a powerful artifact from a ruthless crime lord—who is also Cordelia’s father.

The fate of the Afterlands lies in the hands of a runaway enchantress and a monstrous ex-detective. What could possibly go wrong?

Perfect for fans of Doctor Who, Once Upon A Time, Indiana Jones, or The Dresden Files, the Beaumont and Beasley series features high adventure in a world where fairy tales are history.

We love to fear them and fight them. Monsters come in many forms, from the monsters within to the monsters outside and under the bed. Dare you venture into the caverns and the castles? Dare you enter the darkness of an accursed soul?

An eclectic collection of dark creatures and those who confront them. You have been warned.

Here Be Monsters features 19 tales (really 40) of myths, monsters, and mayhem.

The Here Be Monsters bundle is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iTunes, or direct from the BundleRabbit site.

 

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Summer Shimmer

The latest seasonal story bundle curated by A. L. Butcher is out!

I’ve not had a chance to read it yet—super busy with design work on the paperback of my upcoming novella Blood Silver—but there are several titles that especially catch my eye.

I’ll list them below, along with my own novella, Skies of Navarys, also included in the collection.

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IT HAPPENED in early September, the time of year when the city does its damndest to remember what heat was, just one more time before winter rocks on in…

This is a story of horror and haunting regret.

A group of homeless men—fishing for a little fun and folly—latch onto something that MIGHT be a mermaid.

Regret lives on and lingers—long after the last tear drop has fallen.

“If Harlan Ellison, Richard Matheson and Robert Bloch had a three-way sex romp in a hot tub and then a team of scientists came in and filtered out the water and mixed the leftover DNA into a test tube, the resulting genetic experiment would most likely grow up into Steve Vernon.” —BOOKGASM

“Steve Vernon was born to write. He’s the real deal and we are lucky to have him.” —Richard Chizmar, CEMETERY DANCE

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SAN FRANCISCO. Haight-Ashbury. It is midnight in the Summer of Love. Thomas Brock and Evelyn Love are attorneys who crusade for the rights of OTs—Other-Than-Humans. Their clients include ghosts, gargoyles, vampires, and things that have not yet been given names. The city’s OT element is sometimes malevolent, sometimes misunderstood, and often discriminated against. Brock and Love represent them, whatever the case, whatever the species.

Magic hangs heavy in San Francisco, and danger and intrigue is as thick as the fog around the Golden Gate Bridge.

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WHEN ETHAN RILEY earned a summer internship in Yellowstone National Park, he thought he’d won the world’s best lottery, but that was before he met the girl of his dreams, Jenny Leigh.

Jenny’s family had lived and worked in Yellowstone for generations, and the beautiful and fascinating young woman knew all its secrets.

Including a few that might just be the death of Ethan!
 
 

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QUITE HOW Ashley Mason made the journey from rural Kansas to working atop a lookout tower in the Montana wilderness eludes her. This summer’s challenge: coping with isolation.

Brent Tucker dedicates every summer to learning something new. In the past he pursued competitive swimming and ballroom dancing. This summer’s goal: to master hang gliding.

This year they both will learn more than they bargained for during the Summer of Fire and Heart.

~a Firehawks Lookouts romance story~

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WHEN THE KING’S GEOMANCER announces that a tidal wave threatens Navarys—the Atlantis of the North-lands—every citizen on the island springs to action. Amidst the uproar, the aeromancer Palujon steals unique and magical lodestones.

Mago, son of the lodestones’ creator, vows to retrieve his father’s precious artifacts. But Mago’s friend Liliyah questions Palujon’s motives.

Why would a man of his stature break the law? Is he truly a dastard?

Life and death hang on her answers.

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Hot lazy days, cracking thunderstorms, paddling a canoe upriver, long twilights filled with chasing fireflies, picnics under shady oak trees, overnights with friends and ghost stories. The days of summer carry us back to memories of the delights from childhood.

But summertime offers abundance even when we leave the realm of innocence—perhaps especially then. It’s a season of warmth, growth, and strength, embodying the powerful move from inspirations and ideas into reality: action, decision, and works we can touch and use.

This mixed-genre bundle of summery sensations features romance in the wilds of Montana, an alien invasion, revelation in a tropical and buggy third-world country, paranormal adventures during the Summer of Love, a serial killer who targets telepaths, and more.

Available for 3 months only—June, July, and August.

The Summer Shimmer bundle (with 11 titles) is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iTunes, or direct from the BundleRabbit site.

 

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A Bundle of Fairies

My story The Troll’s Belt is in the Here Be Fairies bundle along with 12 other titles.

I’m excited about it, because some of the other participating authors are amazing. I’ve enjoyed the works of Leah Cutter, Anthea Sharp, and Kristine Kathryn Rush for several years now. But this bundle also features two of my newest favorites: Alexandra Brandt and Leslie Claire Walker.

Here’s a little bit about the bundle:

Fairies, fair folk, imps, trolls, and pixies—they haunt our myths from Ireland to Iceland and everywhere else. Join in the fairy fun, or fairy fear, as good, bad, and mischievous they show themselves. Dare you take the trip to Fairyland? No one who returns is ever quite the same.

And here’s a quick rundown of the titles that especially caught my interest:

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FUNERAL DIRECTORS DEAL with everything at a funeral, but only a few must handle an influx of flower fairies. Or worse: the arrival of a flower fairy child, alone and unsupervised.

Flower fairies are unpredictable…except when they get angry. And then they become terrifying.

So, what will they do if they think one of their children faces danger?

 

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~ USA Today Bestselling Urban Fantasy ~

WHAT IF A HIGH-TECH computer game was a gateway to the dangerous Realm of Faerie?

Feyland is the most immersive computer game ever designed, and Jennet Carter is the first to play the prototype. But she doesn’t suspect the virtual world is close enough to touch—or that she’ll be battling for her life against the Dark Queen of the faeries.

Tam Linn is the perfect hero, in-game. Too bad the rest of his life is seriously flawed. The last thing he needs is rich-girl Jennet prying into his secrets, insisting he’s the only one who can help her.

Together, Jennet and Tam enter the Dark Realm of Feyland, only to discover that the entire human world is in danger. Pushed to the limit of their abilities, they must defeat the Dark Queen… before it’s too late.

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ON GULL ISLAND in the cold North, Eithni awaits Winter Solstice with pride, resentment, and fear. All signs point to a Taking year. And Eithni, chosen to enter the chamber of the gods, prepares to leave her human community forever.

On the other side of the Stone Door, Sable stands guard in anticipation of a successful solstice, when the veil between worlds will lift…and when her liege, a lightlord of the fae, will claim the human woman who willingly steps across into the Summer realm.

But everything changes when Eithni breaks the rules.

Everything changes when Sable hears a voice from the stone.

A fantasy love story set among the Picts in Iron Age Scotland.

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A faery sword — A haunted mermaid — A fallen angel

WHEN THE FAE SWORD named War transports Amy to the scene of a magical crime, she finds more than a dead man. The oldest Watcher, Shadow, newly reborn, saw the murder. The victim isn’t innocent, and the killer remains on the loose.

Haunted by the past, Amy wields a powerful weapon. But the source of her mermaid magic—her wild, untamed feelings—frightens her. She’s no hero, and yet the fight comes down to her.

She must learn to trust her her magic, her emotions . . . everything, or she and Shadow have no chance of stopping the killer.

If they fail, enchantment—and with it, all the worlds—will never be the same.

A story about awakening magic and lighting the fires of hope.

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THE GREATER OREGON Fairy Kingdom hides beneath the Pacific Ocean cliffs. Between their own lost dreams, battles with the dwarves, and the encroaching humans, the kingdom continues to diminish. Only two young humans can save them now.

Will Dale, the young human Tinker, answer their dreams? Can he repair the malfunctioning clockwork of the kingdom? Help them finish their great machine? Can they make him care enough?

Or will Nora, his twin sister and a human Maker, align herself with the hated dwarves and destroy the fairies instead?

The Clockwork Fairy Kingdom—the first novel in this exciting New Adult trilogy—combines fast-paced action with magic and modern day clockwork. A delightful read for all ages!

Be sure to read the other two books in the trilogy, The Maker, the Teacher, and the Monster and The Dwarven Wars.

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And here’s a little about my own contribution to the bundle, along with some kind words by reviewer James J. Parson.

YOUNG DECEIT sprouts timeless trouble.

Motherless Brys Arnsson digs himself into trouble. Bad trouble. Tricked by a troll in J.M. Ney-Grimm’s richly imagined North-lands, Brys must dig himself and his best friend back out of danger. But that requires courage … and self-honesty. Traits Brys lacks at depth.

A twist on a classic, The Troll’s Belt builds from humor-threaded conflict to white-knuckle suspense.
 
 

The writing style is fantastic. It’s somehow youthful (as it’s through the eyes of a twelve year old) and mature at the same time. Normally, it would be a challenge to discuss…responsibility, loyalty and forgiveness with such a young ‘voice,’ but Ney-Grimm does so easily. The result is a thought provoking tale…” —James J. Parsons

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The Here Be Fairies bundle (including The Troll’s Belt and 12 other titles) is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iTunes, or direct from the BundleRabbit site.

For more about other bundles, see:
Here Be Dragons
Spring Surprise
Immortals
Remembering Warriors
Winter Warmer
Mythic Tales
More than Human

 

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Here Be Dragons

The Here Be Dragons bundle has three of my titles in it!

They stalk our myths and hunt our past—dragons—humankind’s greatest and oldest foe. Good, bad, legendary and deadly. Dare you enter the dragon’s lair?

Thirteen tales of dragons, their friends and their foes.

The Crown and the Dragon
        by John D. Payne
Dragon Writers (an anthology)
        edited by Lisa Mangum
Of Blood and Scales
        by A. L. Butcher
Devouring Light
        by J.M. Ney-Grimm
Ascension of the Whyte
        by Karen Wrighton
Of Dragons and Centaurs
        by Deb Logan
Night of the Clockwork Dragon
        by Louisa Swann
The Legend of G and the Dragonettes
        by Russ Crossley
The Dreamweaver’s Journey
        by Diana L. Wicker
Graybill by Rita Schulz
Star-drake by J.M. Ney-Grimm
Like At Loch Ness by Karen L. Abrahamson
Winter Glory by J.M. Ney-Grimm

The Here Be Dragons bundle (with 13 titles) is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iTunes, or direct from the BundleRabbit site.

For more about other bundles, see:
Spring Surprise
Immortals
Remembering Warriors
Winter Warmer bundle
Mythic Tales
More than Human

 

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Spring Surprise Bundle

I seem to have fallen off my bundle reading and reviewing duties.

There’s a good reason. I’ve reached the end sprint in the writing of my novella, tentatively titled His Poison Tear, and I can hardly bear to do anything but write! You may have noticed that blog posts were a touch scarce during the last week of February. That’s why.

It’s typical of my writing process. By the time I near the end of a story, I am so caught up in the characters—they seem real to me—and I’m so excited by the climactic events that are going down that blog posts just can’t compete.

But I hope I can give a little more attention soon to bundles, because…

There’s a new one out—Spring Surprise—and it has two of my stories in it! Perilous Chance and Sarvet’s Wanderyar.

But it’s not my own stories that have me so excited about this bundle. It’s the stories by the other authors.

I did a bunch of checking the Look Insides on Amazon, and what I saw has me eager to read Easter at Glossner’s by Robert Jeschonek, Eden’s Eyes by Sean Costello, Temporal Dreams by Lesley L. Smith, and “The Brownies Holiday” by Rita Schulz. Those first pages hooked me!

I couldn’t find Mother of the Waters on Amazon, but the tiny excerpt on the BundleRabbit site intrigued me, so I’m looking forward to it as well.

I’ve already read “The Queen of May” by Linda Jordan, so I know it’s good! And I enjoyed The Tuxedoed Man by Marcelle Dubé so much (from the Winter Warmer bundle) that I’m eager to read her novel, The Forsaken Man, in the Spring Surprise.

I’d like to not only read all these titles, but also tell you about them via a series of mini reviews. We shall see!

In the meantime, here’s a little bit about the bundle.

The season of spring ushers in a time of rebirth; new life comes forth, trees emerge from their winter slumber and the cycle of nature begins again. Plans unfold, new adventures commence and the past is washed clean. At least . . . that’s the theory.

In this mixed-genre bundle, tales of hope, fresh beginnings and emerging dreams, dangerous new lives and daring schemes awaken the springtime in us all.

Available for 3 months only — March, April, and May.

Perilous Chance by J.M. Ney-Grimm
Easter at Glosser’s by Robert Jeschonek
Eden’s Eyes by Sean Costello
The Queen of May by Linda Jordan
The Forsaken Man by Marcelle Dube
Mother of the Waters by Leigh Saunders
Temporal Dreams by Lesley L. Smith
The Paths of Water and Air by Barbara G.Tarn
The Brownies Holiday by Rita Schulz
Second Spring by Karen L. Abrahamson
Sarvet’s Wanderyar by J.M. Ney-Grimm

The Spring Surprise bundle (with 11 titles) is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iTunes, or direct from the BundleRabbit site.

For more about other bundles, see:
Here Be Dragons
Immortals
Remembering Warriors
Winter Warmer bundle
Mythic Tales
More than Human

 

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Winter’s Last Chance

The Winter Warmer bundle comes off store shelves March 1. After that, it’s gone forever. That’s the nature of bundles.

ETA: The bundle is now gone, but all the stories that were in it are available solo. I urge you check them out, especially “Phoenix,” “Nutball Season,” Nobody’s Child, “Desperate Housewitches,” and my own Winter Glory.

Winter, a time of festivity, of hardship, and cold. Perhaps it remains the most superstitious of seasons and for many the most beloved. Snow, feasting, gifts, religious significance, family and getting together. A time for storytelling!

Thirteen tales about, or set in, the harshest of seasons. From witches to icy realms and faery kings, to holiday nutballs who might be less nutty than they seem. From detectives up against wintery crimes and mysteries to Christmas romance and second chances, there’s something for everyone in this winter warmer.

“Sanctuary” by Leslie Claire Walker
“Snowman’s Chance in Hell” by Robert Jeschonek
Tollard’s Peak by Michael Kingswood
“Phoenix” by Leslie Claire Walker
The Tuxedoed Man by Marcelle Dube
“Nutball Season” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
The Dreamweaver’s Journey by Diana L. Wicker
Dark Dancer by Jaleta Clegg
“Coconutty Christmas” by Ann Omasta
Nobody’s Child by Janet Dawson
Freak Sanctuary by Ann Stratton
“Desperate Housewitches” by Dayle A. Dermatis
Winter Glory by J.M. Ney-Grimm

For more about the stories and novels in the Winter Warmer bundle, see:
Winter Warmer: Phoenix
Winter Warmer: Nutball Season
Winter Warmer: Winter Glory
Winter Warmer: Nobody’s Child
Winter Warmer: Desperate Housewitches

 

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Immortals Bundle

This seems to be the year of the book bundle for me. Across the last 6 months, I’ve had stories in four bundles. Now I have two titles in a new fifth bundle!

My short story, Rainbow’s Lodestone, features the spirit of the rainbow as its protagonist. My novel, Fate’s Door, follows the adventures of a naiad of the Mediterranean Sea.

Both Rainbow’s Lodestone and Fate’s Door are included in Immortals, along with 12 more stories by other authors, amongst them the talented Leah Cutter, the unique Janet Morris, and my new favorite Leslie Claire Walker.

Gods, nymphs, vampires, deathless clones, cursed mages and those who serve them face perils where immortality acts as either curse or blessing or…both. Souls and selves lie at stake in this eclectic bundle.

“The Goddess Problem” by Sherry D. Ramsey
Glamour of the God-Touched by Ron Collins
A Man and His God by Janet Morris
“Unnatural Immortal” by Russ Crossley
First Chosen by M. Todd Gallowglas
Walking Gods by Leah Cutter
“Rainbow’s Lodestone” by J.M. Ney-Grimm
Brainjob by David Sloma
“Silver Dust” by Leslie Claire Walker
“Vale of Semūin” by Eric Kent Edstrom
Fate’s Door by J.M. Ney-Grimm
Kaylyn the Sister-in-Darkness by Barbara G. Tarn
“The Legend of Oeliana” by A. L. Butcher
“Jamal & the Skeleton’s Heart” by Ezekiel James Boston

The Immortals bundle (with 14 titles, including Rainbow’s Lodestone and Fate’s Door) is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iTunes, or direct from the BundleRabbit site.

For more about other bundles, see:
Here Be Dragons
Spring Surprise
Remembering Warriors
Winter Warmer bundle
Mythic Tales
More than Human

 

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Remembering Warriors: Resonant Bronze

My short story “Resonant Bronze” is one of the 13 titles included in the Remembering Warriors bundle. I’ve had readers tell me in conversation that they enjoyed the tale, but shorts don’t tend to collect written reviews as much as do longer works.

However, one reader on Goodreads shared his opinion after winning a copy in a Goodreads giveaway.

“…I enjoyed it very much. The characters and plot were well developed given the [length] . . . I would recommend [Resonant Bronze] to anybody who enjoys a good medieval-era tale with a little magic and mythology thrown in.” —Tyler Knight

Thank you, Tyler! I’m glad it pleased you! 😀

Resonant BronzeHere’s the official blurb for Resonant Bronze:

The warriors of Torbellai brought back a prize in the night, and young Paitra wants to see it. Even hidden away in the armory, the artifact changed the whole mood of their mountain citadel from dread foreboding to hope. And Paitra’s people need hope to turn the tide in their long war against the troll horde.

Might this small triumph presage a mightier victory?

But the warlord hid the fighters’ plunder for good reason. Forged by trolls and radiating magic, it presents grave risk to the soul and spirit of any who approach it.

Sneaking past the weapon smiths into the armory with his brother, Paitra still believes his home a safe place for boy’s mischief. But bronze hammered by trolls is anything but safe. Opportunity cloaked within its lethal enchantment awaits the right unlocking key. Could Paitra wield that key? And will he survive his curiosity?

Through death into magic and sound, Paitra confronts . . . resonant bronze.

And here’s a list of the all the titles in the Remembering Warriors bundle:

Comrades in Arms by Kevin J. Anderson
Outside the Walls by A. L. Butcher and Diana L. Wicker
Norman Blood by Barbara G.Tarn
The Rise of a Warrior by Harvey Stanbrough
Total War by Russ Crossley
“Resonant Bronze” by J.M. Ney-Grimm
Siren by Blaze Ward
“The Museum of Modern Warfare” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
Nothing for Nothing by Harvey Stanbrough
“The Rescue” by Blaze Ward
Soldier, Storyteller by Linda Maye Adams
“Heroes of Old” by Russ Crossley
With a Broken Sword by Stefon Mears

The Remembering Warriors bundle (with 13 titles, including Resonant Bronze) is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iTunes, or direct from the BundleRabbit site.

For more about the stories in the Remembering Warriors bundle, see:
Remembering Warriors: Siren
Remembering Warriors: The Museum of Modern Warfare
Remembering Warriors: With a Broken Sword

 

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Remembering Warriors: With a Broken Sword

I thought I’d read all of the Remembering Warriors bundle, from its first book to its last. I was so convinced of this that I don’t know why I re-opened the ebook. But I’m glad I did!

There was one more story—a novel—awaiting me, a quintessential war story, telling of an all-but-conquered town, courageous commonfolk facing a hopeless situation, and one lone knight, committed enough and crazy enough to attempt to save . . . as many as he can.

As I started reading With a Broken Sword by Stefon Mears, I was immediately captivated by its protagonist, Ser Colin, with his youthful enthusiasm for deeds of derring-do and his surprisingly wise heart. Ser Colin knows that while he has sworn to serve his king, he has also sworn to serve his country. And his country—the people of Kholost—come first in that oath.

As I continued to read, the world building came to charm me as much as had Ser Colin. The medieval country of Kholost has a vaguely Hungarian mood, as does its mighty river, the Odeda. Its dread sorcerers work their evil with demons in a way new to me, despite all my reading in the fantasy genre, while its “cunning men”—equally unique—work gentler magics through the essences of squirrel, trout, cow, beagle, boar, and crow spirits.

The story is well told, moving from scene to scene surefootedly, from one point of view to another with clarity and discernment. As the challenges facing our heroes escalate, the pace quickens, rising to a brisk sequence of hair-raising events, and then resolving into a brief-but-satisfying denouement.

Through the action and the suspense, I came to care about all of the helpers Ser Colin recruits. Particular standouts included old, wrinkled Farold, the “cunning man”; the devoted husband-wife team, Drud and Ebba, brave and generous; and, of course, the clever and resourceful seamstress-leader, Terrwyn.

All in all, With a Broken Sword was a pleasure. I hope Stefon Mears has written more stories in this world.

One knight stands between invaders and conquest.

His secret mission ended in an ambush. Now Ser Colin awakens on a battlefield under the bodies of his friends, the last knight still alive. And the invaders have seized the town of Three Bridges, with river access to the whole kingdom. How can one lone knight lead a ragtag group of townsfolk to victory over warriors and wizards?

The Remembering Warriors bundle (with 13 titles, including With a Broken Sword) is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iTunes, or direct from the BundleRabbit site.

For more about the stories in the Remembering Warriors bundle, see:
Remembering Warriors: Siren
Remembering Warriors: The Museum of Modern Warfare
Remembering Warriors: Resonant Bronze

 

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Going, going, gone!

One of the things about bundles is that they don’t stay on the store shelves forever. Some last a mere 3 weeks. Others longer.

The Mythic Tales bundle arrived for purchase November 1, and now it’s about to bow out!

Edited to add: The bundle is gone now, but the stories that were in it remain available separately. A few are so good that each was worth the price of the Mythic Tales bundle all on its own.

I urge you to check out the individual titles with an eye to purchasing the ones that particularly appeal to you.

Remember those epic legends of heroes and monsters? Stories of great adventure woven with magic and myth live once more in this collection; read of ancient lore, magic swords, wicked beasts, courageous souls, desperate champions, and unholy bargains. Fairy tales and bold ventures come together in this boxed set.

Beneath the Knowe by Anthea Sharp
Tales of Erana by A. L. Butcher
A Sword’s Poem by Leah Cutter
On the Edge of Faerie by Stefon Mears
Sorcha’s Heart by Debbie Mumford
Tales Fabulous and Fairy by Kim Antieau
Tempus by Janet Morris
Caught in Amber by J.M. Ney-Grimm
The Warden of Power by Karen L. Abrahamson
Beautiful by Barbara G. Tarn
Lost: Cinderella’s Secret Witch Diaries by Ron Vitale
Tales of the Faie: The Beginning of Days by Diana L. Wicker
Raziel’s Shadow by Joseph Robert Lewis
Magic for a Rainy Day by Alexandra Brandt

For reviews of the stories and novels from the Mythic Tales bundle
(plus the odd character interview), see:

Mythic Tales: Beneath the Knowe
Mythic Tales: Caught in Amber, Character Interview – Fae
Mythic Tales: A Sword’s Poem
Mythic Tales: Tales of Erana
Mythic Tales: Tempus
Mythic Tales: Author Interview
Mythic Tales: Raziel’s Shadow
Mythic Tales: Magic for a Rainy Day

 

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