Many insist traditional publishing is the only way to go, but years of experiences have taught me otherwise. Keepers of Runes and the Tower of Shadows is appealing to a wide spectrum of fantasy fans, yet so many publishing houses refuse to read the work of new authors. Readers are unfortunately denied many great books as a result, but I am grateful to sites such as goodreads, where readers are put in touch with these excellent titles and their authors. Self publishing is continuously growing easier and more efficient to accomplish, and we are finally making our mark in the world. I'm proud to release the dawn of my original series as well as tell a little about it.
Keepers of Runes tells the tale of 4 characters, whose eagerness to assist a troubled world attract far more trouble than they bargained for. They learn tragedy can be caused by the best of intentions, and that the world of Terranesit is far darker than it seems. Consumed with their personal demons, the young heroes must discover themselves in the midst of an ensuing holy war, onslaughts from mysterious and magical creatures, assassins, and much more. I'm ecstatic this first title has earned high praise from reviewers such as Kirkus, Foreword, Pacific Book Review, and several others. Fans of fantasy are encouraged to watch out for future volumes...and my work is far from over.
Please visit my site www.keeperofrunes.com and follow me on twitter @Mortiscet. My site contains my charity flier to be shared with our libraries and educational institutions. To celebrate my launch, proceeds from September and October will be donated to the World Literacy Foundation to battle illiteracy. A link to my personal store can be found as well and as thanks; I offer my readers a dollar discount for purchasing from me directly. Discount code is under the link to the store.
A native of Honeoye, New York, Andrew Cratsley lives in North Carolina. Keepers of Runes and the Tower of Shadows is his debut novel. Cratsley is a lifelong fan of fantasy books, films, and RPG-style gaming. A champion of literacy issues and proud supporter of the World Literacy Foundation, Cratsley will donate a portion of the proceeds from Keepers of Runes and the Tower of Shadows to the World Literacy Foundation’s fight against illiteracy.
Title: Shiloh’s True Nature
Author: D.W. Raleigh
Publisher: Hobbes End Publishing
Purchase at Amazon
When 12 year-old farm boy Shiloh Williams is sent to stay with his estranged grandfather, he discovers a mysterious new world inhabited by ‘Movers’. The Movers live in symbiotic harmony with one another, except one extremely powerful Mover who has stolen the town’s most precious artifact, the Eternal Flame. Shiloh investigates his supernatural surroundings, makes new friends, and begins to think of the town as home. However, just as soon as he starts to fit in, he realizes his newfound happiness is about to come to an abrupt end. One decision and one extreme consequence are all that remain.
Shiloh Williams walked along in the late-afternoon heat, on his way home from the town of Salem. The lanky twelve-year-old brushed his sweat-soaked, brown hair away from his blue eyes with one hand while trying to finish the ice-cream cone he carried in the other. His bare feet were relieved to step off the asphalt main road and onto the narrow, shady dirt path leading to his home.
The dusty, dirt lane was flanked by a vast cornfield to one side and towering black willow trees and intertwined brush on the other. Shiloh inhaled the sweet scent of honeysuckle as he licked the cone, gazing toward the two-story, white Victorian house in the distance. The house was his home, and the cornfield part of his family’s farm. One of the few farms left in the area, his father always liked to mention.
Shiloh was in a good mood: partly because he had spent the day in town playing with some friends, but mostly because this was his first actual vacation day of the summer. Until today, he had been working on the farm all day every day, since school ended. When his father told him he was receiving a two-week break, Shiloh decided he was going to make the most of it and be thankful he didn’t have to work another day in the brutal July heat.
As he strolled along the dusty path, Shiloh heard something rustling in the brush beside him. He turned his head and saw two large black birds only a couple of feet away. The birds cawed as they boldly jumped from branch to branch trying to keep pace with him. He assumed it was the ice cream they were after, so Shiloh tossed the remainder of the cone toward the brush and watched as the birds descended upon it.
Farther along, Shiloh spotted an expensive-looking, black car in front of the house. It was parked next to his father’s battered, old pickup truck, which made any other vehicle look nice. There was a man leaning against the rear of the car wearing a black suit and cap. Shiloh found that strange, considering he was dressed in a white T-shirt and shorts and had been sweating since he stepped outside that morning.
As he drew closer to the house, Shiloh realized his hands were sticky with ice-cream residue. He wasn’t supposed to be eating sweets this close to his suppertime, and knew his mother would scold him if she found out. So he slipped into the cornfield to let the giant stalks conceal his five-foot frame until he could reach the back of the house to wash off undetected.
He quietly snuck through the field and came up behind the giant stack of hay bales perpetually piled at the rear of the house. After glancing around to make sure it was clear, he crept up to the porch and over to the rusty, old spigot. He winced as he slowly turned the squeaky faucet handle, hoping the noise didn’t make it through the kitchen screen door just a few feet away.
As Shiloh cleaned his hands, the aroma of his mother’s cooking filled his nostrils, while the sound of arguing voices filled his ears. When his hands were no longer sticky, he quietly moved over to the back door, and stopped when he could hear the discussion in the kitchen. He immediately recognized one voice as his father’s, but there was another, unfamiliar, rough-sounding man’s voice. It must have been whoever came in the black car, he thought.
Listening intently, Shiloh was startled when something rubbed against his leg. It was one of his cats, Lovie. The gray and black tabby mix rubbed her face against his anklebones as she walked figure eights between his legs. Shiloh knew if Lovie was around, his other feline, Cheepie, couldn’t be far behind. He looked over his shoulder toward the faucet and found the other gray tabby, one that looked like a miniature tiger, entranced by the remaining water droplets dribbling from the nozzle.
His attention returned to the kitchen door when the rough voice said, “I don’t know how you’re keeping this farm productive when all the others in this area have gone under, but whatever you’re doing is going to fail eventually. So you might as well sell it to me before I decide to withdraw my more than generous offer.”
Shiloh imagined the scowl on his father’s face as he heard him answer, “You’ve been trying to get your hands on this property for years, but I’m not going to give it to you. Not now. Not ever. Not at any price. And if there are problems with the soil around here, you need only look in the mirror for the cause.”
“I’ll not be insulted by the likes of you, Joseph Williams. Good day,” the man huffed.
Shiloh heard footsteps, followed by the front door slamming. He was curious about this unfamiliar man, so he leapt off the porch and ran up along the side of the house. In his haste to see the stranger, Shiloh slipped on some pebbles and fell just as he reached the front corner of the house. The man immediately turned toward Shiloh scowling. Shiloh looked up at the stranger, but the bright sunshine kept him from distinguishing any of his features. The one thing Shiloh did notice was, like his driver, the man was dressed all in black, except for a hideously bright orange tie.
The man’s gaze was broken as two black birds descended and began attacking him. The man quickly ducked into the rear of the car, the birds turning their attention to his driver, who ran around to the other side to enter. As the car pulled away, Shiloh noticed it had a peculiar, black license plate with orange lettering reading HAINES.
When the vehicle left his sight, Shiloh returned to the back door, but again paused by the screen door when he heard his father’s agitated voice. “The crops looked a little off today. We definitely need to get some cash together for fertilizer. They could use a dusting too. And on top of that, I haven’t paid Rikki and Peco for a couple weeks. I’m glad I agreed to let them stay in the old barn. Otherwise they might’ve left by now. I’ll need to find a way to make it up to them.”
Shiloh heard the oven door open and close, followed by his mother’s voice, “Are you having second thoughts about Haines’ offer, Joe?”
“What? No! I’ll work the fields alone and eat dirt before I let that man get his hands on this land, Mary,” Joe stubbornly declared.
Mary scoffed. “Okay. Well, I’ll see if I can round up some recipes for dirt . . . just in case.”
Joe chuckled slightly and Shiloh smiled to himself, thinking about the easy way his mother was always able to diffuse his father’s anger.
Joe then noted, “By the way, I spoke to Doc and he said it would be all right. In fact, he suggested it before I even asked.”
“He’s not going to be happy about it,” Mary sighed.
Shiloh frowned, wondering what they were talking about, as Joe continued, “Well, that’s too bad. A vacation is a vacation. He’s almost a man now, and he needs to learn that part of being a man is having to do stuff you don’t want to do.”
Mary snorted sarcastically. “Say it just like that, Joe. That’ll make him feel better about it.”
Joe chuckled again and said, “Give me a break, Mary.”
“I won’t give you a break, but I will give you dinner. Go wash up,” Mary replied with a giggle.
Shiloh heard a chair slide across the kitchen floor and waited until the footsteps faded before opening the screen door. When he stepped through the doorway onto the black and white tile, he found his mother’s tall and slender frame at the sink. As Mary washed her hands, her long sandy-blond hair was illuminated by the sun shining in from the window above the sink.
After she dried her hands, Mary turned to open one of the nearby wooden cabinets and said, “No . . .” pointing in Shiloh’s direction and downward. Shiloh looked around in confusion. “. . . I’m making dinner and those two are not coming in here,” she finished.
Shiloh looked down and realized she was referring to the cats lingering in the doorway.
“One keeps trying to drag dead mice in the house. And the other keeps eating bugs, which wouldn’t be so bad if he wasn’t throwing them up all over the place afterward,” she continued.
A tight-lipped smile rolled across Shiloh’s face as he turned to shoo the cats back out the door.
When he turned back around, Shiloh found himself face-to-face with his mother. Her chestnut-colored eyes stared straight into his baby blues with a smirk. “What’s this?” she asked, pointing to his chest. “Ice cream?”
Shiloh looked down at his T-shirt to see a couple of stains from his earlier treat. “Oh . . . that was from earlier this afternoon,” he replied with a wide grin.
“Really? Because it still looks wet,” Mary noted, returning his smile with a shake of her head. “Go wash up. Dinner is almost ready.”
The family dinner was relatively quiet. Shiloh tried to stuff himself so he wouldn’t be lectured by his mother about eating ice cream before supper. He avoided eye contact with his father, because after hearing Joe grumble about all of the farm’s problems, he feared he might lose his time off.
When he finished, Shiloh took his plate to the sink and tried to make a hasty retreat out the back door without saying a word. However, it wasn’t to be. “Hey . . . take a seat,” Joe called, pointing to Shiloh’s empty chair at the dinner table.
Shiloh walked back to the chair feeling certain his father was about to revoke his vacation time “for the good of the farm.” He looked up to see his father leaning forward with his elbows on the table and his large callused hands folded. Joe was a tall, muscular man with perpetually unkempt, light-brown hair, piercing blue eyes, and his face always appeared to need a shave.
Joe stared at Shiloh for a moment before asking, “How would feel you about spending some time with your grandfather?”
He was taken off guard by the question, but shrugged and answered, “Okay, I guess.”
“Good,” Joe smiled. “He’ll be by to pick you up tomorrow.”
“What?” Shiloh responded in shock.
“You’re going to spend a couple weeks with your grandfather,” Joe answered pointedly.
Shiloh’s disbelief and agitation spilled out of his mouth in rapid succession. “A couple weeks? Why? I’m supposed to go swimming at the pond tomorrow! The carnival is in town next week! My birthday is in two weeks! I don’t want to go!”
Joe leaned back in his chair, shaking his head, “You’ve been complaining about having to work the fields all summer. I’d think you’d be glad to get a break from it.”
“Yeah, I wanted a break to have some fun with my friends. Not a break where I’m sent away to some strange place . . . I’m not going!” Shiloh’s voice shook with anger.
Joe, not the kind of man to listen to long protestations, replied, “You are going. End of discussion.” He returned to his meal.
Slamming his hands on the table, Shiloh rose from his chair, and walked toward the back door. “Get back here,” Joe called, as Shiloh forcefully pushed open the screen door.
He heard his father yell, “Shiloh!” but he ignored him and ran into the immense cornfield. He ran through the field until he grew so tired he had to walk. He continued walking until he found himself on the far edge of the field, where he stepped out onto a narrow dirt trail that surrounded it.
Shiloh looked back to see how far he had come and the farm’s old horse barn caught his eye. The faded, maroon monstrosity had fallen into disrepair, but the barn’s current residents, Rikki and Peco, loved it for some reason. It was their big, red dilapidated mansion.
When his gaze drifted across the field, Shiloh saw his home in the distance. The towering cornstalks obscured all but the top half of the house. Taking a couple of steps backward, trying to find a better view, he suddenly lost his balance. He began tumbling down a slick embankment covered with reeds and into the swampy marsh that separated his family’s property from the Delahanna River.
Shiloh was uninjured by the fall, but landed on his backside in the mud. He sat for a moment to catch his breath, gazing toward the river stretching out in front of him. He saw some Great Blue Herons standing nearby in the marsh. The large gray birds were motionless, with their S-shaped necks pointing up into the distance.
Following the herons’ gaze, Shiloh saw the large factory to the south. He knew the factory was there, but never paid it much attention. It was practically invisible due to the thick cluster of hickory trees lining the rear of the farm. The factory’s most distinguishing feature was an enormous cylindrical brick smokestack with a giant, orange H on its side. The huge tower emitted a perpetual gray smoke that seemed to linger in the air.
Hearing voices in the distance, Shiloh turned back toward the river. An old fishing boat was anchored just offshore with some young people frolicking around the deck. He watched as a young man jumped from the deck into the river. “It’s freezing!” the young man hollered, emerging from the water.
Shiloh smiled, remembering how he used to love the crisp bite of the river water on a hot summer afternoon. His parents wouldn’t allow him to swim in the river anymore. They said it was too polluted and dirty.
Straight across the river were some lights from the town of Old New Castle. Just beyond that was Pike Creek, where his grandfather lived and where he would apparently be going the next day. This made him think of the things he’d be missing in the next two weeks: going swimming, the carnival, spending time with his friends.
Thoughts of his impending departure made Shiloh feel sick to his stomach, so he tried thinking of something else. He looked around and noticed several gray puddles of water with a number of long-stemmed, gray wildflowers growing out of them. He frowned because he couldn’t recall ever seeing a gray flower before. He plucked the closest one and thought it was a wild daisy of some kind.
Another flower grew out of the puddle right before his eyes, taking the place of the one he picked. This second flower was not gray, but golden yellow with a black center. Though startled, Shiloh scowled and dismissed the peculiar occurrence, recalling how he’d seen colorful mushrooms grow right before his eyes while working very early in the morning on the farm.
As the sun began to set, Shiloh climbed the embankment, deciding he had better return to the house. He chose to walk back through the cornfield instead of the path along the edge of the field, because it was shorter. He came to regret that decision when the sunlight faded and the tall cornstalks blocked out what little light was left in the sky. To make matters worse, it was a new moon, so there was no heavenly light to guide him.
In the darkness, the size of the farm became more apparent than ever. Shiloh walked and walked, seeing only dark rows of corn ahead of him. He knew he would escape them eventually, but not knowing exactly where he was made him uncomfortable. The odd collection of noises echoing out of the darkness only added to his discomfort.
Shiloh dismissed some fluttering and flapping sounds, thinking it was probably one of the Great Blue Herons he saw earlier in the marsh. He then heard an odd, thumping sound, as if something was running around. He tried to dismiss that as well, remembering his father had mentioned seeing red foxes in the fields. Shiloh had never seen a fox on the farm, but supposed one could be the source of the noise.
The thumping sound seemed to grow closer and closer, but every time Shiloh stopped to listen, it would cease. The louder the noise grew, the more Shiloh’s heart raced. He tried to ignore the sound, focusing into the distance to locate his house. When the thumping became so loud it seemed just a step away, Shiloh panicked, breaking into a run.
He sprinted along until he tripped, falling forward onto the ground. Shiloh remained still and listened for a moment, but the only sound he could hear was his pounding heart. Looking behind him, down the corn row, he saw an indistinct dark mass just a few feet away.
Fear gripped Shiloh, who now thought only of escape. He turned his head around, thinking if he could just stand he might be able to outrun whatever was back there. He was shocked to discover a second dark figure blocking his path. The second shape was lower to the ground, with glowing eyes, and it was growling.
Shiloh didn’t know what to do, but figured whatever it was would have to start with him being on his feet. He took a deep breath and readied himself to stand, but before he could, the second dark figure charged him. He placed his hands over his head, preparing for an attack. However, no attack came. The figure leapt over him, chasing whatever was behind him down the corn row. Shiloh stood and sprinted away as fast as he could.
As he neared the edge of the field, he could hear a loud, fierce growling and tussling behind him. Resisting the temptation to look back, he broke through the edge of the cornfield and ran straight into the house.
Young Adult Author, Emerald Barnes, is releasing her latest novel, Entertaining Angels, today. It's a Young Adult Christian romance that faces the issues of self-esteem and weight in teens. It's a story that will hopefully grab the attention of girls - and boys alike - and help them understand that no matter what they are beautiful.
About Entertaining Angels
"I've read many books that tackle the issue of spiritual warfare, but I especially loved this one. Mads was alive and real and jumped off the page! Her character is so strong, she needed strong characters to balance her, and Barnes certainly provided that in the characters of Chase and Zach." - Author Precarious Yates
"This story is beautiful and so profound." - Author Sylvia Stein
"I would recommend Entertaining Angels as a graceful stepping stone to self-acceptance and self-love." - Author Christine Cunningham
Madison Andrews can’t face her reflection in the mirror. All she sees is a big, fat nobody. Yet, deep inside she longs for something more, something that’s not skin deep.Along comes Zach, the new guy in school. He’s smoking hot and totally out of her league. She somehow catches his eye, and he makes her feel beautiful for once. But just as she gets close to Zach, her nerdy best friend, Chase, won’t let Madison doubt her true beauty, no matter how many meals she skips. Even as Madison begins to realize that she is more than what she thinks, darker forces are at work, darker than the lies and mocking from her peers, stopping her from amounting to her full potential. Can Madison find true happiness in her own skin?
A Word from the AuthorEntertaining Angels is near and dear to my heart. Essentially, it's my story. I have struggled with my weight issues for many years, and I remember clearly the very first day I fell victim to the word fat I am more than that label. I am a Child of God, and He wanted me to see that. Making a long story short here, I have began to realize that although I am overweight, it's not who I am. I am so much more, and He wanted me to share that story with everyone else, especially young adults and woman who need to be reminded just how beautiful they are. If you do buy Entertaining Angels, I hope that it shows you just how beautiful, or handsome if you're a guy, you are.
Giveaway Time!Enter to win this autographed (by Emerald) tote bag with the Bible Verse Psalm 91:11 on it, and this notebook that says "God Makes Beautiful Things." (US Only please. If you're international, Emerald will send you an e-book and choose another winner.)
Where can you purchase Entertaining Angels?
ABOUT THE BOOK
Adam Craig, a forty year-old stock trader in Chicago, finds his marriage teetering on the rocks and his life at a standstill. Desperate and on the edge of personal collapse, Adam takes the advice of a therapist and travels to his childhood family compound on Black Bear Lake with hopes of making peace with his past. Stepping onto the northern Wisconsin property, he relives the painful memories of the summer of 1983, his last summer at the lake.
In August 1983, a self-conscious fifteen year-old Adam carries a world of worry on his shoulders as he arrives at Black Bear Lake for a month long family reunion. Between anger and fear of mother’s declining health as she quietly battles a quickly spreading cancer and his cherished cousin’s depression over her parents’ bitter divorce, Adam is swept up in smothering familial love among the multiple generations and heartbreaking misunderstanding and betrayal. The arrival of a sensual but troublesome babysitter throws the delicate balance of his family into a tailspin. Blinded by his attraction to the newcomer, Adam fails to see his cousin's desperate cries for help and the charged electrical current running through his family's hierarchy. Crushed in the middle of it all, Adam is forced to learn that there's a fine line between self-preservation and the strength of family blood, all the while unaware of the impending tragedy that will ultimately change his life forever.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
ABOUT THE BOOK
For two decades Tyler Gibbons has been keeping a secret from his family. At the tender age of sixteen, Tyler embarks on a student exchange program. Sent to the Andean city of Ambato, Ecuador, he finds daily adventure as he tries to fit in at school, connect with his host family, and navigate through a world of beaches, volcanoes, and jungles. But tucked deep inside this year are events so profound, so unexpected, they forever shape the man he will become.
Now, 25 years later, his mother pulls these soaring tales from her son, exposing, for the first time, the source of a deep unhappiness. While these memories contain the wounds of an unresolved past, they also possess the power to heal his painful present.
Thoughtfully crafted and boldly told, Tyler’s journey takes the reader on a wild South American adventure, while illuminating a mother’s unyielding power to heal her child.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Randy's Website / Goodreads / Twitter
A performer, playwright, and producer Randy founded The Beggars Group in 1999. During the following decade he produced over two dozen productions including; The Expatriates, Do It!, and Theadora, She Bitch of Byzantium.
Plays he’s written include; New Year’s Resolutions, Homlessness Homosexuals and Heretics, Testing Average, Kill The President, Armor of Wills, and The Dwelling.
Randy is currently completing his novel careful, which will be released in May 2014.
I am super thrilled to show you the beautiful cover for my newest and upcoming novel, Entertaining Angels. Again, my cover artist was Natasha Brown, and she is super talented. She brought my disjointed vision to life, and I don't think I'll ever be able to thank her properly.
I can't wait to publish it, which I'm hoping will be in May. That's what I'm estimating anyway. But, I couldn't wait any longer to show you my beautiful cover!
About Entertaining Angels:
Madison Andrews can’t face her reflection in the mirror. All she sees is a big, fat nobody. Yet, deep inside she longs for something more, something that’s not skin deep.
Along comes Zach, the new guy in school. He’s smoking hot and totally out of her league. She somehow catches his eye, and he makes her feel beautiful for once. But just as she gets close to Zach, her nerdy best friend, Chase, won’t let Madison doubt her true beauty, no matter how many meals she skips.
Even as Madison begins to realize that she is more than what she thinks, darker forces are at work, darker than the lies and mocking from her peers, stopping her from amounting to her full potential. Can Madison find true happiness in her own skin?
Are you a book reviewer? If so, please sign up for an ARC (Advanced Reading Copy) of my novel here.
Emerald Barnes graduated with a B.A. in English with an emphasis on Creative Writing at Mississippi University for Women. She resides in a small town in Mississippi and has the accent to prove it.
She mainly writes suspense/thrillers in the YA genre, but she dabbles in other genres and her books are enjoyed by all ages! She's constantly working on new novels and has more ideas than she knows what to do with. She blogs which takes up more of her time than she anticipates but loves it so very much! She's also a volunteer at the World Literary Cafe which is amazing, and she is a crazy grammar nazi who proofreads novels!
She's an auntie to three beautiful nieces and two handsome nephews who take up the other half of her time, but she couldn't imagine spending her time in any other way!
She's a Whovian, a little bit of a nerd, a reader, a writer, and a family-oriented person. God is number One in her life, and she thanks Him continuously for His love and favor.
Where am I touring?
Rachelle's Window -- Guest Post
The Writing Realm -- Interview
ssteinwriting -- Interview
Sitting On The Porch With Lynn -- Guest Post
Angel Breath Books -- Guest post
Totally unrelated to this tour is my interview with Angie Brashear.
Sheila Deeth -- Guest post
Ever On Word -- Guest Post
A.R. Silverberry -- Guest Post
Nike Chillemi ~ Crime Fictionista -- Guest Post
Fan Favorite Highlights:
“Everything you say makes sense, sir. I guess it’s logical. But with all due respect, you’re out of your f*&!#*! mind. Come on, Sam. Let’s go home.”
"Jase strides back into the room, of course, midway through this proposition. “George. Beat it. Discovery Channel is on.” George backs out of the room, but not before saying, “His bed’s really comfortable. And he never pees in it.” The door closes and we both start laughing."
“I guess I like things that take time and attention. More worthwhile that way.”
“It’s like Tim’s drowning and they’re worried about the color of his swimsuit.
A gorgeous debut about family, friendship, first romance, and how to be true to one person you love without betraying another
“One thing my mother never knew, and would disapprove of most of all, was that I watched the Garretts. All the time.”
The Garretts are everything the Reeds are not. Loud, numerous, messy, affectionate. And every day from her balcony perch, seventeen-year-old Samantha Reed wishes she was one of them . . . until one summer evening, Jase Garrett climbs her terrace and changes everything. As the two fall fiercely in love, Jase's family makes Samantha one of their own. Then in an instant, the bottom drops out of her world and she is suddenly faced with an impossible decision. Which perfect family will save her? Or is it time she saved herself?
A dreamy summer read, full of characters who stay with you long after the story is over.
JOIN US TODAY!!
T.R. Patrick, author of the YA Dystopian Platform 21, will be having a Twitter chat today at 4:00 p.m. via blogger Sara Monteaugo. Don't miss this exclusive discussion, where he discusses mystery, conspiracy, ghosts, sci-fi, and more!
Just search and follow the hashtag #chatlore to keep up with the discussion!
You can also follow them on Twitter Here:
One word. Awesome!
Platform 21 is one of those books that grabs a hold of you and intrigues you right from the start. Even from the beginning of the book, before things really get going, I had this impending sense of doom. The writing was great, the characters better, and the plot a maze of twists and turns with A LOT going on. With elements of conspiracy, terrorism, politics, along with the dystopian genre, with a bit of sci-fi, this speculative fiction novel has a little bit of something for everyone. The most current comparison I have to Platform 21 is the Hunger Games, so if you enjoyed that series, give this one a shot. Hopefully you will find it as engrossing as I did.
About The Book:
Luke’s life is about to take a dangerous turn.
But first he has to die.
In the year 2052, high school sophomore Luke Gibson considers himself an average teenager in a world on the brink of monumental change. Joining his parents and sister, Laura, at the first World Energy Initiative Conference, he is among thousands gathered in a Denver arena to celebrate free renewable energy when a massive earthquake strikes killing everyone in the stadium. The last thing Luke sees before his death is a girl reaching out to him—a stranger whose face he remembers from his dreams.
The end, however, is not the end. Suddenly, inexplicably, Luke is back home in Ohio and everything is different. His sister is gone, the victim in an unsolved homicide years before. Angela, his mysterious dream girl, is here also, and the only person besides Luke who recalls the previous reality. And now their determination to uncover the truth about Laura’s murder and their transformed world is making them targets—forced to flee for their lives from a nameless shadow organization and a government seeking vengeance for an unthinkable act of terror—as they stand on the threshold of a dark conspiracy that threatens all humankind.
With Platform 21, a brilliantly inventive and unrelentingly exciting excursion to a troubled near-future, author T.R. Patrick joins the ranks of Suzanne Collins (The Hunger Games), Veronica Roth (Divergent), Pittacus Lore (I Am Number Four) and other masters of YA speculative suspense fiction. The first book in the “Beyond the Veil” series, Platform 21 follows teenager Luke Gibson up to and beyond his death in a horrific terrorist attack in Denver in the year 2052. Reawakening in a world strangely transformed, Luke sets out to uncover the truth about his new reality—joining forces with Angela, a girl he had seen previously in his dreams, in a desperate race for survival that will propel them across the threshold of an insidious global conspiracy that threatens the future of all humanity.
About The Author
Author Timothy R. Patrick, born in 1985, started writing when he was only nine, delivering his first short story to his Mom for her birthday. Since then, writing has been an incredible passion. Every chance he could write, he took it. He even scratched out a few stories in Naval Boot Camp at Great Lakes, Illinois.
Tim spent four years in the Navy achieving the rank of Petty Officer 2nd class. He served three years aboard USS Chosin and was deployed twice in support of the Global War on Terror, and Iraqi Freedom. However, he would always be remembered as the guy who sat in the corner of the mess decks writing a book he would never release. He said it wasn't good enough.
After his time in the Navy, Tim became a Test Engineer working for companies like Scientific Research Corporation and Hewlett Packard. During this phase of his life he moved to Charleston, South Carolina where he bought a home and tried to settle into the American Dream. But Tim wasn't content with that, he wanted to do something more than work the 9 to 5. So, he tried his hand at politics and ran for Dorchester County Council as an Independent. They said he was too young and verbose. After losing the election, he decided to try his hand at writing instead.
Today, Timothy Patrick is the author of, Platform 21 - the first installment of the "Beyond the Veil" series. Platform 21 is a novel set in the near future which follows a young man on a journey to solve his sister's murder in the midst of global conspiracy. His current project is, The Vorago Initiative - which picks up right where Platform 21 left off.
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It’s 1968. The winds of change are descending on Fairmont and engulfing the small South Carolina town in a tornadic frenzy. The public schools are finally being completely integrated. Mossy Springs High School is closing and its black students are now attending formerly all-white Fairmont High; the town is rife with racial tension. Several black youths have been arrested for tossing firebombs at a handful of stores. White citizens form a private academy for the purpose of keeping their kids out of the integrated school system. The Ku Klux Klan is growing.
Reese Knighton arrives on the scene at precisely the right time. The principal of Fairmont High School, Claude Lowell, becomes superintendent of the school district. Lowell chooses Preston Shipley, currently the football coach, to replace him as principal and hires Knighton to coach the team, thus forcing Knighton to find common ground with Willie Spurgeon, the successful Mossy Springs coach who has been passed over for a job he richly deserves.
At The Intangibles’center is the Hoskins family, their relationships to those living within the town of Fairmont giving rise to a memorable cast of characters. Tommy Hoskins is a local businessman and farmer who is a supporter of the team, on which his older son, Frankie, plays. Frankie’s best friend is Raymond Simpson, who lives in a shanty on the Hoskins’ farm. Another of Frankie’s friends, Ned Whitesides, is a spoiled bigot. Clarence “Click” Clowney is the talented, rebellious quarterback from Mossy Springs. Al Martin is the staunch black tackle who becomes the glue that keeps the integrated team together. Twins James and Joey Leverette are the sons of professors at local Oconee College. Curly Mayhew coaches rival Lexington Central. Laura Hedison is a white cheerleader. Jorge Heredia is a tennis player at the college who sells drugs on the side. Aubrey Roper is a college girl who exerts a corruptive influence on Frankie Hoskins. The county sheriff, a turncoat within the team, Ned Whitesides’ father, the loyal assistants, militants both black and white, a doctor, a lawyer, local businessmen, and others all add fuel to the fires of prejudice and fear of the unknown that are raging in the town of Fairmont.
This is a story of a high school football team that puts aside its differences, never realizing that, outside its bounds, the world is unraveling. It’s a story about the cultural changes, good and bad, that take place when two societies shift and finally come together.
Ultimately, The Intangibles is a story of triumph achieved at considerable cost.
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Mossy Springs High School was on the west edge of town, bordered on one side by a few acres of forest and a small stream. On the other side, across the street, was a bowling alley and roller rink.
“That place give you any problems?” Knighton asked.
“Oh, it has its pluses and its minuses,” Spurgeon replied. “When we notice somebody laying out of class, we got a pretty good idea where we can round him up. You find a few bad influences hanging around the place, ‘specially at night. I reckon the woods out back is just as bad. At lunchtime, students sneak out there to smoke. They’s a creek in there. One time I found a six-pack of beer tied around a root in the bank, just laying in the creek getting’ cold. I told the principal about it – I believe it was Mr. Tom Lindsay back then – and he went down there and hid till somebody come and got it. Damned if it wasn’t two of my ballplayers.”
Knighton smiled. “There’s some things you wish you didn’t know, huh?”
“Mr. Lindsay suspended them boys for two games. Me, I’d whole lot rather take the punishment out of ‘em in laps and wind sprints.”
They left the school through a back gate at the end of the woods. The football field was to the left, old and rusted. Some of the planks were warped on the visitors’ side.
Spurgeon drove Knighton’s truck through a neighborhood of old wooden houses and cinder-block apartments. Tiny black kids on hand-me-down tricycles recognized Spurgeon and waved at him. Adults craned their necks and squinted their eyes, trying to see who the white man on the passenger side of the unfamiliar vehicle was. Willie Spurgeon was not the kind of man to own a pickup and looked out of place driving one, especially with that Sunday-go-to-meeting suit on. On a concrete basketball court, a gang of teenagers was playing in street clothes. The pickup pulled off the edge of the road.
“That’s Clarence Clowney,” said Spurgeon, pointing to a tall, light-skinned kid. “He could be the best we ever had.”
“They call him Click, don’t they?”
“Why, yes. How’d you know that?”
“I watched the team play one night.” Knighton paused, letting the sentence soak in. “Mr. Lowell had just called me about the job, so I drove up here one night and sat in my truck on that bank behind the end zone. You were playing Sturkey. I wanted to find out as much about the situation as I could. I wasn’t busy. You know, our team at Central didn’t make the white playoffs this year.”
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