Book Blitz – Nightmasters by Loran Holt with #RABTBookTours



Doubles Talk Book 1

General Fantasy

Date Published: June 30

Publisher: Acorn Publishing

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Kelgan Defthand is used to being top dog at the Academy of Magic where he is Senior Apprentice Mage. Compared to his peers, he’s faster, more skillful, and well aware of it, but when he finds himself beset by fearful voices that come in the night, his confidence is shaken.

Adding to his worries, Kelgan is summoned to the headmaster, Sargal’s presence; it looks like he’s really in trouble. But to his bewilderment, he finds he’s being sent on a “mission” with two very hostile-seeming aristocratic twins, Neroma and Nevander Di Nerrill.

Upon embarking on this mission with the twins, Kelgan soon realizes the world outside the cloistered Academy is a bit different than he imagined. First of all, there seems to be women doing magic! Secondly, he’s not the only one hearing voices.

Following a strange compulsion, Kelgan and the Di Nerrills find themselves seeking out the source of the voices, hoping to put an end to it.

The fateful journey tests Kelgan’s underdeveloped skills to the limit, and could come at an unbearable cost to both to him and his companions. Once Kelgan accepts the challenge of Magehood, there’s no going back.


Excerpt 


The work went swiftly. Two flame-throwers—in spite of the concerned voices, Ezrael insisted on being one of the carriers. “Cain’t do better, I jes’ stand and let ’er rip.”

And two drones. Cal looked far from satisfied, but Kelgan assured him they would work for recon, as well as something else. He refused to explain the something.

“Crows, you want to use crows?”

“They’re smart, and I’ve placed a homing spell on them.”

“What’s the plan?”

“Don’t have one.”

Cal groaned. “It’s going to be like the tavern owner. We just walk in and say, ‘We’re back to save the world.’”

“Yep.”

O

Cal shook his head in wonder. “They even shook our hands.”

Kelgan repressed a giggle. “Just a touch of persuasion.”

“You spelled them.”

“As I said, just a touch.”

“I keep forgetting you’re not me.”

Kelgan eyed him quizzically. “That was an ‘interesting’ thing to say.”

Cal shifted his feet, looking uncomfortable. “Let’s get busy.”

Laden with their hastily assembled equipment, they rejoined the rest of the group, who paid them no attention. So busy with their toys, the two had completely missed the combined outward gaze of the others. Turning their heads, they followed the line of sight and drew in simultaneous breaths. The enemy, who had evidently watched all, was well ahead of them. The red-and-black army stood at the ready—seeming to number in the thousands. Knowing that could simply be illusion did not reassure them. At the forefront hovered the sorcerers, wearing robes that trailed off behind them into mist and gave them the appearance of black thunderclouds. Kelgan was sure that was no illusion.

“Uh,” he said stupidly.

Only Neroma responded, swinging her head in their direction just a bit. “They wait.”

The fur of her voice blanketed him for a moment, leaving him short of breath.

He shook his head to clear it, saying, “Well, let’s not disappoint them.”

Without another word, he directed a concentrated blast of energy to the first rows of the army. Those turned out to be real, at least, as they transmogrified into twinkling atoms, which then fell like raindrops onto the now-scorched earth.

A gasp arose from the facing soldiers. For a moment, they quailed visibly. The brief flash of triumph Kelgan allowed himself was cut short by the nearly instantaneous return blast from the younger sorcerer.

Even aided by Neroma and Nevander, Kelgan barely managed to divert the energy back onto the facing army, thereby taking out another two or three rows.

No time to be cocky, he thought, that was nearly fatal.

He fired off another blast. This time the opposition was ready—as one, the soldiers dropped to their knees, and the energy sailed over their heads to knock off a corner of the gloomy castle.

However, they failed to notice Cal, who was now in command of his deadly flamethrower. A low charge, directed just above the ground, caught the red-and-blackers by another unpleasant surprise. Closing his eyes to the charred corpses that now littered the ground, he paused only when he had to refuel.

Too easy, again, too easy, too easy, beat in Kelgan’s head like a drum solo. He glanced behind him. Ez was slumped over the now empty goat-cart, and Teri was staring in horror at the now empty uniform of her sister, Cenci.


 About the Author

Recently retired from a job as a university professor, and looking for a diversion in sunny Southern California, Loran Holt did what any Southern California does – took up writing, of course. Feeling that sword and sorcery fitted her personality admirably, she set her sights on that genre. Nightmasters is the result, and her first work of published fiction, but she is already the published author of two books on the Silent Film era, with a third on the way. Recently

 

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Book Tour: Taking Time by Mike Murphey #RABTBookTours #AcornPublishing

Book 1, Physics, Lust and Greed Series
Humorous Science Fiction
Date Published: June 15, 2020
Publisher: Acorn Publishing

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The year is 2044. Housed in a secret complex beneath the eastern Arizona desert, a consortium of governments and corporations have undertaken a program on the scale of the Manhattan Project to bludgeon the laws of physics into submission and make time travel a reality.

            Fraught with insecurities, Marshall Grissom has spent his whole life trying not to call attention to himself, so he can’t imagine he would be remotely suited for the role of time travel pioneer. He’s even less enthusiastic about this corporate time-travel adventure when he learns that nudity is a job requirement. The task would better match the talents of candidates like the smart and beautiful Sheila Schuler, or the bristle-tough and rattlesnake-mean Marta Hamilton.

            As the project evolves into a clash between science and corporate greed, conflicts escalate. Those contributing the funding are mostly interested in manipulating time travel for profit, and will stop at nothing, including murder, to achieve their goals.





Taking Time is an interesting book with many elements and layers of traditional science fiction. Fair warning, there are several adult instances in this book and a fair amount of innuendo. Largely, this is done with humor in mind, but I felt like I needed to say that upfront. The characters are fun, particularly Marshall and his fellow time traveling candidates. As the book progresses, the reader can really see the early science fiction influences in the narrative!

I felt the book was paced well and it didn’t take me all that long to read on my kindle! The humorous aspects were indeed humorous and it was a fun book to read!

Thank you to RABT Book Tours and the author for a complimentary copy of the book! This is my honest review. Don’t forget to scroll down to enter the giveaway and pick up your copy of Taking Time today!

About the Author


Mike Murphey is a native of eastern New Mexico and spent almost thirty years as an award-winning newspaper journalist in the Southwest and Pacific Northwest. Following his retirement from the newspaper business, he and his wife Nancy entered in a seventeen-year partnership with the late Dave Henderson, all-star centerfielder for the Oakland Athletics, Boston Red Sox and Seattle Mariners. Their company produced the A’s and Mariners adult baseball Fantasy Camps. They also have a partnership with the Roy Hobbs adult baseball organization in Fort Myers, Florida. Mike loves fiction, cats, baseball and sailing. He splits his time between Spokane, Washington, and Phoenix, Arizona, where he enjoys life as a writer and old-man baseball player.

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Cover Reveal – New Suspense Novel, Black Veil by Greg Jolley is coming July 1st!


Suspense
Date Published: 7/1/2020
Publisher: Épouvantail Books, LLC


Murder and Madness in the High Sierras

The tragic and gruesome story of the Donner Party is being made into a movie, a tale of cannibalism and treachery high in the snowbound mountains. The cast is made up entirely of children. One by one, they are dying. The series of deaths are haunting the production, each one of the “accidents” at the hands of Florentino Urbino. Driven by greed and jealousy, he is killing off the film’s stars to line his pockets by selling off the gruesome footage of the accidents.

Six-year-old actress SeaBee Danser in her black veil is his next target. She is the only one who can see through the black curtain that Florentino Urbino drapes over his deranged and murderous heart.

Can she survive?

Can he be stopped?

Will any of the children be left standing?


About the Author


Greg Jolley earned a Master of Arts in Writing from the University of San Francisco and lives in the very small town of Ormond Beach, Florida. When not writing, he researches historical crime, primarily those of the 1800s. Or goes surfing.


Contact Links
Twitter: @gfjolle
email: gfjolle@sbcglobal.net


Purchase Links
iBooks: Black Veil is available via search

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Book Blitz – The Match Disaster by Latesha Kellam #RABTBookTours



Romance, Women’s Fiction
Published: March 2020
Publisher: Lulu

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This is a story about a middle-aged woman who recently got divorced and thought she was open to companionship. She was very apprehensive about opening her heart again after being hurt badly by her ex-husband. To her surprise, she met someone on Match.com that seemed like the man of her dreams. They had so much in common and really enjoyed each other’s company. He managed to convince her to be open to the possibility of falling in love again.

She ended up giving this man her heart only to find out that he wasn’t the man of her dreams at all. He wasn’t like her ex-husband but he had just as many issues. She found it difficult to be the woman that he needed her to be while not compromising her integrity and moral standards.

This story is told totally from her point of view. She is finally able to tell the love of her life everything that she wanted to say throughout their relationship. She is able to express her perspective on all the events that were occurring in their lives without feeling like she is being ungrateful for the good times but imagining the bad times.

She will take you through five years of her relationship. Will she figure out that she deserves so much better than how she was being treated? Or, will she talk herself into saving this relationship and giving her one true love another chance?





Excerpt

Chapter 1

We met on Match.com about a month after a short friendship with someone I met on ChristianMingle.com.  Although, that situation didn’t end well, I thought I would give online dating one more try and boy was I glad I did. I met you.  I was on Match.com one day and I noticed that you looked at my profile.  I decided to say hi to you through the Match.com app.  I was pretty shy about reaching out to guys that I didn’t know, but what did I have to lose?  The only thing that could happen was that you didn’t say hi back.  To my surprise you sent me a reply and it wasn’t just hi.  We began to talk and things got interesting pretty quickly.

Initially, I didn’t know how things would end up because you very blunt and to the point and I really wasn’t used to that.  I would ask you how your day was and you would respond, “It sucked.”  I thought to myself, this guy has a bleak outlook on life, but then one day when we were chatting online about your job, you made me laugh.  I said to myself, maybe he’s not so bad after all.  You actually had a sense of humor.

We talked frequently via the Match.com app for about 3 weeks.  We talked about how many children we had and their ages. Between the two of us, we had 4 boys.  You also told me that you had a daughter, that you raised, but she wasn’t biologically yours.  I really found that honorable.  You told me that your children lived with you, but it wasn’t because their mother passed away.  This also impressed me.  It definitely wasn’t as common for the man to have full custody of his children.  You asked me about my ex-husband and if he was involved in my children’s life.  At the time he wasn’t and you were very upset by that.  You just couldn’t understand why he wasn’t an active participant in the children’s life.  I had some of the same thoughts, so this was a sensitive subject for me.

One day we were chatting on the Match.com app and you told me that you had many more stories to tell me about work and the horrors of online dating, but they would be easier to tell me over the phone.  I figured that was your way of hinting that you wanted my phone number, so I finally gave it to you.  I remember the first time you texted me, I responded and then asked who I was talking to.  You responded, “It’s Thomas.  Didn’t your mama teach you not to talk to strangers.”  That made me laugh.  I liked that you made me laugh.  We progressed from texting to talking on the phone, but it took about a week.  During our first call, you explained why you took so long to call me.  You told me that you had been sick and you didn’t want me to hear your voice like that.  Our very first conversation lasted for over 2 hours.

You told me so many stories about the horrific experiences you had with online dating.  They were so funny but disturbing at the same time.  It was a good thing I met you before hearing those type of stories because your stories made me question the process of online dating.  I asked you why you opted for online dating.  You were a very handsome and intelligent guy.  You had a successful career as an Engineer at a great company.  You could probably get any girl you wanted.  You told me it was because you didn’t hang out at the typical places that would allow you to meet someone and there was definitely nobody at your job who you be interested in dating.

It was amazing to me that I felt so comfortable with you right away, which was unusual for me.  It was like we knew each other forever.  After that first conversation, we talked on the phone almost every night for hours about various topics.  We talked about everything from work, politics, pop culture, music, relationships and so many other things, including what we expected from our significant other in a relationship.  During one of our conversations, you told me that you didn’t believe in traditional roles between a man and woman in a relationship.  You explained that you were looking for a partner and wasn’t planning on supporting anyone, anymore, after taking care of your ex-fiancée.  We discussed how you expected for whomever you were dating to help pay for the dates.  This would have normally been a turn off for me, but I actually understood what you were saying.  In my marriage, I was the one paying for everything, all of the time, so I didn’t mind contributing and helping to pay for our dates.  You told me that you didn’t mind paying for the first date but after that you would expect for me to pay for the second date.  You even told me a story about a girl you went out with and how she acted like she didn’t have money to pay for a second date that you were on and how you refused to pay.  The story was kind of funny, but I was horrified at the same time.

You told me that one of your biggest flaws was your temper.  You explained to me that you didn’t give people too many chances and that your first impression of a person was usually a lasting one for you.  You were very honest and told me that you were a stubborn person and you had no intentions of changing who you were.  You stated that either I liked you for who you were or I didn’t.  I appreciated the fact that you were honest and upfront about who you were.  I learned from my marriage that you can’t change people.  They are who they are, so I had no intentions of trying to change you. I felt if I couldn’t handle who you were, I would just end the relationship.

We were just talking on the phone for a little over 2 months when one night during our conversation, you asked me if we were ever going to go out on a date.  We were taking things quite slow, but I thought it was nice that we were taking the time to get to know each other before our first date.  The truth is, I was actually waiting for you to ask me on a date because I wanted to make sure you wanted to meet me like I wanted to meet you.  I was afraid of rejection, so there was no way, I was going to initiate that first date.  You asked me for a date that night and I definitely said yes.  I couldn’t wait to see if we had the same connection that we had over the phone, once we met in person.

We were so excited about our first date that we talked about it every day on the phone up until the actual day of the date.  You kept changing your mind about the plans for that night.  You asked me multiple questions about what I was going to wear, while you were trying to determine what you were going to be wearing.  I had my outfit ready as soon as you asked me to officially go out on a date however, I didn’t plan on telling you about what I was going to wear.  I just wanted you to see me in it.  I expressed to you that I was nervous about meeting you because I was the total opposite of the girls you were normally attracted to.  I was short, brown skinned, independent and very opinionated.  You explained to me that you weren’t worried about the fact that I was different from the girls you normally dated and that my differences were a good thing.  You never dated anyone who had a Master’s degree, owned their own home and was career driven.  You said you were looking forward to being with someone who had those qualities.

Our first date ended up being pretty low key.  We went to Buffalo Wild Wings, where we intended to watch the UFC fight.  I got there about 20 minutes early because I was so nervous and I didn’t want to be late.  I remember sitting there waiting for you to walk through that door.  When you came in you looked at me and smiled. I was relieved, because you looked just like your picture.  I went to shake your hand and you pulled me in for a hug.  That surprised me since we really didn’t know each other, but I didn’t mind it.  I had on a green and black asymmetrical skirt with a black body shirt and a camouflage jacket that matched the skirt, with some black boots.  I thought I was looking pretty good.  I hoped you liked my outfit because I did.  You were wearing a tan Nautica sweater with some dark khaki pants and black shoes. You were also wearing your glasses.  In your online pictures you were wearing contacts, but I liked glasses on you.  I remember thinking that you looked very nice.

I was so relieved that you were so friendly, especially with us meeting for the first time.  We were seated and the conversation flowed as smoothly as it did when we talked on the phone.  I felt absolutely comfortable with you. The restaurant was playing country music on the radio and I started to sing the song. You made a face and I asked you what was wrong. You told me how you didn’t like country music because of a bad experience you had as teenager working at a barbecue joint in North Carolina.  You told me about the racism you encountered at that restaurant and how that turned you against country music.

When our waiter came over to take our order he was very rude. I must have given him the “look”, because when he walked a way you told me to behave myself.  I didn’t realize that you caught my reaction until you mentioned it, so I began to laugh.  You would quickly learn that I could keep my opinions to myself, but I definitely couldn’t control my facial expressions most of the time.

During dinner, I mentioned how my oldest son wanted a dog.  This was a subject matter that you were well versed in so we spent a large part of the date, googling dogs on your phone. You were determined to help me pick a suitable dog for my son that would also serve as protection.  After the UFC fight was uneventful, you asked me if I wanted to go to the movies.  I don’t know what got into me, but I was following you to your car.  You said, “You’re going to get in the car with a stranger?” I said no and started to laugh again.  I was so embarrassed as I walked to my car.  I normally wouldn’t have even considered doing something like that, but I was just so comfortable around you.  It felt like I had known you all of my life.

We traveled to the movies in separate cars.  I followed you in my car, because I didn’t know the way to the movie theatre that we were going to.  We ended up seeing the Jennifer Lopez movie, “The Boy Next Door.” The movie wasn’t that great but the overall night seemed like a good first date.  We enjoyed each other’s company and laughed a lot.  You paid for the entire first date, however I was prepared to pay for the movies, especially since you told me how you felt about paying for everything. The next day, you texted me and told me that you had a good time.  Although you said you had a good time on our date, I was unsure about whether you would ask me out on a second date. During that week, you asked me out again.  We made plans to meet at Dave & Buster’s for our next date.



About the Author

Latesha Kellam is an author who takes her life experiences and puts them into words that will inspire others. She wrote her first story at the age of 14, about the events surrounding the unexpected death of her father. During the current phase of her life, she has the desire to not only write inspiring books but to help people, especially woman, recognize when they are in dysfunctional relationships. She lives by the old adage, experience is the best teacher, therefore she takes events from her own life to inspire her writing.


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Book Blitz: A Rite of Hearts Undone by Lauren Sergeant



Children of the Glaring Dawn, Book 2
Young Adult Fantasy
Published Date: May 22, 2020
Publisher: INtense Publications LLC

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As they journey into the land of the Jini, Ihva grapples with her divinely-appointed role and Jasper struggles to resolve the fearful nature of his existence. With things at home deteriorating and Gant on the brink of war, Ihva presents a solution, and Jasper must decide how far he’s willing to go to see his purpose through.

With the world upending and their feelings dividing them, can Ihva and Jasper find a way to reconcile their differences to overcome the Shadow’s conquest?



About the Author

Lauren C. Sergeant, author of the Children of the Glaring Dawn series, adventures through life as a wife, mother, author, and assistant property manager. Having dabbled in over a dozen languages and taken more than a handful of international trips, she expresses her fascination with people in the novels she writes. The relationships of her characters with each other and with themselves draw readers into her keen attentiveness to what it means to be human. She spins epic tales of love, humor, and struggle, but in the end, she is just another individual on this quest called life.

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PROMO: Taking Time by Mike Murphey – Teaser

Book 1, Physics, Lust and Greed Series
Humorous Science Fiction
Date Published: June 15, 2020
Publisher: Acorn Publishing

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The year is 2044. Housed in a secret complex beneath the eastern Arizona desert, a consortium of governments and corporations have undertaken a program on the scale of the Manhattan Project to bludgeon the laws of physics into submission and make time travel a reality.

            Fraught with insecurities, Marshall Grissom has spent his whole life trying not to call attention to himself, so he can’t imagine he would be remotely suited for the role of time travel pioneer. He’s even less enthusiastic about this corporate time-travel adventure when he learns that nudity is a job requirement. The task would better match the talents of candidates like the smart and beautiful Sheila Schuler, or the bristle-tough and rattlesnake-mean Marta Hamilton.

            As the project evolves into a clash between science and corporate greed, conflicts escalate. Those contributing the funding are mostly interested in manipulating time travel for profit, and will stop at nothing, including murder, to achieve their goals.


Excerpt


A HARD ROW TO HOE
October 2044
Global Research Consortium Projection Laboratory


“SO, DO YOU THINK THEY’RE telling us the truth why some of the lemmings didn’t survive?” Sheila Schuler whispered from the side of her mouth.
“The . . . what?” Marshall had to replay Sheila’s com¬ment one time before he could muster the concentration to make sense of it. As he scanned the computers, lights and lenses while he absorbed stares of scientists, engineers and technicians, though, a single thought consumed him.
We should have practiced naked.
The one time he’d suggested it, several female scientists and computer techs scowled as if Marshall personified the lowest bundle of perverse male hormonal scum on the planet.
The smart guys who represented the conglomeration of competing interests pursuing time travel had considered the question. Would nudity create such a distraction at a critical moment that the mission might be jeopardized?
Marshall recalled a couple of scientists insisting that, just as when the astronauts took man’s initial steps into space, everything should be rehearsed in precise detail. Every conceivable circumstance should be anticipated and practiced.
Within the Wormhole Project, Marshall now realized, this philosophy represented a distinctly minority position. Training is fine, conceded the folks putting up the money. As representatives of the various governments and corpora¬tions pointed out, however, unlike the swash¬bucklers over at the Light Speed Project, travelers here at the Wormhole Project didn’t fly anything, navigate anywhere, or even push any buttons. They only needed to stand there and live long enough to describe the experience.
As for nudity, any male who suggested some of the rehearsals should take place in the buff suffered an unspoken accusation that he just wanted to ogle a naked woman.
“The lemmings?” Marshall asked, shifting his gaze from computers and cameras to look directly at Sheila. He did his best to concentrate on her eyes, making a futile effort to ignore the spectacular and unambiguously nude body below her chin.
“It doesn’t bother you?”
“Um . . . but . . . but why would they lie?”
Sheila gave a quick shrug, which resulted in a corre¬spond¬ing jiggle.
Marshall understood unequivocally. They should have practiced naked.
Until this moment, with the platform beneath him beginning to hum and a plasma sort of ooze crawling across giant mirrored metal globes to each side of them, Marshall counted on the historical gravity of the occasion to block the male animal’s primordial response to the female body. He might have been okay if Marta Hamilton was the only naked lady he had to try and ignore. Attractive in her own way, Marta was relegated to something like optical back¬ground noise compared to Sheila. And none of Marshall’s carefully nurtured best intentions would pass this test.
When that awkward moment arrived for the six travelers to remove their robes, the men hesitated. Sheila and Marta exchanged an eye roll, shed their garments and stepped under spotlights illuminating the projection platform. Marshall felt his first warning tingles at the sight of Sheila from behind. When she turned to face the room, though, she eclipsed all the technological wonders surrounding them. Marshall took his place beside her, aware that he was doomed.
That’s when Sheila asked about the lemmings.
The first-time travelers were two lemmings wearing sensors and miniature video cameras and recording and tracking devices built into their tiny collars. The scientist’s first choice as test subjects had been dogs. Dog lovers among the technical staff had objected, though. Which set a precedent, and the scientists were forced to seek popular approval for the choice of test subject. The only two creatures to which staff people had no objections were lemmings, which are suicidal anyway, and African tree frogs. Because an African tree frog has nothing in common with mammalian anatomy, and because the collars kept slipping off over their little heads, the scientists went with lemmings.
When the scientists waved their wands and pushed their buttons, the lemmings went away—somewhere. The scientists waited a while, pushed the buttons again, and the lemmings returned. The fact of their decapitations, though, dampened any sense of triumph. Both lemming bodies and lemming heads were present, albeit neatly disconnected. The collars were conspicuously absent.
The second time around, someone suggested the issue, rather than fine-tuning all the calibrations and power settings, might be the collars. They put the instrumentation into lemming vests. This time a head and four legs were all that reappeared. So, the scientists said screw the popular sentiment and went with their original second choice, pigs. The pigs worked out better only because the researchers could barbecue the leftovers.
Finally, they attempted a projection without vests or collars. Both lemmings and pigs returned in good health. The process of time travel, though, acquired a completely unanticipated complication.
“N-naked?” one female traveler candidate stammered when Naomi Hu, the project’s chief medical officer, made the announcement.
“That is correct,” Naomi said, “Our physicists now believe only living organic matter can be transported through the wormhole. We can’t send devices crashing around through time and space to record things remotely. We can’t write notes to ourselves to warn of some impending doom. We can only project a living, breathing being, showered and scrubbed free of inorganic matter. And is completely naked.”
“In front of . . . people?” another weak query sounded from somewhere behind Marshall.
Half a dozen female candidates decided they could not abide the nudity and transferred to alternate duties. Marshall considered his options. None of the other male candidates appeared particularly concerned, though, so he felt he could not withdraw without seeming prudish or cowardly. And in truth, Marshall felt he could ultimately deal with the danger. He couldn’t, however, abide his fear of making a mistake that might jeopardize someone else.
Not to mention his other problem.



About the Author


Mike Murphey is a native of eastern New Mexico and spent almost thirty years as an award-winning newspaper journalist in the Southwest and Pacific Northwest. Following his retirement from the newspaper business, he and his wife Nancy entered in a seventeen-year partnership with the late Dave Henderson, all-star centerfielder for the Oakland Athletics, Boston Red Sox and Seattle Mariners. Their company produced the A’s and Mariners adult baseball Fantasy Camps. They also have a partnership with the Roy Hobbs adult baseball organization in Fort Myers, Florida. Mike loves fiction, cats, baseball and sailing. He splits his time between Spokane, Washington, and Phoenix, Arizona, where he enjoys life as a writer and old-man baseball player.

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