Spreading the Word . . .

. . . on behalf of Sean Robins, author of The Scarlet Queen, The Golden Viper, and The White Republic (some of the quirky [fun/exciting] books in the sci-fi The Crimson Deathbringer series).

Jim Harrison is the main protagonist, a fighting hero with an ego and alter-ego named Venom.  He has a trustworthy best friend, Kurt, who helps him win battles.  And there is a great array of secondary characters, such as dogged and determined (win at all costs) General Maada, prank-dense and maybe dangerous (but you can never truly be sure) Tarq, and beautiful femme-fatale mercenary and spy, Xornaa.

So, per Sean’s request, I’m helping spread the word: the box set continues to be a bestseller!  How awesome is that?  If you haven’t yet checked out his books, I highly recommend you do; each one is an entertaining (easy-to-get-hooked) read.

A little about Sean: he’s a university/college-level English teacher and huge Marvel (plus Star Trek, Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, and Stargate) fan, as is evident in his stories (they’re full of pop-culture references).

Check him out on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/sean.robins.77, and Amazon, https://www.amazon.com/Sean-Robins/e/B07PS1116K%3Fref=dbs_a_mng_rwt_scns_share, among others.

The Two-Parter Continued: The Still Inexhaustible Robin Murphy

1robinm (1)The previous post focused on Robin Murphy’s critically acclaimed books—and she has penned many, from a paranormal mystery series to chick-lit and nonfiction.  This one centers on her informative [impressive] website/blog.  Her site is what I’d love mine to be: instructive, well written, and smartly designed.

“Where our experience makes your journey easier . . . keep on writing.”

Robin’s absolutely correct about there being countless books, posts, and articles telling us how to market books.  I myself have read many and, for the most part, find that they can impart some tidbits of useful information.  She’s also spot-on when she says, “you need to choose which is best for you and what you feel comfortable doing.”

Not everyone has the time to spend countless hours marketing, networking, and/or promoting.  And while we should be exceptionally careful (wary) about putting out money to do any of these, if the company is legit, then financial expenditures (b-u-d-g-e-t) may also be something to take into account.  Determine what you’re capable of accomplishing . . . and go for it.

The purpose of this post is not to repeat what Robin asserts and presents info-wise, but to have you to visit her comprehensive site.  Check out the fabulous advice/guidance this bestselling author has to offer.  You’ll find writing links, marketing tools and tours, podcast interviews, and even book covers for sale.

1rookie2abc

“Writing is my passion and I have met so many amazing people that have helped me along the way.  I want to share what I’ve learned in the best possible way of instruction that I can.  I hope I can achieve that here and I wish you luck.”

As an aspiring writer (or even a published one), you might want to read Robin’s edifying book, the “practical, hands-on and user-friendly” A Complete “How To” Guide for Rookie Writers.

To learn more about Robin, please check her out at:

http://rookiewriterssolutions.net/index.html

https://www.facebook.com/rookiewriterssolutions/

https://twitter.com/authorrmmurphy

https://www.amazon.com/Robin-Murphy/e/B007TO7NEQ%3Fref=dbs_a_mng_rwt_scns_share

http://www.linkedin.com/pub/robin-murphy/38/213/338

A Two-Parter: The Inexhaustible Robin Murphy

Given they’re two different components, I thought I’d first focus on the books and  second on Robin Murphy, her website and offerings.  A lovely Maryland-based lady who wears many hats, Robin constantly contributes, in one way or another, to the literary world.

1robinmAnd just who is Robin Murphy, for those not in the know?  Besides having served in the administrative and graphic design areas for several years, she’s a speaker, writer, and the sole proprietor of Rookie Writers Solutions.

Robin is an Amazon blockbusting author of a paranormal mystery series—thanks to her fascination with the paranormal, murder mysteries, and ghost investigations—featuring Marie Bartek and the SIPS Team.  The first, Sullivan’s Secret, was an Amazon bestseller, while the subsequent [highly recommended] books have received notable critical acclaim.

  • Sullivan’s Secret (2011)
  • Secret of the Big Easy (2012)
  • Federal City’s Secret (2013)
  • Secret of Coffin Island (2015)
  • Savannah’s Secret (2017)

1books

Point and Shoot for Your Life, was a one-off, or non-series, book.  Viewed on NBC, ABC and FOX, it was voted one of “The 50 Best Indie Books of 2016”.  Another intriguing/entertaining read, it revolves around down-on-her-luck photographer Hannah Mills, who is out of work and about to get evicted.  A relative wills her a rare Navajo blanket worth a million dollars, but before Hannah can auction the blanket, human traffickers kidnap her niece—and the blanket is the ransom.

There’s nonfiction as well: The Complete How-To Guide for Rookie Writers.  It has been described as “a very practical, hands-on and user-friendly book to enable a rookie writer to learn how to get their newly created work produced and available to readers”.  Sounds like a worthwhile read for any writer!

One last fascinating FYI: our prolific writer was also named one of the “50 Great Writers You Should be Reading in 2011”.

More in part two of . . . The Two-Parter.

In the meanwhile, please feel free to check out Robin here:

https://www.facebook.com/rookiewriterssolutions/

https://twitter.com/authorrmmurphy

https://www.amazon.com/Robin-Murphy/e/B007TO7NEQ%3Fref=dbs_a_mng_rwt_scns_share

http://www.linkedin.com/pub/robin-murphy/38/213/338

Sean Robins does not Disappoint with The White Republic

Another quick plug—this one for Sean Robins.  I had the pleasure of editing the sixth book in The Crimson Deathbringer series and The White Republic: An Epic Space Opera/Alien Adventure does not disappoint.  It’s as enjoyable a read as the previous (great title, too).

If you’ve been following, you know about the brilliant battles and enemy invasions and the fun cast of characters, including: Jim (the hero), Kurt (his friend, and the President), Xornaa (a stunning warrior), Tarq (the four-legged prankster), Maada (the enemy-turned-ally General). 

This time the question is: what happens if the technologically superior Akakies develop into the villainous Klingons in a parallel universe?

The ship itself was built before the widespread use of SAM had changed the Akakies into a warrior race, but they had recently added layers upon layers of offensive and defensive weaponry to her hull, turning her into a lethal killing machine that could destroy an entire planet with ease. With a few thousand escort space fighters, she could stand against the entire enemy force and prevail.

When the White Republic’s navy decimates the Federation’s forces in a surprise attack, Jim and his friends must unite once more to expel the invaders and liberate their worlds.  Unfortunately, they have only a few thousand ships left and, to make matters worse, they’re under a tight deadline—with time rapidly running out. 

How will they accomplish this incredible feat?  You’ll have to read The White Republic to find out.  You can find it and the other books in the series here:

https://www.amazon.ca/Sean-Robins/e/B07PS1116K%3Fref=dbs_a_mng_rwt_scns_share

And to learn what makes Sean tick, check him out on Goodreads, BookBob, Twitter (@seanrobins300) and/or Facebook (facebook.com/seanrobins300).

Ring Ting Tingle, Sleigh Bells Jingle

A little early for the holidays?  Nawww.  We blink; they’re here.

I’m happy to share the news that James J. Cudney is releasing the eighth book in the Braxton Campus mystery series—Sleigh Bell Tower—December 20, 2021.  And there’s a blog tour from December 11th through the 20th.  Exciting news indeed.

I’ve enjoyed the series, featuring amateur sleuth Kellen Ayrwick, a thirty-something single father and professor at Braxton University.  Included in the cast of characters: a precocious daughter (Emma), feisty grandmother (Nana D), love interest (April), and intriguing (quirky) assortment of townsfolk.

When Bell Towers decides to build a new boutique hotel in Wharton County, Braxton establishes a hospitality program as part of the university expansion. Despite the Ingram and Lynch family ties to prominent citizens, a dispute over the proposed landsite pits citizens against one another. One takes matters into their own hands and slays the hotel magnate during a campus holiday party. As the list of suspects increases, long-lost family members are anxious to keep their secrets from being revealed, complicating Sheriff Montague’s ability to determine the murderer’s true motive. Even Kellan is forced to cast doubt on his friends and colleagues when it becomes obvious someone he knows committed the ultimate crime.

Just hear those sleigh bells jingle-ing
Ring ting tingle-ing too
Come on, it’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you   (Leroy Anderson)

Kellan and April celebrate their first Christmas and Hanukkah together, exchanging gifts based on the classic Twelve Days of Christmas song. While they trim the tree, light the menorah, and experience all the traditional holiday festivities with the kids, Nana D delivers her sarcastic brand of humor and endlessly tortures the town. Among Eleanor’s surprise news, Augie’s new girlfriend, and Myriam’s hilarious demands, Kellan’s dealing with unexpected holiday drama. The poor guy simply wants to spend the merry season with his family before he’s forced to trek to Scotland to fulfill his promise to the late Constance Garibaldi.

And what about our prolific author and fine friend, Jay?  As well as being the aforementioned author, he’s a blogger, reader and reviewer, genealogist and researcher, and thinker.  He’s also a pretty amazing person.

1jayPlease check him out at:

https://jamesjcudney.com/

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=james+j+cudney&i=digital-text&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/56803291-sleigh-bell-tower#_=_

Five, Four, Three, Two, One

A quick countdown to the last day . . .

Coco’s Nuts, the third mystery in the Triple Threat Investigation Agency series, is available for 99 cents today, the last day of the promo.

It’s Linda today (or Lindy-Loo, as Rey likes to call me too often).

As still newbie P.I.s, we become entrenched in our second paying assignment: proving socialite-turned-trucker Buddy Feuer did not shoot her boss, infamous entrepreneur Jimmy Picolo.  If that’s not bad enough, a few days later her best friend, Eb, is found dead in a nearby alley.  Oh, it gets worse: not long after that, Razor, Picolo’s assistant, receives five fatal bullets in his bulky frame.  Unfortunately, all the evidence points at our pretty client. 

In the search for answers, JJ, Rey and I deal with a sundry of suspects.  Many persons hated Picolo enough to kill him—no news there—but determining who pulled the trigger proves quite challenging.  And, apparently, the killer hates Buddy as well, because she’s been set up to take the fall.

Our detecting leads us down a few detours, like the world of high-stakes gambling and the not-so-friendly limb-breakers that reside within it.  Picolo’s daughter, Annia, owes thousands of dollars to debt collectors in Vegas and on Oahu.  Was this motivation to kill her father, so that she could collect from the will?  Or did Picolo’s son, Jimmy Junior, want to take charge of his father’s multiple and highly successful businesses?

What about nutty Coco Peterson?  A driver for Picolo, the weird little  pest (as some might call him) has been MIA since his boss’ murder.  Alas, while searching Picolo’s million-dollar Haleiwa retreat, the we discover “bits” of Coco—his tattoo and jewelry.  It appears pesty Coco is another casualty, but locating the rest of him is as difficult as proving Buddy innocent.

If you’d like to find out how we do, please check us out at:

Review: The Scarlet Queen by Sean Robins

It’s time for another Sean Robins review.  Our prolific writer has penned another book, The Scarlet Queen, the prequel to the well-received The Crimson Deathbringer series.  This time, we follow beautiful Xornaa, a “femme fatale mercenary”—and Xortaag spy—who becomes involved in time traveling with the intriguing if not unique Klatzo, creator of the time machine.  In addition to (expected and desired) engaging battles, there are more life-saving episodes (but no spoiler alerts as to outcomes).

There are references to characters from the series (like Tarq the impassioned prankster and Maada the dogged general), which bring back welcome memories of those other exhilarating stories and danger-fraught and oft crazy adventures.

Here’s a little taste:

Up until then, I still had a faint hope that we could make it to the jump point, but it evaporated with the arrival of the new enemy ships. I closed my eyes, let out a long low sigh, and covered my face in defeat. The thought that everything I’d done, including inventing a freaking time machine, had been for naught stabbed at my heart.

I clenched my fist so tightly that my hands started shaking as a vein began to pulse in my forehead. Then I heard my doppelgangers shouting in excitement. I looked at my tactical display and, in sheer astonishment, realized the new ships were shooting at their own space fighters.

I blinked and checked my tactical display again to make sure my eyes weren’t deceiving me. Nope. It was real.

Two of the pursuing space fighters were hit before their pilots realized what was happening. The other two broke and flew in opposite directions, but each had three vessels on their six, and I was certain even their pilots knew they were doomed. They threw their space fighters up and down, left and right, and tried to avoid the incoming fire, but they joined their dead comrades in less than two minutes.

What the hell is going on?!

What the hell indeed?  You’ll just have to read The Scarlet Queen to discover what happens!

For those not yet familiar with Sean, he’s a huge fan of Marvel, Game of Thrones, Star Wars, and Star Trek.  He’s also a university/college level English teacher who has lived and worked in different countries.  To find out more, please check out Sean and his new book out at:

Amazon:  https://www.amazon.ca/Scarlet-Queen-Adventure-Crimson-Deathbringer-ebook/dp/B091FMTSX4/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=the+scarlet+queen&qid=1625919260&s=books&sr=1-1

Twitter:  @seanrobins300

Facebook:  facebook.com/seanrobins300

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18999889.Sean_Robins

Rating: lei1forbookreviewslei1forbookreviewslei1forbookreviewslei1forbookreviews

It’s JJ on the last day of the 99-cent promotion for Can You Hula Like Hilo Hattie?  . . .

Hula is our first professional (paying) case that we—the three private investigators of the Oahu-based Triple Threat Investigation Agency—undertake.

Given we’re newbies, we do pretty well . . . okay, maybe we make a few mistakes and get ourselves into some seriously sticky situations . . . but we learn along the way.

An elderly millionaire hires Rey, Linda and me to find out what his young, pretty wife is doing when she’s not at home.  He believes she’s having an affair—and, given he’s looking at a divorce, this would help his cause immensely. 

Before we can discover whether she’s involved with anyone (like her personal trainer or the “pool boy”), we find her floating in the Pacific at the base of some cliffs.  Any number of people might have been responsible, so we have our work cut out for us. =

A few more bodies drop.  As they do, we attempt to help a young drug addict, does deal with an ornery drug dealer or two, and encounter some mean-tempered gang members.

This first case proves complicated, but we endeavor to put the pieces of the complex puzzle together.  Perhaps you’d like to find out how we accomplish this?

You can find Hula here . . .

https://www.amazon.ca/Hula-Hattie-Triple-Threat-Mystery-ebook/dp/B01KEEBNOS

https://www.amazon.com/Tyler-Colins/e/B01KHOZAL2%3Fref=dbs_a_mng_rwt_scns_share

https://www.amazon.com/kindle-dbs/entity/author/B01KHOZAL2?_encoding=UTF8&node=618073011&offset=0&pageSize=12&searchAlias=stripbooks&sort=author-pages-popularity-rank&page=1&langFilter=default#formatSelectorHeader

Becoming Bulletproof – Part 1

I’m reading a great book right now (one I’m not editing)—Becoming Bulletproof by Evy Poumpouras.

The intention was to do a review, but as I was strolling along pre-dawn streets this morning, it came to me to do a two-parter.  One: how the book came into my possession.  Two: the review itself.

This year has been one of sharing, of communicating things about my personal situation, and what a challenge life has become over the years.  I never had the inclination to be transparent [that much] in past, but somehow, these days, this year, it seems a cathartic thing to do.

I’ve been sad/depressed off and on for a long time; sometimes, I can handle it, sometimes I slip deep within and/or spit razorblades.  Lately, it’s been the latter.  I’ve walked away from people (the very, very few friends I have, all three of them).

One friend, however, was sweet enough to give me a feel-better bag filled with lovely pick-you-up pressies.  Scented candles (I couldn’t peel my nose from those heady fragrances).  Sweet treats (how nummy).  A soft blanket (so ni-ice at night).  And the book . . . Becoming Bulletproof (Life Lessons from a Secret Service Agent).  Thank you, Krystyna.

“The one person you should be able to fully rely upon to save you is you.  You are the hero you’ve been waiting for . . .” is how the back jacket reads.  Love it.  Ultimately, it’s true; the only person(s) we can rely on are ourselves.

The book revolves around how to deal with and overcome fear.  I’m all for that; who doesn’t want to take charge of her/his life?

My fear?  There’s really only one: never being free of mom-care.  I’ve devoted most of my life to taking care of a woman who could care less what the toll is on me, nor is she thankful for the multitude of things I do every day.  That’s okay.  Some people simply can’t say thank-you.  And I don’t criticize or condemn her for that; that’s just who she is.

I’m often feeling like one of the walking dead because I am exhausted beyond exhausted.  And hope and faith are merely memories.  But real [uninterrupted] sleep will come one day.  Maybe not tomorrow or next month.  But it will come.  Hope may return and I hope (he-he) it does.  Faith I’m not so sure about, but maybe I take the Wayne Dyer approach to life.  Faith is found in many forms and it doesn’t have to be “religious”.

I must learn to go with the flow better than I have been doing.  Pull up the socks.  Keep a stiff upper lip.  Let things happen/unfold.  Allow the cards to fall where they may.  How are those for overused—but appropriate—sayings?

wpbookI must also apply what I’ve learned from the book.  It’s merely a matter of putting advice into practice . . . and practice does make perfect (one last familiar saying, he-he).

And, with time, yours truly will become bulletproof.

Review: THE BLACK FLEET – The Crimson Deathbringer Book Three (Sean Robins)

The third book in the series, The Black Fleet, continues to satisfy.  It’s not quite as complex perhaps as the previous two (The Crimson Deathbringer and The Golden Viper), but it still delivers—with brisk action, campy humor, and the crazy cast we’ve grown so fond of.  They abound with zealousness (or is that insanity?).  The threat this time deals with the fate of the future.  Scary!

There’s protagonist Major Jim Harrison—with new wife, Ella, a career military woman—and his nemesis/alter-ego, Venom.  Jim’s still an ace fighter pilot but is also the author of well-selling autobiographies; not only have they granted him a certain level of fame but have bolstered an ego that was rather big to begin with.  Comrade Kurt returns, as does prankster Tarq, but the “insect” seems a little less dynamic than previously.  General Maada takes a pivotal role and gives Jim a run for his money, er, space fighter, er . . . .

Sean’s characters are well crafted and alternative planets and lifeforms—like the Akakies, Volts, and Talgonians—are thoroughly detailed.  It’s easy to visualize the action in all its explosive fervor.  Energy and danger overflow as heroes/heroines and enemies engage in thrilling skirmishes.

I looked at Earth, visible from the front window, and admired its magnificent beauty for the thousandth time. No matter how often I saw Earth from orbit, this view always made my breath catch and my spirit lift. My planet, where all my loved ones lived, including my unborn child. In this wide universe, this was the only place I called home, which incidentally I’d helped save a couple of times, along with the rest of the galaxy.

If pride really were a deadly sin, then I was going straight to hell.

And now new baddies were coming for her. Well, guess who was standing in their way. But first, there was a minor issue I had to deal with.

“You know what, Tarq?” I said conversationally. “It’s just occurred to me you never answered for the seven hundred million humans you got killed.

Another thrilling ride to be sure, one that leaves you longing for another.  Lucky us—there’s a fourth one to come.

A definite 4 out of 5!

savesavesavesave

What about Sean Robins?  As may be evident from the Crimson Deathbringer books, he’s a huge fan of Marvel, Game of Thrones, Star Wars and Star Trek.  He’s a university/college-level English teacher and has lived and worked in six different countries, including Canada.  Sean has met people from all around the world, which is “probably why my characters look like the bridge crew from Star Trek”.

His favorite author is Jim Butcher (The Dresden Files), which is why he ended up writing in first-person POV with the same light-hearted, funny tone.  The fact that his MC’s name is Jim is purely coincidental, and has nothing to do with Captain James Kirk either.

Please check Sean out on Amazon, Goodreads, Twitter (@seanrobins300) and/or Facebook (facebook.com/seanrobins300).

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