Movie Blast! The SECRETS of the KEYS by Robin Jay

 

We’re thrilled to be hosting Robin Jay’s THE SECRETS OF THE KEYS Movie Blast today!

 

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Title:
The SECRETS of the KEYSProducer: TwoBirds, Inc.

Genre: Inspirational/Motivational

Imagine getting a life-altering call from your doctor. That’s exactly what happens to motivational speaker and author “Elizabeth” in The
Secrets of the Keys.
Now, the inspiration she has used throughout her career to guide others comes back to her as she attempts to make sense of her situation.
Elizabeth comes face-to-face with her spiritual guide, “Gwen,” who has an intriguing opportunity for her. Gwen takes Elizabeth on a mystical
journey where they encounter impressive experts eager to share the importance of 7 Keys: Appreciation, Harmony, Courage, Passion, Faith, Vibration, and
Empathy
.
Will she accept Gwen’s unique offer of a new kind of existence? This empowering and transformational film is both entertaining and beautiful . . .and will forever change the way you look at life.

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Information

Cast:

 

Watch the Trailer!

https://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/icETsM3NdPk?rel=0

 

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About the Producer

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Robin Jay is an award-winning filmmaker, author, speaker, and publisher. She began her career in Personal Development as “The Queen of the Business Lunch™,” a Business Relationship Expert who shares the nuts-and-bolts of building profitable business relationships, with an
emphasis on smart ways to network and socialize with clients.
Robin’s award-winning book, “The Art of the Business Lunch ~ Building Relationships Between 12 and 2” (Career Press) is in 12 languages worldwide. She is also a contributor to “Chicken Soup for the Wine Lover’s Soul.” Robin has been featured internationally on MSNBC-TV,
Newsweek Magazine, CNN, the BBC, the New York Times, The London Financial Times, Forbes.com and other well-recognized media outlets.
In 2006, she founded the Las Vegas Convention Speakers Bureau. As president, she not only runs the bureau and coaches speakers to success, Robin also published “The Power of the Platform,” a series of anthologies that feature messages from today’s top motivational
speakers, including Jack Canfield, Brian Tracy, and Les Brown.
Robin’s first film was “The KEEPER of the KEYS” – the first FUNNY personal development movie, which stars Jack Canfield, John Gray, and Marci Shimoff. Robin wrote, produced, and costars in the movie.
Her goal was to empower viewers by keeping them engaged and entertained. She was thrilled when the movie won the Las Vegas Film Festival Award for Best Independent Film, and The INDIE Fest Award for Best Documentary.
Her latest project is titled “The Secrets of the Keys”, which features a fun, engaging fictional story along with expert testimonials and personal accounts from some of the top names in the self-help industry, including Brian Tracy, don Miguel Ruiz, Gloria Loring, Dannion
Brinkley, Michael Beckwith, and John Assaraf. The film was released in January 2016 and immediately won awards, including two gold awards for Concept & Original Song from the International Independent Film Awards.
For More Information

Giveaway

Robin is giving away 3 DVDs and 3
downloads!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • Six winners will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one THE SECRETS OF THE KEYS DVD or one download
  • This giveaway begins April 4 and ends on April 29.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on April 30.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!

ENTER TO WIN!

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Free of Malice Book Blast!

Free of Malice banner 2
Title: FREE OF MALICE
Author: Liz Lazarus
Publisher: Mitchell Cove Publishing LLC
Pages: 274
Genre: Suspense/Thriller
Laura Holland awakes in the middle of the night to see a stranger standing in her bedroom doorway. She manages to
defend herself from the would-be rapist, though he threatens to return as hemretreats. Traumatized with recurring nightmares, Laura seeks therapy and is exposed to a unique treatment called EMDR. She also seeks self-protection—
buying a gun against the wishes of her husband. When Laura learns she could have gone to prison had she shot her fleeing assailant, she decides to write a hypothetical legal case using the details of that night. She enlists the help
of criminal defense lawyer, Thomas Bennett, who proves to be well versed in the justice system but has an uncanny resemblance to her attacker. As the two work together to develop the story, Laura’s discomfort escalates particularly when Thomas seems to know more about that night than he should. Reality and fiction soon merge as her real life drama begins to mirror the fiction she’s trying to create.

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Book Excerpt:

Run. Run faster. As much as I
strained my legs to move, they were immobile, like I was waist deep in
quicksand.
Why can’t I move?
I tried to scream for help but
my mouth was full, like it was stuffed with cotton—no sound would escape.
I felt something clutching my
shoulder. No, it was someone. He was pushing me forward and then yanking me
back. I tried to jerk away but he had a tight grip, like a vice.
I have to break free.
The tugging got harder, more
forceful. He was calling my name— over and over. He knew my name.
“Laura, Laura.”
I jolted awake—my husband’s
hand still on my shoulder.
“Honey, wake up. You’re having
another bad dream.”
Slowly, I turned over in bed
and looked at him—his dark brown eyes were fixated on me. I could see them clearly
as the light from the bathroom brightened our bedroom.
For a month now, we had slept
with this light on.
I could see the small wrinkle
on his forehead. I loved that wrinkle though wished he didn’t have good reason
to be so concerned. I was enduring the nightmares, but he had to deal with my
tossing and mumbling in terror.
I remember when we first
met—ten years ago in chemistry lab at Georgia Tech. He had walked up to me with
those warm eyes and a charming, confident smile and asked, “Want to be partners?”
Two years later he took me to
Stone Mountain Park, rented a small rowboat and, in the moonlight, he pulled
out a diamond ring and asked me again, “Want to be partners?”
Life had seemed just about
perfect.
Until now.
We looked at each other for a
moment. Then he propped himself up on his elbow and said softly, “Laura, I feel
so helpless. I know it’s only been a month, but…”
He hesitated.
“What?” I asked.
“It’s just as bad as that
first night. After it happened. Look, I want to make you feel safe again, but I
don’t know how.”
He rubbed his eyes and looked
away. I waited, staring at him.
What isn’t he saying?
“I know you don’t want to see
a therapist, but seeing someone doesn’t mean you’re crazy. Therapists don’t
treat just crazy people. They help people who have been through traumas and you
have. Hell, no one even has to know.”
He paused for a second.
“Don’t be mad at me, but
yesterday I made an appointment for you. I was going to talk to you about it in
the morning if you had another bad dream. I found a woman who is downtown by my
office. She’s been practicing for about twenty years, got her doctorate from
Emory and comes with really good patient reviews.”
He looked for my reaction and
continued. “I made the appointment for you at 4:00 so we can go to dinner
afterward. You know what you always say. You’ll try anything once, right?”
“I told you I don’t want to
see a psychiatrist,” I pushed back. “I just need more time. I’ll bounce back.
You know I almost came in the house on my own today. Besides, if I see a
psychiatrist, on every job application I complete in the future, I’ll have to
check the ‘Yes’ box when they ask if I’ve had mental health treatment.”
“Jesus. No you don’t. You’re
too innocent sometimes.”
He gently tapped me on the nose.
“You can check the box ‘No.’
Besides, if that’s the only thing stopping you, I think you should give it a
try. Her name is Barbara Cole. I’ll take you to Houston’s afterward,” he added.
I ignored the bribe. “But what
can she do that you can’t? All she’ll do is listen and you do that for me
already. Psychiatrists are for people who don’t have friends or husbands to
talk to.”
Chris shook his head.
“Please? Do it for me.”
The tone in his voice was
different—more helpless than normal. Chris had been so understanding, so
comforting this past month, especially considering I had been waking him every
night. How could I refuse his request?
I sighed. “Okay,” I relented.
“I’ll go.”
“One visit. That’s all I’m
asking. If you don’t like it, you don’t have to go back. She’s a psychologist,
by the way, not a psychiatrist. She does therapy, not drugs.”
He glanced at the clock. It
was 3:30 a.m.
Chris grabbed Konk, my stuffed
animal gorilla that I won at the state fair by outshooting him at the
basketball game. He had sworn the scum running the game couldn’t take his eyes
off my butt and let me win.
“Here’s Konk,” he said. “I’m
going to finish my presentation since I’m up. I’ll just be in the office. Want
the door open?”
“Yes,” I said as I wrapped my
arms tightly around Konk.
“Hey, we’ll celebrate your
first therapy visit and my signed contract, I hope, this evening.”
“You mean you hope my
first visit?” I said with a playful smile.
He gave me a look—he was in no
mood for jokes.
“Fine. Fine. I’ll go,” I
assured.
“If you’re asleep when I
leave, just come by my office after the appointment and we’ll head to dinner.
Try to get some sleep. I love you.”
“I love you, too.”
About the Author
Liz Lazarus is the author of Free of Malice, a psychological, legal thriller loosely based on her personal experience and a series of ‘what if’ questions that trace the after effects of a foiled attack; a woman healing, and grappling with the legal system to acknowledge her right to self-defense.
She was born in Valdosta, Georgia, graduated from Georgia Tech with an engineering degree and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern with an MBA in their executive master’s program. She spent most of her career at General Electric’s Healthcare division and is currently a Managing Director at a strategic planning consulting firm in addition to being an author.
Free of Malice is her debut novel, set in Atlanta, and supplemented by extensive research with both therapists and criminal defense attorneys. She currently lives in Brookhaven, GA, with her fiancé, Richard, and their very spoiled orange tabby, Buckwheat.
For More Information

Giveaway

Liz is giving away a $25 B&N
Gift Card & an autographed copy of FREE OF MALICE!!

Terms &
Conditions:
  • By entering
    the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • Two winners
    will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 B&N Gift Card or
    one autographed copy of FREE OF MALICE
  • This
    giveaway begins April 11 and ends on May 11.
  • Winners
    will be contacted via email on May 12.
  • Winner has
    48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!

ENTER TO WIN!

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Book Excerpt: The Bipolar Millionaire by John E. Wade II

The Bipolar MillionaireTitle: The Bipolar Millionaire
Author: John E. Wade II
Publisher: Sunbury Press
Pages: 164
Genre: Memoir

John E. Wade II, retired CPA, author, investor, television producer, and philanthropist, reveals in his memoir, The Bipolar Millionaire, his personal struggle with bipolar disorder and how he has succeeded in living a balanced and blessed life, despite his mental illness.

 

Wade takes the reader through his family experiences, political aspirations and beliefs, spiritual journey, relationship trials and errors, all while battling mental illness.

Through his religious beliefs, personal perseverance, and the help of friends, family, and his mental health professionals, Wade lives an active, creative, and successful life.

 

His memoir doesn’t end with contentment at achieving a balance in his life, however. Instead, Wade expresses a determined vision for the future, aiming to assist humanity in what he describes as achieving heaven on earth through his writing, political and spiritual endeavors.

 

For More Information

Book Excerpt:

I was struggling and dropped into a walk from the jog required of fourth classmen. It was an autumn day in 1963, just a month after I’d had a near-fatal attack of meningitis, and I was still fighting to regain my strength. Panting for breath, I was confronted by a first classman. He asked very directly why I wasn’t jogging. I quickly replied that I had a medical excuse, knowing full well that the excuse had expired. He ordered me to produce the excuse, which I did. Noting its date, he nonetheless allowed me to proceed.

 

Soon, I was in the academy hospital, lying flat on my back in an almost catatonic state, unable to cope with my mental torment. Although this severe depression, the first in my life, was not diagnosed at the time, it must have been my first bipolar episode, possibly having been triggered by the recent attack of meningitis.

 

My mother and Carol, my then-girlfriend, came to try to revive me, but I don’t remember responding. Years later, Carol told me that I asked her to help me kill myself, but I have absolutely no memory of making such a request.

 

Until this illness I had been a model cadet. I had prepared physically according to academy guidelines, so the transition to basic cadet summer was rigorous but easier than it would have been without vigorous training.

 

One other thing that helped me during basic cadet summer was the stream of daily letters from Carol. My fellow cadets were jealous, partly because of the letters, but also because of the picture of her I had in my room. Even though it was black and white, it was clear that she had blond hair, a sweet smile, and a pleasing, pretty face. That face helped me get through the rest of what we all had to endure to complete our training.

 

Each week we were given certain “knowledge” to learn, such as types of aircraft or chains of command. I always spent part of Sunday afternoon memorizing the information so that I could recite it during Monday’s meals. The upperclassmen pointedly asked several questions of each basic cadet, which kept us from finishing our entire meal. The first classmen took turns performing the interrogation, but as the questions were considerably shorter than the answers, they always had plenty of time to eat. I always felt I was short-changed because I was the only one who knew the trivia from the first day it was due, and yet I didn’t get a chance to eat more than the other basic cadets.

 

At the end of basic cadet summer, all the cadets were subjected to a physical fitness test, and I scored the highest in my squadron. At about the same time, we also went on a survival exercise in the mountains for which we were organized into small groups with twenty-four hours’ worth of food and about a week’s time to find our way back to the academy. The experience was particularly taxing for me. I became so obsessed with saving my food that I still had some left when we got back to the academy.

 

After the final tests, those of us who successfully completed basic cadet summer became fourth classmen. My personal excitement was not long lasting, however. Although I had scored high marks on the physical tests, I was disappointed with my first academic grades, which included some Bs, as I was used to all As in high school. When I asked a first classman for his opinion, he said I did just fine considering that I came from a weak high school.

 

Basic cadet summer had ended—then the meningitis hit. I’ve since read that physical illness can trigger the onset of bipolar disorder, and although the diagnosis was not made at that time, I believe that is what had happened. My father eventually was diagnosed as having bipolar disorder also, so it appears that I was genetically predisposed to the condition, as is often the case.

 

I had entered the academy in June 1963, and I received an honorable medical discharge that December; whether I was right or wrong, I considered the situation a great disgrace. It was definitely a life-defining event for me, and I was overcome with depression.

 

But, there was another aspect to my failure at the Air Force Academy that I didn’t disclose to anyone else until years later: part of the reason I attended the academy was that I had presidential ambitions, which I knew would be shattered by the stigma of mental illness. I internalized and brooded over that stigma for the next forty years.

 

To make matters even worse, when I finally got home I also lost my girlfriend.

It was quite a shock to me and had a negative effect on my confidence with the women I would date for most of the rest of my life.

 

I have often wondered what would have happened had I not had the meningitis and bipolar episode. What aspects of my life would have been altered? It’s a haunting possibility to consider.

 

Still, even though the realization of some of my dreams has eluded me, I have had and am having an interesting, fulfilling life in spite of bipolar disorder, and I invite you to understand its role as I work toward what I believe is my destiny.

 

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A Bookish Conversation with Kim Harrison, author of ‘The Drafter’

Kim HarrisonKim Harrison, author of the New York Times #1 best selling Hollows series, was born in Detroit and lived most her her life within an easy drive.  After gaining her bachelors in the sciences, she moved to South Carolina, where she remained until recently returning to Michigan because she missed the snow.  She’s currently working on the Peri Reed Chronicles, and when not at her desk, Kim is most likely to be found landscaping her new/old Victorian home, in the garden, or out on the links.

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About the Book:

Detroit 2030. Double-crossed by the person she loved and betrayed by the covert government organization that trained her to use her body as a weapon, Peri Reed is a renegade on the run. Don’t forgive and never forget has always been Peri’s creed. But her day job The Draftermakes it difficult: she is a drafter, possessed of a rare, invaluable skill for altering time, yet destined to forget both the history she changed and the history she rewrote. When Peri discovers her name is on a list of corrupt operatives, she realizes that her own life has been manipulated by the agency. Her memory of the previous three years erased, she joins forces with a mysterious rogue soldier in a deadly race to piece together the truth about her fateful final task. Her motto has always been only to kill those who kill her first. But with nothing but intuition to guide her, will she have to break her own rule to survive?

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What made you decide to become a published author?

I almost hate to say this, but I became a writer almost by accident. I started writing later than a lot of authors, probably my mid-twenties, actually avoiding everything but the most basic English classes in high school and college to pursue a career in the sciences. But I was an avid reader, and I think I picked up on the niceties of pacing, plot development, and character growth from the sf/fantasy masters of the mid 70s, early 80s. They have stood me in good stead, and I owe them a debt of gratitude.

I first put pen to paper at the birth of my second child. I had decided to stay at home, starting a licensed family day care to be able to afford it. At that time, writing was the escape, not the job, so when the kids went home, I wrote to unwind. One hour became two, which became four, which became my weekends until I was able to quit and write full-time. It took about five years, but toward the last two, I treated writing as a part-time job, devoting four hours a day, every day, when I got home from my paying job.

Would you consider your latest book, The Drafter, to be a one of a kind?  How so?

Absolutely I would. Every book is one of a kind, even when they explore the same themes and follow the same directions as others out there. It’s the characters, not the plot or theme that make a book unique, and so as long as you’re not writing fan fiction, your work stands alone.

But from a more nuts-and-bolts view, I’ve never heard of anyone mixing rewriting time with memory loss framed by a strong nod to espionage. There’s a unrequited love in there too, which keeps me happy even as I’m blowing up buildings and righting the wrongs.

Where is your writing sanctuary?

My writing space has evolved as my career has, and what started as a small pressboard desk against a wall in my kitchen has grown over the last two decades into a stunning space in my small, city backyard. There are windows on all sides to let in the light and keep me connected to the passage of time. I can look up from the keyboard to my office garden complete with a koi pond and bird feeders. It’s always as warm or as cool as I want, as quiet or noisy as I want, and no one comes in looking for a cookie, or a Band-aid, or even a pair of socks. When it snows, it’s like heaven, and when it rains it’s even better with the damp air flowing over my desk. There is a couch for napping, that I never use, and a chair for my husband who spends the first half hour of our day together with me and coffee. I figured that if I was going to sit somewhere for 6-8 hours a day, I should be comfortable.

You’re concocting a recipe for a best selling book.  What’s the first ingredient?

Determination

Did any real life experiences find their way into your book?

Yes, my family and I are learning how to graciously accept one of life’s ugliest bitch-slaps called Alzheimer’s, and where Peri Reed does not have this disease, many of her coping techniques and fears come from here.

Aside from writing, what’s your passion?

I’m almost embarrassed to admit that I’m a really good knitter, going off pattern all the time to make my own creations. One of my greatest joys this year was to share the pattern I made to create Anna McCaffrey’s fire lizard. (I’ve included a picture if you want to use it.)

What’s next for you?

I’m currently working on the sequel to The Drafter, called The Operator, which is scheduled for a November 22, 2016 release. I’m also working on the rough draft for a fourteenth volume in the urban fantasy Hollows series which will probably come out in 2017. I’m also beginning to collect the ideas and elements I want to work with on a third, utterly new series that will have a more horror bent to it. I don’t expect that to see the light of day for several years, but anything worth having takes time.

 

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First Chapter Review: From Ashes Into Light by Gudrun Mouw

From Ashes Into LightTitle: From Ashes Into Light
Author: Gudrun Mouw
Pages: 240
Genre: Literary/Visionary Fiction
Publisher: Raincloud Press

From Ashes into Light is a transpersonal tale of epic tragedy, spirituality, family, and personal redemption. It is told through three distinct voices: the haunting story of Ruth, a Jewish adolescent during Kristallnacht in World War II Austria, Saqapaya, a stalwart Native American from coastal California during the time of the Spanish conquest, and Friede Mai.

Friede is born during WW II to a Bavarian soldier and an East-Prussian mother. As those around her struggle with the inevitable chaos and paradox of war, young Friede opens her heart to gruesome enemies, at times helping her family members escape atrocities.

With war behind them, the Mai family immigrates to the US, where Friede, her veteran father and ex-refugee mother, struggle with reverberations of trauma, suspicion and prejudice. Upon leaving home, Friede meets her spiritual guide and confidant in her fiancé’s Rabbi, who helps her see that the voices from her past are teachers and the horrors of history also contain beacons of light.

For More Information

  • From Ashes Into Light is available at Amazon.
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.

First Chapter Review:

When we look back at WWII, visions of Nazis, Hitler, concentration camps, war on Jews, all that, comes to mind.  If we haven’t experienced it first hand, Gudrun Mouw brings it to life for you in her new visionary fiction, From Ashes Into Light.  What I wanted to do is give you my review on the first chapter, then the whole book at some point, but this first chapter is so totally riveting.  It’s November 10, 1938.  Ruth Gutherz and her family leave their home after it had been ransacked by the Nazis.  They knew their lives would be in danger if they continued to stick around.  Wearing extra clothing, they escape in the middle of the night.  They get into the back of a furniture delivery truck where they can hide from the Nazis until they get to their next destination – Vienna, where there is more family.  What happens at the end of this chapter might be a spoiler if I mentioned it but that’s where I presume the visionary fiction comes in.

All in all, I would definitely keep reading after this first chapter.  It is so intriguing.  Some first chapters don’t give you enough information to keep going.  Some first chapters you end up going if I keep reading I’m sure I’ll be able to fall into the story, but not so with this one.  I am a Holocaust buff anyway, but this sounds like it’s going to be an excellent story and I can’t wait to finish the whole book.

 

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First Chapter Reveal: The Hidden Reality by Stephen Martino

The Hidden RealityTitle: The Hidden Reality
Author: Stephen Martino
Publisher: Light Messages
Pages: 318
Genre: Science Fiction/Political Thriller

In the year 2084, the brilliant inventor, Alex Pella, finds himself at a precarious crossroad between the pursuit of justice and preservation of his own sanity. While attempting to undermine an international New World Order government created by the financial juggernaut known as The New Reality, he must also face the hidden truths about his own genetic heritage that are slowly destroying him. After receiving an ambiguous message sent from a former New Reality executive who died 2 years prior, Alex learns that the only possible means to confront this New World Order is to defeat a long-forgotten enemy almost 2500 years old.

 

THE HIDDEN REALITY is the second stand-alone novel in a trilogy starring Alex Pella, created by New Jersey-based neurologist and entrepreneur Stephen Martino. With his fusion of history, politics, and science fiction, Martino joins such masters of the thriller genre as Dan Brown, James Rollins, and Michael Crichton.
Martino’s villain is a corporation run by a cadre of ruthless international bankers known as The New Reality. Directed by the most corrupt and morally unscrupulous of the bunch, Myra Keres, the company has economically seized control of the world’s governments and the population’s personal freedoms in the process. In order to save humanity from this despot ruler and the unwonted atrocities to which she plans to perpetuate on the world, Alex Pella must infiltrate the company and face an enemy that has unknowingly haunted both him and history for almost 2500 years.
Martino says he wrote THE HIDDEN REALITY more than just to entertain the reader. He wanted to create a modern day Orwellian ANIMAL FARM to allegorically forewarn his readers of a possible dystopia future that awaits all of mankind if humanity continues to proceed down its path of self-destruction.

 

In THE HIDDEN REALITY, Martino has included such hot-button contemporary topics as genetic cloning, unprecedented economic debt, the rise of big government, and the threat of a New World Order run by the economic elite, while bringing the reader back almost 2500 years into the past when the ancient city state nation known as Greece fought the mighty Persian Empire for world domination.
All of these elements, Martino maintains, separate his book from the pack. He calls THE HIDDEN REALITY “issue-oriented fiction. There are real concerns facing society today that threaten both the sovereignty and prosperity of our future generations. Though fictional, my novel addresses some of these issues and predicts the potential consequences we face as a nation and the world if they are not properly addressed today.”

For More Information

First Chapter

 

September 4, 2084 London, England

A YOUNG MAN IN HIS late twenties stood confidently behind a large, circular table made of clear glass. With his well-tanned, stubbled face and wavy, beelined honey-colored hair that reached his shoulders, he appeared more ready to catch the next wave than to speak at this meeting. His tan suit with a large butterfly-like collar and unbuttoned white shirt completed the look.

Most of the other 20 executives at the meeting also appeared less than adequately dressed for such an occasion.

In the center of the table a crisp image was meticulously engraved on the glass. It represented not only the symbol for their company but also that of the New World Order it created—a vibrant triangular diamond with a perfect, golden circle at its center. Above the symbol, a holographic image of a globe with countries coded in different colors rotated slowly.

“As you can see by the green color on about half of the countries,” the speaker from the public relations team went on to say with little enthusiasm, “The New Reality virtual services is actively utilized by at least 50 percent of the population. Though this percentage has increased by almost two-fold since the first quarter in 2083, we are still about 10 percent shy of reaching this year’s expectation.”

He pointed to one of the large canvas painted portraits at the front of the room. “As our former president and CEO of The New Reality, Albert Rosenberg, once said,” he continued in a monotone voice, “failure to meet expectation, no matter how grandiose these expectations may be, is still a failure.”

He attempted to rouse his fellow colleagues around the table with this famous quote, but none seemed interested with the words from the deceased old man or with the presenter’s lack of enthusiasm.

Although the painting depicted Albert as a younger gentleman with large blue eyes, curly, gray hair, high cheekbones and an intense demeanor, most remembered how he looked before his death three years ago—decrepit and skeletal. Some incorrectly assumed he was a casualty of The Disease, which once ravaged the planet and led to the untimely deaths of millions of her inhabitants. The real reason for his demise proved much more dubious in nature.

“Sit down!” a man by the name of Jules Windsor bellowed from across the table in an English accent. “Just sit down. Your total lack of understanding and ignorance of the subject is making me go completely out of my mind.”

Jules stood up from behind the table and pointed at the door behind him. “No, better yet, why don’t you just take yourself and that God-awful ensemble you call a suit and get the hell out of here. Go. Now. Be quick about it.”

The man giving the lackluster presentation then slowly backed away in disbelief. Because of Jules’ worldwide reputation as a great philanthropist and highly esteemed member of The New Reality board, he was taken aback by such a negative reaction.

“But…” he attempted.

Jules once again pointed at the door, curtailing all further discussion.

Unlike most others around the table, he was exquisitely dressed in a designer black pinstripe suit with a red tie and similarly colored handkerchief protruding from his right breast pocket. Just above six feet tall with wavy blond hair and an athletic physique, his physical prowess overpowered all those at the table. His large, black, penetrating eyes only proved to accentuate his ominous presence.

The man whimpered away from the table like a beaten dog. The door dematerialized upon his exit.

Not many noticed his departure as all eyes now squarely focused on Jules Windsor. Once a man of Albert Rosenberg’s inner circle, Jules was now relegated to the London office to oversee advertisement and distribution of The New Reality virtual products across the globe.

Still riling in the fact that Albert did not allow him to run in the general election for the leader of The New Reality, he begrudgingly took the position with plans of greater success in the future.

After The Disease had ravaged the planet for over a year, the world was subsequently left financially bankrupt. Though the illness did not precipitate this financial ruin, it was the final act that led to its collapse. Years of deficit spending, mounting debt, growing unfunded liabilities, poor central financial planning, and complete waste of taxpayer money produced the problem. The inception of The Disease proved to be its tipping point. Led by Albert Rosenberg, The New Reality was there to reap the benefits of the world’s financial ruin. Fueling the economic crisis by providing loans to countries around the globe that had no means to repay them, he took control of the governments when they universally defaulted on their payments. Thus marking the end of all local, territorial sovereignties and the rise of a central, economically controlled New World Order run by The New Reality.

“Look at you all around this table,” Jules admonished, as if scolding wayward children. “You all come here, to my office, dressed like shaggy vagabonds.”

He pointed to a gentleman who wore running pants made from synthetic rayon woven fabric with long slits along the sides to maximize air flow and a baggy black-striped shirt that looked similar to a poncho and said, “Or worse yet, some…” He was at a loss of words. “God knows what even to call that terribly unfortunate outfit.”

The man began to chuckle, somehow thinking that Jules’ reaction was funny.

“You think it’s amusing?” Jules asked as he closed in to where the man was sitting. The closer he approached, the less the man found it humorous. Jules’ broad shoulders, chiseled jaw, and focused expression made further laughter next to impossible.

Those few in the room who actually knew Jules on a personal level, shuddered at what was to happen next. Despite his popular reputation, Jules was actually an intense businessman with relentless determination and an abundance of self-confidence.

Jules placed his rather large and muscular hand around the back of the man’s neck. The pain was so intense that he felt paralyzed and could do nothing in response but wince helplessly in pain. He tried to speak, but only tears came out. The other people around the table were in shock. Instead of helping the man, they sat motionless in fear. Jules finally released his grip. The man slumped to the floor and began to gasp for breath as if he had choked.

“Crawl on out of here hooligan,” Jules reprimanded. “You will disgrace my board room with your insolence no longer.”

The man quickly obliged. Mustering what little energy he had left, he crawled to the doorway and rolled out of the room once the door dematerialized.

He turned to the woman and the rest of the men at the table. Many began tucking in their shirts, adjusting their jackets, or simply attempting to sit up a little straighter. “So,” Jules went on to ask as if nothing had occurred, “do any of you want to finish this dreadful presentation you traveled from far and wide to present to me today?”

No one dared to answer. Though he understood the fear he instilled upon his guests, Jules was certainly disappointed that not a single person was willing to speak. Always looking for a mental challenge or good intellectual argument, he quickly realized by the blank stares from the woman and men around this table that he would receive neither at the moment.

He pointed at the painting of Albert Rosenberg. “Your esteemed colleague left off by mentioning expectation. Would anyone like to further explain what Mr. Rosenberg meant by expectation?”

Though Albert was Jules’ uncle, he seldom acknowledged this familial bond any longer. The people who were chosen to run the enterprise shared little of Jules’ political or even moral beliefs, and he was appalled by Albert’s nominees and even more appalled by the political policies that The New Reality had created. From the time Jules was a teenager, he had worked tirelessly with his uncle and had helped financially to bring this company to its economic prominence—not the pathetic candidates who were nominated. Many of his ideas were those used to consolidate The New Reality’s power and create a financial empire never before seen on the planet.

Though his uncle never showed him any love or affection, Jules did not require it. Instead, he received something far greater: respect and responsibility. A promotion by his uncle meant more than a hug. A raise was more prized than an affectionate pat on the back.

“Well,” Jules went on to say, “despite what was so horribly just taken out of context, what Mr. Rosenberg referred to when speaking of expectation is a concept known as reflexivity.”

He looked around the table at even blanker stares. Knowing that few, if any, understood his reference, he continued, “The theory of reflexivity was first popularized by a great man and professor by the name of Karl Popper. Does anyone know of him or his work, The Open Society and Its Enemies?”

No one answered.

He shook his head, “William Shakespeare once wrote, ‘Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven.’” Imploring those around the table, “Please let us all not whither in this ignorance. Listen to what I am about to teach.”

Jules walked over to the painting of Albert Rosenberg and stood in front of it. “Reflexivity is simply a matter of cause and effect. If the cause is expectation then the effect will be its outcome. However, this simple domino effect is bidirectional in many instances whereby cause and effect can become blurred and at times indistinguishable from one another. And that is what we call reflexivity. It can occur not only in economics but also in business or even politics.”

He felt intellectually enthralled by the subject and could speak on it for hours. He continued with a little more baritone to his voice. “Let me give you an example. If the expectation for a product or even service is high, then the cost of its stock will rise accordingly. If the stock begins to rise, the expectation for this product or service will thus rise accordingly, making the cause and effect one in the same—creating a reflexive relationship.”

Jules swung his fist and hit the painting’s wooden frame, sending it crashing to the floor, smashing the glass-covered canvas upon impact. Shards of glass scattered across the tan carpet.

The people around the table shuddered at the sacrilegious action.

Jules smiled at the reaction, realizing he had properly conveyed his point. “You see, some reflexive relationships can build until they are unsustainable and come crashing down like this painting, crumbling under the false pretense of a ballooning cycle.”

He stared at the youth around him. Though they were at most only 10 or 20 years his junior, he felt this new generation being created by The New Reality was already lost. “So what do you believe?” he asked one of his guests wearing a rather conspicuous red sports jacket.

The man just shook his head, not knowing how to respond. Jules walked over to him and again asked, “What do you believe? What are your expectations? What do you want out of life?” “Well,” the man feebly responded, “my wife and I are going on a two week virtual New Reality experience later this year. We’ve been saving for it for some time now.”

Jules scoffed at the response, insulted by both the man’s ignorance and self-absorption. “Where is your drive or aspiration in life? If that is your greatest ambition, then you surely live a petty existence.”

Jules shook his head and began to walk around the table. Glass crunched under his feet. He put his hands behind his back and looked down as he perused the room. “Don’t you see what The New Reality has done not only to all of you but also the world? They are creating a generation of mediocre, mindless sheep. While The New Reality’s New World Order takes away more of your individual freedoms, rights, and even integrity on a daily basis, you are all so self-absorbed in total nonsense that you fail to notice what is so blatantly occurring.”

Jules laughed and continued. “Rome gave its population the Coliseum and spectacular gladiatorial displays to suppress the masses. Now, two thousand years later The New Reality gives you virtual experiences, mind-bending drugs, an inundation of free, highly-censored media, and a myriad other self-indulgent activities. Instead of reading the great Aristotle or the modern day philosopher Winston Burke, you peruse the bantering of the latest pop star. Instead of worshiping great minds like Heisenberg or Einstein, you venerate men who can carry a silly ball quickly or some underage, socially immoral adolescent who can gyrate to an algorithmic computer-produced song. Classical literature has been replaced by the holograms of pop culture. Conformity has supplanted innovation and enlightenment.”

“Don’t you see?” he said as he approached another painting on a different wall. “This is all just a smoke screen created by The New Reality to suppress the people of the world. While you all pursue your materialistic, self-destructive, and selfish behaviors, The New Reality and its economic cronies are becoming wealthier by the day at your expense and your personal freedom.”

Jules gestured to the painting of a smiling, middle aged, hazel-eyed female with short, cropped hair, sharp, yet fair facial features, and a mildly bulbous nose and on the wall. “Sure, there are some who understand what the esteemed President of The New Reality, Myra Keres, is perpetrating, but most say nothing in fear of negative repercussions. Plato wrote, ‘We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.’” He beseeched them all, hoping to inspire some initiative on their part. “Who of you or your pitiful generation will embrace this light?”

Jules attempted not to laugh as he mentioned Myra’s name. The election that brought her to this position was fixed by Albert Rosenberg from its inception. Her opponents were simply political puppets used to create a facade of a genuine election. The votes were never counted and the media coverage of the event was a carefully orchestrated event by the New Reality meant to provide the world’s population with a false sense of importance and power.

All those around the table sat uneasy on their chairs, not daring to utter a single word. Expecting Jules to smash Myra Keres’ painting just as he had Albert Rosenberg’s, an already tense situation grew even more uncomfortable.

The door dematerialized and a beautiful, young woman sauntered through the opening. Dressed in a blue dress, she cleared her throat and politely said, “Excuse me. Mr. Windsor. There’s a package that was delivered to your office that said Urgent—Must Open Immediately. I didn’t want to bother you sir, but…”

Jules’ whole demeanor instantly became at ease. Her blue eyes, long brown hair and pouty lips almost made him lose his train of thought. “No bother Marie,” he politely interjected. “I was just finishing here.”

Jules had a propensity for a beautiful woman and a long list of former acquaintances that grew by the day. He never found his secretary’s interruptions at all intrusive; in fact, he looked forward to them.

The woman and men around the table exhaled with a great sense of relief as Jules exited the room without speaking another word to them. Their reprimand had finally ended, and each could not wait to return home as quickly as possible.

***

Jules paced in his office, awaiting the package. Usually he would have disregarded such a seemingly unimportant message, but the public relations team the top brass at The New Reality sent to meet him was woefully inadequate and not worth any more of his time. Plus, the mere thought of how Myra Keres became president of The New Reality instantly placed him in an irritable mood. He never understood why Albert Rosenberg would choose such a crooked, unscrupulous, and morally bankrupt person to take over his company. She had a body-bag list too numerous to count lining her way to success. In addition, her policies of a strong-fisted New World Order that corrupted the population would never survive. Eventually, the sense of individualism and intellectual enlightenment would again rise like a great Renaissance and make her control over the masses nearly impossible.

Like the man himself, Jules’ office was immaculate and exuded an air of elegance. The natural flow and curvature of the Greco-Roman furniture with its cream-upholstered cushions, dark wood chairs and master desk, and white, lush draperies were offset with an assortment of modern fluted class sculptures in the shape of different colored exotic plants. Unlike all other rooms throughout the building, there were no New Reality logos or pictures of its current or former leader. Jules believed such visual distractions in his office would only be detrimental.

The door dematerialized and Marie began to walk through the opening with a large pizza-shaped box held out in her hands. Before she could fully enter the room, the box unexpectedly seemed to stand still in the air and slide across her arms until it abutted her chest, halting any further progression. She momentarily stumbled on her heels, both surprised and confused by the interruption.

“Is everything alright?” Jules asked in the most pleasant demeanor. She pushed the box forward with her body, and like a slingshot it flung about 10 feet into the room and hit the mosaic-tiled floor.

“I hope it didn’t say FRAGILE along with URGENT,” Jules jested, trying to diminish some of his secretary’s embarrassment.

Marie stood in the doorway almost in a state of shock, not understanding what had just transpired. “But,” Marie finally said with confused look on her face, “it seemed to just fly on its own. I really didn’t do anything.”

“No worries,” Jules responded while picking up the package. After placing it on his desk, he traced slowly over the box’s white strip that ran diagonally from one corner to the other, releasing the adhesive binding. The box instantly opened and white packing foam protruded.

“Thank you, Marie,” Jules finally said, curious as to what secret the box held. Without a return address on its front and with only a clear sticker continuously blinking URGENT on it, the package had no indication from where or from whom it originated. Jules patted down the packing foam and upon contact it collapsed, forming tiny white beads that fell to the bottom of the box. Captivated by the contents, he barely took note of Marie exiting the room or her again mentioning how the box flew through the air of its own volition.

Neither did he notice all the commotion that started to commence around his office building. Flashing red lights, sirens and even a muffled voice on a bullhorn did little to garner his attention. Two fully armed and internationally sanctioned World Order Guards, or WOGs as they were known colloquially, flew by his office windows, each riding their own silver, chariot-like heliocrafts named after the Greek sun god Helios.

The white beads continued to trickle down to the bottom of the box, revealing a beautifully ornate, circular shield. Jules gazed upon it, perplexed by the urgency of this gift. Though clearly recognizing its historical significance, he was at a loss to understand why he needed to see it right away.

A few more WOGs flew by the windows as other sirens and police began to converge on the building.

The intrinsic beauty of the shield was not lost on him as he looked in awe at the craftsmanship of this ancient artifact. The sun surrounded by the earth, moon and a few constellations were engraved in the center of the silver-plated shield. Then, like layers of an onion, different gloriously sculpted scenes encircled this central point. A city at peace lay above the sun and constellations, while a city at war was depicted below it. Surrounding these scenes were three separate engravings of men reaping bushels of corn from a king’s estate, workers plowing a field, and young girls picking grapes along a bountiful vineyard. The following layer tempered its adjacent, inner scenes of serenity. A bull being ripped apart by two lions was engraved prominently at the top while two more pleasant engravings of sheep grazing and young men and women dancing framed each of its lower sides. At its outmost edge, a flowing ocean encircled the inner scenes while a rusted strip of metal wrapped tightly around the edge secured its perimeter.

As the foam continued to collapse, Jules noted a transparent, rectangular strip of plastic lying inconspicuously to the side of the box. Taking the message card in one hand, he contemplated if it would provide him some clue to its origin or its urgent nature. Jules knew this shield was formerly the prized artifact of Albert Rosenberg’s Greco-Roman collection. But who sent it was a different story. Rumored to be the actual shield of Achilles, written of in Homer’s epic poem The Iliad and usurped by Alexander the Great, Albert prominently exhibited the relic in the center of his massive display.

The card’s perimeter began to blink a bright red. The intensity of its illumination made Jules wince. A succinct message then became apparent on the card. In three large capital letters, the word RUN appeared. Jules looked at both the front and the back of the card, perplexed at the message. Hoping more was to come, he awaited patiently, trying not to be blinded by the flashing light.

The door to his office dematerialized. “Marie,” Jules asked, assuming his secretary had entered. “Would you happen to know from where this package here originated? I’m awfully confused—”

Jules looked up, hoping to receive an answer. Instead of seeing his beautiful secretary at the door, a fully assault-ready WOG began to enter. Dressed in a pure black uniform with a New Reality diamond and gold emblem on each shoulder, gray helmet and crimson visor, this anonymous soldier headed towards Jules. As the WOG began to raise his weapon, only one thought came to Jules’ mind.

RUN!

 

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A Conversation with Kaylin McFarren, author of ‘Banished Threads’

Kaylin McFarrenKaylin McFarren is a California native who has enjoyed traveling around the world. She previously worked as director for a fine art gallery, where she helped foster the careers of various artists before feeling the urge to satisfy her own creative impulses.

Since launching her writing career, McFarren has earned more than a dozen literary awards in addition to a finalist spot in the 2008 RWA Golden Heart Contest. A member of RWA, Rose City Romance Writers, and Willamette Writers, she also lends her participation and support to various charitable and educational organizations in the Pacific Northwest.

McFarren currently lives with her husband in Oregon and visits her second home in California once a month. They have three grown daughters and two grandchildren, and look forward to having more.

Her latest book is the romantic suspense, Banished Threads.

For More Information

About the Book:

Banished ThreadsTitle: Banished Threads (Book 3 – Threads Series)
Author: Kaylin McFarren
Publisher: Creative Edge Publishing LLC
Pages: 258
Genre: Romantic Suspense

A valuable art collection disappears turning a treasure-hunting duo into crime-stopping sleuths committed to vindicating family members in Kaylin McFarren’s action-packed suspense novel, Banished Threads.

While vacationing at the stately Cumberforge Manor in Bellwood, England, Rachel Lyons and Chase Cohen attend an elegant dinner party hosted by her uncle, Paul Lyons, and his aristocratic wife, Sara. Before the evening ends, a priceless collection of Morris Graves’s paintings are stolen from her uncle’s popular gallery, throwing all suspicion onto his wife’s missing granddaughter. Determined to clear Sloan Rafferty’s name and, in the process, win Paul’s favor, Chase scours the countryside looking for answers. In his absence, the police accuse Rachel’s uncle of an unsolved murder and secrets surrounding her grandmother’s death and the deaths of Sara’s former husbands turn his wife into the most likely suspect.

With the true villains hell-bent on destroying Paul Lyons and his family, solving both crimes while ensuring her uncle’s freedom not only endangers Rachel’s life but that of her unborn child. Will Chase save them before the kidnappers enact their revenge or will the ultimate price be paid, as predicted by a vagabond fortuneteller?
First place – 2016 Hudson Valley RWA Hook, Line & Sinker Contest

For More Information

  • Banished Threads is available at Amazon.
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.

What made you decide to become a published author?

I’ve always had a fondest for the written word. As a youngster, I was an avid reader and fell in love with mysteries. A few of my poems won awards and a few short stories found their way into high school newspapers. But it wasn’t until all three of my daughters were grown and on their own that I felt to need to reinvent myself. I realized that I wanted to write a book and end it completely different from all the books I read over the years. The day my father died became a turning point and made me understand the importance of sharing experiences and pieces of our lives, even if it came from a fictional place.

Would you consider your latest book, Banished Threads, to be a one of a kind?  How so?

This book, like all the books in my series, comes from personal encounters, work experiences, sightseeing, and information gathered while traveling around the world. I love the idea of creating flawed, multi-dimensional characters that grow despite their weaknesses and the hardships in their lives. I also love the idea of educating readers about places and things and at the same time leaving them guessing as to who the good and bad guys are until the final pages are read. Together, this results in creating a unique story.

Where is your writing sanctuary?

I have a fabulous library inside my home in Oregon where I practically live. It includes a great writing desk, comfortable chair, MAC computer and wonderful bookcases filled with bestsellers, works by up and coming authors, collectibles, Japanese novels and research journals.

What do you believe a writer should not do as far as getting his or her book published?

First, don’t fall in love with the first draft of your story…at least not deeply. It’s not unusual for publishers to toss pages, especially the first chapter, or to eliminate characters that are fun to write about but ultimately serve no purpose. Don’t believe your book is perfect, even after hiring a professional editor and sharing it with friends and critique partners, because somehow errors magically appear even in Arthur Golden books. No matter what anyone tells you, don’t believe that your book will become an overnight bestseller without being seen or recommended by Oprah Winfrey, the New York Times and the top writing critics in the nation. It’s a rare occurrence when this happens and the success is short lived unless you write day and night, and publish as many books as humanly possible. But most important of all, don’t give up on your dream to be a qualified author – the person who can hold a book in your hands and know that every word in it came from your thoughts and imagination. Believe me, the right publisher is out there, even if it turns out to be yourself.

You’re concocting a recipe for a best selling book.  What’s the first ingredient?

A compelling premise or storyline that can be told in twenty words or less.

Did any real life experiences find their way into your book?

While in college, I studied art and for eight years owned and operated a 5,000 square foot art gallery in Portland, Oregon where my staff assisted in representing the work of more than 400 artists. This experience came in handy while writing a book about art thieves, especially since a neighboring gallery had more than $200,000 worth of art stolen during one of our monthly shows.

Aside from writing, what’s your passion?

My husband and I formed an organization called the Soulful Giving Foundation due to our pledge to find a cure for cancer. Each summer, we host a music, art and food event at our home, bringing together 4,000 ticketholders and raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for Providence Cancer Center and Randall Children’s Hospital. With the help of 8 board members, 160 volunteers, 16 restaurants, 40 cases of donated wine, 60 kegs of beer and hundreds of silent auction items, this festival has become an award-winning east Portland event with the slogan, “Come for the Concert, Stay for the Cause.”

What’s next for you?

I’m currently working on the next installment in the Threads series, Twisted Threads, bringing together villains from two books and am loving the drama and unexpected twists that I think readers will enjoy and have come to expect from my books. J

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Book Spotlight: The Avocadonine and Spring Stone by Patrick Barnes

Inside the Book:

 
Title: The Avocadonine and Spring Stone
Author: Patrick Barnes
Publisher: Independent Self Publishing
Publication Date: January 26, 2015
Pages: 334
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Book Description:
 
Praised by many as one of the best YA fiction books you’ll ever read.
Rey Naresh, a likeable kid worth rooting for, is going into the ninth grade at Pemota High.  He’s not sure what to expect being fresh off a visit with a gypsy who may or may not have been psychic, but he’s hoping in ninth grade he’ll get to meet his crush, the pretty green eyed, Christy Lane.  He’s wanted her to notice him since sixth grade and keeps a letter to her in his backpack.  The school bully, Huxley Core, and his friends, who call themselves Nadine’s Puppies, threaten to publish something about Rey in their libelous newsletter.  As Rey looks up at the stars one night he realizes he will have to confront Huxley and be man enough to make Christy fall for him.
One day, on the bus, fellow ninth grader, Ryan O’toole, says to Rey that there’s something wrong with something the students are drinking and that electronics are making a humming sound when he’s near them.  It sounds to Rey like looney toons, but are other students having a similar problem?  Rey and Christy unite and embark on a quest that seems to have to do with mind control by an evil administration and provides a quandary for philosophical thought.  A mystery seems to have taken hold of Pemota High, one that may stretch back generations to a malicious woman and a story of her relationship with a student named Spring Stone.
 
 
Book Excerpt:
 
“Der,” Huxley straddled the bench and sat down next to Joe, “It’s your
newsletter.”  Huxley was tired of talking
about the newsletter.  He didn’t write
the articles, didn’t come up with the ideas, and didn’t care whether or not
people came up to him in the hall and said, “Funny article Huxley.”  The newsletter was getting old.
Above them the branches of Douglas Fir Trees blew in the wind which was
strong today.  Acorns like big
caterpillar cocoons fell on the grass.
The Smokers Corner was inhabited by three others on this after school
smoking session.  Sarah Wein was sucking
on a Marlboro.  Her boyfriend Jonas
Wilson was with her.  And their friend
Jared McCurry had joined the smoking session.
The three of them were seniors and had no interest in the affairs of the
ninth graders.
“Huxley, I read about this,” Der said.
“You got your switchblade?”
Switchblades were legal in Pemota, but carrying them concealed was
not.  Huxley had sent away for his.  He slipped through the school’s doors each
day switchblade in pocket, unbeknownst to the authorities, because Pemota High
never had or would need metal detectors.
“Is this the PTSD thing?”  Joe
asked, as he stomped on a cigarette.
Der had learned about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder from The Deer
Hunter.  He found it on the internet and
learned it was caused by intense fear and anger under helpless conditions.  Der thought it was possible to institute the
disorder without a combat circumstance.
Huxley and Joe strongly disagreed.
“Der,” Huxley chided, “That’s for people in Vietnam.”
“This will be like Vietnam,” Der said, “Just do what I say.”
Huxley and Joe looked at each other.
Joe gave a shrug and that was enough for them both to know they would go
along with what Der had in mind.  Der
pointed to the wide arcing sidewalk corner, “Stand there, pop it out, and show
it to them.”
Joe said under his breath, “That’s what she said.”
Huxley laughed at Joe’s favorite thing to say.  It never seemed to get old.  Christy and Rey were approaching
cautiously.  Then Christy stopped.  Huxley was standing there with a switchblade
in his hand.  He held his hand knuckles
up.  Then he dropped the switchblade to
his side and started doing Karate like movements with it.
Rey looked at Christy noticing she had turned bright red.  “Huxley, if you hurt us you’re going to
jail,” she screamed.
“Tell them if they ignore the insults they can gain entrance to Harper
Way,” Der said.
“If you ignore the insults you can gain entrance to Harper Way,” Huxley
said adding a few Karate chops.
Normally, Huxley didn’t intimidate Rey.
But normally, Huxley didn’t have a switchblade in his hand.  A thick powerful wind shook Rey and Christy’s
T-shirts around as they pushed forward but going nowhere.  The Douglas Fir Trees shielded the Smokers
Corner.  Rey thought the smartest
decision was to go back to the school.
He could sit with Christy and wait for a ride, but then Christy would
have to meet his Mom, and that would surely be embarrassing.  He also didn’t want to look like a “pussy” as
Huxley had called him in front of both Christy and Huxley.
“What do you want to do?”  Rey
asked.
“They won’t do anything,” Christy said.
She put her hand on Rey’s back and pushed him forward with her.  She walked forward determined.
On the Smokers Corner, Der had taken Huxley’s place on the bench.  “Verbal assault,” he said quietly.  “It’s what PTSD was made for.”
“You sure, Der?”  Joe asked.
Der nodded then called out: “Hey Christy.  Did you hear David Benson has a horse named
Christy?  We all sit around wondering if
you like to hang out in his stable.”
“That ponytail is like a mane,” Joe joined in, “You can just hold on to
it and go for a ride.”  Joe found this
comment extremely depressing as he did think Christy was pretty, and would
barely acknowledge it to himself.
“Christy, let us take turns.  Let
us ride you like you’re a pony.”  Der
stood up at that point, and threw his arm forward like he was punching
them.  “Rey, is that your bitch, because
I’ve seen better looking horses at the Kentucky Derby.”
As they approached, Huxley rounded the arcing corner doing karate
moves, keeping them aware of the switchblade.
Christy had tears in her eyes Rey noticed.  He put his hand on her back briefly.  His heart was doing jumping jacks, his face
was blushed, and he felt sweat seeping out of every pore in his body.
“Aw, the stable masters come to give the horse a pat on the back.  To be a beastiality loving stable master from
Mexico.”  Der looked at Joe who seemed to
be speechless.  “Rey when you ask her for
her number make sure it’s not her racing ID.
I’m sure she’s stamped somewhere.
They’ve got her on file at the racing bureau.  You can probably get her number there.”
Christy and Rey were feet away from Harper Way and in twenty more yards
would be free as flying sparrows.  Rey
was dying to stand up for her.  Sarah
stood up for them instead.  “Jesus Christ
guys, leave them alone.  They didn’t do
anything to you.”
Der paid Sarah no mind.  “Does
your sister ride you at home?  Is that
why you hate her so much?  Does she pull
on the reins and dig her spurs into your sides.”
Christy was growing more and more infuriated.  She began to feel like she was going to
explode and that her whole life would be ruined if she didn’t say something.
“Hey Christy,” Huxley said, sounding very uncharacteristically
serious.  “What’s it like to always be
second?  What’s it like when everywhere
you go you’re just a reminder of Brianna? She’s cooler, smarter, prettier.  You’re just the little sister that’s always
about to cry.”
Christy turned to Huxley, her hands balled into fists.  “What’s it like to always be first
Huxley?  What’s it like to have a sister
that’s dead?  What’s it like to have no
one to stop you from messing up your life because no one cares about you?  What’s it like …”  She stopped when she saw Huxley’s facial
expression.
For Rey everything seemed to stop in that moment.  Then time got reinstated.  Huxley’s smile was gone, and he started to
walk towards them.  Christy and Rey saw
his cold vicious eyes and they ran.  They
were at the end of Harper Way, when Huxley started to give chase.
For More Information:
The Avocadonine and Spring Stone is available at AmazonBarnes & Noble, and Goodreads


Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads

Meet the Author

 



Patrick Barnes lives in Charleston, South Carolina.  The Avocadonine and Spring Stone is his second book.  It has been awarded a five star review from Readers Favorite, and a four and a half star average among critics on Amazon.com.  He has a Bachelors Degree in Film and Writing from the University of Massachusetts and a Masters in Library Science from the University of South Carolina.  He has won first place in Arts and Entertainment Writing at the Yankee Penn Journalism Conference, and has worked as a Librarian at the Folly Beach Public Library.  When he’s not writing, he likes to walk on the beach with his dog, and watch movies.
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Book Feature: Risen by Thomas Barr JR

Inside the Book:

Title: Risen
Author: Thomas Barr Jr.
Publisher: Printhouse Books
Publication Date: January 15, 2016
Pages: 188
ISBN: 978-0997001624
Genre: Urban Fiction
 
 
Book Description:
The growth of “Mega churches” has risen considerably in the 21st century as compared to the past. Miami Urban Chronicles Volume I: Risen, seeks to set forth a fictional biopic of the rise of spiritual leader Yahweh Ben Yahweh of the Liberty City based movement the Nation of Yahweh, “Ben Yahweh’s.”
 
Chauncey Miller, the main character in the story is determined to be a success. He uses his natural skills of cultivating relationships and influence to draw his followers. Despite his meager rural southern background he dreams big and takes risks head-on in realization of his goals. It is significant in modern 21st century times that individuals take control of their life’s path. The urban youth particularly need to realize by making deliberate decisions concerning their life they can live their dreams.
 
Chauncey meets a mentor whom cultivates his ideology and sharpens his mediation skills in working with people. He harnesses his skills by working with the youth ministry of a local church. As he attends college he learns the basics of economics and administration in his courses. He understands education is just one tool that can help him along his path. Individuals must utilize opportunities as they present themselves along life’s path. The main character seizes upon this truth and follows it down the rabbit hole in a manner of speaking.
 
In most communities the Church is a place of worship, fellowship, family, communal meetings and refuge. Individuals seek comfort in its walls and the main character leverages this in amassing followers. Modern successful pastors have PhD’s and fancy seminary school training. The main character can be viewed as the progenitor to the modern “Mega church” system. He is of the conviction that god must call a person to preach which is a spiritual mission.
 
The main character takes this mission on as any other profession and is determined to be a success as a spiritual leader, messenger of god, as well as a successful business entrepreneur. The main character goes from city to city while growing his followership and refining his professional talents. In addition his studies have led to him evolving his religious convictions.
 
The story enthralls with the turmoil of power, beliefs, sex, control, and all the human pitfalls that too often affect successful professionals. In desiring success and wealth upon any career path it is important to maintain composure. Chauncey, although a spiritual leader, is in realization of this truth.
In paralleling the lifestyles of the larger community many individuals become disillusioned and pigeonhole themselves. Only in selflessness can individuals walk a blemish-less path. Particularly urban youth must learn the lesson in traversing modern life goal paths in reaching their dreams.
 
This chronicle wraps with Chauncey answering to the communal guidelines of this prescribed society. All must answer to the allegations of their fellow community members and none is an exception to this rule. In acquisition of success and goal setting humility can be a lifesaver.
Book Excerpt:
 
Chauncey Miller was a
Carolina native that grew up in the south and knew the hard work of the tobacco
fields.  Raised in a Christian household
he was fascinated with the bible and studied religion with a fervor.  Little did his contemporaries know that he
would rise to the level of a spiritual leader commanding a multi-million dollar
enterprise.  They surely wouldn’t realize
that he was a megalomaniac capable of manipulating a band of killers.
It’s a sunny afternoon in
1976 and Chauncey was on the corner of 125th Peachtree Street in
Atlanta, Georgia.  He had a stack of
paper leaflets, as he is approached by pedestrians he offered a flyer to a man
dressed in a black suit.  The man took
the flyer and read it, mouthed the words soundlessly.        
“Do you believe in god,”
asked the man in black.
“Surely I do,” responded
Chauncey sternly. 
The man continued to look
at the flyer; he wore iron rimmed glasses and had shiny black shoes. 
“I’m a history professor
at the local community college and would like to have you join one of my focus
group,” he asked. 
The man stood and looked
Chauncey in the face awaiting an answer to his inquiry.  Chauncey had not expected such an immediate
attention to himself and paused in response noting the man’s patient nature.
“I’m not sure what focus
groups do but if you give me the address I’ll check it out,” said Chauncey.
The man pulled a business
card from his blazer and handed it to Chauncey as pedestrians ushered pass them
on the street.  No one seemed to notice
the exchange between the two men and was oblivious of them obstructing the walk
way as they chatted. 
“Don’t worry you’ll find
out when you show,” the man replied. 
He placed the flyer
Chauncey had been passing to people on the street in his coat and continued on
his way.  Chauncey looked down at the
flyers he had been passing out for the street team company. He had been working
for the company weekends and at afterhours bar locations.  Exhausted he read it. It said, let me tell you why the white man is the
devil.  Come hear CL Cayman speak truth
to power at White Hall located on Jackie Robinson Avenue.   
Chauncey never took
notice of the leaflets he passed along to pedestrians and this one had a very
inquisitive message.  He wondered about the
thoughts of the gentleman in which he had just met, had the message affected
him so profoundly?  He took the business
card from his pocket looked at the address and contemplated the location.  He had seen the address before on something
he read at home and could not recall it do to his momentary failing
memory.    
The stack of leaflets sat
on the sidewalk near a lamp post.  A gust
of wind arose that blew some of the top flyers into the street.  The sudden barrage of papers broke his
thoughts and he scrambled to grab them as people continued to bustle past.
“Get out the street,”
yelled a disgruntled driver.
            He
blew his horn as he drove past and Chauncey continued to pick up the flyers
ignoring the outburst.  Chauncey had
hardened his feelings to ridicule and he believed with his ability to project
an icy persona could ward off potential personal threats.  He had developed this ability while in grade
school and used it throughout his young adult life as he entered his college
years.  As a youth he had dealt with
bullies and experienced being singled out for jokes among friends in the
neighborhood.
            He
decided he would attend the focus group the following day after his last class
on campus and find out more about the strange gentleman that intrigued him on
their meet.
***
Claude Donors was a tall
wiry light skinned complexioned man with green eyes in his sixties and did
social research on religions in historical contexts.  He was an eccentric man with a direct
nature.  Chauncey’s curiosity of the
gentleman had led him to the campus upon the issued invitation.  Chauncey entered his office at the university
and was immediately stopped at the door by Donor’s secretary. 
“I’m sorry sir do you
have an appointment?”  She inquired. 
The young woman was very
pretty and Chauncey noticed that she had a curvy figure.  He could see that she was highly educated by
the way she addressed him.  She was
smartly dressed in a business suit.  She
smelled of light perfume and mints.  Her
hair was penned up into a bun and she sat positioned at her office desk.  He quickly handed over the business card
given him and she looked at the back of the card for a moment.
“Have a seat Dr. Donors
will be with you in a minute,” said the young lady. 
Chauncey took back the
card he had given the girl and looked on the back of it as she did, his
curiosity peeked.  Let this man pass, it said written in a very legible hand written
signature.  He had not noticed it the
entire time he had possession of the card and was surprised at himself for not
realizing that fact.                
    As he sat awaiting Dr. Donors he noticed the
office was cozy and decorated with plaques along the light blue colored
walls.  The carpet smelled as if it was
freshly vacuumed and it being in the late evening not much pedestrian traffic
came in or out.  He noticed the young
lady pick up the phone a number of times and she talked for just a few minutes
on each instance.  He assumed it was
Donors and thought if he made the right decision in coming.  Just as the thought popped in his head Donors
brushed by him.
“Let’s go young man,
we’re late.” He said. 
Chauncey was out of his
chair and behind Donors as he strode down the hallway taking giant steps to
quickly reach his desired location. 
“My focus group is
designed to record the assumptions, thoughts and impressions of religion on the
average working class individual,” he said as they walked. 
“By the way what’s your
name?” he asked turning to look at Chauncey.
“Chauncey Miller,”
Chauncey replied.
“Well Mr. Miller you
should find this to be very interesting,” he said as they entered a room with
about seven people sitting around a circular table.  Upon introduction by the four males and three
females it was noted two were teachers, one was a factory worker, two were
students, one was a paramedic and one was a shop keeper.  The questions posed to the group were
designed to elicit discussion and all responses were recorded by the professor.
The first question posed
was do you believe in god followed up with what do you think about
religion.  All the participants believed
in god but it was interesting to see their apparent ambiguity in the actual
practice of religion.  As the professor
guided the group’s discussion a light bulb went off in Chauncey’s head.  He had wondered throughout his life what his
purpose was in this world.  He had
attended college and taken on various odd jobs to support himself in the
city.  He’d bounced around in search of a
career interest to no avail.  He was
articulate and well regarded for his ability to persuade others.  In observing the professor’s research he saw
a need and an opportunity that could possibly be exploited.  He decided from that instance he wanted to
know more about the professor and the purpose for his work. 
The session ended after
about an hour of discussion and all the participants departed leaving Chauncey
along with the professor in the room.  As
the professor put the finishing touches on the session notes Chauncey broke the
silence which permeated the room after the last departed guest.
 
For More Information:
Risen is available at AmazonBarnes & Noble, and Goodreads
Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads

Meet the Author

Born in Lake City, South Carolina home of the 2nd African American astronaut, killed on the Challenger space mission, Dr. Ronald E. McNair.  I was the grandson of a share cropper whom taught me about hard work and education.  At age 17 I began college at Bethune-Cookman University and graduated Cum Laude with honors.  While in college I was inspired to write when I read the novel, Black Boy by Richard Wright.  I began writing short stories for campus publications and won a $500 dollar publication contest in a local campus circular.  I Entered the Air Force after college and spent two tours of duty in the gulf during the Persian Gulf War.  Upon leaving the Military I went back to school and completed graduate school at the University of Akron in Ohio earning a master of public administration.  I began a career in government as an Intern with the Ohio legislature and later became employed with the Florida Senate as a legislative assistant.   I currently work for the City of Miami as a civil servant in administration.
See website http://www.thomasbarrjr.com/ for more details.
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Book Spotlight: A Northern Gentleman by Lane Everett

About The Book

Title: A Northern Gentleman
Author: Lane Everett
Publisher: Senior Prospect Publishing Co.
Publication Date: July 15, 2015
Format: eBook / Paperback (US Only) / PDF – 298 pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Buy The Book:
Discuss this book on our PUYB Virtual Book Club on Goodreads
Book Description:
Handsome and quick-witted Drucker May is miserable in the privileged life that he leads working at a bank in Atlanta. So he runs away. He wants to find what it is that he’s really supposed to do with his life and he wants to have a good time doing it.
Because the year is 1890, the people who he meets after he leaves Atlanta have no easy way to find out who he really is, allowing Drucker to reinvent himself in each stop that he makes along the way to California. As he travels, he explores late 19th century America as well as his own identity – both real and mistaken – all while solving a mystery, falling in love and getting caught up in a wild west caper gone awry.
This story isn’t just a rollicking ride from one town and one mistaken identity to the next, though. It’s the tale of a man trying to strike a balance between his responsibility to his family and his desire to be his own man. Alternately moving and laugh out loud funny, A Northern Gentleman chronicles the adventures that unfold when one man decides to leave his boring desk-work behind to seek out the life he’s meant to lead and to find that special something that his life has been missing.
Book Excerpt:
I. Atlanta
Chapter 1
There’s a photograph that’s kept upstairs in the same wooden box that holds the invitation to Grandmother’s wedding and some yellowing stationery that is all but illegible, and an election-year button that used to be blue and bears a name that used to be important. The photograph is black-and-white and there’s an inscription on the back of it, in looping longhand, in dark ink. Five words, each character tied together by a dragging pen as their author noted what the photo captured: Atlanta Southern National Bank, 1890.
The picture is a portrait, though there’s no one in the photograph. There’s a desk, but no one sits behind it. There’s a window, but no one looks through it. Instead, what must have been the golden light of a low and setting sun streams through the window onto the lonely desk. And somehow, though the sloping curves of human flesh are absent, and in their place only the severe angles of lifeless wood appear, the photograph becomes a portrait nonetheless. A portrait that, even without eyes or lips or teeth, captures the stilted smile of capitalism begging the question of the hour: Isn’t there something more than this?
The desk didn’t always sit unmanned, and to glimpse this particular photograph is to witness a ship without its captain. With a broad body of dark wood, the desk was itself both ocean liner and iceberg. It was a vessel on which one could have enjoyed a comfortable cruise up the corporate ladder; yet, simultaneously, it formed a ruinous blockade against all that stood beyond the door. And though its home in the office of the vice president of Atlanta Southern National Bank should have made it a vehicle of transport to the highest ranks of economy and society, to its owner it was a slave ship.
When the desk belonged to Atlanta Southern National Bank’s vice president, Drucker May, the desk sat squarely in the middle of an office that was regal in its décor. A green rug lay underfoot, gold cresting marked the line where wall ended and ceiling began, and a garish bronze sculpture of a tufted eagle perched above a second doorway.
In an office quite remarkable for its ornamentation, that second door was perhaps the most notable sign of prosperity. Though the door itself was unembellished, confederate in its colorlessness, its value was inflated greatly by a single fact: it led directly to the bank president’s adjoining office, which was twice the depth, thrice the length, and many multiples as lavish as its neighbor. The desk there was no dowdy brunette, but rather a brilliant blonde, painted in gold leaf, and more like a banquet table than a workstation. Next to it, Drucker’s mahogany steamship was reduced to tugboat. It was as if the bank’s own vault had been emptied and its content melted and molded into the shape of a desk, behind which sat the bank’s president, a king on his throne, presiding over business.
Daily, the door that joined the offices would swing open, and the booming voice of the bank’s president would rouse Drucker from his daydreams. The accuracy of a clock could be measured against the precisely timed roar that each day at half past one prompted a dozen bankers to rush to the threshold of the ornamented office. Drucker was among the crowd, though he was never the first to arrive, which the president was pained to notice every time.
This daily assembly was brief and usually followed by a demand that some item or other that the president had misplaced be found before the hour was up, inevitably prompting a scramble.
The lengthier congress would follow each day at three. One financier would read aloud from the newspaper. Another would recite notes from a pad—covered in his own scribbles—on the availability of silver or the latest blustering of William Jennings Bryan, at which all in attendance would groan in unison. No matter how little there was to say, the meeting would always manage to drag on for an hour.
For Drucker, the afternoon assembly was a prime opportunity for him to do what he was best at: daydream that he was somewhere else. As his eyes wandered to the windows, his thoughts drifting in the same direction, he would lose himself in a world where the memories he had mingled with the ones he had not yet made, where he could be anyone, do anything, live anyplace. Though he was careful to keep a straight face so as to appear engaged, in his mind he was running, arms flailing, through a meadow of tall grasses, never looking back as the banality of a life spent behind that wooden desk grew smaller and smaller in the distance behind him.
Outside the boardroom’s window, the sun shone brightly over Atlanta’s verdant Peachtree Street. There was one tree in particular that had the same branch structure as the one Drucker used to climb as a boy, when Atlanta was nursing its burn wounds and the talk of rebuilding, like the lemonade he would gulp on blistering afternoons, was endless. These days it seemed that the only thing endless was the daily midafternoon summit, and so Drucker allowed himself to drift back into the comfortable memory of what it felt like to perch in the highest branches of the tree.
***
“Drucker!” The voice was sweet but sharp, the last syllable pronounced fully, unlike when his mother called his name, dropping the final ‘r’.
“I brought you a glass,” called Lucy.
“Just one?” asked Drucker, looking down through a leafy web of foliage below him.
“Yes. And a peach.”
“Throw it up here,” instructed Drucker. “The peach, not the glass,” he added slyly, “I’ll have the lemonade when I come down.”
Even through layers of leaves and branches he could see her frowning. “Ten minutes,” she sighed. “Or I’ll climb up there and get you. Your mother wants you to know that dinner is at six, and if you’re late, you won’t be served.”
Drucker reached out his hands, beckoning for her to toss up the peach. Lucy was more than a governess to Drucker. She was an ally and a friend, and he had no doubt that his mother had instructed her not to give him the peach, but she had snuck it to him anyway. “Toss it,” he urged. “C’mon, toss it up here.”
Toss she did, but the arch of the fruit’s trajectory was short of where Drucker could reach, and Lucy threw up her arms, waving him off from the catch. “No, no! You’ll fall!” she called up to him as the peach thumped back into her outstretched palms.
“Aw, Lucy,” he teased, “I thought you could have thrown it better than that!”
“You know I could have thrown better than that.”
“Or forgot that you couldn’t throw it better than that,” he taunted from a dozen feet off the ground.
The playful exchange delighted nine-year-old Drucker, who prided himself on keeping pace with the twenty-six-year-old blonde who had lived upstairs for as long as he could remember. Drucker considered her a best friend, and it had never occurred to him that she felt any different than he, or that the fact that she was paid to look after him was the reason they spent their days together. Though to his mother she was one among a crew of employees who flitted about the property, gardening and cooking and generally serving as directed, to Drucker she more than took the place of the sisters and brothers his parents never gave him, and she lavished on him the attention and affection his parents similarly failed to provide.
***
A slap on the table ceremoniously ended the meeting. The men rose to their feet and shuffled papers and murmured to one another, their voices blending into a single sustained note. It was not unlike the drone of the meeting itself, which was little more to Drucker than a continuous low-pitched whine.
Back at his desk, Drucker eased into his chair, reclining for a few moments before hearing footsteps approaching his door and, on cue, straightening his spine. He glued his eyes to the front page of the newspaper that lay across his desk. Not a sentence was familiar, though the meeting had been dedicated to hashing through each and every headline.
“Hello, Drucker. I’m sorry to interrupt.”
Drucker looked up from his display of feigned diligence. The interruption was, in fact, not an interruption at all, as the scene in which Drucker was consumed by work was no more than a show, performed for the benefit of his one-man audience.
“I just spoke with Hank,” continued the bank’s president before Drucker could get a word in, “and I’m more than a bit concerned. Another five accounts have moved over to Georgia Consolidated Bank, and Hank expects the Langdons will move most of their assets by the end of the year. That damn bank hasn’t been operating six months, and already we’ve lost a dozen of Atlanta Southern’s…” he hesitated, grasping for the right word.
“Richest sons of—” Drucker tried to offer.
“Beloved patrons,” the bank’s president cut him off, giving Drucker a stern glance.
Drucker smirked but returned to the question at hand. “Five more accounts,” he mused.
“Since March, no less. At this rate we’ll be sucked dry in a matter of months,” the president replied, gravely.
“Well,” said Drucker, feeling apathetic, “I’d say it sounds as if this calls for a detailed discussion in tomorrow’s afternoon meeting.”
Sarcasm was always lost on the bank’s president. “Forget the meeting,” said the president, waving a dismissive hand. “This is a project for you.”
He looked down at Drucker’s desk, which was artfully staged to look like the station of a diligent worker. “You’re very busy, I know, but we’ll just have to find someone else to take the rest of this.” He motioned toward the stacks of financial records and yellowing newspapers on Drucker’s desk, all of which had been carefully arranged to look worn out from frequent and heavy use.
Drucker admired the scene he had crafted. “It is tiring,” he said. This was the truth. He couldn’t fight the sedative effect that all things banking had on him, even the relatively exciting prospect of the bank’s demise.
“Good then, it’s settled,” said the president. “You’ll be in charge,” he added, gaining momentum, “of making sure that Atlanta Southern doesn’t see the—suffer from the—well, that we don’t…” Momentum halted. He stammered through a long sentence that ultimately went unfinished.
“To be clear,” said Drucker, “you’re telling me that you’ll give all my work to someone else in exchange for me coming up with a plan to stop our accounts from moving to our competitor?” It suddenly occurred to him that this was a disadvantageous trade. He had made a practice of doing practically nothing all day, and suddenly here he was being asked to barter it away for a nearly impossible task.
The president nodded. “Precisely. This will look quite good for the board review, too.” It was widely known that the president intended to step down by year’s end, and the board would soon be appointing his replacement. Despite Drucker’s lackluster performance at every element of his job, the president threw the full weight of his portly existence behind the naming of Drucker as his successor.
“Or, I suppose, it could look quite bad for the board review. That is, if Georgia Consolidated continues to steal our customers,” Drucker replied evenly.
The president cringed deeply. “It could, yes, if you fail. But if you fail, I suppose we all shall. And if there is no bank for me to preside over, there will be no bank for you to preside over.”
A glum thought, but for some reason it delighted Drucker. “Well, when you put it that way,” said Drucker, “you give me no choice.”
Another glum thought, but for some reason it delighted the president. “Good, then it’s settled. I’ll tell Hank. I’ll tell him I’ve put you in charge, and that Atlanta Southern is in good hands.” He paused to consider his last statement and then added without humor, “It’s sink or swim now, Drucker, but you’ll keep us afloat. Won’t you?”
“Yes,” said Drucker quietly. “Of course, I will, Father.”

About The Author

Author Lauren Tanick Epshteyn, using the pen name Lane Everett, has nurtured a life-long love of the written word. At 10 years old she knew that someday she wanted to be a New York Times best-seller. A voracious reader, Lauren loves American Historical fiction, making it easy and interesting to research the 1890’s for her debut novel A Northern Gentleman.

The novel follows Drucker May who abandons his privileged life, embarking on a series of adventures allowing him to reinvent himself at every stop while searching for the life he’s always longed for and discovering the man he’s meant to be.

Her writing has been formed through writing education attained through Brown University (Providence, RI) creative writing courses, plenty of writing on the topic of American Government during her undergraduate education at Georgetown University (Washington, DC) and plenty more writing on the topic of American Business History, her chosen field of concentration for her MBA at NYU (New York, NY).

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Author Website
Author.LaneEverett@gmail.com

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