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Sunday, May 15, 2011

Five 99-Cent Heroic Fantasy Ebooks

Are you tired of all those door-stopper epic fantasies where the entire world is always in jeopardy? Want adventure and lots of action? Heroic fantasy may be your mug of ale.

Here's the definition from the Rogue Blades Entertainment site:

Heroic Fantasy incorporates the epic/high fantasy tale on one hand and the sword & sorcery/low fantasy tale on the other. It is a strictly heroic tale written in favor of neither one side nor the other. Its story often appears to be of a lesser magnitude than that of the epic tale, while its protagonist sometimes appears to have a higher purpose than that of the usual sword & sorcery character. David Gemmell’s novels are good examples of heroic fantasy.

Now, let's get to the good stuff, the 99-cent ebooks:

You know I have to plug mine first! Especially since it's usually $2.99. I'm lowering to $0.99 since Book 2 is coming out in a few weeks--want to grab some new readers! Here's the blurb:

Imperial law enforcer Amaranthe Lokdon is good at her job: she can deter thieves and pacify thugs, if not with a blade, then by toppling an eight-foot pile of coffee canisters onto their heads. But when ravaged bodies show up on the waterfront, an arson covers up human sacrifices, and a powerful business coalition plots to kill the emperor, she feels a tad overwhelmed.

Worse, Sicarius, the empire's most notorious assassin is in town. He's tied in with the chaos somehow, but Amaranthe would be a fool to cross his path. Unfortunately, her superiors order her to hunt him down. Either they have an unprecedented belief in her skills... or someone wants her dead.

It was a simple assignment. Deliver a little blue orb to the monastery at Boot Mountain. But no one told Brother Godfrey that the orb was the key to unimaginable power. No one told him that others would be coming after it.

For that matter, no one told him about the demonic guardians, either.

He never intended to assemble a team, but they kept showing up. A witch without any powers. A bearman who just wanted to be liked. A stableboy with dreams of adventure. Together they will face powerful and desperate men, men who will kill, and worse, to possess the orb.

And then there’s the squirrel. The one with the glowing red eyes. It’s hunting them.

They are an unlikely group of heroes, but they are the only thing standing between an unsuspecting world and the devastating rise of the Lord of Fire.

This story is a finalist for the 2010 NEBULA AWARD for Best Novelette.

This is the first novelette in the series entitled The Elephant and Macaw Banner, a fantasy set in sixteenth-century Colonial Brazil.

In this series, two adventurers from vastly different cultures travel through the unexplored Brazilian wilderness in search of adventure. There they confront the many cultures which vied for control of Brazil at the time, along with magical creatures from Brazilian folklore.

The invitation to join the secretive Guadel should have been the fulfillment of dreams Va'del didn't even realize he had. When his sponsors are killed in an ambush a short time later, he instead finds his probationary status revoked, and becomes a pawn between various factions inside the Guadel ruling body.

Jain's never known any life but that of a Guadel in training. She'd thought herself reconciled to the idea of a loveless marriage for the good of her people, but meeting Va'del changes everything. Their growing attraction flies against hundreds of years of precedent, but as wide-spread attacks threaten their world, the Guadel have no choice but to use even Jain and Va'del in their fight for survival.

In Zelloque, great magic wrecks great havoc on the natural world. When the magical storm known as Faramigon's Eye descends on the city, all know something huge and evil is afoot, from the lowliest bar like Slab's Tavern to the Great Lord's palace. And the Narmon Ri, the Great Lord of Zelloque, has vowed to stop it--even if he has to kill every wizard in the city!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

10 Free Fantasy Novels at Amazon

Amazon is beefing up its "free ebooks" section, so you can find lots of freebies, especially by indies, in the Kindle Store right now. The following list is from the fantasy section and includes a mix of epic and urban fantasy, and contemporary and historical fantasy. It's not clear whether these ebooks will be free indefinitely, so grab them now if they look interesting. Hey, it's not like you've got anything to lose, right?

10 Free Fantasy Ebooks Available at Amazon:

Hancock's intriguing Arena drew a great deal of praise for the originality and starkness of its alternative universe. In The Light of Eidon, she begins a fantasy series called Legends of the Guardian King that is more clearly a Christian allegory but is so crisscrossed with subplots and deceit that exactly where the light of Eidon shines may baffle the reader. It certainly baffles young Abramm Kalladorne, Hancock's hero. He is the little-valued fifth son of the king of Kiriath, a vivid kingdom that seems a bit like medieval England, with a bit of ancient Rome. Abramm is drawn to the religious life, but after eight years as a novitiate, he discovers that his spiritual leader is a fraud and that the true path to Eidon's light lies elsewhere. But upon leaving the monastery, he finds himself in the middle of court intrigues, and his brothers sell him into slavery in a faraway, barbarous land. For a while, Hancock's novel seems like a gladitorial epic, but then Eidon, or Jesus, makes his truths known. A great battle ensues, but victory is not complete and many questions remain. Readers will certainly return for the second installment.

Ben Alderman and his sister Casey discover a portal to a world of magic, a world discovered, shaped, and settled by wizards. It is a world where elves and dwarves are locked in mortal combat against a witch who is trying to free the last wizard from exile. The witch has been defeated once before but with the combined power of the wizard, no one will be able to stand against them. 

Dreibrand Veta has killed for his country. At the frontlines of imperial expansion, he seeks to rebuild the fortune of his noble family. In his daring travels he encounters the rys, a race far more powerful than the human empire that bred him. Dreibrand cannot defy the rys Queen Onja nor defend his companion, Miranda, and her children from the wicked tyrant Queen. Desperate for help, Dreibrand and Miranda join Shan, a rys with emerging powers who plans to challenge Onja. In Shan's pursuit of the rys throne, he exerts his magical powers, gathers his allies, and incites rebellion among Onja's human subjects. Great wealth and power will reward the kings, warriors, and spies that align themselves with the rys pretender, but defeat could mean worse than death. Onja can imprison souls and her genocidal rage is legendary. Everything is at risk for Shan's union of renegades.

Book One of The Dawning of Power trilogy. Echoes of the ancients' power are distant memories, tattered and faded by the passage of eons, but that is about to change. A new dawn has arrived. Latent abilities, harbored in mankind's deepest fibers, wait to be unleashed. Ancient evils awaken, and old fears ignite the fires of war. 

Her father-king wants war.

Her messianic brother wants peace.

The black god wants his due.

She suffers all the consequences.

King Vieri's war against the lands of Pawelon rages into its tenth year, and with the kingdom's holy savior, his son Caio, en route to the fighting in the storied canyon, victory ought to come soon. Feeling abandoned by his god, King Vieri forces young Caio to lead his army to victory.

The Black One, Lord Danato, tortures Lucia with nightly visions promising another ten years of bloodshed. She can no longer tell the difference between the waking world and Danato's nightmares. Lucia knows the black god too well; he entered her bed and dreams when she was ten.

As the epic battles rage, Lucia struggles to understand the messages of The Black One, while Caio wrestles with his conscience: Can someone who only wants to heal the world bring himself to kill another man?

Lassoed, knocked down, face planted in the dirt -- best thing to happen to Frank Bowen in years. When wife Liz went missing in the wilds of Belize, the constables of San Ignacio could find no trace. Years later, on a pilgrimage to her remote 'grave,' Frank is abducted and whisked away to a place he can't identify, by people whose motives and origins baffle him. Could this be what happened to Liz? 

Vydor was on a fast track to the highest-ranking position in the Imperial Navy’s security forces and was recently assigned to the senior staff of the flagship of the Navy, the Dragon Claw. All he wanted to do his entire life was to serve his god, the Emperor, and given his phenomenal performance during his training in the Naval Academy, it seemed he would be able to do just that. Everything seemed to be going his way, until the Dragon Claw and its massive command fleet was sent on a rather unusual assignment to investigate a minor incident deep within the Empire’s space. That one event would start Vydor down a path filled with fantastically powerful enemies and extraordinary friends that would obliterate everything he ever understood to be true and threaten the very foundations of the Empire itself. 

He has spent his whole life trying to prove himself worthy of his father’s crown. By age fifteen, Bomani’s warrior skills had surpassed all the boys his age; yet that wasn’t enough for him.

When the precious Ifa Scepter must be found to save his kingdom, it is Bomani who secretly sets out on this journey to retrieve it -alone.

But, it is destiny that adds a companion to his solemn quest; a young girl named Farra. This cheerful, chatty, young sorceress is just attaining her powers and has only just begun the sacred magical bond she share’s with her wolf pup.

Together, they venture deep into the, “Forbidden Expanse,” where most other humans would not dare to dwell.

Their, “Search for the Ifa Scepter,” will test every aspect of their being in this intense magical adventure. They’ll need Bomani’s prowess of shield and spear, Farra’s sorcery, and the help of a few magical runes to battle their way through the Expanse. Yet, the most powerful of all of their assets is their courage and the friendship they will forge.

Two is trapped: hooked on heroin, held as property, forced to sell her body to feed the addiction. Time brings her ever closer to what seems an inevitable death and Two waits, uncaring, longing only for the next fix.

That’s when Theroen arrives, beckoning to his Ferrari and grinning his inscrutable grin. He is handsome. Confident. Eager to help lift her out of the life that’s grinding her down.

The only problem? Theroen is a vampire.

His blood can cure her addiction, grant her powers she has never had, change her forever into something greater than she was. But when he sinks his teeth into her neck, Theroen also thrusts Two into a world of danger, violence, madness and despair. The powerful, twisted elder Abraham will use her arrival to shatter the uneasy peace that exists in his mansion, bringing an end to the dark game he has been playing for centuries. 

Do parallel worlds exist? Searching for proof, Professors Rodger & Cassie Swift vanish. Kestrelle, a spirit girl claiming to know their fate, tells their son Braden he must brave a whitewater, tooth-sprouting river into a land where wise vultures predict the future and blue minds inhabit lava caves. Only two powers can help: Kestrelle's Blood Thorn and Braden's vine-painted guitar. (For All Ages)

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Blood and Guts: A History of Surgery

I'm not sure my stomach is strong enough to read this ebook (depends on how many graphic pictures are involved!), but if you're fascinated by medical history then you might dig it:

Blood and Guts: A History of Surgery

Today, astonishing surgical breakthroughs are making limb transplants, face transplants, and a host of other previously un dreamed of operations possible. But getting here has not been a simple story of medical progress. In Blood and Guts, veteran science writer Richard Hollingham weaves a compelling narrative from the key moments in surgical history. We have a ringside seat in the operating theater of University College Hospital in London as world-renowned Victorian surgeon Robert Liston performs a remarkable amputation in thirty seconds—from first cut to final stitch. Innovations such as Joseph Lister’s antiseptic technique, the first open-heart surgery, and Walter Freeman’s lobotomy operations, among other breakthroughs, are brought to life in these pages in vivid detail. This is popular science writing at it’s best. 

The Kindle version is $15 ($20 for the hardback).

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

99-Cent YA Fantasy Novels by Jenna E. Johnson

The kids will be out of school soon. If you're looking for some inexpensive reads to entertain them this summer (and you're willing to share your Kindle), you could give these YA/middle-grade fantasy ebooks a try. They're 99 cents through the end of May.

When the dragon Jaax receives word that a human infant has been found in the province of Oescienne, he doesn’t dare believe it. Humans have been extinct for centuries, trapped by a terrible curse and left to live out their existence in the form of dragons. Despite his doubts, however, Jaax assumes responsibility for the baby girl only to discover that what he has been seeking for so many years has finally been found...

Jahrra knows all about the legends and sagas of Oescienne, but never in her wildest dreams would she believe that she played a part in one of them. She’s far too busy dodging the bullies at school and seeking out new adventures with her friends to worry about what secrets her dragon mentor might be keeping from her, or that her every move is being watched by something living in the forest surrounding her home.
But the secrets run deep, and as Jahrra fights to earn her place in this extraordinary world, she will begin to unravel the truth of it all: that she isn’t as safe as she thought she was, that danger lurks around every corner, and that her role in this unfurling tale is far more significant than she could possibly imagine.

Twelve years have passed since Jahrra arrived in Oescienne and became the responsibility of the old Korli dragon Hroombra; yet much can happen in twelve years. So far, Jahrra’s life has been filled with adventure, danger, friendship and even loss. Despite what she has learned in school and what she has learned from life, she has no idea that she is in fact human, a child of the race that has been absent from the world of Ethöes for five long centuries...

But the girl’s identity must be kept secret, even from Jahrra herself, for if the Tyrant King of the East knew of her existence all would be lost. And as time goes by those responsible for the young human girl grow anxious and cautious, for there is evidence of an unknown danger in their midst; a danger they cannot see or hear, but one they can sense like a bad omen.

As Jahrra continues to grow and learn about the world around her, facing personal dangers, challenges and enemies of her own, she will become aware of the prophecy that she is meant to fulfill and what she must sacrifice in order to survive what lies ahead.

About the author:

Jenna Elizabeth Johnson grew up and still resides on the Central Coast of California. She later received a BA in Art Practice with a minor in Celtic Studies from the University of California at Berkeley. It was during her time in college that she decided to begin her first novel. She has drawn inspiration for her book not only from the landscape of her home town, but also from such works as Beowulf, The Mabinogi and The Second Battle of Maige Tuired. Besides writing and drawing, Miss Johnson enjoys reading, gardening, camping and hiking. She also loves animals and bird watching and has many bird feeders set up in her garden at home. She currently works as a teacher's aid at a local elementary school, but in her spare time she continues to work on her many book projects.

Visit Jenna on Facebook

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

99-Cent Bestselling Science Fiction Action Adventure Novels

Looking for some cheap reads that are selling well at Amazon? These ebooks are currently in the Top 20 in the Science Fiction Adventure Category in the Kindle Store. And they're only 99 cents. Give 'em a shot!

 As Earth's ability to support human life begins to diminish at an alarming rate, the Global Space Agency is formed with a single mandate: protect humanity from extinction by colonizing the solar system as quickly as possible. Venus, being almost the same mass as Earth, is chosen over Mars as humanity’s first permanent steppingstone into the universe.

Arik Ockley is part of the first generation to be born and raised off-Earth. After a puzzling accident, Arik wakes up to find that his wife is almost three months pregnant. Since the colony’s environmental systems cannot safely support any increases in population, Arik immediately resumes his work on AP, or artificial photosynthesis, in order to save the life of his unborn child. Arik’s new and frantic research uncovers startling truths about the planet, and about the distorted reality the founders of the colony have constructed for Arik’s entire generation. Everything Arik has ever known is called into question, and he must figure out the right path for himself, his wife, and his unborn daughter.


His Legion designation is Beta 3, warname Thinker. This will be his first real mission, the first mission for all the members of Beta squad—young men and women given immortality but trained to die for the cause of freedom. They are going into the deep Outvac to investigate the remote planet Andrion 2. What they find could start a war, they all know that, but what they don’t know will take every ounce of training to survive.

It’s the mid-21st century when Sergeant First Class Grant Justice is killed during an ambush on an enemy tank column.

Six hundred years later, his body is retrieved from the frozen, arctic lake where he perished. Re-animated by a team of scientists, Grant awakens to a civilization that has abolished war. A civilization that has outlawed violence and cherishes Peace above all else. A civilization that has been enslaved by an alien race called the Minith.

Grant is humankind’s final hope against the alien menace. He must be the... Peace Warrior.

If you've enjoyed stories by James Rollins, Michael Crichton, Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child, get ready to strap yourself in for a roller coaster ride of terror as you learn that you truly are what you eat...


At a genetics lab where a revolutionary strain of wonder food crops is being developed, FBI Special Agent Jack Dawson's best friend and fellow agent is brutally murdered. The killer was looking for very special seeds that Jack's friend had taken from the lab, and tore his body apart trying to find them...


Jack is convinced that Naomi Perrault, the beautiful geneticist who leads a group of suspected eco-terrorists, is behind the murder. But when FBI agents who aren't quite who they claim to be show up on Jack's doorstep after a bomb devastates the FBI lab in Quantico, destroying the evidence from his friend's murder, Naomi becomes Jack's only hope of survival.


Framed for murder and confronted by the terrifying truth of what the genetically engineered seeds stolen by his friend are truly for, Jack joins Naomi in a desperate battle across half the globe to save humanity from extermination...

What do you do when you wake up one morning and everyone you know - friends, family, everyone - is trying to kill you?

Answer: you RUN.