“I Am the Lightning Flashing and Streaking!”

Beneath the stars or flying up among them, the Ga’an dance a deadly dance. Apache Devil Dancers take to the skies to defeat the ruthless Gulo, an alien race bent on the destruction of humanity. Led by Captain Victorio “Tomorrow’s Wind” Nantan, the 3rd Sol fighter Wing follows a long tradition, adapting the dance to make them an ace squadron, but will it be enough?

It is hard to hold faith in the face of a never-ending foe, when life and limb are sacrificed with no end anyone wants to see in sight. But Captain Victory comes from a long line of fierce warriors and he is more than ready to take the fight to the enemy.

Join us for seven action-packed tales of Robert E. Waters’ Devil Dancers.

On NetGalley until 11/5.

Enjoy an exclusive interview with Robert here.

Dead Bear Witness-6x9

A chronicle of survival in a world of the living dead.
There is no Heaven or Hell; there is only blood and the dust of flesh.

Sentenced to life after a bank robbery gone bad, Cornell thought his worst nightmare had come true—and that he deserved it. After a stint in solitary, though, he learned his nightmare had only started: While Cornell rotted in isolation, all around the world the dead had returned to life.

Inside the prison walls, Cornell should’ve been well protected.

He didn’t reckon on the stone-cold killer who demanded his help breaking out, nor the fanatic warden who forced him to help “save the souls” of other prisoners. He didn’t count on being snared in a web of lies, violence, and betrayal. He didn’t expect his survival to depend on fighting his way back to freedom before the eyes of the watchful dead. Now as nooses sway over the prison yard, Cornell can almost feel one tightening around his neck, and freedom seems so far away….

On NetGalley until 11/5.

Enjoy an exclusive interview with James here. 


What woman doesn’t dream of a young, handsome stranger sweeping her off her feet?


She gave up on such nonsense long ago.

Old, homeless, and unwanted by society, such faerie tales seemed beyond impossible for her. So when a young, handsome stranger, more child than man, asks her to come home with him, she knew he could only mean her harm, but who cared? She was tired of living anyway.

But instead of finding her death, Margaret learns that nothing in her savior’s world is what it seems, including herself.

Why would someone young enough to be her grandson be interested in her? And when would he drop his pleasant façade to reveal the darkness she expected beneath?

New hope struggles with old suspicion as demons from Margaret’s past come to call.

After all, was it really possible to get a second chance at life?

Now on NetGalley through November.

Enjoy an exclusive interview with Megan here.



eSpec Books interviews David Lee Summers, contributor to After Punk: Steampowered Tales of the Afterlife, edited by Danielle Ackley-McPhail and Greg Schauer, funding now on Kickstarter.

eSB: What can you tell us about the story you have written (or plan to write) for After Punk?

DLS: My story is about a spiritualist who is invited to a mummy unwrapping party. When she arrives, she finds the place is swarming with scientists, some of whom have called her a fraud. She soon begins to thinks they may be playing her for a fool, but it turns out the party’s host has an experiment in mind and she’s a key element.

The story was inspired by panels I’ve done with magician Dyno Staats at a few different steampunk conventions. Ostensibly we’d talk about how Victorian science was incorporated into magic shows of the period, but no topic related to science and the mysterious was off limits. Mummy unwrapping parties and séances often found their way into our discussions.

eSB: Why did you choose that particular aspect of the afterlife to ‘punk up? How did it lend itself to the theme?

DLS: Mummy unwrapping parties were, strangely and sadly, a thing during the Victorian period. Strange because it involved inviting people over to your house to unwrap an ancient, dead body. Sad because of the total disregard it represented for another culture. Of course the whole point of Egyptian mummification was to send the dead to the afterlife with body and soul. Mummies are so lifelike, I can see where it would be tempting to think one could wake them and talk to the dead.

There’s also an aspect of the story that has to do with hauntings and ghosts, as one might infer from having a spiritualist character. Although I’m a skeptic where ghosts are concerned, I have seen and experienced things that I can’t easily explain and I wanted to bring some of that mystery to this story. Of course, spiritualists and séances were a big part of the Victorian era.

eSB: Does you story introduce new characters, or are they old friends you revisit often…to torment mercilessly?

DLS: My story introduces new characters. However, I have to admit, that prim and tormented spiritualist Dinella Stanton and showman-like chemist Augustus Harriman grew on me in their short tale and they may well have to appear again. Harriman especially has a kind of arrogance that deserves further torment.

eSB: What traditions or beliefs were you raised on regarding death or the afterlife? Did that influence your story at all?

DLS: I was raised in an evangelical Christian household with an idea that faithful Christians would have everlasting life in a paradise. To be honest, that idea didn’t much influence my story. A bigger influence from my upbringing was visiting the Tutankhamen exhibit that toured the United States when I was in elementary school. It engendered a fascination with Ancient Egyptian culture and funerary practices.

eSB: Describe your ideal vision of the afterlife.

DLS: In addition to being a writer, I’m a professional astronomer and I’m confronted by the sheer enormity of the universe on a day-to-day basis. My ideal vision of the afterlife would be to come into the presence of the mind that set all that in motion. I’d also hope that I could somehow use an eternal, spiritual existence to explore the vast multiverse in some form.

eSB: How would you ‘punk the grim reaper?

DLS: Forget the scythe, I’d give that boy a steam-powered combine harvester. His wardrobe is also a bit medieval. Maybe ditch the robes and give him a black tuxedo and top hat combination with a red waistcoat.

eSB: The coffin or the pyre, which one for you and why?

DLS: I always liked the fate Captain Kirk had planned for Spock at the end of The Wrath of Khan, launched into the atmosphere of a planet to go out as a shooting star.  Barring that, I lean toward the pyre. Once I’m done with my body, I don’t need it anymore. It seems the easiest way to deal with what’s left behind.

eSB: What are some of your own works readers can look for?

DLS: Readers can look for my horror novel set at an astronomical observatory called The Astronomer’s Crypt. My Clockwork Legion steampunk novels are Owl Dance, Lightning Wolves, The Brazen Shark, and Owl Riders. I’m one of the editors of Maximum Velocity: The Best of the Full-Throttle Space Tales which features a story by eSpec’s own Danielle Ackley-McPhail.

eSB: What projects of your own do you have coming up?

DLS: My fourth Clockwork Legion steampunk novel, Owl Riders, is due out this spring. I also have a spooky story about electricity rousing the dead in the anthology DeadSteam coming out this October from Grim and Grimmer Books.  My ghost story “Evicted from Heaven” will appear in the anthology Hotel Haunted coming from Wolfsinger Publishing later this year.

eSB: How can readers find out more about you? 

DLS: The easiest way for readers to learn more about me is to visit my website at http://www.davidleesummers.com and read my blog at http://davidleesummers.wordpress.com


David Lee Summers is the author of eleven novels and numerous short stories and poems. His most recent novels are the global steampunk adventure, Owl Riders, and a horror novel set an astronomical observatory, The Astronomer’s Crypt. His short stories have appeared in such magazines and anthologies as Cemetery Dance, Realms of Fantasy, Straight Outta Tombstone, and Gaslight & Grimm. He’s one of the editors of Maximum Velocity: The Best of the Full-Throttle Space Tales from WordFire Press. He’s been nominated for the Science Fiction Poetry Association’s Rhysling and Dwarf Stars Awards. When he’s not writing, David operates telescopes at Kitt Peak National Observatory. Find David on the web at http://www.davidleesummers.com.


Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/davidleesummers

Twitter – http://www.twitter.com/davidleesummers

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/885915.David_Lee_Summers

Amazon Author Page – https://www.amazon.com/David-Lee-Summers/e/B003LLIC3C/

Blog Address – http://davidleesummers.wordpress.com

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/astroscribe/

Pinterest – https://www.pinterest.com/davidleesummers/


eSpec Books interviews Torah Cottrill, contributor to The Awakened Modern, edited by Hal Greenberg and Greg Schauer, which is currently funding on Kickstarter.

eSB: Can you tell us a little about your story, Return of the Devis, from The Awakened Modern?

TC: When Hal Greenberg first suggested that we bring the premise of The Awakened into the 21st century, I wondered how people in the developing world, without access to 24-hour media coverage and with much different cultural lenses, would think about the sudden appearance of individuals with powers. Would they seem like gods, or monsters? Once I found my protagonist, a child with little formal education or knowledge about the world beyond her village, a girl too young for powers, I had a way to tell a story about what watching the world around you blossom with the Awakened might be like, a view from below the clash of powers.

eSB: What do you like most about The Awakened series, and why?

TC: One of the first things that excited me about the series was the fantastic roster of authors already on board. Who wouldn’t want to contribute to an anthology featuring writers like Jaleigh Johnson, Ed Greenwood, and Rosemary Jones? But the aspect of the series that continues to draw me in is the flexibility of the setting, and the number of different stories you can tell about what having a difficult gift, a power, feels like, and how it affects your life and the lives of the people around you.

eSB: What interested you in writing for this series?

TC: With the potential to write a story about characters who have superhuman powers, it’s easy to find yourself writing about spectacular clashes between Awakened, to turn a story into a series of bigger and bigger confrontations, until you’ve turned your story into a series of mind-blowing CGI fights! Those are a lot of fun to write, so part of the challenge of writing for this series is to bring the story back to the characters’ internal conflicts, the struggle to know and understand yourself. I do really enjoy those glorious wuxia ballet fight scenes, though.

eSB: Do you have any plans to expand your story…or write in the same universe? If so, what more can your readers expect?

TC: My stories in Awakened I and II follow one young woman through her awakening in the Frozen Wastes through her impressment into (and escape from) King Stewart’s forces in his push to conquer the Open Lands. Right now, I’m working on a story for Awakened III that explores the cost of using your power in war and the idea that sometimes a power can be more burden than gift.

eSB: If you could have a special power or familiar, what would it be and why?

TC: I’d like to be able to slow time, so I could get everything done in a day that I intend to. Wouldn’t we all?

Torah Cottrill is a professional editor and amateur video gamer whose short stories have appeared in Stupefying Stories, Luna Station Quarterly, Ares Magazine, and Tokyo Yazuka, among other publications. She wastes her free time researching hand-to-hand combat techniques for her novel and failing to complete the seasonal set dungeons in Diablo III. 


Twitter – @TorahCottrill

Amazon Author Page –

Blog Address – http://torahcottrill.weebly.com/blog.html


eSpec Books interviews Erik Scott de Bie, contributor to The Awakened Modern, edited by Hal Greenberg and Greg Schauer, funding now on Kickstarter.

eSB: Can you tell us a little about your story, Whiteout, from The Awakened Modern?

EdB: It starts like this: The first thing you need to know is that this is not an admission of guilt. It’s not an accusation, a cry for help, or a suicide note. It’s a record.

Magic seems great and all, but it’s just as much a curse as a blessing. On her 19th birthday, my heroine manifested the power to drain away memories at a touch. Her first victim? Her then girlfriend, who doesn’t remember her at all. Since then, she’s been on the run from family, friends, and a mysterious government agency determined to control her devastating power.

eSB: What interested you in writing for this series?

EdB: Aside from it being hard for me to say no to Hal, I find the concept of the Awakened mythology fascinating. We humans have been telling stories about the transition from child to adult for as long as there have been stories, and the Awakened presents a new kind of coming of age story. And applying that logic to our own world? Fantastic.

eSB: If you could have a special power or familiar, what would it be and why?

EdB: Teleportation, no question. The ability to be anywhere at any moment? That would be amazing. And save me a lot of GenCon expenses.

 eSB: What are some of your own works readers can look for?

EdB: I am the author of several novels in the iconic Forgotten Realms setting, as well as an ongoing post-apocalyptic epic series called the World of Ruin, which I describe as a collision between Game of Thrones and Fallout. I’m constantly writing more, and the best way to keep up with me is online.

eSB: How can readers find out more about you? 

EdB: Read my work, play a game with me, and/or hang out with me at a bar at GenCon. You can find out a lot about a person from how they write, how they game, and how they drink. 

Erik Scott de Bie is an American fantasy author and technical writer who has authored several Forgotten Realms novels. He has a degree in English composition and literature from Willamette University in Oregon. 


Facebook – www.facebook.com/Erik.S.deBie

Twitter – www.twitter.com/ErikScottdeBie

Amazon Author Page – https://www.amazon.com/Erik-Scott-de-Bie

Blog Address – http://erikscottdebie.com/


eSpec Books interviews Ed Greenwood, contributor to The Awakened Modern, edited by Hal Greenberg and Greg Schauer, which is currently funding on Kickstarter.

eSB: What kind of challenges did you find writing for this series?

EG: Cutting back on my natural urges to write madly off in all directions, detailing lots of territory and writing about the intertwined lives and subplots of a huge cast of characters. I cut down to a single focus, and had fun that way, instead.  

eSB: What interested you in writing for this series?

EG: Hal Greenberg asked me to, I thought the central idea was fun, and I liked my co-contributors…and have liked them more with each GenCon breakfast with them I’ve managed to attend. It’s been a blast so far!

eSB: If you could have a special power or familiar, what would it be and why?

EG: I would want the special power of being able to stop time (with objects frozen in mid-fall, cars and people in mid-rush, and so on) so I could improve my failing-with-age powers of doing sixteen things at once. Without dropping anything.

eSB: Sunrise or stargazing?

EG: Both. As a writer and late-night reader, I see the stars often. And as a husband with a day job and a wife to care for, I see the sunrise all too often!

eSB: What are some of your own works readers can look for?

EG: As a young boy, I created the Forgotten Realms fantasy setting, later adopted as the “world” of the Dungeons & Dragons game, and have published over 20 Realms novels. I’ve also written five Aglirta novels about The Band of Four, a Falconfar trilogy, a Niflheim duology, a steampunk novel entitled The Iron Assassin, and many more; I’ve written, co-written, or contributed to over 300 books thus far. Yes, my house is groaningly crammed full of books. And I’m taking it easy, these days: I’m writing only a novel a month.


eSB: What projects of your own do you have coming up?

EG: I’ve started a new transmedia publishing venture, The Ed Greenwood Group, for creatives interested in working in new genre settings I’m creating, such as Hellmaw (daemons lurking among us on Earth, who consider us food; dark urban fantasy); Stormtalons (a medieval-cum Renaissance world in which a tyrant archwizard tries to control other wizards, and is defied by priests of the Six gods, as magical mists, the Stormtalons, ravage the world, and the mighty Sleeping Dragons stir; high fantasy), and almost 30 other settings.

eSB: How can readers find out more about you? 

EG: On the web, drop in on onderlibrum.com (where I blog at “The EdVerse”) or theedgreenwoodgroup.com, or find me on Facebook (I’m, yes, Ed Greenwood) and on Twitter at @TheEdVerse

Ed Greenwood is a New York Times-bestselling Canadian writer, game designer, and librarian best known for creating The Forgotten Realms® fantasy world fifty years ago. His 350-plus books have sold millions of copies worldwide in more than three dozen languages. Ed was elected to the Academy of Adventure Gaming Art & Design Hall of Fame in 2003, and has won multiple ENNIE and Origins and other awards. Through The Ed Greenwood Group, he now helms many shared storytelling worlds he’s created; they can be found at OnderLibrum.com


eSpec Books interviews James Chambers, contributor to The Best of Bad-Ass Faeries, edited by Danielle Ackley-McPhail. Funding now on Kickstarter as a part of their #Make100 campaign, http://tiny.cc/BBAF.

eSB: What is your idea of a bad-ass faerie?

Going back to faerie roots, these creatures tended to be pretty live and let live as long as you didn’t cross them. Stay on good terms with them, show them respect, and they might even help you out now and then. But get on their bad side—and it was awfully easy to do that—and they would make your life miserable. Or steal your children and leave changelings in their place. Or other mean stuff. I boiled that down to a faerie, Gorge, who lives by very clear principles and standards and does not hesitate to mess you up if you don’t live up to them.

eSB: Can you tell us a little about your story, “The Way of the Bone,” that was selected for The Best of Bad-Ass Faeries?

baf2-web2x3“The Way of the Bone” started with a simple suggestion from editor Danielle Ackley-McPhail. She wanted “heavy metal faeries” for the second BAF anthology. The result was the character Gorge, the greatest musician in the Enchanted Lands, cast out, wings ripped off, magic taken away, and made mortal for the crime of playing forbidden music. Trapped on earth, though, he realized he could regain his magic by playing music for live audiences. Now he’s determined to deliver some payback to the faerie world.

eSB: What would your fae character’s signature drink be and why?

bone Single malt whiskey, neat. Everything else is for losers who like umbrellas in their drinks. (Which is what Gorge would say.)

eSB: What do you like most about The Bad-Ass Faeries series, and why?

The variety of interpretations of classical faerie lore. When working with myths or other pre-existing notions, my writerly instinct is always to go back to the beginning, the core of what made something fascinating and look for inspiration. I think a lot of the BAF contributors did that and then went in so many amazing, original, and different directions. I love that kind of creativity.

eSB: What is your first recollection of faeries growing up?

The Blue Fairy in Pinocchio. That was one of the first stories I remember reading as a wee lad. Other than that, fairy tales in general. The Elves and the Shoemaker. The idea of leaving little gifts for faeries like bowls of milk and honey to keep them from tossing your house. I don’t remember details of where I encountered those ideas, though. Just vague recollections of more kids’ books. Then of course, Tinker Bell in Peter Pan, but even as a kid I thought she was pretty sanitized for a fairy.

eSB: Tell us something about yourself that is bad-ass.

 I once saved a frog’s life by pulling it from the mouth of snake. Ha! (On the other hand, though, I suppose that snake was pretty hungry. And the frog wasn’t especially grateful. He just hopped away.)

eSB: Do you have any plans to expand your story…or write in the same universe? If so, what more can your readers expect?

three-chords-chaos_lgI already have. Reader reaction to “The Way of the Bone” was so positive that I wrote a follow-up story “Faerie Ring Blues,” which appeared in the third BAF anthology. And Danielle Ackley-McPhail asked me to write novella featuring Gorge, which was published a while back, Three Chords of Chaos. That’s out of print now but it might not be for long (nudge-nudge, wink-wink), and I might just be writing some new Gorge stories as well.

eSB: What are some of your own works readers can look for?

 I write in a lot of different genres. Look for my stories in many of the anthologies from eSpec books or those edited by Danielle Ackley-McPhail and Mike McPhail. There are steampunk stories (Gaslight and Grimm), sci-fi stories (Man and Machine), super-hero stories (The Side of Good/The Side of Evil), and fantasy stories (Dragon’s Lure). I also write a lot of horror fiction, which can be found in anthologies such as Chiraljameschambers_engines Mad 2, Shadows Over Main Street, Dark Hallows II: Tales from the Witching Hour, and Kolchak the Night Stalker: Passages of the Macabre. And I recently wrote the original graphic novel, Kolchak the Night Stalker: The Forgotten Lore of Edgar Allan Poe. More of my work can be found in two collections, The Engines of Sacrifice (which nabbed a starred review in Publisher’s Weekly) and Resurrection House.

eSB: What projects of your own do you have coming up?

I’ll have a story in the forthcoming anthology of small-town Lovecraftian fiction, Shadows Over Main Street 2 and some other short stories coming up in soon-to-be-announced publications. Most other projects are in early stages, all fun stuff but too soon to let the cat out of the bag.

eSB: How can readers find out more about you? 

 Drop by my website, www.jameschambersonline.com, or catch up with me online on Facebook or Twitter.


James Chambers writes tales of horror, crime, fantasy, and science fiction. He is the author of The Engines of Sacrifice, a collection of four Lovecraftian-inspired novellas published by Dark Regions Press which Publisher’s Weekly described in a starred-review as “…chillingly evocative….” He is also the author of the short fiction collections Resurrection House (Dark Regions Press) as well as the dark, urban fantasy novella, Three Chords of Chaos and The Dead Bear Witness and Tears of Blood, volume one and two in the Corpse Fauna novella series.  

His short stories have been published in the anthologies The Avenger: Roaring Heart of the Crucible, Chiral Mad 2, Clockwork Chaos, Dark Furies, The Dead Walk, Deep Cuts, The Domino Lady: Sex as a Weapon, Dragon’s Lure, Fantastic Futures 13, Gaslight and Grimm, The Green Hornet Chronicles, Hardboiled Cthulhu, In An Iron Cage, Kolchak the Night Stalker: Passages of the Macabre, Shadows Over Main Street, The Spider: Extreme Prejudice, Qualia Nous, Reel Dark, Truth or Dare, TV Gods, Walrus Tales, Warfear, and the award-winning Bad-Ass Faeries and Defending the Future series as well as the magazines Bare Bone, Cthulhu Sex, and Allen K’s Inhuman.  

He has also edited and written numerous comic books including Leonard Nimoy’s Primortals, the critically acclaimed “The Revenant” in Shadow House, and the original graphic novel Kolchak, the Night Stalker: The Forgotten Lore of Edgar Allan Poe. 

His website is www.jameschambersonline.com.


Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/james.chambers

Twitter – https://twitter.com/mothman1313

Amazon Author Page –

Blog Address – www.jameschambersoline.com/blog/   


It is rare that I post my personal author stuff her on the eSpec blog, but my good friend James Chambers did an extensive interview with me a while back (big enough to have been broken into SIX posts) and I don’t currently have an active author blog to post it to, so I’m sharing here. Here are the links for those who are interested: