Posts Tagged ‘fantasy’

When we’re broken and we realize we are not in complete control, it’s time to surrender.

Surrender can mean many things to many people, even animals. In this fictional story, a religious fairy-tale satire about a Sasquatch named PoBo, we learn what it can mean on many different levels. On one level, he is displaced from his family at a young age amid a war initiated by humans. But with an unyielding spirit to be reunited with his kin—and with music being his best motivator, at least at first—the hairy bachelor decides to set off on a dangerous quest to find them. He knows the journey will be fraught with danger because he knows he and his family are on the endangered list—a constant struggle to survive. But like an adage he once read in a book, “nothing ventured, nothing gained,” he is steadfast to not give up on his goal. Fortunately, and unexpectedly, he gets some assistance from two animals, one of whom is far bigger in his faith than his physical size. PoBo encounters many obstacles along the way, and his own faith is tested repeatedly as time runs out to fulfill his quest. What he at first thinks is the true meaning of his journey becomes redefined as a desperate yearning to achieve three things: faith, family, and love.

You can learn more about Surrender by checking out the listing on Amazon, or Covenant Books. Learn about Surrender and Chris Baum on social media here: Facebook, Twitter.

Author’s Bio

I am proud to admit that I’m a constant reader and writer because books don’t have redundant commercials. I was born on Independence Day, live in Ohio (US), and graduated from Kent State University in 2016 with a Bachelor of Arts in English. I am happily married to my best literary critic, Melannie. We have two sons, Michael and Alexander, both of whom continue to keep us active and young at heart. I draw a lot of my inspiration from some of the creative things I overhear my kids say throughout the day.

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The Genes of Isis
by Justin Newland
Genre: Epic Fantasy
Akasha is a precocious young girl with dreams of motherhood. She lives in a
fantastical world where most of the oceans circulate in the
aquamarine sky waters.
Before she was born, the Helios, a tribe of angels from the sun, came to
Earth to deliver the Surge, the next step in the evolution of an
embryonic human race. Instead they spawned a race of hybrids and
infected humanity with a hybrid seed.
Horque manifests on Earth with another tribe of angels, the Solarii, to
rescue the genetic mix-up and release the Surge.
Akasha embarks on a journey from maiden to mother and from apprentice to
priestess then has a premonition that a great flood is imminent. All
three races – humans, hybrids and Solarii – face extinction.
With their world in crisis, Akasha and Horque meet, and a sublime love
flashes between them. Is this a cause of hope for humanity and the
Solarii? Or will the hybrids destroy them both? Will anyone survive
the killing waters of the coming apocalypse?

Guest Post

What drove you to expand these initial ideas into a full novel?

Legends from other ancient cultures mentioned cross-breeding between species, mixed genetics and hybrids. The apocryphal The Book of Enoch spoke of the Grigori or fallen angels who came to Earth and mated with ‘the daughters of men,’ spawning the Nephilim, an antediluvian race of giants. The Epic of Gilgamesh talked of strange beings such as fish-men who came ashore for the day and returned to the sea at night.

What if these fallen angels were sun-folk who manifested in human form and settled in Ancient Egypt, as suggested by the Pyramid Texts? What if antediluvian genetics were unstable, in that the bindings that prevented successful inter-species crossbreeding had become loosened, spawning mixed genetic creatures and humans with animal heads?

This was the germ of the idea for the novel: an alternative genesis of the human race.

Interwoven with these ideas were esoteric concepts such as the akashic record and the astral body. The akashic record is conceived of as a compendium of thoughts, events and emotions encoded in a numinous plane of existence. From this, I derived the name of the novel’s heroine, Akasha, a Sanskrit word meaning aether or atmosphere. The astral body is a personal spirit entity which can leave a person during sleep, travel through the vast numinous corridors of the akashic record and in so doing re-connect to the history of any person or event from any previous epoch. This is what Edgar Cayce, an American mystic, claimed to have done.

Other sources included Doris Lessing’s Shikastra which speculated on how humans may have lived in the time before recorded history. The name Samlios, where the initial action of the novel unfolds, is taken from Gurdjieff’s Beelzebub’s Tales to his Grandson.

All this nourished my fascination for the supernatural and ancient times.


JUSTIN NEWLAND writes historical, fantasy and speculative fiction with a
supernatural bent.
His first novel, The Genes of Isis (Matador, 2018), is an epic
fantasy set under Ancient Egyptian skies.
His second novel, The Old Dragon’s Head (Matador), is a historical
fantasy set in Old China and is due out in November 2018.
His work in progress is a historical novel set in Prussia during the
Enlightenment in the 1760’s.
His stories add a touch of the supernatural to history and deal with the
existential themes of war, religion, evolution and the human’s
place in the universe.
He lives with his partner in plain sight of the Mendip Hills in
Somerset, England.
Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!
The Witch’s Touch
by Rosie Wylor-Owen
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Criminals are going missing. Felons or not, Detective Meeks is duty-bound to
find them, with little to go on but a suspicious encounter between
the latest missing person and a local business owner. As the case
unravels, Meeks struggles to make sense of a world he thought he
understood. Yet this twist of fate could be his chance to truly
making a difference to the community he holds dear.
Amanda Solanke is used to making waves, but never with the police. The last
person to see the latest missing criminal, she is dragged to the
heart of a police investigation. A small business owner in the eyes
of the community, behind closed doors Amanda and her partner Leona
guard a magical secret. The closer they are watched, the closer
Amanda and Leona come to facing the ultimate danger: exposure.

Guest Post

4 Reasons Why Reading is Better than Watching TV

I’ll admit, I’ve binge-watched my fair share of awesome TV shows. Westworld, Charmed, Avatar: The Last Airbender (<<< THIS). Their plots are mind-blowing, with characters you just want to set off an adventure with, even if their special effects don’t always stand the test of time.

While a TV licence isn’t worth the price tag these days, Netflix subscriptions definitely are! For anyone outside the UK wondering what on earth I’m talking about, yes, we have to pay $183 a year for the privilege of watching TV. Scandalous, isn’t it?

But here’s the thing about books – they are arguably the better way to escape reality. Before the TV fandoms throw rocks through my windows, let me explain why. (I’m just kidding fanboys and girls, we know you’re all a lovely bunch.) Here are four reasons why reading is way better than TV.

We Can Read Anywhere

I’m not just talking about reading in the bath – we have phones and WiFi now, we can’t pretend we don’t watch TV while swimming in bubbles. The only real difference there is that we risk electrocution.

But are the flight attendants going to tell you to put your book away when the plane comes down? If they do, they’re just jealous of your hardback. Say goodbye to Brooklyn 99, and whip out the Prison of Azkaban until you are safely at the landing gate.

Where else are our electronics banned? Phones off in the hospital, people. They say it’s for safety – though we’re not sure how – so, we’re forced to pick up a magazine and the latest John Grisham. Forced? What am I saying? We GET to.

The Special Effects Are Never Outdated

Sorry, Charmed, but your orbs and fireballs just don’t stack up against the special effects we have today. Jurassic Park has stood the test of time, and even twenty-five years later, the quality holds up. Though it usually depends on the budget, TV shows and films run the risk of losing their quality over time.

Books? They’ll never have that problem. Our imaginations set the standard when we read, and for that reason, we are never disappointed by the special effects. The content might be disappointing sometimes, and that isn’t easy to work with, but how we imagine the worlds we read about is always satisfying to us. You won’t find any bad CGI here!

It Makes Us Look Smart

We could be watching documentaries, but it doesn’t matter. We’re still staring at screens and looking like zombies on ritalin. Head down, staring at our phone screens, some Cheeto dust in the corners of our mouths. It’s not the most intellectual look.

Imagine instead sitting on a train, book in hand and holding your chin as though you are considering something incredibly thoughtful. When in fact we’re actually reading Manga tucked into the pages of “The Great Gatsby.” The public perception of reading is generally good – if you read, you look like you’ve got a few brain cells to rub together. Until we can make watching TV look just as intellectual, people are going to judge us more favourably for holding a paperback than our iPads.

We Don’t Need Electricity

Can I get an amen? Electricity is cheap and so are chargers, but if our Kindle dies when we’re out and about and there are no outlets, what are we going to do? Wait until you get home to finish watching Love Island, that’s what.

Books get tatty and worn but their words don’t change, and they certainly don’t disappear entirely if they run out of battery. We are in no danger of boredom on our 9 hour flight to New York when we’ve got our trusty, tangible and electricity-free books.

In my opinion, books will always triumph over TV. We learn more, they don’t carry on without us when we fall asleep and they stand as a material reminder of our love for literature. In any case, one day our first editions are going to be worth a fortune!


Rosie Wylor-Owen was born in Worcester, England at the height of baggy
jeans and boy-band popularity. Her work has been featured in the
literary magazines The Fiction Pool, Anti-Heroin Chic and Ariel
Chart, and the Manawaker Studios Podcast. Her short story “Arm-in-Arm
with Alchemy” was accepted for publication by Otter Libris for
inclusion in the anthology “Magical Crime Scene Investigation.”
In February 2018 she won third place in the Fiction Writer’s Global
flash fiction contest for her story “In Exchange for Your Sins”.

Follow the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!