Monday, July 28, 2014

Nighthawks at the Mission by Forbes West

Sarah Orange is a smart girl from Orange County, California who has a rich, cheating boyfriend named Tyler. When Tyler’s twin brother Jaime reveals Tyler is cheating on Sarah, Sarah decides that she’s got nothing left for her in So-Cal.

Getting an interview with an exploitative corporation that runs the human colonies, the Off-World Network, Sarah journeys through a massive energy portal discovered in the South Pacific.

Meeting Guy Farson, a young salvager, on the trip to The Oberon, Sarah gets the idea of joining up with the many different co-ops who are doing all the dangerous salvage jobs in the abandoned cities that are crawling with the undead remnants of what is called the Antediluvian civilization. Alone now and in a customer service job at the colony, Sarah falls in with Guy Farson’s co-op (the Page sisters and Tek, a non-human Oberon native or “Ni-Perchta”) which reveals itself to be an illegal operation that does salvaging without a license and in the middle of the night (a term they call “Nighthawking”)

Sarah’s co-op is betrayed by Tek to the Mathias-Petty gang, a group of humans and Ni-Perchta robbers, causing what looks to be the death of Guy Farson and Treena Page. Sarah is confronted by Treena’s sister Winniefreddie who believes that Sarah, being the only other survivor, betrayed the co-op. Forced into a magical duel with Winniefreddie based on Ni-Perchta customs, Sarah kills Winniefreddie and is ruined by guilt.

Having gathered up a good haul of cash from their salvaging, Sarah and the others think about heading to a southern Oberon city in order to get away from the terrors at their own Mission. Sarah, Treena and Guy flee south to Guy’s vacation home on the Quadling Sea. Ambushed by the gang again at an ancient palace turned into a resort, Sarah convinces her friends to hunt the gang down themselves. Ambushing the gang at McRoss Research Station, Guy, Sarah and Treena manage to kill most of the gang members except for the leader, Charles Mathias and his Ni-Perchta girlfriend, nicknamed Jenny Petty. Mathias arrives later with a small army of Ni-Perchta. Sarah and Mathias battle during a “flashstorm”, or energy storm in one of the dead cities. Mathias is defeated by Sarah, who challenges him to a Ni-Perchta ordained duel.
 
 
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Forbes West

About the Author:

Forbes West was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois and graduated with a Master's Degree in Political Science from California State University, Long Beach. He currently lives and works mostly in San Francisco, CA and owns a home in Ojima, Japan- a village five hours south of Tokyo by car that is in the foothills of Mt. Fuji.

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Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Name That Character Contest


How would you like to have a chance for a character YOU named be in a popular new series soon to be published by Dark Feed Press with GMTA Publishing? 


Sounds like a dream come true, right? 


Well here is your chance, read below to find out how you can be a part of this amazing new series soon to be released! 

Like the Dark Moon Series Facebook Page and tell us the story behind why you are choosing that name you're submitting.  

On August 12th, 2014 we will choose a winner at random and the name you've chosen will appear in our next book "Dark Harvest."

  RULES: The name can not be a celebrity name or contain curse words.  We retain the right to use the character as it pertains to the story. This means they could have a short run (two book minimum) or a long story arc. Who knows how that character will develop. 

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The Cauldron Presents: The Lost Catacomb by Shifra Hochberg

           Beautiful art historian, NICOLA PAGE, flies to Rome to assess a newly discovered catacomb of enigmatic provenance at the invitation of Cardinal MAURO ROSTONI, who has been personally asked by the Pope to claim the catacomb and its contents for the Church.  Assisted by an Italian archaeologist, BRUNO RECANATI, Nicola discovers a buried parchment scroll detailing the shocking murder of a pope centuries earlier, a murder connected to priceless artifacts from the ancient Temple in Jerusalem that have been buried in the Vatican since the time of the early Empire.  

            Nicola and Bruno soon find themselves caught up in a web of intrigue and peril stemming from a sinister bargain between the Holy See and Germany during World War II—for when the Nazis had accidentally learned of the existence of the Temple treasures, coveting them for their intended Museum of Dead Nations, Mauro Rostoni, rising star in the Apostolic Palace, agreed to cooperate in the deportation of the Jews of Rome in exchange for German silence.  

            Rostoni, moreover, has a shocking connection to Nicola's own family.  As Nicola discovers when she is recalled to her grandmother ELENA's sickbed in New York, Rostoni had been spurned by Elena during the German occupation of Rome, and, in revenge, had masterminded the murder of Elena's Jewish lover, NICCOLÒ ROSSI—Nicola's true biological grandfather—as well as the arrest of Elena's family.

            As Nicola looks into the Cardinal's wartime activities to confirm his identity, her determination and strong physical resemblance to Elena arouse Rostoni's suspicions, and he has her followed by his Fascist associates.

            Meanwhile, Nicola receives a tense phone call from Athens, from her friend MATT OSBORNE, an investigative journalist who has discovered records linking Nazi expropriation of Spanish and Greek Jewish artifacts during World War II to an organization called Catholic Charities International.  He asks Nicola to look for corroborating evidence in the Secret Archives of the Vatican and tells her that he believes he is being tailed. 

            Nicola and Bruno locate files on the activities of Catholic Charities International, but, unknown to them, they have been observed by one of Rostoni's operatives.
           
            The next day, Bruno sees a newspaper obituary for Matt, who has died of an apparent heart attack.  Bruno receives a package from Greece, containing papers cataloguing shipments of artwork from Athens to Rome during the War.  One of the documents is initialed "M.R.," and Bruno and Nicola suspect that Rostoni is involved, given his past as a Fascist collaborator. They now believe that Matt was murdered.

            Recalling the puzzling presence of a Spanish object buried in the catacombs, they return there at night and uncover a hidden chamber with carefully catalogued artifacts from Jewish communities that had been exterminated during the War.  Bruno realizes that this is a secret branch of the Museum of Dead Nations that Hitler had planned to commemorate the eradication of the Jews, Gypsies, and others.

            Suddenly they are confronted by one of Rostoni's thugs, and after a fierce struggle, Bruno kills their attacker. Bruno rushes to a news agency to expose the Museum, while Nicola heads for the Vatican to look for incriminating documents in Rostoni's office.  To her shock, the Cardinal is there, waiting for a report from his henchman. 

            When she confronts him about the Museum and his role in fencing stolen art during World War II, he boasts that the greatest treasure of all—from the ancient Temple in Jerusalem—is waiting to be reunited with the rest of the Museum and is concealed in a vault behind his office wall. Only he has the code that will safely deactivate the door.
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            Determined to verify Rostoni's role in the murder of her relatives, Nicola asks if he had ever known Elena or Niccolò, and he boasts of his role in Niccolò's death and the pact with the Germans.  Suddenly, Rostoni lashes out at Nicola with a poisoned stiletto hidden inside his pectoral cross.  He is scratched during the struggle and dies, defiantly unrepentant.

            Father Benedetto arrives at the Apostolic Palace and shows Nicola a shocking letter unearthed in Church archives, proving that Rostoni was actually born Jewish and unaware of his true origins. Bruno brings reporters to the catacombs, and Rostoni's connection to the Museum is suppressed to save the Church from embarrassment, as is the existence of the Temple treasures, which can no longer be accessed. 

            Rostoni's confederates outside Italy, undeterred by his death, move their art collections to another location, convinced that the Reich will soon be reestablished and the Museum of Dead Nations finally built.


Shifra Hochberg has a Ph.D. in English Literature from New York University and teaches at Ariel University in Israel. She has published 20 academic essays and is currently writing another novel.


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