The Adulteress Principality — The Parker J Cole Show

valorShe is everything a woman wants to be — glorious, beautiful, and vivacious. All men want her. She is captivating, exciting, and desirable that men can not help but succumb to her charms.

Hiding among the pages of a magazine, pictured on the billboard of the freeway, or clicked on by a mouse, the Adulteress Principality exists only to destroy the first relationship God created: marriage.

The Adulteress Principality has existed for eons, changing shape and form. She has been a woman of ample proportions. She has been a woman of slim proportions. She changes with changing dictates of the culture and what unattainable beauty demands we place upon ourselves. With silken words, she reaches out and embrace we women with words of cunning. “You do not look, act, or talk like me. I will take him from you and there’s nothing you can do.” To the men, she whispers sweet-honeyed words, “Stolen water is sweet.” With such words she entices the men to her canopied bed. Under the auspices of pleasure, she latches chains of bondage meant to steal, to kill, and to destroy.

The Adulteress Principality is not the ‘other woman’ who make take on her guise. She is a spirit who seeks to destroy not just marriages, but self-esteem, virility, and more.

Join me as I chat with my returning co-host Rebecca Bruner as we discuss the Adulteress Principality. You can call in at our new number 929-477-1965, press 1 to be live on air. Or, click on the link here: http://tobtr.com/11022159.

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GUEST POST: Speculative Fiction Writer’s Guide to War–part 1, Reasons by Travis Perry and Travis Chapman

I often showcase and host books on the blog. Yet, I have become a fan of a publisher by the name of Bear Publications whose owner is Travis Perry. I enjoy his insights into a variety of things. He’s also been on my show several times as well and continues to deliver helpful blogs about writing. He start a series with Speculative Faith called The Speculative Fiction’s Guide to War and of course, I thought, I think this is good information to share.  After all, human history is drenched in the blood of the battlefield. What aspects of the real do we take in our speculative worlds? This is currently a five part series but here is the first part of it. I hope you enjoy!


travisToday I’m launching a new series. (Or maybe I ought to say, “I’m harnessing my regular writing slot for Speculative Faith to motivate myself to write a book that’s been on my mind for years.” 🙂 ) My goal is to make a comprehensive guide to warfare, from beginning to end, from fantasy war based in the legendary past, to futuristic science fiction conflict. And we’ll start at the beginning–reasons. Why does anybody go to war in the first place? What causes conflict? And how do you use that knowledge to write a better story?

When discussing causes of human behavior in general, you’ll find that there’s much speculation and disagreement–and the subject of war is no exception to that. It’s not even universally agreed upon if war is natural to human beings. For almost all known societies over the entire world throughout all of known human history, at least on occasion wars are fought and at least a little formal training for warfare exists. Though it is also true that human beings in general show signs of having a natural aversion to killing one another–if we did not have such an aversion, training warriors to fight would not be necessary.

In terms of why wars begin, the Wikipedia article on war fairly represents the topic when it lists seven major categories of theories of reasons wars begin (Psychoanalytic, Evolutionary, Economic, Marxist, Demographic, Rationalist, and Political Science), many of which have sub-categories. In other words, there’s a lot of disagreement about this topic.

This Writer’s Guide for Speculative Fiction authors (which is focused on science fiction and fantasy) takes the view that warfare among human beings stems from aspects of human nature that are common to all human societies, but which require certain societal elements to exist before they can be expressed in warfare. In spite of occasional allegations of completely peaceful societies, there has never been a human society which has no concept of crime in general and murder in particular.  Murder–in which one human being kills another for reasons the society does not see as valid–is very rare in some societies, but exists everywhere human beings live. Likewise, even in societies that practice sharing of resources, it still happens that people disagree over who gets what at what time on occasion, leading to conflict. Even in tribal societies that are very egalitarian, at times there is disagreement or even conflict about who will be in charge of a particular action. And even in tribal societies without a formal law code, it’s true that sometimes fighting occurs within the group over perceived injustice–usually relating to issues of crime, yes, but fighting can also erupt when a group of human beings cannot agree about what is and is not just or fair or right.

Murder, fighting over resources, fighting over position in a society, and disagreement over the rules can each be phrased in terms of a human trait that is the primary cause of each of these actions. While hatred is not be the only cause of murder, it’s a major one. While it may be possible to fight over resources without greed or envy, feelings of at least envy usually accompany such a fight. Seeking prominence over others is usually (fairly) associated with pride, and disagreement over the rules appeals to the innate human sense of justice. Hatred, envy (or greed), pride, and justice–all human societies express these traits to some degree or other. Note that the first three of these traits are generally seen as vices–and justice itself can be a vice, if misapplied.

Though not all human societies go to war, even if all societies have the traits that cause war. But even societies that don’t go to war, if they were invaded by others, would be able to define what’s happening based on the principles they already know. That’s true even if they are shocked by the level of brutality involved. For example: “Those people are murdering us to take our water!”

War-Peace-Public-Domain-1In speculative fiction contexts, it may be that fantasy races or alien species literally would have no concept of war and wouldn’t have any conflict within their societies either. Such people probably would not even realize they should run away when attacked, not immediately anyway. But in discussing warfare, let’s start with the baseline reasons of what is known about human beings first and then afterwards adapt that to non-human societies.

So if the reasons behind human conflict are found in all human societies, why is it that not all societies actually go to war?

The societies that don’t go to war fall into two groups: 1) tribal societies that occupy a niche in which war is unlikely 2) deliberately pacifist societies that come out of warlike societies and which consciously reject war.

The number 2 societies probably require the least explanation. They usually are part of a religious order that teaches that all human being are valuable, so killing any of them is wrong (think Amish or Mennonites or groups like them, or various monastic orders, or Jainists)–or on occasion are non-religious organizations that have high intellectual ideals that include rejection of violence (like some Israeli Kibbutzim). People raised in these societies who are taught to believe war is wrong usually live up to their beliefs and refuse to go to war.

Number 1 societies include tribes that are so geographically isolated that it’s very hard for them to make contact with other groups, let alone fight them. It also includes groups that occupy an ecological niche that other groups are not interested in. Example for both: Imagine a tribe living in a small oasis in a desert which is surrounded by well-watered lands–it may be that other tribes prefer to fight one another over the well-watered lands rather than cross the desert, leaving the oasis tribe to live in peace.

Note the existence of isolated groups that do not engage in warfare at all is the reason some anthropologists argue war is not natural to human beings. They imagine that the original state of the human race consisted of this type of isolated tribes that did not ever fight each other–only later when, say, agriculture was developed, could a society have surplus food to pay people to train for warfare full-time.

While it is true that desperately poor societies cannot afford to pay for a warrior caste, some tribal groups have existed in which everyone (or in most cases, every male) in the tribe was a warrior. That has been especially true for groups that live in areas that make for easy travelling and which have resources which are easily stolen (think the animals that pastoral nomads keep). These groups are usually the among the most warlike of all human beings.

So it seems there’s an element of necessity in who is and who is not warlike. Those who are vulnerable to attack are more likely to be aggressive (in self-defense) but the issue of resources also raises its head here.

Fighting over resources, whether water or food or even gold for societies that use precious metals, seems to be the primary reason for people to go to war. To either take or defend what they perceive they need. Humans also seem show a preference for not fighting over resources if they don’t have to–that is, societies which are vulnerable to loss of resources organize themselves to defend those resources, but ones who can obtain what they want or need “for free,” are much more peaceful–which is where the natural aversion to killing others seems to come into play. It does seem to be true that while some individuals may chose to kill (in the criminal sense) in any society, only societies who perceive they need train themselves in warfare actually do so. And that perceived need is mainly based on access to resources–though again note that almost all humans, historically speaking, have perceived a need to organize to protect resources, so this isn’t anything unusual. A pacifistic society is much more exceptional than a warlike one.

Note that while hatred of others may cause one person to kill another within a tribe and relates to a reason for warfare, it’s actually not usually the main cause of a war–but it can be an important catalyst. Especially because human beings are very quick to define other humans in terms of those who are part of our “in-group” and those who are part of an “out-group” (quotations are there because these are standard terms, though not necessarily ones I prefer). Humans find it much easier to hate someone who is not part of the in-group. When humans start thinking of the out-group as being less than human, which may not be limited to but certainly involves hating them, it becomes easier to go to war against them. Hating another human being to the degree that they are thought of as less than human, or another group of human beings, helps overcome the natural aversion to killing them.

Some people would elevate the fact humans divide into groups easily as a major cause of warfare. This tribalism in modern form can bleed over into racism and extreme nationalism, which certainly have been involved in many wars.  While I agree that tribalism is important, that’s because we humans find it easier to hate those outside the tribe than those in it–tribalism itself is not the issue as much as hatred is. Without hatred and the willingness to kill empowered by hatred, tribalism or nationalism is mostly harmless–they amount to trivial things like which flag you wave at the Olympics.

Note that envy over resources in an environment in which conditions are harsh can easily become greed, in which one or both sides of a fight actually have enough to survive, but are striving for more anyway, hoarding gold like legendary dragons. Greed is a major cause of warfare–one nation or tribe seeking to take from another something it may not really need, but definitely wants. Think of Cortez’s conquest of the Aztecs, or even more so, Pizarro and the Inca, in which lust for gold, land, and women drove the Spanish conquest forward.

Pride (or prestige) as a motivation for warfare is a bit more complex. Societies that develop a warrior class usually laud praise on their warriors–and rightly so under many circumstances. They are, after all, protecting the in-group, and providing for resources people either need to survive or don’t need but want anyway.

There’s quite a bit to be gained in being a successful warrior in terms of how well others treat you. Certainly Cortez and Pizarro not only were greedy for gold, they knew in the warlike society of Spain, they would be admired as conquerors. They’d be given prestigious titles–they’d be seen as heroes (and they were then, though not anymore). Those who like to put things in evolutionary terms say the prestige successful warriors gain gives them the opportunity to produce more children, which they see as a basic drive. While it is certainly true that the prestige warriors have heaped upon them may help them marry and reproduce, the historic warriors who have reproduced the most did not have women flock to them because of their prestige as much as they took the women they wanted because of their desire to have them (greed/lust)–think Genghis Khan.

While it is sometimes true that a warrior caste will seek to go to war because of the prestige or honor involved (honor is how they’d put it), going to war simply because they can (like Klingon warriors) is actually not as common as fighting over resources. But having a warrior caste with intrinsic reasons to fight can certainly be a catalyst for a war.

Fighting for justice is not often listed as a reason for warfare by experts on the topic, but should be. When we think of wars of religion, weren’t people fighting because they think their religion is right (just) and the other religion (or lack of religion) is unjust? When revolutions happen, such as the French or American Revolutions, wasn’t part of the fighting taking place over perceived injustices and abuses? Like taxation without representation? Or anger at the abuses caused by the so-called divine right of a monarch?

Note that a sense of justice can be a catalyst for warfare in a different way that other traits listed here. People want to think of themselves as being in the right and it is much easier to defend violence that is perceived to be honorable than to do so for other reasons. Please recognize that’s true even if you assume there is such a thing as just war (and I believe there is). The existence of just war does not mean that every single appeal to justice is actually fair or true.

Often nations have a stated reason for war that’s different from their actual reason. The stated reason for the Crusades was that they were about justice–Muslims were heaping abuses on Christians in the Holy Land and furthermore had no right to be there as far as the Crusaders were concerned. Yet the actual reasons had a lot to do with overpopulated European territories, looking for lands (and resources) elsewhere, a warrior caste in Europe itching to go war (for the prestige involved), and the fact it was easy to see the Muslims as an “out-group,” not only because they were perceived as racially different, but more importantly because they did not share the Crusaders’ religion.

 

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This WWI poster is about “The Rape of Belgium”

The “real” causes of the Crusades has been debated widely and will continue to be debated. Even if we grant that the Crusades really were about perceived injustice (a.k.a. a war of religion), it’s ridiculous to think Cortes and Pizarro invaded the Aztec and Inca Empires in order to right the wrongs those empires perpetuated, including their perceived errors of religion. Yes, the consquistadores probably felt better about themselves bringing priests along to justify some of their actions in the rhetoric of spreading their faith (which they would see as undoing injustice)–but their greed for gold, land, and women is well-documented as their primary motivation.

To leap to a much more recent example, did the United States really enter World War I “to make the world safe for democracy” (as US President Wilson stated)? Well, partially–the motives were to protect American shipping and businesses, but also there was a sense of justice involved, especially over widely-reported German abuses in Belgium (called in the press at the time, “the Rape of Belgium“). And also important was a wave of anti-German hysteria that swept through America–hatred of the other, the Germans, our enemies, the “Huns” as seen in the classic poster. (Note the imagery of the “Hun” is of a savage, barbaric invader from the East.)

 

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“Hun” = German

You’d find if you dug into details that there were layers of motivations for the entire country, the basic causes interacting in a complex way. And also that the motives for going to war for a single soldier varied a great deal from soldier to soldier in that conflict–which would be likewise true for almost every war. Motives probably even varied for the same individual soldier at different moments.

And while the reasons for a nation going to war are more complicated than those of a single soldier in that nations often primarily seek to gain what they want by negotiation and only go to war when negotiations break down (as reflected in the war theorist Carl von Clauswitz saying, “war is the continuation of politics by other means”), the same basic reasons apply to all wars, even when political factors not named in this post are also involved (such as a nation overestimating its ability to win a war).

I’d say there are four basic causes of wars, listed in order of actual importance for most conflicts (though the order does in fact vary from war to war and person to person as mentioned above):

  1. Resources (or as a vice, greed/envy)
  2. Tribalism (as a vice, hatred of other groups)
  3. Prestige (pride)
  4. Justice (as a vice, false justice or religious extremism)

In order of stated importance, publicly declared importance, reasons for war are usually:

  1. Justice (nations usually proclaim themselves to be right–and only on occasion actually are)
  2. Prestige (calls to service and self-sacrifice are common, especially in modern wars)
  3. Tribalism–hating the other (though some wars have used so much propaganda against enemies that hateful tribalism or nationalism is openly more important than number three)
  4. Resources/greed (most societies talk least about their actual reasons, which are usually-but-not-always about possession of territory or other material things)

As you apply these principles to stories, think about how these motivations play out for the individual human beings involved, which may or may not be the same as collective national or tribal reasons to fight. Note that stated reasons for war are often different from actual reasons. Writing a complex mix of motivations for a war makes for a more realistic and more interesting story.

To briefly mention how to apply these principles to races or species who are not human, while it might be interesting to attempt to invent reasons for warfare that have no connection to how human beings behave, it’s probably best to simply change the order/priority of war reasons that also apply to humans. It will seem more realistic (to human readers anyway 😉) but can still provide some interesting twists.

What if, for example, other species always stated their actual reasons for war openly? Or if a fantasy race had a much stronger sense of justice than human beings have so they don’t ever care in the slightest about resources they could gain? Or if a race had no tendency to be tribal, but still fought for other reasons? Or if they had no actual aversion to warfare in the first place? Or on the other hand, what if a non-human society were naturally non-violent because of an inability to hate others (which is not necessarily the same thing as being good and pure in every way), yet learned over time it was necessary to defend themselves, taking much more time to process what war is than humans require?

Please excuse the length of this post, I’ll strive to keep future ones shorter, but I hope you’ve found it informative. With so many academic opinions on this subject, I don’t imagine for a moment that everyone will agree with what I’ve listed here. So what are your thoughts on the reasons why people go to war?

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Tonight on the Write Stuff — The Gnostic Library with Lewis Smith

gnosticThe deserts of Egypt conceal the greatest treasure since the Dead Sea Scrolls…
…and the twisted hate of a master terrorist!

Father Duncan MacDonald, Vatican archeologist, has been doing routine parish work in the States near the home of his friends Joshua and Isabella Parker, who are investigating a mysterious Spanish mission in north Texas. Suddenly Duncan is called away to help excavate an ancient library full of writings by the early Christian sect known as the Gnostics, discovered by a villager in Egypt’s Black Desert.

Working with British archeologist Dr. Katherine Feezel, Duncan begins retrieving and preserving the scrolls and codices from the stone structure, buried in the dunes for seventeen hundred years. Katherine, a lovely widow, stirs feelings that he had long suppressed in his service to God and the Church. Before he can resolve this inner conflict, the two scholars are kidnapped by a savage band of jihadists known as the Army of Allah and their sinister leader, Muhammad Al-Shavadi. Josh and Isabella and the rest of the Capri Team race across the globe to help rescue their friend and colleague, but time is running out – and Duncan must decide how far he will go to save the woman he has fallen in love with!

The Gnostic Library brings the adventures of the Capri Team to a heart-pounding conclusion!

Join Lewis and I as we talk about his newest release at 7 pm Eastern time. Call in at 646-668-8485 and press 1 to be live on air. Or, download Stitcher on your mobile device. Follow us on iTunes. Click on the linkhttp://tobtr.com/10994507.


lewissigning.jpgLewis Ben Smith’s many friends describe him as a man of numerous talents, and with good reason.

As much at home behind the pulpit as he is in his classroom, where he teaches history to students of six different grades, Lewis also loves walking down ancient riverbeds seeking to add to his museum-like collection of stone artifacts left behind by Texas’ ancient inhabitants. He has even helped excavate the fossilized remains of a Mosasaur, a type of marine dinosaur that roamed the shallow seas that once covered his neck of the woods more than 70,000,000 years ago.

A voracious lifelong reader, Lewis saw his thrilling debut novel, The Testimonium, released by eLectio Publishing in the summer of 2014.

It was soon followed in the spring of 2015 by a historical title, The Redemption of Pontius Pilate, and then another modern archaeological mystery, Matthew’s Autograph, published that same autumn. Theophilus, which covers much of the Roman world in New Testament times, came out in 2017, and most recently his fifth novel The Gnostic Library, which sets its cast of archaeologists down amid the turmoil of present-day Egyp

Write Stuff Friday Roll Call — Find Your Next Weekend Read!

This week’s Write Stuff Roll Call’s got something for everyone. Fiction and nonfiction, find your next weekend read!


 

There’s only one thing Chloe Smith has ever wanted: family. Yet the DNA results she’s received have thrown her life into a tailspin. Her utmost desire has ended up being the catalyst for shaking her faith. She doesn’t even know who she is anymore, and she’s certainly too messed up for her longtime crush to give her more than a second glance.

Darryl Jones is struggling between his past and the grace God so freely offers. His sins feel too big for him to handle, let alone expect the woman of his dreams to accept. Chloe is the only woman he’s ever wanted and the one he doesn’t deserve.

As they form a tentative relationship and examine their faith, Chloe and Darryl ache to know they are finally accepted and fully loved.



A rising tide of violence is spreading across the land, and it threatens to cast all of Aurion into war and chaos. Slayvin, a dragon straight out of nightmare, is at the heart of the corruption. Using dark, and sorcerous power, the shadow drake bends and twists the will of those who would seek his power for their own.

As the dragon wages his war, the survivors are left with a choice; forge unlikely alliances among the disparate races, or become enslaved. In either case, the future is grim. It is a future of war. Axes are sharpened, bows are strung, and cryptic prophecies are examined for the one thing that is all but lost—hope.


Known to historians as “the First American,” Benjamin Franklin is without a doubt the most accessible of America’s founding fathers. His writings have inspired millions of Americans, and even now, more than 200 years after his death, his wit and humor still brighten lives all across the world. But what was this great man’s view on faith? Was he really a Deist as so many historians have proposed? Was he a humanist like so many of his French friends? Is there any possibility that he could have been a Christian?

In this unique volume, Bill Fortenberry has collected everything that Franklin wrote about his faith. From Franklin’s admission that he became a Deist at the age of fifteen, to his letter to Ezra Stiles 69 years later, Fortenberry catalogues exactly how Franklin’s religious views progressed throughout his life and gives us a glimpse of a side of Franklin that few Americans have ever seen.


 

Does the mirror define your beauty and who you are? Are you desperately striving for the world’s “perfect image” of outer beauty? Or have you given up trying, realizing you’ll never be “good enough?”

It’s time to look deeper, past the surface. It’s time to find your true beauty!

Get practical, real-life, biblical advice for the issues you deal with every day…

Body Image. Beauty. Fashion. Sex. Dating. Self Esteem. Relationships.

Will you dare to look deeper?

If you do, you will find that there is so much more. More than what your mirror has for you. More than what Hollywood and the media has for you. More than what any guy can give you.When you look deeper, you’ll find true satisfaction, true beauty and true intimacy waiting for you. Jesus is inviting you to take this journey with Him.

Will you accept?


islandAgent Sherard Parker never expected to get caught.

His first reconnaissance mission with the DEA was supposed to be simple: infiltrate a small South Pacific island and gather intelligence about its involvement in the international drug trade.

But when Parker stumbles upon a hidden airliner reportedly shot down weeks earlier—an act of terrorism that sparked a war—he realizes the island is more than just home to a major drug operation, it’s also part of a conspiracy so evil it could lead to World War III.

After being captured, Parker is forced to abandon his original mission for a far more important one: escape from the island and return to his family.

Can Parker lead an eclectic band of prisoners in a daring life-or-death escape from their tropical prison, or will those in charge of protecting the island prevail, keeping its dark secrets forever?

 


 

Small town science teacher Keith Bradley climbs into a red Tesla with English teacher Talia Ramin for the field trip of a lifetime. At stake is a missing copy of the Scriptures on gold tablets. At risk is the trust of an ancient order sworn to keep the tablets safe.
Talia’s archaeologist aunt and uncle may have lost their last clue to artifact thieves. A government ultimatum might undo every lesson they have taught their students about keeping the Word safe.
from Chapter Eighteen – “Are You So Selfish?”


 


Tess Daniels would rather have her nose in a book than to interact with the people around her. Living under the overprotective and overbearing nature of her mother, Charlotte Daniels, made it easy to keep her distance from the townsfolk of Silverpines apart from a few close acquaintances.

However, when Tess finds a man sleeping in her deceased father’s studio, it sets in motion a series of events that she is not prepared for. The town needs assistance burying the bodies from the aftermath of the double-earthquakes and the new stranger challenges Tess to assist her community. As she steps in to help, she realizes that there are many secrets her mother has been keeping from her, including the mystery of how her father died.

Dawson Elliot was in Silverpines for one reason only: to find the man who murdered his wife and unborn child. Helping a small community get back on its feet wasn’t in his plans. But the weather had other ideas, so he decides to put some long-retired carpentry skills to use, building coffins to bury the dead. Working side by side with Tess will he find healing and love again?

As Tess uncovers the secrets of her past, what will happen when she finds out the biggest secret of all? What is the secret Dawson is hiding? With every coffin he builds can he heal his heart and possibly open it to love again?


 

When we first meet Aili MacIntyre, she’s doing what she’s been doing all her life: running in fear. She flees through a foreign jungle with two young girls and tries to save them from the forced prostitution ring that has been holding them in a virtual hell-on-earth. But tragedy meets them under the trees, and only one child escapes.

Three years later, Alexandra Adelaide has acquired a new identity in a radically different scene: the metropolitan jungle of Greater Los Angeles. She, though saved by Grace, has invented what she believes is the appropriate way to suffer for her own sins. Alex is raising the child who was orphaned by her insecurities. And she never, for a second, lets herself forget the pain caused by her mistakes.

Then the real tragedy strikes . . .

. . . she falls in love.

Matthew Gold is everything she needs and a lot more than she could’ve imagined. Bright, attractive, generous, and with his own vested interest in Grace, Matt works hard to earn Alex’s trust and a place in her life. He even loves and seeks to protect her daughter, who is the key to breaking open the biggest human trafficking case in recent history.

But Alex has lived in fear since she took her first breath. So how does she let Love start a new day? How does she choose courage even as very real dangers draw closer to her barred doors?


Light and dark battle for the soul of six-year old Prince Rayne, heir to the throne of all Ochen and prophesied Light Bringer of the One. Kidnapped, his memories and voice blocked, claimed as a slave, and given the name Wren, he is raised as an assassin.

Sigmund, powerful ancient sorcerer and enemy of the One, plans to frustrate the prophecy by using the young prince to assassinate his own parents. With the death of the Light Bringer and the failure of the prophecy, Sigmund and his demonic colleagues will be free to bring darkness to all seven worlds of Ochen. But what the sorcerer fails to realize is that the One has already claimed the boy, placing within his spirit a glowing ember of light, and giving him support in a world of abuse and violence.

The Seven Words fantasy series, though set in a far distant future, is a sword and sorcery tale that explores the working out of prophecy through themes of forgiveness, trust, and courage.



What if it wasn’t the right time to fall in love but you met someone you couldn’t resist?

WroOth and his brothers come to save a village beset by giant spiders. They’re finishing off the horde for free—but just so they can mess with their enemies.

It really is quite simple, but WroOth finds his attention sidetracked by an unusual baker named Mara who is trying to escape a threat far greater than the hook-fanged spiders. Against his better judgment, WroOth becomes involved and finds himself struggling as Mara calls into question all his future plans regarding love, locking, and marriage.

A fast-paced fantasy romance adventure set within the larger world of the Tue-Rah Chronicles.


Love in a time of Terror

On a beautiful spring day in 2001, a 9-year-old American girl met a 10-year-old Arab boy who played the Arabic flute in the Persian garden of an Israeli electronics engineer. They knew nothing about each other. Karen knew only that boy with the flute was named was Omar, and his music was the most beautiful sound she had ever heard. Omar knew only that the girl from America was named Karen, and had golden hair. Neither understood that they lived at the end of an era, the era before September 11th, 2001, when the War on Terror began and divided their cultures forever.

Twenty years later, on a chance encounter, Karen Wingfield meets a man named Omar Arraf working at a local business in Oklahoma City. Could he be the boy with the flute?

The Muslim, by Callen Clarke explores the loves, the hates, and the passions of two cultures, Palestinian and American, what divides us as citizens, and what unites us as human beings. A story of Love and Tragedy in the grand tradition of Romeo and Juliet, The Muslim by Callen Clarke uncovers the universal truths concealed beneath the prejudices of politics, lust, and religion, while illuminating the world-changing power of the greatest weapon in human conflict: Grace.

[Disclaimer: contains adult language/themes. Not suitable for children or adolescents.]


 

For a US Navy SEAL, life can be many things — challenging, thrilling, rewarding, hazardous, unexpectedly short. Lieutenant James Salvatori knew all this going in, but nothing could have prepared him for his mission to Laos. What started as an anti-terror operation turned into an experience that was quite literally out of this world!

New lands, mythical creatures, powerful magics, immortal tyrants. What’s a guy like Sal to do, except lock and load?


 

A future terraformed Mars, where civilization crashed back into a Medieval Era. Christian Knights called “riders” patrol the Pilgrim Road from Olympus to New San Diego, on the Chryse Sea. The technological past is known as the “Age of Magic” and only a handful of people understand how the remaining ancient devices really work. Lighter gravity in dense air makes flying dragons and bird riders a reality; alloys of the past make “magic” swords; and masters of ancient knowledge wield wizard-like power.

Nine authors spin tales in this unique story world, one which combines elements of science fiction and high fantasy.

 


 

In 1906, American humorist Mark Twain published a sixty-page essay entitled “What is man?” Consisting of an interminable dialogue between a senior citizen (who believes that man is just a machine) and a young man (who believes nothing in particular but is open to persuasion), it wasn’t one of his finest books. But at least he tried. Authors since then seem to have avoided the subject like the plague, often tackling the respective roles of men and women in society but seldom asking deeper questions about what it means to be human. When the psalmist asked, “What is man?” (Psalm 8 v.4) he was, I think, seeking an altogether more profound answer.

Avoidance of the subject is all the more strange because there has never been a time like our own when curiosity about human origins and destiny has been greater, or the answers on offer more hotly disputed. It’s a safe bet that any attempt to give the “big picture” on the origin, nature and specialness of mankind will be contentious —which might explain why writers have generally fought shy of it. Yet at heart it is the question most of us really do want answered, because the answer defines that precious thing we call our identity, both personally and as a race.

The Psalmist did, of course, offer his own answer three millennia ago. Man, he claimed, was created by God for a clearly defined purpose — to exercise dominion over planet earth and (by implication) to ultimately share something of the glory of the divine nature. The rest, as they say, is history, but it’s not a happy tale. As Mark Twain says in another essay; “I can’t help being disappointed with Adam and Eve”. Not surprisingly, then, a large proportion of humanity today are looking for alternative solutions, accepting the challenge of the Psalmist’s question without embracing the optimism of his answer.

In this book we are going to consider the alternative solutions on offer by considering what it means to be human against the backgrounds of cosmology (man’s place in the universe), biology (man’s place in the animal kingdom), and psychology (man’s consciousness and mind). Finally, we return to the biblical context, arguing that the Psalmist got it right after all.


 

Reclaim your peace! Recover your health! Revive your heart and recover joy! Learn how to take back everything the enemy has stolen with this practical, comprehensive guide to healing and deliverance. Discover the missing keys to unlocking the answer you need. Inside these pages, you will learn how to recognize and break generational curses, the power and potency of the blood of Jesus, how to recover your losses through the courts of heaven and many more powerful insights that will release greater levels of healing. There are curse-breaking prayers as well as many others to lead people into a more intimate relationship with their heavenly Father. Discover the Father’s heart for you as you partner with Him to receive healing and wholeness!


 

In a land of complete darkness a war rages. The quest for one of the light-giving stones of the King brings Lachlaniel into contact with Velius. Together with an eclectic band of other people, they must battle the forces of evil as well as their own human flaws or the assault on the city will bring catastrophe and leave the Seven Cities only six. The forces of darkness are bent on devastation and destruction of everything in their path. Can this intrepid band of valiant heroes rescue the people of the surrounding towns and save the great city from the torment and anguish inflicted by the hideous creatures of the darkness?


 

A team of naturalists find themselves facing a nightmare beyond anything they have ever known – and the product of unspeakable evil.

Philip Caster, a former Green Beret now working as a zoologist, leads an international team in Indonesia whose revolutionary new program may spell salvation for the endangered Sumatran tiger. They will release six artificially-conceived cubs into the wild, accompanied by their surrogate mothers. The effort will prove the feasibility of in vitro breeding as a new tool against extinction. But its success is overshadowed by the sudden emergence of a horror beyond reckoning. Something has been unleashed in the forests of Sumatra. A life-form never meant to walk the earth. One that claims humanity as its only prey.

As death unfolds around them, Caster and his circle of friends must uncover the truth behind an abomination: the instrument of dark and all-too-human forces pursuing a twisted ideological vision. Their creation has killed already – and their plans will consume millions more.


 

 

One brave decision leads to serious consequences. Maggie is secretly educating the slaves at Spirit Wind Manor. But the manor’s serenity is soon threatened by abolitionist John Brown.

A new republic looms on the horizon and with Abraham Lincoln’s presidency, her countrymen’s anger escalates as secession spreads across the southern states. With the fires of civil war glowing on the horizon, Maggie is swept into its embers realizing she is in love with the manor’s hardworking, handsome Irishman Ben McConnell.

Ben joins the Union Army and Maggie is forced to call him her enemy. An unexpected chain of events leads her into choosing where her loyalties lie. Conscience and consequence—did she care more for Ben or for her beloved South? As the battle between North and South rages, Maggie is torn. Was Ben right? Had this Irish immigrant perceived the truth of what God had predestined for America?


 

A job worth dying for, a love worth fighting for.

Undercover ICE agent Madi Reynolds has spent years infiltrating a human-trafficking ring, but when her life is threatened, she is forced to walk away and advised to leave the country. Undeterred, she continues her plan to attend her brother’s Christmas wedding, with her partner assigned as her bodyguard. But after seeing Brice care for her niece, she finds it’s more than her life that needs protecting. Is there really any defense for the heart?

War Veteran and ICE agent Brice Johnson has been defending his country and American lives for as long as he can remember. Now, he faces the biggest assignment of his life–protect the woman he loves. He’s never been one to run from a fight, but when an old flame butts in expecting a second chance with Madi, and crippling visions of war call out to him, he begins to wonder if surrender is an option after all


 

 

Escaping a violent and abusive environment, eight-year-old Emanuel Martinez attempts to cross through three countries to be with his mother, Ana, whom he hasn’t seen since he was a baby. When la migra catches him at the border and he’s thrown into an immigration center, his dreams for being a real family start to disappear.

Vowing never to be like her own mother who abandoned her and never looked back, Ana has worked for six years to get her son to the United States, Now Ana has to rely on her distant mother and her alcoholic boyfriend, Carlos, to finally get her son to her side so they can build a life together.

When Lauren Barrett agrees to help with the afterschool program, she soon realizes she’s bitten off more than she can chew. Growing up in an unsupportive home has made her insecure and vulnerable, plus suffering through years of infertility hasn’t helped matters. Yet she longs to do something meaningful with her life and wonders when that opportunity will come along. When a special young boy named Emanuel enters her life, he turns her worldview on its head.

As their lives intersect, will they help each other understand what family and love and home really mean?


 

When Princess Elaina refuses an arranged marriage, she flees the court –and her father’s fury–for school. Normally, she enjoys practicing rapier combat and training Tiercel, her chatty griffin, but troubling dreams keep her on edge.

After a warning by a prophet, she returns to court only to find her twin taken captive and her father dying. Challenging the assassin leaves her blinded. As the sightless regent of Corby, she must protect her brother’s throne as he completes his studies.

Threats thicken all around her. Her ambitious uncle, mad for the throne, pressures her to abdicate to him. Elaina must find a way to see her path when all is dark. Failure would bring death to many.

Tonight on the Write Stuff — The Sorcerer’s Bane with Chris Wachter

baneLight and dark battle for the soul of six-year old Prince Rayne, heir to the throne of all Ochen and prophesied Light Bringer of the One. Kidnapped, his memories and voice blocked, claimed as a slave, and given the name Wren, he is raised as an assassin.
Sigmund, powerful ancient sorcerer and enemy of the One, plans to frustrate the prophecy by using the young prince to assassinate his own parents. With the death of the Light Bringer and the failure of the prophecy, Sigmund and his demonic colleagues will be free to bring darkness to all seven worlds of Ochen. But what the sorcerer fails to realize is that the One has already claimed the boy, placing within his spirit a glowing ember of light, and giving him support in a world of abuse and violence.
The Seven Words fantasy series, though set in a far distant future, is a sword and sorcery tale that explores the working out of prophecy through themes of forgiveness, trust, and courage.

Join me as I chat with Chris Watcher and her new book! Call in at 646-668-8485 and press 1 to be live on air. Or, download Stitcher on your mobile device. Follow us on iTunes. Click on the link here:  http://tobtr.com/10983327.


christ.jpgI started out as a reader … but then, I guess most writers start that way.
Enter: Chris as author!
I am a sixty-something mother of three amazing sons, grandmother of one cute little grandson and a pretty as a princess granddaughter. I have been married to the same absolutely amazingly patient man for nearly forty years.
I spend my days obsessively writing. (Wow, I really do!) And I have been known to spend way too much time gaming on a borrowed X-box.
A degree in Performing Arts and English Education from Rowan University, a job as a professional proofreader, and more than fifty-years of experience as a voracious reader of multiple genres (most especially fantasy), honed by a level of maturity I didn’t possess when I was in my twenties, have prepared me to finally write what I have always loved, fantasy (specifically Christian Fantasy).
I love living in rural Lancaster County, PA and if I’m not writing, I’m reading, walking my dog, working on counted cross stitch, or spending time with family and friends.

Practical Help for the Suddenly Single Mom–The Parker J Cole Show

motherandchildLast month, we had the pleasure of speaking with a woman who was thrust into the reality of being a suddenly single mom. We continue in this series but not just sharing her story but for giving the suddenly single mom practical help to navigate through these waters.

Raising your family on your own can be heartbreaking, lonely and hard to navigate. Suddenly, you are the one who has to have the answers. Remembering that God is always with you and that His love is faithful can give you the confidence to face whatever this new life brings.

Join Jeanette and myself as we continue our series for the suddenly single mom. You can call in and weigh in by calling in at 646-668-8485, press 1 to be live on air. Or, download Stitcher on your mobile device. Follow us on iTunes. Or, click on the link here:  http://tobtr.com/10938039.


 

Tonight on the Write Stuff — Candid Conversations with Heather Hart

candidLife isn’t always sunshine and chocolate.

It’s hard.

Being a Christian doesn’t change that.

In Candid Conversations you’ll read real life stories from real Christian women, and how God has used their struggles to either refine their faith or used their faith to help them weather the storm. From struggling with doubts to dealing with the loss of a loved one, these women lay it all out. They aren’t afraid to get real, because they know God can use their struggles to inspire, encourage, and reach others all for His glory.

Heather Hart, founder of the #CandidlyChristian movement, encourages readers to be honest and look for ways they can relate to each story. Then take that mentality into their everyday lives and start having candid conversations with those around them. Because when we share our struggles, when we are real, that’s when we truly point others to Jesus.

So what are you waiting for? It’s time to get Candid.

Join in the discussion as I chat with author Heather Hart and her newest release at 7 pm Eastern.  You can call in at 646-668-8485, press 1 to be live on air. Download Stitcher on your mobile device. Follow us on iTunes. Or, click on the link here: http://tobtr.com/10912425.


heatherHey there! My name is Heather Hart, and I am about to get candid.

The first thing you need to know about me is that I don’t have it all together… and I’m okay with that. While I am constantly striving to be more like Christ, I know that He has me covered when I fail. That’s the gospel (and I LOVE it!!)

I’m an imperfect mom, but I love my kids like crazy. They might not always have clean faces and manicured nails, but they are mine and I love all four of them.

I’m an epic failure as a wife. I’m constantly putting myself first instead of being the helpmeet my husband needs, but for some reason he loves me anyway (and of course the feeling is mutual).

Other than being a sinner saved by grace, here are a few other fun facts about me:

I love high-heeled boots and flip-flops (no matter what season it is).

If it is under 90 degrees, there is a good possibility that I’m cold. I think I get it from my mama, but either way it makes sunshine and sweaters two of my best buddies.

I am not a morning person, I don’t like vegetables, and unfiltered water makes me sick (literally, we think it’s the chlorine). But, I love Jesus. He can make any day better.

I’m an introvert, but I love others deeply. In other words: It doesn’t matter if we’ve met before, I love you and care about you instantaneously… but I probably don’t show it (unless you count my overabundance of tears… If you are sad or hurting, I’m probably going to cry about it). It also means that I’m crazy quiet and might not talk to you if we ever meet face to face (I’m working on it).

Oh and I love to write! Besides blogging, I also write Bible studies, devotions, and other nonfiction books.

So in a nut shell, I am first and foremost a servant of Christ who is happily married to the man of my dreams – but I am also the mother of four, an internationally best-selling and award-winning author, owner of BooksFaithandCoffee.com, founder of CandidlyChristian.com, and the director of FindYourTrueBeauty.com. I enjoy working from home where I spend my days studying God’s Word, typing on the computer, and encouraging those around me. And, of course, if I am not writing or absorbed in my four kids, I can usually be found with my nose in a book.