Review of Denton Salle’s Novel “Black Earth Rises, Hall of Heroes Book Three”

black earth

Cover art for Denton Salle’s novel “Black Earth Rises”

Black Earth Rises is the third book in a series by Denton Salle, but it stands very well on its own since I haven’t read the first two novels.

Denton asked me to review his book and was aware of recent difficulties I’ve had reviewing books by people I know. He assured me that he’d understand me being forthright and fair about my review, and I have been.

For being a supernatural urban legend thriller, the story is pretty standard, up to a point. Two college buddies from very different backgrounds, the women in their lives, coming up against frat jerks, all seems normal.

Then the frat jerks turn out to be werewolves and there is a sinister school being operated by an evil sorceress in the bowels of a Texas university near Dallas. But this school also has an old graveyard haunted with the unexpected, both evil and good.

A good Catholic boy named Jim gets pulled by his frat friend Mike into an Orthodox religious group (most of which are Mike’s family) of an ancient order sworn to protect our existence from occult dangers. They live an uneasy peace with the “Otherworld” by a compact signed untold centuries ago…but not all of the Otherworld creatures are obedient, or perhaps they just didn’t sign on the dotted line.

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2021 Helicon Award Winner for “The Three Billion Year Love”

“The Three Billion Year Love” wins a 2021 Helicon Award for best short story in an anthology

First of all, no one is more surprised than I am to have won an award. I have no idea what the nomination process was or how I got on the list, but “wow.”

I actually found out on Facebook first before I checked my email. Then once I did, I saw that Richard Paolinelli announced it on his blog:

Thanks to our new overlords and masters in Silicon Valley, the announcement of the 2021 Helicon Awards has been moved up 36 hours.

Check out the 16 winners and buy the books and discover some great authors!

Yes, it’s been a rough week for a lot of us, especially as many high tech platforms continue to censor anyone who leans even slightly right, but I’ll cover that another time.

Anyway, that leads to the 2021 Helicon Award Winners announcement.

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“Fantastic Schools Vol 2” Available in Paperback

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Cover image for the anthology “Fantastic Schools, vol 2”

I just got the announcement from L. Jagi Lamplighter that Fantastic Schools Vol 2 is now available in Paperback. Previously, you could only read the book (from Amazon) by downloading it to your Kindle device.

The anthology features my short story “Sorcery’s Preschool,” which chronicles the tale of a “gifted and dangerous” four-year-old girl being enrolled in an other worldly magical pre-school. However, she’s unsure if the school is to teach her how to use her magic or to prevent her from doing so. There’s also a sinister undercurrent that the little girl’s equally powerful Grandmother realizes almost too late.

The book, so far, has 32 Amazon global ratings with 82% being four and five stars. That’s pretty good.

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Coming Soon: Superversive Sunday Spotlight

Screenshot from the Superversive Scribe blog

Every Sunday, author and editor Richard Paolinelli spotlights a different writer in a one-on-one interview. Last week he even turned the focus on himself.

This coming Sunday, November 22nd, the interview will be with me.

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Planetary Anthology Saturn’s Promotional Video

saturn

Screenshot of the promotional video for “Saturn”

Nearly a week ago, I published the blog post “Saving the Apostle” to be featured in the Planetary Anthology “Saturn”. This is particularly exciting for me because most of the time, I can’t write science fiction with a religious theme, particularly involving Judaism and Christianity, that is, with any hope of seeing such a tale published.

Heck, I’d written the story originally for a Christian science fiction periodical which turned it down.

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Fantastic Schools: Volume One (Fantastic Schools Anthologies) Paperback – May 26, 2020

vol 1

Cover image for “Fantastic Schools, Volume One”

Just found this out. My story “Sorcery’s Preschool” is still on track to be published in Volume Two of this series next month.

In the meantime, if digital isn’t your thing and you prefer a book you can hold in your hands, Fantastic Schools – Volume One is now out in paperback.

Buy them…

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Being Superversive in a Subversive World

fantasy

Found on Richard Paolinelli’s blog. No image credit given

Richard Paolinelli has named me on a list of superversive authors (scroll down, the list is in alphabetical order by last name).

Now you may be asking yourself what is “superversive?”

According to Urban Dictionary:

Nurturing; supportive, building up — opposite of subversive

The superversives decorated the object with daisy chains, linked their arms around it and sang “Jerusalem.”

Seems a bit “flowery”.

So how does that translate into writing superversive fiction, and particularly science fiction? Back in 2016, Russell Newquist crafted an answer in What is Superversive Fiction? (I should say that he hasn’t posted anything on his blog since September 2019):

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Fantastic Schools: Volume One Now Available

vol 1

Cover image for “Fantastic Schools, Volume One”

Finally L. Jagi Lamplighter’s magic schools anthology Fantastic Schools: Volume One (Fantastic Schools Anthologies Book 1) is available on Amazon. It features short stories by Christopher G. Nuttall, Mel Lee Newman, Emily Martha Sorenson, and others.

My short story “Sorcery’s Preschool” will be appearing in Volume Two of the series, hopefully out sometime this in August 2020.

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