My Obscure Works

Savage Tales of Ki-Gor, Lord of the JungleI know, I know… it’s not like I’m so famous that all of my work couldn’t be described as “obscure” but there are definitely ones that are less well known than others.

“Six Gun Hell” — I wrote this Masked Rider story for 6 Gun Western Magazine’s Summer 2010 issue. It’s probably the only straight western I’ve ever written since my other stories were all definitely Weird Westerns. It was fun to handle this old character but I’ve never had any desire to go back for more.

U.S.E.R.’s Most Wanted – This was a sourcebook for a game line known as Godsend Agenda. It used a variation on West End Game’s beloved D6 system and it was a superhero tabletop rpg. It had some really fun concepts. I was drafted to create about two dozen heroes and villains, with full game statistics and backgrounds. It was really fun and you might recognize one or two concepts that I used there that I later used in other projects. Sadly, I don’t think Godsend Agenda is still around anymore.

“Restoration” – This tale introduced Devlin Jones to the world. A possible reincarnation of King Arthur, Devlin was a World War II-era character and I think he could have survived into a fine series if it had ever developed. This one was published in Startling Stories Spring 2009.

“Dogs of War” and “In the Name of Hel” – These two stories were both published in Tales of the Norse Gods and featured an original creation named Grimarr. A Viking who was returned to life to serve as “The Sword of Hel,” I really enjoyed writing this character in his debut story. The second tale came about when the publisher was running short on material for the book and asked me if I could belt out another story over the course of a weekend. I did so — and it’s not bad for having been written in like 48 hours. But it’s not nearly as good as the original. Grimarr and his sword have been mentioned in numerous other stories set in my greater universe… most notably in The Rook series. He’ll also be name dropped in Lazarus Gray Volume Five.

Fires of Amatsumara – This roleplaying game book was part of West End Games’ D6 Space line and it was pitched as “Firely meets Cowboy Bebop.” I created several planets and statted up all the equipment and characters that existed on them. It was lots of fun! I had always loved West End’s products so I was excited to work on this one.

Savage Tales of Ki-Gor, Lord of the Jungle – I wrote two novellas for this collection: “The Ivory Goddess” and “The Devil’s Domain.” To be honest with you, I think both stories ROCKED. I had a blast writing them and I genuinely feel they’re amongst the best of my obscure works. Obviously, being published by Wild Cat Books, they are very rough and unpolished as they didn’t really do any editing on them. But I still think they hold up well and I’d love to see them back in print at some point. I really enjoyed ‘em!

Saturday Matinee: V for Vendetta

vEvery so often I find a movie or clip that I think will appeal to the fans of this blog. Since most of you enjoy action/adventure, I tend to focus on something that falls into that category. This week we’re looking at V for Vendetta.

Inspired by the graphic novel of the same name by Alan Moore and David Lloyd, this 2005 film was directed by James McTeigue and written by the Wachowski Brothers. It starred Natalie Portman and Hugo Weaving. As much as I enjoyed the graphic novel, I have to admit that I prefer the film. It’s more emotional and the portrayal of V stays a bit more romantic — the shocking scenes where he breaks Evey works much better in the movie than in the original, in my opinion. In the graphic novel, it was that moment where V stopped being a revolutionary hero in my eyes and became a lunatic. In the film, I didn’t get that feeling, which was a big positive.

Here’s one of the more famous scenes, where V outlines his philosophy and puts his enemies on notice:

This sequence shows off the Valerie’s Letter portion of the story. It’s beautiful and powerful.

This is V’s final battle — if you haven’t seen the movie, you might want to avoid it for potential spoilers.

The Occult Forces Project

rook_v3_iron_maiden_smallOne of the background elements that has featured in a lot of my pulp adventure stories is the Geheimnisvolles Kraft-Projekt, also dubbed The Occult Forces Project or OFP. Founded in the late 1930s, the OFP was dedicated to utilizing super-science and magic in the name of The Reich and was a subset of The Ahnenerbe. The group had several notable successes when it came to creating larger-than-life figures who spread the Nazi ideals across the globe. Thankfully, they were combated at every turn by heroes like The Rook and Lazarus Gray.

Here are some of the more notable agents of the OFP that we’ve seen thus far:

Silver Wolf – This werewolf agent of the SS named Karl Raider battled Lazarus Gray and The Darkling in 1937 during the events of “Eidolon” (The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume Three). He was enslaved by Princess Femi before he had a fatal encounter with The Darkling.

Geist – General Luther Strauss was a graduate of the OFP who encountered Assistance Unlimited in 1937. An accident in Tibet left him with the ability to manifest ghostly powers. Blackmailed by The Darkling, Geist worked as a double agent until his skills were no longer needed and The Darkling killed him. His story is told in “Eidolon” (The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume Three).

The Iron Maiden – Kirsten Bauer ascended through the ranks of the OFP and gained possession of a deadly suit of armor. An expert in Norse mythology, she was involved in something called Project: Ragnarok, which sought to use ancient Norse relics to boost the power of The Reich. To this end, she pursued the so-called Sword of Hel to Atlanta, Georgia in 1941. Eventually falling in love with The Rook’s friend Will McKenzie, The Iron Maiden defected and began using her abilities to help the Allies. Her first appearance came in “The Iron Maiden” (The Rook Volume Three) and she was a frequent supporting character in the series after that.

The Grim Reaper – Not long after Bauer’s defection, Werner Richter arrived in America. Using the fearsome identity of The Grim Reaper, Richter battled The Rook for possession of three crystal skulls that contained tremendous power. These events are shown in “The Three Skulls” (The Rook Volume Volume).

The Black Zeppelin & Sun Koh – Lamar Bane was a brilliant scientist who became involved in the creation of something dubbed The Un-Earth. This project resulted in the creation of a Nazi superman known as Sun Koh. Bane battled The Rook, Catalyst (Nathaniel Caine) and Esper (Rachel Winters) in 1942. That adventure was depicted in “Catalyst” (The Rook Volume Three) and The Rook’s encounter with Sun Koh was depicted in “The Scorched God” (The Rook Volume Six), also set in 1942.

The Furies – Three beautiful but deadly agents of The Axis Powers, the Furies were created by the OFP. They were feared throughout the world before they embarked on an adventure to locate Sun Koh. They were at his side when his plan to destroy Washington evaporated and all three women were killed. This adventure took place in 1942 and was shown in “The Scorched God” (The Rook Volume Six).

Baron Rudolph Gustav – An ancient vampire with designs of his own for ultimate power, Gustav was loosely affiliated with the OFP before he gained possession of The Rod of Aaron and attempted to use it to take over the mind of The Rook’s wife — who was also Gustav’s reincarnated lover! This exciting battle, which culminated right in front of Hitler himself, took place in “Dead of Night,” from The Rook Volume Four. This was set in 1943.

The OFP will play a large role in Götterdämmerung, which is a novel that will be set in 1938 and will feature The Rook, Lazarus Gray and Gravedigger in one epic adventure.

Our art today is by George Sellas and it depicts the dangerous Iron Maiden.

My Favorite Pulp Villains

the-hand-of-fu-manchu-book-coverRecently, I listed out for you my favorite “classic” pulp heroes. I had fun making my little list so I thought this time, I’d flip it over and look at the other side of the coin…

The bad guys.

Yep, as we all know, heroes are often defined by their villains. If you think of the greatest heroes, they almost all have at least one villain that is closely related to them in terms of public perception. Batman has the Joker, Holmes has Moriarty and The Road Runner has Wile E. Coyote.

Or something like that.

Anyway, without further ado, here’s my list of my favorite pulp villains. Again, I kept it to ‘classic’ pulp villains — so nothing from New Pulp is on this list.

Here we go:

10. Fantomas
9. Wu Fang
8. Doctor Death (Dr. Rance Mandarin)
7. The Voodoo Master
6. Shiwan Khan
5. Thoth-Amon
4. John Sunlight
3. Doctor Satan
2. The Prince of Evil
1. Fu Manchu

What villains top your personal list?

Reese Unlimited Month Begins!

Happy Reese Unlimited Month! It is the first day of Reese Unlimited Month (what, you mean it’s the first day of something else, too? Wow! Well, that something else must be totally honored to share its first day with Reese Unlimited Month!) A month devoted to sharing the works of Barry Reese and the madcap New Pulp universe he has crafted with the world!

And what better way to start off than to offering a free peek into Barry’s author imprint! For 48 hours only, THE ADVENTURES OF GRAVEDIGGER, Barry’s most recently debuted series, is available for FREE at https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/301049!

Just enter PN29D as you check out and enjoy the action and adventure of GRAVEDIGGER by Barry Reese! Free until January 3rd!

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Timeline of my Pulp Adventure Universe

Barry_Reese_cover_colMajor Events specific to certain stories and novels are included in brackets. Some of this information contains SPOILERS for The Rook, Lazarus Gray, Gravedigger and other stories.

~ 800 Viking warrior Grimarr dies of disease but is resurrected as the Sword of Hel. He adventures for some time as Hel’s agent on Earth. ["Dogs of War" and "In the Name of Hel," Tales of the Norse Gods].

1748 – Johann Adam Weishaupt is born.

1750 – Guan-Yin embarks on a quest to find her lost father, which takes her to Skull Island [Guan-Yin and the Horrors of Skull Island].

1776 – Johann Adam Weishaupt forms The Illuminati. He adopts the guise of the original Lazarus Gray in group meetings, reflecting his “rebirth” and the “moral ambiguity” of the group. In Sovereign City, a Hessian soldier dies in battle, his spirit resurrected as an headless warrior.

1793 – Mortimer Quinn comes to Sovereign City, investigating the tales of a Headless Horseman [Gravedigger Volume One]

1865 – Eobard Grace returns home from his actions in the American Civil War. Takes possession of the Book of Shadows from his uncle Frederick. [“The World of Shadow,” The Family Grace: An Extraordinary History]

1877 – Eobard Grace is summoned to the World of Shadows, where he battles Uris-Kor and fathers a son, Korben. [“The World of Shadow,” The Family Grace: An Extraordinary History]

1885 – Along with his niece Miriam and her paramour Ian Sinclair, Eobard returns to the World of Shadows to halt the merging of that world with Earth. [“The Flesh Wheel,” The Family Grace: An Extraordinary History]

1890 – Eobard fathers a second son, Leopold.

1895 – Felix Cole (the Bookbinder) is born.

1900 – Max Davies is born to publisher Warren Davies and his wife, heiress Margaret Davies.

1901 – Leonid Kaslov is born.

1905 – Richard Winthrop is born in San Francisco.

1908 – Warren Davies is murdered by Ted Grossett, a killer nicknamed “Death’s Head”. ["Lucifer's Cage", the Rook Volume One, more details shown in "Origins," the Rook Volume Two] Hans Merkel kills his own father. ["Blitzkrieg," the Rook Volume Two]

1910 – Evelyn Gould is born.

1913 – Felix Cole meets the Cockroach Man and becomes part of The Great Work. ["The Great Work," The Family Grace: An Extraordinary History]

1914 – Margaret Davies passes away in her sleep. Max is adopted by his uncle Reginald.

1915 – Felix Cole marries Charlotte Grace, Eobard Grace’s cousin.

1916 – Leonid Kaslov’s father Nikolai becomes involved in the plot to assassinate Rasputin.

1917 – Betsy Cole is born to Felix and Charlotte Grace Cole. Nikolai Kaslov is murdered.

1918 – Max Davies begins wandering the world. Richard Winthrop’s parents die in an accident.

1922 – Warlike Manchu tutors Max Davies in Kyoto.

1925 – Max Davies becomes the Rook, operating throughout Europe.

1926 – Charlotte Grace dies. Richard Winthrop has a brief romance with exchange student Sarah Dumas.

1927 – Richard Winthrop graduates from Yale. On the night of his graduation, he is recruited into The Illuminati. Max and Leopold Grace battle the Red Lord in Paris. Richard Winthrop meets Miya Shimada in Japan, where he purchases The McGuinness Obelisk for The Illuminati.

1928 – The Rook returns to Boston. Dexter van Melkebeek (later to be known as The Darkling) receives his training in Tibet from Tenzin.

1929 – Max Davies is one of the judges for the Miss Beantown contest ["The Miss Beantown Affair," Tales of the Rook]. Richard Winthrop destroys a coven of vampires in Mexico.

1930 – Richard Winthrop pursues The Devil’s Heart in Peru ["Eidolon," Lazarus Gray Volume Three].

1932 – The Rook hunts down his father’s killer ["Origins," the Rook Volume Two]. The Darkling returns to the United States.

1933 – Jacob Trench uncovers Lucifer’s Cage. ["Lucifer's Cage", the Rook Volume One] The Rook battles Doctor York [All-Star Pulp Comics # 1] After a failed attempt at betraying The Illuminati, Richard Winthrop wakes up on the shores of Sovereign City with no memory of his name or past. He has only one clue to his past in his possession: a small medallion adorned with the words Lazarus Gray and the image of a naked man with the head of a lion. ["The Girl With the Phantom Eyes," Lazarus Gray Volume One]

1934 – Now calling himself Lazarus Gray, Richard Winthrop forms Assistance Unlimited in Sovereign City. He recruits Samantha Grace, Morgan Watts and Eun Jiwon ["The Girl With the Phantom Eyes," Lazarus Gray Volume One] Walther Lunt aids German scientists in unleashing the power of Die Glocke, which in turn frees the demonic forces of Satan’s Circus ["Die Glocke," Lazarus Gray Volume Two]. The entity who will become known as The Black Terror is created ["The Making of a Hero," Lazarus Gray Volume Two].

1935 – Felix Cole and his daughter Betsy seek out the Book of Eibon. ["The Great Work," The Family Grace: An Extraordinary History] Assistance Unlimited undertakes a number of missions, defeating the likes of Walther Lunt, Doc Pemberley, Malcolm Goodwill & Black Heart, Princess Femi & The Undying, Mr. Skull, The Axeman and The Yellow Claw ["The Girl With the Phantom Eyes," "The Devil's Bible," "The Corpse Screams at Midnight," "The Burning Skull," "The Axeman of Sovereign City," and "The God of Hate," Lazarus Gray Volume One] The Rook journeys to Sovereign City and teams up with Assistance Unlimited to battle Devil Face [“Darkness, Spreading Its Wings of Black,” the Rook Volume Six)]. Lazarus Gray and Assistance Unlimited become embroiled in the search for Die Glocke ["Die Glocke," Lazarus Gray Volume Two]

1936 – Assistance Unlimited completes their hunt for Die Glocke and confronts the threat of Jack-In-Irons. Abigail Cross and Jakob Sporrenberg join Assistance Unlimited ["Die Glocke," Lazarus Gray Volume Two]. The Rook moves to Atlanta and recovers the Dagger of Elohim from Felix Darkholme. The Rook meets Evelyn Gould. The Rook battles Jacob Trench. ["Lucifer's Cage", the Rook Volume One]. Reed Barrows revives Camilla. ["Kingdom of Blood," The Rook Volume One]. Kevin Atwill is abandoned in the Amazonian jungle by his friends, a victim of the Gorgon legacy. ["The Gorgon Conspiracy," The Rook Volume Two]. Nathaniel Caine’s lover is killed by Tweedledum while Dan Daring looks on ["Catalyst," The Rook Volume Three] Assistance Unlimited teams up with The Black Terror to battle Promethus and The Titan in South America ["The Making of a Hero," Lazarus Gray Volume Two]. Doc Pemberley allies himself with Abraham Klee, Stanley Davis and Constance Majestros to form Murder Unlimited. Lazarus Gray is able to defeat this confederation of evil and Pemberley finds himself the victim of Doctor Satan’s machinations [“Murder Unlimited,” Lazarus Gray Volume Three]. Lazarus Gray is forced to compete with The Darkling for possession of a set of demonic bones. During the course of this, a member of Assistance Unlimited becomes Eidolon. ["Eidolon," Lazarus Gray Volume Three]. Charity Grace dies and is reborn as the first female Gravedigger. [Gravedigger Volume One]

1937 – Max and Evelyn marry. Camilla attempts to create Kingdom of Blood. World’s ancient vampires awaken and the Rook is ‘marked’ by Nyarlathotep. Gerhard Klempt’s experiments are halted. William McKenzie becomes Chief of Police in Atlanta. The Rook meets Benson, who clears his record with the police. ["Kingdom of Blood," the Rook Volume One]. Lazarus Gray and Assistance Unlimited teams up with Thunder Jim Wade to confront the deadly threat of Leviathan (“Leviathan Rising”, Lazarus Gray Volume Four]. Hank Wilbon is murdered, leading to his eventual resurrection as the Reaper. ["Kaslov's Fire," The Rook Volume Two]. The Rook and Evelyn become unwelcome guests of Baron Werner Prescott, eventually foiling his attempts to create an artificial island and a weather-controlling weapon for the Nazis ["The Killing Games," Tales of the Rook] Gravedigger confronts a series of terrible threats in Sovereign City, including Thanatos, a gender-swapping satanic cult and The Headless Horseman. Charity and Samantha Grace make peace about their status as half-sisters. [Gravedigger Volume One] Lazarus Gray teams with Eidolon and The Darkling to combat Doctor Satan ["Satan's Circus," Lazarus Gray Volume Four]. Lazarus Gray battles the forces of Wilson Brisk and Skyrider. The Three Sisters are unleashed upon Sovereign City ["The Felonious Financier," Lazarus Gray Volume Five]. Gravedigger confronts the twin threats of Hiroshi Tamaki and the immortal known as Pandora [Gravedigger Volume Two]. Lazarus Gray travels to Cape Noire to investigate the mysterious vigilante known as Brother Bones ["Shadows and Phantoms," Lazarus Gray Volume Five]. The villain known as The Basilisk attempts to seize control of Sovereign City’s underworld ["Stare of The Basilisk," Lazarus Gray Volume Five].

1938 – The Rook travels to Great City to aid the Moon Man in battling Lycos and his Gasping Death. The Rook destroys the physical shell of Nyarlathotep and gains his trademark signet ring. ["The Gasping Death," The Rook Volume One]. The jungle hero known as the Revenant is killed ["Death from the Jungle," The Rook Volume Four]

1939 – Ibis and the Warlike Manchu revive the Abomination. Evelyn becomes pregnant and gives birth to their first child, a boy named William. ["Abominations," The Rook Volume One]. The Rook allies himself with Leonid Kaslov to stop the Reaper’s attacks and to foil the plans of Rasputin. ["Kaslov's Fire," the Rook Volume Two] Violet Cambridge and Will McKenzie become embroiled in the hunt for a mystical item known as The Damned Thing [The Damned Thing]

1940 – The Warlike Manchu returns with a new pupil — Hans Merkel, aka Shinigami. The Warlike Manchu kidnaps William Davies but the Rook and Leonid Kaslov manage to rescue the boy. ["Blitzkrieg," the Rook Volume Two] The Rook journeys to Germany alongside the Domino Lady and Will McKenzie to combat the demonic organization known as Bloodwerks. ["Bloodwerks," the Rook Volume Two] Kevin Atwill seeks revenge against his former friends, bringing him into conflict with the Rook ["The Gorgon Conspiracy," The Rook Volume Two]. The Rook takes a young vampire under his care, protecting him from a cult that worships a race of beings known as The Shambling Ones. With the aid of Leonid Kazlov, the cult is destroyed ["The Shambling Ones," The Rook Volume Two].

1941 – Philip Gallagher, a journalist, uncovers the Rook’s secret identity but chooses to become an ally of the vigilante rather than reveal it to the world ["Origins," the Rook Volume Two]. The Rook teams with the Black Bat and Ascott Keane, as well as a reluctant Doctor Satan, in defeating the plans of the sorcerer Arias ["The Bleeding Hells"]. The Rook rescues McKenzie from the Iron Maiden ["The Iron Maiden," The Rook Volume Three].

1942 – The Rook battles a Nazi super agent known as the Grim Reaper, who is attempting to gather the Crystal Skulls ["The Three Skulls," The Rook Volume Three]. The Rook becomes embroiled in a plot by Sun Koh and a group of Axis killers known as The Furies. The Rook and Sun Koh end up in deadly battle on the banks of the Potomac River. ["The Scorched God," The Rook Volume Six]. In London, the Rook and Evelyn meet Nathaniel Caine (aka the Catalyst) and Rachel Winters, who are involved in stopping the Nazis from creating the Un-Earth. They battle Doctor Satan and the Black Zeppelin ["Catalyst," The Rook Volume Three]. Evelyn learns she’s pregnant with a second child. The Rook solves the mystery of the Roanoke Colony ["The Lost Colony," The Rook Volume Three]. The Rook battles against an arsonist in the employ of Bennecio Tommasso ["Where There's Smoke", Tales of the Rook]. The Warlike Manchu is revived and embarks upon a search for the Philosopher’s Stone ["The Resurrection Gambit," The Rook Volume Three]

1943 – The Rook teams with Xander to deal with the Onyx Raven ["The Onyx Raven, Tales of the Rook]. The Rook is confronted by the twin threats of Fernando Pasarin and the undead pirate Hendrik van der Decken ["The Phantom Vessel," The Rook Volume Four]. Evelyn and Max become the parents of a second child, Emma Davies. The Rook teams with the daughter of the Revenant to battle Hermann Krupp and the Golden Goblin ["Death from the Jungle," The Rook Volume Four] The Rook battles Doctor Satan over possession of an ancient Mayan tablet ["The Four Rooks," The Rook Volume Four]. The Rook travels to Peru to battle an undead magician called The Spook ["Spook," The Rook Volume Four]. The Rook clashes with Doctor Death, who briefly takes possession of Will McKenzie ["The Rook Nevermore," Tales of the Rook]. Baron Rudolph Gustav gains possession of the Rod of Aaron and kidnaps Evelyn, forcing the Rook into an uneasy alliance with the Warlike Manchu ["Dead of Night," The Rook Volume Four]. Doctor Satan flees to the hidden land of Vorium, where the Rook allies with Frankenstein’s Monster to bring him to justice ["Satan's Trial," The Rook Volume Four]. Tim Roland is recruited by The Flame and Miss Masque ["The Ivory Machine," The Rook Volume Five]. The Black Terror investigates a German attempt to replicate his powers and becomes friends with a scientist named Clarke ["Terrors"]

1944 – The Rook organizes a strike force composed of Revenant, Frankenstein’s Monster, Catalyst and Esper. The group is known as The Claws of the Rook and they take part in two notable adventures in this year: against the diabolical Mr. Dee and then later against an alliance between Doctor Satan and the Warlike Manchu ["The Diabolical Mr. Dee" and "A Plague of Wicked Men", The Rook Volume Five].

1946 – The Rook discovers that Adolph Hitler is still alive and has become a vampire in service to Dracula. In an attempt to stop the villains from using the Holy Lance to take over the world, the Rook allies with the Claws of the Rook, a time traveler named Jenny Everywhere, a thief called Belladonna and Leonid Kaslov. The villains are defeated and Max’s future is revealed to still be in doubt. Events shown from 2006 on are just a possible future. The Rook also has several encounters with a demonically powered killer known as Stickman. ["The Devil's Spear," The Rook Volume Five]. The Rook encounters a madman named Samuel Garibaldi (aka Rainman) and his ally, Dr. Gottlieb Hochmuller. The Rook and his Claws team defeat the villainous duo and several new heroes join the ranks of the Claws team — Miss Masque, Black Terror & Tim and The Flame. ["The Ivory Machine," The Rook Volume Five]

1953 – The Rook acquires the Looking Glass from Lu Chang. ["Black Mass," The Rook Volume One]

1961 – Max’s son William becomes the second Rook. ["The Four Rooks," The Rook Volume Four]

1967 – The second Rook battles and defeats the Warlike Manchu, who is in possession of the Mayan Tablet that Doctor Satan coveted in ’43. Evelyn Davies dies. ["The Four Rooks," The Rook Volume Four]

1970 – William Davies (the second Rook) commits suicide by jumping from a Manhattan rooftop. Emma Davies (Max’s daughter and William’s brother) becomes the Rook one week later, in February. ["The Four Rooks," The Rook Volume Four]

1973 – The third Rook is accompanied by Kayla Kaslov (daughter of Leonid Kaslov) on a trip to Brazil, where the two women defeat the Black Annis and claim the Mayan Tablet that’s popped up over the course of three decades. Emma gives it to her father, who in turn passes it on to Catalyst (Nathaniel Caine) ["The Four Rooks," The Rook Volume Four]

~1985 – Max resumes operating as the Rook, adventuring sporadically. Due to various magical events, he remains far more active than most men his age. The reasons for Emma giving up the role are unknown at this time.

Events depicted in the years 2006 forward occur in one of many possible futures for The Rook. As revealed in Volume Five of The Rook Chronicles, the events of 2006 onward may — or may not — be the ultimate future of Max Davies.

2006 – The Black Mass Barrier rises, enveloping the world in a magical field. The World of Shadows merges with Earth. Fiona Grace (descended from Eobard) becomes a worldwide celebrity, partially due to her failure to stop the Black Mass Barrier. ["Black Mass," The Rook Volume One]

2009 – Ian Morris meets Max Davies and becomes the new Rook. He meets Fiona Grace. Max dies at some point immediately following this. ["Black Mass," The Rook Volume One]

2010 – The Ian Morris Rook and Fiona Grace deal with the threat of Baron Samedi ["The Curse of Baron Samedi," Tales of the Rook]

2012 – The fourth Rook (Ian Morris) receives the Mayan Tablet from Catalyst, who tells him that the world will end on December 21, 2012 unless something is done. Using the tablet, Ian attempts to take control of the magic spell that will end the world. Aided by the spirits of the three previous Rooks, he succeeds, though it costs him his life. He is survived by his lover (Fiona Grace) and their unborn child. Max Davies is reborn as a man in his late twenties and becomes the Rook again. ["The Four Rooks," The Rook Volume Four]

Note: The art accompanying this post is by Chris Batista and will be the cover to the upcoming ‘crossover’ novel.

Rabbit Heart Is Back In Print

rabbit_heart_newPro Se Productions, a leading independent Publisher known for producing work on the cutting edge of Genre Fiction, proudly announces the return to print of noted Author Barry Reese’s most controversial and groundbreaking work- RABBIT HEART.

Barry Reese, author and creator of The Rook, The Adventures of Lazarus Gray, and the Adventures of Gravedigger, takes the battle for good and evil to a completely different level. Known for his Pulp work, Reese pushes his own boundaries for this groundbreaking tale of action and adventure, sex and violence, discovery and death.

The time of the Hunt is nigh… Fiona Chapman was dead. However, though her heart still beat and she breathed oxygen, she was no longer like the rest of humanity. Fiona was now one of The Furious Host, a race of mythical spirits who, in Archetype Form, rage through the centuries hunting for innocent victims to slake their thirst for blood. However, Fiona’s desire is different: she craves the destruction of the Host themselves. In her Archetype Form she begins her own hunt to put an end to the evil of centuries. Now the evil has descended on the small town of Milledgeville, Georgia in the form of Urhl, one of the bloodiest of killers. Young women are being murdered in the most savage fashion imaginable. With the aid of legendary occult investigator Ascott Keane, Fiona Chapman embarks on a blood-soaked battle to the death with the ultimate serial killer!

“Rabbit Heart,” says Reese, “is unlike anything else I’ve ever written. It’s the most personal work, featuring all the nasty little secrets that I usually don’t share with the world. Super hardcore in both violence and sex, it allowed me to depart from my mostly PG-13 pulp adventure stories and do something that truly frightened my friends and family. I have fans of this book who wouldn’t touch pulp with a ten-foot pole and I think it shows the world that I choose to write New Pulp… but it’s by no means the only thing I can do.”

One of Reese’s most popular titles, RABBIT HEART is a cutting edge exploration of the basest fears and needs everyone feels. Available in print at Amazon and Barnes and Noble as well as as an ebook from Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Smashwords, RABBIT HEART features a cover by Jason Levesque with an all new cover design by Sean Ali as well as print formatting by Ali and ebook design by Russ Anderson. FOR MATURE READERS.

For interviews, review copies or more information on this title, contact Morgan Minor, Pro Se Productions’ Director of Corporate Operations at MorganMinorProSe@yahoo.com. To learn more about Pro Se, go to www.prose-press.com and like Pro Se on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ProSeProductions.

Reese Unlimited Month!

PRO SE PRODUCTIONS PROCLAIMS JANUARY 2014 REESE UNLIMITED MONTH

Pro Se Productions, a cutting edge Publisher of Genre Fiction and New Pulp, announced today that January 2014 would be THE MONTH OF REESE UNLIMITED. Reese Unlimited is the author imprint of New Pulp creator Barry Reese, the man behind The Rook, Lazarus Gray, and Gravedigger, all well known New Pulp characters. Reese is also known for his work with licensed properties, from The Avenger to Liberty Girl and multiple Marvel characters, but Reese Unlimited, Pro Se’s first in house imprint, focuses solely on his own concepts and ideas.

“Reese Unlimited,” says Tommy Hancock, Pro Se Partner and Editor in Chief, “is a wonderfully mad corner of Publishing where Barry’s heroes, villains, and over the top tales can live and grow and continue on. Barry’s characters ring true in so many ways with the concepts of classic heroes, and yet he brings to bear not only a modern relevance, but his own masterful touch to each character and world he creates. Although one of our most popular imprints featuring several best selling titles for Pro Se, we definitely want to make sure everyone gets a chance to experience Reese Unlimited. So much so that we’re kicking off the new year by dedicating the month of January to promoting Reese Unlimited every single day.”

Beginning on January 1, 2014, Pro Se Productions will feature a different promotion daily related to REESE UNLIMITED. Also, according to Hancock, a REESE UNLIMITED product will be given away each day. This will include ebooks as well as signed print editions of Reese’s work, and other specials and items as well. Also, interviews with Reese as well as excerpts from various titles from the imprint will be a part of the promotion.

To follow the daily promotions beginning New Years Day 2014, go to http://prose-press.com/blog/ and/or like Pro Se Productions on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/ProSeProductions. A daily press release will be created for each promotion and distributed to any and all available outlets as well.

JANUARY 2014-THE MONTH OF REESE UNLIMITED. From Pro Se Productions.

For more information or to be added to the press release list, please contact Morgan Minor, Pro Se’s Director of Corporate Operations, at MorganMinorProSe@yahoo.com.

Single Shots! (Press Release)

20131214-183230.jpgPro Se Productions, a cutting edge independent Publisher, announced the beginning of a new digital line. The best short fiction in Genre Fiction and New Pulp will now be available as digital ebook singles through Pro Se Productions’ PRO SE SINGLE SHOT digital imprint.

“There’s nothing like,” says Tommy Hancock, Pro Se’s Editor in Chief, “a really good short story to an avid reader. And now, thanks to the wonders of eBooks, the ability to pick up one story instead of an entire collection is literally at a fan’s fingertips. Whether it’s a story from an existing collection, like the first four in the debut of our PRO SE SINGLE SHOT line, or tales to tease an upcoming work, or even short stories exclusive to the imprint, PRO SE SINGLE SHOT lets readers get a taste of New Pulp in easy to read and easy to get bites.”

PRO SE SINGLE SHOT titles will be available for 99 cents via Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords.
Although word count will vary, the featured stories will generally be 15,000 words or less. Covers for the Ebooks will either be redesigned covers of the full length collections the stories appear in or, for the tales exclusive to the line, newly commissioned works of art.

“PRO SE SINGLE SHOT,” comments Derrick Ferguson, whose story ‘Dillon and the Alchemist’s Morning Coffee’ is one of the four debut singles, “is a great way to get acquainted with what Pro Se is all about without breaking open the piggy bank. Just as the name implies, it’s a straight shot of pure pulp adventure that’s guaranteed to get your heart pumping and your blood racing.”

To kick off the line, Pro Se Productions has taken four of the best stories from its existing catalog and made them into Pro Se Single Shots. Ferguson’s story, as featured in BLACK PULP, joins Andrea Judy’s ‘The Bone Queen’- the original short story introducing her stunning Pulp villainess in THE PULPTRESS collection, as well as two tales from Barry Reese’s REESE UNLIMITED imprint- ‘Kaslov’s Fire’ from THE ROOK VOLUME 2 SPECIAL EDITION and ‘The Girl with the Phantom Eyes,’ from THE ADVENTURES OF LAZARUS GRAY VOLUME ONE.

“I’m excited,” says Reese, “about this new and affordable way for readers to discover my pulp heroes! Pro Se has done a great job selecting stories that are exciting gateways into these series.”

The first four singles- THE BONE QUEEN, THE GIRL WITH THE PHANTOM EYES, DILLON AND THE ALCHEMIST’S MORNING COFFEE, and KASLOV’S FIRE are now available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords. Four additional singles will be released the week of Christmas as a second wave in the line’s premiere. After that, at least two new singles will be released every two weeks.

PRO SE SINGLE SHOT titles are formatted by Russ Anderson and the line’s banner/logo is designed by Jeff Hayes.

Author of THE BONE QUEEN, Andrea Judy adds, “I’m very excited to be included, and happy that Pro Se is expanding into this line of ebooks. I think it’s amazing.”
For more information on PRO SE SINGLE SHOT, featured stories, the writers involved, or other related details, please contact Morgan Minor, Pro Se’s Director of Corporate Operations, at MorganMinorProSe@yahoo.com.

To learn more about Pro Se Productions, go to http://www.prose-press.com and like Pro Se on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/ProSeProduction

 

News, Updates and Reviews!

thumbsupHello and welcome back to another day at Ye Olde Blog!

After much contemplation, I took the plunge and returned to tumblr. If you’re brave, you can give me a follow over there and I’ll do the same for you. It’s mostly going to be just pictures and videos of things that excite me.

Didn’t get much writing done yesterday. I just couldn’t get into this Pulse Fiction thing I’m working on, even though I got off to a good start last week. Hopefully the magic will return.

Over at Amazon, a number of folks have been commenting on my books. A reader named John posted the following about The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume One:

My First New Pulp book and I loved it! I have read several Doc Savage and The Shadow novels from the 30s and 40s and I loved them. I was a little hesitant about the New Pulp, but Barry Reese has nailed it. I enjoyed The Adventures of Lazarus Gray even more than the original pulps that I have read. 5/5 stars.

Thanks, John! I’m thrilled that you enjoyed the book and I hope you’ll continue to check out New Pulp works – both from myself and from others. There’s a lot of good pulp adventure out there. And I’m deeply honored that you enjoyed my book more than the Doc Savage and The Shadow novels you’ve read. High praise, indeed!

Meanwhile, Shadowman: The Red Sash has gotten two reviews so far. My Pro Se publisher Tommy Hancock said:

Barry Reese’s ‘THE RED SASH’ featuring Valiant’s Shadowman is typical of Barry’s work. That is to say, it is exciting, well paced, full of emotion and characterization, and great read for anyone who is a fan of comics, pulp, action adventure, and the like. Barry brings his own touch to Shadowman and it definitely makes the story stand out.

Doc Panic’s review went like this:

This was an enjoyable book from start to finish. I have read probably all of Barry’s work, and this story like most of his others, was very well written. Pulpy goodness bestowed upon a comic character. Highly recommended!

Thanks, guys! So far, I’d say that most of the people reading The Shadow novella are people who are already reading my other works. I was curious to see if I’d pick up any new readers — it’s too early to really tell. Hopefully Valiant fans will eventually sample this story and then jump onto Lazarus Gray or Gravedigger. Fingers crossed.

I haven’t watched episode two of Sleepy Hollow yet but I really liked the first show. As many of you know, I’m a sucker for The Headless Horseman and used him as the big bad in the first Gravedigger book. If you’re looking for a pulpy supernatural way to spend an hour on a Monday night, I think Sleepy Hollow will fit the bill.

See you guys tomorrow!