We Have a Winner!

We have a winner in The Damned Review Contest! Anthony Davidson posted a review of The Damned Thing on Amazon.com, which means he’s won a free copy of The Adventures of Lazarus Gray. Anthony gave the book 5 stars and said it was a good read — Thanks for taking the time to post that, Anthony!

In other news, I was asked by someone today how many books I’d had published. I stopped counting long ago but I figured I’d try and figure it out since people do ask that of me a lot. By my count, I’ve been published exactly 50 times since 2003. That includes the various anthologies I’ve been a part of, magazines that ran short stories by me and all the books I did with Marvel Comics. Not a bad total. And to think that once upon a time, I figured I’d never get published even once!

Currently working on a story called “Tomorrow Never Knows” but I might change that one — sounds like a Bond movie, doesn’t it? It will run in the third volume of Lazarus Gray. The first volume is for sale right now, so go and buy it.

My to-read stack keeps growing. I’m currently reading a Black Centipede book by Chuck Miller and next up is Four Bullets for Dillon by Derrick Ferguson. There’s so much New Pulp out there right, it’s amazing — and it’s almost all wonderful to read! Good times, my friends.

Heading To the Crossroads

This weekend I’ll be a guest at the Crossroads Writers Conference in Macon, Georgia. The guest list includes Gail Simone, Nathan Edmonson, Tina McElroy Ansa, Terry Kay, Jeffrey Stepakoff and a whole lot more.  Registration opens at 8 AM in the lobby of the 567 Center for Renewal, and our workshops, panels and talks begin at 9 AM. I’ll be part of a panel at 9 AM entitled “How I First Got Published” and then I have a workshop called “How To Get the Most Out of Murder and Mayhem” at 4 PM. Hope to see some of you there!

The Best of the New 52

Comics and pulp have a long association and in the world of comics these days, nothing is bigger than DC’s recent revamping of their universe. In the past month, I’ve read virtually everything they’ve published and I’m now ready to reveal what books I thought were the best. I’ll be sticking with a few titles that aren’t on this list in the hopes that they improve but the ones below were the ones that left me genuinely excited about reading more:

  • Justice League – I know a lot of folks didn’t like how the first issue focused on only two heroes (with a third popping up on the final few pages) but I thought it was well put together and a lot of fun.
  • Wonder Woman – I normally hate this writer but the first issue of this series was genuinely creepy and featured some awesome artwork.
  • Action Comics — I wasn’t blown away by this but I did enjoy it a lot. I like the notion of a de-powered Superman.
  • Frankenstein, Agent of SHADE – The BPRD in the DC Universe. I was very, very surprised by how much I enjoyed this.
  • Green Lantern – Stunning artwork, great characterization. GL remains high quality in the DCnU.
  • Fury of Firestorm – I loved the original Ronnie Raymond version but I wasn’t sure what to expect here. I was sad to see the race angle played up but I loved the storyline and the way old characters (Cliff Carmichael!) were reborn in the new universe.
  • Demon Knights – This rocked, just like I knew it would. Great art. Good story.
  • Supergirl — Stunning art and while the story wasn’t anything earth-shaking, it was solid. I love the Supergirl redesign.
  • Batman — The perfect version of Batman. This is what the character should be. Snyder and Capullo — I hope they’re around for a long time on the title.
  • Justice League Dark – I didn’t expect to like this one very much but I enjoyed the parts with Shade and the art was nice. Honestly, I could have done without the traditional JLA being in this book at all, though. Their presence almost dropped the title off this list.
  • Aquaman – Amazing artwork and I think Johns is really grooving with this character.

If you’re a comics fan, those are the titles I’d recommend you give a try. There were others (JLI, Legion, Animal Man, Superman, etc.) that had some real good moments but they also had elements that kept them from making the list of my “must-buys.”

Lazarus Lives Again — On Amazon!

The Adventures of Lazarus Gray is now available on Amazon.com! Go and buy multiple copies — you’ll be kicking yourself a year from now if you don’t….

The biggest and best thing I’ve done so far in New Pulp!

The Rook… By Comics Legend Bob Hall!

  The image at left is by Bob Hall, who’s drawn nearly every major Marvel or DC hero over the years — and is probably best known for his awe-inspiring work on Valiant’s Shadowman series. It was a blast to see him depict The Rook! This cover will most likely be used as the front piece for The Rook: The Killing Games but that’s not confirmed yet.

Feel free to ooh and ahh.

Weekly Sales Check

It’s that time once more — where we bravely head over to Amazon.com and see what the five bestselling Barry Reese titles are! So, without further ado, here’s your Top Five:

1) The Avenger: The Justice Inc. Files

2) The Green Hornet Casefiles

3) The Adventures of Lazarus Gray

4) The Rook Volume One

5) Marvel Comics Legacy: The 1960s-1990s Handbook

A strong debut for Lazarus Gray and a return to the top five for The Rook — things are looking good!

Lazarus Gray

The Adventures of Lazarus Gray is now out — it should be on Amazon sometime next week but until then you can buy it at Createspace. I’ve had folks tell me that they think it’s much better than my Rook series and I have to agree — I love Max Davies and his crew but from day one the heroes of Assistance Unlimited seemed very real — and very exciting — to me. In book one the cast consists of:

Lazarus Gray — A mysterious figure who literally washes up on the shore of Sovereign City with few clues to his true identity.

Eun Jiwon — A Korean immigrant whose parents ran afoul of a protection racket. Eun is a fiery personality with a few secrets of his own.

Morgan Watts — Former confidence man turned roguish hero, Morgan is the oldest member of the group. Given his past, he often serves as the most cynical member of the team.

Samantha Grace — A stunning young blonde, her parents were philanthropic idealists… until the day that her father became the target of blackmailers. Now Samantha uses her intelligence to aid Lazarus Gray in his war on crime.

Those four are the core characters in the series and I’m proud to say that all of them undergo actual growth over the course of the seven stories in book one.

Book two is a novel-length adventure called Die Glocke and I’m currently writing stories for an eventual third volume.

The fellow at left is Walther Lunt, one of the major villains in the series. The image is by George Sellas and is actually going to appear in Die Glocke.