Frost Warning!

frost_finalmocksm

MOONSTONE JUNE ’17 release

I.V. Frost: Tales of Mystery and Scientific Detection

Authors: Matthew Baugh, David Boop, Eric Fein, Ron Fortier, Chuck Miller, Gene Moyers, William Nedrow, Barry Reese, and Frank Schildiner.

Cover: Alex Innocenti

266 pgs, $16.95

ISBN: 978-1-944017-12-5(51695)

 “Stalking a territory that is somewhere between the gaslit world of the Victorian Consulting Detective and the flickering neon darkness of Film Noir, Wandrei’s Frost is part analytical rationalist, part Angel of Death. Like someone took Sherlock Holmes, armed him to the teeth, and turned him loose on the mean streets of Phillip Marlowe.” –Peter Atkins

For the first time ever, a NEW collection of I.V. Frost stories!

Guest-starring: The Green Ghost, The Phantom Detective, Dr. Satan, The Moon Man, & more!

Matthew Baugh, David Boop, Eric Fein, Ron Fortier, Chuck Miller, Gene Moyers, William Nedrow, Barry Reese, and Frank Schildiner.

What’s Going On?

dc-ca-2Welcome back to Ye Olde Blog, my friends! I wanted to update you on a few outstanding projects:

THE ADVENTURES OF LAZARUS GRAY VOLUME SIX is (I promise!) on the way soon. Sean Ali is doing his usual amazing formatting job on it and I should be getting final galleys to approve in the next few days. I think you guys will like it!

THE ADVENTURES OF GRAVEDIGGER VOLUME THREE is now complete! The story’s written, interior art by Chris Batista is in and George Sellas has just finished off the cover — if you loved his work on the first two books, prepare to be blown away again by his work on this one. As amazing as George has been over the years, I think his Gravedigger covers are his best work and that’s saying a lot.

I’m still working away on CAPTAIN ACTION VOLUME THREE and expect to finish it in the next two weeks. It’s been a blast working on this classic hero with Jim Beard and I hope that fans of CA will get a kick out of what we’ve come up with… it’s both a totally new adventure and a continuation of the plot points from the first two books. Our art today is from the DC Comics’ series published in the 1960s — gotta love that Gil Kane artwork!

As soon as I’m finished with CA, I’m submitting a plot to Pro Se for my Nightveil novel and then I’m diving right into that. With luck I’ll finish off Nightveil before the end of March, leaving me to split time for awhile between the first book in the ASSISTANCE UNLIMITED: THE SILVER AGE series and THE ADVENTURES OF LAZARUS GRAY VOLUME EIGHT.

We’ll be having another “Ask the Author” blog post soon if you want to ask me about anything, let me know in the comments to this post — anything is fair game!

The Occult Forces Project

br8smallOne 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 defeated at every turn by heroes like The Peregrine and Lazarus Gray. A division of the OFP was known as the Department of Occult Armaments (D.O.O.M.) and was headed by Dr. Meer.

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).

Mr. Death – Otto Luther was a sadistic Nazi scientist before being transformed by the blood of The Mother of Pus into the skeletal figure known as Mr. Death in 1938. His madness became even greater than before and he clashed with Lazarus Gray, Gravedigger and The Peregrine during the events known as Götterdämmerung before later teaming with The Torch to combat Lazarus Gray in Transylvania. His body ended up being housed in Lazarus Gray’s super-prison, Tartarus (Götterdämmerung novel and “The Strands of Fate,” The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume Six).

The Torch – August Hauff was a famous scientist whose body chemistry was altered to the point that exposure to the air caused his body to burst into flame. He had to wear a protective suit that could also project fire – which he could then control via his mind. The Torch was sent after Mr. Death when Otto Luther went rogue and the two of them embarked on a scheme to capture the Eye of Cagliostro in Transylvania. He soon became a prisoner in Tartarus (“The Strands of Fate,” The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume Six). His exploits took place in 1938.

Heidi Von Sinn This young woman was a pseudo-vampire, afflicted with an enzyme disorder that forced her to consume human blood to survive. She was stronger and faster than a normal woman. Heidi Von Sinn was her codename, assigned to her by a fetishistic scientist who also designed her leather-clad outfit. She was sent to Sovereign City to retrieve a mystic artifact, which led her into a short-lived alliance with an out-of-control Golem. This was in 1938 and depicted in “Tapestry” (The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume Six).

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 Peregrine’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 Peregrine Volume One) 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 Peregrine for possession of three crystal skulls that contained tremendous power. These events are shown in “The Three Skulls” (The Peregrine Volume One).

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 Peregrine, Catalyst (Nathaniel Caine) and Esper (Rachel Winters) in 1942. That adventure was depicted in “Catalyst” (The Peregrine Volume One) and The Peregrine’s encounter with Sun Koh was depicted in “The Scorched God” (The Peregrine Volume Two), 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 Peregrine Volume Two).

Steel Jaw – Albert Speiros was disfigured by a grenade blast but he was given new life as part of D.O.O.M., a subset of the OFP. After the large number of defeats the OFP had suffered, Steel Jaw was one of the few remaining from the original program as of 1942. Unfortunately, he had the misfortune of encountering The Warlike Manchu and during the two’s battle, Speiros was brutally murdered. This was shown in “The Resurrection Gambit” (The Peregrine Volume One).

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 Peregrine’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 Peregrine Volume Two. This was set in 1943.

Our art today is by Anthony Castrillo and features one of the deadly Furies.

An Update on Current Projects

black_terror_03_smallWelcome back to Ye Olde Blog!

The sixth volume of Lazarus Gray is still on track for a January release so let’s keep our fingers crossed on that — I’m anxious for all of you to see the book, which picks up where the crossover novel left off. It features several interlinked short stories and turned out very well, I think. It will feature a cover by Ted Hammond and interior art by George Sellas. In fact, the scary-looking fellow to the left will make his debut in this book!

I’m closing in on the halfway mark of the Captain Action novel — I’d love to finish off the first draft before the end of the month.

Immediately after I finish CA, I’m going to start work on the Nightveil novel I owe Pro Se as part of their AC Comics prose line. And *then* I’ll work on the first Assistance Unlimited: The Silver Age book and write the second story for Lazarus Gray Volume 8 (yes, 8! Volume 7 is already complete).

In the meantime, don’t forget to check out my short story in Restless, the new mummy-themed anthology from Flinch Books!

It’s Shambling Onto The Shelves…

For immediate release

FLINCH BOOKS RELEASES RESTLESS: AN ANTHOLOGY OF MUMMY HORROR Six-story collection available on Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com

Never disturb the dead. For generations, we’ve heard the stories – and the warnings – about those who sleep for centuries yet do not rest. By ancient ritual, by violence or by accident, they are left for dead, but they are not at peace.

Flinch Books, publishers of adventure fiction in the vintage pulp style, unearths some of these legends with the release of RESTLESS: AN ANTHOLOGY OF MUMMY HORROR, a collection of six terrifying tales by some of the most talented storytellers on the New Pulp landscape: Barry Reese, Teel James Glenn, Sam Gafford, Duane Spurlock, John C. Bruening and Nancy Hansen. The anthology is edited by Flinch Books founder and content editor Jim Beard and publishing partner/editor John C. Bruening.

RESTLESS is available now in print format on Amazon.com and Barnesanadnoble.com. A Kindle version will be available later in 2017.

The world knows well of Imhotep, Ankhesenamon and other icons of ancient Egypt who continue to fascinate and mystify long after their passing. The tales of their reawakening and the horrors they bring back with them from the dead have been the stuff of legend for generations.

But beyond the pyramids and desert sands of the Middle East, there are mummies who sleep in other, less likely parts of the world – South America, Europe, Asia and beyond. Wherever their place of origin, whatever their horrific demise, they dare to defy death itself and return to the realm of the living to settle that which remains unresolved.

“Mummies stand as some of the most underserved monsters in fiction,” notes Flinch Co-Founder Jim Beard. “RESTLESS is here to balance the scales, and with diversity of theme and locale. Though many of the stories are set in the past, this is a mummy anthology for the 21st century.”

You can find RESTLESS: AN ANTHOLOGY OF MUMMY HORROR on Amazon.com at the following link:

https://www.amazon.com/Restless-Anthology-John-C-Bruening/dp/0997790318/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

You can also purchase RESTLESS from Barnesandnoble.com at:

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/restless-john-c-bruening/1125458020?ean=9780997790313

Founded in 2013 by Jim Beard, Flinch Books is an independent print and digital publisher that produces adventure fiction in the classic pulp style. Previous releases include THE MIDNIGHT GUARDIAN: HOUR OF DARKNESS; BIG TOP TALES: SIX STORIES OF CIRCUS ADVENTURE; and SOMETHING STRANGE IS GOING ON: NEW TALES FROM THE FLETCHER HANKS UNIVERSE.

# # #

For more information about Flinch Books, contact:

Email: flinchbooks@yahoo.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook/flinchbooks

A Year Of Assistance Unlimited!

lazarus_batista_smallIf you’re a fan of Lazarus Gray and the heroes of Assistance Unlimited, 2017 is going to be an exciting one for you! Six years ago we saw volume one hit the market and during that time, these characters have become favorites of so many people… I’m honored that you guys enjoy them as much as I like writing them!

I returned the edits on the sixth volume of Lazarus Gray a few days ago so I fully expect that you’ll be able to buy it before the end of the month! This one picks up where the crossover novel left off — and if you’ve read that one, you know that Lazarus was in a very interesting state when last seen. This book features several short stories that combine into a larger narrative.

Volume seven has already been written, as well. That’s a novel-length tale and is expected to drop sometime in the early summer of 2017. Volume eight will feature five interconnected stories, the first of which has been completed.

We’ll also see the debut of Assistance Unlimited: The Silver Age this year. The main character will make her first appearance in the third Gravedigger volume, which should come out in the latter part of the 2017. I expect the first book in the Silver Age series to be published in 2018.

There’s been talk of an anthology that would feature new stories of Gravedigger, Lazarus Gray and The Peregrine by other writers — is this something you guys would like to see? Let me know!

Our art today is the original penciled version of Volume Five’s cover by Chris Batista!

 

My Ten Favorite Comic Book Artists

perezYeah, I like lists.

Anyway, in the past I’ve listed out my favorite Spider-Man writers, my favorite Spidey villains, my favorite classic and new pulp heroes & villains… heck, I even listed out my ten favorite pulp-inspired comics.

Today we’re looking at my top 10 favorite comic book artists. These are guys who always excite me when I hear their names are attached to various projects and over the years I’ve shared their work on my Facebook, on Tumblr, etc.

So let’s go!

10. Steve Rude – The Dude first came to my attention when he was working on Nexus. Loved the way he depicted the entire cast and he’s really underrated in the way that he draws facial expressions. The guy’s a master, period.

9. Jim Aparo – Aparo was the definitive Batman artist for me in the Seventies and I enjoyed his work on the Batman and the Outsiders series a lot. He also did great work on Aquaman over the years and in Brave and the Bold, he got to draw just about everybody!

8. Keith Giffen – If I had made this list in the 80s, Giffen would have been much, much higher. I adored his work on Legion of Super-Heroes but eventually his style became much more manic. I still enjoy it a lot (especially on Kirby-influenced projects) but there are times it comes off as a hot mess. Still, I’m always curious when I see his name attached to a project.

7. Will Meugniot – Will became one of my faves when he was doing DNAgents back in the 80s but I have continued to follow him through his work on Vanity and Femforce. He’s a remarkably talented guy and I’ve loved that I’ve had the chance to work with him on my own books.

6. Gene Colan – Colan was a master of atmosphere. I adored his pencils on Tomb of Dracula, Batman and Night Force. His work on other titles was sometimes a little odd in ways but I still loved his work. I mean, I would never have put him on Iron Man or Daredevil, for instance, and yet his pencils were so awesome that I didn’t even mind that he wasn’t a traditional superhero artist. He did work well on Batman, though.

5. Ivan Reis – The newest name on my list, Reis has really impressed me with his work on titles like Blackest Night, Green Lantern, Justice League and Aquaman. He’s amazing!

4. Chris Batista – I first noticed him on Legion of Super-Heroes and he’s actually my favorite Legion artist because he’s able to perfectly capture their youthful nature. I also really dug his work on Booster Gold and an all-too-brief run on Justice League. Why DC or Marvel hasn’t snatched him up for a major title is beyond me. I think he’d really rock on a New Gods revival, too.

3. John Byrne – Back in the day, Byrne was a stud. I followed him from X-Men to Fantastic Four to Alpha Flight to Superman… At some point, I think his work became somewhat less appealing to me but I still enjoy it. Aside from his work on Fantastic Four, I generally prefer him as an artist and not a writer but he’s capable of doing fine work on both sides of the creative fence.

2. Alan Davis – Captain Britain. Excalibur. The Nail. Batman. X-Men. Superboy’s Legion. I could go on and on. I am mad about his artwork. It’s fun, it’s sleek, it’s everything I want from a superhero artist. I’ve bought books simply because he drew them, even when I knew I’d dislike the story. He’s simply that good.

1. George Perez – The king of superhero artists in my opinion. He’s known for his crowd scenes — and they are awesome — but he’s also a fine character-based storyteller. Look at his run on New Teen Titans or Wonder Woman for proof. And unlike some artists, I find his later work to be just as good as the older stuff… Legion of 3 Worlds, his Avengers run with Kurt Busiek and his work on Worlds’ Finest are all fine examples of his more recent books that I think are great. For me, I’ll always associate him with the Titans first and foremost, then his work on Crisis. He also drew a fine, fine run of JLA.