Peter M. Ball's Short Fiction Lab Series offers a regular dose of weird fantasy, uncanny science fiction, literary horror, and other fictional experiments that blur genre boundaries. This bundle brings together the first four stories: Winged, with Sharp Teeth; Eight Minutes of Usable Daylight; A White Cross Beside a Lonely Road; and One Last First Date Before The End of the World.
Winged, With Sharp Teeth
They had chemistry right from the first date, but Steve's never been comfortable with the idea of he and Duke of them together. Steve's idea of a good life involves great books, a warm fire, and a nice glass of red. Duke's idea of a great time involves adrenaline, excitement, and plenty of travel. Their love seems tricky enough even before the flying crocodile arrives, trying to steal Duke away to a magical land in need of a king and a hero.
Eight Minutes of Usable Daylight
There has been no daylight in Brisbane for five years, a hundred and twenty-three days, and fifteen hours. People have learned to adapt.
Mika makes his living hustling black-market daylight to Brisbane's rich and powerful, but he'd prefer to spend his days hanging out at his favourite cafe. When he gets his latest delivery of product, all he wants is enough cash to buy cup of real coffee and coast through the next few months of darkness. Then his little sister makes a request for half his product, because Pavio has built a machine that might be able to replace the long-vanished sun. All she needs is a little fuel to get things started, and the good sense to avoid the authorities who monitor the daylight trade.
A White Cross Beside A Lonely Road
The last thing Alex wants is a trip home with his boyfriend in tow, but when Brendan insists on coming there's nothing for it but a ten hour drive and the dread of what might happen when they reach their destination.
There is nothing about the idea of being trapped in car with his lover that Alex is looking forward too, but a haunted stretch of lonely road is about to make him question everything he knows about his relationship and his life
One Last First Date Before the End of the World
Logan expected his date with Stina Lorne to be a disaster, an awkward dinner that ends when they both acknowledged she was out of his league. Instead they went for a long drive, then a walk along a familiar beach. In fact, everything seems to be going better than Logan could have imagined when he asked her out last week.
Sure, his date is convinced she's the descendant of Fenrir, demon wolf of Asgard. And yeah, she's talking about the apocalypse kicking off in the near future. Logan's not sure that matters, yeah? After all, nobody's perfect, and even the best relationships take work.
“A smart, deep, black magic carnie noir existential bloodbath” from the acclaimed author of Boon (Gemma Files, Shirley Jackson Award–winning author). In the shadow of World War II, the barren, dusty streets of Litchfield, Arkansas, are even quieter than usual, leaving hotel detective George “Jojo” Walker with too much time to struggle with his own personal demons. But everything changes when a traveling picture show comes to town. The film’s purveyors check into the hotel where Jojo works and set up a special midnight screening at the local theater. The curtain rises on a surreal carnival of dark magic and waking nightmares, starring Jojo and the residents of Litchfield, as madness, murder, and mayhem threaten to engulf them all . . . “A stunner of a story . . . Flat-out brilliant . . . Unfolds like petals of an exotic and scandalous black flower—each one gently opening to give the reader a distressing revelation . . . Powerful ideas, wrapped in a dark mantle of horror.” —My Haunted Library “If you like pulpy noir with a dose of existentialism mixed with some utterly bizarre horror, this book is for you.” —Fangoria “Genre mash-ups like this one are difficult to execute, but Kurtz navigates it deftly, with writing so visceral and evocative it feels less like reading a book and more like watching a film in real time.” —Literary Hub “While it echoes with the shadowy threatening of Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes and the religious dread of Hjortsberg’s Falling Angel, the clearest voice here is Kurtz’s own cry into the existential abyss.” —Bracken MacLeod, author of Mountain Home
“The action is quick-paced and interesting . . . fans of both fantasy and steampunk will find this is a great introduction to a promising series.” &mdashInD’taleA war is brewing between the worlds of fey and man . . . but only one can prevail. Find out which in this fantasy featuring nefarious plots, dashing knaves, and militant gnomes. When Sir Walter Conrad discovers a new energy source, one that could topple nations and revolutionize society, the race to dominate its ownership begins. But the excavation of this energy will have dire consequences for both humans and fey. For an ancient enemy stirs, awakened by Sir Walter’s discovery. Outcast half-fey Effie of Glen Coe is the empire’s only hope at averting the oncoming disaster. But she finds herself embroiled in the conflict, investigating the eldritch evil spreading throughout the Highlands. As she struggles against the greed of mighty lords and to escape the clutches of the queen’s minions, her comfortable world is shattered. Racing to thwart the growing menace, she realizes the only thing that can save them all is a truce no one wants.“Well-developed characters and plot make this historical fantasy a true pleasure to read and become lost in . . . A very unique and fascinating story. I definitely can’t wait for this series to continue!” —Cecily Wolfe, author of Throne of Grace“I really enjoyed this book. It’s unique . . . The writing was excellent, and the details the author added in didn’t just make the time period, but the whole world come to life.” —I Heart Reading
From the award-winning “heir to the mantle of Stephen King”: A supernatural entity draws a woman into a terrifying nightmare (The National Post). Some little girls have imaginary friends. Ann LeSage had the Insect. A violent poltergeist that tore a murderous path through her family, it wasn’t imaginary—and it definitely wasn’t a friend. Now Ann is all grown up—and so is the Insect. And Ann’s upcoming marriage to a mysterious young lawyer is about to open up a whole new world to both of them, rife with secrets and laced with traps. Soon, Ann will find herself in a perverse battle against a group of men who want to wrest control of the Insect from her. What they don’t know is, if you play with the Insect, you’re sure to get stung . . . “Few writers do psychosexual horror as well as Toronto’s David Nickle, and with The ’Geisters he’s back with another tale of voluptuous terror and the supernatural.” —Toronto Star “This is a book that buzzes in your ears, climbs your crawling skin with multiple barbed feet, feeling with exquisitely sensitive antennae for the next new and terrible revelation.” —The National Post “[The ’Geisters] doesn’t just explore the attractiveness of terror—it embodies it in a narrative that demands (excites even as it repels) your attention. It’s a(nother) strong novel by one of the best, most interesting horror writers working today.” —Bookgasm
Joining the Galactic Garrison was the best decision Ada Gomez ever made for herself. Or so she thought. Orphaned, with her brother Sarkus in the foster system who she can't claim custody of, a guardian who is days from kicking her out and, no job. There is nothing left for her on planet Earth. The only thing going for her is that she has made it. After three years of work, she qualified to begin training for the esteemed Special Operations team on the Galactic Garrison's space station. Joining the Spec Ops division is a chance to start over, to make a name for herself, and if she plays her cards right maybe, Ada can get Sarkus back. But her journey is just beginning.
Being in the Spec Ops isn't easy. It isn't supposed to be. Any sign of weakness must be squashed, fear is the devil, and hesitation is worse than death. But some of the training doesn't add up. And any semblance of structure? It looks like Ada left that on Earth.
Ada and her team do their best to put the pieces together and figure out what exactly is going on and roll with the punches mentally and physically to come out on top.
Little do they know the hardest test is yet to come. Because this year everything is different.
The author relates how, traveling in the Sahara desert, he has encountered a remarkable vehicle and its pilot, David Innes, a man with a remarkable story to tell.
David Innes is a mining heir who finances the experimental "iron mole," an excavating vehicle designed by his elderly inventor friend Abner Perry. In a test run, they discover the vehicle cannot be turned, and it burrows 500 miles into the Earth's crust, emerging into the unknown interior world of Pellucidar. In Burroughs' concept, the Earth is a hollow shell with Pellucidar as the internal surface of that shell.
“Out of Time's Abyss“ is a novel by Edgar Rice Burroughs, an American fiction writer, who created such great characters as Tarzan and John Carter of Mars.
Out of Time's Abyss is a fantasy novel, the third of his Caspak trilogy. The trilogy includes “The Land That Time Forgot”, “The People That Time Forgot” and “Out of Time's Abyss”.
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