Excellence in All Genres of Fiction

Monday, October 31, 2016

CLASS ACT BOOKS HORROR LINE...get 'em while they're hot...uh...chilling!

More selections available at the website in e-book and paperback.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Get into a CHILLY MOOD for Halloween

Class Act Books came under new ownership in 2013 and since then is expanding its publishing horizons. We now publish all genres and have award-winning authors among our titles. We also publish both e-books and paperbacks and are featured on amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords.

We have novels for every Genre and every Season.

For Halloween, we offer books from our authors skilled in penning tales of the paranormal:

 Rick McQuiston's award-winning novel WHEN ONLY THE NIGHTMARE REMAIN, or FEAR THE SKY...

 Tony-Paul de Vissage's novel BLOOD WILL FREEZE, or SHADOW LORD, Book 1 in The Second Species series, voted one of the Top Ten in horror for 2013...

Kenneth Gordon's Artificial Intelligence frightener, DARK CITY or his CADRE OF VAMPIRES, a sci-fi/horror story... 

  James Austin McCormick's horrific tale, BALEC... 

  Award-winning author Linda Nightingale's FOUR BY MOONLIGHT, an anthology of chilling paranormal romance... 

Toni V. Sweeney's Lovecraft-inspired novel, A BIT OF THE DARK WORLD or SERPENT'S TOOTH...

These and many more mysteries and tales of suspense are available from our website www.classactbooks.com and also at amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords.


Tuesday, October 18, 2016

The Movies...the Moon...and My Novel...

When people asked me, “Why did you write this novel?” my answer is ready.

I wrote it because of a movie.

Two movies actually.  One was a movie-of-the-week, back when each of the major networks has their own library of stories for the viewers’ entertainment. The other was a theatrical release.

Murder on the Moon (also known as Murder by Moonlight) was a made-for-TV movie telecast in 1989. It stared Brigitte Nielsen, Julian Sands, and Gerald McRaney, and was the tale of Soviet/US astronauts on the moon trying to solve a murder happening in their midst.  One thing striking me during the story was that back on Earth, a scientist is missing and one of the investigators says, “Why on Earth couldn’t we find him?” 

The answer?   

“Because he isn’t on Earth.”  Or words to that effect.

That got me to thinking…if you were a witness to a crime and no place on Earth was safe for you, where would be the safest place for you?  If you lived in a time of space travel, the answer’s  simple…leave Earth and go someplace else.

Just hop a ship to another world.

The other movie supplied my hero. 

It was Quigley Down Under (1990), about a Montana sharpshooter who’s hired by an Australian rancher. There, the American and the Australian clash…about treatment of the aborigines, as well as treatment of women.  Quigley is good with a gun, ready to fight for what he considers right, and gentle with a woman when it’s needed. Tom Selleck’s Quigley formed himself into the model for Sarkin Trant the hero of my novel Three Moon Station.

In the story, Katherine Rawls is a woman on the run.  Working late, she witnesses her boss’ murder by two men who promptly chase her through the streets at gunpoint. Only when Katy gets on a subway thinking it heads to the local police precinct does she elude them. There’s a bit of an argument with the guard assigned to protect everyone from the prospective weekly passenger violence but since the tram’s already moving, he lets her stay. Unfortunately, the tram’s going in the opposite direction from the police station. In fact, it’s taking all the passengers to a ship leaving for a primitive planet called Tritomis-2. Katy isn’t happy about that, but she reasons another planet could be the safest place for her until she can find a way to get the evidence she has to the authorities, so she goes along…

…and that’s when things get complicated, because all the passengers are women…women prisoners…offered pardon if they’ll marry the womenless men on the pioneer planet Tritomis-2. 

Tritomis is a place much like the Old West, where men ride horses and use wagons for transportation while spaceships streak across the sky.  There, the station owners are the kings, the farm owners come in second, and the gadjas, the natives, are lowest of all. On Tritomis-2, a man’s word is his bond, gunfights are common, and justice is sometimes meted out immediately without calling in the Federation marshal.

Katy’s unaware of all this. She thinks the women will be employed by the men with whom they leave the shuttleport. When Sar Trant, owner of Three Moon Station comes along and wins Katy after a financial battle with another station owner, she goes with him, not realizing the document she signs is a marriage license. Misunderstandings follow, but after Sar learns why Katy really came to Tritomis, he agrees to help her hide out until the year in the marriage contract is up.  The only trouble is…he’s fallen in love with his bought bride and he intends to woo her and win her and make her want to stay with him.

Fate, the murderous gunmen, and the station owner who loses Katy to Sar have other plans, however…

A good many readers have fallen in love with Sar and Katy (and I think more would if they envisioned the Tom Selleck of Magnum PI (not the Police Commissioner dad of Blue Bloods)  in Sar’s place). At their encouragement, what was intended as only one novel has now grown to three in the series…Three Moon Station, The Finer Gentleman, and In This Kingdom by the Sea,  all  released by Class Act Books. 


“…an out of this world must read…so well written that it’s a bestseller contender, one that I would proudly display in my personal library.”—Long and Short Reviews

“If you like epic style romance that leaves you with warm fuzzies and a desire to revisit the characters, and who doesn’t, you’ll love 3 Moon Station.”--WRDR Review


“Mr. Trant. I guess we’d better have that talk now,” she began and he nodded soberly. She walked a little closer, looking up into those bright eyes. Careful, Katy! Don’t get too close. You might fall into that blueness and drown. “There’s so much we need to discuss. W-we haven’t even talked about how much I’ll be paid.”
“Paid? You expect to be paid for—”
“Of course,” she interrupted. “I believe it’s customary.”
He thought about that a moment. “Guess that tells me something about you I hadna wish to know, Sunshine.”
“After all,” she reminded him. “I do have my own welfare to think about.”
“What would you consider fair payment, Katy?” He asked it very softly, his expression serious.
“I guess that’s up to you. What do you think my services are worth?”
“Truthfully? I doubt I have that much money.” He looked a little flustered. “The women in town…at Larkin’s…ge’ ten Federals per toss, so…”
“I’m sorry,” Katy interrupted. “What’s a toss?”
“Maybe they call it something else on Terra.” He startled her by seizing her shoulders, saying with an earnestness that made her frown, “Katy, I want you to know I’ll ne’er hold your old life against you.”
She smiled at this statement of reverse snobbery. Since she had no intention of ever letting him know that her uncle was one of the richest, and also one of the most criminally unscrupulous, men on Terra’s Northern Hemisphere, she didn’t answer.
Trant went on, “Though if you’re a virgin, I dinna understand how—”
“I am.” Katy flushed. “And I’d appreciate it if you’d quite harping on that fact. It’s not going to affect what I do for you. I swear.”
“But how? I mean…” Trant shook his head, murmuring, “We’re too isolated from Big Planet life here.”
Since she didn’t understand what he was muttering about, Katy decided to name her own salary. “How about you pay me five hundred credits a month? For services rendered?”
“What kind of services?” he asked, suspiciously.
“The usual kind.” She shrugged, wondering why he looked even more confused. “But I think we should get one thing straight. I’m grateful for your saving me from Alwin Marsten, and I fully intend to uphold my end of the Agreement and work hard for you b-but…” Taking a deep breath, she pulled herself free of his grasp. “I won’t sleep with you.”
“Na right now, you mean.” He didn’t look too upset.
“No. Not ever.” She shook her head, adding, “I’m sorry.”
“’Tis I who’s sorry, Sunshine, most definitely. But I do na understand. If you intend to adhere to that contract, how can you refuse to—”
“I’m certain the Federation didn’t send me here to satisfy the lust of some sex-starved colonist, Mr. Trant.”
“Is that what you think I am? A sex-starved colonist?” He didn’t looked insulted, as she’d expected, just a little more bewildered.
“Of course not,” she denied, meaning, didn’t you act like one last night? “Not really.” She took a deep breath. He’d obviously expected it to be so easy. “I’ll be a good housekeeper, Mr. Trant but I just won’t sleep with my employer. I can’t.”
“Employer?” he repeated. His face underwent a startling change, disbelief, amusement, relief, she wasn’t certain which. “That’s what you think I am? Your employer?”
“Of course,” she nodded. “You hired me to be your housekeeper—”
He stopped whatever else she was going to say, by laughing out loud.
“What’s so funny?”
A hand went to her shoulder. “Sunshine, I’m na your employer. I’m your husband.”

All three novels can be found on he Class Act Books website: www.classactbooks.com. They are also available from Amazon.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Kenneth Gordon is Today's HIGHLIGHTED AUTHOR

Kenneth Gordon, author of Dark City, Harmonic Differential, and Cadre of Vampires, is today's gues at Highlighted Author at: http://highlightedauthor.com/2016/10/welcome-kenneth-gordon/

Stop by and learn more about this Class Act Books author.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Debut Author Jeremy Higley and The Son of Dark

Debut author Jeremy Higley was born in California but now lives in Arizona. As of 2016 he’s a graduate student working on a master’s degree in English. He’s also an instructional aide at a local elementary school, a novelist, and a contributing editor for a nonprofit student success company called LifeBound.

Here’s what Jeremy has to say about The Son of Dark:

When I first started writing The Son of Dark I knew I would want a dragon, but I wanted him to be more powerful than your average dragon. Someone frightening enough to cow a countryside, but not in the cataclysmic force kind of way that is so common in dragons from Tolkien to Anne McCaffrey to Margaret Weiss. This wouldn’t be a dragon who spawned earthquakes and volcanoes, who left natural disasters in his wake. This dragon’s effect would be more akin to the horrors of a civil war mixed with a zombie apocalypse.

There was only one way to do that. I gave my dragon, the Wyvern, the ability to possess armies w of human beings with an enchanted song and control them completely. He would use those armies to build a castle and run a small city-state of his own within thick stone walls, perfectly cut off from the world. Any country seeking vengeance for the enslavement of their neighbors, friends, and family members would be forced to cut their way through those very people to get to the dragon himself.

The Wyvern would feel the pain of his thralls, but his response to the pain would be different from a human’s. Dragons are covered in scales, and don’t have hands to clamp down on bleeding wounds, or scratch at scabs. As the apex predator in their ecosystems, with no biological memory of ever being anything else, a dragon has a much less developed flight response, and is more likely to fight through pain than wince from it. The enslaved humans, similarly, would mostly ignore wounds. Pain would affect them, but it wouldn’t hold them back in the normal way. The dragon would eventually learn to take care of wounds in his thralls, and dispose of humans whose injuries were too severe to be anything but a hindrance to him. The dragon’s harsh efficiency would reflect his disdain for humans, who are easily replaceable and completely ignorant of his culture and ways.

There would be more inhuman aspects of the Wyvern-Held. Their gait would be awkward and clumsy, like a bird trying to walk without its wings. There would be no differentiation because of sex or age: only physical capacity. They would swarm like insects in response to the Wyvern’s direct control. They would ignore discomforts unique to humans, such as bites from insects, or the common cold. They would not speak to each other, and in fact hardly speak at all except as a mouthpiece for the Wyvern. Then they would speak all at once, in concert. Occasionally the Wyvern would force them to commit suicide in order to thin out weak humans or gain a strategic advantage.

The implications were all very disturbing, but they ended up pointing to a problem I would need to deal with as a writer. To maintain his numbers, the Wyvern would be forced to perform regular raids to pick up new “recruits” for his army. He would be a constant threat to the people around him, and he could never live too far away from people or his army would become too difficult to maintain. For a while the prospect of killing family members would be enough to keep the Wyvern’s enemies away, but not forever. Eventually a hardened group of rebels would decide to make the sacrifice no one else could, and the Wyvern’s army would lose its effectiveness as a shield.

The solution I came up with was to make a loophole in the spell. So long as there was one way to break the Wyvern’s enchantment, no matter how difficult or impractical, no one could bear to destroy the Wyvern-Held. The loophole would have to be something that inherently weakened his opponents, or the Wyvern would lose his soldiers too easily and gain new enemies at the same time. I decided to take the classic route, and require the sacrifice of one’s life for one’s loved one in order to break the curse.

That, I believe, is how you take the one most frightening aspect of a dragon, his fire, and replace it with something even more frightening. Give him a way to tear apart families, break up human society, and force eternal war on a people. Give him a way into our hearts and minds, a way to force our very natures to become alien and strange, like his. Give him the power to force us to become like him, and to turn against our own kind. That is a dragon whose psychological effect on humanity would be far worse than the hopelessness of facing a natural disaster. He doesn’t give us the half-comforting feeling that all is lost. Instead, he tempts us with the sacrifice we aren’t strong enough to make, in exchange for the victory we aren’t strong enough to stop hoping for. He embodies the impossible choice.


A thousand years ago, the wizards of the Nynsa  failed to follow the prophecy of the Darksome Thorn, and now the greatest evil of their time has survived into the next age. 

Now, the Darksome Thorn has revealed a new prophecy, and the very evil they failed to kill is working to use that prophecy to his advantage.

Forces of evil run rampant in the land of Duskain. Ancient powers are stirring. A greater darkness is imminent...

...and Skel, the foster son of an elephant herder, finds himself caught in the middle of everything. Will Skel's newly developing powers be a help or a hindrance...

EXCERPT from The Son of Dark:

A chorus of pounding footsteps interrupted their conversation. Wherever the Wyvern’s soldiers had been hiding, they were obviously not far away. Zar was about to explain what he was hearing to Morkin, but the Dracinfec was already on his way to the fireplace. As he walked,
Morkin emptied a vial of jelly-like fluid into his gloves and then slipped them back on. Zar realized what Morkin had in mind when he saw him plunging his gloved hands into the
burning fire. He quickly grabbed Marga’s chair and pulled her to the side of the room just before the soldiers began to enter.
They entered the room two-by-two, cantering in a strange, inhuman fashion as the Wyvern drove them onwards. They were a mismatched group. Different ages and races, though mostly Mra, and both sexes seemed to be equally represented. Despite these differences, they were all
well-muscled from years of forced drilling, wore ill-fitting woolen tunics and slippers, and shared a look of frustration and rage that was not their own. The pikes they carried were
long and had dull, rusty blades, but Zar didn’t doubt they’d be lethal.
As he drew his sword to get their attention, Morkin threw an armful of burning logs and cinders into the foremost rank’s faces. Another cloud of hot coals followed the first as Morkin finished emptying the fireplace, then began to climb up the hot stone sides of the wide chimney.
The troop of Wyvern-Held coughed, but there were no shouts of pain or confusion as the hot smoke billowed around them and filled the room with darkness. Though he could hear them moving around and searching, Zar couldn’t see the soldiers anymore. He struggled to stifle his own coughs as he picked up Marga and ran to the fireplace.
With the practiced speed of a sailor, he wrapped the rope three times around his wife’s body, securing her around her waist, back, and under her shoulders. He ended the lashing
in a knot a couple of feet above her. Now Morkin could pull her safely up the chimney shaft.
Thankfully she wasn’t a particularly tall woman, as otherwise Zar wasn’t sure she would have fit this way. He tugged twice on the rope to signal Morkin to start pulling, then held her above the still hot coals of the fireplace. The rope began to pull, drawing her up and out of his arms. Just
as he let go he heard, amidst the scuffle and commotion of the Wyvern-Held stumbling through the smoke and ash, the sound of one heading toward him.
Before he could draw his sword, a glassy-eyed woman with bulging biceps came upon him, nearly tripping over him in her haste. He knocked her down with a quick blow from his gauntleted hand, then grabbed her pike and held it lengthwise as he rushed the length of the room.
Two Wyvern-Held near him started to rise again. Since their wills were not their own, any pain and injury he inflicted would quickly be swallowed by the Wyvern.
Zar got up and headed to the chimney. He was running out of time. Hopefully Marga was safely out of the shaft and he could begin his ascent. He saw the end of the rope hanging into the fireplace and dove for it, only to be drawn back by the woman whose pike he had stolen. Somewhat stronger than he, she grappled him and held him to the floor.
Zar caught her off her guard with a head butt, followed by a knee to the stomach.
He pushed her off him with as much strength as he could muster, only to have her stumble after him. He clambered into the fireplace and began to climb the rope hand-overhand. She grabbed his foot. He made a desperate kick, cracking her hand against the hot stone wall of the shaft.
She released her hold.
A second Wyvern-Held pulled her aside. He entered the fireplace to stick his pike into Zar’s retreating rear. Zar was just far enough to avoid being impaled on the rusty blade.
The close confines and the darkness made a proper throw impossible. Finding handholds using the dim starlight in the shaft, Zar was soon on the rooftop and well out of reach.

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Saturday, October 15, 2016

Class Act Books Announces Award-Winning Author for October's Novel Release

Class Act Books is happy to announce the signing of award-winning Linda Nightingale as its latest author and the acquiring of her short story anthology, Four by Moonlight, as its October release.

Ms Nightingale, a native of South Carolina, has lived in England and Canada, and now resides in Texas.  Before turning to writing, she bred, trained and showed Andalusian horses, this knowledge showing up frequently in her novels.

In 2012, her controversial novel, Gemini Rising, was voted Best Mainstream Novel in the Preditors & Editors Readers Poll. Her vampire romance, Cardinal Desires won the Georgia Romance Writers Magnolia Award in 2013, and that was followed by her science fiction romance, Love for Sale, being awarded Best SF/Fantasy novel of 2015 by the Paranormal Romance Guild’s Reviewer’s Choice. It was also voted one of the Top Ten Romance Novels of 2015 by the Preditors & Editors Readers Poll for that year.

Four by Moonlight is her first novel for Class Act Books. This anthology is a collection of four short stories, written in the style winning her the above-mentioned award, with a paranormal romance theme.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Class Act Books' Award-winning Authors

In 2015,  four novels at Class Act Books  received recognition from the Paranormal Romance Guild and Preditors & Editors, two highly respected literary organizations.

Among the books winning prizes in 2015 were:

NEBRASKA: Walk the Shadow Trail by Toni V. Sweeney, placed 2nd in General Genre from Preditors and Editors Readers Poll, and placed 1st in Historical Romance from Paranormal Romance Guild's Reviewers Choice. Set in the Nebraska Territory in the mid-19th century, the novel tells the story of the friendship between an impoverished German nobleman and a halfbreed Pawnee cowboy. Running from his father's crimes, Baron Wilhelm von Brandt is helped to assimilate into life on the Great Plains by Johnny Moon, a ne'er-do-well living just this side of the Law. The well-researched novel details their building a prosperous horse ranch and the tragedy occurring when Will takes a Pawnee woman as his wife.

Though Ms Sweeney's main genre is scifi/fantasy, she has written several western novels which have been well-received by the reading public.

Toni was also named one of the Top 10 authors of 2015.

When Only the Nightmare Remains was named #2 in Paranormal Horror/Suspense Fiction for 2015 by the Paranormal Romance Guild's Reviewers Choice.  The narration recounts a small-town sheriff's fight against supernatural forces resurrected by one man's misguided attempts to gain immortality. Trapped inside a deserted mansion with only three adolescent boys to help him, the sheriff must figure out how to escape so he can protect his town.

Mr. McQuiston has several horror novels published with Class Act Books.
Absinthe by Tony-Paul de Vissage, second place in M/M horror from Paranormal Romance Guild's Reviewers Award. His horror novel Blood Will Freeze was a Top 10 finisher in Horror with Preditors & Editors.

In Lieu of Surrender by Bill Russell, second place in Historical 2014 from Paranormal Romance Guild's Reviewer's Choice,

Tuesday's Child by Icy Snow Blackstone, first place in Contemporary Romance from Paranormal Romance Guild's Reviewers Choice.

Linda J. Burson's debut novel Rage was named the 3rd Best Thriller novel of 2015 by Preditors & Editors Readers Poll.

Preditors and Editors was founded in 1997 as a guide for writers, composers, artists, and game designers. It is a nonprofit organization which hold an annual poll for print/electronic books and short stories as well as other categories in which readers vote for their favorites.

Paranormal Romance Guild (PRG) is a nonprofit and was organized in 2009 to promote and support authors of the paranormal romance genre through its website and events. This has since been broadened to include other genres, as well as reviewing and recommending novels, and offering advice, links to author services, and writing contests. Each year, it selects from novels reviewed within that year for its annual Reviews Choice awards, with reviewers for the website choosing the novels they think best represent each genre. Readers are then invited to vote on their selections.

All award-winning novels can be found on the Class Act Books publisher's website:  www.classactbooks.com