Effigy is the story of a man obsessed by power and the desire to manipulate reality for his own ends—a man who will do anything necessary to ensure that he gets what he wants. But all his desires lie thwarted and latent until fate presents him with the means to transcend not only his own past, but death itself—if only he can lay his cruel hands on it.
Book I: Stroud
Growing up in a poor mill town in southern Louisiana taught John Stroud one thing: There’s no point in caring about a world that doesn’t care about you. Unfortunately for Stroud, the world of Woodville was always there, undeniable, oppressive, and inescapable, with absolutely no means of satisfying the ambitions bursting inside him—until a carnival and a freak of nature showed him the way.
Book II: Oakdale
Returned to the town he once controlled, John Stroud learns that no matter how many trails he's trod and how many obstacles he’s overcome on his journey to achieve the ultimate in power, more waited ahead. Armed with ruthless ambition and deadly knowledge, he begins regaining command over his former empire. In his way stand those who now control what once was his as well as the daughter he’s never known. His first act is murder.
THE BOOKS OF BOB
Go to Hell. For a little while.
In this raucously satirical take on the dangers of believing your own fictions, a corporate climber named Bob is just about to pull off the sweetest deal of his corrupt career when a heart attack that sends him plummeting into the pit of Hell. A flea-bitten Cerberus meets him at the door, a snot-nosed demon gives him a book of impossibly complex rules to follow, and he’s sentenced to an eternity in the pit of boiling…well, let’s just say his punishment isn’t pleasant.
But eternity is too damn long for someone as ambitious as Bob, especially after he finds a way around the rules and finagles his way to the top of Hell’s hierarchy. Besides, he has a secret weapon: a beautiful and mysterious but insistently tedious young woman who has attached herself to the Devil like a white shadow. Will the Devil manage to repower the faltering volcano that is the physical symbol of his potency? Will Bob wrest Hell from him and turn it into an amusement park? Will the Devil’s white shadow redecorate everything in sight?
Whatever happens, you can be sure that all hell is gonna break loose!
Holy Smokes, Bob is Back.
In this satiric follow-up to Devil of a Time, corporate climber Bob, a recent inmate of the infernal regions, takes his shenanigans to a whole new level as he seeks to worm his way into Heaven’s graces—and the good life that comes with it. But what’s a middle-man to do when Heaven’s labor force is completely unionized and his potential customers have all their heavenly desires—even contradictory ones—met instantly?
But all is not well behind the Pearly Gates. Heaven’s infrastructure is collapsing, and Paradise just isn’t as blissful as it ought to be. Worse, the Boss is nowhere to be found, leaving Archangel Michael overseeing a situation rapidly growing impossible. Faced with a ponderous, out-of-date infrastructure—and no end in sight—what’s an Archangel to do but ally himself with a wily go-getter with devious organizational experience?
Before he knows it, Bob is on a mission to fix Heaven, and he plans to leverage his position to the hilt. Will Bob get his company off the clouds and gain permanent Residency? Will he get his heavenly desires? Will he get Nanookie?
To find out, he will have to go to the edge of reality, itself.
And Other Compulsions
Out of the ordinary entertainment from the author of Devil of a Time, Jumping Jehovah, Lord of the Loincloth, and other curious and unusual books.
A werewolf who meets his match in a wraithlike girl. An artist whose paintings might be a little too real for comfort. An adolescent girl who races a train to a dangerous crossing. A boy who must make a harrowing climb out of the only world he knows to discover the world within himself. A man who learns that the missing step he seeks might not be one he really wants to find.
These are just some of the characters in this collection of distinctive and unusual stories that delve into the mysteries of compulsions to lose oneself, and perhaps, to find oneself anew.
Five years after taking part in a disastrous raid to rescue a cruise liner from terrorists, Alex Brant has begun to discover peace for himself driving an eighteen wheeler across the American Southwest. He even finds time to protect a mysterious desert rat and the mute kid who travels with him. But he can’t protect himself from a vicious band of road pirates and their brutal leader, T-Bone, who shoot him and leave him for dead at a roadside rest stop. T-Bone wants Alex’s truckload of electronics to further his mad scheme to take revenge on the Las Vegas hoods who killed his wife and son. There’s only one thing standing between him and the incendiary hell he plans, and that’s Alex, who discovers that the road pirates have left him with more than one score to settle.
It’s World War I, and the fate of Africa lies in the hands of a madman—an eccentric Royal Navy commander who sank his two previous commands in the most ridiculous ways possible.
Geoffrey Spicer-Simson is ordered to destroy two ships that give the Germans military control over the continent, but that may be easier said than done. The ships are on Lake Tanganyika, and to get there, Spicer-Simson and his men will have to drag two 40' gunboats over desert torn with ravines, through tsetse-infested swamps, and across a 6,000-foot range of mountains. Undaunted, Spicer-Simson forges ahead, but can his men accept the leadership of a pretentious braggart who names his gunboats Mimi and Toutou, is completely covered with tattoos, and wears a leather skirt instead of a uniform?
And if the journey to the lake isn’t bizarre enough, imagine what happens when they get there and meet the Germans in mortal combat on the high seas in the middle of Africa!
A non-fiction novel, Lord of the Loincloth is the humorously adventurous account of one of the 20th century’s strangest heroes and his extraordinary quest for redemption.
The Clay Guthrie Mysteries
Teetering on the edge of the gutter, ex-cop Clay Guthrie is offered a way out of his bitter isolation. All he has to do is locate a stolen sculpture. The task seems simple enough, but Guthrie quickly finds himself enmeshed in a series of unreal events that push him to the breaking point. His employers, more disturbingly dangerous than the suspect, threaten him with pain and death if he fails, while their antagonist, a mysterious old man, forces Guthrie to act on his behalf, warning that worse horrors will greet his success. The only way Guthrie can survive is to find the sculpture and help the old man destroy the terrible power that lives within it. But before he can do that, he must endure a series of trials that test his physical endurance and drive him into the core of his own corruption.
“Who better to send into a grave situation to find out what lies buried there than one who has known death. Such as you.”
With those words, the mysterious old Tereba set Guthrie on the trail of a vanished artist. Having to deal with a witch from an ancient lineage and the ultimate hunter seeking the ultimate prey didn’t bother him, but the doorway to another world was a different matter. Out there an unknowable predator waited, and it wanted nothing more than lay waste to everything in its path.
But Guthrie couldn’t refuse. He knew that anything Tereba directed his way would be as interesting and important as it might be dangerous, and those were lures he couldn’t resist.
Besides, when he set a trap for his nemesis, the bait wasn’t the only thing that had gone into the unknown along with the artist.
Now Guthrie’s client had vanished, too.
When a frightened railroad employee tells Guthrie that a monster in a boxcar ate his co-worker, Guthrie finds himself drawn into a web of corrupt and warped ambition and wanton violence. Traveling to far West Texas in search of the monster, Guthrie and the trainman encounter an organization whose goal is the total destruction of social order and whose weapon is an abomination from the past. Waging a guerrilla war against their enemies beneath the harsh Texas sun, they quickly discover that the nights hold a mortal danger more terrible than their human enemies. With the fate of civilization in the balance, they must eliminate the humans who stand in their way before they can root out and confront a canny and clever inhuman foe.