2X Release Day, 2X the Fun! – Author Jeffrey Cook’s New Works

Two great new titles recently released! FVP Featured Author, Jeffrey Cook‘s new work and a punk-licious Anthology for charity… Now Available on Amazon.com. Also, meet Jeffrey and several of our other FVP Featured Authors at Norwescon in April! Stay tuned for more details…

Dawn of Steam: Rising suns (Volume 3 of the Dawn of Steam series)

Dawn of Steam Gods of the Sun cover1817 sees the first signs of recovery from the Year Without a Summer – and the beginning of the end of the journey of the airship Dame Fortuna. The crew first accept a unique offer from the Shogun of Japan, traveling with the Dutch contingent from the island of Dejima into the isolationist nation. From there, their travels will take them through the English colonies in Australia and India, into darkest Africa, and eventually home to England. Along the way, confrontations loom, and both personal secrets and national conspiracies are uncovered. By the time a future queen is born, nothing less than the fate of England and the direction of world events are at stake. Dawn of Steam: Rising Suns is an alternate-history, emergent Steampunk epistolary novel, following after Dawn of Steam: First Light and Dawn of Steam: Gods of the Sun.

Sound & Fury: Shakespeare Goes Punk

Shakespeare Goes Punk coverAirships and sky pirates! Brain Modification chips! Technologically enhanced nymphs! Shakespeare goes punk in this first volume of stories from Writerpunk Press (www.punkwriters.com). Profits to go to PAWS Lynnwood (www.paws.org), an animal shelter and wildlife rescue. Ask a bunch of eclectic writers to write stories inspired by one of the greatest dramatists of all time. Cast the stories in various punk genres: Cyber, Tesla, Diesel, Steam, Clock. Result: an innovative collection of stories inspired by the Bard, with a twist! Punk stories show the path not taken or the path that shouldn’t be taken. Let us reshape your world.

Free Valley author Jeffrey Cook contributed (and helped spearhead) this charity anthology, writing a steampunk version of Shakespeare’s ‘The Winter’s Tale’, with airship pirates, magical clockworks, swashbuckling musketeers and 5000% more bear than the original.

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Best of the Year Award! – Congrats to Author, Jeffrey Cook

FVP’s Featured Author, Jeffrey Cook received an award from Moonrise Book Blog in their 2014 Reader’s Choice Awards. His book, DAWN OF STEAM: FIRST LIGHT was chosen as BEST SCI-FI book of the year!

Dawn of Steam - First Light w Award Badge

Jeffrey Cook – Dawn of Steam: The Rat King – Anthology Sneak Peek VIII

As you may know, FVP’s new Anthology, Free-flowing Stories, will be released online and at our sale on Dec. 6th. Tomorrow is the big day!! You can find it on Amazon too!

Here’s a teaser and a snippet from the eighth story:

Jeff Anthology author photo (2)DAWN OF STEAM:  THE RAT KING  by Jeffrey Cook

October, 1815. Aboard the dirigible The Dame Fortuna, a rat problem threatens the safety of the ship and its crew. It’s up to the ship’s boy, Matthew Fisher-Swift, to deal with the problem and put an end to The Rat King.

  • Preface by Dr. Cordelia Bentham-Watts
  • April 8th, 1887
  • Amidst my efforts to document the writings of the crew of the Dame Fortuna, there has been one author of note largely forgotten. While my dear Gregory was the most prolific writer of that crew, some others were particularly noted for their letters. At least one other member of the crew wrote nearly every day, though few of his notes have made it into my larger works. In this small collection, I attempt to correct that oversight, partially for my own amusement. While unlikely to see a much wider circulation, the daily chronicling assignments of a small boy along for a great journey provide a perspective on the trip, on the day-to-day life aboard the airship, and on the crew themselves that is not present elsewhere.
  • The writings are not as broadly informative as Gregory’s accounts, nor as eloquent as the journals of Sir James Coltrane and his sister Jillian, nor as mysterious as the diaries of occultist Julietta Penn and the terse notes of the eccentric Samantha Bowe to her reclusive author father. As they were required by his aunt to help ensure his literacy, they are not even as enthusiastic about the prospect of being read as the letters home by the Coltrane’s colonial cousin, Harriet Wright. Nevertheless, they have their own charm. Matthew Fisher-Swift certainly put more ink to paper about the great war hero Edward McBride than Eddy ever did himself. A few entries by others are included to provide context. –C B-W

P.S. As in my other publications, as part of international revision, the English term ‘flingy’ has been replaced with the modern colonial colloquialism ‘slingshot’ in describing Matthew’s weapon of choice at that age.

◦ ◦ ◦

  • From the assignments of Matthew Fisher-Swift
    16th of October 1815
  • Eddy says waiting is the most important part of hunting or sniping. I figured that part out for myself back during my second flight ever, when Aunt Ruth said I was allowed to start earning my keep on the ship. The rats and the mice don’t just walk up to you. It means more when Eddy says it, though. When Eddy waits, he practically isn’t even there. That’s why they call him the Battlefield Ghost. I want to get even better at waiting, more like Eddy. He says a lot of stuff about scouting out the ground and figuring out the best place to shoot from, someplace no one’s going to get to easily while he’s working. I used to just find a hiding spot, but now I’m trying to figure out how to scout a grain storage room and how one spot is better than another one. A lot of it is all about lines of sight to as many points as possible, so I’m trying to figure out how to do that, and still find a place I can sit real still and pick off pests as soon as they show themselves. Sitting still is hard, cold as it is, but Eddy’s waited in worse.
  • I spent almost the whole day doing that, instead of shooting anything, but I think it’s going to make me even more useful for everyone.
  • I also have to watch myself, like Eddy does on the battlefield. He can’t just shoot anybody he sees. He has to pick. I can’t let loose every time I hear something, or something shifts in the corner of my eye that might just be the ship settling in the wind. It isn’t just that I have only a few rocks. One shot, and no mouse’ll move in that bay for a while, so I have to make it count.
  • I know Eddy wasn’t talking about hunting rats, since he mostly shoots at people, and sometimes deer, but I’m still learning a lot, and I think it kind of works. Seems to me those people who got hired to shoot at Eddy and Sir James and all are sort of like rats, anyway. Eddy once called them that, after Aunt Ruth stared at him whenever he started to say something else. In St. Louis, there was a lot of talk about the other airship and the crew and their weapons and such. The townspeople said they looked just like I said they looked when I saw them back in July. Mr. Watts seemed a little surprised, even though I know he wrote it all down when I said it. Sometimes I wonder how much everyone’s going to let me earn my keep.

Maybe if I can prove I’m learning from the things he was talking about, and I get better at hunting rats, Eddy’ll give me some more advice, or let me help him out more. I much appreciated getting the rifles ready for him last week when they spotted those bandits….

Want more? You can get the Anthology December 6th, December 13th & December 18th at our events. We’ll have a link to Amazon for online purchase as soon as it is released.Anthology 2014 final cover front

Anthology 2014 final cover treats

Release Party You Won’t Want to Miss! Dawn of Steam: Gods of the Sun

Dawn of Steam Gods of the Sun coverThe second book in the Dawn of Steam series, DAWN OF STEAM: GODS OF THE SUN will be out soon, and the RELEASE PARTY is SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 27th, at the AFK E&E in Renton, starting about 4 PM. This will also be Author, Jeffrey Cook’s 40th birthday, so we’re hoping some of you lovely people can come out and help him celebrate!

You may remember the photos from the party for the first book, DAWN OF STEAM: FIRST LIGHT. (see one below). CLICK HERE to see all the fun. And don’t miss out on your chance to attend this next one on Sept 27th! Steampunk attire encouraged.

Authors, Jeffrey Cook and Kennedy J Quinn

Authors, Jeffrey Cook and Kennedy J Quinn

A note from the Author:

Gifts are neither required nor expected, just looking forward to some time among friends, fans and family amidst book stuff– and to turning a nice, round number’s worth of old, or something.

Hope to see you there!

Jeff

 

 

And here’s a new rave review of the first book in the series:

DAWN OF STEAM:  FIRST LIGHT

This step back into an alternate reality is a delight from beginning to end. The vivid characters and captivating adventure tempted me to rush through the book, but the well-rendered regency/steampunk hybrid style was so delicious that I meted out small portions to savor every word.

As if crossing the wild west of America via dirigible is not enough excitement, the author has added entanglements in the Spanish threats to New Orleans and dabblings in other historical events with researched accuracy and madcap twists.

I especially liked the unquenchable Sam Bowe, but each character was dear and bigger than life. I found myself missing them when, alas, I reached the last page. I’m thrilled that the sequel is soon on the way, and I will definitely hitch a ride on this continuing expedition!

Top hats off to author Jeffrey Cook and to Sarah Symonds. This is a new favorite, and I find myself recommending it to anyone who will listen.

-Sheri J. Kennedy

Congratulations, Jeffrey Cook!

Several of FVP’s featured authors and our local writers groups SnoValley Writes! and Maple Valley Writers turned out to celebrate the book launch of DAWN OF STEAM: FIRST LIGHT. It was a fun and well-attended evening at gamers’ paradise AFK Elixirs and Eatery in Renton. (Authors, Thomas Alexander and Rachel Barnard also attended before photo ops occurred-so not pictured)

Assassins in the Banquet Hall

DawnofSteamOneCover[Excerpted from the letters of Gregory Conan Watts to his fiancee]

While they were at that, Miss Bowe had found herself having drawn a great deal of attention from our assailants, having ruined the first shot. Somehow she had found a second blade from the table, and thus was fighting at least three men, perhaps more, though I could not be sure, armed with a bodice knife and a steak knife. Despite this poor armament, she was holding her own, though her breath was labored, and she could barely move — and certainly not lunge into her efforts — due to her own dresses and bindings.

The table she had knocked over guarded her back, with Julietta Penn remaining behind her and the table for cover. Our gypsy woman meanwhile had leaned herself across the table and was desperately sawing through the threads of Samantha’s bodice with another steak knife, that Sam might fight and breathe. It came free at last, and Samantha lunged forward in her far-less-restrictive undershirts, surprising the men who thought they had her pinned down.

I do not know if she dispatched them or simply fought past them, for even as the others were fighting for our representatives here, she headed for the new royals of France, the original targets of the assassination attempt, and there found their guardsmen fighting a desperate battle. I imagine they were quite surprised to find a woman armed with a pair of mismatched knives, in a torn dress and her undershirts, fighting on their behalf. She has even said since that they at first attacked her themselves, but she convinced them of her good will when she felled a gunman coming at them by throwing her steak knife. She then re-armed herself by groping about on the nearest table for further silverware while fighting off another assassin using the bodice knife she’d borrowed from Miss Penn.

Somewhere in the chaos I lost track of Giov anni Franzini and assumed he’d crawled under a table or under some rock to hide. He quite surprised me later, when we learned he’d run down two of the assassins who had attempted to flee in the chaos and felled both, albeit from behind as they were running.

I could not see all of it, but by the end as we regathered, I would swear Samantha had gone through at least two table settings, but had held onto Miss Penn’s knife. She was bleeding from half a dozen cuts, at least, and looked a wreck, her hat hanging from one side of her head, still held to one now-loosed braid by a single hatpin. She was decent only by the simplest definition, but for all of it, she looked quite pleased with herself, unlike anyone else in the room.

Our small group was once more gathering, soon to be helping in a call for order. We would assist in patrolling the grounds all night, trying to make sure that we had all of the assassins and that no one attempted to flee before they might be questioned. First, however, Miss Bowe asked, somewhat too loudly, of Sir James, “That was fun; do all your parties end like this?”

This is what drew the final scandal, which has hit the rumor mills, I understand. Overhearing our American misfit, the Queen of France fainted.
With love, always,

Gregory Conan Watts

from First Light, Volume I of the Dawn of Steam trilogy.

by Jeffrey Cook, with Sarah Symonds    Published with Permission

Cover image by Michal Marek