Sleeping Legion SWAG

Standard

jr-handley-header

Hey Space Cadets, how’re you doing today?  Things are good here, and I have some exciting news I want to share. We’ve finally crossed the threshold, The Sleeping Legion has SWAG!!  Boss Man design some excellent coffee cups for you to enjoy your coffee or grok in!  Or both together, we here in the Handley Trenches don’t judge. Okay, maybe a little… I mean we can’t tolerate people putting pineapples on perfectly good pizzas! A man has to have standards.

 

US buyers click here for your awesome drinking beverage!

 UK buyers click here for your awesome drinking beverage!

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

 

Until next time, stay frosty and don’t forget to keep your powder dry!  

brown_bess

JR

 

 –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section or are videos used by JR Handley for use under the Fair Use Doctrine.

newsletter-banner

Podium Publishing

Standard

jr-handley-header

Hey Space Cadets, how are you doing?  Hopefully everyone is doing amazingly!  I’m working on rewriting the ending for Operation Breakout and wanted to take a break to give you some amazing news.  If you jump into the Handley Trenches, and join our newsletter, you’ll receive some free literature!  Not religious tracts, you’ll get a free copy of the prequel novella Demons of Kor-Lir and, for this week only, No Marine Left Behind.  It goes up for sale later this month, so check it out.

 

podium.PNG

 

Now, onto the topic of the day!  The fine people at Podium Publishing recently signed a contract for the audio rights for The Sleeping Legion Series.  We’re getting an audiobook.  I’ll keep the information coming as soon as I get it!  In the meantime, I checked out their company and was impressed.  They’ve got some amazing voice talent and the other books they’ve done are fantastic.  I’ll have good company, what more could I ask for?

 

Until next time, stay frosty and don’t forget to keep your powder dry! 

brown_bess

 JR

 

  –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section or are screen grabs taken by JR Handley for use under the Fair Use Doctrine.

newsletter-banner

Operation Breakout Update

Standard

sleepinglegion_logo_nov2016_02_darkbg

Hey Space Cadets, I won’t be getting out my World Building Wednesday today because I’m deep into the final editing of Operation Breakout.  By this time tomorrow, the third novel in the Sleeping Legion Series will be with my copy editor and then prepped for publication.  However, I don’t want to leave you with nothing.  For some happy news, my interview with the Dead Robot’s Society went live today.  Take a listen, it was a fun interview!

 

DRS #439: Interview with JR Handley

 

Until next time, stay frosty and don’t forget to keep your powder dry!

brown_bess

JR

 

  –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section or are screen grabs taken by JR Handley for use under the Fair Use Doctrine.

newsletter-banner

Book Review: Exigency

Standard

Michael Seimsen.PNG

Hey Space Cadets, here is the next installment in my series of book reviews.  I’m currently outlining Maternal Vengeance, the fourth novel in my Sleeping Legion Series.  I wanted to take a second away from that to share my review of the last novel I read, and recommend it!  Tomorrow I will have a new World Building Wednesday, and I’ll share some super exciting news with you!  Nothing else has changed on my end, so I won’t bore your brain buckets with gobbledygook.  Instead, let’s jump right into the nuts and bolts of the story.

 

Title: Exigency

Author: Michael Siemsen

Price: $3.99 USD

Obtained: Bought on Amazon on the recommendation of a friend

Pages: 440

 

Exigency Book CoverExigency

 

Rating: 4/5 Grenades

4 Grenade

 

Summary:

This novel tells the story of several scientists, who travel light years on a one-way trip to an Earth-like planet.  Their mission was to study the two species of intelligent lifeforms on the surface from their orbital station.  One of the species was an isolated people embarking on civilization and building their world’s first city.  The other species was a brutal race of massive predators, spreading across the dominant landmass.  The scientists believe this species is destined to breed and eat their way to extinction within a few centuries.  After almost a decade of observation, disaster struck the orbiting station and only two crewmembers eject successfully.  Drifting down through a dark alien sky, the pair realizes their escape pod launched not toward the safety of the city, but to the other side of the planet.  They ultimately touch down deep inside a land no human could possibly survive.

 

Characters:

There were many secondary characters, but I’ll limit my review to the two main ones.  The characters were exactly what I would expect from a group of scientists, but that meant they weren’t necessarily as likeable or personable.  The author does get credit for their believability, but much of this is to be expected from this sub-genre of science fiction.  Overall, the character development was one of the two reasons this was a 4 Grenade book for me, instead of a 5.

 

Minerva (Minnie): She was, hands down, the main point of view character and John was her supporting cast.  She has been diagnosis with HSPD, some new psychotic condition that forces her to remain on medicine to maintain her sanity.  Why would you send someone like this into space?  I don’t know, because the author never told us.  She was whiny, annoying and I didn’t really like her but I didn’t want her to die either.  She was well rounded, not very likeable, and shouldn’t have been anywhere near a space exploration mission.  She was believable, as a character, but I kept yelling “Why isn’t she back on Earth?”

 

John: This character was very thought out, although he came off as a bit too perfect for my tastes.  The usual “Mr. Awesome,” who sails through life until Thing X in the story requires divergence from his life’s trajectory.  He was strong at times many would have broken down, and I didn’t feel like we had enough back story to justify his actions.  Overall, it wouldn’t have bothered me if he got struck by lightning and tied.

 

Plot:

The story was disjointed at times, though I can’t tell you how without ruining the plot.  It was high octane on the drama, an even mix of internal angst and outside forces.  Though, if strange aliens wanted to eat you, you’d be pretty angst ridden as well so I can’t fault that artistic choice.  While I did think it was disjointed, the novel was easy enough to follow so that might just be a personal preference on my part.  And for all its faults, which might not be flaws for some people, the story kept me riveted.  I couldn’t put it down, even as I wanted to throw Minnie off a cliff!  I read this in just under two days, which is pretty quick for me.  Again, other than the character development, this was a solid plot that was well written.

 

World Building:

This was another area where the author excelled!  The world was vivid, I could imagine all of it and I wanted to see it on the big screen.  The world was fleshed out, and totally believable for the circumstances.  I could envision myself fighting the Hynka and dealing with the more advanced Threck.  The strange colors and toxic environment would be fun to visit, like an alien safari!  But obviously, only if we were well stocked and had food and water for the entire trip!  I have nothing to say here, this was a solid 5 Grenades.

 

Description:

The author also got this right, the descriptions were spot on, and added to the desperate vibe the unwittingly unintentional colonists were enduring.  I would love to go into more details, but I strive for spoiler free reviews.  Overall, if this is ever made into a movie the script writers won’t have to worry about imagining things because Michael Siemsen gave them what they needed!  Another 5 Grenades for this category!

 

 

Overall:

In an effort to be fully transparent, I half listened and half read this novel.  Whysper Sync I think it’s called?  Some books are better suited for that, a lesson that I learned with this book.  The audio narration WAS superbly done, since I brought it up.  Heck, I wouldn’t mind if Julia Whelan wanted to narrate my books, I certainly wouldn’t say no!  If you love audiobooks, give Julia and Podium Publishing a shot, they’ve seem to figure out the magic formula.  While I gave the book 4 Grenades, the audio narration gets 5!  One of my main issues, aside from the characters, was the use of alien languages.  I get it, you want to show your world building and how things are different but if you invent translation programs in your world, we don’t need to bog us down with the language.  Move on, tell the story!  However, the story and the plot is something the author got right!  If I rated the plot separately, he would have a solid 6 Grenades out of 5, it’s that good!  If you like science fiction, with some of the science on full display, you need to buy this book!  Heck, give the audio book a listen as well!

 

 

If this book sounds like it’s right up your alley, check it out!  You won’t regret it!  Well, unless it keeps you up all night and you’re late to work… and then your boss fires you, because you became a book addict and a rabid Michael Siemsen fan.  Okay, the fanboy/fangirl syndrome MIGHT leave you starving.  Then again, it COULD be one heck of a weight loss plan!  Be warned, but enjoy the high!

 

 

Until next time, stay frosty and don’t forget to keep your powder dry!

brown_bess

JR

 

  –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section or are screen grabs taken by JR Handley for use under the Fair Use Doctrine.

newsletter-banner

Quick Editing Update

Standard

sleepinglegion_logo_nov2016_02_darkbg

Hey Space Cadets, just wanted to give you a quick update!  I’m still alive, I’m just deep into the final edits with Operation Breakout.  It’s looking even better than I’d hoped after Corey got his teeth into the story.  Until then, enjoy this awesome interview of one of my favorite authors, Terry Mixon.

 

 

Until next time, stay frosty and don’t forget to keep your powder dry!

brown_bess

JR

 

 –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section or are screen grabs taken by JR Handley for use under the Fair Use Doctrine.

newsletter-banner

Exciting news!!!!!

Standard

I’m lifting my head above the writing and publishing trenches for a few moments to share some exciting news about an imminent new Sleeping Legion book launch, a new audiobook deal, and more. If you follow JR Handley’s blog, you’ll already know about a novellete he’s been working on called No Marine Left Behind. Well,…

via No Marine Left Behind: a new Sleeping Legion novelette — The Human Legion

WARRIOR WEEKEND: Craig Martelle

Standard

warrior-weekend

Hello Space Cadets! Today, I wanted to introduce you to another author from my WARRIOR WEEKEND INTERVIEW SERIES. Normally I would update you about what’s going on in my life but I’ve nothing new so Craig took the time to write his own introduction!  Cheeky, isn’t he?

 

Craig Martelle:  I’m a lifelong daydreamer and student of human interaction. I have some degrees, but those don’t matter when it comes to telling the story. Engaging characters within a believable narrative- that’s what it’s all about. I live in the interior of Alaska, far away from an awful lot, but I love it here. It is natural beauty at its finest.

Craig Martelle

 

Without further ado, let’s get this interview cranking!

 

Tell me a little about your military service?

Enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1982 and eight years later earned my commission. I retired at the rank of Major after thirteen years of commissioned time. I was a Russian Crypto linguist at the outset, spending two years at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California. As an Intelligence Officer, I served all over the world, Japan, Korea, the Middle East, Russia, and Ukraine.

 

How do you feel that your military service has influenced your writing?

Most of my books have a Marine or a Marine-like character. I know the lingo, I know the mindset, and I carry those ideals to this day, almost fifteen years after I retired.

 

Do you think your military service, and more specifically your training, adds to the realism in your books?  If so, how?

It absolutely does. Combat scenes, fighting, and those things can easily be described if you’ve seen some good war movies on TV, but the emotions of the moment, the different personalities you’ll find on the battlefield, the sights, and the smells are the kinds of things that I believe I put into my work. The spurious thoughts of your life back home. The jokes one makes in life or death situations. It is very unique and a challenge to get right if you haven’t seen it for yourself.

 

When did you start pursuing your writing more seriously?

When I retired from the consulting business in September 2015. I was still way too young to sit at home and do nothing. So I sit at home and write instead.

 

Of all your work, which was your favorite to write?

I love my Cygnus Space opera. It flowed the best of all my books from the outset. It is good fun in the way that Star Trek is.

 

How many of your characters were inspired by your military service?

Many, of course, probably a quarter of the characters can trace to people that I met while serving in the Marine Corps.

 

How many of the scenes you wrote were inspired from your service?

I typed The End on my 21st book today, so trying to tally the scenes inspired by my military service? Too many to count. Nearly all the combat scenes, many times when a character is away and misses home, his girlfriend, those are all service related.

 

That is fricking awesome!!  One day I’ll get there.  But this is about you, so do you feel like your writing has served any therapeutic value for you?  Has it helped you process your experiences?

It has not. I enjoy writing and that is a value in and of itself.

 

If you could serve with any of your characters, who would it be and why?

I like the Nomad in my new series co-written with Michael Anderle. He’s a stand-up guy who is just a little better than everyone else. He uses that help people and others think of him as Sir Galahad from the Knights of the Round Table.

 

If you would want to avoid serving with any of your characters, who would it be and why?

Usually those people end up on the wrong end of lethal fire in my books. As my XO told me once, “Sir, you don’t suffer fools gladly.”

 

What are you currently working on?

This survey. Is this a trick question? The Terry Henry Walton Chronicles – Michael and I will have published five books in eleven weeks (first right before Christmas and the fifth by March 15th). My next project is the third book in my Cygnus Space Opera. I’d like to get that one done in March, so come April, I can concentrate on getting the next three books done for Terry Henry Walton.

 

How can people find you? [will insert what social media platforms with direct links]

E-Mail: craig@craigmartelle.com

Amazon

Facebook

Twitter

Website

 

If this convinced you to find out more, look up Craig Martelle.  I hope you all had a great time getting to know about Craig, don’t be afraid to say hello here or on his website.  If he don’t respond quick enough, bombard the friendly Marine with Army memes!  Mwahahaha!!

 

 

Until next time, stay frosty and don’t forget to keep your powder dry!

brown_bess

JR

 –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section or are screen grabs taken by JR Handley for use under the Fair Use Doctrine.

newsletter-banner