Volume 7: The Glass Bridge NOW AVAILABLE!

glassbridgeNow available!

The Glass Bridge (Bell Mountain Vol. 7)

In the seventh installment of the Bell Mountain Series, can faith do what pride and power can’t? In obedience to God, the boy king, Ryons, with only half his tiny army, crosses the mountains to invade the Thunder King’s domains.

The new First Prester, Lord Orth, a man of peace, is called to lead a savage nation in a war for freedom and survival—and to deliver God’s word to Heathen peoples who have never known it.

At the top of Golden Pass, wealth beyond calculation lies waiting for whoever can take it.

Will it be the king’s man, Baron Roshay Bault, or an unscrupulous lord with a renegade army behind him?

Confronted by perils they can barely understand, with no safe choices set before them, the heroes of Obann must risk their lives on the glass bridge that can only be crossed by faith.
Read the First 2 Chapters Purchase the the paperback and/or the ebook bundle (pdf, epub, kindle version) Purchase the Kindle ebook from Amazon


Oops–No Blizzard

It’s both fascinating and unsettling to see how little people are able to learn from experience.

Time and time again the noozies and the Weather Service trumpet forth warnings of impending snow, big-time, great suffocating masses of it. Time and again the people stampede to the supermarket and empty the shelves of milk, bread, toilet paper and batteries. Again and again this happens.

And then we get a few inches of snow, or even no snow at all, and the whole big scare turns out to be for nothing. It would not be much of an exaggeration to say that this is what always happens. The forecasts almost never come true.

Please bear in mind that I am writing from a part of the country characterized by cities and highly developed suburbs, and we have no mountains, no deserts, no forests, and no vast uninhabited spaces to cross before you can find a grocery store, hardware store, or hospital. Once in a generation, or so, we have a really bad hurricane; and that’s it.

So it really is not possible that anyone around here in Panic Land will ever be snowed in, cut off from civilization, starved, etc. At the very worst, emergency services will continue to function. If you need an ambulance, you’ll get one.

Why can’t they learn? Why, every time they hear a big snow forecast, do they repeat the same behavior? It truly never turns out to be necessary, it’s a lot of wasted effort and anxiety–and they never learn to react otherwise. It’s as if they are actually incapable of learning from experience.

Now I’ll bet, if you put your mind to it, you can think of other examples of sane people, not nuts, doing the same thing over and over again even though it always turns out badly for them.

Sobering thought, isn’t it?


Aargh! It’s Gonna Snow! Oh, Nooooo!

So a great big monster blizzard is supposed to hit us tonight and tomorrow. New York Mayor and former Sandinista groupie “Bill DeBlasio” (his real name is Warren Wilhelm Jr.) held a press conference and said, in the most sepulchral voice he could muster, “We are going to see something worse than anything we’ve ever seen…” Yep, we’re doomed. But don’t panic.

Monday is our normal day for grocery shopping, so we had to go to the supermarket. We went early, in case there was going to be a panic. In this we were to some small degree successful: the panic hadn’t really started yet, and there was still some toilet paper, milk, and bread on the shelves. But the couple in line in front of us had at least eight rolls of toilet paper in their cart.

What did they think was going to happen? “Oh, no! We’ll be snowed in for weeks!” Other shoppers had their carts piled high with various foodstuffs: obviously determined not to let this snowstorm turn their households into a latter-day Donner Party. But who knows? Maybe they had more exotic terrors in their minds than that. “Oh, doom, doom, the snow! Why, we won’t be able to set foot outside, because The Woman of the Snows will be out there waiting for us!” Try to stay away from that scary Japanese folklore.

When are people in New Jersey going to learn that none of these apocalyptic things is going to happen to them when it snows?

The worst snowstorm ever seen is nowhere near as big a disaster as public education.


Signs of Spring

By the calender, Winter is only a month old, plus a few days. There’s snow on the ground, with a lot more in the forecast.

Hi, Mr. Nature here–and I wish I knew how to take pictures and post them on this blog, because I’d like to show you that buds have appeared on most of the trees around here. The folks next door were sitting in their hot tub this morning, but that doesn’t count because they’re nuts.

God’s handiwork is all around us, which means that God is never far from us. “For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead…” (Romans 1:20). If you want to understand the things you can’t see, first take a good look at all the things you can see.

But of course if you think those things made themselves, just sort of evolved into being, then you won’t be able to see the things of God. You’ll have a stock of worldly wisdom–and the wisdom of this world is to wisdom as Tang is to fresh-squeezed orange juice–and boundless faith in government.

Now that’s poverty. That’s winter with no buds on the trees.


How to Write Good

The guy who usully writes here, he can’t make it today so I’m taking his place. He is a litterery snob anyhow.

I can’t tell you who I am because I snuck away from my edditor to do this, and then they’d all be mad at me and they wouldnt put me on the New york times best-seller list anymore. You would sure recognize my name if you knew it was me.

I am here to complain about some stuff that other guy has been saying, like he knows how to write fantersy and I don’t. Ha ha! I sell more books in a day than he sells all year.

So he don’t like my dialog. That is cause my dialog is up to date and his isnt. I had a dworf say to a Elf, “Dude, get out of my space!”:And this Mr. Lee he didn’t like that. Also he don’t like it that I write for Young Readers and so the chacterers in my books are in school most of the time, he says that ruins the fantersy, but my edditor says just keep on doing it, the sales are fine.

He dont like magic and super powers, but I know kids want to read about magic and super powers because my books are best sellers and his aint! He also says my books they dont make any sense. For instants, in my New york times best seller called The 12-Year-Old Sorcerors With Super Powers, I made a story that had this terrible bad guy wizard who was going to wipe out all life on Earth (only I didn’t call it Earth, I called it, well I don’t remember, Id have to look it up). And you know what he said? He said it didnt make any sense! He wrote a nasty review and he said, “What is the point of being a dictator if there’s no one left to rule over?” Well I sell more books in a minute than he does in a week.

So take my advice and write fantersy that has kids with super powers sitting around in algerbra class and going on dates and texting, and its all right to have elfs and dworfs and orks and habbits saying okay and dude and celerbrate diversity, etc. If the truth be known, you can write any old thing you want and you can be a best seller. All it takes is good edditors and lots of avertising.


Gloom and Doom… in a Commercial

On our car radio today, we heard a commercial grimly warning of “three events” that will soon take place, that will destroy the world as we know it, cutting off the food supply and killing off “nine out of ten people” in America. The advertiser never got around to telling us what those three events will be: only that they’ll be catastrophically horrible. But if you send him a bunch of money, he’ll tell you how to survive them.

Survive to do what? Emerge from your shelter into the toxic rubble that used to be civilization, and maybe get killed by some Hell’s Angels types who want your stuff?

I don’t know about you, but it’s been years since I outgrew those Mad Max fantasies. Why would I even want to survive the total destruction of my entire way of life?

There’s a lot of apocalyptic imagining going on these days, much of it in literature pitched to “Young Adults”–The Hunger Games, Divergent, etc. Well, all right, look at what Democrat and liberal government have done to places like Detroit, Camden, NJ, and Gary, Indiana. But even that falls way short of these dark fantasies.

In none of these do we find a suggestion that a sovereign God controls the fate of His creation and can, at will, intervene decisively in history. It’s all “We’re going to completely mess things up, and then we’ll buckle down and fix it”–whether it’s Global Warming, chemtrails, World War III, whatever. The Bible proclaims “The earth is the Lord’s,” but these doom scenarios say “No, no–the earth is man’s, to wreck or to restore as we see fit.” And apparently the Lord, if He exists at all, will do neither good nor evil. Instead, we get some guy who has all the secrets of survival at his fingertips, and will share them with you for a price.

It is up to God to shake the earth, to preserve the things that cannot be shaken, to establish a new heaven and a new earth from which sin and death shall be excluded. God takes His time, and God is patient: because “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness: but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9).

Shall we trust in Him, or trust in man?

God is not a man, that He should lie (Numbers 23:19).

Or, to look at it another way, Man is not God, that he should tell the truth.


Feeling Sick? See Your Cat’s Vet

I had to take my cat, Robbie, to the vet today. She has asthma, and has been coughing a lot. So they took care of her.

I’m beginning to wonder if maybe our pets are getting better medical care than we are. I try to stay away from doctors, but my sister is a nurse at a doctor’s office and we get a lot of information from her.

These days it seems the patient gets only 10 or 15 minutes with the doctor or the nurse, usually the nurse; and some of that time is used up with inane questions mandated by the government and having nothing to do with whatever the patient came in to see the doctor for. So my eye doctor is obliged to give me “anti-smoking counseling,” which makes him feel like a dickey-doo-dah and annoys me no end. You come in with an arrow sticking in your shoulder, and they demand to know how often you’ve had sex this month.

None of that with the vet. She was all business, and took all the time she needed to deal with her patient’s problem.

I think I will go there if I ever need an operation.


When TV Personalities Spout Gibberish

Remember, back in 2011, there was a spate of TV reporters, live and on the air, uncontrollably spouting gibberish? ( http://vigilantcitizen.com/latestnews/judge-judy-the-4th-to-talk-gibberish-on-air/ ) The most famous victim of this mysterious affliction, was Judge Judy, who aborted a taping session because all that would come out of her mouth was nonsense. Judge Judy was immediately taken to a hospital and thoroughly examined. Doctors were unable to find any cause for what had happened to her.

There’s video, all over the internet, of this happening to reporters in and out of the studio–all of it at roughly the same time. Various explanations came and went. Reporter was having a mini-stroke; about to have a stroke; a mild epileptic seizure; some rare kind of migraine. None of these stuck. A few commenters suggested that someone was doing this on purpose, using experimental technology to interfere with the victim’s ability to function mentally. That didn’t stick, either.

So yesterday I found myself reading a novel in which the members of a scientific team working on a top-secret missile project, one by one become unable to talk anything but gibberish. Naturally I thought of that spate of on-air gibbering in 2011.

The book was written in 1957: The Electronic Mind Reader, a Rick Brant Science Adventure by John G. Blaine, the pen name for Hal Goodwin.

Goodwin, who during his career worked for just about every government agency you can think of, was on the cutting edge of his era’s technology. His Rick Brant books are full of insights into the electronics wizardry of the time–which was a lot more sophisticated than you might think.

The point is, Hal Goodwin was very well-informed and knew what he was talking about. In 1957 he described something that we didn’t see until 2011. I haven’t finished the book yet, so I don’t know how the bad guys made this happen–but what was Goodwin on to? I’m sure he wouldn’t have used his books to leak official secrets. But was there someone in 1957 who had found a way to foul up your brain by remote control? Imagine a hand-held device–something that maybe looks like a video camera–that gets pointed at you and suddenly you can’t express a coherent thought anymore. Would that be scary, or what?

Check out the link above, and watch the videos. Watch what happens to those poor reporters as they try to speak.

Hmmm….

 


Hollywood Snipes at ‘American Sniper’

While the rest of Hollywood’s product struggles to break even, Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper broke records at the box office.

Why else would people who have made literally thousands of war movies be so averse to this particular war movie? ( http://www.examiner.com/articles/hollywood-firestorm-against-american-sniper-shows-disconnect-with-filmgoers ) Well, to speak of the Hollywood Left is to use a tautology. Of course it makes them mad to see an American soldier killing the enemy–and a Muslim enemy, which makes it so much worse. Because Islam hates Christianity, Hollywood cherishes Islam. If you turned this film around and called it Freedom Fighter, and made it about a Muslim sniper picking off American troops, the same fleas and ticks who are complaining about it today would  be praising it to high heaven tomorrow.

Have compassion for me, O readers–because I’m beginning to understand how these people think. For instance:

“Like, y’know, war is bad, y’know. And Islam is the religion of peace, man. So, like, why don’t us and the Muslims, y’know, like get together, and, like, y’know, maybe find out what kind of music we both like. And then we could have, y’know, like a free concert, man, or maybe a benefit concert, and, like, donate all the money to the fight against Climate Change–because that’s like, y’know, the real enemy! That, and Homophobia…”

Meanwhile their adored Muslims are pitching their adored gay men off the tops of high buildings in Syria. But for these people, the “narrative” is everything and truth does not exist.

Don’t get me wrong. I grew up on movies in which the sniper was always some evil German hiding in a church steeple. Of course we Americans always had snipers, too. But you never saw them in those old movies, and anyhow they didn’t call them snipers. “Sharpshooters” sounded ever so much nicer.

But for Hollywood to zero in on this movie… well, that’s hypocrisy. Big-time.


Look at My Competition

The Goliath of Young Adults fiction, Scholastic Books, has come out with another really big project–the Spirit Animals series by Brandon Mull.

Check out the website, http://spiritanimals.scholastic.com/about# . Has this got bells and whistles, or what? They’ve even got a Spirit Animals game you can play.

Scholastic’s last big thing was Philip Pullman’s venom-spewing atheist fantasy trilogy, His Dark Materials.They pushed it like crazy in the public schools, and managed to parley it into a feature film. I am happy to say the movie sank like a stone.

So what’re these new books about? Why, “a quest to find legendary talismans” that’ll save the fantasy world from an “ancient evil”–can you say “Harry Potter Wannabe?” The heroes are kids with super-powers, which they acquire by being able to link to and bond with special Spirit Animals.(Pullman had the same motif with kids bonded to friendly, loving “daemons” which could take animal form.) “Every kid dreams of calling a Spirit Animal,” says the voice-over in the promotional video on the website.

I’m sure they’re hoping to turns this into a series of blockbluster movies, down the road, to step into the No. 1 Franchise spot when Hunger Games gets worn out.

Anyway, that’s my competition, folks.

Now go out and buy Bell Mountain and its sequels, and make the big boys at Scholastic feel all kinds of frustrated.


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