Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike and Book Promo

Book Promo

*Note these are books sent to us by readers/frequenters of this blog.  Our bringing them to your attention does not imply that we’ve read them and/or endorse them, unless we specifically say so.  As with all such purchases, we recommend you download a sample and make sure it’s to your taste.  If you wish to send us books for next week’s promo, please email to bookpimping at outlook dot com. If you feel a need to re-promo the same book do so no more than once every six months (unless you’re me or my relative. Deal.) One book per author per week. Amazon links only. Oh, yeah, by clicking through and buying (anything, actually) through one of the links below, you will at no cost to you be giving a portion of your purchase to support ATH through our associates number. I ALSO WISH TO REMIND OUR READERS THAT IF THEY WANT TO TIP THE BLOGGER WITHOUT SPENDING EXTRA MONEY, CLICKING TO AMAZON THROUGH ONE OF THE BOOK LINKS ON THE RIGHT, WILL GIVE US SOME AMOUNT OF MONEY FOR PURCHASES MADE IN THE NEXT 24HOURS, OR UNTIL YOU CLICK ANOTHER ASSOCIATE’S LINK. PLEASE CONSIDER CLICKING THROUGH ONE OF THOSE LINKS BEFORE SEARCHING FOR THAT SHED, BIG SCREEN TV, GAMING COMPUTER OR CONSERVATORY YOU WISH TO BUY. That helps defray my time cost of about 2 hours a day on the blog, time probably better spent on fiction. ;)*

FROM CELIA HAYES:  Adelsverein:The Complete Trilogy.


The Adelsverein Trilogy, now combined in a single hardbound edition, is a saga of family and community loyalties, and the challenge of building a new life on the hostile frontier. They came from Germany to Texas in 1847, under the auspices of the “Mainzer Adelsverein” – the society of noblemen of Mainz, who tried to fill a settlement in Texas with German farmers and craftsmen. Christian “Vati” Steinmetz, the clockmaker of Ulm in Bavaria, has brought his sons and daughters: Magda – passionate and courageous, courted by Carl Becker, a young frontiersman with a dangerous past. Her sister Liesel wants nothing more than to be a good wife to her husband Hansi, a stolid and practical farmer called by circumstances to be something greater, in the boom years of the great cattle ranches. Their brothers Friedrich and Johann, have always been close – in the Civil War, one will wear Union blue, the other Confederate grey homespun – but never forget they are brothers. And finally, there is Vati’s adopted daughter Rosalie, whose life ends as it began – in tragedy. But Vati’s family will will survive and ultimately triumph. They will make their mark in Texas, their new land. Adelsverein: It’s about love and loss, joy and grief . . . and the sometimes wrenching process of becoming American.


FROM CYNTHIA HAYES: The Luna City Compendium #1: The Chronicles of Luna City, The Second Chronicle of Luna City, and Luna City 3.1



The first three volumes of the Luna City Chronicles , with expanded maps of the area, and of the town itself.

FROM CELIA HAYES:  The Luna City Compendium #2.


The second Luna City compendium, containing the complete text of Luna City IV, a Fifth of Luna City, and One Half Dozen of Luna City

FROM NATHAN BISSONETTE:  A Wizard in the Caravan.


In this sequel to A Wizard in the Monastery, the Wizard is enjoying time away from active wizardry when he is snatched from retirement to spy for the Crown. But the spell goes awry and his finds himself in a camel train on the Silk Road, hoping to find a way home. Ride along as he meets wizards, slaves and kings in what could have been The Greatest Story Ever Told, if only he hadn’t accidentally . . . .

FROM L. JAGI LAMPLIGHTER:  The Unbearable Heaviness of Remembering (Books of Unexpected Enlightenment Book 5).



…She has discovered she has an older sister named Amber, who was stolen-away as a baby. Nobody but Rachel remembers her—not even their parents. Rachel is determined to find Amber and restore her to the family. But how?

She doubts it will be as easy as overhearing the name Rumpelstiltskin.

Meanwhile, Rachel has bigger problems. Wild fey have invaded the campus. If they so much as bewitch even one more student, Roanoke Academy will be forced to close its doors. Rachel and her friends must solve this menace before the academy cancels more classes or, worse, the Year of the Dragon Ball!

But she has hope—if she can keep the school open—because, as Rachel’s late grandmother told her, Masquerade balls are a time of wonder… when anything is possible.

Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike.

So what’s a vignette? You might know them as flash fiction, or even just sketches. We will provide a prompt each Sunday that you can use directly (including it in your work) or just as an inspiration. You, in turn, will write about 50 words (yes, we are going for short shorts! Not even a Drabble 100 words, just half that!). Then post it! For an additional challenge, you can aim to make it exactly 50 words, if you like.

We recommend that if you have an original vignette, you post that as a new reply. If you are commenting on someone’s vignette, then post that as a reply to the vignette. Comments — this is writing practice, so comments should be aimed at helping someone be a better writer, not at crushing them. And since these are likely to be drafts, don’t jump up and down too hard on typos and grammar.

If you have questions, feel free to ask.

Your writing prompt this week is: soothe

25 thoughts on “Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike and Book Promo

  1. “Let’s see. The four of us have to take on a city ruled by powerful Ultras and then take on a power-eating shadow monster in order to get home. We may be powerful Ultras but I should be scared sh*tless but I’m not. Why’s that?”

    “Well, I’m soothing your realistic fears. I just wish somebody would soothe my realistic fears.”

  2. If you have issue with it being over 50, I suggest you 86 such,
    Thus this:

    “I appreciate your talk, yes, and I feel ever better, but I have yet to hear of any forecast or warning, which is why I came to you.”

    “You were expecting some information of the future, rather than relief from various ills?

    “Yes, I did.”

    “Whoever sent you to me was confused. I am not a soothsayer, but soothe-sayer. After your adventures, whatever they might be – assuming you survive – return to me. I fear you will be in sore need of my services then.”

  3. She brought the waterbottle against his arm, and she must have just filled it from the spring. It did soothe the pain, a bit.
    “Don’t take too long,” called Carrigiana. “This one is bad.”
    A less than soothing comment, thought Aidan, and waited. Fortuna help him, he had no choice.

  4. A new Rachel Griffin? Long awaited joy! I already know the pleasures of the Adelsverein Trilogy and heartily recommend that!

    As for promptness, it took a little padding but have produced a contribution in my own inimitable* vernacular:

    Taking in the situation and mindful of the bans on contact with lesser nobles, the Prince snapped out a series of orders to his quartet of pages: “One – fetch drink, Two – raise the window, admit some light and air, Three – play something light and airy on your harp, Four – soothe!”

    *Vengeful mobs ensure that lack of imitators

  5. Not a vignette, but my favorite exchange (paraphrased because I haven’t read them in a while) from the X-Wing series of Star Wars books.

    “Now remember, we’re on a diplomatic mission, so be diplomatic.”
    “‘Diplomatic’ means saying something soothing while you pull the trigger, right Boss?”
    “Shut up, Wes.”
    “Yub yub, General!”

  6. Lisa moaned in pain. The fever and the headache were more than she could bear. The stranger stood at her bedside.
    “Hush, Lisa” he said. “Here, drink this”.
    He held a cup to her lips. She took a taste. It was bitter, so he spat it out.
    “Now, Lisa,” he said, “None of that. It is meant to taste bitter, but it can help heal you.”
    He turned aside, brought out a damp cloth and laid a soothing touch on her brow.
    “Are you trying to poison me? End my misery that way?” She turned away.
    His chuckle was almost as soothing as his touch. “Far from it. It’s…for healing. Here, try again.”
    This time she swallowed some, but gagged, “Where did you get that vile-tasting stuff? It’s like nothing I’ve ever tasted.”
    “Not likely, but if you take one more swallow, I will tell you”.
    She did, and gave him a fierce grimace. His dark skin was wrinkled with age, his dark hair curly, with touches of gray. He was short, only a little taller than herself,
    “Brave girl!”
    “Woman. I left girlhood behind years ago”
    “To me, you are a bird, a bee, a butterfly, a baby. A sick one. I saw a need.”
    “I’m still fevered. ”
    “No, it doesn’t act that quickly. You must sleep first.”
    “You say it’s not a poison.”
    “It’s not supposed to taste good. A small amount heals, too much *is* poison. ” The teeth of his grin were a vivid contrast to his dusky face.
    “So you could have poisoned me by accident”.
    “I could have, but I didn’t. I haven’t made that kind of mistake in…a very long time”
    “I don’t think I can sleep”.
    “I will help. To answer your question, I compounded it.”
    She stared. “What are you? Herbman? Apothecary? Physician? Witch? Sorcerer?”
    “None of those, at the moment, although I have been each of them at one time or another. The draught I gave you has much more craft than magic.”
    He began to sing, a rhythmic chant, with words she did not recognize, a strangely pleasing, restful kind of song. She fell asleep.

    She awoke, covered in sweat.. A warm blanket was wrapped around her, She tried to move, but she was weak. A familiar voice commanded her “Rest”. It was Maggie Wilson, one of her neighbors.
    “:Are you hungry?”
    “Yes, but what are you doing here?
    “You had a fever. The magister told me that the fever might break, and if it did, you would be weak. He ordered me to have food for you, if you were hungry, and to not do anything you did not feel strong enough to do.”
    “The magister?”
    That’s what he called himself. Small brown man, graying curly hair?”
    “That was him. He saw me in the village, brought me home, made me take a vile-tasting potion, and sang to me. How did he bring you into this?”
    “He knocked on my door, said I had a sick neighbor, and gave me a few coins to be here when you woke and give you a meal. He didn’t need to, I would been glad to help if I had known it was you, but he didn’t say.”
    “Where is he? I feel much better. I want to thank him for his healing.”
    Maggie shrugged. “Gone, as far as I know.”

  7. Her favorite spaghetti and curling up with the teddy bear did nothing to soothe her.
    He was going to kill her, Lunette told herself. That was certain. She was the witness to his last crime, and he was going to kill her. That was the only reason it killed him.

      1. Nah. A super power. She was just trying to use it for the first time and it killed.

  8. “Shush,” said Bredon, his arms about her. “Shush. Shush.”
    His hand stroked her hair steadily. She sniffed.
    “It’s all right.”
    Minette sniffed again. She shouldn’t make him lie like that. It was not all right. Outside, they were no doubt panicking and wondering what they could do to contain her.

  9. The two of us pulled the cover off of the white 560SL and rolled it up. I connected the battery and climbed in. It fired up right away, and even the groan of the power steering pump complaining about being low on fluid didn’t drown out the soothing low rumble of the idling M117.

    The car had sat in the barn long enough. Time to take it out.

  10. The honest answer failed to soothe the Colonial Advancement Supervisor’s nerves. “What do you mean, you deviated from the accepted program because of changed local conditions? Those were not accepted by the Colonial Advancement Office or the Colonial Placement Bureau!”

    “Well, sir, you see, Planet Texas didn’t want to cooperate with our terraforming efforts, so it didn’t.”

    “The planet is sapient?”

    The consul’s slightly exasperated chuckle did not help matters. “No, sir. It is a figure of speech. The preexisting conditions in the atmosphere and surface did not react as planned with the terraforming package. So we adapted.”

  11. Keeping her voice carefully soothing, she raised it. “Come up, come up. You haven’t got much time, the meteors may be gone if you linger too long.”
    Silence followed.
    “It’s quite a sight. You shouldn’t miss it.”
    They came out slowly. Another girl, and a boy. And she knew them.

  12. “Shush,” Autumn said, as gently as she could. She did not dare touch him, not with the blood still oozing from his skin. And she had no words for his consolation. “Shush.”
    Ciara stalked across the floor, and Autumn breathed a sigh of relief. The other woman could do something.

  13. Rand looked up from whatever book he was studying on his tablet. “I wonder if a fortuneteller is called a soothsayer because they’re saying things to soothe the anxieties of their patron.”

    Juss tried not to laugh. “Actually, that’s a false etymology, but it is a pretty logical one, given that your traditional soothsayer’s operation was based on a completely false premise. While it is possible to look into future time if you have the appropriate psi genemods, you can’t ‘see the future’ the way they would understand it.”

    One of the other kids looked up. “Why not?”

    “Something about quantum mechanics.” Rand looked at Juss for confirmation.

    “Right. Foreseeing the future in the traditional sense would require superdeterminism, which the Chang-Mendolssen experiments have pretty decisively discredited. Precognition involves looking into a multitude of possible futures of greater and lesser likelihood. Now there are conditions in which one can achieve something approximating traditional ‘seeing the future,’ if the event in question has become determinate. That’s why precogs are allowed to play roulette or craps for a stake, but not poker.”

  14. It stung as she rolled it around in her mouth, and burned as she swallowed. She carefully breathed out, and felt that burn behind her nose. But the nagging scratch in her throat was gone.

    “Wh-what… did you say this was called, again?” She asked her host.

    “Rum” he answered.

  15. Carolus’s face was set as if granite. She wished he would glower at them. It would be less frightening.
    What a fool you are, Rosine told herself. As well expect him to soothe and console the two of them after their confession. She should rejoice not to be executed immediately.

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