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10.29.15.GILDEDAGEBIG

Welcome! We’ve asked authors Lisa Mason and Laura Vosika to talk with us about their time travel books.

Lisa Mason is the author of Summer of Love, A Time Travel, and The Gilded Age, A Time Travel. Summer of Love was a Philip K. Dick Award Finalist and San Francisco Chronicle Recommended Book. Locus Magazine said, “Remarkable. . .the intellect on display within these psychedelically packaged pages is clear-sighted, witty, and wise.” The Gilded Age was a New York Times Notable Book and New York Public Library Recommended Book. The New York Times Book Review called The Gilded Age, “A winning mixture of intelligence and passion.”

Laura Vosika is the author of Blue Bells of Scotland, lauded as a book in the vein of Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series, and earning many five-star reviews. Nan Hawthorne, author of historical fiction, called Blue Bells of Scotland one of her favorite books of the year. The praise was echoed by Robert Mattos of Book and Movie Reviews, adding that it is a must-have for the book shelves of any serious reader. The Minstrel Boy, Book Two in The Blue Bells Chronicles, is also out.

Q: Do your time travelers have to observe certain rules of time travel or do they get into trouble?

Lisa: Of course they get into trouble! And there are sanctions and restrictions my time travelers must observe, starting with the classic “grandfather paradox;” if you traveled back in time and killed your own grandfather, you wouldn’t exist in the first place to go do the deed. Then there’s the “butterfly principle,” in which a time traveler goes back to a primordial jungle and accidentally kills a butterfly, changing all of reality.

Both Summer of Love and The Gilded Age begin with stringent “Tenets of the Grandmother Principle,” supervised by the Luxon Institute for Superluminal Applications, a far-future bureaucracy. Please go to the books to see what they are.

Like many authors before me, I played with these concepts and their ramifications, adding quantum physics into the mix. Under the Uncertainty Principle, the observer changes the observed, proven in the famous experiment in which a photon appears as a wave or a particle depending on how the experimenter sets up her observational apparatus.

I wanted to add another favorite trope of science fiction authors—that a sweeping and seemingly beneficial technology can go terribly wrong. Consider the automobile, a technology which has given us freedom and mobility unprecedented in pre-car history, reliable distribution and delivery of goods, and a lot of enjoyment. Cars have also blighted the landscape, caused us to be dependent on foreign oil, caused pollution, injury, and death, and alienated people. I explored the notion that the far-future technology of “tachyportation,” which could be employed to colonize planets and right historical wrongs, had sweeping unintended consequences.

Laura: Throughout Blue Bells of Scotland, Shawn and Niall have no idea what they’re dealing with. Niall, being from 1314, has no concept of Grandfather Concepts or of changing history. He gets Amy to help him research what happened to his people at Bannockburn–in her world, the history says they all died–and he doesn’t care much about changing her present or anyone’s future. He cares only about saving the people he loves.

Shawn, for his part, spends his first few days in medieval Scotland in a wilderness that looks much like parts of present-day Scotland. He is not aware of just how badly off track his life has gone, and even if he had been, he cares only about his own pleasure. Once he does understand that he’s not in his own time, his only motivation is survival and getting back where–make that when–he belongs, to safety.

In The Minstrel Boy, these ideas are delved into a little more, but my characters are dealing with something unheard of, something nobody else knows about, and something of which they have very little understanding. There’s no machine, no control, no bureaucracy, no answers to any of their questions. Their motivation continues to be mainly survival and setting their own lives right.

Thanks to Lisa Mason and Laura Vosika for a lively and thought-provoking discussion. If you, the reader, wish to join the discussion or have any questions or comments for our authors, feel free to contact them at their websites.

And please buy their books! Like them, review them, add stars, blog them, post them, Tweet them, and share the word with your friends. Your participation really matters.

We thank you for your readership!

Summer Of Love (a Philip K. Dick Award Finalist and San Francisco Chronicle Recommended Book). On BarnesandNoble, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Smashwords, Apple, and Kobo. On Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.

And back in Print! From the printer: https://www.createspace.com/7257603

From Amazon.com: https://www.amazon.com/Summer-Love-Travel-Lisa-Mason/dp/1548106119/

The Gilded Age (a New York Times Notable Book and New York Public Library Recommended Book). On BarnesandNoble, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. On Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands. Back in Print in July!

Visit Lisa Mason at Lisa Mason’s Official Website for books, ebooks, stories, and screenplays, forthcoming projects and more. And on my Facebook Author Page, on Amazon, on my Facebook Profile Page, on Goodreads, on LinkedIn, on Twitter at @lisaSmason, and at Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America.

For urban fantasy, science fiction, fantasy, romantic suspense, humor, and a screenplay, visit the Virtual Bookstore! All Lisa Mason Titles, All Links, All Readers, Worldwide. NYT Notable Book Author

Blue Bells of Scotland is on Kindle, Nook, itunes, and at Smashwords, and The Minstrel Boy, Book Two in The Blue Bells Chronicles, is on Kindle.

Visit Laura Vosika on the web at www.bluebellstrilogy.com or www.facebook.com/laura.vosika.author.

If you missed the first three Time Travel Blogs, please find Blog 1 (Introduction) at https://lisamasontheauthor.com/2017/07/15/lisa-mason-talks-time-travel-with-laura-vosika-part-1-sfwapro-timetravel-novel-1960s-1890s/

Blog 2 (Social Commentary) at https://lisamasontheauthor.com/2017/07/16/lisa-mason-talks-time-travel-with-laura-vosika-part-2-social-commentary-sfwapro-timetravel-sciencefiction-womenssciencefiction-socialcommentary/

Blog 3 (Time Machines) https://lisamasontheauthor.com/2017/07/17/lisa-mason-talks-time-travel-with-laura-vosika-part-3-time-machines-and-thin-spots-sfwapro-timetravel-womenssciencefiction-timemachines/

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MysteryCoverSmall

Every Mystery Unexplained by Lisa Mason
1

“As long as the human mind delights in mysteries, so it will love magic and magicians. I would say to all beginners, ‘Keep three things in mind:
First–Practice constantly new sleights, novel devices, and invent new combinations of old feats. You must always have something new wherewith to dazzle.
Second–Make your work artistic by clothing each illusion with all the glamour and shadows of fairyland and the suggestions of incantations and supernatural powers in order to prepare the observer’s mind for a mystery.
Third–Leave every mystery unexplained.'”
–Harry Kellar, “The Greatest Magician in the World,” 1887

My father is done with the doves and colored scarves by the time he gets to the spirit show. “And now, ladies and gentlemen,” Uncle Brady announces, his voice as sonorous as a Shakespearean ghost, “Professor Flint will endeavor through his astonishing, miraculous, and mysterious psychic powers to establish communication with the Spirits of the Dead!”

“Endeavor to establish communication with the Dead,” I whisper to Mr. Pannini, the booking agent for the Tivoli Theater, as we watch from the wings. “A pity he seldom endeavors to establish communication with me.

The audience shifts and titters, restless in the early evening, which is awfully cold and gloomy even for fog-haunted San Francisco. Gaslights flicker, leaking fumes into the chill, damp air. A smell of mold clings to the dark velvet curtains, a sepulchral odor that leaves me uneasy.

“The old man is a boiled shirt, is he?” Pannini says with a grin. He is a dapper, clove-scented, well-oiled dandy in fancy gabardine and a velvet bowler, a massive mustache curling over his lip. Some ten years my senior, I suppose, with the air of the rake about him. My father dislikes him intensely. “Nothing a young gentleman like yourself cannot handle, I’ll wager.”

“I endure,” I say, “the dutiful son.” I like Pannini. He slips me a Mecca cigarette. I light up, quick and guilty. My father has forbidden me to smoke.

My father has forbidden me to grow a mustache till I reach the age of one-and-twenty, which has been a source of more contention between us than cigarettes, since extravagant mustaches are all the rage for gentlemen in our year of 1895. A requirement of fashion that occupies many of my thoughts despite other concerns, such as the bank panic, massive unemployment, and civil unrest throughout our great nation of America. What lady will consider me without a mustache? I chafe at each passing day of these next nine months, shave the scant fuzz from my lip–dutiful son–and speculate pessimistically on what poor bristles may be produced when Pop’s injunction has expired.

“And what will you do, Professor Flint,” Uncle Brady is inquiring onstage, “if you should encounter the Grim Reaper Himself?”

“I shall challenge Him to a duel!” my father replies.

“A duel?” Uncle Brady says, inviting the audience to marvel with him.

“A duel to the death!” my father declares.

Onstage, my father arduously prepares himself to establish communication with the Spirits of the Dead. Of Pop’s many talents, this is one of his best, the dramatic preparation for impending dire difficulty. Uncle Brady assists him, yanking off Pop’s cutaway coat, ceremoniously withdrawing the dueling sword from the trunk. My father effects much rolling of eyes, rolling up of sleeves, girding of loins. He kneads his forehead, unleashing psychic powers.

A pity he had not prepared so well for my mother’s death.

Someone snores in the audience with an exaggerated gargle. A heckler? A pack of hoodlums in scruffy top hats tip rotgut in the back row. There has been an air of uncertainty, of desperation, since we arrived in San Francisco. No one in the far West honors paper money. You must pay in gold or silver coin. Only half the seats in the Tivoli are filled tonight.

“He ain’t Houdini,” Pannini says, not unkindly. “With a switcheroo act.”

No, Pop is not that daredevilish young rascal, the dexterous Harry Houdini. No one can top Houdini who, with his wild antics, has spoiled audiences from St. Pete’s to Nome. Everyone is clamoring to see “Metamorphosis,” during which the monsieur and the mademoiselle, each bound at wrist and ankle, exchange places in the box in three seconds flat.

“No, but I know how Houdini pulls off ‘Metamorphosis,'” I say. “I know exactly how he does it. The box trick has been around for a hundred years.”

“The box trick?” Pannini raises his eyebrows.

Over the years, the box trick has been vastly improved, ingeniously improvised, and presented again and again, fresh as the morning dew. But I bite my tongue. I cannot reveal how Houdini’s “Metamorphosis” is pulled off, not even if I wanted to.

“You know all about the box trick, do you?” Pannini prompts, intrigued by my hesitation.

“Sorry,” I say. “We magicians have a code of secrecy. We’ve all sworn not to reveal how an illusion is accomplished. Even if we’re not the ones performing it. Especially then.”

“Ah, a code of secrecy,” Pannini says with a shrug. “Well, don’t look so glum, Danny. It’s a fair crowd for the Tivoli. For a magic act.”

Now I shrug, and draw deeply on the Mecca.

“The old man has got to get himself a pretty heifer onstage,” Pannini says. “That’ll draw ’em in.”

“Oh, we had a beautiful lady in the act.”

“Did you?” Pannini says, suddenly animated. “Well, trot her out, sir.”

“She died,” I say. “Last spring.”

I fling the Mecca to the floor, stamp it out. My father will raise Cain when he smells tobacco on my breath.

“Sorry,” Pannini says.

When I look again, he’s vanished.

As it is, my father has got a good act. Not a great act, perhaps, not a spectacular act like Harry Houdini’s, but a very good act. He’s worked on this act, in its various permutations, for all the twenty years I have walked upon the earth and before then, too, according to Uncle Brady. My father is no daredevilish robust rascal, but a well weathered man, lean of flesh and spare of hair, whom some people mistake for my grandfather. Yet Pop has not lost his touch, in my opinion. In my opinion–and as his only son and heir apparent, I’m entitled to my opinion–it’s a lousy crowd for the astonishing, the miraculous, the mysterious Professor Flint.

Then again, nothing seems right since my mother died.

Now my father takes up the sword, commences feints and thrusts. In the sulfuric glare of the limelights, I can see sweat pooling over the starched wing collar that throttles his throat, soaking through his threadbare brocade vest like a bloodstain. I used to worry about Pop’s health. He always was a scrawny bird, and scrofula and consumption ran in his family. Sometimes it seemed to me that the exertions of the stage, not to mention the financial uncertainties of magic, would do him in.

I don’t worry so much about Pop anymore. He turned out to be the strong one. Which only goes to show you. You never can tell from the look of things what the truth is or what, an illusion.

With a swift, decisive jab, my father thrusts the sword–back into its scabbard. That’s right. This preliminary action sequence is intended to arouse any flagging interest among gentlemen in the audience. Gentlemen are by nature discontent and easily bored, not to mention skeptical. Sure enough, one of the hoodlums in the back row shouts, “Bloody well get on with it, man!”

But my father never concedes to a quick, cheap thrill. No, there are ladies and children in the audience–usually there are, anyway, though such tender persons appear to be singularly lacking at the Tivoli tonight. Ladies and children of sensitive sensibilities may become alarmed by Professor Flint’s aggressive antics. They may pause, they may press gentle pale fingertips to their pale throats, they may wonder if the next mystery will be too much for them to bear.

It is for this portion of the audience that my father sheaths the sword. A portion deserving, as my mother used to say, of a performer’s special courtesy. A portion endowed themselves with the power of trembling lips, of fluttering eyelashes, of little cries of joy or alarm, of those gentle pale fingertips just as she, my mother, was so amply endowed.

It is for them that my father now trots out the dancing handkerchief.

“But first, ladies and gentlemen,” he announces, “before I challenge the Grim Reaper to a duel to the death, I shall endeavor to prove that the power of Life goes beyond Death. Beyond the grave itself!”

To be honest, I personally think the dancing handkerchief is the silliest of illusions.

I’m always astonished at how much the ladies and the children and the gentlemen love it.

Need I say that all of the Tivoli’s stagehands, Mr. Pannini, and anyone and everyone not privy to our techniques, have been banished from backstage. Need I say that Uncle Brady and I sprint like souls possessed to our respective positions at each wing abutting the stage. Need I hint that the dancing handkerchief illusion works much like a marionette. Need I add that we gleefully seize the wonderfully simple and devilishly clever devices. For they are devices. There is no person on earth once clearly shown who would ever mistake the technical application of wrist and wire for the appearance of something supernatural.

“Ladies and gentlemen,” Pop is saying, “I will endeavor to demonstrate the miraculous Power of Life utilizing the most ordinary of personal accoutrements.”

My father has got one of those masterful voices and the ability to project his ironic personality out into a crowd. Yet I worry how well he will project his personality tonight, for the air feels thick in the Tivoli Theater. I feel a chill sweep through the room, like a draft from a back door left carelessly ajar.

“Does anyone,” Pop says, “have a handkerchief? Of purest white silk, if you please?”

In this surly crowd, reeking of cheap whiskey and unwashed clothes, I fear no person in attendance is genteel enough to possess the requested accoutrement. The chill deepens, and a cloud of bay fog drifts in. Clear across the stage I can see Uncle Brady twist his head around, glancing behind himself, at me, out there. He’s working up a fury for the stagehands. Some rotter has left a door open, taking petty revenge, perhaps, for his banishment from backstage.

One of the very few ladies in the audience stands, works her way to the aisle, and approaches the stage. I heave a sigh of relief. Across the stage, Uncle Brady pantomimes wiping his brow. What a lady she is, too, tall and slim, in a ruffled burgundy dress. Her coiffure tilts above her forehead at a saucy angle, a curl coiled on the high curve of her cheek. She smiles at my father, who bows graciously, and glances around at her neighbors, seeking their approval of her boldness. Her dark eyes light upon me, as I peer out from the wing. I can smell her perfume, a rich musk of red roses. She holds forth a white silk handkerchief in her elegant fingers.

Da,” she says in a purring contralto, “I have handkerchief.”

And then she winks at me.

Oh, Lord. I duck out of sight. Pop will have my hide if he should notice that someone in the audience has spied me skulking about in the wings. He proceeds apace with the illusion, however, deftly knotting one corner of the lady’s handkerchief. When he’s done, the handkerchief looks just like a little ghost, with a pert peaked head and a drooping shroud. He tosses the handkerchief on the stage, casually leaning over to rearrange the silk and attach the fabric to the—ah, never mind.

It’s a mystery unexplained.

Much like a marionette, as I’ve said. That’s all you need to know.

“Thus I shall prove, ladies and gentlemen,” my father says, “that within each small thing, even a mere handkerchief from this beautiful lady, the Spirit of Life can come alive.

And off we go, Uncle Brady and me at opposite ends of the stage, making that little ghost come alive.

First, the handkerchief raises its head, struggling to become animated, then (pardon me) gives up the ghost, and falls slack again. My father coaxes it, by turns tender, then stern, and the handkerchief rises, rises, growing more vigorous by the moment, finally standing upright and positively lively. The ghost leaps into Pop’s hands, leaps down again, and capers across the stage like a maniac. Pop gives chase, captures it. It swiftly escapes, and he gives chase again. At last he seizes the handkerchief and hands it to the lady, still bobbing and wiggling like a hooked fish. She cries out. Pop takes the wiggler back, unties the knot, and, with a murmured apology, releases a lifeless handkerchief.

The lady beams and displays her erstwhile ghost. Everyone in the front rows leans forward, entranced, applauding wildly.

Like I said, they always love the dancing handkerchief.

“Thank you, madam,” Pop says. “What is your name, please?”

“I am Zena Troubetzskoy.”

“Bloody well get on with it, man!” the hoodlum in the back row yells again. His pals guffaw.

“Madame Troubetzskoy, I am charmed,” my father says, ignoring the hecklers, and takes her handkerchief yet again and produces from it a fresh red rose. He regards the rose as if it is a wondrous treasure and hands silk and bloom to her.

Zena stares, openmouthed. As I peer from the wing again, I see a flush infuse her cheeks, staining her face as if with a sudden fever. “Can you really communicate with the Other Side, Professor Flint?” she asks.

“I certainly can,” Pop says.

Liar, I think. The enmity between stage magicians and spiritualist mediums revolves around this very point–what we each claim we can do. No one has actually established communication with the Spirits of the Dead. No one has proven that the soul survives. Yet spiritualist mediums deceive people with cruelties–and with illusions any stage magician can readily replicate. Maskelyne, the Royal Illusionist, exposed the Davenport brothers’ spirit cabinet as nothing more than the good old box trick. Anderson, the Great Wizard of the North, produced better table-tipping and spirit raps than the Fox sisters, who have bilked many a silver dollar from the bereaved.

If my father really could establish communication with the Other Side, don’t you think he would have contacted my mother?

But what else is my father supposed to say? No, not really? He cannot say that, not in front of an audience in a theater. A magician must never reveal the secrets of his illusions, must never explain the mystery though there is no mystery. That is our code of secrecy.

Still, I am uneasy with Pop’s charade, his disingenuous answer. Is he any better than a deceitful spiritualist medium?

If Zena Troubetzskoy is perturbed by my father’s lie, however, she gives no sign. “How marvelous,” she says and returns to the darkness beyond the limelights.

Now our rented orchestra strikes up a sprightly tune. Uncle Brady rushes onstage to assist Pop, while I pull the ghost getup over myself, head to toe, and sprint to my appointed place before the pane of plate glass. The pane, which the audience cannot see, is situated just so, in relation to the activities onstage and the activities offstage, and to a strategically placed spotlight. When light and darkness are arranged precisely right, when the physics of reflection and refraction are manipulated correctly, you will see an apparition appear out of nowhere onstage with Professor Flint. You will see the apparition joust with him in a death-defying duel. You will see him pierce the apparition clear through with his sword. At which point, you will see the apparition perish amid much pathos, and disappear before your very eyes.

All right, the ghost duel is not actually so death-defying. Not like the real stunts of that daredevilish Houdini, who trusses himself up like an animal bound for slaughter and swallows needles. Nor is the ghost duel original to my father. Professor J. H. Pepper pioneered the illusion, and many others have presented it in various permutations such as “The Blue Room” or “The Room of Mortality,” in which a skeleton in a coffin transforms itself into a young woman, then withers again into bare bones. Still, I think the ghost duel is the high point of Professor Flint’s act.

I never tired of watching this illusion back in the days when my mother played the ghost. When I was a kid, I used to love it. Uncle Brady would intone his Grand Invocation of the Spirits of the Dead, and the ghost would appear–just like that!–floating over the stage. And you could feel how the audience began to believe. Ladies would weep, and children cry out. Some gentlemen would toot their noses, while others would gasp, with fear or shock or the wonder of it all. One time in Cheyenne someone called out, “Praise the Lord!” and someone else answered, “Amen!”

What a ghost my mother played! Pop would fling down a leather glove in challenge, whip his sword from its scabbard. The apparition would fling down its own white silk glove, defiantly produce its own weapon. And off they would go, leaping and sparring. My mother was so charming and spritely and graceful that the ladies would stop their weeping, the children would laugh, the gentlemen would stop tooting in their handkerchiefs. These hardy people of our young American nation, who faced death daily by consumption or childbirth or fever, they would gaze at that graceful ghost and they would smile. I could see joy stealing into their hearts, and it was magic.

I am not nearly as charming a ghost as my mother once was, but I can spar, I can feint, and the duel has got this audience warmed up at last. From the location offstage where I accomplish my part of the illusion, I can hear the cheers and exclamations of encouragement. Pop pierces me through the heart, I perish and vanish, and it’s over. I fling off the ghost getup, and dash up onstage. The audience stands and applauds. Mr. Pannini gives me the thumbs-up.

I can see the relief on my father’s face. Pop is the sort of man who makes a meticulous accounting of each triumph and especially of each failure, however small. The failures disturb him far more than the triumphs ever give him satisfaction. Uncle Brady beams and bows, but he gives a little shake of his head, a sort of cringe to his shoulder, and I know what he’s thinking. He’s thinking nothing has seemed right since the accident took my mother’s life last spring.

The woman in the burgundy dress rushes up to the stage, clapping furiously, the red rose tucked behind her ear. Zena Troubetzskoy says, “How marvelous! Oh! How marvelous!”

So there you have it, my friends. This was a wonderful anthology and I’m delighted to have been a part of it.

From the author of Summer Of Love, A Time Travel (a Philip K. Dick Award Finalist and San Francisco Chronicle Recommended Book). On BarnesandNoble, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Smashwords, Apple, and Kobo. On Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.

The Gilded Age, A Time Travel (a New York Times Notable Book and New York Public Library Recommended Book). On BarnesandNoble, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. On Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.

Time Travels to San Francisco (boxed set of Summer of Love and The Gilded Age). On US Kindle, UK Kindle, Canada Kindle, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, Apple, and Kobo. On Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, Brazil, Mexico, India, and Japan.

Arachne (a Locus Hardover Bestseller). On US Kindle, UK Kindle, Canada Kindle, Australia Kindle, Barnes and Noble, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. On Kindle in France Kindle, Germany Kindle, Italy Kindle, Netherlands Kindle, Spain Kindle, Mexico Kindle, Brazil Kindle, India Kindle, and Japan Kindle.

Cyberweb (sequel to Arachne). is on US Kindle, BarnesandNoble, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. Also on UK Kindle, Canada Kindle, Australia Kindle, Brazil Kindle, France Kindle, Germany Kindle, India Kindle, Italy Kindle, Japan Kindle, Mexico Kindle, Netherlands Kindle, and Spain Kindle.

Strange Ladies: 7 Stories (“A must-read collection—The San Francisco Review of Books). On Nook, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Smashwords, Apple, and Kobo. On Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.

The Garden of Abracadabra (“Fun and enjoyable urban fantasy . . . I want to read more!) On BarnesandNoble, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. On Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.

Celestial Girl, A Lily Modjeska Mystery (Five stars) On Nook, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Smashwords, Apple, and Kobo. On Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.

Shaken On BarnesandNoble, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. Also on Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.

Hummers On BarnesandNoble, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. Also on Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, and India.

Daughter of the Tao On US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, BarnesandNoble, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. Also on Kindle in AustraliaFrance, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.

Every Mystery Unexplained On BarnesandNoble, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. Also on Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, and India.

Tomorrow’s Child On BarnesandNoble, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. Also on Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, India, Mexico, and Netherlands.

The Sixty-third Anniversary of Hysteria On BarnesandNoble, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. Also on Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, and India.

U F uh-O On BarnesandNoble, US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. Also on Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, and India.

Tesla, A Screenplay On US Kindle, Canada Kindle, UK Kindle, BarnesandNoble, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. Also on Kindle in Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, and India.

My Charlotte: Patty’s Story On Barnes and Noble, US Kindle, UK Kindle, Canada Kindle, Australia Kindle, Smashwords, Apple, and Kobo. On Kindle in France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Japan, Netherlands, and Mexico.

“Illyria, My Love” is on US Kindle, Barnes and Noble, Apple, Kobo, and Smashwords. Also on UK Kindle, Canada Kindle, Australia Kindle, Germany Kindle, France Kindle, Spain Kindle, Italy Kindle, Netherlands Kindle, Japan Kindle, Brazil Kindle, Mexico Kindle, and India Kindle.

Please visit me at Lisa Mason’s Official Website for all my books, ebooks, stories, and screenplays, reviews, interviews, and blogs, adorable cat pictures, forthcoming works, fine art and bespoke jewelry by my husband Tom Robinson, worldwide links, and more!

And on Lisa Mason’s Blog, on my Facebook Author Page, on my Facebook Profile Page, on Amazon, on Goodreads, on LinkedIn, on Twitter at @lisaSmason, at Smashwords, at Apple, at Kobo, and at Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America.

If you enjoy a title, please “Like” it, add five stars, write a review on the site where you bought it, Tweet it, blog it, post it,, and share the word with your family and friends.

Your participation really matters.
Thank you for your readership!

Collected Stories Cover Final

PERFIDIA

By Lewis Shiner

“’That’s Glenn Miller,” my father said.  “But it can’t be.”

He had the back of the hospital bed cranked upright, the lower lid of his left eye creeping up in a warning signal I’d learned to recognize as a child.  My older sister Ann had settled deep in the recliner, and she glared at me too, blaming me for winding him up.  The jam box sat on the rolling tray table and my father was working the remote as he talked, backing up my newly burned CD and letting it spin forward to play a few seconds of low fidelity trombone solo.

“You know the tune, of course,” he said.

“’King Porter Stomp.’”  Those childhood years of listening to him play Glenn Miller on the console phonograph were finally paying off.

“He muffed the notes the same way on the Victor version.”

“So why can’t it be Miller?” I asked.

“He wouldn’t have played with a rabble like that.”  The backup musicians teetered on the edge of chaos, playing with an abandon somewhere between Dixieland and bebop.  “They sound drunk.”

My father had a major emotional investment in Miller.  He and my mother had danced to the Miller band at Glen Island Casino on Long Island Sound in the summer of 1942, when they were both sixteen.  That signature sound of clarinet and four saxes was forever tied up for him with first love and the early, idealistic months of the war.

But there was a better reason why it couldn’t have been Miller playing that solo.  If the date on the original recording was correct, he was supposed to have died three days earlier.”

We’ve got a mystery on our hands! And all sorts of revelations to unfold. Lew’s love of swing music and his expertise shine (so to speak) in this fine story. Learn about the mystery of Glenn Miller’s death during World War II and much more in The Story Collection Storybundle.

Lewis Shiner is the author of BLACK & WHITE, FRONTERA, and the World Fantasy Award-winning GLIMPSES, among other novels. He’s also published four short story collections, journalism, and comics. Virtually all of his work is available for free download at www.fictionliberationfront.net.

Visit Lew and learn more about his books and stories at lewisshiner.com.

So there you have it, my friends. The Story Collection Storybundle is live but time is running out! You the reader name your price—whatever you feel the books are worth. You may even designate a portion to go to a charity. Savor traditionally published, multi-award-winning stories from diverse and varied publications which the authors have collected for you.

The Bundle includes What I Didn’t See (a World Fantasy Award Winner) by Karen Joy Fowler (the New York Times bestselling author of The Jane Austen Book Club), Collected Stories by Lewis Shiner, Errantry by Elizabeth Hand, The Green Leopard Plague by Walter Jon Williams, Women Up to No Good by Pat Murphy, Strange Ladies: 7 Stories by Lisa Mason, Wild Things by C. C. Finlay, and 6 Stories by Kathe Koja.

But you must act now. The Story Collection Storybundle lasts only until June 2, 2016 at https://storybundle.com/storycollection. Enjoy world-class stories for your summer vacation and beyond!