By Carl Slaughter:
Novelist, weird fiction writer, and future ruler of the Earth. JM Guillen is not your average writer of odd things. He is the half-mad constructor of “The Paean of Sundered Dreams”, a puzzle of a story that weaves together realms of steampunk, fantasy, and science fiction. In his spare time, he summons strange things from beyond the stars, and never rues the day
THE DOSSIERS OF ASSET 108
By JM Guillen
The world is not what it seems. Michael Bishop is an Asset of the Facility- a job that comes with many strange perks. He is a man who never gets ill, who never pays taxes. He is effortlessly fit, and has a different woman every night of the week. That is, when he is not on assignment. When activated, Michael becomes Asset 108, an enhanced human who stands against the strange darkness that lurks at the edge of our world. Armed with equipment that most would find impossible to comprehend, he is sent on missions both strange and deadly. Each dossier pits him against irrational creatures and beings- most with the power to unravel his sanity, or reality itself. It’s never a simple job. This job, however, is more complex than most. Mysterious unknown targets are fracturing reality, somewhere in the middle of the Mojave desert. The Facility has no other Assets in the area, and their telemetry is spotty at best. Without knowing what to expect, Bishop is activated, assigned to a cadre, and sent to the middle of nowhere. What he finds there is both the beginning and the end.
THE PRIMARY PROTOCOL
Eldritch abominations are invading our world. Only Michael Bishop and the Facility stand against them. With none of his cadre at his side, Michael Bishop, Asset of the Facility, awakens in a labyrinth of forsaken darkness with faceless assassins in close pursuit. He has few memories and fewer weapons and is running for his life fighting against inhuman horrors from another world. It seems as if Asset 108will soon be dead, all without remembering his true nature. Then things grow difficult. Soon Michael and his allies are lost in a dark, forbidden city in a world where the stars are bent and strange. He is without any of his reality-twisting technology or upgraded neuralware and is pursued by mad fanatics, worshipers of the tentacled aberrations that plot against the nations of man. Even this is not the greatest danger, however. There are twisted plots between the abominations, schemes of which Michael and his cadre are simply pawns on a vast board. Soon they will take part in an attack that will change the very fate of this entire twisted realm, all in exchange for a whispered oath: a promise of a way home, back to the Rational world. But can the cadre trust the creatures they are bargaining with? Will the technology offered actually be capable of taking them home? And what of the mysterious lost Asset and his cryptic warnings? In distant worlds beneath strange stars, promises are easily broken, especially ones made by inhuman foes.
THE WORMWOOD EVENT
A TALE OF APOCALYPTIC ELDRITCH HORROR
PREQUEL TO THE DOSSIERS OF ASSET 108
The American Midwest: September, 2015. At the end of the Rational world, she holds the only key to the future, written in madness and blood.
Grace believed she was going to be a computer programmer someday and perhaps create programs that educate children or save lives. She never thought she would be fleeing for her life from her roommate. She also never thought that her roommate would be a ragged, undead monstrosity that had clawed out her own eyes.
Sometimes, life takes odd turns.
The turn in Grace’s life came the night of the Wormwood Star, when the dead awoke and twisted aberrations began to walk the land. As technology and sanity began to corrode, all of civilization collapsed.
Meanwhile Grace and her new comrades struggle to survive and understand what has happened. But Grace has an advantage, one she doesn’t truly comprehend.
Grace owns a curious gathering of old papers – a work convoluted with equations, constellation alignments, and dire dates in history. The more she reads, the more the nature of the work shreds the remnants of her mind, until eventually Grace cannot tell what is true and what is false. She has horrific waking dreams and begins to doubt all she knows.
Which is unfortunate, as the papers imply that she may, in fact, be the only person on the planet who can change what has happened.
This story is a peek into the possible future of Rational Earth, a future feared by the Facility. It is here that the same doom that has befallen other worlds first begins to overshadow our own – in the year 2015.
The cover design and blurbs leave me completely uninterested in reading these. “[He] has a different woman every night of the week.” Umm, right. Not the target audience, here.
Yeah, me, neither. I note that the male world-saver is an ubermensch who does things; the female one is apparently a hapless drone to which things happen. Blurbs can be misleading; I understand that… but based on what’s presented here I have little interest in this series.
Anyway, I like my apocalyptic battles with a touch of black humor (as per Stross’s Laundry Files) and I don’t see anything like that hinted at here.
Why on earth would anyone want a different woman every night of the week? Isn’t that a rather bleak existence?
Seems pretty bleak to me, Rea.
<snark>Perhaps rather than “ubermensch” I should have written “teenaged boy’s fantasy life.” All it needs is hitting the game-winning home run in the bottom of the nineth in the seventh game of the World Series to make it complete… </snark>
Has anyone here read any of these? I’m aware we may be reacting unfairly based on blurbs…
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