October 3, 2014

Daughter of Fire, a Novel by Dory Fiamingo

Helen of Agralee is a fierce warrior who wants nothing to do with her family’s legacy of being the Guardian, protector of the people of Davosad. Trained since childhood in the fighting arts and the only woman in the country of Cruinn allowed to fight, Helen has grown arrogant and selfish. To remedy this her father, Kurel, the current Guardian, sends her to Tieton Abbey to learn humility. She rebels, but her desires matter little. Vulcan of Norlad quickly becomes her enemy while Galen, High Prince of Cruinn, and Brother Patrick, an ex-mercenary posing as a monk, become her allies. When Kurel is murdered by Demion, insect, bat, and wolf-like creatures led by Mallus, who seeks the Guardian’s sword, the power seeks out Helen. It burns its way through her body, forever changing her—and the…

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September 9, 2014

Portrait of Ignatius Jones, a Novel by Peter David Shapiro

Editor’s Note: Herewith, Chapters 1 and 2 of Portrait of Ignatius Jones, Peter David Shapiro’s third novel, now published. Capitalizing on the late-19th-century fascination with psychics and confidence games, with a dash of The Picture of Dorian Gray, the novel takes the reader from Victorian Boston to the Peaceable Kingdom of Vermont, where things are not as peaceful as one might think. Chapter One September 12, 1896 Testimony of Mrs. Eugenia Stephenson concerning a Meeting at the Boston Spiritualist Lyceum I WAS SEATED AMONGST THIRTY others in the audience in a meeting hall of the Boston Spiritualist Lyceum on Tremont Street when Ignatius Jones entered, accompanied by Mr. William Price following several steps behind. Ignatius Jones sat behind a table at the front of the room. To be sure, I’d heard the whispers emanating from…

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September 9, 2014

“Carpe Diem,” A Poem by Catherine Dougherty

  Watching the world go by; Seeing it pass before my eyes. Bearing witness to another day’s dawn, Preluding, yet, another day’s song. Funny, how it all seems to slip away; Nothing is ever meant to stay. * Still, I can remember, Ah yes, oh so well, Rising from what seemed like hell, Grasping the day and making it mine, Simply living my life And feeling so fine. * But, now I’m old, My time here almost gone. If my life was a battle, I would say that I’ve won. So I have no regrets of what’s come and passed, Always remembering, nothing’s meant to last. * I’m just watching the world go by; Savoring the moments before I die; Thankful and rich for what I’ve done, Where I’ve been, how far I’ve come. Knowing…

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September 9, 2014

Estelle and David by D.K. Lubarsky

  Editor’s Note: This is a chapter from Dante’s Angels, a novel in progress. David’s hands were shaking as he steered the 1996 blue Chevy into the hotel’s circular driveway. He mopped his forehead with a plaid handkerchief and stuffed it back in his shirt pocket. “See. No problem getting here. I told you so.” Estelle kept her mouth shut. The ninety-minute trip from Beaverton to Cannon Beach had taken three hours. The line of cars behind them often extended into the horizon. Estelle looked around. She could see the water, and the top of Haystack Rock. “I can’t believe we’re really doing this.” “Why not? Everyone else goes on vacation. Getting away for a long weekend is just what we needed. I just hope you packed everything this time. Did you remember my pajamas?”…

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August 12, 2014

A Dancing Bear, a Novel by David Free

 Editors Note: Herewith we introduce David Free, our first contributor from Australia. This submission is another first for Fictional Cafe: the premier chapter from his novel appears in two formats, type and podcast. You can begin reading, or scroll to the end of the excerpt and listen to the author in his inimitable Down Under accent read aloud to you. In either – or both – we hope you will find A Dancing Bear as delightful as we did. Please click on the arrow below to listen to the podcast of Chapter 1: Chapter 1 You lunatics, Fenton Bland pretended to think, while taking a fiery glance at his watch. What the hell am I doing here? In truth, he knew perfectly well what he was doing there. He had, moreover, no genuine urge to know the…

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