Winter 2017—Fiction

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The Gospel of Thomas (The Younger) by Gary T. McDonald

"A convincing faux gospel that challenges orthodoxy. Thomas traverses his world encountering First Century figures from Jesus to Nero bringing his times and the origins of Christianity alive in a fresh, new way with wry humor and exciting storytelling."
Winston Groom, author of Forrest Gump and El Paso

Think you know the story of Jesus? Peter? Paul? Think again.

In 1945, a trove of ancient papyrus books was discovered in Egypt. Among them was the Gospel of Thomas. This new Gospel, that of Thomas (the Younger), was not found at Nag Hammadi, but also claims to have been written by an eyewitness―a nephew of the man now called the Christ.

Over the course of his long life, Thomas (the Younger) watched the mythology that grew up around the very human man he traveled with and saw die on a cross become the basis for a religion that Jesus himself would never have accepted. Then, in his Gospel, he gave us his uncle's true message along with all the blood-chilling drama of those times.

Translator Timothy X. Hardesty, PhD, fully annotates this alternative history of the major players on the first-century stage in this humane, rational, and thought-provoking novel of truly epic proportions and spiritual vision. The Gospel of Thomas (the Younger) might just change your perspective...and your life.

Gary T. McDonald is a practicing Buddhist and an award-winning playwright and filmmaker with a life-long interest in the origins of Christianity. His latest film is The Fourth Noble Truth (winner of the Audience Award at the Sonoma International Film Festival). The Gospel of Thomas (the Younger) is his first novel and is the basis for his forthcoming historical epic The Blood of Men and Angels.

Fiction | Hardcover | 6 x 9 in | 320 pp | US $26.95

Publication Date—Dec 19, 2017

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Crisis: Black BY J. A. Davis

"...J. A. Davis offers frightening, real-world perspectives in his writing, bringing scenarios alive with realism."

"...a pleasure to read."
The Grumpy Book Reviewerk Times bestselling author of The Kitchen House and Glory Over Everything

In one short but fateful day, former Navy Seal Dr. Rex Bent has gone from dedicated emergency room physician to the most hunted man on the planet. After stumbling onto the world's biggest terrorist plot, as told in Crisis: Blue, Dr. Bent is framed by extremists, with no small amount of help from the media and inept politicians. Now every fanatic on the planet―from Iranian operatives to North Korean restaurateurs to an FBI agent with tunnel vision and blood lust―wants Rex dead.

With his beautiful, yet deadly, wife, Trissy, and a sassy, swamp-bred Cajun sidekick he picked up while stealing a helicopter, Rex mush elude capture by the good guys and the bad guys so he can expose the real threat to America before it's too late.

Part thrill-a-minute adventure tale and part satiric look at what a dystopian America could look like after years of feckless government and military spending cuts, Crisis: Black will delight readers of Tom Clancy, Jack Higgins, and Clive Cussler.

With experience in emergency medicine, nuclear power and with the military, as well as his travels throughout the world, author J. A. Davis offers frightening, real-world perspectives in his writing, bringing scenarios alive with realism. His first novel Crisis: Blue was released in 2016 by Rare Bird Books. This is is second novel.

Fiction | Paperback | 5.5 x 8.5 in | 248 pp | US $17.95

Publication Date—Dec 19 2017

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Night Driver by Ronald Colby

“Colby has written a novel of relentless energy. While driving a cab at night, his main character hunts his wife’s killers through LA’s dark streets of dreams and nightmares. It’s tense, episodic, complete and compelling. It’s quite a ride.”
Francis Ford Coppola, director of The Godfather and Apocalypse Now

"Colby’s well-paced first novel takes the reader on a winding, exhilarating ride through late-1970s Los Angeles."
Publishers Weekly

So this was it, he thought. He had his first fare and was now officially a cab driver. He shook his head as he exhaled the smoke into the morning cold. Well, he’d use the taxi time just as he had promised himself. He would figure things out, get a hold on himself, keep some little money coming in, and find the men who had murdered his wife.

Nick Cullen's wife was brutally murdered in a burglary gone horribly wrong, and he's not the type to move on with his life, especially when he has seen the faces of the murderers in person. His plan: learn how to drive a cab so he can find his wife's murderers on the streets of Los Angeles.

Nick's nighttime rides lead him down dead end after dead end, until one day he manages to get a hold of the ID of one of the men who destroyed his life. Nick's chase heats up and he's forced to face the truth of how far a man will go who has nothing left to lose.

Night Drivertakes the reader on a white-knuckled thrill ride through the dimly lit streets of nighttime Los Angeles and into the dark heart of a man pushed to the brink. An unforgettable journey of obsession, sadness, and revenge.

Ronald Colby began his career as a playwright and actor in New York City. Stolen away to Hollywood by director-writer Francis Ford Coppola, Ron began producing films and television. Always wanting to try his hand at a novel, he began writing Night Driver two decades ago, but the rigors of film work kept pulling him away and later to concentrate on writing and directing feature documentary films. After years of fitful starts, Ronald walked away from film and completed Night Driver.

Fiction | HC | 5.5 x 8.5 in | 472 pp | US $25.95

Publication Date—Jan 16 2018

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Where Night Stops by Douglas

"This sinuous narrative works neatly, both as a gripping novel and a solid meditation on identity."
Kirkus Reviews

We're born with a finite number of opportunities. Attrition, bad choices, misspent goodwill, and fucked-up luck. The opportunities dwindle through a process called living. Our portfolio of prospects turns into a tattered novel of outcomes.

I am twenty-two.

Orphaned by a brutal car crash, a young man lives with no plans for the future. Leaving his small town of Windstop, Iowa, he finds his way to Seattle, where he ends up broke and sleeping in a homeless shelter. There he meets Ray-Ray, an Iranian with a shadowy past, who initiates him into a new life. When Ray-Ray disappears, the young man is left to fend for himself through carrying out clandestine drops for cash from an anonymous source. At first, it's perfect: living without the responsibilities of a real job or a proper home. But then the scope of his travels widens to Europe, Brazil, and China, leading him deep into a conflict of international proportion.

Soon, he finds himself targeted for death, but from whom or for what reason, he's not sure. The only thing that he's sure of is that if he wants to survive, he needs a plan―now. Because at noon, they're coming to kill him.

Douglas Light is the author of Girls in Trouble, which won the 2010 Grace Paley Prize in Short Fiction. He co-wrote The Trouble with Bliss, the screen adaptation of his debut novel East Fifth Bliss. His work has appeared in the O. Henry Prize Stories and Best American Nonrequired Reading anthologies.

Fiction | Paperback | 5.5 x 8.5 in | 288 pp | US $16.95

Publication Date—Jan 16 2018

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Nightsun by Dan Vining

Praise for The Next
"Vining adeptly blends crime and the supernatural in his second noir outing."
Publishers Weekly

Los Angeles, 2025.

A brutal drought throughout the west has plunged Los Angeles into a permanent state of crisis. Traffic congestion has forced all emergency services―cops, EMTs, even fire trucks―into the air. Nate Cole, an up-all-night air cop, works to bust up a human trafficking operation, "New Okies" being smuggled into now oil-rich Mexico to work their fields.

Meanwhile, Ava Monica, a westside PI, chases a runaway bride who's fallen in with a cultish group of sun-lovers led by a pop star named Vivid. Nate and Ava's paths cross time and again and they come to count on each other for sources and solace, but like half of LA they just can't seem to merge.

A dystopian future that feels too close to home, Dan Vining's NightSun grapples with what it means to search for connection, solace, and home within a chaotic new world.

Dan Vining was a Stegner Fellow in Poetry at Stanford and taught there. Previously, he was a newspaper reporter, a writer and editor at Rolling Stone as well as a screenwriter and Senior Lecturer at the American Film Institute Conservatory. He is the author of The Quick and The Next (Berkeley Books), an omnibus edition of which came out as Among the Living. He lives in one version of Los Angeles.

Fiction | Hardcover | 6 x 9 in | 320 pp | US $25.95

Publication Date—Jan 16 2018

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Black Sheep Boy by Martin Pousson

"Martin Pousson writes with such lush honesty, such charged intimacy, about the real and the unreal, about danger and sex and home. I don't know quite how to describe the hypnotic power of Black Sheep Boy, except to say that the book is somehow a spell and a mercy, both."

—Justin Torres, author of We the Animals

Winner of the 2017 PEN Center USA Award for Fiction

Meet Boo, a wild-hearted boy from the bayou land of Louisiana. Misfit, outcast, loner. Call him anything but a victim. Sissy, fairy, Jenny Woman. Son of a mixed-race Holy Ghost mother and a Cajun French phantom father. In a series of tough and tender stories, he encounters gender outlaws, drag queen renegades, and a rogues gallery of sex-starved priests, perverted teachers, and murderous bar owners. To escape his haunted history, Boo must shed his old skin and make a new self. As he does, his story rises from dark and murk, from moss and mud, to reach a new light and a new brand of fairy tale. Cajun legends, queer fantasies, and universal myths converge into a powerful work of counter-realism. Black Sheep Boy is a song of passion and a novel of defiance.

Martin Pousson was born and raised in Acadiana, the Cajun French bayou land of Louisiana. His novel, Black Sheep Boy, includes stories that won a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship. Two of his stories were finalists for the Glimmer Train Fiction Awards. His collection of poetry, Sugar, was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award, and his first novel, No Place, Louisiana, was a finalist for the John Gardner Fiction Book Award. His writing has appeared in The Advocate, Antioch Review, Epoch, Los Angeles Review of Books, The Rumpus, StoryQuarterly, TriQuarterly, and elsewhere. He now lives in Los Angeles.

Fiction | Paperback | 5.5 x 8.5 in | 208 pp | US $16.95

Publication Date—Feb 13 2018