Saturday, February 12, 2022

Autumn Paths by Various Authors - Book Blitz

Autumn Paths

Nine writers - Seasonal Collective - from both sides of the Atlantic, including best-selling and award-winning authors, have created this miscellany of stories.

These tales of family, mystery, intrigue, adventure, and suspense will take you across continents, through time and space in this world and others.  With a linking theme of autumn, discover new landscapes, encounter new and intriguing characters, uncover secrets and lies, and witness the resolution of old enmities.

Take the first step on this roller-coaster of an emotional journey, and you won't be disappointed.

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Winter Tar
By Jeremy Thomas Gilmer


WE STOOD, WE TWO, UP ON TOP OF THE GAIN, the hill that overlooked the rough cut of the bay below us, and we watched the sparrows hook and meander on those cold winds, and I thought of what those winds would bring. Devlin was a few winters older than me, how many neither of us knew, but a few at least. He wore those years like he wore the sash around his shoulder, the hard blue of it marking him as a man of our tribe, a watcher and a protector. We watched the sparrows swoop and we marvelled at their speed and freedom, their rightful claim to that air over our heads, lost to us, leaving us on the hard ground to fend for ourselves.

Dev took his eyes from those flyers, and I watched him as he looked to the horizon, the grey blue meeting the blue grey. He squinted into it and the paint across his temples disappeared in the wrinkles. A few of our people's teaches lay down in the low ground, the thatched roofs looked so fragile from way up here. They were so warm and dark at night, quieting the world outside to the sound of wind off the ocean. My coat was only just fighting off this wind and I wished for the warm glow and slow fire that night would bring. Dev clicked his tongue, and we were off, down the gain.

It was the last days of autumn, the wet and then the cold would come soon. People getting winter crop down in that hard earth, getting the animals closer to the teaches and camps, no longer free to range out into summer fields and flowers. The rare bees had long since gone down, a sign to us that gathering for the cold would need to pace up. We were short with time.

We walked back to see Sloan on his puller, his horse puffing and wheezing as it pulled the trailer, stacked high with wood and bags of grain. He waved us on as we descended and came up on him along the road.

Dev slung his rifle, a rusted relic, over his shoulder, and Sloan swung his into view, as was the custom. He greeted us with broken teeth and his long hair, both grey and a weak straw, blew across his face.

"Lads, what's the view up there," he said while loading a pipe with foul smelling tobacco.

"Ah, the seas kicking up a bit. We are close to the end of the season, gotta keep eyes up. If they come it will be soon." Dev said.

I was an only, a dílleachta, my mother had died bringing me forth, and my Da had been taken when I was five winters. Dev's family had taken me, I was a wild one and needed the strong hand. I would have starved that first winter. They fed me up and taught me how to till and row and string a bow. After a time, I took to calling them Ma, Da, with no strings attached to the words. I was given as much meat and tots as their own, and I grew strong because of it. I could still see my old Da's face though, bleeding from his eye as the Tars dragged him toward the beach, onto the ship. I was small but I could remember the things. Blood and screaming, men shouting in a tongue I could not hear in my head, just jumbled sounds. A group of Tars had taken a girl from our neighbor's house and laid her down on the cold ground. Her screams were still loud in my ears, as loud as their laughter. When they had left, our houses burned. The dead were left scattered, our stores of food and things were stolen, burned or left blowing across the windswept ground, where I sat crying and beaten. Dev's family found me the next day, wandering the hill side still covered in my father's blood and shaking from the cold. I never knew why they didn't kill him, or me on the spot. Winters later I realized his marks, the tattoos on his arm, marking him as a metal worker, a Gobha, could have made him valuable. But they burned our forge, so the answer was lost to me.

Dev and I left Sloan and made our way back to the main camp. It still felt empty with so many of the grown off to Sligo to sell at market and work in the wool mills and turf farms. They used to work in the bullet factories, but the war in the deep south ran through all the powder and there was nothing left to make the bullets. We had gone backward, almost back to swords and spears now, with only the occasional shot sent over a hill, with the dimming hope the old powder would still fire. Many of the old guns sat gathering dust and history in camps and sheds, but with nothing to shoot out of them, they were just rare clubs, and not much good at that. We had a few bullets among us, kept in dry boxes, hidden from the ravages of salt air and thieving hands.

Author Bios

Sandra Bunting

Sandra Bunting's publications include two books of short fiction, a poetry collection, a non-fiction book besides articles, poems and stories in numerous literary magazines. Sandra is on the editorial board of the Irish-based literary magazine, Crannóg, and worked at NUI Galway where she set up the Academic Writing Centre and taught Creative Writing and TEFL teacher training. Now living in Atlantic Canada, she is a member of The Writers Union of Canada, New Brunswick Writers Federation, Words on Water Miramichi, the Grand Barachois group Women Who Write and the Galway Writers' Workshop.

Pierre C Arseneault

The youngest of eleven children, Pierre C. Arseneault grew up in the small town of Rogersville New Brunswick. As a cartoonist, Pierre was published in over a dozen newspapers. As an author, he has five titles published so far:

Dark Tales for Dark Nights (2013)

Sleepless Nights (2014)

Oakwood Island (2016) Poplar Falls – The Death of Charlie Baker (2019) Oakwood Island - The Awakening (2020)

Chuck Bowie

Chuck Bowie graduated from the University of New Brunswick in Canada with a Bachelor Degree in Science. His writing is influenced by the study of human nature and how people behave. Chuck loves food, wine, music and travel and all play a role in his work. His publisher has just launched his latest novel, set in Ireland and England, entitled Her Irish Boyfriend, fifth in the international suspense-thriller series: Donovan: Thief For Hire. He has just completed and published the second novel in a new cozy mystery series, set in a fictional town in New Brunswick, and is now finishing the follow-up in this series. - Chuck recently completed tenure on National Council of The Writers' Union of Canada; - Acted as Writer in Residence at Kingsbrae International Residence for the Arts, 2019; - Acknowledged as an author of note in the Miramichi Literary Trail installation, 2021.

Steve C Eston

Steve C. Eston always had a conflicting love for the fantastical and the scientific, which led him to write both fantasy and science-fiction. He has three published books: Deficiency (2020), The Conclave (2018) and The Burden of the Protector (2016). He also has several short stories available for free download on his website. He lives in Fredericton with his wife and children.

Angela Wren

Angela Wren is an actor and director at a theatre in Yorkshire, UK. An avid reader, she has always loved stories of any description. She writes the Jacques Forêt crime novels set in France and is a contributing author to the Miss Moonshine anthologies. Her short stories vary between romance, memoir, mystery and historical. Angela has had two one-act plays recorded for local radio.

Monique Thébeau

Monique Thébeau is retired and lives in Riverview, New Brunswick. She has published a murder mystery In the Dark of Winter (which she is currently translating) and a French historical novel of her hometown, Saint-Louis-de-Kent. She is as passionate about building suspense in her stories as she is about gardening and being a grand-parent.

Jeremy Thomas Gilmer

Jeremy Thomas Gilmer is a writer of short fiction and nonfiction. He has been longlisted for the CBC Canada Writes Short Story Prize, won the inaugural Short Story Day Africa Flash Fiction Prize and was selected as the writer-in-residence at the KiRA residency in 2018. Jeremy is the Art and Literature editor-at-large for The East magazine. Gilmer has spent over twenty-five years as an Engineering Consultant on environmental, energy, and mining projects. Born in New Brunswick, Gilmer grew up in Nigeria, Northern Ireland, and Canada and has lived and worked in over forty countries. He splits his time between Eastern Canada and Brazil.

Allan Hudson

Allan Hudson was born in Saint John, New Brunswick. Growing up in South Branch he was encouraged to read from an early age by his mother who was a school teacher. He lives in Cocagne with his wife Gloria. He has enjoyed a lifetime of adventure, travel and uses the many experiences as ideas for his writing. He is an author of action/adventure novels, historical fiction and a short story collection. His short stories – The Ship Breakers & In the Abyss – received Honourable Mention in the New Brunswick Writer's Federation competition. He has stories published on, The Golden Ratio and his blog - South Branch Scribbler.

Angella Cormier

Angella Cormier grew up in Saint Antoine, a small town in south east New Brunswick, Canada. This is where her love of reading and writing was born. Her curious nature about everything mysterious and paranormal helped carve the inspiration for her passion of writing horror and mystery stories. She is also a published poet, balancing out her writing to express herself in these two very opposing genres. Previous titles include: Oakwood Island - The Awakening (2020), Oakwood Island (2016), A Maiden's Perception - A collection of thoughts, reflections and poetry (2015) and Dark Tales for Dark Nights (2013, written as Angella Jacob).














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