Excerpts


Into the Void – 50 page excerpt

Hi,

For everyone waiting for tomorrow, or the postman, or payday, here is a 50 page excerpt of Into the Void, courtesy of Star Wars books.  It may only be available until this coming Friday, so be quick, or read fast.

You can find the excerpt here


Extract from White

I went with Ellie and Brand. Ellie had a shotgun cradled in the crook of her arm, a bobble hat hiding her severely short hair, her face all hard. There was no room in her life for compliments, but right now she was the one person in the manor I’d choose to be with. She’d been all for trying to make it out alone on foot; I was so glad that she eventually decided to stay.

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Extract from Dawn

An extract from Dawn, Chapter One

Warning: if you have not yet read Dusk, read no further! Here be spoilers!

Soaring high above Noreela, it was easy to believe that the world had ended again.

The evidence of scared, scattered communities lay spread out below, all of them illuminated against a darkness that should not be. Ten thousand faces would be searching for the sun but seeing only this unnatural dusk, and Lenora wondered what they would think were they to spy the hawk. Would they know? Would they have any inkling of what they were looking at?

She thought not. But soon, that would change.

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Extract from Hellboy: Unnatural Selection

“That is one big worm.” Hellboy had always wanted to take a trip to Rio, but not to fight dragons.

“Weird how people get used to things,” Amelia Francis said. She was a lecturer in Mythology in History at the local university, and a BPRD advisor in South America. She had met Hellboy at the airport less than two hours ago. Now they were standing beside the road staring up at the dragon that perched on the outstretched left arm of Christ the Redeemer. “Ask most people now, and they’ll shake their heads and smile and say it’s a joke.”

“Even though that thing turned half of Copacabana beach into a sheet of glass?”

“People can’t believe, so they choose not to.”

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Extract from Berserk

Ten years after Steven’s death, Tom never thought that his son would change his life again.

Tom held dear every precious memory of Steven, especially those times that affected him so much that he believed they had altered his perception of things forever. His toddler son, pointing to the sky in wonder and gasping his first word, Cloud! Older, learning to ride his bike, Tom letting go and Steven only falling off when he realised he was riding on his own. At thirteen he won a bronze swimming medal for the school in the national finals, and the photograph of his presentation showed a boy on the cusp of manhood, his expression delighted yet reserved, full of self-awareness. At seventeen Steven joined the Army, and at nineteen he was accepted into the Parachute Regiment. Tom still had the photograph of his son wearing that red beret hanging above his fireplace at home. It made him proud. It made him sad. It was the last picture he took of Steven before he died.

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Extract from Dusk

An extract from Dusk, Chapter One

When Kosar saw the horseman, the world began to end again.

The horse walked towards the village, the rider shifting in fluid time to his mount’s steps. The man’s body was wrapped in a deep red cloak, pulled up so that it formed a hood over his head, shadowing his face. His hands rested on his thighs. The horse made its own way along the road. Loose reins hung either side of its head, its mane was clotted with dirt, its unshod hooves clacked and clicked puffs of dust from the dry trail. Only one man on a horse, and he did not appear to be armed.

How, then, could Kosar know that death followed him in?

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Extract from Pieces of Hate

Gabriel dreamed of the last time he was truly alive.

After all he had been through – the exotic places, the violent encounters, the disappointments and victories – this memory should have been a bland speck in his seas of experiences. There was just him, and some trees, and the man with a snake in his eye. But the image was important, because it was the last time he could remember having any sense of excitement or hope for the future. Then he had been a man with a family; now, he was barely even a man. It stood out from all his other memories as the moment when his soul had been corrupted by three simple words:

Feed your hate.

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Extract from Desolation

An extract from Desolation, Chapter One

Cain had few possessions, even fewer memories, and no family. Nowhere seemed a perfect place to begin his new life.

The taxi dropped him at the kerbside and left him sitting on his suitcase, several plastic carrier bags scattered around his feet like bloated dead pigeons, real birds chattering from gutters and telephone lines, irate at his intrusion. He turned to the wooden chest beside him on the pavement and grabbed its handle, hardly surprised when he found he could lift one end from the ground with ease. Its weight seemed to vary with his own moods. Today, he was happy to be here.

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Extract from Changing of Faces

A full moon brought the first tide of death.

They saw them in the distance, loping along the beach, crawling through the sand, ducking and diving in the air, leaping from the sea where waves dashed whitely against the shore. The curved bay was wide, the approaching shadows at least a mile distant, and this far out the threat could only exist in the minds of the observers. But after all they had been through they were attuned to dangers, both apparent and potential. They had come to expect the worst.

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Extract from Exorcising Angels

There were ten thousand dead Germans laid out before them. Gunshots still rang out, but the offensive had halted. What they heard now were the individual reports of German officers shooting their men as they turned tail and fled, and perhaps the occasional sound of a suicide. They screamed and shouted, these officers, urging the attack onward even though the slaughter was already over, accusing their men of treachery and cowardice. Blinded by terror at what they had seen, it was their Lugers that gave final judgement.

“Thousands of them!” Bill said. “There’re thousands of them dead out there!”

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Extract from White and Other Tales of Ruin

An extract from “Mannequin Man and the Plastic Bitch”

A clock struck one o’clock somewhere unseen, and he realised suddenly that he had somewhere else to be.

He walked around the shaded park twice before he saw the sign for Ashley Street. It was a lane rather than a street, and an alley more than a lane, home to a few squat fast-food shops, a couple of porn palaces and a chop shop that stank of blood and desperation. A couple of its regular clients hung around outside, bad advertising if ever Tom had seen it: the woman had no nose or eyelids, but bled profusely out of open veins above her eye sockets; the man displayed his mutilated genitalia, balls the size of footballs and a dick like a joint of uncooked pork.

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Extract from Face

An extract from Face, Chapter One

Later, they would all wonder how they had not guessed the truth. He was waiting in the snow, but after climbing into the car he did not seem cold, his breath did not condense, he appeared calm and composed. He did not act like a man that needed help.

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Extract from Until She Sleeps

Nightmare

He ran, because it was all there was for him to do. He had a target in mind — somewhere in mind, somewhere buried beneath the panic and agony, and the disbelief that his Wednesday could possibly have turned into this — but for now he could only run, and if his flight took him anywhere near his target, his plan, so be it. He could not slow down enough to think, nor lessen his pace to allow his brain time to plan his route. All sense of where and when had vanished when the fire-dogs chased him from the field.

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Extract from The Nature of Balance

The dead girl holds her mother’s hand.

She does not seem dead. In fact, she is the very image of a pretty, lively child, all sun-tanned limbs, glinting eyes and knees grazed by adventure. Even her hair appears drunk on her life force, swaying where there is no breeze and bouncing with each step.

But the girl is dead, existing only in this strange place, unmissed and forgotten elsewhere. And although her mother clasps her hand tightly, and their palms are fused by sweat, there is no real connection.

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Extract from As The Sun Goes Down

An extract from “The Beach”: A short story:

“Sunday,” Ray said.

I nodded. “Sunday. Day of rest.” From behind us, the regular crack of rifles.

He sighed. “I’m dead beat. Stiff as a bugger. Do you think there’s any hope?”

Without looking at him, I uttered something between a giggle and a sob. I’d been feeling pretty weird lately. “There’s always hope. So long as we have bullets, there’s always hope.” I drew a shape in the dew-speckled grass, but did not know what it was meant to be.

“Clich√© King strikes again.”

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Extract from Hush

He cannot tear his gaze from the dead man.

Even though terror is bearing down inexorably upon them, still the body grips his attention. The corpse has fallen to the crawling ground, and has started to disintegrate. Darting shapes – ant-like things, big as scorpions, made of blood – nip at the exposed flesh. They burrow into the wound at the back of the cadaver’s neck and bear away gory morsels. The body’s cells seem possessed of a sudden repulsive energy, their binding properties reversed by this perverse domain until their very molecules rip apart in a cloudy red haze. In a matter of seconds the dead man has ceased to be an individual. Now, he is a swarm.

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Extract from Naming of Parts

In the morning Jack went to fetch the milk, but the milkman hadn’t been. His father appeared behind him in the doorway, scowling out at the sunlight and the dew steaming slowly from the ground, hands resting lightly on his son’s shoulders.

Something had been playing on Jack’s mind all night, ever since it happened. An image had seeded there, grown and expanded and, in the silence of his parent’s bedroom where none of them had slept, it had blossomed into an all-too-plausible truth. Now, with morning providing an air of normality – though it remained quieter than usual, and stiller – he was certain of what he would find. He did not want to find it, that was for sure, yet he had to see.

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Extract from Faith in the Flesh

(From the novella “Bad Flesh”)

There is a good chance that I will never return from this trip. The lumps on my chest have opened up and are weeping foul-smelling fluid; the first sign of the end. I wear two T-shirts beneath my shirt to soak up the mess.

And if my disease does not kill me, Malakki is always there in the background to complete the job.

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Extract from Dead Man’s Hand

Death rode out of the desert on a pale horse. He came on the fifth day of the rains, and although his mount was caked in mud and his clothes were sodden, I could still smell the sweet stench of death. It takes more than water to wash all that away.

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