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May 2, 2020

"Once again Paul Bennett mixes magic, action, great characters, and a wonderful storyline to produce another must-read book." - Ljp

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On the Homefront

May is upon us now, and with it, the warmer weather has arrived. Not much has changed around the neighbourhood, but at least the sun is out a little more often, making the task of walking the dogs more enjoyable. Tilly likes that there are more sticks on the ground for her to carry home!

Inside the house, I have discovered a new streaming service called Tubi. It’s absolutely free, though it does have commercials, and is owned by Fox. The nice thing about it is that it has many, many categories that help you refine your search, and it also has a number of classic movies, including The Way Forward, of which I wrote about some weeks ago.

This week, I watched The Man in the Iron Mask, the 1939 version starring Louis Hayward and Joan Bennett. It’s always interesting to see an actor portray a dual role, and they did a good job of using a split-screen, though I did detect at least one scene where they used rear projection! Overall, an entertaining swashbuckler.

Read Mercerian Tales: The Call of Magic for FREE!

Over 50% of you choose Mercerian Tales: The Call of Magic as the book you would most like to read this week, so without further ado, here it is just for you!

Both Daisy and Tilly agree with your choice, as this book features a canine sidekick that they both like, Fang! 

And for those who have already read this, and want more Albreda, I do have a second book in mind for her, I just have to fit it in the schedule!

Spoiler alert - Although you can read this as a standalone, it will give you a better experience to read it after Shadow of the Crown, book four in the Heir to the Crown series.

Politics in Fiction

Whenever you have people, you have opinions, and these opinions, when applied to countries, form a political landscape. To the French, Napoleon was a hero, while in Britain, he was a villain. History is, of course, written by the victors and so we tend to be heavily influenced by those that come afterward, and fiction is no different.

When I write a series like Heir to the Crown, I can’t help but get the characters involved in such things. After all, they’re meant to mimic the actions of living, breathing individuals. The ruler of Merceria will not always agree with her advisors, something that comes to the forefront in Defender of the Crown, though we see the seeds of discontent being sown in Burden of the Crown.

This political landscape has far-reaching consequences as Anna attempts to reform her country for the betterment of all. Even though Burden settled many issues relating to discontent, there are still those out there with divergent theories about how the country should be ruled, theories that they cannot wait to put into practice.

Making politics intriguing is a challenge, of course, as there are not too many people that want to read about a bunch of ministers complaining to their liege lord or lady. The advantage of fiction is that we can manipulate events to suit the storyline, making it much easier to have events coincide at a critical time.

Will politics continue in Merceria? Undoubtedly, as I still have to write Fury of the Crown, and many more stories afterwards!

Paul's Entertainment Pick of the Week - Aces High

I had seen this movie a long time ago but came across this just this week as I was searching through our streaming services, so I thought I’d rewatch it. Aces High is about British aviators during World War One. It stars Malcolm McDowell as the leader of a squadron that is fighting near the front in 1917. The movie also features Christopher Plummer and Simon Ward, who fill out the cast nicely. In essence, it is a retelling of the play “Journey’s End” by R. C. Sherrif but transplanted from the trenches to an aerodrome.

If you’re looking for historical accuracy, I’m afraid there are flaws, but they do a decent job of making the British planes look like S.E.5’s, and while the German aircraft are less authentic, but at least the dogfight scenes are impressive. While watching, I was reminded of the memoirs of the WWI Ace James McCudden. In his book, Flying Fury, he describes what life was like for these airmen, which I think they did an excellent job of capturing in this film.

There are only a handful of decent films of this genre, the most well known probably being The Blue Max, but I think this film ranks up there with it!

Please let me know what some of your favourite war movies are so I can add them to my watch list!

A big apology to those of you who expected me on Facebook Live last Monday. Unfortunately, I was under the weather for most of this past week. I will now be restarting my Live videos on Monday, May 11, 2020 at my usual time of 5:30 pm EST. Please take a moment and shoot me an email with your questions.

Paul@pauljbennettauthor.com or simply reply to this newsletter.

Work in Progress Update

My word count for the week hasn’t been great as I was a little under the weather for a few days, but I managed to hit 100,000 words in Temple Knight, and the book is now building nicely toward its conclusion.

I did, however, manage to make my early chapter edits, and I think the story is better for them. Starting a new series is always a challenge, and even my most detailed outlines end up being modified by the end, with this book being no exception. As I wrote the prose, new concepts came to mind, allowing me to introduce new characters and situations that will benefit the series in the long run.

I also have to remember that Temple Knight sets the stage, not only for the rest of Charlaine’s story but also that of Ludwig as well, for just as she struggles on behalf of the church, he struggles to unite the Petty Kingdoms. In both cases, they are involved in the conflict with Halvaria, a conflict that will grow to engulf the entire continent and maybe even beyond!

Until next time, Happy reading!

Author Spotlight!

Check out these featured books that are free, discounted, or new releases.
These authors are returning the favour by sharing my books with their readers.

Shadow of the Overlord: A heroine no one knows they need. A reluctant warrior with a dark secret. A crumbling kingdom on the brink of war. 

Taliesimon has always dreamed of being the first female Dragoon warrior, but the commander and his lackeys will do anything to ensure she fails. 

An itinerant sell-sword, William’s life is nothing like he imagined. His two greatest enemies are the bottle, which he takes no pains to avoid, and his past, which he avoids at all costs. 

With enemies on all sides, can they put their differences aside in time to save humanity from a brutal war unlike anything the world has ever seen?

The Sword of Light: For five hundred years the Gods have united the Three Lands in harmony. Now that balance has been shattered, and chaos threatens. 

A town burns and flames light the night sky. Hunted and alone, seventeen-year-old Eric flees through the wreckage. Guilt weighs on his soul, but he cannot stop, cannot turn back. If he stops, they die. 

For two years he has carried this curse, bringing death and destruction wherever he goes. But now there is another searching for him, one who offers salvation. His name is Alastair, and he knows the true nature of the curse. Magic.

Buried Goddess Saga: A rotten thief. A disgraced knight. Only together can they save the kingdom. 

When the young king's soul is stolen by a cultist desperate to resurrect the Buried Goddess, exiled knight Torsten Unger makes it his sworn duty to get it back. He has one chance to restore his honor. But he can't do it alone. He'll need a thief. 

Whitney Fierstown planned the perfect heist, one that would have made him a legend among thieves, until he got caught. Now, a knight with a questionable reputation is offering a deal: rot and die in a dank cell or join him on a dangerous expedition to put his skills to good use and earn his freedom. 

Now they must put aside their differences and work together to battle unholy cults, demons, rebels, and worse to become the heroes their war-torn kingdom never expected...if they don't kill each other first.

Featured Book Deals & Giveaways

While you wait for the release of my next book, here are some great stories for your TBR pile!

More Giveaways & Deals!
Sci-Fi & Fantasy Giveaway
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May Fantasy Book Giveaway
Bingeworthy Boxset Bookfair
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Fantastic Free Fantasy Books
May All-Genre BookFair
Bingeworthy Boxsets
Starlight Sci-Fi & Fantasy BookFair
Fantastical Tales May Giveaway

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