Friday, December 18, 2009

The Minution Chronicles - Saving Zinitheron: A Science Fiction Adventure book for Kids!

An evil scientist has poisoned the atmosphere of Zinitheron. Professor Zeetherious Zarnosis holds the hopes of the remaining population in his hands as he puts in motion a plan to save his microscopic planet. Armed with the knowledge that larger living organisms become super-strong when shrunk to his size, Zeetherious reaches out to three seventh-grade “Earth-dwellers” for help.

For best friends Kelly, Benny, and Jonathan, getting past the shock of an encounter with a space-alien is difficult enough, but placing their faith in this miniscule stranger, agreeing to be “matter manipulated” to the size of amoebas, and then travel into space, now that takes guts!

Watching the threesome sneak out of Benny’s basement, “get small”, and enter a waiting space ship, the reader is left to wonder, will Benny’s sister discover them missing? Can Zeetherious’ dying planet be saved? Can he manage to get these three brave adventurers back to Earth in time for dinner?

Zeetherious and his young recruits draw on their friendship, their faith, and their belief in what is right, to navigate through battles with bizarre space creatures, flying asteroids, and a dastardly villain, in a valiant effort to save Zinitheron! Along the way, these four unlikely partners learn life lessons about the true meaning of friendship and the importance of trusting one another.

THE MINUTION CHRONICLES – SAVING ZINITHERON is crafted with the love of what-ifs, and an appetite for exploration of the unknown. The story is aimed at the lower age range of the young adult category. While it is a science fiction romp through space, the improbable journey takes root and grows out of the lives of three middle school kids. A simple space-time relationship allows the reader to readily suspend disbelief, making it easy to get lost in the adventure.

Friday, December 11, 2009

An Excerpt from Chapter 4 - Sweet Dreams?

Bright spots danced around blinking on and off, moving, darting from one place to another within the field of view, growing larger and smaller, pulsating, distorting the scene.

It was dark, very dark. Or was it? Was it the bright spots that made it seem that way? The spots seemed to light up the scene while at the same time making it harder to see. There was something in the darkness but it was hard to make out. It was large, but the shape was distorted. It changed shape, as if it was living, breathing, in and out, deep long breaths, in and out, in and out. Then it changed again, first tall and thin, tip toeing and reaching for the sky, then low sprawling on the ground reaching tendrils out to grab and take. It was evil, menacing, but then it was a friend, a comfort.

The scene changed to a calm, tranquil lake. The lake was still like glass, surrounded by trees. The sun was setting, casting a wonderful purple-orange glow over the water. As soon as it appeared, it disappeared, replaced by a raging fire, flames so close the children felt them licking their faces and smelled flesh burning. The scene changed again, this time it was bitter cold, and wet. The children were under water, gasping for breath, held down, unable to break the surface of the water.

From his lab, Zeetherious watched the children on his monitors as they lay dreaming in their beds. They tossed and turned, their legs churning beneath the covers. He saw sweat beading on their foreheads.

Again the scene changed, a shrill whistle, a look in the direction of the deafening blast, hammering vibrations as a locomotive hurtled past within inches, shaking their bodies to the core. The rush of wind, feeling like thousands of needles thrust into their faces.

Then total darkness, stillness, silence. Then BOOM, BOOM, BOOM. That’s a heartbeat; it reverberates. It goes on, BOOM- BOOM-BOOM. It is getting faster and stronger and louder. Then there is nothing. Is the heart still beating? Are their hearts still beating?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

More from Chapter 2, Time and Space

Zeetherious was not the only one watching the children. From high up in his office on Vanderia IV, in the farthest reaches of the Minution Planetary Cluster, Narcos Varanan listened to make sure that the transmission was complete. He could not contain his delight. Although there was no one else in his office, he chuckled out loud.

“So, Zeetherious, you went to Earth for help. I guess you really didn’t have much of a choice did you? Well, this should indeed be fun. Not only will I destroy you, and take back Zinitheron, I can also have some fun with three little Earth children. Yes, my friend, you must sleep now. Of course, you go right ahead and sleep. You’ll need your rest.”

Thursday, October 22, 2009

An Excerpt from Chapter 2, Time and Space

Zeetherious’ circular head and slanted shoulders took up the entire PDA screen. He had two large eyes, on either side of his face, much the same as humans, but had nothing resembling human ears or lips. He had no wrinkles, but he looked old.

“I can see you, so you should see me.” Zeetherious lipless mouth moved, but was out of synch with his words.

The children gaped at his distorted image on the PDA. He was illuminated only by the murky, yellow-green light cast by his monitors. His movements were sudden and imprecise, like a movie with pieces of the film edited out. The video signal was pulsating, growing weak and fuzzy, then so bright that the children had to squint to keep looking.

Jonathan, Kelly, and Benny leaned in on each other and began whispering. He moved DRAVU number two in between the three of them and increased the input volume. By the time Jonathan spoke aloud, Zeetherious knew what he was going to say.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Minution Chronicles - Saving Zinitheron, Now Available!

The Minution Chronicles - Saving Zinitheron, is now available for purchase on CreateSpace and AMAZON.COM! Middle grade readers, come on an adventure through space with Zeetherious Zarnosis, his sidekick DACU, and three remarkable seventh graders, as they race against time to save Planet Zinitheron!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Contact, An Excerpt from Chapter One

Kelly broke the silence, “No Way. This is by far the best trick you have ever pulled, Benny. You are a genius. That thing sounds like a cross between Yoda and The Terminator!”

“Kelly, I swear, I’m not doing anything.” Benny’s voice trembled.

“No way,” Kelly said. “No way. Okay I tell you what, let’s ask for a sign or something. Let’s make this ‘whatever it is’ prove that it’s for real. It should be able to make itself visible, or blow something up or something. Benny, I’m gonna find out how you are doing this.”

“If it can really hear us, then we shouldn’t have to ask,” Jonathan whispered.

With all of the time he had spent perfecting his communication systems, the DRAVUs, the language translation module, Zeetherious had not thought of having to prove his existence by doing something extraordinary. He had to think of something and it had to be convincing. If I can see them, he thought, it is only fair if they see me.

He connected his video camera output to a spare monitor. He then aimed the camera back towards himself so his image appeared in the center of the screen.

“Miss Taylor, please activate your hand-held device.”

Kelly turned on the PDA. “He’s so polite, Benny.” She looked over at Benny and began to giggle.

The three children huddled up to the display. Zeetherious sent the video signal from the camera to the PDA. As if by magic, the image of Zeetherious, sitting in his lab deep below the surface of Zinitheron, a planet thousands of miles away, was displayed on a three inch PDA display screen in a clubhouse in Novi, Michigan.

Kelly stopped giggling.

He watched the three children through his monitor as they stared at his strange image on the PDA. It was as if they were looking through a window that gave them a glimpse into another world. Indeed, Jonathan Mitchell, Kelly Taylor and Benny Bartholomew had entered another world. The world they once knew had been changed forever.

In but a few moments, he had transformed these three children into believers, believers that they did not know everything about everything, that there were still many things to be discovered and that indeed what many thought impossible, was possible.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Front Cover Courtesy of Jasenka Luksa Photography

A special thank you to Jasenka Luksa Photography for allowing me to use one of their photographs for the front cover of this book. If you want to see more great photographs like these, visit Jasenka Luksa Photography