PORTAL on sale for 99 cents!

For some reason my novel PORTAL is now on sale for a mere 99 cents at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. I really think you oughta buy it. Here’s its great new cover:

And here’s a random quote from a satisfied reader:

A Terrific Read! I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started reading this. Would the promising story idea deflate once it got past the initial set-up, as so many other books do? It definitely did not, and stayed entertaining all the way through – I could not put it down. I have kids around the same age and I really felt for these boys – they’re lost and are doing whatever they can to stay alive, stay together and hopefully get home. Glad the book was complete in itself, but it would be great to see them have more adventures like this. Overall, two very enthusiastic thumbs up!


What “A Theory of Justice” needs is a little “Slaves of the Volcano God”

I am following through on my resolution to read John Rawls’s magisterial A Theory of Justice.  But I’ve gotta say that it doesn’t have a lot of laughs.  Approximately zero laughs so far.  Nowhere near as many, in other words, as you’ll find in my friend Craig Shaw Gardner’s Slaves of the Volcano God.  I’m even using my valuable Slaves of the Volcano God bookmark to mark my place in A Theory of Justice, in hopes that some of Gardner’s humor will rub off.  No such luck.  (Of course, if what you’re looking for is political philosophy, I’m pretty sure you won’t find much in Slaves of the Volcano God.)


By the way, something else that could have used a few laughs is Manchester By The Sea.  Casey Affleck is good in it, I guess, but mostly what he does is mope.  Maybe he’ll get an Oscar for moping.  (His big scene with Michelle Williams, though, is epically good.)

If you’ve already read Slaves of the Volcano God and still need some laughs (don’t we all?), you should try Gardner’s new novel, Temporary Monsters

Terra now available on Kobo, Google Play, iTunes…

For those of you who like to take less-traveled roads, my new novel Terra is now available on Kobo, Google Play, and iTunes.  I’m not sure what’s taking Barnes & Noble so long.

Here’s an article about the market shares of ebook vendors.  iTunes has 11% of the market; Barnes & Noble has 8%; Kobo has 3%; Google Play has 2%; Amazon has almost all the rest.  Oddly, most of my sales come from Barnes & Noble.  I do see a smattering of sales from the other vendors not named Amazon.

I will now start reminding people that customer reviews are the life’s blood of book sales.  So far Terra has none.  I expect that they may be hard to come by, since the novel will be of most interest to folks who have read The Portal.  So it’s all the more urgent for me to browbeat you into both reading and reviewing the thing.

Here’s the plot summary and first chapter.

“Terra” is now available from Amazon!

It took longer than I expected — but Terra is finally here.

Terra is the sequel to my novel The Portal; it extends and deepens the story of Larry Barnes and the cosmic gateway he has discovered to parallel universes.  Here’s a summary, along with the first chapter.

Terra cover

The ebook will be available on Barnes & Noble and other online vendors before long.  A print version will show up shortly thereafter.

By the way, if you read the marketing description of Terra on Amazon, you’ll notice a reference to the next book in the series, which is called Barbarica.  Don’t hold your breath waiting for it to appear, though; I’m about a quarter of the way through the first draft.

A nice review of “The Portal”

Here’s a nice review someone just posted on Amazon for my novel The Portal:

The story is riveting from beginning to end. Two preteens far from home but in fact not far but in a parallel universe is a fascinating concept all by itself. Throw in the time travel, dangerous situations, an array of interesting characters to interact with, and the emotions evoked as they experience privations and loss, and this becomes a captivating story you don’t want to put down until the very end. Recommended for teens and adults.

I couldn’t have said it better myself!  I’ll probably post more of these when I get closer to publishing its somewhat long-awaited sequel.

“The Portal” is now free on the Nook!

For a limited time only, presumably.  Presumably Amazon will follow suit before long and lower its price to zero, but you should probably go ahead and pay real money for it anyway.


Here’s a recent 5-star customer review from Amazon:

In this new entry in the Young Adult fiction category, Richard Bowker explores questions of our relationship to the world we live in by telling the tale of a young adolescent who discovers a portal to an alternate version of that world. By creating that world as one with underdeveloped technology, he is able to paint a vivid picture of what life might have been like in the mid 18th century in colonial New England (even though the portal is not a time-travel device). His characters are well-drawn, and his descriptions of battle scenes between the New Englanders and the Portuguese soldiers are gripping, especially with regard to the angst his protagonist, Larry Barnes, feels about having killed an enemy. In the end, Larry has to make a choice — one that is surprisingly difficult and thought-provoking and which wouldn’t have been anticipated earlier in the story.

Print on Demand reaches “Lore of the Underlings”

My friend John Klobucher has created an interesting fantasy universe in his episodic series Lore of the Underlings.  He has now collected the first set of episodes in old-fashioned book form:

Print books are great!  You can read them in the bathtub, and I’m pretty sure they don’t require batteries.  So pick up a few.

Note that John did the cover art.  He also creates podcasts of the episodes, where he does the narration and all the voices.  Plus he composes original music for them.

He’s a bit of a show-off.

Print version of “The Portal” now available from Amazon!

Right here.  It’s more expensive than the e-book version, of course, but don’t you like the feel of a real physical book in your hands?  Also, don’t you think it would make a great Christmas present?  Actually, I’ve given this a lot of thought, and I can’t come up with a better Christmas present than this book.

OK, maybe a Samsung 40-inch 1080p 60Hz LED TV.  But just barely.


Temporary Monsters

Now that you have dutifully purchased Dover Beach at its amazingly low price of $0.99, you will want to also purchase my friend Craig Shaw Gardner’s new funny fantasy novel Temporary Monsters.  If you are wondering whether this novel is worth the $4.27 that Penguin Group (USA) LLC is charging for it, I have just three words for you: Bob the Horse.  Bob the Horse is perhaps the most irritatingly comic character ever invented.

Here is the clever cover: