I am delighted to Welcome author, C.S. Boyack to Robbie’s Inspiration today with an over view of, and extract from, his new book, Viral Blues. I must say I love the cover, Craig.
Thanks for the invitation, Robbie. I’m touring my new book, “Viral Blues,” around for the Halloween season.
This one is a sequel for “The Hat,” but there is no prerequisite reading required. I actually worked pretty hard on this, so people could pick up any book in the series and not feel like they’re lost.
One thing I did was incorporate characters from previous tales into Viral Blues. I’m really happy with how it turned out, because you don’t need to read their stories either to enjoy this book. This may be the swan song for many of them, but Lizzie and the hat will go on.
Today, I have a little excerpt that features Jason Fogg. Jason is the result of a science fiction accident. He is able to turn into vapor and back again. This makes him pretty handy as a corporate spy. In fact, he makes his living as a private detective.
This is a team-up adventure, and in this scene, Jason has invaded a large pharmaceutical company to gather some intelligence.
“I’ve got company.” I’ll keep reading, but I’m going to get cut off. “St. Joseph, Des Moines, Ann Arbor –”
A huge hand grabbed him and yanked him to his feet. The telephone clattered to the floor. Jason smiled. “Just putting in some overtime.”
The zombie didn’t speak. How could he with his mouth stitched up? His grey, crackled face completely emotionless. His eyes black and dead.
The zombie threw him down the hall, bouncing him off the window. Jason struggled to breathe and retain consciousness. The sound of cracking glass prickled the hairs on the back of his neck. The zombie was on him in the blink of an eye.
The next throw broke the window. Jason watched the zombie’s face fade into the distance as he fell from the fifty-sixth floor. His eyes rolled back in his head, and he swooned.
When he regained his composure, the zombie still watched, but was high above him now. Jason took a glance at the rapidly
approaching asphalt. With the zombie watching, he’d have to time this perfectly.
He rolled to the side to check oncoming traffic. Somewhere around the third floor, he evaporated. His clothes landed in the street. Cars screeched and swerved to avoid them. The impact of the vehicles spread his particles down the block. Pieces of his cloud went in different directions.
His consciousness clung to the largest piece, intact, if a bit groggy. He drifted toward the next largest piece and adhered to it. This gave him a better feel for the other bits swirling around the resulting fender bender.
Pieces of Jason roiled under the cars, flowed down the storm drain, and swirled around a street lamp. He gathered enough of them to gain more control, then started calling the smaller bits toward him. The last bit blew out the nostril of a wino who’d been sleeping in an alley. Gross. I hate it when people breathe me in, but that’s the worst.
Someone knows about the hat. The creature from another dimension that helps Lizzie fight against the creatures of darkness.
They are summoned to a cryptic meeting with a secret society, where they meet other people with enhanced skills. It turns out someone, or something, has been tampering with the world’s vaccine supply. The goal doesn’t appear to be political or financial, but biblical pestilence.
Can this group of loners come together in time to make a difference when even the proper authorities are obstacles?
Check out Viral Blues, for your dose of paranormal adventure, with a strong sample of dark humor. And in recent superhero style, don’t miss the secret last chapter after the back material.
A five star Amazon review
Writester Verified Purchase five star review
It was everything I expected and more.
Viral Blues reminds me of A League of Extraordinary Gentlemen—a large cast of heroes with various powers/talents/strengths who band together to stop a nefarious organization from issuing in an apocalypse. Boyack’s villains plan to infect the world with a deadly virus by distributing the illness through tainted batches of the vaccination that should save the population. Thank God he’s created many story worlds with heroes who can rise to the challenge. The motley cast of characters is assembled, and what ensues is brilliant—stealthy surveillance, epic zombie battles, and action-packed shoot-outs, all under the umbrella of snarky banter Lizzie and the hat are famous for. (Clovis and Lisa more than hold their own, and the rest of the group rises to the challenge, as well.)
The plot advances at a blistering pace climaxing in a final battle I couldn’t read fast enough. Kudos to the author for a masterful work. And bonus points for the teaser at the end. I’m really looking forward to more in this series.
My five star review of The Hat
The Hat by C.S. Boyack is such a great read. The main characters are a young girl, Lizzie St Laurent, a twenty-one-year-old college dropout whose grandmother has died and who has been left to fend for herself in a city far from home and the Hat. Lizzie is working a couple of jobs to pay the bills and keep a roof over her head. She also has a deal with the landlord whereby she keeps the garden tidy and trim in return for free utilities. Lizzie is struggling and when her uncle doesn’t want to give her a keepsake from her grandmother’s estate, she helps herself to one from the back of the removal van. Boy, does she make a good choice. She ends up acquiring a hat that can communicate with her, transform its shape, transfer her to a “safe house’ built by her grandfather and teach her how to play a musical instrument. What is even better is that the Hat is magically bound to Lizzie’s family and is there to assist her out of tight spots in life. When the baby of a friend of Lizzie’s is stolen, the Hat is right there by her side to help her rescue the babies form a band of ruthless kidnappers.
Along the way, Lizzie will have some fun experimenting with great fashion items and meeting some interesting musicians. The Hat is a fast-paced novella which will keep you turning the pages, giving you lots of laughs along the way.
I rated this book five stars out of five.