Self-Publishing Review of Arklight

It’s been an incredible Labor Day weekend! Operation Nightfall won a Bronze Medal in the Readers’ Favorite international book competition, and Force Interdiction had a great review from SPR! Here’s what the professionals had to say about Arklight: Force Interdiction: 4 1/2 out of 5 Stars!

“Novels that could easily fit into 5 or 6 different sections of a bookstore don’t come around very often. Arklight: Force Interdiction by J.M. Myrick is one such creation, a sweeping and creative ride that transcends time, heroic ideals and the traditions of genre.

The plot and premise that Myrick began with Operation: Nightfall is sharpened and expanded in this sophomore offering, with the ancient weapons of the Knights Templar once again being fought over, and the fate of humanity hanging in the balance. Many of the same compelling characters from the first book reappear on Spear Team, the special ops group around which this novel centers.  Myrick also maintains the same delicate balance of action, philosophy, spirituality and suspense that made the opening salvo of this series such a success.

This book has a far more ambitious edge than its predecessor, in that time is now a malleable variable and scenes take place in different time periods with different special ops groups. This temporal disparity could have made the plot difficult to follow, but Myrick has a clear and powerful vision for this series, and a broad enough perspective to keep the plot lines smooth and the holes minimal.

The level of detail in these different time periods, and the shifting tone of the prose, are equally impressive, particularly between soldiers separated by centuries. Even with that broad space to work in, the theme and message of the story remains strong throughout – protecting the oblivious citizens of the world from the evil that lies waiting in their midst.

One of the weak points in the novel is the character development, as Myrick seems more concerned with plot complexity and ensuring that all the pieces fit, rather than focusing on whether the characters are the most believable vessels for such a story. Some of the key characters receive ample attention and have well-constructed interactions with other players, but many others seem like caricatures of recognizable “warriors” and don’t seem to grow or evolve throughout the course of the book. A bit more time spent on creating cohesive relationships between characters (in all relevant time periods) would make the read more engaging and increase reader investment.

When it comes to the technical side of the novel, the editing is solid and the prose is tight. The dialogue is one of the strongest pillars of the book, utilizing the rough-around-the-edges attitudes of hardened soldiers, but also finding time to explicate larger issues and philosophical debates in a natural way. The visceral descriptions of visually striking scenes are also impactful and succinct, and perfectly placed to welcome readers into a new place (or time).

While keeping track of all the varied events between the centuries makes this read a bit demanding on one’s attention, the end of the novel is very satisfying, and readers finally see how all of the pieces fit together. That sort of well-planned payoff – as well as the promise of more books in the future – makes J.M. Myrick an exciting voice in science fiction, and in his own unique genre.”

There’s always something you can do better, and I’ll certainly work hard to improve my craft. However, the takeaway here – “My own genre” – WHAT?! That’s a pretty solid complement, considering I set out to redefine how a book can be perceived. To some, Arklight is science fiction – to others a thriller. It certainly contains those elements, as-well-as Christian-based fiction, action-adventure, historical fiction, military and some have even suggested it to be something entirely different – a hybrid-screenplay. Isn’t that what a novel should be? Something new, or unusual, written in a fictitious prose?

I’m just starting down this path. It’s a path built upon my past, but my past will not define my future. I might stop writing tomorrow, but I can feel it… God is trying to teach me something on this journey. Whatever that may be, I’m listening harder than ever before. Wherever this leads, I’m thankful and it has purpose. Whoever I can positively impact through my story, I’m ready. As a good friend, teammate, and writer once said to me, “Here’s to the journey!”

AWARD WINNER!

My debut novel, and 1st book in the series, Arklight: Operation Nightfall has won the 2018 Readers’ Favorite Bronze Medal for Christian Thrillers. It was an inspired tale that came to me in such a way; it begged to be written. I am very honored to receive a major international award. I have entered Arklight: Force Interdiction in the 2019 competition, so I’m hoping for much of the same!

I’m really happy to announce that Operation Nightfall will be on display at the Miami Book Fair, November 11-18, 2018, by Readers’ Favorite. My book placed third out of thousands of submissions and that’s a pretty awesome milestone. I hope to have the final book in the series through the initial write by sometime in early 2019. For now, I will seriously enjoy this moment!

Arklight wins Readers’ Favorite Bronze Medal

What an honor! To have Operation Nightfall WIN an International Award is awesome! Thanks to everyone for their support and I look forward to seeing how Force Interdiction fares in 2019. I have much appreciation for the readers! Thank you!

I guess I’ll be off to Miami to become an award-winning author. Sweet!

The Arklight Saga and More!

After much thought, internal discussion, and plotting, the Arklight story will end with book 3, Task Force Crusader. The story was originally planned for 4-5 books, but I’ve grown to appreciate heart-pounding, pulse-pumping action. That means book 3 will be much longer than the first two, essentially packing the last phases of the story into a mind-boggling ending. The good news, I’m already well into the initial write, and I don’t think it will take very long to finish.

The readership has grow exponentially since Operation Nightfall hit #1 on the Military War Thriller Free list on Amazon. It almost topped three different categories that weekend. Force Interdiction is still getting off the ground and I’m expecting a review from SPR any day now. Fingers crossed; they usually don’t pull any punches. Hoping it fares well.

Stay tuned for some cool upcoming features of the Arklight story. Get your copy of Force Interdiction today!

On another note, I’ve started a new project that’s different and interesting. I can’t wait to pull from all of the stories floating around in my head. To words; cop stories. Finally, thanks to the readers!

TODAY: Force Interdiction Release!

After an awesome promotional weekend, Arklight: Force Interdiction is available TODAY for purchase on Kindle and Paperback! Operation Nightfall went to #1 on Amazon’s Military Thriller free list over the weekend, so don’t miss the follow up to that incredible story! Interdiction uses Nashville’s diverse civil war history to create an awesome backdrop to the story. A new mission awaits!

This installment brings back Spear Team as they attempt to locate another piece of the ultimate weapon. The appearance of Magnus O’Keefe has deadly consequences. The Alsos Mission team learns the importance of the Knights Templar journal, and they follow up on one of it’s secrets in WWII. Find out the importance of the Ghent Adam panel code and what’s really at stake.

Arklight: Force Interdiction Review

This ARC review was courtesy of Lindsay Merkel and can be found on Goodreads.

5 of 5 Stars!

“Arklight: Force Interdiction” – Spear Team is back with even more action, adventure, and time travel in this second installment of the Arklight series! The story also introduces new characters, a wicked Big Bad, and more historical mysteries to solve.

Using the ancient Knights Templar journal from their first mission, the new novel sees Spear Team working to uncover and obtain another piece of the “ultimate weapon,” which is tied to historical works of art that are hiding critical secrets. The story unfolds across time as the large cast of characters engages in separate-but-related missions in World War II, the Civil War, and modern day 2016.

As the sequel to “Arklight: Operation Nightfall,” “Arklight: Force Interdiction” is a strong followup to the first novel. Like the first book, the story is well-written and the plot is robust – in fact, I think there is even more happening here in “Force Interdiction.” There are so many layers to this story! Like it’s predecessor, “Arklight: Force Interdiction” is a multi-themed book, blending together military, history, and spirituality elements. When combined, these themes create a novel that is equal parts exciting, interesting, and inspiring. And while there is a lot information to absorb, the threads of the plot come together steadily throughout the book, offering suspenseful moments to intrigue readers, and then delivering on resolution so we aren’t left behind as the story continues to jump between missions and eras.

“Force Interdiction” also sees a minor character from the first novel rise up as a major player, who contributes to making the second book decidedly gorier and raises the stakes for Arklight by way of his cruelty and a mission of his own. Along with this villainous figure, “Force Interdiction” includes several female characters in each time period who fill some smaller, strategic roles. Their presence is a fresh addition to the action, showing us some diverse ways in which women contribute to the missions of Arklight!

With its solid writing, detailed storyline, and variety of characters, “Arklight: Force Interdiction” is a novel that will appeal to a wide audience. In addition, its unique blend of thematic elements puts the Arklight series into a genre of its own. I say “series” because it seems there is still more to transpire for Spear Team and company, and I look forward to the continuation!