Links to Interesting Sites and Books (and some very good friends):
Bill Crider's Author Site
Joe Prentis' Author Site
Lise Horton's Author Site
Milton T. Burton's Author Site
J. Conrad's "Lake Caerwych" on Amazon
Sally A. Wolf's Author Site on Amazon
Publisher: Cinco Puntos Press
Friday's Forgotten Books
The Art of William B. Montgomery
Duggan House Museum
Texas Ranger Hall of Fame
A Bit of Music:
In The Good Times:
Book Signing Photos (2010)
Reading in Alpine, Texas
The launch of MysteryPeople
--BookPeople, Austin, Texas
(left to right: Jesse Sublett--hamming it up, Scott Montgomery, Johnny Byrd, Bobby Byrd, Ito Romo, George Wier)
The eloquent Bobby Byrd
--Book People, Austin, Texas
Bobby Byrd & George Wier
--SMU Barnes & Noble, Dallas, Texas
Texas Book Festival, Austin, Texas
(Under a tent in the center of South Congress Avenue near the Capitol--left to right: Bobby Byrd, Sarah Cortez, George Wier, Jesse Sublett, and the incomparable Tim Tingle)
Sarah Cortez reading with elan'
--Texas Book Festival, Austin, Texas
MILTON T. BURTON
Author, Historian, Friend
Photograph by Sallie Wier
Milton Burton passed away in the early morning hours of December 1, 2011 at a hospital in Tyler, Texas. He will be sorely missed by his family, his many friends, and his many thousands of readers.
What made Milton stand out as a writer was his way of succinctly capturing the essence of a person such that it reflected their entire character. It might be one little thing that one could hang a tag on to define that person and draw a definite--and colorful--picture of in the mind of the reader. That's just one. The other was his unique ability to capture the essence of the culture and the environment in a few well-placed words. He was a wordsmith, natively, of a calibre that has largely disappeared from the Earth.
What I will perhaps recall most fondly about Milton is his abrupt and genuine laughter. He saw humor in all things, great and small. His laugh was large and full and matched his frame and his agile, keen, wizard-like and professorial mind.
I would like for people to know that a man walked in their midst who was both larger-than-life and yet was down to earth. He was a common man and he surrounded himself by common men and women. He took exception to pretentiousness in any form, whether it was a politician--whom he could, with a laser scalpal wit, divorce from any reason--or an article-writer who spoke much and said little. He was first and foremost a friend upon first meeting with everyone.
Texas has lost an honored son and the world has lost one of its precious treasures.
Viewers of this site are welcome to a free copy of Letters To The Galaxy, a science-fiction short story. You may copy and distribute freely. A bit of fun. I hope you enjoy!--GW
Ganymede, by Cherie Priest (Folks, I highly recommend The Clockwork Century books. They are steampunk thrillers of the highest order. Where else can you find zombies, blimps and Civil War revisionist history in an action-packed thriller?)
Dreadnought, by Cherie Priest
The Terror, by Dan Simmons
Boneshaker, by Cherie Priest
Abraham's Bones, by Joe Prentis
A Bit of Art, for those of you who have called upon me to put it back up. Thanks!
pencil by George Wier
pencil by George Wier
pencil by George Wier
oil on canvas by George Wier
I have become enamored with the books of Cathy Cash Spellman. I am suggesting her books, especially Lark's Labyrinth and Snowflake From the Hand of God to my readers. While Labyrinth is pure mystery with a Biblical twist, Snowflake is a book of poetry and reflections on loss, grieving and peace.
Long Fall From Heaven, by George Wier and Milton T. Burton, is being published at Cinco Puntos Press for a scheduled June 3, 2013 release!
Pre-Order now from Amazon or Barnes&Noble!
"Dark and violent as a Gulf storm, Long Fall from Heaven shows us a Galveston full of fascinating characters, secrets, and conspiracies. Cueball and Michah are a team readers can root for."
"Rich in history, Wier and Burton evoke the Galveston I knew from my days with the Galveston News in the 1960s."
Former Lieutenant Governor of Texas
WORK IN PROGRESS:
"Ten years ago, Shelby Knight turned in his badge and put his gun under glass. Since that time there hasn't been a day he has not replayed the shooting death of Aiden Holloway in his mind. When a man kills another man, it changes him forever on the inside.
While lost and adrift amid the pieces of his unreconstructed life, Knight is brought in for questioning regarding a recent murder -- the ballistics match his own gun, he has no alibi, and the police brotherhood of which he was once a well-loved and respected member is now out to nail him to the wall.
Long after the press has dubbed him "The Black Knight," Shelby takes the fight for his life to the streets in the persona of a self-styled vigilante and superhero, complete with armor, shield and sword. Only from behind the protection and anonymity of a medieval steel shell can he discover the truth before the killer strikes yet again. But what are these disturbing dreams where he's killing people he's never met? Is his only friend the killer? Is it a conspiracy? Or is there a hidden, darker half of himself that takes pleasure in bloodshed."
J. Conrad has released the next book in her Copper & Cobalt trilogy, The Space Between Worlds. (!)
Follows is my review:
J. Conrad has created a new world from the ancient one, rich in detail, extravagant in color and texture, and breathtaking in feeling. While this sequel to Lake Caerwych is historically accurate in detail (which stands up to the closest scrutiny and passes with flying colors), the underlying story of the journey of these two time travelers, Bridget and Celena, rivets the reader to the page, and the next page, and the next.
This is a must-read with a timeless appeal. While The Space Between Worlds may have been written for young adults, more mature readers will find themselves spellbound. The characters live and breathe. The pace flies at a fever pitch, and when it does not, it builds suspense one megalithic stone at a time. What better gift could a parent give to their teen, or for that matter, what better gift could one friend give to another than this haunting tale and its prequel, Lake Caerwych?
Strap in for the long-haul and for the ride of a lifetime.
As an aside, it's going to be tough waiting for the final volume in the Copper and Cobalt trilogy, but I know the wait is going to be worth it.
Author of The Bill Travis Mysteries
The Last Call went as far as #5 in the Kindle Free Store, U.S. It went to #1 both in Kindle Hardboiled Mysteries and in Kindle Action/ Adventure and has remained so now for 5 weeks. Bill Travis readers now number in the hundreds of thousands. I can't thank you enough for your support.
If you've downloaded The Last Call, you're welcome to get Capitol Offense, on sale at Amazon now.
So thanks for stopping by and a big Texas welcome to the site!
As a courtesy--for those of you who do not own a Kindle and would like to read a book, please click on one of the following links, download Kindle for PC or Kindle for Mac, go to Amazon.com and have the book delivered to you instantly.
Thanks again for stopping in!
Download Kindle for PC
Download Kindle for Mac
CONTACT THE AUTHOR:
I am always happy to talk to a reader, therefore, you are welcome to send your emails or inquiries to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Murder In Elysium
The Bill Travis Mysteries #1
The Bill Travis Mysteries #2
The Bill Travis Mysteries #3
The Bill Travis Mysteries #4
The Bill Travis Mysteries #1-4
The Bill Travis Mysteries #5
The Bill Travis Mysteries #6
The Bill Travis Mysteries #7
The Bill Travis Mysteries #8
A Short Story Collection - various authors
A Short Story
A Short Story Collection
A Short Story
A Short Story
The Bill Travis Mysteries
Other Writing Projects:
Murder On The Llano Estacado
A standalone mystery.
(a collaboration with Jaime Conrad)
1889: Journey To The Moon
(from friends of the author):
Fiction - YA Fantasy/SF
Excellent! - gw
See my review of this book
by clicking the link above.
Over The Wall: The Men Behind
The 1934 Death House Escape
by Patrick M. McConal
by Jim Willett
The Rogue's Game
by Milton T. Burton
Read a Review
The Sweet And The Dead
by Milton T. Burton
Read a Review
Nights Of The Red Moon
by Milton T. Burton
The Devil's Odds
by Milton T. Burton
Milton's best book by far.
Skip to www.billtravismysteries.com
Here's a little something for the kids (and those of us who have refused to grow up!):
The Alphabet of Fantasy and Horror
by George Wier
“A” is for “Apoplexy”,
“B” is for “Blight”, and
“C” is for “Counting Sheep”, late, late at night.
But no, “C” is for Centaur,
“D” isn’t for “Doll”, a “D” is for “Dragon”, if I rightly recall.
“D” is also for “Dwarf”, just like
“E” is for “Elf”; I’d like to meet one, if I may say so myself.
“F” is for “Fairy Tale”,
“G” is for “Ghost” or could be for anything that scares you the most.
“H” is for “Halloween”, “Haunting” and “Hell”,
some words you can’t say but they’re easy to spell.
“I” is for “Indian”, not cool to say, but they’d skin you alive if you lived yesterday.
"J” is for “Justice”, just test it and see and you’ll find it’s a myth that most grownups believe.
A “K” is for “Kremlin” if the Russians attack, but they won’t—they’re our friends—it’s the Chinese we track.
“L” is for “Lycanthrope”
“M” is for “Martian”, just the right distance for an alien incursion.
“N” is for “Nightmare”, of course not a horse; little good it’ll do you to try to discourse.
“O” is for “Omen”, bad things on the wing—it might help to believe that such has no sting.
“P” is for “Puritan” with witches to burn, with a “Get the hence, Satan,” if he’s any concern.
“Q” is for “Quarry”, before the attack, or else they’re just “Foes” if surprise they do lack.
“R” is for “Righteous” and “R” is for “Rinse”, wash the blood from your hands if no guilt do you sense.
“S” is for “Sanctuary”, for all whom so claim, "Come and get me, you rats!”, if you do so disdain.
"T” is for “T-Rex” so big and so fast, and just why is Spot barking at eleven half-past?
“U” is for “Unicorn” majestic and true, but why won’t your average blue pony still do?
“V” is for “Villainy”,
“W” for “Wasp”, and while looking for treasure, sure,
“X” marks the spot.
“Y” is for “Yellowstone”, who might blow her lid. We’d all move to New Zealand if ever she did.
“Z”, the last letter, a tough one at best. How ‘bout “Zombie?” or “Zulu?” or “Zebra?” or “Zest?”
Maybe you’d do much better, constrained in your text, to an alphabet letter, one after the next,
and take them completely from “A” unto “Z”.
But don’t fear, it’s no test, it is mere poetry.
A Short Story
We met at the City Lake around 1:30 a.m. As promised by the weatherman the sky was clear and shone with a million stars. The moon would not be putting in her appearance until sometime around five a.m., so there would be no obscurity. We’d be getting the full effect.
I pulled my old Ford off the gravel roadway, expecting to have to wait, but a set of headlights pulled off the highway and turned down the narrow road a quarter of a mile back. Twin spears of light penetrated the settling cloud of dust I’d left behind scant moments before. I wouldn’t even
have time for a cigarette.
After a minute of watching the headlights bounce and dodge all over creation Matt and Mandy and the kids pulled up beside me, their windows rolled down.
“Probably won’t see anything,” Matt said from the driver’s seat.
“Hey Bill,” Mandy said to me. We couldn’t see each other worth a damn. We were two ghostly faces in the night, mere feet away from one another. She had her arm hanging outside the minivan.
“Hey, Amanda,” I said. “Are you bored yet?”
She laughed. I’d always loved her laugh. Matt was a damned lucky man and I’d often wondered to what depths he knew that singular fact.
“I am,” a voice intoned from the back seat. That would be Stuart, the eldest. Stu was a lot like his father-- he saw the rust-lining in everything.
“Did you bring the booze?” Matt asked me as he got out and slammed the door behind him.
“Hush, Matt,” Mandy said. “Get the chairs.”
I waited while the Prescott family disembarked. An onlooker might have thought we were all up to no good--a single man meeting a husband, wife and kids in the dead of night in a closed lake park miles from town. We’d had it figured that there would eventually be cops coming by on patrol. They’d see the vehicles, run an obligatory check or two of the plates, then start to nose around and see if they could find us and run us off. Maybe even give us a ticket. Or two. But the plan was that if that happened I was supposed to flash my badge and magically make everything alright.
I fished the beer out of my trunk and Matt and Mandy and the kids each had their hands full as we trudged across the mown grass, up a hill and around the stand of trees down to the lakes edge. We’d be out of sight from the road, so truthfully, anyone wanting to find us could, but it might take them awhile. I estimated we were a couple football
field lengths from the cars.
Mandy and the kids opened up the lawn chairs. Matt clicked on a flashlight and inspected my cooler.
“Coors Light,” I told him. “And a little something-something for us hard-core drinkers.” I pulled out a flask and handed it to him. Matt unscrewed the lid and sniffed.
“Scotch,” he said. “How old?”
“Older than you,” I said.
“Bill,” Mandy said, “you’re contributing to the
delinquency of a major.”
“I know,” I said. “With malice aforethought.”
“Just so’s you know.”
I took the flask back, screwed the cap on.
“It’ll keep till later,” I told Matt and then tossed
him a cold beer. “In the meantime, shut off that damned light so we can see.”
You can see the stars on the water on a clear night with no wind, no tide and no moon. And the silence is its own presence.
“There’s one!” Suzie, the youngest Prescott exclaimed and pointed. Our eyes had adjusted, so we could see her arm.
A line of light lasting about half a second traced
itself across the sky just west of Leo.
“Oooo. . . Ahh. . .” Stu said, clearly unimpressed. What more can you expect from a fourteen year-old?
“Shut up, Stu,” Matt said.
“Good one, Suze,” Mandy encouraged. “You be nice, Stuart.”
“Hey, Bill. You heard about that water truck we
crashed out at the Extension Service?”
“Nope,” I said, and sipped my beer. “But I’ve got the feeling I’m about to.”
“You sure are,” Matt said, and went on for five minutes about how he orchestrated a fully loaded truck crash into a concrete barrier at sixty miles per hour and managed to catch video from ten different angles for study purposes. The whole time he talked I nodded, watched the sky, and kept
Mandy’s perfume in my nose.
Three more lines came into the sky in rapid succession. This time the ooo’s and ahhh’s were real.
Then, for five minutes, nothing.
Matt was my best friend. I’d known him all our lives. But I wondered what Mandy saw in him that I didn’t. What stars in their courses had brought them together? And why were they still together?
Mandy had always kept me at arms length, but at the same time she had always treated me with a deference I could not fathom. A certain softness found its way into her voice whenever Matt wasn’t around and we had a moment to talk, which happened at least once every few weeks. She would never know that I lived for those brief encounters. And not for the first time, as I watched the night sky and breathed
in her perfume and her presence not three feet away, I wondered if something was there.
“Say, Bill,” Matt said. “I brought something I meant to show you, but I left it in the van.”
“What is it?” I asked.
“It’s a surprise. I’ll go get it.”
“Matt, can’t it wait?” Mandy asked.
“I’ll only be a minute,” he said and got up. “Stu,
walk with your dad.”
“Oh hell!” Stuart said.
“Stu!” Mandy admonished him. “Do what your father says.”
“Alright,” Stuart said, the way only a fourteen year-old who knew everything there was to know on God’s green Earth could say it.
“Be right back,” Matt said, and the darkness swallowed them.
The silence came again.
I breathed in Mandy.
“Mom,” Suzie said. “I’ma gonna wade in the water. Is that alright?”
“What do you think, Bill? Can anything get her?”
“Anything that could get her will run from her,” I
offered. “Suzie, make sure you don’t go deeper than your knees. This lake drops off pretty quick out there.”
“Cool!” Suzie said and darted toward the shore, ten yards or more away.
Silence again, but for little feet making gingerly, quiet splashes.
“Mandy,” I said. “How are you doing?”
“I’m okay. You?”
“You know me. I’m fine.”
“Yeah,” she said. “I know.”
Silence once more.
There came a thudding. A fatalistic thumping as of some oil well a mile away broaching the earth. After a moment of careful listening I decided it was my chest.
“Are you happy?” I asked her.
A moment appeared, stretched itself out, and flitted away.
“I’m not unhappy,” she said.
“That’s not an answer.”
“I know,” she said.
A spray of meteors thirty degrees up visited us and our breaths caught as one.
“Did you see that?” I asked.
“Yeah,” she said. “He found me first, Bill. It should have been you.”
“I know,” I said. “There’s nothing we can do about that. Ever.”
I stood up, turned away.
“Thank you, Bill,” she said.
“For not saying it. Those words.”
“Oh,” I said. “Those words. Any time, Mandy. But if Matt ever hurts you, I’ll hurt him pretty bad. And then I’m coming for you.”
“I know, Bill,” she said. “I know.”
The Leonids quit the sky around four, or so the
newspapers say. But these Leonids--Bill and Matt and Mandy and Stu and Suzie--we quit long before then.
I moved to Grapevine, Texas and took a job with the Sheriff’s Office ten years later. Matt had a heart attack and died after coming home from work one cold January night. My new wife comforted me while I cried, offering solace for one who rarely showed emotion.
I walk out in the back yard some nights and study the night sky. Sometimes I feel like I can distinguish the relative distances between the stars, and can even tell which ones are closer and which are farther, and let me tell you, it has nothing to do with brightness.
And once or twice in a blue moon I’ll catch a shooting star. So brief they are. So very damned brief.
Site copyright 2011, 2012
by George Wier
Art images copyright 2011, 2012
by George Wier.