Will iconic images recorded in the grooves of an ancient vase unite the Holy Land or rip it further apart?

THE VASE

A novel by Mark M. DeRobertis

Muhsin Muhabi is a Palestinian potter, descended from a long line of potters. His business is run from the same shop owned by his ancestors since the day his forebears moved to Nazareth. The region's conflict saw the death of his oldest son, and rogue terrorists are in the process of recruiting his youngest in their plot to assassinate the Pope and Israeli prime minister.

Professor Hiram Weiss is an art historian at Nazareth’s Bethel University. He is also a Shin Bet operative on special assignment. With the help of fellow agent, Captain Benny Mathias, he plans to destroy the gang responsible for the death of his wife and only child. He puts a bomb in the ancient vase he takes on loan from Muhsin’s Pottery Shop.

Mary Levin, the charming assistant to the director of Shin Bet, has lost a husband and most of her extended family to recurring wars and never-ending terrorism. She dedicates her life to the preservation of Israel, but to whom will she dedicate her heart - the brilliant professor from Bethel University - or the gallant captain who now leads Kidon?

Harvey Holmes, the Sherlock of Haunted Houses, is a Hollywood TV host whose reality show just flopped. When a Lebanese restaurant owner requests his ghost-hunting services, he believes the opportunity will resurrect his career. All he has to do is exorcise the ghosts that are haunting the restaurant. It happens to be located right across the street from Muhsin’s Pottery Shop.



Monday, January 18, 2016

Publishing Schedule Released

Knox Robinson Publishing has released a tentative publishing schedule for 2016. My book, John Dunn, Heart of a Zulu is tentatively scheduled for release in November.

Interestingly, my other book, Second Chance, a Football Story is on the list, too, and scheduled for release in August. Which is, of course, three months before John Dunn. I was actually thrilled to see that. But at the same time confused, since I haven't signed a contract for Second Chance yet.

But that's okay. I sent the publisher, Dana, an email, pointing this out. And I also sent a later version of the manuscript, which is a revised version. Since I just sent the email, I don't suppose I'll hear back for a day or so, but I suppose Dana will draft a contract to make it official.

So that's the news for me. It's good news, to be sure. Having two books published in the same year is an accomplishment in itself. That means every book I've written has found its way to publication. That's not common. From what I've read in blogs of other writers, and stories of other authors, it's more common that an author's first manuscript is never published. It is more likely tossed into a closet and left there to be forgotten.

Not so with me, thank goodness. My first manuscript, Killer of Killers, to this day remains my favorite book. Not only of all books that I've written, but of all books of all time. No, please don't think I believe I'm a better writer than Melville or Dickens or Jack London. Or any of the other great writers in the history of the world. Clearly, it's a personal thing. It's my book, you see, and authors often feel their books are close to their hearts. Especially their first one.

So that's all. I'm in a good place right now. Maybe I will continue to write. After my current WIPs are done, I hadn't planned on it. We'll see.

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