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.



Saturday, February 4, 2017

John Dunn manuscript better than ever

I was talking about how The Vase manuscript was better than ever. Well, my John Dunn manuscript also is better than ever. When my publisher advised its authors that its publishing schedule was behind, that might have been bad news to some of the authors. But to me, for John Dunn, it was good news. I've been using this extra time making the manuscript better than ever. And every day it's getting better. And the days keep going by, and the manuscript is better every day.

So much detail is in this book. Detail regarding places in Natal, places in Zululand, and the distances involved in traveling to those places by horseback, by carriage, barouche, and even on foot. The Zulu ran everywhere they went. With rare exceptions, they did not ride horses or ride in carriages. John Dunn of course rode a horse. He taught Dabulamanzi to ride a horse, and he took Cetshwayo with him in a barouche. And I had to get it right how much time it would take to get to different places in Natal and Zululand by horse, barouche, and on foot. I've nailed it by now.

And the prose is better. The battles are also necessary to have the detail correct. I have four battles in the book. iSandlwana, Rorke's Drift, Gingindlovu, and Ulundi. All major battles in the war. And I've made sure the details are right on.

Lastly the cover. Here's the cover.


I wish the publisher would have gone with a cover that depicted a battle scene like this:

But oh well. It's all good. Can't wait. Look for John Dunn, Heart of a Zulu coming soon.

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