Going, Going, Gone

Three days ago, Amazon listed two copies of The Heavenly Fox for $19 each direct from them. As of yesterday there are still two listed, only one’s listed new at $197 and the other is listed used and priced at $99. Yeah, good luck getting those prices, but it does demonstrate something I was rather anticipating—The Heavenly Fox has sold out it in both published states. There was a 100 copy signed, numbered and DJ’d run, which sold out several months ago. I checked with the publisher and, sure enough, the second, unsigned state has also sold out. Since both were limited runs I’m not too surprised. I’m just glad it didn’t take longer.

I’ll know in a few days who it lost the Mythopoeic Award to, but in the meantime I’m getting used to the fact that, for the first time in about five years, I don’t have a single book in print at PS Publishing. Good thing the Yamada novel is coming out from them next year.

Excerpt – All the Gates of Hell

This is from a novel with the working title Kuan Yin in Hell. (Edited to note–the final title is All the Gates of Hell. Inviting, no?) The premise is that the Buddhist bodhisattva of Mercy, Kuan Shi Yin, is undergoing a mortal incarnation as Jin Hannigan for reasons she can’t remember, and those who know, refuse to say. While she’s trying to figure that bit out, she still has to fulfill her function as the “Goddess of Mercy,” which is to release suffering souls from hell. She’s just met the first of her divine helpers–who she also doesn’t remember–currently a mortal called “Frank” because his real name takes too long to say. She’s about to meet the second.

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Jin sighed. “I think before now I’ve really been more pointed and led than called,” she said, “but if I understand your meaning, then yes — I think I have definitely been called.”

The only questions remaining so far as Jin could tell were “where” and “who.” She already knew why. If she didn’t yet know “where,” she did know which direction to go, and for the moment that was enough, though she did wonder why she also felt an extreme sense of urgency.

“What’s the hurry?” she asked aloud.

“You’re setting the pace,” Frank said. “Or was that question rhetorical?”

“Not exactly. I feel we need to hurry.”

“Then I suggest we do so,” Frank said, maddeningly calm as usual.

Jin gave up her brisk walk and broke into a run. Continue reading

Excerpt – The Heavenly Fox

I’m trying something new for the blog–snippets. Today’s post is an excerpt from The Heavenly Fox (PS Publishing 2011). To frame this bit,  the fox vixen Springshadow has successfully brewed and and imbibed (how often do I get to use that word?) the Golden Elixir of Immortality, and now she’s awaiting the results with her friend, a Taoist immortal named Wildeye and the goddess/bodhisattva Kuan Yin who showed up unannounced for reasons of her own:

     Springshadow stood up. Her form was somewhere between fully human and fully vulpine; a transitional form that gave her human hands and other aspects of humans that were useful, without fully surrendering her fox senses, and she’d used it often. Only now there seemed to be more to it. Several “mores,” actually.

     “My tail feels funny.”

     “Say rather your tails, girl,” Wildeye said, and started counting.

     “You’re a Heavenly Fox now, Springshadow. Look up,” said the goddess.

     Springshadow looked up. There, in the distant sky far beyond the clouds, far beyond the mortal world yet clearly visible, clearly reachable, was a magnificent floating city with towers of gold and walls of the finest jade.

     Wildeye gave a grunt of triumph as he finished his count. “Nine! And each as magnificent as the last.”

     “What are you babbling about? Nine what?” Springshadow said, unable for the moment to take her eyes off of Heaven and the floating city.

     “Tails, of course,” he said.  “Yours.”

     That finally got Springshadow’s attention. She quickly glanced behind her like a courtesan checking her appearance. It took her a moment to understand what she was seeing, but she finally saw what Wildeye saw–fox tails.

     Nine in all, and all, as Wildeye said, belonging to her. Attached.

     “Nine?!”

     “Nine.” Wildeye nodded in grudging respect.  “You have to admit,” he said, turning to the goddess, “that’s pretty damn impressive.”