Sunday, February 28, 2010


cover by Marcos Calo
Publisher: ALADDIN

Fade in on thirteen-year-old Dani. It’s the summer before eighth grade, and she’s stuck in her nowhere mountain town with only her favorite noir movies at the Little Art theater to keep her company. But when a big secret invades the scene in real life, Dani can’t let it go. All she knows is someone’s been lying, and it all has something to do with a girl in polka-dot tights… Armed with a vivid imagination, a flair for the dramatic, and her knowledge of all things Rita Hayworth, Dani sets out to uncover the truth, and learns more about herself than she ever thought she could.

     It's three for three in good reads for me this year when it comes to novels. My first two books read fell into the YA section of things and with DANI NOIR I found myself reading my first Tween book of the year. Hell, my first Tween book in a really long time.
     Loved the old movie connections in this story. The book has as one of its strengths how it uses pop culture references and it does so better than most books I have read. A lot of writers could learn from how references are used in Dani Noir. I know I'm taking note. The references are not just thrown in, they are threaded into the soul of the story.
     The lead character, Dani Callanzano is not the most likable young lady and that is actually how I like young lead characters because looking back, be honest, weren't most of us jerks in our own ways either to others of our own age, to parents, or siblings? This characters has weakeness that are right there for you to see. As with most young people of her age, the world spins around her. This story paces its way through a short period of time in the life of a young lady as she deals with the divorce of her parents, an uncoming remarriage, and she does so by finding a mystery. While the mystery is explored she gets her first taste of love, well puppy crush love, the complicated nature of relationships, and how hero worship when it comes to fictional characters can mislead you in real life, especially when you are young.
     Dani Noir has the best cover of any book I've read in a long time. It's a wraparound cover that really makes you glade you pulled it off to give it a full look. A great cover is a part of the book and could also hang on your wall just as easy. I'm not a fan of photo covers which is the popular cut and paste for most YA novels. I only mention YA novel covers in a review for a Tween book because I wish and pray that more YA novels would follow the idea. One out of every fifty photo covers work, the rest, no. I give thumbs up to the cover artist for Dani Noir because this cover enhances the story and makes me happy to see artwork on a book cover instead of photos pulled from stock.
     From reading a few places online it looks like the next book from Nova Ren Suma will be a YA novel and I will be reading it when it is released but I hope she also returns to the area of Tween fiction soon and if she does so I double hope she brings back Dani. I give this book four out of five stars. I highly recommend Dani Noir.

Cover image and summary taken from the official Dani Noir website. Link found above.

Review written by Brian C. Williams

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


CLEAN CUE CITY will still be updated on Fridays but I need to focus on the book I'm writing right now after Word played Satan with formatting and replacing words symbols; so for now the weekly writing schedule here will have to go on hold for now. I've decided on the book I wish to write this year and I need to play writer in ways I never have before. Wish me luck.


Saturday, February 20, 2010


Written by Brian C. Williams
Edited by Melinda L. Harold

     Clean Cue city is the capital city of Toriyama.
     Toriyama is one of the primary planets in the Citadel Union Of Planets, (C.U.P.). It is also a hotbed of commerce and tourism.
     All of the historical places of Toriyamain culture are in other cities. Clean Cue City is where you go for hotel nightclubs, expensive stores, and those restaurants where they serve tiny, tiny portions on plates with weird shapes. Nothing from Wal-Mart in those places. The modern part of my brain asked the 21st Century part of my brain, "Wal-Mart?" and I answered, "Chain of superstores? Modern?" Then I responded, "Just wondering, because now Wal-Mart is an Earth military contractor dealing in foot soldier weaponry."
     So visitors from other planets love Clean Cue City. A great deal of the rich aliens and Toriyamains choose it as their place of residence.
     The only inhabitants of the city considered low income are the miners and the cops. They make good money but are still thought of as low income compared to the city's other residents.
     The humans send most of their income back to Earth because the exchange rate there is more favorable.   
     This was due to the fact that Earth was the home of the C.U.P.'s stock exchange.
     The other members of the C.U.P. are Mars, Edgewall, and Fade. Mars houses the C.U.P.s military forces-yeah, fits. Edgewall is home to the government, and Fade is the farming planet. The non-members of the C.U.P. who call themselves Allied Planets United, (sounds like a rugby team). They are many in number and includes Moon Nation(Earth's moon), Venus, Saturn, Mercury, and Jupiter.
     Just to name a few that you would be familiar with.
     Back to humans on Toriyama.
     When you are human and have a day off there are not many activities to choose from. The only reason humans are on Toriyama is to work. You put up with the racism for the high exchange money. You put up with being a stranger in an unusual land for the money. You live in Human Town for a big pay check.
     All over the C.U.P., economically speaking, things are pretty good.
     Oh, and the big pay check humans get on Toriyama is for the most part coming from working in the small Tarceny mine.
     Tarceny is a very powerful fuel mined in small portions in a mine just outside Clean Cue City in the Desert Lands.
     Tarceny is also very much a poison to Toriyamains but it is not harmful to humans. That is why humans are the ones who mine it.
     Honestly, though, I don't even know any other humans in Clean Cue City. Toriyamains and humans are not that different in my eyes but with all the hate out there maybe I'm stupid.
     When I'm not at work, there are only a few other places besides my apartment that I spend time at. One of them is a small Earth restaurant chain called Pink Bomb.
     The name Pink Bomb actually has an interesting story behind it. During the Robot War, Earth was being overwhelmed by the battles there and it was a huge Toriyamain troop ship that brought the help needed to keep Earth in human hands. That ship was nicknamed the Pink Bomb by Earth news agencies because of its color.
     The original owner of the Pink Bomb chain of restaurants was a soldier who stood on a sea vessel while it was under attack. He and others were rescued by a Toriyamain rescue jumper.
     The Pink Bomb is one of the few Earth businesses to set itself up in Clean Cue city and its taking off like hotcakes...which they don't serve don't ask....because I already I looked stupid for you.....Your welcome.
     They don't sell hotcakes.
     The company already has plans to expand across the planet to other Toriyamain cities.
     At the Pink Bomb you will find my small group of friends.
     The manager of the Pink Bomb is Arika, a former C.C.P.D. officer. He's also my landlord. This man went from making shit money as a cop to mad money owning shit. The guy is smarter than anyone I have ever meet with business decisions. I think my father would have liked him.
     And yes, even on alien planets policemen are underpaid. A little factoid that may be interesting to you is that on Toriyama, sanitation workers are some of the highest paid city workers. They get more than a State   Attorney, Citizen Driving Coordinators, and yes, even jet pack salesmen.
     Getting back to the Pink Bomb. This is a family run restaurant.
     The restaurant's head cook is Arika's brother Masashi. He doesn't talk at all. I don't know if he can.   Despite being a mute and being a little weird, he is pretty cool. The guy loves Earth literature, especially-   Strangers In Paradise. Yeah, a different sort of Toriyamain.
     The Pink Bomb's only waitress is Molly. Kooky how that name exists in both cultures.
     Molly is Arika's daughter and the reason he quit the force. As soon as Molly was old enough she wanted to follow her father and become a cop. Arika knew what life was like as a cop. He didn't want this for his daughter and so he made a tough decision and quit the force, bought a Pink Bomb franchise and hired her at the restaurant. Tradition dictated that she accept his job offer.
     If you are wondering about Molly's mother, most Toriyamain women die during childbirth, something like 74%.
     That's pretty fucked up.
     I have a week off for vacation time so the Pink Bomb will be seeing me a lot.
     When you walk into the Pink Bomb, no matter how busy she is, Molly greets you with a joyful welcome.
     "Your usual booth is open, Garth. Be with you in a few."
     "Thanks, Molly, no rush."
     The atmosphere inside the Pink Bomb is always fun and loud. The laughter of family and friends sharing moments over good food. The chatter between manager, cook, and waitress keeps the operation running along smoothly.
     I love it.
     The place is decorated in faux-Earth style and is a mess of 1950's Americana and Victorian England Englandana...?.
     My regular booth has seats upholstered in Time Magazine cover images. The table is a morgue operating table. The unusual things that come from one culture and are interesting to another without much research about them. I love culture mixes.
     The menus are handwritten on thin parchment enclosed in glass. That's pretty fucking unique considering handwriting is a lost art among Ariyamains.
     The menu items are Earth vegetarian meals using Ariyamain grown plants and fungus. Though to appear accurate they use Earth food names.
     My normal breakfast here is a simple salad. The salad I get isn't even a menu item. During one of the first times I came here I asked for something that wouldn't drive my stomach nuts because I was still adjusting to Toriyamain food. Molly brought me a salad that tasted like a Cesar Salad but without the chicken...Cesar  Salad is supposed to have chicken in it, isn't it?
     God, what a way to end Part Three, a salad question. I'm late with the Part and I end with a salad quesiton, I suck.

(c)Brian C. Williams


Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Middle Grade
You are not a middle grade hate,
Because you are so wrapped up in your personal fate,
I have no time for you,
No piety for you,
Just because I once knew you,
You ask when yours will come due,
Because of how the world has treated you,
Grow up little boy blue,
I have no time for you,
No piety for you,
Bury all the relatives you have to,
And I still have no piety for you,
(c)brian c. williams

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Monday, February 15, 2010


by Masashi Kishimoto
Publisher: Shonen Jump Manga

      The last few volumes of this series have been a little flat to me. The Pain storyline did not have the creatively choreographed fight scenes that earlier stories did. This volume sees the series returning to its roots of putting a lot of creativity behind the fights and putting a lot of emotion into the conflict. I would be hard to talk about this volume without spoiling anything but what you do find here is a sense that things are rolling to something very big.
In the creators mini-intro this was stated:
"The plot development toward the finale having been settled, I am drawing full steam ahead! Please continue enjoying Naruto until the end!!"
      I don't look up much Naruto stuff online in fear of spoilers so maybe I'm wrong here but that sure sounds like an end to the series is in sight. Though that could be years down the road it still makes me a little sad to know a series I have enjoyed so much is coming to an end. But also it is good to know this story will not go on forever and water itself down. I'm all for manga series having an end. DEATH NOTE in one would have been better rested in my mind if it had ended after about four or five volumes.
      Naruto is a great series. I would even go as far as to put the first set of Naruto volumes right there with Harry Potter for creativity and energy. Though the last time I mentioned that particular view I got a lot a hate mail so I will stop things right there.

Friday, February 12, 2010


Written by Brian C. Williams
Edited by Melinda L. Harold

   The room wasn't filled with tension. OK, it was filled with tension but that was such a cliched way to open the scene. I didn't want to do it but here we are in a sort of rambling mess. I was trying to avoid the way things were going, unfortunately, I found myself just writing to fill up the space. I wanted to make more out of what little I was giving you this week. I just need to let things flow and promise a larger Part Three.
   Enough about that, narrator to the side.
   Two men sat in a small, metal, sound-proof room. Each to one side of a single table placed in the middle of the room. Two figures of authority. One of very high authority. Both are searching for answers but only one is asking questions.
   "Once again, please go over what happened?"
   "I know we have to do this, but can I have a minute to think?"
   "Well, I need to get as much as I can from you while the events are still fresh in your mind."
   "I know, sorry."
   "Just one more time and then you can go home, Officer."
   "How many didn't make it?"
   "Please, Officer, let's keep to the details of the event. You understand why we have to stay focused?"
   "Yes, sorry."
   "OK, once again."
   "It was humans..."

(c)Brian C. Williams

Come back next Friday for Part Three of CLEAN CUE CITY.


Monday, February 8, 2010


When you think you have never earned happiness,
You run yourself down a road to never finding it,
If your gift is God given,
You think maybe you should stay within those shadows in the corner of the room,
Hiding because you are your own Doctor Doom,
Playing human and just being a man are not the same,
Playing hero is seeing no one is to blame,

The last time you gave a shit,
You fell right into the fight,
And the fight kicked your ass,
The chills are so long,
Praying that they can't last,
The heat has fallen,
Follow man,
Follow man,

When the pain pills are more painful than the pain,
The shirt no longer fits,
If you have lost something from the dream,
Then leave the room because the dream has gone tits,
Continue hiding because you are your own Doctor Doom,
Playing human is playing the clown,
Keep worshiping at the swirl of gloom,
You have become a Follow man,

(c)brian c. willaims

*if you liked this poem try some more.



by Sherman Alexie
Publisher: Little Brown and Company

   My gf is a Librarian and she recommended this book to me when she read it. The unusual thing is I was the one who mentioned it to her after I read Neil Gaiman mention it on his blog but I was at the time going through a Doctor Who book reading fun addiction path. I do that every so often, most of the time when I have read a few bad books in a row and need something I will like at least in some fashion no matter what just because it is a Doctor Who book enjoy reading. Enough geek, the point is I didn't read it when I first found out about it. She thought I would like Part-Time Indian also because she said the lead character reminded her of me. After reading the book I will say I do not think it was an insult.
   As I mentioned in my review of SOME GIRLS ARE sometimes books can remind you of old pain and stirr up your thoughts about those events and sometimes lead to better thoughts about those times. The Absolutely True Diary Of A Part-Time Indian did that for me. I spent most of my early childhood sick or in a hospital. There were very few days when I wasn't sick in some way. This story based on true events from the life of the writer hit home with me and though I'm not much for reading things outside of the strange and bizarre, fantasy and scifi type stuff, and keep a lot of straight fiction on my shelves unread, I have found myself starting this year off by reading two dramatic pieces and boy did I pick two great books to start with. Part-Time Indian now is ranked as one of my all-time favorite books.
   The book also has some really great illustrations by the lead characters that greatly enhance the story. I would love to see this turned into film but they need to keep the illustrations in there somehow through animation or the like because some of the heart from the character is his illustrations and without them I think the story loses a lot of heart. If you have a reluctant reader who is a young male then this book would be great for them. The story does not end with clean cut lines and the sadness that flows throughout the story never goes away but that is a true truth of life.
   The truths that lay within this book have been and are still ignored by most of this country. This is a part of America everyone needs to read about. Needs to know about. Now with all of my talk about pain I don't want to skip by the humor this book lives with. I've always believed that if you mix humor with pain in a story, the hit of the pain is that more power and the other way around also because that is real life.
   Have the urge to ramble on about how much I loved this book but the simple way to go is:
   FOR GOD'S SAKE....never really understood that statement....anyways, READ the absolutely true diary of a part-time indian. For the lowercase impaired read THE ABSOLUTELY TRUE DIARY OF A PART-TIME INDIAN. Oh, and don't even think about going, "It's a YA book and I'm too ol..." Shut up! Read this book.

(c)brian c. williams


Thursday, February 4, 2010


written by Brian C.Williams
edited by Melinda Harold

My dad was a truck driver but before that he was a coal miner and before that he delivered pianos and before that he was in the Marines. He served in the Earth conflict called the Korean War but did not talk about it beyond saying, "Death is something that comes easy and that is the tragedy of war." He disliked anyone or anything that glamorized war. It's the reason why I can't stand Hemingway for sure. Every job my dad ever had was not by his choice but by life throwing him a curve ball. One thing he instilled in me was a sense of no matter what the circumstances that life gives you there is no reason to take that harshness of life and make yourself weak by it. No matter what job you had, you had to take it seriously and work hard even if you disliked the work. He also taught me about dealing with others. No matter if the person was a stranger or relative, you had to treat them as if you had known them all your life and they deserved the benefit of the doubt. Now my dad wasn't stupid, he also taught me to stand up for myself in every situation unless taking a little punishment would help out someone else and if fighting would hurt someone innocent. "Bravery can come in not swinging." He threw out words of wisdom that told me there was no such thing as a fair fight and if you weren't ready to hurt someone, whether it was a physical fight or not, you should walk away or in his exact words, "Be ready to kill'em or walk away."

My father was a banker, it being the profession of most of his family ever since Earth became the center of business in this sector of space. Though I was for the most part raised by people not even related to my family, I did learn a few things from my father. He taught me prejudices are very human but very bad for business. He let me know at an early age that you look into and help up the scale of the strengths in others and that was one of the key ways you will gain strength within yourself, "We are always only as strong as our weakest link so you don't throw that link away, that would be the easy way. Instead you make that link stronger because doing so will also make it loyal for the faith you showed in it." Despite using "it" a lot when referring to people, my father was actually a really good man, totally business obsessed, but he knew the strength of the human factor or person factor or people., or...?...what the fuck ever! Once aliens entered the human consciousness, the ability to communicate with other humans became a whole lot more difficult.

During my childhood, my dad drove shipments of goods all over the United States in a 18 wheel gas powered delivery machine while my mom worked as a nurse in a nursing home before becoming a full time mother. They had me late in their lives. She said that time working at the nursing home was her war experience. She saw mans’ inhumanity to man within those walls. From my mom I gained a sense of kindness but also that letting people treat you like shit all the time does nothing for your soul. She was a lonely person in so many ways. Someone who spent a life time letting others win. Though even after saying all of that, my mom was a joy to be around and really loved life when she got the chance to do new things when that opportunity came into her life.

My mother was a Child Supplier. A Child Supplier is a woman who helps the rich to continue their family line if they are going to be the last of their line. The Child Supplier signs a legal document that says this would be her only time she would have a child and would be sterilized afterwards. They get paid a life's wages for doing this but even in this age people see them as sleazy and place them in a social standing outside of the rest of society. Funny that in an age when prostitution is legal giving birth when you choose what been seen like that. This is also the only way a Child Supplier operates legally. Having a child outside of marriage or Child Supplier contract is strictly illegal. Once I was born I never saw my mother and she never saw me. I do think about her every so often but in this instance I block out thoughts about her and only think about my mom.

I was an only child in both of my families so take from that what you will learn about me as things go on.

My families were good people who would help anyone if they needed it so the word hate did not come up that often. I'm a little different from my families.

Lets start with a little egotistic thinking. The thing I hate the most about being Garth Dale is having two personalities...wait, two first names. I hate when my likes and dislikes argue but the whole having two first names thing is really a pain in the ass. It all comes down to paperwork and how transplants are listed in government documents.

The worst thing about moving to another planet is tasting black pepper twenty-four seven. Its not really black pepper you taste in the air but humans can taste a harmless invisible parasite called the Potent.

The thing I hate most about being a cop in Clean Cue City are the Doll Shells. The Music Box gangs, the still at-large Albuquerque vigilante, all are nothing compared to my hatred of the Doll Shells. A Doll Shell is a whacked out rich punk who thought life was boring being pampered, protected, and well feed, an all too typical story throughout the history of many worlds, and so these rich brats illegally paid surgeons to replace their body parts with doll-like artificial bits and pieces.

After the Robot Wars, all artificial replacement technology for non-android races was deemed illegal and an offense to the technology based races.

The replacement parts that the Dolls replace their own body parts with turns them into individuals beyond a normal human or Toriyamain line. Their physical abilities are so enhanced they are no longer classified by Earth or Toriyama law as people but categorized as dangerous weapons. The deep space technology races shoot them on sight, tear them down to little pieces, and send them back to their world of origin. Then again no one goes near the technology races for good reason. We nearly lost that war and I'm so glad I didn't end up fighting in it. Any war that takes out an entire planet on day one is pretty harsh. We will miss you Pluto, they had just made you a planet again and then boom.

Doll Shell's are really creepy looking too, sort of like acid laced Raggedy Ann dolls after years of being lovingly mistreated. Their artificial skin looks loose and seems on appearance as if it was sewed on with thread but actually the skin is bullet proof and the thread is really an almost unbreakable wire. Most Doll Shell's commit crimes because that is the next step in their extreme games bullshit. They start with crazy daredevil stunts, then go on to doing acts of vandalism. After that, they move on to high risk thievery and finally murderous actions. The technology and flesh sides are not meant to work together and the combination drives the brain of the Dolls insane. This is seen by some as more proof that technological life forms and those made of flesh are not meant to co-exist.

The Doll Shell fad has passed but from time to time we still get a Doll Shell. Hell from time to time I still see someone smoking on Earth when I get back for a visit, so some bad things never die out. Most people do not have as strong of a reaction to Doll Shells as I do but then again most people in Clean Cue are not humans. I'm just the lucky one the recruiter asked if I wanted to join the C.C.P.D. to show not everyone on Toriyama are anti-humans. The Ariyama politicians wanted a human detective in their city capital, so here I am the poster boy to try and quell hatred from one planet towards another.

Back to my Doll Shell hatred which right now is for the most part racing through my body because my heart and lungs are about to explode inside me as I chase this particular Doll through the "mean" streets of the city. Nothing pisses you off like someone making you have to run. Actually, in this, its the same way gym teachers and drill sergeants are Satan to many.

This Doll which I'm not gaining ground on was spotted by a door opener, that's doorman in human, leaving the scene of a murder, the murder of a city manager. What he managed I have no idea, I just know that my unit was called to the scene because one of our assigned specialties is Doll Shells and technology based crimes.

I was watching our bikes down the street from the scene of the crime when I spotted the Doll running away. I romote signaled that I was backing out of the location in pursuit and took off after the female Doll Shell. I haven't been able to brain signal my location because I still haven't gotten the nack of brain signaling while running yet. What can I say, I probably couldn't walk and chew gum at the same time either if I tried. It could be the case that my altered brain makes the signal device misfire.

I'm running flat out, dodging traffic, and citizens, trying to catch up with this bastardized bionic Barbie doll with Charles Manson tendencies. My brain pattern transfer from someone born in 1974 makes my culture references very dated. Some of the stuff that comes out of my mouth makes even less sense as I live on a planet with only about two hundred humans in total. Our influence on this culture outside of Keeping Up Appearance being a big hit here is almost unseen.

I gave up on trying to catch the Doll, stopped, and signaled ahead to a Zone Unit to try and bring her in. Then I signaled my unit with my location. I took a seat by a restaurant to try and catch my breath. Even though I had undergone DNA enhancements to at least keep up with Toriyamains, I'm still not the best athlete. On Earth I would have been assigned to a desk job but here...well, here I watch patrol bikes as the real police work happens. Earth police knew this was a bullshit assignment so they sent a brain pattern transplant to do it. The Toriyamain police didn't believe in wasting man power so they assigned me to a unit because, despite me being human, and putting the brain stuff aside, I'm a good cop. I know I will have to earn the respect of the rest of my unit but I am willing to do that.

The other members of my unit, Unit Offerson, arrived at my location in time to have a laugh, inform me of the Doll Shell capture, and tell me I have to walk back for my bike, "That is just the way of the rookie."

Since I'm walking back to my bike and have the time I'll explain the whole "brain pattern transfer" thing to you and we will wrap up part one of this story.

There is this Earth disease called Brain Posting which means a brain can not retain any memories once the person reaches the age of sixteen so the patient is given a brain pattern transfer from old brain tissue files This tissue is actually retrieved from the graves of those who have no family alive to object to the upheaval of their bodies, and the desecration of the remains. The destruction of the remains is required so no two people get the same pattern transfer.

All of that means I contain two sets of memories. Most transplant recipients either turn out to be a genius or a slobbering vegetable. I'm a cop. I'm a police officer on an alien planet...well, that really doesn't apply here since I'm the alien here. I'm just a police officer on another world, yea, that works better. I like it here. My partners in my unit treat me OK, about as good as any newbie would be wecomed into an unit of veterans. I'm the rookie and that's fine with me. I've already settled into my life here and hope everything will go just fine, normal, and easy for the rest of my career.

It would be a boring story for you to read on a weekly basis if that was true wouldn't it?

I guess I just need to prepare for whatever may lay ahead for me.
To fact tomorrow my first vacation starts.

(c)brian c. williams

Come back next Friday for Part Two of CLEAN CUE CITY


Wednesday, February 3, 2010


STEREO The first ebook in the Tin Universe series. Here you will be introduced to all the major players and settings in the universe. $3.00
Written by Brian C. Williams
Cover Art by John Delmonte

FLIGHT OF THE COMING STORM The next story in the Tin Universe series following from STEREO. This short story focus on a ordinary day in the life of the hero Pulpy. $2.00
Written by Brian C. Williams
Cover Pencil Art by John Delmonte
Edited by Melinda Harold