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DRAGON CROWN BOOKS

Dragon Crown Books, Ltd. is home to my Phoenix series of books, as well as Undefeated, Feathercap and Requiem for a Phantom God.

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A WHOLE DIFFERENT LEAGUE

$17.95 paperback, $8.95 ebook - Revisit the world of summer football, baseball in skirts, and professional team bowling. Read about sports innovators broke down racial barriers and ushered in the era of free agency. They gave us the three-point shot, which changed the way basketball is played today. With names like the WHA, AAFC and All-American Girls Pro Baseball League, they fielded teams with names like the Chicago Whales and Philadelphia Bell. They were upstarts and outlaws, playing in rundown arenas and without TV contracts but making the kind of memories you don't find in prime time.

You'll read about the basketball star who was so volatile an opposing team once hired five boxers to stand guard at courtside; the Hall of Famer who came out of retirement at age 45 and led his new team to a championship; The first superstar of women’s basketball; George Steinbrenner’s first big signing: the two-time college basketball player of the year; the NBA legend whose poor eyesight led to him to design the ABA’s red-white-and-blue basketball; the man who built Wrigley Field and the team that played there before the Cubs called it home; the hard-partying skater who signed the richest contract in pro sports but wound up sleeping on a park bench after he lost it all; the team that was supposed to bring NFL football to Los Angeles nine years before the Rams moved west from Cleveland; thee team owner who warned Donald Trump he’d have “no regrets whatsoever” punching him “right in the mouth”; and much more.

Illustrated with dozens of photos and filled with statistics, A Whole Different League brings together memories of some two dozen leagues in a single volume that covers everything from bowling to Negro League baseball. It’s a look at the “other” leagues that helped shape the way our favorite sports are played today, even if they themselves are all but forgotten. 8 x 10 format, 340 pages.

The legend of Molly bolin

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$14.95 paperback. She was the first player to sign a contract in the first women’s professional basketball league, paving the way for the WNBA. She set records for the most points in a season, in a game, and in a playoff game that still stand four decades later. Yet few people know the story of Molly Bolin. Her shooting stroke evoked comparisons to Stephen Curry and earned her the nickname “Machine Gun Molly.” She appeared in a movie with Pete Maravich and in a poster that made her the sports world’s answer to Farrah Fawcett. But perhaps most impressively, she overcame the odds time and again through hard work and dedication. This is the story of a young girl from a small town in Iowa who had a dream, pursued it and made it come true. This is the legend of Molly Bolin. 237 pages.

martinsville memories

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$19.95 paperback. Martinsville isn't your typical Virginia town. It’s been the plug tobacco capital of the world and the sweatshirt capital of the world. It hosts two stock-car races each year at the oldest speedway on the NASCAR circuit. And Patrick Henry once lived just down the road.

Martinsville is a place of verdant beauty and blue skies a few miles north of the North Carolina state line, in the Goldilocks zone: seldom too hot in summer or too cold in winter. It has thrived as the town with the nation’s most millionaires per capita and struggled through factory closures during the era of globalization.

Packed with more than 300 images and chock full of details, Martinsville Memories is a look at a diverse town built on tobacco, textiles and furniture that occupies a unique place in the nation’s fabric and history. From its the town’s historic beginnings through its 20th century heyday, this volume offers a nostalgic trek through time, with stops at drive-ins, old hotels and iconic storefronts along the way.

With a foreword by author and Martinsville native Stephen Mark Rainey, Martinsville Memories captures the triumphs and struggles of a city at the heart of the South and the soul of America. 8 x 10 format, 222 pages.

PLEASE STOP SAYING THAT!

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$9.95 paperback, $3.95 ebook - Have you ever wanted to plug your ears and scream after hearing a newscaster, politician, sports announcer or your boss use THAT word again? You know the one: that buzzword or cliche that sets your teeth on edge because you've heard it so often? It doesn't really mean anything. It's just there. On people's lips. In the newspaper. On television. Everywhere, all the time. Well, chances are, it's here, too, in this irreverent look at some of the things people say far too often while giving them far too little thought. '

Consider this book your last line of defense against the banal inanities that assault your ears on a daily basis. Its purpose is to poke fun at them, which is really all most of them are good for: poking fun at.

"Please Stop Saying That!" is a no-holds-barred, sarcastic look at the catch phrases used in politics, religion, sports, business, pop culture and elsewhere. You'll never look at (or listen to) jargon quite the same way again. 202 pages.

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Media Meltdown
in the age of trump

$11.95 paperback, $3.95 ebook - The once-powerful Fourth Estate might as well be in foreclosure, shattered into a million pieces by cable television, talk radio and the internet. Newspapers, their stranglehold on information broken, are on life support. Gutted by cost-cutting and consolidation, they see the very same digital platforms that crippled them as their last, best hope for salvation.

Television news has descended from Cronkite and Brinkley into a three-ring circus of breaking news and talking (or shouting) heads. Donald Trump has taken for himself the role of ringmaster, using his chaotic style and the power of his office to dominate the spotlight. At once condemning and exploiting the media, he’s transformed the presidency into a reality show, complete with multiple scandals and cliffhangers to keep everyone tuned in.

This is the story of how carnival journalism has supplanted and, in some cases, co-opted what’s left of the mainstream media, and how politicians like Trump have both fueled and profited from the change. Is any of this good for the nation? A game without a referee might be more fun to watch, but is it fair? Media Meltdown provides the answers.

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THE PHOENIX CHRONICLES

$21.95 (paperback only) - The three books of The Phoenix Chronicles in one volume, with fewer illustrations and without the author's commentary included in The Gospel of the Phoenix. 454 pages

VOL. 1 - the osiris testament

$12.95 paperback, $4.95 ebook The Osiris Testament completes the Phoenix Chronicles trilogy begun with The Gospel of the Phoenix and continued with The Way of the Phoenix. The last installment written, but actually the first in terms of chronology, The Osiris Testament is a poetic look at humanity's creation and the development of Western mythic tradition from a new perspective. Just as The Gospel of the Phoenix sets forth a new version of Jesus' life and The Way of the Phoenix offers a collection of new, original parables and proverbs, The Osiris Testament draws from Sumerian, Akkadian, Babylonian, Hebrew, Egyptian, Norse, Greek and Celtic sources (among others) to weave a new narrative corresponding loosely to the Pentateuch. As with its companion volumes, this work is for those who enjoy the works of Kahlil Gibran and Robert Graves, and students of the interplay between myth and ancient history. 228 pages

VOL. 2 - THE WAY OF THE PHOENIX

$12.95 paperback, $4.95 ebook The Way of the Phoenix is a companion volume to The Gospel of the Phoenix. As the latter book explored the life of Jesus from a new perspective, this work uses the style of wisdom literature to offer insights into life, ethics and meaning. "The Way of the Phoenix" is divided into two sections. The first is a series of tales modeled after the parables of Jesus, the fables of Aesop, the stories of Hans Christian Andersen and others. The second is a series of teachings in the style of proverbs, sayings and aphorisms, grouped according to subject matter. All the material here is original, but the subjects are familiar. The Way of the Phoenix is a work in the tradition of Kahlil Gibran, Paul Coelho and others who have used the language of legend and fable to tell new stories based on timeless truths. 174 pages

VOL. 3 - THE GOSPEL OF THE PHOENIX

$12.95 paperback, $4.95 ebook The Gospel of the Phoenix tells the story of Jesus’ life, in biblical style, as never before. Fans of Kahlil Gibran and students of history alike will enjoy this the story of a Jewish teacher trained in Egyptian healing and mysticism who set about spreading a gospel of humility, servanthood and renewal. His mission? To reveal the hidden kingdom of heaven that is both within and all around us. His method? Retracing the footsteps of his heavenly father, the Egyptian god Osiris, and honoring his divine mother while immersing his followers in the way of forgiveness, humility and wisdom. 228 pages

THE PHOENIX PRINCIPLE

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VOL. 1 - FORGED IN ANCIENT FIRES

$18.95 paperback, $5.95 ebook - 437 pages

VOL. 2 - MESSIAH IN THE MAKING

$18.95 paperback, $5.95 ebook - 454 pages

Who was Jesus? It is a question that has been asked and answered many times and in many ways throughout history. But in order to even begin addressing this question, the person of Jesus must be placed in historical and mythical context. Once this is done, some truly shocking answers emerge. Here is a man who was intent upon establishing the kingdom of God on earth in his own lifetime, a revolutionary leader with training in the mystical traditions of Egypt who would settle for nothing less than following in the footsteps of King Solomon, the pharaohs and the gods themselves. Journey back to the Garden of Eden, then forward with Gilgamesh and to the mystical isle of Dilmun, with Jason and his crew on the Argo, with Mary Magdalene to the garden tomb and with Arthur's knights in search of the Holy Grail. Much of what you uncover along the way will be surprising; some things may even be disturbing. Those who enjoyed Sir James Frazer's Golden Bough will find much of interest in the tapestry of myth, political intrigue and pagan ritual woven together in The Phoenix Principle.

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REQUIEM FOR A PHANTOM GOD

$11.95 paperback, $4.95 ebook - The debate between the theist and the atheist dates back millennia. Yet the crucial question involves not the existence of deity, but what kind of deity might exist. Can we eliminate certain options and leave ourselves free to explore others? Requiem for a Phantom God argues that we can. Any consideration of the divine should rule out what C.S. Lewis termed "nonsense." Self-contradictory portraits of God are not only meaningless, but they have the potential to do great harm - and they have over the course of human history. Requiem for a Phantom God serves as an epitaph for just such a god of nonsense. It identifies the core philosophical problem: the desire of humanity to believe in an all-powerful deity who is at, at the same time, entirely "good." This desire, however, is destined to remain unfulfilled, because these two concepts cannot be reconciled. Once humanity realizes this, we can choose the kind of god we wish to believe in: immanent or transcendent ... if, indeed, we wish to put our faith in a god at all. Requiem discusses the abuses and pitfalls of faith, and whether it is possible to speak of a faith that is not blind. It addresses modern and historical examples of religious abuse and suggests they tell us about the doctrines that support them. 196 pages

UNDEFEATED

$11.95 paperback, $4.95 ebookUndefeated is a collection of stories about individuals who have triumphed in the face of prejudice. Dismissed because of their religion, demeaned because of their gender, or persecuted for their race, these are individuals from a variety of backgrounds. A Christian in one nation's majority may be persecuted in another land. The same applies to a Jew or a Pagan. What of the atheist and transgender individuals? Their stories are drawn from past and present, from the realms of history, sports and politics. They show that bigotry, a false attitude based on false distinctions, in reality knows no bounds ... but neither does the human spirit. Join the author on a journey through a diverse spectrum of stories that spotlight our shared humanity and celebrate the courage of women and men who sought to defend it. 248 pages

TIMELESS NOW

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$4.95 paperback, 99 cents ebook - Time does not exist. It’s not something we can possess, but an artificial construct that we use to measure change. All that really exists is a single moment called “now.” Once we understand this, we gain a new understanding of how we view ourselves and, in turn, more vivid awareness of everything around us.

This awareness can shape how we deal with blame, regret and guilt about the past, and worries or fears about the future. It can influence how relate to others, how we approach art and athletics, even how we view age. It levels the playing field and means that, in each new moment, we have the ability to make something entirely new and wondrous happen in this Timeless Now. 72 pages.