+Book Review+ Moments in Millennia: A Fantasy Anthology edited by Penny Freeman

Posted Monday, 7 April, 2014 by jorielov , , , , 0 Comments

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Moments in Millenia edited by Penny Freeman
Artwork Credit: Dale Pease (of Walking Stick Books) http://walkingstickbooks.com

Published By: Xchyler Publishing () 11 February, 2014
Official Editor WebsitesSite | Facebook | Twitter
Converse via: #MomentsInMillennia
Genres: Time Travel | Alternative History | Dystopian
Available Formats: Trade Paperback and E-Book
Page Count: 234

Acquired Book By: I contacted Xchyler Publishing about receiving books in exchange for honest reviews and was asked to pick the two books I’d like to request. Moments in Millennia was my second choice, as my first choice was A MidSummer Night’s Steampunk. The main reason I selected this anthology is due to my continued appreciation for being introduced to new authors through their short story contributions. I received a complimentary copy of Moments in Millennia in exchange for an honest review direct from the publisher Xchyler Publishing. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

A note about Xchyler Publishing:

I have been quite impressed with my interactions on behalf of Indie Publisher: Xchyler! They have been quite forthcoming and open to suggestions, ideas, and for a book blogger to not only host their editor & author on my blog, but to be open to giving me press materials to incorporate into my posts. I have enjoyed getting to know Ms. Freeman through my interview with her about her editing, writing, and reading experiences as much as I had the honour in getting to know a bit more about the genre of steampunk through her brother fellow author Scott E. Tarbet.

I am hopeful I can continue to work with them in the future, as they are one of the Indie publishers who has a distinctive eye for creating books which give a reader a lift of spirits to read. The attention to detail in their books is quite bang-on from editing, copy-editing, cover-art design, and by giving some of their books a lovely book trailer presentation that borders on motion picture adaptation! I have enjoyed getting to learn a bit about their process as a publisher as much as learning key behind-the-scenes into the writing of the novels through one of their authors.


Editor Biography:

Penny Freeman

Author and editor, Penny brings to Xchyler thirty years of wordsmith experience, with emphasis on historical fiction, business writing, and journalism. She also serves as assistant public affairs director of a large organization, and has extensive experience in social media and Internet advertising. Literature, history, and storytelling are her great passions, although the technical aspects of the language arts satisfy her compulsion for order. 

Anthology Synopsis:

Travel with seven talented authors as they glimpse through time into Humanity’s future. Will mankind blossom and flourish, conquering the stars and time itself? Or, with selfishness, greed, and just plain bad luck send us all to the brink of destruction?

The Cartographer by Samuel A. Mayo: Destined to chart the stars throughout the aeons, a team of novice map makers are thrust into a conspiracy to control the universe and time itself.

Author Connections: Site | Twitter | Facebook

Fairykin by Ben Ireland: In a world where nature has ceased to exist, a tribe of fairies on the brink of extinction must fight for survival itself. But who will bear the ultimate cost?

Author Connections: Site | Blog | Twitter | Facebook

Time out of Mind by Michael Cross: One young girl’s cosmic connection to her grandfather’s tragic past brings life and hope to the blackest days of the Holocaust.

Author Connections: Site | Twitter | Facebook

The Hawkweed by Candace J. Thomas: Consumed with guilt, one girl fights to solve the riddle of her friend’s murder and the disappearance of his brother—unaware of the price on her own head.

Author Connections: Blog | Twitter | Facebook

Spaceman in Time by Fischer Willis: Victor seizes the chance to return to the past and right a terrible wrong. Will he have the strength to do what he must, or will history repeat itself?

Author Connections: Twitter | Facebook

Human Era by Neal Wooten: Two grad students hurl themselves into the past with their wormhole technology. Their modern skills make them heroes, but do they truly know where they are?

Author Connections: Site | Twitter | Facebook

Black Ice by S. P. Mount: Men have become mindless drones controlled by chip implants and a master satellite. Can one serial killer imprisoned for a thousand years give them the will to truly live?

Author Connections: Blog | Twitter | Facebook

{ full author biographies : on Xchyler Publishing }


My review of Moments in Millennia:

{ am electing to highlight the stories within the anthology which piqued my interest the most out of the seven offered inside }

| Time Out of Mind by Michael Cross |

From the moment I entered this short, I felt a direct pull into the story-line as Cross singularly chose to focus on the aspect of love and how bound we can become through love where time disintegrates from view. Love is an unlimited gift where time and distance do not affect its full measure of containment. By arching the story into a military dialogue of a grandfather’s selfless acts towards gaining the freedoms of others, whilst the granddaughter struggles to understand how her heart can entwine, through time was a very enchanting pull at the very jump-start of a story!

I believe the main reason this particular story held such a heart tug for me, is due to the fact I come from a very close-knit family. I oft talk (on Jorie Loves A Story & regular blogs I visit) about my adventures in uncovering my ancestral past as Mum and I resume the search after a bit of a long hiatus to uncover the missing gaps and links on both sides of our family. And, of how through these historical adventures the connections we find become stitched into our family’s tapestry is a bit like the discovery of the coin inside Time Out of Mind. You find a tethering to one moment nestled into the past which brings the past forward and the present backwards. We create connections due to our distinctive nature of not only wanting to belong but to become understood. To understand not only where we originated ancestrally but to understand who we are and what our purpose is whilst we journey through life.

The nexus of the portal which opens through the coin brought me startling back to Somewhere in Time, which is one of my favourite all-time romantic motion pictures despite the gutting ending and the reprieve that is bittersweet. The bending and yield of the fissure points held within the mechanisms of how time is wielded and kept is always an interesting theory to pursue.

As I read this story with a thirst and appetite of anticipation,  my heart willed me to press the pages apart and see what the author would reveal on the next page, the next paragraph, the next sentence. It held my attention longing to know as Chantel did the fullness of the story she was tipping herself into on behalf of her grandfather’s legacy. He gave her a unique gift at the turning point of his exit from life, and it’s how she’s meant to follow his guidance that gave my heart a pulse-jump.

Cross pursues the theory of history and time being of temporal constant travellers of each other, where in order for our present to be in our reality, the past which has already occurred is still on-going as it had once lived. The present therefore gives us a way into the future, but whilst in the present we can stumble into the past and the past into the present at junctions of arrival we might not be aware of crossing over. In this, he held my complete attention.

Shedding my own tears as I turnt the last pages on this lovely short story, I felt compelled to see if Cross has published other stories such as this one or on parallel themes. He is intuitive about a woman’s heart and mind, as much as he understands the fractures of our hearts when we are left without the connecting pieces to puzzles. Living histories and historical artifacts help us all engage in the conversation of our shared reality. We gain compassion and empathy simply through the acknowledgement of who traversed before us as much as giving proper honour to those who died for a cause greater than we can all fully contemplate in one sitting.

Michael Cross is a debut author getting his wings in the publishing world from what I can gather off his website! How splendidly wicked news is this?! To have alighted on his first published short story and its the very one within this anthology which held my breath and heart in equal eclipse!? I cannot wait to read more of his writings, and am hopeful he is in development of a novel or novella which will be released in print form so that I can partake of reading it! Dear hearts, if he continues to write on the breadth of what I’ve just completed reading in Moments in Millennia – I dare not emerge until the last page is consumed! He has a gentleness and soft grace in writing a story with this thematic and character point of view.

| Human Era by Neal Wooten |

When I was younger I was especially intrigued by the motion pictures “2001: A Space Odyssey” and “2010”. Stemming out of those initial stories of how futuristic reality and past reality can become altered or perceived differently given the chance to change the perception of how time is analysed and accepted. I garnished an interest in “Planet of the Apes” except to say I never had the proper chance to watch the Roddy McDowell editions opting inside for the Mark Wahlberg remake when it was available to see on the silver screen. Cautionary tales of how future societies and future living realities can become transformed by interference and by curiosity.

Within the short contributed by Wooten, I had a foreshadow knowledge that their adventure ‘through time’ would end in a shocking conclusion. Not the kind that would be overtly traumatic or psychological disruptive to their well-being, but the shock that comes from discovering the unexpected truth of their actions. And, how best to continue forward in their own ordinary lives after having lived through the experience. I was not disappointed as they jolted through their time machine crossing through their homemade wormhole straight into a medieval time period fraught with war and unimagined terror of epic scale.

The more they explored the less they understood, because everything they could observe, sense, and be aware of was telling them they hadn’t traversed very far at all. If anything, they appeared to have travelled to their own world yet a step out of time or place from any map which could guide them. I loved the layers Wooten added-in to the narrative and the heart of the character of Ash, who I wish could have been developed and explored further past this initial foray. Ash is the type of character you could rally behind and see grow in the role of a mentor for the young lads who recklessly pursued technology they had little understanding of past its conception.

What I appreciated the most is how thought-provoking the capsule of the tale is for generations who are pursuant towards science explorations and experimentation. There is always a nod towards knowing how to balance the joy of discovering a new ‘acting theory’ of science within the realms of what is plausible and safe to explore. When we tip the balance into pursuing elements of science which lead us down corridors of heightened danger – it’s best to pull back and reconsider what the consequences might incur for everyone rather than the few who are involved in the experiment. It would have served well to have an epilogue on this one to see what the lads had learnt from their wormhole trip through time and how effectively they forestalled the events yet lived.

Neal Wooten is a huge appreciator of The Walking Dead which I found unique on the level that it’s the very last television series I would even dare contemplate viewing! It is interesting then that it’s his short which drew my eye to mention in my review of Moments in Millennia as I drew a connection to both of these stories (his & Cross) moreso than the others! I would not have felt that possible had I known ahead of time he was into Zombies & Horror, as his short is such a far cry from both genre exploits! This story appears to run in a side vein of what he normally writes and for that I appreciate the chance to sample his writings! I wonder if he could expand on the theory he set forth in this short and encourage out a novel?


My closing thoughts are ones of gratitude to Xchyler Publishing for giving me the honour of reading two of their books and being in a position to ask for Interviews on behalf of those who create and/or oversee the creation of the stories they publish. I am going to seek out an Interview for the two writers who inspired me whilst I read “Moments in Millennia” and I hope to provide those for you to read in forthcoming weeks. I was swept away by the depth of the story Cross conceived as from the initial moment I started to read his contribution to the very closing paragraph I dare not lift my eyes for fear of not returning to the narrative and the journey in which Chantel embarked on to find the truth etched in the past.

Stories which stir our imaginations and our hearts yield the best reading pleasure and joy; hence why my reader’s heart is full of gratitude at having been given such an extraordinary introduction to the works in which Xchyler Publishing produces and gives to readers everywhere. Again, I hope that I will be able to work with them again, and I do hope you will re-visit me this Thursday as I give my thoughts and observations on behalf of Scott E. Tarbet’s Shakespearean Steampunk debut!


Moments in Millennia : A Fantasy Anthology Book Trailer by Xchyler Publishing


This book review is courtesy of:

Xchyler Publishing

check out my upcoming bookish events and mark your calendars!

And, be sure to drop back on Thursday, 10 April

when I review A MidSummer Night’s Steampunk!

Previously I lamented about my appreciation for anthologies!

Dear hearts, I extend the conversation now to you,… what do you appreciate about anthologies which feature upcoming OR established fantasy writers? Which thematic do you find yourself attracted to the most out of: time travel, alternative history, and dystopian? The two I featured fall under the first two categories! Have you stumbled across a new-to-you author by reading a fantasy anthology and then longed for new material by them to read next? What elements make a short story endear you the most? And, what do you think is the hardest part on behalf of a writer of a short story to convey to their readers!?

{NOTE: I am enjoying the “Just Write” edition of writing blog posts in WP! This is my first post to be completely written inside this new format of ‘white board’ free writing – where you can focus on composing your thoughts without the interference of the menus & columns of the regular view inside of a browser. Quite a bit more enjoyable for me!}

{SOURCES:  Moments in Millennia Book Cover, synopsis, Editor photograph & biography were provided by Xchyler Publishing and were used by permission. Book Review badge provided by Parajunkee to give book bloggers definition on their blogs.  The book trailer by Xchyler Publishing had either URL share links or coding which made it possible to embed this media portal to this post, and I thank them for the opportunity to share more about this novel and the author who penned it. Tweets are embedded due to codes provided by Twitter.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2014.

Related Articles:

Author Spotlight: Fisher Willis – (xchylerpublishing.com)

Author Spotlight: Candace J. Thomas(xchylerpublishing.com)

Conversation with Ben Ireland – Author Interview – (jaurelguay.wordpress.com)

#BookReview: Moments in Millennia – A Fantasy Anthology (jeriwb.com)

Comments via Twitter:

About jorielov

I am self-educated through local libraries and alternative education opportunities. I am a writer by trade and I cured a ten-year writer’s block by the discovery of Nanowrimo in November 2008. The event changed my life by re-establishing my muse and solidifying my path. Five years later whilst exploring the bookish blogosphere I decided to become a book blogger. I am a champion of wordsmiths who evoke a visceral experience in narrative. I write comprehensive book showcases electing to get into the heart of my reading observations. I dance through genres seeking literary enlightenment and enchantment. Starting in Autumn 2013 I became a blog book tour hostess featuring books and authors. I joined The Classics Club in January 2014 to seek out appreciators of the timeless works of literature whose breadth of scope and voice resonate with us all.

"I write my heart out and own my writing after it has spilt out of the pen." - self quote (Jorie of Jorie Loves A Story)

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Posted Monday, 7 April, 2014 by jorielov in 2001: A Space Odyssey, Alternative History, Anthology Collection of Stories, Book Review (non-blog tour), Book Trailer, Bookish Discussions, Debut Author, Dystopian, Fantasy Fiction, Futuristic Fantasy, Good vs. Evil, High Fantasy, Indie Author, Indie Book Trade, Military Fiction, Somewhere in Time, Suspense, The World Wars, Time Travel, Xchyler Publishing




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