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Squirrel Mountain Trilogy
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ISBN-10: 1-55404-410-3
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy/SF
eBook Length: 146 Pages
Published: November 2006

From inside the flap

Bench watched his father, Grand Stanley; follow a clan tradition by leaping off a cliff and attempting to fly with only a homemade parachute. Young Bench is left to travel down the steep slopes of Squirrel Mountain. His trip home is filled with many strange yet exciting events, e.g. meeting animals that could speak, fighting his familyís archrival Deener, and being pursued by a strange flying object in the sky.

Bench becomes a man, a very powerful man and political figure. He is the first president of the Republic. The Republic is a war torn version of the U.S.A. and Canada. A young doctor, Captain Robert Stanton, befriends him. Together they fight the enemy, a large group of Chinese built androids. The Republic flounders and war is inevitable.

From the Publisher: I truly enjoyed reading this story. Iím a big fan of apocalyptic fiction and found Squirrel Mountain very satisfying.

Squirrel Mountain Trilogy (Excerpt)

The Beginning
Chapter One

Time slithers like some dark and angry snake on its belly, waiting for its prey to weaken, to give up. Time waited for Grand Stanley and so did the deep ravine known as Squirrel Valley.

Grand looked out over Squirrel Valley squinting his eyes in the sun and shielding them with his outstretched hand. He knew the time had come, but didnít know if he could go through with it. His brother had done it and died. His father had done it and was lucky, luckier than his father, and his fatherís father. The Stanley men died young.

Grandís young son, Bench, stood behind him in a small copse of trees watching curiously as his father stood at the edge of the cliff. Benchís eyes would see on this day something he would not soon forget. The young boy stood alone behind a small birch. He had his backpack sitting beside him, paying no mind to its contents of dried venison, fruit, and a bedroll. He paid no mind to the old, rusty shotgun leaning on an adjacent tree. The gun was loaded just in case, just in case...

Grand tested the wind. He knew it had to be right. He knew the wind. He knew it well, the subtleties and the brutal cyclonic rushes. He had watched for years. Squirrel Valley would soon be his grave or his genesis. He looked back at the boy, feeling a tinge of sorrow. If he didnít survive, the boy would have to walk back to his mother and the other children by himself. It was a long journey for a lad, five days fraught with danger.

Cliff flying had been a tradition in the Stanley tribe forever. Stories had been passed down through the generations. It had been told that Arkin Stanley had begun the practice over two hundred years before. He had fallen to his death while his oldest son stood by a tree not dissimilar to the one Bench now stood beside.

Tradition has it that the patriarch of the family could not jump from Squirrel Hill cliff if he had no sons. Taber Stanley had four daughters and therefore was not allowed to jump. Wonson Stanley had no children and was not permitted to jump. In other words, the Stanley patriarch could not leave his wife unattended or without a man to keep wood in the stove.

After the oldest sonís tenth birthday, the Stanley patriarch could take his leap. A successful leap placed the patriarch at the head Clan Table during the Red Leaf Season Festival. He and his son had bragging rights until the next patriarch jumped. A failed leap placed the patriarchís name on the Stone of Legends and his son was required to weave a tale about his fatherís attempt. Grand wondered if the boy could weave such a tale. Bench was a quiet lad, never imposing, always compliant, a good son. But, could he lead? Could anyone? Grandís father survived the leap, but had passed away two years ago. He died the yellow death. Grandís father, Bond, was quiet too, like the boy, but had been a great leader in the clan. Yes, Bond Stanley was quiet, but deadly.

The story was told about Bondís confrontation with Yamen Tyler, clan leader of the Tylers, a rugged, leather skinned man who had the temperament of an ox and just as ugly. Seems Yamen wanted to take one of the Stanley women to bed without marriage. Bond stood his ground and stared old Yamen down. The Tylers have stayed away from the Stanleys ever since the incident. The clans have learned to be tolerant of one another, speaking only when necessary. They used the same forest to hunt in, but the forest was immense, giving plenty of game to both clans.