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Literature
Adoption Day: A new short story!
Here's the surprise I promised for the 450th post on this blog: A new short story! It features Henrietta Honeycutt and Duncan Wizansky, two characters who debuted in Redblade (needless to say, there are spoilers ahead). It's a slice of life story, much like "That's Amore", and there's only a little magic...unless the magic in the human heart counts.
If you like this, feel free to leave a comment or drop me a line, and you're welcome to share the link all over social media! Spread the word!
Adoption Day
a short story by Robert Dahlen
It had been an even more chaotic Sunday morning than usual at the Wonderland Diner and Tavern. A group of visitors from San Francisco had shown up the previous day, to help rescue one of their own, and had stuck around for breakfast before heading back. All of them but one were at one large round table. There was Theresa Drake, sorceress and BIP agent, who had helped bring down the dreaded wizard Kraimorg. There was Charlie Main, Theresa’s husb
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Literature
That's Amore! : A Monkey Queen short story
It's almost Valentine's Day! To mark the day, after the cut is the premiere of a new Monkey Queen short story, "That's Amore!" Be warned: There are spoilers, especially for the endings of A Tiding Of Magpies and Redblade.
Scylla had just finished preparing her tea, and was setting the cup and saucer on the table by her favorite chair, when she heard the knocking on the door. "Perfectly timed," the black-clad faerie murmured as she walked over. She glanced through the peephole, nodded, and opened the door.
"Hey," Beth McGill said. "Am I early?"
"A bit," Scylla said, "but I can work with it." She stepped aside as Beth entered the apartment, closing the door behind her.
Beth paused as she reached for her shoulder bag, staring at the bookshelves that filled every available spot along the walls of Scylla's living room. "I still can't get over all those books," she said as she opened the bag.
"This?" Gregor snorted as he poked his head out of the bag. "She hasn't even read some
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Literature
The Troll And The Garter: A Monkey Queen Story
Warning: Spoilers ahead for the fifth Monkey Queen book, Redblade! Continue at your own risk!
It had been a long Saturday for Abigail Main-Drake, but in a good way. She had returned to Nortonville for the first time since she had toured Cooper College and met Beth McGill, fought against and then alongside Michiko Koyama, the Monkey Queen, and helped to defeat the sorceress Lady Midday. In the end, Abby had been invited to work with Michiko and Beth to watch and protect the Emigre communities once she had graduated from high school, and she had happily accepted.
Spring break had begun, and Abby's parents had been pleased with her progress in swordsmanship and sorcery, so they had allowed her to spend her break in Nortonville. Abby had arrived bright and early Saturday morning, suitcases in hand, where she was met for breakfast at the Wonderland Diner and Tavern by Michiko and Beth. They had dropped off Abby's stuff at the apartment Michiko and Beth shared after they ate, and had
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Literature
Redblade: Read Chapter One!
Redblade, the fifth Monkey Queen book, should be going on sale sometime this week. I’m pleased to present the official preview, with Chapter One here! Be advised that this spoils the ending of A Tiding Of Magpies. I hope you enjoy this, and feel free to let me know what you think in the comments!
Chapter One
Michiko Koyama was grinning as she started up the winding trail, a smile that spread to her brown eyes. “The rain’s finally gone!” she said, snapping her fingers. The seeming with the yellow sweater and the black jeans vanished, revealing her “Monkey Queen” outfit, the black t-shirt and leggings, the yellow karate jacket, the red pillbox hat with the long matching scarf that snapped in the morning breeze. It had been a quiet morning, and Michiko treasured it; being a hero meant that there weren’t too many of those.
“Yeah,” Beth McGill said as she walked alongside Michiko, brushing back her brownish blonde hair with
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Literature
Redblade: Read Chapter Two!
Redblade, the fifth Monkey Queen book, should be going on sale sometime this week. I’m pleased to present the official preview, with Chapter Two here! If you missed Chapter One, click here! http://fav.me/d9k0wpv (Be advised that it spoils the ending of A Tiding Of Magpies.) I hope you enjoy this, and feel free to let me know what you think in the comments!
Chapter Two
“I’ll get you!” The thin bald man in the dark robe struggled in the automaton’s grasp, glaring at the pixie in the purple jumpsuit. “All of you! I’ll have my revenge! Release me at once!” he snapped over his shoulder at the automaton. It stared straight ahead, its clockwork copper gears poking through the gaps in its ceramic body, as it continued with the task it had been magically programmed for, the physical restraint of prisoners.
“Blade Buskin,” the pixie said calmly, “you are under arrest by the Bureau of Interdimensional Policing for var
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Literature
The Names Of The Stars: A Tale of the Far Lands
It was an excellent breakfast. Michiko Koyama, the Monkey Queen, and her best friend and partner in adventure, Beth McGill, had wrapped up a quest early that morning, and Princess Jiao's men had found a restaurant near the Bridge of Magpies with an owner who was all too happy to wake up early and get paid for feeding royalty. There were seven of them at the table—Michiko, Beth, Jiao, Prince Yun, Merchant Sheng and his girlfriend, the wizard Jade Crane, and the elderly priestess Auntie Ting.
The priestess had taken a liking to Beth during their quest, and had been telling her some of the classic tales of the Far Lands. She had finished eating before the others, and now stared intently at Michiko and Beth. They had been quiet during the meal, letting the others carry the conversation, glancing nervously at each other. Auntie Ting shook her head slightly, sipped her tea and waited for a lull in the conversation before she spoke. “Wizard!”
“Yes?” Jade Crane sm
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Literature
A Tiding Of Magpies - Chapter Two!
You've read Chapter One of the upcoming Monkey Queen book, A Tiding Of Magpies; now, you can read Chapter Two!
If you missed Chapter One, you can read it here! http://fav.me/d8sfvt4 Also, you can read an excerpt from Chapter Four - "The Author, The Archer And The King Of Magpies" - here! http://fav.me/d8m1ui2 Thanks for reading, and feel free to comment, favorite and share!
It was windy on the mountain, windy and cold, and Michiko's long red scarf danced as she looked around the narrow peak. What is this place? she thought. Why am I here? Where's Beth? She could see four other mountains in the near distance, all of them tall and slender.
A piece of paper, blown by the wind, landed at Michiko's feet. She picked it up and saw writing on it, in gold letters, in a script she recognized as Sanskrit. It seemed familiar to her, but she couldn't quite place it.
There was loud, mocking laughter behind Michiko. She slowly turned.
Squatting on a ridge above her was a monkey.
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Literature
A Tiding Of Magpies - Chapter One!
The wait is over! Here's your chance to read the first chapter of the upcoming fourth Monkey Queen book, A Tiding Of Magpies! You can also read Chapter Two here - http://fav.me/d8sfyhn - and an excerpt from Chapter Four - "The Author, The Archer And The King Of Magpies" - here! http://fav.me/d8m1ui2 Enjoy! Comments, shares and favorites welcome!
"It's always about the stories, isn't it?"
Beth McGill raised an eyebrow as she and the hobgoblin standing next to her waited near the entrance to the maze of hallways and rooms that took up the back of the converted warehouse. In front of them was a public square, with actual grass and trees, lit by skylights when the sun was out and overhead lights at night. During the day, it was crowded, but that evening it was deserted except for them and a handful of guards.
“Stories?” Beth asked as she pushed her glasses back up her nose and stuck her hands into the pockets of her green army jacket, which she wore over her faded blue j
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Literature
A Game Of Scones: A Monkey Queen short story!
If you guessed this was the short story that would be premiering today, you were right! Here's Michiko and Beth's latest adventure, "A Game Of Scones"!
“Sometimes,” Michiko the Monkey Queen said after everything had been resolved, “trouble starts when and where you least expect it.”
For Michiko and her roommate and partner in adventure, Beth McGill, it started one Sunday morning while they were on their weekly walk along the trail to the Wonderland Diner and Tavern, for breakfast and conversation with their Emigre friends. The informal dress code at Wonderland was “determinedly casual”, so Michiko wore a yellow sweater and black jeans instead of her usual Monkey Queen outfit. Beth was dressed as she usually was, in blue jeans and her green army jacket, over a Widdershins t-shirt.
They were chatting idly as they walked when they saw the dwarven couple heading down a side trail towards them. "Good morning!" Michiko said.
"Good morning, Mo
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Literature
Three Women In A Stew: A Monkey Queen short story!
If you guessed this was the short story that would be premiering today, you were right! Here's Michiko and Beth's latest adventure, "Three Women In A Stew (To Say Nothing Of The Guinea Pig)"!
It may have been late October, with summer gone and autumn looming, but someone had forgotten to tell that to the weather. It was hot, and getting hotter as the day went on, without any breezes and fog from the not too distant Pacific Ocean rolling in. Throughout the town, people pulled out every trick they had used back in August to stay cool, some of which actually worked.
The heat gave the afternoon a hint of lethargy, but newish roommates Michiko Koyama, the Monkey Queen, and college sophomore and geek girl Beth McGill had been too busy expecting company to be lazy. They had already cleaned up, but Michiko kept poking around, finding little specks of dust or fluff that she had missed the first three times she had checked, humming Monkees songs to herself. Beth had taken refuge on the li
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Literature
The Author, The Archer, And The King Of Magpies
As promised, here is the excerpt from the upcoming fourth Monkey Queen book, A Tiding Of Magpies. I've included the lines from before and after this story within a story, for context, but the story itself should stand on its own. I hope you like it. Here is “The Author, The Archer, And The King Of Magpies”.
Beth said, “Auntie Ting?”
“Yes?” the old priestess said.
“If I may ask--why is it called the Bridge of Magpies?”
“Ah!” Auntie Ting smiled. “There is a story behind that, one of the classic tales of Heaven! It has been told and retold for centuries! You and the Monkey Queen need to hear it, wizard!”
“I'm not a wizard,” Beth muttered as Michiko moved next to her.
Auntie Ting ignored her. “Come closer, spread your ears, and a tale I will tell!”

Once upon a time in Heaven, there was a god who was an author. He was of middle age, as gods go, and behind his words and characters and stori
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Literature
Monkey Queen 3: Read Chapter Two!
I just posted this on the Monkey Queen Books blog, so I thought it was only fair to share it here - a look at Chapter Two of the upcoming third Monkey Queen book, Under The Stars Of Faerie! I hope you like it, and if you do, comments and favoriting are always welcome!
And so, Beth thought as she spun the steering wheel of her airship, having thwarted the plans of the impertinent Baron Von Spotnick, it was onward towards their next adventure! He had put up a challenge, but with the help of her loyal crew and the dark and brooding masked rogue she knew only as Starling, she had triumphed.
One of her crew hurried up to her, pausing only to preen her whiskers and munch on a stalk of celery. "Wheep?" she asked Beth.
"Where are we going, Snootles?" Beth told the guinea pig. "Wherever the wind and sky take us!"
"Captain..." A slender masked young rogue dressed all in black strode up to her, his dark hair drifting dramatically in the breeze, guinea pigs swooning in his wak
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Literature
Sneak Preview: Monkey Queen Book Three!
The third Monkey Queen book, Under The Stars Of Faerie, is coming February 24! Here's a look at Chapter One!
It was a November day that felt like one from December, dry but overcast with a strong cold breeze. That, combined with the usual Monday blahs, had driven Michiko Koyama—known to her friends as Michiko and her foes as the Monkey Queen—to ask her roommate and best friend, Beth McGill, to join her on a late afternoon trip to the Dew Droppin' Coffeehouse, the source of their favorite hot caffeinated drinks. Since Beth had never turned down a cup of coffee in her life, she quickly agreed, and the two were taking the short walk from their apartment to the coffeehouse.
"What are you getting?" Beth was asking. Even with the cold, she was wearing a Nimona t-shirt and, over that, her green army jacket, mostly because among the many enchantments on the jacket was one to keep her warm in cold weather.
"I was going to have an espresso," Michiko said, fidgeting with her yellow sw
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Literature
Best Christmas Ever - new Monkey Queen short story
Just in time for the holiday season, we (we?) here at Monkey Queen Books are pleased to unwrap a brand new short story! Join Michiko, Beth and their friends for their..."Best Christmas Ever!"
"There!" Michiko carefully hung the last shiny ornament on the Christmas tree and straightened up. "I thought I'd missed a spot!"
It had been a quiet holiday season so far for Michiko Koyama, the young hero known as the Monkey Queen, and her best friend and partner in adventure Beth McGill. One of Michiko's duties was watching over the various communities of Emigres in and around the town of Nortonville. December was the quietest month for her, as Emigres celebrated their New Year starting with the winter solstice. This was marked by low-key ceremony, somber reflection, and staying warm indoors. Much to her joy, Michiko had had plenty of free time to prepare for Christmas.
The main beneficiary of this was the tall Christmas tree that dominated the small living room of the apartment she and
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Literature
Monkey Queen Book Two: Sneak Preview!
Monkey Queen fans! Book two, The Brigadoon Boondoggle, is coming November 28! To celebrate, here's a sneak preview of a scene from Chapter Four!
* * *
“I'm not crazy, Jill!” the old spriggan shouted as he ran through the woods.
“That's still open for debate,” said the young spriggan who followed him. She had short black hair and light green skin, and eyes like cherry stones. She wore resoled boots and a knee-length sleeveless dress that had been thoroughly patched, so it appeared to be multiple shades of blue instead of just one. She carried a crossbow that was gremlin-crafted, small yet powerful and quick to reload, and wore a bandolier lined with bolts.
“The bird told me where to find them!” the old spriggan said.
“Gramps,” Jill said, “last week you said the birds told you there was gold in a poison oak shrub!”
“So they're not perfect.” Gramps shrugged.
“You were scratching for three days straight!”
G
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Literature
Monkey Queen: Curse of the Werecorgi (short story)
This is a Monkey Queen short story I was inspired to write after a rather silly thread on a writer's message board I hang out at, which in turn was inspired by the Twitter feed @worstmuse. The story-within-a-story part is a parody of the current flood of stories about Rubenesque women hooking up with werewolves (really), and there's some nice moments with Michiko and Beth in the framing sequence. Enjoy! And if you leave a comment asking me to, I'll tell you where the name "Rosie Darniels" came from. :)
It had been Beth's idea. She and Michiko—the Monkey Queen, her best friend, roommate and partner in adventure—had been having another rough week. Beth's TAs had been getting prickly again, and Michiko had been stuck in meetings with the Council of Eight that made dishwater seem festive. She and Beth also had to deal with Emigre issues—a gang of ogres had snuck in from Faerie to shake down the locals, the hobgoblins kept squabbling with one another, and several brownies
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I'm thrilled to announce that, at long last, the sixth Monkey Queen book, The Crown Of Kylthena, has been published! Get your copy at Amazon, or search your favorite ebook retailer for "Robert Dahlen" or "Monkey Queen"! And check out this gorgeous cover by the amazing :iconwillow-san: !

Mq6 by RobBrain

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RobBrain
Robert Dahlen
United States
Fantasy author, all-around wisecracker, baker of cookies, wearer of nice hats and penguin aficionado. Get the Monkey Queen series at your favorite e-book store! Three books out, and the fourth, A Tiding Of Magpies, is coming in May! Read short stories and previews in my gallery!

Oh, and the covers are by DeviantArt's own :iconwillow-san: ! Go check out her gallery!
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