Book Series Recommendation | Hell Bound, Hell Hounds, Hell Gate by International Bestseller @WestonA
Title: Hell Bound – Hell Hounds – Hell Gate
Author: Andrew P. Weston
Publisher: Perseid Press
Hell Bound Blurb:
In hell, none of the condemned believes they deserve to be there. And that’s fine, so long as they’re not foolish enough to try and do anything about it. For those that do, there’s always Satan’s Reaper–and chief bounty hunter–Daemon Grim.
Feared throughout the many layers of the underverse, no one in their right mind dares to cross him.
However, when Grim discovers that someone has attempted to evade injustice, and seems hell-bent on gaining access to ancient angelic artifacts proscribed since the time of the original rebellion in heaven, circumstances point to the fact they may be doing just that.
The question is...why?
Thus begins an investigation that leads Grim throughout the many contradictory and baffling levels of the underworld, where he unearths a conspiracy that is not only eating its way like a cancer through the highest echelons of Hellion society, but one which threatens the very stability of Satan’s rule.
As you can imagine, Grim’s response is bloody, brutal, and despicably wicked.
Hell Bound – In hell, everyone can hear you scream...
Hell Hounds Blurb:
Feared throughout the many circles of the underworld, Satan’s Reaper – and chief bounty hunter – Daemon Grim, is known as a true force to be reckoned with.
Having eliminated a major player in the uprising eating its way like a cancer through the underbelly of hell, Grim is stunned to discover he cannot afford to rest on his laurels, for the rebellion runs far deeper than was ever imagined. New players have emerged – denizens with uncanny abilities – who seem determined to support Chopin and Tesla’s revolutionary agenda.
Ever keen to test their mettle, the Sibitti – personified weapons of the ancient Babylonian plague god, Erra – also appear eager to capitalize on the growing unrest, and set about maneuvering events in order to place themselves in direct opposition to Grim’s investigation.
And if that was not cause for concern enough, there’s an insane angel on the loose, a creature as hell-bent on creating havoc as he is to return home.
How do Grim and his rabid pack of bounty hunters respond?
Baying for blood – doesn’t even begin to describe it.
Hell Gate Blurb:
The Angel Grislington is dead, effaced from existence during an epic battle with Daemon Grim that destroyed a Zion forged blade and one of Satan’s premier palaces in the process.
Chopin and Tesla have gone to ground. So much so, that they might as well be six feet under helping to push up hell-daisies.
Even Erra and the Sibitti, his living weapons of vengeance and destruction, seem reticent to show their faces.
Rioting sweeps the length and breadth of the underworld. Yet the halls of the Mortuary lie vacant, for someone is stealing soul-essence, the very means by which Satan condemns sinners to everlasting torment.
But who would dare such a thing? And how does the hush that descends upon the dirty streets of latterday hell tie into ancient prophecy relating to the Reaper’s destiny?
It’s often calmest before the storm.
Just imagine how bad things will get with the apocalypse approaching.
Hell Bound Excerpt:
In the Juxtapose level of Hell, Olde London Town was a conundrum at the best of times, a heady mix of the implausibly warped, and secularly grotesque. Its denizens were the perfect accompaniment to their city, a stir-fried hotchpotch of condemned souls, who took the geophysical and temporal irregularities of their hometown in their stride.
Everyday life here was as much of an enigma as it was a challenge, and you’d think that, having lived here for centuries, I’d be used to it by now. But the truth was, it still caught me by surprise from time to time, as the boundaries between eras were as fluid as they were temperamental. And in this place more than any other, I’d discovered that, even if you knew a surprise was coming, forewarned was definitely not forearmed.
As was the case regarding my current predicament.
Nimrod and I were en route to the Grey Friars. In the land of the living, Greyfriars had been the site of a Franciscan friary that existed from 1225–1538, in a northwestern part of the City of London, called, St Nicholas on the Shambles. That great establishment had included one of the largest conventional churches in the capital. It had also been home to a Studium, an extensive library of logical and theological texts so important, that it was rivaled only by Oxford University. It achieved a level of cultural prestige that drew people from all over the then known world, until Thomas Cromwell–a man who came to be a good friend of mine–ordered it seized during the English Reformation. Under his enlightened guidance, the Greyfriars estates were confiscated, the order itself was disbanded, and most of its monks, banished or executed.
Of course, we couldn’t let such a monument go to waste. And with a gothic twist, it became the perfect establishment for the truly irreverent.
The Grey Friars were now Satan’s very own thought police, an unholy order of hermits who regularly vetted the ranks of the Devil’s Children to weed out those with doubts or illusions of grandeur. Every Sinday morning, the pews of the High Church of Lucifer within the Friars’ domain would be packed with Blue Suits and spooks, all of whom would undergo their regular confessional evaluation.
But the order also served another purpose.
The site had also retained its archives, and was now one of the largest repositories of occult knowledge in the Underworld, rivaled only by the Hellexandria Library.
The Grey Friars defended that vault, and had placed the treasures in their care within the Cloister of Scourging, a great castle-like tower situated within a separate annex. Constructed on a mound built from the bones of those who died during the Great Fire of London, some one hundred years after the original monastery’s passing, the cloister was protected by a series of enchanted wards, and a powerful temporal barrier. Of course, it was also guarded by the friars themselves, who were known to possess skills far more lethal than Shaolin monks tripping on amphetamines.
A heavy set of precautions, and yet, all these measures were but a secondary line of defense. To reach them, you first had to pass the Knights Bridge, an esoteric conduit from here to there, and now and then.
Appearing much like a ground-level mushroom cloud from a nuclear explosion, the Knights Bridge encompassed the Cloister of Scourging in a haar of literal thought stealing smog. A brume that was so thick, so cloying, that unworthy individuals had been known to enter, only to wander forever lost.
Hell Hounds Excerpt:
Hidden amongst the ziggurat spires adorning the northwestern corner of the Palace of Westmonster, I had a commanding view of a midnight skyline that could only belong to Olde London Town. As usual, the rainbow-haloed blush of the streetlights far below twinkled into the distance, distinguishing those parts of the city anchored in the modern day from the remnants scattered throughout the broad spectrum of other eras known to saturate this, the topsy-turviest existence in all of latter-day hell; otherwise known as the Juxtapose level.
From my vantage point, it looked as if a patchwork quilt of simple open fires, gas streetlamps, and brilliant neon beacons had been spread out in all directions. Whatever the period, it made no difference; everything remained veiled beneath the stain of original sin.
I inhaled deeply, my phantom nostrils flaring in pleasure as a pungent blend of brimstone and exhaust fumes filled my nonexistent lungs.
This was my kind of place and I loved it here. But I suppose that was understandable, as I was top of the food chain.
Movement down below and on the opposite bank of the River Tombs caught my attention. I phased, and in the blink of an eye materialized among the crenels of the highest buttresses on the far side of Westmonster Bridge. Safe amongst the shadows, I adjusted my perspective and zeroed in on Phosphate Magnum Square in the district of Lambsdeath, a place synonymous with hellegal weapons trafficking. Not that you could call it a square any more, for the Victorian thoroughfare was littered with ruptured gas mains, shattered cobbles, and a veritable no man’s land of debris from semi-demolished buildings, courtesy of our Sibitti friends and the latest tremors they had engendered over the past several months.
Vegetation, taking advantage of the unexpected reprieve from all-enveloping brickwork, had exploded from every available crack and fissure, adding a tangled maze of roots and foliage to the already confusing minefield that remained. Along with it came cloying swarms of insects. Freed at last from the confines of centuries-old pipe work, they wove their droning spell through the air like chitinous starlings; worrying people and animals alike under a relentless assault of gnashing mandibles and venomous stings.
If that wasn’t distracting enough, an endless drizzle of oily black rain fell from leaden clouds, making the going treacherous underfoot. But not for the assassin I’d espied.
Dressed from head to toe in a figure-hugging flaytex cat suit and soft-soled boots, she looked completely at home in this environment, and every inch the femme fatale she clearly was. In fact, so innocuous was her presence that she was able to pierce the legion of hearse flies swarming about the crown of the debris without attracting the slightest curiosity.
An exceptional achievement. And part of the reason for my interest.
Tonight would be the fifth assignment I’d tagged along on—without her knowledge, of course—and I had to admit, I was impressed with her work. Over the past several weeks she had managed to take out a Low Court judge, midsession, as he summed up a case in the primary courtroom of the Olde Bully; a high value inmate under witness protection in the isolation wing of Wormblood Scrubs maximum security prison; and her last job involved one of the most clinical demonstrations I had ever witnessed of how to dispatch an entire coven of Dread-Locks, armed with nothing but a pair of combat knives blessed in the flames of the Bãlefire.
Hell Gate Excerpt:
Down below, the rails began to hum. As the drone grew louder, the distinct skittering sound of metal vibrating distinguished itself, thrumming out from the blackness to our left. Peering into that tunnel, I discerned two amber coals glowing in the distance. Those coals drew closer, gradually clarifying into the lamps of a First Class Victorian carriage.
That thing must be from the eighteen sixties? On electric tracks? I grinned. Who would have thought Hatamâh would be into steam punk?
The coach pulled to a stop in front of us, glorious in burnished red walnut trim, gold paint and brass handles. A sign on the exterior panel said:
Though the door was open, it was hard to distinguish what lay inside, for ambient light didn’t seem to penetrate. Entering cautiously, we found a single occupant – an old style conductor – waiting patiently in the shadows by the first row of seats. Resplendent in a crisp navy-blue uniform and hat, starched white shirt and shiny shoes, he still managed to look distinctly inappropriate, for Hatamâh had elected to provide the simulacrum of a lilac-skinned Jinn ogre instead of a human being.
Even so, the Gate’s ambassador was exceedingly polite. Tipping his cap, he addressed me directly. “And where will Sir be travelling to?”
“I’m sorry, I don’t really know?” I turned toward Jotûn and Garôk, hoping they might have a suggestion, only to find them staring at me. Or more accurately, they were staring at the ogre and me in turn. Dismissing their unusual behavior; I asked our guide a direct question. “I’m not sure what I’m supposed to do. Are you allowed to help in any way?”
“Of course. Perhaps Sir would like to share the memories held by his blood? Or, if he feels reticent, he can explain the events that led him here, orally?”
Events that led…? The clue! “Of course, hang on a second.” Concentrating, I brought the acolyte’s song to mind and repeated it out loud:
Mocked by a sea of death’s-head grins
Of those condemned, innocent and guilty alike.
I come to rest,
Amid a petrified forest of bleached white hands
That reach for the sky, pleading for mercy.
I navigate the maze of a scarred and twisted mind
Only to be strangled by a philosophy of sweetest sin.
I drown in a sea of crimson passion,
Tainted by poison and liquid vows of tainted possession.
I savor the sweetest embrace of pain and pleasure,
For they are served upon the dregs of my shattered dreams.
I slumber upon a pillow of incendiary emotions laden by grief
Plumped upon a divan of carbonized dreams.”
The conductor nodded appreciatively as I completed each line. I also noticed he didn’t appear taxed in any way, giving me the impression he knew exactly what the disciple of the Right-Hand Path had meant all along.
When I’d finished, he stepped closer, and declared, “I’m thinking you’ll all be needing safe passage to the Hall of Shattered Dreams. One moment…” he lifted the ticket machine slung about his neck and whirled the handle. Once – twice – three times.
A line of pink tokens appeared, jerking from the slot like the extended tongue of a petulant child. Tearing them free, he handed one to each of us. “There you go. Don’t forget; wait for the train to come to a standstill before exiting the carriage.”
Andrew P. Weston is Royal Marine and Police veteran from the UK who now lives on the beautiful Greek island of Kos with his wife, Annette, and their growing family of rescue cats.
An astronomy and criminal law graduate, he is the creator of the internationally acclaimed IX Series, along with Hell Bound, Hell Hounds and Hell Gate, (Novels forming part of Janet Morris’ critically celebrated Heroes in Hell shared universe). Andrew also has the privilege of being a member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, the British Science Fiction Association, British Fantasy Society, and the International Association of Media Tie-In Writers.
When not writing, Andrew devotes some of his spare time to assisting NASA with one of their remote research projects, and writes educational articles for Astronaut.com and Amazing Stories.
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