17 Oct 2013

“Sounds of War: Iraq Attack of Thomas Edington” by Thomas Ferreolus

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“Sounds of War: Iraq Attack of Thomas Edington” by Thomas Ferreolus is a gripping and powerful book that shows what the Iraq War could be like for some of its participating US soldiers.

It depicts in much detail and with well chosen characters the lost battles for the Al Anbar Province during Operation Iraqi Freedom as experienced by Thomas Edington.
Ferreolus describes the all day life of soldiers, the continuous threats, the ‘luck’ of surviving because a bomb blast just missed its target by metres, the at times disgusting food and water situation, interpersonal relations and the technical and tactical problems to carry out their missions. 
Interlaced with memories from Thomas’s past we get a good picture of Thomas and his life. 
This is a rich read, unlike many war novels it feels both real and surreal.
“The Devil has no remorse….he poisons humanity with war…Mankind’s apocalypse, all balancing on the individual” to quote the book.
A colleague being left by his wife, the fear of losing your loved ones while being unable to do anything about it, the threat that lingers with every possible false move, the weakness against the suicidal tactics by the enemy, the temptation the female soldiers can pose on his minds – Ferreolus has given his protagonist a lot to experience. 
There is heroism and foolishness, dark humour and a glimpse of what the war really felt like.
This is a very impressive read and unusual in its own brand and combination of wit, horror and realism. It is very impressive as audio book, too. Highly recommended.

Interview with Thomas:  1920ab1d0c6b0a22d17a2d.L._V369201168_SX200_

Hi Thomas

Your novel is set in the Iraq war. Can you briefly explain your connection to Iraq and to war?

I served in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom…

How did the idea for the novel come to you? What motivated you to write about the subject/ What do you think is missing in films and books about the subject?

What started out as hobby turned into a goal to publish an entertaining story.   I have watched movies about the war and felt Holly Wood has fallen short in bringing certain aspects of realism out, and the same goes with the few books I have read…most have disappointed me in not being brave enough to bring to the table of what was really being served to the fighting soldier. Overall, I really wanted to give to my audience an after taste, a same gritty and unforgettable taste that every soldier who fought in the conflict came home with.

Will there be another book/ series?

Yes, this the first book in the series and I am planning a total of three.

How did you come to writing in the first place? Was it always going to about this subject or did you have other genres in mind, too?

During my college days I wrote screens plays and poems. Then, I had no idea I would write anything on this level or about this subject.

How did you choose the characters for the story? Who did you have in mind when you wrote the characters? Who would play them in a  film?

The characters are strictly fiction but we writers tend to take bits and pieces of people we know or may have known.

Are you like any of the characters (and how so)?

Well, I would be a liar if I said no.  Parts of myself may be reflected in the protagonist Thomas Edington.

What was the most fascinating aspect in the research and the writing for you? How did you research for the book?

I think I am more of a story teller than a writer, and I found that without a life full of experiences I wouldn’t be able to write down anything interesting to share. 

Were the plot and sub-plots completely planned from the start or did they change during the process, and if so, how?

Someone once wrote: “Life is stranger than fiction.” And it was easy for me to just look around at what was going on during the war to come up with material to write about.  The news channels filled the cable networks with twenty four seven hours of ideas.

Tell us about the audio version and the production of it?

Awesome narrator, I feel he deserve more attention, and there is no doubt that F. William Baldwin rivals James Earl Jones.  Also, I am very proud of the post production via: P. Rebog Productions.  Right from the introduction, the audio book really captured the essence of what it felt like to be standing on the battle fields of Iraq.  With all the special sound effects, and when I heard it for the first time, I had flash back for the first time in years.  The audio book is nothing short of spectacular.

What is your writing environment like? Do you have any habits?

I have taken over the entire dining room table and strangely enough, I like to listen to opera music.

What are the best and the worst aspects of writing?

Including my home life, I have to shut out the entire world. Obsessively, I become part of the story and think about nothing else until I finish the chapter or chapters. 

How do you balance marketing one book and writing the next?

Right now I am concentrating on trying to spread the news about my first book but soon I will delve into the second book. That will be easy enough because when I came home from my tour of duty many years ago, I wrote the frame work for the three books then…I just have to pull it off the shelf and dust off the proverbial cover.

What do you do when you don’t write?

I spend time with my lovely wife and family.  By the way, my wife is a fantastic writer. We are collaborating on a project and we’ll be releasing the first of many books next year. For some strange reason, I feel absolutely confident that the series will be a huge success.  Call me an optimist if you will but nothing short of earth grabbing entertainment is coming your way.

Who are your biggest influences? Which are your favourite books and authors?

Moby Dick by Herman Melville and Gates of Fire by Stephen Pressfield are two that come to Mind.

Which indie writers can you recommend?

There are so many to choose from I can’t decide right now…

What would you take to an isolated island?

I would say my wife and family.

Who would you invited for dinner?

William Shakespeare

What else would you like us to know about yourself and your books?

If you are going to buy my work, I would highly recommend the audio book or only the kindle version of Sounds of War.

‘Sounds of War, ‘ is a historical fiction of lost battles for the Al Anbar Province during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Richly rot with lambasted situations, follow Thomas Edington’s gritty journey as it teeters on the edge of the surrealism. Always landing in hot water, his life is altered when he is forced to navigate down a precarious path of unspoken truths all while a barbaric war rages around him. The war’s twilight reflects a rainbow of dark hues bathed in blood soaked colors of altruism, and if it were not for the gruesome realities of war, the ‘Sounds of War, ‘ would be a fantastic comedy. Entertainingly witty, the story line easily unfolds like a Hollywood block buster. “A modern day Iliad.” P.Rebog – Author “What really happens behind the tent flap, gruesome and funny all rolled into one. I’m not much into war stories but I was mesmerized with Thomas Ferreolus’s not so normal fiction, ‘SOUNDS OF WAR, ‘ had me hooked from the get go.” S. Churchill – Author







Kindle link:


 Audio Book Link 

Thomas Ferreolus, adventurer and great outdoorsman, proudly served during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Loving a good cliff hanger, he continues to write fictions in the Pacific Northwest where he now resides with his beautiful wife, and family.

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30 Aug 2013

Newsflash: Review Bonanza for THE LUCK OF THE WEISSENSTEINERS

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In the last week this book drew in a staggering 10 new reviews:


Here are some highlights from the reviews. Thanks for everyone who has helped promoting the book and put the word out there. This is a very exciting time. {Sebastian also had more reviews but that will have to wait for another newsflash}

Historical Fiction at its Best!!

“The Luck of the Weissensteiners” by talented Author Christoph Fischer is classified as a fictional novel but words can barely describe how much more it is than that…his style of writing is seasoned, well-researched, captivating, and true-to-life. It brings back memories of my first encounter as a young school girl with the heart wrenching plight of the Jewish people when I read “The Diary of Anne Frank”.

Author Christoph Fischer has such an incredible gift. He is able to quietly and softly bring his reading audience into the lives of his characters and touch their hearts in a memorable and profound way.

This touching novel has certainly left its mark on me. Early in the morning…I eagerly rose to read a few more chapters before I started my day. In the evening before bed time, I engaged in the same activity with not wanting to miss a word in this captivating epic story with plenty of historical facts and authenticity to make every word penned remarkably believable and enticing. I was so expertly drawn into the story line in this incredible novel that I felt mesmerized by the cast of characters depicted…how their lives were intertwined and how their stories unfolded. This historical novel is such a wonderful and enjoyable read. Thank you to Author Christoph Fischer for sharing his talent with all of us! Simply put…I loved this book!


An encapsulating read,

A very interesting read

It is a touching and moving tale with some wonderful characters and great storytelling.

The story is well developed and will draw a reader very quickly inside the pages

and an overwhelming sense of reality in this book.

An exceptional page-turner and many historical readers will enjoy this gripping novel.

Nicely put together! A credit and a craft to the author.

***** 68681_10151109627282132_490312403_n

A truly beautiful historic suspense,

An astounding and epic story about the harrowing experiences of a Jewish family during World War Two.

Christoph Fischer’s wonderfully descriptive writing style gives an authentic feel of the era.

I found myself feeling real concern for the superbly drawn characters as they desperately try to avoid being detected by the Nazis.

*****  Molly

A little difficult to get a hang of at first, but good later on,

In Christoph Fischer’s “Luck of the Weissensteiners” you get … a great new perspective to yet another war story.

… becomes a nail biting drama as the war comes to its end. I am glad I persisted with the book. I felt moved by the story and just loved the ending when everything is being tied up.
I really enjoyed some of the great characters that came in later, particularly a tough and ambiguous Hungarian Countess, or the late love interest for the widowed father Jonah. I cared for all the characters, even some of the bad ones were becoming soft and it made me realise just how difficult it had to have been for all these people, regardless of their agendas, and how many possible outcomes for these people there could have been.
Fischer tells a good story and does so without much stereotypes and predictability. Some parts were intense but overall it was a pretty good read.

****  704801_10151110620882132_1411199247_o

A Jolt to my Ethnocentricity,

Reading Christoph Fischer’s The Luck of the Weissensteiners presented another view of that period through the camera lens of people living in Eastern Europe. The book shows people from all the different perspectives before, during, and after the war. It’s an eye-opening read to learn that the United States wasn’t the center of this war. In the lives of these ordinary folks, the United States played an almost peripheral role.

Through it, all one family stands strong.

This book’s retelling of the history of this period in Europe is personalized through the characters that represent a cross section of the lives impacted by the atrocities of war. Jews, Gentiles, Germans, Slovakians, lesbians, and traitors all point to one direction. War never makes much sense when the individual lives of its victims are examined. Neither side wins when people are persecuted for their religion, political beliefs, nationality, or sexual orientations.

Christoph Fischer has written an important book for its historical perspective. He personified the vagaries of war through the fictional characters.

As long as genocide exists in the world, we must do as Fischer has done in his novel – remind us, and remind us again, that our faith, our color, our language, and our life choices should matter not a wit. In the end, it’s our integrity and how we treat others that matters the most.

Thank you, Christoph, for writing this important book to remind us never to repeat the mistakes of the past.

***** 14708_10151107403537132_1439408697_n

Historical Fiction at it’s best,

It is hard to say a great deal about this book without giving it all away. No, it isn’t an ‘easy read’. But it it a literary gem in a huge field of historical fiction, many of which I don’t get past the opening chapters. It is insightful, historically accurate, and informative. One I started, I couldn’t put it down. A fantastic read for all ages.

I am looking forward to starting the second book in this trilogy.





About this author

Christoph Fischer was born in Germany, near the Austrian border, as the son of a Sudeten-German father and a Bavarian mother. Not a full local in the eyes and ears of his peers he developed an ambiguous sense of belonging and home in Bavaria, which has led to his interest in the concept of Nations, individuals and communal culture, some of the central themes of ‘The Three Nations Trilogy’.
He moved to Hamburg, London, Brighton and Bath, where he is still resident today.
The Luck of The Weissensteiners’  is his first book and was published in November 2012.
‘Sebastian‘ in May 2013.He has written several other novels which are in the later stages of editing and finalisation.

Christoph Fischer on Facebook:




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17 Aug 2013

“Kicker” by R. Grey Hoover

4 Comments Book Reviews


“Kicker” by R. Grey Hoover is an extraordinary read about air force life in Burma during WWII.
It focuses on Sam Huber (and his wife Eleanor home in Pennsylvania) from his first days of training through his various stops on the way to armed conflict in Burma.
Sam and his friends illustrate the regular soldier’s life, not just the super heroes as featured in Hollywood films about the time. They have embarrassing moments during the physical exams, they run out of petrol and have a huge variety of close calls and successes, too. It made them much more realistic and likeable.
The story is not just limited to Burma; Sam stops in Africa and India on the way and with him we also get to know a lot about the situation for soldiers in these areas.
With much research and an amazing amount of factual knowledge about flying, aircraft technology and weather conditions as perceived by air force personnel this book is packed with amazing information and moving insight and worth reading for many reasons.

Based on the actual experiences of American soldiers during World War II, KICKER features the lives of those who fought in the China, Burma and India Theatre, also known as CBI. Written by R Grey Hoover, this book showcases one of the most unheard of forces that fought in conjunction with British and Chinese Allied air and land forces during the Second World War.

Compelling, insightful and moving, this book tells the story of a family caught in the throes of war. It pays tribute to the bravery of a family with a 165 year tradition of service to their country. It reenacts the understated heroism of valiant men who were sent off fourteen thousand miles from their homeland to battle all the harsh elements of nature and the life-threatening attacks of hostile enemy forces. In the hopes of reminiscing his father’s life in the military, Grey writes this historical novel to bring to light the significant efforts of war veterans whose struggles may not have been recognized by many.

Little is known about the CBI Theatre. This was even referred to as the Forgotten Front due mainly to the fact that the men who fought in this zone had received very little amount of supplies and support from the government. The soldiers did not have enough provisions and had limited supply of rations. A man named Sam Huber was a part of this group. In his son’s effort to bring to life his father’s accomplishments not only as a soldier, but also as a family man, Sam’s story is told in this powerful work that will inevitably stir readers.

KICKER inspires readers to appreciate and honor the courage, strength and endurance of war veterans who risked their lives and the welfare of their families in order to fight for the very freedom that is now being enjoyed by millions




Hi Grey

Tell us a little about yourself and your book.

I am retired from the Pennsylvania State University where I spent a long and successful career in the IT field.  Since retiring, I have done a lot of traveling and have become quite successful in the field of wood carving. I have also written a book titled “Kicker”, which is a historical novel based on the experiences of my family during World War II. In addition, I founded the Author’s Social Media Support Group (ASMSG) to bring together authors who are interested in helping each other. 

How did you come to writing in the first place?

After I retired, I wanted to document my father’s wartime experiences for my family. However, the more I learned about his service and others in the China-Burma-India theatre, I decided to write a book to shed more light on that little known theatre of the war and to honor the men and women who served there.

How did you choose the actual characters for the story?

The majority of the characters in the book are based on my family members and veterans I met or learned about during my research on the book.

Who is your favourite character and why?

I would have to say my favourite character is Sam, the main character in the book.  He is my favourite because he is based on my father who I admired and respected very much.

Are you like any of the characters yourself (and how so)?

 I am like the character Billy because he based on my life during that time.

What was the most fascinating aspect in the research and the writing for you?

The most fascinating part of my research was actually meeting and befriending many World War II veterans.

How did you research for the book?

I spend over 7 years researching the book. I attended meetings of CBI veterans where I made many new friends and was able to interview a lot of them.  Sadly, those CBI veteran groups are now largely disbanded because their numbers have dwindled. I also did a lot of research through military records centers and publications available online.

Did you have any say in the cover art and how was that process?

I had a lot of say on my cover art. I provided the publisher with a picture of my father in a C-47 cargo plane and they suggested it be placed over an image of a World War II ration booklet. I was very pleased with the job that was done.

What do you do when you don’t write?

I spend a lot of time with the administrative aspects of the ASMSG group. When I am not doing that, I like to travel and pursue my wood carving interests.

Which are your favourite books and authors?

 I like adventure books and my favourite authors are Edgar Rice Burroughs, H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, Isaac Asimov and Clive Custler. 

Which indie writers can you recommend? 

The ASMSG group has a large number of indie authors that are very talented. 

What else would you like us to know about yourself, your books and the ASMSG?

Having a successful book is very difficult. Through the ASMSG group, I hope to help as many authors as I can become successful.



Blog: http://rgreyhoover.com/

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/R.-Grey-Hoover/e/B00940YE9U/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_10?qid=1375295961&sr=1-10

Twitter: https://twitter.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rgrey.hoover

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6517460.R_Grey_Hoover

ASMSG: http://asmsg.weebly.com/




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