Right now the Kindle version of my novel Nearer the Dawn is on sale for just 99¢. You can find it here: https://www.amazon.com/Nearer-Dawn-J-Avila-ebook/dp/B00J1AVQLM
As usual, all net profits go to charity.
If you don’t own a Kindle, you can download Kindle onto your computer absolutely free at https://www.amazon.com/Amazon-Digital-Services-LLC-Download/dp/B00UB76290
This is one of the top rated novels on Catholic Fiction.net, where it received a glowing review that will give you some idea what the book’s about: http://catholicfiction.net/book-review/nearer-th-dawn.php
How this book came to be: I wondered what an atheist would do if he witnessed a miracle. I figured he would try to explain it away. But what if he couldn’t explain it away? Well, I think he’d still try to explain it away, no matter how ridiculous the explanation.
Nearer the Dawn grew out of that idea.
This is my most Catholic book. Because the battle between good and evil can be violent, this book is recommended only for those age 13 and up.
Here’s the prologue:
Evil oozed up between the floorboards and glanced around. Puffs of dust, four bed legs. A throw rug nearby. Peaceful ticks from a clock.
The usual danger was nowhere in sight. Excellent.
A blob of thick oil, it crawled from under the bed, slithering along the planking, fingers of darkness gliding up the wall. It snaked along the ceiling, then paused, hovering over the four poster bed.
Below slept the loathsome creature.
Auburn hair, spread on the pillow, haloed her face. One hand rested on her stomach. The other, fingers curled upward, lay near her head.
Oil coagulated, drew into a rough cylinder, its tip sculpturing into a serpentine head. Eyelids sliced open, red crescent pupils burning within. Scales sprouted along a belly coiled on the ceiling.
Eyes narrowing, it spiraled down to scrutinize the creature. Repugnance rose into a groan, dark vibrations purling outward and rippling about her brain before worming into her dream.
Her eyes slipped open.
Ah, yes. Time for terror. He thrust at her and hissed.
“Oh, pheeeew.” The woman pinched her nostrils and gagged. “Your breath is rancid. You need a mouthwash.”
His head sprang back, growls rolling in his throat.
Yawning, she sat up. “Oh, Hezera. Not the serpent again. Can’t you do the dragon? The dragon’s a lot scarier.”
Arms thick with muscles burst from his sides. The head chiseled into a human countenance. Curved horns erupted from temples.
“Oh,” she said. “You’re going for a more conventional look. But you forgot your pitchfork.”
Hezera splayed his fingers. “These are better,” he said, his voice deep and grating. Nails stretched into talons reflecting the scarlet rage of his eyes.
She folded her arms. “Well, now you need both a mouthwash and a manicure.”
Roaring, he slashed her face, but the talons swiped as clean as sunlight beaming through glass, leaving her unscathed.
She inspected her own nails. “Know what? I need a manicure too.”
Jaw and fist muscles clenched. A powerful bellow whooshed her hair back.
She yawned again. “You finished?”
“Someday I will find a way to hurt you.”
“Promises, promises. Look, I’m very sleepy, and I don’t feel like playing.” She called, “Abriel!”
“No!” Hezera muzzled her with both hands. “Shut up!”
Glaring radiances blasted the room, scoured through him like fire. Howling, he plunged through the floor and burrowed fathoms deep into soothing darkness.
The light dimmed, bathing her in a warm luminescence.
Eyes squeezed shut. Soreness tinged her throat.
“Please,” she blubbered. “Abriel, please. Can’t you make him stop?”
Abriel’s voice hummed inside her head. All soldiers train for war. Little skirmishes prepare you. But you should cease your snide comments, for they are dangerous. Not only will they not defeat this enemy, they only serve to antagonize him further.
She tugged the blanket over her knees. “I can’t seem to help myself. I have to deal with his attacks somehow, don’t I? Besides, I didn’t ask to be a soldier.”
You want evil to win?
Her shoulders slumped. “No. But why me? Why not someone else?”
The light dissolved, leaving her question unanswered.
Arms huddled her legs. Outdoors, crickets chirped.
Alone, she stared, unblinking, at the darkness.
You can read the first chapter and most of the second free by clicking the book cover in the Amazon listing. Also feel free to check out the reviews.