Friday, March 8, 2013


Art: Jack Kirby
Art: Jack Kirby
I looked over the galley proofs for the upcoming anthology from Moonstone Books called The Avenger: Roaring Heart of The Crucible. My story in the anthology, as you can see above, is called "Lone Justice," which is a play on the title character's team, Justice Inc. As the name implies, in this one, Richard Henry Benson, the man known as The Avenger is on his own.

The bad guys should still be worried though.

The Avenger is one bad mutha... well, you know.

As I was working on the proofs a realization hit me. Now, I'm glad this thought hadn't occurred to me while I was working on the story because it might have thrown me for a loop. Despite the character's pulp novel roots, The Avenger was adapted by Denny O'Neill and Jack Kirby for DC Comics back in the 1970's. Plus, Joe Kubert and Al McWilliams to boot.
Art: Jack Kirby

Now, as a longtime comic book fan, these are some pretty heady names and it feels strange, and also gratifying to work on the same character as some of my comic book creating heroes. I got a similar charge working on the Green Hornet as well. Jack Kirby, a man I was fortunate to meet briefly at a convention once upon a time, is regarded as one of the father's of comic books. Not only did Jack co-create some amazing characters like Captain America (with Joe Simon), The Fantastic Four, The X-Men, Nick Fury, The Hulk, Silver Surfer, Galactus (all with Stan Lee), to his solo creations like Darkseid, The New Gods, Mister Miracle, The Eternals, and so many more.

Thanks for indulging my detour into comic book history. I really geeked out a bit when the realization of the Kirby link hit me and I just had to share. I'm excited for the upcoming Moonstone release and I'm proud to be a part of this new anthology. Speaking of which, I've posted a little information about The Avenger: Roaring Heart of The Crucible below.
Art: Jack Kirby

I hope you'll check it out.


The 1970s DC Comics Justice Inc. covers



The Avenger: Roaring Heart of the Crucible is now available for pre-order. Moonstone Books’ third anthology collection chronicling new tales of pulp hero, The Avenger is now available for pre-order on Amazon. Titled, THE AVENGER: ROARING HEART OF THE CRUCIBLE, the book is scheduled for release in April 2013 in both softcover trade paperback and limited edition hardcover.

Art: Douglas Klauba
The Avenger: Roaring Heart of the Crucible features stories by New Pulp Authors Matthew Baugh, James Chambers, Greg Cox, Win Scott Eckert, Joe Gentile, CJ Henderson, Nancy Holder, Michael May, Matthew Mayo, Will Murray, Bobby Nash, Barry Reese, Chris Sequeira, John Small, and David White. Edited by Nancy Holder and Joe Gentile. Cover art courtesy of E. M. Gist (soft cover) and Jay Piscopo (hardcover).

The greatest crime-fighter of the 40′s returns in a third thrilling collection of original, action-packed tales of adventure, intrigue, and revenge. Life was bliss for millionaire adventurer Richard Henry Benson until that fateful day crime and greed took away his wife and young daughter… and turned him into something more than human. Driven by loss, compelled by grief, he becomes a chilled impersonal force of justice, more machine than man, dedicated to the destruction of evildoers everywhere. A figure of ice and steel, more pitiless than both, Benson has been forged into an avatar of vengeance, possessed of superhuman genius supernormal power. His frozen face and pale eyes, like a polar dawn, only hint at the terrible force the underworld heedlessly invoked upon itself the day they created… The Avenger!

Exclusive HC BONUS material: An Avenger timeline by Rick Lai, a story by John Small, plus solo tales of the Avenger’s aides by Howard Hopkins!

Coming April 2013 from Moonstone Books. You can order the softcover trade paperback and limited edition hardcover now. Learn more about The Avenger here.

The Avenger: Roaring Heart of the Crucible is now available for preorder at the following:
Amazon (paperback)
Amazon (hardcover)
Barnes and Noble (paperback)
Barnes and Noble (hardcover)
Books-A-Million (paperback)
Books-A-Million (hardcover)
Indie Bound (paperback)
Indie Bound (hardcover)

Also available for preorder at your local comic book shop or favorite on-line retailer.
The Avenger: Roaring Heart of the Crucible in Previews.

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