A Free Dreamer Review: Purpose by Andrew Q. Gordon

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

Purpose coverForty years ago the Spirit of Vengeance—a Purpose—took William Morgan as its host, demanding he avenge the innocent by killing the guilty. Since then, Will has retreated behind Gar, a façade he uses to avoid dealing with what he’s become. Cold, impassive, and devoid of emotion, Gar goes about his life alone—until his tidy, orderly world is upended when he meets Ryan, a broken young man cast out by his family. Spurred to action for reasons he can’t understand, Gar saves Ryan from death and finds himself confronted by his humanity.

Spending time with Ryan helps Will claw out from under Gar’s shadow. He recognizes Ryan is the key to his reclaiming his humanity and facing his past. As Will struggles to control the Purpose, Ryan challenges him to rethink everything he knew about himself and the spirit that possesses him. In the process, he pushes Will to do something he hasn’t done in decades: care.

There are two things you should know before you start reading this book. First of all, the story is pretty violent at times. In the beginning, Gar is essentially a cold-blooded killer. He does have his reasons, but he still kills people. Second, there is no happy end, probably making “Purpose” more of a sci-fi/fantasy story than a traditional romance.

This book was incredibly intense and emotionally challenging. I found myself deeply engrossed after only a few sentences. I couldn’t put my kindle down at all. I started this on a long train ride, where I usually read a bit and then turn on my laptop. This time, I didn’t even unpack my laptop. And the train ride suddenly wasn’t all that long either.

The setting seemed very unique to me. Gar/Will is possessed by what he refers to as the Purpose. He doesn’t really know all that much about It. He only knows that It somehow draws the souls of innocents to him and he has to avenge them by killing their killers. Memories of former hosts have shown him that ignoring Its will results in insanity within a few days.

Like previous hosts, Will has adapted the persona of Gar, a cold, emotionless man, who lives solely for the Purpose. He doesn’t have friends, family or a lover, so when he finds himself suddenly attracted to Ryan, it comes as a huge shock. He hasn’t been attracted to anybody in forty years and suddenly he feels like he just has to speak to this stranger on the train.

With Ryan’s help, Will takes over again and pushes Gar to the back of his mind. It was intriguing to watch cold, distant Gar slowly turn back into Will. They really felt like two completely different people. Reading about Will’s pain broke my heart. Reading about his struggles and doubts made me want to hug him. It was frighteningly easy to feel really connected to him.

The author came up with some pretty interesting ideas. Like the scrambler-box that lets Will turn invisible or take on a completely different look at his will. That explains how he managed to go undetected for forty years. He did kill countless people, after all, and the police don’t make a distinction between innocent victims and those who truly deserve to die. The author eventually came up with a thoroughly logical explanation for everything and I absolutely love him for that. Andrew Q. Gordon really thought this through.

The relationship between Ryan and Will is absolutely crucial for the plot and yet somehow doesn’t really matter all that much in the grand scheme of things at the same time. I could really feel the connection between those two.

The author decided to solely write from Will’s POV, which worked really well. I loved that there were more personal journal entries in between the normal chapters. Even when Will was still Gar, the journal entries felt very thoughtful and emotional.

I decided to knock off half a star because while there eventually was an explanation for everything, it took a long time to get to that point, often leaving me wondering just how this all worked.

To sum it up, I absolutely loved this book. It was unique, imaginative, intense and deeply moving. Had everything been explained a little sooner, I would’ve happily given this the full five stars.

This is my first book by Andrew Q. Gordon, but it definitely won’t be my last. This man seriously knows how to write!

I’m also fast becoming a real fan of DSP Publications and their unique fantasy novels.

Cover: The cover by AngstyG is brilliant. It shows Gar in his black-and-white world and Will in his world that suddenly has shades of gray.

Sales Links:  DSP Publications | Amazon | Buy It Here

Book details:

ebook, 240 pages
Published October 6th 2015 by DSP Publications* (first published June 21st 2013)
ISBN1634761626 (ISBN13: 9781634761628)
edition language English

In Our Spotlight: Andrew Q. Gordon on his latest release, Purpose (guest post and giveaway)

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Purpose by Andrew Q Gordon
Publisher: DSP Publications
Release Date:  October 6th

Edition: Second (Re-written, re-edited, new cover)
Goodreads
Genre: Paranormal, Gay Fiction

We are happy to have Andrew Q. Gordon here today to talk about his latest novel, Purpose.  Welcome, Andrew.  Tell us a little about the inspiration behind the story and the characters.

Vengeance. Revenge. Vigilante justice. None of these are especially positive words, especially not to law enforcement officers. But think of all the anti-hero heroes; Batman, Wolverine, for those older like me, the Walking Tall movies [The Originals from the 70’s or the Rock’s remake in 2004, or Charles Bronson in the “Death Wish” movies. (for those who don’t know these, click the links). Everyone loves the bad guy who is taking down the real bad guys. It’s a very Machiavellian approach where the ends justify the means.

“Thanks. There is more than a bit of that in Purpose. William Morgan is the human host to the spirit of vengeance. He deals out ‘justice’ to those who have killed an innocent person. And while the innocent victims are avenged, Will kills a lot of people. Regardless of how we feel about the original crime, how many of us would really sanction killing the killer? Maybe a few, maybe more, but that is probably not the position most of us would take in polite company. Why? Because civilized society is built on laws that don’t allow us to take the law into our own hands. And yet…

Among the themes I’ve tried to weave into Purpose, is whether or not the law is willing to turn a blind eye to these events. Certainly Commissioner Gordon didn’t exactly object to what Batman did. Same in Death Wish. There seems to be this tendency among the top brass—at least in movies and comic books—to look the other way and secretly applaud the ‘bad guy protagonist’ for doing what law enforcement couldn’t.

I can’t say if that is truly the view of those in charge, but from my twenty plus years working with law enforcement officers I can say it is certainly an unspoken feeling among the rank and file frustrated by what they perceive as the lack of consequences. That said, I don’t think they would turn a blind eye to someone who killed another, even if it were in retaliation. I’ve never met anyone who would welcome a full on vigilante in the community.

In Purpose there are two different law enforcement characters. Detective Daniel Griffin is a homicide detective who firmly believes in upholding the law. Will is a vigilante, at times Det. Griffin calls him the devil. Dealing with Will, however, upends his world. Will offers him the chance to always get the right person. But Griffin isn’t quite able to reconcile the good with the cost. One of the journeys in the book is Griffin’s as Will forces him to question his beliefs.

The other is Agent Barrington. His worldview is clear: Will is bad and must be caught. He has no interest in dealing with the devil.  Where Griffin quickly realizes he has no chance of catching Will, Barrington takes a different approach. His methods, however, demonstrate how similar he and Will are—or not.

As the three interact, decisions are made, perceptions change and motives are revealed. The cover reflects the duality of the entire situation and hopefully that is reflected in the story.

Enjoy— Andrew

Blurb

2nd Edition

Forty years ago the Spirit of Vengeance—a Purpose—took William Morgan as its host, demanding he avenge the innocent by killing the guilty. Since then Will has retreated behind Gar, a façade he uses to avoid dealing with what he’s become. Cold, impassive, and devoid of emotion, Gar goes about his life alone—until his tidy, orderly world is upended when he meets Ryan, a broken young man cast out by his family. Spurred to action for reasons he can’t understand, Gar saves Ryan from death and finds himself confronted by his humanity.

Spending time with Ryan helps Will claw out from under Gar’s shadow. He recognizes Ryan is the key to his reclaiming his humanity and facing his past. As Will struggles to control the Purpose, Ryan challenges him to rethink everything he knew about himself and the spirit that possesses him. In the process, he pushes Will to do something he hasn’t done in decades: care.

1st Edition published by Dreamspinner Press, June 2013.

Buy Links: DSP Publications |Amazon | Omnilit | Barnes & Noble

Video Trailer:

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Giveaway

Click on the Rafflecopter Link or Enter on the RC below for a chance to win one of the following.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Link and prizes provided by the author and tour organizer.

First Prize: $25 Giftcard to Dreamspinner Press
Second Prize: Autographed Paperback copy of Purpose

The tour organizer will select a winner from entries received as of close of business 21 October. Be sure to leave a thoughtful comment on each stop on the tour for additional chances to win.

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General Excerpt

He turned where he saw the others disappear and understood why they had stopped: dead-end alley. Ryan stood with his back to the brick wall, wide-eyed and pale. Gar noted the uncontrollable shake in Ryan’s body as the four jackals slowly inched closer. White knuckles surrounded the small bag he’d carried off the train.

The one closest to Ryan inched closer. “You know what time it is.”

“Police!” Gar didn’t wait for them to react to his command. He tightened his leg muscles and moved the moment everyone turned toward the front of the alley. Using the split second before they could focus on him, he leaped over them, twisting in the process.

The space between them and Ryan wasn’t much, but he managed to avoid contact with the kid, landing a foot to the left. He reached into his coat and removed a collapsible metal baton with his right hand and a pair of brass knuckles with the left.

One step right, and he completely covered Ryan’s shaking form. Not risking a glance back, he kept his eyes on the startled thieves in front of him.

“Stay behind me, Ryan.”

A muffled grunt, barely audible, told Gar the kid heard him. He dropped the police officer illusion, staring calmly at his prey. Assessing his adversaries, he ignored the hint of a thought that said they were not the guilty. Too late for that—they would have been had he not stopped them.

“I know what time it is,” he hissed, tossing the slang for street robberies back in their face. “Time for vengeance to collect its fee.”

In the recent past, Gar had taken to finding a way to take out the guilty without doing it himself. This time he couldn’t risk it; Ryan was too close. One of them had a gun. He could smell it now.

He definitely didn’t have time to make it look like an accident.

Spinning on his left foot, he kicked the kid with the gun so hard his skullcap flew off when his head hit the wall. Allowing his movement to carry him around, he brought the metal baton down on the arm of a robber with a knife. Metal on flesh and bone was no contest. Gar saw Ryan flinch when the kid let out a scream of agony and fell to the ground.

At least he would live, Gar noted. The first kid was probably dead already. The other two were rooted in place, stunned into inaction. Two seconds ago, they were about to rob a defenseless kid. Now they were being taken apart. Before they could run away, Gar lashed out.

Using the palm of his left hand, he struck the one closest to him. Even using the inner part of his hand, he heard the brass knuckles crack the kid’s sternum when he connected. The last kid finally moved and made it three steps before Gar swept his feet out from under him with the baton.

The face looking up in terror was that of a kid, a juvenile. They were all kids. Reaching toward the teen’s head, he heard movement behind him.

“Gar.” Ryan’s timid, urgent tone caused him to turn. “Don’t kill him.”

“I won’t.” His voice was a cold hiss. Instead, he touched the sweaty forehead, inserting confused thoughts. He quickly repeated the process with the others. The first kid still lived, but probably not for long. The other two, he left sobbing out their pain.

“Come on.” He grabbed Ryan’s left arm. “We need to go.”

Ryan resisted the pull, but Gar was prepared for this. “Either you come with me or I leave you to explain this.”

Author Bio

Andrew Q. Gordon wrote his first story back when yellow legal pads, ball point pens were common and a Smith Corona correctable typewriter was considered high tech. Adapting to the times, he now writes with a shiny new AQGAuthorImage300x300MacBook that he sets on the same desk as his manual typewriter and vintage adding machine.

Long a fan of super heroes, wizards and sports, Andrew’s works include high fantasy, paranormal spirits, magic as well as contemporary fiction. He is still trying to find the perfect story that will include all his favorites under one cover.

He currently lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his husband, their young daughter and dog.  In addition to dodging some very self-important D.C. ‘insiders’, Andrew uses his commute to catch up on his reading. When not working or writing, he enjoys soccer, high fantasy, baseball and occasionally sleeping.

THE LAND OF MAKE BELIEVE:  “http://andrewqgordon.com/
FACEBOOK:  “https://www.facebook.com/dominic.andrews.7568

PurposeTourSidebarTour Schedule

6 Oct – Elin Gregory
6 Oct – Jessie G Books
7 Oct – Divine Magazine
8 Oct – Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
9 Oct – Hearts on Fire Reviews
9 Oct – MM Good Book Reviews
10 Oct – Author Susan Mac Nicol
10 Oct – Wake Up Your Wild Side
11 Oct – The Purple Rose Tea House
12 Oct – Love Bytes Reviews
12 Oct – Queer SciFi
13 Oct – World of Diversity Fiction
14 Oct –  Prism Book Alliance
15 Oct – Diverse Reader
16 Oct – Loving Without Limits
17 Oct – Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents
18 Oct – BFD Book Blog
18 Oct – Wicked Faeries Tales and Reviews
19 Oct – Molly Lolly
20 Oct – Drops of Ink

In the Spotlight: Andrew Q. Gordon’s The Eye and The Arm (excerpt and giveaway)

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The Eye and The Arm (Champion of the Gods #2)  by Andrew Q. Gordon

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Release Date: April 14, 2015

Are  you a lover of fantasy fiction? Then check out Andrew Q. Gordon’s latest fantasy novel,  The Eye and The Arm in his Champion of the Gods series.  We have the book synopsis and an excerpt for you as well as a contest to enter.  Happy Reading.

Special bonus! We also have a trailer for you as well: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bk6OfKOU6nc&feature=youtu.be

STRW Author BookSynopsis

After defeating Meglar at Belsport, Farrell returns to Haven to recover from his injuries, but Khron, the god of war, has other ideas. He gives Farrell a new mission: free the survivors of the ancient dwarf realm of Trellham from their three-thousand-year banishment. To fulfill Khron’s near impossible task, Farrell will need the help of his distance ancestor, the legendary wizard Kel. But Kel has been dead for a thousand years.
 
Farrell finds information hinting that Kel is alive, so he moves his search to Dumbarten, Kel’s birthplace. To reach Dumbarten unannounced, Farrell and Miceral disguise themselves as mercenaries on board a merchant vessel. Their journey is disrupted when pirates attack their ship. While attempting to subdue the attack, Farrell is struck down by one of Meglar’s minions.

Unconscious and trapped in his own mind, Farrell’s only chance for survival rests with Miceral and the peregrine king Rothdin entering his thoughts and helping him sort fact from illusion. To reach Farrell, they will need to rely on an untested spell from one of Kel’s spellbooks. If they succeed, Miceral can guide Farrell home safely. If not, Farrell will destroy not only himself, but Miceral, Rothdin, and everyone around him.

Pages or Words: 296 pages

AQGRC

Categories: Fantasy, Gay Fiction

STRW Spotlight Book Excerpt

Miceral grabbed his last javelin and crept toward the starboard rail. The tip of pirate’s prow had just reached their stern. He could see men crouched under the protection of the gunwale. “They’re almost here—be ready.”

Moving faster than the enemy could react, Miceral scaled the short staircase and quickly found a protected spot in the aftcastle. Peering through a narrow opening, he scanned the clusters of men he could see. At the rear of the largest group, Miceral spotted someone who, by clothing at least, appeared to be an officer. With no one else standing out as being the captain, this man became his target.

Springing to his feet, he hurled the spear before anyone could target him. One of the pirates huddled by the rail fired an arrow, which Miceral caught in midflight. Flashing the enemy a wicked grin, he snapped the shaft in half before dropping back behind his cover.

Miceral closed one eye and stared through the space between crates. He watched the men look toward where their officer had been standing, and from the shouts he knew he’d hit his mark. One pirate tried to pull the spear out but failed. When he turned to ask for help, a stream of blood dribbled out of his mouth and over the feathers of the arrow protruding from his neck. Everyone else ducked immediately and remained out of sight.

Miceral traced the shaft’s path back to where Peter knelt, nocking another arrow. He gave his friend a wink and a nod. Before either could enjoy the small victory, a hail of arrows and spears whistled across the deck. Under the cover of this barrage, dozens of grappling hooks landed on the deck of the Rose. Once the barbs dug into whatever purchase they could find, the two vessels inched closer. Miceral heard the faint thud of the two ships colliding and slipped the mace and axe from his belt.

With the ships tethered together, the pirates flipped long wooden planks from their ship onto the Seafoam Rose. Hooks on the ends secured the slim pathway firmly in place. The first wave of invaders ran across the boards, screaming at the top of their lungs. If they expect to scare the crew into surrender, that hope dissipated when four of their number fell dead from a round of arrows.

Miceral used the distraction to leap from his hiding place. Screaming his own battle cry, he rushed the startled pirates. From his right, Emerson and Nathan led the crew in defense of their ship.

The ferocity of the resistance appeared to catch the invaders by surprise. Miceral killed anything in his reach, stalling the attack momentarily. Peter stood next to Miceral and proved the value of all the long hours of practice he’d been put through.

Unfortunately, Miceral couldn’t defend all points of entry onto the vessel. The pirates quickly learned to avoid the armed warrior who moved with the speed of lightning.

The initial advantage of the Rose’s crew quickly evaporated as the pirates brought superior numbers onto the trading ship. To avoiding being surrounded, the defenders fell back to a predetermined, more defensible position. This allowed the rest of the pirates to cross unimpeded.

“Now would be a good time to arrive, Farrell.” Miceral didn’t know if Farrell could hear him, but if he didn’t arrive soon, there’d be no one left to rescue.

“I’m almost there, Ral.” Farrell’s voice distracted Miceral enough that he cut off an opponent’s arm instead of slicing through the man’s neck. “Hang on!”

  • Publisher: DSP Publications
  • Cover Artist: AngstyG
  • Sales Links: DSP Publications

STRW Author Bio and Contacts

Andrew Q. Gordon wrote his first story back when yellow legal pads, ball point pens were common and a Smith Corona correctable typewriter was considered high tech. Adapting with technology, he now takes his MacBook somewhere quiet when he wants to write.

He currently lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his partner of twenty years, their daughter and dog.  In addition to dodging some very self-important D.C. ‘insiders’, Andrew uses his commute to catch up on his reading. When not working or writing, he enjoys soccer, high fantasy, baseball and seeing how much coffee he can drink in a day.

Where to find the author:

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Tour Dates & Stops: April 15, 2015

Parker Williams, Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents, Bayou Book Junkie, Cate Ashwood, Charley Descoteaux, BFD Book Blog, Full Moon Dreaming, Divine Magazine, Butterfly-O-Meter, 

Molly Lolly, The Fuzzy, Fluffy World of Chris T. Kat, Rainbow Gold Reviews, The Hat Party, Love Bytes, Inked Rainbow Reads, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, The Novel Approach, My Fiction Nook, Velvet Panic, Prism Book Alliance, Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, Fallen Angel Reviews, Amanda C. Stone, Elin Gregory, Nephylim

 

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Contest: Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: 3 e-copies of the Last Grand Master with the new cover art. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Link and Prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions.

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