New Free E-Book: “With Friends Like These”

Finally put together something I’ve had in mind for quite a while — an e-book collection of short stories especially for the subscribers to my Announcements List. I really appreciate the people who invite me into their inboxes to let them know about my new books and new projects, and I wanted to do something nice for them.

Here are a few words from the book’s introduction, laying out the theme:

So when I wanted to put this collection together, I decided that it needed to be a collection of stories that were about friendship. That was not difficult to accomplish; friendship is a theme I keep coming back to again and again in my fiction. In her review of SLICES, Elizabeth Twist wrote:

The failures and beauties of human relationships are at the core of Michael’s work [….] SLICES is at its strongest when considering the many permutations of men’s relationships, most sadly and beautifully in the context of male friendship, brotherhood, and love.

I think that’s a pretty fair statement of what many of my stories are really about.

A lot of fiction in general — I mean, seriously, a lot of it — is about romantic love. I get that. Love is madness. It can drive us to our highest heights and our lowest depths. That’s an engine that can drive a million stories.

But I think that, in my experience, the worst things you often end up doing in your life, the stupidest things, are the things you end up doing for your friends. Standing up for your friends can fuck you up; helping them out of the trouble they get into can lead you deeper into danger than you would ever end up on your own.

With that in mind, I’d like to present some stories of people who have gone too far in the name of friendship, trusted the wrong people and made some bad decisions, and ended up on the edge of everything they ever considered possible. I hope you enjoy them.

“WITH FRIENDS LIKE THESE” contains one sample story from each of my three anthologies, and a bonus novella that hasn’t been published anywhere else! There’s a history behind this story and a reason why my subscribers will be the only ones to get to read it — but you’ll find that out when you download the book and read the introduction.

If you’re already on the mailing list, you should already have your email with the download links — it went out this morning. If you’re not a subscriber yet, why not subscribe right now? Once you confirm your subscription, you’ll be directed to a page with the download links.

Let me know what you think. I look forward to hearing from you all!