The Thirteen Kingdoms of the Misplaced Mercenaries universe create what a standard fantasy world might look like if you pantsed it, set it on fire, and kicked it into a pigpen full of switchblade-armed rattlesnakes.
Mercenaries, sorcerers, and royals butt heads and stab backs in their pursuit of empire and control, or just a simple tankard of ale in a quiet tavern.
Full of snark, fun, and laughs, this book series will keep you entertained and leave you happier for having read it.
Big Damn Magic
By Kevin Pettway
Somehow, Keane, the ex-mercenary king of Greenshade, must outwit a wicked usurper from within and an overwhelming army from without. And if that weren’t enough on his royal plate, when Keane flees with his pregnant queen and brainwashed mother-in-law, his own nefarious past rears up to smack him in the face.
A thousand miles away, Keane’s best friend Sarah, a swordswoman and sorceress-in-training, treks toward the only possible ally strong enough to help them: the goddess of either beauty, seduction, obsessiveness, or insanity.
Depending on who you ask.
Meanwhile, the child of a god commands all the powers of hell in order to grow an empire large enough to swallow the mortal world.
Can Keane and Sarah pull enough allies from an adversarial countryside to take back a kingdom, defend it from an empire, and defeat the greatest threat the world has ever known?
Keane is an accomplished smartass, and Sarah can blow out a candle from across the room.
It should be fine.
“This series has really hit its stride. Every single thing about this book is a treat. Pettway keeps introducing new characters that I fall in love with. Sweet Loffa, the broken-minded slave who slowly heals. The mighty troll Grohann, a solid shoulder for Sara to lean on. High King Ivarr of Coldspine, who, wow. Never mind. I’m not giving that one away. The plot, in this author’s deft hands, is grim and gory and heartbreaking and hilarious.The odds are overwhelming, and there’s no way out, but Keane and his cohorts keep battling on. It’s not a book about the triumph of good over evil, it’s about the deep determination of the human spirit to keep fighting even when the obstacles are insurmountable, and to conduct yourself with honor when all hope is lost. But wait! Never count out the strategic, clever minds of Keane and Megan, nor the fierce love of a deep, loyal friendship. We have surprises, we have new characters, we have lots and lots of hilarious new curses and fantastic humor splattered through the pages like blood off a swinging swordblade, we have some evil, sick, twisted creatures with godlike powers. We have Sara giving one of the best put-down speeches evvah–I had to read it three times. It’s just delicious. I loved it.” —Mary Natwick
“Pettway devotes time not only to Keane and Sarah, but also to Brannok and to the story’s other antagonist, Hulda Hubrane, so the villains are afforded intriguing depth. This adds to the believability of the fantasy setting, as does the raft of strong female characters. The prose is breezy, and the story rattles along in a series of short chapters, sweeping the reader up with its camaraderie, action, foul-mouthed banter, and irreverent celebration of the antihero. Manna for those who don’t take the genre too seriously.
Fast-moving and fun; a lively re-imagining of quest fantasy.”—KIRKUS REVIEWS
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A Drink with Death
By Kevin Pettway
I am giving away a free short story for people who want to know what all the hubbub is about before forking over their hard-earned cash for a whole book. Be a Misplaced Mercenary and get all the news first, as well as prizes and giveaways.
Mercenaries Keane and Sarah have just finished a long day of burning, looting, and pillaging, and are looking for a nice place to rest. But that well-deserved drink may cost more than it is worth in a tavern with only one patron left alive.
A Good Running Away
By Kevin Pettway
If the enemies of your enemies are still your enemies, how do you know who your friends are?
Smart-mouthed Keane and feared-warrior Sarah escape the mercenaries of Wallace’s Company to start somewhere fresh, where no one is trying to kill them. Keane steals the company’s wages in return for his attempted murder, and Sarah agrees to the plan.
“A Truly Cannot-Put-It-Down Rollicking Read: If you love fantasy adventure and bursting into laughter, you will love this book. Pettway has a delightful sense of humor and fun. Great female-warrior protagonist. Great relationship between the male and female protagonist. Lots of swashbuckling action and mercenaries are a lot like pirates on over land rather than sea. Grab a cuppa and some snugglie jammies, turn off your phone, and lose a day in wonder.” —Murshida Va
“Entertaining at a Great Pace: Kevin Pettway knows his way around a mercenary camp! Fun details and just the right blend of humor and plotting. Well done. This is my first read by this author, and I’d read him again. Thumbs up!! Entertained.” —LA Selby
“A well-realized and lively caper.”—KIRKUS REVIEWS
Blow Out the Candle When You Leave
By Kevin Pettway
A newly minted king and an untrained sorceress seek allies in a world full of backstabbers. Luckily, these ex-mercenaries know a bit about backstabbing.
“This is my kind of fantasy. Irreverent, let’s call it.” Eric Flint
“Blow Out the Candle When You Leave, the second installment in Kevin Pettway’s raucous Misplaced Mercenaries series, picks up in the immediate aftermath of A Good Running Away. The two main characters, Keane and Sarah, have survived the mercenary war and are busy transforming from the rough and ready street-smart comrades we grew to love in the first book of the series. Keane is now a king, married to the lovely Meg, and Sarah is his head of security, in training to be a sorceress. It’s fascinating to watch the pair deal with the responsibilities that have been thrust upon them: They are no longer on the outside, but must actually take the heavy responsibility of running a country. Pettway’s world of the Thirteen Kingdoms is fully realized, filled with details both amusing and believable, and this series provides the reader with an enjoyable escape from the problems in the real world.” —Jennifer Taylor
“A puckish, free-wheeling take on the sword-and-sorcery genre.”—KIRKUS REVIEWS
Ex-mercenaries Keane and Sarah struggle to keep their heads above water in the roles of snarky pretender-king and sorceress-in-training for the kingdom of Greenshade—which alone would make it a good day. But good days are clearly for better people. As the nations of the Thirteen Kingdoms line up against them, assassins stalk the castle halls with hidden daggers and deadly salted fish. The only weapons Sarah and Keane can count on are each other and the few friends they’ve made, none of whom are safe. While Keane must triumph over the literal enemies at the gate, Sarah must win the support of foreign leaders to their cause. If either fails, Greenshade collapses to the evil empire of Tyrrane. And everyone and everything they care about, including their own skins, will be utterly destroyed. Will our heroes’ efforts to foil enemy plots and pry allies out of the countryside succeed, or stretch them past the breaking point? Find out now.
Monsters, Movies, & Mayhem
With Contribution from Kevin Pettway
Lights! Camera! Monsters?
Sometimes you go to the movies. And sometimes, the movies—and their monsters—come to you. At any moment, without notice, monsters once relegated to the screen become a reality. Aliens and demons, dragons and ghosts, werewolves, vampires, zombies, and seemingly ordinary people who are just plain evil.
Join award-winning authors Jonathan Maberry, Fran Wilde, David Gerrold, Rick Wilber and others for 23 all-new tales of haunted theaters, video gods, formidable demons, alien pizza, and delirious actors. Each story takes you to the silver screen with monstrous results.
Funny or grim, unsettling or cozy… You’ll laugh! You’ll sigh! You’ll scream!
Grab popcorn—and good running shoes—and enjoy the show.
“The authors’ palpable love of supernatural cinema is infectious; horror fans won’t want to put this down.”—Publishers Weekly
“Anderson (Stake) assembles a fun, nostalgia-filled anthology of 23 original, lighthearted horror tales riffing on the movie monsters of both modern cinema and B-movie favorites. The majority of tales are short and snappy, like Jonathan Maberry’s fresh, surprising zombie story “Gavin Funke’s Monster Movie Marathon” and Karina Fabian’s playful “Josie’s Last Straw,” both of which hit the ground running and pack a quick punch. Fran Wilde’s “Welcome to the Underhill Cinema,” is one of the longer offerings, taking the time to settle in to a more weird and sinister register. Linda Maye Adams’s especially delightful “Alien Pizza” features friendly aliens so enamored with low-budget monster movies that they make one of their own. Every aspect of horror movie production gets its moment in the spotlight in stories featuring tortured directors (Kevin Pettway, “Love Your Mother”), ambitious PAs (Brendan Mallory, “Make Me a Star”), washed-up creature feature screenwriters (Sam Knight’s “Whoever Writes Monsters”), and, of course, classic cinematic monsters—vampires, werewolves, kaiju, gods, demons, and zombies all make appearances and are frequently given the opportunity to be protagonists instead of villains. The authors’ palpable love of supernatural cinema is infectious; horror fans won’t want to put this down.” —Publisher’s Weekly