Excerpt #4 HOOD American Rebirth Book 1

Excerpt #4 HOOD American Rebirth Book 1

Well, I’m almost home.

I don’t think I’ll have it published by the end of this month like I’d hoped. I’ll probably have edits done, but I’ll still need to do Kindle formatting along with everything else that goes into getting it as polished as I’d like. If it all goes well I should have it out by January.

I can live with that. I’m varying between anxious and excited about being on the home stretch. I don’t think it will feel real until I’m staring at it on Amazon.

It’s been joyous, exciting, painful, growth-inducing, and humbling writing and re-writing this book. I’m glad to say some early version readers have had some very positive things to say about it. Any writer will tell you, that means the world and beyond.

My goal has always been to make an entertaining, enjoyable, page turning story. I think I’ve come a long way to doing that. For all you reading this, I hope you give my story a shot when it’s done.

And with that, here’s the excerpt. Fittingly, I’m ending with the beginning–it’s the opening to the book. Enjoy!

Evan Pickering

HOOD COVER FINAL 1

The iron sights of Hood’s AK-47 lined up perfectly between each other, trained on the dark-haired man in the muted blue of predawn light. Hood’s heart picked up speed, his chest rising and falling with hasty breaths. The Kaiser knows we’re here. The purposefulness of the man’s search was proof enough. A lone wastelander would’ve kept his distance from their camp. How many more are coming? The image of a host of the Kaiser’s soldiers waiting in the dark mountain woods set his mind ablaze. Focus. The man hustled to the next tree and crouched down behind it, leaning over to peer around the mossy bark towards the campfire up the hill. No one else followed behind him. Maybe he’s just a scout.

The man’s chest rose and fell quickly as he closed his eyes, pistol in hand. He switched hands on his pistol as he wiped his palms on his pants. He doesn’t want this. He’s just like you. The thought surged into his mind unabated. Hood tried to cast it out, focusing on keeping his aim true. Just turn around and go back, Hood pleaded. He had a perfect shot from his flanking position up in the tree, but his finger stayed still on the trigger.

If you don’t shoot him, he will kill someone you love.

Hood chewed on the salty pull string of his well-worn hoodie, breathing in deeply and holding the air in his lungs as he squeezed the trigger on his rifle nearly to the firing point, keeping the sights steady.

Excerpt #3: Hood, Book 1 of the American Rebirth Series

Excerpt #3: Hood, Book 1 of the American Rebirth Series

While I’m undergoing yet another round of professional editing (sweet, delicious feedback) I figure let’s keep this thing going with another excerpt!

While I am antsy to get this thing published and out there, I’m trying to remind myself to be patient. . . after all, It’s better to take longer but come up with a better product than just hurry the damn thing out there. So, deep breaths, writers, neither you or I can rush the growth process.

-Evan

Hood, Book One of the American Rebirth Series

Excerpt #3


Kerry stared out the windshield of the truck at the broken bridge ahead of her. The sun was high in the sky and the wind rushed through the river valley. The empty road and tall grassy clearing past the bridge might as well have been miles away. The tall grass swept and swirled about in a graceful dance with the wind, and she wanted nothing more than to just be there on the solid earth with the overgrowth. Her hands clutched the wheel tight. Her mouth was dry and her eyes felt bleary from lack of sleep.
“Pull the truck in close,” Hood said from behind the guardrail atop the wall. Behind him was a straight drop to the riverbed, but he looked as though he didn’t notice or wasn’t worried. “Closer. Pull her all the way against the wall. We ain’t worried about the paint job.”
Kerry turned the wheel and then counter turned to slide the truck closer. The front left panel of the car scratched and squealed as the stone bridge dug into its side.
“That’s it, nice and tight.” Hood said. “We want to get as much leverage on this baby as we can.” He slapped the hood of the car with a metallic thud. To Kerry, the wall was one more thing trapping her inside the truck. She closed her eyes and exhaled. Sweat beaded on her forehead and made the steering wheel slick under her hands. This wasn’t what she had hoped for.

She kept seeing the image from her childhood play over and over in her head. Sitting in the back seat, her parents in the front seats. They crept through the intersection, and out the driver’s side window came the front grill of a truck. Glass exploded as the car flipped over and over, she slammed her eyes shut feeling herself spin in the air, slung out of her seatbelt, hitting the ceiling. She opened her eyes, numbly looking at her own shattered hand covered in blood as she lay on the ceiling of the up-side down car. Her heart started to race just conjuring the memory.
Between Whiskey trying to kill her and having no choice but to play chicken with her worst nightmare, maybe she should have just kept hiding in the darkness that night she saw them.

Another Excerpt from my New Book, Hood

Another Excerpt from my New Book, Hood
It was nice to see so much viewership and positive feedback from my last excerpt I posted a week or so ago for my new book Hood, Book one of the American Rebirth series.
I hesitate to say the editing process is coming to a close, but I hope (and pray) that it is. It’s been a long, long road. I still am researching the best way to go about self-publishing, and still need to get some stuff done, but hopefully I’ll have the book up soon. You can be sure you’ll hear about it 🙂
So without further ado, enjoy:


Hood slammed the door of the truck. The bright sun blared down on the old house that remained largely intact. He’d seen this exact sight before; an unhinged red front door and pile of rotten wood shingles that lay in a heap next to the walkway. They’d already been to this house, months ago. He scanned the area, looking over each shoulder. The narrow lake shimmering in the sunlight nearby looked much more sylvan now than in the nighttime.

“Whiskey?”

“Mm-hm?” He replied, the crunch of his footsteps on gravel unceasing as he strode towards the old farmhouse. It still held the air of a once majestic country home as it must’ve been some years ago.

“Why are we looking in the same place again?” Hood’s voice did nothing to hide his annoyance.

“Just keep an eye on the truck,” Whiskey said, entering the house with his police-issue shotgun half-raised.

Hood breathed in deep, leaning his head back and letting out a grumbling sigh. He looked out over the still lake that carried a few lost pine cones about like ships at sea. He turned around, observing the vast overgrowth of grass and weeds on what must have once been fields. The old barn covered in flaky brown paint was listing so heavily to one side it looked like if Hood yelled at it, it would collapse. In the distance, over top the treeline he could see the rise of the Shenandoah mountains. At least, he was pretty sure that’s what it was.

He hoisted his rifle onto his shoulder, letting it rest there lazily. At least it was a gorgeous day in yet another ghost town. He wondered what his old home in D.C. looked like. The parts of the city that still stood were on the brink of chaos when Hood and Taylor left two years ago. They waited for days hoping their parents would show up, but fled when the survivors grew desperate. Radiation sickness decimated many of the people that had survived the blast.

How different would Hood’s life be if his entire family was together during the fall. They probably never would have met Whiskey and become a part of Clearwater. He hadn’t seen Ian in over a year even before the fall, barely talked to him save a few texts. It was easy to get caught up in your life and not even pick up the phone to say hi. Now he just prayed Ian was still alive.

It was hard to accept going from a world where communication was a given to a world where your survival depended on being cut off from the world. A bird of prey was floating slowly on the strong winds high up in the blue sky. Nothing to see here, buddy.

Excerpt from my new book: Hood

After two years worth of writing, Months worth of editing and hack-sawing more than half of the book and then rewriting the whole dang thing again, I’m happy to present a snippit from my new book: Hood, Book One of the American Rebirth Series.
As any writer will tell you, even a finished book still feels like it needs editing. So I’m going to forego my endless need to tweak and just toss it up. Here goes:

With a click light filled the room, so bright Hood had to turn his face and jam his eyes shut.
“You’re getting full of yourself,” came the hoarse voice of the old sheriff.
The idea that the sheriff had Hood’s life in his hands was a dark seed in his mind. He needed to buy some time, find out why he was here, why he was still alive.
“Yeah, you’re probably right,” Hood answered at length. The yellow floodlight nailed to the wall still shined in his eyes, but he adjusted enough to be able to see that they were in an portable arch-shaped metal warehouse.
“Of course I’m right.” the old man said, pacing in front of him. “Sneaking through my land, stealing from me and thinking you’d just run back home unmolested. You and your self-righteousness. I swear, I can smell your naiveté on the wind.”
Hood licked his lips and kept silent. The old man leaned in close to Hood. His breath smelled like old cigarettes. His bald, middle aged face was worn and weary around blue eyes. It was a look of disappointment, the look of a vulture flying over picked bones. His search was over.
“You know what it is that did you in,” the sheriff said with a smile and focused eyes. “It’s pride. The same pride that god saw in us when he smote us down.”
Hood smirked, his head leaned forward with his brow keeping the light out of his eyes.
“Granted, I’ve never read the good book cover to cover, but I’m pretty sure you don’t qualify as the godly type.”

The sheriff swung his pistol at Hood’s face. The handle connected with his eyebrow, his head snapping back from the blow. The pain seared, his head feeling numb. The worn barrel of the sheriff’s pistol hovered in front of Hood’s right eye. Inside the barrel was darkness.

A tight frown quivered on The sheriff’s face. “You don’t talk to me about godliness. You’re just a mongrel slinking around this hell on earth.”
Hood breathed in slowly, closing his eyes. Despite being provoked the Sheriff still hadn’t shot him. Gotta keep him talking.