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September 5: 30-second Read from Miracle Man

By on Sep 5, 2014 in Book Excerpts | 0 comments

Fall is a time of reflection for many people, and this week’s excerpt echoes that sentiment now that we’re moving into September. In the following teaser you’ll get a look into the existential side of Miracle Man, and into protagonist Robert James Austin’s meditations on faith and the universe.   There is a force of negativity and destruction in the universe. Highly efficient and infinitely resourceful, it empowers and leads. It gives diseases their resiliency, their tenacity, their propensity to reinvent themselves, resist treatments, regenerate and defensively mutate. It propels them. This force is not a neutral physical phenomenon. It’s an evil —an active and pervasive evil. Are you surprised by this? Don’t be. There is balance in the universe. That is the immutable law that governs what otherwise would be chaos. Everything has its reciprocal, its opposite. Do you believe in God? I do. Well, you can’t have just that.   For more, you can purchase the book here. Related: August 29: 60-second Read from Miracle...

August 29: 60-second Read from Miracle Man

By on Aug 29, 2014 in Book Excerpts | 0 comments

In this week’s 60-second read we see how protagonist Robert James Austin’s accomplishments in finding cures for previously terminal diseases bring controversy, protest, and… Unity? Walking toward Tufts, Bobby saw a large crowd of people gathered in front of the main gates. This was a sight that had become all too familiar to him over the last few months. He put on his sunglasses and pulled down hard on the visor of his baseball cap. Their overhead lights flashing, five police cars were askew in front of the main entrance to Tufts, and at least fifteen officers and a dozen campus security guards were trying to contain fifty or more demonstrators who were intent on blocking the campus entrance. A remote broadcasting truck from one of the local television stations was also on the scene. Some of the demonstrators were picketing with placards that said “Stop Austin Now” and “Let God Decide.” Others were waving signs and chanting, “Austin Will Bring His Wrath.” As Bobby weaved through the crowd, he looked like any other student trying to make his way to class. Having eschewed the media and avoided being photographed for years, no one outside of a small circle knew what he looked like. As a leaflet was thrust into his hand that was titled, “God Has A Plan,” Bobby noticed that someone had splattered the ornate wrought iron gates with red paint. Other than their disdain for Bobby, the demonstrators had little in common. But Bobby’s accomplishments had managed to unite Christian Scientists, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Muslim Fundamentalists, Scientologists and Pentecostalists. But the largest contingent was comprised of an angry looking group, dressed in pseudo-military garb, who were rhythmically shouting, “The Anti-Christ Works Here.” They were members of a radical organization called RASI which was an acronym for Retribution Against Scientific Interference. RASI advocated violent opposition to modern medicine which it believed to be contrary to the ordained natural order of life and God’s divine plan.   For more, you can purchase the book here. Related: See Big Pharma Through the Eyes of a CEO, Antagonist Colum...

See Big Pharma Through the Eyes of a CEO, Antagonist Colum McAlister

By on Aug 22, 2014 in Big Pharma, Book Excerpts | 0 comments

In the following excerpt of Miracle Man, we get an inside look at big pharma through the eyes of a CEO of a pharmaceutical company, antagonist Colum McAlister. We meet McAlister for the first time and get a vision of all he represents:   Colum McAlister was the CEO of Bushings. Standing six feet tall and at one hundred seventy pounds, he was trim and in good shape for a man of sixty-three. Working-out every day under the supervision of his personal trainer in the private gym of his office suite helped in that respect. He had a perennial tan and his sparse silver hair was perfectly groomed, as were his manicured highly polished finger nails. His complexion had the toned radiance usually reserved to movie stars and only obtained through a regimen of weekly facial treatments. He dressed in “bespoke” shirts, suits and neckties from Saville Row and his shoes were custom made in Italy. His gold and sapphire Cartier cuff-links and tie-pin perfectly complemented his gray suit and pale blue monogrammed shirt. The only items that he was wearing which weren’t personally created for him were his argyle socks, underwear and Hermes belt. Even his pink gold Patek Philippe wristwatch was custom designed at a cost of almost two hundred thousand dollars, a sixtieth birthday gift from his wife. While McAlister’s appearance had been painstakingly tooled, there was an inherent roughness to the man which was discernible in his eyes and the way he carried himself. The street fighting kid who grew up in one of Brooklyn’s worst neighborhoods wasn’t far beneath the polished veneer.   For more, you can purchase the book here.   Related: What the Face of Big Pharma Truly Looks Like, a Look at Protagonist Colum McAlister...

August 15: 60-second Read from Miracle Man

By on Aug 15, 2014 in Book Excerpts | 0 comments

For anti-celebrity Robert James Austin life hasn’t always been perfect. Before he became a “miracle man” he overcame a traumatic childhood, and in this week’s 60-second read we not only get a glimpse into that childhood, we also see him begin to come to into himself as he accepts a new home: Harvard University.   Struggling to breathe in the stifling darkness of the garbage bag, a paralyzing sense of helplessness overwhelmed the infant. As the putrid odor of decay in the dumpster permeated the air, Bobby was jostled by the bloated bodies of scurrying rats slamming against the garbage bag in their frenetic search for an entrance point. He felt the wind and rain pelt and pull at the bag and threaten to dislodge it from its perilous perch, toppling him into the vermin ridden dumpster. Completely alone, he screamed. Gasping for breath, his chest, face and hair drenched with sweat, his hands trembling, Bobby awakened from his night terror. Feeling like he was burning up with fever, he dragged himself into the bathroom, pulled off his clothing and lay naked on the cold bathroom floor, sweating and shivering simultaneously. Afraid he was going to pass out, he grasped the toilet seat, pulled himself up to a wobbly standing position and guided himself back toward his bedroom vanity where he grabbed a bottle of Vodka and gulped down half of it, searing his throat. He gave up trying to sleep any more that night. In the darkness, he made his way on the mass transit system to Harvard. His head buried in his hands, he sat on the steps of Massachusetts Hall for four hours waiting for it to open. Finally, when it did, Bobby walked down the long marble corridor feeling an odd combination of despair and optimism. He pumped himself up. They love me here. I’ve helped so many of the professors for so long. They won’t want me to go. They need me around. They’re not going to throw me out. I’m part of the family.   For more, you can purchase the book here. Related: August 8: 60-second Read from Miracle...

August 8: 60-second Read from Miracle Man

By on Aug 8, 2014 in Book Excerpts | 0 comments

In this week’s 60-second read we meet Orin Varneys, Director of OSSIS (the Office of Special Strategic Intelligence Services), and get a look into the formative relationship between him and protagonist Bobby Austin.   Director Varneys’ office was impressive by anyone’s standards, but Varneys radiated such imposing authority and gravitas that he overshadowed it. Orin Varneys stood five feet seven inches tall and appeared to be in his mid-forties. Although portly now, his build was still so broad and thick that no one would be surprised to learn that he went through college on a wrestling scholarship. His almost square head was far too large for his body and looked suitable for mounting in a hunting lodge. Thinning black hair was oiled and combed straight back, and his small dark eyes were set wide on his head, almost like a fish. His mouth was a long lateral slit with no discernible lips and his ears were large, swollen looking items. While his teeth were peculiarly small, he appeared to have many more than was usual and they were badly stained, probably from too much cigar smoking. Varneys rose from the chair behind his ebony Louis XVI desk and motioned perfunctorily to Uhlman and Bobby to take the two seats in front of him. They sat down, as he did, and Varneys proceeded to just stare at Bobby. He said nothing to him. He just kept staring intently at him with his shiny dark eyes. He propped his left elbow on the desk, rested his chin in his left hand and then stared some more. When a seemingly inordinate amount of time had passed, Varneys said, “So, finally, I meet Robert James Austin. John, why didn’t you let Austin and me get together years ago? Shame on you.” Varneys laughed. Uhlman managed a mechanical smile. “You know, director, on the trip to D.C., I was thinking how strange it is,” Bobby said. “You’re a person whose had such a major influence on my life, and yet we’ve never met or even spoken with each other. You came into my life at age five and now I’m twenty. All these years have passed. That’s quite extraordinary when you think about it.” “I prefer to be behind the camera. That’s where I perform best.” “I see. You’re the wizard behind the curtain. The puppet master.” “I don’t see myself that way. But I understand the analogy. I have a job to do and I try to do it as effectively as possible.”     For more, you can purchase the book here. Related: August 1: 60-second Read from Miracle...

August 1: 60-second Read from Miracle Man

By on Aug 1, 2014 in Book Excerpts | 0 comments

It’s already August, the last full month of summer, and many are starting to look back at memories of this past summer. In that spirit I wanted this week’s 60-second read to echo that sentiment of reflection. The following excerpt of Miracle Man takes a look at protagonist Robert James Austin’s tough start, as he dreams about his rocky entry into the world.   Eventually, Bobby fell asleep. It didn’t take long for the nightmares to kick-in with full force and now there was new material with which he could be terrorized. It was as if he were there at his own birth watching it all unfold, his newborn cries echoing eerily through an abandoned factory building in which his mother, a teenage drug addict, lay on a blood stained blanket on the cold concrete floor. His cries seemed so small, so inconsequential, so pitiful as they reverberated through the decrepit cavernous structure. There was no welcome for him. No teary eyed parents, filled with gratitude and wonderment. No doctors and nursing staff officiously performing their duties. No incubator to warm its new occupant. There was only silence punctuated by the urgent cries of a tiny human being thrust into a world that didn’t want or need him. A nursing student, a friend of the mother, he presumed, did her best to clean him with the paper towels and bottled water she pulled out of a bag from a convenience store. With difficulty, she cut his umbilical cord with a cheap scissor. She triple-wrapped him from head to toe in a too-big bed sheet she had taken from the hospital where she studied. Only his doll-like face remained visible. His mother didn’t want to hold him or even look at him, and she didn’t seem to be in very good shape after the birth. The father—-well who knew who the father was anyway? The bedraggled young man who was standing there, shifting nervously, perspiration pouring out of his pasty face, wasn’t acting like the baby was his.   For more, you can purchase the book here. Related: July 25: 60-second Read from Miracle...