This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. G. Lloyd Helm will be awarding 10 paperback copies of the book to 10 randomly drawn winners via rafflecopter during the tour. (international giveaway)
Serpents and Doves is about a very small slice of the 1960’s at a small church college in a small town in Tennessee.
The sixties–what a time. We baby boomers saw what was happening and tried to do something about it. War, hatred, racism, dishonesty in government. And how have those things changed? We are in another immoral war into which we were pushed by terror, but also by lies and greed from our own government. And, just like in Vietnam, we are really fighting the wrong enemy and fighting them the wrong way. We should not have ever gone into Afghanistan, that’s not where the builders of this whole jihad movement started. They actually started in Saudi Arabia, but certain people in our government have been holding hands with the Saudi royals for decades and were not willing to lose their lucrative deals with them.
Hatred and Racism went underground after the 60’s but it didn’t die as proved by everything that has happened in the last couple of years. There are not many lynchings, now. Instead we have police shootings, but the people are just as dead.
Dishonesty in government is rampant. We have a good and competent president who, because of his race has had nothing but grief out of the congress. He has done pretty well in spite of all that, but how much better off would this country be if the congress got off its rear and helped.
All this is tied into the economic mess that was created by the previous administrations who tried hard to cancel and roll back all the things that had carried over from the end of the Roosevelt years.
All the civil rights that were achieved back in the sixties by blood and sweat and marches and legislation, the current congress and many state governments are trying to erase those gains with exclusive voter registration laws. They are making it difficult if not impossible for people of color or poor people to vote.
Finally, I am sorry to have been so negative in this, but I have said repeatedly in the last few years that I am ashamed of my generation. We had something going back when we were young, but when we reached the age of real power we sold out to the corporations who promised comfort and pleasure, while not saying they were going to addict us to drugs (the so called legitimate ones) and take away our rights to make a living wage and to be citizens. I am hoping that my little book about this tiny slice of the 1960’s will in some way help to bring some justice back to this country.
Stephen Mitchell did not know what he was getting into at a small church college in Tennessee. Sex, protest, friendship, and Civil rights. The title “Serpents and Doves” comes from the warning Jesus gave to his disciples as he sent them out to preach the gospel, knowing the dangers they were going into. He said “I send you out as sheep among wolves, therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves.” Stephen Mitchell learns first-hand what that warning means when he goes to a Tennessee church college in the midst of the turbulent 60’s. He learns about friendship, war, protest, the sexual revolution, and civil rights.
Enjoy an excerpt:
Ethan’s suicide rocked the school, but not nearly as much as Stephen expected. The New Jersey and New York folks mostly didn’t know anything about Ethan or the BSU so they noted the suicide as a bit of news, but it didn’t effect them much. There was some anti-homosexual noise and the inevitable nasty jokes, but Ethan Patrick’s passing caused no more than a ripple for the most part.
There was some noise and protest from the Mason First Baptist Church when Billie Jo asked them to hold the funeral service, but finally they said they would bury him, but not in the church cemetery. They ignored the fact of his suicide and the reasons for it and held a small service. Stephen debated with himself whether he should go. He had about decided not to when Cathy Powell cornered him and asked if he would go with her. “I really don’t have the strength Steve,” she said. “I’m just a wreck. Can’t you please come with me?”
Stephen seriously thought about saying, Why don’t you go ask David Hall? But didn’t say it. “All right. I’ll meet you at the church.”
She smiled sadly, but Stephen thought he saw just the smallest glimmer of triumph in it.
The coffin was set across the aisle in front of the altar. Closed. It was silvery gray and looked more like a large tin can than a coffin. The congregation was small, mostly people from the BSU but a few from Beacon’s faculty including Dr. Conners and Dr. Marchant. Having the Pope there was no surprise. Probably here to make sure the sumbitch is really dead, Stephen thought, and then felt bad about thinking it.
About the Author:
G. Lloyd Helm has been writing for 40 years, having published poetry in a wide variety of magazines and newspapers including “The New York Poetry Anthology,” “Stars and Stripes News,” “The Los Angeles Times,” “The Antelope Valley Press,” and “The Antelope Valley Anthologies,” among others.
… Has published short stories and memoirs both in the US and in England in such journals as “Pligrimage” which published the memoir “Football” in spring 2005, and a second memoir “4 April, 1968” in the winter of 2008. He has published short stories in “Citadel” the literary magazine of Los Angeles City College,” “Delivered Magazine,” which is based in London, “Short Story Library,” The University of S. Illinois’ “Eureka Literary Magazine,” “Tales as like as not,” and London’s “Black Gate Magazine.” Recently published “Even Up” a Civil War Ghost story at www.ruthlesspeoples.com, an English on line magazine, and the short story “A Lovely Elephant” in “Delivered Magazine” an English fiction journal. “The Other Fellows Shoes,” Pulp Empire III, Metahuman Press, Cedar Rapids, IA Nov. 2010. Is being published in an on line experiment from Alfie Dog Publishing in England. May 2012.
…Has published three novels in the F&SF field, 1) OTHER DOORS, From MousePrints Publishing, and 2) DESIGN from American Star. 3) WORLD WITHOUT END from Rogue Phoenix Press, www.roguephoenixpress.com OTHER DOORS, originally published in 1997, was published electronically by Rogue Phoenix Press in July 2010. Also Published a literary Romance novel called SOMETIMES IN DREAMS, from Siren’s call. Most recently a volume of short stories called TRAIN WHEELS, FLYING SAUCERS, AND THE GHOST OF TIBURCIO VASQUEZ. Many of these stories appear on the Alfie Dog site.
…Is in process of publishing an adult literary novel called SERPENTS AND DOVES with Rogue Phoenix Press, which will be out in May 2016.
Buy the book at Amazon.