Recommended Reads

This page features Steve's list of recommended reads. They include his books alongside those works that inspire him. All of the titles below are available on Amazon.*


Near-future science fiction thriller short story

APOSTATE by Steve Pantazis

Leonardo holds a secret the Church wants buried . . .


. . . and the Archangel Michael has come to extract it.


If Leonardo’s captured, millions will die—his daughter first.


On the run from the all-powerful Church, Gallo has made it his mission to keep his daughter safe. Within his neural implant is a secret that can destroy the Church.


But Gallo’s luck is about to run out.


A platoon of Marines has descended on the abandoned cathedral where Gallo and his daughter are hiding. The vengeful Archangel Michael has come to oversee Gallo’s capture personally.


If Gallo surrenders, they’ll kill his daughter. He can’t allow Michael to hack his mind.


But how can he stop the most powerful man on the planet?


You’ll love this near-future thriller, because of the mind-blowing twists and turns.


Get it now.


Epic fantasy short story

INFERNALLY YOURS by Steve Pantazis

Being a demon is tough.


But a good-hearted one?


That’s when the trouble begins.


Samael isn't your garden-variety demon. He has a heart, and it’s gotten him in hot water with the resident demon overlord, Lolack.


Samael’s crime?


Trying to spread the “good word” among the demon hordes of hell. It wasn’t his intention to start a revolution, but the reality is . . .


Demons want to hear the good word, even if it's bad for business.


Can Samael use his salesman skills to sell Lolack on his vision of a “better hell”? It’s easier said than done, considering Lolack's eternally foul mood.


You’ll want to devour this fantasy story, because you know you want the good guy to win.


Get it now.

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Nonfiction book for authors


Are you an indie author? Do your book descriptions suck? Chances are they need a makeover.

I love this how-to book by Brian. He explains the importance of creating eye-catching ad copy--i.e. book descriptions--and includes before-and-after examples.

Did you know that ad copy is the next most important thing to sell your book after your cover?

I applied Brian's technique to all my book descriptions. You'll spot his famous "Get it now" call to action at the end of each book description I post.


Why is it important to use this call to action? Why does understanding the advertising concept of "above the fold" matter? Why are the first three lines of your ad copy the most important?

You'll need to read Brian's book to find out.

You'll love his how-to guide for authors, because you'll learn how to become a Jedi warrior of book marketing.

Get it now.

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Hard science fiction novel

THE LAST CAMPAIGN by Martin L. Shoemaker

From the mind of my good friend and fellow Writers of the Future winner, Martin L. Shoemaker, comes a murder mystery of interplanetary proportions:

Crime is spiking.

People want answers…

…except you’re not on Earth.

You’re on Mars, where crime is as unfamiliar as the landscape. Not for Rosalia Morais.

She was made for this.


As the first chief of police in Maxwell City, Rosie’s job is to bring law and order to the Red Planet’s fastest-growing settlement. She’s done an amazing job creating a squad to handle the growing unrest.


But there’s a problem.


An industrialist found among the chars leads to arson. Rosie knows better. She’s seen it before.




With a situation about to spiral out of control, can Rosalia stop it in its tracks?


More importantly, can she find the murderer?


You’ll want to read this out-of-the-world story, because you won’t be able to put it down.

Get it now

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Science fiction short story

HONOR BOUND by Steve Pantazis

Invaders are coming.


Scourges from the heavens.


Can one mech warrior make a difference?


The samurai were entrusted as the ruling military class of feudal Japan. Centuries later, their legacy endures, passed on to a division of mech warriors sworn to protect the people of Earth from alien invasion.


One mech remembers.


In the quiet woods that stand before the great Mount Fuji, the ancestors speak to him of honor, discipline and the way of the warrior.


The time has come to rise up.


Just as the samurai repelled the hordes of Mongol attackers a thousand years before, so must he join his brethren to repel this new threat from beyond.


Will he survive the onslaught?


Or will he face certain death?


You’ll love this sci-fi story, because everyone wants the good guy to win.


Get it now.


Epic fantasy short story

UNTAMED by Steve Pantazis

Great warriors ride wyverns.


But a dragon?




Especially not the daughter of the king. At least that’s what Lina’s condescending brother says.


Besides, the dragons are gone, vanished from the land. Lina doesn’t believe it. Her great-grandfather the king had ridden the mightiest dragon of all, Saunder the Great.


Why not her?


Lina uncovers the clues that lead her to the cave where the beast slumbers. Saunder awakens, furious. If Lina doesn’t leave right away, he promises to torch her, granddaughter of the late king or not.


Lina hasn’t come this far to give up.


She would prove her brother wrong . . . and all of the other pigheaded nobles.


But what can she offer a dragon?


How can she prove herself worthy?


You’ll love this epic fantasy, because it will capture your heart.


Get it now.

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Urban fantasy novel

TOKYO BLOOD MAGIC by Travis Heermann

This cover rocks. Seriously, it's my favorite cover from 2020. It so happens Travis Heerman is a talented lad, so the cover represents his skills in every way.

When Django Wong, a modern-day ninja turned sorcerer, takes a job to track down a newly Awakened witch, he discovers that his target is not only his lost love, but now she’s an enforcer for the Black Lotus Clan, a ruthless yakuza syndicate.

​But time can change a person. Is she the girl who used to love him, a yakuza slave, or a deadly black witch?


With a smart-mouthed magical house cat as his ally, Django must protect her from other Hunter-Seekers sent to kill her until he can learn the truth of her allegiance. And not only that, if he can't stop her from stealing a powerful magical relic, the Black Lotus Clan will launch a bloodbath in Shinjuku’s streets.


Perfect for fans of Bleach or Fullmetal Alchemist, Tokyo Blood

Magic brings you ninja sorcerers, femme fatales, savage monsters, martial arts action, and powerful cultivation.


​You'll love this urban fantasy novel, because you'll crave the crazy good fun.

​Get it now.


Near-future science fiction thriller

OUT OF PRINT by Steve Pantazis

Owen has a problem.


Make that two giant problems.


One, he’s a robot fresh off the 3D printer. Two, his maker wants him to kill.


Owen doesn’t want to be a killer, but Dan has other plans. He’s programmed Owen with a deadly instinct.


Even worse . . .


Dan’s mission is to create the world’s first serial killer robot. Owen has passed all the tests in the lab. Now, it’s time for the real world:


Owen’s first kill.


Owen tries to resist the urges designed into his code, but how can he fight his own programming? As far as Dan is concerned, Owen has no choice but to comply.


You’ll love this gritty robot tale, because it will keep you hooked until the end.


Get it now.


Science fiction space adventure


They say no bond is stronger . . .


 . . . than a mother’s.


What if the mother was the host for an unborn alien?


What if this alien were dangerous not only to her but the crew aboard her spaceship?


The crew wants to kill the gestating alien, but they can't do so without killing the host. If the alien were allowed to live . . .


 . . . it could spell doom for everyone.


The ship's doctor won’t allow them to kill the alien. No, the mother will die giving birth, and then the alien will be his to study.


Unless the alien has plans of her own.


Which she does. And she's saving the doctor for last.


You’ll love this horror-in-space tale, because it will grip you from the very beginning.


Get it now.


Fantasy novel

THE ELEMENTS by Mark Stallings

Xan always assumed he would be apprenticed to an herbalist in the sleepy village of Mogu and follow the Path of Peace, just like his father before him. It is the way—has always been the way.


But when his village is sacked by a raiding force of vicious monsters, corrupted by dark Qi, life as Xan knows it is over. Family dead. Villagers slain. His home burnt to ash.


Now, all Xan wants to do is figure out why his people were targeted and get revenge on the merciless creatures sweeping across the continent like a plague of locusts. Spreading their vile corruption. His only hope at salvation and retribution lies in the Valley of the Moon, at the fabled Xing Yi School of Martial Magic. If he is to succeed, he will need to learn to cultivate the energy of the elements, hone his martial and crafting skills, and complete the school’s harsh tests and trials. It will take more than a passing grade at this school, though, and not all that fail survive the experience…


​You'll love this fantasy novel, because it will leave you breathless.

​Get it now.