Desert Son

Desert Son

by Glenn Maynard



Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781612963129
Publisher: Black Rose Writing
Publication date: 02/13/2014
Pages: 188
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.60(d)

Read an Excerpt

Desert Son

By Glenn Maynard

Black Rose Writing

Copyright © 2014 Glenn Maynard
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-61296-312-9


Warm weather streaked through Boston for a cameo on this late March afternoon. Mid-70's usually did not emerge from hibernation until April, but none of that mattered much for Carter Spence. No temperature could affect him now. Temperature usually made all the difference in the world to Carter, but now springtime's rebirth seamlessly transpired.

Carter's mood elevated, but temperature played no role. For a split-second, he thought perhaps his mood had a calming effect on his body, but only because his 175 pounds felt fluffy, like he'd been influenced by helium. Just to contradict this sensation, he remained still. He felt silly even testing. This feeling had only captivated him while running around the bases at the baseball fields near his home, or even when he was a tad tipsy at the bar, but this still overpowered those other times.

Carter questioned reality. As a recent college graduate, he'd dabbled in binge drinking, even though not nearly as frequent as his "crowd" did. In fact, every so often, Carter would be the one strong enough to volunteer himself as designated driver. Carter was able to glance beyond the average college student in an attempt to supersede peer pressure, and assume responsibility for his actions. He always was the responsible type.

As Carter found himself suspended in a position enabling him to oversee earth, he knew this transcended a typical mood swing. He unquestioningly went along with whatever life threw at him, even in this extreme case, surprising even himself.

Surveying the earth below, feeling not an ounce of care in the world, Carter continued wafting like a loose sheet of paper in the wind, drifting inch by inch, contentedly, as he began keying in on an object. He seemed more preoccupied with this new attraction than with his sudden participation with the solar system. It would have been cataclysmic had both his feet mixed with the earth's dirt, but that wasn't the case.

As much a presence that this altered state should have been, Carter began battling a continual attraction to the object. This diversion was enough to cloud the reality and incomprehensibility of the situation. He finally stopped moving, involuntarily; no further elevation. He awaited the presence of normalcy, but this delay only lengthened his journey.

He sensed that he had no encasing. He felt that he was just a feeling, or that his existence was just a thought. He couldn't see his body, but never really cared to check, either. He just had a gut feeling that his thoughts were in a mind of their own. He felt like a breadless sandwich. However, he did not care one way or another.

Carter astonished himself when his focus zoomed in like human binoculars. This felt so empowering, so controlling, so consuming, and he felt that the sky was the limit. For a 26-year-old guy who had felt so powerless in the city of Boston, this certainly boosted his confidence, but he only wished he could have this focus and earth simultaneously.

He began reflecting on the bullying that he'd received as a child on his school playgrounds. He wished he could find those punks now, even though he since had learned to defend himself fairly well. Nobody much messed with Carter once he hit the 10th grade and began pumping weights vigorously. Nobody was going to offend him, and in the city it was sink or swim. He had taken it upon himself to get in a position where he could defend himself. He looked at it as survival of the fittest.

He did not get revenge by beating the hell out of those bullies who had previously roughed him up. No, that was not Carter's style. Rather, his presence became his revenge. And with this new image came a certain macho sex appeal that ushered in his debut in dating. He discovered that the two scenarios were intertwined, and that did not pose a problem for Carter Spence.

Carter did love women, but he could not be in love with them. He believed that he had just never found the right girl, but deep down wondered if he even had the ability to love. This disturbed him greatly, making him, for the most part, uncomfortable around women. He had convinced himself that he was just very picky when it came to women.

During his peak conditioning, the one-time bullies would look up at Carter in the high school hallways, acknowledge his presence with a nod, and then humbly mumble, "What's up, Carter?" Although Carter considered this sufficient sweet revenge, the thought of toying with these bullies from above did tickle his imagination.

Carter eventually determined that the object on the ground resembled a body, but it wasn't moving. Then his focus zoomed in some more, and quickly the body took on an eerie familiarity to him. The scene below grew chaotic. Cars jerked to the highway side. Doors swung open, remaining that way while people flocked to this object, which was a body lying face down in an embankment. Carter watched this scene unfold before him as if he was watching a movie on television.

The first man to arrive shouted in panic to an unresponsive body. He carefully turned the body on its back, eased down by the second and third man to arrive. Carter continued to zoom in on the victim because he felt as if he knew this man. He recognized the strong face attached to the muscular frame. He recognized the worn denim jeans with the oddly-shaped tear just above the knee, and even the tan polo shirt, which by now had absorbed blood. The shoes that had detached from the man's feet were familiar, as were the blue Gold Toe socks on his feet. His eyes moved back up the body to the face, and saw that it was his body.

Carter felt indifferent while observing his poor, lifeless body. I look so pale, he thought, aside from the streaking blood on his face. Carter couldn't believe it was really him. He would have been hard pressed to select that body out of a lineup if asked to identify him. However, he barely was able to recognize his own facial features below. Just how observant and aware of his own self was he, Carter pondered. It seemed interesting to Carter, more than anything else, to see himself from another vantage point, yet treat the situation so matter-of-factly.

Between the lanky frame and the short, light brown hair, he thought that it had to be him. But why, he wondered, confident that there would be no dream to awake from, or no Allen Funt to emerge out of nowhere to tell him about a camera. Besides, if this was a dream, he wouldn't be wondering if it was a dream. He didn't think he'd be wondering if it was a dream, but what he wouldn't give to test this theory of his.

Carter zoomed to within about a telephone pole's length away, even though he felt like a satellite in space. He noticed the traffic really starting to jam. Cars could no longer pass by. One woman screamed hysterically after discovering an upended automobile streaming fuel onto the ground. She placed both hands on her head and let out a series of chilling wails. Carter watched emotionlessly.

Some good Samaritans flocked to the car to help, while others ran from the danger. Most drivers rubbernecked their way past. Carter shifted his attention to directly above the car, where a solid oak shook off contact. A penetrating scar splintered the tree, which was evidence of a speedy impact. Carter faced all four wheels, witnessing the last tire as it finally slowed to a stop. This all happened so suddenly that this new scene before him appeared almost before the previous scene had ended. A dirty, scraped arm flopped outside of the car, limply touching the ground, and a thin tornado of smoke rose through Carter.

Carter could see that tire marks had blackened the highway, and then dirt marks continued off the side of the road to where the car rested. He did remember getting into his parents car, but he could barely make a positive identification of that car. It had rolled and wrapped itself around the tree at the roof. The smell of gasoline enveloped the air and the potential danger was incalculable. However, good people still stopped.

Gas dripped at a steady rate from the gas tank vicinity. Streams of smoke billowed from under the hood. Carter hoped the smoke and the drips didn't merge, but when there's smoke, there's fire, and within minutes the car flickered flames. Carter felt helpless to try to save those inside. He wondered if it even mattered as he saw that the car's front bumper meshed with the dashboard and the roof the car rested on met up with the bottom of the windows, which were smashed all around.

He knew those inside hadn't a chance, and then Carter positively identified the car as his parent's car, so it was his parents who were trapped inside. My God, Carter thought. This isn't happening. They could die. This thought flashed through him, but he was emotionless.

Emergency vehicles nudged a path to the wreckage, and a few heartless people took advantage of this path to better their positioning. This was the city life, and nothing was going to spoil the day of some people. Cars edged closer to neighboring cars on the left, while cars in the far right lane eased off the road, some entirely. Sirens blared, while red and blue lights flashed through the light of day. Carter took notice of numerous police cars, ambulances and fire trucks.

Carter knew his parents had expired, but what about his body? Where was he now? Was he dead? Paramedics swarmed his physical body below, and he wondered if he would ever be reunited with it. He wanted badly to be able to help himself, but he could only watch, unsure if it was his unwillingness or inability to intervene. He felt like an actor watching his own movie, but he certainly possessed more peacefulness above than what was being transmitted at the chaotic scene below.

Firefighters in yellow coats squelched the flames with foam, but the people who had jumped from their cars to throw mud at the flames controlled the spreading. These people will be the ones dubbed heroes, but will refuse the tag on the local newscast. Carter could envision this before it even happened. He wasn't being disrespectful to those trying to help his parents, but he felt his folks stood no chance by the looks of things. Maybe the car wouldn't burn to a crisp, but if they did survive the impact, any fire would be enough to finish the job.

Carter believed his ejection from the car came prior to impact because of his distance from the vehicle, and then it occurred to him how he had gotten into the situation he found himself in. His thoughts moved away from the chaos momentarily, zooming out of that scene and into another.


Sydney and Patricia Spence planned a family function religiously every Sunday after church with Carter, their only child. Even if it was just a sit-down dinner, they were happy, but Carter's independence made this a difficult thing to schedule, at times. It wasn't that Carter did not enjoy spending time with his family. In fact, they were a tight-knit family that may even be considered normal as far as dysfunctionalists are concerned.

Carter always said his life story was unremarkable, but he had the personality that made him okay with that. He was not a guy who liked attention, preferring to live under the radar. Routine was what he craved. He resided in the same house, same street, same town his whole life, and he wanted to know what was wrong with that?

Carter believed his parents deserved a tip-of-the-hat for his upbringing. He had no regrets, no war stories, yet no younger brother he could refer to as the Beaver. Carter still lived at home as a 25 year old, and he and his parents did enjoy each other's company with only minor tiffs. The outrageous housing expense in Boston had skyrocketed beyond impossible, so if Carter tossed a few bucks at his parents on a weekly basis, then everybody won.

On this particular Sunday, Carter had a previous engagement with his best friend. He and Charlie Ritz had planned on purchasing last-minute tickets to the Boston Bruins game against the Colorado Avalanche. They waited until game time, even beyond, in order to get drastically reduced tickets from scalpers, who either accepted a few dollars or went home with unused tickets they would refer to as "evil souvenirs."

Charlie Ritz had graduated high school with Carter and they played varsity baseball together. He went to trade school to be an electrician. He kept himself physically fit and was Carter's workout partner. Charles had a quick wit, which sometimes got him in hot water. If he drove, it would be in his company truck. He wanted to learn all that he could from his employer of seven years, "Beantown Electric," so he could eventually open his own business. He was always trying to convince Carter to leave his job and join him in business as an electrician. Charlie was willing to mentor him, and Carter could also help with the books. They had met in high school and formed a pretty close bond during this critical time in a person's life. They continued their friendship post-high school as they both commuted to college while living with their parents. They even had that in common.

Carter and Charlie usually paid next to nothing for hockey tickets, but if the Bruins met their rivals, the two would have to revise their plans without a hockey game under their belts. The Avalanche battled for a playoff spot while Boston had already sewn up second place with few games remaining in the season. Carter and Charlie still had trouble, even though the game meant nothing for the home team.

They couldn't find tickets to this Avalanche match-up to save their lives. The game sold out a couple of hours before the showdown, and everyone walked circles around Boston Gardens yelling out for anyone to hear, "Who's got tickets? Need tickets!"

This meaningless match surprised these two ticket-seekers. They gave up early, and decided to go their separate ways. This usually only happened when the Red Sox played, even though Fenway Park had far more seats to offer. So after Carter dropped Charlie off at home, he returned home, where his parents had the car packed for a day trip.

Carter's parents had planned a jaunt to see Al Gorman and his wife. Sydney Spence and Al Gorman had teamed up for over 10 years at their accounting firm, and Carter had been working at their firm since graduating college from Northwestern University three years prior. This season proved especially taxing, so they decided to take a day off and get together for food and drink.

Sydney and Al were far from rich, but just as far from poor. They were comfortable. Both possessed accounting degrees from different schools, but they worked together at this small company, buying it from their boss/owner when he retired. The boss was going to pass the business on to his son, but his son had died in a motorcycle accident two years before he was to take the helm.

Although Sydney and Al had no intensions of taking over the business, the boss offered them a deal they couldn't refuse. This would ensure a more comfortable lifestyle for them even during the economic downturns such as the one they had been going through of late. They were all like family, and Sydney and Al had helped their boss through the most difficult period of his life when he lost his son. They began as coworkers and formed a bond, which strengthened when they had become equal partners. Every summer they would shut the business down and the two families would vacation together in a different state each year.

Since Carter's plans never materialized, he decided to go along with his parents to the Gorman's. He very much enjoyed being with this second family. Sports fans never swap boring stories. There's always an incredible comeback or the save of a lifetime or a promising new season, especially if there is an addition to the roster, and that was always the case. Boston is just the place to live for any sports fanatic. Of course Carter would go for the ride. Besides, he had missed the last month of Sundays with his parents, which was the longest stretch of time since he could remember.

The Spence's took the Mass Pike, which was the best route to the Gorman's house, and they couldn't have picked a better day. Mr. Spence sped down the pike, and Mrs. Spence copiloted. Carter viewed both of his parents from the back seat. His father fought the tax-season fatigue, which burdened him every year. Some weeks he would put in 75 hours, barely returning his own taxes before the deadline. One year he actually missed the deadline, which he still got ribbed about to this day.


Excerpted from Desert Son by Glenn Maynard. Copyright © 2014 Glenn Maynard. Excerpted by permission of Black Rose Writing.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Desert Son 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Rajalakshmi More than 1 year ago
What started off as a near death experience story, kept me hooked till the very end. Desert Son is one book which was eerie, captivating and full of suspense. The plot is not very unusual- reincarnations and love triangles. However, the treatment definitely is, and it is the manner in which the storyline has been weaved that convinces its novel concept. Glenn has a way with words. There are breaks in the story with sudden twists and chapter endings. Yet, these add on to the appeal quotient. The narration is flawless. The descriptions immediately trigger visualizations and imageries. Reading it was like watching a movie inside my head. The story unfolds in a language which can be easily understood by any reader not very familiar with the language. As far as the characters are concerned, well, Carter and Brenda perfectly compliment each other. The story, in fact, unfolds through both of them. The way they find themselves, search for signs and answers together, is like the icing on a festive cake. Besides other characters, Martin is one man you would love to hate. What I really loved about this book is that it addresses a concept which many find it hard to believe- that of reincarnation. The story would make many a disbeliever question whether it is really possible. The thought of a soul returning back to its family, is something acceptable by people in India. The descriptions regarding out of body near death experiences are so very realistic, similar to those undergone by people in real life. To sum up, reading about the Desert Son has forced me to grab its sequel. The story is so compelling, I had no choice but to finish it in one single sitting. It is definitely a must read for lovers for supernatural and paranormal writings. P.S- If you believe in reincarnations, the beliefs will get stronger thanks to this book.
amyshan More than 1 year ago
A Twist on Reincarnation! This is the first book that I've read by Maynard, but it will definitely not be the last. I only recently got into reading the paranormal genre but this is something that will stay with me. It's a twist on reincarnation and falling in love, after having an out-of-body experience. I think it's written amazingly well and I was instantly drawn in. I wasn't sure at first where the story was heading, and I like that in a story. I don't want to be able to predict what will happen next, and this book kept me interested and constantly wondering what would be on the next page. I was drawn to Carter (MC) and his perspective of his environment and his outlook on the future and the past.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Desert Son turned out to be a very interesting ‘out-of-body reading’ experience :) The book starts out with an out-of-body experience and ends with the revelations of reincarnation of people revealing the past and present connections. The build-up of suspense is interesting. The book begins with an accident which kills the protagonist and his parents resulting in an out-of-body experience of our protagonist. He goes through the mythical ‘tunnel of light’ to meet long deceased people. The description is eerie, scary and relaxing at the same time. He later comes back from the dead since a lady in the ‘heaven’ informs/directs him to discover his true identity … sending him back to complete unfinished business. The book kind of gets a slow start - a significant portion in the beginning describing the out-of-body experience and the return (although some readers may indeed enjoy the descriptive heavenly journey) The story soon catches pace as a few more characters are introduced and in the end the secrets are revealed and the dots are connected for the reader's. The plot is interesting and the author attempts to captivate the reader with the out-of-body experience as well as the reincarnation plot twists and the inter-connected relationships between the different characters. The characters are interesting and you can feel the inner turmoil of the protagonist and the girl who joins his journey of self-discovery. You keep wondering why the girl is so interested and involved. It sort of never becomes clear as to why she got interested in something that she was running from, although she becomes an integral part of the story in the end. The cover design is good although for a book with out-of-body experience and reincarnation at its core, the book cover could have been better. Now it seems like a love story in the desert. Although there were times in the first half when I I found it too slow but once you hold on to it and read further, you are rewarded with an interesting climax. Although a pretty interesting read ... I would still wish the first half was squeezed into just fewer pages and the book was no more than 125-150 pages long.
WolfFaerie17 More than 1 year ago
Carter Spence believed that he knew everything about his life and family. When he and his parents are involved in car crash which leaves his parents dead. He has an out of body experience that sets him on a journey of self discovery and delving into secrets he knew nothing about. Carter can't explain his lack of injury or his driving need to go west to the mountains. Along the way west Carter meets Brenda who lights up Carter's world. Carter takes Brenda to her hometown of Boulder, Colorado. Carter can't seem to escape wanting to be close to Brenda. Carter breaks down outside of white house he feels drawn too. Will Carter admit his attraction to Brenda? What is it about the white house? Will Carter reach his destination? Your answers await you in Desert Son. The story unfolds in an unusual way yet makes it clear how important that it is as a whole. I'll be honest I thought Carter was kinda self-absorbed person thinking of only his needs and feelings. Yet as the book progressed I changed my mind. I found that Carter is just another lost soul searching for answers like the rest of us. If you're looking for an out of the ordinary read this book is for you.
MyFamHrtBookRvw More than 1 year ago
This is a story about a young man Carter who is in a horrible car accident and watches everything going on as his entire life flashes before him. The so called “out of body” experience. He describes everything he is seeing and is able to flash back and forth from place to place. Just when he thinks the end is near he is sent back with a message to head west and find himself. I have always had a very hard time with stories that are from a one person perspective as I really like interaction and perspectives from multiple sides. So the beginning was very slow for me to get into as it really is all Carter describing everything going on, everything he see’s and does. There is minimal interaction with people in the hospital and at the funeral afterwards so I really did have to push through these parts. Carter has several “adventures” I guess you could call them, or moments that one may not normally have in the course of their life so that did add to the book as it kept me wondering if it would eventually catch up to him. At times I wondered just how in the world did he get away with that. Was there some “force” that was driving him, keeping him on a path and from detection? Carter winds up in Boulder, Colorado after giving Brenda a ride. A girl he met when he stopped on his travels. Something about Boulder pulled to him. Made him want to stay and figure out just what it was about the place. This is when the story picked up, there was finally some interaction, dialogue and story build up. And I finally got to where I wanted to see just what happens, what it is about this place that not only caused Carter pain but pulled him to stay as well. Carter and Brenda seem to be on a collision with the past and the more they dig the more it is unraveled. I will say the ending is not what I expected. It was actually a much better ending than the start of the book. Slow start great finish.
NovaReylin0 More than 1 year ago
The beginning of this reminds me of What Dreams May Come. There’s a small portion about heaven and I just kept seeing Carter and thinking he would see Robin Williams any time! I loved the imagination that this took especially since everyone has their own ideas about where we go when we die, and it didn’t take away from the story but added to it. In fact Carter is given a mission to go back to the world, something that he wants to fight against after seeing how wonderful the afterlife really is! Carter’s situation is pretty intense and would catch anyone off guard and I enjoyed seeing his ascent to heaven, however, the beginning of the book was actually really slow. The beginning 30 or so percent was really long and it took everything in me not to put this down. I think a lot of this could have been revised. Some of the information is needed though and it’s all from Carter’s perspective. The actual plot itself is quite interesting and different. I did really enjoy Glenn’s scope of imagination and the characters surrounding Carter. Once the plot picks up it’s a brilliant read and becomes much more understandable when the pieces start to fit together. All in all, if you enjoy paranormal romance and want to pick this one up and find yourself slowing at the beginning, skim a bit and get to the good stuff, you’ll be glad you didn’t put it down!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
FizzaYounis More than 1 year ago
This is a life or rather after-near-death life story of Carter. The story begins with an out of body experience he had following a tragic accident. Both his parents die in that accident and he miraculously survives. But everything changes for him. He can't stand to be in his house and now that he has a destiny to fulfil he must follow his heart. It seems right to him to leave and go west. So he does that. Then we see different experiences he has along the way. How he feels, what he thinks. His life might be never be the same once he finds out the truth about himself. It scares him and also encourages him to seek the truth about himself. Then he meets Brenda and a whole new chapter of his life begins. The first few chapters are somewhat boring as the story develops slowly and there is much repetition about Carter's feelings and thoughts. Although some might enjoy minute details about his accident and the way he comes back to life.  Once he is on his journey to seek the truth and fulfil his destiny, whatever that might be, story becomes more and more interesting. There is a sense of mystery which will keep you on edge. Finally ending in a most epic way. In the beginning I never thought It'd end like that. But I am happy that I read it. It was refreshingly different from books I mostly read. It was entertaining and a fun read. 
Kissablysweetone More than 1 year ago
   Carter Spence was only twenty-six years old when his life was altered forever.  An accident and out of body experience sends Carter on an adventure to find himself.  He'd lost his parents in the accident or at least the people he believed to be his parents.  Now, with something pulling him west, Carter met Brenda and again his life would change.  Would he ever have all the answers?      Well written, with a tight plot and characters you can really relate to, this book will have you questioning your beliefs. Reincarnation and a near death experience are just part of this gripping story.  It's a romance that reaches out from the grave and grabs your heart.  Love, devotion and friendship will make people do many things. I recommend this book to everyone.       I found only a minor issue. It seemed to drag in spots but quickly recovers and moves along again.      I gave this one 5 cheers out of 5 because love is truly eternal.  ~Copy of book provided by author in exchange for a fair review
TracyG-1 More than 1 year ago
Meet Carter, recent college graduate, who's dabbled in binge drinking as would be expected of any college student, but more often than not he's the designated driver, he's the responsible one. Then you realise he's actually telling you about himself and this leads up to the accident where he losses both his parents and he survives. I appreciated the depth the author went into where Carter's character was concerned. At times I found Carter to be a confused and sad character. He questions himself, his existence, even his ability to love. He goes through the motions of laying his parents to rest and then wonders how he should mourn them? ?? I was like WTH you sob dude!  After the funeral he heads West to "find" himself. On his travels, he meets up with Brenda and now it becomes "their" journey. The ending was a bit of a surprise and is not quite what I expected. When you're given a second chance in life, take it and LIVE it!  To sum it up.....Desert Son was a bit like fishing :D you bait, cast and wait. You get a nibble then, the fish starts to  tease you, nibble, let go, nibble, let go and then all of a sudden BAM! You've got it! Hook line and sinker! You reel it in and feel satisfied with yourself! And that my friends is exactly what this book did! 
Allthingsbook-ReviewRL More than 1 year ago
5.5 Stars WOW! This book is captivating. This book will hook you from the beginning. I was unable to put it down. The author has given a new perspective on reincarnation and life after death. The story is well written and the plot is exciting. This is one book I would highly recommend everyone take the time to read. During an out-of-body experience, Carter begins to doubt that the parents who raised him are his true parents. After returning to his body, he follows signs to find out the truth. Please check this amazing book out. I look forward to reading more of Mr. Maynard's work in the future.