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Oct. Artist of the Month Excerpt 3

Filed in ARTS/ENT by on October 15, 2015 0 Comments • views: 654

Dale Kornreich’s novel, Santa Cruz—The Island of Limuw, transports the reader on an intelligent, yet pulse-pounding adventure that uses California’s Channel Islands as a backdrop to this suspenseful story.  A 160 year old parchment, filled with verses obscured by innuendo and metaphor, the correct interpretation of which would reveal a government cover-up and the discovery of a fortune in gold. An old but sagacious Chumash Indian who guards an island secret that goes back thousands of years. An encounter with a rare and gigantic sea creature that repays its human benefactors with their lives. A seemingly impossible quest to find the grave of a sixteenth century Spanish conquistador. A Secluded valley where fantastical and supposedly extinct animals continue to thrive. A greedy and unethical Aquafarmer whose contaminated products cause a national health crises and who will stop at nothing, even murder, to protect his interests. Here’s an excerpt:  

Novel, Santa Cruz, The Island of Limuw by Dale M. Kornreich

Excerpt from: “Chapter 16”

Interrupting, and pointing towards an outer kelp bed, Mischa asked nervously, “Will Dad also know what to do about that?”

Jake stared at where she was pointing. A twelve inch high dark-gray dorsal fin was heading in their direction at a fast pace, like a bloodhound on a scent. “It wants my seabass,” Jake said. “I’ll dump it, which ought to distract it, giving us plenty of time to swim in.”

Before Jake could implement his plan the shark quickly closed the gap and then slid beneath the surface. Popping her head underwater, Mischa scanned for the beast. She located it circling twenty feet below, an adolescent great white shark approximately eight feet in length. Mischa breathed a sigh of relief; mercifully, young great white’s were not man-eaters’, preferring game fish and large schools of baitfish over mammalian prey. It probably was interested in Jake’s seabass, but was apprehensive about approaching because of their imposing physical presence. Contrary to Hollywood’s stereotype as a vicious hunter, great white’s rarely launched an attack if they thought their own safety was at risk.

Mischa was about to inform Jake of her assessment when she noticed that the oarfish was once again emitting a bluish-white light, but this time there was a phosphorescent glint to it. She assumed the oarfish was aware of the prowling shark and that the shark was conscious of the oarfish—its shimmering glow a dead giveaway as to its whereabouts. Mischa was contemplating the oarfish’s odd behavior when it suddenly emitted a low-level pulsating wave of light that enveloped her body, momentarily jolting her senses, causing her exposed flesh to tingle as if galvanized by an electrical current. Fortunately, the disruption of her mental faculties was only temporary. Remembering the predatory shark Mischa swiftly attempted to ascertain its status. Gazing downward, and then spinning like a compass, she was unable to locate it, the great white having mysteriously vanished. Checking on the oarfish she noted that it had lost its radiant luster and was once again resting peacefully in its hidden niche. The garbled sound of her name spoken in Jake’s thrill voice caused her to lift her head. She observed Jake straddling the water next to his seabass.

“You okay?” he asked. “I’m still a little light-headed from what seemed like a discharge of electricity.”

“Yes, I’m fine, and you’re correct; the oarfish has the same capabilities as an electric eel. Its mild shocking of the water certainly scared off the shark besides energizing all my nerves. Thankfully, the affect was transitory.”

“I wonder what it could do if it was really angry?”

“I don’t think I want to know,” said Mischa seriously.

Excerpt from: “Chapter 25”

Standing on the opposite side of the archway, Mischa continued to stare at the inexplicable scene that had rendered her temporarily speechless. Her brother was responding in a similar fashion, and stood motionless as if in a trance.

Back on familiar turf, however, Gabriel, Aiyana, and Journey took off, running at full speed in the direction of a small rush-lined pond that was located on the western edge of the cathedral-like valley—the husky’s rhapsodic yelping, as it nipped playfully at the heels of the two horses, reverberated off the sheer volcanic walls.

The area reminded Mischa of an animal reserve in Africa, Ngorongoro Crater Wildlife Sanctuary, which she had learned about on a Discovery Channel special. The Tanzania preserve was situated in an extinct caldera and was surrounded by impassable cliffs—with only one entryway. The inaccessibility of the enclosed valley had allowed the natural habitat to remain unspoiled and the abundant wildlife safe from human interference.

In a soft voice, barely above a whisper, Jake asked, “What are they?”

Half submerged in the shallow marsh-like pond were over a dozen animals, with an equal number browsing on the succulent brush that fringed the swampland. The creatures were diminutive in size, less than four feet tall, and had shaggy reddish-brown hair on top of their heads, upper shoulders, and along their entire back. From their midsection down to their pillar-like legs and broad feet, the exposed skin was grayish in color. Each animal had a flattish head, small floppy ears, short neck, large muscular trunk, and a pair of spiraled ivory tusks that extended two to three feet beyond their mouths. Several of the creatures were engaged in frolicsome sparing battles and were emitting high-spirited trumpeting sounds.

“Miniature elephants,” Mischa said in awe, “but, unlike anything I’ve ever seen in a zoo or on television.”

 

 

Biography

Dale Kornreich has earned two degrees—a B.A. from Fresno State University (English Major), and a J.D. from Pepperdine University School of Law. He is a member of the State Bar of California and the U.S. District Court of California. His law practice, located in Thousand Oaks, California is limited to plaintiff’s personal injury and wrongful death cases. Kornreich currently splits his office time between his law practice and creative writing.  Dale Kornreich’s interests include SCUBA diving, skin diving, spearfishing, saltwater fishing, freshwater fishing, surfing, hiking, biking, reading, gourmet cooking, vegetable gardening, raising chickens, taking care of a small vineyard, and walking his three Siberian huskies.  Dale Kornreich is married to Carole. They have three children—one boy and two girls, and reside in Agoura Hills (Old Agoura), California.

For more information visit dalekornreichbooks.com or reach out to Dale at contact@dalekornreichbooks.com

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