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Forsaken (Unit 51, #2)
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Group Reads: Guest Author Invite > May 2018 Group Read with Guest Author, Michael McBride

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Kenneth McKinley | 1559 comments Mod
This is the thread for our May group read with guest author, Michael McBride. For May, we will be continuing his Unit 51 series by reading his new release, Forsaken. Forsaken is the second in the series. In November, we started with the first book, Subhuman. For those of you that haven't read Subhuman yet, I have good news. We will also reopen the November thread for you, if you'd like to start the series. I can tell you that it was one of our most well received reads we've had on here. So feel free to read one or both with us. Either way, Michael would love to have you and talk all things Unit 51 and more. Please help me welcome, Michael McBride!


Lena | 2492 comments I loved it!

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

This is now a read-the-second-it’s-available series for me.


Kimberly (kimberly_3238) | 6436 comments Mod
Welcome back Michael!!! Looking forward to the discussion on FORSAKEN. :)


message 4: by Ami (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ami | 210 comments Thank you for hanging out with us!

Subhuman has been on my TBR list for a while! :o I didn't know it was a series... :D I'm going to try and get both read in May!


Robert Mingee (robertmingee) | 776 comments Reading this now, and loving it so far. Looking forward to the discussion!


message 6: by Dustin (new) - added it

Dustin Very cool, thank you for the invite!


message 7: by Adam (new) - added it

Adam (adamreads1) Great! Looking forward to another fun group read!


message 8: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 55 comments Hi guys! Thanks for having me back! Glad to be here and looking forward to another fun conversation!


Kimberly (kimberly_3238) | 6436 comments Mod
I just started another book in the Charlie Parker series, and was wondering how I got so far behind.... Then it came to me--all those McBride books sidetracked me! ;)


Kimberly (kimberly_3238) | 6436 comments Mod
As for FORSAKEN, I love the way you get right back into the characters' various lives--it was just enough to bring back the memories of them, and yet you didn't need to give the entire backstory on each. I'd say that's a testament to how well we got to "know" them in SUBHUMAN.


message 11: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 55 comments Kimberly wrote: "As for FORSAKEN, I love the way you get right back into the characters' various lives--it was just enough to bring back the memories of them, and yet you didn't need to give the entire backstory on..."

Awesome! I'm thrilled it worked for you. :)


message 12: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 55 comments Kensington set up a website for the series at www.Unit51Book.com. They're running a really cool contest for those of you who might be interested. They're giving away a handful of framed original manuscript pages from FORSAKEN (no purchase necessary).


message 13: by Ami (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ami | 210 comments That sounds like an awesome contest! :D


message 14: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 55 comments Ami wrote: "That sounds like an awesome contest! :D"

I hope whoever wins can post a picture. I've obviously seen the pages, but not the framed presentation.


message 15: by Empress Reece (Hooked on Books) (last edited May 05, 2018 03:13AM) (new)

Empress Reece (Hooked on Books) (empressreece) | 86 comments I just started reading Subhuman so I can read Forsaken with you guys. I have a huge weakness for stories with unique settings like i.e. artic and Antarctic regions, high altitude mountain ranges, deep sea, underground caverns, ancient ruins, subs and ships etc. so I'm really excited about reading this series!

BTW Michael, the Snowblind series and Sunblind were fantastic books! I'm looking forward to reading more of your work. You always pick the best settings for your stories! : ) Thanks for hanging with us!


message 16: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 55 comments Empress Reece (Hooked on Books) wrote: "I just started reading Subhuman so I can read Forsaken with you guys. I have a huge weakness for stories with unique settings like i.e. artic and Antarctic regions, high altitude mountain ranges, d..."

Hey, thanks, Empress! I'm glad you enjoyed the other books and hope you like this series as well. I'm with you on the idea of setting. Cool settings like those you mentioned can function as second threat looming over the story, almost like a ticking time bomb, only one that slowly creeps up on you.

Thanks for having me. You guys are always fun to chat with. I'm also down for talking about things that have nothing to do with my books specifically. I'm always down for talking reading, writing, and the business in general.


Kimberly (kimberly_3238) | 6436 comments Mod
I love the different areas in the world that you chose for "active" locations in this series. How did you decide upon which ones to utilize? Was it purely research based, or have you been to some of these?


message 18: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 55 comments I let the research guide the story. In the case of FORSAKEN, I learned about the Mexican location through researching crop circles. I discovered the specific Antarctic location from both books through my research for my previous book, SUBTERRESTRIAL. My books are all connected in a lot of ways, just not by the characters themselves.

I rarely get out of Colorado, so most of my travels are virtual in nature. It's amazing how far you can go if you know how to search it. :)


Kenneth McKinley | 1559 comments Mod
Through Chapter 13 -

I finished Book One and I'm really enjoying it. It took a few chapters to get reacquainted with the characters from SUBHUMAN, but now I'm rolling. What I'm wondering is (view spoiler)


message 20: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 11 comments Hey, cool! I'm glad you're enjoying it so far. I've had a lot of fun expanding the world of these stories. Just wait until you see where book #3 goes!


Kimberly (kimberly_3238) | 6436 comments Mod
Michael wrote: "Hey, cool! I'm glad you're enjoying it so far. I've had a lot of fun expanding the world of these stories. Just wait until you see where book #3 goes!"

Ready....NOW! (just saying ;) ).


message 22: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 11 comments Ready....NOW! (just saying ;..."

It's a slow work in progress. As you know, I've been otherwise engaged for a while now. ;)


Kimberly (kimberly_3238) | 6436 comments Mod
Michael wrote: "Ready....NOW! (just saying ;..."

It's a slow work in progress. As you know, I've been otherwise engaged for a while now. ;)"


Well, I guess I can wait a while longer...... :)


message 24: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 11 comments I appreciate you bearing with me. :)


Kimberly (kimberly_3238) | 6436 comments Mod
Michael wrote: "I appreciate you bearing with me. :)"

Ha! It was bad enough when it was just for myself, but now I have my father asking when your next book will be out! :)


message 26: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 11 comments Right on. I wish I had an answer for both of you, but it all depends upon the publisher. My plan is to have it written by the end of September so I don't have to stress the other deadline.


Kimberly (kimberly_3238) | 6436 comments Mod
Michael wrote: "Right on. I wish I had an answer for both of you, but it all depends upon the publisher. My plan is to have it written by the end of September so I don't have to stress the other deadline."

They'll be well worth the wait.
As for FORSAKEN (view spoiler)


Kenneth McKinley | 1559 comments Mod
Finished. Whew! What a ride!

Here's my review:
https://intothemacabre.com/2018/05/14...


message 29: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 11 comments Awesome review! Thanks, man! I'm glad you enjoyed it. :)


Kenneth McKinley | 1559 comments Mod
Michael. Can you describe the research you had to do to make FORSAKEN (and SUBHUMAN, for that matter) so realistic?


message 31: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 11 comments I start by building a library of sorts. I gather a collection of books, fill a folder with bookmarked websites, and download as much actual scholarly research as I can find, but even that doesn't necessarily paint a full picture. Google Earth is the greatest thing ever invented. You can tour just about any site on the planet from the comfort of your own home. And YouTube is a wonderful tool to find video footage of most places, too.

I guess what it boils down to is any time I feel like inserting an adjective, I realize there's probably a better, more precise means of describing something and go to my notes. :)


Kimberly (kimberly_3238) | 6436 comments Mod
Michael wrote: "I start by building a library of sorts. I gather a collection of books, fill a folder with bookmarked websites, and download as much actual scholarly research as I can find, but even that doesn't n..."

Traveling without leaving your office.... and yet the details come out so solid that it "feels" as though you're describing things first-hand. If anything, a testament to how well suited you are for this job. :)


message 33: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 11 comments Thank you kindly. Needed that right about now. :)


Robert Mingee (robertmingee) | 776 comments I had hoped to be more active on this thread, but man, life is just getting in the way right now, between the day job, editing, and my daughter's graduation looming. I started this the day it released and arrived in my mailbox, and I flew through it. :-) This is an *incredible* series! Agree about the settings - it's like you're in my head (scary thought for you :-) and know exactly what is going to catch and hold my interest. And the cast of characters is so diverse and 3-dimensional.

I meant to ask this question right at the first of the month, when it was fresh in my mind, but I went back and confirmed the details, so hopefully I still do it justice. In Chapter 34, (view spoiler)

I'm with Kimberly, I'm planning to nag you until the next book arrives - now I remember why I always stay a few books behind in the Charlie Parker series! :-)


Kimberly (kimberly_3238) | 6436 comments Mod
Robert wrote: "I had hoped to be more active on this thread, but man, life is just getting in the way right now, between the day job, editing, and my daughter's graduation looming. I started this the day it relea..."

LOL! I'm still saving the last few Charlie Parker books for a "rainy day" read!!


message 36: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 11 comments Hey, Robert! I wish I had a good answer to your question, but, really, it all comes down to what feels right at the time. I don't remember questioning his motivations. Sorry to be of no help. ;)

I'm reading the new Connolly now and it's fantastic!


Robert Mingee (robertmingee) | 776 comments Michael wrote: "Hey, Robert! I wish I had a good answer to your question, but, really, it all comes down to what feels right at the time. I don't remember questioning his motivations. Sorry to be of no help. ;)

I'm reading the new Connolly now and it's fantastic!"


No, you answered my question, if it wasn't something you thought about. As usual, I'm probably overthinking it. :-)

That was actually going to be my next question - how much free reading time you get now with multiple series in the works. Good to hear that you can still make time for it!


message 38: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 11 comments Unfortunately, I don't have nearly as much time as I'd like. Writing-wise, I definitely overextended myself. I underestimated the editing process with the publisher of the books under my pen name. (The editor is very demanding. I've rewritten the entire book and countless scenes on top of that, but the house will be throwing its full weight behind it, so I have no complaints.) Plus, my wife's working on her master's (in addition to working) and my younger boys have hockey every day, so it's my job to keep the wheels from falling off at home. If losing reading time (and missing playoff hockey) is the worst of it, then I'll call it a success.


message 39: by Ami (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ami | 210 comments I just finished Subhuman! Loved it! I was hoping to get book 2 read this month also but I don’t think I’ll be able to get to it this month! >.<

Subhuman hit so many of my favorite themes- aliens, ancient aliens, lost civilizations, secret organizations, conspiracies, archeology, etc. The book was a blast! I can not wait to read more of the series.

Earlier in the thread you talked about the kind of research you do for each book. And with so many interesting topics in the story, it sounds like there is a lot of research going on, on several different topics.

From the very start, plus research, all the way to the finished draft, how long does it normally take you to write a book?


message 40: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 11 comments Hmmm... it depends on the book and the nature and amount of research required. SUBHUMAN took longer and required more research than FORSAKEN, although a lot of the research I did for both was while working on other projects. I'd say on average it takes about 2 months to research and another 4-5 to write it. I average about two novels and a novella each year, but I need to figure out a way to increase that.

Good question, Ami! Made me think. :)


message 41: by Michael (new)

Michael McBride | 11 comments Hey, this is pretty cool. I dig the frame job. https://m.facebook.com/story.php?stor...


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