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—Zigmund in Heroes of Time: The First Ethereal
Heroes of Time Legends: Murdoch's Choice
NOW AVAILABLE in paperback, hardcover, ebook, and audiobook!
"Life is full of choices. I always say, choose the one with the best payoff."
-Captain Zale Murdoch
A fast-paced, treasure-hunting, swashbuckling adventure set in the world of Eliorin....
Captain Murdoch has the chance of a lifetime in his grasp...or is it just a fool's errand?
Zale "the Gale" Murdoch, one of the greatest seafaring merchants in the kingdom of Tuscawny, is at the top of his game. No one has reached the guild's grandmaster status in generations, and he's but one job away, with his biggest rival right on his heels. When a mysterious stranger approaches him with information that will seemingly ensure his success, Zale is tempted. The mission: to retrieve the Grimstone, a mythical artifact obscured by the shadows of history and religious folklore...an object of immeasurable value...if it's real. The journey to find out could cost him more than his reputation and a leisurely retirement. He'll have to battle dark magic on a perilous voyage to the hostile land where the Grimstone is reportedly hidden...a land very few sailors return from alive.
Starlina Murdoch, Zale's estranged daughter, wants nothing to do with the sea. But Jensen, the boy she loves, is a member of her father's crew and determined to make a career as a sailor. As she becomes unexpectedly entangled with her father's voyage, she must find her bearings amongst the crew and decide for herself where her dreams truly lead.
Join Zale, Starlina, Jensen, and the rest of Murdoch's Mates on an epic adventure of daring, danger, and magic in this first installment of the "Heroes of Time" series.
Meet the Characters
Captain Zale "the Gale" Murdoch
Seafaring merchant extraordinaire...swashbuckling scallawag...loving Pop-Pop.
Captain Murdoch is one of the most successful seafaring merchants in the prestigious mercantile guild of Warvonia. He and his crew specialize in the retrieval of high-value cargoes for top-paying clients, often including officials of the kingdom.
When not sailing the seas, Zale enjoys spending time with his wife, Lola, and Lola's granddaughters, who all know him as a playful, fun-loving Pop-Pop. Often the children will gather round as Zale tells tales of his many great adventures, stories of the seas, and rhymes from his childhood.
Zale has had a rocky relationship with his own daughter, Starlina, who grew up
resenting her father's love for an occupation that frequently kept him away from
Zale Murdoch—the man, the scourge, the legend!
Rakakeetacha (aka Boomer)
Rakakeetacha is a red-panda anthropod who gets tangled up with Zale during one of his adventures. Zale gave him the nickname "Boomer," because it was much easier to say.
Boomer's speech is very broken and difficult for most to comprehend. Zale is one of the few who is able to understand.
He's an aggressive fighter and a sure shot with his miniature crossbow.
Despite being a little hellion, Boomer is extremely loyal and capable of affection. He's also capable of ripping off your face.
More Artwork in Murdoch's Choice
The Inspiration Behind Captain Murdoch
Zale is a character very near and dear to my heart. His larger-than-life personality, mannerisms, and overall way of speaking are based on a bygone friend, colleague, and member of the family named Daniel "Skip" Person. Skip and I had a ton of fun traveling the world together and sharing life with the family. He was a goofy and loving "Pop-Pop" to my kids. He passed of a rare lung disease in December 2018 at the far-too-young age of 61.
I actually intended to create a character in the "Heroes of Time" world based on Skip a while before he passed. Starting a little over a year before the disease took him, we actively brainstormed this character together. It was Skip who came up with the idea that he should be captain of his own crew. Skip came up with the name Zale "the Gale" Murdoch, offering Augustus Macpherson as an alternative. Somewhere in the course of that, we conjured up a fiesty red-panda sidekick. I so dearly wish he could be here today to see the results. I'm sure that now, from the Ethereal Realm, he looks down upon it with a riotous grin.
Zale, of course, develops as his own character, but this real-life inspiration is very much present within, from the loving Pop-Pop to the rascally scallawag. So, raise your ale in tribute to the man, the scourge, the legend! Skip, living on vicariously as Zale Murdoch.
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