SFFS: Snippet #5 from Atomic Zion

Atomic Zion

Moving ahead in my SF Thriller, Atomic Zion, we begin chapter two in the present day, and the ticking clock starts. Marcos Skovasja, the main character in this scene, is the nephew of Jakub Skovajsa from chapter one.

Atomic Zion was influenced by my time as the Educational Marketing Director at Frank Lloyd Wright's House on Kentuck Knob and by reading stories from Michael Crichton, Robert Ludlum, James Rollins, and Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child.

Back Cover Blurb...

On the night of his 90th birthday, a former Wright Apprentice is thrown from the fifth floor of the Guggenheim Museum in New York. The only clue to clear his grandson of the murder is a note written in Navajo code which warns "The Bear has awakened."

These four words throw Nick Vanko into the middle of a decades old international cover-up where Wright Apprentices encoded WWII-era secrets about genetic experimentation into their blueprints. In order to stop a being who isn't quite human from unleashing a biological weapon upon the U.S., Nick must find Broadacre City, the fabled utopia designed by Wright, but supposedly never built. Searching by his side are an old Navajo CodeTalker, a woman who sees emotions as colors, and a Mossad agent who is really working for the Russian mafia. But can Vanko trust any of them?

June 21
3:40 AM GMT
Prague, Czech Republic

Marcos Skovajsa threw his cigarette butt into the gutter, relishing the last tang of nicotine swirling around his mouth. The glowing remains bounced off a dead rat lodged between the wall and a drain pipe and landed on a sun-bleached candy wrapper. He looked down the sleeping street.

Overhanging electric lamps striped the macadam. One shone down on the stoop of his apartment building, almost directly, so even his small frame made no real shadow on the sidewalk. That's why his wife wanted to live here. Of all the crumbling, crime-infested buildings they could afford in the great city of Prague, she felt safest here because it was never dark, not during the day when the sun shone right through their threadbare curtains and interrupted his sleep and not—he glanced toward the heavens—under the murkiest night sky.

It was nearly a morning sky now. In a couple of hours the sun would burn through those clouds and waken the city. He pulled the pack of Petras from his jeans' pocket, but spying only two more cigarettes inside the plastic-covered cardboard, decided against another smoke.
Find other wonderful snippets at Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday!


  1. your writing style is simply superb. I really need this book.

  2. Nice stage setting. You weave a brilliant tapestry with words. I cannot wait to read this book.

  3. Wow. Love, love, love the descriptions. Vivid! Hurry up and release this bad boy!! I wanna read it all.

    1. Depending on who publishes it, T.K., it might not be out for another year....

  4. Cool imagery. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Wonderful descriptions-- almost too good. I had the urge to bathe after reading it.

  6. The mood, the details, the world building--just fantastic, Heidi. You've done beautifully with this.

  7. The title alone should make this a hit. If it doesn't, I don't know what will. Oh, wait! The awesome writing you always put on display!

    Speaking of effective writing, damn, now, even after ten years... I really want a cigarette. There's just not enough smoking in books these days.

    1. My husband feels the same way when he reads about a character smoking, Cary.


  8. Lovely snippet Heidi. Very descriptive and pensive atmosphere. I don't smoke, but even I want a cigarette after that!

  9. So atmospheric! I love the cigarette bouncing off the dead rat. Thanks for stopping by my blog on Saturday, sorry it took so long for me to check out yours.


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