W. Clark Boutwell is a gentleman of a certain age who has spent most of the time since he was eighteen-years-old learning to be a physician, practicing his craft, and teaching it to others.
In the middle of his seventh decade, he was seized, as these things will happen to men of a certain age, with the conceit to write.
What was initially planned to be a short story, a large work for a novice writer, eventually morphed into a two-book and then a three-book series: Old Men and Infidels.
He is fascinated by how the narrative of history is forgotten, used, abused, invented, denied, transmitted, warped and generally dealt with rather shabbily.
To “use up” the OMAI world, two more books are in the works. The Silence and the Gods is in editing and (W/T) Unity Ascending is well started. (See Why Omai).
He lives with his bride of 40+ years (when he is not working and she tolerates him) in rural Alabama near Montgomery. He is a believer, long distance hiker, climber, traveler, bad poet and worse wit.
You have been warned.
2129 AD – The long-awaited war approaches. Young countries make one kind of mistake, while old countries make another.
For the Unity, the lone surviving high-tech and forward-thinking remnant of a once-vital America, war represents a final chance to liberate the backward and unfashionable Midlands from their centuries-long nightmare of freedom and self-determination.
War breeds opportunity and danger.
Young Malila Chiu, once a hero of the Unity, emerges from the jungle to deliver a dire message to a beleaguered America: the Deep Scorch, a polyarchy of sentient plants, declares itself to be a potent ally—or a dangerous foe. Familiar and distrustful of the Scorch for much of his long life, Jesse Johnstone stays by Malila’s side for the sake of their love.
The grand architect of the war, Unity General Eustace Jourdaine, recovering from grievous injuries, rallies to lead his troops into battle in the hopes of winning a new empire—but for whom?
All the while, within the bowels of the Unity, American spies, William Butler, Hecate, and Elise, delve into the secrets of the CORE and their own mortality to thwart the invasion.
Even as combat and betrayal swirl around him, the Old Man learns too late that this latest battle with the Unis may be his final one.
Malila of the Scorch completes the Malila/Jesse Trilogy that started with Outland Exile and continued with Exiles’ Escape.
Nominated for the 2019 Prometheus Award for Best Novel! Malila is dead by her own hand—at least, that is what she hopes General Jourdaine and the entire Unity will believe. Middle-aged eighteen-year-old Malila Chiu has no choice but to escape her homeland. Making common cause with the strange subterranean workers of the beltways, Malila perseveres toward freedom in the Scorched fields of America. Nearly naked, with no friends, no resources and only a scant idea of the route, Malila’s only real information comes from time in the outlands. While a captive of the old, harsh-and-tender-by-turns Jesse Johnstone, Malila learned of the lies told her by her homeland and the truths shown her by the arrogant and contradictory Jesse. She thinks she may love him. If only he were not so strange . . . Pursuing Malila and becoming more obsessed with each failure, Jourdaine moves closer at each turn. Jesse, once again the target for assassination from old enemies, escapes to the skies, using a huge new American R-ship, the Illinois, in his own attempt to find Malila. Spies, subterranean poet-socialists, virtual entities, interfaces, and people—both good and bad—wrestle the Fates for survival and supremacy in a twenty-second-century America.
The United States is dead and the Democratic Unity killed it.
After catastrophic wars and the Meltdown, The Unity rules from its East Coast citadel, leaving the outlands to savages and its strangely altered plants. Providing free health care, employment, and ThiZ (the drug of any really civilized life), the Unity mandates retirement at forty before fatigue and error contaminate a culture of youth, innovation and vigor.
With liberating body implants, history’s finest democracy supervises every citizen for her/his/its own and the nation’s welfare. Seventeen-year-old Lieutenant Malila Chiu, is a veteran officer who, despite well-earned fame, finds her career in tatters. Vandalism at a distant station triggers her demotion. Facing denunciation … or worse, Malila’s one option is to enter the outlands to repair the station herself. At first, the repairs go well.
Dropping from fatigue, she wakes to find a hideously ancient savage has murdered her platoon and now holds a knife at her throat, making her the … Outland Exile.