Unbelief Book 1
by C.B. Stone
Genre: YA Dystopian
This is a dystopian series set in a post-apocalyptic world with hints of romance. Books should be read in order. May be cliff hangers.
Unbelief Book 2
Unbelief Book 3
God Wars: The Beginnings
Unbelief Book 4
Believing wasn’t always a crime.
Margaret Moore celebrates her fortieth birthday quietly. It’s a day that should be
celebratory but in reality, it’s now only a day of sadness. Her father had died on his way home
from spending her birthday with her and her son, little David. Or, as she calls him, Davey. She
blinks, shaking her head. It’s hard to believe fifteen years have passed since that dreadful day.
Today, Davey is helping with the flood damages that have wreaked so much havoc on the
towns along the lower Mississippi. So, it seems like a natural day to spend time remembering her
father. Other than her son, she has no other family. Her mother died last year from a heart attack.
At least Davey telephoned her to wish her happy birthday. Margaret smiles as she looks at the
photo of her son, holding a prominent spot on the wall near the front entrance. He is such a
Unbidden, she has an immediate second thought and has to convince herself it’s not an
irreverent one. She clucks her tongue, mentally chiding herself. But if she’s being honest, Davey
is proof positive that God has a sense of humor. Just like most firstborn children she’s ever
known, Davey is the spitting image of his father. A weird phenomenon, but she’s convinced the
first child a woman has inevitably looks like the father, whereas the second tends to look like the
mother. Whether that holds true or not with everyone, only God knows. But that was certainly
the case with young Davey, much to her chagrin. When Margaret found out she was pregnant,
she realized almost immediately that she didn’t want to marry the man who got her pregnant.
The man who in fact, had been her boyfriend for nearly two years prior. He’d been great fun and
all, and she’d liked him well enough, but he just wasn’t the kind of man you chose to bind
yourself to for the long haul.
Maybe it isn’t God's sense of humor but merely a pointed reminder that having a child with
someone binds the two of you together forever in an intangible but undeniable way. She’d lost
touch with Davey's father years ago, and sometimes feels bad about that. Occasionally she is
reminded how arrogant of her it has been of her to deprive Davey of a father.
Margaret and her mother had been close but she always knew that she and her father had
shared a special bond. After her parents divorced, she and her father developed a different sort of
relationship. It became more mature and their discussions often became intense and highly
political. This was partially because she had been sixteen at the time and it had become easier to
run his radical ideas by a sixteen year old who could intelligently argue back, than it had been to
have such discussions with a ten year old.
Her father had been on the road for much of Margaret's childhood, covering stories and
seeking out deep secrets and hidden agendas. He was a crusader for good, her mother always
said. Even still, she divorced him. She’d been lonely for one thing, living on her own and raising
a child. She also once admitted years later that she’d been afraid too. “Your father never had any
fear of the repercussions of sticking his nose in business it didn’t belong in, but I did.”
The reports after her father's fatal accident claimed it was caused by drinking and driving.
But Margaret knew better. He'd had one glass of wine at her birthday party. He was not drunk
when he left her and Davey and began the hour-long drive back to his own home. He had
however, been agitated and distracted, which she supposed could have resulted in the accident.
The media reports were highly skewed, she was certain. She always knew that for some reason,
the head of Robb Media hadn’t liked her father, even after the years of excellent service he’d
provided for that company. Because of that, she chalked the negative reports up to journalistic
chicanery and the whimsy of an antagonistic ex-boss.
For whatever reason, the newspapers sought to blacken his memory as much as they could.
Margaret possesses her mother's personality and she has always been much less inquisitive than
her father. She could definitely see him driving too fast, obsessed with whatever thoughts were
tormenting him that day, and losing control of his car. Despite that, part of her knows if only
she’d been more like her father, she’d have seen a plot behind his death and she’d have pursued
that plot, looking for the truth.
Margaret roams restlessly around her living room and looks out the front window. Eyes
turned inward, blind to the present world, she thinks back to that day his car had pulled into her
driveway. He’d opened his trunk and pulled out one enormous box. It was plain, made of
cardboard. She’d thought at first it was her birthday present, especially when that was the only
thing he’d carried into the house.
She’d pushed the door open wide, ushering him in and said, “Oh is that for me?”
He’d set the box down in her hallway and replied, “No. This is.” Then he’d reached into
his pocket pulled out a small package that he handed to her. She fingers the locket around her
neck. That had been her gift. A solid gold locket.
He’d given the box a small kick with his foot. “This is just some papers I'd like to store
here. Old research and a lot of memories.” His tone was reflective.
When she’d looked at him with a questioning gaze, he’d elaborated. “I'm downsizing and
sorting out some things. I'll have more stuff I'd like to store here, if you don’t mind. Oh, and is
there any furniture of mine you have a particular liking for?” She’d felt something then, some
frisson of unease. Maybe it had been God forwarning her of what was to come.
The box turned out to be full of family pictures, along with an old antiquated Bible, the
heavy kind with the gold-edged pages. It also held congratulatory cards that had been sent to her
parents on her birthday – her original birthday, the actual day she was born. There had also been
a file folder with a thick stack of articles neatly typed and stapled together.
When she had to close up her father's apartment after the accident, she and her mother
went through that box together. They’d laughed and cried and reminisced. Then they’d each
chosen which mementos they wanted to keep to remember him by. Margaret’s heart aches as she
remembers her mother’s words that day. “Sweetheart, you know I loved him too,” she’d
All I could think of to say back was, “I know, Mom. And he loved you.”
At the end of it all, her mother took some of the furniture and Margaret took all his files
and his old typewriter. Now, on her fortieth birthday, Margaret thinks of that Bible and the
typewriter, both of which are on display in her front hall, set lovingly on a narrow, long-legged
She thinks again of the boxes of papers stored in her garage and the file folder she has
stuck in among the taller books on her bookshelf. All the family photos she and her mother had
diligently arranged in properly labeled albums.
Now, with Davey gone for her birthday, Margaret wonders if this was how lonely her
father had felt. Downsizing? He’d lived in a tiny, one-bedroom apartment. How far did he plan
to downsize, exactly? She remembers he often used to tease her about having absolutely no sense
of curiosity. He always credited her mother with giving her genes that kept her from sticking her
nose into dangerous places.
Feeling suddenly as though she’d let him down somehow, Margaret looks up toward
heaven and whispers, “I'm sorry, Dad.” Then she gets up and refills her wine glass. Letting her
instincts guide her, she wanders over to her bookshelf and pulls the file folder down from where
it has been stuffed for fifteen years.
She opens the folder and the first stapled collection of papers that catches her eye is one at the
back. It has a front page of yellow lined paper littered with her father's distinctive handwriting.
Bold big letters in thick black pen strokes. The rest of it is typewritten.
C.B. Stone is sometimes called author, writer, or purveyor of stories. One might even dub her a yarn spinner if you will. It's very possible she might be considered just a little left of normal by most, but she's cool with that. Really, she's too busy avoiding normal to care. On any given day, you might find Stone pounding away at a keyboard in sunny Florida, contemplating waves, contemplating life and dreaming up more exciting stories to share with readers.
Except Sunday's of course. Sunday's are God's day, so you'll often find her making her best "joyful noise" with her local church praise team. When not pounding poor fingers to bloody nuggets and reinventing the definition of eye strain, C.B. Stone enjoys living it up, doing the family thing, the kid thing, and the friend thing. And in her downtime, reading the minds of fans.
Also being invisible. Being invisible is fun.
Follow the tour HEREfor exclusive excerpts and a giveaway!
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