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Michael Farfel

The Reluctant Journey of Manfred Bugsbee

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Manfred Bugsbee wants nothing more than to drink beer and take a nap on his couch. Unfortunately for him, he’s the most important person in an inter-dimensional battle for the fate of all reality. He’s dragged kicking and screaming from one hellish, apocalyptic landscape to the next. He and his companions must face down sun-eating lunatics, hive-minded dog beasts, and extratemporal gods along the way. In the end, Manfred either learns to wield a sword or watches all of existence get wiped out—maybe both. Enjoy the ride!

“The elucidating journey into the warm, yet fractured psyche of Manfred Bugsbee is the best kind of fever-dream experience. A read that strongly stirs introspection within.” — Christopher Kamrani, The Athletic

“An uninhibited collage of the whirlwind fantastic, all of which makes Manfred’s bitter mundaneness all the more delicious.” — Mari Murdock, Whispers of Shadow and Steel

Picture your favorite fantastical heroes–Sherlock Holmes, Harry Potter, Bilbo Baggins, Quentin Coldwater, Jon Snow, and Percy Jackson–embodied by a complacent ad man tasked with protecting the universe and you have Manfred Bugsbee, our reluctant hero, through whom we experience a world reminiscent of Earthsea, Narnia, Discworld, and The Dark Tower mythos. Michael Farfel has done his research in constructing a new epic tale aware of its fantasy and science-fiction predecessors; herein lies a story as inventive as it is cinematically inspired, a fully-imagined book sure to awaken the dormant heroes in all of us. –Nathan Elias, Coil Quake Rift and The Reincarnations

“Farfel crafts an epic tale with The Reluctant Journey of Manfred Bugsbee; equal parts fantasy and adventure, this story is entirely entertaining. It will hold your attention to the very end and leave you wanting more.” –Charis Emanon, 51 Ways To End Your World

“An engaging, intelligent, well-paced story. The author has created a realistic world with believable characters and where the magic is more subtle than the lightning-bolt-in-the-face magic of some fantasy books. I want to avoid spoilers, but I’ll go so far as to say that the ´magic´ in this story delves much deeper into the spiritual realm than the wham blam cowboy style that is very prevalent and ultimately boring. Personally I found that very satisfying. The main characters: It’s easier to empathise with a character when he/she has human flaws like self-doubt, both in him/herself and on a grander scale. It might be fantasy but it’s these touches that make it feel almost like reading historical fiction, (from one of the more interesting, bloody and treacherous periods of history that is). It’s also refreshing to read a book full of strong female characters that don’t keep alluding to how strong and female they are - that’s a given. They’ve got nothing to prove and they just get on with it, which gives them more credibility. Recommended to fans of the genre and to those who might like to give it a try.” –Pete Peru, The Reeking Hegs

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