The 1980s saw the peak of a moral panic over fantasy role-playing games such as Dungeons and Dragons. A coalition of moral entrepreneurs that included representatives from the Christian Right, the field of psychology, and law enforcement claimed that these games were not only psychologically dangerous but an occult religion masquerading as a game. Dangerous Games explores both the history and the sociological significance of this panic. Fantasy role-playing games do share several functions in common with religion. However, religion—as a socially constructed world of shared meaning—can also be compared to a fantasy role-playing game. In fact, the claims of the moral entrepreneurs, in which they presented themselves as heroes battling a dark conspiracy, often resembled the very games of imagination they condemned as evil. By attacking the imagination, they preserved the taken-for-granted status of their own socially constructed reality. Interpreted in this way, the panic over fantasy-role playing games yields new insights about how humans play and together construct and maintain meaningful worlds. Laycock’s clear and accessible writing ensures that Dangerous Games will be required reading for those with an interest in religion, popular culture, and social behavior, both in the classroom and beyond.
Who was Jake Hinchley, and where is his body? Harper "Hap" Whitman, State Department Officer attached to the American Embassy in Rome, is thrust into the middle of a complex web of deception and intrigue as he searches for the answers to these and many other puzzling questions. But it is Mary Beth Perkins and her sister, Martha Richman, who find themselves caught up in yet another perilous adventure involving treachery, dirty tricks and cover-up as they begin their tour of Italy. There are those who might seek to make it their last. The delights of Venice, the romance of Tuscany and the splendor of Rome await. Let the games begin!
Fletcher Smith, Sports Private Investigator, tackles corruption and foul play in the world of professional sport. It's a dangerous game.
"Leigh's pages explode with a mixture of erotic pleasures." -RT Book Reviews #1 New York Times bestselling author, Lora Leigh's sexy Navy SEALs series, the Tempting SEALs, is red-hot, sexy romantic suspense at its best, featuring men who will stop at nothing to proect their country and all they love no matter how dark the danger, no matter what demons they must face. And when these men love, their passion runs deep and hard. Navy SEAL Clint" Iceman" McIntire earned his name by being the ultimate warrior. He's untouchable, unstoppable and he takes no prisoners. Having crushed an infamous drug cartel in Columbia, Clint was nothing short of an American hero. Now he's home on a much-needed leave, but instead of some R & R, he finds himself neck-deep in the hottest kind of trouble with his best friend's seemingly innocent little sister, Morgana Chavez, the only woman who has the power to bring him to his knees...Morgana has been secretly working with the DEA to uncover a thriving date-rape drug, which leads her to a shadowy faction that is more deadly than anything her team has ever encountered. Now, it's up to Clint to keep this beautiful, determined agent out of harm's way, even while the explosive passion between them threatens to consume them both. But these Dangerous Games will bring Morgana and Clint to the very edge of high stakes danger and perilous desire.
In Melbourne's urban underworld, there's a nightclub for every fetish, fantasy and desire. But for Riley Jenson, a rare hybrid of vampire and werewolf, one such club has become an obsession. Riley hasn't come in pursuit of pleasure but of an unknown killer who's been using the steamy nightspot as his hunting grounds. Leave it to Riley to find the only ticket into the heavily guarded club: Jin, a deliciously hot-bodied bartender who might just provide the key to unmasking a killer unlike any other in the Directorate's experience. Taunted by a former colleague-turned-rogue, distracted by an ex-lover's attentions, Riley follows Jin into a realm of pleasure she could never have imagined. And as danger and passion ignite, a shocking mystery begins to unravel - one where Riley herself becomes the ultimate object of desire . . .
Danielle Steel tackles major political scandal and a power crisis in the White House in her gripping bestseller, Dangerous Games. TV journalist Alix Phillips is always willing to put herself on the frontline for her job. All that matters is getting the story. After a personal tragedy, only her beloved mother and daughter are allowed to get close. And her cameraman, Ben. Neither of them fears death – it's love that is more terrifying. When Alix's boss suspects a major political scandal in the White House involving the Vice-President, he sends Alix to uncover the truth. This story could blow the corridors of power wide open, and this time Alix is feeling the heat. But when Alix receives some shocking news, she must make a decision about where real happiness lies. Those she loves are at risk. For someone who was never scared, Alix now realizes that the time has come to play some very dangerous games.
In the reality shows of the future, people will literally be dying to watch. Science fiction's most expert dreamers envision the computerized, high-risk games of the future in this winning collection. Features: Robert Sheckley Cory Doctorow Kate Wilhelm Alastair Reynolds Vernor Vinge Jonathan Letham Gwyneth Jones William Browning Spencer Allen Steele Terry Dowling Jason Stoddard At the publisher's request, this title is sold without DRM (Digital Rights Management).
London, 1851. An alluring, outspoken widow and an enigmatic agent are drawn into a web of power, greed, and ambition that threatens to overturn the very future of the British Empire. . . Society knows Lilly Clarence Hampton as a respected widow who was wildly in love with her husband, the architect of London's famed Crystal Palace. The truth. . .well, the truth would cost Lilly her reputation, her freedom, and quite possibly her life. And one man has uncovered it--the reclusive, savagely handsome Julian St. Martin. A former agent of the Crown, Julian intends to blackmail Lilly to obtain plans to the Palace, where the Koh-I-Noor--the largest diamond in the world--will be presented to Queen Victoria at the Great Exhibition. Men have committed all manner of crimes to possess the fabled gem, but Julian's intentions are even darker. And the closer he gets to the beguiling Lilly, the more complicated matters become. Succumbing to intense, primal desire, Julian and Lilly both become pawns in a wicked game where no one can be trusted, and where the final, shocking truth will test their newfound passion to the limit. . .
Deadly Forgery Francesco Benetti is a desperate man who won’t give in, even in the face of certain circumstances. He must find the money to save his wife and pay off his gambling debts. The only way he can do that is to try and sell a fake Titian painting for ten million dollars. An adventure that will take him from his antique shop in Venice to the spectacular world of Japan, attracting the attention of the powerful Japanese mafia and the local authorities. An engaging game where his life will ultimately be at stake. A 100-Carat Diamond The world’s great financial crisis is ruining Francesco Benetti again. His investments in the Stock Exchange are sinking and he must find a way to recover his losses. From Africa to India, among unscrupulous diamond dealers and jihadists of Al-Qaeda seeking revenge for the killing of Osama bin Laden, and his encounter with the Kidon-Israel’s secret service most lethal hit squad, he will bet his life for an extraordinary diamond. The Burmese Game Francesco Benetti’s poker addiction matches that of a far-away drug warlord. From Bangkok’s glittering lifestyle to Burma’s Golden Triangle, he will plunge into a perilous world of gambling dens, ethnic rebellions and drug trafficking, unknowingly becoming part of a spy plot aimed at a secret nuclear reactor. With the Cross and the Sword Francesco Benetti has no choice but to play high-stakes no-limit Texas Hold’em in the VIP rooms of a Las Vegas casino. He will enjoy the pleasures and luxuries of Sin City, then in Mexico, he will be involved in a drug war. The Head of a Muse drawing by Raphael as the actual winning pot, a depraved man with a mysterious past, and an intriguing woman. All in the shadow of a State-run intelligence organization whose existence few dare to mention.
When Terry Pugh's headless body is found floating in the canal, DCI Woodend at first believes that Pugh had merely miscalculated the amount of rope he needed to hang himself. But why would Pugh commit suicide when he had a loving wife who was expecting their first baby, and was just about to start an exciting new job? Other disturbing questions soon follow in the first body's wake. Who was the mysterious stranger Pugh was seen with, just before he died? What is the connection between him and the down-and-out who suffers a similar fate to his only twenty-four hours later? And how many more men are intended to die? As the investigation proceeds, Woodend and his team come to realize that the key to solving the crimes is hidden in the past - and on an island far, far away.
Roll the Bones! In a world ruled by chance, one rash decision could bring down the house, one roll of the dice could bring untold wealth, or the end of everything. The players have gathered around the table, each to tell their story - often dark, always compelling. Within you will find tales of the players and the played, lives governed by games deadly, weird, or downright bizarre. Multi-award winning editor Jonathan Oliver (The End of the Line, House of Fear, Magic, End of the Road) brings together new stories featuring a diverse collection of voices. Here you will find incredible new fiction by Chuck Wendig, Silvia Moreno-Garcia, Lavie Tidhar, Benjanun Sriduangkaew, Paul Kearney, Libby McGugan, Yoon Ha Lee, Gary Northfield, Melanie Tem, Hillary Monahan, Tade Thompson, Rebecca Levene, Ivo Stourton, Gary McMahon, Robert Shearman, Nik Vincent, Helen Marshall, and Pat Cadigan.
In this elegant and exciting collection Andrew Todhunter, himself an extreme sportsman and the author of the critically acclaimed Fall of the Phantom Lord, takes readers along as men and women push themselves to their limits in the world’s riskiest sports. In several of these essays Todhunter writes from personal experience, joining his subjects as they free fall from cliffs, wriggle through narrow underground crevices, and dive deep beneath the ice of a frozen lake. In these adrenaline-laced accounts of extreme sportsmanship, Todhunter captures not only the thrill of conquest but the deep pleasure of being someplace few others have gone as well.
Reminding readers that the Cold War was actually a time of hot wars, spying, murders, defections, shoot downs of reconnaissance aircraft, and a space race, the authors uncover some unknown or long-forgotten incidents of the period. Among them, the murder of a U.S. naval attache on the Orient Express, an East German soldier s leap to the West in Berlin, two CIA officers twenty years in a Chinese prison, Cpt. Bert Mizusawa s rescue under fire of a Soviet defector in the Korean DMZ, a North Korean pilot s defection in a MiG fighter, the USS Forrestal fire, and the Soviets putting the first man in space.
The Olympics promise to be a rare relaxation in the tensions between the States and Russia. That is, until a racial purist decides to punish America's multi-racial track-and-field team, putting their lives in very real danger. A bomb explodes in the super-secure Olympic village, killing two Russian security guards, just before the torch is lit. As more threats come flooding in, top-secret government agents Remo and Chiun put on their running shoes and join the US Olympic team. Enlisting the aid of a beautiful and flexible Indian gymnast, Remo and Chiun race to track down the terrorists who vow to permanently disqualify America's track-and-field squad. But when the terrorists turn on Remo and Chiun, it's a sprint to the finish for the Defender to keep the Olympic torch alight. Breathlessly action-packed and boasting a winning combination of thrills, humour and mysticism, the Destroyer is one of the bestselling series of all time.
Explores the ways in which history has been used to influence people and government, focusing on how reportage of past events has been manipulated to justify religious movements and political campaigns.
Collects two stories, in the first Blake Remington's only hope of learning to walk again is therapist Dione Kelly; in the second, a high profile investigation puts Sam Holland's relationship with senator Nick Cappuano in the spotlight.
Mages' Games Netheril, empire of magic, where wizards wield power far beyond the ken of mortal men. Netheril, where citadels float, magic runs wild, and mages dabble in games better left for the gods. Netheril, a place of dangerous games where the barbarian Sunbright Steelshanks soon finds himself an unwilling pawn in a lethal match of wits, wiles, and powers.
A woman auctioned off to pay a gambling debt finds her only hope lies with a seductive stranger in this Regency romance from a USA Today–bestselling author. When her father auctions her off to pay his gambling debts, Melissa Seacourt vows that she will be no man’s bought bride. Desperate to escape her fate shackled to someone she could never love, Melissa instead is forced to honor and obey the seductive stranger who comes to her rescue. Purchasing a wife for 20,000 guineas wasn’t the end game Nicholas Barrington envisioned when he walked into the notorious Newmarket gambling club. But the innocent Melissa arouses much more than his protective instincts. It will take all of Nick’s skill and daring to best a cunning adversary hell-bent on his destruction. With two lives now hanging in the balance, Nick’s playing for the highest stakes of all: his future with the woman who won his heart. Dangerous Games is the 2nd book in the Dangerous series, but you may enjoy reading the series in any order.
Nebula Award Finalist. This sequel to Journey blends science fiction and family saga to create a complicated and vibrant world for the people who cherish it, those who want to conquer it, and those who bring it to the edge of ruin. The Kennerins pursue their desires and hatreds from the reaches of deep space to the smallest islands on Aerie, in a series of dangerous games whose stakes include the world and space and tauspace, beyond the reach of time.
Fans of the award-winning SLATED trilogy won't want to miss this exclusive ebook sequel to Mind Games, a new psychological thriller from Teri Terry! Sixteen years after Luna took on the might of PareCo, her daughter Liberty is fighting for her independence, fighting for her freedom, fighting to discover who she really is. Constantly pushing the boundaries of what she can do in the virtual space of the void and still survive in the real world, it is only a matter of time before Liberty goes too far. And when the mysterious Ex offers to tell Liberty all her mother's secrets, it seems too good an opportunity to resist. But how will Liberty know what is real, or who she can trust - especially when it seems that the future of the void, and of the non-virtual world it connects to, may be at risk of destruction?