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A lot has happened since the last time I've reached out! Sorry it's been so long, sometimes life gets in the way...

VEIL OF DECEPTION was named the Winner in the Action category in the Book Excellence Awards! This is a big deal, because it's our first win in a contest outside of the United States. Special thanks to our friends from the Great White North!



Also, VEIL OF DECEPTION made the semi-finals in the Chanticleer International Book Awards! Winners will be named at the end of the month at their conference in Portland. Kim and I had planned on attending but a conflict with my work schedule scratched that idea.What a great honor to be listed with such a great list of authors! Keep your fingers crossed! Until next time!





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Two weeks ago, I had the privilege of being a featured author at the Louisiana Book Festival. What a great experience and the folks putting this on did an incredible job! Friday night, Kim and I attended the Author's Party with two good friends, Rickey and Debbie Heroman. We enjoyed great company, great food, and great drinks. We even managed to make a few connections while we were there!







On Saturday, I had my presentation in the Capital Park Welcome Center at 12:15pm. We had a fairly good crowd and I gave a quick recap of how my first two books evolved. It was great seeing some friends from both high school and college!




After the presentation, we headed over to the Barnes and Noble tent and had the opportunity to sign a few books!







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I'm happy to announce that I am one of the Featured Authors at this years Louisiana Book Festival! The date is October 29th and will be held on the State Capitol grounds. This is a free event so feel free to drop by!

The schedule is still not out yet, so I'm not sure what my time slot is, but I've been told I have 30 minutes to talk about what ever I want to talk about! Hmmmm...

Check out the website below for more information:

Hope to see you there!



The August 2016 issue of Air Line Pilot Magazine contains and incredible review of Veil of Deception by FedEx pilot Scott Tyler! What an awesome job! Thanks Scott!

Text is below:

In Veil of Deception, author Michael Byars Lewis continues his riveting tale of a young Air Force pilot’s inability to escape the clandestine world of international espionage. The novel, which is laced with political intrigue, high-tech stakes, and mysterious, compelling characters, finds Jason Conrad struggling for anonymity. And he once again finds his professional aspirations plagued with circumstances haunted by ghosts from his past. In Surly Bonds, Lewis introduced Conrad, a student pilot trying to succeed. After the girl of his dreams enters his life, so do Russian spies and the CIA, making pilot training the least of Jason’s concerns. The thrilling roller-coaster ride of international secrets that quickly ensues in Surly Bonds exponentially escalates in Lewis’ second installment.

Veil of Deception rejoins Jason for his next military assignment: testing America’s top secret fighter. The stealthy F-2000 boasts innovative remote piloting, self-healing skin, integrated thought control, and several features its builder fails to disclose. Jason soon discovers his new job involves joys and angst from a past he cannot escape. Romance, mystery, intrigue, and murder are entwined with unbridled government spending, corporate greed, and unchecked foreign influence. Lewis draws readers in with drama and captures their attention with fascinating technical detail. The edge-of-your-seat journey culminates with an epic air-to-air dogfight. Strap in tight for another ride through a well-woven puzzle as Jason methodically uncovers the intricately layered Veil of Deception.

by Scott Tyler, First Officer, FedEx



Veil of Deception earned an Honorable Mention in the 2016 Hollywood Book Festival! While that might sound trivial to some, the category was 'Genre-Based', meaning-it competed against books in all genres; romance, horror, mystery, thriller, sci-fi, western, and so on...No small accomplishment!

From the Hollywood Festival Website:

Based in the capital of show business, the Hollywood Book Festival aims to spotlight literature worthy of further consideration by the talent-hungry pipeline of the entertainment industry.

The 2016 Hollywood Book Festival considers published, self-published and independent publisher non-fiction, fiction, children's books, young adult, how-to, spiritual, wild card (anything goes!), unpublished stories, science fiction, biography/autobiography, sequels, genre-based, business, screenplays and history.


This is the fourth award for Veil of Deception and we are very excited about the direction we are going! We hope you enjoy the book and don't forget the three R's!!!



Veil of Deception won it's third award since it's release! It is the winner in the Best Thriller category in the 2016 Pacific Book Awards contest. The Pacific Book Awards are operated through the Pacific Book Review organization. From their website:

"Founded in 2005, Pacific Book Review is a recognizable name in the business for publishers, authors, literary agents and the media.  We specialize in authoritative, objective book reviews, written by specialists selected for their knowledge and expertise in each genre.  Our reviews have received accolades from all aspects of the publishing industry, e-Commerce recognition, scholastic recognition, news media and personal praise from most every author.

We review books for well known authors as well as emerging authors; enabling many first time authors to reach the publishers with a recognizable review.  We help you get the exposure you need to market your book effectively. We review published books, manuscripts, eBooks, ARC’s, audio CD’s, and DVD’s.  Pacific Book Review provides additional services for authors including Internet review postings, video book trailers and distribution, professionally written press releases including distribution to the media, and author interviews along with other book promotion services to help gain exposure for your book.  We have the friendliest, old-fashioned customer service on the planet (no phone menus – just real, committed people).   The only wish we have is for your success as an author."

Click on the link below for a list of winners and finalists:






Very excited to announce that on Tuesday, May 24th, VEIL OF DECEPTION was named a FINALIST in the 2016 International Book Awards in the Fiction: Thriller/Adventure Category! (The winner in this category was Jon Land, from Forge, an imprint of MacMillan Publishers. Some of you may remember Jon from Thrillerfest) This is huge! How can being a FINALIST be huge? Because this contest isn’t just a contest among independent authors. We competed with the traditional publishing houses as well and had a great showing! Check out the press release below and click on the link to find VEIL OF DECEPTION!







Mainstream & Independent Titles Score Top Honors in the

7th Annual International Book Awards


Penguin Random House, Palgrave Macmillan, Puffin Books, John Wiley & Sons, Crown Business, McGraw-Hill, Tor/Forge, Rowman & Littlefield, American Cancer Society and hundreds of national and international Independent Houses contribute to this year’s Outstanding Competition!


LOS ANGELES announced the winners and finalists of THE 2016 INTERNATIONAL BOOK AWARDS (IBA) on May 24, 2016. Over 300 winners and finalists were announced in over 80 categories. Awards were presented for titles published in 2014, 2015 and 2016.


Jeffrey Keen, President and CEO of i310 Media Group, said this year’s contest yielded over 1,500 entries from authors and publishers around the world, which were then narrowed down to the final results.


- - # # # - -


Click on the link below for the Winners and Finalists:



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 For immediate release:         




Beverly Hills -- The 10th Annual National Indie Excellence® Awards recognized Veil of Deception the category of Military Thriller as a winner in this year's competition.


This prestigious National award is open to all English language books in print from small, medium, university, self and independently publishers.


The National Indie Excellence Awards exists to help establish independent publishing as a strong and proud facet of the publishing industry. Recognizing authors that put their heart and soul into their work, the NIEA is proud to be a champion of self-publishers and small and independent presses that go the extra mile to produce books of excellence in every aspect. Established in 2007, the NIEA competition is judged by independent experts from all aspects of the indie book industry, including publishers, writers, editors, book cover designers and professional copywriters.  


Winners and finalists are determined based on 'overall excellence of presentation in addition to the writing.' Veil of Deception is a Military Thriller that asks the question: What if America's most secret weapons program was secretly owned by one of our enemies?


We are proud to announce the winners & finalists whose books truly embody the excellence that this award was created to celebrate, and we salute you all for your fine work, said NIEA Award sponsor, Ellen Reid, President & CEO.






For more information please visit:







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It's been a wild two weeks. All of this happened after I was called in for a trip, of course. We had SURLY BONDS on sale to help promote VEIL OF DECEPTION. The SURLY BONDS sale took a life of it's own and on the 27th, shot up to #1 in three different categories on Amazon. It stayed #1 in the three categories for three days until the morning of the 29th. My Author Ranking got as high as #16. These are all based on sales at that moment, of course, not longevity or popularity.
The Author Ranking takes into account both books. As my Author Ranking fell, I found myself next to some of my favorite authors, John Grisham, Brad Thor, and Vince Flynn. While this doesn't mean anything in the big picture, it sure is fun to see my picture and books next to my favorite authors!
SURLY BONDS ranked as high as #10 on Barnes and Noble NOOK (that's in all genres: Thriller, Romance, Literary, Science Fiction, Horror, etc...) It ranked #53 on iBooks (Apple iTunes). It also made the KOBO Top 50.
Like I said, it's been a wild two weeks. Thank you all for riding along with me and there's a lot more to come! Fly safe!

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I am happy to announce that I've been invited to participate on a panel at this years THRILLERFEST in NYC! I'll be on the panel, "Army, Navy, or Air Force? Military Thrillers!" The panel will be moderated by NYT Bestselling Author A.J. Tata. Don't know who else will be on the panel yet, but I'm extremely excited! So in you're in NYC on July 9th at 10:30am, drop by the Grand Hyatt and say hello!

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The Veil of Deception Book Blog Tour begins tomorrow! I'll post a schedule as soon as I get it but over the next several weeks, there will be plenty of action along the way! Here's a quick rundown of where I'll be stopping in:

 1. Showcase @ Reading Renee

2. Guest Post @ Books Direct

3. Showcase @ Celticladys Reviews

4. Showcase @ Mythical Books

5. Review @ Book Reviews from an Avid Reader

6. Guest Post @ Mystery Suspense Reviews

7. Review @ just reviews

8. Showcase @ Reading Renee

9. Review @ Vics Media Room

10. Interview @ BooksChatter

11. Showcase @ Its a Mad Mad World

12. Review & Guest Post @ Jersey Girl Book Reviews

13. Review @ Marys Cup of Tea

14. Showcase @ Writers and Authors

15. Review @ Booklishly Me

16. Interview @ Deal Sharing Aunt

17. Review @ Jaquo Lifestyle Magazine


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Review by

The Bottom Line: Guaranteed to please Brad Thor fans, this terrific military thriller finds Moscow hardliners plotting to assassinate the next U.S. president.Moscow, 1995. A small group of communist hardliners, intent on overthrowing the existing Russian regime, gather to discuss operational details. Confident that their plans will work, there’s just one problem – Senator Jonathan Bowman, the man who seems destined to become the next U.S. president, is a Reagan-esque figure who might be willing to risk military intervention to prop up the struggling Russian democracy. At last, the KGB’s Nikolai Gregarin stands to announce his solution: “Gentlemen, within twenty days, we will assassinate the man favored to win the Republican nomination.”

Click here for the full article

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Article on Book Bomb fundraiser for ACA

SATCOM Publishing and the Air Commando Association (ACA) are teaming up to promote award winning author Michael Byars Lewis’ novel SURLY BONDS for a fundraising effort to support the ACA Foundation Endowment. The ACA Foundation Endowment assists with unmet needs of Air Commando families during critical times.

The event is an August 15th ‘Book Bomb’, a one day surge to generate donations. To support the ACA Foundation Endowment, go to and purchase one or more copies of Michael Byars Lewis’ SURLY BONDS in paperback or Kindle. A portion of the royalties from books/Kindle books purchased during the August 15th ‘Book Bomb’ will go to support the ACA Foundation Endowment.

The Air Commando Association Foundation Endowment is a fully tax deductible 501(c)(3) devoted to helping Air Commandos and their families; past present, and future in times of unmet needs. All donations to this Foundation are 100% committed to this end as all administrative and other overhead costs are absorbed by the ACA. The ACA is the United States Special Operations Command Care Coalition’s “go to” organization when no other agency is able.

Click here to read entire article

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Pilot and author Michael Byars Lewis is a man of various talents. Trained as an artist as a young man, he worked his way through college selling paintings and working as an illustrator for a Baton Rouge advertising agency.  After graduating from Louisiana State University, he did what every college graduate does . . . he moved to the beach to sell suntan lotion. After getting serious about life, he set his sights on a flying career, sold everything he had that would sell, and began taking flight lessons. His first flight, in a Cessna 152, was a memorable one. It took place on a grass runway and the first approach to land had to go around because a cow was on the runway! Things improved from there and Michael went on to a distinguished military and civilian flying career  in a variety of high performance aircraft. A professional pilot, he has accumulated over 5,000 flying hours in military and civilian flying, including his time as an airline pilot flying the 737-200 and the 737-800.

Click here to read this entire article 


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Very happy and excited to have the endorsement of James R. Hannibal! James is one of the more prominent military thriller writers today and is about to bust loose in the Middle Grade market with his upcoming title, THE LOST PROPERTY OFFICE!

James R. Hannibal

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