Entropic Crusader

Home of sci-fi and fantasy author, Benjamin Matthews

Benjamin Matthews is an author of sci-fi and fantasy fiction. On this page you will find a number of free stories that should give you a pretty good idea of his writing style and content. All books are hosted on BookFunnel, in .epub, .mobi, and .pdf formats for your convenience.

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This is the prelude to a longer series I’d describe as ‘fantasy World War 2, but with airships and magic‘, and it will have something of an Indiana Jones adventure feel (the original trilogy only; we don’t talk about the other two), albeit with a female main character. It’s closer to the game series, Tomb Raider, in that respect (meaning original Lara Croft, the wealthy and competent adventurer version, not Nu Lara; *sigh* It’s sad that I even need to make disclaimers like this, but that’s apparently where we are now).

The prelude includes three short stories (Before the Storm, Grimoire Girls, and Spirit of Adventure), which together set the stage for the main series.

Length: ~24,000 Novella.

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I’ve enjoyed magical girl stories from Japan for years, in no small part because they are generally more wholesome than most of the garbage in Western entertainment (on TV/movies at least) these days. When I first started writing back in 2014 or so, one of the things I wanted to eventually try was my own take on the magical girl genre, so that’s what The Love We Lost is.

The closest Western equivalent is urban fantasy, but magical girl stories often tend to be lighter in tone and focus on friendship and fighting unambigous bad guys. My own take on the genre keeps some of the light tone, but is much darker when necessary, and features older characters in the 20-23 age range.

Length: ~92,000 Word Novel (Book 1 of a trilogy).

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Originally inspired (at least in part) by an old anime I once watched called Uninhabited Planet Survive, which was essentially a sci-fi retelling of the movie, Mysterious Island.

Forsaken Planet is a similar story of a group of people being marooned on an alien world where they have to survive, and in so doing uncover a mystery that will shake the galaxy to its core.

This is the first book in a larger series collectively titled Higher State. See the next freebie below this one for a sample of Book 2 in the series.

(Note that I’m doing some fiddling with this novel at present, adding content and generally fixing things up. The book will be available soon!)

Length: ~100,000 Word Novel.


The second book in my Higher State series, Shipbreakers follows a different cast of characters to Forsaken Planet, and will delve more into wide-scale space opera, rather than the small-scale adventure of the preceding story.

This book will appeal to fans of space opera and shows like Firefly (albeit with a lighter tone than that show). This excerpt functions as a standalone short story, but will become part of the opening act in the full novel.

Length: ~11,000 Word Novelette.

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Gungirls of the Apocalypse is a sci-fi wild west adventure set on a colony world known as Terra Nova (New Earth), following three young women (Clara, Esther, and May) as they attempt to find a hidden treasure, each for their own reasons, and occasionally at cross purposes. Naturally the treasure hunt will evolve into something a little larger in scope as the story progresses… but that’d be getting into spoiler territory ๐Ÿ˜‰

This standalone short story, titled The Lucky Defective, introduces the third of the three main characters, May, as she goes about her regular business of scavenging for juicy tech salvage to sell, and will ultimately become chapter 3 of the full novel.

Length: ~5,700 Word Short Story.

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While I don’t write short stories all that often, I do dabble occasionally, in no small part because shorts allow me to have fun with different genres and types of writing that don’t really fit my longer work.

The Imperative One is one such experiment, and was inspired by Sir Terry Pratchett’s awesome Discworld series, with a similarly irreverent tone. I also wrote this in first person present tense, which is a rarity for me (I normally write third person omniscient), but first person worked better for this particular story.

Length: ~3,800 Word Short Story.

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