Links for The Long Way Home

As mentioned in newsletters, previous posts and on the Facebook pages, I am releasing my current Science Fiction / Space Opera serial novel The Long Way Home as downloadable books. These are FREE at the moment, and this post contains the links to download the books. You do not have to sign up to the newsletter to get these two books.

Book 1 The Dark Takes Fools comprises episodes 1-6. LINK HERE

Book 2 Out of the Dark comprises episodes 7-12. LINK HERE

The story is ongoing, and further episodes are only available by subscription to the monthly newsletter. At the present each newsletter contains a link to a full episode of short story length.

Signup for the newsletter HERE.

The newsletter is run through MailChimp, and it’s an easy one-click to unsubscribe. The contact details will only be used by me to provide my monthly newsletter and very occasional alerts for a new book by me. Contact details will not be made available to anyone else.

About Mark Henwick

I was born in Africa and left out in the sun too often. An early interest in philosophy and psychology was adequately exorcised by tending bars. And while trying to enroll in a class to read Science Fiction full time, I ended up taking an engineering degree which splendidly qualified me to move into marketing. That in turn spawned a late onset career in creative writing. When not working, I get high by the slightly less conventional means of a small light aircraft. My first books are available on Amazon at

14 responses to “Links for The Long Way Home”

  1. Dennis Morel says :

    Just finished book 1, The Dark Takes Fools, and it was good; actually better than good. I liked the story, the overall plot, really liked the characters; but what set it apart was it was different and not what I expected. You did a great job with the unexpected twists to the story that not only made it entertaining, but kept it interesting. Great job. Moving on to Out of the Dark. Sign me up for your newsletter please. And get a move on Bite Back, been way to long and it is one of my most favorite urban paranormal series. Fantastic work.

    • Mark Henwick says :

      Thanks Dennis, I’m glad you enjoyed it & will add you to the newsletter.
      Thanks also for the feedback on Bite Back.
      Bite Back 8 is starting slowly in the writing sense, but many of the books have done that. I promise you, I want it out as quickly as possible!

  2. aikidaves says :

    Hi, Mark!

    I just downloaded and read the books and they’re great! I signed up for the new SF newsletter November 12th. Apparently episode 13 was in the October newsletter? How can I get it? Thanks!

  3. Ben (a different one) says :

    That was pretty fun. Thanks for the books.

    Since I got the vaguest, most subtle impression that feedback might be wanted, here’s my cents:
    I thought the first two chapters were a bit clunky, but either prose got smoother very quickly or I got used to the style of narration; tbf, I’d probably need to go back and see what’s going on. Either way, rest was fine; the one thing that stood out to me is that I felt that the two signature phrases (“I got a plan” and “the Dark takes fools”) were a little bit overused.

    Speaking of these phrases; initially, the whole “I got a plan” stick comes across as something to be dreaded, like a desperate ploy that might be ultimately successful but probably requires unreasonable risks (sorta check) and more likely than not also should have unreasonable outcomes (notsomuch check).
    I’m thinking protagonists like Lina Inverse (Slayers) or Jame (Kencyrath), where you can be sure that if they arrive at a scene, and foil the plot of the antagonist, the entire surroundings will (usually accidentally) be reduced to rubble, to the point where’d you’d better think twice about whether you actually want to be “rescued” by them …
    The books got a bit of that, but ultimately everything works out quite well, and there’s a bit of a lack of spiraled-out-of-control-chaos and general mayhem. More Vicky the Viking than Jame, basically. To my taste that could have been tuned up a bit.

    And speaking of my taste; regarding the other phrase: prose overall feels quite prosaic, which, okay, isn’t too outrageous for this type of story and a bit of a milscifi vibe. But I wouldn’t have minded things getting a bit less precisely descriptive and a bit more “poetic” in places. Though that’s a tough balance to strike.

    As my personal pet peeve: blergh for the romance. But generally speaking, there could have been a bit more crew interaction, given that we’re travelling around a lot with them. Granted, I don’t know how in-depth you want to go with a serial like this, but a scene more here or there …

    Lastly; not sure why the first “book” ended where it did. Not sure that matters either, given the format, but if it were a published book I’d have been annoyed by that. Feels cut off at essentially a random point, not even a proper cliffhanger, just “okay, that’s it now”. I’d have preferred the Jan’s speech as essentially the stopping point; that concludes the first arc (getting back home) to me, and sets up the next major line (going back out again).

    Mh. Yeah, that’s about it. Obviously, all just my opinion, yaddayadda. Keep up the good work πŸ˜‰

    • Mark Henwick says :

      Thanks Ben. Yes, I may have dropped a hint that feedback is welcome! πŸ™‚ And it is.

      I take your points.

      Romance. I do not really want to slide into either straight no-kissing MilSciFi or lotsa-kissing SciFi Romance, but I’ve had quite a bit of direct feedback that Jan & Bjorn better get together. The romance is pretty muted. It’s Space Opera and most of the genre in modern times has a romantic thread in the background somewhere.

      Crew: They definitely will get more on the page as the story develops (we’re less than half way). I didn’t want to increase their share of story early on because that would dilute the impetus of the episodes. I can quite see that, as a book rather than episodes, it feels different.

      Out of control & general mayhem. Noted. I want to get that feel, but it is difficult to do well. I’ll research Slayers, thanks.

      Poetry vs prose. If you’ve enjoyed the UF, you’ll know I do delve into spiritual / poetry in writing. I’ve kept it dialled down here because it feel a little out of place in Space Opera with military overtones. Interesting.

      Signature phrase ‘I have a plan’ has had lots of positive feedback from others! But interesting that not everyone likes it. As a writer, it does seem the sort of thing an episodic novel needs, and links with the outcome.

      Book 1 ended at the end of episode 6, and is a tease rather than a cliffhanger, I guess. And I had 12 episodes to put into 2 books…

      Anyway, glad you liked them overall, and more are on the way. Thank you for the feedback.

  4. Mark Finley says :

    I have thoroughly enjoyed the first two books, and look forward to the rest of them. Great cliffhanger. I really, really want to know what happens next. While I wait, I’ll head over to the Clint and see if they serve apple pie and coffee.

  5. Mark Henwick says :

    The Clint would most definitely serve you apple pie and coffee, if your ship’s credit is good. Don’t mess with the staff πŸ™‚
    Only a couple more days and book 3 is out.
    It has an ending that could be taken two different ways… but it isn’t a cliffhanger like book 2.

  6. Mark says :

    I just finished The Dark Takes Fools on my kindle fire. It doesn’t like the way your links are configured… Could be just on my end.

    It took a bit to finally figure out that Jan was a woman. Once I did things started making much more sense on the interaction between Jan and Bjorg. Book Funnel no longer has book 2 available. I was a bit disappointed but life goes on. Hopefully, I will find it somewhere else soon.
    I don’t recall seeing any spelling errors! Which is awesome! I see so many ebooks littered with errors from spelling to a lot of extra spaces for no reason. It’s like some folks don’t like using a spell checker…

    I’m curious about the use of the term “Chang Space.” Yeah, I actually googled that just to see what came up if anything. Did you choose that arbitrarily or is it a part of one of the myriad of gaming systems on the market today?

    Ever thought of doing a prequel series showing how the whole mess actually started? I’d read it. I will also have to investigate your other works, lol I see there is another story or at least the beginning of one after TDTF.
    Curiosity has gotten the better of me. What model craft is your avatar pic from? It looks like your in the left seat. So… Licensed pilot? I had wanted to try out an ultra-lite for several years but never got around to it. My Dad loved to fly. I just never got the bug quite like he did.

    Thank you for sharing your stories!

    • Mark Henwick says :

      Hi Mark

      I’m guessing you have the free, early version of The Dark Takes Fools, which I distributed while compiling the stories for my newsletter in 2021 and early 2022. Now, the series is launched and there are only the 3 Amazon books available. The link to book 2 is (US) or (UK)

      I’m a careful writer, but I still have all my output professionally edited. I know there are spelling mistakes, but it takes a lot to find them. I’m pretty sure I’ve mixed up the spelling of further and farther somewhere in these books, for example. (Someone complained πŸ™‚ )
      Chang field and Chang space is mine. It wasn’t completely arbitrary, in fact, it’s a joke. I projected the demographics of the current population and decided there would be a 1 in 3 chance that the person credited with the discovery of this dimensional space would be from a Chinese background. However, I project that variations of English will be the dominant language, especially in the scientific area. Then I had a think about how that might go wrong. So ‘Chang’ is Mandarin for ‘field’ (as in electrical field), and due to miscommunication, this was adopted as the name of the dimensional field – ‘Chang field’ is actually ‘Field field’. Writers have to keep themselves amused somehow. No one else has noticed it or questioned it.

      Prequels… actually, TLWH is a prequel to my Among the Stars series. Humanity has moved to the stars in a series of abrupt expansions, and AtS is told in the era after the expansions which will happen as part of TLWH have died down. Should I go one prequel back? I’d love to, but my readers are already impatient with the delays in my 4 major series (2 SciFi, 2 Urban Fantasy).

      My avatar picture is from my UK microlight which is a Flight Design CT2K, and yes, I’m a licensed pilot. I put off learning to fly as long as I could, but I highly recommend it for everyone.

      Thanks for reading my stories, and I hope you enjoy the other books.

      • Mark says :

        I don’t recall exactly when I downloaded the book. It and many others spent a long time on my back up hard drive. Computer problems combined with faulty memory (mine, lol) I know it was probably a year or two ago… I just know I am looking forward to reading more of your work. thank you

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