In the News! Cro Magnons interbred with Neanderthals

The Toth HunterThe Wall Street Journal for April 27 2017 had some startling news related to Neanderthals and North America! In my Arken series I decided to place Neanderthals in America only 13,000 years ago, even though there has been no fossil evidence of Neanderthals like there is in Europe and Asia. However, as reported yesterday, an excavation for freeway construction in San Diego unearthed mastodon bones and some of them had been crushed using a stone tool.

This is done in order to eat the marrow, not the best of meals but better than starving. Archeologists unearthed a stone near the bones which appears to have been used to smash the bones, (the surface patterns match the bone damage), meaning this was a stone tool used by humans to get to the marrow. The bones have been carbon dated to be 130,000 years old which is far earlier in the history of this continent than existing migration theory which places mankind coming to America only 13,000 years ago. Steven Holen, director of research at the Center for American Paleolithic Research in S. Dakota, who led the international research team stated that they have made a very good case for the 130,000 year ago date for humans in California. And researchers added that because this earlier date is so far back in time, there is a possibility that Neanderthals were the ones using the stones to break the mastodon bones, indicating that it was possible Neanderthals had actually lived in N. America long ago.

I was startled by this report because when I started writing my books about 15 years ago, no one thought Neanderthals could have lived in America. I thought that it might be possible and used the fact that my books are fiction to add Neanderthals into the story mix because they created a far more interesting world for Arken’s adventures to take place. I also said at the beginning that Neanderthals interbred with humans, and at the time scientists were saying this was not true. But now of course DNA testing has proven that us humans, Cro Magnons, did indeed interbreed with Neanderthals. So this is one of those classic cases where fiction predicts fact when science catches up to the fictional world!

Read more about neanderthals in Alex Paul’s Arken Freeth series here: Get the Complete Series

Tookan Attack, Book 4 has launched!

Tooken AttackTookan Attack is out in e-book format and will be available as a paperback in time for Christmas.  I’m so excited to get this book done for the readers who have asked for months, “Where’s the next book?”

Twice now I’ve been at art openings and the dear grandmother of a twelve year old who loves the Arken series comes up to me and asks, “When is your next book coming out? My grandson is bugging me to buy it for him!”

This is very encouraging as a writer but it has made me feel guilty during the times I wasn’t working on it like when I took my daughter buffalo hunting this fall or salmon fishing on the Columbia. However I have chalked these adventures up to the idea that I’m doing critical writing research and if someone invents a time machine I will volunteer to go back in time if they send me to Florida 13,000 years ago with a video camera.

Of course I’d probably be devoured within minutes of arriving and then the video camera would be found and the introduction of this technology would entirely disrupt the trajectory of civilization so on second thought, no I won’t time travel back to Arken’s time, I’ll just imagine it and write about it!

Writing the Tookan attack over the last two years has been so much fun for me.  I think the greatest delight of all has been the surprises that the characters have presented me. Writing about Arken’s life has become more of a sense of recording the actions and events. Most times when I’m writing it’s not, “Ok what will I cook up for Arken to deal with next”.

Instead it feels like the character’s lives are playing out in some kind of movie in my brain that I’m privileged to watch and I just type as fast as possible to record the events. So when some surprise or plot twist comes up (and trust me there are a ton of them in Tookan Attack), know that I was as surprised by the turn of events as my readers will be.

Hang on for a thrilling read. The Tookans aren’t returning to the Water Cave to share stories and visit. War has called them to the Nander’s coast and war is what Arken will give them in full measure.

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Shipwrecked: Arken Freeth and the Adventure of the Neanderthals – Book 1 has launched!

Shipwrecked: Arken Freeth and the Adventure of the Neanderthals


I am happy to announce that the Kindle e-book version of Shipwrecked: Arken Freeth and the Adventure of the Neanderthals Book 1 are available from Regular price for the e-book is $2.99 for the e-book but on Sept 14-16, I’m offering up Shipwrecked for free to my friends and fans.

The Story

In the age before the Great Flood, 13,000 years ago, a new alliance between the nations of Lanth and Tolaria is threatened by pyramid-building Amarrats out to conquer and enslave the world.

Fourteen-year-old Arken Freeth is swept up in the conflict when his Lantish Military Academy training ship is attacked by pirates and runs ashore. He and six classmates are the only survivors of the shipwreck and they struggle to live in a jungle filled with saber-tooth cats, dire wolves, mammoths, and mastodons.

Neanderthal blood runs in Arken’s veins. His lineage gives him strength and makes him a powerful warrior, a warrior who can keep his friends safe. But he must use his strength wisely and keep his heritage a secret because it means certain death under the laws of Lanth.

And to Lanth he must return. For Arken has salvaged a necklace from the wreck–a necklace that bestows the gift of prophecy. If Arken can get it to the King of Lanth, he can turn the tide of war. But Arken and his classmates are pursued onshore by the pirates who want the necklace as well.

Get your copy of Shipwrecked now!

Amazon Kindle E-book