Book Tour: SEVENTEEN by Mark D. Diehl

 Today I have the wonderful pleasure of featuring a new book by Mark D. Diehl called Seventeen. So check out the blurb and excerpt below. It's one I have added to my own growing to be read list. Also before I forget - don't forget to hit up the rest of the stops on this tour.  The generous Mr. Diehl is giving away a $50 gift card for either Amazon or Barnes and Noble to one lucky winner.  So make sure check out the rafflecopter entry form at the end.  


Most of the world's seventeen billion people are unconscious, perpetually serving their employers as part of massive brain trusts. The ecosystem has collapsed, and corporations control all of the world's resources and governments. A bedraggled alcoholic known as the Prophet predicts nineteen year-old waitress Eadie will lead a revolution, but how can she prevail when hunted by a giant corporation and the Federal Angels it directs?


“I know what you did, Sett. There is a Federal Angel with me right now. He wants to talk to you.  He would like to know why you helped some waitress escape after she killed Matt Ricker. Switch to visual. Now.”

He blinked hard and wiped a palm across his forehead. A sickly gray light seemed smeared along the opposite wall, having filtered through the filthy window at the end of the hallway. The floorboards creaked as he shifted his weight.

“Is it true, Sett?” his mother asked. “Why would you get yourself involved in a debacle like that? Why? When everything was going so well for you?”

He stared down at the stained plywood floor, now spotted with teardrops.

“What were you thinking? A waitress? You know better than to go getting messed up with people like that. They’ll drag you right down with them, every time. You come home right now and explain to this Angel exactly what happened; I’m sure he’ll understand. But I’m not going to lie to you. There will still be fallout. Society does not tolerate wretched, uncivilized behavior. I can’t guarantee you’ll be allowed to remain at Fisher.”

“I wasn’t thinking at all, Mother. I was just doing it, all of a sudden.” He sniffed. “She was hurt, and they started it, not her. Nobody else would help. What was I supposed to do? Just let her die?”

“Oh, Sett.” His mother sighed. “Of course you were.”



Mark D. Diehl writes novels about power dynamics and the way people and organizations influence each other. He believes that obedience and conformity are becoming humanity’s most important survival skills, and that we are thus evolving into a corporate species.
Diehl has: been homeless in Japan, practiced law with a major multinational firm in Chicago, studied in Singapore, fled South Korea as a fugitive, and been stranded in Hong Kong.

After spending most of his youth running around with hoods and thugs, he eventually earned his doctorate in law at the University of Iowa and did graduate work in creative writing at the University of Chicago. He currently lives and writes in Cape Elizabeth, Maine.

Author’s Website:


©Becki Gylberte All rights reserved. This is a work of fiction. All names, characters, locations, and incidents are products of the author’s imagination, or have been used fictionally. Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, locales, or events is entirely coincidental. No portion of this work may be transmitted or reproduced in any form, or by any means, without permission in writing from the author.


Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thank you for hosting

Karen H in NC said...

Good afternoon Mark. I was just reading your biography and thought, have a colorful and some would say, checked past. How have your past experiences and work history influenced your writing?

Happy New Year!
kareninnc at gmail dot com

Mark Diehl said...

Thanks for hosting, Becki!

Ooh! What a fun prompt, Karen! Let's see...

Yes, "Seventeen" has influences from all parts of my life, including both sides of the ocean and both sides of the tracks.

Lawrence is on the inside of the corporate world, on track to become another member of the ruling class, like I was as a little kid in a household with sports cars and a private airplane. He loses that status by doing something unforgivable in that world, showing compassion to someone outside it.

That makes him more like Eadie, who grew up alone with her mom after her own family was cast out of the corporate class. Eadie found herself living on a fraction of the income she'd had before, like I did after my parents' divorce.

Brian and Kel are hoods, much like the group I hung out with. "Seventeen" starts with Brian in a back-alley drug deal, which goes bad and ends up with Brian dosed against his will with some new street drug that developed when the bacteria producing it mutated.

There are two ways to interpret what happens next to Brian: Either he suffers serious brain damage from the drug and develops a kind of schizophrenia that makes him hallucinate another personality, or the drug actually serves as a gateway allowing another personality into his head. (Brian doesn't know which one, so I wrote it so the reader doesn't, either.)

The personality who comes to dwell inside Brian's head is Sato, a 15th century samurai.

I put Sato into the story to show what I saw in Asia: Conformity and obedience to hierarchy become increasingly important in a world with high population density and few resources, just like Asia already was hundreds of years ago. As the world runs out of resources and America becomes more crowded, we are structuring our society in a similarly hierarchical way. While samurai were the ruling class in old Japan, the corporate class rule us today.

Eric was another important character I drew from my own past. I modeled him on George Orwell's character Winston from "1984," but instead of being controlled by a Communist dictatorship, he is dominated by the corporate hierarchy. Where Winston was watched by the government, Eric is watched by his superiors at work. His work environment is similar to the way I lived when I was working at the giant law firm: Every minute of his day is claimed, earmarked, and documented, and even minor mistakes are punished severely. Eventually the company takes steps to claim more than his time, targeting ownership of his soul.

Whew! Thanks so much for the opportunity to share that!

If you've read all this, you should really check out "Seventeen." Go to Smashwords and click the "buy" button, then go to checkout and give them this coupon code to get it FREE:


Here's the link, if it lets me do this:

Melinda Campbell said...

THank you so much for doing this! I can't wait to check this out, sounds amazing! ^_^ Happy New Year.

cloud.weaver.girl AT gmail DOT com