J.M. Erickson

J.M. Erickson earned his bachelor's degree from Boston College, majoring in psychology and sociology, masters degree from Simmons School of Social Work, and post-graduate certification program in psychological trauma, clinical assessment and treatment from Boston University.
Early in his clinical practice, Erickson worked as a critical incident specialist for police and fire fighters for a large urban setting just outside of Boston, Massachusetts, and later provided crisis prevention and clinical intervention training for staff working with clients deemed dangerous to self or others in locked settings.
To date, Erickson works as a  ...See more >


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"A gripping story featuring well-constructed characters, poignant moral dilemmas and a chillingly realistic dystopian future."

Kirkus Reviews


AWARDS, PRESS & INTERESTS

Kirkus Star: FUTURE PROMETHEUS: EMERGENCE & EVOLUTION - NOVELLAS I & II

Awesome Indies Approved , 2014: FUTURE PROMETHEUS: EMERGENCE & EVOLUTION - NOVELLAS I & II

Honorable Mention - Foreword 2013 IndieFab Book Awards, 2014: FUTURE PROMETHEUS: EMERGENCE & EVOLUTION - NOVELLAS I & II

Bronze Medal, Readers' Favorite 2014 International Book Awards, 2014: FUTURE PROMETHEUS: EMERGENCE & EVOLUTION - NOVELLAS I & II

Honorable Mention, Readers' Favorite 2013 International Book Awards, 2013: RAVEN: BIRDS OF FLIGHT - BOOK TWO

Finalist, 2014 20th EVVY Awards, Colorado Independent Press Association, 2014: Eagle: Birds of Flight - Book Three

Honorable Mention, Readers' Favorite 2014 International Book Awards, 2014: Eagle: Birds of Flight - Book Three

Awesome Indies Approved , 2014: Intelligent Design: Revelations

Hometown Dorchester, Massachusetts

Favorite author Joseph Conrad

Favorite book Heart of Darkness

Day job Therapist & adjunct professor

Favorite line from a book His very existence was improbable, inexplicable, and altogether bewildering. He was an insoluble problem. It was inconceivable how he had existed, how he had succeeded in getting so far, how he had managed to remain -- why he did not instantly disappear.

Favorite word Obfuscation

Unexpected skill or talent Black Belt, Kenpo Karate

Passion in life Teaching


BOOKS REVIEWED BY KIRKUS:

SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Pub Date:
ISBN: 978-1478734772
Page count: 482pp
Erickson’s (Future Prometheus, 2013) dystopian, militaristic sci-fi saga continues the adventures of a male lieutenant who awakens from cryogenic freezing in a world run by women.
In the first book (not recapped in this volume), scientist Lt. Jose Melendez found in 2019 that he was one of the few adult men on Earth who wasn’t struck by a strange pandemic that made most of them brutal and violent. Due to his rare status, he submitted himself for medical testing and, in the process, was accidentally frozen for 150 years, finally waking up in a corrupt matriarchal society—a country called Nemericana—that continued to kill and/or banish all male children despite the pandemic having been wiped out years ago. Events proceed in the same vein in the second set of novellas, which tracks, among other things, a series of military actions between the various sides; Melendez’s capture at the hands of Aurora, the head of a cybernetic army; and the relationships between various characters, such as Maj. Mare Sade Singh and her human son, Roberto, who, to her surprise and dismay, has impregnated a woman. Melendez had been rescued by a number of cybernetic women who had also been cast out due to their beginning to achieve sentience, and their revolution against the government continues with Melendez’s help. Erickson has crafted a fascinating series with complex characters and an incredibly rich premise. It’s rare and refreshing to find such female-driven drama—particularly in the context of militaristic sci-fi—that never resorts to stereotypes. At times, the action can grow a bit repetitive, and the forward momentum sometimes stalls in favor of dialogue-heavy scenes. However, these scenes and character dynamics are so strong that it’s easy to forgive. Creating full-bodied characters is as important to Erickson as sci-fi philosophizing, which is crucial to the book’s success.

A truly original sci-fi series with strong ideas and even stronger characters.
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Pub Date:
ISBN: 978-1478704188
Page count: 266pp

In Erickson’s (Eagle: Birds of Flight, 2013) dystopian sci-fi novel, a cryogenically frozen scientist wakes up in the year 2155 to find that he’s the only man in a matriarchal military state.

In 2019, Lt. Jose Melendez is a scientist on the autism spectrum who uses himself as a test subject in his innovative cryogenics research. When a sudden, unrelated pandemic causes nearly all adult men on Earth to become violent, Melendez is one of the few who are unaffected, and he soon becomes the subject of military testing. His work in cryogenics takes on a new urgency as it may hold the key to keeping mankind alive. He’s frozen as part of an eight-month cryogenics test, but he isn’t thawed until more than 150 years later. His rescuers are four cybernetic “artificial persons” who have been expelled from society for exercising free will. In this future world’s matriarchal society, all male youths are similarly “cast out” of society when they reach puberty. Melendez and the APs learn that the government is actually murdering the boys, despite the long-ago eradication of the original pandemic, so they form a guerrilla-style group to try to stop the killings. Meanwhile, Maj. Mare Singh tries to stay focused on her military career, but secretly spends all of her free time watching, through mirrored glass, the young son she was forced to give up. When she discovers that Melendez has implanted a computer virus into all APs, she soon learns of the murders, and she comes up with a plan of her own to save her son and the other boys. In this first, two-part installment of a planned series of novellas, Erickson artfully raises profound ethical and philosophical questions regarding class systems, gender equality, neurodiversity and what it means to be human. He draws on classical references, and especially literature, in his work, and readers will likely appreciate the way he beautifully weaves in references to Mary Shelley, H.G. Wells and other masters of science fiction. Overall, it’s dystopian literature at its finest.

A gripping story featuring well-constructed characters, poignant moral dilemmas and a chillingly realistic dystopian future.

THRILLERS
Pub Date:
ISBN: 978-1478715948
Page count: 366pp

This fast-paced second book in Erickson’s Birds of Flight series continues the story of fugitive Alexander Burns and his family.

After stealing classified government information from the Department of Defense Foreign Intelligence Agency, Burns and his team have been on the run for years. As the book opens, they decide to negotiate with law enforcement officials for their safety, but their careful plans go awry, and Samantha, the woman Burns loves, is killed. Burns instructs her sister Becky to inform their FBI contact that “the ‘dead man switch’ has been pulled….‘The flood is coming.’ ” He then embarks on a mission of vengeance that could have repercussions for every American. He and his team risk their lives to release classified data on the controversial actions of the Foreign Intelligence Agency, which causes a diplomatic crisis. The team wants its freedom, and it’s willing to take down the whole country to get it. It finds unexpected allies within the government; one government operative says that Burns “has been consistent with loyalty to friends….Even when his paramour is killed, he keeps his word to those who keep it with him.” Erickson depicts government agents, spies and rogue operatives as well-rounded characters with discernible inner lives. The novel improves on 2012’s Albatross, the first book in this series, in Erickson’s ability to handle a somewhat convoluted plot without losing the reader. There are just as many explosions and gunfights here, but the overall mood of the work is tenser, and less triumphant, as Burns and his family risk not only their freedom, but their lives.

An ambitious thriller that looks at the gray areas between vengeance and justice, law and morality.

THRILLERS
Pub Date:
ISBN: 978-1475934151
Page count: 282pp

Erickson’s debut novel explores personal development through love, explosions and terrorist plots.

From the book’s opening, two storylines take off: a terrorist plot to destabilize the U.S. government and a record of the key characters’ psychological development. Yet, in investigating the inner worlds, Erickson doesn’t sacrifice explosions and gunfire; instead, he peppers the action with psychological insight. Sam Coleridge (nee David Caulfield), Alexander Burns’ former therapist, tells most of the story from his point of view in the form of his confession to the police. Coleridge’s specialty is “recovering memories and treatment of patients who suffered…from post-traumatic stress disorder.” He insists that the treatments work “only if the patients really wanted…to” participate; Burns certainly wants to participate, since the recovery of his memories is crucial to his plan for revenge. The plan seems natural from Burns’ perspective: His former employers betrayed him and, ultimately, the nation. His skills return with the memories that motivate him, and he trains his team of civilians to help, teaching them “abilities of researching, acquisitions, reconnaissance, planning, and improvising,” while he handles the business of violence. The series of events that lead to Burns’ action is, at times, unclear, partially because of the intense focus on the characters and the nonlinear narrative. Erickson competently portrays the sometimes violent tactics, though it’s clear that his real interest lies in his characters’ emotions and psychology.

Some rough plotting, but the solid action is driven by dense characters.

ADDITIONAL WORKS AVAILABLE:

ALBATROSS: BIRDS OF FLIGHT - BOOK ONE (REVISED)
Fiction, thriller, action, adventure

Albatross, the psychological thriller that started the Birds of Flight series, is now revised with an additional one-hundred pages of pure action.

Published:
ISBN: 9781478730798
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EAGLE: BIRDS OF FLIGHT - BOOK THREE
Fiction, thriller, action, adventure

Following the success of the acclaimed books Albatross and Raven, Eagle continues the richly characterized, fast-paced action in this gripping third installment of the Birds of Flight series.

Published:
ISBN: 9781478708049
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FALCON: BIRDS OF FLIGHT - BOOK FOUR
Fiction, thriller, action, adventure

Falcon is the fourth installment of the Birds of Flight series were many questions are answered and a new threat emerges. This book continues the richly characterized, fast-paced action story line of Alex Burns, Diane Welch, Jillian Davis, Steve Anderson, Becky Littleton and all the rest.

Published:
ISBN: 978-1942708001
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INTELLIGENT DESIGN: REVELATIONS
Fiction, science fiction, adventure, high-tech, metaphysical

Intelligent Design: Revelations is a science fiction novella that looks at the origins of our existence as a species, and our place in the universe.

Published:
ISBN: 978-0-9873231-6-3
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