Terry Tumbler

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I was born in 1944 in theUK principality of Wales, retired in 2004 and now living with my wife in Spain, amongst the Spanish. For over 30 years I was in the computer industry, some of which were with IBM before I got itchy feet, even though I was well regarded. Afterwards, I worked as an Organisation & Methods specialist and came up with some innovative ideas before I moved into mainstream computing and became involved in programming, analysis and management. At school, I gained a string of school level certificates before leaving and gaining a commercial apprenticeship, an Advanced Certificate in Business Studies, and professional qualifications in Personnel Management and the Institute of Company Secretaries and Administrators. During my time, I have used desk top publishing and spearheaded the writing and publication of two detailed, technical manuals, one of which was regarded as the administrative bible by a (then) major force, British Olivetti. The other manual was used by me as a resident teacher of electronic data interchange (EDI) for a specialist software house, where it was distributed as a tour de force. I took up writing at an advanced age simply because I had the time and desire, and the first hand enjoyable experience of helping my younger daughter to tame her two mischievous boys.

Magic Carpets, Turkish Carpets Cover

Magic Carpets, Turkish Carpets

BY Terry Tumbler • POSTED ON Dec. 17, 2014

Tumbler (The Inlooker, 2014, etc.) presents more globe-trotting adventures in his latest novel—this time set in Turkey.

Retired detective Terry Tumbler and his wife, Sandra, are British expatriates living in Spain. Last summer, their grandson, Seb Cage, enrolled in a school run by the philanthropic Sombrella Syndicate, which brought him to Turkey for a special mission. Recently, Terry has been hearing a strange voice in his head telling him to return to Turkey. His Sombrella contact, Skip, suggests that he and Sandra take the trip on the Syndicate’s dime as its emissaries. While touring Turkey’s archaeological and religious attractions, the Tumblers meet Senator Marius, who, it turns out, has been speaking to Terry telepathically. He asks them to report any extremist behavior they might witness in their travels. Soon, the Tumblers find an anonymous scroll that decries the mutilation of people and animals by extraterrestrials (one of Terry’s favorite research topics). At the same time, Terry experiences flashbacks to the life of a 12th-century monk named Gregory, who’s on the run from Turkish warriors. The book’s first portion ends with a shocking revelation from Marius; in the second half, set two years later, the Tumblers and several of their friends tour Turkey in a cushy, futuristic coach known as the Magic Carpet. Further surprises await, especially for fans of the author’s previous Seb Cage novel. This work boasts many of Tumbler’s signature traits, including close attention to historical detail (“The word Byzantine came to have special meaning, being synonymous with intrigue, cunning, deception, greed, and corruption”) and bawdy humor; for example, the protagonist's consistently wily behavior gets him mistaken for a “typical Australian.” There’s even traveling advice, as when Sandra tells her husband, “Just ignore [the vendors] and they’ll get fed up.” The narrative’s main drawback, however, is Terry's frequent complaining about food, travel time, and other issues. That said, an imaginative finale redeems the journey, featuring technological wonders and the truth about Earth’s alien visitors.

A somewhat cranky fictional travelogue that gives way to a charming sci-fi adventure.

Pub Date: Dec. 17, 2014

Page count: 392pp

Publisher: Sombrella

Review Posted Online: Feb. 6, 2015



BY Terry Tumbler • POSTED ON Sept. 30, 2014

In Tumbler’s (The Inlooker, 2014, etc.) middle-grade fantasy novel, a group of teens receives special training from a mysterious race of dwarfs.

Thirteen-year-old English boy Sebastian and his younger brother, Bart, have come to Costa Blanca, Spain, to spend the summer with their grandparents. The rambunctious boys are a handful for Terry and Sandra, even with tennis, swimming and soccer available for the kids’ enjoyment. Terry, a former police detective, decides to occupy Seb with a research project on UFOs and then reveals to his grandson his belief that people less than 5 feet tall are related to space aliens. Seb begins trailing short people and eventually befriends one named Skip, a representative of the secret Sombrella Syndicate. Skip recruits Seb to join a small group of students studying exotic subjects in classes with names such as “Rocking and a’bonding” and “What Goes Around Comes Around.” The teen quickly learns that the Sombrella teachers are telepathic and that his fellow students, including the lovely Maisie, come from all over the world. Their hands-on courses involve flying UFOs, digging a high-speed train tunnel and visiting ancient battlefields. Seb wonders why he’s been chosen for this special education, and Tumbler explores this mystery in this imaginative, heartfelt tale. At one point, Seb cheekily wonders if he and his classmates will be “used as slave labour by Sombrella,” but when the kids use futuristic gizmos such as a gravity-defying phaser, it becomes clear that the children’s education is Sombrella’s top priority. Frequently, Tumbler’s teachers go on historical or technical tangents that younger readers may have trouble following; the Buster Cruster machine, for example, is said to filter rocks’ “pulverised and chemically-separated components into segregated containers.” The author combines such passages with an easygoing plot that has no true central conflict, which makes the narrative feel as if it’s aimed at both adult and middle-grade audiences. Nevertheless, its noble messages of environmentalism and empathy ring loudly throughout its second half.

A loose sci-fi adventure that often wanders, but always into delightful territory.

Pub Date: Sept. 30, 2014

ISBN: 978-1909121775

Page count: 342pp

Publisher: Palace Park Press

Review Posted Online: Nov. 27, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2015



BY Terry Tumbler • POSTED ON Aug. 18, 2014

A computer manager gains otherworldly powers in Tumbler’s (Seb Cage Begins His Adventures, 2014, etc.) latest novel.

As his prophetic name might indicate, Thomas Beckon is no ordinary man. His everyday life bears all the marks of normality: He’s married and has two daughters and two cats. However, he discovers that he can use the cats as vehicles to observe the behavior of people’s souls, independent of their bodies. It turns out that he’s an Inlooker: a quasi-human, supernatural entity with the ability to examine the contents of anyone’s soul, and he uses that power to carry out his own brand of justice. Soon, and with careful practice, he learns how to transcend his own bodily limitations. He takes possession of an abusive acquaintance, causing him to crash his car and die in a coma. Soon, his malevolent, volatile powers can’t be contained, and he applies them to the pursuit of industry, first mastering the manufacture of an advanced, alien-derived transportation technology and eventually dominating the world’s governments. Tumbler’s strange, even outlandish novel is a highly original remix of standard sci-fi thriller concepts laced with Beckon’s witty, sardonic asides, which guide readers through each chapter. The narrative eventually becomes overly detailed, and it lags when Beckon’s worldly aims become loftier and more complicated. Nonetheless, this is a playful, even funny, book—one with sharp edges, a dark underside, and quirky, metafictional streaks. It also has more than a few things to say about the psychology of sociopaths like Beckon and creates a futuristic version of society that’s neither completely utopian nor dystopian. The protagonist’s habits, which range from acts of violence to sexual reconnaissance and manipulation, will likely prompt readers to consider the limits of power and the importance of privacy.

A thoughtful, eccentric sci-fi novel that’s as creepy as it is comic.

Pub Date: Aug. 18, 2014

ISBN: 978-1909121768

Page count: 168pp

Publisher: Acorn Independent Press

Review Posted Online: Oct. 16, 2014


Magic Carpets, Turkish Carpets

This is a story based on the author’s own magical tour of the ancient marvels of Turkey. The first part is set in the near future. Our ageing anti-hero, a retired detective, begins receiving repeated messages from an unknown source insisting he goes to Turkey. During the course of his travels, he writes about the sites he is actually visiting, and is told that he has to undertake a secret mission. To his consternation, he begins experiencing flashbacks, indicating that he once lived in this part of the world. The second part of the book is set further in the future, where futuristic travel is in regular use for most of the population. This time, he and his wife are travelling incognito with some friends who have previously shared adventures with him. The experiences of the group become fantastical, as the past merges with the future, and the true nature of the shelter is revealed. Suitable for adventurous readers from their teens to their dotage.

Santiago Tales

A group of retired people decide to embark on a pilgrimage to Santiago, in Northern Spain, under the leadership of an ex-detective and a few nefarious friends. The problem is that a number of them are not exactly devotees of any particular religion, and are doing it because they think it's a fun thing to do while seeking entertainment and companionship on their journey of discovery. Each evening, one person in the group is committed to telling a short story, and it is this collection of stories that forms the core of the book, whilst in the background tensions are brewing between various factions in the group that eventually lead to divine retribution. The inspiration for the style of presentation came from Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer, but without delving too deeply into the poetry associated with the original masterpiece. The material in the individual stories varies from the raunchy to the bawdy and from the hilarious to the sad, being based more often than not on actual experiences. The style of writing is fully intended to be humorous, and should appeal to those who enjoy a good belly laugh. It is similar in style to The French Lieutenant's Woman.
Published: Aug. 17, 2014
ISBN: 978-1909121904 1909121908

The Rough & Tumbles Of Early Life

The birth of a baby is normally the cause for major celebration in all families. In this instance, the joy was matched with an equal dose of relief, since both parents had survived the worst that the Second World War could throw at them, and were looking forward to a return to civilian life with their newborn son. On his discharge from the armed forces, the father said his goodbyes to his in-laws and started the long journey back to the ancestral tribe in Wales, with his wary wife and indifferent son in tow. He looked forward to the forthcoming reunion with those of his brothers who had stayed at home to help run the family business. There is little doubt that they too were looking forward to smoking the pipe of peace and burying the hatchet - in him. It was a large family and they had all suffered the rough and tumbles of living in it. War had been a relief. The newly anointed Mother Tumbler came from a more genteel family background in Kent, but it was not entirely a normal household; suffice it to say that her parents had bought a new three bedroom semi-detached house in the 1930s, and the first thing that was added to it was a sign on the vehicle gate indicating where the Tradesman’s Entrance was located. Father Tumbler was perplexed by the behaviour of this strange creature that he had sired. In reality, father and son had inherited a defective gene that made them behave in an amoral way; that is to say, each could distinguish right from wrong, but neither cared about the consequences of taking either route. When faced with a dilemma or opportunity, anyone around them could unpredictably suffer or be amused; it was pot luck. As life unfolds, the growing boy encounters and deals with a series of unfortunate events, the majority of them amusing and others surrounded by pathos. Witnessing the ongoing drama from the sidelines, an increasingly stressed mother makes her presence felt as she despairingly tries to cope with the gruesome twosome. This is an uplifting and humorous tale of a passage through life. It is also a warning to teachers everywhere. THIS BOOK WAS DELIBERATELY WRITTEN IN EBOOK FORMAT, WITHOUT CHAPTERS, IN CHRONOLOGICAL SEQUENCE.
Published: May 11, 2012
ISBN: ISBN-10: 1467961639 ISBN-13: 978