A Hop, Skip and a Jump is published.

Amazon was sort of slow last night, and I was delayed posting it since I was given an unexpected opportunity after supper to take everything out from under the kitchen sink and tear apart the plumbing.
This is the 4th Family Law book with many of the characters from the April series. I’m working on April #10 which will continue closing the century gap between the series. And no, I have no idea when it will be available.


45 Responses to A Hop, Skip and a Jump is published.

  1. Joyce August 24, 2017 at 8:53 am #

    Hooray! THANK YOU!

  2. Mike M August 24, 2017 at 9:30 am #

    Thank you very much!

  3. Matthew Malkin August 24, 2017 at 10:43 am #

    Wooooo. Yeaaahh. Thanks. I have been looking forward to this for a while.

  4. Mac August 24, 2017 at 10:55 am #

    There was a formatting error in the chapter headings that showed up in the ‘Look Inside’ preview. It should be fixed now. I’ve gotten one typo report. So instead of do one place. If you see more please tell me. – Mac’

  5. merr August 24, 2017 at 4:59 pm #

    Hip hip haray. ☺

  6. aimee August 24, 2017 at 5:50 pm #

    cool reading now.

  7. Mike M August 24, 2017 at 9:07 pm #


    As always this was an outstanding entry in in the Family Law series. Thanks so much for writing such compelling science fiction.

  8. James Crutchley August 24, 2017 at 11:28 pm #

    OMG that was an awesome ebook! Read it and skipped raid to finish. (World of warcraft dungeon thingie) I told my Raid lead i skipped to read your book and he said no excuse and asked what book i read? I told him latest Mackey chandler book and he said he understood and asked if april was in it? I was shocked and asked if he read any of your books. He said yes LOL.

    • Mac August 25, 2017 at 3:53 pm #

      Wow….I have sufficient density of fans they find each other? What are the odds?

  9. Eric August 25, 2017 at 12:59 am #

    Another excellent book Mac. Book read, review up. Plus a nice #1 Amazon flag. Congratulations!

    • Mac August 25, 2017 at 3:51 pm #

      Thanks. I really appreciate reviews, and a number of people have pointed out typos.

  10. Brent August 25, 2017 at 11:55 am #

    Thanks Mac! Sorry to hear of the unfortunate opportunity to explore the plumbing… Seems to be the current period’s version of filter cleaning duty. Has to be done, but you hate being the one stuck with doing it!

    • Mac August 25, 2017 at 3:51 pm #

      At least I am a real plumber so I know what to do.

  11. John August 25, 2017 at 8:27 pm #

    You need better alpha and beta readers focused on continuity.
    Lee “know[s] the stuff anybody needs to know, like algebras, trig, geometries, topography, calculus, statistics, N-space drive geometry and second generation special relativity, vector calculus, practical quantum mechanics, theory of astro-navigation and basic chemistry.”
    Any chance of getting in?

    • Mac August 26, 2017 at 9:49 am #

      Say more about this. It’s a problem?

      • John August 26, 2017 at 1:21 pm #

        the problem is in the first book she says she understands each of the scientific fields to understand jump drives, and in this book she says she does not understand them.
        While talking to the Blackwater guy she might have exaggerated a bit and not know the full details of the jump drive, but if she understands the drive geometry, quantum mechanics, the vectors, and how that results to astrogation, she understands enough of at least the concepts to build a drone which could jump out. While she might not understand enough to maintain quantum integrity and appear safely on the other side, that was apparently easy enough for the Brazilians to accomplish.
        To say nothing of the other math skills she now claims not to have.
        While she could pass it off in the future as not having enough time to figure out the issues caused by the oversimplification due to removing gravity from the equations, she would still have said she didn’t understand it to several people, an exaggeration if not outright lie, which (due to her views on lying) does not seem to be in character at all

        • Eric August 26, 2017 at 11:38 pm #

          I don’t know. To me it sounded like she knows all of the things needed to RUN a drive, not that she understands the theory behind how it works. It’s one thing to understand how a car moves you down the road and that it’s internal combustion and the rules of the road and how to navigate. That doesn’t mean you have the knowledge and ability to build a car.

          Sidenote: Thanks for continuing to include “The Last Part”. I know I whined about it being missing from A9.

          • Mac August 29, 2017 at 10:39 am #

            Yeah it depends on your viewpoint. I know enough to build a car from scratch. From casting the engine block on up. I couldn’t make rubber tires, but I could plastic injection mold a flexible wheel with a soft shoe tire on it that would serve the same purpose. The same with windows – clear plastic as I doubt I could form glass. It would have a magneto likely for ignition. But I do know all the theory. Could make a differential and tranny too.

  12. Eric August 26, 2017 at 12:38 am #

    As entertaining a read as I have come to expect from your books… my compliments on the work for what it is worth, I look forward to the next book.

  13. Rob Gritton August 29, 2017 at 4:40 pm #

    Loved the book! There is only one thing that I missed…no mention of the gravity plate the caterpillars traded to the little fleet in book 3 (unless I’m not recalling it correctly…). Correct me if I’m wrong, but that seemed like a different technology… Plus, in book 3 there were a few snippets from the caterpillar point of view…those were fascinating. Need more please, writing the truly alien is a challenge, but it’s so rewarding for the reader. Thanks again and I look forward to your next book in this or the April series.

    • Mac August 29, 2017 at 8:05 pm #

      The gravity plates were from the Badgers. I don’t have time to look right now but I think they were looking to get help understanding them. Yeah – alien viewpoints take a lot of thought. I’m going to finish up a stand alone book or perhaps two before I do another in the series.

      • Tim August 30, 2017 at 12:44 am #

        The caterpillars gave them an upgraded version of the gravity plate when they were trading. As it shows in the quote.

        “Very well, when they withdraw we’ll grab the gold and the gravity plate replacement. I hope they gave us the upgrade version and not just a little better plate of the same sort we have.”

        Chandler, Mackey. The Long Voyage of the Little Fleet (Family Law Book 2) (Kindle Locations 6895-6897). Mackey Chandler. Kindle Edition.

        • Mac August 31, 2017 at 8:16 pm #

          Thanks. Story has gotten so long and complex I have to review a lot to write more.

          • Tim August 31, 2017 at 9:13 pm #

            No problem, still a great story.
            One way you could account for this is to add a note in the next book with one of them remarking that they never figured out how to reverse engineer the caterpillars gravity plate.

          • aze September 1, 2017 at 2:04 pm #

            I did not miss the gravity plate at all. Lee was seriously overworked, and they already have working gravity plates. I imagine it is sitting somewhere in storage waiting for qualified and trustworthy engineers. I don’t believe you should give such a project to people with unknown allegiance that might leak your company secrets.

          • Mac September 1, 2017 at 7:27 pm #

            Next book….

  14. Cheryl August 29, 2017 at 10:19 pm #

    When you announced that book 4 was almost out I started rereading all of the April series and then moved on to Family Law. I was about halfway through book two when the book published but just kept on reading so everything would be fresh for book 4. I just finished (and posted a review of course).

    Can I just say I loved it and thank you for a wonderful series.

    • John Leggett September 1, 2017 at 1:35 pm #

      Another way is to have someone remember the caterpillars gravity plates. Among all the other things going on it would be easy to forget trying to figure out the caterpillar tech. It was among the many things they needed to be figured out that they have not gotten around to figuring out. Another way is to get a report from the team working on the caterpillar tech. That says they have either figured out how it works or not whatever the story needs.

  15. Jerry September 1, 2017 at 4:23 pm #

    Loved the book!

    Found what I think is an error. “This gravity altering material … what was it supposed to have been” it has Musical asking Born. But it was developed by the Badgers so how would Born know? I think the names have been reversed.

    You mentioned before how difficult it is to keep the story consistent. Writing two series separated by a hundred years is going to make that very difficult. Also if you write another April book we know that she, Heather, Jeff, Gunny, Dakota, etc. can not die because they are alive in book 4 of Family Law.

    • Mac September 1, 2017 at 7:29 pm #

      Yep – looked at it and I got them reversed. Uploaded a correction to Amazon. Thanks.

  16. Jim Hill September 2, 2017 at 7:29 pm #

    Just caught that this got released. Getting it now.

    Problem in the Amazon description though…

    “advanced medial treatments” is missing the ‘c’ in ‘medical’.

    • Mac September 2, 2017 at 7:41 pm #

      Beats head on desk…Thank You.

  17. Dan McRae September 3, 2017 at 10:40 am #

    Just finished it. Very enjoyable, especially the one or two line “life lessons.” More, please.

  18. John September 4, 2017 at 9:28 pm #

    Also with April setting up the self sustaining Intel agency that already is set up to resell information, how come Jeff and Heather have to rework theirs? Do they have a separate group? Did the sales portion fall apart when they moved beyond Earth? Did Chen and Tetsuo move on and it fell apart?

    • Mac September 5, 2017 at 8:26 pm #

      April has always had her own sources.

  19. lon September 8, 2017 at 9:42 pm #

    great read, when can we plan on a family law 5????

    • Mac September 9, 2017 at 10:03 am #

      MAYBE later next year. I’ve started April #10 but I have a stand alone to finish first – maybe two. I’ve posted 3 snippets of it. Not sure I want to post another. Maybe April 10 instead.

  20. Colleen September 14, 2017 at 1:07 am #

    I jumped up and down waving my hands in the air when I saw the new book in Family Law Series was available. I read it overnight and thoroughly enjoyed where the story line traveled to in distance and life lessons. I like the progression of the characters and am awestruck at your brilliance in both the April and Family Law series.
    I eagerly consume any thing you have written and tell others who love a good tale all about your books.

  21. Zan Lynx October 2, 2017 at 1:38 am #

    This is maybe a little bit of a spoiler so close your eyes if you haven’t read it yet. 🙂

    I was thinking to myself that Central’s ship hanger goes down. Wayyyy down.

    Does it go all the way down to the center of the Moon? Because I was thinking, if Central’s jump drive needs a somewhat low gravity area, and I’m not sure about that (could one of their ship’s jump directly from a landing pad on a planet?). But if they do need a low gravity area, the center of the Moon may just count. Which would mean they could take their elevator all the way down and jump out. Which would be a cool way to mess with people. They’d see you arrive but never figure out how you left!

  22. Terry Dean November 16, 2017 at 12:32 am #

    Loved the book (Family Law #4). You have now set up three speed classes of starships. The electromagnetic jump drive which most space civilizations have (Humans, Badgers, Bills, Biters). The electromagnetic drive with grav plates to protect the crew which the Caterpillars and Centaurs have (I assume). And the gravity jump drive that Central has, which is the fastest.

    I can see Lee and Gordon selling the Fargoners the improved gravy plates and also using them for their own next generation of DSEs and Destroyers. But I expect Lee to be disappointed if they are unable to develop this in time to incorporate into her new diplomatic speedster that she is having built.

    The gravity drive will take years for High Hopes Exploration Association to bring into common use, unless The Three help. And even then I don’t think they will release it generally, but use it sparingly for special cases, such as a Fast Response Task Force (Lee’s enforcement hammer). And maybe her yacht.

    • Mac November 18, 2017 at 9:15 pm #

      Good analysis. We’ll see who gets pushed to do what…

    • Terry Dean November 19, 2017 at 7:29 pm #

      One thing needed for Derfhome to build these improved ships: an orbiting shipyard. It is also needed for the increased traffic to and from Badger/Bill space. Such a long trip without way stations means the arriving ships will need maintenance. Perhaps several of the other clans will get involved in such a project. Red Tree cannot be the only Derf clan interested in space.

      Also I cannot wait to see if Derfhome or Providence gets the first space station in human space with grav plates such as Far Away(Badger) station.

      Looking forward to the next book. And I am now done with my (perhaps unwelcome) predictions until I see what happens then. I hope that the wait is short.

      • Mac November 20, 2017 at 8:48 pm #

        I’m at 102kwords on the stand alone. After I finish it I’ll go back to April 10.

  23. Rifat February 26, 2020 at 4:18 am #

    I like your blog, thanks for sharing. I love this information you shared with us. I am waiting for your next post. Keep it up.

    • Mac February 26, 2020 at 7:29 am #

      Thanks. I realize it is very slow paced and only concerns itself with my books. I don’t feel comfortable to use it as a platform to talk about current events or how to make biscuits.

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