Craig Vann is the proud father of three strapping lads who thankfully take after their mother, Audrey, in the looks department. He is blessed to live in beautiful Vancouver, Canada, with its vibrant literary community. Craig retired in 2015. He has always had an interest in words and history. He is Gramps to two whose imaginations are already blossoming.
Thanks to the author’s son, Clark Van Alstyne, who penciled the portrait of the author and designed the covers for the Second Edition of "A Tale of Two Time Travellers" and "Southumb Pride".
Books (available at Amazon or on your Kindle)
Ticking: A Tale of Two Time Travellers (2018)
Ticking: Finding Jesus (2021)
Chrononauts Skypilot and Zachary journey with Alim to ancient Galilee in search of Jesus Christ to prove his existence. And to confirm his family lineage; they carry a DNA kit, to try to get a sample. An overwhelming task by itself, but they may have underestimated the influence of the Roman Empire at that time.
Zachary is kidnapped by the Roman Legion and forced to become a trainee, a tirone. He learns how hard, and how fleeting, life can be for a soldier; a hard life, but one that many made by choice.
Kaleidoscopic, the story is set on a background of sea blue and blood red, the latter being the colour of Mars, the Roman God of War. Throw in the oily silver of tilapia, or St. Peter’s fish, taken from the Sea of Galilee and the rich brown of garum and you have the basic palette used to paint the story.
The story seems to fit with recent global events. The tragedy of the pandemic may be offset, somewhat, by a healing process that includes a viral appreciation of the goodness in people and life's fragile essence. And, perhaps of a higher being.
Will the chrononauts meet Jesus? Will they get a sample of his DNA? Will they rescue Zac from the clutches of the Roman Legion? And eww…did they really wash their clothes in urine?
Ticking: Southumb Pride (2022)
The fourth adventure of chrononauts Skypilot Sewell and Zachary Burling finds them returning to Southumbria, a world that resembles our world in the late 1800’s, with a whirring steampunk vibe. This vibe includes the ticking of clocks, the clicking of gears, the sheen of burnished metal, the softness of velvet, and steamy goggles everywhere. This time, Sky's Aunt Beatrice joins them, leaving a nervous Alim in charge in her basement laboratory.
They land in the middle of a civil war, and reconnect with their friend Nelly Lovelock, the captain of a privateer airship and leader of the rebellion. Nelly, mysterious and charismatic, convinces Bea to join her on a trip into the future; the future of Southumbria! Beatrice finds much there; including a part of herself.
They also reconnect with Sam Richter, the spy who decided to remain in Southumbria on their previous trip there. Sam had stayed to be with his new bride, Tabitha Tremaine. Tabitha is expecting their first child. But she is kidnapped as a victim of the war. Sam is desperate to find her.
Copies available at these fine locations...
Ticking: A Tale of Two Time Travellers
306 pages, Black & White, 6 x 9 inches
The Hawking Sequence
432 pages (including hand-drawn map), Black & White, 6 x 9
309 pages (including hand-drawn map) Black & White, 6 x 9
432 pages, Black & White, 6 x 9
Historical action and adventure
Eighteenth century England
Inter-dimensional time travel
Roman marching camps
Inter-dimensional future war
A Tale of Two Time Travellers
Karen B.: A MUST READ BOOK! TICKING captured and held my attention from beginning to end. I am really looking forward to TICKING II: The Hawking Sequence to discover what adventures are in store for Sky and Zac.
Sue K.: The first thing that connected me to this novel was the beautiful, poetic prose. This novel was not only highly entertaining (and sometimes suspenseful), but it was also very informative. Craig blended an astounding amount of research with a solid, fictitious premise. The title, Ticking, created a thread that wove all parts of the story together. I have to admit that I chuckled at the familiar names: Westover, Pickett, Sewell, among others! Can’t wait for your next one!
Sheila W.: Thoroughly enjoyed your book. Liked all the twists and turns that you threw in. Looking forward to the next one. I have ordered 4 more (from Indigo) for my Book Club. We would love you to come and discuss it (soon). Keep writing.
Cam A.: I love time travel books, especially if they engage me in the period (or periods) visited. Craig Vann does this masterfully in his story for two visitors to the year 1766, England. He adds such vivid details of what daily life - sights, sounds, events, social mores, societal values, ranging the spectrum from aristocracy to the lowly poor and destitute. He even throws in some science, which appealed to the techie in me. The story moves at a pace that keeps you turning pages and saying OK - 'one more chapter before ...' (whatever) For a good read, check this one out!
Doug P.: Craig, I recently read your book. A great read and am looking forward to the sequel. Lots of research, a great job. Congratulations.
[From Amazon Reviews, Kindle Edition] George J.: A superb time travel novel -- Young Skypilot is sent fleeing into the African night jungle by his Missionary parents as their camp is attacked. Sky's inventor aunt sends Sky and his friend Zac (carrying modern aids) back to 1766 in an inaugural run of a time travel device. Interesting and memorable characters are introduced as Sky and Zac spend their 39-day adventure in 1766. There's a lot of historical info that's been capably researched by the author to give the reader a very satisfying journey back in time. The ending is a surprise as well.
This book is suitable for the whole family, with no excessive violence, language or suggestive situations to make parents uncomfortable. I would recommend for the entire family. You'll love it! The author promises more. I'm excited already!
Sheila F.: Our English friends loved your book - high praise! Let us know when the next one comes out.
Miriam H. : I finished your first book. Enjoyed every page while learning some history as well.
Tim D. : Wow wow wow. Just finished Ticking and u may have created a diehard reader out of me. First of all; very impressed with the story and detail. A true work of art; I was riveted to the story and really felt I was watching a movie as I read. Very much enjoyed it. Bring on The Hawking Sequence! Can’t wait; the preview is a serious tease.
Gerry S: With the dramatic opening, we now have a glimpse of our main character. It would have been a natural transition and a focus for the reader as Sky developed in his role of time traveller. [It would have been good to] more fully develop Sky’s character but retain the story line and all the interesting players and events. Introducing more reflection related to his parent's demise, success achieved by mistakes or good luck as well as fear and mental fatigue would have additional appeal. The well-researched story was told in an entertaining manner with crispness to the writing and a sense of authenticity. Occasionally, sentences became lengthy and that crispness was momentarily lost. The Epilogue was a wonderful capper. Perhaps a Foreword might have been appropriate to present your thoughts about Time Travel and its place in literature.
Wally R.: I thoroughly enjoyed the travels and travails of Sky and Zac, all the wonderful historical references and the twist at the end. You indeed have a talent for writing and capturing the attention of your reader. I plan to continue reading the next book in the series very soon.
The Hawking Sequence...
[From a Beta Reader after she had made suggestions): So good to hear how you address changes. Being a writer is such an amazing craft. It's funny how things from the book pop into my mind from time to time. Demonstrates that I really connected with it. Waiting for your next one now.
Cam A.: It was amazing. Most enjoyable read. Imagination unbounded is on display. A colourful romp in time and space, if you catch my gravitas. Is there a best book list for reading during quarantine - this one gets you out of the house and sailing the skies. Well done Craig, can't wait to read the next. Keep those fingers flyin'
Brenda M.: Loved both books! Excellent reads. Can hardly wait to see where Sky and Zachary end up next and the adventures they will have! I highly recommend both books and am so looking forward to Book 3.....
5.0 out of 5 stars (reviewed June 2020) Wow! Great escapism! Craig Vann has done it again! Great story. It doesn’t matter if you haven’t read his first book, this stands alone. You’re missing a treat if you haven’t. I can’t wait to see if we’ll be lucky enough to get a third. Please keep writing Mr. Vann!
Amazon customer reviews say..."4.3 out of 5 stars"
Winston L. :There was a point in "Finding Jesus" that had a profound impact on me. That’s when I know I am deeply involved in a book.
Tim D.: I've never been a reader but your writing and books captivate me. I was lost in the story, unable to put it down. You're turning me into a reader at the ripe old age of 64! Great detail, great storyline. I found myself fixated on it through the whole book. Can't wait to start "Southumb Pride".
George J.: I just finished the book. Fantastic read! Can’t wait for further adventures with Sky and Zac (and maybe others?)
Tim D.: I'm down to the last 40 pages, but I'm purposefully dragging my heels because I'm going to have to wait for Book 5! I love how "Southumb Pride" ties in with "The Hawking Sequence", creating a continuum of all four books. I am captivated by your books.
Brenda M.: Loved this book! A great read…couldn’t put it down….had to see how it ended! Looking forward to reading more adventures about Sky Pilot, Zachary and of course Aunt Bea!!!