Soapbox Spotlight: Ahmad Taylor

Thanks for joining us!  Today’s guest is Ahmad Taylor, a 36 year old budding sci-fi thriller author and former NYC police officer from Brookly, NY.  Ahmad gave me the honor of reviewing his  bestselling, award-winning debut novel, Dark Side of the Moon, which is also pending a sequel some time this fall.  Welcome, Ahmad!

Can you tell us about your latest work, the sequel Darker Side of the Moon?

In Darker Side of the Moon, former agent Derrick Thomas’s journey to save his family and uncover the truth about a secret government program using violent criminals for slave labor continues. Derrick awakens at a secret government facility on the surface of the Moon in more trouble than he could have ever imagined. He finds himself in the middle of a prisoner revolt and his family still missing and feared dead; oh, and the least of his problems is his missing left hand. After rescuing the hostages of the lunar site, Derrick follows a lead that takes him back to Earth to track down his family and attempt to take down the leader of ARCA, the clandestine government agency which has been performing unconscionable experiments on unwitting test subjects for more than 40 years.

Wow, that sounds exciting!  Okay, so if your book became a movie, who do you see playing your main characters?

From page one of DSOM, I always imagined the two main characters, Derrick and Jeanie Thomas, being played by Will Smith and Paula Patton. Just a combo I think would really work on screen.

What projects can we expect from you in the future?

While there is a third book in the Dark Side series, I plan to take a break from [that] for a moment and work on a few individual works:

• Crime novel about a bank heist gone awry;
• Suspense/Thriller about a futuristic society where people use clones to commit horrific crimes with total legal impunity, until…
• Drama about a vampire who shows readers the sad irony of being immortal.

Those are just a few of the tales I have in my pipeline. I have a few more, including a mega series that will probably take me the better part of a decade to construct.

That’s a pretty full plate.  Do you have any advice for other writers?

Determine whether you can truly do this for the rest of your life. It is such a great rush creating something new and original, and while the dream of being a famous and successful author producing quality literature seems very enticing, the reality is that there are few to no overnight successes in the literary arena, and if you don’t have the intestinal fortitude to plug away during the hard times, then you will find this a hard path to follow.

That being said, if you truly love writing, don’t let anyone or anything stand in your way. There is no greater satisfaction than proving yourself worthy and your critics wrong.

 RJS Book Review
Dark Side of the Moon is about Derrick Thomas, a 28-year-old government agent, who finds himself caught up in a whirlwind mystery of intrigue and covert, top-secret intel–only to find that his father and sister are somehow dangling at the center of it.  This book has all the things you love about a great sci-fi story: futuristic weapons, engaging fight scenes, government cover-ups and an extensive list of dead bodies.  The twists and turns this novel takes are inventive and intricate as the plot builds from one discovery to the next.
But Dark Side doesn’t open this strong.  I was often confused by the flashbacks and their relevance, and Taylor takes awhile (almost a hundred pages) to bring the reader to the real plot of the story.  There was quite a bit of jumping around in the opening chapters of the novel, and I had trouble getting my footing in the plot lines because of it.
Don’t let that discourage you, though; once Dark Side picks up, it doesn’t let go.  And the ending delivers a great big WTF, leaving you panting for the pending sequel.

3.5/5 suns: The first hundred pages almost killed it for me, but I’m glad I persevered.

You can find Ahmad at the following links:

Twitter: @AhmadDarkside
Darkside Blog:

You can find Ahmad’s book(s) at the following links:



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