Kobo Book Store

Honor Above All is now available at Kobo Books.
For current special, use code AUGUST35


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Upcoming Events

2015 Printers Row Lit Fest

June 6th
Allium Press Booth
Book Signing: 1:00 to 3:00pm

June 7th
Allium Press Booth
Book Signing: 12:00 – 4:00pm

Historical Novel Society Conference

June 26 – 28
I will be attending this conference (they gave me a great review).
Any Midwesterner living in CO….stop on by!

Also… Honor Above All is now available at Vroman’s Book Store. http://www.vromansbookstore.com

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Just received this note from a reader. Totally surprised!

Ms.  Bard-Collins

A few minutes ago I finished reading Honor Above All.  I enjoyed every line. When a novel can take you away on a mind trip, that you get so wrapped up in it you don’t realize you are reading at all … then that is the mark of a great Author. You accomplished that. Look forward to your next novel.


Charlie down in North Carolina

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The Midwest Book Review

Small Press Bookwatch
February 2015

“Honor Above All” is an historical novel embedded throughout with meticulously accurate details that bring early 1880s Chicago to life as a backdrop to a fascinating and engaging mystery/suspense story. Exceptionally entertaining from beginning to end, “Honor Above All” is very highly recommended for personal reading lists and community library collections. It should be noted that “Honor Above All” is also available in a Kindle edition.

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Love is Murder Conference 2/7/2015

Honor Above All has been nominated Best First Novel!

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Historical Novels Review

Chicago history enthusiasts will thoroughly enjoy Honor Above All. Set in 1882, it showcases the city eleven years post-fire when architects Adler & Sullivan and Burnham & Root were rethinking its skyline. Garrett Lyons, a Pinkerton detective and ex-Army man, returns to the city with the body of his murdered partner. Determined to avenge his death, he finds himself unwelcome at Pinkertons; Allan Pinkerton has had a heart attack, and his son Bill has his own agenda. Lyons strikes off on his own, accepting solace from Army widow Charlotte Reid, who runs the most popular poker game in town; help from his friend Louis Sullivan; and room and board, as well as oversight of a doomed building project, from his former commanding officer, General Stannard.

Full disclosure: I work as a librarian at the Chicago History Museum, so Chicago history is my business. Bard-Collins gets everything right, from the opulence of the large hotels to the dustiness and grit of the streets. The inclusion of a disgraced state senator returning to public life after imprisonment feels like a nod to Chicago’s long history of political corruption. The book is packed with various aspects of unsavory deeds in 19th-century Chicago – vandalism on a building site, counterfeit government bonds, and Army cover-ups. At times, it felt as though a lot of plot lines were juggled, but in the end, I realized that they were skillfully woven together. And, what came through was a zest and appreciation for Chicago, undimmed by the corruption and greed of some characters. This is Bard-Collins’ first book, and I hope the first in a series. I’d love to see Lyons, Reid, Sullivan, et al., again.


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“The Patrol”, by J Bard-Collins

Honor Above All started with a short story titled, “The Patrol”. It was published
in a now out of print magazine, Louis L’Amour Western Fiction.

Download “The Patrol”, by J. Bard-Collins

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Library Journal Review

Civil War veteran Garrett Lyons works as a Pinkerton agent. But after his partner Sam Wilkerson was fatally ambushed in St. Louis, Garrett returns the body to Chicago and vows to find the killer. With a desire to continue investigating the situations involving counterfeit bonds that got Sam killed, Garrett quits the agency. General Stannard, Garrett’s former commanding officer, hands him a bundle of counterfeit money, and Garrett believes the two cases are connected. Along with a rising young architect named Louis Sullivan, with whom he plays poker, Garrett investigates. VERDICT: This debut is almost as much an architectural history as it is a mystery. The author details the construction of the first modern skyscrapers that transformed 1880s Chicago from a backwater crossroads into an urban giant. Garrett is a likeable sleuth, and the supporting characters are equally appealing and colorful; Louis Sullivan is charming, and Garrett’s romantic interest, Charlotte Reid, runs high-stakes poker games. Fans of Walter Satterthwait’s mysteries featuring Pinkerton agents Jane Turner and Phil Beaumont will enjoy this series launch.

Library Journal
November 1, 2014

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Honor Above All has been published!

My new book, Honor Above All has been published by Allium Press! You can buy it on Amazon for Kindle or in Paperback here http://www.amazon.com/Honor-Above-All-J-Bard-Collins/dp/0989053571.

Here’s what Kircus Reviews has to say:
“Bard-Collins’ detailed knowledge of building, architecture and Chicago history forms a solid base for a debut showcasing a hero reminiscent of Sam Spade.”

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What Price Honor? Is now… Honor Above All

Let’s face it – I have virtually lived with the book title, What Price Honor for nearly ten years. We’ve been through it all together, plotting, character, good writing days and bad ones. The title became part of me, like a pair of comfortable shoes, or a favorite sweater. So…it came as a shock, right out of the blue…when Emily Victorson my publisher at Allium Press suggested, let’s say strongly suggested I find another title for the book”.
Evidently there is another scifi book with the same title.

I felt lost. After much discussion among my immediate family as well as my writing critique group, the final choice was Honor Above All. I am pleased with it. And I think we are getting used to one another.

Titles are important. They convey to the potential reader something about this book. It is more than just a mystery. This is a story about our hero, Garrett Lyons, who always tries to do the right thing. And, of course, has to abide by the consequences.
Honor Above All…..yes we are getting used to one another.

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