DEAD MAN’S DEBT is now available on Amazon!!

DEAD MAN’S DEBT is now live on Amazon!

Dead Mans Debt ebook


Nobody expected the war to last three hours, let alone three years. The star system of Archangel holds the line against invading corporate fleets, but a quarter of its territory is already lost. The navy can’t hang on much longer. Faced with this grim truth, Archangel’s leaders shift their strategy to diplomacy and espionage. For both arenas, they call upon a reluctant weapon: a frontline grunt named Tanner Malone.

These days, Tanner doesn’t aspire to win the war. He merely wants to survive it. Now he’ll be thrust into the center of events once again, pulled back and forth from covert missions to the media spotlight. Yet with every battle, he gets closer to the old enemy hidden in the shadows, and the ugly truth about the war that could unravel everything Archangel might hope to win.


The eBook is out ahead of the other versions largely because I didn’t want to keep people waiting. The paperback and Audible versions are still in the works, and I’ll be sure to let everyone know when they’re available (plus LIFE IN SHADOWS on Audible drops next week!).

THANK YOU SO MUCH for keeping me going on this! I can’t tell you how excited I am to have this novel out, and I only hope that you readers enjoy it as much as you have liked the previous installments.

PLEASE LEAVE A REVIEW if you can! Even short reviews make a HUGE difference when they start adding up. This is one of the best ways to support authors and to make sure they keep them producing the stories you want. The reviews I’ve gotten so far have meant the world to me, and the reception of these books has made a tremendous difference in my life. Never think your reviews don’t matter; they add up like you wouldn’t believe.

Thanks again, and I hope you enjoy!

68 thoughts on “DEAD MAN’S DEBT is now available on Amazon!!

  1. McDiel

    You probably got a rough idea how many times I have checked the amazon page and your blog in these last days, hoping that I’ll see a sign that it’s up yet. I mean, you certainly got favourite authors yourself, thus can understand. And now it’s finally here! … oh dear, wonder if I’ll be getting any sleep.

    1. Elliott Kay Post author

      I don’t want to say no, but I don’t know when that might be. Right now I’m giving this a shot at being Kindle/Amazon-exclusive. That’s a three-month commitment. After that, I’m going to consider going “wide” with distribution or keeping it that way.

      This is something I resisted for a long time, as I didn’t want to punish people who don’t have Kindles. As the software spread so people could put Kindle reader programs on their tablets, phones, etc, I felt less bad about that, and the truth is that so far I hit far more readers this way. If you look back at the numbers on my “Is That a Lot?” post, it turns out I’ve sold a few hundred copies of any given book via Smashwords (which spreads the book out to multiple vendors), which is a tiny trickle compared to Amazon. In the first month of going exclusive & having titles on Kindle Unlimited with the Good Intentions line, I’d already equaled whatever Smashwords had done for me.

      So the honest answer is “We’ll see,” but it’s going to be a few months at least. I’m truly sorry if that’s a disappointment. There were good arguments to be made for both approaches.

      1. Todd

        Thank you for your reply. I am one of those holdouts that don’t even have a smart phone, tablet, reader, or a computer smaller than a laptop. Almost all your works I have in both pdf and print including both versions of Poor Man’s Fight and Rich man’s War. For me, print is my preferred method of reading (I like the feel of solid books, easier on eyes, and cheaper to fix if you fall asleep with one in the tub).

        1. Elliott Kay Post author

          Gotcha. There WILL be a paperback version. It’s in the works now. I’ve already received notice that a physical proof is on its way for my approval, so hopefully it’ll be available to order in paperback in just a couple of weeks.

  2. Chris McFadden

    Can’t believe this came out thirteen hours ago and I just now got it. I’ve been checking Amazon everytime I walk past my computer for the past week. I could read it for free with my unlimited subscription, but that would simply not be enough. This is a book I must own, and now I do. I could write a review right now because I know it is going to be great, however I have just barely enough self control to wait until I read it, barely.

  3. G. Sebastian

    Thank you for making my day. It’s 3 am here and I just finished reading.
    Today was one of those days for me: Got an A back on a test, wrote another test – went great, went to a concert and just as I come home from school, my PC tells me that Dead Man’s Debt is online. So I open my Kindle, looking for it, only to find nothing. Back to the PC, Amazon up, frantically searching and YES – there it is.
    Your summary in the previous blog entry is as acurate as advertised, Tanner is kicking ass, taking names and doing “murder-math” in his head (great pun by the way ^^).
    My own summary is a bit shorter, but I hope all your fans will agree with it: Chuck Norris doesn’t have any enemies left, but his new BFF Tanner Malone does. For a time.

    1. Elliott Kay Post author

      Originally, yes. When Skyscape (Amazon’s YA imprint) picked up Poor Man’s Fight and Rich Man’s War, we went through a copy/line edit, and the editor suggested changing it to avoid confusing her with the other “A” names, since they all had some similar interests. I’d heard this suggestion before (after publishing, sadly), and so I went ahead with it. This is literally the only significant change, btw; obviously I’d love it if everyone who read the originals picked up the Skyscape editions, but it’s not like the story changed significantly at all. The wording got tightened up some, but the editors at Skyscape didn’t ask me to change a single part of the story.

      1. PeterM

        Oh, so the name change isn’t indicative of Allison having been replaced by a Red Lectroid who’s been using its pheromone powers to appear like Allison but messed up her name and eventually the pheromones won’t be able to keep people ignoring the mistake? I thought I’d uncovered the plot of the next book in the series.

        1. Daniel

          I like the name Allison better though it was a little weird at first I was like who is this new girl she sounds like Alison. lol other wise great book just like the last two. I look forward to when you get around to the next one.

        2. Dan Turissini

          Wow you totally read my mind. That’s exactly what I thought was going on, and I was on my way to post it, but then I saw your post and I was like “Wooooah….”

  4. Sean

    Again another great book. I wonder what’s in store for Tanner next time. I would love to see his current relationship last longer than all of his previous ones. Whatever happens Tanner did a good job following all the clues in this book. Also when you said some dies I was a little worried but after reading the book it would be better to say a LOT of people die. Either looking forward to the audio book for this and to the next installment of Tanner Malone kicking ass.

  5. Chong Go

    Great book! Just finished it! I’m a bit sleep deprived (your fault!), so perhaps I missed this, SPOILER ALERT

    1. Elliott Kay Post author

      (SPOILERS REMOVED VIA EDIT — I hope that’s not presumptuous of me, feel free to flame me if you deem it appropriate)

      To answer your question in brief: Tanner’s path at the end is a less-than-ideal option, but he knows an ideal resolution simply isn’t going to happen (no rainbows or unicorns available). Yes, things could absolutely go south in the aftermath of the book. It’s intended to be a huge risk and I deliberately left the fallout unresolved for later books…you know, depending on who all got out of this one alive. 🙂

      Feel free to email me at elliottkaybooks at gmail if you want a clearer answer. I’m more than happy to talk about it privately, just not here on the blog. Little soon for spoilers is all. Thank you for putting in the alert, and thank you so much for your interest! Again, sorry if I’m being a control freak here.

      1. Chong Go

        Absolutely no problem at all! And I appreciate the reply. I felt like I had missed something, but wasn’t sure.

      2. nope

        You may want to make it clear that there are more books planned (if I’m understanding you right, at least). I came out of Dead Man’s Debt with a strong impression that the series was done.

        1. Elliott Kay Post author

          There’s a note at the very, very end (on the “About the Author” page). I know a lot of people will skip right by that, but at the same time, it’s not like I have a projected date for the next installment. Right now I’m working on Book Three for my UF series.

          I have a good chunk of starting material for an Alicia Wong & Gunny Janeka novel already written, too (set between Rich Man’s War and Dead Man’s Debt), but again, not sure when that will be out. Juggling priorities at this point.

  6. Rehcra

    I thought you went a little over the top re-emphasizing the name change lol. Boy was I wrong. And this whole book felt like a conclusion so I was definitely glad to see that sentence at the end.

    I have a few questions.

    1. Since its the end of the Arch are you going to change the naming theme? Good time for a book like you suggested with a different lead character/s if you are.

    2. I feel like UF is provably Good Intentions but because that seems illogical what does UF stand for?

    3.You ended so many plot arches I was wondering if you have a special way of keeping track of them all? The only thing I could come up with that probably won’t happen in the future is [Edited for Potential Spoiler]

    1. Elliott Kay Post author

      1. Probably. “Rich man’s war, poor man’s fight” was a protest cry during the Civil War (and later wars), so that worked out…and to be honest, when I started all this I didn’t realize I’d need three titles. It’s not like there’s a third line to that protest slogan, so that was a little tough to work out! Honestly, I’m pretty sure Lee Moyer (my cover artist) came up with that one. Anyway, yeah, I’m probably going to loosen up the naming convention for a later book, though I don’t know how much. It’d be good to keep the same basic title layout to keep the line design of the covers consistent, so we’ll see.

      2. UF = Urban Fantasy.
      Although mine’s pretty smutty, and a friend pointed out that “SMutty Urban Fantasy” works as “SMURF,” so I often call them my Smurf books.

      3. Other than reading and/or reviewing the books frequently? No, no particular technique. I’m not huge on outlines. I use them sometimes, but only when I’m trying to work out pacing or when I’m having trouble pushing myself through a given chapter. As for your question for the future…I don’t know if that’ll happen or not. I’d love it for the sake of humor value, but I don’t have a specific plan for it. Yet.

  7. Mo

    So, I just read dead man’s sent, and I loved it. The only thing that’s bugging me is who is Madelyn Carter? She’s written into the story like we’re supposed to know her, but if it’s who I’m thinking of, her name was Allison in the first book. May want to look into that if that’s an error your editors didn’t catch.

    1. Elliott Kay Post author

      Madelyn = Allison. It’s in the cast list.
      Long story short: when Skyscape (Amazon) picked up PMF & RMW, the copy editor suggested changing Allison’s name to avoid having too many “A” names in similar interests, which was a thing I’d heard readers say was confusing before. I went with the suggestion.
      There are NO other significant editorial changes to the first two books. We did copy edits to clean up a few things, but Skyscape wanted the books as they were.

      1. Tom

        So the page count jumping from ~360 to 500 pages for the revised editions of the first two books is mostly formatting?

          1. Tom

            So, I just finished rereading the first two books (the Skyscape Eds.) and then went ahead and read the third book. You had me worried towards the end of the book. I thought you were going to kill off Malone, but yet again he pulls his butt out of the fire. Loved it. Good job.

            But there is a problem. The only problem with marathoning the books, I want to read book four, right now. XD

  8. Rehcra

    Thanks for the answers. Sorry about the spoilerish comment, I just hadn’t seen it in that light for obvious reasons, but you shouldn’t have to worry about anything of the sort right after a book release so sorry again.

    1. So a reference to the individual first followed by the conflict they are “responsible for/owner of”. That leaves some interesting title possiblities for your Alicia and Jeneka story.

    2.Seems obvious now.

    3. Impressive; and good to know.

    1. Elliott Kay Post author

      Workin’ on it! Probably gonna be a while before I have anything close to a projection on when it’ll be done. Been a bit distracted from that for the last couple weeks with the release work for DMD, but I’ve put in some writing on it every day for the last few.

  9. Amarus

    So I just finished Rich Man’s War, holy cow was that spectacular! Seriously could not give it high enough praise. I grew up playing Decent: Freespace and Freespace 2 and when you were talking about main guns all I could see were beam cannons all over the place, it was great! I was surprised how much time was spent in each fight but I gotta say I didn’t feel like you over used anything, nor did I feel like I was missing out on something any of the characters were feeling, you have an excellent way of vac suiting us in with the team, you really get a feel for whats happening on the ground. Not gonna lie, personal favorite character is Admiral Yeoh, every time she shows up I smile and know that something important is about to happen, she is like your tool for character development, but not only that she is just super cool. From her role with tanner at the presidents address in Poor Man’s Fight (which I thought was hilariously awesome) to her counseling him on his ‘career’ in Rich Man’s War, she is always someone I am happy to see.

    So question…any word on when this is coming to audible and will Mr. Pabon be narrating still? I think he does a magnificent job =D

      1. Amarus

        Thanks so much for the heads up, I’m excited to ‘read’ it. In the meantime Life In Shadows has me enraptured =D

  10. andy

    thats awesome do you know when it will come out on audible as my partner is blind and we like to read this series toghether

    1. Elliott Kay Post author

      Thank you! I don’t know when Audible’s edition will be done. They’re hoping to have it out in a month or two, but I haven’t gotten a release date or anything yet. All I can say is that we’ve signed the contracts and I’ve been notified it’s in the pipeline. I’ll definitely announce here and on my notifications list when it’s out.

      Also: Love your deviant art page! You’ve got some really nice work in there!

  11. Erik

    I really enjoyed the book. It felt stronger than book 2 and had a a good finish. I’m already dreading the long wait until book 4..
    My one gripe: Mrs. Rambo! Seriously?!

    1. Elliott Kay Post author

      HEY. That’s RAMBEAU. Yeah, the gag is there, but the homage is for Monica Rambeau, one of my favorite Avengers. I’d just started reading when she joined the team.

  12. christopher

    Elliott i did manage to download Dead Man’s Debt while on vacation. Excellent!!! you pulled together many divergent story lines to make a excellent ending. and left plenty of future story lines to be developed. I’m glad to see Tanner has a love life and all the other characters also. Now I have to wait for good intentions 3. Someone posted a line about the worst thing about finishing a new chapter or book is the wait for the next one. I’ve always said you have more writing talent in your little finger than i have in my whole body. Glad to see you proved me right. One question though at the very end when the shuttle door opens and Tanner see’s an ensign with a familiar face and a smile was that supposed to be Alison/Madelyn? If so wasn’t she a Lieutenant? Again Excellent book!!! Can’t wait for the next one. Chris

    1. Elliott Kay Post author

      D’oh! Yeah, that’s supposed to be Madelyn, and therefore a lieutenant, not an ensign. Have to fix that and reload the ebook text. Thank you for the catch!

      Glad you enjoyed it!

  13. Ryan

    Just one question. Towards the end there is a guy named Overton guarding an exterior hatch. Given what happens afterwards is that a pun about breaking out of the Overton window or am I reading waaaay too deep on that?

      1. Rehcra

        The intention of the accused is irrelevant to the validity of the pun. Credit (from hence forth refered to as citation) may be acquired at any time yet can not be legally recommended due to the citation’s most probable negative net gain result.

  14. Ben

    This is one of the strongest series I’ve read in a while. Can’t wait to read more of Tanner’s story.

  15. Ginger Booth

    Just got Dead Man’s Debt, and loving it like the others! Formatting glitch, tho – beginning of chap 2, we enter italics and fail to exit italics. Just fyi. Kindle eBook.

    1. Rehcra

      Sounds like the weakest episode of the Twilight Zone ever. But seriously either you’re referencing the dream sequence in which case it does eventually go back but only after Tanner is no longer dreaming or you need to remove it from your kindle and then re-download it because it is fine on mine. Either way good luck exiting the Italic Zone …doo dee doo doo….doo dee doo doo

  16. Chad

    I just finished Tanner Malone 3. Better than I expected and a good solid wrap up to the story so far. Keep the successes rolling your way.

  17. Dylan

    I love both series. I didn’t get that part in rich man’s war where he asked Kelly if her name started with an A until the second listen because I saw that thing you posted about Madelyns name being different in the original. I’ve only listened to the Audible versions. Just finished relistening to both preparing for Dead Man’s Debt on audio can’t wait to hear it! Any ETA on the audio (he says knowing he’s the hundredth person to ask)? And thank you so much for all your books.

  18. Rehcra

    Elliott Kay; Do you have any interviews ,or the like, online? I was looking and didn’t see anything..

  19. John Taylor

    Loved this book but I have been dying for another Good Intentions book… I NEED more. I don’t know if I can wait another year or two for Book 3 🙁 Do you know of any other books that are similar to the plot of Good Intentions with a good story and hefty amount of sex scenes?

    1. Elliott Kay Post author

      Er…you caught Life in Shadows, right? 🙂

      I honestly haven’t read much with the same degree of story & sex. I have heard the Kushiel’s Legacy series and the Anita Blake books provide that, but I haven’t read them, so don’t quote me on it.

      1. John Taylor

        I finished Life in Shadows the day the audiobook for it came out back in March (: . Hmm… I’ve heard the same thing about those series but they are 1st person with a female lead.. Looking for a male lead (like Alex) that gets the main attention in the book… Any updates on Book 3? About how many words have you written so far? I can only re-listen to a book so many times before I memorize every single detail :'( 🙂 keep up the good writing, Good Intentions is my favorite series!

  20. Guy in sandy coveralls

    So I have successfully progressed through Dead Man’s Debt and re-read the Good Intentions series, and here I sit on deployment wondering when you are going to add another novel into Alex’s story as I can’t get enough of his antics. In the mean time, what are your suggestions for books that are similar as I have found little to nothing. Kusiel’s dart was the only other one that comes to mind as anything close to the nature of Good Intentions but is a much heavier read (with way fewer trash talking angels). Thanks for my favorite series, and look forward to whatever you happen to pen next,

    -Guy in sandy coveralls.

    1. Elliott Kay Post author

      Hey Guy,

      I’m about 55k words into the next Good Intentions novel, but I don’t give out projected release dates as those all inevitably turn out to be filthy lies. I’m dead set on getting this out much faster than I wrote Dead Man’s Debt, but the GI books are generally easier to write, anyway. As for similar books: sadly, I haven’t seen many. If you’re not up for the Kushiel stuff, the only other comparison I’ve heard has been Laurel K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake novels. Those apparently have a good deal of erotic content…although I’m pretty sure vampires sometimes get laid in those books, and while I don’t want to shame anyone’s kinks, I can’t look into that particular abyss without getting shouty and such.

      I may have strong feelings about vampires. Turns out they’re all negative and full of profanity. 🙂

      1. Robert

        I always found that bit about vampires to be hilariously ironic considering you write your angel/demons exactly like most other authors write vampires (the anita blake books even have vampires that straight up feed on various forms of lust and sex).

        1. Elliott Kay Post author

          How dare you, SIR!!
          My angels are GOOD PEOPLE. Except Donald. And kinda Vincent.
          And my demons are at least, y’know, not vampires.

          Ew. Just ew.

  21. Tarjei T. Jensen

    I like your books a lot.

    And now for the rain :

    Have you thought about the energy budget for your lasers? If you want to cut trough a lot of steel in fractions of a second, you need a nuclear bomb at the other end to get enough energy. Because we are talking about x-ray or gamma ray lasers. And that is just for one point. If you are going to make the laser slash, you need humongous megatons needed to generate the energies to fuel such a laser. It is not survivable at the sending end. It is not possible to get even multiple reactors to deliver those kind of energies in time.

    Anything that boils off a single point will work to reduce the power of the laser. A real military ship will have ablative layers designed especially to do that.

    The current anti-aircraft and anti-missile lasers needs to keep the laser on a point in order to burn through the aluminium. This only works because the targets fly in a straight line compared to the laser. It is not just one flash and the target is destroyed.

    The energy needed for a portable plasma/laser weapon (that can kill people) to work is absurd . It will never happen. The shooter can’t survive. The ray guy will get shot with a projectile weapon before the ray weapon can do much damage. There is a reason only authors think there will be ray weapons carried by people in the future.

    And in space, only nuclear weapons will work if they don’t hit the target. High explosive dissipates into the space vacuum immediately. If you have real armour on the target, the warhead might make some marks on the paint. Basically, a high explosive weapon with a proximity fuze is pointless unless the warhead contains kinetic kill projectiles which are propelled by the warhead. e.g. self forging fragments. Which can’t penetrate much armour.

    And the idea that there can be pirate ships are ludicrous. Do you know what a non-space worthy aircraft costs these days? Submarines? A space ship would be even more expensive. We are most likely talking at least of something the size of a US aircraft carrier. After all, it needs to be able to carry a substantial cargo to be profitable. It would take years to build. And they would be tracked and recovered if lost. They are too expensive to loose.

    On the other hand, realism kills much of the fun of a story.

  22. Nathan

    I want to say thank you again Mr Kay you have quickly became one of my favorite author’s I savored dead man’s Dept for a whole week but I truly can’t wait for another GI book.

  23. Davin

    Thanks for putting in the acknowledgements that there’ll be a fourth book. I can’t wait already. Also looking forward to listening to the Audible version when it comes out. I really like all your work. Thank you.

  24. Rhett


    I don’t remember exactly *how* I stumbled across “Poor Man’s Fight,” but I’m so glad I did. You captured how it feels to be overqualified in a navel role with hostile crew members so well. I know you must have been writing from personal experience. I’m not great at talking about my feelings, but know it really helped to know I wasn’t alone.

    Also, phenomenal story. I almost never leave reviews on amazon, but I made sure to review both of the Malone books. And now, lucky me, there’s a third to read and a fourth in the works!

    Thanks for sharing the contents of your wonderful mind.

    1. Elliott Kay Post author

      Thank you!
      In all honesty: I never once felt overqualified. I totally experienced the treatment Tanner gets in PMF, and I was a pretty nerdy/cerebral guy, but there was no point where I thought I was better trained than the people around me. That was part of my frustration, though. On my first (and only) ship, I never really felt like there was much effort to train me or get me up to speed. Mostly it was a grudging bare minimum of training and a lot of impatience and eyerolling. That, on top of the cold shoulders, low morale and bullying killed my motivation early on.

      I suffered from seasickness, so the Coast Guard probably wasn’t ultimately the place for me anyway, but I’ll always wonder how things might have turned out if I’d been assigned to a different ship with a better environment.

  25. Sue

    Hi Mr. Kay,
    My son loves your books and reads them over and over again. Is there a way to get Dead Man’s Debt in hard copy? My son is hospitalized and is not able to use any types of e-readers. He’s hoping to have this third volume for Christmas.
    Thank you.

  26. Vern Bliss

    I found your books on Kindle Unlimited. I’ve read the first two o f the series and I am reading the third now. This is a superb space opera series: great story, well-drawn characters, and lots of action. I hope you will continue writing science fiction, since I don’t read much fantasy (although Robert Heinlein’s “Glory Road” is a favorite of mine). Thanks again for your books!

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