Rockford resident Mike Phillips grew up on a small farm in West Michigan. While his friends spent their summers watching reruns of bad sitcoms, Phillips’ father gave him a very special gift. He turned off the television. With what was affectionately referred to as “the idiot box” no longer a distraction, Phillips was left to discover the fantastic worlds that only exist in books. When not tending sheep, gardening, building furniture, chopping wood, or just goofing off, Phillips spent his time reading. He excelled as a student and went on to pursue a career in the sciences. Working as a safety engineer in the insurance industry, Phillips soon became bored with the corporate grind. Writing engaged him like nothing else. After a few novels and numerous short stories, he thought getting published would be a pretty neat idea. Fans of fantasy will enjoy his debut novel, “Reign of the Nightmare Prince,” a sci-fi fantasy. This is an adventure that will attract young adults, but is written for anyone who enjoys a mysterious trek into a science fiction/fantasy adventure. The novel is dubbed as an isolated pilgrimage of self-reflection, which soon turns into a bloodthirsty fight to avoid extermination from a foe who lacks any compassion for humanity. The book is set in the protagonist Rakam’s world, which is under a tack by an ancient a versary that has plagued his people for gene ations—or so it would seem. All around him, these new Shaitani (supernat ral beasts with mythical powers) murder the innocent and burn any evidence a village even existed. The crusade against the invaders leads to battles against not only the mystic and evil terrors native to Rakam’s world, but also with the alien powers that wish to destroy everything. Survival means defeating an enemy with superior weapons and a thirst for blood. Although it seems like a fight he’s destined to lose, Rakam is willing to die to save his world from certain annihilation. The paperback has a list price of $12.95 and was published by JournalStone.