The one thing you can count on is a constant flow of new releases in the science fiction romance world. We’re all prolific writers and our wonderful readers are voracious inagoodway, so it works! This week I’m starting off with my own new release, Star Survivor. This is a standalone sequel to my Wreck of the Nebula Dream, which was loosely based on the Titanic sinking, but in the far future, on an interstellar spaceliner. (Note: We covered this on Amazing Stories earlier this year, “Talking Titanic in Space 104 Years After the Tragedy”.) Practically from the first day that book was released in 2012, readers were asking me for the sequel, which is a wonderful compliment for an author! No pressure, of course?! Got to get the story right and tell a good tale.
The readers wanted to know what happened next for two of the secondary characters and so I’ve finally answered the questions. Here’s the story: The survivors of a terrible wreck meet again — but this time only one can survive.
They survived an iconic spaceship wreck together. She never expected to see him again…especially not armed to kill her.
Twilka Zabour is an interstellar celebrity. She built on her notoriety as a carefree socialite who survived the terrible wreck of the Nebula Dream, and launched a successful design house. But now the man who gave meaning to her life, then left her, is back — this time for the worst of reasons. Will he kill her…or help her survive?
D’nvannae Brother Khevan survived the Nebula Dream in the company of a lovely, warm woman, only to be pulled away from her, back into his solitary life in the service of the Red Lady. Now Twilka’s within his reach again — for all the wrong reasons. Khevan will do everything within his power to discover why Twilka has been targeted for assassination, and to save her.
But Khevan is not Twilka’s only pursuer. Will allies Nick and Mara Jameson arrive in time to aid the couple, or will Khevan and Twilka’s ingenuity be all that stands between them and death?
A new release that I was excited to see was Lindsay Buroker’s End Game, the eighth book in her Fallen Empire series. This has been a wonderfully fun series, with a definite “Fireflyesque” feel, much serious adventure and a slowly growing romance. Here’s the plot of the new book: Alisa Marchenko has reunited with her daughter, and even though she hasn’t figured out how to get Jelena to accept Leonidas yet, she dreams of the three of them starting a new life together. They can return the Star Nomad to its original purpose of running freight and staying out of trouble (mostly).
Before that can happen, Alisa must fulfill the promise she made to Jelena: that she and her crew will retrieve young Prince Thorian, the boy who has become Jelena’s best friend. But Thorian was kidnapped by the rogue Starseer Tymoteusz, the man who wants to use the Staff of Lore to take over the entire system — and the man who may have the power to do it. Alisa doesn’t know why he kidnapped Thorian, but Tymoteusz once promised to kill the prince, so she fears they don’t have much time. Unfortunately, Tymoteusz hasn’t left a trail of breadcrumbs. Finding him will be difficult, and even if they’re successful, facing him could be suicidal. To have a chance of surviving, Alisa will have to come up with her greatest scheme yet.
Anna Hackett has released the third volume in her Galactic Gladiator series, Hero. From Lydon in the 1980’s TV movie of Last Days of Pompeii to STARZ TV’s gritty Spartacus series, I can never resist the noble gladiator and the strong woman he loves. The fact that Anna’s arena is in intergalactic territory just makes it all more fun. The plot: Raised from birth to be a soldier, Kace Tameron is a disciplined, military-trained gladiator. He is on contract to the Kor Magna Arena to hone his fighting skills on the blood-soaked arena sand and then return to the military. He lives for one thing: to protect his planet, and on his world, love is forbidden. But then he collides with a feisty redhead from Earth who threatens to shatter his legendary control.
One moment, Rory Fraser was an engineer on a space station circling Jupiter and the next, she is abducted by evil alien slavers. After suffering at the hands of the Thraxians, she is rescued by her friends — with the help of the tough gladiators of the House of Galen. Rory finds herself outrageously attracted to straight-laced Kace. He is a skilled fighter, ultra-disciplined, and a hero at heart — but she knows passion beats within him, if only he’ll let it loose.
Rory is obsessed with finding another fellow abducted female from Earth, but as she asks questions, she finds herself ducking bullets and explosions. Someone wants Rory dead. Kace steps in as her protector, and together, they embark on a dangerous mission that will take them deep into the bowels of the arena, and deep into a scorching desire…both of which could lead them to lose not only their guarded hearts, but their lives as well.
If you’d like to try a winter themed anthology of science fiction romance tales, the eight authors of the boxed set Baby It’s Cold In Space aim to please. Their synopsis of the offering: Travel off-planet for the holidays. Set thrusters to max with these steamy science fiction romance stories by eight exciting authors. Each SFR novella in this anthology delivers the perfect holiday gift — love — to warm readers during the coldest season of the year. A limited time offer with 470 pages of outer-space romance by New York Times, USA Today, and other bestselling authors.
For God and Mars by Shona Husk is something different, based on a game. The description: For God And Mars is inspired by Takamo, a science fiction game created in the early 1980s, and Takamo Universe, the massive multiplayer online (MMO) version now under development. The Takamo Universe back story is based on the writings of Randall Ritnour, game play events that occurred in Takamo, and the creative contributions of a host of Takamo players and fans.
This is the start of the story of Mars, of a planet peopled by humans, and yet not Earth…
Expansion of Will: With the Martian government putting pressure on the Ammanian eastern provinces, civil leader Eshe Tordis faces a tough battle convincing her people to fight back. As her community splits into warring factions, she finds that her greatest enemies may be those standing behind her.
Turning the Tide: Alic Ollsen is an Ammanian in Terran clothing. To pursue his dream of being a terraformer, he had to give up all trace of his Ammanian beliefs. But when he’s asked to help the Ammanians win the war against the Martian government, he finds himself caught between faith and career…life and death…right and wrong.
Vows of Assimilation: The wounds from the first Martian war haven ‘t yet healed and Isak Morven ‘s parents — Terran in thought and belief — hold everything Ammanian in disdain. He knows they barely tolerate his mingling with the despised victors of the war but, until he decides to marry his Ammanian girlfriend, even Isak himself isn’t aware of how deep his parents’ hatred runs.
No Reward: Ryne Morven has been fighting against Ammanian rule his entire life. When Earth forces invade the red planet to take back control, Ryne is exultant. Joining the rebels against the Ammanians, he can ‘t wait to shove his brother Isak ‘s nose in it, but when the war finally ends, will the price paid by the Morven family be worth it?
And a rare piece of news — the prestigious Library Journal has named the Pets In Space science fiction romance anthology as a Best Book of 2016! Author Pauline B. Jones and I partnered to come up with the original idea and invited seven other terrific SFR authors to join in, so we’re all thrilled. “Star Cruise: Stowaway” was my contribution to the volume, but I hope you’ll check out all the stories. It was exciting this week to see science fiction romance receiving recognition from librarians.
“Without libraries what have we? We have no past and no future.” Ray Bradbury
“With a library you are free, not confined by temporary political climates. It is the most democratic of institutions because no one — but no one at all — can tell you what to read and when and how.” Doris Lessing
“Libraries are our friends.” Neil Gaiman
“Libraries raised me.” Ray Bradbury