New Release – Star Fight by T.Jackson King

Today I have a new release for you, Star Fight, book three in the Empire series by my friend  T. Jackson King.

StarFightKindle

 

Description1

Failure to protect Earth is facing Nathan Stewart and his friends aboard the battlecruiser STAR GLORY. His captain’s effort to divert the deadly fleet led by Smooth Fur of the Empire of Eternity is not working. Despite the destruction of an Empire shipyard, Fur returns to Kepler 37 and begins a steady advance up Orion Arm, on the lookout for radio, maser and neutrino signals from Earth’s colonies and Earth itself. Since Earth lies just 215 light years uparm from Kepler 37, Nate knows Earth will soon be found. And Fur has two extra fleets for a total of 65 Empire starbiters. When Fur finds Earth, humanity’s newly built battlecruisers will not be enough to stop Fur from killing all life on Earth. Nathan’s fiance Evelyn comes up with a plan. His captain supports it. But will it be enough to divert Smooth Fur from her sworn duty to find and extinguish all life on any resistor planet? Nathan sets out to make sure the plan will be deadly enough to convince Smooth Fur to never, ever again mess with humans!

 

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Who Is – Linell Jeppsen?

Today I bring you my friend Linell Jeppsen.  She has a diverse range of writings and I can tell you they are all fabulous.

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Linell Jeppsen is a writer of science fiction and fantasy. Her vampire novel, Detour to Dusk, has received over 44- four and five star reviews. Her novel Story Time, with over 130- 4 and 5 star reviews, is a science fiction, post-apocalyptic novel, and has been touted by the Paranormal Romance Guild, Sandy’s Blog Spot, Coffeetime Romance , Bitten by Books and 64 top reviewers as a five star read, filled with terror, love, loss, and the indomitable beauty and strength of the human spirit. Story Time was also nominated as the best new read of 2011 by the PRG! Her dark fantasy novel, Onio (a story about a half-human Sasquatch who falls in love with a human girl), was released in December 2012 and won 3rd place as the best fantasy romance of 2012 by the PRG reviewers guild! Onio also sports over 50- 4 and 5 star reviews!
Her novel, The War of Odds, won the IBD award for fantasy fiction and boasts 18- 5 star reviews since its release in February of 2013. It also placed 2nd, as the best YA, paranormal book of 2013 by the PRG!
She is in a collaborative effort with the Welsh author, J. Bryden Lloyd in, The Guardians- a science fiction, serialized thriller with over 30 reviews here and in the UK! The Guardians just won 2nd place as the best serialized science fiction novel of 2013 by the PRG!
Her latest effort, The Beginning of the Story (Story Time Prequel) is a must for those of you who loved Story Time.
… Deadman’s Lament- a Western novel of Retribution and Revenge! Dead Man’s Lament already boasts over 130- 4 and 5 star reviews!

You can find out more about her writings at the links below:

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First Chapters – Andromeda’s Mountain by L M Beyer

Today’s First Chapter is from Andromeda’s Mountain by my friend L M Beyer.

LM Beyer Andromeda's_Mountain_Cover_for_Kindle

DESCRIPTION

Human life has outgrown Earth, and the survey team of the ES Valgard is searching nearby star systems for new worlds to colonize. No team has found one where human life could survive…until now. The scans from orbit as well as the probes launched to its surface tell Andy and Cory that the bonus for finding such a world is almost theirs. But when they set their feet on the ground they discover what the scans and the probes could not tell them, that this ancient world is already inhabited, and that magic rules. Or does it? Trapped by creatures whose true shape they cannot see, manipulated toward an end they do not understand, the two must find a way to escape a world where chaos is given form, where it breathes but does not live and has no soul.

~ ~~ Chapter 1 ~~ ~

Frozen Planet

I leaned back in the acceleration couch and forced myself to look away from what I saw on the screens. I stared at Cory instead. His eyes were still on what the screens displayed, the thing that should not have been there, a black jumble of angular structures rising out of an icy landscape. They were the ruins of a city, and it looked like it had been bombed.

“What is this, Cory? Why didn’t our scans see it?”

He unbuckled the straps of his couch, climbed to his feet, and walked over to a porthole. His breath fogged the glass. He made the smear worse by wiping at it with his fingers, then shrugged, “It’s a million years dead, Andy. Just more rocks among rocks. That’s why we missed it.”

I left my own couch and went to the other porthole that faced the mountain and the mystery at its foot. “Impossible,” I muttered. “Even if the builders are dead, there’d be other life here––”

“Will our suits handle the cold?”

“Yes, but the scans must be wrong. There’s got to be––”

“Great,” he cut me off again. He was not deliberately rude, only preoccupied with his own work, but my understanding of the reason didn’t stop me from being annoyed when interrupted mid-sentence.

I shook it off and studied the mountains behind the city, wondering briefly how much of an effect the sun would have on the temperature. The mountains stretched from horizon to horizon, as high and white as the Himalayas. Beneath the cold stars and small round face of the planet’s only moon, the valley around us lay barren and white in all directions for as far as we could see. Everything was buried in ice and snow except where our shuttle sat in a frozen lake of burnt earth created by our fiery touchdown.

The entire planet was white. Even the seas were covered in thick sheets of ice, in some places a kilometer or more thick. As we had worked to prepare the shuttle for a trip down to the surface, I had asked Cory why all of it was frozen. Conditions were otherwise perfect. It was a rocky little world occupying the habitable zone around a G-Type main-sequence star that could have been our own sun, and it was only a fraction smaller than Earth. It also had an atmosphere unexpectedly similar to Earth’s. That had surprised me. The high levels of oxygen suggested the possibility of organisms capable of photosynthesis. In other words, life. Did it take the form of algae? Grasses? Or was the accumulation of so much oxygen due solely to an inorganic process uninterrupted for a billion years. Scans taken from orbit had not detected any organic source. Obviously, the equipment was faulty, but we hadn’t known that before we landed.

After launching a dozen small satellites to continue with a more thorough analysis, and dropping as many probes on the other, much larger continent, we had come down to look for the source of the oxygen. The satellites and probes would gather samples and take measurements of the planet’s sun, atmosphere, land and frozen seas, and radio the data back to our ship, the ES Valgard, and from there to Earth.

Cory, meanwhile, had answered my question about the frozen planet by pointing to what one of the screens displayed, an enormous plateau on the larger continent.

“It’s above the snow line,” he said. “The result is almost three million square kilometers of ice and snow. This and a long list of other factors I’m still looking into, have pushed the average albedo for the planet very high. Too much of the sun’s energy is reflected away from the planet, leading to more glaciers, snow and ice everywhere else. A domino effect. Earth experienced similar ice ages, possibly because of the Tibetan Plateau.”

“Not all the way down to the equator like this.”

“There is some argument about that, the snowball Earth hypothesis. Personally, I believe there was more slush than ice.”

I had glanced up sharply, expecting to catch him in a joke, but if it was, I couldn’t tell. He had already turned away to grab another box of supplies for the shuttle.

Now, down on the surface and faced with several square kilometers of sprawling and broken cuboid structures, some of them as tall as anything I’d seen in New York City, we were confronting something completely unknown, something we were not prepared to handle. I knew we should leave it for a team trained in first contact scenarios and contingency procedures, but as Cory had said, the city was probably long dead. He would also object to the risk of someone else getting the bonus if the planet qualified for human settlement.

I stared through the porthole and wondered if that’s what it was. At last, after years of searching, had Cory and I found the world all the teams had been searching for, a world perfect for the life born on an overcrowded Earth?

Or were we finally about to meet an alien race, a race of beings we could talk to, a strange and exotic people that built cities?

Maybe not, if they were gone.

Or if this wasn’t a city.

We might be imagining intelligent construction behind something that was nothing more than a natural formation. If weathering and the passage of time can transform basalt cliffs on Earth into monumental works of art, then all that lay before us might be due to nothing more than the powerful forces of wind, water and ice.

And yet I could not convince myself those dark walls had been shaped by wind and ice. I would, however, make certain of it before we made fools of ourselves with hysterical messages to Earth.

I hit the switch to close the shields over the portholes. Cory blinked in annoyance but said nothing. As eager as he was to explore, he knew we were both too exhausted and needed rest. A few minutes later, without more discussion about the discovery, we crawled into our bunks.

Listening to the comforting hum of the shuttle systems, I waited for sleep. The generator was doing an adequate job of maintaining the temperatures required for all the equipment and for us, so I had no reason to worry about the frigid darkness wrapped around our fragile shuttle. And yet I did.

No, Andy. It’s not the cold that worries you. It’s the dead city out there in the moonlight.

I should have been excited. Finding it was important… No, it was bigger than simply important. This was an incredible discovery. My reaction to it surprised me. Why was I worried about it? Why so uneasy?

“Up to now, tonight,” I argued quietly with myself, safe from Cory’s ears because I could hear him snoring, “we’ve been alone. All other star systems explored by our teams, more than a hundred planets, have been dead. Not even bacteria, nothing. We’ve become resigned to the idea of being alone in this corner of the galaxy. Then Cory and I touch down half a kilometer from the black walls of an alien city. What are the odds? Impossibly huge.”

I stopped talking to myself and thought of the oxygen in the atmosphere that had forced our landing on the surface to draw samples and write reports based on direct observations. I had always believed landing the shuttle to be a thoroughly ridiculous risk of equipment and our lives when the probes and satellites would ultimately do an equal or better job. But the landing was inescapable, a requirement carved solid as stone into the mission directive. There was no way to avoid a trip to the surface the moment we detected oxygen.

Then we’d seen the dark bulk of an abandoned city at the base of a broken mountain. I was wrong, after all, about the need to risk equipment and lives to get human eyes on the ground.

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Who Is – Jade Kerrion?

I have a new promotion for authors called Who Is?  I found this concept on another authors blog from Zena Shapter.  Zena kindly ok’d for me to use this concept to help promote the many wonderful Indie authors out there.  So today I am beginning with my friend Jade Kerrion.  It will give readers a chance to know authors and where to look for their books, hope you enjoy.

Jade KerrionABOUT JADE KERRION

Jade Kerrion defied (or leveraged, depending on your point of view) her undergraduate degrees in Biology and Philosophy, as well as her MBA, to launch her second (and concurrent) career as an award-winning science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance author. Her debut novel, Perfection Unleashed, won six literary awards and launched the Double Helix series, which should be read in order for maximum enjoyment. (Hang in there for the happy ending…) Life Shocks Romances features her sweet and sexy contemporary romance series. She writes at 3:00 am when her husband and three sons are asleep, and aspires to make her readers as sleep-deprived as she is. She is a lifetime member of the Florida Writers Association, and the Regional Director for Miami-Dade and Broward counties. McSill Literary Agency represents Portuguese rights for her Double Helix series in Brazil.

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First Chapters – The Founders by Holly Barbo

Today’s First Chapter is from The Founders, the first book in the Sage Seed Chronicles by my friend Holly Barbo.

The FoundersDESCRIPTION

The Sage Seed Chronicles follows the stories of certain individuals with a psychic gene

There are no monsters on Ose. People can be monstrous enough.

Recruited by an ancient race, a group of people from Earth colonize the lovely planet Ose in a far corner of the galaxy. Thirty-two years after the Founders settle the unanticipated happens. A small asteroid hits on the edge of the continent instantly throwing them into a “nuclear winter” weather pattern. Struggling to survive, the young culture slips ever nearer to a survival of the fittest world.

In this climate of hardship, Marisily comes of age. She flees for her life after watching her mother die. Unexpectedly, she discovers the cave in which she seeks refuge was a hidden Ancient’s shelter and the secrets within it reveal that she is a sage: a small group of seemingly unrelated people with heightened extra senses that are strangely linked to the planet itself.

The conditions reach dangerous levels as more citizens become victims of the outlaw bands. Marisily struggles to stay safe when she is targeted for slavery. A clandestine plan is devised to take back the society and reestablish the founding culture. Can they do it in time?

CHAPTER ONE

Bure glared at the old man, his whole body vibrating with his effort to suppress his frustration and be civil. He wanted answers and would prefer not to beat them out of the coot. The guy was older than him but looked tough. “How do you get out of this place? I’ve been all over this valley and I’ve not found even a crevice of a cave or a finger hold to scale the walls. You’ve been here awhile. Tell me!”

The grey-haired fellow met Bure’s eyes with a calm confidence. “I’ve watched you. I know. We all search this valley when we first arrive until we come to the same conclusion. So son, tell me, what part of ‘Once you’re in Obsidian Island there is no getting out’ don’t you understand?”

He chuckled when he saw the flair of rage in Bure’s eyes. “It’s true. There’s no exit. Look all you want. Let me tell you what you found: The walls of this crater are glass smooth and very hard so you can’t chip any climbing grips. The trees aren’t tall enough to reach the top if you climbed them. The stream that feeds this valley starts as an artesian spring in the small lake over there and exits in a seep at the west end of the basin. If it didn’t, this whole crater would be a lake with an island in the middle.”

Bure’s growl interrupted the recitation. “Yeah, well what about that stone uplift?” He gestured to the huge column of stone rising from the floor of the basin.

The veteran mused, “It’s interesting isn’t it? A former resident of this place had been a geologist. He said that before Obsidian became extinct it was trying to rebuild itself. That huge stone column is just as smooth and unscalable as all the other walls. It’s high enough that birds perched on the edge are beyond bow range and even if you could get up there, you still would be out of reach of the outer walls.”

Bure snarled.

The older man shook his head. “It isn’t so bad a place when you accept the inevitable. You’ll see. There are resources to build a life here. We’ve all tried to escape and take revenge against those that sent us here but there’s no way out.” He studied the fuming young man. “So, what did you do? What laws did you break? My guess would be murder.” He watched as the new man clenched his fists.

Now the seasoned inhabitant threw back his head and laughed deeply. “Thought as much, I know the signs. I’ve been in this extinct volcano for nearly thirty years; killed a witch, I did. Murder is against the law on this world and one of the sure ways to end up here.” The old man’s gravelly voice took on a harder edge. “This crater is the exception, so don’t get ideas, son. I may be older than you but I’m fit and can defend myself. I can still kill you if you push me to it.”

Bure’s scoff of disdain was cut short by an unnervingly strong hand around his throat. The older man laughed with a mad glee, “You’ve heard the phrase, ‘I brought you into this world and I can take you out’? It’s very true, son. I’m Kald…your daddy. So nice of you to provide this little family reunion. Welcome to Obsidian Island.”

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