Tuesday, August 2, 2011

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SFR News & Links For August 2011

AFTERMATH (Sirantha Jax series) - Ann Aguirre

Sirantha Jax has the right genes—ones that enable her to “jump” faster-than-light ships through grimspace. But it’s also in her genetic makeup to go it alone. It’s a character trait that has gotten her into—and out of—hot water time and time again, but now she’s caused one of the most horrific events in military history…
During the war against murderous, flesh-eating aliens, Sirantha went AWOL and shifted grimspace beacons to keep the enemy from invading humanity’s homeworld. The cost of her actions: the destruction of modern interstellar travel—and the lives of six hundred Conglomerate soldiers.

Accused of dereliction of duty, desertion, mass murder, and high treason, Sirantha is on trial for her life. And only time will tell if she’s one of the Conglomerate’s greatest heroes—or most infamous criminals…

 WAR GAMES - KS Augustin

What can you do when you start falling in love with the woman you’re meant to kill?

Laisen Carros is an agent of the Fusion sent undercover to infiltrate the Perlim Empire. However the years she’s spent impersonating military commander Cheloi Sie are starting to wear her down. She’s sick of the manipulation and duplicity and, after twenty years of being an agent, she wants to live her own life.

To Lith Yinalña, a former Perlim subject now returned to a place she dreads, Cheloi Sie is nothing but a war criminal and Lith considers it her personal mission to kill the Colonel.

Unfortunately for Laisen/Cheloi, the Empire and an idealistic assassin aren’t her only enemies. When Laisen and Lith start falling in love, it’s only a matter of time before someone else in the Empire notices. And acts.

Read the excerpt.

IRONHAVEN - Misa Buckley

The Earth is dying, and Lucian Hoyt is going to die with it thanks to his parents cancelling his pass aboard the last shuttle off the planet. There is hope, though – a brilliant inventor has come up with a plan to build a ship to evacuate those who’ve been left behind.

That inventor turns out to be Genevieve Scott, Lucian’s bitter ex-fiancée. If they’re going to work together to get off this planet, they need to put their past aside, but even melting the ice between them can’t erase all the scars.

Read the excerpt.

GHOST SHIP (Theo Waitley storyline) - Sharon Lee & Steve Miller

Theo Waitley is an ace starship pilot – and pure maverick.  Her mom is a renown Terran scholar and her birth father is an interstellar aristocrat in hiding. Whatever, thinks Theo.  She still feels like a socially-challenged misfit.  But after being selected to train with the best-of-the-best at the pilot academy, she figures she can leave behind those gawky, misfit days of teenage angst that made life so complicated before!

But for Theo, life is about to get even MORE complicated – and deadlier still.  For even though she’s survived the Academy and become one of the best pilots in the galaxy, the past is about to blast her with gale-force winds.  Theo can run, but she can’t hide.  Her destiny as master pilot and leader of a powerful Liaden clan calls, and there are LOTS of enemies who will try to make sure she’s quite dead before she has the chance to make an answer.


Liv Braxton's Felon Rule #1: Don't get emotionally involved.

Smash-and-grab thieving doesn't lend itself to getting chummy with the victims, and Liv hasn't met anyone on the mining colony of Nevarro worth knowing, anyway. So it's easy to follow her Rules.

Until her ex, Tonio, shows up with an invitation to join him on the job of a lifetime.

Until Zia Talbot, the woman she's supposed to deceive, turns Liv's expectations upside down in a way no woman ever has.

Until corporate secrets turn deadly.

But to make things work with Zia, Liv has to do more than break her Rules, and the stakes are higher than just a broken heart...

Read the excerpt.


In the face of Human slavery, Back Sword Captain Ariela of Kassouk must do the unthinkable. Rebel against the Mutant regime. But she cannot do it alone.

Ariela suspects the king’s death is no accident. And the tyrant who usurped the throne looks guilty as hell. As leader of the Human rebellion against the Mutant rulers, Ariela is desperate for help, and Lord Starro, the handsome Crown Prince of the Star Children, offers the technology the Human faction lacks. But can Ariela trust a spoiled, arrogant foreign prince who never fought a battle, and thinks he is destined to rule the universe? Is she trading one tyrant for another? No matter how kind, handsome, or fascinating, Starro has frightening mental abilities. And this alliance is not safe, especially for Ariela’s heart.

CYBERSHOCK - Samhain Publishing's Cyberpunk Romance Anthology

 “Ghost in the Machine” by Barbara J. Hancock

Rule number one: Run from the Shadows. Unless one knows the secret that will save you.

A Cybershock story.

I live in a world of waifs and shadows. Live might be an overstatement. I scrounge and scramble and survive in an atmosphere made thick and gray by the ashes of the Fallen. And sometimes I dream of sunlight. My parents were taken, even though they followed all the rules. Never scavenge at night. Never talk to Shadows. Don’t fight the Sweepers. Run. Run. Run.

Now that they’ve taken my little brother, Douglas, I’ve realized I’ve only been surviving for him. I have two choices: Follow him or lie down and die. I can’t just quit after years of struggle. I wouldn’t know how if I tried. Determination is all I have left.

And then I meet him.

He claims to be a rogue who can help me find my brother. It’s got to be a lie. But I don’t run. I stop. I listen. And I make a deal with a Shadow even though I know it will mean the death of me.

Never talk to Shadows.

But no one ever told me what would happen if I kissed one.

“Zero Factor” by Stacy Gail

Armed and dangerous…

A Cybershock story.

Born a psionic—a rare human prized by the government for her gifts—agridome worker Via Brede lives by two simple rules: slip into stealth mode whenever the cybernetic-enhanced militia is near. And never remove the gloves that block her psychic ability.

During a routine delivery, a tear in her glove connects her with what should be her worst nightmare. A meched-out soldier with bulging muscles and a scarred face that makes her heart pound like a pneumatic drill. She also envisions his death in an attack that happens…now.

Locke’s typically ho-hum mission goes sideways when the stunning, green-eyed bubble farmer plants a sensual kiss that sets fire to every one of his remaining man-nerves. He also sees her vision. His own commander is about to kill him.

He needs Via to find out why. First step is to get her to Old Las Vegas without succumbing to a raw, sexual need that burns in him like fever. Getting there will be a snap. Getting out alive—and winning her trust—might be a little tougher.

“Gridlock” by Nathalie Gray

He finds love on the eve of a war he doesn’t plan on surviving.

A Cybershock story.

Dante knows the price of rebellion. The Grid created him in its likeness, turning him into a killing machine—tested, modified and enhanced to be a “better citizen”. Years may have passed since he escaped that freak show, but the scars are still fresh.

Without the mandatory implant, Steel scrapes by, living free of the Grid’s control. When a job goes bad, everyone around her dies, their minds crushed by the notorious Cardinal. But he doesn’t kill her. He takes her to a secret lair filled with fascinating, forbidden pre-Grid knowledge. Who is this man—ruthless murderer or eccentric loner?

Bad-mannered as she is, Dante can’t bring himself to silence the abrasive, cigarette-addicted Steel. Something about her calls to him, though trusting her could be a mistake. Should she betray him, it would wipe out years of patient waiting. Waiting while the Grid hunts him for the priceless information he carries within his living data vault. Waiting while his dish of revenge turns ice cold.

For Dante intends to go back. And this time, he intends to be the only one left standing.


KEEPER OF THE RINGS (Kindle edition) – Nancy J. Cohen

A beautiful archaeologist and her mysterious protector search for a stolen sacred artifact.
Leena is an expert on the carvings left by the ancient Apostles who established the religion of Sabal on her world. When a holy artifact is stolen, she is    assigned the task of locating it along with Taurin Rey Niris, a mysterious stranger engaged as her protector. Together they face evil adversaries and develop a love endangered by secrets from the past.

Forthcoming releases

Carina Press announced the lineup for its holiday steampunk collection:

Far From Broken by J.K. Coi
Untitled steampunk novella (set in Australia!) by Jenny Schwartz
Untitled steampunk novella by Stacy Gail
This Winter Heart by PG Forte
Ella Drake announced the news of her latest contracted book right here on TGE:

Liquid Silver Books has contracted Braided Silk, Future Tales #2. This is a future-set Rapunzel fairytale retold, even heavier on the biopunk than Jaq's Harp!

Also, Kim Knox recently announced that Ellora's Cave has contracted CURRENT, book 3 in her “Planetary Bodies” series. And according to this post, she’s also contemplating writing a biopunk romance. Whee!

Authors blogging

At CONTACT – Infinite Futures, Diane Dooley (BLUE GALAXY) waxes poetic about The Women of Flash Gordon: The Movie. Her post features some awesomesauce videos so check it out.

For authors

What a provision like this does is prospectively eliminate any negotiating power you may have if the book you sold to the publisher outperforms expectations.   Why?  Because you’ve obligated yourself to a set of business terms even if the book does very well, and the publisher has obligated itself to nothing, irrespective of the book’s performance.  But — and this is the big but — the publisher has given itself the right to purchase a big seller on the cheap.
His advice is worth a read whether you're published in print or digital.

Showing the love for SFR

At Escape Reality, Read Fiction! Marlene Harris explains why she enjoys Romance with a touch of rocket fuel:

Sometimes I like my romances with just that little bit of rocket fuel to flavor the plot. I’m referring to science fiction romance, or SFR. After all, if love makes the world go round, there’s nothing to say it can’t power a starship, too!


Writer Greg Rucka and artist Rick Burchett launched their swashbuckling steampunk webcomic today, Lady Sabre & the Pirates of the Ineffable Aether. As announced back in April, Rucka said the comic is “steampunk, pirates, western thing,” noting it would feature airships, floating islands, gunslingers and sword fights.
 (Thanks to IT HAD TO BE YUU author Ilene Kaye for the link.)

And there’s more! Sci-Fi Fan Letter shared the news that Mantecoza is a “new steampunk web series in the making. There’s a trailer, too:

Wonder if they’ll throw in a little romance?

In the mood for something a little different?

Try Jody Wallace’s hilarious new short story, “Field Trip.”

About the story:
Can a slightly cynical third grade teacher survive a day-long field trip at an antique space station, an interdimensional incident and a handsome tour guide all at the same time? Find out in this futuristic comedy of (little) terrors!

“Field Trip” is available at Amazon, B&N, and Smashwords. With a .99 cents price tag, it’s worth the...trip!

Finally, a quick word about Google +1 (or Google Plus One)

When I blogged about Google +1, there seemed to be some misunderstanding about the way it works. You don’t have to join any new social network, wear a funny hat, or watch THE SOCIAL NETWORK, the movie. If you’re already signed into a Google (Gmail) account, you can just click the “+1” sign anywhere you see it.

It’s simply a way to denote, “Hey, this is kinda cool.” That’s all. There’s no secret handshake or password needed. (But if there is in the future, dibs on “My gopher is full of spontaneous cider.” ;) 

Now, I turn the mike over to you. Do you have any science fiction romance news or links to share?

Joyfully yours,