Wednesday, July 1, 2015

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SFR News & Links For July 2015


When you're in the mood for a sci-fi romance, here are some new titles to choose from!

New releases

LIBERATION'S KISS - Wendy Lynn Clark

The Old Empire has crumbled. Strong factions prey on the weak, and strongest of all are those who ally themselves with the mysterious Robotics Faction…

Cressida Sarit Antiata is twelve years old when her diplomat parents learn that her name has appeared on the Robotics Faction Kill List, a classified document of dangerous individuals marked for execution. Calling in all of their connections, her parents smuggle her to a small but wealthy ore-producing moon where she grows up in anonymous luxury, secure that her data is safe.

Until now.

Xan | Arch is an x-class android with one mission: execute the target n81, also known as Cressida Sarit Antiata. Although he possesses biological skin, hair, fingernails, and eyes – and extensive conditioning to pass as a sweating, swearing, rough-and-tumble everyman - beneath the surface, he is all machine.

When he arrives at the moon, something unexpected is waiting for him. Something that circumvents his execution order and forces him to protect Cressida instead. Something that gives him the free will to question his makers, control his destiny, and awaken his heart.

Together, they might escape their destinies and forge an entirely new future.

If they can survive...

FINAL PROTOCOL - J.C. Daniels


Tip #1: Don’t get on her bad side. Tip #2: There’s no good side.

Her name is Silence. If she was ever known by any other name, she doesn’t remember. 
She is a killer. If she was ever anything else, she doesn’t remember.

She has an owner. If she was ever free…well, that she does remember. She was free and then somebody gave her to a madman to pay a debt that wasn’t hers. She’s his toy, his pet…and his trained killer. She kills at his whim or she dies. 

She has a target. Her so-called owner…the man who makes her life a living hell. If she could kill anybody in the universe, it would be him. But he holds her life in his hands. 

And she has a wish—to find a man she barely remembers. A man she knows she once loved. The man who betrayed her and stole away her freedom.

With one final target between her and the tantalizing promise of freedom, she moves in for the kill. There’s one problem. There’s something strangely familiar about her mark. Something that echoes in the void where love used to live.

Product Warnings

One woman with a mission, one evil bastard who lies as often as he breathes, and a man who’ll stop at nothing to find what he lost. Be warned…some questionable consent lies within.

OURS TO EMBRACE (ES Siren #7) - Denise Rossetti


She's sweet, serious and prim – and she's messing with his head.

Shuttle pilot Cory Olsen figures he'll live fast and die young. After all, his is one of the most dangerous jobs on the Earth Ship Siren. Out among the stars, on the long journey to the penal colony on Solitaire, Cory parties hard, laughing and loving, no commitments, nothing serious.

Which would be fine if he could ignore Bella – Prisoner 2844 – and move on to the next pretty face. He can't work out where he's going wrong. The woman's all lush temptation – skin like velvet, mouth like honeysuckle – but Bella's crankier than his temperamental shuttle craft and twice as mean.

Since Bella's doing seven years for sedition, she can't afford entanglements of any kind, not with her old associates – and especially not with a handsome, reckless flyboy who makes her laugh at all the wrong moments. With tension on the Siren reaching fever pitch, a ruthless leader emerges from among the convicts. When violence starts to escalate, rebellion seems inevitable.

If Bella's not careful, she could lose a lot more than her wary heart. She could cost Cory Olsen his life.

OURS TO SHARE - (ES Siren #8) - Mel Teshco


If stealing from the rich to give to the poor is a crime, then Silo Warrick is a felon of the highest order.

A gifted horticulturist found guilty of stealing from the elite greenhouses, Silo is also an extraordinary musician, and therefore the perfect con to throw onboard the Earth Ship Siren. Though he's promised a fresh start on Solitaire, Silo's not about to believe his captors.

But his disgust of the elite is about to be challenged by highbrow lovers Cloey Pederson and Jasmine Hewitt. They aren't the arrogant and superior snobs Silo has learned to hate, even though trusting them is a whole ballpark out of his league.

One woman might whet Silo's carnal appetite; two is cause for all his wet dreams to come true. But are Cloey and Jasmine double the trouble or twice as nice?

OURS TO SAVE - (ES Siren #9) - Shona Husk


Micah Stone sees Solitaire as a fresh start. With twenty years’ experience in the agriculture industry, he hopes the colony won’t make the same mistakes that were made on Earth.

To most people, Micah looks like a member of the well educated elite, but he’s really a Gaia activist. Not only did he lie about his daughter’s age to get her on board, but his partner is one of the most dangerous women on Siren.

Felicity Valez was once an Army explosives expert, and she was also a member of the radical Gaia Movement. After being sentenced to life for sedition, she wound up on Siren. To protect her partner and daughter while they’re on board, she needs to make sure that no one links the family together.

But her liaisons with Micah have been noted. And when her daughter’s life is threatened Felicity will do the one thing she promised Micah she’d never do again: rig an explosive that will kill.
No one on Siren is safe.

REED (Hell Squad #4) - Anna Hackett 


As part of Hell Squad, former Coalition Navy SEAL Reed MacKinnon fights for humanity's freedom from the alien invaders. He also fights for his brown-eyed girl--the woman he rescued from the aliens' secret laboratory. He admires her quiet strength and will to survive, not to mention her elfin looks and curvy body...but he knows he has to keep his distance. She's nowhere near ready for what he has to offer and he'll protect her from everything, even his own powerful desires.

Energy scientist Natalya Vasin has lived through hell. Still struggling after her captivity, scarred by the aliens' experimentation, all she wants is to be normal again...and she wants Reed MacKinnon. But the rugged soldier is holding back, treating her like glass, and she won't accept that from anybody.

As Reed and Natalya wage a sensual battle of desires, they also work together to decipher a mysterious alien energy cube. Hell Squad need Natalya's expertise and they need her to go back into alien territory to use it. But on a mission to destroy an alien outpost, secrets are uncovered--of what the raptors really did to Natalya. Secrets that mean the future she wants with Reed is just an impossible dream.

Note to readers:
This sci fi romance contains a lot of action (think invading aliens, explosions and gunfights), tough warriors (the sexy, battle-hardened soldiers of Hell Squad) and a steamy romance (lots of sexy times between a tough Navy SEAL and a smart scientist). So if you like it fast, and gritty, and sexy, this is for you! 

SPACE COWBOYS AND INDIANS - Lisa Medley


How can the chance of a lifetime go so horribly wrong?

Mining Engineer Cole Hudson signed up for NASA astronaut training, but after washing out short of getting his gold wings, he retreats to Alaska where he stakes out a gold claim. When billionaire entrepreneur Duncan Janson offers him an opportunity to join a mining team on an asteroid, Cole jumps at the chance.

But nothing is as it seems. Former NASA reject and rival classmate, Tessa Hernandez, is also a member of the team, and from the beginning of the mission test flight, things go wrong. They soon discover they’re not the only ones on the asteroid. As they try to escape, they are pulled through a wormhole and back to the early 1800s New Mexico desert where aliens and Apaches may be the least of their problems.

THE ADVENTURES OF CASSIUS FLYNN AND MOLLY MCGUIRE (Reapers #3) – Eleri Stone


Cassius Flynn is a smuggler. An outlaw. A scoundrel. Charming, devilishly handsome in a maverick sort of way and fiendishly clever to boot. He's also the only man Molly McGuire has ever loved.
Molly'd left him a year ago. Stolen his airship, broken his heart and made him look like a damn fool. Still, he's rushed to her rescue, storming into Reaper territory to snatch her out from under the repulsive bounty hunter who brought her in.

High above the plains, up among the clouds in the most rarefied Scraper city of them all, a ruthless statesman has stolen everything Cassius considers important. And without Molly, without her quick hands, sharp mind and pretty face, he doesn't stand a chance of getting it back...

AN ALIEN TO LOVE (1Night Stand Boxed Set) - Jessica E. Subject 


Five HOT 1Night Stand stories by Jessica E. Subject about sexy heroes from other planets.

What do a librarian, a nurse, a director’s assistant, a housekeeper, and an orphan have in common? They all end up spending an evening with a gorgeous stranger. But, will one night lead to more, or will the women end up running away when they learn their sexy suitor comes from another planet? Find out in these five sensual 1Night Stand stories by sci-fi romance author, Jessica E. Subject.

Contains: Celestial Seduction, Satin Sheets in Space, Another Night, Another Planet, His Alien Virgin, and Her Alien Hero

SHADES OF TREASON (An Anamoly Novel #1) – Sandy Williams


Ash would have given her life to save her teammates.

Instead, they gave their lives to save hers.

Lieutenant Ramie Ashdyn is an anomaly, a person whose genetics makes her stronger and smarter than the average human. She’s pledged her life to protect the Coalition, an alliance of thirteen planetary systems, but when a top secret operation turns deadly, she’s charged with treason and the brutal executions of her teammates.

The Coalition needs the information Ash’s team stole on their last mission, so they send in Commander Rhys “Rest in Peace” Rykus to get it. He’s the man who’s responsible for turning Ash into an elite soldier... and he’s a man who isn’t, never was, and never will be in love with the woman he trained. Or so he tells himself.

Ash wants nothing more than to clear her name and be the woman her former instructor wants her to be, but the enemy who killed her teammates did more than frame her for treason and murder: they telepathically silenced her mind, preventing her from saying anything that might point to the truth about what happened.

Now Ash is trapped and set to be executed, the truth dying with her. Unless she can prove her innocence. But taking that path could destroy the Coalition she’s sworn to preserve and protect...

Recent SFR/romantic SF discoveries

STARDUST DREAMS by S.B. Redstone has me intrigued since it features an octogenarian couple. Now that's the kind of variety I like to discover in SFR! I've encountered older heroes and heroines before, the most recent being KS Augustin's RESTORATION, but I do believe this is the first book I've seen that features an elderly couple. I asked Mr. Redstone if the story has an HEA and he assured me it does.

Despite the unusual placement of a period in the first sentence, I may just have to check this one out. Here's the cover and blurb:


Lance Forrester is a dreamer. After a celebrated career as an astronaut and engineer, he and a friend build a secret spacecraft to seek their destinies in the stars. But his friend dies and Lance is diagnosed with terminal cancer. Desperate not to succumb to his fate, he convinces an acquaintance, ailing actress Sage Saint Claire, whom he hasn’t seen since high school, to join him on his quest to reach an advanced alien civilization which can heal them both.

Unfortunately, true life is not a Hollywood movie, as much as Sage might want it to be, and problems abound. Mistakes in the past have turned Sage into a bitter old woman, and she turns out to be a less-than-perfect traveling companion which no amount of optimism, youth, or good health can cure. Can these two intrepid octogenarians-turned-immortals overcome the emotional scars of their pasts and achieve true happiness, or are they doomed to suffer for their mistakes, no matter how far from Earth they go?
***
Author D.B. Story wrote to tell me about his new adult SFR work. He noted that not all of his stories have an HEA, but many do. I asked him to name three of his titles that would most likely interest SFR readers and he suggested the following:

THE FEMBOT CHRONICLES, Volume 1 (includes robot-related essays and stories)
RUNAWAY KARA (android romance)

I sampled the first few pages of FAR FUTURE FEMBOT and for what it's worth my impression is the prose has a Golden Age SF style, with an emphasis on the worldbuilding. Here's the cover and blurb for RUNAWAY KARA:

You never know when or how the right fembot will find her way into your life, even when you have intentionally moved away from most of civilization to live a simpler life. When it turns out that she is escaping a bad situation for herself as well, and that her motivations dovetail nicely with your own, then magic can happen—but always be prepared for surprises.

Cover reveal
Author Greta van der Rol revealed the cover for her forthcoming sci-fi romance DEMON'S EYE at Spacefreighters Lounge!

Author blogging

Athena Grayson, author of HUNTRESS OF THE STAR EMPIRE, blogged at length about science fiction romance at Romance University: Launching Romance Into Space, New Horizons in Sci-Fi Romance
Authors are flocking to this small, but tenacious, sub-genre that’s sometimes seen as the “nerdy little sister” of both Romance and Science Fiction. The main groups of readers in each of these genres don’t traditionally have a large intersection. SF fans often don’t want to be “bothered” with one-on-one relationships in the midst of all the wonder and strangeness of the vast cosmos, and Romance fans tend to count as a “distraction” story elements that drift away from the interpersonal relationships.

…Or so we’ve been told…


Reflections on JUPITER ASCENDING
MoviePilot ran an article called Jupiter Ascending: transcending the sci-fi genre in a beautiful way. Since I haven't yet seen the film, I didn't read the article, but I figured I'd share it for those of you who have seen it!
Fun and informative guide about gender, sex, and sexuality
The Queer 101 (via Rooster Tails) is a great resource for not only being generally better informed about gender, sex, and sexuality, but also for authors interested in making their stories more diverse.

Now I turn the mike over to you. Got any SFR news/links to share?

Joyfully yours,
Heather