Koritt Diviak is assigned a mission he would rather not go on. He goes to Earth anyway and ends up crashing in the Afghan dessert. He attracts the attention of two people who are on their own missions. Lieutenant Lavender would love to use the U-10 recovered from the crash site to protect his troops against terrorists and militia. Lincoln Frost also comes into the picture with a desire to get the same elite weapon for his superiors who supposedly plan to use it for the safety of the American citizens. It is quickly discovered that all three have to fight each other for their interests. Will any one of them come out unscathed?
U-10 is an action filled science fiction adventure story that meshes fantasy and reality into one medley of literary excitement. The plot is well sculpted and executed. No holes are left especially regarding the functionality of the tech. Speaking of which, the gadgets in this book are straight out of any sci-fi enthusiast’s imagination. They are simply out of this world with high adaptability and power. It only makes sense that everyone is willing to go to such great lengths to be in possession of it.
Koritt is your typical veteran soldier. He will follow orders despite his feelings on the matter. He will fight and keep to the mission objective above all odds. Frost is also a typical lackey for the man. These characters are all introduced to the reader with such vivid descriptions that you can almost put a face to the image created in your head. Strong characters make for a strong story. They carry the story and ensure that the reader is engaged. They each work so hard for their mission that they do not realize just how intrinsically similar they are.
The story remains fresh up to the very end with engaging dialogue that supported the plots movement. It remains consistently exciting and lively throughout which makes for a quick pace.
U-10 will keep you at the edge of your seat and anxious for the next twist in the plot. I enjoyed the simplicity with which the story is told as well as the brilliant tone that rarely leaves a dull moment.
Pages: 458 | ASIN: B07W864RY3
Tags: action, adventure, author, book, book review, bookblogger, ebook, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, kindle, kobo, literature, nook, novel, read, reader, reading, romance, Sam B Miller II, science fiction, story, The Most Ingenious Technology in the Galaxy, U-10, writer, writing
The Lost Signal by J.S. Fernandez is a science fiction novel that explores the reality of our planet and the myth of creation. Aeons ago, the Creators had arrived on Earth and established two races: the humans and the Urukulu. The humans were to be kept subservient under the Urukulu so that the Creators could tend to their commercial mining needs on Earth. Naturally, this greedy scheme was banned by the intergalactic Federation. However, the Creators have found nefarious ways to infiltrate and exploit Earth again. Fiona is the lady in charge who has taken it upon herself to keep these creatures away for good. She enlists the help of her close friends and allies, fighting her personal demons on an already uphill battle.
The Lost Signal is fast paced without being rushed. Right from the beginning we are thrown into the middle of action. The characters are introduced in an almost Whack-a-Mole fashion, displaying flashes of their personality and the place they occupy in this world. I loved Fiona’s character fight from the introduction. She is teased about her supposed tomboyishness while she struggles with her attraction towards her close friend, Ralph. While her life isn’t particularly easy, it was admirable the way she buckled down on her principles in order to do what was right. Despite the dark and depressing premise, the lead characters were kept respectable without seeming to be on a pedestal.
Similarly, the antagonists were kept interesting without losing their believability. In this era, it’s hardly difficult to imagine a corporation doing their absolute best to achieve profit maximization. Hence, the menace of the Creators was real without seeming preachy. The physicality and characterization of the aliens also left a chill down my spine.
In certain places, the novel reminded me of a Jeffrey Archer novel. I think this was because the amount of real world-like politics involved combined with its fast pace. All of the perspectives were totally human, without verging on too scientific or political. The Lost Signal is a thrilling ride from start to finish. It is a great choice for anyone looking for a creative depiction of today’s world, offering just the right amount of escapism but remaining grounded in reality.
Pages: 454 | ASIN: B07X9147K1
Passage of Time finds Elara struggling with letting go of her past while fighting a dictator that will destroy the planet. What inspired the setup to this thrilling novel?
Life inspired this novel. I want my readers to experience challenging situations through my characters eyes, and my hope is that they come away with tools on how to cope with life’s hardships. I want my readers to get more than just a great escape from reality.
Elara continues to be an engaging character. What were some obstacles you felt were important to her character development in this book?
Elara’s growth is something I wanted the reader to witness. She needed to experience “real life” challenges, and she needed to hit rock bottom to grow into a powerful young woman. Sometimes we feel as though we are stumbling through life, when in reality we are constantly evolving. The obstacles she faces in Passage of Time were essential to her growth.
The writing in this book was exceptional. What were some goals you set for yourself as a writer before writing this book?
My goal was to publish a book with zero regrets. Each book you publish should be better than your last. I wanted to challenge myself with Passage of Time by approaching topics I once feared. Domestic violence, sexual abuse, suicide, and war are tough to explore. This involved intense research and deep breaths. A plethora of emotions surfaced while writing this book because I wanted my readers to explore various reactions between characters. I wanted them to explore Elara’s mind. Passage of Time is the largest book in my series, and it took the longest to publish because I refused to rush the process. I spent countless hours doing revisions and edits. When I wasn’t writing I was reading. Reading is the most valuable tool for improving your craft.
Where do you see the Seeker of Time series going in the future?
I have BIG plans for the Seeker of Time series. I can’t give away all of my secrets but I will say this: books 4-6 are scheduled for publication.
Abandoned and betrayed, Elara struggles to let go of the man she loves while her fearless mentor encourages her to stand against the evil dictator who rules her home planet. To succeed, she must rise above the darkness and trust the voice near her heart.
The twins experience a setback after a deadly standoff with the Inner Circle. An act of love transforms Elara’s destiny, and an act of hate pushes Cyrus to his breaking point.
Zenith makes a bold move that disrupts the lives of everyone on Aroonyx. Samson gathers the citizens to prepare for war. An alliance is formed, and a traitor seeks revenge.
A tragic event in the West Village sends Elara tumbling further into the darkness, leaving her to face the masked dealer alone. Outnumbered and out of luck, the twins must rally the recruits to end Zenith’s reign.
As the epic battle approaches, the hands of time pause during a life-changing event, and a visitor from the past alters the future.
Passage of Time is the third installment in the award-winning Seeker of Time series. Meaningful lessons challenge the reader, sending their hearts on an emotional marathon that leaves them sprinting toward the finish line.
The Modronovich Incident by RL Dean is a sci-fi mystery set in outer space and told from the perspective of Beatrice, a pilot and wreck driver. She is tipped off about a mysterious case in which the Modronovich, a cargo ship testing an advanced Newtonian drive, went missing. Bea is intrigued by this case and pulls some strings to get a crew on board so that she can take a deep dive to find it. However, after facing endless obstacles and dead ends, she is forced to give it up. Until, a figure central to the case finally appears. Bea is finally able to put together the missing pieces and finds a shocking revelation at the heart of the puzzle.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book- I read it in just a few sittings and found it nearly impossible to put down. Not only are the premise and plot captivating, but the perspective from which it is shown is also perfectly captured. Beatrice is the perfect window into this futuristic world- the secrets, conspiracies, and revelations are portrayed through her eyes. From the first scene itself, RL Dean masterfully creates an air of suspense and tension, without losing me on an overdose of tech jargon.
RL Dean also managed to create strong female characters in powerful positions. They were ready to save the day, irrespective of which situation happened to arise. Their voices were deftly handled for the most part, except for a few questionable allusions to the ‘women love shopping’ trope. Especially Bea, who handled professional trouble and a petulant mother like any real woman do, with exasperation and a determination to bring her life back on track.
Another aspect that I found great joy in were the ‘Harvey Editorial’ snippets at the beginning of each chapter. They offered short insights, dialogue, or debate on the current day affairs of the future. They were funny, quirky, and often harkening back to our very own 21st century. These were everything from a sassy quip on a politician to a gloomy proclamation of the world ending (I guess some things never change).
All in all, this is a rewarding and thrilling read from start to finish, and I would recommend it to everyone.
Pages: 171 | ASIN: B07Z282VB4
The Literary Titan Book Awards are awarded to books that have astounded and amazed us with unique writing styles, vivid worlds, complex characters, and original ideas. These books deserve extraordinary praise and we are proud to acknowledge the hard work, dedication, and imagination of these talented authors.
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Tags: 50 shades of truth, action, adventure, author, author award, book, book award, book review, bookblogger, ebook, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, kindle, kobo, literature, mystery, nonfiction, nook, novel, read, reader, reading, romance, science fiction, story, supernatural, suspense, thriller, writer, writing
Rok was living a great life. He was a detective, something he’d aspired to be since childhood. Even better, he was working each day with one of his oldest friends. His girlfriend was more perfect for him than Rok could have ever imagined. Things were good. Until his stolen laptop is returned in the mail, containing a diary entry dated the following day. Each day brings a new update, eerily predicting events in the next 24 hours. As Rok tries to understand the why, how, and who of the situation, everything in his previously idyllic life is upended and he realizes he no longer knows anything.
720 Heartbeats, by Jaka Tomc is an intriguing mix of noir style detective drama, traditional love story, and mind bending science fiction, in a story that comes full circle before its end. What begins with Rok and his best friend Boris on an assignment soon turns into an unwanted and improbable adventure. When Rok’s laptop mysteriously reappears at home, he finds the journal entry but doesn’t give it too much thought. It isn’t until a couple of days have passed that he realizes it gives an accurate, albeit vague, glimpse into the future and by then, Rok is plagued with questions about how it can happen, and who is writing the diary. Things only get weirder when he decides that the only explanation is that it’s a future version of him, which spurns many discussions with Sara about alternate dimensions, the non-linear nature of time, and whether the decisions of present day Rok can change the outcomes of events for future Rok. To complicate matters further, his professional life becomes muddled when he learns some hard truths about people he thought he could trust. Within a week, and with the return of his laptop, Rok’s entire life changes.
Tomc does a wonderful job with his character’s development and dialogue, namely between Rok and Sara. Their conversations feel sincere, and cover the necessary points of the story without feeling forced. The other characters, while very much important to the plot, nonetheless remain very much in the background. Their interactions are still good, but slightly more flat. The story itself is frequently interrupted by Rok’s inner monologue about the randomness of life, the beauty of love, and various other philosophical musings. Although thought provoking the first few times, these tangents quickly become repetitive and, with a few exceptions, add little to the story. Despite that, the book is truly captivating and unique in the way it weaves genres together.
720 Heartbeats isn’t lengthy, but manages to contain plenty of action and mystery, and I had a hard time putting it down. The subtle implications presented at the end truly screws with your head as you wonder… what just happened?
Pages: 145 | ASIN: B07DS81NZR
The Mars One Incident is set in the 27th century, where all technology is banned for the residents on Earth, supposedly for their own good. The Joint Confederacy ensures everything remains this way by using- advanced technology. We are introduced to Alma Johnson, who is offered the captaincy of the Indianapolis starship. She is the youngest and most prolific of all her colleagues, but that doesn’t mean the job comes baggage-free. In a world where technology is scoffed at, she faces the scorn of society and even disapproval within her family. Her colleagues resent her for the sudden rise to power, and there are grave issues with her love life as well. Along with all this, she is on a mission to protect Earth from a rebel space ship that wants to overthrow the peaceful tech-free existence.
The book begins with a thought-provoking and humorous quote by E.B. White, the illustrious author of Charlotte’s Web. It mocks and uplifts humanity’s endless drive for more. More power, more efficiency, more knowledge. After all, we wouldn’t be in our situation, for better or for worse, if we did not have an innate desire to discover, create, and understand. This quote manages to set the perfect tone for the entire story.
It seems to have achieved a tale as old as time status- the man vs technology premise. There is no shortage of criticism for the all-consuming, relentless downpour of new technology. Some of these criticisms are worn-out and unoriginal, while others spark interest; offering a new perspective on a tired argument. This novel is of the latter sort. Kelly Curtis manages to infuse the antagonism against technology with new life and creativity. This is not an endless rail against the egregious gadgets- it is an acknowledgement of their power to empower and destroy.
An example of this aspect is how the Guild know technology is a gray zone, a double-edged sword. The hypocrisy of those in power when they are allowed to use whatever they need for their benefit, while robbing their population of it was a dismal echo of today’s world. Terra Nova was even using technology to sway votes their way- if that isn’t a dismaying reflection of today’s political world, I don’t know what is.
I found this novel utopian not only in the sense of keeping man at bay from the “technology plague,” but also in the sense of a quiet and powerful female presence throughout. The men in charge are all women. This is an infinitely welcome and refreshing change from so many other sci-fi tech novels, where men seem to be the only ones capable of executing all the science, engineering, and thinking. It manages to delve into the complexities of Alma Johnson’s world- personal and professional. It’s an interesting and thought-provoking read, perfect for everyone concerned about the direction we are headed.
Pages: 246 | ASIN: B07TX9NQ8J
Ullr’s Fangs is a dark fantasy following the experiences of Lluava as she faces some massive responsibilities. What was the inspiration for the setup to this thrilling story?
The initial inspiration for Ullr’s Fangs, as well as the two succeeding other books in the series, stems from the backstory of Lluava’s family. Her true origin if you will. As a writer, I need to know not only the personality and characteristics of the main characters but also the secondary characters as well. I challenged myself to understand Lluava’s father who had died before the first book begins. In understanding his story, I discovered where Lluava’s would lead.
Ullr’s Fangs is full of characters that are trying to serve their own interests by manipulating governing officials or pursuing ancient prophecies. My protagonist, Lluava Kargen, must discover whom to trust while struggling to forge her own path against formidable enemies and daunting situations.
Another important concept involves the Berserker. I love ancient Nordic myth and history. In reading and researching countless sagas and historical novels, I was drawn to the mighty and almost supernatural warrior known as the Berserker. This was the inspiration for a new threat to the Kingdom of Elysia that is introduced in this second novel of The Incarn Saga.
I was impressed with the way in which you dealt with the mental decline of King Thor. What were the ideas you wanted to explore with his character?
I grew up with a grandfather who dealt with Alzheimer’s. Though my earliest memories were positive, the majority of my dealings with him were watching a man, who was the patriarchal figure of my mother’s family, slowly deteriorate and lose most of himself to that disease. Thor was, in part, inspired by those experiences and the heartbreaking moments when old memories blended with the present or were irretrievably lost. I hope readers will relate to the bond his grandson shares with Thor as well as the desire to protect this man who is not only his grandfather but also his king.
The second reason for developing Thor in this manner involves plot. As Thor’s dementia increases, he becomes a puppet king easily manipulated by other members of the government who crave control. A power struggle ensues between the heir to the throne and those that have determined policy, made laws, and insured their own interests for years. I also wanted to express that even at the highest levels of power, corruption exists.
The Theriomorphs are exceptionally intriguing. Where did this idea come from and how did it develop while writing?
I have always had a passion for both animals and myth. Growing up, I read anything I could about either topic. Yet it was not until I had a dream where shape-shifting people were training in a military camp that Theriomorphs were essentially born. After that night, I explored shape-shifter and skinwalker stories.
Merriam-Webster’s definition of theriomorphic means “having animal form”. I used that terminology when I started developing my own race of animal shapeshifters. I wanted both human and animal forms to have shared characteristics and personality traits. For example, the main character, Lluava, has platinum blonde hair, jet black eyebrows and olive-hued skin. She has an athletic form and a personality that is fierce, assertive, and sometimes hotheaded. Her animal form, which is referred to as a dual form, is a white tigress.
Theriomorphs cannot choose their animal form; it is something they are born with and it is linked to hormones. For this reason, most males (testosterone) have larger and more volatile dual forms like tigers, bears, and stags. Females (estrogen) typically have smaller and meeker forms like house cats, ducks, and backyard birds. Lluava’s dual form of a white tigress emphasizes the fact that she is atypical even among her own race.
As a society, I wanted the Theriomorph race to encompass the idea of a native culture that has been conquered and forced to incorporate the social traits of those who have taken over their lands. Like many native tribes, their religion is based on a complex system of polytheistic beliefs, one that is very much in tune with nature. In Ullr’s Fangs, it was fun to slowly reveal more details of the original Theriomorph society and their beliefs so that readers could continue to immerse themselves in the kingdom of Elysia.
This is book two in the The Incarn Saga. Where does book three, Crocotta’s Hackles, take the story?
Each book in The Incarn Saga reveals more of the darker realities of the Theriomorph world. It is not until the end of Ullr’s Fangs that the reader begins to learn what the Incarn are. In the third book, Crocotta’s Hackles, Lluava’s personal mission is to discover the truth about the Incarn and what that means for her own future. I also delve into what the original Theriomorph culture was like before humans reached the shores of Elysia.
Crocotta’s Hackles is full of sudden twists and new realizations that will distinctly alter what both Lluava and the readers believe. I truly hope fans of the first two books will fall in love with the third as much as I did when writing it.
“According to legend, when the world was young, two gods of war — one male, one female — were destined for each other. Yet Ullr, forever unfaithful, lost the love of Issaura, his true match, and was forsworn. His violent anger and bitter rage grew and intensified, poisoning all creation and humanity.
Now that the Raiders’ long ships have faded from sight, the kingdom of Elysia is beginning to recover from the summer’s war with the brutal invaders from across the sea. Yet darker forces have taken root, forces that can alter the future of the land and its people in unthinkable ways. Seventeen-year-old Lluava must discover the means to prevent her world from collapsing. But in doing so, will she succumb to that darkness?”
Year of the Child is book two in your Harmony space opera series. What were some ideas you wanted to explore in this book that were different from book one?
The first was a detective. I was really moved by Hideo Yokoyama’s protagonist, Mikami, in his best-seller ‘Six-Four’. And in the current plot it made sense to provide a storyline from the point of view of law enforcement. At some point the piracy occurring in the story would need to be investigated, and I thought it would be a good idea to bring that investigation to the foreground, rather than simply telling it via newsfeeds.
The second were children. Given the story, what is the implication for them? What is their future going to be like? There are five children in the novel, all of them have an impact on the storyline, even if they are not in the forefront. In some cases those storylines will be dealt with in subsequent novels.
I enjoyed Ludwick Chaserman’s character. What was your process for bringing that character to life?
Ludwick was easier to create then you might imagine. I think of someone that had big dreams and no opportunities, or at least no knowledge of how to fulfill those dreams. In Ludwick’s case he wanted to be an advocate for human rights, but he started pursuing it far later than he should have in life. With no real contacts, no real knowledge, and no real help, he was zealous to do the right thing, but didn’t realize the might of the corporate giant that he was up against.
Ludwick writes himself.
What draws you to the science fiction genre and makes it ripe for you to write such a great space opera story in it?
It’s really about people, I just prefer the space opera genre. It shows us that human nature is the same no matter the setting.
Will there be a Harmony book three? If so, where will the story pickup?
Book 3, A Country Among Countries, will pickup around a month after the events in Year of the Child.
All cops know a mystery starts with a lie …
MISAKI— Two months have passed since the destruction of Harmony dome, and Misaki, guilt ridden over her desperate act of sabotage, returns to the place of healing that she knows best … the Sadie. Mat accepts a contract on the far flung moon of Ganymede, hoping that time and distance will heal him of the nightmares from his own wrong doing.
TETSUYA— Disreputable, former detective Tetsuya Takahashi is reassigned as the Lead Investigator for out-system piracy. Despite his reputation, his work is part of who he is. He knows all mysteries start with a lie, and his investigation begins to lead him closer to finding Misaki Iriyama … who reminds him of his lost daughter. His answers lie at Ganymede.
ALEXANDRIA— Her plan has succeeded. The destruction of Apex’s plant has caused a loop-hole in the restrictive UN law that once prohibited the selling of raw ore to the Martians. Then suddenly, word comes from the new mining base on Ganymede- something has been found in the ice, something puzzling and unnatural that has been buried since the time of David. More surprising is the fact that Alexandria seems to already know of its existence.
SHULTZ— With the construction of the new Apex plant on Deimos, and the end of the ore embargo, Mars is entering a ‘bubble economy’. Governor Shultz and Lt. Governor Jung finally feel like they are doing their jobs for the Martian people. But, using the Free Mars Now movement like a tool for their own agenda has made them powerful enemies. Even as Shultz and Jung ride the heady days of making Mars free of UN greed they know those days are numbered. Colonel Compton is slowly putting together the pieces of the puzzle that will link them to the terrorist attacks. They must plan for a future Mars knowing that their own demise is soon to come.
COMPTON— The failed attempt to ambush FMN terrorists at Cydonia Depot cost seven of his people their lives, and Compton is facing a possible court-martial. The families and friends of those that died alongside his soldiers do not believe their loved-ones were terrorists, and the news media has ahold of the story. But, the embattled Lieutenant Colonel knows his duty. With no leads in one hand, and a hanging mob in the other, he must somehow find the head of the Free Mars terrorists and cut it off.
I enjoyed the unique use of DNA in this story. Where did this idea come from and how did it develop as you were writing?
The idea came from my own experience with having my DNA tested. It seems like everyone is wanting to know where they came from and what their true nationality is. I have noticed some people have expected one thing and were shocked to find out that they had a different genetic makeup. So, I thought what would happen if someone had DNA not of this planet. How would they react? What would they think? As I was writing the story I thought to myself how surprised the person would be to find out that they were not alone on this planet and there were others just like him living and working here as he was.
I enjoyed Ian’s character and backstory. What were some obstacles you felt were important to his character development?
The first one was finding out that you are not of this planet, when your whole life you thought you were a human just like everyone else. The character would have to come to grips with the fact that he looked and acted human but was from a whole different universe. The second one was how does he deal with the fact that he is older than what he expects himself to be. How do you come to grips with the fact that you are thousands of years older than anyone else around you? And third, having to come to grips with the fact that you inherited a leadership role and you had thousands of people who were willing to follow you. How do you lead them on a planet that was originally not yours? And your leadership came from your parents who traveled somewhere else in the universe leaving you here alone to take over?
What is the next story that you are working on and when will it be available?
I am finishing up a story titled “The Haunting of Smock Hill” and it is a paranormal/mystery that takes place in an old coal mining town in Southwest Pennsylvania. A dark energy that used to haunt the mines returns to wreak havoc on the town. I hope to have it finished in time for Thanksgiving.
Checking your DNA and ancestry is real popular these days and everyone is doing it. A group of co-workers who meet regularly for drinks decide to do it as a group and share their results. But what happens when one of them finds out he is not even from this planet? And he is not alone! Are they friendly or hostile to planet earth and it’s people?