Showing posts with label Sci-Fi. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sci-Fi. Show all posts

May 16, 2018

Mikky's Review: Evolved by N.R. Walker



In 2068, androids are an integrated part of human life. Big Brother no longer just watches from the shadows. It’s in every household.

Lloyd Salter has OCD issues with noise, mess, and he’s uncomfortable with human interaction. When his ex claimed the only thing perfect enough to live up to his standards was an android, Lloyd dismissed it. But two years later, after much self-assessment, Lloyd thinks he may have been right.

SATinc is the largest manufacturer of androids in Australia, including the Fully Compatible Units known as an A-Class 10. Their latest design is the Synthetic Human Android UNit, otherwise known as SHAUN.

Shaun is compatible with Lloyd’s every need; the perfect fit on an intellectual and physical basis. But Lloyd soon realises Shaun’s not like other A-Class androids. He learns. He adapts. Sure that SATinc is aware Shaun functions outside of his programmed parameters, Lloyd must find a way to keep Shaun safe.

No one can know how special Shaun is. No one can know he’s evolved.



N.R. Walker.

I don’t know what I could say about this author and her books that hasn’t been said before. She’s THAT good.

When I first started reading MM, I stumbled upon Elements of Retrofit (Thomas Elkin #1) and I adored Cooper, his loyalty, his passion, dedication and ethics and I fell in love with Thomas’ gentle nature and his awkward stumbling through a new path in his life and a new and totally different relationship.


Isaac broke my heart and it was so easy to connect with him and understand his pain, his desire to have his sight back and be able to see and be “normal” just like everyone else. I cried so much while reading their story and had to take several breaks because I couldn’t handle it. I understood because I remembered when they told me I wouldn’t be able to walk anymore. I remember the pain of watching everyone around me getting on with their lives while I was stuck and dependent on others to do even the smallest thing. Years later I still cannot read without shedding tears for Isaac. 


I dare you to tell me you didn’t cry and wished their story will never end. I dare you!


Phew!! These two are so damn hot. I don’t care if it’s just fan-fiction or whatever. This is one of N.R.’s best stories and so damn funny. You’ll laugh your head off from beginning to end.

And I could go on and on, and on because every single one of her books has a special place in my heart.


Which brings us to the latest release, Evolved.

Sci-fi novels, cyborgs or androids are not my thing. Never have been but she was so clever at taunting us with this novel that I HAD TO give it a try. (You big tease!)

Oh, boy!

I don’t even know where to begin.

It’s the year 2068 and androids are a big part of day to day life. People use them for almost anything, from driving cars, cleaning the house, act as receptionists to offices and hotels, to having an android as companion.

This is how Lloyd Salter, a Professor of Philosophy at Melbourne University, ends up with Shaun, an A-Class synthetic android.

Lloyd has OCD and doesn’t like human interaction so he designs Shaun to be the perfect companion, someone who can live with all his quirks without complaining or making him feel like there’s something wrong with him.

But Shaun is different. He learns, he adapts and he evolves, which is something no one expected from an android. Not even an A-Class one.

Soon, Shaun and Lloyd find themselves in a tricky situation because SATinc, Shaun’s manufacturer, is likely to realize the truth and come for him, separating them just when they’re beginning a new life together.

Like any other N.R. Walker novel, this, too, was captivating from beginning to end but, the best part, at least for me, was Shaun.

Following his evolution made me pause and think about quite a few things.

Let’s start with technology. We’re so dependent on our devices and spend most of our time in front of a computer, tablet or glued to our phones that we fail to see what’s happening around us. 

Shaun is an android so he knows everything there is to know about how technology works so he’s curious about his surroundings, about things that humans take for granted every day. Take books, for example. In the year 2068 everyone has stopped reading or buying paperbacks, but not Lloyd. He loves the feel of a book in his hands, the smell of it, he loves reading words written on paper and he explains this to Shaun, tries to make him understand why a simple act, such as holding a book, can bring such pleasure and comfort.

In exchange, Shaun helps Lloyd rediscover the joy of small and big pleasures like holding a new partner’s hand for the first time, the first tentative touches between new lovers, the thrill of getting to know someone and allowing them to show you the world through their eyes.

I think one of the most interesting parts of this book was reading about Shaun seeing himself for the first time, the reaction of someone who has no preconceptions. There are no standards of beauty as far as he’s concerned and his curiosity is genuine. There’s a lot of focus on emotions and feelings rather than physical aspect. And, just like any other of N.R.’s books, you won’t find any senseless drama. 

Bottom line is, you have to read Evolved. 

To be honest, I had no idea what to expect but I loved it, every single part of it and I wish it would have been longer. I wanted to see more of Shaun and Lloyd building a life together after all the struggle. 

Evolved has been added to my “Favorites” list and I plan to read it again in a few days, which means I’ll probably add to this review. For now, I just wanted to share my initial thoughts. Looking forward to hear what the rest of you thought and to Mrs. Walker’s next novel.

Happy Reading!





Author also writes as A. Voyeur

N.R. Walker is an Australian author, who loves her genre of gay romance. She loves writing and spends far too much time doing it, but wouldn't have it any other way.

She is many things; a mother, a wife, a sister, a writer. She has pretty, pretty boys who she gives them life with words.

She likes it when they do dirty, dirty things...but likes it even more when they fall in love. She used to think having people in her head talking to her was weird, until one day she happened across other writers who told her it was normal.

She’s been writing ever since...



April 18, 2016

Excerpt, Book Trailer & Giveaway! Infinite, The Infinite Series #1 by Nicole Corine Dyer


A SECRET WORLD. A THREAT TO ALL MANKIND. A FIGHT FOR A LIFE WORTH KILLING FOR. The Immortals are a group of men and women chosen by their Gods to protect humanity from the evils of the world for all eternity. Ryan, Anna, and their companions have been living the immortal life with ease as they secretly protect the innocent and enjoy the fruits of life. UNTIL NOW. The Immortals are about to face the biggest threat to mankind and the Gods they willingly serve — villainous Immortals called the Risen. The consequences of failure are unimaginable. They must fight their way through traps, traitors, and a host of deadly enemies, before religion is destroyed and along with it, the very essence of humanity. WILL THEY SAVE THE LIFEBLOOD OF MORTALITY? OR WILL THEY BECOME NOTHING BUT A MEMORY OF THOSE FALLEN TO THE WICKEDNESS OF THE CORRUPT? 










She was now face to face with him—her eyes never once left his. Her gaze pulled him in and Ryan was doing everything in his power not to kiss her.

She leaned toward him slowly—her lip’s parted and suddenly Ryan was on the floor. She’d caught him by surprise and quickly swiped his legs out from under him with her own.

That escalated fast.

“Don’t ever talk to me like that.”

Ryan grinned and propped himself up on one elbow. “Going to have to try harder than that for me to fall for you.”

That seemed to make her angry.

She tried to kick him, but he caught her leg, twisted her around, and she fell to the ground. He sat precariously on her back as she pushed herself up. She bucked him off making him land on his side.

Julia put him in a chokehold and Ryan stood up with her on his back. With momentum, he bent forward and flipped her over. She landed on the mats with a soft thud.

“You want to play with the big boys?” Ryan grinned as he stood over her. To his surprise, she was calm. Her leg swung around and hit the back of his knees again collapsing his legs and forcing him onto his back.

One word came to mind about her—perfection. She quickly straddled him and pulled out her small knife, lightly pressing it to his throat.

“From what I hear you’re not a big boy.”

“Only one way to find out.” He winked.

“You couldn’t handle a woman like me. Keep messing with those girls of yours. Break some more hearts.”

“Let me break yours then,” he whispered. Her smile was amazing and breathtaking, but he truly didn’t want to hurt her. She had to dislike him in order for him to protect her from his idiocy.

He moved his hands up her thighs, and the knife came closer to his neck.

“Try it. I dare you.”

He put his hands on her waist and ran them up her sides as he pulled her lightly down towards him. For a brief second of joy, he thought she was giving in, and then he felt her fist connect with his jaw. She is definitely stronger than she looks.

She leaned down and whispered in his ear, “Want to try that again?”

“Depends, are you going to kiss it and make it better?”

“It truly is amazing how full of yourself you are, Ryan.” She shook her head, stood up and threw her knife across the room at a target. To his surprise, she held out her hand and helped him up. “You’re lucky you are my brother’s friend. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have a problem killing you.”

“You, ma’am, are very violent. Attacking men for no reason, how do you ever expect to find a decent husband with such an attitude?” he mused.

“Easy, find someone completely opposite of you.” He detected a smirk about to play across her lips, but she hid it well.

Ryan looked appalled and grasped his chest. “Are you saying you want an ugly, untalented, uneducated, skinny, weakling with no sense of humor? Now Julia, you don’t have to set your standards so low. I know I am intimidating and amazing, but I could learn to love you.”

Her arms crossed and she looked him up and down. “Idiot.”

“Easy with the foreplay.”

“You’re disgusting.”

“You love it.”




My name is Nicole Corine Dyer. I was born in Kansas and have two beautiful boys in my life. 



March 10, 2016

Excerpt & Giveaway! Jakob & Ivo, Storming Love Series: Meteor Strikes #2 by Mario Kai Lipinski


Dr. Jakob Feldmann is a renowned German geneticist at Research Hospital Essen... and a recluse par excellence.

Ivo Andersson is a male nurse working at the same hospital as Jakob. His outgoing personality and good looks have earned him the nickname Sir Grin-a-lot.

They both have a crush on each other that everyone except the two of them seems to know about. But when the German Federal Police shows up with two patients suffering from a suspected alien infection, their voluntary exile in the high security research complex shifts their relationship into fast-forward mode.

Just when they find the courage to open up to each other, Jakob discovers the true nature of the infection. He has to make a decision that will change everything.

How much can love endure?




“Emergency, emergency on floor seven! Dr. Feldmann’s eyeballs are about to drop out.”

Jakob flinched. “Shhh, not so loud.” He spun around. “Not everyone has to know.”

Marc may have been a capable physician, but he made a bull in the china shop look like a well-behaved customer interested in a delicate porcelain service.

“I think apart from the both of you,” Marc chuckled and that sound got Jakob’s ear canals dirty, “everyone else in the hospital is aware of your crush on each other.”

“He isn’t interested in me.” Jakob turned back and looked down the hospital hall again. Ivo was still talking to the other nurse, Sandra Gronder, right? How could such a cute guy be interested in Jakob “Average Guy” Feldmann? It took one look from those blue eyes, one sweep through that dark blond mass of hair, one smile with those perfectly white rows of teeth, and every man would drop down to his knees begging for a date, regardless whether that guy was gay or not. “I’m not in his league.”

Marc groaned through his closed lips. “Oh fucking Jesus.” He reached into his pocket, got his cell out, and held it to his ear before offering it to Jakob. “It’s for you. The nineties’ rom coms are calling and want their clich├ęs back.” He let his hand sink down. “You’re a doctor and he’s a nurse. You look at a nucleic acid sequence and give a perfect description of the person it came from. I won’t sleep with any chick for a month if you can name a better geneticist in the world than you, and I’m damn jealous. And he? He cleans bedpans and chauffeurs meals.”

“You’re a snob and a jerk.” Jakob would never become one of those demigods in white. That’s what he had promised his father and he would stick to that promise. “He’s twenty-seven. I’m thirty-three. And I don’t even know if he’s into guys.”

“Six years? You’re kidding me, aren’t you?” Marc huffed, blowing his nostrils. “As a male nurse, he most probably is gay or has been asked that question so many times that he doesn’t give a crap anymore. It’s the twenty-first century, you know? You can talk about who you fuck in public.”

Jakob closed his eyes, pushed down his glasses, and massaged the bridge of his nose. Marc was a snob and a jerk for real, but however much this turned Jakob’s stomach, he was also right. Jakob opened his eyes again. “That just isn’t me, approaching him and asking him out.” His elbow began to itch. Damn psoriasis! He didn’t need any reminder that he was nervous.

“I can ask him for you.” Marc took a step forward, but Jakob grabbed him by his arm.

“Are you crazy? No, no, please, no.” The embarrassment would kill Jakob. Slowly pining away, yearning for Ivo, didn’t seem to be that bad of an alternative to death.

Marc shrugged and tilted his head, a smug grin on his lips. “I only want to help.” Another filthy chuckle fouled the air around them. “Seriously, Jakob, get a grip on yourself and ask him. It’s not that difficult.”

For normal people, asking that simple question may have been a piece of cake, but for “Four-Eyes Jakob” and “Crumble Cake Skin Feldmann”? “I’ll consider it.” Perhaps another month and the crush would go away all by itself. They always did. He eyed Ivo again and sighed. This infatuation, however, might need some harder medication.

With another huff, Marc shook his head. “Okay. While you’re considering,” he drew quotation marks into the air, “let me share the newest rumors with you. A few minutes ago, two white vans with federal license plates pulled up at the security lock. Our friends of the BKA are back.”

The German federal police had paid them a last visit about a year ago when they had arrested a criminal with a suspected Ebola infection. It had turned out to be a false alarm though. “Did you hear anything about why they are here?”

“Nope.” Marc let the p plop. “I’ll be dicked anyway because they definitely won’t need an orthopedist unless Queen Angie sprained her ankle on a secret holiday in the Dolomites.”

Maybe they needed a geneticist? Helping to convict—or exonerate—a criminal would distract Jakob from Ivo at least. Was hijacking a doctor’s thoughts a felony? If so, Ivo was guilty: a cute rogue with a killer smile. Jakob lowered his head until his chin touched his chest. He had to stop spending all of his weekends reading fantasy graphic novels at home. At the age of thirty-three, he should have something better to do. With real people. He sighed once more.


Mario K. Lipinski (born in November, 1975, in Germany) lives in Herne, Germany.
He is a spare-time author and, in "real" life, is a mathematician teaching at university level. Does it show in his books? Yes, it does.
English is not his native language, and a frequent question is why he does write in English. For more than 15 years, most of the books he has read have been in English. So, it felt natural for him to write in English, too.
He is into romance with a capital R.



February 16, 2016

Excerpt & Giveaway! Scardust by Suzanne van Rooyen




 Dead Rock, Texas, 2037

Raleigh Williams made a promise to his brother before he died, that he’d scatter his ashes on Mars. Desperate to leave a life of bad memories behind and start over in the Martian colony, Raleigh fully intends to keep that promise. But his plans are thwarted when a meteor near-misses him in the desert, and Raleigh finds in its crater not debris or even a spacecraft, but a man covered in swirling scars and with no memory of who he is. At least he looks like a man—a man Raleigh can’t seem to keep his eyes off of—but whenever they touch it ignites a memory swap between them. Raleigh agrees to help Meteor Man piece together his life through their cosmic connection. But the memory share goes both ways, and Raleigh becomes inexplicably entangled with a guy who is everything he needs—everything good that Raleigh is not—but might not even be human. As their minds and worlds collide, reality unravels and Raleigh must face a painful truth, one that could shatter his dreams of finding love, reaching Mars, and fulfilling his brother’s last wish. 




The Texas sky stretches an empty hand across the desert, reaching for the shimmer-slick horizon it won’t ever be able to hold. Bear and I hit the dirt road cutting between the fracking lands flanking old McCauley’s farm. It’s not even a farm any more, just a homestead crumbling down around a geriatric couple too stubborn to sell their land before they kick the bucket.

My feet lead me straight to the crater. Pain drills through the side of my skull, a screwdriver to the brain as a kaleidoscope of images form and fracture in my mind: Writing a final physics exam and not knowing all the answers, meeting my little sister's first boyfriend, struggling against the effects of zero gravity.

The mental storm ends when I blink. What’s happening to me? Withdrawal from the meds shouldn’t be like this, not this intense or disorientating. This is more like a bad acid trip. How can I remember something I've never done? Please don't let this be another episode.

Chilled despite the baking heat, I turn away from the crater and head back to the Interstate, the headache fading. McCauley's drought-slimmed cattle are ghost smudges in the dusk heat as Bear and I follow the trail of roadkill along the asphalt. The wind barrels across the land, dousing us in the stench of gasoline from the lonely pump-jacks studding the fields to the north. My scars burn as we approach the bone cross marking the spot where Weston met his maker.

First time I made the cuts right after West died, everyone thought I was trying to kill myself. I tried telling them it was Comanche tradition, a way of honoring the dead. All that got me was another prescription for meds I’m not sure I ever needed. They gave me the wrong cocktail too. Instead of the drugs making me happy, they made me crazy: make Daddy Sergeant Williams proud, throw sick bullets and score touchdowns, beat a kid's head in and get sent to juvie kind of crazy.

I brush bird shit off the bleached leg-bones of a coyote with the hem of my shirt and splash bourbon into the dried out grass. My brother chose suicide over standing up to our father. Hope Dad enjoys hunting down insurgents in the Middle East while his eldest son sits in an urn on the mantelpiece.

“Hi, West,” I whisper. “Here's to four years dead.”




Suzanne is a tattooed storyteller from South Africa. She currently lives in Sweden and is busy making friends with the ghosts of her Viking ancestors. Although she has a Master’s degree in music, Suzanne prefers conjuring strange worlds and creating quirky characters. When she grows up, she wants to be an elf – until then, she spends her time (when not writing) wall climbing, buying far too many books, and entertaining her shiba inu, Lego. 



February 2, 2016

Excerpt & Giveaway! Marked, The Birthright #2 by Amy Saunders



Starting over for Rosamund Brandt is more complicated than it sounds. Especially when the past keeps coming back to haunt her. As she and her mom and brother try to pick up the pieces in a new home, the universe seems determined to tear them apart even more as secrets multiply, and distrust grows.

While new threats and unknowns emerge, Rosamund struggles with her own inner battle. Her new powers are growing whether she wants them or not, and their origins and nature are sketchy at best. The more that’s revealed to her, the more uncertain she feels.

Choosing allies and facing new and old enemies alike may not be their biggest problems. Not if Rosamund’s worst fears come true. Could she be the one they should fear the most?





Xavier turned his back to me, disappearing among the students walking in all directions. I gulped down the lump in my throat, and headed toward my locker on autopilot. I walked straight down the middle of the hallway, students veering around me one way or the other. Each step was like the last, until gravel crunched beneath my boot.

I stopped walking and glanced down. Instead of tile, I saw charred black gravel. When I looked back up, I was standing in a virtual field of the stuff. There was nothing else around me except some hills the same color. The sky was gray and wind blew strands of my hair across my face. When I brushed the hair away, I saw something glint among the rocks near my feet.

I bent down, brushing the blackened dirt away, revealing something silver. I grazed the edge of it with my fingertips, then plunged my fingers into the gravel, pulling out the object. I stood again, my hand wrapped around it. When I glanced up, I was back in the hallway, students parting around me.

Another memory. Each one seemed to get more vivid and real.

But then I felt something cold in my hand.

I slowly unwrapped my fingers, and charcoaled dirt sifted between them onto the floor, leaving behind a 3-D silver serpentine object the size of my palm. My hand shook. That wasn’t just a memory. I’d physically done something. Or, more to the point, I’d gone somewhere. And I was pretty sure it wasn’t on Earth.

I covered the object in my hand again. I took a step forward, totally ready to skip class to go have a meltdown in the bathroom, when someone grabbed my arm, dragging me across the hall into an empty classroom. I wrenched away, facing the guy from detention–who didn’t exist in school records.

“What are you doing?” he hissed. “Didn’t you grow up like this? I thought you’d know better.”



Amy is a sci-fi/mystery addict with a soft spot for humor and romance. She lives in Massachusetts, and loves to bake and watch movies. Learn more about Amy and her books at http://amysaundersauthor.com.



January 28, 2016

Excerpt & Giveaway! Mercury Striking, The Scorpius Syndrome #1 by Rebecca Zanetti



With nothing but rumors to lead her, Lynne Harmony has trekked across a nightmare landscape to find one man—a mysterious, damaged legend who protects the weak and leads the strong. He’s more than muscle and firepower—and in post-plague L.A., he’s her only hope. As the one woman who could cure the disease, Lynne is the single most volatile—and vulnerable—creature in this new and ruthless world. But face to face with Jax Mercury…

Danger has never looked quite so delicious…



Slowly, like prey, she rolled over to face Jax Mercury, bare chested, cascading heat. A jagged tattoo made up of complicated lines and sharp edges wound over his left shoulder. She could make out a 20 in the center, covered and crossed over by lines. A special ops tat with a 44 in it shifted in the muscle on his left arm. A military designation of some type? “You promised,” she whispered.

He opened one brown eye. “I’m not attacking you, am I?”

“Well, no.” She inhaled, trying to slow her heart rate before a panic attack swamped her. She eyed him, tousled and relaxed. His right bicep held a tattoo with sharp lines, a shield, and the word Vanguard written through a heart. A dark lock of hair had fallen over his forehead, and a bristly shadow covered his square jaw, giving him the look of a lazy panther.

Panthers didn’t really get lazy, now did they? 

He sighed and reached for the comforter, frowning when she flinched. Sighing, he pulled up the threadbare fabric to her neck, covering her completely.

“I need to know what I’m dealin’ with here, darlin’,” he rumbled, opening both eyes and focusing on her.

She curled her knees up toward her chest, hitting his hip bone on the way. “What do you mean?”

His gaze roamed her face, lingered on her lips, and returned to her eyes. “The world turned shitty-times-ten for women without the ability to fight.”

She blinked. “I know.” Predators always found the weak.

“What really happened when you disappeared from the CDC? Kidnapping or escape?” he asked.

Apparently the questioning would begin in bed. She tried to move back, but the wall stopped her. “I’d rather discuss this later while clothed.”

“That’s unfortunate, because we’re discussing it now.” His tone remained gentle.

She’d have to crawl over him to get to the floor, and no way was she getting in a tussle in bed with him. “I escaped.”

“Three months ago.”

“Yes.” She plucked at a string on the comforter. “The contagion spread, and soon the people in control weren’t the people who should be in control. I ran.”

He nodded. “Right about that time, the news stopped.”

So many people had succumbed to the illness, the world had seemed to stop. “I know.”

“Where have you been for three months?”

She tightened her jaw to keep her lips from trembling.

“Before the Internet crashed, the battles in L.A. were broadcast continually. I saw you fight, and I later read about the group you’ve formed here. Even the worst of the worst know not to come within five miles of inner Los Angeles, or they face the wrath of Jax Mercury.”

He lifted one dark eyebrow. “Those reports were exaggerated.”

“Of course.” She rubbed sleep from her eyes, her heart rate finally slowing. “The remaining doctors at the CDC tried to contain me, but I got loose. I knew I needed to get here, that with your vitamin B stores and fighting troops, maybe I could be safe and help find a cure.” That wasn’t the whole story. But she couldn’t trust him with it yet.

“Did you meet trouble on the way?”

“Of course.” There was always trouble, and she’d seen too much. “But I made it here.”

He touched her cheek. “Did anybody hurt you?”

She frowned. Oh. “No. I traveled with my uncle Bruce, who was a hell of a cop in his day. He helped me to break out of the CDC—the center we created in the nation’s capital the second Scorpius got out of hand.”

“Wasn’t the CDC branch in DC just policy oriented?”

“Yes, but we took over a hospital and started researching there, and once I was better, I worked there. It was supposed to be temporary, but as you know, everything happened so quickly, so we never returned to the main CDC hospital in Atlanta.”

Her uncle Bruce had visited her many times in the hospital, and when it became evident that several of the CDC doctors had been infected and were considering making Lynne a prisoner, he’d come up with a plan to get her out. “He posed as a lab technician to get me out of the facility, and then he had an elaborate scheme that included three stairwells, one secured lab, and finally a row of windows.” She smiled and then faltered. “We’d been on the run for months, and he’d taken great pains to protect me. He died a month ago.” The pain was fresh and almost doubled her over. She’d lost so many family members and friends, as had any survivor. God, it hurt.

“I’m sorry.” Jax ran a knuckle across her chin. “Scorpius?” It’d be easy to just nod and lie. “No. Bruce was killed by one of the groups seeking me. Many people still are hunting me, believing I either started the apocalypse on purpose or I have knowledge about a cure.”

She had knowledge about Myriad but no cure. “After my uncle’s death, I continued my search for you and safety, meeting stragglers on the way and staying away from most encampments. Foraged for food when I could.” Of course they were hunting her now. It was amazing she’d survived, considering she could trip over a smooth floor, she was such a klutz.

Her former lack of grace was the least of her worries. At some point, she’d need to tell Mercury everything, especially if he wouldn’t let her out of the room. But not now, and definitely not while in such a vulnerable position. “I haven’t been attacked, Jax.”

“Good.” His smile seemed almost sinful. “Then you can relax here in our bed and not flinch when I pull up the covers.”

Heat flared through her. Our bed? “Oh, hell no. I’m not sharing a bed with you.”

He glanced at her, at the bed, down at his chest, and then back at her. “I believe you are.”

She shoved him. “Absolutely not.” When he didn’t move or respond, she coughed out air. “Why? Why would you want to share a bed?”

He sighed. “It’s not personal. You’re a danger to people, and some of them might be a danger to you. So you stay with me, under guard, where I can protect everybody.” He pointed to the stacked locks on the door, which she’d failed to study the day before. The door was metal, huge, and obviously not native to the building. “There are locks on both sides, and I have all the keys. One of us could take the couch, but frankly, it sucks.”

What should’ve been the worst come-on she’d ever heard actually sounded like the truth. It was a pretty cage, but a cage nonetheless. She needed freedom. “I want my own place.”

“You’re not safe, and I can’t have guards on you twenty-four

seven. Sometimes it’s just me, and I need sleep. So you sleep when I sleep, and everybody stays safe. Period.” He stretched an arm above his head, showing that amazingly cut chest. “Like I said, I won’t force you. You want the couch? It’s yours.”

She eyed the cold-looking, rather worn pleather. It was a freakin’ luxury compared to sleeping on the hard ground, but even so, now she’d had a taste of a real bed again . . . “A gentleman would give me the bed.”

He scratched the stubble next to his scar. “All the gentlemen are dead, baby. Soldiers and survivors are what we have now.” 

She pushed up to one elbow, discreetly eyeing the locks on the door before studying him. “How dangerous is it here for me?”

“Very.” His eyes darkened from bourbon to Guinness. “We have many who haven’t been infected, and you are a carrier.”

“Anybody who survived the fever is a carrier.”

“As you know, there are rumors that you carry a new strain of the disease.”

More lies meant to force her away from other people. “We already discussed that. Either you believe me or you don’t,” she whispered. 

His expression didn’t gentle. “There are so many rumors and ghost stories out there; I don’t pay attention to them.”

She swallowed, her throat clogging. “Good. There is no new strain of the bacterial infection. I’m no different from anybody else who’s survived Scorpius.”

“You’re the only one with a blue heart.” 

“I know. I was infected with the main strain, and then we used one of the many experiments to save my life, turning my heart blue. We were never able to duplicate the exact concoction again, although since it didn’t cure me, I’m not sure it matters.”

“You’re different. How can it not matter?” 

She sighed. “My heart is blue, as are a few veins around it. I have both photosphores and chromatophores in my heart, which without the initial bacterial infection would be impossible. Squids and octopi have the same materials, essentially, and they can turn different colors—usually blue.”

“So you have squid genes?” His brows furrowed, and his gaze pierced her.

She snorted. “Not exactly, but close enough.”



USA Today Bestselling author Rebecca Zanetti has worked as an art curator, Senate aide, lawyer, college professor, and a hearing examiner - only to culminate it all in stories about Alpha males and the women who claim them. She writes contemporary romances, dark paranormal romances, and romantic suspense novels.
Growing up amid the glorious backdrops and winter wonderlands of the Pacific Northwest has given Rebecca fantastic scenery and adventures to weave into her stories. She resides in the wild north with her husband, children, and extended family who inspire her every day—or at the very least give her plenty of characters to write about.


January 20, 2016

Excerpt & Giveaway! Kahayatle, Apocalypsis #1 by Elle Casey




NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR, ELLE CASEY, brings readers Book 1 of 4 in the YA Dystopian APOCALYPSIS Series, suitable for older teens and adults.

KAHAYATLE. My name’s Bryn Mathis. I’m seventeen years old, and I live in a neighborhood outside of Orlando, Florida. I live alone because my dad died almost a year ago, along with all the other adults in the world. I’m almost out of food and the gangs of kids that roam around my town are getting more vicious by the day. It’s time for me to leave and find another place to live … a place where I can find food and shelter … a place where they won’t be able to find me. Alone, it might have been possible, but now I’ve got company. I’m worried that I don’t have what it takes to get from here to my final destination, and I have no idea what might be waiting for me when I get there.

Content Warning: Mild violence and some foul language. Meant for older Young Adult readers (age 15+). This book is in the Dark Science Fiction / Horror / Post-Apocalyptic genres, featuring teen characters only.



I had eaten all the rations that were left in my house, except for five cans of baked beans and two bags of noodles. It’s all I’d been eating for a week, and if I had to have another bite of starch I was going to puke. I didn’t like the idea of going through my neighbors’ houses to find food, but the choice was being made for me now. I was desperate. 

Morning would be the best time for me to make my move. I’d heard the sounds of other people - teens like me - moving around in the daytime; but usually it was in the afternoon or at night. Groups of them had gotten together, looking for stuff in the houses that didn’t have kids in them. None of the houses had adults in them anymore. 

I needed to move without being seen. Leaving my house unprotected would be a very bad idea. I knew that these gangs were soon going to stop showing respect to the houses with kids in them like me. It was only a matter of time before the resources left in these neighborhoods dwindled down to an amount so small, it would no longer be enough to support the number of growling stomachs that roamed the streets; not without the hungry breaking into the occupied places too. 

I hadn’t heard them hit the house behind me yet, maybe because there was someone living there. I’d never met that neighbor, though, and had never seen any sign of a kid there. There were two other houses on my street that used to have kids my age in them, but they had left - I assume to join one of the roving gangs. I guess they figured they had better chances of surviving in a group. 

I didn’t feel that way at all. Before the world had gone into the crapper, I’d been pretty much a loner anyway. I liked my music and my books and didn’t bother with after-school clubs or hanging out at the local cafe. Besides, my dad had me in martial arts training every weekday and most weekends, practically my whole life; it didn’t leave much time for socializing. I’d only moved to this town six months before my dad was suddenly gone. He’d hoped to outrun the apocalypse, but it eventually caught up with him like it did anyone who wasn’t going through puberty.

The guys I trained with at various dojos over the years - I was always the only girl - were as serious as my dad about their skills. They lived for the feel of total control and absolute domination, in any situation. I appreciated the power, but it was never really my thing. I did it to make my dad happy. I’d advanced through the ranks, but didn’t get as far as he’d wanted me to. Now he wasn’t here to help me move forward, and I wished like hell I’d tried harder. For him and for me.

I decided to go to the house behind me to search for food. Maybe there was a kid there, maybe there wasn’t. It was worth checking out, at least. I could get there by climbing my backyard fence, and no one who might be out on the street would be able to see me. Up until now, no one had bothered to try and come into my house. I’d put a note on my door that said to stay the hell away and that I had a gun - which was the truth. But in doing that, I’d essentially become a sitting duck. Eventually, they would come for the things they hoped were in my house - food and fresh water. It was going to be time to leave soon. But until that day came, I needed something else to eat. My hunger was gnawing a hole in my stomach.

Two more hours and I’d go over the fence. My hand went nervously to the ring on a chain that hung at my neck - my dad’s old wedding ring that he’d given me just before he went away for good.



Elle Casey is a prolific, NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY bestselling American writer who lives in Southern France with her husband, three kids, and several furry friends. She writes in several genres and publishes an average of one full-length novel per month.



December 6, 2015

Excerpt & Giveaway! The Planet Whisperer by E.E. Montgomery




Jonah Starovski, a Planet Whisperer, harnesses the energy surrounding dead planets and redirects it into new growth. Abandoned by the man who bought him from a brothel sixteen years ago, Jonah flounders in a world he’s ill equipped to deal with. He must accept the help of a stranger in order to rebuild his life.

First Lieutenant Marcus Davis volunteers as Jonah’s assistant without realizing the terraforming process requires Jonah’s sexual release. Balanced on the knife-edge of fear and ambition, Marcus is faced with his mother’s machinations and threats to his career. Marcus’s parents bring their illegal scientific experiments to the planets Jonah is terraforming just as Marcus learns to accept himself and his feelings for Jonah. At the same time, Jonah’s past catches up to him, putting them both in danger.

Jonah and Marcus must trust in each other to put a stop to the illegal activities, rescue an endangered animal, and create the future they both want—a future they can share.


~*~
“You’re offering to help?” Jonah whispered harshly, his throat raw from the tension still riding his body. “Are you sure you want to know what I need to finish this?” 

Jonah almost smiled at the wariness that crept into the lieutenant’s gaze, but the amusement that relaxed his features died when Davis nodded. 

“I’ve orders to assist you in any way you need.” 

Anger flooded him then. The stupid man was so focused on carrying out his orders he didn’t know what he was offering. What he was risking. “Are you volunteering to help me, Lieutenant?” The roughness in Jonah’s voice smoothed to a silken purr, and the lieutenant’s expression finally showed the uncertainty it should have all along. 

Jonah felt guilty at the pleasure he felt in bringing that expression to Davis’s face. But only a little. He decided the lieutenant was a smart man when he stepped away. 

“Tell me what I have to do, and I’ll tell you if I can help.” 

Jonah forced a grin. He hadn’t tried to take control like this since Wes—better not to go there. Not while he was standing with power still tight in his body. The fallout would be beyond his control. Instead he reached out and grabbed the lieutenant’s hand and pushed it roughly against the aching length of his dick.

“This is what you have to do, Lieutenant. The power is stored there and needs to be released. My dick, your mouth. Get the picture?”

Davis snatched back his hand and fumbled a few steps back from the momentum. But he didn’t leave. Jonah frowned. He’d been sure he’d scare him off with that. “What’s your name, Lieutenant? If you’re going to suck me off, it seems a little ridiculous that I don’t know your name.” “I didn’t say I was going to suck you off,” Davis exclaimed.

~*~

E E Montgomery wants the world to be a better place, with equality and acceptance for all. Her philosophy is: We can’t change the world but we can change our small part of it and, in that way, influence the whole. Writing stories that show people finding their own ‘better place’ is part of E E Montgomery’s own small contribution. 

Thankfully, there’s never a shortage of inspiration for stories that show people growing in their acceptance and love of themselves and others. A dedicated people-watcher, E E finds stories everywhere. In a cafe, a cemetery, a book on space exploration or on the news, there’ll be a story of personal growth, love, and unconditional acceptance there somewhere.