Category Archives: SFR Monday

#SFRMonday: Brought to their knees by a Clone ~ BOOK OF EVA by @Paxton_Summers #scifirom

#SFRMonday

Please welcome Paxton Summers, who is here to tell us more about her Clone series.

Clone: The Book of Eva by Paxton Summers

CLONE: Book of Eva

by Paxton Summers

When a world leader’s daughter meets a clone, a doomed love affair begins.

In the year 2087, a great war erupts upon the face of the planet, destroying most of the earth. Mankind turns to cloning to survive. Over one hundred-fifty years later, the planet is divided into two factions. There is a shortage of food and an abundance of illness. Most live on the scraps of the wealthy, who wallow in excess.

This is the world Olivia Braun inherits. Sick from birth, she wakes up from surgery with a new heart, only to discover she is the youngest president of Aeropia, an empire that has created and used clones to maintain their position of power since the bombs dropped, but her rise to power was no accident and the fall won’t be either. Before her transplant, Olivia conspired with a clone to free those Aeropia had enslaved.

Now, enemies lie in wait, hidden among the population. Even friends can no longer be trusted, and Olivia must make a choice that will decide the fate of the free world. Before her tale of corruption, forbidden love and war ends, the mighty will be brought to their knees.

By a clone.

AVAILABLE OCTOBER 1ST. PRE-ORDER FROM:

Kindle | Smashwords

blog space excerpt

The first time I met Axel, a pack of boys were beating him in the garden on my parents’ summer estate. Five of them pummeled him; meaty sounds and grunts followed each punch.

“That’s for telling me I can’t have it.” Slam. A fist flew and another oomph. “Cocksucker.”

“Hold the fucker down,” another said.

“You aren’t so tough. Big dumb fuck. We’ll teach you your place.”

Easy for them to say when it was five to one. I crept up behind them as quietly as I could, not even daring to draw a breath. With my size and lack of physical strength, the element of surprise would be all I had going for me, and it shouldn’t be wasted.

The person they pounded was out of view, hidden behind the bulk of the bullies’ bodies. Even though I couldn’t see him, I knew they were giving him a terrible beating, and that he must be male, for the slurs from their mouths sounded as though he intimidated them.

Each time their fists or boots connected, as they were kicking him, too, a thud ensued. He didn’t speak, choosing silence over screaming for help. The only sounds he made were the occasional grunt or moan, when someone’s knuckles or steel toes connected with his torso.

From the back, I recognized them. Boys from the local village who had no business here. They’d trapped their victim in the hedges, using the thick vegetation to contain him while they delivered the beating, pounding on his ribs, face, and anywhere they could strike. Certainly they would have killed him had I not intervened.

“Stop!” I moved for the cowards. “I’ll report your trespassing to my father.”

They whipped around, and their eyes widened.

Even though they were twice my size, I did not back down. “You have no official business on this estate.”

“Says who?” one of the more stupid lads asked, obviously unaware of who I was. From the looks on his buddies’ faces, at least they weren’t clueless. They vehemently shook their heads at their friend. One even delivered a sharp elbow to the witless one’s ribs as he opened his mouth to say more.

“Sorry about that. He’s not the brightest bulb on the tree, Ms. Braun.”

None of them were if they were trespassing on the property. “Get out of here.” The conversation was over, and I was only interested in getting to the wounded boy in the hedge. “Now!”

Nobody messed with a Braun. They bolted in every direction, running as though I had a charged weapon pointed at them, and perhaps I had. My family name was something to be feared.

“Come back and I’ll tell my father,” I screamed as they disappeared from view.

On the ground was a bag, fruit from the estate conservatory spilled out onto the pavers, for the fruit outside would not look so perfect. Theft, no doubt.

I looked down into the bushes and saw him. The brown pants and tunic gave away his identity, that of a slave. The boys who’d beat him were the thieves, not this clone. I instantly recognized his face, even though he wouldn’t look at me. General Axis’s clone.

“They were stealing from the conservatory?”

He nodded but continued to avoid eye contact. It was obvious he’d caught and tried to stop them. I’d seen him tending the conservatory orchard from a distance, and supposed it was his primary function when he was at the summer palace from May to November. Beyond that, I’d paid little attention to the clones and what they were doing. Regardless that he was a clone, the lowest in the food chain, he’d done nothing wrong and did not deserve the punishment the boys had given him.

A ball of heat built in my chest as anger seeped into me. This wasn’t right, and my father would hear about it. I didn’t care the victim had been a clone—his suffering had been unwarranted.

I stretched my arm out to help him from the box elder, waiting for him to take my offered hand. He tried to roll to the side, and his gasp told me the motion hurt, but it also told me other things. Like how desperate he was to avoid any contact with me. I waited, ignoring his rejection of help, certain if he couldn’t roll over, he wasn’t climbing out of the hedge on his own. “Come on, take it. Let me pull you out.”

He refused, turning his head away. With a sigh, I leaned down and grabbed his wrist, doing my best to heft his solid frame out of the shrubs. “The more you help me here, the faster I let go of you.”

He clasped my wrist in return and, using the support I offered to climb from the greenery, stood. When he straightened his spine, he towered over me. Most men his height would slump their shoulders in an unintentional need to be smaller. This clone did not.

I gasped and stared at his chest, certain I’d met a giant. General Axis was tall, but I’d had never been in close enough proximity to him to get the full effect of just how big he really was. Perhaps the shock came because I’d always avoided my father’s military leader every chance I could, not liking the way he watched me when he thought no one was looking. I never understood how he’d commanded so much respect before now.

From where I stood, Axel and I were practically chin to shoulders. I had a hard time understanding why he’d let those boys beat him. He obviously had the size and strength to stop them if he desired.

At the time, Axel was around the age of nineteen, at least six-foot-four, and twice my weight. Two years senior to my seventeen and healthy to my scrawny and sick. Even though he was a clone, I felt in the presence of greatness and couldn’t help the slight buzz I got from being so near. And then I got a closer look.

I tipped my chin up, and my mouth dropped open. “Oh.” I blinked, and my heart skipped. My stomach did this strange flip-flop thing, and heat washed across my face. “Wow,” I breathed out, almost silently. I was pretty certain he hadn’t heard, or he’d have looked away again.

My knees got all wonky, and little jolts raced up my arm from where we made skin-to-skin contact. I swore I could feel his pulse beat under my fingers, matching time with my own.

He pulled his wrist free and backed away as I continued to stare.

“Wait,” I said, shaking off the awe. “What’s your name?” I didn’t want to call him clone. And wow, seemed a little impersonal. The clone was more human to me than most of the people who came through the palace. He was the hero of my mother’s antique romances, the ones I’d squirreled away in my room and read until the pages were coming free from the spines.

In a matter of seconds, I’d become a victim of hit-and-run love at first sight.

All my life I’d wanted to meet someone like him—the man of my dreams. Only he was a clone, and any kind of a relationship between us would be forbidden. Impossible. I didn’t care. I was captivated and wanted to know more about him. “Please, don’t walk away. Tell me.”

He stopped his retreat. “I have an I-dent, a creation registration number.” He touched his cheek and ducked his head. The act was both boyish and charming on so powerful a figure.

“No, I mean a name, not an i-dent. I’m Olivia.” I stepped closer. “What name do you call yourself?”

“I know who you are. It’s prohibited for me to have a name, to even think about having one.” He eyed the corner of the house. “I should go.”

I rolled my eyes. “It’s just us out here.” I picked up the bag of fruit and pushed it at him. “What name do you go by?”

He made no move to take it, as though he was afraid we might accidentally touch again. “I haven’t ever had a need to claim one.”

“We shall have to change that.” I thought for a minute and then smiled. “I think I’ll call you Axel. Do you like that?”

“It sounds like his name.” He shifted on the balls of his feet but didn’t run.

“It does, doesn’t it? We’ll keep it between us. I like it much better than a number, or calling you clone.”

“But that is what I am.”

“And?”

Then he lifted his gaze to mine and smiled. It reached his eyes like the sunlight that warmed me on a sultry day, and it took my breath away. I wanted more. “Thank you,” he said, shifting his attention back to stare at the ground.

“You’re welcome.” I tucked the bag under one arm and reached out to take his hand.

He took several steps in reverse. “Don’t touch me.”

“Why?” The moment of closeness we’d shared, vanished.

He didn’t answer but turned and walked away. I followed him, doing my best to keep up, but his legs were so much longer than mine and stretched the distance between us rapidly. It didn’t take seconds for the wheezing to start. My chest hurt, but I did not let it stop me. I wanted an answer to my question. So I jogged, pushing limits I never should’ve.

He whipped around. “Go away.”

I came to a complete stop and sucked in a sharp breath. The bag dropped from my arms. The fruit rolled all over, scattering at our feet. He’d raised his voice. They never did. My chest cramped, and my heart fluttered inside my ribs. Not the steady beat I usually had, but as though it struggled to find its pace. I dropped to my knees, gasping for air, certain I would die. My hand went to my breast, and I willed my heart to beat normally. I needed my medicine and would never make it to the house to get it.

“You shouldn’t have followed me.” He stooped to brush the hair from my eyes and touched my cheek. “I’m a clone, Olivia. I’m not allowed to touch you or speak to you. They execute us for it.” Then Axel did the bravest thing. He lifted me in his arms and ran to the front steps of my home, calling for help.

Three rules broken to save my life. Three that could get him executed. I had not known. I’d been buried in my own little world of romance novels and gardens, failing to learn the laws of our land, living a fantasy instead of facing reality, and it could cost Axel his life. I’d never felt so ignorant or helpless.

General Axis came out and took me from his arms. “What did you do to her?”

Axel shook his head and retreated a couple of steps. He stared at the ground.

General Axis didn’t say anything further, but the look on his face promised Axel would pay. I worried at that moment I’d killed him, my question of why I shouldn’t touch him clearly answered in the commander’s cold accusation. I opened my mouth to speak, to tell General Axis he’d saved me, but I had no air or voice. Then, I swam in darkness.

Coming in 2016…

The continuing tales of the Clone Series by Paxton Summers.

Olivia by Paxton Summers  Clone: The Lost Chapters by Paxton Summers  Clone: Book of Axel by Paxton Summers  Clone: Pilot's Epilogue by Paxton Summers
 

Paxton Summers is giving away a limited number of review copies. If you’d like to review Clone ~ The Book of Eva, please feel out the form below.

#SFRMonday: Meet BAD KITTY and her boys…. @TeresNoeRoberts #scifirom

#SFRMonday

Meet Bad Kitty and her Bad Boys in….

Bad Kitty by Teresa Noelle Roberts

BAD KITTY

CHRONICLES OF MALCOLM

by Teresa Noelle Roberts

When you make the Devil’s bargain, be prepared to take the heat. A lot of heat.

Most of cat-girl Xia’s early memories are repressed, thank the Great Cat Mother. But her body remembers how to kill.

The longer she and her fellow Malcolm crewmates are holed up on lawless Cibari hiding from assassins, the twitchier she gets—until the planet’s insanely sexy warlord, Rahal Mizyar, borrows her skills to take out slavers.

Rahal suspects Xia is his mate, but the human-raised female never learned the finer points of felinoid rituals. The solution: make her fall hard and fast for him, even if it means playing dirty.

Hired to determine if Xia is the long-missing granddaughter of the felinoid prime minister, Cal Janssen has finally tracked her down. Getting past Rahal, though, is a problem—until he’s mistaken for a notorious arms dealer and playboy. And he finds himself the object of both Rahal’s and Xia’s seduction.

When their first mission brings Xia’s memories bulleting back to the surface, she realizes she’s fallen for two men who don’t exist. Running away, however, could be her deadliest mistake.

Warning: Contains an assassin with a swiss cheese memory, a badass warlord who’s getting tired of his own con, and a freelance lawman. Secrets, lies, and hot sex with no rules.

Chronicles of the Malcolm series:

In the 26th century, humans and numerous alien races share the galaxy. Technology has advanced massively. Old Earth is a vast preserve and museum, and humans have spread to the stars. But some things remain the same. Love, lust, and money motivate both humans and other sentient species. Politics can get ugly. And crime can pay very well indeed.

Meet the crew of the independent freighter Malcolm. They usually succeed in keeping things only a little bit illegal. But then a seemingly legit job goes supernova—and they’re on the run, hiding from assassins, a planetary government, and their own dark pasts.

It’s the perfect time to fall in love!

AVAILABLE FROM 
Samhain Amazon B&N Kobo All Romance | iBooks

Bad Kitty teaser 3 catgirl with chainsaw

blog space excerpt

Rahal gravitated toward Rita and Xia. “Drax! You were holding out on me!” His voice was filled with mock menace, just enough of an edge to it that Xia glimpsed the dangerous man underneath the sleek, playful exterior. “You mentioned your own lady, Rita, who must be this charming human—” under Drax’s watchful gold gaze, he shook Rita’s hand rather than kissed it, “—but not this beauty.”
Drax opened his mouth, but Xia beat him to the punch, extending one small hand and saying, “I’m Xia. Xia Suarez. And you are one pretty-pretty man.” And obviously not queerbent one hundred percent. Thank you, Cat Mother.

“Thank you, beautiful Xia.” Her name sounded different when he said it, with the accent on the second syllable and a delightful lilting music to it.

It was the correct pronunciation, she realized. But it had been years since she’d heard it said that way, so long ago she really couldn’t remember. She listened to felinoid language lessons sometimes. She had nagging memories of knowing the language fluently when she was a kitten and she wanted to retain the little she recalled. Hearing her name on his lips, pronounced the way few nonfelinoids could get right, even her own family, thrilled her at the same time it made her want to cry.

Rahal made an even bigger show of kissing her hand than he had with Mik, bowing low, bending one leg and extending the other straight before him.

His lips were soft and hot against the top of her hand. He locked her gaze with his, pupils wide with curiosity and desire.

A raspy but soft tongue licked, drawing a delicate path from her knuckle to her wrist. It was almost as powerful as if he’d traced a similar path along her labia to her clit. She began to tremble. She never did that, not even when Nitari Belesku held a knife to her throat and she’d known she was about to die. Now, she was quaking all over.

The warlord turned her hand over gently as if she were valuable and breakable. As if she weren’t Xia Suarez, tramp freighter crew member, petty criminal, slacker and sometime assassin. He studied her hand intently then met her gaze again. “You have strong hands, Xia. Hands that know how to work and play, maybe even kill. I like that in a woman.”

Still maintaining eye contact, he brought her hand to his mouth. Then he bit into the fleshy pad at the base of her thumb. His eyes closed in ecstasy as he lapped at the blood welling in the small wounds made by his eyeteeth.

In her peripheral vision, Xia could see Drax, Rita and even Gan holding Mik back from getting all fatherly on Rahal’s tail. Gan was muttering under his breath like he was once again ready to explode. Buck was shaking his head, a strange look that might have been amusement or worry on his scarred face. Xia couldn’t spare much thought for them, though. All her energy was focused on the sudden, keen connection between her and the warlord.

He was tasting her blood the way smoothstyle types tasted wine. And the combination of the bite and the clever, raspy tongue simultaneously soothing the wound and drawing out more blood aroused her more than most of the foreplay she’d experienced in a not-exactly-inhibited life. She’d been with a few cat-boys before, but they’d been boys, her own age or younger, and most of them straight off Mrrwr. Innocent, though they wouldn’t like to hear themselves described that way.

Rahal was a man, an adult, playful but not innocent. Like her. He knew blood and pain, she sensed, even more intimately than she did, and he still knew how to use those things for pleasure.

Xia had wanted plenty of men in her short life, not to mention some women, a few transpeople and a couple of beings whose gender wasn’t easily described in Standard. And for the most part, she’d taken what she wanted, everyone involved had fun, and after they had their sexytime, she moved on. Simple. One night was safe, because if you shared one night with someone, you didn’t bother with sleeping. If she spent more than one night, even a good-looking fluffhead might notice the way she whimpered in her sleep.

She had a feeling that nothing about Rahal Mizyar would be as simple as her usual flings, and that one encounter would be far from enough to satisfy the ache.

This time, while she felt the familiar wet yearning between her legs, it didn’t originate there and spread outward to inflame the rest of her body. It seemed to come from somewhere deeper inside her.

Not her heart. She knew about hearts. Knew, despite what human romantics said, hearts had nothing to do with emotions, except to the extent that if you ripped someone’s heart out they wouldn’t be loving or hating anymore.

She knew anatomy. But she didn’t know where feelings came from.
If she did, she would rip this feeling out at the roots because it was more dangerous than Nitari Belesku and her ugly San’balese counterpart, more dangerous than a laser cannon in the wrong hands, more dangerous than her own secrets.

She didn’t just lust after Rahal. After knowing him for only a few minutes, she wanted him to share her life, her darkness as well as her light, wanted to trust him as if he were Rita or Buck or her father.

Bad Kitty teaser 1

About the Author

Teresa Noelle Roberts started writing stories in kindergarten and she hasn’t stopped yet. A prolific author of short erotica, she’s also a published poet and fantasy writer—but hot paranormals and BDSM-spiced contemporaries were her favorites until she realized science-fiction romances offered new possibilities for outrageous adventure, wild sex and love that overcomes serious obstacles, including being from different species!

Find her at http://www.teresanoelleroberts.com, on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/AuthorTeresaNoelleRoberts, or on Twitter, where she hangs out as @TeresNoeRoberts. She tries not to spend too much time on Pinterest, but you can see the results of her procrastination research at https://www.pinterest.com/teresanoellerob/

BadKitty-1

#SFRMonday: Stranded on a dying planet ~ RECKLESS RESCUE by @RinelleGrey is FREE! #scifirom

#SFRMonday

Please welcome Rinelle Grey who has a FREE ebook for you…

Reckless Rescue by Rinelle Grey

RECKLESS RESCUE

a Barron Planet romance

by Rinelle Grey

Stranded on the dying planet of Zerris, Marlee longs for the one thing she can’t have…a family. Due to the noxious gas covering the planet, she can’t conceive a child, and the Council, determined to repopulate the planet, have ended her third—and most precious—relationship. They insist she pick a new mate and try again, but she’s sworn off love and the possibility of ever having a real family.

When a ship from the thriving planet of Urslat crashes on Zerris, Marlee rescues the ship’s daring captain, Tyris. His ship is grounded, winter is setting in, and he won’t survive without help. She offers him a deal…he can live with her if he pretends to be her mate so the Council will leave her alone.

Tyris agrees and a hungry desire sparks between them as they battle the harsh winter and primitive conditions. Their attraction grows, and soon, keeping their distance becomes impossible, even more challenging than the snow, the Council, and, for Marlee, the risks of a real relationship.

Will she risk her heart one last time for a chance at her dream? Or will Tyris be her undoing?

AVAILABLE FREE FROM 
Amazon |  iBooks | Nook

blog space excerpt

Jaimma’s comments signalled the end of her period of grace. She and Nelor had been apart two weeks, the accepted grieving period. Her mother’s visit yesterday, Kalim’s insistence that she needed to move on—those were just the beginning. Over the next week, the hints would become less subtle, her friends and family would start suggesting possible partners. The pressure would intensify. She’d seen it before.

Eventually, everyone gave in and made a choice. Not many had held out to three weeks, and none to four. But she had no intention of giving in. Not this time. She didn’t want that anymore.

What would happen when she continued to refuse to choose? Would everyone eventually accept her choice? Her mother? The council? How far would they push?

She didn’t know. It hadn’t happened before.

She jerked her head up, listening. Far off in the distance, she heard it again. Screams. Something was horribly wrong. Abandoning the wheelbarrow, she turned to run back to the settlement when a loud boom sounded overhead. Instinctively, she ducked.

A large object burned through the sky above her.

Marlee crouched, frozen to the spot, staring at it in disbelief. All her life she had heard tales of the meteor that had decimated her mother’s home planet before she was born, but she had never expected to see one for herself.

She needed to get back to the village, to find shelter. Would any kind of shelter protect her from a meteor strike? Her heart thudded in her chest, and she couldn’t tear her eyes away from the fireball.

Then, right in front of her eyes, the flames dissipated and a silver form emerged.

It sailed through the sky at an amazing speed, and adrenalin pounded through Marlee’s veins. She shaded her eyes from the sun as it crashed through the trees some distance away. The ground shuddered at the impact.

If it wasn’t a meteor, what was it? It looked a little like a miniature version of the Tenacity, the old rocket ship that had brought her people to this planet. But if it was a rocket ship, where was it from and what was it doing here?

After all this time, had someone come to rescue them?

She was too young to remember the hope people held onto after their arrival, but Nelor remembered. He had told her, childlike hurt and pain in his voice, how they had waited. How it had taken several years for them to accept there would be no rescue.

Had they given up too soon?

Marlee picked up her skirts and ran. The ship had been going down fast. The crash she had felt had been too hard for a controlled landing. The occupants could be hurt and needing help.

She glanced over her shoulder, back towards the village. She should wait for somebody to come with her, but she was too excited to stop. Someone would come looking for her soon enough. She continued on, her breathing laboured.

After about half an hour, she reached the small stream that ran through the woods. In summer, the stream trickled along, and she and Nelor had picnicked beside it, paddling in the shallow, cool water.

Now it was swollen from recent storms, and though it was flowing too fast for ice to form, it would be freezing cold. The stepping stones she used in summer still peeked out of the water, so she took a deep breath and stepped carefully across without incident. The ground rose gradually after the stream, but at least the rocky surface made for firmer footing.

It took another hour to reach the crash site. Marlee hid in the scant shelter of the bare branches for a few moments, catching her breath. The giant silver spaceship rested, still and silent, at the end of the long furrow it had ploughed through the trees.

Even once Marlee was breathing normally, her heart hadn’t returned to its normal beat. This ship held so much promise, so many possibilities. If its occupants were still alive, and the ship repaired, perhaps they could escape from this planet?

Despite the crash, she could see little damage to its graceful shape. A shape that bore only the slightest resemblance to the ship that had brought her people here. The Tenacity had been built for carrying people and cargo over long distances. Nelor told her it had taken forever to reach this planet, and she supposed that to a five year old, the nine months of the trip must have seemed like forever. This ship, long and slim, had been built for speed.

Not that it was going anywhere now.

After a while, when nothing happened, she stepped out from behind a tree, wondering where the entrance was. There was no door that she could see, only a word on the side in raised text. Hylista. She stepped closer and touched the exterior with one finger. It was still warm.

She ran her hands slowly over the text, down across the smooth surface then paused. The perfect shell was marred by a rough patch. Her fingers slid up and down a small crack, imperceptible to the human eye. She pushed at it with her fingers then jumped back as a gaping hole appeared in the surface with a hiss. Smoke billowed out.

She hovered a few metres back, coughing. Her nose wrinkled. It smelled strange, bitter and tangy, not like normal smoke at all.

Even when it cleared, inside remained dark and still. When no sound or movement eventuated, curiosity overcame her caution, and she stepped up to the doorway and peered in.

It took a few moments for her eyes to adjust to the darkness. Slowly she could make out shapes, buttons, instruments, and a shadowy form slumped over the console at the front. It didn’t stir. Taking a deep breath, she ventured inside to find out if it was still alive.

Reckless Rescue by Rinelle Grey is FREE!

 

About the Author

Author Rinelle GreyRinelle Grey loves fairy tales of all kinds, the older style ones she enjoyed as a child, up to the new modern Disney takes with independent heroines, such as Tangled and Frozen. She enjoys a story that she can trust will end perfectly, regardless of the twists along the way.

She believes in fairy tales in real life too, and has been happily married for twelve years, falling more in love with her husband with every passing year. They share their life full of adventures with their homeschooled daughter. Yes, true love takes work, but it’s worth every bit of it. She is optimistic, and believes that everything will work out, just like in the fairy tales.

So it’s no surprise that these are the sorts of stories she likes to write. Feel good romances, with a touch of magic. Her hero’s and heroine’s aren’t perfect, they’re real people with real problems, and they need to figure out how to work together to solve them. No one sits around waiting to be rescued in her books.

If you read a Rinelle Grey story, you can trust in that happy ending. Love will find a way, even if it seems impossible.

Links:

Webpage: http://rinellegrey.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rinellegreyauthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/RinelleGrey
Mailing list: http://rinellegrey.com/notify/

#SFRMonday: Will their romance survive the alien planet? STAR CRUISE: MAROONED by @VScotttheAuthor #scifirom

#SFRMonday

Please welcome Veronica Scott with her latest release. Be sure to check out the amazing book trailer as well.

Star Cruise Marooned by Veronica Scott

STAR CRUISE: MAROONED

by Veronica Scott

Meg Antille works long hours on the charter cruise ship Far Horizon so she can send credits home to her family. Working hard to earn a promotion to a better post (and better pay), Meg has no time for romance.

Former Special Forces soldier Red Thomsill only took the berth on the Far Horizon in hopes of getting to know Meg better, but so far she’s kept him at a polite distance. A scheduled stopover on the idyllic beach of a nature preserve planet may be his last chance to impress the girl.

But when one of the passengers is attacked by a wild animal it becomes clear that conditions on the lushly forested Dantaralon aren’t as advertised – the ranger station is deserted, the defensive perimeter is down…and then the Far Horizon’s shuttle abruptly leaves without any of them.

Marooned on the dangerous outback world, romance is the least of their concerns, and yet Meg and Red cannot help being drawn to each other once they see how well they work together. But can they survive long enough to see their romance through? Or will the wild alien planet defeat them, ending their romance and their lives before anything can really begin?

AVAILABLE FROM 

AmazonBarnes & NobleKoboiBooks  | Paperback

 

Enjoy the book trailer


 
blog space excerpt

On the beach, there was chaos. An eel, easily two feet in diameter and eight feet long, lay convulsing on the sand, Red’s hunting knife buried to the hilt in one eye. The crewman had the medkit open beside him and was struggling to staunch the blood flow from Sharmali’s lower leg, while she lay on a red-stained towel and moaned. Callina was standing beside them, trying to help. The other men and women milled on the beach nearby, drinking and talking in too loud voices. As Meg headed for the injured passenger, the Primary intercepted her.

“Miss Antille, I demand to know how something like this could happen.” Purple in the face, he waved a hand at Sharmali. “I paid top dollar, if not an exorbitant price, for a safe, enjoyable cruise for myself and my guests, and now the poor girl’s had her foot eaten!” He was so upset he was spitting.

“On behalf of the Line, I certainly apologize, sir. We do everything we can to ensure the safety of our guests under all circumstances, but if she swam beyond the sonic barrier—”

“She was standing in three inches of water right next to me,” Finchon said. “That monster could have just as easily gotten my foot.”

“The barrier’s off,” Red informed her, not glancing up from his task. “Can you argue with him later? I need your help.”

Meg ran to his side, the Primary matching her step for step, yelling at her about lawsuits and refunds. She tried to stem the tide of his vitriol so she could concentrate. “Sir, please, let us assist Sharmali, and then I’ll be happy to discuss the legalities.”

Trever, the retired pro athlete, came forward and took his host by the arm, shoving a drink into his hand and drawing him aside. Meg took a deep breath of relief and knelt beside Red. “What do you want me to do?”

“Apply pressure to the wound for a minute while I see what antivenom we’ve got.”

Gulping against her nausea, Meg set her hand on the makeshift bandages and pressed hard. “You said the barrier was off?”

“Must be. There was more than one of these things right in the shallows at the beach. We were lucky no one else got attacked. I got her out of the water as fast as I could so the blood wouldn’t attract other predators.” He sat on his heels, frowning, holding an inject. “This is only a generic. Will it work on eel venom?”

“It’s all we’ve got on the shuttle. It’ll have to hold her until we get to the ship’s sick bay.”

As he gave Sharmali the inject, Meg eyed the wound with deep misgiving. The woman’s leg was definitely swelling and there were ugly purple streaks advancing toward her knee. “This is my fault,” she said.

“How do you figure?” Red applied a light tourniquet.

“I should have known if the ranger station was closed, the barriers might be shut off, but I didn’t check.”

“Well, keep your voice down, the Primary is pissed off enough right now. Don’t add fuel to his fire. We’d better get her to the shuttle and hustle offplanet, to the ship. What did you find out?” He turned to take more towels from Callina with a murmured thanks and wrapped the oversize, gaily colored fabric around Sharmali. “She’s going into shock, gotta keep her warm.”

“Drewson said he hadn’t heard anything. I called the ship myself, but we got interrupted. Signal failed or something.” Meg rose as he did, admiring the smooth manner in which Red lifted the injured woman, not jostling her.

“We’ll know soon enough.” He shifted Sharmali to lie more comfortably against his chest and walked away as if her weight was nothing to him. “Guess it’s our turn to leave the equipment behind, at least temporarily.”

“Oh, Lords of Space, of course.” Meg grabbed the cleaning supplies bag, since the blasters were in there, thankfully unneeded. She detoured to flip the switch turning off the power grid, dropped the bag inside the nearest robo’s storage cavity to leave her hands free, and then caught up to the guests at the base of the walkway leading to the landing pad.

The rumble of the shuttle’s engines caught her by surprise. How could Drewson possibly know about the emergency? As she decided he must have checked the beach-facing vidscreens for some reason, the tenor of the sound changed from warmup to full power. In disbelief, she saw the shuttle rising from the pad.

“What the seven hells is he doing?” Red yelled.

“Stay clear, don’t get caught in the backflare,” Meg screamed, pulling at the guests. Most shrank away from the landing pad, but the Primary strode up the ramp, shaking his fist and yelling curses at the pilot. Red set Sharmali in the sand and sprinted to tackle Finchon before he got crisped. The two men rolled on the ramp, the ungrateful host trying to punch Red.

As the crewman laid their passenger out with a swift right hook to the jaw, the shuttle cleared the trees and shot into the sky, leaving them behind in the blink of an eye.

“Now what?” Callina said, shielding her eyes with one hand as she watched the shuttle grow smaller and smaller in the sky. “He won’t forget to pick us up later will he?”

“Of course he won’t,” Meg said, fear making it hard to enunciate. The captain would send Drewson or someone to collect them. He wouldn’t abandon half his passengers and two of his crew, would he?

 

About the Author

Best Selling Science Fiction & Paranormal Romance author and “SciFi Encounters” columnist for the USA Today Happily Ever After blog, Veronica Scott grew up in a house with a library as its heart. Dad loved science fiction, Mom loved ancient history and Veronica thought there needed to be more romance in everything. When she ran out of books to read, she started writing her own stories.

Three time winner of the Galaxy Award, as well as a National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award, Veronica is also the proud recipient of a NASA Exceptional Service Medal relating to her former day job, not her romances!

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