All posts by Ceri London

Writer of Science Fiction/Fantasy

May 30 New Release: The Terra Debacle: Prisoners at Area 51 by Marcha Fox

The Terra Debacle: Prisoners at Area 51

Release Date: May 30, 2017

Preorder NOW for 99c! ($2.99 after official release)

It’s May 1978 and a normal night at Hill Air Force Base in Ogden, Utah—until a bogey shows up in their air space. It gets even stranger when the UFO requests permission to land. It changes its mind, but by then F-16s escort it to the ground. A human girl in her early teens and a robot exit the craft, a strange botanical lifeform found onboard later that night by a USAF landing party. The vehicle, robot, and the strange plant are impounded and subsequently sent to Area 51.

NASA astrobiologist, Gabriel Greenley, PhD, is called in to study this new lifeform that at first appears similar to a botanical species known as oxalis. As a psi-sensitive, Greenley quickly learns the specimen is highly intelligent and potentially dangerous when he attempts to take a leaf sample. He backs off, frustrated, desperate to investigate the scientific details of this new botanical species that combines intelligence with a metabolism based on photosynthesis. Meanwhile, the specimen, a flora peda telepathis named Thyron from the planet Sapphira, is investigating his new environment through all frequencies of the electro-magnetic spectrum as well as his suite of psychic abilities that includes remote viewing.

Greenley eventually gets his leaf sample and makes a ground-breaking discovery that he can never share, due to his security oaths and research agreement at this Top Secret facility. Eventually, however, he’s confronted by an ethical dilemma that forces him to make a treasonous and potentially deadly decision.

* * *

(Sound familiar? If so, you’ve probably read one or both of the first two volumes of the Star Trails Tetralogy. Yes, this is the story you’ve been waiting for, of what happened to Thyron and Aggie while they were detained at Area 51. If you’re not familiar with the series, this story stands alone, but you’ll undoubtedly want to read the proverbial “rest of the story” when finished. )

* * *

StartrailsSaga Series Website

Book-specific webpage

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EXCERPT

Onboard Impounded UFO

Hill AFB

Ogden, Utah

May 30, 1978

1445 MDT/2045 GMT

 

THYRON SAT PERFECTLY STILL on the bench occupying the Cerulean Nimrod’s lower deck, the very spot where he’d tromped the ‘troid in a tysa game during their recent journey; one of his most cherished moments of botanical victory. That association was fading rapidly, however, as a bearded man with dark brown hair streaked with shoots of grey scrutinized him with curious green eyes.

“Clearly it’s a botanical lifeform,” the man stated to a small cluster of uniformed humans, then removed a small light source from one of many pockets in his tan jacket.

Invisible behind his carefully arranged leaves, Thyron rolled his botanical eyes. Lifeform, indeed. Classifying these people as morons was far too generous.

“Strange,” the man went on.. “It looks like an oxalis palmifrons – gigantea hybrid, a type of wood sorrel quite common in Brazil. South Africa and Mexico, too, as I recall. I wonder if it was brought here or harvested? They’re known to have medicinal properties, which could make them of interest.”

“What do you suggest we do with it, Doctor Greenley?” asked an older soldier of considerable rank, judging by the cluster of decorative ribbons and dangling metallic ornaments on his chest. His uniform, unlike the others, was a shade of blue, similar in color to coagulated Sapphiran blood.

“We need to secure the specimen in a sealed unit to assure its safe arrival at the Nellis lab, Colonel. It looks rather hardy, but we don’t know what its heat tolerance is, which could be exceeded during the trip across the desert. Furthermore, it shouldn’t be exposed to contaminants like molds, fungi, bacteria, and such, which could prove lethal. Hopefully, that hasn’t already occurred.”

“Yeah, I know,” the colonel grumbled, expression grim. “We were so taken back, we jumped in without proper precautions. It’s not like we have an SOP, at least around here. We usually send in a specially trained detachment for this kind of thing. By the time I checked the manual, it was too late. I’m sure I’ll hear plenty about it from my superiors. At least so far no one’s gotten sick.”

“Spilt milk, Colonel Jenkins. Fortunately, I brought along an ECV.”

“A what?”

“Environmentally controlled vivarium—an isolation chamber. To protect it from the environment, at least from this point on. Designed and built it myself, but on loan from NASA’s Astrobiology Branch.”

“Great. Let’s do it. We need to get this thing off the tarmac. A crane’s on its way to load it up on an eighteen wheeler so we can get it out of sight until departure tonight.”

Greenley removed a notched strip of metal from one of his pockets and handed it to the nearest soldier with hair the color of deciduous leaves after a frost. “Here’s the key to my rental car, airman. It’s in the back seat. Two of you should be able to handle it.”

Airman? Thyron thought. Odd. He didn’t look as if he could fly.

“While your men retrieve the ECV, I’m going to take a sample to study in the astrobionics lab when I get back to Houston. Then I’ll be able to determine conclusively whether it’s native or extraterrestrial.”

Thyron gasped as the botanist reached into another pocket and extracted a cutting device. Take a sample?

Instantaneously, an ancestral defense mechanism lurking in his DNA activated. Thyron froze, having never experienced anything quite like it before. His cytoplasm tingled as deep within his primary bulb potassium transmuted to sulfur that bonded with two oxygen molecules, forming sulfur dioxide. Fortunately, the burning sensation tipped him off before it combined with water being drawn from his leaves, allowing him to stop the process before it emitted a toxic cloud of gaseous sulfuric acid, injuring and possibly killing everyone within ten meters.

The mental concentration required to perform this humane action, however, prevented him from cloaking his thoughts. As soon as it escaped, all he could do was hope that no one within range was psi-sensitive enough to pick it up.

No such luck. The botanist’s eyes widened and jaw dropped, hand gripping the cutting device frozen in midair.

“What’s wrong, Dr. Greenley?” Jenkins asked, stepping closer. “Are you all right?”

The scientist closed his mouth, blinked a few times, then turned in the officer’s direction. “Holy guacamole! It just refused! Rather adamantly, in fact. I swear! To be exact, I had the distinct impression it said, Like hell you will.

Several more mouths fell open amid chuckles of disbelief.

“What’s that smell?” one of the airmen asked.

“Well, it wasn’t me,” the scientist stated. “Whatever this species is, Colonel Jenkins, I suspect it’s intelligent, perhaps highly so, and possibly dangerous.” He shook his head, muttering, “Too bad Backster isn’t here to see this,” which earned even more mystified expressions.

Greenley dismounted from the bench, narrowing his eyes as he returned the obnoxious tool to his jacket’s breast pocket, then stared at Thyron with elevated suspicion.

“I’ve seen thousands of botanical species, from the tropics to Antarctica, from the Andes to the depths of the Mariana Trench,” he said. “But this specimen’s unlike anything I’ve ever encountered, anywhere on Planet Earth.”

The colonel took a deep breath and blew out his cheeks. “Yeah. If it’s a talking plant, I’d say that’s intuitively obvious, Dr. Greenley.  Intuitively obvious.

* * *

AUTHOR INTERVIEW

 

Q: What can readers new to Star Trails expect from “The Terra Debacle: Prisoners at Area 51”?

 

A: Like the other books in the Star Trails Tetralogy, this one is hard science fiction with a liberal dose of known science embellished with speculation. Instead of focusing on physics and engineering, however, this one addresses botany and the possibility of intelligent plantlife. We’ve all enjoyed characters such as Audrey in “Little Shop of Horrors” or Groot in “Guardians of the Galaxy” and Star Trails fans already have met Thyron. But what kind of scientific investigation would provide evidence that a plant has consciousness? Do they have it already, but we just haven’t noticed? This is what Gabe Greenley wants to find out: What makes Thyron so different when he looks so much like domestic oxalis?

 

In addition, there’s a generous dose of satire, humor, and wisdom seeing Earth through the eyes of a telepathic walking plant. As stated on the print version’s back cover, this story is “A unique combination of hard science fiction, suspense, intrigue, and a touch of humor, this story has been described as a “dark version of ET: The Extraterrestrial.” Strong characterizations, a mysterious setting loaded with intrigue, and unexpected plot twists make this an unforgettable tale whether you’re a science fiction fan, botanist, UFO aficionado, or simply enjoy a good story.”

 

Q: What was the most challenging part of writing this story?
A: There were several. First of all, I’m a physicist and former NASA engineer, not a botanist, so I had to have a crash course in plant science, courtesy of Wikipedia and Google. In so doing, I learned some fascinating things, particularly about oxalis, the plant on which Thyron is based. The more I learned, the more ideas came to mind. By the time I was finished, I had 100+ website bookmarks in addition to buying some print books as well.

 

Next to botany, the next most challenging was learning as much as possible about Area 51. As a UFO fan, I’ve seen several TV shows that talk and speculate about it, but the really cool and creepy details came from books by Maximillien de Lafayette as well as “Alien Disclosure at Area 51”, the story of Dr. Dan Burisch, by C. Ronald Garner. The basic description of Area 51’s subterranean levels found in TDPA-51 is based primarily on what Garner described with a large portion of my own poetic license.

 

Q: What was the most fascinating thing you discovered from your plant research that related to the story?
A: Several things made me smile. First of all, how appropriately Thyron is named, given the light collecting cells in a plant are known as thylakoids. I had no idea when I named him, though like most characters, he named himself. He’s on a quest toward enlightenment, so this was one of those serendipitous moments. The other that fit nicely was confirming his medicinal qualities.

 

Q: Tell me about the main human character, Gabe Greenley.
A: Gabe is the NASA astrobiologist called in when Thyron is discovered onboard the UFO. He has such a love and affinity for plants that he’s a fruitarian, a specific type of vegan who only eats the parts of a plant that don’t result in it’s demise. He’s also psychic, enabling him to communicate with Thyron telepathically. He’s worked at Area 51 previously when UFOs with algae-based air purification systems were impounded, but he’s never encountered anything like Thyron. If you’re familiar with the 70s classic, “The Secret Life of Plants,” let’s just say that Gabe is very comfortable with the ideas presented there for plant sentience.

 

Q: Is this book suitable for Young Adults like the other books in the Star Trails Tetralogy?

 

A: All the characters (besides Thyron, of course) are adults, and since this story is based on Earth, it does include a few words not found in the tetralogy, but nothing that exceeds the “PG” level or what you hear on television. The science gets a little deep in places, but for someone interested in life sciences, especially botany, it would serve as a great introduction to some basic lab procedures and research methods. The technical parts are concentrated in a few chapters, so if a reader’s eyes glazed over, they could skip over the science without losing track of the plot. It’s primarily included as brain candy for true, hardcore science fiction fans like myself. My objective as an author is to include enough science to lend interest, credibility, and some palatable science lessons for YA readers to demonstrate that science is interesting, fun, and relevant.

 

Q: Your stories tend to link together. Does this story actually end or will there be sequels?

 

A: Not exactly what you’d call a sequel, but there will be story elements that continue which readers are sure to recognize as teasers when they occur. TDPA-51 ties into Star Trails Tetralogy Volume II, “A Dark of Endless Days,” actually including some common scenes from that story, but from Thyron’s viewpoint instead of Creena’s. As far as Thyron’s fate is concerned, what happens to him after this story is covered in the tetralogy. In many ways, this is simply a sidebar to Volume II, even though it’s a standalone, full-length novel. Some of the other characters you’ll meet in TDPA-51 will turn up again. 😉 Let’s just say that the various encounters Star Trails characters have had on Earth have ongoing reverberations that aren’t over yet, and they won’t all be pretty.

 

Q: That sounds pretty ominous! Will you give us a few hints what to expect and when?

 

A: Let’s just say that Allen Benson from “A Dark of Endless Days” will be back, as will Brad Inglehardt, whom you’ll meet in TDPA-51. There will be more Area 51, especially “Alice’s Floor”, (supposedly named for Alice in Wonderland) some more new characters, and various time travel elements similar to “Refractions of Frozen Time.” It’s title will be “Dark Circles”, but don’t expect to see it for at least a year or more. Nonetheless, rest assured that Star Trails ain’t over yet!

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Marcha Fox: Teleportation, Science Fiction or Science Fact

Marcha Fox has written two great blogs on teleportation exploring the scientific basis and reality behind the fictional device authors employ to extend our characters horizons…

Yesterday’s blog (20th March) follows and immediately links to the first blog :

Teleportation: Science Fiction or Science Fact (Take Two)

startrekbeam2

My first blog on this subject focused primarily on the similarities between Lawrence Krauss’ description of teleportation found in his book, The Physics of Star Trek, to that contained in the Teleportation Physics Study done for the Air Force Research Laboratory by Eric W. Davis at Warp Drive Metrics.  I found that particularly amusing since the steps involved in the latter were nearly verbatim to Krauss’ speculations.  The show stoppers to this method, however, were, if nothing else, the computing requirements to track every subatomic particle, convert it to energy, transport it at the speed of light and then get everything put back together again.  Formidable, indeed.

A Form of Psychokinesis

This time I’m going to look at one of the other possible means that has enjoyed positive experimental results, i.e. P-Teleportation, which is a form of psychokinesis (or PK) similar to telekinesis.  Telekinesis is the moving or bending of stationary objects without using any known physical force other than mental energy.  Often considered no more than a cheap parlor or magician’s trick, this phenomena has been investigated scientifically for years with numerous demonstrations provided for high ranking military officials and trained observers.  I swear I’m not making this up.  read more…

 

Marcha’s teleportation blog also contains a great quote I would like to repeat:

“I would add yet another piece to the puzzle: the convergence of physics and mysticism.  religion and science have often had an uneasy relationship. They still do, in many ways. And of course science itself is a religion to many people…And yet, I believe that the division between science and spirituality is healing–that science, at its best, is simply human reason struggling toward the truth of things…” (Ibid, pp. 304-305)

Click Here For Marcha’s Blog on Teleportation.

 

Marcha Fox is a scientist by trade and her knowledge enriches her Star Trails Tetralogy , a wonderful hard-scifi adventure series that follows the adventures of a family where the children have starring roles. I often reblog Marcha because her posts are well-written, informative and researched. Anyone interested in the science behind the fiction should go explore https://startrailssaga.com/for-parents-and-educators/ .

Marcha Fox Blog – A Nasa Insider’s View Of “The Martian” Movie Version

Reblogging a former NASA contractor’s post on The Martian! Please note warning re spoilers for a film I loved – sit on the edge of your seat stuff!

Marcha Fox is the author of the Star Trails Tetralogy series, a must read for lovers of hard sci-fi.

https://marcha2014.wordpress.com/2016/01/03/challenges-of-space-exploration-a-nasa-insiders-view-of-the-martian-movie-version/

[Spoiler Alert: This constitutes one massive spoiler if you haven’t already seen the movie. I comment on specific situations depicted onscreen based on my experience working as a NASA contractor for over 20 years. So if you’re even slower to see movies than I am, are planning to see it, and prefer to thoroughly enjoy the suspense, then bookmark this blog and read it later.]

Courtesy of NASA
Courtesy of NASA

Weapons of Mass Deception: A military thriller by two US Navy veterans that could be ripped from today’s headlines

A great interview to follow on my review of this intriguing new military thriller Weapons of Mass Deception by David Bruns and JR Olson. Thanks to Christoph Fischer!

writerchristophfischer

WeaponsMass_CVR_LRGA military thriller by two US Navy veterans that could be ripped from today’s headlines

Transcript from http://chimerasthebooks.blogspot.co.uk/2015/05/a-military-thriller-by-two-us-navy_15.html

In 2003, the world watched as coalition forces toppled Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, then searched unsuccessfully for the weapons of mass destruction they were certain existed.

None were ever found, but they do exist. On the eve of the invasion, a handful of nuclear weapons was smuggled out of Iraq and hidden in the most unlikely of places: Iran.
Now, as the threat of WMDs fades into a late-night punch line, a shadowy Iranian faction waits for the perfect moment to unleash Saddam Hussein’s nuclear legacy on the West.
Brendan McHugh, a Navy SEAL, meets a mysterious Iranian diplomat on a raid in Iraq.

His former girlfriend and FBI linguist discovers a link to Iran among a group of captured jihadis. And pulling it all together is a CIA analyst who can’t…

View original post 736 more words

New Release: WEAPONS OF MASS DECEPTION by David Bruns and JR Olson

A military thriller by two US Navy veterans that could be ripped from today’s headlines

WeaponsMass_CVR_LRG

AVAILABLE IN PRINT & EBOOK

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Patriot Games meets The Fourth Protocol in this riveting story of modern-day nuclear terrorism.

In 2003, the world watched as coalition forces toppled Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, then searched—unsuccessfully—for the weapons of mass destruction they were certain existed.

None were ever found, but they do exist. On the eve of the invasion, a handful of nuclear weapons was smuggled out of Iraq and hidden in the most unlikely of places—Iran.

Now, as the threat of WMDs fades into a late-night punch line, a shadowy Iranian faction waits for the perfect moment to unleash Saddam Hussein’s nuclear legacy on the West.

Brendan McHugh, a Navy SEAL, meets a mysterious Iranian diplomat on a raid in Iraq. His former girlfriend and FBI linguist discovers a link to Iran among a group of captured jihadis. And pulling it all together is a CIA analyst who can’t forget about Saddam Hussein’s WMDs—even if it costs him his career.

What the reviewers are saying

(Don’t miss Ceri London’s review below!)

 “Fans of Tom Clancy, Vince Flynn, or Nelson DeMille should feel right at home with this story of lost nukes, Navy SEALS, intelligence agency operatives, and up-to-minute global politics.”

“An intense, wild ride, hang on to your hats.”

“WMD weaves global politics and fundamentalism with love and hard-hitting action, all against a backdrop of real-world events. A…scary exploration of what might have been!”

“A visual page-turner, WMD is art that imitates life.”

 

AVAILABLE IN PRINT & EBOOK

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About the Authors

 

Duo pic - min
JR and David

 

David Bruns and JR Olson are both graduates of the US Naval Academy and share a combined 35 years of service in the US Navy.

Weapons of Mass Deception is their first co-authored work.  For more information, visit davidbruns.com

 

MY REVIEW

 

Weapons of Mass DeceptionWeapons of Mass Deception by David Bruns

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

There were scenes of action in Weapons of Mass Deception when I just knew that the two authors must have had so much fun plotting out this book. Their real-life military experience shines through, adding even more credibility to a political thriller that sometimes tracks so closely to recent events I began to wonder if the authors possessed a crystal ball at the time of writing. The level of research gave me a greater appreciation of the complexities of life and politics in the Middle East than I had before.

The story captures snapshots of the lives of six flawed and interesting characters covering a wide spectrum of professional and personal developments across several years, the steady pace enlivened with intense scenes of military action and personal drama. Every now and again the lives of these six characters cross over, enough for the reader to understand the significance, sometimes ahead of the characters creating an air of looming suspense. Always in the background is the menacing threat that the world is about to discover the whereabouts of some famous missing nuclear weapons.

I loved how the three baddies in this story were given equal billing with WMD’s heroes. The back stories of Hashem Aboud, Rafiq Roshed, and U.S. Navy officer Brendan McHugh are particularly well drawn. For me, Brendan was the main hero, oh so hopeless with his personal relationships, but I found myself as much immersed in Rafiq’s personal story as I was rooting for Brendan and FBI Special Agent Liz Soroush to get their act together.

Beautifully written, convincingly detailed, and professionally edited, WMD weaves global politics and fundamentalism with love and hard-hitting action, all against a backdrop of real-world events. A well thought out thriller, but also a fascinating and scary exploration of what might have been!

Highly recommended!

(I received an advance review copy in exchange for my honest opinion.)

View all my reviews

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Coffee & Chat with Ally Shields!

A thank you to Ally Shields for hosting me on today’s Coffee and Chat at her blog Step into the Realm of Urban Fantasy.

“Welcome to our Wednesday book chat!
Today’s guest is Ceri London, author of the Shimmer in the Dark series.

Nice to have you visit, Ceri. How do you take your coffee?

CERI: First let me thank you so much for inviting me to chat on your blog!

Coffee? I love filtered coffee with hot milk. I always seem to ask for a cappuccino though. The cocoa sprinkled on top sways me.

Ally: Since you love both, why don’t I surprise you. 🙂  Meanwhile, please show readers your bio and tell them something unique about yourself… “  Read more

 

NEW RELEASE: Refractions Of Frozen Time by Marcha Fox

 

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000039_00004]
“Author Marcha Fox has a gift for explaining the science. The world she creates in the Star Trails Tetralogy is genius, so well thought out and crafted. As the Brightstar youngsters observe and understand their surroundings, their conclusions can be coloured by their Miran schooling, but when they break old habits and open their minds in order to survive the hostile planet they must now call home, these children achieve the incredible. Quite beautiful.” Ceri London.

 

                 BOOK DESCRIPTION

A discovery that links two dimensions of time. . .A prison ship’s dirty little secret. . .Esheron has answers but will they arrive before it’s too late? 

"Refractions of Frozen Time" finds the Brightstars, your favorite space-faring family, more separated than ever before. Laren is in the process of being exiled to the galaxy's ultimate security prison onboard an automated spacecraft. Creena, her little brother, Deven, and her mother, Sharra, remain in the Caverns, while Dirck and Win report to the Clique base at Apoca Canyon. 

Deven discovers a new crystal which, combined with cristobalite, unlocks the portal between Local and Universal time, offering the potential Creena has been looking for to reunite the family at last. There's one problem, however. Teleporting results in the correct location but the arrival time seems to be random, which has risky implications. Before she can unravel the mystery, however, Integrator commandos find their underground hideout, forcing a harrowing escape loaded with unexpected consequences. Believing they're permanently lost, the dark and lonely days that follow change Dirck forever as fate plays out a hand dealt on Earth years before, ultimately revealing the crystals' incredible secret. 

Onboard the Bezarna Express, Laren's efforts to exploit the ship's dirty little secret backfire, putting him more at risk than ever before, his survival dependent on ground intervention. Little does he know that the solution has been with him all along, quietly lurking in a device that operates strictly on the principle "If you don't ask, you don't get." Meanwhile, Augustus Troy, Laren's long-time nemesis, gains more power than ever before coupled with being armed with a weapon capable of wiping out anyone opposed to his despotic goals. 

Do the Brightstars have what it takes to survive much less prevail at their final confrontation with the Integrator and his evil proponents? Or will the family’s longed-for reunion take place in another dimension of time and space? Find out in this suspense-laden conclusion to the Star Trails Tetralogy. 

 

Marcha Fox

Marcha Fox is a former NASA engineer based at Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas so she really does know her science, but she has also written an amazing science-fiction series Star Trails Tetralogy and I was thrilled to get the opportunity to beta read this final volume: Refractions of Frozen Times.

Naturally, I have got to know Marcha through our mutual writing endeavours and so I am delighted to publish my advance review on the day she releases her work.


MY ADVANCE REVIEW

Refractions of Frozen Time (Star Trails Tetralogy, #4)Refractions of Frozen Time by Marcha A. Fox

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Star Trails Tetralogy is the classic story of good versus evil seen through one family’s struggle to reunite, an endeavour that draws in a number of lonely souls along the way. The three Brightstar siblings are the young heroes of this story and, as they observe and understand their surroundings, their conclusions can be coloured by their Miran schooling. It’s when they break old habits in order to survive the hostile planet they must now call home that they open their minds and hearts to the mysteries of the universe and achieve the incredible.

This is a beautifully written story, developing themes of loyalty, tolerance, understanding, and patient study. As I have alluded to in reviews of the preceding stories, the thoughtful pace is broken up by moments of intense excitement, but the narrative has to be savoured and enjoyed for gems like this, “…a vast and abrupt precipice, the sheer sides a trickle of motion…” Each character makes a discovery, about themselves and their friends and family, except for maybe Deven, the little boy, who intuits everything in the most lovely and unassuming manner. I so want to see what he gets up to when he’s older. The more alien characters are equally fascinating and the subtle hints of their background cultures enrich the story with depth and colour.

Finally, author Marcha Fox has a gift for explaining the science in an interesting and original way. The detailed world she creates is genius, so well thought out and crafted and sci-fi fans who love properly developed cultures backed up by hard and well understood science will devour these stories. The quiet thread of an entity stronger than either individual or corporation runs throughout this series and I believe reflects many faith systems once semantics are put aside with its impact only fully understood in the uniquely fitting and uplifting climax.

Quite beautiful.

I highly recommend this series for adults and young adults.

(I received an advance copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.)

 

AUTHOR LINKS.

You can find Marcha Fox:

Amazon Author Page:  http://www.amazon.com/Marcha-Fox/e/B0074RV16O/

Amazon UK Author Page: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Marcha-Fox/e/B00T6XPLR4/

 Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6481953.Marcha_A_Fox

Author Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/marchafoxauthor

Author Homepage:  http://www.StarTrailsSaga.com

Bublish Author Page:  https://www.bublish.com/author/view/3111

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/startrailsIV

Blog Page: http://marcha2014.wordpress.com/

Tumblr:  http://startrailsiv.tumblr.com

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/pub/marcha-fox/86/440/326/                

Google+:  google.com/+MarchaFoxAuthor

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/kallioperisingp/

YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZsgOqTmtMFutwU3lt4RByQ


PREVIOUS REVIEWS OF STAR TRAILS BOOKS:

My Review of: A Dark Of Endless Days by Marcha A. Fox  Volume II Star Trails Tetralogy

A Dark Of Endless Days

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I made time over the holiday season to read the second book in this wonderful series. The family is still torn apart, Creena is on Terra, desperate to return to her family and completely bewildered by the backward humans living on planet Earth (loved all the references to UFOs and aliens), while the rest of her family is surviving life on a hostile planet passing between two suns.

The heat ramps up as does the drama as Dirck is forced to take on Laren Brightstar’s design for an AC system that might keep the family alive during the hot season while Troy (baddie) plots how to manipulate Laren into doing his bidding.

I am in awe of the world author Marcha Fox has created. She has populated our galaxy with human colonies and aliens, enriching the story with intricate detail covering solar systems, seasons, geology, politics, anthropological, fauna, eco-commerce, technological, and spiritual beliefs that are unveiled layer upon layer as the story progresses.

The children are learning so much and (as I mentioned in my review for the first book) the reader learns right along with them. These kids face an epic struggle for survival and I felt their joy with each small success and their despair when everything they’ve worked for begins to fall apart on them. The characterisation is beautifully carried throughout and you witness the children’s emotional growth. Deven is still one to watch! I think leaving Mira was the best thing that could have happened to them. I shudder to think how their lives might have turned out if their biggest trial to face had been boredom and compliance in a system designed to perpetuate the ordinary. Not on Cyraria. Here, Marcha Fox has created something extraordinary.

Take your time reading this book as this is not a fast-paced read although it certainly has its heart-thumping moments. However, the pace encouraged me to slow down, savour the rich detail, and get inside the heads of these children. A thoroughly enjoyable read and I’m very much looking forward to Book 3!

( I received this book free in exchange for an honest review.)


My Review of: Beyond the Hidden Sky by Marcha A. Fox Volume I Star Trails Tetralogy

BTHS_wrap_around_d-Kindle

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A joy to read. Imaginative hard sci-fi with real-life characters

Imagine growing up in a regimented, well-ordered, pristine bubble. Then imagine you burst that bubble accidentally and your new playground suddenly opens up to include the galaxy, but you’re on your own, your family is travelling farther and farther away, you’re trapped in this escape pod, and there’s a virtual nanny telling you what to do. Imagine you’re a natural rebel.

Creena Brightstar is a rebel.

Dirck is her brother. Dirck is dutiful, compliant, and loves to drive his non-conforming sister crazy. This time he went too far. Now he’s with his father and on a mission to find Creena, only the big, bad world outside is nothing like the bubble he’s raved about all his life, and his dad has some rapid education to do.

This is such a fun, fascinating read. Marcha Fox knows her science, and the Brightstar children rapidly need to learn all this stuff about space travel, warp drive, and time bumps, and so the reader learns right along with them. Anyone who loves hard science will lap this book up. However, that and the wonderful world-building is the bonus.

The real joy in this story (the start of a bigger, complex, political sci-fi thriller chock-full of mysterious baddies) is Creena and Dirck’s development. Adversity tests, tries, and changes their outlook on life. In Marcha Fox’s world, never mistake inexperience for incompetence. She expects much from her young characters, and yet intuitively understands and empathises with them.

Oh, and there’s a robot I swear would drive C-3PO insane.

Overall, I highly recommend this book for both young and old and I will be gradually devouring the rest of this series.

View all my reviews

BRAND NEW! Shimmer In The Dark: DESTINY NEXUS Official Launch!

I am very excited to announce the launch of Shimmer In The Dark: Destiny Nexus. This exciting, high paced sequel to Rogue Genesis is now available as an e-book on Amazon and is packed with shocks and revelations.

Destiny Nexus

“This man isn’t the exclusive property of the US any longer. He is answerable to the world.”

Major Niall Kearey is the only man capable of bridging space-time to create portals across the known universe.

His government and the US military exploit his abilities, a secret society incites global unease in a bid to control him, and the alien refugees he smuggled to Earth revere him as the fulfillment of ancient prophecy.

Under threat of exposure, a potential one-man weapon of mass destruction, Niall and his family are forced back into hiding. Struggling to protect his wife and children, honor his oath to God and country, Kearey discovers he’s attracted the attention of a devourer of worlds – the legendary Balor – an enemy so powerful it enslaves or destroys everyone in its path.

The world needs Niall Kearey and his abilities, but the shady politics and dirty maneuvering of Earth’s power-brokers have tied his hands. Shackled by the unceasing suspicion and assaults on his liberty, Niall desperately seeks a means to protect planet Earth against the ancient predator hunting him down. Whether Balor’s purpose is Apocalypse or invasion, the threat escalates as Niall realizes the answer to the future lies in the past—his past.

How far can one man travel to preserve a world that has turned on him?

Niall must accept his destiny as the nexus – a magnet for destructive forces and possibly mankind’s last hope for salvation.

An exploration of love and betrayal with the high-octane pace of military thriller, Destiny Nexus stretches a man’s moral fiber to breaking point and changes him forever. This action-packed sequel continues the epic space opera saga introduced in Rogue Genesis.

Grab your copy of this breath-taking, dramatic sci-fi thriller, the second novel in the Shimmer In The Dark series!

AVAILABLE NOW AT AMAZON

I was delighted to receive this Advance Review by Marcha Fox, who worked as a NASA Contractor at Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas for over 20 years and who has kindly advised me on the science aspects, keeping my flights of fantasy near the bounds of scientific credibility! Marcha Fox is also a science fiction writer and we have become friends through our mutual enjoyment of each other’s work.

Marcha Fox’s Review of “Destiny Nexus” by Ceri London

5-stars (only because in most rating systems I can’t give it more)

If you enjoyed the breathless intensity of “Rogue Genesis” you will be equally enthralled by its sequel, “Destiny Nexus.” When you’re dealing with a hero with talents like Niall Kearey trouble is inevitable, especially when coupled with the US Government, the Pentagon, and a plethora of hidden agendas on the part of an ancient secret society. Add an influx of off-world alien immigrants from another planet and you not only have a plot which is bound to thicken but require considerable skill on the part of the author to tie it all together. This London achieves, the result a breath-taking kaleidoscope of science fiction intrigue. Several developments left me literally gasping, yet the scary part is that the author did such a convincing job of tying it all together that nothing exceeds the realm of reader credibility.

In this volume, character development takes its natural course as Niall experiences increasing pressure from those who resent and fear his talents. Hero-types don’t take well to such bullies, whether in the form of an individual or some powerful entity, yet as we all know “fighting city hall” usually doesn’t end well. The plot as well as various characters and situations darken, threats to Niall’s family taking a different turn than they did in “Rogue Genesis” yet no less hair-raising. New characters and developments related to Niall’s distant past arise which have startling implications as well.

I highly recommend reading (or rereading) “Rogue Genesis” to get the most out of this worthy sequel. Seemingly minor characters from the previous episode return in a variety of roles for which their context and relationship to the protagonist as well as each other are important to fully grasp and appreciate the story’s considerable depth.

As with “Rogue Genesis,” the author has done an outstanding job blending cutting-edge science, ancient history, the paranormal, and government intrigue into a skillfully orchestrated saga that will, like its predecessor, leave you biting your nails with bated breath until the next book comes out.

(I was provided a free electronic copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.)

SHIMMER IN THE DARK: ROGUE GENESIS

Rogue Genesis

Destiny Nexus is the  sequel to Rogue Genesis. Rogue Genesis is the first book in my Shimmer In The Dark series and can be read as a standalone novel.

I’ve loved developing the characters from Rogue Genesis and have introduced a few more as Niall discovers his heritage and unravels the threat of an alien predator hunting him across the cosmos. I’m now looking forward to developing a cast of new alien characters in Galacticus Elecion, the third book in the series.

Shimmer Series Banner

 

A FINAL THANK YOU!

I have thanked several people in my acknowledgements, but I want to express again my huge appreciation to my beta readers and proofreaders for their honest feedback and catches. A special, massive thank you goes to Travis for his insightful content editing, his generous line editing, and his consistent support throughout the creation of Destiny Nexus!

On to Galacticus Elecion!