Spotlight & Excerpt: Recon, by Devon C. Ford

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Recon
The Expansion #1
by Devon C. Ford
Genre: military sci-fi
Pages: 204
Publication date: Oct 2020

The universe is expanding, and so is humanity’s reach.

Years after clean energy ended the world’s reliance on fossil fuels, a lull of peace encompasses all of humanity. Some think we should travel to the distant corners of the galaxy, others oppose the idea, thinking that the harnessed singularity reactors are unnatural.

When a terrorist group attacks the Lunar colony, members of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force are affected in different ways.

Years later, Lieutenant Commander Kyle Torres comes face to face with old friends, as he’s thrown into an assignment that could change everything: a reconnaissance mission with huge implications for humanity and science.

Start the epic journey as Earth begins its venture into deep space, where not everything is as it seems. From Devon C Ford, the best-selling author of the hit Post-Apocalyptic series, After It Happened.

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Recon

Excerpt:

Armed men and women sprayed indiscriminate bullets everywhere as they flooded off the transport shuttle and into arrivals.

From the way The Choosers conducted the attack, it was obvious they were on a suicide mission. After the duty unit responded and drew their sidearms to concentrate their fire at the foot of the metal stairs, the invaders’ intention was clear. One of the terrorists was hit, collapsing forward with flailing limbs to make the others scatter panicked away from their downed body. Seconds later the attacker detonated, a suicide vest rigged to their biometrics blowing savagely as the heart stopped and the bomb timer started. The terrorists continued the attack, spreading out and overwhelming the too-few defenders rapidly as pockets of leaderless peacekeepers were pinned down by the superior firepower. There were no heavy-weapon platforms, no automated gun systems and no armed drone surveillance programs operating. The place was still treated as a frontier outstation.

The secured doors leading out of the area closed in their attack. Other than the hangar airlocks, the only other way out was the long service tunnel to the freight arrival dock. A large pallet containing what looked like a bomb was unloaded from the newly arrived shuttle hovering six inches from the ground, courtesy of the four repulser jets at each corner propelling it quickly across the open space toward the dome edge. The way the terrorists treated it with almost equal care and fear combined with the wires and makeup of the device screamed bomb to anyone watching.

The sporadic gun battles had faded, becoming an occasional outbreak of firing as both sides ran low on ammunition. Just as the bomb was bumped into the inner dome, a group of three UNPF burst from the access tunnel and sprayed the three terrorists arming the device. If they weren’t stopped it would rip open the dome and depressurize them all out into space.

Jake was sweating and out of breath when he reached the main arrivals hangar, more from the adrenaline than the physical exercise. Glancing around the corner, he realized they were on the near side of what looked like an explosive device. It seemed to be being rigged to blow underneath one of the main support beams of the huge dome. He ducked back and filled the others in.

“Bomb,” he said, his eyes wide with adrenalized fear. “They’re trying to blow the goddamned dome!”

“We can’t let that happen,” Torres said, stating the obvious with all the manly gusto he could summon.

“Duh,” Paterson said, embarrassing the boy. “Not if we like living.”

“On three,” Jake said as he gripped his service pistol, which felt inadequate for the challenge. “One, two… three.”

They stepped out and opened fire, dropping the three people rigging the device as the small 6mm subsonic rounds drilled into their bodies and expanded on impact. Their bodies exploded before the three ambushers reached them. Jake saw the detonator—the flashing lights of the display indicated ‘ready’ beside a red button with the clear plastic safety shield raised.

Movement to his right caught his eye as another terrorist burst into view; he was a ragged-looking man about Jake’s age but his eyes displayed none of the discipline and belief that the seaman possessed. The two men raised their guns at one another. Both pulled their triggers at the same time, and both guns clicked. Jake’s gun had run dry and the old machine gun in the hands of the terrorist jammed. Both men’s eyes went wide, and both reacted at the same time.

About the Author:

Devon is from the UK, having lived in many places until finally settling in the Midlands. His career in public services started in his teens and has provided a wealth of experiences, both good and some very bad, which form the basis of the book ideas that cause regular insomnia.

Devin c fordHe first started reading for fun as an adult, having tried his hardest to avoid anything resembling academia growing up, and at that point the world became a far bigger place. He has been reading, at least one book at a time, ever since.

His debut works, the After It Happened series, (Survival, Humanity, Society) were published in April 2016 followed by Hope (July 2016) and Sanctuary (December 2016). The first part of the series concluded with the release of Rebellion which was published in June 2017.

Storming high into the charts with the first books of the After It Happened series, Devon launched into the top 10 sellers listings in the UK, Australia, Canada and the US, and he made the decision to write full time shortly after the launch of Hope.

Devon’s self-published beginnings caused a stir in the publishing world, and resulted in contracts with Podium Publishing for Audible, narrated by R.C. Bray (The Martian, Expeditionary Force, Arisen), before a publishing deal for kindle and paperbacks with Vulpine Press.

Further works have seen the start of a multi-author series, sci-fi/post-apocalyptic cross genre, futuristic dystopian and alternative history zombie apocalypse. Spin-off books from the After It Happened world have been announced for 2018.

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Book Blitz & Excerpt: Dirty Deeds + Giveaway

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Dirty Deeds: An Urban Fantasy Collection
Devon Monk, Diana Pharaoh Francis, Faith Hunter, R.J. Blain
Publication date: January 12th 201
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy

When the going gets tough, the tough get their hands dirty. Join NY Times Bestselling author Faith Hunter, USA Today Bestselling author R.J. Blain, and National Bestselling authors Diana Pharaoh Francis and Devon Monk on a wild romp where the damsels bring the distress and what can go wrong will go wrong.

Venture into a thrilling spinoff tale from the world of Jane Yellowrock; join vacationing gods in what appears to be a quiet, ordinary town; visit a supernatural hotel where the bedbugs could very well eat you; and dive into the zany, deadly world of the Magical Romantic Comedy (with a body count) series.

In this collection of all-new urban fantasy novellas and other stories, no job is too big or too small — if the price is right.

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SNEAK PEEKS:

From Diana Pharaoh Francis’s The Pixie Job

The thing about taking a vacation is that you always feel guilty that you aren’t being productive, or someone wants you to do something you don’t want to do. Case in point: the ghost elf sitting on the lounge opposite giving Mal the fish-eye stare because she refused to go train.

“I told you. I’m on vacation. I promised Law, and the other ghosts, and So’la. I’m not supposed to do anything but relax for an entire month.”

Mal reached for her mimosa and sipped it deliberately. She wasn’t generally a drinker, especially in the morning, but Edna, another of her ghost companions, had encouraged her to try it out. She could have done without the champagne in the orange juice but whatever. She was on vacation, and apparently this is what people did on vacation. She wouldn’t know. She’d never actually taken one before.

Merrow’s lips twisted downward. She looked entirely out of place. Well, generally ghosts did look out of place among the living, especially since generally the living made sure they were exterminated like vermin. Mal used to be one of those exterminators until she couldn’t stomach it anymore. Now she had her own family—collection? cult? hangers on? —of ghosts.

She had eighteen of them, now that Merrow had joined. They fed off her magical energy, which they needed to survive. Which was sort of an oxymoron but whatever.

Anyhow, Merrow had been an elf. A militant one, part of an elite fighting force. She’d been betrayed by her own and killed, then joined Mal in order to get revenge. She’d achieved that and Mal thought maybe she’d have crossed over in whatever way elves do, but she’d stayed.

Merrow was bored.

Law, Mal’s boyfriend and the blood-bound security witch of Effrayant—where Mal was vacationing, just as she’d promised after her most recent near-death experience—had arranged charging stations for the ghosts so they could go anywhere and find sustenance. This was not an unselfish act. He’d been motivated by a desire for privacy with Mal, but the ghosts were grateful.

Most of them.

From R.J. Blain’s Doggone Mess

After a long week of work, I couldn’t really blame anyone for grabbing fast food on the way home, but did everyone in Long Island have to visit my specific branch of McDonald’s? From vanilla humans, lycanthropes, practitioners, and centaurs, to devils, demons, and even an angel, everybody wanted a hit, and they wanted me to give it to them.

I questioned the angel. How could they eat without a head? Did they eat? Why did an angel want nuggets? Why did everyone want nuggets today?

While all the lines were busy, mine had twice as many people, and I doubted I’d survive to the end of my shift in an hour.

I considered asking some divine for help, but I opted against the idea. With my luck, the devil would join the mayhem and give me one hell of an order.

The nuggets held the place as the day’s reigning champion of sales, with the smart people ordering twenty, as it was approximately fifty cents more expensive than ordering ten. Burgers took the second spot of the day, and the underdog salad came in a close third, resulting in general mayhem in the back, as we hadn’t prepared for a salad bender.

Oddly, the lycanthropes led the charge on the unexpected salad bender. Had someone slipped pixie dust into our dressing when I hadn’t been looking? While filling an insane order consisting of a hundred and sixty nuggets, ten fries, and enough soda to float a boat, I checked one of the labels to make sure.

Nope, no pixie dust.

I could’ve used a hit of pixie dust, but for some damned reason, the CDC got cranky when those infected with a contagious life-altering disease became snuggle fiends. My driver’s license specifically barred me from ingesting any pixie dust without a prescription, the cruelest of blows in my life outside of my accidental infection with lycanthropy. Pixie dust turned me into a snuggle fiend out on a mission to love everyone, making me a high infection risk.

They would consider removing the flag after I mated, as they believed I would become a snuggle fiend with my mate, something they viewed to be acceptable.

I hated the CDC, especially as my virus agreed with their idea. I bet my terrorist virus just wanted me to settle down and used pixie dust to its advantage, although I’d resisted its wicked ways thus far.

Damn it, I needed a vacation.

 

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Book Blitz: Cuttle, by Chelsea Britain

Cuttle

 

Cuttle
by Chelsea Britain
Women’s Fiction, Literary Fiction

Published: September 2020

Publisher: Bleau Press

 

Nora Novak knows cuttlefish.

Actually, Nora knows a lot of species. She can name every shark, whale, eel, and Ohioian turtle (among others).

She’s not as committed with humans.

But she’s only been in her lab for a little over a decade. How much could she have missed?

As she’s wrapping up her postdoc, Nora’s carefully-balanced ecosystem is in crisis. Her maze-navigating cuttlefish are retiring. Polyester shorts are no longer “in.” Somewhere along the line, she forgot to learn how to date.

So she does what any self-actualizing biologist in her early thirties would. Nora Novak embraces the #FOMO.

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Praise for Cuttle:

“Insanely good” -Literary Titan

“You won’t want to miss a single sentence.” -Independent Book Review

“Cuttle glows with interest and graceful writing.” -Foreword Reviews

“Hilariously astute…brimming with heart” -Indies Today

“Quirky and clever…perfectly in tune” -Reader’s Favorite

“Poetic, captivating…a romance steeped in a vibrant personality’s introspective genius.” -Midwest Book Review

“Britain’s writing is both assured and full of heart…a rollicking fun read.” -The Praries

About The Author


Chelsea Britain loves critters of all kinds. She hopes to meet a representative of each of the living shark species one day…but some of them aren’t very cooperative, and she can’t really swim. Cuttle is her first novel. Visit her at chelseabritainauthor.com.

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