Spotlight & Excerpt: Lift-Off + giveaway

Lift-Off
by Fiona Lehn
Genre: Romantic Science Fiction

 

The world’s first tourist space cruise launches from the International Spaceport in White Rock, British Columbia, on New Year’s Eve. One hundred free cruise tickets are hidden all over North America. You have three days left to find one. Would you… 

Break and enter? Risk a billion-dollar inheritance? Betray the love of your life? 

It’s a random universe. While millions around the globe celebrate the Quicksilver spaceliner’s impending launch, a handful of our heroes struggle to achieve their stellar dreams. 

One of them is a methane heiress desperate for a free ticket. Another is a newscaster digging for a killer scoop. And another is a veteran astronaut who’s never been in space.

There are more. Tween twins attempt a secret mission, a star is almost born, and everyone is trying to get to the launch before the Quicksilver—you know—launches.

A lot can happen in a random universe. Do-gooders become saboteurs, cowards muster courage, and loners find love. Who will crash and who will soar? The clock is counting down to one moment that will change everything: Lift-Off!

 

**Special Sale! Get Lift-Off for 35% off Dec 1st – 31st at DevineDestinies !!**

Add to Goodreads

 

 
“Dammit!” Zoom leafed through the tech modules hanging from his belt and cranked up the compression ratio on Kembly’s handheld. “Kembly.” Zoom spoke into the microphone that connected to her earcomm, “Kembly, if Mercury eats any more of that mic, the audio will distort and Station Manager will reassign us to Cartoon Hour. Back him off!”
Up on the News10 location stage, several yards from where Zoom stood with camera rolling, Kembly inched her handheld away from Mercury. “Subtle,” Zoom said. “Nice work.”
Unfortunately, Mercury’s mouth followed. “Others maintain that space is a pipe dream, future music, abandonment of the home world, or a financial black hole.”
Zoom cursed and re-adjusted the compressor settings. Though lacking in mic technique, the guy sure knew how to work a crowd. Kandy Kembly, a veteran newscaster who could command the undivided attention of a two-year-old for hours, had dwindled to mere eye candy in this interview, while Mercury posed, poised like a superhero on the News10 stage—hands on hips, chin raised, gaze sweeping the sky above Semiahmoo Bay. His shoulder muscles rippled under the thin fabric of his t-shirt—who wore a t-shirt in December in Canada? And it was at least two sizes too small, probably on purpose. “All this guy needs is a cape,” Zoom muttered. “I’ll be wiping blobs of charisma off Kembly’s handheld for days after this.”
“Cut to aerial,” the station crew chief’s voice crackled in Zoom’s earcomm, “in three, two, one.” The station crew cut from Zoom’s live feed to the News10 drone-cam hovering above him, bird’s-eyeing the audience and the stage at the north end of the pier, or what used to be a pier. Widened, reinforced, and extended, the hundred-year-old promenade now served as the primary thoroughfare from the mainland to the International Spaceport nearly three miles offshore.
The drone skittered fifteen-hundred feet south along the old structure to the point where the pier extension jutted southwest and the no-fly zone began. It then veered to the western rim of the bay and lingered there, buffeted by the wind coming off the Georgia Straight, vying for a clear distance shot of the spaceport’s bulbous domes and flat launch pads, which never failed to remind Zoom of a giant water hyacinth.
“Some see romance in the stars,” Mercury said, as voice-over. “Some see a welcome release.”
When the station crew cut back to Zoom’s live feed, he was capturing Mercury’s chiseled cheekbones and sun-burnished visage in a tight close-up. Slowly, Zoom widened the frame until it again included Kembly and a background of cerulean sky.
I say venturing into space is the greatest manifestation of the human spirit yet, and I can prove it.” Mercury stamped his foot dramatically, and the portable stage shuddered. “I will prove it—in three days, at midnight UTC, on New Year’s Eve!”
“We’re about out of time,” said Kembly, regaining control of the handheld. “Could you briefly tell us why you decided to launch that day?”
“Love to.” Mercury smiled. “The New Year has long symbolized rebirth, a chance to start again, to live a better life. My space cruise leads us into a new, enriched era of unification, here on Earth and in our entire universe.”
Fans cheered and pressed against the temporary fencing at the foot of the stage.
“Thank you for your time today, Mr. Mercury,” Kembly said. “You must be incredibly busy, preparing for the imminent launch of the Quicksilver.”
“Yes, I’m universally occupied, you could say, ha ha!”
Kembly newscaster-chuckled.
“Aces. Wrap it up.” Zoom directed via her earcomm. “I’m panning away in ten.”
When Kembly reached out to shake, Mercury tugged her glove off, bowed, and brushed a kiss across the back of her hand, all in one fluid movement. He was some smooth operator.
“My, you’re gracious,” Kembly said. “It’s been a pleasure. Let’s hear it for Mr. Herm Mercury, everyone—CEO and founder of Mercury Spaceliner corp, and the genius behind what is going to be the first tourist space cruise in history! Mercury Spaceliner corp—stellar tours of the future, today.”

Little is known about reclusive writer Fiona Lehn, but legends abound. Some claim she emerged from her mother’s womb singing “We Are the Champions,” a half-written story clenched in her angry fists. Many believe she is serving life without parole for leading an Ottawa sit-in demanding that cloudberries be made one of the four food groups. Others tell that Lehn daily frolics with Sasquatch in glacier-fed slipstreams. Still more assert that Lehn will only answer to “Hermit FiFi” and wields a bedazzled staff like a weapon, fending off house-size mosquitoes and meteorites with a single blow.

All we really know is this: Lehn lives in Canada, has ME/CFS, and lovingly serves a Feline in perpetuity. Her songs have earned the praise of Billboard magazine, and she is a Writers of the Future winner.

 

Follow the tour HERE for special content and a giveaway!
 
$5 Amazon

Spotlight & Excerpt: So Long Earth + Giveaway

So Long Earth
Michael Bienenstock

 

Science Fiction
Published: January 2020

 

photo add-to-goodreads-button_zpsc7b3c634.png

2017. Dr. Thomas Burns, an environmental engineer, is listening to the President, talk about global warming. He and his colleagues quickly realize that Earth will no longer be able to sustain life in a few years. Environmental disasters all over the world are occurring at a quicker rate, and each one seems to be stronger than the previous one. As a result, Tom begins to develop and carry out his plans to build 4 spaceships for 1,000 people each to leave Earth and travel to a new galaxy to find a place to live. The Russians, Germans, and Australians all agree to build spaceships and join Tom in search of a new home somewhere in the Alpha Centauri Galaxy.

Over the next 20 years of planning Tom along with his wife, Sarah, determined but naïve son, Sam, his loyal second-in-command, Bob Jackson, and an amazing medical doctor, Dr. Sato, Tom must wrestle with inevitable questions. How are they going to sustain life for such a long journey? How can they travel fast enough? Will the Russians fully cooperate? How will they be able to successfully launch four huge spaceships at the same time? Most of all, will they be able to save humanity?

Purchase Link

$.99 on Amazon
Free with Kindle Unlimited

B&N

Excerpt:

Prologue
Denver, CO, September 2017

Dr. Thomas Burns could not believe what he was hearing. He was sitting in a restaurant with his eight-year-old son Sam after attending a baseball game. The Colorado Rockies had just defeated the New York Mets by a score of eight to six. They were discussing the various players on the team. That was until the president started talking.

Listening intently to every word President Trump said on CNN, the environmental scientist shook his head several times. He’s appealing to every gawker of developers and brand-loving radicals rolling everything back—radicals who want to de-regulate, de-environment, just de-anything—and it was deflating, thought Dr. Burns. Decades of work falling apart for a new consensus, it seemed. Depressing.

Not only was the president waging a permanent delay of just about everything, while making money for his backers, but he was hoping people were going to do nothing about it. He was buying time for some of his obscenely wealthy investors and developers; that was all. They somehow pinned their losses in the previous years from failed deals and investments on anyone but themselves, despite how their investments were only about money, not about the major concerns of the times everywhere you looked. Having had a great outing with his son only moments ago, Dr. Burns fumed as he sat there.

The president was like the suits many in the rural parts of the Dakotas, Tennessee, and his home state of Colorado worried about. They were all caught up in their excesses, mindless to what life outside their air-conditioned life was like. Who cared how his message on TV was going to benefit neglected areas? He just expected people to deal with it. Except, this time, this suit, staring at Dr. Burns on the high-definition TV screen, was the one barreling his way at anyone who gave him a microphone like a dusted wagon train full of barons with money bags who pulled into town. And he’d be building what he knew best, a wall of heat for struggling people. They were less interested in tackling the daily concerns in their lives, finding no areas of concern in common.

Dr. Burns shook his head again. And the environment was a no-brainer!

Sam looked up at him momentarily, and Dr. Burns gave a half-reassuring smile. Sam returned his attention to his cell phone.

The president was unconcerned about whatever no man’s land was left in his wake of ruin while he doled out skepticism and disparaging comments when people needed reassurances and to feel confidence that the authorities were doing their best to keep them safe and secure. In the old Wild West, they used to blame the Yankee, wondering if somebody up in the skyscrapers meant them more harm than good. They just wanted the top suite.

Dr. Burns couldn’t stop looking from the TV to his son. He felt like he was falling into an abyss when he should have been feeling like he was there to share a moment of joy with his son.

He stood up, and despite his tall stature—he’d almost made it to varsity baseball years ago at six feet, two inches tall—he felt powerless. It was time to put the agreed-upon plan into action—at full speed. First, he gave his son some ice cream and told him to stay seated across from him, take out his Game Boy, and put his ear buds in, as he did not want Sam to be concerned about what he was going to discuss with everyone. He pulled out his phone and dialed a group text number, the specific code setting of a meeting of his peers. Tom raked his hands through his solid black hair, practically pulling strands out as he waited impatiently for everyone involved in the meeting.

Within five minutes, all of his colleagues around the world were on FaceTime. He’d been selective about which colleagues from Russia, Germany, Australia and America he involved in preparing the mission. Several of them had worked with him on projects at Boeing and others he had met at conferences around the world that had brought his attention to the staggeringly slow pace of applied research. He knew immediately what he wanted to say to the thirty people he’d reached. He trusted them. He sat back down as they met and discussed their plans.

Members from these four countries were going to be the first ones involved because they understood that to do nothing would ensure the end of the human race. These thirty people were the most esteemed researchers in their field of expertise. They published nearly 500 research papers researching climate warming and various environmental issues as well as future space travel. Russia as the leader in space travel was an obvious choice. Germany had some of the leading engineers in the world. Australians had suffered a great number of environmental disasters such as a deteriorating Great Barrier Reef and also had a large number of excellent engineers.

Tom, despite his anguish, spoke calmly. “I hope everyone was watching the president’s disgusting speech. Obviously, he is not going to listen to any environmental scientists or reports. We have no choice but to go ahead with our agreed upon plan. It is full steam ahead. We will have to speed everything up. Based on the environmental evidence and facts, the human race probably has 200 years—or less—to live. To survive, we need to find a new planet.”

Several of his colleagues made comments agreeing with Dr. Burns. They all agreed they would go home and start implementing the agreed upon plans.

With that, he ended the FaceTime meeting. He felt a spectrum of emotions including betrayal by the president’s actions and fear for his children’s future and the future of everyone else. He had hoped his family could grow up to lead normal lives, go to college, marry, have children and choose a career for themselves without worrying about the environmental disasters that were sure to take place. He also felt bad for just about everyone alive and every person yet to be born. Most people were going to face terrible hardships just trying to survive. Most of all, he felt determined.

He and Sam walked toward the exit. Tom waved goodbye to the woman behind the counter.

As his son closed the door behind them to the restaurant, Tom felt the cool night air, hoping his son wasn’t too cold given the temperature had fallen quickly. It was September and although it had been a mild seventy-five degrees at Coors Field, they had to walk a block to get to their car. He didn’t want to embarrass his son, so he just put his arm around him to keep him warmer. Sam didn’t protest thankfully.

As they made their way to their car, Tom couldn’t help but look at Sam’s baseball glove that Sam held loosely in his hands. He’d given the glove to Sam after his son refused to use his old worn-out one. Tom had used that glove as a teenager when he was about Sam’s age. He laughed to himself when he remembered Sam’s look on his face as he stared at Tom’s old glove. It seemed so important to him to give it to Sam, but Sam wanted his own glove.

Tom knew that Sam had loved the game that afternoon. Sam had a fantastic baseball card collection and recited stats that baffled Tom, who also felt proud of his son for knowing and memorizing all kinds of stats. Seemed like the type of thing kids should be worried about in high school, not what was weighing on Tom’s mind. Tom shook away a bunch of thoughts. He still wanted to look like he was enjoying himself after he and Sam had watched their favorite team win and ate at their favorite restaurant. But that damn television and the news. He was overcome with concern and resentment, knowing that his son’s future was going to be nothing like his own.

Sam said, “You know my good friend Kory just made varsity, and I heard that there were even some top university recruits watching. I hope when I get to high school, I’ll play that well.”

Tom stared at Sam momentarily, masking the welled-up feeling of regret and sorrow that threatened to silence him, before he said, “Sam, you’re going to play with the best.”

He unlocked the car door, and they headed toward Interstate 70. All the while, Tom was glad that he had reached an agreement with his colleagues that there would be no more delays, no matter what lay ahead.

And so, it began.

About the Author
Michael Bienenstock is a retired teacher with over 35 years of teaching experience. He has published papers and given numerous presentations and earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Rochester Institute of Technology, a Master’s degree from Gallaudet University, and a Ph.D. in Special Education from the University of Maryland at College Park. He is married with one son and lives in Florida. So Long Earth is Michael’s debut novel and no, his clone did not write this book.
Contact Links
RABT Book Tours & PR

Spotlight: The Realm Wardens Series + Giveaway

Blood Magic
Realm Wardens Series Book 1
by Bobbi Schemerhorn
Genre: Dark Epic Fantasy

 

Can an ex-warrior, lost soul, and thief stop magic from falling into the wrong hands? 

Dufin an ex-warrior dwarf now a mine working botanist, finds peace and purpose in his gardens with his flowers. But he is pulled away from his serenity by his king. An important package must be taken to the High Kingdom.

A mission he shouldn’t do on his own.

Enya, a human raised by dwarfs struggles with fitting in. Loved by the dwarf mother who raised her, but despised by the dwarf she longed to call father.

Jardeth, a thief too sophisticated for the brothel he was found in. A roamer, traveller happy to go where possible treasures may lie. His true intentions carefully concealed from those closest to him.

What does the package they carry contain? Will it throw the world into chaos or is it a peaceful gesture between two kingdoms? 

 

The Gift
Realm Wardens Series Book 2

 

To prevent the rise of evil, rules must be broken.

The assassin, Niviel Darke, is the best in all of Totriga Realm and several others. His services are expensive but worth it. The agency he works for has one rule: protect the client list or die.

The dryad spends his days tending his forest and nights watching the stars. Occasionally, he would use his magic to help visitors bearing gifts. He too lived by one rule: never harm another living creature. Ever.

The assassin and the dryad’s paths cross when a very powerful man, Drummond Amberaull, informed Niviel he has the assassin’s client list. If he wants to protect the list and his life, Niviel must journey to the Dwarf Kingdom for answers. To keep his magic from the High King’s nefarious intentions, the dryad must join Niviel.

Niviel’s plans for the year didn’t entail a five month journey, but he must protect his client list. The dryad only wishes to remain with his forest but the uncertainty of the kings desires for him frightens him more than leaving his life behind. Both are faced with a choice neither wants to make.  

 

Tor
Realm Wardens Series Book 3

 

When who you were born to be isn’t who you are meant to become.

Tor is an orc stuck between two worlds. 

She was born to be a warrior, but was raised to be a healer. 

Tor was sent to the Rejuvenation Monastery at a young age. Cast out by her father for dishonouring the family. She was forced to denounce her warrior upbringing to become a healer. 

Tor is warned on two fronts that a threat is coming.

But she doesn’t know when or where it’s coming.

Can Tor find this threat before it becomes fatal? Who or what is she looking for? Will she be forced to make a choice between being a warrior or a healer?

If you like dark, epic fantasy with a touch of humour then Tor is for you. Learn more about the Realm Wardens world and her peoples in this third instalment in the series.

Grab your copy!

**Only .99 cents until Dec 1st!**

 

Bobbi Schemerhorn was born in Nova Scotia, but raised in Alberta. She has lived all across Canada, living in at least five different provinces, thanks to her military husband. Bobbi enjoys watching a variety of TV shows and movies; she is a Sims 2 playing fool, and loves working with her hands making crafts. Although she has no human children she does have one beautiful kitty who has reached her 19th year.

Bobbi is self-published in the fantasy genre. She has dabbled in Steampunk and Greek Mythology as well as Urban and Epic. Outside of her own writing Bobbi takes pride in helping her fellow authors with their work with her content editing and beta reading. She is known for her tough love both in her professional and personal life.

 

 

Follow the tour HERE for special content and a giveaway!
 
$15 Amazon giftcard,
Print Copy of a Realm Warden book (winner’s choice)
– 1 winner each!

Scroll Up