Book Blitz: Calamity at Gattori V, by D.H. Dhaenens

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Calamity at Gattori V

by D.H. Dhaenens

Pulp Sci-Fi, LGBT

Date Published: January 2022


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Can you rise up and be a hero even when you’ve lived among criminals all your life?

When Tommy is entrusted with a special power he has to make a decision. Fight to uncover what is off about Cattori V or keep his head down and focus on getting a ride off of the prison planet he was born on?

When he finally uncovers the secret of Cattori V, it may just be too late for him and everyone on the planet…

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About the Author


Daphne D’Haenens writes about grumpy mages from her London flat. Born in Belgium, she moved to the UK after graduating from her studies in Applied Linguistics, and has been enjoying the British weather ever since.

She lives with her loving wife and two ginger cats writing a little every day. All while collecting very frilly dresses and occasionally taking a break to be an adult.


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Book Blitz & Excerpt: The Crucible Kingdom, by Blair Bancroft

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The Crucible Kingdom

by Blair Bancroft

Sci-Fi Fantasy, Sci-Fi Paranormal, Sci-Fi Adventure/Romance

Published: April 14, 2022

Publisher: Kone Enterprises

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In this spin-off of the Blue Moon Rising series, the Crucible Kingdom, an obscure planet far, far away, is suffering from an ancient curse—periodic bouts of violent storms, earthquakes, floods, tsunamis, and wildfire. To break the curse, a widowed duchess and a starship captain from the disintegrating Regulon Empire (which her ancestors fled centuries earlier) are forced to work together. Although the duchess grudgingly concedes that the captain is highly capable in emergencies, she scorns the idea that a hard-headed Reg who does not believe in the power of sorcery can be helpful in ending the curse. And then the captain comes up with an idea no one thought of, setting off a quest that turns out to be as dangerous as the curse itself.

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“Command, Command,” Ryn called, “Yindan exploding. Repeat, Yindan exploding.” He paused, craning his neck to look toward their rear. “The whole fydding side of the mountain is collapsing, cloud rising. Black, roiling . . . Dimmit, that was lightning!” Ryn steadied his voice to captain mode, continued his narration. “We’re red-lining it out of here, but it’s right on our tail— Omni!” he breathed. “It’s leveling trees like toothpicks.” For Alora’s ears alone, he added, “Max it, Duchess! Show me this toy can out-run what’s chasing us.”

It was as if they were flying in a vacuum—no sound from explosion or thunder, but the sky darkened around them, leaving only a small blue patch in front. Alora, fingers white-knuckled on the steering stick, attempted to blot out all thought of the monster looming on their tail, but mind over matter refused to work. She could feel the target on her back, the force of the blast aimed straight at them.

Ryn was alternating his communication with Command with private words of encouragement that somehow rang false. Even though they’d kept a respectful distance from the volcano, their head-start was slim. But every kilometer they traveled toward home would lessen the force of the blast. So, keeping a wary eye on the instrument panel—how long could her precious baby keep up this pace?—Alora pushed their speed to faster than a PCC was ever designed to travel.

“Fyddit,” Ryn muttered as more flashes lit the gloom.
“The lightning’s gone weird. Pink and purple.” A short pause, and he added, “A story to tell our grandchildren, right?”

The PCC wobbled as air whooshed out of Alora’s lungs. He could make jokes at a time like this! Or maybe it wasn’t a joke, just an attempt to reassure her they would survive this. Have a real marriage. Strange as it was, it helped.

“Good,” Ryn muttered a few minutes later. “Passed the half-way mark. Blast shouldn’t be too bad at forty kliks.” But after another look over his shoulder, he did a swift recce of the forest below. Shouting over the now audible roar that was about to engulf them, he pointed toward the right. “There! That break in the trees . . .”

Alora followed his direction, even as his tone sent a warning shiver up her spine. They weren’t going to make it. Ryn was looking for a clearing . . .

“Give me the stick!”

No question which one of them was stronger. Alora gladly gave up control. A rushing stream with a slight clearing on either side, came into sight just as, thirty kliks from home, they lost the race. The forefront of the explosion, armed with ash, pumice, blocks of lava, snow, ice, and chunks of rock, sent the PCC into a spin. As hard as Ryn fought the onslaught, it was like an ant fighting a giant. Their world no longer silent, the PCC went down in a barrage of sound, from the bangs and thuds of the lethal contents of the black cloud to the ugly crack of a wing sheared off by a tree, the whomp of the undercarriage hitting the ground, skidding, bouncing, grinding to a stop. The noise finally settled to near silence, leaving only the soft hiss of falling ash that was already beginning to envelop the plane. And the unconscious occupants inside.

About the Author

Blair Bancroft is the award-winning author of fifty novels. Although best known for books set in the Regency period (Gothic, Historical & Traditional), she also writes Contemporary Mystery and Suspense, with a Medieval Young Adult and a Steampunk thrown in for good measure. Her awards include a RITA nomination and winning the Golden Heart (Romance Writers of America). “Best Regency” from Romantic Times magazine. “Best Romance” and “Best Young Adult” from the Florida Writers Association. She is also the author of Making Magic With Words, a 200,000-word book of advice on Writing and Editing.

Blair considers being able to create people, even whole worlds, from the imagination a never-ending joy. She is an “out of the mist” author. One of her favorite sayings: “I can hardly wait to sit down to my computer each morning and find out what my characters are going to do next.”

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Spotlight & Excerpt: Under Fortunate Stars + Giveaway

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This is my post during the blog tour for Under Fortunate Stars by Ren Hutchings. Under Fortunate Stars is a timey wimey space opera for lovers of Star Trek and Firefly.

This blog tour is organized by Lola’s Blog Tours and the tour runs from 10 till 23 May. You can see the tour schedule here.

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Under Fortunate Stars
By Ren Hutchings
Age category: Adult
Publisher: Rebellion Publishing
Release Date: 10 May 2022

Two Ships. One Chance To Save The Future.

Fleeing the final days of the generations-long war with the alien Felen, smuggler Jereth Keeven’s freighter the Jonah breaks down in a strange rift in deep space, with little chance of rescue—until they encounter the research vessel Gallion, which claims to be from 152 years in the future.

The Gallion’s chief engineer Uma Ozakka has always been fascinated with the past, especially the tale of the Fortunate Five, who ended the war with the Felen. When the Gallion rescues a run-down junk freighter, Ozakka is shocked to recognize the Five’s legendary ship—and the Five’s famed leader, Eldric Leesongronski, among the crew.

But nothing else about Leesongronski and his crewmates seems to match up with the historical record. With their ships running out of power in the rift, more than the lives of both crews may be at stake…

Rebellion Publishing


Engineering Deck, ZeyCorp Gallion

Despite all the empty seats around the Engineering pit, Uma stood next to the captain as the rest of the crew filed in. With everyone assembled in one place, there was no denying just how tiny the Gallion’s turnover crew was.
The captain, two directors, eight engineers, Shaan, and Zel. Thirteen people and one android, that was everyone on board.
No. Fifteen people, Uma corrected herself. The Ambassador and the Voiced interpreter remained oblivious in their guest apartment. Uma couldn’t imagine how anyone was going to tell the diplomatic contingent about this.
She looked around at the crew. Wazar, the equipment team lead, was clutching a steaming hot beverage to her chest like some kind of elixir, her shock of blue-grey hair in disarray. The Cordero siblings, both of them engine techs, looked dazed and bleary-eyed after hours of repeated engine core resets. Even Zel was out of sorts, hovering anxiously at the edge of the pit. His usually-perfect coif was flat on one side, as if he’d slept on it.
By the time Director Barnabyn appeared—dressed in his formal blazer, just like the captain—the crew was abuzz with speculative conversation. Outside of a drill, Captain Fransk had never invoked an emergency Full Staff Assembly.
“Crew of the Gallion,” Fransk began. He drew in a long, laboured breath. “It’s been many hours since the event that knocked out our engines, and we haven’t yet restored our  connection to the network. We don’t know if our signals relaying our position have reached anyone. We have no idea where we are.” He paused. “We have a long list of serious problems. But none of those are the reason I called this assembly.”
Fransk’s gaze lingered on Uma for a moment, and she gave him a small, encouraging nod.
“The Gallion has picked up another ship’s distress call,” Fransk continued. “Dean alerted me and the directors. But… as our current crew is so small, I want to share what we know
with all of you before we make any decisions.”
A confused whisper rustled through the room.
“The transmission we received is of human origin, albeit using an antiquated comms protocol. It is the only external signal of any kind that we’ve received since our ship entered  the energy field.” Fransk turned to the android. “Dean? Show us the ship scan.”
Dean tapped two smooth fingers together to call up a projection. As it unfolded above the android’s hand, the image slowly resolved and enhanced, and the outline of a ship  appeared.
An unsettlingly familiar ship. The back of Uma’s neck prickled again.
“I’ve isolated the source of the signal and located the ship, eighty klicks away,” the android said. “You will note that this image quality is unusually poor. That is due in part to the interference from the energy field, but the ship also has two scan-jamming devices mounted on its cargo bay. The devices are of an extremely old make and quite inefficient, so this  hasn’t prevented us from mapping their hull.”
The image zoomed in and rotated. “It appears to be a small civilian ship,” Dean continued. “The hull profile suggests a short-haul freighter, 00Y class—a common war-era vessel. The best-known ship of this type is undoubtedly the one that carried the Fortunate Five to Etraxas at the end of the war. The Jonah.”
Uma thought of the small, silvery model of the Jonah that sat on the shelf in her apartment, and a chill squirmed down her spine.
“Of course, the Jonah was a very ordinary ship for its time. There were thousands made exactly like it.” The android paused. “Most of them would be long out of service by now, but a few may still be spaceworthy if they were well-maintained. This could also be a modern replica of the Jonah.”
“Replay the transmission, Dean,” Fransk said.
The android’s head bobbed, and the crackling recording began to play.
“Calling all channels, we have an emergency! This is the civilian cargo hauler Jonah. Is anybody out there? We’ve had a complete systems failure… ran into some type of… unusual  energy field… no power. If anyone’s receiving this, we need immediate assistance. This is an emergency. I repeat, this is Eldric Leesongronski of the Jonah, requesting assistance.”

Ren Hutchings

About the Author:
Ren Hutchings is a speculative fiction writer, writing mentor, and history grad. She spent most of the past decade working in game dev while also plotting twisty space novels. She loves pop science, unexplained mysteries, 90s music, collecting outdated electronics, and pondering about alternate universes. Ren always drafts out of order, and almost everything she writes ends up involving a dash of time travel.

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There is a tour wide giveaway for the blog tour of Under Fortunate Stars. One winner wins a paperback copy of Under Fortunate Stars. Open International.

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