stories in and

Alienese

Alienese by Oliver Davis Pike

Dave Ladd, has-been musician, didn’t mind being abducted by aliens. Especially when those aliens had plenty of cash to compensate him. Let them keep whatever secret they seemed to have learned about Earth. So he thought when he was returned to his home in rural Alabama. But he was already too involved in that secret—a secret that involved the survival of humanity—and soon was on the run with an alien girlfriend, first on Earth and then ‘out there.’ A solution must be found by the motley band of humans and aliens thrown together in ALIENESE, a science fiction novel by Oliver Davis Pike. ' Available in print from Arachis Press and most book retailers, and as a free download from Arachis Press.


On Virgin Moors

On Virgin Moors by Alexandrina Wilson

The Unity holds dominion over the breadth of space. And now, at last, they've set their sights on the final prize. That prize is Essegena - a planet at the farthest edge of the universe, ripe for human habitation and yet completely untouched. But all is not well on Essegena. Three of the colony's pioneers have vanished without a trace, and in their place a man has appeared who - according to all the records - simply does not exist. Worse still, the infant colony is beset with concerning reports of mysterious lights in the distant trees, shadowy phantoms haunting the edges of their nascent home, strange noises from high up on the cliffs. The colonists need to stay united if they're to make Essegena a success story - but with ambitious vipers around every corner, they've never been more divided. Once they dreamed of a fresh start, far away from their former lives. Now that dream is fast becoming a nightmare.


The Doom Tapes

The Doom Tapes by D.N. Schmidt

Enjoy fifteen science fiction short stories filled with adventure, aliens, robots, and monsters! Take your flying car to the drive-in because the show’s about to start! In "The Doom Tapes", the earth is invaded by aliens. The only ones who can save the world are the clerks at Last Chance Video, the last movie rental store that still stocks VHS. “Robot Eden” is the story of a trio of machines wandering a post-apocalyptic wasteland in search of the one place humans can never enter. Gangs of survivors fight them at every turn, seeking to scrap them for parts. In “The Many Bodies of Harlan Thorne”, a spacefaring assassin has a collection of cloned bodies, each with a different super power. It’s a great life, until a clone refuses to go back into storage. In “The Texas Creepers”, a man plays poker with parasites from another dimension. “Mystery Meat Monster” features a truck stop in space, aliens, ray guns, and the galaxy’s most dangerous meatloaf. The collection also includes the novella “The Asteroid Heist.” A thief and conman has a plan to pull off the biggest crime in history. But how do you steal three miles of space rock?


The Cosmic Principle

The Cosmic Principle by Abby R. Laughlin

When corruption surrounds her, she can either give in… or fight. One hundred years ago, a galactic cataclysm decimated the Centaurus galaxy, leaving only the planet Bersama unscathed—a world now divided into five struggling sectors. Captain Caldera Keane, an explorer for the Vanguard, is growing tired of going on pointless missions ordered by the king of Tellis. The people are suffering, and she wants nothing more than to exact real change for Bersama. But when Caldera gets escorted to the palace after nearly botching her last mission, she is certain she’s in trouble. Instead, she receives shocking news: King Quill is dead, and she’s the sole heir to the unstable throne he left behind. While balancing her new role as queen and contending with the corruption surrounding Bersama’s most powerful leaders, Caldera becomes entangled in a dangerous conspiracy related to the former ruler’s death. With no idea who she can trust, she must find a way to protect her friends, save her people, and uncover the truth before she suffers the same fate as the king.


Star Bound

Star Bound by Rex Burke

Book 3 of the Odyssey Earth series – the final chapter of the feelgood SciFi story. A storm’s coming, and it’s time to go home. But home isn’t always where you think it is. As rescue looms, the teenage castaways face new decisions and changing alliances. It’s not plain-sailing on New Earth either, where Captain Juno Washington faces a blatant challenge to her authority. As the dangers increase and stories collide, everyone has a choice to make. Be part of something or strike out on your own? Make plans or break promises? All the Odyssey Earth characters combine for one final, unforgettable adventure, as they look for a place to call home. And one thing’s for sure. If you want a happy ending, you need to put your trust in the people you love. If you like feelgood, character-led SciFi with heart and humour, then you’ll love Star Bound. Perfect for fans of snappy dialogue, snarky space crew, strong, relatable characters, slow-burn action, and coming-of-age, found-family adventures.


Twin Landing

Twin Landing by Rex Burke

Book 2 of the Odyssey Earth series – 'Wrong place, wrong planet, but right time. We’ve got to get on with life.' Typical. Travel fifty trillion miles without finding a habitable planet, and then two come along at once. The mission is not exactly going to plan for the New Earth settlers. Captain Juno Washington is feeling the pressure, and Reeves, the know-it-all AI, seems strangely out of sorts. Meanwhile, the missing teenage castaways are coming to terms with their situation. Dana, Karlan and Manisha are figuring out how to survive on an uncharted alien planet – they just need to work out the rules. Dervla, Poole and Bryson can’t wait to explore, and are ready for adventure. Which leaves their unwilling adult caretaker, Jordan Booth, with nothing much to do except complain – campfire cooking, outdoor showers, do not recommend. As the unknown planet starts to give up its secrets, and new arrivals threaten the mission, friends become separated and family ties are tested. In the end, it all comes down to trust. Who’s on your side? Who’s got your back? And who’s coming to the rescue? If you like feelgood, character-led SciFi with heart and humour, then you’ll love Twin Landing. Perfect for fans of snappy dialogue, snarky space crew, strong, relatable characters, slow-burn action, and coming-of-age, found-family adventures.


As Born to Rule the Storm

As Born to Rule the Storm by Cate Baumer

The star-crossed temporal romance of THIS IS HOW YOU LOSE THE TIME WAR meets the vintage setting and yearning of DIVINE RIVALS in AS BORN TO RULE THE STORM. Cadet Charlotte Amsel will trade her life to win a war- but not all at once. As part of an elite group of experimental soldiers, she can move through time, with each jump taking months from her own fated lifespan as she struggles to prevent the cold war from boiling over into an apocalypse. With her own side just as untrustworthy as the enemy, the only thing she cares about is keeping her best friend and fellow soldier (and in some timelines, lover) safe. But each time loop adds violent complications, and saving anyone before she runs out of life to give may prove impossible.


THE FINDING MACHINE

THE FINDING MACHINE by Lucy Lyons

HER FATHER’S MYSTERIOUS INVENTION…A 1920s COLD CASE…CAN ALEX FOLLOW THE DOTS TO SOLVE IT? One winter morning in 1998, Alex Martin inherits a mysterious invention from her late father. The Finding Machine solves mysteries. But the biggest mystery of all lies deep within its wiring — the unsolved disappearance of a little girl, dating back seventy years. What happened to the girl, all those years ago? Who was she? Alex and her handsome housemate, Antony, must follow the dots to solve the mystery. But, as dark family secrets are revealed, will the Finding Machine bring them together…or push them further apart?


The One Exiled: A YA Sci-Fi Adventure

The One Exiled: A YA Sci-Fi Adventure by Jennifer Lewy

Yesterday, she was a savior. Today, she is an outcast. Seventeen-year-old Rayne and her friends have just averted a disaster, stopping a shadow AI from wreaking havoc on their world. However, their relief is short-lived. In the aftermath, Rayne and her boyfriend, Vic, are blamed for the chaos. As punishment, their Threads—their lifeblood and sole connection to the virtual Games they create—are severed, and Rayne and Vic are exiled, on the run… alone. To add to their woes, the neighboring community falls victim to a ruthless assault by the Settler rebels—a radical anti-tech group dedicated to annihilating the AI that safeguards their world. Now, Rayne and her friends must find the Settlers, uncover their plans, and prevent them from striking again—because this time the Settlers’ target is Rayne’s own home, and everyone she holds dear. Her only hope lies in surviving long enough to track down Freya’s Path, a legendary faction of coders, and persuading them to join her cause. But time is running out. It's a no-holds-barred-race that leads Rayne on a perilous journey and into the deeper darkness of the secrets lurking within her own path. And in this race, the only prize for second place is certain, lonely death… as The One Exiled. Mixing the excitement and wit of Ernest Cline’s Ready Player One, the cyberpunk suspense of Marie Lu’s Warcross, and the sci-fi dystopia of James Dashner’s The Maze Runner, The One Exiled is the second thrilling book in Jennifer Lewy’s post-apocalyptic young adult series, Game of Paradise. Dive into the exhilarating adventure today!


Never Steal from Dragons

Never Steal from Dragons by Patrick Dugan

Welcome to Hub! Just a few simple rules apply: 1. Never Steal from Dragons 2. See Rule #1 3. Never Work for Dragons In Hub, a city of treachery and deceit, Gelsey, a pixie, is one of the best thieves around. When a smash and grab assignment turns into a job interview with a powerful dragon, Gelsey finds herself a part of a crew including five more of the best criminals Hub has to offer. Her crew includes Silai, a con artist with a deadly secret. Kelthar, a mage who’s bent on self-destruction. Aikila, a smuggler set on avenging her father's murder. Nyx, a hacker coming off a busted run, and Lorcan, a mercenary whose child is being held hostage. The dragon pulls all their strings, forcing them to accept an impossible job: break into a fortress nobody in all of Hub’s long history has ever cracked. And if they fail, they’ll end up dead one way or another. A wild mix of fairy tale and Cyberpunk that hits all the marks of classic crime capers. Reads like Elmore Leonard and Neil Stephenson playing D&D in a pixie-infested bar and having the time of their lives way past last call. Kat Richardson, Bestselling author of the Greywalker novels Dugan weaves an excellent heist story by blending the fantasy, cyberpunk, and even noir genres. The world building is top notch, including the lore which uses familiar creatures, but in new ways. This is the book for you if you enjoy cyberpunk, urban fantasy, heist stories, or any combination thereof! Bishop O'Connell Author of American Faerie Tale series and Two-Gun Witch


First Contact Last Resort

First Contact Last Resort by Singularative Ranch

SFINCS

A team of scientists must prove their surprising discovery or surrender it to conspiracy in this breakout soft sci-fi series exploring the pitfalls and virtues of human nature. In 2033, a rogue experiment in a Berkeley astrophysics professor’s lab leads to discoveries that astound humanity—but have uncertain consequences for the planet. Those uncertainties incite a popular conspiracy theorist to spread apocalyptic doom. The discoveries also stir heretical ideas that provoke a firebrand religious crusader and her acolytes to vilify the leader of the Berkeley lab, a young professor striving to advance her career. While battling to overcome all that often violent backlash, the roller coaster lives of the professor and her colleagues careen into even more chaos when their collaborations with a gutsy biotech entrepreneur, an alt-lifestyle activist, and a divergently-developed child reshape society—in beneficial but also divisive ways. As the intimate stories of this cadre of trailblazers unfold in the face of this changing world, some will be triumphant. Others tragic. The First Contact Last Resort series dramatizes how civilization is revolutionized by a chain of new technologies, scientific discoveries, and social movements. This crisply written saga of raw human experience will make you question our destiny—and our origins.


The Gods Awoke

The Gods Awoke by Marie Vibbert

[If the Gods were real, could you believe?] Hitra, high priestess of Revestre, already has enough on her hands: political upheaval, a distractingly attractive male servant, and an upcoming harvest festival. But when a column of flame from the heavens sends a city into tumult, it upends more than just her schedule. Now, Hitra must deal with a religious schism, ethnic strife…and a God growing out of control.


Courage Is the Price

Courage Is the Price by S.L. Dove Cooper

Seventeen-year-old Rue doesn’t need anyone other than Ghost, her not-so-imaginary best friend. They’ve been inseparable for as long as Rue can remember and she shares everything with Ghost. The day before Rue returns home from school for the long holiday, Ghost disappears. Ever-fretful Rue tries to tell herself it’s fine, but she knows something is horribly, terribly wrong. She’ll have to overcome her anxiety find her courage and push her boundaries further than she ever thought possible in order to save her best friend, and perhaps make some new ones as Rue finds herself drawn into the fringes of a secret battle for human survival. Soft science fiction meets fantasy in this exciting novella-length adventure of daring and friendship.


A Mirage in the Memory

A Mirage in the Memory by Simon Tull

SFINCS

Dogged by a digital ghost and his own murky past, he must scour the city to kill the killer … or lose the woman he loves. Earth, post-Apocalypse. Thibault Allard is determined to save his wife. After he escapes the addictive virtual reality that enslaved them both, he works as a bounty hunter for their unsavoury captor to gain inside access and search for his beloved. But when the morally flexible immortal is handed a ruthless ultimatum, he derails his plans in order to pursue the man who terminated his boss's spouse. Getting close to the dangerous cult leader responsible for the woman's death, he scrambles to survive after he's captured and imprisoned. And thrown into a pit for a gladiatorial battle against a blood-lusting monster, Thibault fears he'll die before he can rescue the bride he left behind. Can he double down on his duty without losing the rest of his soul?


The Flying Tiger: Mortal Engine

The Flying Tiger: Mortal Engine by Henry Spector M.

Aarón Melisandré knows that he is more than human. This truth scares him, it is the very thing that led to the death of a loved one years ago, and now something from a different dimension is coming for him. Aarón realizes that he must fully embrace what he is when he and his nephew are thrust into the vast multiverse on a dangerous mission to stop a troubled supervillain from activating the fabled Mortal Engine.


Orphan Planet

Orphan Planet by Rex Burke

SPSFC 2023

They needed some help. They woke up the wrong guy. The colony ship, Odyssey Earth, is on a 17-year voyage across the galaxy to a new home. And Jordan Booth is exactly where he wanted to be – tucked up in hypersleep, with nothing to worry about until planetfall. However, Captain Juno Washington has other ideas. She’s got a quirky ship’s AI, Reeves, and a crew of loners and oddballs, but what she doesn’t have is anyone to look out for the Odyssey Earth’s six ship-born teenagers. When Jordan is revived and given the job, he’s far from happy about it. Then again, nor are the kids. Tight-knit, whip-smart, resilient – the last thing they need is a chaperone, and they make sure he knows it. After an unexpected change of course, everyone needs to join forces if they’re going to survive. But Jordan is out of his comfort zone – and the teenagers are in no mood to listen. Still, if they pull together and stop squabbling, they might all just make it. Yeah, right. Good luck with that. If you like feelgood, character-led SciFi with heart and humour, then you’ll love Orphan Planet. Perfect for fans of snappy dialogue, snarky space crew, strong, relatable characters, slow-burn action, and coming-of-age, found-family adventures.


Exolegacy

Exolegacy by Andr Moș

SPSFC 2023

Fifty years ago the manisae claimed Earth’s red neighbor as their new home. Since then, humanity has fostered a suspicious and fragile relationship with them. Now, Earth’s first ambassador has just passed away, survived only by his three estranged children. Their inheritance: his memories, divided between the three of them. Will they be able to follow the hints that their father has woven into his memories to uncover the truth of his work, the lie of their neighbors, and their mother’s death a decade before? Both Humanity and the Manisae must come to terms to understand a legacy that is larger than either civilization.


The Orchid and the Lion

The Orchid and the Lion by Gabriel Hargrave

Dorian Vidales left his cushy but constrictive life on Earth behind to become the star femme Dom at a space station brothel. Convinced that love makes people stupid and will ruin everything he’s worked so hard for, Dorian remains happily married to his career. But when Laith Ritter, a gorgeous trans man, is hired at the brothel and Dorian gets roped into training him as a sub, he’ll find it hard to follow his own “don’t get attached” rule. At first, having a bratty, inexperienced live-in sub is more chaos than he expects, but it soon becomes everything he could never admit he needed. As he trains Laith, Laith helps Dorian find himself outside of his high-strung, overly controlled work persona. With their relationship growing more and more serious, Dorian realizes this is what was missing in his otherwise glamorous life. But amidst the glitz and glamour of the space station—a haven for people otherwise disenfranchised by Earth’s Purity Laws—trouble is brewing. When a pro-Purity politician gains power and begins pushing her political agenda, Dorian and the man he’s falling in love with will be thrust into a dangerous fight to keep the station free. The trials they face will test their burgeoning romance and change their lives forever. The Orchid and the Lion is the first novel in a kinky, sensual series about love, self-acceptance, and fighting for what you believe in.


The Lion and the Dahlia

The Lion and the Dahlia by Gabriel Hargrave

It’s been months since Earth supported a pro-Purity coup on Baldwin, and Laith Ritter is settling into his new home on Europa Station. He’s a hit at work, he’s building a life with his boyfriend and Dom, Dorian Vidales, and he’s found a family, one that he would do anything for. He’s even caught the eye of his handsome coworker, Omar. On the surface, it would seem Laith’s star is on the rise and still climbing. But in reality, he’s struggling. And so is Dorian. He’s desperately trying to find his boyfriend, Kenny, and figure out how to help his coworkers who got arrested the night of the raid. And unlike Laith, Dorian’s not as big a hit as he used to be, which is hurting his already fragile ego. With their relationship already shaky, the last thing they need is to get swept up in more chaos. But some always manages to find them... When a client is found murdered, it’s up to Laith to figure out who really killed him and why. But the list of suspects is long—and some of them are people he cares about. As he and Omar work together to clear an innocent man’s name, Laith uncovers secrets that he’d rather not know, ones that throw what he believed about some of the most important people in his life into question. Can he find the murderer before it’s too late? And can Dorian and Laith’s rocky romance survive the chaos? The Lion and the Dahlia continues the epic kinky queer sci-fi romance series that began with The Orchid and the Lion and sends Dorian and Laith hurtling towards a fierce battle to reclaim the home they lost.


Small Town Problems

Small Town Problems by Chris Ritchey

Comfortable in his simple rural life, widower Robert Potter never put much stock in Old Jim's moonshine-fueled conspiracy theories. But after he finds Har'elday, the lone survivor of a crashed spaceship, he begins to wonder if the Loch Ness Monster has relocated to Eufaula Lake. Much to Robert's dismay, the wandering eye of the federal government is casting a questioning gaze on his small farm town as well. Caught between relentless federal agents and the found family harboring him, Har'elday's freedom depends on the ingenuity of his new friends. A Sci-Fi novella, Small Town Problems is the first book in a three-part series that explores the impact a lone survivor from an advanced alien civilization can have on a sleepy farm town in the middle of Oklahoma. Robert Potter gifts us with his insights as we traverse this world-shattering event through his eyes. A close group of friends helps Har'elday adjust to his new life as he finds solace in the comfort of a hard day's work on the farm. But, how long can such peace last? In what has been called a throwback to the golden age of science fiction, you can expect to find the heartwarming feeling of a found family, the awkwardness of a budding romance, and genuine and funny characters. We also explore the toll of loss and hardships that are compounded by the advances of a threat looming on the horizon.


A Slice of Mars

A Slice of Mars by Guerric Haché

SPSFC 2023

Mars is a strange place these days. Corporate overlords, capitalism, and even aging are things of the past on a planet increasingly brimming with biodiversity - yet pizzerias are in short supply! Siblings Hett and San set out to change that. But a roboticist and a bureaucrat can't run a restaurant alone, so they bring on some help - a bioengineer, a communications scientist, and an unlikely grad student from Earth. Together, this gang of geeks will brave the fires of small business. But work is just a small part of life. People are complicated. Different brains, different wounds, different values, and one questionably tame wildcat will all collide as they try to grow and succeed together. What comes out of the oven, in the end, is anyone's guess.


The Descendants of Prontoth

The Descendants of Prontoth by Mark Raines

An eight-hundred-year, galaxy-spanning hunt nears its conclusion setting up a confrontation thousands of years in the making. For eight hundred years Timion High Command has hunted the Descendants of Prontoth across the galaxy. Wars were fought, lives were lost, but the Descendants of Prontoth remained at large. Hamron Modestus knows Timion High Command has been doing it wrong. Their quest for revenge made them blind to the allies they would need to bring the Descendants of Prontoth to justice. In his new position of power, Modestus is on their trail, ready to succeed where High Command had failed. Caught in the middle of this inevitable confrontation is retired General Dash Cricken and the entire crew of the Prometheus. Dash and his crew discover evidence of a secret alliance formed to bring down the Descendants of Prontoth. The crew of the Prometheus is caught in the crosshairs of Timion High Command, forced to defend themselves against the hunter on their trail and dissension within their own ranks. Any failure could jeopardize everything they have worked toward. The Descendants of Prontoth is the action-packed sequel to Mark Raines' debut Novel, Felan's Rescue, following the crew of the Prometheus on another wild adventure.


JUNKER SEVEN

JUNKER SEVEN by Olive J. Kelley

A romantic, queer sci-fi epic about changing the galaxy, one girl at a time. Castor Quasar is a junker— a bounty hunter making a living off of collecting and selling valuable scrap. They live a quiet life, bouncing from job to job and not worrying about the brewing galactic rebellion. Except, when they get a job offer for an irresistible amount of money, they find themself embroiled much deeper than expected. Their task? To smuggle transgender activist Juno Marcus across the galaxy under the watchful eye of the Intergalactic Police Force and a propaganda-informed galaxy. It’s too dangerous to accept, but too valuable to refuse, and it doesn't help that Juno herself is charming and beautiful. Agreeing drags Cas into a whirlwind race against those who want Juno dead to make it across the galaxy to safety, risking it all for a cause they can’t– or won’t– believe in.


Electron Spin

Electron Spin by Qualia Reed

Can a rock band save the universe? After surviving everything the galaxy could throw at her over half a million years, the android Esmerelda did the only thing that made sense to her. She stole a state of the art, experimental starship with her best friend, and started a rock band. Together, they began to travel around the galaxy creating art and music while trying to move on from their respective pasts. When a strange couple beg for asylum after a gig, Esmerelda feels the galaxy pulling her back into a life of violence once again. She'd sworn to herself that she'd never go back to her life as an assassin, but when events threaten her new chosen family, Esmerelda must do what it takes to keep the people she loves safe.


Wild Flowers, Electric Beasts

Wild Flowers, Electric Beasts by Alina Leonova

Two species of humans — one technologically advanced and one living in nature — have coexisted peacefully on their home planet for over a century. But when an ancient treaty is breached, devastation follows. Balika has always felt like an outsider. When tragedy strikes, she is left without a reason to remain with her tribe. Looking for a place where she can belong, she leaves the familiar forest and ventures into the desert to bond with a mythical animal through music. But her forgotten life calls her back when she discovers an unexpected threat to her land. Sammah works long hours as an experience developer and returns to his tiny apartment alone. He suffers from anxiety and spends most of his time in the virtual world. He opens up to a friendship with a colleague, but just when things start to look up, he gets trapped in a strange and dangerous affair. He might either lose himself, or the only person he truly cares about. Struggling to make the right choices, they get pulled into a brewing disaster. Their worlds are about to collide, and their paths are fated to cross. Caught on different sides of the conflict, Balika and Sammah take up the fight in their own ways. If they want to save what they love most, they must risk everything. Will that be enough?


Who

Who by Karen A. Wyle

Have they changed their minds? Or have their minds been changed? Death is no longer the end. Those who prepare, and can afford it, may have their memories and personalities digitally preserved. The digitally stored population can interact with the world of the living, remaining part of their loved ones’ lives. They can even vote. Except - someone's in charge of the code. Someone who may have an agenda. After the young and vital Thea dies and is stored, her husband Max starts to wonder about changes in her preoccupations and politics. Are they simply the result of the new company she keeps? Or has she been altered without her knowledge and against her will? And if Thea is no longer herself, what can they do? Blending near-future speculation with courtroom drama, this novel explores the technical, legal, and ethical ramifications of a technology that many see over the horizon.


Donation

Donation by Karen A. Wyle

Whose children are they? Who decides? In the near future, abortion is a thing of the past -- but the development of artificial wombs provides an alternative. The federal government controls this technology, and the fetuses consigned to these special incubators. Young and unprepared for motherhood, Toni Green panics and agrees to "donate" her unborn child for adoption, the fortunate parents to be selected by the Bureau of Reproductive Safety. But the decision doesn't sit well with her, and as her regrets grow, she consults her mother, a high-powered lawyer, about her options. And thus begins a journey for her, her mother, the chosen adoptive parents -- and Poloma Clark, an administrator at the Bureau whose policies and practices Toni is challenging. Poloma, initially tasked with helping the Bureau prepare for trial, finds herself confronted with evidence that the Bureau is exceeding its mandate. If the purpose of this mission creep is to protect vulnerable children, how can she help but join in? But the more she learns, the more her assumptions face challenges that force her to make possibly life-altering decisions. This novel, like Wyle's previous near-future stories, includes a substantial number of courtroom scenes -- and a memorable judge.


Twin-Bred

Twin-Bred by Karen A. Wyle

Can interspecies diplomacy begin in the womb? Humans have lived on Tofarn, planet of creeks and rivers, for seventy years, but they still don't understand the Tofa. The Tofa are an enigma, from their featureless faces to the four arms that sometimes seem to be five. They take arbitrary umbrage at the simplest human activities, while annoying their human neighbors in seemingly pointless ways. The next infuriating, inexplicable incident may explode into war. Scientist Mara Cadell's radical proposal: that host mothers carry fraternal twins, human and Tofa, in the hope that the bond between twins can bridge the gap between species. Mara knows about the bond between twins: her own twin, Levi, died in utero, but she has secretly kept him alive in her mind as companion and collaborator. Perhaps Mara should have expected the enigmatic Tofa to have their own reasons to support her project. Perhaps the ever-cynical Levi should have warned her that members of the human government might use her twins as weapons against the Tofa. Will the Twin-Bred bring peace, war, or something else entirely?


Titan Hoppers

Titan Hoppers by Rob J. Hayes

SPSFC 2022

Courage Iro will shatter the Gates of Power to protect his fleet. Born talentless, Iro has all but resigned himself to a life of drudgery, watching his sister hop across to the massive space titan for supplies. But when the titan explodes and his sister is killed, Iro finds a new determination to take her place. He's not about to let weakness prevent him. When the fleet encounters a new titan, filled with powerful monsters, deadly traps, and mysterious cloaked figures, Iro is the first to spontaneously manifest a new talent. Now sent to a different ship, to train with others far beyond his strength, Iro will have to train twice as hard just to catch up. To protect his fleet, and to uncover the mysteries of the titans, Iro won't just open the Gates of Power. He'll break them.


The Darkness Calling

The Darkness Calling by Joe Coates

SPFBO9 SPSFC 2023

The Darkness Calling is a gritty, stylish, action-packed novel from start to finish. Populated with vividly portrayed characters, thrilling moments and plenty of dark humour, it is brilliantly written, and will keep you turning the pages far into the night. Perfect for fans of Lee Child, J.J Connelly, Ben Aaronovitch, Iain Banks and Warren Ellis. When a contract goes out on the head of a human-trafficker living in one of London's most exclusive suburbs, romantically deprived hitman, Archie Nyx, assumes it's just another day at the office. In a profession that usually comes with minimal moral high ground, being paid a hefty sum to expunge an excrescence like Andras Janos is as close to a good day at work as Archie gets. It's a nice thought, but when the hit goes south and the unexpected elements rear their heads, Archie must track down the mysterious client who seems to want more than just Janos dead. Beautiful but hard-boiled Detective Inspector Valentina Galanti is back at work at the Met after an accident that tore her life apart. Her old friend and boss, Detective Superintendent Jack McNeill, assigns Val to a brutal multiple homicide by way of a welcome back. Val embraces the carnage as a pleasing escape from the grief and fury that are threatening to overwhelm her. By chance, or so it seems, Archie and Val meet one afternoon. Lies and deceptions breed more lies and deceptions, with the assassin and copper having no idea that they are both working towards the middle of the same problem from opposite sides. Set in a near-future London not too dissimilar to the one we know, The Darkness Calling is a soft sci-fi novel that explores whether any silver lining can be found in the midst of a son's hatred for his father, a mother's heart-crushing grief, and the place where the bullets fly.


The Crossing

The Crossing by Laurie Janey

SPFBO9 SPSFC 2023 Indie Recs Indie

Those who cross into Rheta from other worlds don’t usually arrive alive. Berro collects the crosser bodies for a prestigious secret project headed by his academic mentor, and he’s proud of his role, but when a living, breathing woman arrives in the forest through a crack in reality, the project and Berro’s ordered life are thrown into disarray. On Rheta, nature is thriving and conflict is a distant memory. Chaos and cruelty are things belonging to other worlds, other times, and most Rhetari have lapsed into blissful complacency. But Berro is at the epicentre of an event that calls the delicate balance into question. As the crossing project unravels, he confronts the ugly truths about the civilisation he lives in, the work he’s committed to, and the broken parts of himself.


Identity Revealed (Tue-Rah Chronicles Book 1)

Identity Revealed (Tue-Rah Chronicles Book 1) by J.M. Butler, Jessica M. Butler

Amelia prepared for the wrong destiny--and it might cause the death of millions. Cursed as a blood child and isolated as a pariah, the young princess Inale lives with one goal: to defeat Naatos, the shapeshifting warlord, in his march of terror across the thirty-six worlds. Then Naatos conquers her home of Libysha in a murderous midnight ambush before she has even learned how to throw a knife. Whisked to Earth by the mysterious Tue-Rah, an interdimensional portal, and now dubbed Amelia, she trains night and day to prove her worth and rescue her people. But when the Tue-Rah delivers Amelia home, she discovers her family captured, the royal court slaughtered, and her people imprisoned. A desperate attempt to free them only reveals more horrific truths: Amelia is a damaged psychic, the last of her kind, cursed by her birth mother, and if she kills Naatos, it will destroy her. Moreover, Naatos is her betrothed in an arranged marriage from birth and he vows to claim her by any means necessary, even as he continues to wreak savage bloodshed in his goal to bring the worlds under the control of him and his two brothers. Outmatched and outflanked, Amelia must defend her nation. But her traitorous empathic powers and connection to Naatos and his family war for her heart. Moreover, her new allies are equally manipulative. Amelia must take control of her true destiny or condemn the worlds to Naatos's rule and millions to death.


Betrayal of Hope

Betrayal of Hope by Justin Doyle

Darynn, Fyra, and Kaylaa have solved the mysteries of the gods. But how can they unveil the secrets to save the starving Olan-Har without unleashing chaos upon Vastire? Even if they knew what to do, war with long-time adversary Erodia forces them to wait. Unfortunately, the Erodians are winning: they’ve taken Vastire’s capital and bombard the west coast nightly. With few options left, Commander Aseus turns to Darynn to attempt a daring mission to infiltrate Erodia, just like his grandfather did 80 years ago. With Fyra, Kaylaa, and a small team at his side, Darynn agrees to the treacherous mission across the dangerous, wild continent filled with powerful enemies. But he’s conflicted. Not only does magical power rampage within, but he starts to wonder who he’s fighting for: royalty and the clergy, or the people? That question will drive him to make impossible choices. If he chooses correctly, he can end the war and save the Olan-Har, but at a great cost. If he doesn’t, the Erodians will rule Vastire and the secrets of the gods will be lost.


Assassination of Hope

Assassination of Hope by Justin Doyle

The destruction of the embargo has made Darynn Mark a lot of enemies: an interstellar bounty hunter, the Grand Cardinal, families of the fallen. On top of that, Darynn struggles with his new responsibility to discover the truth behind Vastire's gods, while battling his growing internal desire to destroy. Darynn and Fyra must travel to the frozen planet Yiptae to find the final pieces of the gods' puzzle. But Yiptae has problems of its own, from a violent revolution to the assassination of a key political figure for immigrant rights. In the middle of it all is Kaylaa, whose mysterious past leads to new opportunities, conflicts, and enemies. Darynn, Fyra, and Kaylaa must work with new allies to solve the secret to the past while navigating the revolution and solving the murder. If they don't, they will end up dead, and the truths of two worlds will be buried forever. Secrets ignite revolutions...


Outrageous Fortune

Outrageous Fortune by Kathleen McClure

After surviving numerous battles and an unjust court martial, John Pitte thought he’d seen the worst of Fortune. Then he went into the air freight business… A year after the war with the Coalition States has ended, John Pitte and the crew of the airship Errant aren't just scraping the bottom of the barrel, they're scraping the the deck under the bottom of the barrel. So when a mysterious woman offers the crew salvation—or, at least, a paying job—John signs on, only to discover that neither the job, nor the woman, are what they appear. Now John and the rest of the crew are on the run and embroiled in hive of madness and deception, while everything he hoped to save teeters on the brink of disaster.


Fortune's Fool

Fortune's Fool by Kathleen McClure

On the planet Fortune, tech is low and times are hard… especially for those living in Nike's slums. Gideon Quinn has barely set up shop as Nike’s—and Fortune's—only private facilitator when an idealistic young medic reports several patients have gone missing. Gideon takes the case and soon finds himself tangled in a cruel enterprise fueled by greed and vengeance that targets the most vulnerable of Nike’s population. And the investigation only grows more complex when a woman from Gideon’s past appears at his door with a missing person of her own. Now Gideon is faced with a bitter question: To save the people no one else cares about, will he be able to bring home a man he’d as soon see vanished from the face of Fortune?


Soldier of Fortune

Soldier of Fortune by Kathleen McClure

On the planet of Fortune, tech is low, tensions are high and heroes as unlikely as they come. Wrongly convicted of treason, Gideon Quinn spent six years harvesting crystal under the killing suns of the Morton Barrens. When a general of the Corps arrives with an offer of freedom and the chance to clear his name, Gideon doesn’t have to think twice. With his pet draco Elvis on his shoulder, Gideon takes 'ship for Nike City on a quest for justice (or, failing that, revenge). What he finds is a dodger named Mia, a city steeped in corruption, and a menace at the heart of the Corps which could bring Fortune's new and fragile peace to an explosive end. And that’s just his first night in town.


Stellar Instinct (Agent Renault Adventures)

Stellar Instinct (Agent Renault Adventures) by Jonathan Nevair

Indie Recs Indie

When galactic danger calls, Agent Renault answers. Strange signals pulse from an icy planet in a remote star system. Enter Lilline Renault, GAM-OPs secret agent extraordinaire. To ordinary citizens she's Keely Larkin, an adventure company guide with a flair for the daring and a penchant for writing trite poetry. When the mission uncovers a terrifying link between high-tech entertainment and ancient cosmic forces, Lilline leaps into action. Verses flow as she rockets through space, dons cunning disguises, and infiltrates enemy territory with an arsenal of secret gadgets. To solve the mystery behind a dastardly plan means beating a mastermind at his own game. Lilline will need her best weapon to stand a fighting chance: her instinct. STELLAR INSTINCT: a fast, fun, and furiously entertaining standalone spy-fi adventure.


Bone River: Book 1 of The Aspect Wars

Bone River: Book 1 of The Aspect Wars by Jesse Sprague

Haunted by a tragic loss, one woman defies the laws of magic. But will the cost of freedom claim her last breath? Flynt is devastated by her husband’s untimely demise on a space station hub. Not only is she drowning in grief for a man she truly loved, he was the only one protecting her from the fate that killed her mother. Vowing to avoid the twisted law that her race must become breeders, Flynt’s heartbreak awakens her high-stakes ability to manipulate death. Training to control her deadly new skills at a forbidden school, her magical gift hides a formidable power not seen in centuries. But when the queen falls gravely ill, only Flynt can save her life… if she can prove she’s not the necromancer to blame. Can she expose the devious truth before she’s cast out to die? Bone River is the explosive first book in the Last Necro-Equitem dark science fiction fantasy series. If you like relentless heroines, mind-blowing worldbuilding, and epic battles against evil, then you’ll love Jesse Sprague’s spellbinding tale.


Deus Ex Machina

Deus Ex Machina by Raquel Rich

Grace knew killing her soulmate to save her son Jordan’s life would trigger a new plague. She did it anyway. When a plan to stop the man responsible came together, Grace jumped at the chance for redemption, bringing Marc, Charlie, and Kay along to 1930s Germany. However, the plan derails fast when a betrayal lands the group in 2006 Las Vegas instead, leaving them stranded. Refusing to accept defeat, they seek help from others in 2006—namely, Jordan. But he seems to have his own agenda and is reluctant to help. Meanwhile, Marc is unwilling to forgive Grace’s selfish decision and turns cold toward her. As the ice thickens between them, and Jordan’s agenda begins to unfold, Grace is fraught with regret. If she had known who her son would become, would she still have saved his life? Official Book Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-dM0tJHWbE


The God Queen (1) (Rebirth)

The God Queen (1) (Rebirth) by M.L Tishner

THE GOD QUEEN RETURNS. SO, WHY IS EVERYONE SQUELCHING HER POWER? In a backwater Earth town, Rei Ettowa dreams of traveling across the stars to destroy Infiernen - the knight who murdered her brother. When Rei discovers she is the reincarnation of the prophesied GodQueen, she relishes her newfound ability to channel lightning forrevenge. Unfortunately, blazing through a battlefield clashes with theFederation's plan for Rei and the others like her. All the gods are tobe trained as diplomatic figureheads to sway voters, not agents of war.Infiernen must remain untouched. As Rei navigates her new role in the Federation, she finds herselfdrawn to Bronx, a handsome young man who can barely control his powers.He is also yet another target of Infiernen's wrath. Unable to let go ofher brother's murder and desperate to save Bronx, Rei searches forInfiernen, only to discover a shocking secret the Federation has beenkeeping from her. Furious by the Federation's secrets, she's outfor revenge. But not everything is as it seems. What else could theFederation be hiding from her?


Tech Mage (The Magitech Chronicles)

Tech Mage (The Magitech Chronicles) by Chris Fox

Enslaved and Forced to Fight Dragons Aran awakens in chains with no memory. He’s conscripted into the Confederate Marines as a Tech Mage, given a spellrifle, then hurled into the war with the draconic Krox and their Void Wyrm masters. Desperate to escape, Aran struggles to master his abilities, while surviving the Krox onslaught. Fighting alongside him are a Major who will do anything to win, a Captain who will stop at nothing to see him dead, and a woman whose past is as blank as his own. Caught between survival and loyalty Aran must choose. If he flees he will live, but the Krox will burn the galaxy. Stopping them requires a price Aran may be unable to pay: Learning to trust the very people who enslaved him.


Chronicles of My Alien Invasion Life

Chronicles of My Alien Invasion Life by Jes McCutchen

SPSFC 2022

Chuck and her friends lost a good one last summer, but none of them are convinced that Ghost is truly gone. Once she recovers from her accident, she's ready to find the truth behind where he went. With the help of her friends, Bailey, Corrin, and Pacey, Chuck will do what she can to track down Ghost, even if it means she maybe kinda gets abducted. It's complicated. Will Chuck be able to reunite her crew, and, more importantly, will she do it without embarrassing herself? Probably not, but she's gotta try.


A Merry Life

A Merry Life by Sarah Branson

Kat Wallace is on a mission. After escaping tortuous enslavement, she sets her sights on ending the human trafficking that has flourished in 24th century Earth. Adopted by the leader of the pirate nation of Bosch, Kat Wallace is determined to prove herself as a member of the Bosch Pirate Force and use her skills to avenge her enslavement and free other thralls. But unexpected love and a test of loyalty threaten to rob her of what she wants most: a home.


The Last Human

The Last Human by P. S. Hoffman

ALL HUMANKIND died thousands of years ago... …but the xenos still worship them as GODS. Today, hundreds of alien civilizations thrive in the gods’ lost cities and fallen megastructures. One Empire has learned to harness the remains of humanity's forgotten technology to reconnect the distant worlds... and dominate them. Eolh is an old, jaded, avian thief who lives in the dark underbelly of a conquered city. When the Empire first opened the gate between worlds, they stormed his home, killed his gang, and burned everything he held dear. But that was a long time ago. Now, the resistance is dead. No one dreams of fighting back—for the Empire wields the weapons of the gods: warships that fly, robotic constructs that hunt, and rare mysteries scavenged from the tombs of the gods. Eolh lives a half-life, thieving, running jobs, and selling his services as a freelance listener for the last gangs of Lowtown. He trusts no one, and only looks out for himself. When an unusual heist takes a deadly turn, Eolh must bargain with an overzealous android who carries an impossible secret—one that will shake the foundations of the universe. There is one last hope for salvation. For his people, or maybe just for himself… This is the story of The Last Human.


A Different Life--What If?

A Different Life--What If? by Joyce Reynolds-Ward

What if Gabriel Martiniere's family didn't die in a plane crash when he was twelve? What if he didn't have to go into hiding after testifying against the atrocities committed by his father, Philip Martiniere? What if he met and fell in love with Ruby Barkley as himself, not as Gabe Ramirez, a broke saddle bronc rider on the run from indenture bounty hunters? Gabe's a billionaire nerd with a conscience, unlucky at love, striving to overcome the shadows of his past while searching for agritech to fight climate change. Ruby's a former rodeo queen, trying to get her degree in agricultural robotics, searching for agritech means to fight climate change, also unlucky at love and struggling with a shadowy past. Can Ruby and Gabe successfully negotiate the complexities of the Martiniere Group and launch Ruby's world-changing biobots without interference from competitors?


Adrift in Starlight

Adrift in Starlight by Mindi Briar

When set adrift in the universe, some things are worth holding onto. Titan Valentino has been offered a job they can’t refuse. Tai, a gender-neutral courtesan, receives a scandalous proposition: seduce an actor's virgin fiancée. The money is enough to pay off Tai’s crushing medical debt, a tantalizing prospect. Too bad Aisha Malik isn’t the easy target they expect. A standoffish historian who hates to be touched, she’s laser-focused on her career, and completely unaware that her marriage has been arranged behind her back. This could be the one instance where Tai’s charm and charisma fail them. Then an accidental heist throws them together as partners in crime. Fleeing from the Authorities, they’re dragged into one adventure after another: alien planets, pirate duels, and narrow escapes from the law. As Tai and Aisha open up to each other, deeper feelings kindle between them. But that reward money still hangs over Tai’s head. Telling Aisha the truth could ruin everything... Their freedom, their career, and their blossoming love all hang in the balance. To save one might mean sacrificing the rest.


Embargo on Hope

Embargo on Hope by Justin Doyle

SPSFC 2023

Even gods have secrets… On planet Vastire, worth is set by the sins of one’s ancestors. Good families rise to the elite and the wicked fall into poverty. Unfortunately for sixteen-year-old Darynn Mark, his father incited a revolution. Now, Darynn scrounges his way through life in the slums. When Vastire is surrounded by an embargo, it gets even harder to survive. That all changes when an alien ship slips through the embargo, seeking Darynn with an offer: finish the revolution and the embargo ends. He might have a chance thanks to mysterious magic powers, and his two companions: clairvoyant crush Fyra and soldierly alien Kaylaa. Cutthroat killers, mystical beasts, Vampires, power-hungry priests and lords, and self-serving spies stand in their way. If the three of them can crack his father’s secret, maybe they can end the embargo and save the poor. If not, another poor orphan will be added to the growing piles of dead.


Revenge

Revenge by Dani Hoots

A swashbuckling upper YA/NA LGBTQ+ sci-fi western you don't want to miss! It has been three years since Elvira "Ellie" Ryder was betrayed by her ex-boyfriend Cor, which caused the destruction of her people by invaders from a different Zone. Now she will do anything to find him and make him pay. Ellie has found someone who knows where Cor is. The price—assassinate a half-human, half-Sirian who is trying to join the Society, a high-class club only for the rich. Ellie takes the job, as it wouldn’t be the first assassination job she has taken, and heads to the Human Zone. However, when she learns more about her target, the more she realizes what is going on behind the curtain, and how her people were really destroyed. Will Ellie be able to forgive Cor after learning the truth? Or will she forever hold on to that hatred? *Rep: Bisexual, asexual, & gay


The Miranda Project: The Miranda Project Book 1

The Miranda Project: The Miranda Project Book 1 by Matthew Cesca

SPSFC 2022

For the last five years, Alex has been on the run. Once a living weapon for a shadowy government organization, Alex is now hiding out on Mars trying to start a new life. But the shadows of his past creep around every corner. Every night, his broken mind forces him to relive the horrors he has committed. Alex isn’t like most people: he’s a psych. Born with rare psionic powers, each mental is a prized asset for the Centralized World Government back on Earth. Psyches like Alex are tracked down by the Agency and trained to do the jobs the CWG doesn’t want the public to know about. With Mars no longer safe, Alex is forced to run once more. Refuge won’t come easy—he's running out of places to hide. And for the first time since taking his life back into his own hands, he's not running alone...


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