Tag Archives: science fiction

Happy Chrismahanukwanzakah, Y’all!

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As much as I love Christmas, I’ve come to dread the holiday season. Starting with Thanksgiving preparation, I begin to stress over the meal. Afterward, I start planning what to give as Christmas gifts and when I’m going to put a package in the mail for my daughter’s family. Also, her birthday is a week before Christmas, and I have to find a present for her.

Things I used to find absolutely imperative every holiday season: sending cards, writing a newsy letter, decorating the house, preparing holiday treats— They have become a pain in my butt and I simply don’t have the energy for them. I have serious allergies, and almost always have a sinus infection going on. I also have developed asthma over the years, so it’s difficult to go out. Too many scents out there to plague a sensitive nose or a delicate set of lungs. Not to mention, my son has to use our truck for his job—he works 5:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. This makes getting out difficult.

I don’t mean to sound like I’m whining, but dammit, I feel like it! Okay, getting worked up takes too much energy, so I will quietly state that I don’t give a shit about doing it up for Christmas. I like presents, but I hate shopping. I love finding the perfect gift, but I loath trying to decide what that may be. I enjoy the meal, but as I do the bulk of the cooking, it’s a pain in the ass. I like spending time with family and friends, but right now, I’d rather spend my time writing and editing, than actually communicating with anyone.

If you’re like me, and you dread the holiday season (though you really like cookies and other tasty treats) I have a suggestion for you. Go through the list of folks you have to buy gifts for, and buy them books. Yes, I know, not everyone is a reader. But if you can capture the one thing they find appealing, you’ve just given them the perfect gift. Cool thing is, even without a Kindle, they can read an Amazon book on any phone, tablet or computer by downloading the free app.

I realize that not everyone likes the same books, so I encourage you to explore some of my suggestions below. These names are by no means the only books I’m recommending. No one paid me to do this, no one twisted my arm to get me to include them. I’m listing people whose books I have read personally, and enjoyed. They aren’t in any particular order, mostly just train of thought. 

First of all, my books. Dellani Oakes writes historical (retro) romance, romantic suspense, contemporary romance, sci-fi and fantasy. To Buy Dellani’s Books 

Karen Vaughan is one of my favorite authors. She writes light hearted mysteries. To Buy Karen’s books 

Kenneth Weene writes a variety of genres, which will appeal to a lot of readers. To Buy Ken’s Books

Amanda Thrasher writes delightful books about fairies, but she also has a hard hitting anti-bullying book that is not to miss. To Buy Amanda’s Books 

Ruth Hays writes magical, epic fantasy that gets the heart pumping. To Buy Ruth’s Books 

Heather Poinsett Dunbar writes fantasy, that’s a bit on the dark side. To Buy Heather’s Books 

William Beck writes political thrillers that set your pulse racing from beginning to end.To Buy William’s Books

S. A. Bailey writes, what he calls, redneck noir. Think Mickey Spillane with an east Texas spin. To Buy Seth’s Books

Mark David Gerson also writes a wide variety of books. From learning to write, to mystical fantasy, he’s sure to appeal. To Buy Mark David’s Books 

Jo Ramsey writes wonderfully insightful stories for teens who don’t fit into the normal mold. To Buy Jo’s Books

Rowena Cherry writes sci-fi that carries you into space. Swords clang as a royal alien race tries to out maneuver one another. To Buy Rowena’s Books 

Gary D. Henry writes in many genres from retro romance to horror. To Buy Gary’s Books

Suzette Vaughn mostly writes romance, but she has other books as well. Sure to appeal to a wide number of readers. To Buy Suzette’s Books

J. Conrad Guest – sci-fi, romance, biography, memoir…the list goes on and on. To Buy J. Conrad’s Books

Rico Austin from a lighthearted children’s book, to memoirs, with a stop off at Graceland to visit The King, Rico has it. To Buy to Buy Rico’s Books

Stephanie Osborn’s Displaced Detective series brings Sherlock Holmes into the modern age. She also has fantastic sci-fi books that are a must read. To Buy Stephanie’s Books

Rachel Rueben’s book, Hag, is a wonderfully poignant look at teen life and the problems some face. Rachel also has some great How-To books for authors. To Buy Rachel’s Books

Marta Moran Bishop is another versatile author. Her books are mostly for children or young adults, but they are great for adults too. To Buy Marta’s Books

Barbara Ehrentreu The same can be said of Barbara’s books. Though geared toward teens, they are an enjoyable read for adults. To Buy Barbara’s Books

Fran Lewis has books in so many genres, I can’t name them all. Very approachable, they are sure to entertain. To Buy Fran’s Books

J.D. Holiday’s books for children are cleverly written and beautifully illustrated by the author. To Buy J.D.’s Books

Dianna Graveman’s books will appeal to those who like history. She has wonderful books on a variety of subjects. To Buy Dianna’s Books

Whit McClendon’s fantasy novels are cleverly crafted and full of action.To Buy Whit’s Books

Janet Morris has been a favorite author of mine since the Eighties. If you like sci-fi, fantasy or historical fiction, Janet has something for you. To Buy Janet’s Books

 Viv Drewa writes mystical mysteries with a hoot of a hero—an owl! To Buy Viv’s Books

Kemberlee Shortland writes romance with an Irish flavor. To Buy Kemberlee’sBooks 

I will continue to update and add to this list as I think of new people. Share this with your friends! Above all, have a Happy Chrismahanukwanzakah! Dellani

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Thieves in Paradise – Bernadette Gardner

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thieves in paradiseCharity Foster is a gambler and thief with a bounty on her head. When she scams Gar Gremin, beating him at his own game, he sends bounty hunter, Kol A’Kosu after her.

Kol’s clan is well known for finding what they seek. To support his clan, he’s willing to chase down Charity, bringing her to justice.

Unfortunately for Charity, Kol is very good at what he does. He finds and captures Charity only to realize that he’s seen her in a vision. A very explicit vision.

When problems with their space ships causes them to remain on the planet of Lebron, awaiting rescue, Kol and Charity get to know one another very well indeed.

Thieves in Paradise is a fun futuristic romantic romp in the jungle. The story is relatively compelling, but over all, it’s really more about the erotic scenes between the two main characters. These are extremely well written and not for the young. I recommend this book for adults only with warning of very explicit content.

 Five Golden Acorns

© 2014 Dellani Oakes

TO BUY

Rock Killer – S. Evan Townsend

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rock killerSRI – Space Resources Incorporated, is a powerful multinational conglomerate based in Japan. SRI has interests all over the world, a well as in space. They bring asteroids from the belt near Jupiter into Earth orbit and harvest them for resources.

GA – Gaia Alliance, is a militant arm of an organization like Greenpeace. They consider SRI the enemy, claiming they are raping the environment of space, making it unstable. Unfortunately, they have very powerful friends in the US government as well as other parts of the world.

Faruq is the leader of UBAS – United Baath Arab States. An ambitious man, he wants the presidency of Syria for himself. He has manipulated and maneuvered until he has himself in a position to take the country by force. He plans to use the GA to strike against SRI, initiating a revolution.

The first step in the process, members of the GA attack SRI’s base on the Moon, stealing one of their own ships to use against them. The attack goes off as planned, but the GA members meet more resistance than anticipated. They still manage to steal the Rock Skipper, renaming it Rock Killer. Armed and highly dangerous, the Rock Killer goes after their target, SRI asteroid 1961.

Rock Killer is a well paced, exciting novel of international intrigue. The plot is engaging and the reader feels sympathy with the plight of the characters. The intricate plot is clearly delineated, the tendrils of each diverse storyline woven into a fascinating whole that keeps the reader involved.

Rock Killer is a wonderful read. I couldn’t put it down. I highly recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys a great story of adventure and intrigue.

Five Golden Acorns

© Dellani Oakes

TO BUY TOWNSEND’S BOOKS

The Rendlesham Incident – Case of the Cosmological Killer – By Stephanie Osborn

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stephanie osbornStephanie Osborn never disappoints!! With Book 3 in her Sherlock Holmes mysteries, Osborn draws her audience into the story, immediately immersing them in the action.

UFOs have been spotted in the UK near Bentwaters and Woodbridge, two abandoned airbases. Observers describe is as a yellow orb of light that resembles a giant tennis ball. This is seems harmless enough until a man is found lying dead in his field. Reports say Mr. McFarlane died of fright, but authorities aren’t convinced.

Back in Colorado, it’s nearing Christmas. Skye Chadwick and Sherlock Holmes are happily ensconced at the ranch, enjoying some free time since the closing of the Tesseract Project. It is nearing Skye’s birthday, November 5, Guy Fawkes Day, and Holmes has quite a surprise in store.

I refuse to give plot spoilers. Readers can fill in obvious blanks themselves. Suffice to say, Skye is happily surprised.

After Christmas, the pair plan a trip to England where they are asked to investigate the death of Mr. McFarlane. What they find is disturbing as well as puzzling.

The Rendlesham Incident is a well paced sci-fi mystery that pits Homes & Chadwick against something not of this world. It leaves the reader puzzling over where it can possibly go wrong next.

Skye Chadwick is a fun character. She is intelligent, witty and spirited. She doesn’t back down from a tough situation and is read to take on any situation. Like Holmes, she is brilliant and resourceful. Although, by her own admission, her deductive powers are learned rather than intuitive, she is a great investigator.

I love Osborn’s characterization of Holmes. He’s true to his Victorian sensibilities, but shows his indomitable personality and ability to adapt to adverse circumstances. Holmes is a far more sympathetic character in Osborn’s series. Perhaps it was the style of the times, or maybe Sir Arthur Conan Doyle didn’t believe in revealing Holmes’ softer side, but I like the loving attention he showers on Skye, as well as the passion they share. He is the Holmes I always felt lurked beneath the words.

I highly recommend this book for all who love a good mystery and adore Holmes. Also a great read for sci-fi enthusiasts.

5Golden Acorns

© 2013 Dellani Oakes

TO BUY

Wake of the Riddler by Janet Morris

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wake of the riddler graphicI recently found out that not only are my beloved Thieves World books around, but many of the stories have been re-released in expanded format. My favorite character, Tempus Thales, and his infamous Sacred Band, have new stories to tell. Not only that, one of my favorite tales from Sanctuary, The Wake of the Riddler, is also out on Audible! You can listen to a free sample on Amazon:

The Wake of the Riddler at Amazon

 Review – Wake of the Riddler by Janet Morris

Narrated by Alex Hyde-White

I’m delighted to hear this short story after all these years. The Thieves World books are some of the best fantasy every written. Tempus & the Stepsons are incredible characters. I first encountered Thieves World and the city of Sanctuary shortly after I was married. My husband was a fan and owned all the books. I read them avidly and waited for each new edition. We had the entire collection and were so upset when the series ended. I re-read the books quite often and have many of them sitting on the shelves in my bedroom. Some are in boxes, but will be brought out soon to be enjoyed again from the very beginning.

Tempus & his band of Stepsons were immediate favorites in my house. Tempus, also called The Riddler, the character created by Janet Morris, is the ultimate anti-hero. You want to hate him, but you just can’t. Even he can’t cheat his fate, though he tries often enough.

The recording was extremely well done. Alex Hyde White’s voice is perfect for the mood of the story. I was impressed at his ability to convey the characters, including the women, with such skill. Listening to this recording brings the story alive once more and will delight fans.

I’m thrilled to have a taste of Sanctuary back in my life.

Shameless Self-Promotion!

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Usually, I reserve this spot for my fellow authors, but I thought I might as well plug my own work today. I’ve included an interview I conducted on myself using the questions I usually give my guest authors.

When did you start writing?

I was telling stories even as a child. I didn’t start to write them down until I got into elementary school. One of my first formal works was a myth “How We Got Hair”. I remember absolutely nothing about it but the title. When in high school, I wrote lots of short stories and humorous essays. In college, I branched out into plays. I didn’t attempt my first novel until I was teaching high school many years later. It’s not finished yet, but it has potential! My first finished and published novel is “Indian Summer”, an historical adventure/ romance set in St. Augustine, Florida in 1739.

 

What gave you the idea for your first book?

My very first, as yet to be finished, novel, “How Many Miles to Avalon” was inspired by a board game I developed for my gifted students. The idea for “Indian Summer” came to me when I was a chaperone on a field trip with my eldest son. I wandered around St. Augustine thinking how many amazing stories the oldest city on the East Coast had to tell.

What genre do you write?

I write mostly romance. I also have a sci-fi series that could be called futuristic romance. I also write a crime/ romance blend that gets your pulse racing for more reasons than one!

What do you do to keep yourself focused?

Me focused? Not gonna happen. I try, but life is full of distractions. I think I have a slight ADD problem which makes it even harder to concentrate. I keep music playing all the time and that helps me ignore many distractions.

Do you stay with one project or do you work on multiple projects?

I’m a multiple project girl. I get stuck on one story or the muse takes a powder, and I move on to something else. I rarely suffer from writer’s block as a result.

What is your writing process?

When I get an idea, I sit down as soon as possible and start at the beginning. I try to find a strong starting sentence and work from there. I don’t really outline, though I do jot down notes—like names, ages, hair color, eye color, etc. If I don’t, I have the hero gazing into the heroine’s beautiful blue eyes on page 10 and into her bottomless blue ones on page 66.

I write chronologically. I’ve tried writing scenes and stringing them together, but that doesn’t work well for me. I did write one story in reverse once. I wrote one section which became the end, wrote a middle and moved on to a beginning. That’s extremely rare for me.

How do you find your voice?

The voice finds me. I have stories in third person as well as first. I never know how it’s going to be until I sit down to write.

Do you know your ending before you begin?

I very rarely know the ending when I begin. I like the exploration process. I might have a goal in mind, but it doesn’t get there often. I enjoy the ride.

What is your latest release?

My latest release is “Lone Wolf”, the first in my sci-fi series.

What other books do you have published?

I currently have two novels in print. The first is “Indian Summer”, the second is “Lone Wolf”.

Where are your books available?

Both books are available through Amazon, Amazon UK, Barnes & Noble and Smashwords.

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Dellani+Oakes&x=13&y=22

http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss/276-7770162-6587258?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Dellani+Oakes&x=0&y=0

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/Dellani-Oakes?keyword=Dellani+Oakes&store=allproducts

http://www.smashwords.com/books/search?query=Dellani+Oakes

Starship Invasions – Old Style Sci-Fi

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Welcome to a world not so very different from our own, yet infinitely strange. That’s what you’ll find in Starship Invasions by Barbara Custer and Tom Johnson.

The pair of authors alternate stories, weaving an interesting, and sometimes disturbing, image of what’s to come—or what might already be.

Barbara Custer’s stories tend to be more other worldly, interacting with aliens and the like. Her stories make the reader stop and think about the possibilities. Could aliens live among us? Have they concealed themselves to fit in? Have they unwittingly mated with Earthlings in order to create a hybrid race?

These stories also reflect Custer’s own concerns about the future of healthcare in the United States, often featuring a hospital executive more worried about the bottom line than whether the patients receive care.

Tom Johnson’s tales follow a character named Eddy Edwards, a former military man who now works for a group who investigate UFO’s. Thrown into a variety of eerie circumstances, Eddy pursues his goal of extraterrestrial investigation. Along the way, he meets an alien by the name of Stuanofu, who rescues Eddy more than once.

Eddy’s investigations take him from a small west Texas town to Area 51 and on to Kansas. He follows leads, avoids danger and searches for the truth.

Johnson’s final story in the collection, Mesa of Terror, sets Eddy aside and focuses on a young man named Don Donovan. He and his friends save the world from an ancient menace.

 Starship Invasions is a wonderful collection of science fiction short stories that take me back to my youth. I highly recommend this short story collection to anyone who likes thought provoking, diverse and fun fiction.

Five Golden Acorns