The Adventures of The Everyday Fangirl welcomes back author Veronica Scott as a guest blogger to talk about her newest release, GABE.
Take it away Veronica!
A Peak at the next BADARI WARRIORS Novel: GABE By Veronica Scott
Thanks for having me as a guest! Always thrilled to have a chance to talk about how things are going with the writing and the books!
I had a special thrill recently when AYDARR, book one of the series, won the I Heart Indie contest in the SF&F romance category.
GABE is the fifth book of the series, although – why did I do such a confusing thing?! – TIMTUR actually came out in mid-October under the In the Stars Romance label and is book 2.5 of the entire line of Badari adventures. His story fell between the events in MATEER and JADRIAN on the series timeline. So if you missed the story of how Timtur the healer and Lily the human teacher became mates, please do go pick that title up from your favorite ebook seller.
But getting back to Gabe, he’s a human, kind of devil-may-care ex-military guy and a supporting character since book one of the series. I have a special fondness for him and I always knew I’d give him his own book. There’s a special twist to the story, relating to who his mate turns out to be. The reveal comes pretty early in the book but SPOILER alert:
SPOILER: Keshara, the heroine, isn’t human. She’s a Badari woman!
The very fact that everyone has been so adamant all along in the series that there are no Badari females, that the evil alien scientists never created any, has been tantalizing to me as the author. I had to ensure there ARE Badari women just to confound everyone on the planet. But they needed a good solid backstory of how they came to be and how Gabe of all people meets them. I had great fun writing this book and I hope the readers will enjoy seeing the events unfold.
Now enjoy this excerpt of GABE!
Setting: Keshara is on the run, escaping from her home, and sees Gabe’s flyer crash. She debates whether to go investigate…
Deciding not to risk herself in the storm for mere curiosity’s sake, she prepared to return to the cozy den when a flash of lightning illuminated the sky and she caught sight of a new problem. A man was falling, clinging to a strange harness. He seemed to be fighting whatever was slowing his fall, and it was clear to Keshara he was descending much too fast.
Heart pounding, hand on the hilt of her knife, she watched him attempt to blunt the shock of hitting the ground by allowing his body to go limp. As he collided hard with the muddy, rock strewn ground near her den, she winced in unwilling sympathy. Through the driving rain she watched him, but he made no attempt to rise. After a minute, she heard an exclamation of pain and a few words with the force of a curse.
Enemy or not, Keshara didn’t have the heart to leave the poor man to die in the cold rain. She could at least go check out the situation, see if he had any chance to survive his amazing fall.
Adjusting her rain cape, knife at the ready, she crawled from the tunnel, rose to her feet and ran to where the man lay. Cringing as thunder boomed overhead, she prayed the lightning would hold off. The man lay on his back, one arm flung over his eyes and, as she drew close, she froze in astonishment.
He had no large crest of red and yellow hair and his skin tones were pale. He wasn’t Khagrish.
He was of some species unknown to her, similar to her own perhaps.
Groaning, he attempted to sit up but cut the move short with a jerk as he realized she was nearby. He fumbled at his hip as if searching for a weapon that was no longer there, lost in the turbulent fall perhaps. Then he spoke in a variation on her own language, the secret tongue the Director was unaware the sisters all knew. His accent was odd, some of the words made no sense, but the general meaning was clear.
“Well, you’re the last thing I was expecting.” He managed a lopsided grin despite obvious injuries, blood welling from a bad cut on one thigh and another on his head. He swiped moisture from his face. “Can we get out of the rain before we do introductions?”
Tongue tied, she stared at him. His face was undeniably handsome, although set right now in lines of pain, radiating from his eyes and lips. He was probably the same height as she was, well over six feet, and since his odd uniform was plastered to his body by the rain, Keshara could tell he was solidly built, with the muscles and sinews of one who was a deadly fighter. And what the wet fabric outlined between his legs was impressive as well. Her primary knowledge of males was gleaned from study modules, and observing the few Khagrish men left at the Retreat. This man put them to shame with his physique.
Thunder crashed again and lightning stabbed a tree at the far end of the meadow, throwing massive sparks high into the air and breaking her concentration. “We’d better get inside,” she said in her own tongue since he obviously understood the language. Reflecting on his aborted search for a weapon, she showed him the knife. “I’ll help you, but don’t think me easy meat for your taking.”
“Aww, seven hells, lady, if you’re what I think you are, you have better weapons than that.” His smile, although strained, was warming. “Do you have a shelter?”
Gabe Carter, hotshot pilot and ex-Special Forces soldier, is far from his home in the human Sectors, kidnapped by alien scientists to be the subject of horrifying experiments. Shot down by the enemy over desolate territory far from his Badari allies and gravely injured, Gabe’s only hope is a mysterious woman on the run herself.
Keshara has to decide whether to abandon the human to die of his injuries on a windswept mountain top or give up her own quest for freedom and take him to a place he can be helped. The undeniable spark between them complicates matters.
His attraction to her is off the charts but when she betrays him to the Khagrish enemy, Gabe doesn’t know what to believe. Trapped inside an alien lab bursting with mysteries and lies, his only hope may be to trust her…again.
Because the renegade alien scientist running her own private experiments wants to use him to accomplish her goals and perpetuate the evil, no matter what she has to do to ensure his compliance. Keshara’s life hangs in the balance and Gabe has to make a choice.
About Veronica Scott
USA Today Best Selling Author, as well as the “SciFi Encounters” columnist for the USA Today Happy Ever After blog, Veronica Scott grew up in a house with a library as its heart. Dad loved science fiction, Mom loved ancient history and Veronica thought there needed to be more romance in everything. When she ran out of books to read, she started writing her own stories.
Seven time winner of the SFR Galaxy Award, as well as a National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award, Veronica is also the proud recipient of a NASA Exceptional Service Medal relating to her former day job, not her romances! She recently was honored to read the part of Star Trek Crew Member in the audiobook production of Harlan Ellison’s “The City On the Edge of Forever.”
I have been challenged by few of my friends on Facebook to name 10 books that changed or influenced my life. However, I have so many books, stories and series that changed or influenced my life that I cannot possibly only name 10. Therefore, below is my attempt to limit this list to only the top books, stories or series that changed or influenced me throughout my life so far!
Stone Soup by Marcia Brown
This was actually one of my Mom’s favorites. It influenced her so much that she made a gift of this book to me as an adult. My Mom told me, when she gave me that gift, it was to remind me that there is always a silver lining no matter how dire things are. Now that she has passed away, this story is even more precious to me and will continue to remind me of her for years to come.
Poky Little Puppy A Little Golden Book
This was a favorite story when I was in elementary school. I am not sure how it changed or influenced me, but I read and re-read this book so much that I wore the binding out and pages fell out of the book.
Nancy Drew Mysteries by Carolyn Keene
I was first introduced to these stories in elementary school, by the school librarian. The first story of the series I read was The Hidden Staircase. These were first set of stories that I became obsessed with and just had to read!
Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen
I first read an excerpt of this story in Middle School as part of an overall reading assignment in the textbook. However, it was the scene where Mr. Collins proposed to Elizabeth and her response to that proposal. The character of Elizabeth was just so powerful in that short scene that I just had to find out more about her and her life. It influenced me to seek out the novel and of course all of the other iterations and adaptations.
Once and Always by Judith McNaught
This is my very first adult historical romance novel. The story, characters and the steamy romance scenes really caught my attention. For a long time, this is the historical romance story I used to measure all the other stories I read in the same genre!
LONG, TALL TEXANS SERIES by Diana Palmer
This series has been a part of my life since 1988 and I mentioned that this was one of my favorite series before. I bought the first story in the series, Calhoun, with money that I earned working part time at a local Kmart store. I was so proud that I was able to not only read such an amazing story with great characters, but that I was able to buy it new with my own money!
Mallory-Anderson Series by Johnanna Lindsey
This is another series that I have mentioned before and has been a part of my life for over 25 years. The first story in the series, Love Only Once, introduced my favorite male character, James Mallory, and I was NEVER the same since.
Legacy by Jayne Ann Krentz
This is the first story that I found by one of my favorite authors, Jayne Anne Krentz. I found this at a used book store one Saturday afternoon. The book was so good that I went to find all her previous books. In addition, because all the other books were just as good as the first, Jayne Ann Krentz became a must read and buy author from that time on.
Flirting With Trouble by Cathie Linz
This is my first signed book by the author! I met the author through an online Bulletin Board while I was in College. The members of the Bulletin Board decided to have a meet up in Cathie’s home town. Not only did I get to meet this amazing author and have this book signed, but it found a life long friend as well.
A Night In the Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny
This story is one that my husband and I re-listen to every year during the month of October for Halloween. Each time we listen to it, it feels like brand new all over again. In addition, we have the rare audio version of this story narrated by the author himself!
And, but definitely not least…
Vorkosigan Saga by Lois McMaster Bujold
I have mentioned this series before. Every single story in the Vorkosigan Saga constantly changes and influences me, even in small ways. However, if I had to choose one book from this amazing series to list it would be Shards of Honor!
My sister, my husband and I spent a few hours at Detcon1 yesterday!
While we were there, my sister and I attended the panel on What’s New About Fandom’s Diversity. I have been an advocate for women and their right to be fans and creators of Science Fiction & Fantasy for awhile now. Therefore, this was a panel topic I was very interested in.
One of the things that stood out for me was that all of the panelists had diverse backgrounds and perspectives. I was really impressed with what each of the panelists had to say, especially Isabel Schetchter. Not only does Isabel represent the female point of view, but the Jewish and Latino points of view in Fandom as well. The most powerful statement she made had to do with a comment about not seeing a person by their ‘color’. I do not remember the exact quote, but it did make an impression on me and I my sister and will do my best to paraphrase it below:
Do not tell me that you do not see ‘color’! This just tells me that you are trying to ignore my ‘color’ because it makes you uncomfortable.
I have to admit in the past that I told many people that I do not see their ‘color’, ethnicity, race, etc in reference to Fandom. As a Fangirl, I always looked at the lack of diversity in Science Fiction and Fantasy Fandom, as a female and not by other aspects. Therefore, I never realized that in the mind of another fan, who faces diversity issues in Fandom that may or may not relate to just gender, that it could mean the opposite. This is a revelation to me and I hope that I can learn from this in my future dealings with other fans.
Dealing with Diversity in Fandom, as one of the panelists said (again I am paraphrasing)…
…is not about you and what you have experienced, but it is about listening to others. It is in the listening that you can learn that what you may have experienced, no matter how bad it is or was, may have also happened to another. Their experience may have been just as bad or even worse, but in a different way than what you experienced.
The panel closed with each of the panelist indicting what they see are the positives with Diversity in Fandom. The best quote on the positives of Diversity in Fandom is:
We are better off than we have ever been before because of panels like this!
For more on the topic of Diversity in Fandom you can check out the following:
War is Coming to Science Fiction and Fantasy Fandom via The Province
Neurodiversity and Fandom via TOR.com
#AtoZBlogChallenge Topic: Zuko
Zuko is one of the more complex recurring characters from the animated series, Avatar: The Last Airbender. It is complexity of characters, like Zuko, that are one of the things that impresses me the most about this series.
The Complex Character of Zuko
Zuko is the main villain and anti-hero, in direct contrast to the heroes of the story, Aang and his friends, in the first part of the series. As the series progresses, he slowly changes, but is often torn between doing what is kind and unselfish vs doing what is mean and selfish. Especially, when certain members of Zuko’s family are involved in the situation. By the end of the series, despite all his trials and bad decisions, Zuko indeed becomes one of the heroes of the story.
The description of Zuko below does a MUCH better job of describing this change from the beginning of the series to the end, than I ever could.
In the beginning, Zuko is an incredibly focused, teenage Firebender who bullies and intimidates everyone around him. He is obsessed by only one desire: to capture the Avatar. Zuko’s greatest weaknesses are his arrogance and impatience. He believes Firebending is the most dominant art and can never be bested by Water, Earth, or Airbending. Zuko’s teenage overconfidence makes him believe he’s invincible. Zuko charges into conflict impulsively and without precaution. As the series progresses, however, Zuko develops compassion towards the nations he’s terrorized. Ultimately, he renounces the Fire Nation and joins up with Aang to teach him Firebending.
Character biography from NickToons website
#AtoZBlogChallenge: Princess Mononoke
Today, I thought I would highlight one of my husband’s favorite Hayao Miyazaki animated films, Princess Mononoke, per his request.
Set in medieval Japan, Miyazaki’s original story envisions a struggle between nature and man. The march of technology, embodied in the dark iron forges of the ambitious Tatara clan, threatens the natural forces explicit in the benevolent Great God of the Forest and the wide-eyed, spectral spirits he protects. When Ashitaka, a young warrior from a remote, and endangered, village clan, kills a ravenous, boar-like monster, he discovers the beast is in fact an infectious “demon god,” transformed by human anger. Ashitaka’s quest to solve the beast’s fatal curse brings him into the midst of human political intrigues as well as the more crucial battle between man and nature.
What I find the most interesting about this film is not only is an epic fantasy story, with interesting characters and scenery, but it also seamlessly integrates hand-drawn cels with computer-generated images, which created a new standard of visual storytelling.