Sunday, September 19, 2010

Science Fiction Romance: Author Interview

Midnight's Ghost
Star Runner's Saga #1
Author: Sara Brookes
Kindle Edition, 207 KB
Publisher: Liquid Silver Books
Release Date: May 10, 2010
Available for the Kindle

SUMMARY: Taran has three days to get her former lover—whom she's barely speaking to—and the mysterious teenager she knows nothing about from one planet to another. Given the fact her ship, Eidolon, is the fastest in the star runner fleet, Taran knows she can make the run in the time Wallace has allotted. As the best—and only—female pilot, she's got something to prove. As if things weren't complicated enough, Wallace, and the teenager he has in tow, are both escapees from the harshest prison facility in seven galaxies.

I won a copy of Midnight's Ghost back in May, but sadly it was put in my Kindle and hidden among the other books. Why is that sad? I loved Midnight's Ghost with it's bold heroine and brooding but sarcastic hero. I wish I had read it as soon as it popped into my inbox. I've long been a fan of science fiction, but this is my first sci fi romance read. I didn't know what to expect, but Sara Brookes captivated me from the first page with kick-ass action to introduce her main characters. I stayed up until 2 a.m. reading until my eyes wouldn't stay open any longer. As soon as I woke up in the morning, I grabbed my coffee and started reading again until I finished.

The sexual tension and banter between Taran and Wallace make for a great read, not to mention the steamy sex, but it's not the sole focus of the book. The author has given her characters depth and her plot substance. Midnight's Ghost has plenty of sci fi elements to make it a cool book for fans of space adventure. It's a fast paced read that will leave you wanting more romance and adventure with Taran, Wallace and their crew. On a side note: My fellow Serenity and Firefly fans will love Midnight's Ghost, as it has that feel to it.

Sara graciously allowed me to fire off some questions to her about Midnight's Ghosts.

Brenda: Midnight Ghost is my first science fiction romance read and I loved the characters, the action and the adventure.

Sara: Oh, that's wonderful!! Glad to hear it was something new for you - it's a great and fun set of characters to work with.

Brenda: What type of research did you have to do for the sci fi elements? I'll admit that would intimidate me.

Sara: Let me just say what a wonderful, wonderful research tool Google is. Most of the knowledge about starships is what I already possess because I have a knowledge of sailboats and such--odd as it sounds. It's not that much different to take that information and apply it to starships. Plus, handy thing about writing "fantasy" elements that don't exist - you're only limited by your imagination.

Brenda: Will we be seeing another book in the series soon?

Sara: Yes! Liquid Silver just contracted the next book in this series, Midnight's Shadow, to be released in early 2011. It'll pick up a few months after Midnight's Ghost ends. Plus, I've been playing with the idea of spinning off the series and giving Kerr his own story. But I'm going to finish off Taran and Wallace's story first.

Brenda: I thought you did such a good job mixing in the steamy elements with the action, so neither overshadowed the other. Did you have to cut back on either when you were editing, or did it flow together pretty nicely?

Sara: Thank you! With this story, the two integrated themselves well without a lot of work on my part. From experience, I know it doesn't always work that way, so I realize I was very fortunate to not struggle to make it happen.

Brenda: Why science fiction? What is it about the genre that drew you to write about a female smuggler in space?

Sara: I cut my teeth on science fiction. My dad is a science fiction nut, so I was surrounded by it when I was a kid. I wanted to write something with a lot of action and adventure, but still had a romance story at it's core. Science fiction romance is a growing genre and I wanted to add my own contribution where the woman was the one who was behind the controls of the starship. I love writing strong women who aren't afraid to show their vulnerability when they find the right man--or have him come back into her life as in Taran's case.

Brenda: What are some of your favorite sci fi television shows, movies or books?

Sara: I loved all of the Star Trek shows when they were still airing, the movies as well. It was a thrill be to able to take my teenage daughter to see the Star Trek movie--I think she's more of a sci-fi geek than I am. Like most kids of the 70's, Star Wars holds a special place for me, and I grew up watching the original Battlestar Galactica, too and loved explaining the differences between it and the newer BSG to my daughter as well. Ann Aguirre and Linnea Sinclair have put out some wonderful science fiction romance books recently, both with series books and stand alone titles.

Brenda: Thank you for taking the time to satisfy my curiosity. I enjoyed Midnight's Ghost and look forward to reading more of your work.

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Talk Like a Pirate Fun for All

Avast Ye, my landlubber friends, today is Talk Like a Pirate Day, and I can't resist sharing a bit of pirate lore with you all.

I always enjoy looking up the history of women on the seas. Charlotte de Berry was one such pirate gal who was born in the 1600's. Stories vary, but most agree that she fell in love with a sailor and disguised herself as a lad to be with him at sea. The stories change after that, but he was murdered along the way, with her having to escape and flee for her life. What a woman won't do for love!

One of the most famous is Grace O’Malley, an Irish pirate. You can learn about her at the official website of Ireland’s Pirate Queen:

For some awesome steampunk pirate fun visit artist Annie Stegg's website where you can play her Dress Like a Pirate game, complete with tattoos you can change, cool accessories and plenty of bustiers and corsets to play with.

Enjoy yourselves! ~Brenda