This week’s new releases open doors to other worlds for U. S. Army Rangers, Israeli tankers, Gilded Age artists, and dungeon building gamers.
China Mike (Abner Fortis, ISMC #2) – P. A. Piatt
Fresh from fighting bugs and clones on Pada-Pada, Second Lieutenant Abner Fortis and Third Platoon look forward to some well-deserved liberty on Eros-69, a plutoid colony built to provide all the earthly pleasures available in the far reaches of space.
When Fortis’s nemesis reroutes Third Platoon to Eros-28 instead, though, the Space Marines discover they’ve been sent to an industrial colony with limited R&R opportunities and no way back to the flagship. Everything goes downhill from there as two Space Marines are arrested and accused of dealing China Mike—a highly addictive and illegal synthetic drug—and Fortis is forced to either get involved in the war against the cartel or abandon his Marines to the local legal system.
However, as their involvement in the drug war deepens, Fortis suspects the platoon has been plunged into the middle of something much bigger. Rumors of a growing resistance movement against the colonial government abound, and it appears his men are being used to do the security force’s dirty work of putting it down.
As Fortis navigates his way between the corrupt colonial government, a corporate espionage agent, intergalactic mercenaries, and his own chain of command, he has to find the truth of the situation and answer one important question—is there any way for Third Platoon to be successful when everyone else on the planet wants them to fail?
The Cosmic Courtship – Julian Hawthorne
Mary Faust, a brilliant scientist, has developed a machine that can allow the conscious human soul to explore the cosmos! Her promising young assistant Miriam Mayne has accidentally transferred her consciousness to Saturn, where she falls under the enchantment of an evil sorcerer! Jack Paladin, her love, sets out after her on a thrilling celestial journey to the ringed planet! Swashbuckling adventure and high romance await in Julian Hawthorne’s The Cosmic Courtship!
While most are at least somewhat familiar with Nathaniel Hawthorne as one of the great American authors, less well known is that his son Julian was an incredibly prolific writer in his own right. Julian wrote on a wide variety of subjects, ranging from literary analysis of his father’s works to poetry to period romances and adventures. Late in his career, Julian even dabbled in the emerging genre of Science Fiction.
The Cosmic Courtship was serialized in Frank A. Munsey’s All-Story Weekly across four issues, beginning with the November 24, 1917 issue and running through the December 15, 1917 issue. While this story has been in the public domain for some time, it has never been collected or published elsewhere until now.
Dungeon Core Online – Jonathan Smidt
James thought he would be just another adventurer in the world’s most anticipated dungeon delving VRMMORPG. But when he logs in, he soon finds out that he won’t be diving the dungeon – he will be creating it. Pretty awesome right?
At least that was what he thought when he boldly chose ‘Random’ as his dungeon type…
Then he summoned his first mob. A fearsome, bloodthirsty demonic… Chicken.
Still, Demonic Farm Animals are the least of his worries. The person who is supposed to be teaching him the ropes is a weirdly advanced AI pixie who drinks too much and is overly fond of gambling. Oh and some mysterious figure seems to be watching and judging his every move – so signing that NDA is feeling like less and less of a solid choice.
Either way, James is up for the challenge. Even if it means building a dungeon around kamikaze sheep, enraged cows, unhygienic pigs and yes… Dickens.
At least his next randomly selected mob type can’t be worse… right?
Lay the Hate (Forgotten Ruin #4) – Jason Anspach and Nick Cole
The War Begins…
The world of Ruin erupts into the flames of war as a great evil rises once more from the Tombs of Eternal Midnight. Werewolves and vampires march from the east, the orcs of Umnoth are on the move, and cities disappear beneath the boots of these savage hordes. Kingdoms field desperate armies in a last desperate bid to stop the tides of darkness, but the truth is clear.
The hour of final ruin has come.
Yet the wizard Vandahar has one more card to play: Rangers. Allied with elves and dwarves, they set out to strike at the very heart of the evil Lich Pharaoh’s domain by attacking from a wholly unexpected direction.
Survival. Asymmetrical warfare. Total surprise. This is what the Rangers do best.
But first they must survive the Citadel.
What the forces of evil have started, the Rangers will finish!
Light Unto Another World #1 – Yakov Merkin
Soldiers are trained to improvise, to prepare for the unexpected. However, there are some things you just cannot prepare yourself for. Such as getting pulled through a portal and into another world.
Uriel Makkis, a young soldier in the Israel Defense Forces, was on his way to base for just another week in his tank when something very unexpected happened. A portal opened, pulling him into an unfamiliar world, with no one to be found. Never one to succumb to panic, Uriel does the only thing he can do: push forward to figure out just what has happened to him.
Almost before he knows it, he finds himself entangled in an entirely new conflict, one that runs far deeper than he realizes. With no way home, all Uriel can do is trust in God to point him on the right path, and fight to secure not just his own survival, but that of those he has quickly come to rely on and care about. With the help of these trusted friends, he must find out precisely what is happening on this new world, and do what must be done.
The Sunforged Prophet (Zack Lancestrom #3) – D. J. Bodden
A hidden enemy. A legacy born. A path through fire.
Zack fled his homeworld to escape his inheritance and wound up the governor of a star system anyway. After three years leading the Venturi Nebula, Zack Lancestrom is on the verge of pulling the whole star cluster together into a grand alliance, a feat even his father couldn’t achieve. But he’s also made enemies, and as the day of the summit approaches, saboteurs and assassins move into position, ready to strike.
Soon, problems are cropping up all over the nebula. On Merton Creed, an agitator called the Kyrenian is inciting the dockworkers to violence, and food supplies are running low. On Asphodel, above the barren world of Duat, old resentments have spawned a murderous conspiracy, and starships prepare for combat. Are these isolated incidents or part of a greater plot? And can Zack and his team uncover the real force behind the conflict before the system descends into civil war?
His enemies may have Zack’s number, but they’ve underestimated the courage of his people and how far he’ll go to protect them.
Wizardoms: Shadow of a Dragon Priest (Fall of Wizardoms #4) – Jeffrey L. Kohanek
A man who commands dragons rises. The people call him a prophet, a savior…the one who will free them from the tyranny of the wizard class.
They do not comprehend the threat he presents.
The dragon priest rages across the land. Cities and rulers are helpless against his might.
A pair of heroes embark on a dangerous quest, seeking a lost object of power. Without it, the dragon priest and his army will destroy the world.
An army of metal golems invades another wizardom. These magic-powered automatons are the weapon of the last wizard lord – a madman who desires to rule the world. Despite his power, betrayal becomes his most useful tool.
Formation (Forgotten Space #2) – M. R. Forbes
After narrowly escaping destruction, Nicholas and his crew find themselves flung far across the universe with no way home. When a distress call from a nearby planet catches their attention, they decide to investigate with the hope the signal is somehow connected to their arrival.
It isn’t long before the truth of Foresight’s mission comes into clearer focus, and Nicholas doesn’t like what he sees. He already knows there’s something disturbing about the circumstances of their escape.
The truth is more unsettling than he could have ever imagined.