Science Fiction
First Contact

First Contact

When the crew of the TNS Aurora makes unexpected first contact with a hostile race, midshipman Sato is spared from the slaughter in order to serve as the alien race’s Messenger, harbinger of humanity’s impending doom. They are going to invade. On the planet Keran. In two years. What kind of aliens are these? They kill everyone aboard and then give us enough warning to prepare for the coming fight? But is mankind ready to take the warning seriously? Or will politics and power jockeying leave us with our pants down when the fighting starts?

Get ready for a wild ride with one of the strongest indie books I’ve read in a while. This is an ensemble piece, with a number of POV characters carrying the camera through a frenetic interweaving of politics, military operations, and human drama. But despite the scope, it still manages to stay up close and focused on just a very few of those humans. The pace is excellent, the aliens are sufficiently alien, and the people are varied and distinct. Ultimately, this is the story of one young man, and the choices he makes that will effect us all. I can only hope that when the time comes, we have somebody like Ichiro Sato on that first contact ship.
— Jefferson

Check out my full review here.

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Ships of My Fathers

Ships of My Fathers

Michael Fletcher thought he was on course for a low-key kind of excitement in his life, working for his father aboard the Sophie’s Grace. But when his father dies unexpectedly, all his protections are stripped away and Michael is flung into a world of smugglers, cheats and family secrets. As he races to uncover the truth about who his father really was, Michael's search drags him into the converging worlds of desperadoes, big business, and Navy Intelligence, all of whom seem anxious to get their hands on Michael himself.

At its core, this is the story of one young man coming to terms with the sudden arrival of adulthood, and having to learn to stand on his own, despite the plans that everyone else seems to be making for his life. Ships is a well constructed tale set in a well-conceived universe, told simply, and with sensitivity for the protagonist and his situation. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
— Jefferson

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The Somniscient

The Somniscient

I'm a sucker for the science fiction of ideas. Give me a thought-provoking concept and wrap it up in a compelling story about the people affected, and you've got me halfway there already. Enter, The Somnicient. Have you ever wanted to be able to control your dreams? Maybe even write the script? But if that became possible, who would bother to write their own? In this chilling exploration of the near future, an entertainment technology giant dominates every facet of human life: from the dreams you dream, to the apps you use to talk about them. They even control the very currency of exchange. So the burning question now is: when dreams are big money, who will be allowed to sleep?
– Jefferson

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All These Shiny Worlds

All These Shiny Worlds

What do you get when you ask 34 of today's top indie authors to each submit a story and then ask a team of ruthless judges to scour that ore and pick out the gems? You get All These Shiny Worlds: A world of today, divided black from white, good from evil, and held apart by the taste of a cookie. A world of griffons and glimmer bunnies, sassy llamas, and the magic of beer. A world of contemplation and serenity, of service and devotion, ruled by a jewel and guarded by children. Plus 12 more, for a total of 15 sparkling worlds to explore.

From the brutal curators at ImmerseOrDie.com comes this collection of indie short stories, each a distinct jewel forged in the fires of judgement, and each carrying that simple promise: Guaranteed not to suck.

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All These Shiny Worlds II

All These Shiny Worlds II

The 2017 ImmerseOrDie Anthology. Each year we hand-pick 50 of today's top indie authors and ask them to submit a story. Then we ask a team of ruthless judges to scour that ore and pick out the gems. The result is All These Shiny Worlds II:

  • a world of today where cosplay and stagecraft are bright lights hiding dark shadows
  • a world of tomorrow, where kitchen appliances fend for themselves and take solace in each other's arms, refugees from indifferent owners
  • a world of little cogs in big machines, where the humble trash collector is the unsung hero of getting evil done
  • a world of small magics and big hearts, where a little chaos can go a long, long way

From the brutal curators at ImmerseOrDie.com comes another collection of indie short stories, each a distinct jewel forged in the fires of judgment, and all still carrying our one simple promise: Guaranteed not to suck.

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Strictly Analog

Strictly Analog

In a decaying world where even your pet ferret has a live-to-net video feed, some problems require a guy who couldn’t leave a bit-trace if he tried. In that case, you go to Lomax. Ex-military, tough as nails… And strictly analog.

A compelling world that I couldn't help but slip into. It's a believable future with touches of grunge and decay that give this noir detective story a real bite of authenticity. Lots of fun.
—Jefferson

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Crimson Son

Crimson Son

In a world where government-manufactured super-heroes have replaced war and terrorism as the world’s greatest threats – and it’s only source of salvation – there’s only one thing that sucks worse than having no powers at all. And that’s being the powerless son of the greatest hero of them all, and a prisoner inside the family fortress of solitude. For his own protection, you understand. Well, Spencer Harrington, son of the Crimson Mask, has had enough. He’s tired of playing by dad’s rules, and this time, he’s going to do things his way.

On one level, a straight-up adventure story, on the other, a fascinating tale about fathers and sons divided by their incompatible expectations of each other. Came for the action, stayed for the angst.
— Jefferson

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The Improbable Rise of Singularity Girl

The Improbable Rise of Singularity Girl

A scientist’s life is thrown into chaos when a grad student’s suicide turns out to be more than it seemed, and ends up triggering a singularity breakthrough in AI computing. What follows is a tour-de-force adventure in politics, technology, and human achievement, with some epic smack-down battles to top it all off.

A welcome reversal of the usual AI story that gets bigger, badder, and bolder as it unfolds. Funny, engaging, and surprisingly well grounded in computer theory.
— Jefferson

Check out the IOD Report here.

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Pay Me, Bug!

Pay Me, Bug!

Grif Vindh, Captain of the Fool's Errand, just pulled off the job of a lifetime: against all odds, he and his crew smuggled a rare anti-aging drug out of Ur Voys, one of the most secretive and secure facilities in the Empire of the Radiant Throne. It was every smuggler's dream, the "Big Score," and they find themselves filthy rich as a result.

And now they have to do it again.

If you miss Firefly, this is the kind of book that’s gonna ease your goram aches and lamentations, for a spell.
— Jefferson

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Mad Tinker’s Daughter

Mad Tinker’s Daughter

In a dual reality, where people live free on one side, but are enslaved by aliens on the other, a young woman and her crew of renegades have formed a resistance of sorts. Armed with the bits of tech they can either steal or reverse-engineer, these few hope to change the world – both worlds – for the better. Or die trying.

A steam-punk Alice goes through the looking glass and finds her twin living in chains. How much awesome do you need?
— Jefferson

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Untimed

Untimed

Charlie’s the kind of boy that no one notices. Hell, his own mother can’t remember his name. So when a mysterious clockwork man tries to kill him in modern day Philadelphia, and they tumble through a hole into 1725 London, Charlie realizes even the laws of time don’t take him seriously.

A fast-paced romp across history. Alice in Wonderland meets Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure.
— Jefferson

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Dark Matter

Dark Matter

When a young man sets out to give himself a "beautiful suicide" and instead gives himself superpowers, I'm curious. Throw in a resurrected Nazi with similar powers trying to hunt him down and I'm full-on fascinated. But Dark Matteris more than just an intriguing premise. It has everything I look for in fiction: intelligent ideas, surprising twists, and a dollop of mystery, all delivered within a steady matrix of confident, evocative prose. Smart writing that tells a ripping tale? Yes please. 
— Jefferson

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