Friday 22 November 2013

Release of The Orphan Alliance

At long last, The Orphan Alliance (book three in the Black Ships series) is now live wherever eBooks are sold! 
The release price of two dollars will remain in effect until Nov 27. 
I prefer to offer a price break from the very start. That way, readers who’ve been patiently waiting for the new release don’t feel ripped off, two weeks into the launch, because I’ve suddenly come out with a sale.

The Orphan Alliance Third in the 'Black Ships' Series
An unlikely alliance of Humans and Midgaard has seized a foothold in the Dactari Republic only to be cut off from all support. For three years, our fleet has heard nothing from Earth except for an automated message warning of a highly virulent infection.
Now, a lone ship has appeared bearing fear, pestilence and hope and its presence forces a decision on fleet command.
We can destroy the ship and all the potential it represents, choosing instead to play out the hand already dealt to us, almost certainly leading to a steady decline in personnel. Our only other option is to embrace the deadly gift carried by the Pandora and become something new. With Earth at its most vulnerable, a decision must be made.
And the fight must go on.
(94,000 words)

To help place the title within the Black Ships ‘verse – here’s a nifty little infographic:
The two side series are novellas (ten to twenty thousand words each). I'll keep the prices of the novellas at less than a quarter of a full length story. The Orbital decay line will likely run to four stories, so It only seems fair to price the episodes at a level that won't penalise readers for picking them up as novellas rather than as a full length compilation.
  • The Black Ships is a full length novel beginning with the world as we know it, except for the presence of a small, medium-term manned presence on Mars. We find that there are others out there who may be interested in the resources of our solar system.  
    • Metamorphosis is a short novella that explores the background of Liam Kennedy, a character who shows up in The Black Ships. He plays a role in The Dark Defiance, so I thought I'd release his credentials to the public and introduce his young son, Tommy, who plays a major role in future stories.
  • The Dark Defiance is the second full length story. It takes place a decade after the first story, and follows the events of a trading crew. The Völund, one of the first Human vessels able to reach out to the fringes of a long dead empire, has been sent out to find minerals that aren't easily found near Earth. The crew soon find that business is a sure way to get drawn into your partner's troubles and they end up exposing Earth to a new risk.
    • Orbital Decay is a novella that develops the scientific and practical impact of discoveries made during the events of The Dark Defiance. Curiosity might just kill the cat (the cat being our species) this time.
    • Kill or Cure is a sequel novella (sequella?) that starts us down the path to recovery. Whether we miss a turn along the way remains to be seen.
  • The Orphan Alliance Is the latest of the full-length stories and it's set three years after the events of The Dark Defiance. It follows the challenges faced by our species as we deal with an implacable enemy to our front, and a crumbling home world to our rear. A way forward is offered, but it may mean the end of the species.
  • Counterweight is slated to be the fourth full length story in the series and it's set fifteen decades after the events of The Orphan Alliance. There's a sample at the end of The Orphan Alliance.

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