(The link is here to find this week’s excerpts from novels or WIP written by other Science Fiction Romance Brigade group members. A fun way to sample new books!)
Today’s selection is from WRECK OF THE NEBULA DREAM, my SFR Galaxy and Laurel Wreath Award winning novel, loosely based on the Titanic, but set in the far future, on a luxury spaceliner. April 14th marks the 102nd anniversary of Titanic’s tragic encounter with the ice berg, leading to the sinking.
This excerpt is from the moment of the crash, on the second night. We’re in the POV of Nick Jameson, the main character, a passenger aboard the ship:
For the second straight night, Nick was awakened by a ship malfunction. This time he was hurled abruptly out of bed, landing halfway across the cabin, instinctively curling to break his fall even as he transitioned from sleep to full wakefulness in midair. The deck pitched violently underneath him, and Nick was thrown the other direction, fetching up against the bed platform shoulder first with bruising force.
Rubbing his shoulder, Nick glared around the cabin. “Ship, what the hell is going on?”
The Nebula Dream pitched to starboard, but not as drastically, and then slowly returned to near vertical. Getting cautiously to his feet, Nick grabbed for his scattered clothes, pulling them on as fast as possible.
“Ship, I want status.” Nick fastened his blue shirt as the deck wobbled underfoot again. The engines are down again, for one thing. Determined to wrest some information from someone, he made his way to the interface panel.
Just as he got there, clinging to the molded desk as the ship shuddered again, the image of Captain Bonlors appeared. Flickering once, the holo stabilized. Amazingly, the captain continued to project unshakable calm. If I hadn’t met the man, I’d be wondering if he was nothing but a well-designed hologram. Reassuring to the passengers or not, no one should be this serene while in charge of a ship pitching and rolling in space like the Nebula Dream.
“Again, I must apologize to you, my passengers,” the image was saying. “We have experienced a small malfunction –”
“Not from where I’m standing, pal,” Nick said grimly. “Small is not the word for it.”
Traveling unexpectedly aboard the luxury liner Nebula Dream on its maiden voyage across the galaxy, Sectors Special Forces Captain Nick Jameson is ready for ten relaxing days, and hoping to forget his last disastrous mission behind enemy lines. He figures he’ll gamble at the casino, take in the shows, maybe even have a shipboard fling with Mara Lyrae, the beautiful but reserved businesswoman he meets.
All his plans vaporize when the ship suffers a wreck of Titanic proportions. Captain and crew abandon ship, leaving the 8000 passengers stranded without enough lifeboats and drifting unarmed in enemy territory. Aided by Mara, Nick must find a way off the doomed ship for himself and several other innocent people before deadly enemy forces reach them or the ship’s malfunctioning engines finish ticking down to self destruction.
But can Nick conquer the demons from his past that tell him he’ll fail these innocent people just as he failed to save his Special Forces team? Will he outpace his own doubts to win this vital race against time?
Audiobook, narrated by Actor Michael Riffle – Available Now at Amazon and iTunes