QSFer Loren Rhoads has a new bi sci fi book out:
Entombed for twenty years, Raena Zacari — one of the galaxy’s most dangerous assassins — has been freed. The first thing on her mind is revenge against Thallian, the insane war criminal who enslaved Raena, turned her into a killing machine, then left her for dead. When Thallian discovers she has escaped, he’s willing to risk everything — including his army of cloned sons — to bring her back under his control.
Gavin Sloane saved Raena once, only to lose her to Thallian. Since then he’s been desperately searching for her. Now that she’s free, Gavin must come to terms with the fact that she might not be his and perhaps never was.
Ariel Shaad is a war profiteer’s daughter who ran guns for the right side of the galaxy-wide war that destroyed humanity’s empire. A long time ago, Ariel and Raena were closer than sisters. Now Ariel must face the truths she’s been running from since Raena vanished.
The Dangerous Type is an action-SF-meets-space opera that grabs you from the first pages and doesn’t let go. Along with a supporting cast of smugglers, black market doctors, and other ne’er-do-wells sprawled across a galaxy brimming with alien life, The Dangerous Type is the explosive beginning to Loren Rhoads’s epic In the Shadow of the Templars trilogy.
Book One of In the Shadow of the Templars trilogy. Some BDSM, Bi and FF Romance
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The multi-species crew of the Veracity are enjoying some well-deserved R&R after informing the galaxy about the spread of the time-bending Messiah drug. Now that the galaxy has been saved again, the crew begin to see each other in a new light. Unfortunately, in the Veracity’s wake lie a string of crimes – and someone has got to pay. Former assassin Raena Zacari is hauled back to the weapons-free pleasure planet Kai to answer charges of kidnapping, murder, and the theft of an Imperial-era diplomatic transport: the Veracity itself.
Book Three in the In the Wake of the Templars series.
As Ariel skinned into her underwear, Sloane remarked, “Your family never formally adopted Raena, did they?”
She shrugged. “My mom did.”
“After your dad’s death?”
Ariel’s eyes narrowed. “So?”
“So Raena had been missing for how long by then?” Sloane didn’t give her time to answer. “What was the point of a posthumous adoption, Ariel? Why rewrite history?”
“We were raised as sisters. It should’ve been —”
He cut her off. “Is that really true? Or is that another revision?”
“Look,” Ariel said, “anything we wanted, my parents gave us. Me or Raena. If we wanted clothes, we went shopping. If we wanted guns, we picked them out of the shop. When I got a jet bike for my birthday, Raena got one, too.”
“So she could keep up with you,” Sloane pointed out. “What’d they give her for her birthday?”
“Nobody knows when it is.”
“I know when it is,” Sloane corrected. “I looked up her birth record. Your parents didn’t bother.”
Speechless, Ariel fastened her bra. Then she recovered enough to say, “We always just celebrated it with mine.”
“I shouldn’t have to explain this to you, Ariel. Your dad was a businessman. You understand what that means: he knew the value of an investment. If you buy a bodyguard, you see that person is well fed, well trained, and generally kept happy. Because when it all comes down, you want to know that bodyguard is going to take a bullet that’s meant for you. An unhappy bodyguard is going to choose the wrong moment to duck.”
She wriggled into a fresh pair of slacks and tied the sash before asking, “What are you getting at, Gavin?”
He pulled on his own pants. Let her wait.
Finally, unwilling to drop it, he continued. “I’m saying that Raena was bought and paid for. Healthy human children, especially girls, they never came cheap. I’ll bet your dad didn’t forget that. I’ll bet he never let Raena forget it either.”
“Suppose you’re right,” she snapped, not really conceding, “what’s the point of bringing that up now?”
“It’s just that I’ve been thinking. When you said you were sisters, that formed an image in my mind. And then I watch you together…”
“I was wondering, back when you were teenagers, how all this got started. I wonder if Raena crawled into your bed, a slave doing what she could to please her mistress, or if you climbed into her bed — did she even have a bed of her own? — and she didn’t dare say no to you.”
Ariel didn’t answer while she tied her sandal straps. Then she asked, “Why are you being cruel?”
Sloane pulled his shirt on and began to button it. “It’s just that I lie awake thinking sometimes. And I wonder what the difference was between the relationship she had with you — and the one she had with Thallian.”
Ariel snatched up her blouse and thrust her arms into it on her way out the door. Sloane watched the door slam behind her. Was that what he’d wanted all along: to chase her away?
Lounging in the shower room doorway, Raena asked, “Was it something she did? Or are you just feeling mean?”
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Loren Rhoads is the author of The Dangerous Type, Kill By Numbers, and No More Heroes. She is also the co-author, with Brian Thomas, of the As Above, So Below series. Lost Angels, book one of the series, comes out in April, to be followed by Angelus Rose in November. Check her out at lorenrhoads.com.