September 21, 2017

Book Blitz + Giveaway: Premonition by Leigh Walker


 

Premonition (The Division #1)
Author: Leigh Walker
Genre: YA Science Fiction Romance

Publication Date: July 19, 2017

Description:

When Riley heads off to boarding school for a summer work-study program, she knows it’ll be demanding. What she doesn’t expect? To be thrust into an intense physical training program described as special, exclusive and worst of all–top-secret. She signed up for tuition assistance, not to be held in a secret government facility for boot camp…

Welcome to The Division, the government agency that’s so classified, most United States senators have never heard of it.

The Division wants Riley bad, but she can’t figure out why. Skeptical of what she’s being told, Riley’s determined to uncover the truth. Boot camp is intense, physically and mentally draining. The upside? One of her new teammates is the cutest boy ever. Watching Finn hit the gym wearing a tank top doesn’t suck–although sometimes his brooding attitude does. But when training forces Riley to confront her tragic past, even Finn’s big biceps aren’t enough to make her want to stay…

Beware: The Division isn’t something you just walk away from. You better run.

Riley realizes her capabilities and strengths are greater than she’d ever imagined. But she also learns she wasn’t just chosen for this special program…

She was made for it.


INTERVIEW WITH LEIGH WALKER

Q: Wow, you’re interviewing yourself…how pompous!
Right? It’s to tell people more about the series, lol. Although I should admit that I normally talk to myself a lot, so this isn’t much of a departure.

Q: Tell us about “The Division” – it’s a bunch of teenagers with psychic powers, right? How did you get inspired?
Everyone on the team has psychic powers, yes. I was watching “Stranger Things” on Netflix and I WAS SO PSYCHED they were testing poor Eleven for psychic powers. But I was also like, YEEHAW! Because I LOVE psychic powers, and I can’t remember the last time I saw or read something that included them. I’ve always been obsessed by the concept, and there’s so many variations of powers, so many incarnations it can take… Anyway, after watching that show and having that reaction, I thought, other people must love this stuff, too, I can’t be the only one. So I wanted to give us all more!

Q: Tell us about the main character, Riley Payne.
Riley is a ‘normal’ girl dealing with a lot. Her father and sister died in a car accident and her mother started drinking heavily after it happened. She just wants to get out of her house and go to boarding school, but she gets more than she bargained for when she abruptly gets recruited into a secret agency…

Q: The ‘secret agency’ is The Division, correct?
Yes. It’s a secret cell of teenagers who were genetically engineered with psychic gifts. They work for the American government to combat domestic terrorism.
Riley thinks they’re nuts, of course. Until she unlocks her powers, then she’s blown away by what she can do.

Q: As the series goes on, you get into genetic engineering, fated love, eco-terrorism, loyalty, isolation, human nature, climate change…some pretty heavy themes. But would you describe the series as a difficult read?
I don’t think so, but certainly some parts were hard to write – like about Riley missing her dad and her sister. I still cry when I read those parts. And in the second book, an eco-terrorist is introduced, and some terrible things happen in the book. So yeah, there’s definitely a heaviness to some of what the characters are dealing with. But they’re teenagers, and their youth is sort of a tonic against everything they’re dealing with. They still care about their friends. They still want to hang out, tell stories, joke around. They are still very interested in falling in love. I think my writing style is naturally light and breezy, so it’s sort of a counterpoint to the storyline. If that makes sense, lol.

Q: What’s your favorite part of this series?
Riley and Finn’s relationship. They have so much on their plates, and they’re so young, but they genuinely care for each other in a way that makes me ache.

Q: What do you do when you’re not writing?
I have three large, unruly boys who like to play every sport and eat as much food as possible. When I’m not at my computer, I’m busy carting them around and grocery shopping. But I also love to relax with a great book or television show – I am currently completely obsessed with Riverdale, OMG!!!

Thanks for having me! Happy reading!!!
Leigh Walker lives in New Hampshire with her husband and three children. She has a degree in Journalism and a law degree. She's never been to the Naval Shipyard prison in Kittery, ME, but she's driven by it...and boy, is it creepy!

Leigh has lots of books planned for The Division Series. Sign up for her mailing list at www.leighwalkerbooks.com to be notified of the next release in the series! You can also find her on The Division's FB page: https://www.facebook.com/divisionbookseries/




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Cover Reveal: Being Alpha by Aileen Erin


 

Being Alpha (Alpha Girl #7)
Author: Aileen Erin

Genre: YA Paranormal
Publication Date: February 13, 2018
Publisher: Ink Monster LLC

Description:

For the first time since Tessa met Dastien, life is quiet. The evil witch, Luciana, is six glorious feet under, St. Ailbe’s is closed due to human trespassers, and people are finally getting used to the fact that supernaturals exist in the world. It seems like the perfect time for a honeymoon.

Tessa and Dastien’s trip to the Caribbean is turning out to be the honeymoon that fantasies are made of—sunset cruises, long walks on the beach, and every romantic cliché you can imagine. She couldn’t be happier. So, when a local man turns up inexplicably dead on the beach, Tessa brushes it off. Not every bad thing that happens in the world is a supernatural mystery to be solved. And when Sebastian—one of the Council of Seven Alphas who rule all the werewolves—appears on the island, she thinks it must be a coincidence. Everyone needs a break now and then. Even council members. Right? Besides, Tessa is beyond determined to not let anything get in the way of her romantic vacation.

But when Dastien goes missing, the honeymoon is most definitely over. Tessa can’t ignore the signs anymore. Something huge is going on. And whoever messed with Tessa’s mate is in for a rude awakening. Because if there’s one thing fighting rogue witches and werewolves has taught her, it’s how to be Alpha.

Aileen Erin is half-Irish, half-Mexican, and 100% nerd–from Star Wars (prequels don’t count) to Star Trek (TNG FTW), she reads Quenya and some Sindarin, and has a severe fascination with the supernatural. Aileen has a BS in Radio-TV-Film from the University of Texas at Austin, and an MFA in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University. She lives with her husband in Los Angeles, and spends her days doing her favorite things: reading books, creating worlds, and kicking ass.







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September 20, 2017

When I Cast Your Shadow Blog Tour: Tens List, Review + Giveaway

http://www.jeanbooknerd.com/2017/07/when-i-cast-your-shadow-by-sarah-porter.html


When I Cast Your Shadow
Author: Sarah Porter
Genre: YA Paranormal
Release Date: September 12, 2017
Publisher: Tor Teen

Description:

A teenage girl calls her beloved older brother back from the grave with disastrous consequences.

Dashiell Bohnacker was hell on his family while he was alive. But it's even worse now that he's dead....

After her troubled older brother, Dashiell, dies of an overdose, sixteen-year-old Ruby is overcome by grief and longing. What she doesn't know is that Dashiell's ghost is using her nightly dreams of him as a way to possess her body and to persuade her twin brother, Everett, to submit to possession as well.

Dashiell tells Everett that he's returned from the Land of the Dead to tie up loose ends, but he's actually on the run from forces crueler and more powerful than anything the Bohnacker twins have ever imagined....   


Praise for WHEN I CAST YOUR SHADOW:

"Tragic and engrossing, filled with nightmarish dreamscapes and menacing villains, it also treads the tender terrain of family, and the strange and sometimes dysfunctional ties between siblings. Highly recommended!" ―Kendare Blake, New York Times bestselling author of Three Dark Crowns

"You'll never think of your nightmares the same way again. Darkly seductive. Sarah Porter’s writing glitters and her storytelling stuns in this twisted tale of siblings, love, and death." ―Stephanie Garber, New York Times bestselling author of Caraval

"Porter offers a poignant consideration of how far we will go for the people we love." ―School Library Journal, starred review

"A wildly innovative, whip-smart, and utterly spellbinding testament to family, memory, and love―and the messes and miracles of each―poised to possess legions of readers." ―Booklist, starred review

"A haunting tale of possession that explores the ghostly landscape of dreams and nightmares―but more importantly, the particular dynamics among siblings, both oppressive and redemptive." ―Kirkus Reviews 


You can purchase When I Cast Your Shadow at the following Retailers:
        
 
Top 10 Best Pieces of Writing Advice

1) Read everything. Read books that aren’t your usual thing, books by authors from very different backgrounds than your own, books that seem too weird or too difficult. This is really the one piece of advice that applies to everyone; reading for a writer is like practicing for a musician. Immersion in the whirl of other people’s voices is the best way to find your own voice!

2) Keep a special journal, and write down every random, crazy thought that flows through your head for ten minutes before you go to sleep every night. Make sure to keep the journal private, so you never have to imagine what anyone else would think of it! Over time, you’ll start to discover all kinds of ideas you didn’t know you had. (All my published poems came out of this process, and some stories, too.)

3) Ideas come from writing, not writing from ideas. If you sit around waiting, you’ll probably be disappointed.

4) Trust your own vision.

5) Forget about writing what you know, and write what you see in your mind. That world is yours alone, and it depends on you to reveal it. You are its only window!

6) No one else can be you, or write what you’ll write.

7) Love your characters, your dreams, your words.

8) Remember that literature is bigger than you are, and your voice is one voice in a force that is vast, wild, and magnificent.

9) Your writing will take over and create you, rather than you creating it. Let it happen!

10) Ignore any advice that feels wrong, no matter who’s giving it. In the end, you’re the only expert on your own work.
When I Cast Your Shadow is by far one of the most unique and imaginative books I've ever read. Even now, trying to write this review, my mind continues to reel. This is going to be one of the types of reviews where I don't make much sense and I ramble if I'm not careful. I don't want to do that, so I'll just break down the major points that I loved. 

Plot: Completely original and nothing short of awesome. Unlike anything I've ever come across. It's a really complex blend of contemporary and paranormal that twists you up inside throughout the entire novel. I absolutely love anything supernatural - the weirder, the better. I haven't really read anything concerning ghosts or possession (at least not in a long time), so this was fresh and new for me. I adored every creepy and twisted aspect of the plot - from the ghosts possessing bodies, to visiting the borderlands and the Land of the Dead, to the battle of spirits and everything in between. There isn't enough room for me to list and explain each thing I loved and why, but I can honestly say that every single part of this novel had me captivated from the opening lines to the last word.

Characters: Each of the major characters - Ruby, Everett, and Dash - were all complex and well rounded. They were all very different from one another, yet all were realistic in their own ways. I loved getting to know each of them - seeing their emotions, fears, hopes, memories, and everything in between. There were definitely interesting secondary characters we meet too - Aloysius, Mabel, Paige, Dr. Bohnacker - each with their own interesting personalities and stories. I really loved seeing the characters' different relationships with one another and how complicated they were on so many levels. It made the story not just creepy, but also heartbreaking at the same time. 

Writing Style: I have to mention this, mainly because the author did a wonderful job in my opinion. She chose to write the book in the first person, but from several different point of view. The majority of the story is told from Ruby's and Everett's perspective, but we also get portions from Dashiell, Mabel, Aloysius, and Paige. The first person is by far my favorite writing style because of the incredibly personal level the reader connects with the narrator. The fact that the author chose to write the book this way was fantastic, but when she mixed in not two or even three - but several - narrators, it blew the story out of the park (at least for me). It gave it a whole new depth that wouldn't have been there otherwise, and it was so much more powerful and intense this way. I couldn't have loved the writing any more. It was a perfect fit for the story and what needed to be told.

Overall, this was an amazing book that still has my mind spinning. I'll definitely be re-reading it some point soon, just to see what else I can pick up on. I very highly recommend this for fans of YA paranormal, horror, fantasy, and even contemporary!

 
SARAH PORTER is the author of the Lost Voices Trilogy (Lost Voices, Waking Storms, The Twice Lost) in addition to Vassa in the Night—all for the teen audience. For over ten years she has taught creative writing workshops in New York City public schools to students in grades K-10. Porter also works as a VJ, both solo and with the art collective Fort/Da; she has played venues including Roseland, Galapagos, Tonic, Joe’s Pub, The Hammerstein Ballroom, The Nokia Theater, and the Burning Man festival. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two cats.

    
 
(5) Winners will receive a Copy of WHEN I CAST YOUR SHADOW by Sarah Porter
Giveaway is open to International. | Must be 13+ to Enter 





 

September 19, 2017

Children of Refuge Blog Tour: Guest Post + Giveaway


Welcome to Day #7 of the Children of Refuge Blog Tour!

To celebrate the release of Children of Refuge (Children of Exile #2) (9/12/17), blogs across the web are featuring exclusive content from Margaret Peterson Haddix and 10 chances to win a both books so far in the series!


Description:

After Edwy is smuggled off to Refuge City to stay with his brother and sister, Rosi, Bobo, and Cana are stuck alone—and in danger—in Cursed Town in the thrilling follow-up to Children of Exile from New York Times bestselling author, Margaret Peterson Haddix.

It’s been barely a day since Edwy left Fredtown to be with his parents and, already, he is being sent away. He’s smuggled off to boarding school in Refuge City, where he will be with his brother and sister, who don’t even like him very much. The boarding school is nothing like the school that he knew, there’s no one around looking up to him now, and he’s still not allowed to ask questions!

Alone and confused, Edwy seeks out other children brought back from Fredtown and soon discovers that Rosi and the others—still stuck in the Cursed Town—might be in danger. Can Edwy find his way back to his friends before it’s too late?


Lies

I’m a terrible liar.

That’s perhaps an odd confession for someone who writes fiction, a job many regard as basically getting paid to lie. But it’s true: Put me in a situation where all I have to do is tell a little white lie, just to spare someone’s feelings, and I usually flub up even that.

Some of my earliest childhood memories are of trying to lie, and getting caught. There was the chocolate ice cream episode when I was four or five: I begged my mother for an ice cream cone; she gave it to me; I carried it outside, took one bite, and made the startling discovery that I hated chocolate ice cream. My parents were big on the virtues of not wasting food, so I thought I’d avoid a lecture by dumping the ice cream on the ground and calling over my dog, Lassie, to eat it. And that was when I made a second unfortunate discovery: Alas, my dog hated chocolate ice cream as much as I did. She also refused to eat it.

So when my mother stepped outside and saw the ice cream melting on our gravel driveway, I tried to cover with a story about how I’d dropped the cone accidentally. It took me years to figure out how my mother knew so instantly that I was lying—why hadn’t I added some convincing tears? Why hadn’t I at least pretended to want another cone?

To this day, I don’t like chocolate ice cream, even though I love pretty much everything else in the chocolate family, and virtually any other flavor of ice cream. To me, chocolate ice cream always tastes of guilt and shame and betrayal. (Though I did quickly forgive Lassie. She was a good dog, even if she wasn’t a very helpful accomplice.)

Lying also still makes me feel terrible.

So it’s perhaps truly odd that I wrote an entire book—CHILDREN OF REFUGE—about a boy who prides himself on his ability to lie. Edwy Watanaboneset, the hero/quasi-anti-hero of this second book in the Children of Exile series, savors his reputation as “the bad kid.”

To put myself in Edwy’s place, I had to think a lot about why kids lie, and about how those reasons applied to Edwy.

I think most if not all kids experiment at some point with the kind of lie I tried to tell about the chocolate ice cream—a lie to avoid getting in trouble. Getting caught usually makes kids eventually come to the conclusion, “Oh, wait. Now I’m not just getting in trouble for my original crime—I’m also getting in trouble for lying. Maybe lying isn’t such a great idea.”

That’s the simple, moralistic view of lying. I’d guess that for most kids there’s also an element of trying to control reality, of magical thinking: if they disobey their parents, that’s bad, but if they say it didn’t happen—or happened in a totally innocent way—then maybe they can erase their crime. Maybe what they say is actually true. Can they make the world work that way? Do they have that much power, just with words?

You have to become a good liar to believe that for very long, or to have that thinking rewarded. Maybe you also have to feel either very safe in your lies or very endangered in your real life.

And Edwy has both situations. In his first home, where he’s surrounded by unconditional love and nurturing adults, his lies are mostly innocent mischief and childish tricks. But he’s smart enough to see that the adults are also all keeping major secrets from him and the other kids, and so his lies and pranks and sneakiness are also attempts at finding out the truth.

By the start of CHILDREN OF REFUGE, Edwy is no longer in a safe place, and no matter how much he wants to stay a carefree, innocent kid, he can’t ignore the dangers and deceptions around him—even as teens and adults around him try to pretend everything’s fine.

Eventually, Edwy comes to see his skill at lying as the only way to protect the people he cares about most.

I think I’m lucky that I never had to learn to lie like that.

But like Edwy—like kids everywhere trying to figure out the relationship between reality and their own words—I see power in lots of stories that aren’t technically true. I joke sometimes that being a writer means that I didn’t have to stop playing make-believe when I grew up.

But the activity many adults dismiss as “playing make-believe” can also serve as a way to see truth more clearly. Or a way to imagine and work toward a better world.

That’s the power in the best of Edwy’s lies, the ones that are told to help, not to hurt.
And while fiction isn’t lying, it can have that same kind of power, too.

CHILDREN OF REFUGE is the second book in the Children of Exile series. The first book, (also called CHILDREN OF EXILE) is newly out in paperback this month. CHILDREN OF JUBILEE, which will be the third and final book in the series, comes out in September 2018.   

Margaret Peterson Haddix grew up on a farm near Washington Court House, Ohio. She graduated from Miami University (of Ohio) with degrees in English/journalism, English/creative writing and history. Before her first book was published, she worked as a newspaper copy editor in Fort Wayne, Indiana; a newspaper reporter in Indianapolis; and a community college instructor and freelance writer in Danville, Illinois.

She has since written more than 40 books for kids and teens, including Running Out of Time; Double Identity; Uprising; The Always War; the Shadow Children series; the Missing series; the Children of Exile series; the Under Their Skin duology; and The Palace Chronicles. She also wrote Into the Gauntlet, the tenth book in the 39 Clues series. Her books have been honored with New York Times bestseller status, the International Reading Association’s Children’s Book Award; American Library Association Best Book and Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Adult Readers notations; and numerous state reader’s choice awards. They have also been translated into more than twenty different languages.

Haddix and her husband, Doug, now live in Columbus, Ohio. They are the parents of two grown kids.


Follow Margaret: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram
(1) set of both Children of Exile books so far (Children of Exile and Children of Refuge) - US Only!



 

Blog Tour Schedule:

September 11th — Living Simply
September 12th — Crossroad Reviews
September 13thWord Spelunking
September 14th — YA Books Central
September 15th — Book Briefs

September 18thPositively Book Crazy
September 19th — A Dream Within A Dream
September 20th — BookhoundsYA
September 21st — Parajunkee
September 22nd — The Book Cellar




Book Blast + Giveaway: The Wondrous World of Violet Barnaby by Jenny Lundquist

The Wondrous World of Violet Barnaby
Author: Jenny Lundquist
Genre: Children's Fiction

Description:

Violet Barnaby searches for the joy in life after losing her mother in this sweet and funny follow-up to The Charming Life of Izzy Malone. 

Violet Barnaby is a having a blue Christmas. She’s still grieving the loss of her mother, and to make things worse, her dad has just married Melanie Harmer, a.k.a. the meanest teacher at Dandelion Hollow Middle School. But on the day Violet and her dad are packing up and moving into the new house they’ll share with Melanie and Melanie’s two children, Violet finds a letter her mother wrote to her before she died, asking Violet to enjoy Christmas, along with a Christmas Wish List—things her mom wants her to do during the holiday season. On the list are exactly the kinds of things Violet doesn’t want to do this year, like Be Someone’s Secret Santa; Give Someone the Gift of Your Time: Volunteer; and Bake Christmas Cookies. 

Violet shows the letter to her friend Izzy’s Aunt Mildred, who calls a meeting of the Charm Girls, a club Izzy and Violet belong to along with their friends, Daisy and Sophia. Aunt Mildred decides she will give them each a charm to put on their bracelet if they do all of the tasks on the Christmas Wish List, which Violet is not too happy about. She’d rather forget about the list completely, but feels compelled to honor her mother’s wishes. 

And when Izzy’s crush confides a big secret to Violet, Violet feels like she is stuck between her best friend and the boy who she just might have a crush on, too…
     
Praise for The Wondrous World of Violet Barnaby:

"[an] emotionally perceptive novel of grief and recovery." - Kirkus 

You'll fall in love with Violet and love every minute of living in her wondrous world! - Stephanie Faris
 
Jenny Lundquist was born and raised in Huntington Beach, California, where she spent her time unsuccessfully learning how to surf. When she was younger, she wanted to be either a rock star or a published author. After she taped herself singing and listened to it on playback she decided she'd better opt for the writing route. Jenny is the author of multiple YA and Middle Grade titles including Seeing Cinderella, The Charming Life of Izzy Malone, The Wondrous World of Violet Barnaby and the forthcoming The Carnival of Wishes and Dreams (2019)


    amazon or paypal 
$100 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Giveaway
Ends 10/10/17





Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. 





 

September 18, 2017

Book Blast + Giveaway: Autonomous by Annalee Newitz

http://www.jeanbooknerd.com/2017/08/nerd-blast-autonomous-by-annalee-newitz.html


Autonomous
Author: Annalee Newitz
Release Date: September 19, 2017
Publisher: Tor Books 

Description:

Autonomous features a rakish female pharmaceutical pirate named Jack who traverses the world in her own submarine. A notorious anti-patent scientist who has styled herself as a Robin Hood heroine fighting to bring cheap drugs to the poor, Jack’s latest drug is leaving a trail of lethal overdoses across what used to be North America—a drug that compels people to become addicted to their work.

On Jack’s trail are an unlikely pair: an emotionally shut-down military agent and his partner, Paladin, a young military robot, who fall in love against all expectations. Autonomous alternates between the activities of Jack and her co-conspirators, and Joe and Paladin, as they all race to stop a bizarre drug epidemic that is tearing apart lives, causing trains to crash, and flooding New York City.  


Praise for AUTONOMOUS:

"Autonomous is to biotech and AI what Neuromancer was to the Internet."―Neal Stephenson
 
"Something genuinely and thrillingly new in the naturalistic, subjective, paradoxically humanistic but non-anthropomorphic depiction of bot-POV―and all in the service of vivid, solid storytelling."―William Gibson
 
"This book is a cyborg. Partly, it's a novel of ideas, about property, the very concept of it, and how our laws and systems about property shape class structure and society, as well as notions of identity, the self, bodies, autonomy at the most fundamental levels, all woven seamlessly into a dense mesh of impressive complexity. Don't let that fool you though. Because wrapped around that is the most badass exoskeleton--a thrilling and sexy story about pirates and their adventures. Newitz has fused these two layers together at the micro- and macro-levels with insight and wit and verbal flair. Moves fast, with frightening intelligence." ―Charles Yu, author of How to Live Sagfely in a Science Fictional Universe
 
"Annalee Newitz has conjured the rarest, most exciting thing: a future that's truly new ... a terrific novel and a tremendous vision." ―Robin Sloan, author of Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore
 
"Holy hell. Autnomous is remarkable." ―Lauren Beukes, bestselling author of Broken Monsters
 
"Everything you'd hope for from the co-founder of io9 ... Combines the gonzo, corporatized future of Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash with the weird sex of Charlie Stross's Saturn's Children; throws in an action hero that's a biohacker version of Bruce Sterling's Leggy Starlitz, and then saturates it with decades of deep involvement with free software hackers, pop culture, and the leading edge of human sexuality." ―Cory Doctorow, New York Times bestselling author of Walkaway.

You can purchase Autonomous at the following Retailers:
 


Jack Chen unstuck the goggles from her face and squeezed the deactivated lenses into the front pocket of her coveralls. She’d been working in the sun’s glare for so long that pale rings circled her dark brown eyes. It was a farmer’s tan, like the one on her father’s face after a long day wearing goggles in the canola fields, watching tiny yellow flowers emit streams of environmental data. Probably, Jack reflected, the same farmer’s tan had afflicted every Chen for generations. It went back to the days when her great-great-grandparents came across the Pacific from Shenzhen and bought an agricultural franchise in the prairies outside Saskatoon. No matter how far she was from home, some things did not change.

But some things did. Jack sat cross-legged in the middle of the Arctic Sea, balanced on the gently curving, uncanny invisibility of her submarine’s hull. From a few hundred kilometers above the surface, where satellites roamed, the sub’s negative refractive index would bend light until Jack seemed to float incongruously atop the waves. Spread next to her in the bright water was an undulating sheet of nonreflective solar panels. Jack made a crumpling gesture with her hand and the solar array swarmed back into its dock, disappearing beneath a panel in the hull.

The sub’s batteries were charged, her network traffic was hidden in a blur of legitimate data, and she had a hold full of drugs. It was time to dive.

Opening the hatch, Jack banged down the ladder to the control room. A dull green glow emerged in streaks on the walls as bacterial colonies awoke to illuminate her way. Jack came to a stop beneath a coil of ceiling ducts. A command line window materialized helpfully at eye level, its photons organized into the shape of a screen by thousands of projectors circulating in the air. With a swipe, she pulled up the navigation system and altered her heading to avoid the heavily trafficked shipping lanes. Her destination was on a relatively quiet stretch of the Arctic coast, beyond the Beaufort Sea, where freshwater met sea to create a vast puzzle of rivers and islands.

But Jack was having a hard time concentrating on the mundane tasks at hand. Something about that homework-addiction story was bugging her. Mashing the goggles over her eyes again, she reimmersed in the feed menu. Glancing through a set of commands, she searched for more information. “HOMEWORK FIEND CASE REEKS OF BLACK-MARKET PHARMA,” read one headline. Jack sucked in her breath. Could this clickbait story be about that batch of Zacuity she’d unloaded last month in Calgary?

Copyright © 2017 by Annalee Newitz

 
Annalee Newitz is an American journalist, editor, and author of both fiction and nonfiction. She is the recipient of a Knight Science Journalism Fellowship from MIT, and has written for Popular Science, Wired, and the San Francisco Bay Guardian. She also founded the science fiction website io9 and served as Editor-in-Chief from 2008–2015, and subsequently edited Gizmodo. As of 2016, she is Tech Culture Editor at the technology site Ars Technica. Her books include Pretend We're Dead and Autonomous.

    


(15) Winners will receive a Copy of AUTONOMOUS by Annalee Newitz
Giveaway is open to International. | Must be 13+ to Enter