Genre: Science Fiction
Publisher: Azure Spider Publications
Publication Date: October 31, 2018
As refugees in a vast sprawling empire, mankind must find and fight for a new homeland after Earth’s destruction. Plains of Exodus chronicles this epic struggle.
Mankind’s first contact with an extraterrestrial species didn’t exactly go well. The inadvertent destruction of the Earth saw a call go out to the vast and ancient empire for help. Despite the quick response to this plea for aid, the remnants of humanity find themselves refugees in an overcrowded galaxy and at the mercy of an empire whose existence predates mankind’s own existence.
Unwanted and unwelcome, humanity languishes in a dozen massive colony ships around an energy poor star.
As a young smuggler Jonah Mctier is one of those fortunate few who has access to this millennia old realm, and it is he who after fleeing a triad of imperial cruisers discovers the answer to mankind’s dilemma.
In desperation Jonah finds refuge in a parsecs deep dust cloud where he discovers not only a habitable and empty planetary system but one of the most sought after resources in the Milky Way: a spatial conduit. Except this is no ordinary conduit.
Exploitation of this unique and unknown type of spatial gateway offers an alternative to the slow but inevitable descent into extinction for the children of Adam. Key to this bright future is the need to keep their phenomenal find a secret from the resource hungry empire who would take this discovery for themselves and themselves alone.
To complicate matters Jonah discovers that there is more than one of these gateways, and for humanity to be successful in their quest mankind must hold and eventually destroy all of these rare portals.
Jonah didn’t know old Earth, didn’t have parents who grieved for such a loss, and his only real desire at this point in his life was to join his friends on Wild-deck to drink that sphere of dark beer so dearly bought for his birthday.
Well, he’d seen the stars for the first time. It had been worth missing the party, and besides he had received a much better gift that day than just a bellyful of beer and a hangover—he had found Sontule.
Five years had passed since Sontule had come into his possession, and that irascible deckmaster had passed away a couple of years ago. Yes, it was definitely strange how fortune graced some while leaving others untouched. Some had gained fame and ease, what ease could be found on the colony ships, by their looks or skill at amusement—something the holocasts demanded.
That hadn’t been Jonah’s gateway out of poverty. Oh yeah, he was tall enough, and had the blond hair and blue eyes of some long ago Germanic ancestry, but contrary to popular belief the entertainment industry required more than just good looks.
No, his fortune had come from luck and luck only, but this was something he wasn’t going to complain about.
Only half-conscious, his mind skirled about the past—slipping randomly from memories of Sontule’s discovery to life on Alterhome.
The great colony ship was home to over twenty thousand inhabitants. It’s design allowed for half of this, but mankind had seen almost a century in an alien ship whose designers had provided temporary accommodation for considerably less souls and for a limited amount of time.
Alterhome and its eleven siblings had housed what was left of the human race for nearly a century since the exodus, and to this day much of its vast exterior remained unmapped and according to the old deckmaster in dire need of maintenance from those young colonists under her fleshless hand.
Jonah wasn’t the first to discover a ship hidden or forgotten on one of the colony ships. There had been others—not many by any means—, but Jonah’s rare find had been the first in nearly a quarter century.
Then, as if finding the alien craft wasn’t lucky enough, it became clear that the ship was of Abellian design. The Abellians had been extinct for almost fifty thousand years, but their craftsmanship was still valued and much sought after throughout the empire.
The salvage rights had gone to him, of course, and this legal procedure had seen him evolve from faceless nobody to smuggler, one of the envied few who could leave the overcrowded and hopeless life dictated by the colony ships.
This transition from unknown to smuggler seemed to happen overnight—a modern day Cinderella story where it had been his, Jonah Mactier’s, graceful foot which had fitted the glass slipper.
Progression from slipper to castle to happily ever after had not gone quite as smoothly for him. Finding one of these abandoned or forgotten craft meant leaving his old life behind—something he didn’t mind one bit.
Jonah wasn’t stupid. He knew his life was never going to be the same again, but what caught him off-balance was the enormous amount of attention suddenly focused on him—some desired and some most definitely not.
Those who brokered power on Alterhome wanted him to join them, and their suit had been powerful and compelling, as well as being heavily laced with the poison of guilt and duty owed. Others had just wanted his ship, preferably without him, and they were quite willing to use any means necessary to get the Abellian vessel. Those had been the beginnings of exciting times.
November 19 – December 1, 2018
Visit each tour stop daily and discover more features, excerpts, reviews, interviews, fun facts and more! For more information, visit the Plains of Exodus Book Page
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About Robert J. Burnett
After crisscrossing the country on more than one occasion, Robert J. Burnett and his wife Louise are currently living in northern British Colombia where they hope each day that they won’t be burnt up in the massive fires ravaging the province. Coming a close second to these fears are the worries about being eaten by bears. Mosquitoes scare him too.
Rob’s favourite religion is Christianity, but he’s never met a druid or a pagan he didn’t like. That said, he doesn’t like them if they’re smelly. Same with bears.
His fondest wish is to be abducted by aliens and taken to their home-world where he will miraculously return to his mid-twenties and be given super powers.
His music likes could be said to be a bit eclectic, ranging from classical to Celtic, especially those composed by non-smelly druids or pagans.
Voted in high school as most likely to lose all his teeth before sixty, he can proudly state that this has not happened as he still retains twelve. It is this ferocious smile, he believes, that scare off most bears.
Today he lives a productive life of non-work, listening to Ancient Astronaut and Hangar 51 shows, a hobby he has cultivated in his expectation of being abducted and taken off-planet. At least he won’t lose his job for failing to show up for work.
As a father to four sons, Rob fervently hopes that all his children will breed and produce offspring who in their turn will support him in his dotage.
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