Die Fährte der Löwin V: Anonym

Januar 18th, 2015

Umschlagbild-Miniatur

Die Fährte der Löwin V: Anonym

Während Johanna als Oberkommandierende der UN-Raumstreitkräfte ihren Aufbruch zu den Sternen vorbereitet, begibt sich die Mamba Monique mit ihrer Partnerin Elodie auf eine einsame Mission, die niemand außer ihr erfüllen kann. Um die Terroristen aufzuspüren, die immer wieder Anschläge auf Johanna und ihre Mitstreiter verüben, präsentiert sie sich selbst als unwiderstehlichen Köder. Als der Gegner anbeißt, wird sie jedoch von ihrer Partnerin getrennt. Wie kann sie sich in diesem Umfeld behaupten, ohne sich als Spionin zu enttarnen und damit die Mission zum Scheitern zu verurteilen?

Auszug

»Hallo, Süße.« Es machte Klick, und der Griff in seiner Hand zeigte mir zwölf Zentimeter tödlichen Stahl. »Magst du mit mir spielen?«

»Spielen?«

»Zeig mir deinen Einsatz, Süße. Zeig mir dein Geld, und wenn es mir gefällt, verzichte ich vielleicht auf dich. Zeig mir deinen Körper, und wenn er mir gefällt, verzichte ich vielleicht auf dein Geld. Zeig mir Respekt, und ich verzichte darauf, dein Leben zu nehmen. Du hast nur ein Spiel.«

Damit hatte er Recht.

Ich machte ein paar langsame Schritte auf ihn zu, streifte dabei langsam meine Jacke ab und leckte mir die Lippen. Er grinste weiter und starrte auf das dünne T-Shirt über meinen Brüsten. Dadurch sah er meinen Fuß zu spät kommen – der Tritt kickte das Messer aus seiner Hand, und mit zwei Schlägen gegen Solarplexus und Eier setzte ich ihn außer Gefecht.

Noch während er zusammenbrach, rannte ich. Für eine Illegale war es nicht ratsam, als Teilnehmerin eines gewalttätigen Konflikts aufgefunden zu werden. Von dem anderen Mann brauchte ich nicht zu wissen, jedenfalls nicht, bis der Schuss fiel.

Lioness Legacy VII — Tracked (Zoe Lionheart Book 18)

Juli 1st, 2014

The seventh book in the series, published July 1st, 2014

She’s Velvet—the mention of her name makes hard-boiled criminals wet their pants.

Lioness’ Legacy VII - Tracked (Zoe Lionheart Book 18)

The time has come to put Johanna’s plan to work, but at the same time, her opponents zero in on her. How can she assemble her team if her pursuers won’t leave her alone anywhere? Worse, how can she protect innocents from being hurt as collateral damage?

Excerpt
It was nice to lean into a strong man and not have to worry about anything. My ambitious plans could wait. Here and now, they didn’t matter.
Scrubby disappeared behind a hummock toward the river with bobbing tail. What was wrong about it?
The evening before I had casually jumped into the water to get our dinner. Rod hadn’t said anything about it, although he knew as well as I that the entire coast was croc country.
The omnipresent warnings were no empty threat—while I had been submerged, I had felt the vibrations of a large animal upriver, exactly in the direction Scrubby was running to now.
Jerkily, I rolled forward, thereby tearing myself free from Rod’s arm, and dashed forward.
“Hey!” he called after me while I was already jumping across the hummock.
Scrubby stood at the bank drinking, his forepaws in the water. Only a light ripple that didn’t match the regular current gave the reptile’s fast approach away.
The dog had no chance, but neither did the saltwater crocodile. I was faster than both. In full run, I snatched the dog up and out of the closing jaws’ trajectory, doubled over to dodge the second attack, too, jumped over a fallen log, and then ran on landward.
The log put the primeval creature off further pursuit. With threateningly opened jaw, it simply stayed lying there.
Only now did Scrubby overcome his terror and start barking. His master barely reached the hummock, spotted the scaly monster and froze.

Lioness Legacy VI - Threat (Zoe Lionheart Book 17)

April 5th, 2014

The sixth part of the Legacy series, released April 1st, 2014

She may be nude, but she’s never unarmed.

Cover thumbnail of Threat

In her own eyes, Jo deserved a few days of luxurious vacation on the Côte d’Azur. Moreover, a little gambling should improve her funding. She hadn’t expected to encounter a sore loser. Even less had she expected the appearance of a new special unit of organized crime that quite soon could become a threat to her plans. To stay ahead of her opponents, she must enter the ZONE again, and this time she can’t expect to escape from there unhurt.

Lioness Legacy VI - Threat (Zoe Lionheart Book 17), now available at extasybooks

Excerpt

“Hello, Dimitri!”

The addressed had found a spot in the green with a view on the casino entrance. Now he flinched, thereby lost the support of the tree he had been leaning on, and stumbled two steps to the side with little elegance before he regained his balance.

“What?” he uttered. “You!”

With a grin, I turned and walked away. Dimitri hurried after me, caught up with me after a few steps, and firmly grabbed my arm.

“Hey!” I protested, turned once around under his arm, and thus forced him to release me.

He stared at me angrily, tried to grab me once more, but I backed off swiftly. “Hands off! Looking, not touching, clear?”

Of the three requests, he only observed the second—he looked at my skimpy shorts and the strapless top. Two times more I dodged his attempts, then he reached under his jacket with one hand. “Wait, slut!”

That was the cue for my retreat. Gravel sprayed away under my flat soles, behind me another curse sounded, and then I heard his steps quickly following me.

Such a Catch me if you can could be funny, only he had a gun and little reservations about using it. Behind me, it barked once, twice, and the hot lead chirped close past me.

I doubled over into the bushes, crossed over the fence with its rusty iron thorns and dashed across the street. Dimitri served another shot after me, and then he had to climb.

To not shake him off right away, I feigned short breath. Soon he was after me, shot again, and I saved myself with a jump behind a corner.

So the hunt continued, inevitably leading downhill and thus toward the sea, where I only had the choice of which direction I’d follow along the harbor. I opted for the way toward the harbor master—and thereby toward Fjodor’s yacht—and lured Dimitri further after me.

He shot again—the bang was reflected by the buildings and rang far over the yachts of the rich and beautiful. This surely was the last sound desired to be heard here. It caused a lot of attention, and not only with Fjodor’s guards. But they couldn’t miss my approach either, and they could guess just as easily as I, what their boss would do with them if they simply let me pass the mooring. So they tried to cut off my way.

That had an advantage, too—Dimitri no longer shot, at least not currently, in order not to hit his guards. I pretended to not have noticed the three yet, as only this way was it plausible to continue running their way, and made a terrified face only at the last moment.

The only way out now led over the extended stairs of a neighboring yacht, and I took this way without hesitation. Behind the dark and mirroring windows, I could see the shapes of people who didn’t dare to come on deck, and who quickly ducked their heads when the first pistol round left an ugly spiderweb pattern in the would-be bulletproof glass.

Only a heavy caliber could cause such damage, and such a caliber would hurt me despite my armor, I computed, so it was better to avoid any hit. While the next shots rang, this time from several guns, I jumped into the water.

Then, one of the bullets painfully grazed my heel. Ouch!

Lioness Legacy V - Treason (Zoe Lionheart Book 16)

Januar 1st, 2014

The fifth part of the Legacy series, released January 1st, 2014

Don’t try to cheat a woman who doesn’t play by the rules.

Cover thumbnail

For her crimes, Jo is sentenced to prison for life. She knew it would be no vacation-but what she encounters there is worse than her wildest imagination. So she should be open to an offer, shouldn’t she? But what if her allies play a wicked game with her?

Lioness Legacy V - Treason (Zoe Lionheart Book 16), now available at extasybooks

Excerpt

With this action, I attracted the attackers’ attention and fire on me for the moment, away from the ROS’ men who’d stand no chance against these plasma weapons. However, as I was in no mood for catching a direct hit, I doubled over a few times on my approach.

Nevertheless, some of the sun-hot projectiles came uncomfortably close. That wasn’t good, not at all!

I didn’t need my Analogy’s warnings to know that these tactics’ usefulness was extremely short-lived. No, I wasn’t inclined to remain a target.

I initiated a sideways move, thereby dodging two more plasma shots, instead collected a badly aimed machine pistol salvo—ouch, that knocked!—and then jumped the opposite direction with activated camouflage.

An opportunity to get my bearings—here, before the house, I had to deal with ten persons from two vans, two of them armed with plasma rifles, four with machine pistols, four with normal pistols. I couldn’t spot the other cars, nor could I instantly discover Davide’s men.

That was good, as they had better keep their heads down. For this kind of game, I was better equipped.

A giant leap carried me between the attackers. This is war, I remembered, and we can’t accommodate prisoners yet. So I extended my claws.

A few seconds later, ten men were lying in their own blood. What now?

Shots and cries of pain from the buildings’ rear clarified where I was needed.

Although I ran at top speed, I arrived too late for two of Davide’s men, who had tried to prevent the Mafia henchmen from entering the building. Big, scorched holes demonstrated that you should respect plasma rifles.

Their murderer was already on his way inside, past the restrooms. I jumped into his neck. My sharp claws severed his cervical bones and demonstrated that you should respect Velvet.

His two conventionally-armed partners shared his fate. Only then did I listen again. No more shots.

Die Fährte der Löwin III: Assassinen

Dezember 31st, 2013

Umschlagbild-Miniatur

Die Fährte der Löwin III: Assassinen

Das weltweite Verbrecherkartell ist zerschlagen, doch noch immer befinden sich zahlreiche Absolventen der alten Drachentechnologie-Universität in der Hand skrupelloser Verbrecher. Sie zu befreien und als Unterstützer für Johannas Verteidigungsanstrengungen zu gewinnen, ist die richtige Herausforderung für ihre Spezialeinheit, die Mambas. Doch eine solche Mission ist höchst riskant und verläuft nicht immer reibungslos. Welche Opfer müssen die Kämpferinnen bringen, um ihre Ziele zu erreichen?

Auszug

Die jeweils vier Uniformierten auf den Patrouillenbooten hatten mit ihren Gewehren schon nicht freundlich ausgesehen, und ihre Reaktion auf meine Rolle ins Wasser war entsprechend: Noch während ich den ersten Schwimmstoß ausführte, eröffneten einige von ihnen das Feuer.

Ich hatte wohl Glück, dass diese ersten Schüsse schlecht gezielt waren, dennoch traf einer von ihnen meinen linken Unterschenkel knapp oberhalb des Knöchels.

Der Trefferschock ließ mich kurzzeitig Sternchen sehen, vom beißenden Schmerz gar nicht zu reden, und allein deswegen war mir sofort klar, dass ich mich von diesen Leuten nicht gefangen nehmen lassen wollte.

Nur weg! Ich aktivierte meinen Booster und tauchte schnell tiefer, so gut es mein verletztes Bein zuließ. Jeder Schwimmstoß sandte neue Schmerzwellen durch das Bein, und zugleich spürte ich, wie meine Kraft wieder nachließ – der Blutverlust musste erheblich sein.

Leider hatte ich wirklich gar nichts zum Verbinden dabei. Das Einzige, was mir jetzt noch fehlte, wäre ein Hai.

Lioness’ Legacy IV - Torment (Zoe Lionheart 15) - new release

Dezember 31st, 2013

The fourth part of the Legacy trilogy, released October 1st.

She brings bright light to humanity’s darkest hour

Cover thumbnail

Lioness’ Legacy IV - Torment (Zoe Lionheart 15), now available at extasybooks

Organized crime has suffered another drawback, but the masterminds are still well established. Politicians are helpless against the world-spanning organization that has secured the monopoly on Dragon technology. Should Jo leave it to mankind to shake off this yoke, or should she risk her life again for others who wouldn’t lift a finger for her sake?

Excerpt
I didn’t expect problems on my way, either. Nevertheless, I remained alert, most importantly during the occasional comfort stops. As a rule, a grim glance or a clear No sufficed to dissuade the men from bad ideas. Perhaps the skull on my belt helped, too.
Only once it didn’t stop at a brief test of glances. During my lunch break–T-bone steak with potato wedges, beans, onions, and salad–several truckers were whispering behind my back. Did they believe I wouldn’t hear them?
“That must be her.”
“Who?”
“The Velvet. Short, black hair, black leather, mercilessly sexy. And dangerous.”
“And valuable.”
“What do you mean?”
“The bounty. Ten grand.”
“No–ten million. A lot of dough.”
“And? Want to earn it?”
“No, never.”
“Why? It’s worthwhile.”
“First, I don’t believe that you can keep the money for long. They don’t like witnesses. And second, I don’t want to be close when it comes to a confrontation.”
“Mmm–I think I’d like to confront her one day.”
“Do you think you can score with her?”
“If I show her my bone, she’ll be mine.”
“You’re dreaming.”
At this point, I sadly had to direct my concentration on another piece of noise near the entrance door.
“…roadhouse, yeah exactly. No, her plate’s still full, she’ll stay for another while. If you hurry up, you can get her–me? No, I stay out of it. That’s not my pay grade, honestly–yesyes, I’ll keep an eye on her–I’ll see that she won’t notice. Just hurry up, yes?”
I turned my knife so that I could see the mirrored door on the blade. Ah, there was the guy with the mobile phone. A smart, twentyish snot with ducktail and golden chain, pale leggings without proper content, and a leather jacket on top. He probably considered himself cool.
How much time did I have left, what did I have to expect, what should I do?
There were surely a few minutes left, as the Cartel couldn’t have anyone ready so close by–and if so, they’d be Tom, Dick, and Harry and not specialists.

Reviewed: Three Hearts And Three Lions (Poul Anderson)

September 8th, 2013

Three Hearts and Three LionsThree Hearts and Three Lions by Poul Anderson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Initially, it looked like a fantasy story to me. It had all the ingredients: a medieval setting with witches, dwarves, elves and an evil sorceress, with a brave hero and his steed, lance, sword and shield - and a quest to master.
However, as it turned out, the fantasy setup was just the stage for the real story: a story about love and devotion. Ah!
The stories both were capturing and entertaining — but they both lack the most important part: the ending. Somehow the author shied away from writing the catharsis for both the fantasy and the love story. Instead, there’s a kind of epilogue that provides only the briefest summary of the fantasy part’s ending. The love story, the main part, remains open though, and leaves me, the reader, with a feeling of disappointment, if not worse.



View all my reviews

Lioness´ Legacy III - Lover (Zoe Lionheart Book 14) - new release

Juli 3rd, 2013

The third part of the Legacy trilogy, released July 1st.

Call her Velvet - freelance secret agent for her own cause

Cover thumbnail

Lioness´ Legacy III - Lover (Zoe Lionheart Book 14), now available at extasybooks

Jo is fed up with playing games. Hiding and running away can´t protect her from the Cartel´s stalking. She decides to raise the stakes and venture herself on a search for the ruling board of the worldwide-operating crime ring. But her enemies don´t play by the rules. They play a special card, and Jo must face her death.

Excerpt

”Ey, Claw.”
Claw? Automatically, I checked my fingertips. No, there was no trace of my golden claws, only ten ordinary if perhaps too long and pointy fingernails. So the blond young man in leggings and long tee shirt only saw a hot young woman in me?
Young—yes, of course. I could account for forty-one springs now, and that it didn´t show surely wasn´t owed to my way of life. With my short one-and-a-half meters and my toned body, I´d pass as twentyish, and my braless tits had always attracted male attention.
Okay, so I was a hot claw for this guy in front of me, who could well be my son. For that he deserved a smile. “Yes, sweetie.”
With one hand, I pointed to the free chair at my table. He placed his coffee mug down and let himself drop on the seat. “I like you, Claw.”
“I see that, sweetie.”
“Well, and what about us?”
Good question. The most recent rapes by the cops lay only one day behind. Was I already interested in sex again? Or at least ready to tolerate a firm rod? Tolerate mentally, that is, because I could always be wet and ready—another side effect of my enhancement.
To my amazement, I discovered, yes, I was ready. Yes, I wanted to live. Yes, I wanted to feel my aliveness with all senses. Yes, I wanted simple, unrestrained sex without domination rituals and without the subtext of a useful partnership, without the unpleasant circumstances of a rape, and without the business context of my primary profession of prostitution, but simply out of a spontaneous feel of affection.
I glanced straight into his eyes. “Are you ready for unconditional passion, sweetie? For lust without mercy? For the ride of your life?”
He returned my glance with expectantly widened pupils. “Claw, if you´re looking for this kind of ecstasy, I´m your man.”

“What do you do, Claw?”
Stealing. Like Robin Hood, I took from the rich and gave to the poor—that is, to me. Fucking for money. Poker. Always alert, always on the run from the Cartel that mustn´t learn about my true identity. And more recently, also hunted by Japanese Dragon cultists. But all that applied until yesterday.
I´ve had enough of running away from the Cartel and the cultists. A life lived in fear is a life never lived. What good had it done me? Could I feel safe? No. Did I live well? No. Often, I had enough money for lunch, for clothes, for a decent hotel bed—but did I sleep peacefully? Did I have friends? A home? Comfort, security? A future?
There were no safe places left for me, so I didn´t have to look for them.
“Some people have bothered me. Perhaps I should bother them back.” I read doubts in his features. “I´m good at bothering people.”
“Okay, I won´t say a thing. Angry April wasn´t taller than you, either. Well—who bothered you then? I have a friend with the cops, so perhaps I can do something for you?”
“The cops are at the very top of my list.”

Die Fährte der Löwin I: Ankunft (neu)

Juni 8th, 2013

ThumbnailDie Verantwortung lastet schwer auf Johannas Schultern: Für ihre Freunde und Mitstreiter, für die ahnungslose Menschheit, sogar für ihre Gegner. Johanna bleibt nicht viel Zeit, um sich in ihre neue Rolle zu finden, denn schon kündigt ein neuer, alter Feind sein Kommen an. Dabei ist noch so viel zu tun – wird es am Ende reichen?

Vorschau und Verlag

Auszug

»Gold Eins, es kann losgehen.«
»Verstanden. Danke, Jim.«
»Halt die Ohren steif, Jo.«
»Im Steifhalten war ich immer gut, Jim.«
Er lachte.
Ich konzentrierte mich auf meinen Gleichgewichtssinn und startete das Triebwerk im Leerlauf. Ein vorsichtiger Zupfer am Knüppel ließ die Maschine auf ihren Federbeinen beben.
Mit der linken Hand erhöhte ich den Schub. Jetzt vibrierte das Flugzeug, wirkte wie ein mühsam gezügelter Hengst.
Okay.
Ich gab noch mehr Schub und zog den Knüppel ein Stück zu mir. Der Computer interpretierte den Befehl korrekt mit »Aufwärts« und ließ den kleinen Flieger langsam höher steigen.
Ich drehte den Knüppel um seine Achse, und der Flieger drehte mit. Leichtes Kippen nach links und rechts ließ die Maschine seitwärts gleiten – der Computer sorgte dafür, dass es nicht zum Höhenverlust kam. Für die Bewegung vorwärts oder rückwärts musste ich die Wippe unter meinem rechten Daumen verwenden. Auch mit dieser Wippe konnte ich langsam seitwärts schweben.
Ein beherzter Zug am Knüppel ließ mich zügig steigen – es fühlte sich an wie in einem Fahrstuhl.
»Wie läuft’s, Jo?« fragte Reginald über Funk an.
»Wie im Fahrstuhl. Ich wechsle jetzt vom Schwebe- in den Vorwärtsflug, Kurs Neunzig Grad Ost.«
»Neunzig Ost. Okay, Jo«, warf Jim ein.
Mein linker Daumen betätigte einen Schalter am Schubregler, während ich den Regler vorwärts schob. Die Maschine setzte sich zügig vorwärts in Bewegung und erreichte innerhalb weniger Sekunden fast zweihundert Stundenkilometer. So dauerte es keine zwei Minuten, bis ich Facing Island passiert und so das offene Korallenmeer erreicht hatte.
»Ich bin draußen.«
»Pass auf die bösen Jungs auf«, riet Jim.
Irgendwo dort draußen kreuzten immer noch – oder wieder – ein amerikanischer, ein chinesischer und ein russischer Flugzeugträger, offiziell zu unserem Schutz vor Terroranschlägen. Doch obwohl die amerikanische Politik sich unter ihrem neuen Präsidenten deutlich geändert hatte, trauten sich die Beteiligten gegenseitig noch nicht so recht.
»Ich beginne mit Teil Eins des Testprogramms. Bisher keine besonderen Vorkommnisse.«
Bisher fühlte ich keine großen Unterschiede zum Flugsimulator, wenn ich die realen Fliehkräfte nicht berücksichtigte. Bisher war Fliegen nicht schwieriger als Autofahren, nur ohne Bäume, Schlaglöcher oder Kängurus. Dies würde sich bald ändern.
Ein Klick mit dem linken Daumen, und mein Vogel schoss vorwärts. Mit einem leichten Zug meiner Rechten ging ich in den Steigflug über, bevor ich den linken Daumen noch eine Raste weiter schob.
»Whoah!« Der Schub presste mich tief in meinen Sitz.
Drei, fünf, sieben, neun, elf Kilometer zeigte der Höhenmesser, und ich ließ den Daumenschalter los. Mit fast siebenfacher Schallgeschwindigkeit stieg der Taipan weiter senkrecht in den Himmel. Wenn ich nichts tat, hatte ich noch gute zweihundert Kilometer Steigflug vor mir – das war aber heute nicht dran. Also ließ ich die Maschine um die Nickachse rotieren, bis ich die australische Küste wieder unter mir hatte, und drückte den linken Daumen energisch nach vorn.

Taming the Dragon #85

April 19th, 2013

Find other Dragons.
Sounds easy, eh? Travel to another plane of reality, another planet, and consult their Yellow Pages under D. Don´t forget to bring chocolate, your camera — and a towel, just in case.
Okay, I´m ready to go. Better get it done soon, or I´ll never do it.
If I can, I´ll send you a postcard or two. If not, stay tuned anyway.