Michelle Diener

Jul 222016
 

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Welcome to the Release Celebration for
Dark Minds
By Michelle Diener

Dark Minds is book three in the Class 5 Series. Michelle has a message below and you can come back on Sunday, July 24th, HERE to learn more about the rise of the genre and on Tuesday, July 26th, HERE to read about the Class 5 world. Feel free to sign up to review Dark Minds (if interested) and enter the fabulous Amazon/book giveaway as well. Enjoy!

Dark Deeds
(Class 5 #3)
by Michelle Diener
Adult Sci-Fi
ebook, 331 Pages
July 22nd 2016

The mind is the most powerful weapon of all . . .

Imogen Peters knows she’s a pawn. She’s been abducted from Earth, held prisoner, and abducted again. So when she gets a chance at freedom, she takes it with both hands, not realizing that doing so will turn her from pawn to kingmaker.

Captain Camlar Kalor expected to meet an Earth woman on his current mission, he just thought he’d be meeting her on Larga Ways, under the protection of his Battle Center colleague. Instead, he and Imogen are thrown together as prisoners in the hold of a Class 5 battleship. When he works out she’s not the woman who sparked his mission, but another abductee, Cam realizes his investigation just got a lot more complicated, and the nations of the United Council just took a step closer to war.

Imogen’s out of her depth in this crazy mind game playing out all around her, and she begins to understand her actions will have a massive impact on all the players. But she’s good at mind games. She’s been playing them since she was abducted. Guess they should have left her minding her own business back on Earth…

GoodreadsAmazon

The Difference Between Science Fiction and Space Opera

Most readers don’t really care what labels publishers or book sellers give to the books they enjoy, they are just interested in the books. But sometimes, those labels, or categories, interfere with finding just what a reader might be looking for.

I think mainstream science fiction and its sub-genres, science fiction romance and space opera, fall into that category.

Quite often, when someone finds out I write science fiction, they look slightly deer-in-the-headlights, and apologetically tell me they don’t like that kind of book, and they’ll look for my historicals instead. I don’t mind that (really! There are some genres I don’t love that much, too :)) but if I ask them if they enjoy movies like Star Wars, Star Trek, Serenity, or Guardians of the Galaxy, and they say they love them, then I tell them it’s safe to give my books a go, because those movies are space operas, and that’s what I write.

The difference between mainstream science fiction and the space opera and science fiction romance sub-genres is in the science.

Science fiction is supposed to be science-based, and that puts a lot of people off. Even if they are interested in science, some science fiction novels, especially what’s called hard science fiction, has the reputation of being about too much detail. How big is the gun, what cool science has gone into the space ship, and so on. Science is almost a main character in the story, with a side-kick of technology and cool toys. If that’s not your idea of a relaxing read, you’ll probably avoid it.

The sub-genres of science fiction–space opera and science fiction romance—are about the characters and about the plot, with the science a minor thread. To understand what space opera is, just think of Star Wars and you’ll know immediately, because Star Wars is a definitive example of the sub-genre. The world and its rules aren’t explained, and there is no expectation that it will hold up to any kind of scientific scrutiny. Sometimes, though, the ideas that appear in space opera can in fact be prescient, like Edgar Rice Burroughs’ space elevator, for example.

When I write my science fiction romance / space operas, I like to get at least the basic science right. The way gravity works, for example. 🙂 And I do actively try to use known scientific concepts. I’ve watched How to Build a Planet and Brian Cox with the best of them, and my work is more accurate for it. I’m not a scientist, and I don’t pretend to be one, and biology is more my field of interest than physics, but that said, some of the classic hard science fiction novels have subsequently had their science proven wrong, and new and wonderful things are being discovered in space all the time, so I’m actually not that worried about what I make up. Readers of space opera are looking for a fun, action-packed read, not an explanation about how the technology behind faster-than-light travel works. Which suits me fine!

If you listen to astrophysicists, a lot of what they say seems so outlandish, I don’t think what I make up is really that much more outrageous :). Space opera is about the story, about the characters, and about the excitement and adventure. If you like those things, and haven’t given space opera or science fiction romance a try, you are really in for a treat. Aside from my Class 5 series, there are hundreds of amazing books out there for you to find.

A group of science fiction romance / space opera authors got together, and we created the Portals Project, a set of volumes containing the first chapters of ten science fiction romance books per volume. They’re a great way to find science fiction romance novels, and they’re free. The first chapter of my SFR novel DARK HORSE, the first book in my Class 5 series, is in Portals: Volume 3, and you can download it for free at most major online book sellers.

We’re celebrating today because the third and final book in my Class 5 series, DARK MINDS, was released today, and I had as much fun writing it as I did the other two. It has all the classic elements of space opera: romance, action, and intrigue.

With space opera, the only limit is your imagination. If you haven’t given it a go, you’re depriving yourself ;).

— Michelle Diener

Other Books in the Series

Dark Deeds (Class 5, #2)Dark Deeds
(Class 5 #2)
by Michelle Diener
Adult Sci-Fi
ebook, 340 Pages
January 4th 2016

Far from home . . .

Fiona Russell has been snatched from Earth, imprisoned and used as slave labor, but nothing about her abduction makes sense. When she’s rescued by the Grih, she realizes there’s a much bigger game in play than she could ever have imagined, and she’s right in the middle of it.

Far from safe . . .

Battleship captain Hal Vakeri is chasing down pirates when he stumbles across a woman abducted from Earth. She’s the second one the Grih have found in two months, and her presence is potentially explosive in the Grih’s ongoing negotiations with their enemies, the Tecran. The Tecran and the Grih are on the cusp of war, and Fiona might just tip the balance.

Far from done . . .

Fiona has had to bide her time while she’s been a prisoner, pretending to be less than she is, but when the chance comes for her to forge her own destiny in this new world she grabs it with both hands. After all, actions speak louder than words.

GoodreadsAmazon

Dark HorseDark Horse
(Class 5 #1)
by Michelle Diener
Adult Sci-Fi
ebook, 381 Pages
June 15th 2015

Some secrets carry the weight of the world.

Rose McKenzie may be far from Earth with no way back, but she’s made a powerful ally–a fellow prisoner with whom she’s formed a strong bond. Sazo’s an artificial intelligence. He’s saved her from captivity and torture, but he’s also put her in the middle of a conflict, leaving Rose with her loyalties divided.

Captain Dav Jallan doesn’t know why he and his crew have stumbled across an almost legendary Class 5 battleship, but he’s not going to complain. The only problem is, all its crew are dead, all except for one strange, new alien being.

She calls herself Rose. She seems small and harmless, but less and less about her story is adding up, and Dav has a bad feeling his crew, and maybe even the four planets, are in jeopardy. The Class 5’s owners, the Tecran, look set to start a war to get it back and Dav suspects Rose isn’t the only alien being who survived what happened on the Class 5. And whatever else is out there is playing its own games.

In this race for the truth, he’s going to have to go against his leaders and trust the dark horse.

Michelle Diener writes historical fiction, fantasy and science fiction. Having worked in publishing and IT, she’s now very happy crafting new worlds and interesting characters and wondering which part of the world she can travel to next.

Michelle was born in London, grew up in South Africa and currently lives in Australia with her husband and two children.

When she’s not writing, or driving her kids from activity to activity, you can find her blogging at Magical Musings. or online at Twitter, at Google+ and Facebook.

Release Celebration Giveaway

$25 Amazon eGift Card
Four ebook sets of Dark Horse, Dark Deeds, and Dark Minds
Open internationally
Ends July 31st

Jul 152016
 

PRISM 2016 FinalistI am really honoured and thrilled that DARK HORSE has won best futuristic at the Prism Awards in San Diego a couple of hours ago. It is such an amazing feeling, with DARK MINDS about to be released, to have the first book in the series win such a prestigious award.

It is a bittersweet moment for me, because exactly ten years ago, I attended my first RWA conference, in Dallas, and the very first event I went to was The Gathering, where the Prism Awards are given. I attended with my roommate and good friend Liz Kreger, who even then was fighting the good fight against cancer and passed away over a year ago now.

This win is for you, Liz. I think of you often.

Dark Horse 250px heigh

Jul 132016
 

I’m very happy to let those readers waiting for the third and final book in the Class 5 series know that Dark Minds will be released on July 22nd. Below, please find the awesome cover, designed once again by EJR Digital Art, and the blurb for Dark Minds.

Dark MindsAbout Dark Minds:

The mind is the most powerful weapon of all . . .

Imogen Peters knows she’s a pawn. She’s been abducted from Earth, held prisoner, and abducted again. So when she gets a chance at freedom, she takes it with both hands, not realizing that doing so will turn her from pawn to kingmaker.

Captain Camlar Kalor expected to meet an Earth woman on his current mission, he just thought he’d be meeting her on Larga Ways, under the protection of his Battle Center colleague. Instead, he and Imogen are thrown together as prisoners in the hold of a Class 5 battleship. When he works out she’s not the woman who sparked his mission, but another abductee, Cam realizes his investigation just got a lot more complicated, and the nations of the United Council just took a step closer to war.

Imogen’s out of her depth in this crazy mind game playing out all around her, and she begins to understand her actions will have a massive impact on all the players. But she’s good at mind games. She’s been playing them since she was abducted. Guess they should have left her minding her own business back on Earth…

Dark Horse is a PRISM 2016 Finalist

 Dark Horse  Comments Off on Dark Horse is a PRISM 2016 Finalist
May 272016
 

PRISM 2016 FinalistI got the news a few days ago that DARK HORSE has finaled in the PRISM Awards 2016 in the Futuristic category. The PRISM is a contest for published books run by the Fantasy, Futuristic and Paranormal Writers Chapter, and the winners will be announced at The Gathering in San Diego this July. I am thrilled DARK HORSE made the list, and am in very good company. You can find the list of all finalists here. It’s a real honour, and good luck to everyone who finaled.

May 202016
 

Dark Horse 250px heighFor those readers who’ve previously contacted me about audio book versions of the Class 5 books, I’m thrilled to announce that I’ve just signed a contract with Podium Publishing, the audio book publishers behind the world’s highest selling audio book THE MARTIAN, for all three books in the Class 5 trilogy.

The first audio book in the series, Dark Horse, won’t be out for some time, as we are not yet in production, but I’m happy to say it is in the pipeline.

Update on Portals Project: Volume 1 is live

 Where I Am on the Web  Comments Off on Update on Portals Project: Volume 1 is live
May 132016
 

Portals Vol 1I’m thrilled to say that the first volume of the Portals Project is live and available at all the various online retailers. Readers get a free sampler of first chapters of ten different science fiction romance novels with a medium heat level in Volume 1. The other volumes will be released at two week intervals.

You can download the Portals Volume 1 from your favourite retailers here:

Amazon | iBooks | Kobo | Nook

More on the Portals Project from Smart Girls Love SFR

 Where I Am on the Web  Comments Off on More on the Portals Project from Smart Girls Love SFR
May 072016
 

portals-promoThe great website Smart Girls Love SFR has some more information on the Portals Project, including the link to the new Portals Project website.

I highly recommending going to both sites to check things out, and there are gift cards to be won on the Portals website, too.

Portals Project – The Gateway to Exciting New Stories

 Where I Am on the Web  Comments Off on Portals Project – The Gateway to Exciting New Stories
May 032016
 

Dark Horse 250px heighI’m excited to announce my involvement in the Portals project. Forty science fiction romance authors from all areas of this diverse genre have come together to put together four volumes of samplers of our work. Each volume will contain opening chapters from ten different authors, grouped together by heat level. The opening chapters of Dark Horse will appear in Portals Volume 3, and I’m thrilled to be participating in such an awesome project.

The Portals volumes will be available for free on all the major online booksellers sites and will hopefully give readers a taste of what they can find out there in the wonderful world of science fiction romance. Stay tuned for more details about release dates, but you can read more about how the idea came about at the Spacefreighters Lounge and over at Galaxy Express.

I’m being interviewed over on the USA Today blog

 Where I Am on the Web  Comments Off on I’m being interviewed over on the USA Today blog
Apr 212016
 

Dark Horse 250px heighThanks to SFR author Veronica Scott for a great interview today with me about DARK HORSE on the USA Today Happily Ever After blog. You can find the article here.

Dark Horse Print Giveaway

 Giveaways  Comments Off on Dark Horse Print Giveaway
Feb 292016
 

Amazon is running a print giveaway for Dark Horse! To enter, click here. Amazon will ship the copies to the winners, but it is for US residents only, I’m afraid. Good luck!AMAZON GIVEAWAY

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