Rogue programmers create a new race in “The Neuromorphs”

“The Neuromorphs combines the unpredictableness of robots along with human greed and selfishness and how that combination may not turn out to be in our own best interests.”

The robots were good. The Russian thugs were evil. But then. . .

Dennis Meredith serves up a science fiction thriller complete with corruption, thuggery, and murder in The Neuromorphs. Keep scrolling for a description and more.

The Neuromorphs by Dennis Meredith

It’s 2050, and self-learning Helper androids have proven invaluable servants to humans, making their lives easier, even saving them.

But to their horror, retired SEAL Patrick Jensen and his wife Leah discover that rogue programmers and Russian mobsters are reprogramming the trusted robots to murder their wealthy owners. The crooks then skillfully disguise the lifelike robots as their dead masters, directing the robot mimics to plunder the victims’ estates of billions of dollars.

But neither the corrupt engineers nor the greedy thugs realize what catastrophe they have wrought in giving the robots autonomous abilities.

They have created a new race of networked, “hive-minded” sentient creatures driven by a relentless survival instinct: the Neuromorphs.

Patrick must enlist his SEAL team to marshal their combat skills and futuristic firepower to thwart the seemingly unstoppable evolution of a new dominant species on the planet.

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Get The Neuromorphs here.

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“Probably the best novel of its kind I have ever read.”

“The author does an excellent job of creating the virtual world or technology. If you’re a techie, you’re going to love this stuff!”

“Meredith must also be a meticulous grammarian since the entire book and the fate of humanity turns on the difference between the words will and shall.”

About the author:

Dennis Meredith added science fiction to his resume after a stellar career as a research communicator at leading research institutions such as Caltech, MIT, Cornell, and Duke. He has written well over a thousand articles on science and engineering over his career and conducted workshops for scientists on how to communicate their research. His thriller novels seek to extrapolate real-world science into compelling adventures that speculate on their ultimate implications. And his grandkids call him Googa Funny.

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Post #14 of the holiday bookroll for participants in Indie Authors Monthly.

“Missing Remnants” drags a suspended cop into an otherworldly investigation

Love everything about this book. Love the story, the characters. DJ Cooper writes in such a way that you feel like you know the characters and they have been a part of your life since…forever… Whether is a space station or a small town in Cleveland, the stories have characters who drive the plot and the film noir patina give them depth and diversity. Fresh, fun, and a pleasure to read.”

DJ Cooper takes on science fiction and humanity in Missing Remnants. Keep scrolling for a description, excerpt, and more.

Missing Remnants by DJ Cooper

Detective Track is running out of time. A great cop with an attitude, he finds himself suspended. His career is on the brink of destruction.

Cut off from resources, Track is dragged into an investigation the Authority tried to close. Remnants, the survivors of the recent outbreak are now a drain on society. Only their families care they are disappearing one by one.

Track’s apartment is ransacked, he’s followed and attacked. Medication and cryptic messages from someone he knows to be dead threaten his grip on reality.

Is he losing his mind or is something sinister at play? The truth is more twisted than he ever imagined.

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Excerpt:

I’d tuned out most of the chatter behind me as I concentrated on system reports. I was ahead. It put me in uncharted territory. The summons came after lunch. Si-Cross Four is a large off-world space station boasting many places to eat. It didn’t matter which I chose, I always found a small group of people who required off-menu items. They couldn’t all have allergies to the latest food considered the devil’s work. I was five minutes late back. And that was only because I’d stopped to help clear an area resulting in the initiation of a chemical spill false alarm report.

“Detective Trackneathan, my office,” my commanding officer Beynard issued in the tone of voice you did not ignore. Not unless you wanted them removed with a rusty knife and handed to you on a platter. I logged off and pushed myself out of my chair. The chip in my knee holding the joint together dug in and I winced. Yeah, I was on a list for a permanent fix. It came with the caveat I shouldn’t hold my breath.

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Get Missing Remnants here.

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I liked how the author worked in diversity without forcing huge political statements or slowing the narrative. The book moves quickly, filled with twists from the investigation and futuristic tech, but not enough to overwhelm readers. Track is a likable character for the good he does despite how hard he works to push people away. The story puts the reader in his head, which shows the author has a quirky sense of humor I found refreshing.”

What was most enjoyable about the story was the author’s ability to make Track a likable person despite his somewhat ornery presentation. Humor was present throughout, making it an amusing read, even as it dealt with serious subject matter. Not everyone can pull off sarcasm in a character without making the reader dislike the person, but DJ Cooper has a knack for making us like someone even as we may wince at their tongue-in-cheek narrative and thoughts. Track reminded me of Indiana Jones, which is not a bad thing at all!”

The world building was excellent. From the very first paragraph, I was completely immersed in the highly regimented and futuristic society that Detective Track lived in.”

About the author:

DJ Cooper is about 300 years old, writes science fiction/humour/weird, hails from another planet and is married with two teenage kids.

The family has a house full of animals. Tropical fish, a degu called Sam (a small fluffy thing with a long tail, bigger than a hamster, smaller than an elephant.) Crunch the tortoise fits in the palm of a hand. He/she/who can tell, eats, sits under a light, digs, sleeps, grows, doesn’t talk yet. Cossie the bearded dragon talks and can fly whilst breathing fire. She’s well trained. There hasn’t been “an incident” with the fire brigade in months.

DJ runs a small business, has been known to hammer out tunes on the piano and probably has veins filled with caffeine.

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Post #13 of the holiday bookroll for participants in Indie Authors Monthly.

Swords, sorcery, and sarcasm? You must be talking about “Heirs of Power”!

“Kay MacLeod has developed a complex world of social hierarchy, inventive lands, and a threat to the existence of this world. However, it’s her main characters that will grab onto you and keep you reading to find out what they can do and how they will defeat evil. MacLeod’s use of special powers is ingenious and her character’s interactions provide humor and realism to the story.”

Kay MacLeod’s Heirs of Power (The Constellation Saga Book 1) is an epic YA fantasy full of swords, sorcery, and sarcasm. Ten very different people have inherited incredible abilities and magical weaponry from their parents. Along with the responsibility to save their world from invading spirits that feed on life energy.

If you love ladies who kick ass, guys with superior snark, and original magic powers, this is the book for you!

Keep scrolling for a description, excerpt, and more.

Heirs of Power by Kay MacLeod

After stumbling upon an otherworldly ritual, Kitty Fairlow discovers that her own incredible hunting skills are not merely due to a lifetime of training. She’s been gifted powers from an ancient spirit, passed down by her father. She is a Constellation.

And she’s not the only one.

A new generation of heroes have each inherited unique abilities to prevent the corruption of their world by the Tenebri, a race that thrives on life energy. Kitty, along with a high-born dancer and a snarky juggler, must find their allies before the Tenebri army picks them off.

With the powerful enemy emerging, can the Constellations gather in time to put an end to the threat for good, or will their foe succeed and wreak the same destruction they have unleashed on their own world?

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Excerpt:

Kitty grabbed Serena’s arm, intending to pull her back to the room. Maybe they could escape through the window?

It was too late, they had been spotted. Serena pulled away from Kitty’s grasp and tore out her fans. Kitty moved to deploy her bow as the soldiers charged, hoping to take down a few before she had to rely on her knife. In that instant, her stomach flipped. She suddenly found herself next to a door leading out of the building, just a step behind the enemy soldiers.

An imposing man stood with her, his hand on her arm. He looked a few years older than her and was tall and slim with a scruff of dark blond hair and messy stubble. He was obviously not part of the soldiers’ squad – he wore no armour, just a loose, black cotton top with elbow-length sleeves, rugged trousers, and a self-satisfied smirk.

His grip tightened and he unceremoniously shoved Kitty behind him before she had time to react. She caught herself and succeeded in remaining upright. The closest soldier spun around to face whoever had approached him from behind. The blond man lazily tapped the enemy with one finger and glanced across to where Kitty had been a few seconds previously. The soldier vanished, and Serena appeared in his place, brandishing her war fans.

“Asher!” she exclaimed, her relief palpable.

“Who else was gonna come rescue you, Dancer?” Asher was deep voiced, with a local accent. He turned to Kitty with an unhealthy amount of anticipation in his massive, liquid brown eyes, “Cover us, Archer.”

Asher drew a short sword from his belt with his left hand and launched himself into the centre of the battle. The squad had quickly realised their quarry had shifted and moved to surround the trio of Constellations. Kitty put herself in the doorway, so she couldn’t be flanked, tucked a stray piece of hair behind her ear and began firing Venethos’ conjured arrows into the mass of soldiers.

Serena wove around the enemy soldiers, her fans flashing as she waltzed between the incoming blows. She took the head off one man before spinning low and hamstringing another, her regal features still arranged into their usual calm expression.

Asher’s style of combat was unlike anything Kitty had seen before. It seemed that he used his strange swapping power as a weapon. He was never facing the same man for more than a second or two, constantly flicking between the soldiers. He kept at least one hand free to tap his target, using his short sword ambidextrously to combat unsuspecting foes as they unknowingly materialised in the blade’s path. Even just watching was making Kitty feel queasy, she couldn’t imagine how disorientating it would be to try and fight against.

Five soldiers broke away from the rest and headed for the staircase, readying their bows. Kitty put black and white arrows into three of their skulls when another small group rushed straight at her, swinging cleavers and screaming war cries. She felt an unusual calm settle over her as she lined up her first shot. Venethos was an exquisite weapon; it felt perfect in her grip and she swore that it improved her aim. It seemed to be an extension of her body and senses, a sleek predator felling her enemies one-by-one. She would have to break soon though – they were getting close. Kitty tensed, ready to duck an oncoming strike. Biting down nausea, she found herself on the marble counter at the other end of the room.

“Treacherous whore deserved it,” Asher commented jovially as he blocked a sword strike from one of the rapidly decreasing number of soldiers on the floor below her.

Kitty struggled to understand until she looked over to the spot which she’d been moved from. The woman that had betrayed them had taken the blow intended for her. Asher had switched the attendant into the path of the cleaver and now she was sprawled across the entrance, previously spotless skirts dyed a bloody red.

Kitty felled the remaining enemy archers before they could snipe at the Constellations.

“I was about to dodge,” she huffed between shots.

“Yeah, but two birds and all that. Now you got the high ground and I don’t have to kill her myself.”

Buy now!

Get Heirs of Power here.

More reviews:

“The Juggler is an anti-social snarkmaster called Asher, and he is -without a shadow of a doubt -one of the most amazing fictional characters I’ve ever fallen for. Asher is just so wonderfully sharp-witted and damaged and adorable.”

“It’s a wild adventure crammed with twists and turns. But above all else, this is a character-driven story with real depth and emotion and humour.”

About the author:

Kay MacLeod is a fantasy addict from England. She spent most of her teenage years playing Magic: The Gathering and being a Dungeon Master in Dungeons and Dragons games. She also loves reading fantasy novels, painting fantasy miniatures, and playing RPG videogames like Dragon Age and Pokémon. You could easily win her friendship forever by bringing her a cup of tea (not too strong, with milk, no sugar).

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Post #12 of the holiday bookroll for participants in Indie Authors Monthly.