by Sharolyn G. Brown

Roxal has spent her life using her Dream Traveler ability in service to Trebor’s gods, The Keepers. Even after she learns they aren’t all powerful like she was taught, she dutifully continues to manipulate an Earth woman named Lauren to do their bidding. Roxal’s content pretending to be a loyal follower, until her mate’s activities with a rebel faction put both of their lives in jeopardy.

Meanwhile on Earth, Lauren is struggling to find balance at work and at home. To make matters worse, she develops an acute case of insomnia which disrupts her life. While trying to cure her condition, Lauren discovers that not only do aliens exist, but that she’s been in contact with one for most of her life. And that’s just for starters.

Now Lauren’s world is turned upside down. And Roxal has to figure out if she can harness the survival instincts which before told her to hide and use it to now fight for her survival.

In the dark, with their sleeping unit’s covering pulled up to their necks, Roxal placed her hands against Edo’s naked stomach and used them to communicate.

What has happened? Roxal asked in the hand signal language Edo had taught her. Why are the Reps looking for traitors now?

I am not sure, exactly. I thought it too dangerous to meet with my Resistor contacts after the assembly. But... he paused during his response.

But what? she prodded.

Roxal, you have always asked that I not give you details because you did not want to get involved. The questions you are asking will get you involved.

This time Roxal paused before answering Edo because he was right. Even after her moment of defiance and after learning their gods were fake, and that her mission with Lauren was a lie, and that she was actually a slave, Roxal had asked him to not give her any details on the activities of the Resistors. She had thought that by not knowing any of the details about the Resistors, she could keep herself safe by denying membership. However, today had shown her otherwise. The sight of the Helper pleading for her life while declaring her innocence had shown Roxal that there was no such thing as being safe.

She finally admitted to herself, that as a slave to The Keepers and the Reps, her life was forfeit from the moment she was created. Appeasing her gods and the Reps could keep her alive. But if they ever decided that she should die, she now knew there was nothing she could say or do to stop it.


-What inspired you to become a writer?

I’ve always told myself stories; I just never figured anyone would be interested in hearing them. Then I read an interview with Stephenie Meyer. And when she said essentially the same thing, it gave me the idea that maybe people would be interested. Next, I was reading a novel by Octavia Butler and the dedication said ‘To Lynn – write.' Lynn is my nickname, so it truly felt like it was sign. I started writing about my weird idea, and it became a novel.

-If you could visit your book’s world for a day, what one thing would you do?

I would want to go to my alien planet, Trebor. I had all of these ideas about what the planet would look like, and I would love to see them in real life.

-Give us a fun or interesting fact you learned researching this book.

This fact isn’t fun, but I definitely found it interesting. There’s a part in the story where a computer is being hacked. So, I looked up information on hacking on Google. In one article it talked about how long it would take to figure out a password using the brute force method, generating every possible combination of passwords for a given number of characters.

Well, it really shocked me that for an 8 character password, if you only used lowercase letters, it could be cracked, on average, in 2.42 days. Whereas if you use all characters (uppercase, lowercase, and special characters), that same 8 character password would take 2.1 centuries, on average. Yes, by adding one capital letter and one special character, like an *, you increase the amount of time it takes to brute force hack a password from days to centuries.

And yes, that made me start changing all of my passwords

-Which of your characters would you go out for drinks and/or pizza with?

I’d probably go out for drinks with Lauren. She’s a pretty driven person. And now, there’s this secret world that she finds out about. I’d love to hear what she thinks about it, and about the choices she has to make.

-What do you enjoy reading in your free time?

I mainly read sci-fi and fantasy in my free time. I love reading about other worlds, or paranormal abilities, or interesting twists on our world. Occasionally I’ll read non-fiction books like Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner and Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell. I enjoy books like these because they help me understand how people think. And knowing how people think helps me to write better characters.

-Is there a genre you could never write? Which and why?

I could never write non-fiction or historical sci-fi. It’s much easier for me to dream up new things and places than to have to restrict myself to historical fact. I have a lot of respect for writers who can do this.


Sharolyn G. Brown is a lifelong science fiction and fantasy fan who decided the best way to deal with all of the characters in her head was to give them stories and put them in a book. She lives with her husband in Houston, Texas where she divides her time between working, writing, and spending time with him.

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  1. Good morning, Mary. Thank you for hosting me today. I look forward to connecting with your readers.

  2. Great interview, I enjoyed reading it :)

    1. Thank you, Victoria. Glad you enjoyed the interview.

  3. Replies
    1. Thank you, Rita. I'm glad you liked the excerpt.

  4. Really enjoyed the excerpt.

  5. Thank you, Mary, for hosting me today. And thank you, everyone, for your comments.

  6. Congrats on the tour and thanks for the chance to win :)

    1. Thank you, Lisa. And thank you for following the tour.


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