Monday, January 21, 2008

Shades of Dark—Sneak Peek #1

I know, July seems a long way off to you. Me, too (even if my weather is likely more July-ish than yours right now). However, I'm very excited about my July 29th release from Bantam,Shades of Dark, which is the sequel to Gabriel's Ghost (2006 RITA Award Winner).

For two fugitive lovers, space has no haven,
no mercy, no light—only...

Before her court-martial, Captain Chasidah "Chaz" Bergren was the pride of the Sixth Fleet. Now she's a fugitive from the "justice" of a corrupt Empire. Along with her lover, the former monk, mercenary, and telepath Gabriel Ross Sullivan, Chaz hoped to leave the past light-years behind—until the news of her brother Thad's arrest and upcoming execution for treason. It's a ploy by Sully's cousin Hayden Burke to force them out of hiding and it works.

With a killer targeting human females and a renegade gen lab breeding jukor war machines, Chaz and Sully already had their hands full of treachery, betrayal—not to mention each other. Throw in Chaz's ex-husband, Imperial Admiral Philip Guthrie, and a Kyi-Ragkiril mentor out to seduce Sully and not just loyalties but lives are at stake. For when Sully makes a fateful choice changing their relationship forever, Chaz must also choose—between what duty demands and what her heart tells her she must do .

Since the first four chapters are already in the files section of my Yahoo Group(incentive to join, eh?), I'm going to post a peek from deeper in the book (Chapter 16):

The bridge's hatchlock thumped softly closed behind me.

Frowning, I twisted in my seat. We never sealed the bridge except for—

Del. All in black, like Sully always wore. Thermal shirt, dark pants but no long coat. I hadn't seen that coat since the first day he came on board. Except for that time in the Kyi.

He stepped toward me with an easy grace, his long silvery-blue hair pulled back in a braid.

"Problems?" I asked him.

He smiled and rested his hand on the back of my chair. I forced myself not to edge away but I was very aware of the pressure of my Stinger at my thigh. Which meant, very likely, so was he.

"Why do you equate me with problems, Chasidah? Perhaps I just crave the pleasure of your company."

"Where's Sully?"

"Ah, Gabriel is an excellent student. I could boast and say I'm an excellent guri, but the truth is, he is responsible for his success."

The hair on the back of my neck stood up.

Your helping Sully means a lot to him," I said, keeping all traces of emotion out of my voice, keeping my rattling duro-hards as still as I could. The man was reading me, sensing me. I couldn't feel it but I had no doubt.

"We were speaking of his appreciation earlier." His eyes were hooded. He slid his arm around the back of my chair, leaning closer.

This time I did edge away. "If there's something you want to talk to me about, I suggest you take a seat."

A whisper of heat stroked my neck then ran down my breasts.
I unhooked the safety strap with a jerk and pushed myself out of the chair. The Grizni on my wrist tingled. My pistol was one move away. "You're overstepping your bounds, Regarth," I said firmly. "I don't find your company pleasurable."

He leaned both forearms on the back of the chair, clasped his six-fingered hands together and looked at me, his smile wistful. "It's just culture and conditioning, lover. It has no real meaning. Not when I have worlds of delight to show you."

"I'm not interested."

"You love Gabriel. I understand that. And he loves you, angel. Oh, how he does. You're his greatest strength, his consummate addiction. But I can teach you ways to love him more. Make him love you more."

"The answer is no. It will be no tomorrow, no a week from now, and no a month from now. A year from now. The matter is now closed. If you raise it again, I will lock you in the brig."

He arched an eyebrow. "Is the bed in there big enough for two?"

Get off my bridge, Regarth. That's an order."

"Consider this." He unclasped his hands, splaying them apart. "I saved Philip Guthrie's life."

"We all worked to save Philip's life."

"What would you do, Chasidah Bergren Guthrie, to keep him alive?"

Fear shot through me. I couldn't help it. Fear and a rage so deep it burned worse than my hatred for Tage. I knew he felt it.

"I would kill you," I said tightly, "to keep him alive."

Del smiled lazily. "Interesting answer."

He straightened, took two steps slowly back and then turned and strode for the hatchway. It opened—illogically—with a flick of his hand in the air and a slight glittering of silver haze.

I stood by my chair, heart pounding, mouth dry, muscles rigid, hands fisted hard by my side, Grizni tingling with more intensity than it ever had before.

But it wasn't the Grizni I needed.

I rounded the chair quickly and headed for the ready room, slapping the palm pad so hard pain shot up my arm. The double doors opened. I punched my code in to the locked storage compartment recessed in the bulkhead and pulled out the rifle Philip had brought on board. The Kyi-killer.

I closed the storage compartment and slung the strap over my shoulder.

This was my answer. And his…

SHADES OF DARK, the sequel to Gabriel's Ghost, coming July 2008 from RITA award-winning author, Linnea Sinclair, and Bantam Books:

Something cascaded lightly through me—a gentling, a suffused glow. If love could be morphed into a physical element, this would be it. It was strength and yet it was vulnerability. It was all-encompassing and yet it was freedom. It was a wall of protection. It was wings of trust and faith.

It was Gabriel Ross Sullivan, answering the questions I couldn't ask. Not that everything would be okay, but that everything in his power would be done, and we'd face whatever outcomes there were together.


  1. Anonymous6:51 PM EST

    My family is clamoring for dinner, but to no avail. My dog is sadly pushing her dog dish across the floor with the last bits of strength her small body can muster. But how can I do something as mundane as make dinner when I become Chasidah whenever I read parts of this book? Linnea, I don't know how you do it, but I feel Chaz's pain, her confusion, her anger, her love for Sully. For that matter I love Sully! The emotion in this book is palpable- my heart rate speeds up and my knuckles turn white because I'm clenching my hands as I read. I seriously dislike real rollercoasters- but I can't wait for the thrilling ride this book will provide! Hurry up July!

  2. Hey Patty, thanks so much for posting! You should have seen me writing this book. I was a total wreck. It's really intense and things happend far beyond what I'd plotted. That's all I can say with getting into SPOILER territory. ;-)

    Go feed the dog. ~Linnea

  3. Cool stuff, especially some of the poetic passages. I really like that it's a romance between a long-term couple. Being a long-time married person, the boy-meets-girl romances are kind of, well, 'limited' from my point-of-view.

    I'm not crazy about the title. It's a little vague and doesn't tie in with the book it's a sequel of.

    Cover's nice.

  4. Hey Kimber An,
    I don't know if four months makes a long time couple... ;-)

    Title: I wasn't crazy about it because it was "Chasidah's Choice" in my head for so many years. But once you read the book, the title will make A LOT of sense and really work. It did for me. ;-) ~Linnea

  5. The cover looks so purty and sexy!
    Go Gabriel and Chaz!!
    How ever will I make it to July?!?!

  6. Anonymous7:30 PM EST

    qukvIn Gabriel's Ghost, doesn't Sully refer to his abilities as Ragkiril when he is talking to Chaz as the shades of darkness within himself? I couldn't find the exact reference in the book, but I seem to remember that at one point, he is frustrated and angry and hurt when he makes the statement. I like the alliteration of Chasidah's Choice better than Shades of Dark, but if the sequel is about the characters, primary and secondary, sifting through varying layers of good and evil, right and wrong, fact and stereotype, then I'm okay with the title.

  7. Patty, Gabriel does refer to the 'darkness that lives deep inside me' in Gabriel's Ghost, and that is the theme behind Shades of Dark. But without getting into spoilers, let's just say it has double meaning come book's end. ;-) ~Linnea

  8. Anonymous11:35 PM EST

    Hmmmmm...well, I'll have fun trying to figure it out and see if I get it right. Thanks, Linnea!