Earlier this week, Fabulous Publisher Babe ™ put Last of the Immortals up for pre-order on all the usual suspects. Several of you went and already pre-ordered. That’s even more awesome. And I’m seeing people wander aimlessly through the stacks, reading things. Hopefully, you will find a little bit everything and that will fill your tummy with goodness.
So where are we at?
Queen of the Pirates ends on a cliff-hanger (because seriously? that was enough emotion for one novel). Jessica has defeated the pirates, killed Ian Zhao, vanquished Jing Du, and thwarted The Red Admiral. She has returned home hurt, scarred, and searching for what her future will hold, having been through so much and being filled with misgivings.
Volume III picks up 40 hours later. We’re in motion. The Red Admiral is taking his battle squadron to Ballard, and he’s going to kill Suvi, the last of the original AIs from the Concord era. The Last of the Immortals. Jessica has to stop him, or die trying.
I had a LOT of fun writing this one. It’s got Jessica. It’s got Moirrey. It’s got Tomas Kigali. It’s got Nils Kasum and Tadej Horvat. It’s even got a little Loncar, my favorite bumbling wannabe villain. It’s got action, pulse-pounding, and combat. It’s got Valse d’Glaive. The whole last third or so of the novel is one battle sequence, Gotterdammerung. It ends with twists that I hope will surprise and entertain the average jaded reader. (Not you folks, being icons of purity and literary aficionados to the being…)
This novel turned out to be almost as long as Queen (85,000 to 92,000 words), so about a third again as long as Auberon. It neatly wraps up the first Jessica Keller trilogy, (yes, first.), and sets the stage for the next trilogy, which I will start writing in the winter, after I finish off the next Science Officer novella (#3, The Gilded Cage), and do some small pieces for other projects that won’t see the light of day until the middle of 2016, give or take.
Something special about Immortals is that it has Suvi. We introduced her in The Science Officer, and at the time she was just a minor character along to provide comic relief and a straight man. Who knew a year or more ago that she would evolve into one of my primary muses? She’s a little over a century old in Javier’s time. She is a little over six millennia old when she meets Jessica Keller at the Battle of Ballard. In between, Doyle Iwakuma (The Librarian) and Henri Baudin (The Story Road). Here, she gets to interact with both Jessica and Moirrey.
I think it turned out really well.
I hope I don’t spoil the surprise when I say that the fourth Jessica Keller novels will be entitled Goddess of War. I’m hard at work on the research necessary for turning out a story with accurate and entertaining details. Especially one that takes place in about 13,443 CE (it being 2,015 CE as I write these words.) Much has changed, but as we learn more about our own past and look back 10,000 years, we see how little really has changed, once you get past the accouterments of technology and being looking at humans as people. Jessica is people. Moirrey is people. Suvi is people.
That’s all I really have to cover today. I have a novel available for pre-order. I’m jazzed because it brings Jessica to a resting point on her road to the next steps. It should bring you the reader some manner of satisfaction that the story is rounded off and you know what happened. And you have the promise of more story as soon as I can write enough things to shut up some of the other voices that have gotten a wee bit jealous of all the attention Jessica got while they patiently waited their turn.
As always, feel free to send me notes and friend me on FB. Newsletters come out quarterly, unless I have something extra special to announce (nothing planned, yet…) and the next one if due Nov 1. Always looking forward to questions, comments, ideas, refutations. Got a lovely response to last week’s blog, and it just made my whole day. So, thanks, Barry.
shade and sweet water,
west of the mountains, WA