Guest blog by Cheryl Brooks, author of Rebel
I was given these topics to choose from for my guest post here on Love Romance Passion.
- Interstellar homelessness
- Refugees and the Homeless
- Heroines as Bait
Since none of them look easy, I’m going to respond to all three and hope for the best. 😉
These questions undoubtedly stem from themes present in the latest installment in my Cat Star Chronicles series, Rebel. If you’ve never read any of the series, suffice it to say that my Zetithian guys are so hot that an extremely rich and insanely jealous man, Rutger Grekkor, blew up their planet after his wife, Amelyana, took a Zetithian lover. Two, actually. After Grekkor killed the first lover, Amelyana went to Zetith in search of another.
Why would she do that? What makes Zetithians so hot? Some say it’s their feline characteristics. They have fangs, glowing vertical pupils, and they can purr. They also have pointed ears and upswept eyebrows like Star Trek’s Mr. Spock. But it’s really their sexual abilities that make them so irresistible — and addicting.
Rebel’s hero, Onca, was only a baby when Zetith was destroyed by Grekkor’s Nedwut henchmen—a rather nasty, wolf-like race of hunters who will basically do anything for a buck. Amelyana did her best to save some of the children from the holocaust. Onca was one of those she saved, which brings me to the first topic:
- Interstellar Homelessness.
It isn’t as simple as it sounds, flying through space with no place to call home. Lots of fictional characters have done it. Case in point, Han Solo in Star Wars. But did he ever mention where he was from? Nope. Not in the movies, anyway. I read a few of the related novels, and one of them mentions that the red stripe on the side of his pants leg is the Corellian Blood Stripe, which “wasn’t given for perfect attendance.” Therefore, one would assume that he was Corellian. But did he ever go there and visit his parents? Hmm…don’t think so. Han’s ship was his home, which is the same kind of homelessness my Zetithian refugees experienced.
Unlike the citizens of Alderaan, who “cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced,” the people of Zetith knew they were about to be obliterated, and there wasn’t a thing they could do about it. After ensuring that the natives had no means of getting off the planet, Grekkor’s minions redirected an asteroid to collide with Zetith. Then Grekkor put a bounty on any offworld survivors in order to rid the galaxy of any remaining members of that species. Yeah. He was pissed at them, and he had the means to retaliate on a massive scale. Any remaining Zetithians were rendered homeless in a way that none of us can even begin to comprehend. Not only were their homes destroyed, but their entire world. And that brings us to the second topic:
- Refugees and the Homeless
When I first began writing the Cat Star Chronicles, I based the series on six members of a military unit who were captured near the end of the war in which Zetith was destroyed and sold into slavery. But during the course of writing those six books, I was asked to write three more. I needed more Zetithians, so I came up with the idea that a hundred or so children were rescued from Zetith. At the time, I didn’t give a great deal of thought to the logistics of such an endeavor, but just imagine two adult couples caring for a hundred kids, some of whom were only babies. Granted, many of the children were old enough to help care for the smaller ones, but they flew around in space for twenty-five years!
Where did they find food? In Star Trek, Gene Roddenberry solved that dilemma with food replicators. But he also thought that living people could be “beamed” from one place to another. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love Star Trek, but I can’t quite wrap my head around the idea that a living being could be dissolved to the atomic level in one place and reformed in another, alive and kicking. Not buying it. Food replication might be more feasible, but I’m going to assume that Amelyana had to send someone down to a planet now and then on a resupplying mission. Money wouldn’t have been too much of an issue since she probably relieved her dear husband of a hefty chunk of change when she commandeered one of his starships.
And now, more than twenty-five years have passed. Grekkor’s death has set the Zetithians free and made them rich. Onca has grown up on that starship and has been educated in his own culture as well as others, including Earth’s history and traditions.
Not long before Grekkor’s death, Kimcasha Shrovenach, a Zetithian child living on the planet Rhylos with her family, was orphaned by a band of Nedwut bounty hunters. Since the age of ten, she has been living on the streets of Damenk on the planet Rhylos, hiding from unknown and unseen terrors. Her only friends are other street people, and now, some of her buddies have gone missing, which brings us to the third topic:
- Heroines as Bait.
With no other options, Kim uses herself as bait to discover where her friends have gone. But she isn’t captured by the Herpatronian thug who accosts her, she is rescued by Onca—and she isn’t happy about it. Poor Onca. His one and only stab at being a hero, and the damsel in distress nearly bites his head off. But wait! She’s Zetithian, a very rare and unsuspected find. Onca isn’t looking for love, but he is willing to help Kim locate her friends, as well as helping her to receive her share of the trust fund established for any surviving Zetithians. As the attraction between them grows, Onca begins to realize that he is the one who must use himself as bait, perhaps even sacrificing his own life to rescue the homeless friends of an adorably feisty young Zetithian woman he is convinced would be better off without him.
So now, the roles are reversed and the hero is the one at risk. At risk of losing his home, his wealth, his freedom, and certainly his heart.
I know which version I like best. Onca is my hero!
He helped to find her kidnapped friends. Will he let her steal his heart?
Kimcasha has lived by her wits since she lost her family when she was eight years old. So when three of her friends vanish, she has no fear about using herself as kidnapper’s bait, until a stranger foils her plot…
After ten years of selling his services in a brothel, Onca has decided to retire. A refugee of planet Zetith, he has no family, no surname, and no woman—until he rescues a young homeless girl from a kidnapper. Onca helps Kim find her friends, but as their intense attraction deepens, he begins feeling too jaded for someone so innocent. It’s up to Kim to convince him otherwise…
Author Bio: Cheryl Brooks is a former critical care nurse turned romance writer. Her Cat Star Chronicles series includes Slave, Warrior, Rogue, Outcast, Fugitive, Hero, Virgin, Stud, Wildcat, and the current release, Rebel. She is a member of the RWA and IRWA and lives with her husband and sons near Bloomfield, Indiana.
Author Website: http://www.cherylbrooksonline.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/CherylCatMaster @CherylCatMaster
Giveaway: One print copy of Rebel by Cheryl Brooks. Open to US and CAN readers. Enter by leaving a comment. Ends 8/8/14.