FLICKERS OF FORTUNE
by S. R. Cronin
Seeing the future is a nuisance. Ariel does her best to shut it out, until she stumbles on a group of clairvoyants using their talents to get extremely rich. They have her attention. Then she meets a second bunch obsessed with surviving an upcoming near extinction event.
Both factions seem dangerous and, to be honest, a little crazy. They don’t get along. As they learn more about her, however, each group decides Ariel’s particular abilities are hard to find and exactly what they need.
There is no possible way to help them both. Aligning with either may be a bad idea, but staying out of this mess is no longer an option.
“I’d really like to think about it.” She said it as calmly as she could while she crinkled the papers between her thumb and index finger, trying to learn more.
“We’d like to get the paperwork started before the end of the week,” the man from HR said. “Tomorrow is Friday.”
“Right. Let me take this information home and I’ll give you my answer in the morning.”
As she stepped outside for air, she had a pretty good idea of what her answer would be. The nice man from HR hadn’t noticed her placing her hand against the wall after handling his manila folder, and he had no way of knowing it was to steady herself against a kaleidoscope of new visions rushing at her while a tiny percent probability turned into an almost certainty.
Ariel muttered it as she made her way out of the building, her eyes half closed as she tried to calm her mind.
She sat down on the cold concrete steps to steady herself.
“Holy crap.” She couldn’t quit saying it.
What Clyde didn’t know, couldn’t know, would never know, was that in making his proposal he probably affected the fate of the world. Many weeks from now, Ariel was likely to discover she had a chance to play a role in the survival of the human race. She couldn’t see how, she couldn’t see when, and as the flashes of little specks of her most distant visions whirled their way through her brain, all she got with any clarity was that her going to Ireland mattered. A lot.
Yes, she ought to accept the transfer.
Yet again, I found myself enthralled in a book of this excellent series. This time, the power in question was seeing the future, and the various aspects to how it worked were just amazing. Combined with more truly interesting characters and another look into problems plaguing the world, and I will say it again: I can’t recommend this series enough.
Ariel was a fantastic heroine. The fact that she is a redhead got me humming Part of that World and Kiss the Girl, but I digress. She’s a take-no-prisoners person, but she’s also willing to bend to get what she wants. I appreciated her modern view on being a woman. “This didn’t have to end in sex, but it probably would.” Being aware is the first step, right?
The bad guy in this book seriously set my teeth on edge. He wasn’t organizing a human trafficking ring or trying to blow up airplanes like the villains in previous books, but his world-domination outlook on accumulating wealth was both scary and disgusting. His willingness to do whatever it took to meet his goals without caring who got hurt in the process was brilliant and terrifying.
As always, the plot was complex and intriguing. Even knowing books often end well for the good guys, there were moments I wondered. One of the best things about this series is that it’s never easy for the characters. The situations they are put in and the decisions they have to make are difficult, and I love that. The fantasy elements are icing on a chocolate cake. I look forward to more installments.
ABOUT S. R.
Sherrie Roth grew up in Western Kansas thinking there was no place in the universe more fascinating than outer space. After her mother vetoed astronaut as a career ambition, she went on to study journalism and physics in hopes of becoming a science writer.
She published her first science fiction short story long ago, and then waited a lot of tables while she looked for inspiration for the next story. When it finally came, it declared to her it had to be a whole book, nothing less. One night, while digesting this disturbing piece of news, she drank way too many shots of ouzo with her boyfriend. She woke up thirty-one years later demanding to know what was going on.
The boyfriend, who she had apparently long since married, asked her to calm down and explained how, in a fit of practicality, she had gone back to school and gotten a degree in geophysics and spent the last 28 years interpreting seismic data in the oil industry. The good news, according to Mr. Cronin, was that she had found it to be entertaining and ridiculously well-paying. The bad news was the two of them had still managed to spend almost all of the money. Apparently she was now Mrs. Cronin, and further good news was that they had produced three wonderful children whom they loved, even though, to be honest, that was where a lot of the money had gone. Even better news was that Mr. Cronin turned out to be a warm-hearted, encouraging sort who was happy to see her awake and ready to write. “It’s about time,” were his exact words.
Sherrie Cronin discovered that over the ensuing decades Sally Ride had already managed to become the first woman in space and apparently had done a fine job of it. No one, however, had written the book that had been in Sherrie’s head for decades. The only problem was, the book informed her it had now grown into a six book collection. Sherrie decided she better start writing it before it got any longer. She’s been wide awake ever since, and writing away.
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S.R. Cronin will award a $10 Amazon/BN gift card + a digital copy of Layers of Light to a randomly drawn commenter. a Rafflecopter giveaway