The Queen’s Triumph: Chapter 4

Part of the serial story The Queen’s Triumph

The Queen's Triumph, Chapter 4. A space opera serial. Image is a colorful alien planet with two moons.

Surprise! Because this chapter has been edited for content, and the next one is a little shorter, you get two chapters this week!

CHAOS REIGNING is on sale for $1.99.

"…this blaster-filled space adventure… lands with a bang" —The Seattle Review of Books

"…resoundingly romantic…" —Booklist

"Jessie Mihalik is an author to watch." —Ilona Andrews, #1 NYT Bestselling Author

Also, the Chaos Reigning ebook is on sale for the first time this week!

It’s only $1.99 (down from $11.99!!) in the US (international prices may vary), so if you’ve been meaning to pick up a copy, this week would be an excellent time! Please spread the word. :)

Get your copy:
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Valentin and I spent the rest of dinner on more pleasant topics. As the meal came to a close, anticipation pushed my pulse faster. Finally, Valentin stood and offered me a hand. I slid my fingers into his and sparks danced up my arm. He helped me to my feet, but made no move to pull me closer, despite the heat in his gaze.

“Would you like to check out your ship now?”

I nodded wordlessly. Truth be told, my ship wasn’t the only thing I hoped to check out tonight. I sent Ari a message explaining that I was taking Valentin for a private flight in Ardia, so ground control wouldn’t try to stop us when I took off.

“Should you let Luka know?”

“Already done.”

We headed for my private hangar. On the way, I reached out and threaded my fingers through Valentin’s. He smiled at me and my stomach flipped over. Giddy excitement mixed with nervousness, but as soon as I set foot on the ship, my nerves settled. Proof of Valentin’s care surrounded me, an unmistakable statement.

And I would show him exactly how much I cared, too.

But first, I had to get us in the air. I was dying to get a feel for the ship that would become my home away from home. I led him to the bridge. Instead of letting him go, I pulled him closer. “Thank you,” I whispered, trying to put the enormity of my feelings into those two words.

Valentin’s mouth curved into a tender smile. “You’re welcome.”

Continue reading “The Queen’s Triumph: Chapter 4”

The Queen’s Triumph: Chapter 3

Part of the serial story The Queen’s Triumph

The Queen's Triumph: Chapter 3. Two wine glasses with lights in the background.

Imogen waited for us at the door to the guest suite. She had deep brown skin, striking cheekbones, and short, curly black hair. She must’ve come from work because she had on a long-sleeved purple shirt, black utility pants, and heavy boots. Even in her work clothes she looked gorgeous and harmless which led people to assume she was harmless—much to their regret.

If I hadn’t been paying attention, I wouldn’t have noticed the tiny change in her expression when she spotted Luka. She was playing it very cool, as was he, but her eyes were just a tiny bit brighter when she smiled at us in greeting.

“Imogen, you remember Valentin and Luka?” I asked. When she nodded, I continued, “I’m assigning you as their security liaison while they’re here. If you need anything, contact me or Ari directly.”

“Will do.” She turned to the two men. “It’s nice to see you again.”

“You, too,” Valentin said.

Luka grunted in acknowledgment, and Imogen rolled her eyes. “I see you haven’t learned how to use your words, yet.” She gave him a smile edged with mischievousness. “Let me show you the suite’s security features so you can prevent your principal from being murdered while you sleep.”

Continue reading “The Queen’s Triumph: Chapter 3”

The Queen’s Triumph: Chapter 2

Part of the serial story The Queen’s Triumph

The Queen's Triumph, a space opera serial. Image includes a futuristic spaceship in a gray hangar.

“Do you like it?” Valentin asked quietly from somewhere behind me.

It took two tries before I could swallow past the lump in my throat and force the words out. “What is this?”

I heard him shift. “It’s not perfect, but I tried to get it as close as I could remember. I know nothing will ever replace Invictia, and I’m so fucking sorry you lost your ship because of me. But I’m hoping that you’ll accept Ardia as a poor replacement.” He paused, then tacked on, “Surprise.”

That did surprise a half laugh, half sob out of me. I looked around the room with vision gone watery. It wasn’t an exact replica, but it was such a close match that Valentin must’ve personally specified every detail from memory—and he’d only been on my ship once.

In the soft sunset light still streaming in through the open door to the hall, it was incredibly, unimaginably perfect, and I wanted it more than I’d ever wanted almost anything.

But it was far, far too much.

This ship would easily buy four or five ships of Invictia’s caliber—and that was before you added whatever special stealth technology the ship had.

The door swished closed as Valentin moved farther into the room. He stopped in front of me, expression shuttered. He gently touched my damp cheek. “I apologize. I just thought…” He shook his head. “It doesn’t matter. You’re welcome to pick whatever ship you like, of course. It doesn’t have to be this one.”

“It’s perfect,” I admitted softly. “I love everything about it. But I can’t possibly acc—”

Valentin interrupted me. “If you don’t accept, then Ardia will sit, unused, in a berth somewhere. I already told you that I’m not replacing Korax, and I won’t sell Ardia. I had this ship trimmed out just for you, so you’d be doing me—and the ship—a favor by accepting.”

I arched an eyebrow, back on firmer ground and glad that he hadn’t made a big deal of my emotional breakdown. “Are you trying to guilt me into accepting a ship?”

He grinned at me. “Yes. Is it working?”

Continue reading “The Queen’s Triumph: Chapter 2”

The Queen’s Triumph: Chapter 1

Part of the serial story The Queen’s Triumph

The Queen's Triumph. A space opera serial.

Your patience has been rewarded! At long last, The Queen’s Triumph serial has begun. :) Chapters will be posted weekly, barring any disasters.

As a reminder, the serial is a rough draft, which means it has typos and grammatical errors. I’m still writing it (yes, still), so it’s also subject to change (sometimes drastically!) during edits. If the serial format isn’t your jam, you can preorder the edited novella (out Dec 8)!

If you haven’t read The Queen’s Gambit and The Queen’s Advantage, you are going to be a little lost because this series follows Samara and Valentin across books, so go binge the previous novellas and then come back. :)

Happy Friday!

The trick to meeting an enemy at a time and location set by a traitor was this: don’t. I stalked through Arx trying to find a way around such a universal truth, but the plain white halls of the Rogue Coalition’s capital did not offer up any suggestions.

The meeting would be a trap, and skipping it entirely was the only way to guarantee safety. Unfortunately, that wasn’t an option. Commander Tony Adams—formerly of the Quint Confederacy but disavowed, supposedly, by the current Chairwoman—had attacked my people, destroyed my ship, and threatened the tentative peace treaty in the works between the universe’s two superpowers.

He needed to die—slowly.

I just had to figure out how to go to the meeting and survive. And, ideally, how to go alone.

I mulled over the problem as I moved through the familiar halls. Moving helped me think, and being out and about also gave people a chance to air their grievances before they became problems. My frequent availability was one of the reasons I was still queen after five years, despite ruling a group of people who took grave exception to rules.

I stopped in the market, and Zita shouted from her bakery, “Samara! If you don’t kill Eddie, I’m going to do it for you.”

She poked her head out of the building and scowled at me. She was in her forties, with pale skin and curly red hair. I was happy to see that her cheeks were returning to their usual cherubic fullness thanks to the new food supply.

Zita was Arx’s main baker, and Eddie was our main chef. They’d been locked in a fierce competition to produce the best pastry, and Zita was kicking his ass. She had years of experience on him, so it didn’t surprise me that he’d tried a new tactic.

“What has he done now?” I asked.

“He’s been in my supplies! As if I wouldn’t notice that salt and sugar aren’t the same thing.”

“Did you catch it before you used them?”

She looked mortally offended. “Of course!”

I laughed and raised a placating hand. “Okay, I’ll talk to him. Don’t start a murder spree just yet.”

She harrumphed at me, but finally inclined her head and went back to work. I stayed and chatted with a few other people before moving on, but as soon as I was alone again, my mind returned to the problem of the meeting.

No matter how far I walked, I couldn’t figure out a solution because Arietta Mueller, my best friend and head of security, would never allow me to track Adams solo, no matter how well suited to the task I was.

I’d tried to leave my past behind, but it kept coming back. But I’d take every skill I’d ever learned if it meant keeping those close to me safe.

And keeping them safe sometimes meant keeping them in the dark.

Continue reading “The Queen’s Triumph: Chapter 1”

Happy Book Birthday to Emerald Blaze!

Emerald Blaze by Ilona Andrews is out today! I got to read an early copy of this book back in April and it broke me out of the pandemic reading slump I was in at the time. We’d been in lockdown for over a month at that point, and I thought it felt like forever. (Hahahahahahasob)

But then Ilona graciously offered me an early copy of EB (full disclosure: we’re friends! I’m biased!), and I tore through it in a few days after not finishing anything for weeks.

It is so good. It’s I should clearly give up this writing thing and go live in a cave in the woods because I can never hope to write this well good. I’m jealous of all of you who get to read it for the very first time.

As a reminder, this is the fifth book in the Hidden Legacy series, and the second book in Catalina’s trilogy. You’ll definitely want to at least read Sapphire Flames before this one. And if you have somehow missed Ilona Andrews’s previous books, then you have a whole host of awesome awaiting you.

More info on EB:

Emerald Blaze Cover. A dark-haired white woman in a long green dress holding a sword next to a dark-haired white man in a white shirt with an open color and rolled up sleeves holding a pistol.

Ilona Andrews, #1 New York Times bestselling author, continues her spellbinding series set in the Hidden Legacy world where magic controls everything…except the hearts of those who wield it.

As Prime magic users, Catalina Baylor and her sisters have extraordinary powers—powers their ruthless grandmother would love to control. Catalina can earn her family some protection working as deputy to the Warden of Texas, overseeing breaches of magic law in the state, but that has risks as well. When House Baylor is under attack and monsters haunt her every step, Catalina is forced to rely on handsome, dangerous Alessandro Sagredo, the Prime who crushed her heart. 

The nightmare that Alessandro has fought since childhood has come roaring back to life, but now Catalina is under threat. Not even his lifelong quest for revenge will stop him from keeping her safe, even if every battle could be his last. Because Catalina won’t rest until she stops the use of the illicit, power-granting serum that’s tearing their world apart.

Happy Reading!

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