Thursday, March 20, 2014

Under Nameless Stars Blog Tour: Guest Post + Giveaway

I'm thrilled today to be a part of the promotional blog tour for Under Nameless Stars, the second book in the Zenn Scarlett series by Christian Schoon. As this series involves all sorts of fascinating science fiction-related things, like traveling through space and life as an exoveterinarian, I thought I'd ask Christian if his leading lady Zenn had any good tips for those of us who have yet to experience space travel for ourselves.

There's a fabulous competition and giveaway associated with this tour, so be sure and check out the bottom of the post for all the details as well as a link to the full list of participating blogs. Welcome to Supernatural Snark Christian!

Hi and thanks for letting Zenn and I tie up the “Under Nameless Stars Blog-Tour-and-Party-Shuttle Craft” to the mooring-mast high above the Supernatural Snark Nature Park/Bookish Emporium. 

Without further ado: Zenn Scarlett’s Top 5 Rules for Interstellar Travel (when you find yourself with no ticket for said travel. Caution: may contain minor spoilers. Proceed at your own risk.)
• When smuggling oneself aboard a starliner inside a crate-cage that also contains a large sandhog boar, double check to ensure that your sedation field generator is in good repair. A faulty seda-field unit could allow the sandhog to regain consciousness at an inopportune moment. As any certified exoveterinarian will tell you, sandhogs are unpredictable by nature and frequently aggressive. Since these creatures attain mature body lengths of over twelve feet and weights in excess of two thousand pounds, being confined inside a crate with a fully awake animal of this species could result in serious bodily harm or death.

• After successfully smuggling oneself aboard a starliner (whether by cage-crate or other means), take immediate steps to secure a discrete location in which to conceal yourself.  One optimal solution: befriend, or have yourself befriended by, a fellow passenger who actually has a ticket and a cabin for the duration of the voyage. If this fellow traveler happens to have a refreshingly jaunty sense of humor and also be wealthy enough to afford a luxury suite of rooms, all the better.

• In the highly unlikely event you’re invited to visit the Indra chamber of the starliner, inquire whether the ship’s captain has informed the Indra groom of your visit to the pilot room. Indra grooms are notoriously protective of their chambers and are likely to resent any distracting intrusions, especially around the time period when they enter into their trance-like communion with the Indra. (For those unfamiliar: Indra, also known as Stonehorses, are 700-foot-long vacuum-dwelling creatures that have evolved the capacity to “tunnel” through the space-time continuum, propelling starliners across vast distances in mere nano-seconds. Indra grooms direct the Indra in these travels).

• In the starliner dining saloons, pay careful attention to the small placards designating which foods are suitable for consumption by which species of passenger. The placards are color-coded for easy referral. In no instance confuse the green of the “Safe for Humanoids” placard with the somewhat similar blue-green “Safe for Zeta Reticulani” placard. Human travelers making this mistake have been known to spend the remainder of their journey locked in their cabin’s bathrooms emitting bovine-like moo-ing vocalizations.

• Be aware that should your starship fall prey to what is commonly referred to as “The Vanishing Indra-Ship Crisis,” your starliner’s company will deny responsibility for any liability relating to this event. Since the vanishing of these ships has been designated “An Act of the Gods” by the controlling legal authorities of the Local Systems Accord, your surviving relatives will be unable to file a claim for damages resulting from your loss and/or death. However, should you at some future time re-appear, most starliner companies will compensate you with free second-class passage to your home planet from the point of your re-appearance.
• • • • • • • • • • • •


Zenn Scarlett’s novice year of exoveterinarian training on Mars isn’t quite going to plan…

After facing a plot to destroy her school and its menagerie of alien patients, could things get worse? Yes, they could: her absent father has been kidnapped.

Desperate to find him, Zenn stows away aboard the Helen of Troy, a starliner powered by one of the immense, dimension-jumping beasts known as Indra. With her is Liam Tucker, a Martian boy who is either very fond of her, very dangerous to her, or both. On the verge of learning the truth about her father, Zenn’s quest suddenly catapults her and Liam thousands of light years beyond known space, and into the dark heart of a monstrous conspiracy.

Braving a gauntlet of lethal environments and unearthly life forms, Zenn’s courage is tested as never before. With the fate of entire worlds in the balance, she is racing headlong into trouble… again.

• • • • • • • • • • • 


Christian Schoon grew up in Minnesota, and worked his way through college in a succession of rock bands before earning his degree from the U of Nebraska-Lincoln School of Journalism.

Following a stint as an in-house copywriter/scriptwriter at Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, he supplied freelance copy for the entertainment industry and scriptwriting for live-action and animated TV.

Currently, he writes from his 150-year-old farmstead in Iowa which he shares with a fluctuating number of horses (generally less than a dozen, but not always), 30 or so cats, a dog, three ferrets and a surprisingly tolerant wife.

The Zenn Scarlett books are his first novels, however he admits to being an unrepentant fan of science fiction and fantasy ever since discovering the tales of Edgar Rice Burroughs in the fifth grade.

• • • • • • • • • • • • 


Thanks to the amazing team at Strange Chemistry, I have a really fun giveaway to share with you all today. Up for grabs are copies (either ebook or physical) of both Zenn Scarlett and Under Nameless Stars, plus a Name Your Own Star Gift Package! To enter, you must answer the below question in the Rafflecopter form. Each tour stop has a question associated with it, so be sure and check out the full list of participating blogs for more chances to win!

The answers to the questions can be found in the book's blurb and author profile (seen above) as well as the author's blog and an extract from the book. Good luck everyone!

TODAY'S QUESTION (Question 9) :

Liam's shirt is made of

a. Synth-cloth
b. Plastic
c. Hemp-cloth
d. Unbleached cotton

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Oo I saw this series before and always wanted to read it! I Love these Travel Tips :))

  2. I only skimmed through the travel tips cause I'm currently reading Under Nameless Stars and I don't want to spoil myself! Will come back once I'm done!

  3. Sandhogs. *snort* I don't think I'd want to hide in a sandhog pen. Mary=smushed by sandhog=sad.

  4. Fun travel tips! This isn't normally something I would pick up on my own but it does sound like a fun read!

  5. Ha this is such a hilarious post Jenny, I was especially laughing hard at point four and the part of emitting bovine-like moo-ing vocalizations! I haven't heard of this series before, but I love this cover, its so pretty and of course I'm rather willing to give anything science fiction related a go!

  6. Yup, those are some important travel tips! This series isn't up my alley but I do enjoy learning more about it.

  7. Just wanted to say thanks again for letting me drop in and share some tips to ensure that everyone gets the most out of their next excursion into the cosmos. And, good luck to any who enter the contest! Cheers!

  8. That was a great guest post, Jenny. I had only heard of this book from few reviewers, but after this smart post, I've added the first book to my never ending to-read list! The covers are so pretty!
    Thanks for sharing.

  9. I love the five rules and they made me very curious about this series. I love it. Adding book one to my list, thanks so much guys!

  10. "One optimal solution: befriend, or have yourself befriended by, a fellow passenger who actually has a ticket and a cabin for the duration of the voyage. If this fellow traveler happens to have a refreshingly jaunty sense of humor and also be wealthy enough to afford a luxury suite of rooms, all the better." haha. This might be very handy indeed :D How I love this cover. This seems like a wonderful series. Thanks so much for sharing, you two!

  11. Thanks for the entertaining Interstellar Travel tips! I'll keep them in mind for my next trip to Mars. ;) Thanks for the chance!

    Carmel @ Rabid Reads

  12. Thanks for the giveaway! This looks pretty good!

  13. What a fun post. I am usually a fan of Strange Chemistry titles. I have had my eye on this one and you just reminded me I need to check it out.

  14. Oh, god, is it time for this already?! I was thrilled when I first saw the cover, it's so gorgeous. And I enjoyed the first book immensely, so I really can't wait to see how it continues.
    Oh, and interstellar travel sounds awfully dangerous. I prefer to stay firmly on Earth, but I'll definitely follow Zenn's journey. :)

  15. Fun post and I'm becoming more and more interested in Strange Chemistry books. Love the tips. Sounds like some great world building!

  16. Oh I loved Zenn Scarlett!! And Christian Schoon's sense of humor. He was on my blog last year for Zenn Scarlett. I didn't even know about the second book. I love the name!! Can't wait to see how Zenn gets out of her situation.... Great post!

  17. I'm such a sucker for a story on a spaceship!

    THat's for stopping by my blog. I used to show on the Quarter Horse circuit, but more recently, I'm hoping to hit a few hunter shows. When I get a new horse (after my current boy gets retired one day), I really want to try eventing.

  18. Ok, that's one pretty cover! I'm really a fan of books set in space (the nerd in me, you know), so I'm definitely intrigued. I've never heard of this one before though, and the premise sounds great. Sign me up!

  19. I don't know this series! I'm going to have to go and look it up now. I didn't' want to read for possible spoilers. BUt I like that 2 books are out already!

  20. Adults aged 18-24 have craze in my to see the beauty of the world specially America and i think vacation is the best way to visit the world for long time bus from columbus to new york city if you want to go for the Us tour its have opportunity at this vacation