Tuesday, October 16, 2012

"Touched by an Alien"

Gini Koch lives in Hell's Orientation Area (aka Phoenix, AZ), works her butt off (sadly, not literally) by day, and writes by night with the rest of the beautiful people. She writes the fast, fresh and funny Alien/Katherine “Kitty” Katt series for DAW Books, the Necropolis Enforcement Files series, and the Martian Alliance Chronicles series for Musa Publishing. As G.J. Koch she writes the Alexander Outland series for Night Shade Books. She also writes under a variety of other pen names (including Anita Ensal, Jemma Chase, A.E. Stanton, and J.C. Koch), listens to rock music 24/7, and is a proud comics geek-girl willing to discuss at any time why Wolverine is the best superhero ever (even if Deadpool does get all the best lines). She speaks frequently on what it takes to become a successful author and other aspects of writing and the publishing business.

Koch applied the Page 69 Test to the first novel in her Alien/Katherine “Kitty” Katt series, and found the following:
When I was approached to do this test, it was for a later book in this series. But I looked, and that Page 69 definitely gave away some major spoilers. So, I requested to go back to the beginning and see what Page 69 of my first published novel, Touched by an Alien, would provide.

Katherine “Kitty” Katt has discovered that aliens exist on Earth -- they're here to protect and serve and as a side benefit, they're all gorgeous. Kitty's first experience with aliens -- she kills a newly formed and very dangerous superbeing with a Mont Blanc pen -- landed her on the national news. When you see your child on the national news stopping a “terrorist”, you pick up your phone, regardless of where you are, so Kitty's mother -- who Kitty believes to be a consultant -- calls from New York's JFK airport. Mom indicates there's trouble there, and Kitty and her “new friends” head over to see what's going on. What's going on is an in-control superbeing named Mephistopheles trying to kill a lot of people, Kitty's mother in particular. There's no way Kitty's going to run away or let this big fugly monster hurt her mom, so she grabs a luggage cart…
Score! Hit his knee, and it caused him some problems. We grabbed the next bag and did the same.

Some of the A-C crew saw what we were doing and came over. I didn't know any of them, but I did get to remind myself that if I died right now, I'd be surrounded by five hunks and so could possibly go happy.

Mephistopheles caught on to what we were doing and started to bat at the flying luggage. This caused us to have to dodge hurtling suitcases, but it also meant he was focused on us, not my mother.

I would have been happy about this, only Mom wasn't cooperating. Instead of running away, she headed towards him. She waited until she was in close, then started firing.

The bullets hit, but they didn't penetrate. She used the entire clip, popped it out, reached back, pulled another clip from somewhere, put it in, and fired again. This time, instead of aiming for his torso, she went for the head.

Better results, but still, it was more of a distraction than a deterrent. And he paid more attention to her than our assault with the Luggage of Doom.

Christopher, Martini and Gower were by my mother now. I got the impression they were trying to get her off the offensive and into run away mode. It was certainly what I'd be suggesting right now. But she wasn't having any of it.

Mephistopheles got to his knees and swiped at my mother. I got scared I'd see him kill her. Fear, like tears, made me angry. I didn't think about it, I just ran towards him. “Get away from my mother, you freak of nature!”

Freak of nature is not necessarily the biggest insult one could hurl, but it sure seemed to offend Mephistopheles. He spun towards me, snarling. I still couldn't understand him, but his expression said it clearly -- he didn't care for me.

He reached out and grabbed me. His grip wasn't pleasant, but he wasn't crushing me, either. He had my lower body, so my arms were free. I risked a look around as he stood up. Gower and Christopher each had one of my mother's arms and were dragging her away. Reader was moving the other agents away. And Martini was headed right for us.

I had no idea what he thought he was going to do, but I didn't have a lot of time to ponder, as Mephistopheles brought me up to face level. His eyes were horrible, but as he stared at me I saw them change and look more human. “You are trouble,” he said, and it was in English.
This page is pretty indicative of the book -- science fiction with lots of action and humor and romance, though the romance isn't as obvious on Page 69 as it is on Page 70.
Learn more about the book and author at Gini Koch's website.

--Marshal Zeringue