The second book:
Kwaide is the second book in the Ammonite Galaxy Series, following on with the same characters from Valhai. It is set in the same binary system, as you can see from the plan of the system at the top of the page.
Kwaide is the name of the planet where Six was born, and where he became a no-name. The book tells the story of what happens when he and Diva are let loose on an unsuspecting system. There are quite a few surprises right through the book, and the banter between the characters goes on.
From the author:
I couldn't wait to get back into the series when I started the second book. The characters were there waiting for me, eager to get back onto the paper, and things started to happen thick and fast.
The banter between Six and Diva is one of the highlights of Kwaide - Kwaide is really their book, the book where they simply can't resist chaffing and dissing each other all the time. I don't know if readers will be able to see it, but it is a book of sheer exuberance at being free, in a world just crying out to be changed; of a sort of mental jumping for joy between them. They keep up the repartee even at the most inappropriate times, reveling in their new relationship, and neither of them wants to push at the boundaries yet; they are having far too much fun just as they are, and they don't want to lose the familiar, teasing bond that they have.
Kwaide is the book where the visitor is first introduced, and the first meeting with him had to be special. He was going to be very important to the whole series, so his arrival was one of the key elements in Kwaide. I knew that he and Six would instantly take exception to each other; I can still see the way Six bristles up at the thought of a strand of protein in a bowl of soup telling him what to do! And even if Arcan has had to become a little less approachable, he can still feel indignation at the visitor when he finds out it classified him as a 2b instead of a 2a!
One of the other pivotal scenes in the book is the attempt to make contact mentally with the Dessites, which hopefully gives a few hints of things to come in the future of the series. I love the possibility of the touching of minds, and it was great to finally be able to explore that in the series, even though only in an introductory way.
The scene at the Kwaidian spaceport was an absolute pleasure to write. It still stays in my mind - and I'm writing this a couple of years later! I can vividly picture the fuel lines, Grace, and the two Kwaidians who go with her. It was one of those few and far between scenes that just seemed to flow out of the pen. I found I couldn't put it down! I really hope that readers will get caught up in the tension of that particular moment, like I did.
The last scene is one of my favourites, too. It is gentle and bright and a really hopeful way to finish the book. I want to get a slow smile out of people, a feeling of warmth when they finish each book. I hope this works for Kwaide.
About the Ammonite Galaxy series:
Although the series is very definitely a work of science fiction, I wanted everything in the books to have some sort of a basis in contemporary science, using concepts that an interested reader could follow up on their own if they were interested, and would find had some real theory behind them, if they did. All the concepts theorized in the books spring from quantum theory, astrophysics, cosmology, relativity theory, physics or biology. In some cases it is a very large leap of imagination from fact to fiction; in others it is only a step. It was important for me to research each new concept as carefully as I could, despite not being a real expert, because I wanted the worlds I was building to be as credible as they possibly could be. I have amassed a huge quantity of paperwork doing this, and have now had to move such a large part of this out to the garage that the car hardly fits inside!
Here is the full paperback cover: