Isolated Futures Omnibus

· Koen Martens

About this ebook

Let these Six Isolated Futures take you on a thrilling ride through different universes that will have you turning pages faster than the speed of light. All six stories in the series in one volume with a preface from the author.

#1: Forced to be Free

A near-future techno thriller novelette.

Young and brilliant hacker Sam takes a job at a defence contractor to fight for his freedom in a Europe that is about to be overrun by the Russian Federation.

With time running out, Sam finds out who his real allies are. Fighting betrayal and his inner demons, he must pull out all his clever hacking tricks to stop the advancing army.

Can he stop the invasion, and if so, at what price?

#2: Murder, Plain and Simple

‘Murder on the Orient Express’ meets ‘Star Trek: Voyager’

Jennifer Mendoza, a washed out doctor on an interstellar luxury cruiser keeps a low profile. When a rich mining magnate is found dead under suspicious circumstances, she must step up and overcome her past.

Joining forces with the ship’s first officer, they follow the clues. Suspects are plenty, but motives thin. When another body turns up, the race is on. Together, they must unravel the victims’ pasts to find the killer roaming the ship.

#3: Cima Peak

A post-apocalyptic coming of age story.

Juan, a brilliant but slightly naive young boy in a post-apocalyptic world that is slowly recovering from the atrocities following the collapse, is forced to come to terms with good and evil when his best friend dies in a horrible accident.

Forced to make amends with the man he holds responsible for her death, Juan discovers that things are not as black and white as he used to believe. When things take a turn for the worse, Juan becomes responsible for saving his fledgling community.

Can he make it to Cima Peak in time and save the city, while making peace with his inner turmoil?

#4: Negative Reinforcement

Independent app developer Limei Huxcon leads a peaceful life on Luxulyan, a space station in orbit over ice giant Yamm. Oobya, the station’s owners, keep the twenty million population fed and comfortable, both physically and mentally.

But when her second date with a power technician is violently interrupted, her life is turned upside-down.

After she discovers what is going on outside her bubble of recommended news and entertainment, she embarks on a crusade to set things straight, teaming up with a gang of underground hackers and rejects. But are their goals and hers aligned, or is there a more nefarious purpose to the gang’s plans?

#5: Eddy

Why did she have to die?

Convicted for a murder he doesn’t remember, digital forensics specialist Lagan Quill spends his days at the secluded Clay Institute, picking apart his memories and separating fact from fantasy.

But when a rehabilitation hearing takes him back into the thrumming city, he uncovers technology so disgusting that his own past pales in comparison.

Forced to trust the one person he despises more than himself, he struggles to stay true to his principles. Can he reclaim his sanity while escaping those who will stop at nothing to prevent him from outing the truth?

Find out in this thrilling tale that puts the disruption in disruptive technology.

#6: DingDong by Zhumee

Martin is the ultimate nerd: wealthy, always on top of the latest gadgets and full of reverence for their manufacturer, Zhumee. But when they touch his neighbour, eighty-nine year old Ms Turikula, he discovers a counterforce to his techno-optimism.

Is his neighbour’s terrible fate a harbinger of his own, or can he escape the dark forces that conspire to crush his awakening awareness?

About the author

Koen Martens is a science fiction author and retired hacker with a degree in artificial intelligence. A software architect by day, Koen has worked with quantum computers, lithography machines, cloud servers and many other high-tech gadgets. Koen’s experience lends a great degree of realism to his writing and provides him with a healthy dose of scepticism towards humanity’s unhealthy relationship with technology.

Together with his husband, Koen lives in a small village near Utrecht, the Netherlands. In his spare time, he plays and restores pinball games, volunteers at a computer museum and hangs out with his friends from hackerspace Hack42. Koen regularly enjoys live jazz at concerts and festivals.

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