Steamrolled cover art

With all of time at risk, it’s a bad time to fall in love…unless it’s the only time…

Robert Clementyne is in a race against the mysterious Dr. Smith to find a machine that could put evil in charge of the universe. The hunt takes him to a steampunk themed bowling alley and museum run by a descendent of the man who created the machine.

Emily Babcock, museum curator and steampunk aficionado, is skeptical when a man suddenly appears asking questions about the machine one of her ancestor’s created. Personally, she is more interested in Robert Clementine making her a believer about something more elusive - something called happy-ever-after.

Emily and Robert soon find themselves steamrolled by time. If they want to a chance at love, all they have to do is survive a trip to the past, the future, a side trip through Roswell, and a face-to-face meeting with an evil-genius-overlord-wannabe.

Can two unlikely people join forces to defeat evil before it has a chance to take over the universe? Grab your copy of Steamrolled  today and embark on an adventure that readers have called “weird and wonderful” and a “must read for science fiction lovers."

Excerpt:

“Why isn’t the anomaly hot?”

Emily was pretty sure it was a rhetorical question, since he was the geek, not her. She waited without speaking, watching the expressions pass across his face. There were a lot to see. He appeared to have a lot of his mind. Be nice if she were in the mix. She tipped her head. He’d be taken for a bit stern if she didn’t look at his eyes. They were kind of…innocent. She liked looking in his eyes, even if they weren’t looking at her. And then they were looking at her and she saw plenty of heat simmering below his surface, enough to run the bowling alley for a long time. She kept expecting him to lean in and make a play, because that’s what guys did when they looked like that, only he didn’t lean. He looked.

And looked some more.

READ MORE

Maybe he needed more encouragement. Or she needed to back off. She considered her options. At some point they were going to be at odds. She wanted the bug. He wanted the bug, but for now they were allied. And she wanted the kiss. She leaned. The flames went higher but he still didn’t match her lean. Okay, he was a geek, a cute geek, but still a geek. The basic lean might be too subtle of an approach, though the ones she’d met at steampunk conventions were well versed in the basic lean—so well versed they saw leaning when no leaning was involved. Maybe he needed an advanced lean. She tried it. Now his breath mingled with hers and she saw dark blue specks mix with the light blue in his abruptly widened eyes, the pupils dilating in a most satisfying manner.

No question he was interested. If she didn’t know better, she’d think he didn’t know what to do. Or he needed encouragement on the level of skywriting. She didn’t have a plane or sky. She did have her lips. She leaned until the tiniest of gaps separated them. If instinct didn’t take over she couldn’t help him—

His arms clamped around her. There might have been yanking. It happened fast, so it was hard to know all the little details when his lips pressed against hers with satisfying, if belated, enthusiasm. He’d moved with too much speed for her to get her arms around him and she didn’t want to discourage him by appearing to struggle against his hold, so she let her lips do the reciprocating, while her arms wished they were clamping, too. She might not get another chance. He’d move on to whatever it was he did and she’d found her world famous museum…

Her ruminations faded as sensation built. At first, he seemed a bit inexperienced, but then something changed—for the better, not that he’d been bad. Maybe kissing had as much to do with right time, right guy, as experience. Or he was a fast learner. The faster he learned, the fuzzier her thoughts got. If her mouth had been free, she might even have asked a question. Or three. How? Why? When? The questions guys hated girls asking. But her mouth wasn’t free, didn’t look like it would be free for a while—

The Earth moved. Or maybe it shifted. And tilted. A sizzle like electricity kicked up the hairs on the back of her neck and her arms. He stiffened, his mouth still against hers, but she’d lost him. She felt it before he eased her back.

“Excuse me.”

And he was gone. She blinked. She knew he’d leave, just not mid-kiss. The earth moved and he leaves—the earth shifted again. More electricity sizzle. So maybe they hadn’t made the Earth move.

COLLAPSE
Reviews:on FirePages:

"Pauline is the Queen of Steam! Steamrolled is a wild adventure full of wit, intrigue, and an evil overlord to boot. Every page was better than the next!"

on Single Titles:

"Pauline B Jones has designed a rollicking time traveling tale set in a deteriorating steam punk world that will blow your mind. Crossing time, space and worlds with technology from steam-run automatons and flying airships to nanites that exist inside the body to help thought processes and healing, STEAMROLLED is a must read for science fiction lovers."

on Mixed Book Bag:

"I never knew time could be so much fun or hold so much peril. Steamrolled is packed with adventure, romance, and danger. I loved the nanites. They were full of personality and added a real touch of humor to even the most deadly situation. In Steamrolled Pauline has produced the perfect blend of Science Fiction Romance and Steampunk making fans of both happy."

on Long and Short Reviews:

"I think this will be a hit with steampunk fans in general, and if you haven’t already tested out the genre, any work by Pauline Baird Jones would be a fine place to start. She's just a talented, entertaining author."


The (mostly) true story of the writing of Steamrolled

A science fiction romance/steampunk novel

First, something about the novel:

Robert Clementyne feared that finding the machine would be as difficult as pronouncing transmogrification (or believing the steam-powered device could perform as advertised). And really, how useful could any information be, coming from a steampunk themed bowling alley/museum?

It’s pretty crazy, but he’s been there, done that, thinks he can handle it.

And then he meets the proprietor/curator….

Emily Babcock grew up in crazy, still lives in it, hey, it’s her freaking zip code. So no worries when Robert and his team walk into her bowling alley, her first visitors ever to her museum.

But neither of them is prepared for what happens when they open the door to the past…

…and the future…

…with a side trip through Roswell…

…and a face-to-face meet with the evil genius/wannabe-evil overlord-of-everything (who is doing a good job of meeting his goal).

With all of time at risk, it’s a bad time to fall in love…unless it’s the only time….

And now for the interview!

Me: Let's start the interview by telling readers where this fits into your sort of series and actually how they all fit together and then we can do the "what were you thinking" part of the interview.

Myself: I was sort of hoping we were going to miss that part this time, but maybe I can draw the first question out long enough you'll forget. Let's see, my sort of series started with The Key, though I didn't know I was writing a sort of series when I wrote it. I was just writing an action adventure romance novel that sort of veered into space and became a science fiction romance novel. When The Key was published, readers (mostly) loved it (with a few grumpy exceptions from those expecting "real" science in their science fiction), and some asked if there would be more. Well, it so happened that Helfon, from The Key was grumpy he didn't get the girl, so I was able to say, yes, there will be another novel andGirl Gone Nova released last year. And of course, if you read my Tangled in Time interview, then you know that it started as a short story, tie in to my sort of series, then bloomed into a novella that some readers, used to my BABs, thought was too short.

I had a lot of fun writing Tangled in Time, and when I concluded the novella, I realized that I had a nice lead into my next BAB, using those plot lines that hadn't ended, such as the mysterious Dr. Smith and the "Big Bug" and what had happened to the transmogrification machine and Professor Twitchet. Steamrolled also has a guest appearance from a character from a connected short story (but one not essential to the main plot/bridge line of the novels). You can find that short in A Death in Texas anthology. In fact, lots of characters from the books also make guest appearances, including Doc and Hel, and Sara even stops by, which was lots of fun. But even with the guest appearances, this is still very much Robert and Emily's story.

Me: But it also has something none of your other SFR books have had: a strong subplot, though you did have something similar in Byte Me.

Myself: Yeah, I had to think back for a minute to remember if I'd done anything quite like this in another novel and Byte Me is the closest, though I think Steamrolled still wins on scope. Without the subplot, the story wouldn't be quite as...

Me: ...brain exploding?

Myself: Well, yeah. I'm always happy when my characters come alive and help me with the story, but I will confess, Ashe surprised me when she strode into the story. It was as if she'd been tapping her foot, waiting for me to notice her standing in the wings and then she insisted on going out first. Doc had good reason to call her the twit.

Me: And Ashe will get her own story, won't she?

Myself: That is correct. I leave her sort of hanging at the end, which will be good for her character, but probably not her temper.

Me: There will also be another story spinning off this one, won't there?

Myself: That is also correct. I was most surprised to get a few requests to redeem the sinister and mysterious Dr. Smith, so instead of a sticky end, I let him live. He will be starring in a short, steampunk story called Steam Time, that will be included in the Dreamspell Steampunk Volume I. I will make sure to hose him thoroughly before allowing him to get a girl. I don't have a release date yet, which is good, since I still need to write the story, but I've got it figured out. I think.

Me: Emily is a bit of a departure from your other books, well, from Sara and Doc.

Myself: Yeah, both Sara and Doc were a** kicking heroines. Emily is able to take care of herself, but she's not a bad a**. She's quirky and unexpected, but also a bit ordinary as far as ninja skills are concerned. But she has a skill set that proves useful to Robert and is able to take care of herself for the most part. And she annoys the heck out of Doc, who isn't sure she is right for her brother. LOL!

Me: And Robert. (dreamy sigh)

Myself: Yeah, Robert was fun as well. He is many things, but mostly he is a geek, a sexy geek, but a geek. Part of his charm for me, is that he doesn't know how smoking cool he is. As the story progresses, he finds himself with Emily's help and he helps her grow, too. I loved spending time with these two characters and watching them grow and fight their way through everything I threw at them (and I threw a LOT).

Me: Well, you almost made me forget the "what were you thinking" part of the interview.

Myself: Rats.

Me: What were you thinking? You almost made our head explode! This story is SO out there!

Myself: This is true, it is waaaay out there, but our editor said we make it seem reasonable, so there is hope that some of our readers will like the ride. I mean, some of them LIKE out there.

Me: True, but dang, it was a near thing with the head exploding thing. A very near thing.

Myself: We are both fine, so get over it.

Me: Yeah, until the next time.

Myself: Was that a question? Because it didn't sound like a question.

Me: I think I'm out of questions.

Myself: So we're done?

Me: I think so.

Myself: Okay, then. (pause) So how do we usually end these?

Me: You tell us when it will release and then we just...stop.

Myself: Oh. It will release the end of April. Possibly the last, very last day, because I was a bit slow getting it done.

Me: A bit?

Myself: Let's not go there. You know what kind of year we had.

Me: Fine.

Myself: So we're done? Because I need to, you know, go.

Me: So do I.

Myself: Then we're officially done.

Me: Yeah. So leave already.

Myself: Gone.

Steamrolled
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