BOOK ONE:  DAX ZANDER AND THE HAND IN THE MOON

Book 1 Excerpt.mp3

2077. A reckless, 13-year-old thrill-seeker, Dax routinely tests his parents’ rules and when things go south, he’s pretty good at charming his way out of the consequences. Plus, he’s just started noticing girls – which complicates everything. But he also has a powerful aptitude for science and a gift for problem-solving - not so surprising, as his mom, Dr. Dayna Zander, is a renowned physicist who designed the undersea compound they call home, 90 kilometers north of Oahu and 20 meters below the surface. Once a bustling military hub commanded by his dad, decorated naval hero Captain Evan Zander, the base has served its purpose in ending the InterOceanic Pirate Wars, and is soon to become a marine laboratory.

While enjoying a few days topside at his Grampa Pat’s awesome Kawela Bay beach house with little brother Kai, Dax and billions of others are stunned to look up to the stars one night and see a mysterious green symbol, glowing over the surface of the new moon. Soon the entire family gathers at Grampa’s; even Shaw, Dax's big brother, takes a break from his marine biology studies in Miami and return to Hawaii, sensing impending change. Sure enough, not long after, three stunningly beautiful, extraterrestrial beings interrupt a summit of global diplomats in Vancouver, but their greeting blacks out when the media feed is cut at the source, leaving all of Planet Earth on edge.

 

Though everyone is mystified, Doctor and Captain Zander are soon getting urgent calls from powerful leaders in science and the military. It isn’t long before Dax and Shaw discover that not only is humanity on the verge of a fantastic new journey, but their family is to be at the center of a daring effort to rescue an alien race from annihilation. It doesn't matter that the enemy is ruthless, as yet unseen by human eyes and their capacities unknown - Earth responds with compassion, sending an all-volunteer protectorate force to the coldest, deepest corner of a tiny, far flung little world. 

For Dax Zander, after years of skating by, cheating the odds with crazy stunts and laughing at the risks, fate presents a life-changing challenge – to grow up, step bravely into a dangerous new world at the center of a distant galaxy – and take responsibility for far more than he’d ever dreamed. His choices will touch the lives of everyone he holds dear, friends and millions of others, in profound ways.

And if he lives through it all, someday Dax might just become a hero.

BOOK TWO:  DAX ZANDER AND THE OGRIBOD ASSAULT

Having persuaded his parents to lead Earth’s “Mission of Mercy” to Delvus-3, young Dax Zander will be joining, as will little brother Kai. And despite his serious concerns about the wisdom of the overall operation, eldest brother Shaw is also coming along, determined to safeguard his family. As nearly 400 volunteers say farewells to loved ones, Dax bids a tough, bittersweet goodbye to his beloved Grampa Pat, best friend Cody and others held dear. But everyone – the Zanders, troops and civilian scientists - are ready to go, embracing a noble, selfless objective: protecting the peaceful Delvans from the invading Ogribods, a ruthless, amphibious race of nomads whose attempts at colonization threaten the entire Delvan civilization.

 

At Seabase UDN-1, the Delvan emissaries to Earth open a warp bubble corridor, and the volunteers begin their transition to a new world. Though anxious, Dax takes a turn just after Shaw, traveling from one galaxy to another in the space of a few short minutes. He arrives to find his family and troops waiting in a massive cluster of caverns on Delvus-3’s ocean floor, a temporary habitat till they move to a network of barracks being constructed in a crater nearby. His mother’s engineering foresight shines; while the caves are a finite space, they have been retrofitted by robots to maximize comfort, and a fleet of nimble and formidable undersea vessels are already under construction, to serve the troops in their eventual patrols of the liquisphere.

 

As they prepare deployment of security and recon forces, Captain and Dr. Zander wrangle multiple challenges, including resistance from their peaceful alien hosts, who struggle with the prospect of impending violence. Still too young to enlist, Dax is restless, chafing at the confines of their temporary home, tempted by a fantastic alien world, just outside the cavern walls. His thirst for thrills finally compels him to "go exploring” in the middle of the night, unarmed and without permission. Soon his unauthorized exploits bring him face-to-face with the mysterious, hulking Ogribods. Their encounter sparks an incredible, unforeseen turn of events that sets in motion the first clash between humans and a hostile alien race, accelerating the timetable for a war that everyone hoped would never happen. Though barely fourteen, Dax begins to sense this is a conflict he is destined to lead – and that the path to peace might be one only he can forge. For now, however, there will be pain - and danger.

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED NOAH KNOX MARSHALL 2019