Nuworld: Claiming Tara

Laurie Fitzgerald
Nuworld: Claiming Tara
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Publisher
Laurie Fitzgerald
Release Date
August 2013
Series
Book 1 of Nuworld
Genre
Action/Adventure Romance, Alternate Universe, Erotic Romance, Romantic Science Fiction/Futuristic

SUMMARY
Nuworld: Claiming Tara - the post-apocalyptic, sensually erotic saga between a warrior heiress and the ruthless, dominating leader of men who vows to possess her.

In a brand new world sprung up from the ashes, a young lady destined to lead the most dangerous race of warriors on the planet, embarks on a road of self-awareness, the Age of Searching.

As heir to all Runner clans on Nuworld, Tara knows their worst enemy is the Gothman race. A runner will be shot and killed on sight if discovered within Gothman borders. Yet they are a race Tara doesn't understand. She decides to walk among them as one of their own.

It's hard to believe that Gothman only train half their people to fight. How they are equally as powerful, or dangerous, as the Runners is beyond Tara's comprehension. Gothman women are little more than property to their families or the men who claim them.

The leader of Gothman, Lord Darius, isn't easily fooled. He knows there is a Runner on his soil. The second he meets Tara, he knows he's found one of the most beautiful and enticing women he's ever met. He also sees through her charade and knows she's a Runner.

Darius instantly claims Tara and moves her into his home. Tara is forced to oblige or risk being killed as a Runner. Being submissive isn't as easy as Tara thought. Taming Tara is much harder to do than Darius originally believed. As their attraction for each other grows, so does their willingness to admit that as enemies, they have a very dangerous problem.

What follows is sexually erotic, a power play between two people convinced they can tame the other, and a scandalous adventure that will test your beliefs, your scruples, and your heart.

Book Review by Breann (reviewer)
Oct 22, 2013   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
121 people found the following review helpful
CLAIMING TARA is set in a unique world. It's a futuristic setting but has a very historical feel with their culture and values.

There are two different factions of people that this story focused on--the Runners and the Gothman. Tara's a Runner; her people move around and don't stay in one place too long. They're a group of warriors, both the men and the women. Tara was in her Age of Searching and was going through a time of self-awareness. During this searching, she went to Gothman.
In Gothman, women were considered submissive and are treated as such. A woman could be claimed (married) by a man without her consent or even knowledge, for that matter. Tara was a very strong heroine, so you can imagine how she felt about all that.

As soon as Lord Darius, the Gothman's leader, met Tara, he wanted her. He saw a strong woman, someone who was different, who didn't willingly throw herself at his feet and he saw the value in that. Darius is your typical alpha male. He saw Tara, wanted Tara and that was that. He was going to have her. She did fight him on this a little bit, but she was such a feisty character that I would have liked to see this come through during their little mating dance. She gave in to him a little too easily for my tastes. Especially since Runners and Gothman are considered enemies, this could have made for a lot of fun banter and shenanigans.

Darius had some major faults and made some major mistakes, but he was true to his culture, so I was able to accept this about him. Mostly. I always find it fascinating when such a hero can still be made likeable and is someone I ended up rooting for.

This was an enjoyable story. There was romance, action and adventure. What I especially loved was the world building and the atmosphere that was created by the author. It was something different and made for an interesting read.
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BOOK INTERVIEW on November 2013
Interview by Breann

Hi Laurie, welcome to The Romance Reviews! CLAIMING TARA sounds interesting. Can't wait to hear all about it!


Q: CLAIMING TARA is your first book in the Nuworld series. What's your inspiration for this series?

I actually wrote the NUWORLD Series (six books) over twenty years ago before I was published. At the time I was reading every romance book I could get my hands on. I kept looking for something more in the books. I wanted my hero and heroine to be more daring, more aggressive with each other. I had a dream one night of a woman at war. She is victorious and returns home to take on the man she loves. They were warriors and knew only one way of communicating--aggressively. I woke up and started writing...the Nuworld Series is what came out of me.

Q: That's fascinating. The setting in CLAIMING TARA is futuristic, and yet it has a very historic feel. How did this world come about? What were some difficulties in keeping this a futuristic story with such old-fashioned values?

CLAIMING TARA does take place in our future. Yet it is Earth reborn. Our planet was destroyed. It rejuvenated. People once again began repopulating it. While these people have some technology foreign to us, they also are starting at ground level. Nations are once again growing. Leaders are discovering new land and taking it for their own. And no, there were no difficulties in writing this world. I slipped right into it and the characters in this world led the show. All I had to do was type. :)

Q: There are two very different factions of people that come together in Nuworld. How did you go about creating the Runners and the Gothman people?

Although yes, I did create the characters in this book, there are times when I feel that they came to me already created. I'm not sure how else to explain it. Runners are nomadic. By exploring they are able to gain knowledge from other races. However, Gothman are isolated on their own land and ruled by one ruler. They know only their own world and since it has been that way for generations, and they have no one to compare their lives to, there is no "grass is greener" syndrome for them. Both Gothman and Runners are proud of who they are and how they live.

Q: The Gothman society is an oppressive one towards women. How difficult was it to create such a world for these characters?

I don't know a lot about cultures that suppress women other than what we all know from the news. But I can't help but wonder, if someone didn't know life any different, if they wouldn't embrace who they were and live to be the best they could be in the world as they know it. The Gothman women are minor characters in this book. What I had to wrap my head around more was the Gothman man, who firmly believed in his heart and his soul that a woman was property to do with as he pleased. That proved more of the challenge. I rewrote Darius many times. I needed him to be true to form as part of his culture, yet, since he is a main character, I didn't want everyone hating him. It was tough. I think what resulted is a book that a reader will either feel is the best book they have ever read, or they'll hate it. There won't be much middle ground.

Q: Tara is a very strong heroine in her own right. Please tell us more about her. What was your inspiration for her character?

I kind of answered this in the first question. My inspiration came from a dream. And no, I wasn't on any prescription or street drugs at the time. :) I wanted a heroine who wouldn't submit, no matter the price. At the same time, she'd do anything to get her man--including walking away if that meant showing him how life would have to be if he wanted her.

Q: The story begins with Tara on her Age of Searching, which I think is fascinating. Please tell us more about that and where you came up with the idea.

This is an easy question. LOL. I've always felt that our society demands that its young people grow up without giving them time to do so. At the age of eighteen, you're a man, or a woman. You now can make your own decisions--and by the way--what are you going to do with your life?

Runners understand that each person grows into maturity at their own pace. The Age Of Searching is when a Runner, around the age of 18 to 21, whenever they are ready to leave their clan and start exploring, leaves home and takes on the world. They do what they want during this time with the end goal being that they return to their clan ready to take on adult responsibilities. Quite a few scandalous adventures occur during the Age Of Searching. In Tara's case, entering enemy land then falling in love with the leader of that land.

Q: Lord Darius is one great alpha male but he also had some pretty unforgivable actions. Tell us more about him. How were you able to create a likeable hero amongst his faults?

I kept rewriting him and rewriting him. LOL. Seriously, though, he had to be faulted. At least in our eyes. After all, he leads a nation that suppresses women. And although he readily admits at the beginning of the book--to himself, he'd never admit it to anyone else--that submissive women were boring him, it is all he knows. He does believe with all his heart and soul that Tara will be the perfect woman for him once she understands that his word is final. He walks among his people and sees that women are proud to be with their man, to honor and obey him, and to make sure his home is perfect so their community will think him a great man. Even Tara notices that Gothman women are happy and content, which surprises her.

Darius believes it a victory on his part when Tara agrees to remain in Gothman with him. It's just a matter of time before she behaves the way a Gothman woman should, at least in public. He isn't foolish enough to think he will ever have her behaving that way privately.

As much as I knew that writing him committing unforgivable sins (unforgivable sins according to our way of thinking) would cause some readers to balk, there really was no choice. I couldn't very well create Gothman people the way I did without showing their leader displaying the epitome of Gothman behavior. If I succeeded in showing at least a few readers how people behave, and truly see no crime in their behavior, in cultures so different from ours, then I accomplished my goal.

Gothman are nothing like we are. Nor will they ever be. I will say by the end of the book Darius does accept that certain behaviors will not be tolerated if he is to keep Tara. She, on the other hand, is at least as stubborn as Darius, if not more so. We will see just how much in book 2: Tara's Revenge.

Q: Tara and Darius are instantly attracted to each other, despite their enemy status. What was it about this couple that compelled you to write their story?

I needed to write these two with very strong, determined and aggressive personalities. After all, both were raised believing they would lead nations. Tara and Darius weren't supposed to be heirs to rule. Not by their birthright. Both worked to obtain that status. It only follows suit that they would see the person they would fall in love with and leap eagerly through any hurdle to have that person. It is the basic nature of who they are. Knowing this about the two of them, I eagerly jumped in and wrote their story. How could I turn down such a challenge?

Q: What was your favorite scene to write with Tara and Darius?

I really liked the first time they made love. I know readers would love for me to post that entire scene, but the very ending of that scene truly sums up what happened between them when they first came together. Here is the end of that scene:

"Where she had tried to show the upper hand, she had instead received the privilege of being fucked good and hard, allowing her one orgasm and leaving her wanting more.

This was not lovemaking. There had been no foreplay. Pure and simply, it was a struggle of powers. A ruthless, dominating nation taking on another, equally powerful and equally dangerous. Through the act of sex, they'd tried to conquer each other--and failed. If they'd attempted to keep the act purely physical, playing the part of the skilled warrior, and not allowing emotions to interfere--again, they both failed." --from NUWORLD: CLAIMING TARA.

Q: I always appreciate a glossary of terms in any paranormal or fantasy romance that I can refer to. Just out of curiosity, is this something that's planned ahead of time?

I'm glad you liked the glossary. It was an afterthought, honestly. My editor and beta readers questioned some of the terms used in the book. Because of that, I wrote the foreword explaining why there are some unusual words in the book. Then I included the glossary so any reader with questions would have it to refer to and be able to fully understand the book. For those who haven't read CLAIMING TARA yet, there are items in Tara and Darius's everyday life that are foreign to us. The glossary explains what they are. And yes, the glossary will appear in each book in the series. There will be other terms used in the series and as they appear, they will be added to the glossary.

Q: Which character was the most difficult to write? Why?

I guess I would have to say Darius. But let me clarify. It wasn't that he was hard to write. He allowed me into his head right from the beginning. I might not have agreed with him, but as the writer, I had no choice but to share his story as he unfolded it. I would say he was difficult to write because I didn't always agree with him. I'd never written a character like him before. And, when I first began writing the NUWORLD Series, I had no idea that accepting how I would have to write Darius was simply training so that I would be ready to write his son once I got to the part of the series where I share his story.

Q: What's up next in this series? Please give us a sneak peek.

A sneak peek, huh. I guess I can do that. If you have already bought the book, you have a scene from TARA'S REVENGE at the end of CLAIMING TARA. Let me say, before sharing this scene, that the NUWORLD Series is a saga. We enter a world very different from our own and get to know the people who live there. We walk alongside them as they make mistakes and we hate them for that. We also are right there when they have their triumphs and we are cheering for them at that point.

CLAIMING TARA focuses on Tara and Darius. As with any series, with each book we learn more about characters we met in previous books. TARA'S REVENGE will reveal more about the explosive relationship between Tara and Darius, but we will also become closer to other characters in this world. I've chosen this scene to give you an idea what to expect.

Please know that TARA'S REVENGE hasn't gone through final edits yet. The scene, as it appears here, might vary slightly in the book once it's released.

Here is a scene from TARA'S REVENGE, which releases February 1, 2014.

Torgo thought about the conversation he and Syra had right before she stormed out of the computer room. The girl had left in a rage. Usually when he worked alone with Syra on the computers, he really enjoyed their time together. But today she had made him so angry he had wanted to shake sense into her.

They'd argued about the Runner pregnancy prevention drug. Torgo didn't want a drug coming between their lovemaking. Why didn't she understand that? He'd tried to explain that the drug made their sex less personal. No, he didn't want a baby. Well, not yet. That wasn't what he'd meant at all.

Ways existed to prevent becoming pregnant. Gothman ways. Herbs. Tonics. This Runner medicine prevented her body from making what would be part of a baby if he added his seed. He just thought it was wrong. And Syra didn't understand. Worse yet, his opinion didn't matter to her. That made him sick to his stomach.

They were from two different races. Two different cultures. He worried sometimes this unchangeable fact might be their ultimate downfall. He suspected she wouldn't be back anytime soon. He'd never met anyone so stubborn. Sometimes he hated how much he truly loved her.

Torgo contacted two other Runners to report to his computer room. Hee tried contacting Syra. When she didn't answer, he tried again. Same thing...no response. So he told her that Patha had ordered a military alert and she needed to come back, then clicked off his comm. Damn hard headed girl.

Patha returned less than an hour later dressed in full Runner garb, well armed with lasers clipped to his belt on either hip. "Have all military units remain in full contact. No one goes anywhere without my direct order. Also, instruct all clan members and townspeople to report in. Program the computer to confirm there whereabouts when they do. All Gothman and Runners must identify themselves with their login numbers. We've had several people reported missing today. The computer can tell us who they are." Patha paused. "If anyone asks, tell them this is Runner procedure. I don't want a panic."

Patha's eyes swept over the two Runners sitting at the other computers. "Syra hasn't come back?"

"No, sir." Torgo tried not to show concern. "She'll be back soon."

Patha eyed Torgo, then wrapped his comm around his ear before flipping it on. "Syra."

Torgo watched intently as Patha stood with a blank gaze waiting for a response.

There wasn't one.

Patha didn't look at Torgo. "Balbo."

This time there was a quick response.

"Do you know where your daughter is?"

Brief silence.

"No, she isn't here."

Another pause.

"Find her. She's not reporting in." Patha shut off his comm. "I want everyone to have a comm device on them at all times so the computer can track them. Tell me as soon as it's done." With that, he left the room.

Torgo began the program that would start the count. "I need you to notify all unit leaders and inform them of Patha's instructions," he said to the Runner next to him.

"Sure thing." The young man who nodded was just a few winters older than Torgo.

"Why wouldn't Syra answer her comm?" the other Runner asked.

Torgo glared at him, and the Runner returned his attention to his monitor.

Syra should have answered when Patha contacted her. She was bullheaded, but she respected authority.

Something wasn't right.



Darius and Tara looked back toward the burning mountain and watched while hundreds of small, black objects descended the mountainside and headed toward them. They didn't look like bikes, but they weren't jeeps either. Neither of them felt the need to sit there and watch these people move closer. The exodus didn't appear to be a rescue party.

Darius took off on her bike fast enough that Tara had to grab him and hold on tightly. Her body was racked with pain. She managed not to cry out from it and kept her arms remained wrapped around her claim's torso.

He covered her hands with one of his and held them against his stomach. He believed his crimes insignificant. It wouldn't surprise her if he believed everything he'd done was in the past now, and no longer worth either of them worrying about it. If she weren't injured so badly, the moment he climbed off her bike, she'd kick his ass.

She would have pushed away his hand, but didn't move for fear of losing her balance. More than once, as Darius flew over the rough, uneven ground, her injuries caused enough pain that Tara thought she might lose consciousness. His kept a firm grip on her hands, ensuring her safety, whether she cared to admit it or not.

They drove at high speed over uneven land through the darkness. Occasionally, Darius glanced over his shoulder, but Tara didn't move her head. She kept it down, her cheek against his shoulder. Every inch of her was now racked in pain.

"Excellent," Darius muttered, and slowed the bike.

Tara looked up and tried to focus her eyes. She stared at an odd formation that she didn't recognize. Several large rocks, taller than any man, stood straight and proud, surrounded by the prairie grass. The rocks resembled four fingers sticking up through the ground.

On either side of the rock formation were Gothman sitting on their motorcycles. Tara counted ten warriors. They pulled their weapons as the two approached on Tara's bike.

"Pay heed to the Lord of Gothman," Darius yelled.

"Good to see you, my lord," one of his men said through the darkness.

"I'd say the same, but I really wish there were more of you." Darius pulled forward and stopped in front of the men. "I need a comm."

"Yes, my lord." One of them climbed off his bike and handed Darius his communications device. "A small army has been dispatched as well. They should be here soon."

Darius nodded and wrapped the comm around his ear. He climbed off the bike leaving Tara sitting there. As he spoke into the mouthpiece, he pointed to a night lens one of his men had on a string around his neck. The man pulled it off his head and handed it to Darius.

"Patha," he said, lowering his voice and returning to Tara's side.

She climbed off her bike, hoping she didn't appear to be in pain.

"Of course I'm alive, old man. You worry like a woman." Darius' laugh was a rich baritone, and his men chuckled along with him. "She's fine. Or that's what she'd have you think."

Darius' smile faded and his expression hardened. He lifted the lens to his eyes and searched the dark horizon. "How many are missing?"

"Missing?" Tara frowned.

"There are eight Gothman and one Runner missing," he whispered, pulling the night lens away and staring down at her.

"What? How long? What do you mean, missing?"

Darius held up his hand to silence her. Tara let out an exasperated sigh, damned if she'd play the submissive claim in front of his men.

"I'll notify you when they get here." He switched off the comm and once again stared into the night lens.

"What's going on, Darius?" Tara demanded.

"There's no one out there." Darius lowered the lens, then searched the darkness without it, as if not trusting the Runner device specifically designed to see across distances in the night.

"What did Patha say?" Tara watched him study the terrain.

"The Lunians have contacted Patha."

"They have?"

"Yes. They apologized for our treatment and informed him it was never their intention to attack us. They told Patha that they were searching our trailer in hopes of finding us there so they might offer their protection. We were apparently fed false information if we thought they were preparing an ambush. They said that we destroyed our trailer for nothing."

"Well, there's a small part of the truth in all that. But they weren't looking for us to protect us. You know that as well as I do."

"I know. The Lunians lied to Patha. What we need to figure out is why."

There was a lot they needed to figure out, none of which would happen while she was in so much pain. "Did Patha give you any of the names of the people missing?"

"Yes, and I'm willing to bet those moon people are the reason all of them have disappeared."

"Who's the Runner?"

"Syra."

"Syra? No!" Tara's hand went to her mouth. "Darius, you know why they've been kidnapped!"

"We both know the answer to that." Darius straightened, and his large, muscular body grew before her while his tone turned cold and hardened. "They'll impregnate the women for some demented thievery they have planned if we don't find and stop them soon." --from TARA'S REVENGE available February 1, 2013.

Q: What's up next for you?

Well there are five more NUWORLD books, all written, but have to go through the editing process. So I foresee lots of edits in my future. TARA'S REVENGE is out in February. I'll announce release dates on the remaining four in the series once I know them. Also, on a side note, I have already started writing a new series, completely unrelated to the NUWORLD books, but also very different. They are the STIMULATED books. I hope to have information about this series on my website soon.

Q: How can readers reach you and learn more about your books?

My website is www.lauriefitzgerald.net. Readers can read the first chapter of CLAIMING TARA there. The first chapter to TARA'S REVENGE will go up sooner to the release date. I encourage everyone to join my newsletter and follow like my fan page on Facebook. Links are on my website. By doing so you'll learn about release dates, find out when I have more information on upcoming books, and when there are new contests--those are always fun.

I know the NUWORLD books are controversial. They definitely aren't for the weak of heart. With CLAIMING TARA now being out for a couple months word is spreading fast about it. If you decide to buy it out of curiosity, in spite of being wary, or because it just sounds good, I want to thank you.

Most of us don't take time to contact authors after reading a book, regardless of our opinion of it. I really do encourage you to drop me an e-mail, even if it is to curse my name for writing something like CLAIMING TARA. I would like to know what you think of the book. You can reach me at nuworldwriter@aol.com. I'll respond to all e-mails, unless you tell me that you never want to see anything I put in writing ever again. You can also reach me on my fan page on Facebook at www.facebook.com/nuworldwriter.

And a very BIG THANK YOU to TRR for inviting me to do this interview. You are the best!


Awesome! It's a pleasure to have you with us, Laurie!


Heads up!
Check out the review for CLAIMING TARA!
from Breann!


Bio:

Laurie Fitzgerald is the author of the NUWORLD SERIES, which are futuristic, erotic, daring and definitely for those who want more out of a book. Laurie doesn't write for the weak of heart. She is self-published, and with the amazing success of her first release, CLAIMING TARA, is very excited for readers to enjoy the rest of the series.

Laurie lives in Kansas and has three grown sons who are more or less out of the house. She also has two dogs and six cats who have informed her that they are never moving out. Laurie writes full time but also enjoys painting, needle work, and her flower garden, which is predominantly an extensive variety of roses.

"Writing is a passion, not a livelihood. I'd get a real job, but the voices in my head won't allow it."


Website: www.lauriefitzgerald.net
Facebook: www.facebook.com/nuworldwriter



GIVEAWAY!!!

Laurie is giving away

1.) 1 ebook giveaway of NUWORLD: CLAIMING TARA, and
2.) 1 ebook giveaway of winner's choice from Lorie O'Clare's backlist at Ellora's Cave

Thanks, Laurie!


ADDITIONAL GIVEAWAY!!!

For all Featured Book Interviews, TRR is sponsoring a prize!

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Archangel's Legion by Nalini Singh
The Hostage by Carolyn Wren
From Ice Wagon to Club House: The Life of Jude Mooney by Viola Russell
To Love a Highland Dragon by Ann Gimpel
That Pearly Drop by Jianne Carlo
Claiming Tara by Laurie Fitzgerald
Cast Off by KC Burn
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