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About FX Holden
Coming June 2022: 'DMZ - This is the Future of War.'
FX Holden is a pen name of award winning author, Tim Slee. To read extracts from coming FX Holden novels, get all the latest news and chat with the author just go to https://www.facebook.com/hardcorethrillers
Tim Slee's first success was as winner of the Allen & Unwin INK short fiction prize. In 2016 he started independently publishing long fiction, and was the winner in Feb 2017 of the Grand Prize in the US Publishers Weekly BookLife Prize in Fiction. In 2018 he received the Banjo Prize for unpublished Australian fiction, and his manuscript TAKING TOM MURRAY HOME was published in August 2019 by HarperCollins Australia. It was released by HarperCollins UK in February 2022 and will be out with HarperCollins USA in July 2022. He has been awarded two US Publishers' Weekly Stars (the Michelin Star of publishing) and the US Readers' Favorite award for Best Political Thriller in both 2019 and 2021!
In 2019 FX Holden also released hard sci-fi title DEEP CORE as the first novel in a new Coruscant Series. The second in the series, CORE DRIFT, was released April 2. 2021. Book 3, CORE MELT is out now.
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The Future War series wraps up with one of the most likely superpower confrontations of coming years. As a nuclear weapon is detonated over South Korean territory in the Sea of Japan, six protagonists hold the fate of the Korean Peninsula in their hands. Their decisions could see North and South Korea reunited at last, or send the world spiraling into nuclear armageddon.
Can a single person change history?
As the North and South Korean leaders sit down to ink a new Peace Accord at Panmujom Peace Village, aggressor pilot, Lieutenant Karen 'Bunny' O'Hare is training South Korean pilots to fight against unmanned combat aircraft. Her unit is pulled into the new front line as North Korean fighters sweep in over the DMZ and bomb Panmunjom. Bunny's life hangs in the balance as events on the Korean Peninsula spin out of control.
In the Sea of Japan, commander of the fast expeditionary transport USS Cody, Lieutenant O'Shea Lomax, is headed out to rendezvous with an autonomous anti-submarine warfare vessel that has just set the record for the longest fully autonomous sea voyage by a US Navy warship. But no sooner is the rendezvous complete than Cody and its crew are witness to a North Korean nuclear attack at sea. The USS Cody is the wrong ship, in the wrong place, at exactly the wrong time, but can Cody and its drone find the North Korean submarine that fired the missiles, before it strikes again?
As the missiles fly, US Navy Chief Petty Officer, Ryan Kronk, is shot down over the DMZ and finds himself inside enemy territory with a North Korean patrol in pursuit. But accompanying Kronk's flight was a Shikaka White Bat drone - probably the most potent airborne weapons platform in the entire theater. If he can only work out how to fly it.
In the cockpit of his South Korean Boromae fighter, Lieutenant Hee-chan "Bounce" Son, prepares to undertake what will probably be the last mission of his career: an attack deep inside North Korean airspace, to plunge a bunker-busting bomb into the heart of the mountain that hides North Korea's nuclear weapons storage facility. He can't destroy it, but he's willing to give his life, just to buy his country even a few days breathing space to stave off nuclear destruction.
In the South Korean administrative capital of Sejong City, 1st Sgt. Jerami Durant of the Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force, is searching for an errant private who has gone missing from Camp Mujuk Marine Base. Less than an hour into his mission, Durant finds himself inside the South Korean Prime Minister's compound, in the company of a Sejong City police officer, surrounded by South Korean Khangpae mafia thugs fomenting a civil uprising.
And, at a secret location south of the DMZ, North Korean Guards Command detail leader, Captain Jong-chon Ri, has to fight off an attempt to assassinate his protectee, the Supreme Leader of North Korea. But when the force attacking him comprises both South AND North Korean troops, his first task is to work out who is friend, and who is foe. The answer to that question could determine the future of the entire Korean Peninsula.
The wars of tomorrow will be fought with weapons on the drawing boards today. What will the Future of War look like?
Told through the eyes of ordinary men and women on both sides of a global conflagration, DMZ is an epic tale that shows how rocky the path to peace on the Korean Peninsula will be.
"10/10: A multifaceted, action-packed war thriller" - PUBLISHERS WEEKLY BOOKLIFE PRIZE
Through puppet nations, the world's superpowers duel in the Middle East using weapons that are prototypes today, but will be a reality in ten years. With characters you will never forget, Kobani is fast-paced, believable and chilling. A frighteningly authentic vision of future war, Kobani is as prophetic as it is unnerving.
Backed by Russian air power, Syria has begun an operation to push Turkish troops out of Northern Syria. Despite US efforts not to get dragged into the conflict, the US 1st Battalion, 3rd Marines 'Lava Dogs', find their hilltop combat outpost encircled and their Kurdish allies under siege. Further west, a Syrian armored advance across the border into Turkey pivots, threatening US troops at the Turkish and NATO air base of Incirlik. But will Syria be satisfied with reclaiming its northern border region, or is the operation just the first move in a bolder plan to regain lost territories?
INSIDE KOBANI, Kurdish Women's Protection Unit sniper, Daryan Al-Kobani, is fighting for her people, her city and her mother and sister, hunting a Russian sniper who shoots to grievously wound his victims, not to kill.
AT COMBAT OUTPOST MEYER on the top of Mishte-nur Hill, Lava Dog Gunner James Jensen is field testing the latest in autonomous ground weapons systems, the Legged Squad Support System 'Hunter'. And finding the weapons system's AI has more than a few potentially lethal bugs.
AT INCIRLIK AIR BASE, laser air defense Tactical Control Assistant, Sergeant Alessa Barruzzi, struggles to keep her battery operational against an enemy who attacks with both cyber, electronic and unconventional weapons.
COALITION ALLIES, pilots Karen 'Bunny' O'Hare and 'Meany' Papastopolous, find themselves fighting for survival in the air over Turkey when Russia decides to unleash its newest stealth fighter on the battlefield, the Su-57 'Felon', and change the rules of engagement.
AND IN ISTANBUL, cyber-warfare analysts Shimi Kahane of Israel's Unit 8200, and Carl Williams, of the US NSA, put together the pieces of an intelligence puzzle codenamed 'Operation Butterfly' that could signal Russia is planning the biggest test of US strategic resolve since the Cuban Missile Crisis.
WINNER BEST POLITICAL THRILLER 2021 - US READERS' FAVORITE BOOK AWARDS
"Kobani is a high octane drama of land and air combat fought with the best in futuristic weaponry...Holden balances this with intricate backstories and motivations for his capable and steadfast characters, offering up fleshed-out human stories amid all the high-tech toys. Military thriller fans, war buffs, Middle East politics junkies, and sci-fi enthusiasts will immerse themselves in Holden’s epic tale of regional politics and potential for worldwide conflict." BookLife
China moves to take over Pagasa Island in the South China Sea, putting it on a collision course with the USA that very quickly takes the region to the brink of total war. Set in an all-too-possible future, PAGASA is 'a whirlwind of a novel' that follows the lives of ordinary men and women facing extraordinary peril, on all sides of the conflict.
On Pagasa, Philippine Seabee Captain, Heraldo Bezerra, and his small force of combat engineers come under attack from Chinese Coast Guard frigates and commandos of the elite Jiaolong special forces.
In Hong Kong, pilot Karen 'Bunny' O'Hare signs on to act as an aerial bodyguard for US flagged merchant marine vessel, the White Star Orion, which is shipping vital materials to PAGASA to help the Philippine Government fortify the island.
In the Celebes Sea east of the Philippines, Captain of the Constellation class frigate, USS Congress, races to rendezvous with the White Star convoy, knowing he is sailing his ship into the eye of an approaching storm.
At Batu Bay in Brunei, maritime militia leader Abdul Ibrahim, receives a visit from a Chinese client bearing heavy calibre gifts and a simple request: sink the Orion.
And high in the skies over PAGASA, China Southern Command Special Aircraft Squadron leader, Li Chen, takes China's untried Zhi Shen J-16 fighter into combat with US stealth drones, to fight for the control of the seas first sailed by her ancestors during the Han dynasty in 210 BC.
Long form review: USA BookLife
Holden is back with another dynamic novel in his accomplished Future War series. This high-flying political thriller paints a grim future where China and the U.S. teeter on the brink of war in the 2030s.
Densely packed with the innovative tech and high-stakes cliffhangers the genre demands,Pagasa approaches its international conflict from every possible side, with a large ensemble ranging from U.S. Navy officers and Chinese military to two young children who must quickly adapt when their island becomes a military flashpoint. That interest in the humanity of all parties sets Holdens work apart. Pilot Karen “Bunny” O’Hare’s no-nonsense attitude and ability to react quickly under pressure make her a standout in the sea of characters, and while many of the main players find themselves thrust onto the front lines of this battle, a handful of politicians navigate the war safely behind closed doors, leaving readers with a chilling realization of who is really pulling the strings.
To achieve that, Holden’s narrative must dart rapidly between viewpoints, mimicking the chaos of war and the quick wit needed to survive it. To help orient readers, Holden supplies a comprehensive cast list as well as a detailed map of the island area for reference. Although Pagasa is part of a larger series, it can be read as an inviting standalone. Readers looking to sink into a war saga rich with differing perspective–and gape at the possibilities of next-gen tech–will enjoy this thriller.
Takeaway: This accomplished high-tech, near-future military thriller admirably examines all sides of its vivid international conflict.
"Engrossing, tense, and polished… Holden’s consistently fine writing will ensure that fans of the genre are entranced.” BookLife Prize
GOLAN, This is the Future of War, asks a question few want to consider. What will happen if Iran acquires nuclear weapons in the next ten years? In true Future of War style, GOLAN explores the question through the eyes of front line participants on all sides, in a conflict set ten years into the future. Featuring military tech that is on the drawing boards today and characters you won’t easily forget, GOLAN throws the reader straight into the center of a nuclear storm and doesn’t ease up.
Readers' Favorite critic reviews.
"FX Holden’s Golan is an amazing read. What I loved most about Golan, however, was its recognition of the world as the stage with players from all nations contributing, be they heroes or villains. Characters like Israeli Corporal Amal Azaria, Aussie Flying Officer Karen O’Hare, and American Director of Cyber Security Tonya Dupré starred in their own way, bringing wonderful personalities to the table in their roles. In a very large cast of players, each demonstrates a uniqueness that will create an enormous amount of either positive or negative empathy, and you will quickly realize that in war every single participant is a victim." Steven Robson
"Author F. X. Holden has crafted a cinematically vivid work of fiction with plenty of twists, turns, and surprises to offer readers alongside its suitably complex plot. Overall, I would highly recommend Golan to fans of immersive military fiction, original storytelling and plot ideas, and for readers of near-future action stories everywhere." KC Finn
"Take a couple of deep breaths before you open the first page of Golan because the dramatic pace will not allow for breathing. As a writer, reviewer, and avid reader, I am a student of the best writers in Holden’s genre and have quickly and eagerly added him to my reading list. I strongly recommend you join me." Author Tom Gauthier
BookLife Prize review:
Engrossing, tense, and polished.
Golan is the speculative tale of military powers in the not-too-distant 2030, and their continuous fight through both war and subterfuge, to capture Golan Heights—an area strategically important to most of the world's superpowers. The narrative’s focus on a conceivable future in which Iran poses a nuclear threat is chilling. Holden’s consistently fine writing will ensure that fans of the genre are entranced. Character development is on point. Regardless of the many moving parts, it’s an elegantly executed military thriller that offers verisimilitude.
In 1942 US Fighting Tigers squadron commander John Chen comes face to face with his enemy, Japanese pilot, Tadao Kato. Ninety years later, in 2033, their great grandchildren are serving on the same side as part of Operation Red Dove, the first joint naval exercises between China and Japan to mark the signing of a new Sino-Japanese mutual defense treaty.
China is determined to forge a new empire in the East with Japan by its side. Its determination is about to be put to the test.
"BEST POLITICAL THRILLER 2020 READERS' FAVORITE BOOK AWARDS"
"A fast-paced, action-packed political thriller that will have you on the edge of your seat."
"Holden’s intense second Future War novel is a riveting take on the near future of warfare and global politics, peopled by a large cast of well-written characters. " - Publishers Weekly BookLife.
In 2034, a cataclysmic meteorite shower rains down on Saudi Arabia, destroying the world's largest oil processing facility and sending the price of oil into the stratosphere. But was it an act of God, or of man?
Taking military technologies that are on the drawing board today and putting them into the domain of space 15 years from now, 'Orbital' is a high-octane look at what the growing militarization of space could lead to in the all too near future.
"An action-packed political thrill ride...Holden’s nail-biting third Future War military thriller (after Okinawa) gives readers a front-row seat to an international tactical assault on a devastating orbiting weapon. " USA BookLife.
"Masterfully elaborated and executed. The story is suspenseful, audacious, and full of thrilling surprises." Publishers Weekly BookLife Prize
"Realistic and original. A fast-paced thriller packed with action and suspense." - Publishers Weekly BookLife
Without warning, Russia starts a lightning operation to seize control of a vital arctic waterway off the Alaska coast. For America, it's a threat to national sovereignty. For Russia, it's a matter of life or death. For hot-wired naval aviator, Karen 'Bunny' O'Hare, it's about to be a bad day at the office. Bering Strait is a chilling look at the near future of warfare. Compelling and exciting, be sure you have nothing else planned when you start reading, because you'll find it hard to stop!
So what happens when an AI has children ... and you threaten them?
For fans of Altered Carbon, Blade Runner, Queen of Angels or Leviathan Wakes, Core Melt is a sci-fi noir suspense thriller about forbidden love, espionage and betrayal.
Emin Wei is a Hunter class cyber, birthed on the spaceport moon of Orkutsk for a single purpose. Find suspected terrorist Kristen Newgard, judge her, and if guilty, terminate her. Only as he is setting out on his mission, does he learn three other Hunters have gone before him, and none have returned.
"Both a love story and a sci-fi thriller, Core Melt is a lot of fun. Holden offers vibrant and effective worldbuilding that will keep readers entranced." Publishers' Weekly BookLife.
Deep Core is a 'masterfully crafted sci-fi suspense thriller', set in the far future world of Coruscant.
AJ is a maintenance tech at Sol Vista care facility. He likes the quiet life. Visiting with his ma. A burger at Fatty's. Surfing the Shifting Sea. Staying in flow. But his flow gets sorely disrupted when a new resident moves into Sol Vista and AJ soon finds himself on the run from an interplanetary assassin, trying to track down a hacker otherwise known as Destroyer of Worlds, all so he can save the life of his new girlfriend, who turns out NOT to be the laid back, Territorian skater girl he thought she was. Sometimes the flow is hard to find, even for a cyber.
All books in the Coruscant series are stand-alone stories, set in the Coruscant universe.
"A hypnotic science fiction novel with strong characters and dark themes ... Core Drift is a slow burn of a story that builds its plot one mind-blowing brick at a time." Readers Favorite, 5 STARS.
For fans of Altered Carbon, Blade Runner, Queen of Angels or Leviathan Wakes, Core Drift is a sci-fi noir suspense thriller that features murder and revolution on a world watched over by an enigmatic AI, The Core. Fan Zhaofeng is a hybrid human-cybernetic citizen in the People's Republic of Coruscant colony. Five years ago, he was little more than a slave. Now he's a citizen. Three years ago, he was a soldier. Now he's a healer. Two years ago, he was a killer. Now he's a fully reformed member of society. Unfortunately, his past won't stay behind him, and his only ally may be the woman who is trying to put him away.
Each book in the Coruscant series is a stand alone story, set in the Coruscant universe.