The Ophelia Prophecy by Sharon Lynn Fisher & Q&A with author

The Ophelia Prophecy

  • By Sharon Lynn Fisher
  • Editions: ebook, paperback
  • Published: April 1st 2014 by Tor Books
  • Genre: Adult Sci-Fi / Romance
  • Source: NetGalley
  • In a Flutter: Awesomesauce!
  • rating-system5

    Our world is no longer our own. We engineered a race of superior fighters — the Manti, mutant humans with insect-like abilities. Twenty-five years ago they all but destroyed us. In Sanctuary, some of us survive. Eking out our existence. Clinging to the past.
    Some of us intend to do more than survive.
    * * *
    Asha and Pax — strangers and enemies — find themselves stranded together on the border of the last human city, neither with a memory of how they got there.
    Asha is an archivist working to preserve humanity’s most valuable resource — information — viewed as the only means of resurrecting their society.
    Pax is Manti, his Scarab ship a menacing presence in the skies over Sanctuary, keeping the last dregs of humanity in check.
    Neither of them is really what they seem, and what humanity believes about the Manti is a lie.
    With their hearts and fates on a collision course, they must unlock each other’s secrets and forge a bond of trust before a rekindled conflict pushes their two races into repeating the mistakes of the past.
    ~ Goodreads

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    Fluttering Thoughts:

    Worldbuilding: Jesus freaking Christ, okay? The worldbuilding was insanely awesome, with freakish Manti (I have insect issues, okay? :p ), a fabulous Manti world with human reservations, scarab AI ships, I mean, biopunk and the works!
    Characters: Asha was a mystery, I mean she finds herself in this weird situation, doesn’t have any idea how she got there. She just jumps into action and does whatever she can, there’s a resilience at the core of her character that, I imagine, would sprout out of being one survivor out of few. The more the story evolved, the better sense of her I got, and I loved that she was discovering along with me as a reader, pretty much. Very engaging.
    Pax was of course the sort-of-dark, charismatic alpha figure I tend to fall for. Of course I fell for him, I mean, he’s just too awesome to resist! You’ll almost surely feel the same way as I did after reading this baby, he’s intense, has a solid moral compass that he tries his best to use as guide in all situations. He’s this mix of very rational, almost scientifically pragmatic and super-hot, molten-lava-potential kind of combo and he’s delicious.
    Their chemistry was awesome, they had this constantly readjusting kind of relationship, lots of buildup and slow burn – once they really got together though, I loved the fact it felt like it was just the beginning of a complicated path, not the be-all-end-all kind of moment that would solve all of their problems. Loved, loved, loved that vibe.
    I also feel the need to mention I totally loved a couple of secondary characters too, and I’d be thrilled to find out somehow I’d get to read more about them too 😀 Yes, I am greedy, hear me roar xD
    Plot: The romance arc and the action were awesomely blended, lots of tension of all kinds that kept on building throughout the novel. The ending was satisfying, but I could also see a fabulous sequel happening (maybe featuring some of those characters I loved, lol!).
    Writing: Third person narrative, his and her POV. I loved their voices.
    Curb Appeal: Awesome cover, hooking blurb, awesome author name (you’ll love her work from page 1) – total impulsive buy material!

    All in all, this was an awesome sci-fi romance read, with lots of action without going into insanity-mode, awesome character building and a fabulously freakish world to explore. If you’re into sci-fi romance, totally, totally give this biopunk a read! And if you haven’t already, give her first novel – Ghost Planet – a shot as well, I loved it too!


    1. I’d like to begin this interview by asking you what’s the portrait of a reader of The Ophelia Prophecy?

    I always think of my readers as romance fans who are a little geeky at heart. Or sci-fi fans who enjoy some sexy times along with their speculative fiction. Those two rather niche readers are becoming numerous enough these days to make up a pretty strong category of their own.

    2. I found the concept of your novel utterly fascinating. Would you please tell readers who didn’t read it yet a few words about it?

    THE OPHELIA PROPHECY is at heart a star-crossed lovers story. Pax is a reluctant alpha, son of the ruler of a race of human/praying mantis transgenic organisms (the Manti). Asha is one of the last survivors of a Manti-engineered plague that all but wiped out humanity. They find themselves stranded together on a beach with no memory of how they got there. Pax suspects Asha is a spy and forces her on board his ship. Danger, suspense, and a slow-burn romance ensue.

    3. What inspired you to create the ‘The Ophelia Prophecy’?

    Partly the title, which is what I came up with first. I almost always reverse engineer my stories from titles. So much can be unpacked from a short, mysterious phrase like that. OPHELIA was also partly inspired by a dream I had about two praying mantises fighting with wooden staffs. The scientific world building in the story was inspired by a talk I attended on open science, which generated some discussion on biohacking.

    4. Could you please explain the notion of the ‘Manti’ without spoiling too much of the read? 😀

    The Manti are transgenic organisms — humans enhanced with insect DNA via unsanctioned biohacker experiments. Most of these experiments were funded by the military, which was looking to create an enhanced fighting force. But some of the scientists got even more creative. Pax, the hero, is very human on the surface, but here’s a description of his sister, Iris:

    Her exquisite face—small and pointed, dominated by large, pearlescent green eyes—was framed by a rigid, shield-shaped hood as brightly green as summer grass. The hood merged with her shoulders, and what was below, Asha had thought at first to be part of her costume—a set of elongated wings, the same color and texture as the hood. They lifted and settled, adjusting slightly with every movement she made.
    As Iris strode toward Paxton, Asha noticed the Manti woman’s arms—slender and tapered like any woman’s—except for the row of spikes running from elbow to pinky finger.

    Humanity referred to its enemy generically as Manti, though genetic experimentation had involved DNA from a variety of species. But Iris was mantis. Darkly alien—darkly other—with a beauty born of nightmares.

    5. Perhaps your book could be interpreted as somewhat prophetic for information to be humanity’s most valuable asset, especially during our current age of immeasurable access to information?

    You’ve definitely hit on what inspired that portion of the book. We are so obsessed with information these days, I thought what if that trend continued and it became a sort of religion? For the humans in Sanctuary, the information in their database is the only connection they have with their past. Over time they’ve developed a dysfunctional relationship with it, viewing it as their only salvation. But their inability to let go of the past keeps them from moving forward into their new reality. I think that’s something we’ve all experienced at times in our lives.

    6. How would you describe the symbiotic connection between Asha and Pax?

    Symbiosis has certainly become a recurring theme for me! It’s more subtle between Asha and Pax than it was for Elizabeth and Murphy in GHOST PLANET. As a phenomenon of his transgenic biology, Pax “tunes” to Asha soon after they meet. Basically it means he now has a biological imperative to protect her, despite the fact she’s his enemy and either betrays or runs away from him on a fairly regular basis. Here is a brief exchange between them regarding this aspect of his biology. (This could be viewed as slightly spoilery I suppose. So skip it if you don’t want to know!)

    His thumb grazed her chin, and he raised a dark eyebrow. “I’ve tuned to you. In my mind—in my body, in my blood, in my flesh—you’re my mate. You’re part of me. I’ll always come for you. I’ll always fight for you.”

    She froze, her throat tightening around her voice. “I—” Her heart raced, and blood rushed to her cheeks.

    “I don’t mean to frighten you,” he continued. “I said I wouldn’t hold you against your will, and I meant it. But you asked why I risked myself by coming for you. It was because I couldn’t do otherwise.”

    7. What would you like your readers to walk away with from reading your novel?

    Satisfaction. The way they feel after really great sex! I get into some political and social commentary in all my books, but more than anything else I want readers to feel like they’ve been on an amazing ride.

    8. Do you feel writing this book has changed you in some way? How?

    It taught me to believe in myself. Really that’s a lesson I learn with every book. Because writing a book is damn intimidating. When you see the finished product you wonder how in the heck you pulled it off, and whether you’ll ever be able to do it again. This book in particular twisted my brain in ways it had never been twisted before, and the science was challenging. On top of that I went through a pretty deep personal crisis and transformation in the midst of writing the first draft. But I made it through, and in the end the book was something I could feel proud of. Note to future self: You can do it.

    9. And, yes, you knew it was coming: give us something to look forward to. What are you working on now?

    I have a third book coming from Tor early next year — ECHO 8. That one’s in the production phase. Here’s an unofficial blurb from my web site:

    The fate of two worlds hangs in the balance as three lives entangle: Jake, a man shifted to an alternate Earth, where he must drain energy from others to survive. Tess, the parapsychologist trying to save him. Ross, the FBI agent torn between duty and his love for Tess.

    I have another book in the early stages that I don’t want to say too much about yet. But it’s the same sort of sci-fi/romance/suspense mash-up, set in Portland, featuring an artist heroine and a physicist/warrior poet hero. I also plan to write a sequel to THE OPHELIA PROPHECY, focusing on the secondary characters Iris and Carrick.

    {Livia says: SCORE!!!! **cra-cram** I mean, very, very happy to hear that!!}
    Thanks so much for having me!

    About the Author & Links:

    Sharon Lynn Fisher Author Photo
    A Romance Writers of America RITA Award finalist and a three-time RWA Golden Heart Award finalist, SHARON LYNN FISHER lives in the Pacific Northwest. She writes books for the geeky at heart—sci-fi flavored stories full of adventure and romance—and battles writerly angst with baked goods, Irish tea, and champagne. Her works include Ghost Planet (2012), The Ophelia Prophecy (2014), and Echo 8 (2014).

    Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


    18 thoughts on “The Ophelia Prophecy by Sharon Lynn Fisher & Q&A with author

    1. Jessica @ Rabid Reads

      So I’ve had this pretty high up on my TBR list, but it just shot straight to the top. I am definitely a SciFi fan who enjoys my sexy times, and while being a little bit creeped-out by humans with insect DNA, I’m dealing with it b/c the Wraith from Stargate Atlantis were pretty cool (even if they were evolved, life-sucking bugs 😉 ).

      Great review/interview!
      Jessica @ Rabid Reads recently posted…Review: Generation V by M.L. BrennanMy Profile

      1. Livia Post author

        Oh, yes! Yes! Do give it priority, I loved it, inspect stuff and all 😀

        P.S.: I have like major hots for them Wraiths!!! Are you kidding me? I was the girl with a crush on Scorpius from Farscape for like years…. (still have it, in fact 😀 that guy is sinister and uber brainy and hot xDDD) And I heart the Wraiths too 😀 But they’re more lizard-like probably in my mind than insect like, these guys, the Manti, some of them aren’t subtly insect, but in real obvious ways… Totally cool sci-fi worldbuilding, I loved it to bits 😀

        1. Jessica @ Rabid Reads

          You loved Scorpius?! No way, LOL! I couldn’t handle the black gums and that tube thing in his head that keeps his brain from exploding. But there were a few wraith that were kind of hot. Oh! And that red former priest guy that helped Zhaan defeat Maldis! He was pretty hot too 😉

          And I really will read this soon!
          Jessica @ Rabid Reads recently posted…Review: Generation V by M.L. BrennanMy Profile

          1. Livia Post author

            Ohoho, the black gums, the serrated teeth, loots of freaky about him, I know. Still my crush from the serious though xDDD What can I say, I love villains/anti-heroes 😀 Oh yeah, Zhaan tended to find cool peeps to hang out with 😀

            Nyah~nyah, glad to hear, hope you’ll enjoy it too!

    2. Christy

      Wow, dang this sounds good. As I read your descriptions of the two characters I thought it sounded like they’d be fun together, and then you said they have great chemistry. That’s important to me, so I’m glad to hear that. And great interview!
      Christy recently posted…Killing Sarai by J.A. RedmerskiMy Profile

      1. Livia Post author

        Can I just say you’ve made me extremely happy with the news about the Iris and Carrick book coming up? They’re the ones I was talking about in the review, the ones I wanted to read more about xDDDD
        You’ve made a definite bioopunk fan out of me!


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