Blog Tour: The Gates of Mars by Kathleen McFall and Clark Hays

GATES OF MARS
The Halo Trilogy #1
by
CLARK HAYS AND KATHLEEN McFALL
Genre: Science Fiction / Detective (hard-boiled)  Publisher:  Pumpjack Press on Facebook
Date of Publication: June 16, 2020
Number of Pages: 336 Scroll down for the giveaway!
IN THE AGE OF SURVEILLANCE, HOW CAN A PERSON GO MISSING? 
The year is 2187. Crucial Larsen, a veteran of the brutal Consolidation Wars, is working as a labor cop on Earth. The planet is a toxic dump and billions of people are miserable, but so what? It’s none of his business. He’s finally living a good life, or good enough. But then Essential, his beloved kid sister, disappears on Mars. When Halo—the all-powerful artificial-intelligence overseeing Earth and Mars on behalf of the ruling Five Families—can’t (or won’t) locate his sister, Crucial races up-universe to find her. 
In the Choke, the frigid, airless expanse outside the luxury domes, Crucial uncovers a deadly secret from Essential’s past that threatens to shatter his apathetic existence … and both planets. Blending science fiction with the classic, hard-boiled detective story, Gates of Mars is a page-turning, futuristic thrill-ride featuring a gritty, irreverent anti-hero, Crucial Larsen. The first book of the Halo Trilogy, Gates of Mars is the eighth novel by award-winning authors, Clark Hays and Kathleen McFall.
PRAISE FOR GATES OF MARS: “An indelible introduction to an interplanetary saga and its sublime characters.” Kirkus Reviews
“The authors’ imaginations again run wild, this time a science fiction/detective series looking at what our lives may hold in the not too distant future if everything that can go wrong does go wrong. And they’ve done it with their trademark undercurrent of humor that lifts an otherwise dreary future into something resembling—do I dare say?—hope. Their best work to date. And the giraffes? You’ll have to read Gates of Mars to find out. I’m already wishing they could write faster.” —Renee Struthers, East Oregonian newspaper “With twists and turns true to some of the best noir detective pieces—but with an other-world setting and futuristic society—along with psychological insights and connections, Gates of Mars is a riveting, unexpected story, filled with intrigue and change. Sci-fi and detective story readers alike with find Gates of Mars one of a kind, worthy of avid pursuit.” —Midwest Book Review
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Gates of Mars is the futuristic science fiction noir novel that I never knew I needed!  This feels like Eagle Eye meets Bladerunner meets a classic film noir!  There are so many classic sci-fi elements blended together with innovative prose to give the reader an immersive experience in an Earth that’s been largely left to waste and a flourishing Mars with it’s own political and socio-economic sphere.  The narrative picks up with Crucial Larsen, a cop on Earth who feels that he’s got it pretty good at this point in his life.  Unfortunately, Crucial gets summoned to Mars to help find his sister, Essential, who has gone missing.  The synopsis of the book begins with an incredibly prescient question:  IN THE AGE OF SURVEILLANCE, HOW CAN A PERSON GO MISSING? 

The book goes on to explore this question in a beautifully thought provoking story that all sci-fi fans should read!  There is an incredibly interesting power structure within the book, with the Five Families ruling over Earth and Mars gives the book a distinctly noir feeling, almost like a gangster novel.  But in space!  There are vivid descriptions that gave me visceral reactions at certain points.  I thoroughly enjoyed the show-not-tell style of writing employed here.  So many innovative ideas about how people in this world live, class structures in this future world, and stark juxtapositions between the ultra-rich and the ultra-poor.  This is truly a thought provoking book, on par with the best of the science fiction genre.

Talking characters, Crucial is flawed, deep, and written in such a way that you just want to hug him, even though he hates it because he’s a curmudgeon who wants more from life but can’t quite achieve it.  Keeping world-shattering secrets can do that to a person!  Crucial runs into so many characters along the way, with the ever present HALO in his ear, and it’s such a cool journey from Earth to Mars and back again!  Sanders to Jynx, everyone has a purpose and all of the characters are well-developed!

This was a book I couldn’t put down and you should absolutely read it if you are a fan of futuristic science fiction in the vein of Bladerunner! Did I mention that there are giraffes?  There are totally giraffes and an unrequited love story mixed in with hard science-fiction of the futuristic kind.  I don’t know what else to say other than, READ THIS BOOK!

Thank you to Clark Hays and Kathleen McFall and the publisher for a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!  Thank you also to Lone Star Book Blog Tours for having me along on this tour!  Stop by all of the other tour stops to get exclusive first-look content and other great reviews!  Enter the giveaway below and don’t forget to order a copy for your brother or best friend who also loves science fiction! 

Clark and Kathleen wrote their first book together in 1999 as a test for marriage. They passed. Gates of Mars is their eighth co-authored book.
Connect with Kathleen
GoodreadsAmazonFacebookTwitter Connect with Clark
————————————-
GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!
TWO WINNERS: One Winner: First edition copy of A Very Unusual Romance 
One Winner: All four books in The Cowboy and the Vampire Collection 
June 29-July 8, 2020
(U.S. Only)
FOR DIRECT LINKS TO EACH POST ON THIS TOUR, UPDATED DAILY. 
Or, visit the blogs directly:
6/29/20
Excerpt
6/29/20
Review
6/29/20
BONUS Post
6/30/20
Review
6/30/20
Review
7/1/20
Author Interview
7/1/20
Review
7/2/20
Excerpt
7/2/20
Review
7/3/20
Review
7/3/20
Review
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2 thoughts

  1. FABULOUS review and love that bookstagram. I’ve just barely started reading the book, but I am hooked and now am anticipating what’s coming even more enthusiastically. Thanks for the post!

    Like

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