In the Black—Sheryl Nantus


I, like many other science fiction fans, loved “Firefly”. Aside from the gorgeous leading man it portrayed a rough and tough world where the final frontier wasn’t a clean and sterilized future – it was darned down and dirty.

I adored Inara, a strong woman who provided companionship for the rich but not necessarily sex. It inspired me to create the courtesans from In the Black.

The concept for In the Black came to me when I wondered about the miners working long hours far from home. They might hook up with each other but work relationships are hard to maintain in such circumstances.

But the courtesans of the Bonnie Belle aren’t just high-priced prostitutes.

To quote Captain Samantha Keller:

“Sean has a degree in English Literature and has performed Shakespeare at the New Globe Theater on Ares. Kendra is a twelfth-level chess grandmaster along with a level three dan in competitive go. April is a qualified tai chi instructor along with a black belt in various martial arts.”

Anything goes for the men and women on the Bonnie Belle. But there’s one rule that’s sacrosanct…

As UNS Marshal Daniel LeClair puts it:

“No one screws with the captain.” He tilted his head to one side. “No one.”

But rules are made to be broken.

Welcome to the Bonnie Belle.

Carina_0514_9781426898358_InTheBlackBook one of Tales from the Edge:

When Sam Keller left the military, she ran to the far end of the galaxy. Now she captains the Bonnie Belle, a spaceship full of courtesans who bring a little pleasure to hard-up men on mining colonies. When one of her girls turns up dead, it’s  Sam’s job to find out who killed her, fast.

Marshal Daniel LeClair is as tough as steel and quick on the draw. But when his vacation gets replaced by an assignment to help find the killer, he can’t help angling for a little action with the saucy, hard-charging Sam. She’s  got brains, attitude and a body he wouldn’t mind investigating.

Sam, six months lonely, might just indulge him. But the Guild that owns the Belle wants the case closed yesterday. With pressure coming from all quadrants, Sam and her marshal clash over false leads and who’s on top. But when the killer threatens the Belle again, romance will have to wait. It’s a captain’s job to save her crew, no matter the cost.

And here’s a question for you: What would you miss the most about working far, far away from home?

I hope you’ll enjoy the first book in the Tales from the Edge series and return in October for the next story, In the Void.

Sheryl Nantus grew up in Toronto, Canada. She met Martin Nantus through the fanfiction community and moved to the United States in 2000.

In 2013 she won a Third-Place Prism Award from the FF&P chapter of RWA for the first book of her paranormal series, Blood of the Pride.

You can find her here:

Personal website:



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