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Monday, January 17, 2022

Pelagia: Between the Stars and the Abyss by Steve Holloway - Book Tour - Guest Post - Giveaway - Enter Daily!

Hi, lovelies!!  It gives me great pleasure today to host Steve Holloway and his new book, “Pelagia: Between the Stars and the Abyss,” here on FAB!!  For other stops on his Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $50 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!!  Also, come back daily to interact with Steve and to increase your chances of winning!!

Thanks for stopping by!!  Wishing you all lots of good luck in this fabulous giveaway!!


Between the Stars and the Abyss

by Steve Holloway


GENRE: Science Fiction



Former special forces agent turned particle physicist Ben Holden is on the run.

The New Caliphate will stop at nothing to get their hands on his wife’s scientific research, which is believed to hold the key to unleashing chaos in the West and advancing their cause.

But in reality it’s Ben’s biometrics that have the potential to unlock the information they so desperately need. Within the oceanic world of Pelagia, in the year 2066, Ben finds sanctuary among the sea settlers of the South Pacific Pelagic Territory, but his respite is short-lived.



Ben’s Escape

He lifted the hatch and placed it onto the deck, then pulled himself up and lay flat near the bow. The coolness of the storm awakened his senses. Rolling onto his back, he paused under the deluge and allowed the rain to stream into his mouth, gulping down the water.

Thirst barely slaked, he slithered to the edge of the boat. The wind now lashed his wet body. He shivered, staring into the night, allowing his eyes to adjust. He spotted the island, a dark fleeting promise glimpsed through a break in the squall.

Looking back, he saw a silhouette climb out onto the side of the boat. Adrenaline shot through him. The man was just a few metres away, clinging to a rail as the boat rolled under them, but still looking towards the stern. Ben inched closer to the edge of the bow, willing himself to be a shadow.

Holding the safety rail, Ben swung himself over the side with the roll of the boat. He hung for a moment, suspended above the sea. Large, deep breaths. Each time the boat tipped his feet dipped beneath the waves. On the third tip, he released his grip, slipping below the surface noiselessly.

As he surfaced, he heard the man on deck shouting into the water in Arabic, “Cut the rope!” There was an answering shout from the water that was lost in the roar of rain.

Ben kept to the shadow of the bow rocking above him. After a minute, that seemed like an eternity, the man climbed back into the stern cockpit. Ben slipped below the water.



Where Do You Find Inspiration?

I am a very curious person. I love to explore new things.

I am fascinated by ideas, particularly in science, and can spend hours on the internet researching random ‘rabbit holes’.

My family and I have explored many countries and have tried to see the world through the eyes of people of other cultures. I enjoy engaging with people, especially those with another world view, learning their stories, hearing about what shaped them to be who they are today.

I also believe we are surrounded by an invisible spiritual world, and it touches us and others in many ways; that we are not only body and mind, but also soul and spirit. Because of this I’ve listened to many narratives of faith through the years.

All of these explorations have contributed to the story of Pelagia.

Science and innovation have inspired me. Years ago I learned about seasteading: people settling on the surface of the open ocean. Many are thinking about this. My realisation was that there was nothing holding humanity back from the last blue frontier of our planet – the seas. The community establishing themselves on the South Pacific Pelagic Territory in my book has emerged from my exploration of the possibilities.

Might some sea steaders be nomadic? After investigating a new approach to designing boats, called SWATH, I created a vessel in my book which serves as a family home for nomads on the open seas. Much of the living space is underwater like a submarine; attached by a column, there are a deck and control room above water. The cover of my book shows one artist’s conception of this type of vessel design, the home of the Battuta family, who herd tuna schools around the South Pacific Ocean.

Several global scientists are investigating low energy nuclear reactors. In the near-future world of Pelagia, there has been a breakthrough in this area, allowing ‘alchemist’ reactors to supply the world with energy produced through the energy released by transforming copper into nickel.

My years of experience working as a marine biologist inform many scenes in Pelagia, as my characters pioneer settling on the sea, rather than just travelling across it. I find the ocean world beautiful and fascinating, and tried to capture this wonder in my writing.

People and their struggles inspire me. A relative of mine runs a rehabilitation ranch, helping alcoholics and other addicts to become free from their destructive dependencies. In Pelagia, my protagonist Ben struggles to step free from his addiction. In telling Ben’s story, I drew from stories I've listened to of others who have faced and fought similar challenges.

Spiritual narratives inspire me as well. For example, what if you chose to follow a faith narrative which is so different from your home community that they felt compelled to force you to change your mind, by force if necessary? I have known people who live in this type of circumstance and have faced it with nobility, grace, goodness, endurance, and wisdom.

So then, Pelagia is a distillation of some of my life experiences, wrapped up in adventure and beauty. I hope you enjoy it.



Steve Holloway grew up on the beach cities of Los Angeles and has always loved the sea. This passion led him to gain a degree in Aquatic Biology from the University of California Santa Barbara; a background which opened many opportunities for him in researching, developing, and engaging with mariculture activities around the world.

Steve and his wife have lived and travelled in many countries over their forty years of marriage, successfully raising three kids in exotic locations in the process. They have always engaged with the people and cultures they live among.

Currently Steve lives in England and consults for a Christian charity in areas of research, leadership development, adapting to new cultures, social enterprises, and mariculture projects. Currently he is consulting for a Indo-Pacific mariculture project – a social enterprise – growing sea cucumbers, a delicacy for the Chinese market.

Steve has always loved books and writing. The story of Pelagia reflects three of his passions: science, the sea and the narratives of faith. The background, in his words:

“I have for many years believed that settling the open sea was within our grasp, and even more accessible than space as our ‘next frontier’. So through the last ten years or so I have been thinking just how this might happen, what would be needed, where people would settle, what kind of livelihoods they might have on the open sea, beyond the EEZs of terrestrial countries. My son Adam told me about what would become a key component of Pelagia, Biorock or seacrete, because of his experiments with it. Many discussions with other scientists, engineers and others helped to begin to fill in the gaps and the concept of the Pelagic Territories, similar to the unincorporated territories of the early US, and what geopolitical contexts they would find themselves in.”

Steve finds any excuse to get into the ocean: sailing, diving, swimming, or just poking around tide pools.







Goodreads Author Page:


Goodreads Book Page:


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Amazon US Kindle eBook:


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Amazon CA Kindle eBook:


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Barnes and Noble NOOK eBook:


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The Book Depository Paperback:


BAM! Books-A-Million Paperback:


Kobo US eBook:


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Steve will be awarding a $50 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card (Winner's Choice!!!) to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those fabulous community outreach projects and awesome giveaways on here**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.


  1. Steve ~ Good morning!! Welcome to FAB!! It is so great to have you here!! Congrats on your new book and good luck on the book tour :)

  2. Thank you Ally; and thanks for the nice format for hosting my book and pieces! I like your FAB site design.

  3. Replies
    1. You are welcome Rita, thanks for taking the time to read through. Lots more like that in the novel (smile).

  4. I really like the cover and the excerpt.

  5. What inspires your main character ideas?

    1. One of the first scenes I wrote, maybe 12 years ago, was of my protagonist Ben Holden sitting in a broken down car and staring listlessly into the desert. He is at rock bottom, addicted to alcohol. What inspired the scene? Stories I've listened to of people who faced unimaginable pain, grief and loss. Where is there hope for people like Ben. Along comes Paul Whitehouse and everything changes...

  6. I enjoyed the guest post and the excerpt and Pelagia sounds like a great book! Thanks for sharing it with me and have a spectacular week!

  7. That's awesome that you've been able to travel a lot, I'm jealous!

  8. Well, don't romanticize travel too much. I do not enjoy being packed like a sardine in a metal tube at 30,000 feet for 13 hours! What I enjoy about travel the most is people I meet and hearing their stories - especially if they are of a world view very different from mine. That makes the trip worthwhile.

  9. What is your favorite childhood book?

    1. My great uncle ran a bookstore in the midwest, and he would send me a book every birthday until he died. One time he sent me an illustrated copy of Edith Hamilton's mythology. I loved that book, and moved on from Greek to Norse mythology, then on to other mythologies from around the world.

    2. What an amazing uncle and memory. I love to gift books to younger family members and friends' kids.

    3. He was even more amazing than that. Apparently he was in cryptology during the war, so in one letter to me he explained how crytograms worked, then corresponded with me in cryptograms. I think I was eight.

    4. I love to hear family memories, so important to who we become in life!

  10. Replies
    1. Favourite holiday is always one week a year where we get together with our kids and their family somewhere and have a great time together.