Hard Lessons is the second novella of the Science Fiction Sam Cane series by T.Q. Chant.
Sam Cane’s escape to the edge of human settlement didn’t go exactly to plan. She was running from her past, but what she’s found out on the fringe could steal her present.
She’s battered, bruised and her mind isn’t entirely her own, trapped in a world of superstition and careless cruelty. As she tries to find a way out of her impossible situation and work out what her enemy is and what they want with her, a Commonwealth special operations team arrives to investigate the distress signal she got out. Caught in a running fight with an implacable, brutal enemy, the elite team is pushed to its limits to find Sam.
Between them, they’ll start to uncover the horrifying secrets of the Saved and discover the true meaning of Rapture…
A Word from the Author
In many ways, this series is exactly as it appears – tense, fast-paced, hard-hitting science fiction stories that follow Sam Cane, a woman with a shady past trying to go straight, but getting caught up with dangerous events on the fringes of human settlement.
Through these novellas, though, I wanted to look at how much better we could be if we could do away with so many dangerous, negative things that still plague us. Things like everyday sexism, racism, homophobia, general intolerance and religious fundamentalism. Rather than the easy option of exploring these themes through dystopia, I chose to write about a world in which they have become a thing of the past. Not a perfect world, but I think a better one. One that’s being challenged by throwbacks to humanity’s darker past. The series started life as something a bit more military-SF, with a fairly typical square jawed hero. I found the setting really popped and the character came to life when I re-wrote it as a woman on the run from her own past. Not a hero, but not a villain either – someone in between who just wants to be left alone to get on with her life.
In Hard Lessons, you’ll find out what happened to Sam after her small victory in Hard Time. I don’t want to give too much away, but it’s probably not a spoiler to say things haven’t gone well for her. Battered and bruiser, her mind not entirely her own, she’s got a hard road ahead of her. She might be getting some help, though, as an elite Commonwealth Army team arrives on-planet to look for her.
(T.Q. Chant, May 2017)
Other Books in the Same Series
Sam Cane Series
Book 1 – Hard Setdown
Book 3 – Hard Time