Goddess Fish: “The Zoastra Affair” by Victoria Pinder Book Review/Giveaway (ends 4/11) WW

By Ruth on April 3, 2014 in blog tour, book, giveaway, review, science fiction

The Zoastra Affair BannerBLURB:
A hundred years from now, Earth has trading partners with alien beings, mostly humanoid. However, going into space brought forth an unknown enemy who attacks Earth at will.
The Zoastra is part of the Earthseekers, an organization originally designed to go into space. Its new mission is to find Earth’s enemies.Ariel is stuck on a Victorian planet and steals Grace’s body and life to get off the planet. Grace must get her body back before Ariel bonds with Grace’s husband, Peter. Then there is Cross, the man on a mission to find those who killed his family. Ariel is attracted to Cross, but she’s stolen someone’s life.


zoastra Affair coverExcerpt :


Twenty Second Century


Sheraton Home World



I’m going to have to steal someone else’s body to get out of here.


“Ariel, are you listening?”


Ariel Transcender stared dumbfounded at the mother superior of her prison, a/k/a Aulnale School for Orphans. “Yes, mistress.”


She had no idea what happened, though she pasted a fake simpering smile of appreciation on her face. Ms. Rochelle walked away.


A few minutes later, Ariel looked out the window again, tuning out Rochelle’s mind numbing lecture on what was proper behavior when near a man. The boarding home on this planet gave the stupidest lectures of the galaxy. Her lips curled into a sneer. Women were not excited to be bound to men.


Could I do this to someone else? Do I have any other choice?


Lenchena, the teenage girl who’d stolen her adult body and taken off on Ariel’s ship, needed to be found. And Ariel refused to listen to the daily drivel about always listening to a man.


No longer on her planet, Grinocx, she did her best to understand this planet’s culture. Order made sense, but the Sheratons never made sense. Her gaze wandered to the well-manicured lawn designed for ostentatious parties. Not paying attention, Ariel’s mind still picked up a few phrases in the lecture, please a man, be agreeable, and do whatever is asked with a smile, floated in the air.


Lenchena’s voice became animated as she told them, “Ferula can be used on your future husband to ensure he finds completion even if you are too tired to perform your duties. However, with your husband, do this sparingly or else he’ll find you a lazy wife.”


Ariel blinked after that statement. Another grueling lecture on pointless marriage and sex. Blah, blah, blah. Her people, Grinders, didn’t believe in love and mating only to reproduce. Being stuck on Sheraton where the women dressed in long dresses, caring for homes with neatly cut green grass, and doing nothing more exciting than watching the pink dawns, while the men held careers in outer space, had never been her plan.


Was she really sitting in a lecture on how to please the male species? She rolled her eyes. Seriously? No, she refused to listen to this nonsense. The words ‘ladies never say no’ reverberated behind her back and made her face pucker.


Ariel schooled her features, pretending to listen to the school master, Ms. Rochelle. The woman had no heart. No one had listened to Ariel when she had cried for days and days that some young teenager had switched bodies with her, trapping her in this alien hell. Rochelle had dragged her back to school, and kept her under lock and key.


Hope became fleeting after that, while the years ticked past. For the past four years, she’d been training at the all-girls school for orphans on how to be a proper maid and housewife.


The twenty-five years of her life training to be an engineer, then serving on the starship Tygra, then the sistership Thrycer, had been stolen.


Now that this body was almost of marriageable age, Ms. Rochelle, cursed school teacher, paraded Ariel out of the orphanage to find her a match. Every week or special event needing service, Ariel had on the job training with heavy supervision, pointing out Ariel’s light pink hair and ability to be a serviceable wife to a working man. Pink hair girls are sweethearts. Yeah right. That lowlife bottom-feeding insect, Lenchena, had stolen her body and her life.


Ariel had stopped complaining years ago because it got her nowhere. She was on her own and needed to find a way out of this body and back to her ship. With the almost age of marriage upon her, it was now or never. Then Ariel was going to find that little twit who stole her body and make her pay for stranding her on this backward planet.


“In a few weeks Ariel will be leaving us. Heading toward marriage with Massimo?” Ms. Rochelle’s voice pulled her back into the lecture.


“Err . . .” Massimo, with his hovercraft, became convenient transportation to leave the school with permission, but marriage? The boy dreamed of owning a restaurant with a pretty wife. She’d find a way off the planet, when she wasn’t being observed or offered for marriage to every low level non-space going man on this planet. Time ticked fast now.


“Ariel is lucky to have found a man so interested in her beauty, he can overlook her status.”


Ariel’s mouth tightened and she lowered her head to hide her scowl. No. Massimo was a child, too. Getting her body back from the child thief, Lenchena, mattered far more. This body was now strong. Away from the ever-watchful teacher, she’d have her chance for escape at one of the upcoming diplomatic events where she’d be a maid or serve others dinner. Plus, Sheratons mated for life, something Ariel refused to believe in. But in order not to draw attention to herself, she played along. “Um, yes. I am.”


A group of male soldiers marched past the closed door of the school room. The females in the class twisted around to catch a glimpse of them. Ariel didn’t join her classmates in staring and drooling at the opposite sex.




Why did these aliens keep males and females separate until marriage? The customs of this world never ceased to amaze her. The teacher taught the virgin teenagers to expect women to fall into orgasm whenever a man’s hand grazed her body. Seriously? Had they never had sex before? In her memory, sex hadn’t been that all-encompassing.


For the past four years she’d been stuck in this body, living through alien teenage hormones. The sexually denied tightness irritated her body, and her mind longed to be back working on a single engine design. On the Thrycer, she’d run a top design engine room, winning numerous awards for ingenuity on a space ship. Then she’d joined the boarding party to Sheraton, being told the planet was a relaxing and safe tranquil spa. Lies.


If Ariel let them, these alien hormones would dull her reaction time in the girl’s leftover body that held her consciousness. She’d managed to keep slim and fit with exercise as she bided her time until she found a way to her freedom, and got her body and life back. When she finished this, she’d fix everything. She’d force the girl who stole from her to return with the borrowed body to make the final switch and right everything.



The Zoastra AffairThe Zoastra Affair by Victoria Pinder

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

First of all, if you follow my reviews, you know that science fiction is not my preferred genre. However, I often agree to review this genre due to the fact that it is something different, and I am capable of giving honest reviews even to genres that do not particularly capture my interest.

The premise behind this book was exceptional, and the writing style was quite good. I have no complaints with any of that. There is no profanity–or it is quite limited. The characters are engaging, and there is no doubt in my mind that the author could write an intriguing sequel that readers would devour with delight. It follows the typical science fiction formula, and it adds the essential romantic element in order to capture the interest of multi-genre readers like me.

In spite of the strengths, there were some pitfalls that caused my estimation of this book to go to 3.5. The bedroom scenes are not detailed, but sex appeared to be the driving force behind so many motivations within the story. I longed for a genuine relationship to develop between the characters, not just one based on the physical attraction.

The scenario described within the book would have been more believable, I think, if the author had given some backstory on the various peoples detailed within the story. A cast of characters inserted at the beginning or conclusion of this book would have aided me in keeping all the characters straight. I struggled with recalling how each character fits into the story.

In short, this is a good science fiction book that has the potential to be improved. There is no doubt in my mind that if the author were to write a sequel, it would be a level above this book. It is clear that this is an excellent introduction.

I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. I was not financially compensated, and all opinions are 100 percent mine.

View all my reviews

Victoria PinderAUTHOR Bio and Links:


Victoria Pinder grew up in Irish Catholic Boston before moving to the Miami sun. She’s worked in engineering, after passing many tests proving how easy Math came to her. Then hating her life at the age of twenty four, she decided to go to law school. Four years later, after passing the bar and practicing very little, she realized that she hates the practice of law. She refused to one day turn 50 and realize she had nothing but her career and hours at a desk. After realizing she needed change, she became a high school teacher. Teaching is rewarding, but writing is a passion.


During all this time, she always wrote stories to entertain herself or calm down. Her parents are practical minded people demanding a job, and Victoria spent too many years living other people’s dreams, but when she sat down to see what skill she had that matched what she enjoyed doing, writing became so obvious. The middle school year book when someone wrote in it that one day she’d be a writer made sense when she turned thirty.


When she woke up to what she wanted, the dream of writing became so obvious. She dreams of writing professionally, where her barista can make her coffee and a walk on the beach, can motivate her tales. Contemporary romances are just fun to write. She’s always thinking whose getting hurt and whose story is next on the list to fall in love. Victoria’s love of writing has kept her centered and focused through her many phases, and she’s motivated to write many stories.


Member of Florida Romance Writers, Contemporary Romance, Fantasy, Futuristic and Paranormal chapter of RWA, and in Savvy Authors.


Visit Victoria online at:


Authors Website:  http://www.victoriapinder.com


Facebook:   https://www.facebook.com/pages/Victoria-Pinder-also-writing-as-Greta-Buckle/294685373900979


Twitter:    http://twitter.com/victoriapinder


Tumblr:    victoriapinder.tumblr.com


Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/victoriapinder/


Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=200859737&trk=hb_tab_pro_top


Google+ https://plus.google.com/105161432419802350109/posts/p/pub


Buy Link: http://www.amazon.com/The-Zoastra-Affair-Victoria-Pinder-ebook/dp/B00HGYVLTW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388944401&sr=8-1&keywords=the+zoastra+affair


YouTube:  http://youtu.be/Buah-LGT4tA


Victoria will be awarding a $10 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour.

Follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here:


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About the Author

RuthView all posts by Ruth

43-year-old single mother of an active 14-year-old girl
Born in Tacoma, WA; lives in Yelm, WA
Entertainment Writer
Available For Interviews and Reviews
Substitute Teacher


  1. Thanks for hosting!

  2. Valerie Theberge April 4, 2014 Reply

    This book look great, I hope I will read it someday!

  3. Elise-Maria Barton April 4, 2014 Reply

    Great review Ruth; the book does look engaging even to those not fans of scifi. I can’t imagine how difficult it was the women in this story and which body theyd were inhabiting at any given time from becoming a huge tangle. It seems Victoria was successful. Thanks for sharing.

    ilookfamous at yahoo dot com

  4. Rita Wray April 4, 2014 Reply

    Great review, sounds like a good read.

  5. laurie g April 4, 2014 Reply

    Great review, sounds like a good read.

  6. bn100 April 4, 2014 Reply

    Nice review
    Having a BBQ

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

  7. cyndi flores April 6, 2014 Reply

    Hi you ask about new years eve? well i think finding a hotel that offers a good all around partys, like dinner, dancing and alot of them have differnt rooms like sports, food, and drinks, karokee, and drinks, pool paryts, you get your room all your friends can go no one drives and you make new friends and they usally do huge ballon drops and it usally is not that expencive in the long run. we have done it a few times and it was always alot of fun. thank you

  8. Mary Preston April 8, 2014 Reply

    It’s wonderful that you went outside your preferred reading genres. A great review.

    For New Years a harbor cruise to view the fireworks over the water.


  9. Sandra Watts June 7, 2015 Reply

    This looks like a good book. I like reading this genre.
    Sandra Watts recently posted…CALYPSO RX #GIVEAWAY ENDS 6/20 @VIATEK 

    The Calypso Rx sends…My Profile

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