Lindsay Versus The Marauders

by J.S. Frankel

Lindsay Versus the Marauders - J.S. Frankel
Editions:Kindle: $ 9.60 USD
Pages: 156

Shy Lindsay Fleming has just summoned up all her courage and come out. All she's ever wanted is to be accepted for herself, but though her best friend, Myra, is okay with her sexual orientation, many of her high school friends are not. Her parents don't understand at all, leaving Lindsay angry and confused. During the Christmas season, Lindsay attends a meeting for the "newly out," but she leaves when that turns into a disaster. On her way home, she saves a young woman from being mugged - by four red-skinned aliens!

The woman, Jonephra ("Call me Jo") is a resident of the planet Carinna, located in another dimension. The red-skinned men, known as "Marauders," are a mean, ruthless bunch who stole jewels that power Jo's home world, and she's on a mission to get them back. Turkel leads the band of heartless pirates, and they'll kill anyone who gets in the way of their looting and pillaging. Lindsay is reluctant to get involved, but she agrees to help Jo, who she is attracted to. Jo is tall and self-confident, and Lindsay thinks Jo might like her, but she feels so shy and awkward. Will she be able to shed her shyness and gain enough confidence to win Jo's heart? Even more risky: will Lindsay survive the dangerous Marauders, find the jewels and return them before Jo's planet runs out of reserve power?

Publisher: Regal Crest
Cover Artists:
Pairings: F-F
Heat Level: 1
Romantic Content: 3
Ending: Click here to reveal
Character Identities: Lesbian
Protagonist 1 Age: 18-25
Protagonist 2 Age: 18-25
Tropes: Coming Out / Closeted, First Time, InstaLove / Love at First Sight
Word Count: 67500
Setting: Tacoma, Washington and various alien worlds
Languages Available: English
Series Type: Continuous / Same Characters

Lindsay assessed Nicole. Short, a bit chubby, with a pretty, oval-shaped face and a head of unkempt red hair, she got no positive or negative vibes from her. This meant a resounding no in her book. She'd always figured that liking someone would come down to the Wow Factor, like a wave breaking over a rock. For her, there had to be some kind of affinity present, a feeling, something which said "maybe". She didn't hear any "maybe" and no Wow Factor was present.

Nicole made the initial introductory conversational overture by explaining that she'd come out at eighteen, entered university, and tried a few relationships which didn't work out. "I'm twenty now. I just hate bein' alone, y'know? Then I heard about this group. Cindy's already with someone, so she's trying to get me set up."


Nicole took Lindsay's hand and pulled her into the kitchen. Not knowing what to expect, Lindsay stood in the dimly lit room and saw the knowing look on the other girl's face. She got a slight shock when Nicole kissed her on the cheek. Flustered, she pushed the other girl away--gently. "I, uh, I thought we'd talk first--or something."

"Why talk?" Nicole asked.

Lindsay felt a moment of panic knife through her. This experience wasn't what she anticipated. She turned to leave, but Nicole seized her wrist in a surprisingly strong grip and thrust her hand under Lindsay's sweater and then her blouse, searching for her breast. Lindsay gasped. "What are you doing?"

"What you want." Nicole's cold clammy hand sent a very unpleasant feeling through Lindsay's body. She tore herself away from the other girl, ran into the den, snatched up her coat and bag, and disappeared through the front door into the cold night air. Lindsay was way beyond feeling embarrassed. Her feelings verged on humiliation.

Lindsay ran until she couldn't get enough air in her lungs to keep going. She stopped near an alleyway and leaned against a wall. The brick, hard and unyielding, supported her physically. Mentally, though, she felt crushed and defeated. "This was supposed to be my night," she muttered and quickly wiped away hot tears of shame. She hoped she'd find someone special. It didn't have to lead to romance, not right away, but she thought maybe she'd find a life-friend like Myra--only not straight.

What to do now? She didn't have a cell phone--she'd never owned one--and no way to get home. She plodded dispiritedly down the block. A few couples passed by, glanced in her direction, and continued on their way. They had their own lives and looked happy enough. Holidays had a habit of putting people in a festive mood. Pausing in front of a movie theater, she checked out the flicks. Nothing piqued her interest. Suddenly she very much wanted to go home, and started walking in the direction of the bus station. Home meant a warm room, hot chocolate, and above all, safety. Her boots, heavy clodhopper things, ate up the pavement. "What a friggin' disaster," she muttered to herself. And then a rotten evening swerved into the realm of the incredibly weird.

Reviews:Jodi Pushkin on Goodreads wrote:

Lindsay Versus the Marauders is an action-packed, young adult story filled with adventure, danger and a bit of romance. J.S. Frankel has done a great job developing this story, which features two strong female protagonists: Lindsay and Jo. Lindsay and Jo are sympathetic and intriguing characters. Frankel has created strong, yet vulnerable women who are placed in extreme situations.

Lindsay has been having a tough time. The 18-year-old has recently told her friends at school and her parents that she is a lesbian. Most of her friends, except for her best friend have abandoned her. Her fellow athletes tried to kick her off the swim team, and her mother has recently died. Lindsay is searching for love and acceptance.

When readers meet Lindsay, she is attending a small “coming out” party and is molested by a woman. As she runs away from the party, she finds herself in the middle of a street fight in an alley. This is not a typical fight. The red-skinned, humongous man-like monsters are attacking a young woman who is brandishing a steel pipe.

Jonephra (Jo) is having a rough day, too, based on the creatures that are following her and trying to kill her. The Marauders followed her to Earth hoping to find a stone she has hidden from them. Jo is on a quest. She needs to find a choosok to save her planet.

Lindsay is understandably freaked out, confused and skeptical.

Jo has been traveling around the universe looking for a choosok, which is a mandatory power source needed to keep the people on her planet alive and the dome intact. But the power source is not the only thing Jo needs. She needs acceptance, friendship and love. In this, Jo and Lindsay have a lot in common.

In this book, Frankel creates alternate worlds and extraterrestrials that are intense and varied. The science-fiction elements of the story are well done and creative.

Through dialogue and descriptive prose, Frankel shows readers worlds that they could never encounter on their own. And, of course, as with most young adult books, there are some underlying important lessons. Jo and Lindsay are both treated as outcasts because of their sexuality. Jo’s home planet is stark and dreary and in danger of being destroyed and a lot like Earth in some aspects.

This is the first book in a trilogy, and the ending primes the reader for more adventures. The focus of this first book is the adventure, but the budding romance of Jo and Lindsay is promising. Frankel has established a strong bond between the two protagonists, and this reader is looking forward to reading the rest of their adventures. While Frankel twists reality in this science-fiction adventure, his writing conveys a multi-dimensional realism and vulnerability.

This is basically a story of a young woman who's just come out and is looking for a girlfriend. Wish granted--sort of. Lindsay meets her soulmate in Jonephra, a young woman from the planet of Carinna, and the adventure begins from that point on.

Love doesn't always come around, and when it does, it isn't always from around here.

About the Author

J.S. Frankel is the writer/creator of the Lindsay/Jo (YA) trilogy, Twisted--a gender-bender comedy-action novel--and the upcoming Fight Like A Woman lesbian action novel. He spends most of his time writing, and the free time attempting to figure out how the world works.

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