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The Elite - ROCK FORSBERG
The Elite - ROCK FORSBERG
The Elite - ROCK FORSBERG

The Elite

€6,75
FormatE-Book

No matter how fast you fly, you can't outrun your past.

In this heart-pounding conclusion to the ARL series, Zane Silvering faces his most formidable challenge yet. The young pilot, known for his dramatic past, is back in action with a new racing team.

But the shadows of his history loom large, threatening to shatter everything he holds dear. As he hurtles through high-speed races on ludicrous circuits across the galaxy, Zane must confront not only the ruthless competition but also the haunting echoes of his past.

Amidst the chaos of the racing world, a spark of romance ignites, and Zane finds himself torn between the thrill of the track and the allure of a love that could change everything. As his heart races on and off the track, the tension pushes at him from all sides.

With his racing team's fate on the line, Zane must find the strength to replace his fear with trust when everyone seems to be playing a game. The decisions he makes will not only shape his future but also the future of everyone in the ARL

If you've been on this breathtaking journey with Zane from the very beginning, "The Elite" promises an electrifying climax to the series, where the heart-pounding action is matched only by the intensity of newfound relationships.

Get ready for one last high-adrenaline ride that will leave you breathless, on the edge of your seat, and believing in the indomitable spirit of camaraderie and love.

Don't miss out on the epic conclusion—secure your seat for the final race now!

Print length: about 375 pages
Audiobook length: about 9 hrs 15 minutes (to be confirmed)
Audiobook sample:

Chapter One: Karvama

The light of the star, Kar-1, glanced off the railings of the Karvama Elite Circuit as Zane pushed the Pistona Hawk to its limits, running a head-to-head race with Pistona’s Carlo Allegri on a track that was new to both of them. The man was good, but he was making consistent errors on the left-hand corners, one of which gave Zane a way past him. As a new team in the Antigravity Racing League, the ARL, Pistona were seeking to hire, but Carlo was their number one, and the reason they’d got into the ARL. 

The Hawk was more akin to the old Kispeed Arrow with its nimble, lightweight chassis, but as a new model, it had what could only be described as a raspy sharpness. After only a few test runs before the duel, it had proven the perfect craft for Zane. 

Carlo was new to ARL, but Zane had to applaud him for trying. The man hung on his tail like a burdock. Even though he was doing his best, he couldn’t shake him, and when the finish line flashed under them, they were only 0.2 seconds apart. But Zane was the first over the line.

He coasted to the pit lane and parked his craft in the Pistona area. His opponent pulled up beside him. 

Zane smiled. He had won the duel, and they would sign him up. While intellectually, he knew his worth, ever since the implosion of Kispeed, he had been feeling anxious about finding a new team. Matt Clay, the champion of the last ARL season, had got him a contact with Pistona via his father, who ran the Reckoner team. They also had an idea that Pistona, a group of racing teams in multiple local feeder leagues, could be one of the best debutants in the ARL. So Zane had said, ‘Why not?’ and they had organised a meeting.

Now, here he was, stepping out of the craft as a winner, ready to join the new team.

The Pistona manager, a sharply dressed middle-aged woman, Marie Modena, stepped over towards him. ‘Good work, Zane.’

‘Thank you,’ he said, and brushed back his sweaty black mess of hair. ‘What happens next?’

‘Well,’ she said, looking at the screen in her hands, ‘first, we will perform a technical analysis on the run against the other potential recruits, and then let our panel of experts have a say about the optimal pilot.’

Zane gulped. He had thought he was the only one, and because he had won, it was only a matter of practicality for them to make him an offer (which, after getting a taste of the Hawk, he was almost sure to sign). But it seemed things wouldn’t be that easy. ‘I understand. When will I hear from you?’

Carlo appeared beside him, slapping him on the shoulder. ‘Well done, spotting the opening; I thought I was being too subtle, but you saw it, and you took it. Would be great to have you in the team.’

He had let me pass intentionally? Either the guy was full of it, or he was the next ARL champion. 

Marie said, ‘We are a high-performing organisation. We won’t take long; expect my call by tomorrow at the latest. We will also reach out to your agent: Hermes Humphries, correct?’

‘That’s right,’ Zane said. He didn’t know what he’d do with all the legalese without Hermes. Pistona wanted to move fast, and so did he, though he couldn’t imagine what he would do if they said no. He had put all his eggs in one basket, because every interaction with Pistona had made him feel like this was his team, and that he would slide into the racing line-up in no time.

Because he was Zane Silvering. He could have won the team championship last season. Surely, Pistona had nobody better than him. Or did they? 

* * *

‘Are you guys at Karvama?’ Zane asked as his former teammate, Joanna Locksloe’s face appeared on his handset.

‘We are! Visiting Matt’s folks for the week,’ she said. ‘How did your testing go?’

Zane sighed. ‘Good, but seems I’m not the only one. Apparently they have other candidates as fast as me, if not faster.’

‘I doubt they have anyone better than you,’ said Matt Clay, Joanna’s boyfriend and the reigning ARL champion. ‘They might use it as a tactic to prepare for negotiations.’

‘I wish I had your confidence,’ Zane said, and meant it. When he had been dreaming of getting into the ARL, he had idolised Matt Clay, assuming he’d have his presence and confidence when he was a professional racer himself, but he would later find out that it didn’t work that way. Becoming an ARL racer didn’t magically make Zane look and act like this charismatic hunk. 

‘Don’t sell yourself short,’ Matt said. ‘You are one of the elite, the best of the League.’

Hearing it from Matt Clay felt good even though he didn’t feel elite—he had less than a season’s worth of races under his belt, and some of those races had been outright bad.

‘He’s right, you’re one of the best,’ Joanna said, ‘but that’s not the main reason we called. We called because of this.’

She and Matt both reached out their hands, showing off a shiny new pair of rings adorning their fingers. 

‘We got engaged!’ 

Zane smiled. He remembered the drama when Matt had proposed to Joanna in the live post-race media session last season, and the scandal of her refusal. But with everything that had happened since, their engagement seemed a natural progression. ‘Congratulations, you two! But, but… I didn’t see you propose on the newscast, Matt. So, how is it possible?’

‘Ha-ha,’ Joanna said. ‘He learned from the last time, and proposed to me in a much more suitable location: on a rowboat, just the two of us, in the natural quiet of Elanga Fjord.’

Matt grinned. ‘I was afraid she’d push me off the boat, but she said yes, and made me the happiest man in the galaxy.’

Joanna pulled him in for a kiss. 

‘So, when is the big day?’

‘It will be during the mid-season break; we have booked the Gaia Lounge on Elvan. You are, of course, invited, though it might take some time for us to get the details for the invitations.’

‘I’m happy for you,’ Zane said.

‘And, mate, the invite is plus one, if you wish to bring someone special…’

Joanna hit Matt on the shoulder. ‘Don’t tease him.’

‘Yeah,’ Zane said, rubbing his neck. ‘I don’t think there will be a plus one for me.’

Both Joanna and Matt’s faces turned serious. 

Matt said, ‘I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to—’

‘Leah was an extraordinary person,’ Joanna said. ‘We all miss her.’

Few dared mention her name. Leah Kairos had been the first racer Zane had got to know on Kispeed, but then she’d left, and, working with Desiree Harmen, had tried to destroy the team. But all along, she had been doing the right thing. She had opened Zane’s eyes, and with her, he had spent the best months of his life. She showed him a love he didn’t know existed, and then, in a sudden missile explosion, she was taken away from him. Zane sighed. ‘She was…’

Joanna frowned. ‘Oh, you poor thing. I know plenty of sweet young women who would love to meet you; just let me know if you’re interested.’

‘Thanks. I appreciate it, I really do, but I don’t think I’m up for a serious relationship right now.’

‘Exactly!’ Matt said. ‘You’re a young superstar. You don’t need a serious relationship, but you could have some fun, eh?’

Joanna hit him again. 

‘Ouch! You pack some power!’ Matt rubbed his shoulder. ‘Zane, it was good to talk to you. Keep us in the loop about Pistona; I’m sure they’ll take you.’

‘Thanks, I hope so too,’ Zane said, and with a wave, cut the line.

He had been living in the Locksloes’ mansion throughout the break, and Joanna and Matt had become his closest friends. He was happy for them, and was looking forward to the wedding. But there were still months and a lot of racing to go. Before the tragic events at the end of last season, he had been so close with Leah that he ended up shutting everyone else out of his life. It was a mistake he never wanted to make again. 

This year, he’d concentrate on racing and spending time with his friends. He had absolutely no interest in rushing into yet another relationship, though Matt’s idea of having fun sounded good, too. 

Talking about friends, Ant, his best friend since they were kids, was also applying to Pistona, but as a mechanic. If they wanted Zane, he would make sure they’d get him as well. He was the best race mechanic he knew, and he trusted him with his life. 

Ant and his girlfriend, Greta Dromberg, a talented mechanic herself, had visited Zane on Elvan during the season break, but they had both then flown to Karvama, the Clay Family homeworld and the home of the Reckoner team, as Matt had hired her as a race mechanic. Greta had got a big break leading the race engineering team, but with Kispeed’s implosion, that had been short-lived. But apparently she didn’t mind being back…

His phone rang again. It was Marie Modena. Zane stepped over by the wall, and with trembling hands, opened the line. Her face appeared on the screen with a sharp smile, as always. ‘Zane, we have gone through the data about all the tests…’

He gulped. Even after so many races on ARL, and so many high-stakes situations, these sorts of things made him anxious. 

‘…and we concluded that unfortunately we won’t be going forward with you.’

He blinked. ‘Excuse me?’

‘We will not be offering you a position with Pistona.’

Zane stared at her image on the screen, his mouth open. He had beat their best racer, and they had even spoken about getting Ant into the team. ‘Who got the job? Against whom was I competing?’

Marie tilted her head and offered a tight-lipped smile. ‘I understand how you might feel. You were my favourite, but our top management decided to stick with our existing roster and grow the ARL team organically. I’m really sorry this has happened so late in the process.’

‘So, you won’t be hiring anyone?’

‘That’s right. Carlo Allegri and Marta Cuverta will headline our debut, and we have a lot of young talent in our local leagues to grow into their shoes.’

She seemed sincere, but it didn’t make Zane feel any better as the realisation sank in. There were only a few weeks until the start of the season, and all the teams had full rosters. There was no chance of him getting into a team before the circus kicked off.

‘Zane,’ she continued, ‘you are a fantastic pilot. Let me assure you, the decision had nothing to do with your skills. I hope to see you on the circuit, and perhaps in the future we may work together.’

After a brief exchange of pleasantries, Zane ended the call and threw himself onto the bed, where, staring at the ceiling, he considered his options. There was one, Gurtech, to which he had already said no. Matt Clay didn’t think the new team would be up to the demands of the ARL, but still, Zane did his research. They had one experienced pilot, Gala Delana. Zane had heard of her winning in the local league, but Gurtech’s craft weren’t at the level of performance required to win in the ARL. Besides, it had already been a month since they had talked, and they would have filled their roster already.

What other options did he have? If all else failed, he might wrangle himself on board Reckoner as Matt’s substitute, but they both knew it wouldn’t work.

He sighed.

All he wanted was to race. He remembered what Ant had once said about him: that he knew what he had to do, whatever it took to get what he wanted. 

He picked up his phone, and tapped a message to the Gurtech manager.

END OF PREVIEW


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The Elite

€6,75
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How do I download my e-book?

1. Shortly after completing your purchase, you will get an email with the subject: Here's "the book title" by Rock Forsberg

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Author

Rock Forsberg

Rock loves awe-inspiring stories and writes to create epic worlds and stories of his own. He has also written songs, poems, and short stories, both in English and in Finnish. For him, writing is a long game, with a lifetime of learning and dozens of novels to write.

"I hope you will find the same awe in reading this book as I found writing it."

Quality

Long Live Editors!

As any quality-conscious independent publisher, I work with several professional editors and proofreaders.

I strive to deliver the best product possible, but it's impossible to be objective about one's own work, so the editorial support is vital.

The quality of my prose wouldn't be what it is without my editors.

Customer Reviews

Based on 9 reviews
89%
(8)
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M
Maggi Lunde
Fast Racing and Complicated Relationships

Racing in the Antigravity Racing League continues to be Zane Silvering's life-long, long-term goal. But now the start of the ARL season is iffy as he has no team. Will he even be able to race at all? Learning that there are personal and political agendas is a bitter pill to swallow when all he wants to do is race.

There are dangerous stops, starts, and curves in the this 3rd AGL racing season and in Zane's personal life as well. It is not only the planetary race courses that are challenging, but his personal life has growing pains as well as, he continues to mature in both his racing and personal life.

His recently discovered family relationship, the Harmen family, continues to provide blindsiding events. Is there anyone he can really trust?

This fast-paced book keeps you in suspense until the very end and hopefully beyond this 3-book series as I am eagerly awaiting the next challenging adventures of Zane Silvering's racing and personal life.

I received a free copy of an advance version and am voluntarily leaving this review.

M
M
Great conclusion to this series!

This book wraps up the threads from all the previous books. A very satisfying fast paced story. Zane has fully matured and is a very sympathetic character you just can't help but like.

While this book can serve as a conclusion he has room for more stories.

I received a free copy of an advance version and am voluntarily leaving this review

v
van brollini
Excellent

Lots of action, very exciting and a very nice read. Now will have to read the beginning ones too :-) Enjoy a nice story, well done!

W
W.G.
The Elite is worth the wait

You will enjoy the Elite with several "Dirty Deeds" thrown in to enhance the story. Very enjoyable read and an ending that will make you cheer.

P
Phil Van
Racing team relationships and stealth scheming share the focus - 4 stars

In a future where the sports entertainment has teams of fast fliers, an amateur pilot with considerable native ability makes this story more about strong women and desire to succeed. Zane Silvering has three years of experience in the Antigravity Racing League (ARL). Zane's focus is on racing. He comes from a wealthy family and has seen people die on the racetrack and is emotionally numb.

A new pilot, Dawn Brume, is attractive. She catches nearly every man's eyes when she is seen, not just in a racing vehicle. Dawn comes from a modest background and does not have support from her family; they want her to marry and have a family. Her flying is good enough to be considered as a pilot in the ARL. She has a dream and wants to be the best of the best. In the league competition, each team is required to have one entry piloted by a man and one by a woman.

At least one perpetrator of nefarious plots surrounding the ARL is still at large. Harmen family members who had been wealthy sponsors of one ARL team have been arrested and convicted but there are still people who have not been brought to justice. Early on, we see possible sabotage of Zane's vehicle. As the racing season is about to start, there are unexplainable problems which affect Zane and only Zane.

At the beginning of the season, Dawn seems to stalk Zane, even though she is engaged to a different man. Zane's cousin, Elodie Harmen, who used to be Zane's girlfriend (until their biological relationship as cousins was realized) is in line to get a large inheritance from the Harmen estate to share with Zane.

The relationships outside of racing keeps the reader's attention. The women who want Zane's attention have different motives and tactics providing tension and giving the story a soap opera-like quality. Like a good thriller, the various plots don't get resolved until the end. I did not realize who, in the large cast of characters, could be trusted until it was spelled out for me.