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Ratings and Book Reviews (3 5 star ratings
3 reviews

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4.2 out of 5
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    Exciting start to this new space opera series!

    Tannin was wrongly convicted of murder twelve years ago, and sent to the prison planet Erebus for his crime. Biding his time, he can't quite believe that the chance to escape has really arrived, in the form of a derilect ship landing on Erebus for repairs. When a chance encounter in a marketplace has him saving the life of Zahli, sister to the ship's formidable ex-war hero captain Rian, she returns the favour by enabling him to escape with their ship. But with enemies closing in on all sides, and his wanted man status, will Tannin get the life he deserves, and the woman to match or will his past catch up to him too soon? I really enjoyed this story! I read a previous sci-fi romance book that this author wrote (Damage Control) and I actually thought when I picked this up that it would be somewhat linked to that, but it isn't. It's the start of a whole new series (and I can honestly say that I'm thrilled by that news!). It centers around the crew of the ship Imojenna, and we are introduced to several characters in this story who will make up the bulk of the series. This particular story is the romance between Tannin and Zahli. Both of their characters were very appealing to me. Tannin is super smart, a hacker extra-ordinaire (a talent that fortunately his prison wardens never caught onto). While we know that based on his prison experience he's had to do whatever is necessary to survive, he comes across as a good guy and someone who will be loyal to the end. He's definitely smitten with Zahli from the get go, and torn between his feelings for her, and his responsibilities to Rian, her brother, without whom he would have been kicked off the ship (and is constantly threatened by Rian that it is still a distinct possibility). Zahli comes across as a smart and friendly woman, one who has a deep affection for her scarred brother even if they are often at odds. As a crew mate on the ship, she has to follow his orders just like the rest of them, getting no quarter just because they are siblings. But at the same time, she knows he has her back, and vice versa. She knows that getting involved with Tannin is a mistake, and against the ship's fraternization policy, but she's never met someone she's so attracted to. The result is a semi-illicit affair, with some steamy scenes between them. But while this romance is going on, there is a lot more action moving the story along. We get a fair portion of the story from Rian's point of view, a bitter and scarred man seeking revenge on the aliens who captured and tortured him during the last war. His goal now is to find and destroy them. With that in mind, he seeks more and more dangerous cargo shipment assignments, skirting the edges of the law and making decisions that aren't always in the best interests of his crew, but that will lead him to his end game. He's got lots of friends in high and low places to make that happen. On one of their assignments however, he ends up with more than he bargained for - transporting a kidnapped priestess. Mirella has psychic abilities that scare him, but draw him to her, much to his dismay. Their relationship of sorts is just getting off the ground in the story and very unresolved but definitely headed in an interesting direction. Other crew mates are also featured and I love where this story is headed and all the intricacies of the plot. The worldbuilding is great, not too complex as to be difficult to follow, but with an obviously well thought out setting and scenario for the story. Though we get a happy ending for Tannin and Zahli here, I'm definitely intrigued as to what will happen next for the crew of this ship! 5 stars for the start of a great new sci-fi romance series!
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    So excited for this series!

    I love Sci-Fi romance and I’m always struggling to find good examples of this genre. I must admit I bought one of Jess Anastasi’s books a month ago and haven’t gotten around to reading it but I’ll be fixing that shortly. I really enjoyed Atrophy and I am very impressed with the extensive universe that Anastasi has created. I loved Tannin and Zahli and how they both wanted to be with each other so much even against Rian’s explicit orders. Tannin was so sweet with a little bit of geek thrown in and plenty of sexy swagger. Each crew member clearly has an interesting story to tell and I look forward to reading them. Though Tannin and Zahli are the “main characters” there is really so much more going on in this book. It’s really about Zahli’s brother, Rian, and his revenge mission against the evil shape shifting aliens, the Reidar. There is so much going on in this book but it’s all presented in a clear manner that builds on itself and I never found myself getting confused. I’m not completely sold on Rian yet but I came to like him more as the book progressed. He has a lot of baggage and history that causes him to lash out but I hope that we’ll continue to see more of his nicer side as the series goes on. The world building in this book is very extensive but I would have liked more information on the Assimilation Wars as well as the daring act that Rian does to end the war. This information may come later as the overarching plot if very present in this series. The other thing that stood out to me was that they are all worried about the Reidar which are capable of changing shape and looking like any person. I would have like a little more suspicion and some attempts to confirm identities. For instance, after they rescue Zahli, there’s no attempt to confirm she’s really Zahli and not a Reidar. Considering the danger, I little more caution would have been appreciated.
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    Risking everything, Tannin Everette plans to use the Imojenna’s emergency repair landing as his means to escape…only to come face to face with the captain’s gorgeous sister in this thrilling paranormal sci-fi romance. Even though no one escapes Erebus and lives to tell about it, Zahli Sherron hides Tannin on the ship and the reader can’t help but get caught up in this space opera of a romance as Zahli risks the lives of the entire crew for a love that can never be. The chemistry is a smoldering heat that builds to scorching proportions throughout the story with some steamy sex scenes but in order to have any kind of relationship they will have to defy the Captain’s rules which causes quite a few emotional outbursts and heated clashes among the crew. The characters are strong, compelling and grab the reader’s attention from the very beginning while the steady to fast paced and smooth flowing plot thrills readers with lots of suspense, excitement and romance. There is never a dull moment on the Imojenna as they continuously dodge assassins, deadly traps, and seem to attract more enemies than friends during every exciting encounter but the real danger is a threat that few no one knows about, one that the crew is determined to destroy no matter the cost which keeps the adrenaline pumping throughout the story with lots of excitement. The scenes are well written with vivid details that make it easy for reader to become absorbed in all the action and romance while the intriguing events draw the readers in and refuse to let go and unexpected twists keep readers guessing while adding spice to the story as well. All of the Imojenna crew have strong personalities that spark interest, so together with their grumpy attitudes, I was completely fascinated by the exhilaration of their lives as they barely escape from or stay one step ahead of their many enemies and I can’t wait to find out what happens next on the Imojenna. 4 ½ STARS

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