Somewhere to review books I'm reading without giving away any spoilers!
by Jess Anastasi
Publication Date: January 2, 2017
Genres: Adult, Entangled: Select Otherworld, Sci-Fi, Romance
Synopsis: After his unusual reaction to a weapon, Commando Varean Donnelly is accused of being a shape-shifting alien and imprisoned onboard the Imojenna. Sure, he has abilities he keeps hidden from everyone—including the gorgeous doc examining him—because the government makes sure people as different as him disappear. For good. Imojenna doctor Kira Sasaki knows there’s something different about the handsome commando the captain’s thrown in their brig. She doesn’t think he’s Reidar, although he might have been a victim of their cruel experiments. But when Kira learns the stubborn commando’s racial make-up, she finds herself torn between defending him to Captain Rian Sherron and his crew or urging Varean to escape while he still can.
The Atrophy series is best enjoyed in order:
Book #1 Atrophy
Book #2 Quantum
Book #3 Diffraction
This is the third novel in this sci-fi series in which Captain Rian Sherron and his crew are striving to remove the threat posed by the shape shifting Reidar who are using their abilities to impersonate key personnel throughout human organisations. Rian has helped developed a weapon which forces the Reidar to reveal themselves but does nothing to true humans. When Commando Varean Donnelly has a weird reaction to the weapon, Rian imprisons him on his spaceship, Imojenna. Doctor Kira Sasaki knows there is something very different about Varean, suspecting he is a victim of Reidar experimentation, but doesn’t believe he is a threat or that he should be mistreated by other crew on their spaceship. Are the crew correct and able to prove Varean is dangerous? Can Kira prove he isn’t? What about the instant attraction between the two – should either of them succumb to the temptation provided by the other? As Rian and the crew continue to try to avoid the authorities, can they succeed in their fight to save mankind from the Reidar?
Diffraction is an easy-read sequel to the earlier novels. It has an intriguingly different take on the alien conspiracy to take over the human communities and there are some revelations and more hints regarding Rian’s past when he worked for the aliens. Many of the crew on the Imojenna still seem dysfunctional, making them difficult to relate to and empathise with, but the action scenes are well portrayed, brought to life in the reader’s imagination. There are plenty of twist and turns and the great ending will certainly encourage me to look out for more in this series in future.
I received an ARC of this novel via NetGalley. This is my honest review.
Here’s an excerpt to whet your appetite:
He sent her a short frown. “I thought Sherron was some big war hero. Why are the authorities after him?”
Kira threaded her fingers through her hair, pulling some pins free. “A few months ago, Rian got Tannin to hack into the data streams of Kasson Three, a supposedly abandoned station that should have been sucked into a nearby black hole years ago. Rian suspected it was some kind of Reidar base. Baden Niels, a multiversal corporation CEO, who’s actually an alien himself, ordered a warrant issued for our arrest. He claimed his company had turned the station into a research outpost. We’re now wanted intergalactic terrorists.”
While the charge was obviously quite serious, and he was a little shocked to find he’d been nabbed by a band of wanted criminals, the idea of Kira being an intergalactic terrorist was pretty damn amusing. The more he thought about it, the harder it was to stop the grin yanking at his lips.
Kira glanced over at him, confusion crossing her features. “What’s so funny?”
“You. Being some badass, hardened criminal on the run from the authorities.”
She crossed her arms, trying for a stern expression but totally failing, her gorgeous eyes giving away her amusement.
“Hey, Mr. Big, Bad, Tough Commando, I took you down, didn’t I? I’m totally rocking the fugitive lifestyle.”
“Then I guess I don’t need to feel so bad about things if I got decked by one of the IPC’s most wanted. When I account this story later on, I’m going to tell people you were a butch, six-foot-tall, backworlds hack-medic who dosed me with an untested cocktail of synthetic drugs.”
She gave a short laugh and patted his arm. “Whatever saves your fragile ego, soldier boy.”
“Thanks,” he muttered, a little too charmed by the spark in her gaze and the way the unguarded smile made her that much more gorgeous. “How many hours until someone else takes over watch?”
She checked the time then slipped her comm away.
“About two hours, maybe three if I’m feeling generous. Tannin said he’d take the next shift.”
“If you’re tired, let me take the next two hours. I promise not to fly us to the nearest IPC outpost, as tempting as it might be.”
A half grin kicked up one side of her lips. “If I was tired, I’d let you take over the helm, but I’m really not. Well, not sleepy, anyway. Truthfully, I am feeling kind of drained. I had this really difficult patient in the last week who seemed determined to get himself killed. You know I had to save his life two and a half times.”
“Two and a half?”
She gave a decisive nod. “Yeah, I’m calling it two and a half. Don’t tell anyone, but I nearly killed him myself with a sedative.”
“Sounds like the bastard deserved it.”
“Maybe.” She gave a quick shrug. “That’s still up for consideration.”
The next smile that crossed her face had just a hint of mischief to it. He’d been wrong—her earlier, unguarded smile he’d thought was beautiful had nothing on this one, and it hit him right in the middle of his chest and rippled outward.
Synopsis: Captain Admiral Zander Graydon has seen a lot of action, but almost getting killed three times in one day is pushing it. Only the company of his new assistant, Lieutenant Marshal Mae Petros, makes things a little easier to swallow. Except the delectable Lieutenant Marshal Petros is hiding a number of secrets, and her presence might have something to do with the continued attempts on his life.
It’s no accident Lieutenant Marshal Mae Petros finds herself in the firing line alongside the charming but very off-limits Captain Admiral Graydon. She’s taken the job as the admiral’s assistant to determine if a shape-shifting alien has killed the CO and assumed his form. Whether the admiral is human or not, Mae finds herself getting way too close to him as they run for their lives.
Military to the core, Mae and Zander will have to overcome their suspicions of each other to work together, when they realize the fate of the entire universe is at stake.
Synopsis: Twelve years on the prison planet Erebus makes a man long for death. The worst part for Tannin Everette is that he was framed for murder. He’s innocent. When the ship Imojenna lands for emergency repairs, Tannin risks everything to escape…only to find himself face to face with the captain’s undeniably gorgeous sister.
Zahli Sherron isn’t planning on turning Tannin in. In fact, she actually believes him. Sure, he’s sexy as every kind of sin, but he’s no criminal—so she hides him. But no one escapes from Erebus and lives to tell about it. With every day that passes, Zahli further risks the lives of the entire crew…even as she falls in love with a man she can never have for herself.
Jess has been making up stories ever since she can remember. Though her messy handwriting made it hard for anyone else to read them, she wasn’t deterred and now she gets to make up stories for a living. She loves loud music, a good book on a rainy day, and probably spends too much time watching too many TV shows. Jess lives in regional Victoria, Australia, with her very supportive husband, three daughters, two border collie dogs, and one cat who thinks he’s one of the kids.