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Blood Will Tell (The Gaian Consortium Series Book 1) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 422 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||
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Top Customer Reviews
The book opens on the planet of Iradia in the compound of a war-lord type of person called Mast. Within the opening chapter, Mast and everyone is dead with the exception of Mia and the mercenary Eryk Thorn. The first half of the book is about Mia and Eryk working to get Mast's treasure and defend the compound until they can leave. The second half of the book happens eight years later when Eryk and Mia meet up again to deal with bad people (I won't give any spoilers).
The first half of the book was extremely engaging and I couldn't put it down. The second half of the book dragged a bit in some places (once they were back on Nova Angeles) and somehow didn't hold my interest as well so I skipped around a little bit. However, overall it was a strong read and I would be happy to read something by this author again.
Miala Fels, alone after the disappearance of her father, has gone undercover in the compound of the crime lord who hired him to set up an elaborate security system. Her father taught her his computer skills and she knows he built a backdoor into the system. She plans to hack it and take her revenge against the criminal who she knows murdered him by stealing from the man. But before she can accomplish her mission, the inhabitants of the compound are attacked and slaughtered by a rival gang while at the cliff site where her boss tortures and kills his victims. When she goes to investigate why they didn't return from their outing, she finds the carnage, and a single survivor who is barely clinging to life. She gets him on her transport and back to the compound med unit, where a mech takes over his care. She then returns to the task of cracking the code that will get her into the vaults and offshore accounts of a dead man.
Erik Thorn is a notorious mercenary who was left for dead in the desert attack. Barely clinging to life, he hears a voice tell him she will give him half of his boss's treasure to get her off the planet, just the incentive he needs to pull through. And through the slow, tortuous process of healing, he clings to that prize and Mia continues to work on finding her father's backdoor. Until the day they knew would come and a competitor attacks the compound with men and heavy equipment. It's then a loose working partnership is forged between Mia and Thorn as they fight off the assault. They know the gangster will regroup and come back to try again and that they will need to be ready. Because he is Just the first of many that will come.
A KU library read.
Miala is intriguing. She is smart, brave, innocent, naïve and determined. And it is such a bad idea for Thorn to be attracted to her, but he can't seem to help himself. There are really two parts to this book, spanning several years. Miala changes quite a bit through the book, and we get inside her head a lot more frequently than inside Thorn's. I like that she starts out so young, but is never frivolous. Thorn remains an enigma through the first portion of the book. Pope does an outstanding job of revealing his backstory and his personality in snippets throughout the second half. I even like that he has a persona that is the real "him" but exaggerated. Thorn has many layers and each of them was fascinating.
Pope does a great job of creating interesting settings on different worlds. It feels like the future, but there are links to Earth civilization that make it relatable.
This was definitely a romance novel, and in fact, I'm used to reading things that are a little more explicit. It's a testament to Pope's skill that she can make an anticipated kiss as sexy as another author's detailed encounter. You definitely felt the heat between Miala and Thorn.
The secondary characters are also very good. I swear my nose wrinkled as I "smelled" Mast's quarters in his compound. The scenes with galactic cops Jessa and Creel were also very entertaining. The scene with them tied together provided great comic relief at just the right time. The pace of the book, and the introduction of action and levity at certain places in the plot, made everything feel like a really good TV series where new characters are introduced over the season with extensive story arcs. Loved this book.
The story line moved smoothly with characters who were real and engaging. The romance between the mismatched lovers was told with sympathy mixed with excitement of stolen treasures, hacked bank accounts, and an eight year old with an uncanny ability to get himself in and out of trouble. If you like good science fiction and subtle romance this is an excellent book for you.
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