Review: Big thanks to NetGalley & Carina Press for allowing me an ebook for an honest review. I’ve re-read this series a few times by now, but here’s my original review.
The summary was a little confusing to me at first but basically the story is set way in the future, long months after the end of a human & alien war. A former war hero named ‘Loop’, who’s certainly showing signs of PTSD, is in search of a dear friend, seeks a cargo ship willing to help him out on the down low. When he arrives on the ship, he’s surprised to see Felix, a man he thought killed in action. A man, he’d been best friends with, lovers.
We start the story in ‘Loop’s’ POV and he kind of narrates in a near noir-ish style. It’s a good balance, not being too over the top or contrived, and helps the reader fall into the world. You get a good feel for him before you’re suddenly thrown into another POV, Felix’s. There’s a third POV that shows up every so often, the Captain’s, but not often enough that to me it felt random. Sure, I liked seeing that side of the crew, get a break from the two main characters, but I think it probably could’ve been better handled or woven in.
Felix’s POV definitely has its own character though, and we get some great insights to what had happened to him, and more so, the technology of the world. And with him, we get the most interaction with the alien member of the crew, Qek, who while could’ve been easily a Spock clone, was very unique and memorable and certainly made me interested to learn more about her and her race.
I think what I liked most about this book was, that it wasn’t just a straight up romance or smut story (though I do enjoy smut). There was a plot, and a well thought out one. There was never a point of info dumping, and great inclusions of backstory through simple memory, that worked for these characters, since it’d been so long since they saw each other. I certainly became interested in the world, and what happened to each and every character, and how they got to be where they’re at. All of it mostly teased out by the authors, but I don’t mind.
There was a good bit of angst going on, not just from what was going on, with an interplanetary drug cartel out to get them or hiding from the military, but internally too, since both men felt damaged to themselves. Results of physical and mental scars and disabilities from their role in the war. I think it was all handled wonderfully.
There’s great supporting characters that aren’t there just to flesh out the book or prop the two guys together, and the world building was pretty good for such a relatively short read. There was one part I thought was a bit anti-climactic, but actually it wasn’t the real ‘battle’ which came shortly after, and that was pretty satisfying.
The smut scenes are pretty evenly spaced and rather realistic. It wasn’t explicit, but not fade to black either, just steamy enough to enjoy. Always a favorite when both guys are switches. There’s also a hint that one of them is bisexual/pansexual, which is great to see, even if his heart’s only for one guy, haha.
Knowing this is a series, made me content that we didn’t get to learn all the secrets, or what’s going on with the other alien races. I certainly can’t wait to read more!
NB: Why this does have some smutty scenes, this is a great, plotful series that I see it more like what’d we see on cable television. So it still has the Adults Only tag but I don’t necessarily consider the series purely erotica.
Cover: It works well with the theme of the book, and like the book doesn’t focus too much on the ‘romance’ aspect. So I do like that the male protags only show up in the small panel of the ship texture. My main problem is they’re in plainclothes and doesn’t fit at all with the sci-fi theme or futuristic setting. But as far as covers go, still pretty good.
Check it out on GoodReads Here!