by Linnea Sinclair
‘Gabriel’s Ghost’ series Book #1
This RITA Award-winning novel of romance and adventure tells the electrifying tale of an intrepid pilot who falls from grace – and the otherworldly rogue who is all too ready to catch her.
Captain Chasidah Bergren, a onetime pride of the interstellar Sixth Fleet, is framed for a crime and exiled to a prison planet from which no one escapes – until a seductive ghost from her past shows up to rescue her. Gabriel Sullivan, alpha mercenary and scoundrel, is supposed to be dead. Now he offers her a ticket to freedom – for a price. Someone in the Empire is breeding uncontrollable killing machines, and Gabriel needs Chaz’s hellp before hundreds of innocents die. Their own lives are on the line – but the long-held attraction that heats up betweent hem may be the riskiest part of all…
Review: Incredible Sci-Fi that’ll take you for a ride!
Stripped of her post as Captain for the interstellar Sixth Fleet after being convicted of a crime she didn’t commit, Chasidah “Chaz’ Bergren is sent to Moabar prison planet, with only her Grizni dagger to protect and defend herself.
Just when she defends herself and kills a Taka, she comes face-to-face with Gabriel “Sully” Ross Sullivan, the legendary mercenary and scoundrel, whom she’d met several times before. Chaz is sure Sully loved the chases then. But meeting up with him now is a surprise, considering he’s supposed to be dead. Mind you, the dead man still looks as good as he did then.
Sully has a proposal for Chaz; in return for her help and services for his mission, he’ll get her off of Moabar and help clear her name.
She accepts and wonders if she’ll regret it.
Racing from one station to the next, Chaz learns that someone is breeding “jukors”; uncontrollable monsters. However, Sully has learned of a new gen-lab breeding these monsters, and using Takan females as incubators. Sully is determined to put a stop to it.
The question is: who can they trust? Who’s behind the gen-labs? How high up the chain of command does it go? For recent reports gleamed by inside informants say the lab is on Marker, where the Empire is based.
And all the while trying to determine answers to those questions, Chaz is falling for Sully more and more, even when she refuses to be on that “long list of confused women” that Sully is purported to have left behind in his wake. And despite not wanting to be on that “long list”, Chaz is falling in love with him.
But Sully isn’t everything he plays himself to be. Sully is an Empath, a Telephath, and then Chaz finds out he’s something more. Can she push past those barriers she was taught to put up against someone, something like Sully, or will her decision be lead by her heart?
Oh, did I so enjoy this story!
At first, I worried. I’m not usually one who likes a story narrated in first-person. While I sometimes have a hard time reading stories told that way, this in no way hampered this book. In fact, I think the story being told by Chaz herself adds to the book – I can’t see it as a third-person story.
The action starts immediately and pretty much doesn’t let up, no matter which kind of action, defending one’s self and others or heating up the sheets. As the story grows, so do the characters, coming full circle from start to finish, and is more than satisfying to this reader. Add in mystery with amazing characters, primary and secondary, and you have the makings of an amazing book.
Chaz is a strong woman, more than capable in defending herself, and like Sully, believes the gen-labs needs to be stopped, is willing to do what is necessary to see them stopped. She knows she’d been framed, doesn’t want to believe that someone close to her helped put her there, but she needs to get to the bottom of it, even if she doesn’t like the truth.
Sully is Alpha through and through; strong, brave, forceful, incorrigible, and protects those he loves and cares about with a fierceness that will steal a reader’s breath. But Sully also hurts more than most, for he hides a deep, dark secret, one that he knows very few will accept. Only one person truly knows what he is, and he’s hoping Chaz will be the second, for he truly loves her deeply, and to be rejected by her would surely put an end to the Sully we grow to love.
Incredible from start to finish, the story will suck you in and leave you with a sigh of contentment when finished. I can’t wait to get my hands on Shades of Dark, book #2 in this series. Awesome job, Ms. Sinclair!