A small town and one stranger are encounter something beyond imagining. Those who survived the illness are changed and now on the run. If they hope to survive, they must master and used their new gifts, but they must also learn to trust each other.
Blue Michaels thought she would always live in Glory though she dreamed of more. She was the small town girl with the notorious dad who committed suicide and the flaky mom who lived off grid. Now she must put her trust in a stranger. Losing everything else was hard, but trust doesn’t come easy.
Army specialist, Seth Campbell, has known hard all his life. Losing his friend and feeling responsible has been eating him alive. Now, a small band of survivors is looking to him for leadership. Their unwanted gifts have put them on the run and he’s their biggest chance for survival.
While on the run, Seth and Blue share an attraction that only grows tighter, but they can’t let it distract them. Each avenue of escape is blocked, even friends and family are suspect either because they are under surveillance or they can’t be trusted. They need answers and they need help, but who and where?
This one was exciting. I enjoyed the way the author built suspense by trickling out the answers and the band of gifted survivors being forced to figure things out and keep moving. The gifts were X-Men type things and watching the group learn what they could do and use them as they fought to stay ahead of the organization out to capture or kill them.
The group dynamics was well written, too. Each character was defined with a strong backstory and presence. Not all the secrets are in the open, but enough is known to make things interesting. Each member of this put together rag tag team have strengths and weaknesses and come together and pull apart as a result. Seth, the soldier, and Jack, the athlete, tend to be alpha dogs with Blue the emotional drive, Luke the analytical computer nerd type and Kitty the one keeping watch over them all. Their emergent gifts reflect their strengths and what drives them.
Seth and Blue are the romantic pair in this one. They both struggle with trust issues for their own reasons. They are on the run, but there is still time for the sexual tension to mount even as their relationship connection slowly strengthens. They both pull back a lot, but are never quite able to abandon their feelings. Seth may be a natural leader, but Blue is stubborn and likes to go her own way particularly when Seth is in danger. I liked that little something I saw as a possibility for Kitty, and I wonder what is in store for the others, as well.
This is a new adult story and definitely has that feel with the characters, but it’s not high-angst. These guys are on the run and fighting for their freedom and lives plus there is a lot they don’t understand so that occupies a great deal of the story. I liked the feel of it all, the pace, and where things seem to be headed. As the pages started running out, I realized that this was just the opening gambit. It does end on a few cliffies, but there was an intense big-money scene near the end with a little denouement. Things are in a bad way for all involved and got even more complicated near the end.
So, all in all, this was a great start to a series. It’s New Adult, but it has a broader feel so that it would appeal to those who don’t normally pick up new adult books, but love X-men style sci-fi worldbuilding and slow burn romance.
I received this book on Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.
Romance Roundabout #173 NA
New to Me #71 author/series
Mt. TBR #74
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