This is the third book in a series of novellas about a unique type of zombie, the Stein. They don’t eat brains or stumble around like horror show monsters. They are re-animated humans who are ‘built’ for a purpose. The world building is unique in these lighter paranormal novellas that focus on the passion, but still offer a sturdy plot to keep things moving.
In this installment, the story is about Kee, a strong alpha stein, who is the oldest and strongest experiment left in the lab. He does his best to comfort and protect his fellow steins even while he studies the humans that are studying him. One of the humans catches his eye both for his compassion and regret for how the stein are treated like lab rats, but also because he knows the human is interested in him as well.
Ben regrets coming to work for the organization even though he needs the money to pay for his late mother’s medical bills. He sees that the stein are not just sentient, but they are undeserving of the treatment they get and that all are eventually put down. The alpha stein has been there longer than most and Ben sees strong intelligence in those green eyes. He watches the stein nurture the others and he is not very surprised to learn that the stein has learned to talk.
When the order comes to close down the lab, Ben makes his move. He contacts a secret group to come rescue the stein before they are put down. This leads to a jailbreak that has him alone and at the mercy of the alpha stein. Kee takes Ben for his own and Ben isn’t sure what his intentions are, but part of him doesn’t mind being in the hands of Kee.
This hot and steamy plot that focuses on Kee and Ben as they escape the lab was an enjoyable reading experience. It was fun watching them work through misunderstandings and find acceptance when they should be bitter enemies.
Those who like to try m/m paranormal romances that take a step off the usual path when it comes to the paranormal part should give this book/series a try (FYI- series offers both m/f and m/m).
Thanks to Net Galley for providing the book for review purposes.
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