Author: Amanda Bouchet
Genre: Science Fiction – Romance
Age Classification: Adult
Release: January 1, 2019
A convict and an enchanting rogue hold the fate of the universe in their hands . . .
Wanted criminal Tess Bailey and her band of merry thieves are desperate and on the run. The most powerful ruler in the universe wants them dead, and while he hunts them, the stolen ship they escaped on is running out of steam. Their one offer of help comes from Shade Ganavan, a tall, dark and arrogant stranger with ambiguous motivations.
At her side is gentle, blind Shiori, Fiona, an ex-rebel fighter with a rage so strong it could bring generals to their knees, and determined Jax and Miko, steering their ship through the depths of space. Together, their friendship gives them strength, but will their bond be strong enough to defeat an enemy whose ruthlessness is legendary?
As their luck runs out, Tess will have to choose an ending to her story – and whether to fight against or yield to a temptation so strong, it threatens to cleave the land of stars in two.
If you like smutty romance novels and science fiction, I definitely recommend Nightcaser!
I remember someone recommending I read an Amanda Bouchet (not that I can remember who or why) so when I saw this cool looking sci-fi novel I decided I would give it a go.
Disclaimer – I am not a fan of smut. I now know that Amanda Bouchet writes interesting stories then slaps a heap of smut in. As such, I did not read about 3% of this book and felt rather uncomfortable for at least another 5%.
Our MC, Tess Bailey, is a tough cookie with a heart of gold. Yes, she is a thief, but the theft she is being hunted down for at the start of the novel she believes to be a lab full of medication that could be used by an orphanage. Unfortunately, she is wrong and that, plus the reveal of her true identity, sets off a galaxy-wide manhunt.
I rather like Tess, but her inner monologue and her behaviour when it comes to Shade were not my favourite.
Shade Ganavan. How does one feel about a shady character who seems to be at odds with himself because he wants a good payday but also a good root? I still have not decided but I know that he is someone I would suggest staying a billion light years away from. He is smooth, flirty and described in a way that makes the reader believe he is insanely hot, but I still cannot help but think he seems like a tool.
The other members of Tess’ crew are Shiori, Fiona, Jax and Miko. Shiori is blind, Miko knows how to navigate, Fiona is basically a scientist and Jax is a kind, protective man whom Tess was paired up with while in this stories equivalent of a working prison camp. Other than that, I do not feel like I learned much else about them. They seem to only be around when they are needed for the plot.
With the exception of the smut scenes and my personal struggles with the characters, I actually enjoyed the storyline. It was rather well written and the plot was interesting but the excitement for me was limited to the first 12% of the book and the last 34% where the story is very much in sci-fi mode. However, there are a few scenes in the middle 54% (the more romance section of the story) that took place in a bookshop filled with cats and a kooky shop owner named Susan. That shop sounded like a little pocket of heaven in the hell of a universe they are living in.
I also need to mention Bonk. A tri-coloured kitten and one of Susan’s gifts to Tess that stole the show. Regardless of how much I liked other elements of the book, I honestly care more about that cat than I did anything else.
The story ended on a bit of a cliffhanger, as we should all expect from the first book of a planned series, but I think it was well done. Despite my personal issues with the smuttiness, I am actually inclined to read book 2 in this series.
Star Rating: ☆☆☆
I really liked the sci-fi storyline, loved the character of Susan and thought Bonk was a cute addition, but the story really lulled in the middle for me, as I felt it focused more on romance than anything else, and I personally dislike all the smut.
What is a book/series you felt conflicted about?
Maybe you really enjoyed one section but also disliked another section?
Let me know in the comments!
Until next time bibliophiles!
A digital copy of this book was supplied to me by Hachette Australia via NetGalley