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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Borealis: A Space Anthology by P.I. Barrington, J. Morgan, Gail R. Delaney

Borealis: A Space Anthology Book One by P.I. Barrington, J. Morgan, Gail R. Delaney
Publisher: Desert Breeze Publishing
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy
Length: Full Length (170 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 Books
Reviewed by Holly

In orbit over a deserted outpost at the edge of conquered space sits an aging space station under the control of the Trans Planetary Protectorate. The Borealis is slowly falling apart as the Protectorate funnels its massive resources into the border wars and keeping the outlaying systems in line, as insurrections break out.

Inamorata Crossing by PI Barrington

As an Enforcement Officer of the TPP, it's Khai Zafara's job to transport Teyrnan Sajan, a rebel leader and 'prisoner of war' to the Borealis to serve out his sentence in the prison levels. Khai holds a deep-set hatred for the Rebellion, believing they were responsible for her father's murder – which she witnessed as a young girl.

Teyrnan Sajan was on Borealis they day Khai's father was murdered. He thought he was the only person left alive who knew the truth. Once Teyrnan realizes who Khai is, he begins a slow process of helping her separate reality from the false memories the TPP drilled into her head.

Teyrnan is a convincing man, and Khai begins to see the truth behind TPP lies. At first, she convinces herself that it's the draw she feels toward him that's clouding her judgment… but as memories break through, she has to accept the truth. And she has to make a choice: Deliver Teyrnan to Borealis so he can serve out his punishment -- and probably die -- in prison. Or, turn her back on the TPP and everything she thinks she's known to join him and the Rebellion and right the wrongs done by her father's murder

Kiss Me, Kate by J. Morgan

K'Tyln Dar is a pampered prince who wants to finally become the man his planet needs so he goes in search of the baddest bounty hunter in the known universe -- The Professor.

Richelle is called The Professor because she knows every possible way to kill a man. Most people -- like K'tyln -- have no idea that the most ruthless killer in the known universe is a woman. And she likes to keep it that way. Richelle has neither the time nor patience for a puff-shirt, golden boy politician like K'tyln Dar.

When he brazenly demands to meet The Professor and reveals his desire to 'learn to be a warrior', her first thought is to put him in his pompous place. But, as he takes his licks -- and bruises -- and contusions -- she sees a glimpse of the man he not only wants to be, but the man he is deep down inside.

Forgive Us Our Debts by Gail R. Delaney

Sarina Laroux is taken hostage and held as a prisoner on the Borealis, considered a traitor to the TPP after they took her father's throne and laid waste to Andromeda Prime -- her home. Theron Kess is sent by her family to rescue her, a job he would never refuse because he owes her family more than they even know.

Theron almost gives up hope in getting her out when he can't locate her amongst the other Uudon-dosed prisoners. When he finally finds her, he is thankful he always prepares for the worst, because her situation is the stuff of nightmares.

Add to that the fact that the Rebellion picks this time to attack the station. Not only does he have guards and Sarina herself to deal with, but gunfire and an aging station ready to shudder apart with the next pulse cannon blast. He has to earn Serina's trust -- something that doesn't come easy on the Borealis -- if he has any hope of getting her out alive. By the time all is said and done, they both come out different people... and for the better.

I enjoyed all three of these stories, all so different, but set in the same universe. Borealis is prominent in all three stories, and I look forward to more in this series. All three stories had strong female characters, but each was handled with wonderful detail.

Inamorata Crossing by P.I. Barrington is a story of political betrayal of trust. Khai Zefara is a lieutenant of the TPP, working on prisoner retrieval. Her latest capture is Teyrnan Sajan, and transporting him to the prison on Borealis becomes a journey of discovery for her, as does the prisoner himself. What happens when everything you believe in, everything you’ve based your life on, turns out to be a lie? Can Teyrnan show Khai the truth before it’s too late for both of them?

Kiss Me, Kate by J. Morgan is a hilarious reversal of roles, as Prince K'tlyn Byllvian Augustyne Dar seeks out the mysterious Professor, in hopes of learning to become the man who will someday lead his people. What he gets is Richelle Burton, the Professor’s second, and she takes it upon herself to accept the challenge. But somewhere along the way, she comes to respect K’tlyn’s desires and when trouble rears it’s ugly head, in the form of a contract on the prince’s life, thing quickly get out of hand. Will Richelle be able to keep him alive to rule one day? And how will K’tlyn explain this woman he wants for his mate to his royal parents?

Forgive Us Our Debts by Gail R. Delaney is a rescue story reminiscent of Star Wars. Theron Kess is undercover on Borealis, attempting to locate and rescue Princess Sarina Laroux from the clutches of the sadistic and evil Tandeth Joquit. When the Rebellion attacks the station, it gives him the distraction he needs to find her. But getting out alive is another matter, thanks to the drug-induced paranoia the Princess is suffering from. Can Theron manage to get her off the station, while also freeing her from the addiction that is crippling her mind? Will there be a future for them, after all of Sarina’s accusations and misconceptions?

I enjoyed watching Khai come to the realization that her whole life after the age of nine was manufactured by the TPP. I found Teyrnan to be the strong hero she needed to help her recover the memories of her father and forge a new purpose in life.

Richelle was a tough taskmaster, and in the beginning, she was merciless in her “training” of K’tlyn, or Kate as she calls him. It is to his credit that, although he was na├»ve and a bit prissy, he has an inner determination to be the kind of ruler his people will be able to trust. K’tlyn is such a fun and silly character at first, and I loved watching him evolve and become exactly what he wanted to be.

Theron Kess is determined to get Sarina back to her father and the Rebellion, and he is strong enough to protect her and help her. I loved watching Sarina slowly overcome her addiction to the drugs forced on her by her captors, and the slow realization that she was wrong about Theron. Sarina went from a woman weakened by drugs, torture and paranoia, to a strong and self-reliant woman.

I would recommend this to all of the space opera fans, who like their star travel with a lot of romance and, in the case of Kiss Me, Kate, a whole lot of laughter and humor. These couples get through it all to get their happy ever afters, and each one is worth the trip.