SciFi Romance, Shapeshifters, Vampires
Paperback $15.99 (286 pages, ENTANGLED)
Breaking assassin Jonathon Decker out of a maximum security prison on Trakis One seemed like a good idea at the time. Now, pursued across space by the two most powerful factions in the universe, the crew of El Cazador are having second thoughts. They’d like to give him back. Unfortunately, that no longer seems an option.
Jon is used to working alone. Now, he’s stuck on the space cruiser El Cazador until he can work out just what he’s supposed to know that puts him on everybody’s most-wanted-dead list. He’s not happy that the crew includes a runaway priestess with designs on his virtue—such as it is. Jon likes women, but he gave up the role of protector a long time ago, and Alexia, High Priestess of the Church of Everlasting Life, is an accident waiting to happen.
After twenty-four excruciatingly boring years of doing her duty, Alex is finally having some fun. She never meant to run away—it was a rash impulse—and she means to go back—eventually. But first, she’s going to squeeze enough excitement out of the situation to last her a lifetime. And what could be more exciting than a stunningly gorgeous werewolf?
Meanwhile, the Church are chasing their missing priestess, and the Collective are pursuing their escaped assassin. Being hunted has never been more deadly…or more fun.
Author Site: www.ninacroft.com
When the hunted becomes the hunter... (4 stars)
When the El Cazador's crew broke assassin Jon Decker out of prison they knew he was dangerous. But far more dangerous is the mystery as to why the Collective want him so badly. Complicating things is the discovery that the cabin boy has just been outed as a woman, and not just any woman. High Priestess of the Church of Everlasting Life, Alexia has spent her entire life under the designs of others. Her little adventure wasn't supposed to land her in the place she's found herself. But being part of the crew is far more enjoyable than serving the Church, at least on the El Cazador she has a choice in what she does and just maybe people who care about her as more than just a figurehead.
Before her obligation to the Church manages to wrest her from the new life she's built Alex just wants one thing—to know the touch of the virile werewolf assassin. But the last thing Jon needs is the complication of a virgin bride of God, even if she's the only thing to truly spark his desire in a long time. Their pasts have made them hunted but their pursuit could prove their more than just prey.
Admittedly, I think my expectations were a little higher than could be met but Croft has done it again. Taken a crew of misfits and sent them on a great adventure where another pair of characters find a happy ending. In my geekness I love the idea of vampires and werewolves in space but I have to say it is actually the one thing that sort of kills this series for me. It's too... Earthy? I kind of wanted them to have some space/alien origins that would scrape the cheese off the idea for lack of a better way to put it. I felt like the werewolves here didn't get explained enough for me as a reader. I like to have a solid understanding of the 'mythology' or in this case 'pseudo-science' that makes it work.
Pushing past that one area I struggled with I really enjoyed DEADLY PURSUIT. It's not-as-common to see the heroine as the one doing the chasing and I adored it here. It may not be something I want in every romance but when done right, as it was done here, it's refreshing. Jon is just not the guy you see being pursued by a girl in romances, that big-bad alpha male being chased by a tiny barely-woman was a nice twist. I didn't quite like either character as much as I had hoped, both felt a little two-dimensional and uninspired but they weren't unlikable either.
On the whole it wasn't flawless but it was still very much worth the read. The things that weren't working for me were pretty mild and not-too-hard to look past to enjoy the novel as a whole. I look forward to seeing what adventure is next for the El Cazador's crew and I really want to know more about the Trog darnit!
Notes: ARC received via NetGalley.
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