Paranormal Romance, Superheroes, Anthology
Ebook $2.99 (81 pages, ENTANGLED/EVER AFTER)
Fiona Nelson has always been one hot ticket—even before she took the conversion serum that gave her superhuman abilities. Fiona's powers come at a price: lack of human contact, or she won't be the only thing burning. When she loses control of her emotions, her fire powers run rampant...and she's hurt enough people already. Including herself. But when the man behind her conversion returns to blackmail her into helping him gain power, the only person she can turn to is Ian Jones, the man who broke her teenage heart. The man determined to expose the criminal known as Fireball, whose explosive escapades are just a little too close to Fiona's M.O. Ian is convinced Fiona's dangerous, convinced she's Fireball, and convinced he'll damn himself if he doesn't resist a heat that's always drawn him to Fiona like a moth to a flame—but Ian has his own secrets. And he'll learn far too soon what happens when you play with fire.
Author Site: tamaramorgan.com
A bit flawed but a comicbook fan is likely to devour it. (3 stars)
Ian Jones had a good reason for rejecting Fiona Nelson all those years ago. He was the teenaged geek and she was a hottie with a reputation. When their paths cross this time it's not long before he suspects that she underwent the costly converstion treatment that's gifted people with supernatural abilities. He's been studying the effects of the conversion serum and trying to track down a specific firestarting criminal nicknamed Fireball.
Fiona's conversion has left her bereft of human touch and forced to control her emotions lest she set her world ablaze. When the ex who paid for her conversion drops back into her life to blackmail her into helping his latest bid for power she'll have to face the past she's tried to let go and decide whether to fight back or become a martyr.
Conceptually, PLAYING WITH FIRE is very comic-book-ish in a totally great way and the shortness of the story delivers itself to that narrative very well. It's not a bad story or a bad romance, it just fell flat to me. I felt like I'd read it before. The whole hot-girl with a crush on the geek (as teenagers) thing kind of confused me and never really felt plausible. It actually made Fiona seem shallow as if she couldn't possibly imagine the geek would be the one who rejected her. Like he should have been thanking heaven he was that lucky. That she was still hanging onto that a decade later seemed even sillier. That aside, I did like them together as a couple.
The plot has a nice twist that's not totally unpredictable but enjoyable. The world building was just right as far as a superhero-type one is concerned. I liked the sort of cliched source of the conversion serum and honestly, if Morgan wrote more novellas in this world, I'd probably read them.
As a novella it's a nice afternoon filler read for readers who love comicbook type stories and superheroes. If you're not big on the superhero thing I can't imagine this one would really entertain.
Manga Maniac Cafe
Notes: Review copy received via publisher.