The Blurb: When her car breaks down in the middle of nowhere, scared and alone, Lauren mistakes a light in the sky for rescue. The help she thinks is coming turns out to be a terror far more sinister than she ever could imagine.
Lauren wakes to find herself on an alien planet in the arms of the sexiest man she’s ever laid eyes on, only to learn that he’s an alien and she’s stranded on a planet that is definitely not Earth. When they’re taken prisoner by the planet’s natives, an old shaman woman tells Lauren she is the key to free the mind-enslaved from the evil Reptiles.
Jo’Aquin is imposing and aloof, and Lauren knows he hides a soul-destroying secret. Lauren has her own secrets. But there’s something about the way that he touches her that sets her skin on fire and sparks flying through her veins.
Can Lauren be the saviour everyone thinks she is, despite the desperate battle of life and death she finds herself in? Can Jo’Aquin save the woman who, against all odds, has stolen the heart he was determined never to give?
I'm having a real "love/hate" relationship with this book. There are issues that, at times, had me struggling to continue. And then, there was great writing that evoked real emotion and had me begging for more. I remember being annoyed while reading, but, in the end, I feel satisfied. I'm torn.
In a nutshell, this is a story about death's heady toll, whether it's our own impending death or the death of someone we love. We're also confronted with issues about loneliness and sacrifice throughout this novel.
It all begins when Lauren, A human on Earth is kidnapped by an evil "Reptile" alien race while broken down in the Australian desert. Jo'Aquin, a Hexonian Star Commander and a protector of Earth. responds immediately and makes an effort to rescue her while she hurdles through space and plummets towards a wormhole. He succeeds in getting to her and away from the Aliens, but can't stop the trajectory of the spacecraft they are in and together they find themselves on a distant planet.
Both Lauren and Jo'Aquin (Joe for short) are defeated people. They have both been through so much in their own lives and are almost immune to self-love and happiness. But as they're put through one obstacle after another, their admiration and attraction grows.
This story's pace is like an uphill battle, with almost no room for reprieve. From the get-go, we are in action and peril where decisions are being made immediately with almost no time to think. The imagery is excellent and the writing is poetic, deep and insightful (although a few things were missed during proofreading). It was very easy to get into a rhythm and move swiftly through the pages.
As for the characters...I've certainly met more likable heroines. Lauren came off as a tad whiny and self-deprecating. I understand that she has been though a lot in her life and I can give her the benefit of the doubt but at some point, it became tiresome. She's 38 and believes she's "middle-aged" and that she's missed her chance at love and happiness. As a 40 yr old, I'm a little offended. But, I've also never gone through what she has, so I'll let it slide.
Jo'Aquin also tended to put himself down. Yes, he was strong and capable and sexy but his self-confidence was still lacking. I did appreciate his protectiveness and was glad to see him break out of his shell. Luckily, we are able to see both of these characters grow and let go of the past that has been holding them hostage for so long.
Like I said, I'm a little torn, On one hand, I liked the story, imagery and writing style. I was emotionally drawn in and physically experienced the panic, pain, and passion expressed in the book. There's white-knuckle action, intense romance, and interesting twists that I never saw coming.
On the other hand, the characters were sometimes annoying and a little hard to empathize with. I also wasn't sure how to feel about everyone's ability to speak perfect English. Joe, I can understand since he is a "protector of Earth". But once they stumble onto a distant planet, in a distant galaxy, the aliens they come in contact with also speak English. This is never addressed in the book and I eventually decided to just plow right over that little detail.
So, I'm stuck in the middle. I'm glad I finished the book but I'm ready to move on. And based on the writing style and plot, I am interested in reading the next one in the series. It just may be a while till I actually get started.
What did you think?