Words cannot express how much I am enjoying this series. From wonderful, relatable characters to an interesting storyline that keeps escalating in unpredictable ways, Jenn Burke and Kelly Jensen have created a winner here. Like a warm, well worn leather chair that welcomes you with each sit, so too is each book in this series easy to fall right back into and enjoy. The authors always leave on a strong note, finish a satisfying book-long arc, set up a surprise that will lead to the plot of the next, and manage a great balance between romance and science fiction. The plot moves assuredly and as new characters are introduced, the worldbuilding becomes richer and more engaging.
Story: Zed is alive and able to return home. Reuniting with his family, who thought him dead, is a wonderful experience for him but less so for partner Fixer. Felix feels every inch of his scarred face, worn clothes, and damaged body – and it is hard for him to measure up to Zed’s aristocratic family. When word of the Dreamweaver project begins to leak into the media, Zed is suspected and the AEF decide he (and his project colleagues) are too dangerous to be left alive. While Fixer runs away from Zed (and his past) in order to save an endangered Dreamweaver vet, Zed and his family begin a very dangerous cat and mouse game with the military. For not even the Anatolius family has enough money or power to save the youngest from the wrath of a military intent on a cover-up.
Where the first book introduced us to both characters, the second book was about Zander’s coming to terms with his failing body, this third book is very much Felix’s story. There’s a lot of emotion here and that really is the heart of all these books. From Chaos shipmates and their compassion and tough love for Fixer to Zander’s family and former colleagues fighting to save themselves and each other. It makes for a story with a lot of action but also a nice undercurrent of pathos. These are characters we genuinely like and want to root for; even the side characters are given very distinct personalities.
As with the two previous books, there is a big surprise reveal at the end. At least two more books in the series are forthcoming (yay!) and I greatly look forward to the release of the next book after the big twist at the end of Skip Trace. This is turning out to be one of my favorite sci fi/romance books ever; certainly the best M/M I’ve read by far. Highly recommended. Reviewed from an advance reader copy provided by the publisher.