This was my first sci-fi and very a good one too. I usually stick to adult contemporary/New adult romance and don't prefer venturing into Sci-fi/supernatural stories, but this was an exception and that's all thanks to K Webster. I'm a huge fan of the author and can read anything she writes and me reading this book is the prime example of that.
And it doesn't disappoint. I dived into it with an open mind and loved every moment of this unusual, well-planned and thoroughly executed take of two lovers of different species. The elements of love, loyalty, freedom and companionship are explored beautifully in this tale and adds new depth and layers to this taboo romance. As this is my first book in the genre, I didn't have any other book to compare it against but that's not to say it was not good! Like any other book of the authors that I have read, it felt complete and 'real' without too much of drama. Breccan is the commander of the troop and the main protagonist in this book. Aria is the human female who is 'found' by the mortals and taken to their planet. This is their 'story' and the ending gives a good closure to them.
Coming to the positives:
1) I loved the depth and backstory given to each of the 10 'aliens'. Though Breccan is the main lead, even his other comrades roles are explored and each of them are given a unique trait that sets them apart from the rest. We are teased about them enough to make us curious and also excited to read the other book in the series that deals with them as protagonists.
2) Despite being a taboo sci-fi sort of read, this book is grounded in earthly emotions and values that readers can connect with and it is this sense of love and freedom that ultimately triumphs.
3) The love that blossoms between Aria and Breccan is shown very tenderly and in a romantic yet belkevan settings. They were so different from one another and yet their 'love, hope and trust' spoke for them. The way they communicate and make each other understand their needs is truly a delight to read. I especially loved Breccan and his earnest love for Aria and it even leads to some light humerous moments that adds a new, rich flavor to the book.
4) I also loved the amount of detail given to the alien race, their planet and their history! It's complex alright but nothing that goes above our heads. They have come up with a very intriguing tale. The settings of the new planet, their evolved technologies, languages and even their body descriptions are top notch and paints a vivid yet detailed picture. This is a must for sci-fi/supernatural books and the authors have really outdone themselves in this area.
Not to be nitpicky, but I did find two areas that could have been better?
1) Their was an estranged race and the verge of extinction - hence their need story reproduce. The build-up for this was good but somewhere amidst the budding love story, the gravity of their situation felt a little lost rather ignored maybe? Though it was told that they had lost all hope, I never felt that urgency and tension in the air. Especially towards the end, it was a very smooth sailing. I was not a big fan of Aria either. On many occasions she compared her condition back home (lack of freedom and hope) to the kind of life these aliens were living and somehow it didn't leave a good taste in my mouth. I mean, I get she has seen bad times but that can't be compared to a whole race getting extinct.and even towards the end, she throws a big tantrum and make a big issue of something that could have been handled differently and more maturely. Somehow trying to show Aria being a leader and seeking freedom of her people undermined the bigger problem at hand. I don't condemn her for action but that tantrum was uncalled for. I really appreciate Breccan's patience for dealing with her.
2) Secondly, I felt the bigger picture of lacking - the whole fight for survival and the consequences of their actions and what awaits them in the future - future of the whole planet and what lies outside ..were missing? There weren't any dots connecting any of them and no clues left for readers to figure out what had happened ( how did Aria even end up in a shuttle from space?.is she on Earth? How far are the two plants? Will anyone find her? Or somehow earthlings responsible for the destruction of the other planet?) or what can happen in the future? Rather than focusing solely on the love story, if the authors had equally focus on expanding their world and providing answers for these pressing questions, it would have been better and BIGGER! That would have truly kept me at the edge of my seats. I can just hope that next books can give readers more clarity and convincing answers.
Overall, I enjoyed reading it and would definitely read other installments in this series. I would consider this as a good start for this genre!! 4-4.5 stars.