AN IMPOSSIBLE JOURNEY
The last thing Addy Dawson remembers is a blazing inferno and freezing river water overtaking her lungs. When she awakens, Addy finds herself on a strange, alien planet, trapped in a cell with no doors, no windows– and to her horror– a naked warrior who claims to be her mate.
AN UNDENIABLE PASSION
An alpha gladiator, Max is forced to breed and produce the finest specimens for the Survival Race, a deadly blood sport created by the alien rulers of Hyborea. To rebel means torture-or worse-yet Max refuses to become the animal his captors want him to be. But their jailors will not be denied, and soon Addy and Max find themselves unwilling players in this cruel game. Pushed to the limit, they will risk everything for the chance at a life free from captivity. And though fate brought them together as adversaries, Max and Addy will discover that when they’re together, there’s nothing in the universe that can stop them.
I started off this book thinking to read a few chapters each day. That plan quickly went to the wayside. I devoured chapters, then stayed up late to finish. I had a great time.
It starts off with a standard plot- humans enslaved by aliens-but manages to take it into new directions. That’s what kept the pacing fast and the pages turning- the story never got predictable.
Basically, the Survival Race is more of a set up to explain the role of humans on the world. The Hyboreans are thoroughly alien. Humans have no means of communicating with them and are regarded as pets. Humans fight, breed, and provide more fighters. And once they are killed, they are reanimated to experience a gruesome death yet again. The focus of the story is on Addy and Max’s escape from the Yard (where humans are kept) and their Hyboreans masters to get to the equator. Max slowly becomes a man again; Addy learns to ask for help; and love grows.
This story works without much about the the aliens or the alien society. In fact, there is just enough world building to drive the plot. It is essentially a story about humans in a desperate situation. The heroine, Addy refuses to accept her fate, which is to be mated with alpha males and breed more fighters. She decides to risk death to get back to earth or to a safe haven near the Equator where humans can live freely. Max is a man who has almost given up. He’s been trapped for 15 years to fight, die, and breed potential fighters. He is forgetting that he is more than a beast. Yet, there is a sliver of hope in Max that he will not be completely broken and Addy’s refusal to accept her fate spurs him on.
Their nemesis is Regan-an alpha male fighter who decides to be no more than the beast he is bred to be. Other characters (Duncan, Tess) accept their enslaved fate as the best they can hope for and think of themselves as pets. Fawcett allows these characters to play off each other is what drives the conflict.
The topics of assault and rape in the book are not graphically shown, but confronted as a reality of the ‘breeding’ program. There is violence in this book but its never glorified or gratuitous. As a reader, I really felt that these were people fighting for survival- not just physically but psychologically.
A great read.
Genre: SF, Romance, Futuristic,
Primary Book Format: e-book, paperback
Publisher/Imprint: Forever Yours
Blush Quotient: Pink
Smart Girls Rating: 5 star
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(Disclaimer: This book was provided by the author for an honest review.)