True Blood, by Patricia Waddell

>> Monday, November 13, 2006

Futuristics seem to be somewhat under-represented in the current craze for paranormals. Too bad, this is a subgenre I've always enjoyed. I was very happy to see True Blood, by previously historical author Patricia Waddell get a very good buzz online. And I'm almost embarrassed to confess that I probably read it sooner than I might have only because I was so curious about a certain unique-sounding sex scene! ;-)

Someone's out for blood . . . True Blood

The unexplained explosion of the space freighter Llyndar brings the League of Planets and the Korcian Empire to the brink of war. The Korcian Guard is on full alert, and the League is depending on Officer Danna MacFadyen of the Diplomat Corps to defuse the situation. At the request of her superiors, Danna puts her psychometric skills to work. Was the explosion tragedy or terrorism? But Danna's soon burdened with another question . . . Can she work side-by-side with Cullon Gavriel, a handsome Korcian Enforcer, without losing her heart?

Fighting isn't just in a Korcian's blood, it's in his very soul. An Enforcer by trade and a loner by choice, Cullon Gavriel arrives on Ramora with one purpose in mind: to find out who's killing True Bloods. What he finds is a beautiful Terran female with the ability to step into the past. But can the information Danna gleans from her dreamscapes prevent future murders?

As the pieces of an explosive puzzle fall into place, Danna and Cullon step into a conspiracy that stretches across the galaxy to the capital city of the Korcian Empire, where shocking secrets are waiting to be discovered, and where the lines between power and politics, and life and love cross unexpectedly.
This is a book with an intriguing plot and setting, but also with a romance that never completely caught my interest. A B-.

Danna MacFadyen is a diplomat from Earth, which is now part of the League of Planets. Ever since an accord was signed, the League coexists peacefully with the Korcian Empire. When a Korcian spaceship explodes in League-controlled space, and the Korcians threaten war if the culprits are not punished, the League responds by forming an investigative tribunal which will be assigned to get to the bottom of things and will be composed by a Korcian, someone from the League and a neutral party.

Danna is somewhat surprised to be the one assigned by the League to the tribunal, because she's relatively inexperienced, but she knows her psychometry talents (which seem to be pretty normal-ish in this world... not common, but no one is shocked to hear about them, either) will come in handy in such an investigation.

But the situation becomes more complex when the envoy from the Korcian, a disturbingly attractive Enforcer (kind of Special Forces soldier) called Cullon Gavriel tells her the real reason why the Korcians so immediately assumed the explosion wasn't an accident. One of the passengers had been a True Blood, a descendant from one of the eight families that ruled Korcia until they were deposed by a military coup. And that's not all; he was the third True Blood to die suddenly in a matter of weeks.

So Cullon and Danna have a hard task before them: they must find out who's killing the True Bloods, a situation that gets more complex by the minute as they discover new evidence, and they must do this while dealing with the powerful attraction between them. And as they do both things, they must be especially careful, because Cullon is True Blood himself, and could thus become the killer's next target.

As a mystery, this was very good. The question of who was killing the True Bloods and why was intriguing and the plot was well-constructed. Danna and Cullon's investigation proceeded in a satisfying, sensible way, and Danna's psychometric talents were well-used and depicted. Sometimes when an author gives one of her characters a psychic talent such as this, it can feel as if she forgets about it after a while, but that wasn't the case here. Danna used her psychometry whenever it was logical that she should and Cullon's reactions to it rang true.

The setting was also good, and added dimensions to the mystery. I wasn't quite as fascinated with Korcia as I was with the other settings depicted, including Ramora, Cullon's spaceship and that other planet they visited, the one controlled by the Conglomerate (sorry, can't remember its name), but it was interesting enough.

Unfortunately, it was the romance that was the weak point. Or rather, the weak point was mostly Cullon. I just couldn't get a handle on the man. I finished the book not really knowing who he was or what he thought, and that's strange, because we do get quite a few scenes from his POV. It's just that those scenes were so uninformative! All I got to understand was that he was attracted to Danna and that he had some conflicted feelings for his father. Nothing else. And so, while the Zero Gravity Sex scene was imaginative and well-written, it just didn't engage me. In fact, the numerous sex scenes were mostly boring, as they usually are when an author doesn't really succeed in establishing a connection between the participants. By the end of the book, when he was declaring true love to Danna, I was like "oh, really?".

Still, even with this, I'm going to keep an eye on this author, as I'd probably be interested in reading her next futuristic.


Post a Comment

Blog template by

Back to TOP