When I picked up this book, I had no idea it was part of an existing world. While this may actually count as a spinoff, this book builds out of the author’s Darkon series, which is rather extensive. I didn’t feel lost, exactly, but I definitely knew I was missing a ton of backstory, which made it difficult to connect with the story, especially at first.
I had a very hard time getting into the book, enough so that I had to force myself not to quit before the 25% mark. It did get better, but it never truly rang my bell.
The story follows Sherise, a Darkon noblewoman who is leading a group of former prisoners back to Earth. These aren’t bad guys. They are assorted races, including her own, who were captured in a recent war and held hostage by the enemy. Bad things happened on the prison planet, some of which she feels responsible for. Now she wants to bring her human friends back home, while hoping to establish diplomatic ties for her own people.
The journey doesn’t go so well. Long story short, a collision badly damages her ship and shoots her through a vortex that lands her on a post-apocalyptic earth 300 years into the future. The people who live there are on the brink of war themselves. Sherise must carefully navigate through the truth and lies about their conflict, while trying to find the tools she needs to return her ship to her own time. All this, while one of earth’s warrior tries to claim her as a mate.
My biggest issue was that I felt like I was reading the middle chapters of a longer story. I missed the beginning, and the ending is to be continued. The romance arc has a resolution, but everything else is left hanging for the next book. But there were other problems too. The bad guy is completely one dimensional with very little information shared about him. The best friend, Bree, frustrated me; I didn’t understand her behavior and I felt let down by a barely serviceable explanation. (I’m thinking she will be the heroine of the next book.)
And then there’s the romance. Were Sherise and Maaka supposed to be some kind of destined mates? If not, the whole instant pull between them was silly. And if so, this is not explained well enough. I didn’t like his whole bossy caveman routine. I didn’t really believe in the evolution of Sherise’s emotions. It was all just meh.
The Priestess, the breeding, the zombies all just weren’t explained well enough. And while I understand the desire to unravel mysteries over the course of a series, this just left too much unresolved. And I am not interested enough to seek answers in the next installment. Maybe longtime readers of the Darkon books will have better luck with this, but as a new reader, this just wasn’t for me.
*ARC provided by publisher
Click to purchase: Amazon
Quest for Earth
by SE Gilchrist
Release Date: July 5, 2016
Publisher: Escape Harlequin