When Sam Keller left the military, she ran to the far end of the galaxy. Now she captains the Bonnie Belle, a spaceship full of courtesans who bring a little pleasure to hard-up men on mining colonies. When one of her girls turns up dead, it's Sam's job to find out who killed her, fast.
Marshal Daniel LeClair is as tough as steel and quick on the draw. But when his vacation gets replaced by an assignment to help find the killer, he can't help angling for a little action with the saucy, hard-charging Sam. She's got brains, attitude and a body he wouldn't mind investigating.
Sam, six months lonely, might just indulge him. But the Guild that owns the Belle wants the case closed yesterday. With pressure coming from all quadrants, Sam and her marshal clash over false leads and who's on top. But when the killer threatens the Belle again, romance will have to wait. It's a captain's job to save her crew, no matter the cost.
Sam, a hard nosed military woman, is in charge of a space ship traveling around the galaxy populated by "Courtesans" who service miners at the furthest reaches. What would ordinarily be a routine visit turns sinister when one of the women is found dead and all signs point to murder! It's vital to catch her killer but unfortunately time is money and Sam needs answers fast!
Daniel is a Marshall and is sent by his superiors to liaise with the miners and the Bonnie Belle's captain to track down and capture the killer. What he hadn't expected was the ship's captain would be a distraction! Sam is an independent woman clearly with untapped needs and the chemistry between them is off the charts but finding the murderer is must come first. With the mining station and ship under lock down no one can leave but that means the killer is still amongst them!
Well this was unexpected treat I must say! I downloaded this expecting a sexy
sci- fi story and what I got is actually a very good who done it! Yes, there's a romance brewing but it's secondary to the actual mystery. If you are looking for lots of erotic sex then you might be a touch disappointed, but I for one wasn't. It was such fun trying to work out who had motive and more importantly opportunity as the victim was hardly the most popular of the crew. These are interesting characters and the dynamics are really intriguing as red herrings abound!
Sam is clearly kick ass but hides a secret that has left her traumatised. A damaged hero or heroine is always interesting to read about and Ms Nantus tapped into Sam's past beautifully without giving away too much, too soon. As for Marshall Daniel, well he's a very sexy guy whose overtures keep the relationship firmly in the readers mind. This may not be erotica but the long slow build up to the romance was very sensual and yet it did not detract from the plot in any way.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading In the Black and will certainly search out more by Ms Nantus. This is not as long as some books I've read and loses a little because of but it was still a great little story. Fabulous world building and very imaginative. I loved the use of computers in this storyline. The author also gave me great insight into what it would be like on a space ship without gravity and indeed has quite creative uses for it! This is more than a simple romance it's a mystery to solve with a great cast of characters. Well done Ms Nantus and please write more!
In the Black is available in Kindle edition from Amazon at $2.51 and the Nook book is $2.99