Cadet Bella West has one simple objective when she joins the scientific mission to Dragath25, the notorious penal planet housing Earth’s condemned. Earn the credits necessary to save her family from starvation. But when her shuttle crashes and the majority of her crew perish, her simple mission becomes complicated fast. Now, to stay alive she’ll have to depend on one of Dragath’s own. But such protection doesn’t come free.
Convicted of a crime he didn’t commit, 673 has become more beast than man after eight grueling years on an unforgiving, hazardous planet of dirt and rock—and even more treacherous inhabitants. He doesn’t look out for anyone but himself and he certainly never grows attached. So when the bold female offers him pleasure in return for protection, he takes the deal without hesitation. He never expects how her touch will alter him. Or the growing realization that saving her may be the key to his own salvation.
But as dangers mount and their ‘simple’ deal unravels will he prove to be her surprise savior or her ultimate downfall? Because caring for someone on Dragath25 may prove the greatest hazard of all.
From the very beginning it’s obvious the heroine, Bella, is a force to be reckoned with. She is clearly someone who is unafraid to make sacrifices and refuses to go down without a fight. After all, she is there because she wants a better life for her family and to feed a dying Earth is possible, then Bella will fight tooth and nail to do just that.
The prisoner, Caine, has given up his humanity and embraced his more primal side as he struggles to survive. Yet a chance encounter sees him with a unique opportunity, protection in exchange for 'anything' he wants. To hold and touch a female after so long is impossible to resist but to let her in and form an attachment is impossible or is it?
I liked both the lead characters although will admit Bella and her constant need to try to save everyone didn't make sense. It's as if no matter how people behave towards her she still claims them as hers to protect. Speaking of protection, Caine sure does know his way around the inhospitable planet he lives on with its terrifying wildlife and of course, his fellow blood thirsty prisoners. I thought in hindsight that I'd have preferred a little more interaction with the other prisoners but what we get is mainly about Bella and her fellow crash survivors.
Two people thrown together and you just know it's going be a fiery tale, well it certainly has plenty of very descriptive sexy scenes. Yet it's Caine’s growth that stays with me, although admittedly he doesn't ever force or abuse Bella. It's a fight not just to survive but to find a way off the planet, but if rescue comes what will happen to Caine because after all, he is a prisoner?
I wasn't happy with everything and particularly thought the ending just got sorted out perhaps a little too easily. That being said, the next book features the mysterious Ava and I'm very curious about what's happened to her since the crash. This story captured my imagination and kept me wondering just what would happen as I couldn't see an easy answer. In spite of being a wee bit disappointed, I'd still recommend this book as it's the first in the series and they are often the hardest to write.
I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review.