Gwen has had to lead a double life. From the outside, she is a successful business woman with the outlook of not a care in the world. It is from the inner sanctum of her people that Gwen is revered as the “Translator”, a rare gift which has greatly helped her people stay profitable and above all remain hidden. The water elemental powers the Ofarian people possess are what sets them apart from their human counterparts known as Primaries. However, the Ofarian funding source is a closely guarded secret and only the wealthiest of Primaries can afford this most coveted magical component. Gwen is at the center of this relatively small populace of people and is on the cusp of obtaining a position within the Ofarian Board, which will allow her the freedom to take her peoples success to the next level. With her father's legacy at stake, Gwen knows she must do whatever it takes to secure her people's future even if that means agreeing to an arranged marriage. Unfortunately, the makings of her success come from disturbing truths that leave her questioning the existence of the entire Ofarian race and the consequences from such actions could mean their downfall. Now it's up to her to set things right, but to do that she will need to place faith in the one person she shouldn't possibly trust – her kidnapper.
Reed has chosen to lead a double life. As Reed Scott, he is a big, caring guy with slightly scary looks and a tattooed past who would do anything for his family. As the “Retriever”, it is his job to find and deliver people who have wronged the wrong person. The “Retriever” is uncaring and cold, which makes him highly effective and successful at what he does. However, his latest assignment tests his resolve in keeping the two personalities and lives apart. When the part of Reed who longs to be something more than a cold-hearted person wants what he can't have he knows he's in trouble and when he finds out the truth of exactly what he's dealing with, his situation escalates to life or death.
The story begins with a pivotal Ofarian business transaction and sets the tone for a tension filled and surprising storyline. The author writes the plotline in a way that commands the reader to follow along with avid interest while it delivers suspenseful developments on the characters and the situations they must navigate through. The story is creative and complex, but can easily be followed along. The interjected romance scenes offer just the right amount of believable developing lust, but Gwen and Reed's relationship is extremely hot and cold. It is frustrating to read at times and during others it is romantic and sad for their situation. At the same time, I very much enjoyed reading Gwen and Reed's personal character development as they look beyond their roles of “Translator” and “Retriever” where vulnerabilities are exposed.
An unusual and interesting take on love, tragedy, and the aliens among us. This debut will surely be devoured by urban fantasy readers and I look forward to seeing where the next adventure will lead.
Magic is Corporate America's best-kept secret
Gwen possesses the unique ability to pick up any language in an instant—a power that will globally expand the profitable family business. As dutiful future leader of her race of water elementals, she'll do anything to protect her people's secrets and bloodlines—including enter an arranged marriage. Inside, however, she yearns for forbidden human men.
Reed is a mercenary addicted to the money and adrenaline rush of his work. After he inadvertently saves Gwen's life, he ignites her taboo desire for men without magic—and with bodies of gods. Just as things heat up, Reed discovers that Gwen is exactly who he's been hired to kidnap. He resolves to put work before lust, yet her luscious beauty and fiery spirit unravel him...
But there is a terrible truth behind Gwen's family business—and now, caught between the kinsmen she no longer trusts and an enemy bent on vengeance, the only ally she has is her abductor...