Series: Scorpius Syndrome #5
Published by Indie on February 20, 2018
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His only goal was survival until he met her...
With nothing to lose, former cop Damon Winter agrees to an undercover op, infiltrating a cult in the dangerous post-Scorpius world. After one look at his new partner, he knows she belongs far away from not only the cult, but from him. She's sweet and kind and has no business being in peril, but she's determined to help. Suddenly, the part he's playing as her man explodes into a passion neither of them had expected.
She hadn't purposefully faced risk until she met him...
April Snyder has survived loss, pain, and uncertainty. Now she's ready to live again. There's nothing left but to make a difference for others, so why not go undercover in the cult? Now all she has to do is keep it professional and ignore her handsome, deadly, overbearing partner, who's too sexy for her peace of mind. Intrigue, risk, and danger make for an irresistible temptation--until enemies close in, threatening everyone they've sworn to protect.
It is great to be back in the world of Scorpius, which is kinda weird. The world has gone to hell after the release of the Scorpius bacterium. Four things can happen after you contract this bacteria. One, you die. Two, you live through it and are changed, for the better. Smarter, better reflexes etc., though these aren’t extreme. Three, you live through it and are a psychopath. Everything from fully functional, but you have psychopathic tendencies like murder and thinking only of oneself. Four, a killer, but almost zombie like or just not really functional. For example, the group comes across one guy that acted like a dog. Sitting like a dog and barking and everything. You could make the case these are a fifth category.
So this Scorpius Syndrome series takes place mostly in what was formerly known as Los Angeles. Jax Mercury, former gang member, turned Delta Force soldier and then on to leader of Vanguard, his stronghold within LA where he is just trying to protect people who cross his path. He was the hero of the first book. His heroine is a scientist who was on the front line trying to fight this disease, until the president turned on her.
There is also a group called The Mercs. They were in an area on the coast. They work with Vanguard and are just starting to merge together into one group. There is also the president, his Elite Force and the Twenty gang. They are the real enemy. You see, the president fits into the third group, the ones that are functional psychopaths. He’s extremely smart, but doesn’t value of human life.
The last group is really more of a subset of Vanguard called, the Pure. They are a group of people who haven’t been infected. There are several women and children, and pregnant women too. It seems women who’ve been infected can’t carry a baby to term, or at least no one knows of an infected woman carrying their baby to term. No one knows for sure, since communications around the country really isn’t a thing. The problem with The Pure is it seems a bit cult-like. Jax doesn’t mind if they want to segregate themselves, he just wants to make sure all the women and children are there of the own free will. He also wants to make sure that no women are being impregnated against their will.
This book focuses on April Snyder, a member of Vanguard, and Damon Winter, a member of the Mercs and a former cop, who just made SWAT right before the breakout. They are both still non-infected, so they are trying to infiltrate The Pure and make sure everything is on the up and up.
April has had it pretty hard since Scorpius hit. She’s lost both her husband and child. She now has a hard time getting close to people, because she doesn’t want to lose anyone else. I wouldn’t call her suicidal, but she also doesn’t seem to care if she lives or not. She is just going through the motions. She has made a bit of a place for herself caring for the kids who are not part of the Pure, either because they’re infected or because they just don’t want to go.
This series has some great mystery/thriller parts. The romance is always a fun time too. Zanetti does seem to have a knack for pairing up couples. They have their issues, but work through them in a way that makes the story very interesting.
I will say that this series really needs to be read in order. Not because of the romance, but because of the overall story arc of the disease and as the characters fight one another. I think if you started this book without having read the previous books, you would have a hard time understanding what is going on with all the different groups and the locations, like the bunkers. Not ot mention how we slowly learn more about disease and how they plan to fight or cure it.
Lastly, I want to say how much I love all of these characters. I really care whether these characters live or die. I want to see them succeed. I want to see them get their happy ever after. After finishing each book, I’m excited for the next couple. I also love how the previous couples continue to be a large part of the series. I highly recommend this series.