By Amy Kennedy, RBTB Contributing Editor
I was a “Star Trek” kid. Loved it with a capital “L,” and was happy to boldly go where no man (girl) has gone before. But I hated it when one of the characters fell in love: Now someone nice is gonna die! Usually it was some earnest new guy on the show. But still, I learned the lesson: All romances in space were doomed.
Thank goodness Jess Granger’s debut(iful) futuristic romance, “Beyond the Rain” didn’t use the love formula from “Star Trek.” Her story’s full of the possibility of a doomed romance, with a side of imminent death thrown in.
But that’s just what keeps us turning the pages, for romance is alive and well in Granger’s space as Captain Cyani, an Azralen, is on her last Union mission before she must return home to join the Elite, celibate female warriors who rule her planet.
Soren is a Byralen. His people are known for their bonding hormones, and he’s been enslaved so his unique hormones can be extracted and sold to shadow traders as powerful aphrodisiacs. Freed by fiercely beautiful Cyani, both become stranded and must find a way off an enemy outpost.
But Soren’s system’s been manipulated for years and his hormones are whacked; he’ll die unless he bonds with a woman soon, and Cyani’s lookin’ pretty good.
Cyani’s not immune to Soren’s sensuality or his mood-ring eyes that change colors with his feelings. But she must get home untouched to be part of the Elite; it’s the fate she’s bargained for her brother Cyn’s safety. Cyani believes that if she can get Soren to his planet, he’ll bond with someone there.
Soren gets the importance of keeping family safe, so he won’t tell Cyani he’s dying just so she'll bond with him. Still, if they can escape, he may be able to at least die on his own planet.
Getting home isn’t easy, and the attraction intensifies to the hands-on variety until their goals are almost forgotten. When they’re separated after rescue by one of Cyani’s Union ships, each wonders: Should they do what seems right, or fight to be together.
Jess Granger’s created a feminine, warrior heroine and a masculine, nurturer hero -- and it works as the warrior and the nurturer collide and the masculine and the feminine heat up the pages. But her storytelling ability goes beyond making us care deeply about Cyani and Soren; she’s created fantastic planetary worlds peopled with fully imagined characters. Here’s hoping you go boldly where many people should go and –
Buy the book.
Jess Granger’s book is not based on “Star Trek,” but it reminded me of my love for the show. Which favorite childhood or grown-up show would you change to a romance, and how?