Monday, January 7, 2019

Nightchaser by Amanda Bouchet

Tess Bailey: the galaxy's Most Wanted.

Captain Tess Bailey is in deep trouble. She and her crew are on the run, pursued by a tyrant who'll take them dead or alive. Tess's best hope is a tall, dark, and much-too-appealing stranger, Shade Ganavan, who says he can help her. But his motivations are far from clear...

Shade Ganavan: arrogance, charm... and that special something that makes you want to kick him.

With the dreaded Dark Watch closing in, what Tess and Shade don't know about each other might get them killed... unless they can set aside their differences and learn to trust each other before it's too late.

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Book 1
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Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

I feel like I should have enjoyed this book more than I did. I’m a huge Star Wars fan and most of the world building in this story is borrowed directly from the Star Wars franchise. Which is probably the problem. Too much of this book feels borrowed and I’m not sure there’s enough character development to carry the story.

This is a new author for me and the book has been marketed as the first in a series. However. I felt like I’d joined a series at book five or six. Tess and Shade’s back stories are recounted at lightspeed and if I wasn’t a Star Wars fan there’s no way I would have been able to visualise the places and events thrown into the story without much description or world building.

Tess has the potential to be a fabulous heroine but she still feels like a rough sketch of a character by the end of the book. Tess’ crew also had the potential to be fabulous, but we really only see them a few times. Big Guy is a nameless question mark until the very end and the love at first sight story line made me like Tess a little bit less.

Shade is an interesting character. Somehow, he manages to alternate narration with Tess while remaining a complete enigma. I’m not sure I like him and I’m not sure I’m supposed to like him. I don’t have any strong feelings about him, but I think Tess would have been more interesting on her own.

I didn’t love this story and reading it felt a bit too much like hard work. I still think there is potential for Tess to become a fantastic character and I hope she comes into herself in future books.

4.5 Stars

Nightchaser is the first installment of the Endeavor series, with the Endeavor being the stolen spacecraft the heroine captains alongside her crew of fellow convicts.

I wished I hadn't been so busy while trying to read this novel, forced to put it down when I wanted to continue reading. Had I read it from beginning to end, without being able to slowly digest portions, while doing those pesky tasks I didn't want to be doing, I would have read with feverish delight and given a quick five-star rating without thought.

Tess is a criminal, a Robin Hood in the Dark (outer space). In a mix of dystopian and science fiction, Tess and her crew of fellow convicts steal from the rich and give to the poor. Her latest theft features something far more valuable than she realized, connecting back to her own childhood. Not to mention the fact that a human being comes along with the stolen goods.

In a relatively small cast of characters, it was easy to follow along on this thrilling, action-packed adventuring novel set in a science fiction locale with dystopian themes. Tess is on a mission to help those oppressed, the oppressor someone close to her.

In walks Shade, a governmental bounty hunter, and with him brings the steam and the romance, proving Tess is innocent in one regard. This portion was pure, yummy deliciousness, as it organically flowed with a forbidden air of will they-won't they. Will he, won't he turn Tess in?

My only issue, which is what I mulled over while doing those menial tasks when I wished to be reading... the emotions were partially placed to the wayside in favor of the action and suspense. While I thoroughly appreciated the wicked fast pacing, many important emotions were only a blip or not shown or told at all.

I wanted a bit more in the world-building, but what details were given were easy to digest and intriguing. I'm sure this is a case where the world-building grows as the series does, along with the hero and heroine.

The most emotion Tess showed/felt were for her newly acquired feline, which as a pet-lover, I approve. Kitties are important and should be treated as the demigods they believe themselves to be.

Highly recommend to fans of the author, as well as those who enjoy the dystopian genre. I'm hesitant to recommend to hardcore fans of science fiction, as I believe the premise of overthrowing an oppressive government is more dystopian in nature, only featuring a science-fiction-esque environment. This isn't a negative, just that some expecting sci-fi fans may not get what they expect.

I read Amanda Bouchet’s series The Kingmaker Chronicles, which I completed loved. Naturally, when I saw her new series, Endeavor, appear I couldn’t wait to see what Bouchet was up to; however, I just could not get sucked into this story. I wanted so badly to love Nightchaser, book one in the Endeavor series, but I found myself feeling like I was constantly missing part of the back story. Honestly, I kinda had high hopes for this series and I felt like I spent the majority of the book waiting for something to really spark my interest. Tess, the main character was a strong female lead and I was intrigued by Shade, her love interest, but it wasn’t intriguing enough to hold my attention. I normally really enjoy science fiction, however, this one just didn’t quite do it for me. The whole story seemed kind of drawn out.

Did I love it? Not particularly, but I also didn’t hate it either. However, I don’t intend to add the next book in the Endeavor series to my TBR pile either.

USA Today bestselling author AMANDA BOUCHET grew up in New England and studied French at the undergraduate and graduate levels, first at Bowdoin College and then at Bowling Green State University. She moved to Paris in 2001 and has been there ever since. She met her husband while studying abroad, and their family now includes two bilingual children, who will soon be correcting her French.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Nightchaser (Endeavor #1) by Amanda Bouchet to read and review.

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