Mercury Striking by Rebecca Zanetti
Series: The Scorpius Syndrome #1
Also in this series: Shadow Falling, Scorpius Rising, Justice Ascending
Published by Zebra on January 26th 2016
Genres: Science Fiction
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With nothing but rumors to lead her, Lynn Harmony has trekked across a nightmare landscape to find one man—a mysterious, damaged legend who protects the weak and leads the strong. He’s more than muscle and firepower—and in post-plague L.A., he’s her only hope. As the one woman who could cure the disease, Lynn is the single most volatile—and vulnerable—creature in this new and ruthless world. But face to face with Jax Mercury…
Danger has never looked quite so delicious…
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book.
When I get an ARC for a sci-fi dystopian universe type book with a hot, badass alpha both my inner geek and inner smut-lover stand up and cheer. Mercury Striking definitely had hot alphas plus lots of world gone crazy action that kept me turning the pages.
“We’re small in number, but we’re fierce in our fight to survive.”
A deadly plague has hit the earth. For the unfortunate ones struck down with this plague the impact has multiple outcomes. It either kills you, turns you into a crazed cannibal-like killer, or it could enhance you by giving you extra strength or cognitive powers. For some, though, it leaves you with all the enhancements, but no sense of right and wrong- similar to serial killers and much scarier than the crazed cannibals running around.
Supposedly, the outbreak can be traced back to our heroine, Lynn, who rumor has it, was the cause but who may also be the key to finding a cure. Lynn escapes a nightmare and makes her way to LA and into the stronghold of the infamous Jax. She hopes Jax will be able to protect her and help her get into the places she needs to go to access the intel and research to figure out how to combat the disease.
Lynn wasn’t some super tough, take no prisoner badass heroine. She was exceptionally smart, driven, and desperate to help humanity. This made her kickass in her own way and I really liked her. All her secrets, and there were many, were secrets worth keeping so I didn’t have any of those “OMG, just tell him!!!” moments. Every action, even the ones that weren’t the smartest, were completely understandable and believable. Many thought of her like a Typhoid Mary, at best shunning her, at worst wanting her dead. I felt for her and how heartbreaking it was to have people hate her based on false rumors and fear.
“A gentleman would give me the bed.” He scratched the stubble next to his scar. “All the gentlemen are dead, baby. Soldiers are what we have now.”
Jax was one hell of an alpha-hole but he had reason to be. With the world literally falling down around him, he was able to carve out a safe place but in order to keep it that way he had to implement some pretty harsh measures. Some would even call them brutal. Jax was damaged and anguished over things he had seen and done even before the world as he knew it came to an end. He took way too much on his shoulders and needed to learn that he was not the end all, be all, therefore everything bad that happened was not all his fault. I loved Jax. To me he was the perfect apocalyptic world hero.
If there are bullets, I’m between you and them. If you get taken, I’m hunting you down till my last breath. And if you end up in hell, I’ll storm the fucking place until the fires go out.”
With all the uncertainties, rumors, and secrets this was a slow burn romance. Trust had to be earned and it was a long time coming. Every step Jax and Lynn took along the way added to them being a believable pair, even when it was just lust and need in control. Once they actually got together, it was one hell of a hot ride. I read a lot of sex scenes so very rarely will I actually make a note about the hotness level within a scene, but the first time these two came together I did. It was scorching hot, and as the emotions took over and actual feelings were involved it became even hotter.
He poised at her entrance and slowly eased inside her, stopping several times for her to relax and accept his size. “Fuck, it’s like coming home.”
With all the action, great characters, emotion and grit, I enjoyed Mercury Striking a great deal, but here is why it’s not a 5 star read for me. I do not like being told and not shown key scenes and it felt like there was a lot of that here, especially with Lynn and Jax’s backstories. I wanted firsthand knowledge of what happened when the outbreak hit, especially to Lynn since she was supposedly the cause of everything. I also wanted to be in on her journey to LA. It would have been good to be there when things turned to chaos and Jax secured his stronghold. As riveting a read as this was, I still felt like I missed some key parts.
I loved the characters, the action, and the grit. My inner geek was satisfied and my inner smut lover was grinning from ear to ear. With a happy for now ending, a bad guy who needs to die, and lots of characters who deserve to find some happiness, I am looking forward to seeing what this series has in store for us next.
Spice’s rating: 4 Smutty Sci-Fi Loving Stars
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