Let's head straight into the review.
The main reason for me loving this novel would have to be Bella and Caine. When her shuttle crashed on Dragath25 she took charge, was unafraid to make sacrifices, and refused to go down without a fight. When Caine was introduced, Bella knew that she needed his help, whether he was dangerous or not, if she was going to survive. In exchange for help, she is willing to offer anything. Smart move if you ask me.
Caine is a prisoner that has given up his humanity in order to survive. In the beginning he seemed rather primal, gruff, and at times frightening. When offered anything he wants in exchange for protection, how could he possibly resist. Especially after not holding, touching, or being near a woman after so long. As the novel progresses, he begins to soften and becomes protective, jealous, and everything an alpha male should be.
Both characters had chemistry and attraction towards one another. They also considered each other's safety and protection. Don't get me wrong their story is not all about rainbows and love, it is also about surviving the danger that lurks in almost every corner of Dragath25, a prison planet. It does help that Caine knows his way around the planet he lives on. However, it is not just a fight to survive but to also find a way off of the planet.
One thing I would have liked to have seen more of would have to be interaction between Caine's fellow prisoners. I think that would have been an interesting part to read. That being said, this novel was such an amazingly delightful read and I can not possibly wait to pick up book two in the The Condemned Series.
I definitely recommend this novel.
Summary from Goodreads:
When Bella West crash lands on penal planet Dragath25, the only thing standing between her and a mass of brutal criminals is one of their own, a ruthless loner known only as 673. But what starts out as a desperate trade based on protection and raw lust soon blossoms into a scorching need that will push them both to the edge...A tale of unbridled desire, stunning sacrifice, and unwavering love, Trapped is the first book in The Condemned Series.
Cadet Bella West has one simple objective when she joins the scientific mission to Dragath25, the notorious penal planet housing Earth’s condemned. Earn the credits necessary to save her family from starvation. But when her shuttle crashes and the majority of her crew perish, her simple mission becomes complicated fast. Now, to stay alive she’ll have to depend on one of Dragath’s own. But such protection doesn’t come free.
Convicted of a crime he didn’t commit, 673 has become more beast than man after eight grueling years on an unforgiving, hazardous planet of dirt and rock—and even more treacherous inhabitants. He doesn’t look out for anyone but himself and he certainly never grows attached. So when the bold female offers him pleasure in return for protection, he takes the deal without hesitation. He never expects how her touch will alter him. Or the growing realization that saving her may be the key to his own salvation.
But as dangers mount and their ‘simple’ deal unravels will he prove to be her surprise savior or her ultimate downfall? Because caring for someone on Dragath25 may prove the greatest hazard of all.
ARC was kindly provided by publisher, Orchid Publishing, via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you.
Alison Aimes is the award-winning author of the sexy sci-fi Condemned series and the contemporary romance Billionaire's Revenge series.
A PhD graduate in Modern History, she's always had a love for dramatic stories and great books. Now, she's moving across eras to create sexy stories full of intrigue, action, and passion, but always with a happy ending.
She lives in Maryland with her husband, two kids, and her dog. When not in front of the computer, she can be found hanging with family and friends, hiking, trying to turn herself into a pretzel through yoga, listening to TED talks about pretty much anything, but especially space, or, last but not least, sitting on her couch imagining her characters' next great adventures.