Scorpius Syndrome #4


Rebecca Zanetti

✮✮✮ 4.5 STARS ✮✮✮

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Those who have been following this series have met Greyson Storm, the fearless and enigmatic leader of the Mercenaries, and Maureen “Moe” Shadow, sister of Raze who we met in “Shadow Falling.”
What we know so far is that Moe was kidnapped by Grey and held captive and Raze can free her when he does Grey a “favor.” Neither of them expected the strong attraction they would feel for each other but there are more surprises for the beautiful scientist and the rough-around-the-edges Mercenaries leader yet to come.

Tying into the last installment of the series in which Moe was saved from the insane self proclaimed president Bret Atherton, they are trying to deal with all the consequences. The Mercs and the vanguards reach an uneasy and tenuous truce and Moe, a biotech engineer, rejoins the Mercs in the bunker to help find a way to survive in this now hostile environment. For herself and everyone she loves.

In the review for the last book I have complained a little bit about the overarching story line not moving forward. I was hoping that Rebecca Zanetti would finally take the threads of it in her hands and continue spinning the president’s demise. I’m happy to say that my prayers were heard and we get a good dose of that in this book. At the end I cheered a little. A war is always an imbalance of losses vs. wins – and in this installment there are battles lost but also a great win for humanity.

We see Grey’s struggle to choose sides. The options being joining the Vanguards and fighting the president or aligning with the president fighting the Vanguards and most likely losing Moe in the process. It should be a no-brainer but there are so many things factoring into this decision and while it would have been a no-brainer for *me* I get why Grey is so conflicted about it.

Meanwhile Moe is keeping a secret from Grey. Before she confides in Grey she needs to know if she can trust him – there is so much to learn about this complex man and she doesn’t know a lot about him. Add to that, that her brother is fighting for the Mercs’ adversaries she needs to treat carefully.

“I wish I knew you better,” she said quietly, her eyelids closing again. 

Grey is a born leader – he looks out for the people, doesn’t expect things from people that he wouldn’t do himself. He gives his people confidence and is ruthless if need be but never without compassion. Grey faces some hard decisions and sometimes they seem a little dubious but he is a good person in an impossible world trying to live another day. That Grey’s charisma attracts Moe is only understandable and their connection pretty obvious from the get-go. He can be high-handed and bossy but it is always for the good of those he cares about. And he is as possessive as they come.

When he let his guard down, he could be the sweetest man she’d ever met. It was hard to reconcile that with the killer he’d made himself become to survive the pandemic.

Maureen is a strong heroine, a spitfire, just like I love them. She has an iron will and stands up to Grey and her stubborn brother. Grey confuses her – he is advertised as cold-blooded killer but soon she finds that there are more layers to the Mercs leader than she was lead to believe  and soon she finds herself falling for the charismatic Grey. But that doesn’t make her brainless and I absolutely adored that about Moe. She keeps Greyson on his toes and challenges him.

“With you, I feel whole. Like there’s hope somehow. I forgot that it even existed. In the apocalypse, you gave me hope.”

I think this is my favorite book in this series as yet. Rebecca Zanetti’s story-telling is compelling and her characters lovable.  We are now perfectly set up for the next book in this series – Damon Knight, Greyson’s loyal second in command is featured pretty strongly in this installment. I hope the author continues weaving the threads of the overarching plot – I really would love to see the despicable Bret Atherton hurt. So now the anticipation for Winter Igniting starts, which we will get in our hands in March 2018.

Storm Gathering is the forth installment of the Scorpius Syndrome series. This series must be read in order.

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