Monday, June 20, 2011
Review - Virgin by Cheryl Brooks
Dax never met a woman he truly wanted...until the elusive scent from a lovely human/Aquerei bar waitress sparks his interest. Unfortunately, he lacks the finesse other Zetithians possess so his chance of winning her is slim. He's far more used to turning women away than attracting them. Waroun, his Norludian navigator, calls him 'The Great Virgin', much to Dax's chagrin.
Ava Karon has bad luck with men. Her first boyfriend was boring. And the last one quickly went from 'bad boy' to simply bad. When the ugly Norludian offers her passage back to her home planet, she hesitates until she meets the pilot, Dax. The tall, handsome man with the glowing feline eyes can melt her into a puddle.
Dax and Waroun, his Norlundian navigator, are transporting Ava, two Kitnocks and a Drell to the destinations of their choice. When his shipboard robot, Kots, gives Ava Aquerei water to drink, things begin to happen - Ava's scent becomes stronger, her hair and skin more lustrous. Kots choice of clothing for Ava is a dream come true - slinky, silky blue that matches Ava's pendant and eyes. The mere sight of her makes him want to purr.
And not just purr. Her scent draws him as no other woman's has. And the look in her beautiful aquamarine eyes tells him that she's interested too. Dax tries to be charming but, more often then not, ends up being abrupt and a little rude. He does a little research on human mating practices but that leaves him more confused than ever.
But when Dax decides to get some advice from his friend Threldigan, a man who specializes in 'magic' with gadgets and with women, they take a detour to the pleasure planet, Rhylos. While Dax has reasons to avoid the planet, he also looks forward to showing Ava around.
Ava isn't looking for romance but if she was, Dax would fit the bill. But she can't tell if he likes her or not. One minute, his eyes are glowing and he's purring, the next minute, he's curt and withdrawn. She tells herself it's for the best since she doesn't want to be involved with another 'bad boy' but she can't help fantasizing about him. She would take him to her bed in a heartbeat...if she knew he wanted her.
Unknown to either Dax or Ava, however, a mysterious group of Aquerei are in pursuit of Ava. In fact, there are two factions chasing her, one that wants to keep her away from Aquerei and one that wants her there desperately. This sets in motion a quest to save Aquerei and usher in a period of enlightenment both feared and desired.
All in all, this book is another amazingly good read from Cheryl Brooks. Dax is adorable, sexy and vulnerable. Ava is a bit more worldly than Dax but has an innocence and a strength that makes her the perfect heroine. As a whole, the story is funny, endearing and a bit suspenseful as we worry about the groups chasing Ava and what their intentions are. But, always, there are the hot, seriously erotic love scenes that lead to character growth and story advancement. If you've read any of the Cat Star Chronicles, you'll want to add this one to your collection.