I didn’t even know that there was a novella by Ilona Andrews until I saw Angie’s review. Thanks for the heads up, Angie! Silent Blade is a romantic science fiction story which can be purchased in e-book format from Samhain. Strong female protagonist determined to get her revenge on the man who ruined her life? I knew I was in for a treat.
Here’s the summary from Samhain Publishing’s website:
Old hatreds die hard. Old love dies harder.
On Meli Galdes’ home planet, the struggle for power is a bloody, full-contact sport — in business and on the battlefield. For years her lethal skills have been a valuable asset in advancing her family’s interests. She’s more than earned her right to retire, but her kinsmen have one last favor to ask.
Kill the man who ruined her life.
Celino Carvanna’s razor-sharp business acumen — and skills with a blade — won him the freedom to do as he pleases. There’s only one thing he can’t seem to control — his reaction to the mysterious woman who tantalizes his senses. Her eyes alone set his blood simmering. With a few words she dissects his soul. Who is she? And how does she slide so easily under his well-guarded skin?
It’s almost too easy to draw Celino within the kill zone. Meli plans to revel in him. Drink him in. Wring every drop of pleasure out of every moment.
And when she’s sure he belongs to her, she will finally repay a decade’s worth of pain — in a single, brutal dose of reality.
This is the first time that I’ve ever read romantic science fiction and it looks like it won’t be the last. The husband and wife duo Ilona Andrews created another intriguing world in Silent Blade – the story is set in a futuristic world where kinsmen (similar to the Mafia) rule the financial industry and biological enhancements are the norm. I don’t get to read a lot of sci-fi because I tend to get lost in the technical terms but I had no difficulty with this one partly because the descriptions were very straightforward. You get a sci-fi feel of the world, without the techno confusion.
Meli has special skills that enabled her to work as an assassin for her family. She’s retired but she couldn’t resist taking on this one last mission – to come face to face with Celino Carvanna and make him pay for ending their engagement years before. I found it amusing that Meli’s real name is Imelda because it’s such a familiar name around here. The Hispanic/Italian characters in this one is something new and another aspect of the story that I liked. I found this description from Ilona Andrews’ blog and I thought I’d post it here:
The world is very lush, a place of bright flowers, pink wine, and too many pastries. The people are tan and dark-haired, this odd mix of Spanish, Italian, and Mexican cultures. Socially, it’s a mafia in SF setting: biologically enhanced families battling for influence. The plot is HP (Harlequin Presents). There is an alpha male, who is an ass, and a wronged woman who will make him grovel in the end.
I really enjoyed reading this one and I hope there are more stories set in this world. It was very easy to get into and even though this one is just a novella, the world was fully described and the characters had enough back story to flesh them out. I love the scene when Meli and Celino first met as adults because it was set in the kitchen of a pastry shop with Meli baking one of Celino’s favorites. Pastries nom nom nom. I love how Ilona Andrews’ female characters are excellent in cooking (remember Kate’s pies? :P) I recommend this one to fans of Ilona Andrews, this could tide you over until Bayou Moon comes out and to fans of romance stories in general.