The Areth came to our world in the early years of the 21st Century, proclaiming to be our brethren, our ancestors, our allies. Decades have passed and the Areth have now infiltrated every part of Earth society: government, medicine, science, even religion.
Some say the Areth are our salvation, others say they are our doom.
Retired Earth Force Colonel Nick Tanner doesn't care. He gave up caring years ago. More than once the Areth have cost him everything he loves and holds dear.
Then Doctor Caitlin Montgomery, the woman he has never been able to forget, finds him in his solitude and changes everything. His son -- the child he was told died twenty-five years before -- is alive and needs him.
Nick will do whatever it takes to bring Michael home. He'll lay down his life, if that's the cost to reveal the truth and stop the Areth. Now, he cares. And if he ever finds the Areth that stole his son from him, she'll pay.
CJ swallowed the lump in her throat and forced herself to enter the room, unprepared for the onslaught of memories that bombarded her when she curled her fingers around the cool metal framework of the footboard. Nights of lovemaking, mornings of waking in his arms... they all came back in a vicious wave.
"What part of leave was confusing?"
CJ closed her eyes against the hate and anger in his voice. "I will leave--"
"Yes, you will."
"You have to hear this first, Nicky."
His head snapped up and he glared at her. "There is nothing you can tell me that I want to hear."
CJ released the footboard and slipped a trembling hand into the hip pocket of her dress, her fingers curling around the data chip sleeve she had tucked away there. She extended her hand, palm up, and unfurled her fingers. Nick sat up, staring at the chip, his dark brown eyes darting up to meet hers momentarily. She nodded, jutting her chin toward it.
"Go ahead. See for yourself. Then, if you want me to leave, I will."
Nick stood, the old bed creaking at the loss of his weight. His fingertips brushed her palm as he took the chip and strode past her into the main living space. CJ took a moment to breathe deeply, closing her eyes. Her skin tingled where his fingers had touched. Clearing her throat, she turned and followed him. As she stepped into the main room, Nick opened the data receptacle on the monitor and placed the disk inside. He didn't spare her a glance as she moved beside him, punching in the command codes to open the file and run the program.
The screen flickered and a video began to play. CJ was far too familiar with the contents, having watched it again and again. The image spanned a large common room filled with men and women of all ages, dressed in loose, white clothing. Some sat together in small groups, some curled into themselves near the wall, rocking to the rhythm of an unheard beat. Orderlies and nurses stood on the outskirts, distributing medications to some, removing one or two for experiments that CJ hadn't yet been able to define or determine.
"What am I looking at?"
She pointed to the far right corner near the bank of bar-covered windows. A single man stood, facing out into the sun, with his feet set apart and his hands linked behind his back in a stance all too familiar to CJ. He was tall and lanky in build, even that was obvious through the baggy clothing he wore. His hair was dark although the exact color was hard to determine with the black and white video. Even now, looking at him, CJ's heart skipped. The reality excited her, yet broke her heart in the same instant.
"Here," she said. "Magnify and enhance."
Nick touched the screen and the image paused. He tapped with his pinky and a menu appeared. With deft fingers, he relayed the commands and the video shifted, magnifying the image two-hundred percent so the single man filled the screen. His back was still to the camera.
Nick tapped again and the video restarted. CJ's pulse quickened as she knew the moment she wanted approached. She stepped closer to Nick, her shoulder brushing his arm. He didn't move away, his interest on the screen, and she wondered if he felt the same niggling sense of familiarity she had the first time she saw it. She glanced quickly at him; his gaze was intent on the monitor, a deep crease digging above his nose as he focused.
Another man entered the view dressed in a white lab coat with his hands pushed into the large front pockets. He had dark hair and Latin features, and the two men stood nearly at the same height, the doctor being only slightly shorter. He looked to be about CJ's age, around thirty, but if he was Areth as she suspected his appearance meant nothing. Her own supervisor at the lab didn't look much older than Nick, and she knew he was nearly four hundred years old.
"Get ready to pause again," she said softly.
He held his hand over the monitor, not touching it.
The doctor stopped and spoke, and the focus of their attention shifted. For one brief moment, he looked straight at the camera.
Nick tapped the screen.
"What the hell?"
His words mirrored CJ's own reaction the first time she saw the young man's face. It was like seeing Nick Tanner twenty years before. The same eyes, the same angled features, the same lips.
"Who is this?" he demanded, only briefly looking at her before focusing again on the screen.
CJ cleared her throat to try and push through the thick emotions that threatened to choke her. "His name is Michael Tanner. Your son."
Posted by Beth on 2nd Apr 2014
Where has this series been my whole "I love sci fi and I love romance, but I can't find great books with both" life?
I am FLOORED by this series! I'm writing this review on the first book in hopes of encouraging anyone and EVERYONE to start here. And just keep reading.
Yes, these books are categorized as romance, but let me say very clearly, they are SO MUCH MORE! The relationships and characters -- players -- in these books are so real and so beautiful, I honestly feel like I'm not reading fiction at all, but watching their lives play out in words.
The storytelling is gripping, and so plausible -- even though this is science fiction -- it makes you stop and think. HARD. What WOULD we do after first contact? What would our world become? The book doesn't follow the "All aliens are bad" typical storyline... but that doesn't meant there aren't bad aliens. Or good aliens.
Seriously... this series will make you believe.
And Michael Tanner... there is so much to say about him, and yet, all of it would be inadequate.
I have read all six books -- and the free read -- the author has written for this "universe", and I cannot WAIT for the seventh.
What are you waiting for? Go! Now! Buy! Read!
Posted by Sally Pink Reviews on 23rd Feb 2013
Delaney scores with Book One of the Phoenix Rebellion, "Revolution." Set in the near future, Delaney puts together an ensemble cast of characters and pits them against the Areth for the survival of the human race.
The Areth come from outer space and appear human. They've come to Earth and shared medical technology with us, but little else. A group of humans, "The Phoenix Rebellion," believe the Areth do not have peaceful intentions toward the human race. Covertly, a member of the Rebellion, Dr. Caitlin Montgomery, infiltrates the Areth's medical complex in New Mexico. Caitlin learns that an Areth scientist, Kathleen, gave birth to a half-human, half-Areth child, Michael. Michael's father is a human, Col. Nick Tanner. Caitlin finds Nick in Maine and shares the information with him. He's stunned. He thought his wife and son had died in childbirth. Without a second thought, Tanner joins the Rebellion, despite the fact that his feelings for Caitlin are complicated due to their previous affair which ended badly.
Nick finds General Castleton in Colorado and meets other members of the Rebellion – a married couple, Lilly, who is a doctor and her pilot husband, Jace. There's also an empath, Dr. Beverly Surimoto. After a carefully coordinated plan, the Rebellion attack the Areth's complex in New Mexico, hoping to free the Areth's subjects – including Michael. An Areth scientist, Victor, has befriended Michael and helps the Rebellion. All is not well with Victor though, as he begins having a mental breakdown. The escape from the Areth's complex in New Mexico is a thrill ride, but one of the Rebellion loses his life and the fate of the human race hangs precariously in the balance.
Delaney's writing is sharp. After a quick introduction to the Areth, Delaney jumps into the story. The plot flows well, never lingering. Delaney uses a good economy of words to paint descriptions. It's easy for the reader to visualize her futuristic world.
Delaney's characters are what makes this science fiction story shine. Col. Nick Tanner is a passionate man who has been hurt deeply in the past. Learning to trust Caitlin again is a struggle. Caitlin, for her part, realizes the folly of her youth, and tries to make up for it. The couple's chemistry is on a slow, smoldering burn that threatens to consume both when ignited. Victor's plight is heartbreaking, especially since he's an alien who shows Michael compassion. Michael's condition is intriguing. It's never fully explored in this book, leaving the reader wanting to discover more about him.
The story is "sophisticated" for romance readers. Delaney's love scenes are intense, yet tasteful. Book One: Revolution is a story packed with adventure, excitement, and love, making it a thrilling start to "The Phoenix Rebellion" series.
Posted by Desert Breeze Publishing on 1st Feb 2013
"This book is a MUST READ...This may well be my favorite book of all time... one of those rare books for which a five heart rating seems sadly inadequate."
~ Karen H.
The Romance Studio