Rating: 4 stars
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Connor Smith is just an ordinary guy with an uninteresting life and a boring job. At least this is what it would seem to the outside observer. In truth, he works as an agent for a top-secret company called Primrose, and his job is anything but boring. He monitors and tracks aliens and alien technology, and he’s good at it. Lately, he’s been spending his days searching for missing aliens and trying to track down missing artifacts that continue to elude them. His job is crazy, a little bit dangerous, and not conducive to having a private life. That is until his best friend, Isa, sets Connor up with the perfect man, Jason, and his relationship luck turns for the better.
Things seem to be going along pretty well until Connor starts feeling the presence of a stalker. But this stalker seems to have a deep effect on Connor physically. Sometimes, he feels his presence manifested in a shiver up his back. Other times, it makes him violently ill and drains him of his energy. He turns to Primrose for help in finding the person who is really starting to freak him out.
Enter Noah Jones. He may seem like just the unassuming owner of a small bookstore, but he’s been around for about 400 years and he’s not exactly what he would seem. He has a human form, but still retains elements of his previous alien life, stored within his skin. Until now, Noah has been flying under the radar, but Primrose has finally caught up with him and he’s got some explaining to do. Even though he’s been trying to avoid Primrose all of this time, since he’s an alien and is worried about what will happen to him, it brings him in contact with Connor, and Noah recognizes the deep connection that they have together. This is the person he’s been waiting for all of his life. There’s just one pesky problem — Connor already has a boyfriend.
Also, Connor’s been busy. Primrose is trying to track down alien artifacts that are turning up missing before they can get to them. In addition to trying to solve this case, their investigation into some missing aliens leads them to a grand-scale conspiracy that involves Noah and a lot of danger for Connor and the rest of the Primrose gang.
I enjoyed this novel a lot. I didn’t know what to expect based upon the title, and what I got was an action-packed, romantic journey set in a compelling world where humans and aliens live, for the most part, in harmony. While this book is, as the title suggests, about aliens, it initially doesn’t deal with it in a heavy-handed manner. Primrose is hunting down aliens in an effort to aid them, and their rescue missions generally end on a light note. It has enough of a supernatural element to appeal to those who like that sort of thing, but is also accessible enough for those who generally don’t.
The biggest problem I had with the book is that it didn’t completely live up to it’s potential — because it has plenty of it. I enjoyed the world that Arden created, but didn’t think it was fully developed. The elements that were introduced, such as the different names and descriptions of the alien species, were fascinating and fun, but the book had too many things going on, and so we don’t get the details that would help us become fully immersed in the world.
The action is steady and well-paced and kept me engrossed until the end, but the main conflicts were hastily introduced and not completely explained. I never really understood the motivation of the villains, mostly because many of the characters were only briefly mentioned, and we weren’t given enough time to become involved in their development. And while Connor was a talented agent for Primrose, a large-scale operation that could be compared to the CIA, there are many amateurish mistakes that were made that don’t seem in line with the supposed reputation of the company. I also wished we could’ve spent some more time with Connor and Noah and watched their relationship develop, because I found both of them to be sweet and charming and liked the limited interaction we got between the two of them.
When it comes right down to it, this story is about soul mates, whose connection surpasses all other obstacles (and there are many), and whose love literally makes life worth living. I found the world that lives within Arden’s brain to be fascinating. So even if you don’t like aliens, there’s a little something here for everyone.