Just so we’re clear, I may have picked up the book An Uncommon Whore for the title, because let’s face it, it’s a pretty awesome title, but I kept reading it because the author kept me transfixed. But there was a point–we’ll call it the ending–where I was disappointed because it felt like so much was left out and left unanswered. Well, McBride does a wonderful job making up for it here in this second book. I seriously loved this story.
It’s a year after Helios’ and Griffon’s arrival to Neo Domus and the planet is thankfully in better shape than it was when they first touched down, but now they face the challenges of having a family, a counsel hounding Helios to produce more children, and threats from stronger, more violent planets. Not only that, they still have to worry about the threat from within that took them down the first time. They have a traitor in their midst and no one is sure of who it is. To top off all that stress, Helios is keeping secrets from Griffon and Griffon is questioning whether he ever knew his lover.
With the threat of Landaun still hanging over their heads, Helios petitions the Interstellar Coalition of Planets to join their ranks seeking protection from their enemies, the Landaun included. Joining the coalition involves meeting with representatives from each planet. Each day reveals a new secret and a new side of Helios that Griffon is afraid to acknowledge. He loves the man with everything he is, but he’s not sure if he loves Pasha, the former whore, or Helios, the king of secrets. Doing his duty and standing by Helios’s side, Griffon journeys to Prima Vega and faces danger after danger when they discover that Landaun is also petitioning the coalition for entry into their ranks. Along with that comes the discovery of another of Helios’ secrets, someone from Griffon’s past he thought to be long gone.
While their planet and people are in danger and Helios is keeping secrets from him, Griffon doesn’t know who to trust, even going as far as doubting himself. With an unknown enemy in their ranks, Griffon watches every day as Helios seems to grow further and further away. Then the unthinkable happens and threatens to tear them apart from the inside out.
When I Fall is the second book in Belinda McBride’s An Uncommon Whore series. Like I said earilier, I loved this story. All of my frustrations from the ending of book one were taken care of with this story, and the author does such a wonderful job of wrapping it all up in a neat (bloody) bow. Okay, don’t let my “bloody” comment scare you. This story is not that violent, nor is it very graphic, but there is a part that is so bloody that it’s heartbreaking and when you get there, you’ll know. Promise.
Oh! And my favorite thing about this story? The author gave me Griffon’s POV. The last book was in Pasha/Helios’ so I already know and love him. But finally, I have Griffon. What I love about being in Griffon’s head are his many hidden insecurities. You don’t expect them from Helios’ POV. He’s this confident, strong, tough guy who doesn’t back down to anything or anyone (except Helios). But now we get to see the real Griffon–the father, the lover, the guy with a heart of gold who would do anything for anybody. His feelings are fragile when it comes to Helios and it’s understandable. Even after a year they’re still getting to know one another again. And they still have secrets.
Secrets are what this story’s about. I like how the author created a king from a whore–well, a whore who used to be a priest, even though he doesn’t remember being such. Helios holds a whole plethora of secrets and they hurt, guys. I hated them. Man, I hated them for Griffon mostly because they hurt him so bad. But then Griffon has the worst secret of them all. And I kid you not, it’s a doosie. And then there are the many secrets that the planet representatives, operatives, governments are keeping. Seriously, McBride wrote a book of secrets and I was enthralled.
I don’t know what to tell you that I already haven’t other than this is a definite must read for sci-fi, space opera, futuristic fans like me. This series is fantastic. And just when the story was closing the author did the unthinkable. She left me with a tidbit of a snippet of a piece of something and I’m not exactly sure what it is. All I know is Caius (one of the supporting cast) is not who he says he is and I’m now dying to know more. Luckily for me and every single one of you that want to read this book now, Caius’ story just came out, so I’ll be reading it very soon, and I can hardly wait. In the meantime, I say to you read this book. It’s definitely worth it.