Rating: 5 stars out of 5
New Orleans, Louisiana. 2015.
A bank is robbed and two guards are torn apart and yet the cameras show nothing. No suspicious persons to be identified and no clues to help search out the killer. Other than the bloody aftermath. Except the fact that the victims are human and the crimes occur in Human Only establishments. All signs point to a Preternatural killer with a grudge against humans. It’s not the first, and it won’t be the last.
Three years have passed since a vampire burst into flames on television and humans were forced to face a new world where supernatural beings exist. Caught up in the revelation and new world order are Sam Garrett and Travis Boudreaux, former NOPD detectives. Once human, they find themselves part of the preternatural world. Now everything is different, new lives, new rules, only their strange bond and attraction to each other has remained the same.
So much to contend with. Humans Only separatist groups are springing up everywhere ala KKK. Also out to get them is a vampire with political ambitions with huge plans of his own. No one’s safe in a world where humans—and supers—are forced to adapt, or die.
Working together as part of a team sanctioned by Homeland Security to carry out Justice Department decrees, Sam and Travis ensure the deadliest of supers pay for their crimes. Permanently.
Warning: This is a steamy urban fantasy. In this series the vampires don’t sparkle, werewolves kill.
Free Falling Crimson (Altered States, #3) by Laura Harner and T. A. Webb is the culmination of three preceding stories and its by far the best of them all. While the others were setting out the characters, relationships (no matter how tenuous), and world building, this story pulls it all together in a taut thriller guaranteed to make your heart race for multiple reasons.
At the center of this series is newly made supernaturals Sam Garrett and Travis Boudreaux. Their job as partners on the force pulled them together, their feelings for each other initialized a strange bond that even the calamitous events couldn’t destroy. Now back together again, Sam and Travis are trying to make their new relationship work amidst a crime spree that seems unsolvable and a new world order that seems to want to repeat the same mistakes made with those of Japanese ancestry during WWII. A Humans Only rights group is gaining in power and political leverage. Everywhere there are talks of internment camps and registering supernatural beings. And that makes solving this case even more important to all.
Harner and Webb understand complicated plots and they keep several important story lines in play at the same time to further deepen the mysteries and obfuscate important details and agendas. Secondary but hugely important characters have relationships in motion at every stage of the game. Some of imploding under stress and power struggles, others are being formed despite outward behaviors to the contrary. And each pairing is critical to the overall picture. The Altered States series is very much a chess game and the authors are very adept at keeping their end game a secret while constantly upping the suspense and, yes, sometimes terror at the events happening all around our characters.
Sam and Travis finally commit to each other and the sex scenes are intense and oh so hot! How I have waited for this to happen. Other couples find themselves in flux and compelling new characters find their way into the mix. Love, love, loved it.
Of course, it ends on a cliffhanger. A heartbreaking, pulse pounding cliffhanger. It is as marvelous as it is frustrating. I can’t wait to see what happens next.
At around 152 pages, this is not a quick read because you will find yourself backtracking to check facts, people and relationships along the way. I told you it was complicated, but as you gather hints throughout the story, you begin to get and appreciate the layers to all the characters and story lines woven into the Altered States series. Pick up the first story and get started if you are new to the series. But if you have been reading along as I have, than this is the book you’lll love on every front!
Cover artist Laura Harner. I’m not a fan of red covers and this one doesn’t change my mind. I get why the artist choose red but it just never works well, no matter the design. A smaller dosage of crimson would have highlighted the drama, instead its lost in the monotone palette.
Published February 1st 2015 by Smashwords Edition
seriesAltered States #3
Books in the Altered States Series in the order they should be read:
• Altered States (Altered States, #0.5)
• Deep Blues Goodbye (Altered States, #1)
• Deadly Shades of Gold (Altered States, #2)
• Free Falling Crimson (Altered States, #3)