A Chaos Moondrawn Review: Starlight (Dark Space #3) by Lisa Henry

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Rating: 3.75 stars out of 5

This is the third book in the series. While there is recapping through memories, I still think it would be difficult to start here. Without the emotional attachment to the characters built through books one and two, I don’t know why anyone would want to just jump into book three. Having said that, as much as I loved books one and two, this is really for those who wanted more closure than book two provided. The story drops the reader right into the action on Kai-Ren’s spaceship. The psychic connection is there between all the humans and Faceless onboard, but muted. All seven of the humans have been on the ship three months, sharing a room, and have still learned nothing about the Faceless. The ship is humid, damaging their equipment, their batteries are draining, and human food is running out. Just when I was wondering why this would be interesting, it got really interesting.

Chris and Brady have their moments of understanding. When disaster strikes, Chris really steps in as the leader here, which is understandable as he has always had an endgame, likely ordered by his superiors. Cam and Brady have their lovely intimate moments. Harry seems to spend the most time with Lucy, but I don’t feel like I know him any better. Andre is barely in this at all. Brady’s point of view is still fearful, angry, and anxious, but tempered from the previous books as he actively tries to be more grateful. His love for Cam and his growing belief in Cam’s love for him makes him less nihilistic. He wants to grow, to be a better role model for Lucy. His relationship with Doc has given him a father figure. He finally even has friends. This is a little repetitive, Brady’s thoughts looped into themselves and his existential crisis, his hatred of space, and his nostalgia. Still, if you are a Brady fan already, you should like this as he finally sees his own worth and what he brings to the table.

For me, the fear (terror really) of the Faceless seemed removed. Even though plenty of horrifying things happen, I didn’t feel it like I did in the other two books. Because of the Faceless that were not part of the hive they share with Kai-Ren, there were few moments the humans were safe, yet everything here felt muted, like their psychic connection. I don’t want to spoil the plot at all. I will just say that traveling on an alien ship in the hopes of learning about the universe and finding some weakness out about the aliens to give humans any sort of chance to not be decimated…didn’t go to plan. By the time they figure out anything useful, the book has turned into a disaster movie in space. The point of this book seems to be to give humanity some sort of triumph and to allow Brady to be brave, in many ways, in a totally Brady way. As much has been made about Kai-Ren and his rape of Cam, I feel like I need to say that it almost happened again…and I am not sure how to feel about it. Some people expressed that after the slow build of book one, the ending seemed rushed for a forced HEA; one could level the same criticism at this book also. I think everything happened exactly the way it needed to for the ending it had, even if beating all the odds was completely unlikely. Kai-Ren doesn’t control or rule all Faceless; he also is obviously not the only Faceless curious about humanity, so I am unsure about the ending provided. I enjoyed the book, but this is the weakest of the three, like watching Return Of The Jedi after The Empire Strikes Back.

The cover art by Mayhem Cover Creations matches the other two covers in the trilogy.

Sales Links: Universal Link: https://books2read.com/darkspace-starlight

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 1st edition, 197 pages
Published December 1st 2019 by Self-Published
Original TitleStarlight
ASINB07YN2GHWP
Edition Language English
SeriesDark Space #3

Love Sci Fi? Check Out the Blog Tour for Starlight (Dark Space #3) by Lisa Henry

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Starlight Tour Banner

Starlight

Dark Space Series Book 3

Lisa Henry

M/M Sci-Fi

Release Date: 12.01.19

Starlight

Cover Designer: Mayhem Cover Creations

Blurb

Brady Garrett is back in space, this time as an unwilling member of a team of humans seeking to study the alien Faceless and their technology. It’s not the first time Brady’s life has been in the hands of the Faceless leader Kai-Ren, and if there’s one thing Brady hates it’s being reminded exactly how powerless he is. Although dealing with the enigmatic Faceless might actually be easier than trying to figure out where he stands with the other humans on board, particularly when one of them is his boyfriend’s ex.

Cameron Rushton loved the starlight once, but being back on board the Faceless ship forces him to confront the memories of the time he was captured by Kai-Ren, and exactly how much of what was done to him that he can no longer rationalize away. Cam is used to being Brady’s rock, but this time it might be him who needs Brady’s support.

This time Brady is surrounded by the people he loves most in the universe, but that only means their lives are in danger too. And when Kai-Ren’s fascination with humanity threatens the foundations of Faceless society, Brady and Cam and the rest of the team find themselves thrust into a battle that humans have very little hope of winning, let alone surviving.

*Starlight can be read as a standalone but probably words better with knowledge of the first two books in the series.

Universal Link: https://books2read.com/darkspace-starlight

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Excerpt

The Faceless ship was silent, but the anger and the adrenaline rush of the battle ran on a constant feedback loop in our skulls. Spikes of pain, of fear, were like blasts of static in our heads. And sometimes, more than once, we felt that same dizzying sensation of sudden loss—and of that hole immediately being filled in again. The Faceless felt no grief for the fallen. The hive barely even noticed the loss of one drone.

I thought of my dad and how acutely I still missed him and how his loss was written in my bones, and in everything I did. A day didn’t go by when I didn’t think of him. And I thought of how my grief and my fear for Lucy had captured Kai-Ren’s attention in the first place.

I wondered which one of us was the most incomprehensible to the other. The most alien.

We made our way carefully down toward the core of the ship. Everything seemed dimmer. There were fewer lights drifting in the walls, and the fluid itself seemed darker than usual. The ship was hurt. Was she dying too?

Chris and Doc carried the hybrid between them, his thin arms held across their shoulders. His pale feet dragged more than stepped, but his eyes were open now. They were dark and wide and fearful, just like mine.

Cam and Harry led the way, and Andre and I brought up the rear. I held Lucy’s hand tightly. It was warm and damp with sweat. She was quiet. Her face was pinched. But she didn’t even stumble as we moved forward through the dimly-lit curving passageway of the ship.

As we moved toward the fighting.

“If anything happens,” I whispered to her, “run back to where we just were, okay?”

She nodded, and squeezed my hand more tightly.

We kept moving, right up until we didn’t. Cam and Harry had stopped, and I craned my head to see.

“It’s okay,” Cam said. “Keep moving.”

There was a dead Faceless lying in the corridor. His mask had been removed. His eyes were covered in a white film. His yellowish skin was stained black around his throat, and over one cheek, like someone had spat ink over him. And then I realized that no, it wasn’t a stain. It was necrosis, or something like it. His skin had been ruptured in several places, punctured, and the flesh around it had turned black.

Venom. It had to be venom.

I looked at Doc and Chris, and at the way the hybrid was slung between them. The hybrid’s fingers curled around their shoulders, and I thought of claws digging into their flesh and wondered how long it would take Faceless venom to kill a human. And then I thought of every time that Kai-Ren had run his hands over my skin, and of how the Stranger had prodded my stomach, and how each time I’d been staring death in the face. I’d thought of Kai-Ren as a god once, hadn’t I? A god who could strike any one of us down on a whim.

I held Lucy’s hand tightly as we passed the dead Faceless.

There was a voice in the back of my head—mine, for once—that told me we weren’t going to make it to the pods. That told me we’d be caught here, in a curving corridor with nowhere to take cover and that the Stranger’s Faceless would kill us, but whatever was happening in the rest of the ship was keeping all the Faceless busy.

My heart was beating out of my chest by the time we descended to the bay where the pods were kept, and the doors shut behind us, the sticky seams sealing closed.

There were six pods here, and seven of us plus the hybrid. It didn’t matter, because Cam and I had shared a pod before anyway. There was plenty of room. But mostly it didn’t matter because we had no way of getting the pods to work, let alone launching them.

And then it really didn’t matter, because we wouldn’t be launching them into some tranquil sea anyway.

“Holy fuck!” Harry exclaimed from the one of the windows that looked out into the nebula.

I look past him just in time to see a Faceless ship being torn apart by a massive explosion. It was colossal. It was blinding.

And it was close enough that the shockwave hit us like a tsunami.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lisa likes to tell stories, mostly with hot guys and happily ever afters.

Lisa lives in tropical North Queensland, Australia. She doesn’t know why, because she hates the heat, but she suspects she’s too lazy to move. She spends half her time slaving away as a government minion, and the other half plotting her escape.

She attended university at sixteen, not because she was a child prodigy or anything, but because of a mix-up between international school systems early in life. She studied History and English, neither of them very thoroughly.

She shares her house with too many cats, a dog, a green tree frog that swims in the toilet, and as many possums as can break in every night. This is not how she imagined life as a grown-up.

Lisa has been published since 2012, and was a LAMBDA finalist for her quirky, awkward coming-of-age romance Adulting 101.

Website: lisahenryonline.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lisa.henry.1441

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LisaHenryOnline

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/author/show/5050492.Lisa_Henry

Instagram: lisa_henry_author

Email: lisahenryonline@gmail.com

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New Release Blitz with Excerpt for Starlight (Dark Space #3) by Lisa Henry

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StarLight RDB Banner

Starlight

Dark Space Series Book 3

Lisa Henry

M/M Sci-Fi

Release Date: 12.01.19

Starlight

Cover Designer: Mayhem Cover Creations

Blurb

Brady Garrett is back in space, this time as an unwilling member of a team of humans seeking to study the alien Faceless and their technology. It’s not the first time Brady’s life has been in the hands of the Faceless leader Kai-Ren, and if there’s one thing Brady hates it’s being reminded exactly how powerless he is. Although dealing with the enigmatic Faceless might actually be easier than trying to figure out where he stands with the other humans on board, particularly when one of them is his boyfriend’s ex.

Cameron Rushton loved the starlight once, but being back on board the Faceless ship forces him to confront the memories of the time he was captured by Kai-Ren, and exactly how much of what was done to him that he can no longer rationalize away. Cam is used to being Brady’s rock, but this time it might be him who needs Brady’s support.

This time Brady is surrounded by the people he loves most in the universe, but that only means their lives are in danger too. And when Kai-Ren’s fascination with humanity threatens the foundations of Faceless society, Brady and Cam and the rest of the team find themselves thrust into a battle that humans have very little hope of winning, let alone surviving.

*Starlight can be read as a standalone but probably words better with knowledge of the first two books in the series.

Universal Link: https://books2read.com/darkspace-starlight

Starlight Teaser 5Starlight Teaser 4

Excerpt

That night I woke up with a start.

Cam made a soft noise beside me, and kept sleeping.

I sat up and swung my legs over the side of the bunk. The floor was damp and sticky against my bare feet. I didn’t care. Barely noticed it anymore. I just reached under the bunk and dragged my footlocker out. Opened it and found my cigarettes.

“Bad dream?” Chris Varro asked in a low voice from the bunk on the opposite wall.

I hadn’t known he was awake.

I lit my cigarette. “Hot dream,” I lied.

“Was I in it?”

“Fucker.”

He laughed quietly.

I’d had my fair share of wet dreams about Chris. And they weren’t just when I’d shared dreams with Cam. Pretty sure I’d come up with some all on my own. And I wish I could say that was the weirdest thing about my life, but it barely made the list. And if it was weird for me to be sharing a room with my boyfriend’s ex, how fucking weird was it for him to see us together? At least he didn’t try to pull rank on me anymore, and I didn’t try to stab him in the throat with a screwdriver. We were a work in progress, Chris and me.

Chris’s bunk creaked as he rose to his feet. He walked to the doorway, and beckoned me to follow.

I did.

“Those damn bunks,” he said, rolling his shoulders as he led me down the slope of the corridor towards Doc’s medbay. “I don’t know how you and Cam can fit in a single one.”

“We make it work,” I said. Cam slept in the bunk next to mine in theory, but in practice we usually ended up wedged close together in the one. I wondered if Chris was jealous. I would have burned with it if I’d had to see Cam with another guy. It was bad enough I’d seen it in his memories.

Chris regarded me silently for a moment, a sort of half smile on his lips, and I remembered—I felt—exactly why Cam had fallen in love with him. Chris was a good-looking guy, but more than that, he was smart and he was ambitious, but not in the way a lot of military guys were. Chris didn’t give a fuck about rank or prestige or how many medals they gave him. He was driven by something outside of all that. Chris wanted to unravel all the mysteries of the universe. No wonder that Cam, chasing starlight, had fallen so easily into his orbit.

They’d been perfect together, at least for a while.

“I like you, Brady,” he said. He reached forward and plucked my cigarette from between my fingers. Took a drag on it, and gave it back. “You don’t like me, but I like you.”

“You steal my fucking cigarettes and of course I don’t like you.”

His smile widened. “We both know that’s not the reason why.”

I shrugged, because there was no point denying it.

“You’re good for him,” Chris said at last. Glowing platelets slid past in the wall behind him and illuminated his face for a moment. “You’re good for each other.”

“I know we are,” I said, trying not to bristle, because I couldn’t quite read him. I couldn’t tell if he was being friendly, or if he was being a condescending prick and implying Cam and I needed his fucking approval or something. Usually I thought the worst of people and usually I was right, but lately I was trying to, I don’t know, be a better person or some bullshit. I at least wanted to set a better example for Lucy, so that she didn’t have to look at me and then look at all these other guys and wonder why I wasn’t like them. I didn’t want her to like them more than me because they weren’t angry and afraid all the time.

Chris stared at me for a long moment, and I wasn’t sure what he was looking for. “Whole universe out here,” he said at last, “just like Doc says, and you’re still living in your own head.”

“So what if I am? No fucking law against it.”

His mouth turned up in a faint smile. “Don’t forget I’ve been inside your skull, Brady. How do you even stand it? It’s so loud in there.”

I blew smoke in his face and ignored the way my stomach twisted.

He smiled again and shook his head. When he spoke his voice was tempered with sympathy, and that’s what made me hate him the most. “Whole universe out here, Brady, right in front of your eyes, and you’re still too afraid to look at it, aren’t you?”

“Fuck you,” I said. “I’m going back to bed.”

I left the asshole standing there, wreathed in the pulsating lights of the Faceless ship.

Starlight Teaser 1

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lisa likes to tell stories, mostly with hot guys and happily ever afters.

Lisa lives in tropical North Queensland, Australia. She doesn’t know why, because she hates the heat, but she suspects she’s too lazy to move. She spends half her time slaving away as a government minion, and the other half plotting her escape.

She attended university at sixteen, not because she was a child prodigy or anything, but because of a mix-up between international school systems early in life. She studied History and English, neither of them very thoroughly.

She shares her house with too many cats, a dog, a green tree frog that swims in the toilet, and as many possums as can break in every night. This is not how she imagined life as a grown-up.

Lisa has been published since 2012, and was a LAMBDA finalist for her quirky, awkward coming-of-age romance Adulting 101.

Website: lisahenryonline.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lisa.henry.1441

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LisaHenryOnline

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/author/show/5050492.Lisa_Henry

Instagram: lisa_henry_author

Email: lisahenryonline@gmail.com

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