Sunday, 1 September 2013
#CBR5 Book 110. "Assassins in Love" by Kris DeLake
Rating: 3.5 stars
In an exciting sci-fi future, on an interstellar cruise ship, rogue assassin Rikki (I seriously can't remember her surname, it's not important) is trying to dump a body. While assassination is legal if you have a license and a contract, Rikki's not a member of the Assassin's Guild, and generally feels that she doesn't need anyone controlling her or regulating how she does things. A very attractive man helps her get rid of the body, and then escape the security guards on the ship. One thing leads to another, and the next morning, Rikki discovers that the hot guy, Misha, is the one who actually hired her to perform the hit - trying to observe her technique. He's the licensed assassin who's recently been blamed for most of her hits in the region, and he wants her to either join the Assassin's Guild and start observing the set guidelines, or he's planning to stop her.
This is just the first section of the book. Rikki uses underhanded methods to discover Misha's real identity, and flashes back to her childhood, when his mother, also a licensed assassin, killed Rikki's father. She becomes convinced that he's trying to kill her, as well, and drugs him so she can escape the cruise ship. He chases after her, still determined to make her join the Guild or stop being an assassin, and there's a plot to kill the head of the Assassin's Guild and various back and forth of now they trust each other, now they don't.
August 2013's theme for Vaginal Fantasy Hangout (the online book club run by Felicia Day and three of her friends) was space assassins. Having nearly burned myself out reading in July, I figured light-hearted romance was just the thing the doctor ordered. So despite my misgivings, having considered both the spectacularly awful cover (even in a genre which features a lot of bad cover art) and the dumb title, picked, I'm assuming from some sort of generic name generator. Kris DeLake is a pseudonym for Kristine Kathryn Rausch, who writes a lot of fantasy and sci fi. Goodreads also tells me that she writes straight romance under another pseudonym.
The book is not bad, but certainly not great either. Rikki and Misha spend a LOT of time in bed with each other for people who don't trust each other. There's also extremely little assassining (this is a totally valid verb that I just made up) being done, and quite a lot more exploring joint (if repressed, in Rikki's case) back story. Like the ladies on Vaginal Fantasy Hangout, I liked Misha as a character a lot more than Rikki, who just never really grew on me. He's probably the reason the book gets 3.5 stars rather than just 3. This is by no means the worst book I've read as a result of the book club, but certainly not the best either, and I don't think I'll be bothered with any more in the series.