Harper Voyager | May 2020 | 416 pgs
Source: Publisher via Edelweiss
This is the last book of Jessie Mihalik's Consortium Rebellion trilogy and well, I was sad to see it end (but what a fun trilogy it was!)
Catarina von Hasenberg is the youngest member of her High House and is often being underestimated by her family though her bubbly personality mask a clever mind and a fierce determination. In the previous book (Aurora Blazing), the von Hasenbergs are still reeling over the treachery and the capture of the oldest son and heir so Catarina figures she'd be the best person to go undercover at a rival House's summer retreat so as to gather information and find out whoever is behind her brother's capture.
However, Catarina's wish of working solo is dashed when her overprotective older sister, Bianca, assigns Alexander Sterling as her bodyguard (or lovers in public to steer away unnecessary attention). Bianca and her acquaintance with Alexander was explained in the last book, so it's understandable to see why Alexander is so adamant about following her request. And since Catarina possesses a strong individualism, it was interesting to see their differences gradually led to a solid alliance and then attractions when they finally acknowledge the unspoken sparks between them.
I enjoyed this finale slightly more than Aurora Blazing, partly because it has more actions and there are stakes that are running high. Catarina was a strong character that easily captures a reader's attention through her warm and feisty personality, but she has secrets which she'd kept since young -- an experimental project done on her by her father to mold her into a super soldier. While she gave others a false impression that the experiment failed, the contempt she'd carried continues till her adulthood, though her other siblings feel the same towards their father, too.
While I'm not a huge fan of sci-fi, this combination of interplanetary adventures and romance was a joy to read. Recommend to read from book 1, Polaris Rising, as there are some events and threads which are interwoven into the books' plotlines.
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