Title: The Aurora Conspiracy
Author: Lexi Ander
Genre: Sci Fi
LGBTQ+ Category: Gay, Pansexual
Publisher: Less Than 3 Press
Reviewer: Sherry Perkins, Paranormal Romance Guild
About The Book
Regin just wants to heal. After a terrible accident that maimed him, and nearly took his life and that of someone he loved, he’s spent the last several years licking his wounds on a mining station. With only six months left on his contract, he hopes to start a new life.
Then he’s accused of a crime he didn’t commit, and a ghost from the past arrives, reopening old wounds and leaving him convinced that no second chances could ever really come his way. But sorting out himself and his personal life won’t matter much if he can’t prevent a second catastrophe and save a whole lot more than two lives.
“You cannot do this to me. You cannot simply show up and expect us to pick up where we left off.” —The Aurora Conspiracy
But that is exactly the premise of “The Aurora Conspiracy” by Lexi Ander. It’s a second chance romance between human-leonid hybrid ReginValentaand a grey, horned alien named MakariGan’Sey. The two men become tragically separated by a mining accident that causes them not only physical separation but emotional trauma and its attendant self-recrimination. The trauma could have been overcome except Makari’s family deftly manipulated the hapless lovers during the period immediately post-hospitalization.
Nonetheless, Regin and Makari survive, their lives diverging. Regin goes on to work for the same mining company as a crane operator and Makari, a police officer (to the dismay of his clan). There is no contact between them again until Regingets involved in a conspiracy and terrorist threatagainst the mining company.
Makari is from a species called Brakkayn, whose abilities include psi capabilities. He is one of the constables tasked with investigating the conspiracy. In addition to psi methods, criminal suspects are often interrogated using drug enhancement, the drug selection based upon the species. Perhaps the most clever passage in this book is that catnipis the truth serum used for human-felines, giving us a familiar connectionto the speculative evolution and off-world species traits found in “The Aurora Conspiracy.”“The Aurora Conspiracy” is a first-person short story. Regin’s point of view is easy to follow, where Makari’sis more jarring. That’s OK; it reinforced he was the more alien of the characters. Both characters clearly have unfinished business with the police investigation being the catalyst for the romantic, family and political intrigue that follows.
I would have preferred the story to be longer with more character and plot development. The dialogue was substantial. It felt like filler, less integral to the relationship between Regin and Makari or in solving the criminal conspiracy. And I was disappointed there was so much dialogue between Regin and Makari when I wished they would be demonstrative rather than conversational. Taken in whole, it was an interesting but not riveting book. Therefore, I’ve given it a 3.5-star rating.
Ander appears to be a prolific writer with at least twelve novels or short stories including “The Aurora Conspiracy.” Of those, there were five series. I’ve no doubt Ander’s readers will enjoy this futuristic second chance at romance short story.
An interspecies, interstellar love story in the setting of loss and criminal conspiracy.
Sherry Perkins has worked as a licensed practical nurse for more than thirty-five years and has experience in psychiatric/addictions nursing, nursing-care coordination, and risk management. She earned a BS in health sciences from Campbell University and has spoken at public health functions on topics such as addiction prevention and treatment, prevention of teenage opioid deaths, and connecting patients who are resistant to treatment with appropriate services.
A mother of four, Perkins lives with extended family on the Delmarva Peninsula, where she enjoys collecting shells and sea glass; reading and writing mysteries, science fiction, and fantasy; doing organic gardening; and following the Dave Matthews Band around the East Coast …..
The Paranormal Romance Guild, AKA (“PRG”), was formed by the banding together of paranormal romance genre readers and writers, through the internet, with the sole purpose of supporting and promoting authors of the paranormal romance genre through the organization’s website and special events. The Paranormal Romance Guild (PRG) was officially organized and recognized on October 31,2009. The PRG is a non-profit organization. All fees and dues collected are to sustain operations of the PRG. No assets of the corporation are to benefit the officers or members.