Deal with the Devil by Kit Rocha
ISBN: 978-1250209368 Publisher/date: Tor Books (June 8, 2020) Genre: Action & Adventure Romance Series: Mercenary Librarians Rating: M, this is a bodice ripper folks! The only thing that matters is survival. By any means. At any cost. Nina is an escaped clone created by one of the remaining technology conglomerates that now rule over a poverty stricken country plagued by post-apocalyptic storms. She leads a small band of genetically modified women who've escaped the conglomerate and want to do some good for the city they live in.
Knox is an escaped genmod super-soldier from another tech conglomerate, leading his squad of men who escaped with him. But they're short one, the techie who can keep their self-destruct implants that Techcorp implanted in their brains from killing them. And she's being held for ransom. The price? Nina. So this book is supposed to be about mercenary librarians. I freakin loved that premise. But the "librarian" part is very vaguely eluded to and not really a central part of the story. They could be mercenary gardeners or mercenary accountants and it wouldn't have made any difference to the plot. Total let-down. Not that these chics aren't bad-ass, they most certainly are. I especially love Dani, the woman who feels no pain and has reflexes so fast you can't even see her move. Cool. Tbh I think the upcoming books in the series will be more interesting, Nina and Knox are relatively white bread bland.
Like most romance novels, it follows the oh-so-predictable plot that they all do. Boy meets girl, both boy and girl try to resist each other for their own good, they fail, they have sex, he betrays her, they make up in some major climax in the action/suspense. All sub-characters develop love interests that we will see in later stories.
Listen, I'll give it some slack because I didn't realize this was a romance novel when I agreed to review it. I probably would have read it anyway. But the librarian angle is a really intriguing hook for most book lovers. And I was really looking to Kit Rocha to surprise me, to change up the plot, to not be so predictable.
Alas, every single move was pretty obvious, every plot twist could be seen a mile away, and the smut was also a little bland. So how would I rate this book? Despite my dissapointment, I give it a solid meh. 3 Stars, I may read the upcoming books, but I'm going to be looking for some serious librarian plotlines to make up for the sheer lack in this one.