Review Summary: A caper involving space pirates that was more romantic than I expected but I would have liked a little more action in space.
Blind and held for ransom, Captain Tristan Kelley is being seduced by a pirate. Tristan’s duty is clear, but as his resolve gives way to desire, Tristan begins to realize that being a prisoner may set him free.
Captain Tristan Kelley enjoys the luxuries of Regency service, as well as the pleasure of his prince’s bed. It’s an easy life, if not a happy one. When the prince decides to take a trip through the perilous Blind Space, Tristan must go with him, but somebody in the prince’s guard is a traitor.
Blind and held prisoner, Tristan finds himself at the mercy of Valero, a pirate who bears no love for the Regency. Valero is determined to seduce Tristan, and Tristan fears his resolve won’t last. His duty is clear, but so is his desire. As the days tick by without word from the Regency, Tristan begins to question his loyalty to his prince, the Regency he’s sworn to, and the man who holds him captive.
Tristan begins to realize that being a prisoner may actually set him free.
I bought this book yesterday and stayed up late to finish it because it’s a Marie Sexton book. What can I say?
At 25 years old Tristan was Captain of Prince Rickard’s guard as well as his favourite playmate. He hated his sexual role but didn’t have many options if he wanted to maintain his lifestyle and his status. They were on a trip to a resort but to get there they had to go through Blind Space which was a hunting ground for pirate ships. Rickard was the son of one of the Empire’s Regents who just happened to be one of the richest men in the area, and he presented a large target that was hard for the pirates to miss. Tristan was uneasy because there was a pirate ship hovering close by and their small ship had no weapons to fight it off. His fears were realized when they were boarded without warning and blinded temporarily by the pirates who used flash guns to disorient the crew. Tristan fought off as many pirates as he could but there was very little that one man could do against so many especially since he was now blind, and they were all easily captured.
When Tristan woke up he and his men were virtually prisoners although technically they were hostages. The only person missing was the prince and no one seemed to know where he was. Along with the missing prince, what was worrying Tristan was how the pirates were able to board their ship without raising the alarm – obviously there was a traitor in their midst who had provided the pirates with the lock code of their ship.
There was something else of concern to Tristan — Valero, one of the pirates seemed to have taken a fancy to him after he saw how valiantly Tristan fought, and he requested his presence at dinner several nights running, trying his best to seduce him with food and wine. At first Tristan was angry but gradually Valero’s gentle approach was breaking down his resistance. Even though Tristan continued to resist it was clear that if they weren’t released soon he might give in because Valero was incredibly sexy and romantic and he was falling for him even though he couldn’t see him. Their cat and mouse game continued for a few days until Valero found out his secret kink, and it was game over for Tristan.
The story started off slowly as there was very little to do after the capture but wait for word on whether the pirates’ demand for a ransom had been paid, but things heated up for Tristan when Valero wooed him. There was one scene involving honey that was so sensuous it made me want to try it, and some of their love scenes were so hot they burned up the pages. Marie Sexton sure can write romance.
Some of the world building in Blind Space was detailed and authentic, even down to the smells on board the pirate ship and the decor in Valero’s cabin which was sumptuous, but I would have loved more emphasis on the science fiction aspect of the story since I’m a hard core sci fi reader. We’re told how evil the Empire and its Regencies were and that Valero’s colony, Rosen, had been annexed by force by the Empire several years ago because they wanted its main export, helium, and weren’t prepared to pay for it. The inhabitants were captured but Valero refused to submit to the Empire and escaped — at great personal sacrifice and cost — with a few of his men, deciding that being pirates was a better fate than slavery.
I would have liked to have seen a bit more of the Empire in action in the book but I suppose because of its length this was not possible; other readers would probably love the ratio of action to romance. Also, since this is a story about space pirates, I wanted to see the pirates looting and pillaging but they were very laid back even though they had all the usual pirate attire, accoutrements and make-up, so from an action/adventure perspective I was somewhat disappointed but the romance between Valero and Tristan definitely rocked.
The characters were all three dimensional, including Prince Rickard who was a puffed up buffoon. As for Tristan, he was naive, having known no other life but the Regency society and it was difficult for Valero to make him understand how corrupt the Empire was, until he was betrayed. While he was blind it was tough for Tristan to manage, and he had to depend on his other senses and Valero for even his most basic physical needs. Marie Sexton did a great job of showing how diminished Tristan felt but also how he learned to listen to Valero’s voice for all the nuances he would have missed if he were sighted. I think that the part of the story when Tristan was finally able to see what Valero looked like was one of the highlights. Quelle surprise! I loved Valero‘s character.
This story had many layers and one of the characters I admired most was Valero’s right hand man, Pierce, who was fiercely loyal to his former captain.
If you’re looking for a high octane adventure in space with lots of action Blind Passion might not be where you’d find it, but the romance between Tristan and Valero more than compensated for any lack of action/adventure and I think that romance readers will be very happy.