Retribution (Tribute #2)

Author: Kate Pearce

Publisher: Riptide Publishing

Rating: 4 stars

Buy Links: Riptide

Type: Novella in a series

Received from Publisher

 

Blurb: Cheated out of his exit from the Tribute program, Kai Mexr is forced to return as a trainer for one more year. His trainee, Aled Price, is an idealistic Mitan patriot who Kai struggles not to loathe on sight, and who seems up for any challenge Kai sets him. As Aled learns to give up control and endure the program’s worst, Kai is drawn into an intense sexual game that leaves him wanting more.

But then Aled must fulfill his duty as Tribute. He must endure the Ungrich—or die.

When Aled returns, it takes Kai’s ruthless presence to pull his trainee back from the brink of madness. Surviving the Ungrich makes Aled doubt his blind allegiance to his planet—and to everything else he’d never thought to question. But with Kai at his side, Aled finds a new cause to believe in. And with the help of master trainer Akran and his partner Anna Lee, Aled and Kai forge unbreakable allegiances of blood, sex, and love that could save the entire planet from the Ungrich for good.

Review:  Kai Mexr really hates his trainee, Aled Price. Kai sort of hates everything at the moment, but Aled is particularly annoying. Aled may be thinking he’s a patriot, but he has no clue what he’s in for, and Kai can’t tell him. Yeah, it’s for the good of Mitan, but Aled really doesn’t want to end up on Commander Palk’s radar. It’s not until Kai steps in to save Aled from his own mistakes that Aled comes to the conclusion there is more going on than strictly meets the eye. When Aled returns from his time with the Ungrich he’s angry and Kai is there. Aled makes Kai the focal point of every emotion he feels, unfortunately Kai doesn’t think he’s worthy of any of them but the hate and anger.

This series has me completely riveted. I don’t think there is a huge amount of characterization for either Kai or Aled, but I don’t care. I cannot look away from them. Aled’s emotions didn’t make a whole lot of sense, and I don’t care. And that ending! Gah! In some ways I don’t really know what to say. The biggest thing to happen here is Aled’s disillusionment, and that isn’t really what he ends up angry about. Survivors of the Ungrich seem to be upset by their time with the Ungrich as opposed to being lied to for years by Palk and the Mitan government.

There is a lot of sex and it’s only vaguely consensual throughout most of the book. The plot for the series as a whole moved ahead nicely and has me thoroughly on the edge of my seat. There is a lot I don’t like about this series, but I know these will be books I re-read. They’re entertaining. If you’re looking to be entertained by a short read I would absolutely recommend this series.

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