Thursday, December 17, 2015

SFRB Recommends 48: Enemy Within by Marcella Burnard

After a stint in an alien prison, Captain Ari Rose wonders why she even bothered to survive. Stripped of her command and banished to her father's scientific expedition to finish a Ph.D. she doesn't want, Ari never planned to languish quietly behind a desk. She wasn't built for it, either. But when pirates commandeer her father's ship, Ari once again becomes a prisoner. 

As far as pirate leader Cullin is concerned, Ari's past imprisonment puts her dead center in Cullin's sights. If she hasn't been brainwashed and returned as a spy, then he's convinced she must be part of a traitorous alliance endangering billions of lives. Cullin can't afford the desire she fires within him and he'll stop at nothing, including destroying her, to uncover the truth.

In Enemy Within, everybody's got layers of secrets and at least one angle. The major characters have complex stories and goals and have to make some difficult decisions to get those accomplished. What do the deliciously disturbing space bugs want with Ari? Who is she really loyal to, and why is that important to Cullin?
The romance is tested hard- at several points I thought it was unworkable.

This book wreacked havoc with my emotions. I felt for Ari, who gets pulled through all kinds of wringers. Cullin was a little harder for me to get a handle on, but his confusion and frustrations made sense and felt real. Add spaceships, some politics, murky alliances, fencing, and aliens, and this book packs quite a wallop. This story's been on my keeper shelf for years and inspired me try writing myself. It ends well, and the characters definitely earn it!

Author site: Marcella Burnard, Official Website

Recommendation by Lee Koven.


  1. Loved it; plus the sequel Enemy Games, but when do we get another in the series? I was hoping to find out that a character I liked didn't get killed after all and shows up in the third book.

  2. Definitely one of my faves. A great read, especially for those who love complex, intricately-woven SFR.

  3. Wow. :D This post made my month. Thank you. I swear to all the gods listening there will be more books in this series - the issue is that the publisher declined the rest of the series. I can pub the last three books, but need to be careful about the existing contract requirements with the rest of the series. Not insurmountable - just something that needs some consideration. That said, book three is half done. :)


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