by Michelle Maddox
Suspenseful, riveting futuristic action romance
Michelle Maddox's action romance Countdown pits together an unlikely
hero and heroine, an outlaw and an outcast, murderer and thief, in race
for their lives. A futuristic setting and technology turns pleasure and
entertainment into extreme territory. Fast paced action, a smart top
notch competitor heroine and an intriguing unique hero combine to make
Countdown one exhilarating read.
Anyone with power, money, influence or anything worthwhile has taken a
transport to Offworld. Kira Jordan, one of the remnant left behind in
this horrible world was out shoplifting a pair of red shoes, when
presto, her world gets a whole lot worse! She awakens in a black room,
chained to a wall. Terrified of the blackness doesn't even cover it.
She feels the presence of a man, a man she cannot see. When the lights
turn on, so does the Countdown and she discovers that she has been
thrown in with a murderer for a cellmate and they have only seconds,
til the end of the countdown, to work together or die. With no escape
possible, Kira must decide whether to trust this man in a survival game
in which the stakes are life and death. Something about this horrifying
ally named Rogan feels different. Can she trust him and for how long?
Using her psi ability to feel the truth within him through touch, Kira
suspects that there is something that doesn't add up about his bio as a
mass murderer but could she be wrong? With the Countdown and game
playing through a chip inside her brain, Kira doesn't have time to
figure out all the intricacies of his past. She must work with him to
beat the Countdown, not just once but 6 levels of the game. Failure to
solve the puzzle in time means death!
Wow! This was one exhilarating read! With echoes of Death Row Game
Show, Survivor, and Fear Factor, Michelle Maddox takes the game show,
survival and romance to the next level and then some. Countdown creates
a dark world where a reality show has turned Xtreme as voyeuristic
viewers enjoy the high stakes with a kind of sick fascination fed by
the latest technology. This is no made-for-mass consumption
Survivor-like reality show with neutral medics and staff waiting beyond
the cameras to insure the safety of the contestants! Here, the closed
circuit subscribers in this covert game are nastier and meaner than
than the most hated Survivor contestant. Michelle Maddox gives readers
thrill after thrill as two unlikely allies must come together to
survive. It is hard to say a lot about the plot of this book without
revealing major spoilers to ruin the fun, but suffice it to say, there
are so many delightful twists and turns to this romance that the
thrills never end. Just when things stabilize, a new kink in the game
surfaces. Countdown is definitely a romance with a dark suspenseful
side that makes non-stop reading a must.
The romance itself intrigues as Michelle Maddox veers from more
familiar romance genre paradigms with her cutting edge characters.
Michelle Maddox both allies and pits the hero and heroine against each
other in a race that unlocks their deepest fears and secrets as they
struggle against the overwhelming odds favoring their extermination.
Kira is thrown into an unfamiliar setting with a man known to be
dangerous --- a mass murderer, but she has no choice but to rely on her
own wits and physical prowess and, worst of all, to trust him. Tied
together, they cannot escape from each other without risking
annihilation. Intelligent and able-bodied, Kira has both fears and
special abilities but she has been cast aside for those better and
brighter and richer --- those who went Offworld. Without money or
special ability, her only hope for a decent life off the streets is to
win the game. Rogan is a condemned murderer, a man sentenced to die.
His only hope for escape is the game. Injured and desolate, Rogan must
depend on Kira's brains and body --- and her cooperation! With each new
level of the Countdown, Kira discovers more and more shattering details
about Rogan's past and yet, something beneath his rough, disheveled
appearance draws her. She must race to distinguish lies from truth in a
world where friend can turn foe and foe a friend. Tortured by their
pasts, can their work as a team unleash the dark demons within...and
will they survive to reap the benefits? In the final game, Kira and
Borgan's developing love will be put to the ultimate test that will
challenge their trust at the most primal level with consequences far
beyond themselves in an electrifying conclusion.
Michelle Maddox's Countdown is a perfect choice for readers who crave
the unusual and daringly innovative in a romance. Countdown adds
elements of science fiction and suspense in a taut, tension-filled plot
that keeps the reader guessing until the last page.
Reviewed by Merrimon,
Merrimon Book Reviews