After reading the series prequel, I was excited to get to this read and Ms. Zanetti doesn’t disappoint. Months after a virulent spore from a rock confounded the vaunted CDC, it’s grown into an epidemic. The world is in a post apocalyptic state, people are scrambling to stay alive and safety is a vague memory. It’s more dangerous for Dr. Lynne Harmony, a scientist working on a cure and the first virus survivor.
Escaping from the DC-CDC where Rippers (survivors that became insane and obsessed) ruled, Lynne’s reached Los Angeles where she hopes to find information on the cure. Meanwhile, POTUS has become obsessed with Lynne and is intent on tracking her down. Engaging the entire population in his search, POTUS offers a bounty and a rumor putting Lynne’s life in danger.
What used to be neighborhoods and cities are now gang territories of varying brutalities. Lynne’s goal is to reach Vanguard, a gang rumored to be led by a strong ex-soldier defending the weak and especially women. Lynne knows she’ll need protection as she searches for notes and works on a cure to stay out of POTUS’s clutches. Enter ex-SEAL Jax Mercury.
Jax protects and strongly leads a rag-tag group struggling to survive. Unfortunately, Jax’ ex-gang is a neighbor of Jax’ Vanguard group and its leader covets Jax, Lynne and whatever else Jax has. Agreeing to protect and help Lynne, Jax tries not to let his growing affection for the little brunette cloud his judgment as he weighs POTUS attempts to gain Jax’ allegiance and what is best for his people.
Lynne and Jax had plenty of chemistry and gave new meaning to the phrase power couple. The supporting characters and those in different threads did their piece to keep the pace of this exciting read as several layers were neatly added. The highlights of the prequel are here but the prequel itself does add depth and good back-stories for Lynne’s involvement, POTUS and the Brigade.