I binged this series over a long weekend and decided to just review them all in one place! I do want to forewarn people that these books all deal with dubcon, have multiple sexual assault scenes, human tracking, forced sterilization, and violence. Some books also have drug use and references to domestic abuse, spousal rape, and suicide/suicidal thoughts. Normally I put content warnings at the bottom of my review, but I wanted to put them up top this time since I will periodically be referencing them in my review!
What’s this series about?
Somewhere in a galaxy far far away….there is a government that has a zero tolerance policy for crime. You murder your wife? Get sent to a prison planet. You deal drugs? You’re goin to a prison planet. You steal a loaf of bread? Prison planet.
On these planets, there are several different zones that each hold its own unique brand of torture. All of which are (technically) co-ed.
Guardian is the first book in the series and sets up a lot of the backstory for the series. While each book can be read as a standalone romance, but I highly recommend reading the first as it sets up a lot of subplots in the series.
The zone in this book is like The Hunger Games. Twice a week there are two drops of supplies that prisoners must fight over. The strong prosper while the weak die. The book starts off with Audra getting sent to Rhodon in a zone that trades women to the men of their zone in exchange for not attacking the all of the women. The women exchanged are given to the men until the next batch of women arrive. It could be a few weeks, could be several months. The men do give the women a “choice”: every 30 days they stay there they “get” to pick a different man. Audra has a plan: pick the strongest man. But what happens when he doesn’t want to let her go?
Hunter takes place in a zone where women are sex trafficked and the men who have been sentenced to death are hunted for sport by the rich.
When Callum was sentenced to death on Rhodon he had one plan in mind: kill the fucker hunting him before they kill him first. But when Callum gets his chance in the hunting zone, he finds a half naked girl. Is she the bait or there to be hunted too?
Champion takes place in a zone where men sentenced to death on Rhodon have the chance to fight for there freedom. Or….well….something like it.
Instead of certain death they can fight in a gladiator style death tournament where if they win, they will get to move to a different zone and serve life. When Slyvie is sentenced to death for avenging her sister, she asks to fight in the area. The first woman to ask to go there. What is Slyvie willing to do to survive? This book is one part Gladiator and one part Effie from The Hunger Games.
Hostage takes place on a blimp that crashes in zone 3.
Sebastian has one goal: get his sister off that damn planet. And he has just been handed the most delectable hostage.
Traitor also starts on the blimp that crashes into zone 3.
This book is about a girl who survive domestic abuse and human trafficking who pairs up with a guy who is mute. When Barrett finds out that a girl who was held captive by the same guy who murdered his wife is in his zone, he’ll stop at nothing to get his revenge.
Guardian: I liked this book up until the ending. It was pretty abrupt and kind of sad. I didn’t feel like I got the closure I needed for me to consider it a HFN/HEA because I certainly wasn’t happy. Also it felt like a weird time to be saying I love you for the first time.
Hunter: This book gave me the closure I needed. It has some characters from book one in it. But that character’s personality did a complete 180 from how they were in book one. It gave me whiplash. Also I find it creepy when a guy will go on and on about how childlike his love interest look and then two seconds later say how much he wants to bone her. It felt creepy. I love how this book included a language barrier.
Champion: This was my favorite of the series. I loved the tournament. I loved the ending. I loved how the media played a part in the book. And that ending was sooooo good.
Hostage: I did not like this one at all. Kaya was complicit in an environment that profited off of murder. She doesn’t really reconcile that. Everyone forgives her actions in two seconds which doesn’t feel realistic. And she was given a sympathetic background to make her more likeable. I loved how this book had us meeting up with the couples from the other books! But I also don’t think that this book really thought long and hard about how she isn’t sterilized on a prison planet. There were other narrative choices that didn’t make any sense. The plot was hectic. Didn’t enjoy it at all.
Traitor: I can’t tell which book I hate worse: this one or Hostage. Honestly I think it’s gross when a widower is only attracted to someone because of how much that person reminds them of their dead spouse. I also didn’t like how this book felt like all dubcon and no actual consent. Mallory has been trafficked most of her life so she doesn’t even grasp the basic concept of consent. And she came across so childlike that the romance felt creepy. I did like how the book touched on PTSD, sympathizing with your abuser, and sexual assault, but it didn’t really tackle any one topic well. Neither character left the book with beginning to heal. The ending was literally just setting up the spin-off series. Mallory and Barrett felt like secondary characters in their own book!
Overall thoughts: I liked the series as a concept. I wouldn’t recommend the last two books. If you want something with neat world-building, lots of steamy scenes, alpha males, and tons of violence then this is the book series for you! While all of the books are sci-fi, everyone is human. I would’ve liked to see other species in the series. Overall the books were fun guilty pleasure reads. There are definitely world-building inconsistencies throughout the series, but that’s to be expected in a long running romance series. If you have Kindle Unlimited I recommend the first three.
Content Warnings: All off these books all deal with dubcon, have multiple sexual assault scenes, human tracking, forced sterilization, and violence. Some books also have drug use and references to domestic abuse, spousal rape, and suicide/suicidal thoughts.