by Charlie Cochet
Published July 7th 2014 by Dreamspinner Press
Formats Available: mobi, epub, pdf, zip/html
My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
When homicide detective Dexter J. Daley’s testimony helps send his partner away for murder, the consequences—and the media frenzy—aren’t far behind. He soon finds himself sans boyfriend, sans friends, and, after an unpleasant encounter in a parking garage after the trial, he’s lucky he doesn’t find himself sans teeth. Dex fears he’ll get transferred from the Human Police Force’s Sixth Precinct, or worse, get dismissed. Instead, his adoptive father—a sergeant at the Therian-Human Intelligence Recon Defense Squadron otherwise known as the THIRDS—pulls a few strings, and Dex gets recruited as a Defense Agent.
Dex is determined to get his life back on track and eager to get started in his new job. But his first meeting with Team Leader Sloane Brodie, who also happens to be his new jaguar Therian partner, turns disastrous. When the team is called to investigate the murders of three HumaniTherian activists, it soon becomes clear to Dex that getting his partner and the rest of the tightknit team to accept him will be a lot harder than catching the killer—and every bit as dangerous.
THIRDS (Therian-Human Intelligence Recon Defense Squadron) the series is set in an alternate universe where human error causes an unexpected mutation on human recipients and soon, shape shifters, or Therians, were a part of the population through no fault of their own. The governments strove hard to make all things work, but as all things humans, there are those who are accepting, and then there are those who are not. This is the story of when a militant movement makes a decision to wage war on Therians and their supporters.
Dexter J. Daley found himself at odds with the Human Police Force Sixth Precinct when his conscience overruled him. Testifying against his partner for the unnecessary killing of a young Therian informant was enough to turn the police force against him. As he was a brilliant detective and had passed at the top of the class in THIRDS training, it was only logical he be transferred there.
Sloane Brodie is the Team Leader AND apparently Dex's new partner. Sloane had lost his previous partner to a still unresolved case and his guilt ran through him every single day. Unwilling to replace his partner led to too many new ones assigned to him and the team to either resign, transfer or simply quit. Dex Daley coming into the team not only changed his outlook but the whole team were wary for this new team mate was hard to ignore and definitely hard to dismiss.
Hiding behind his persona as someone who gave comic relief wherever he was, Dex was a hard character to categorize. A comedian all the way, he surprises all when his detective instincts led investigations to links never thought before. Soon, his presence disturbed Sloane in more ways than one. Is this a complication to their already complicated team partnership and relationship?
I was really surprised with Hell & High Water. I never expected to read something where the alternate world or universe was well thought out and executed so well. I totally enjoyed all the weapons introduced and described; the visuals that led me through the sparring between team mates was elaborate and exciting; the investigative process was meticulous and intriguing; the romance brewing on the sidelines between Dex and Sloane; the mystery of the killer or killers who are studiously killing off Therian supporters; this clicked all the right boxes for me and I am a happy reader here. Very happy.
This is one series I am definitely looking forward to.