"Stunning Shielder Series Sequel!"
SHADOWER is the long awaited sequel to Ms.
Spangler's highly acclaimed debut novel SHIELDER
(Love Spell, April 1999). Actually though it is her second
book, it is really a prequel, the story of Chase McKnight's
partner, Sabin Travers, and his beloved Moriah who appears
as a mated couple in SHIELDER.
Though some might think him a traitor, Shielder Sabin
Travers had become a Shadower to aid his people. As a
Shielder. he is resistant to the mind indoctrination of the
Controllers, and therefore pursues only those whom he
chooses - the truly heinous criminals with no redeeming
qualities. His bounty, aside for a bit he's saved
to purchase a more modern ship, is given to his people.
Sabin had been a child of a mere six seasons when his
entire colony had been destroyed by Anteks, the dimwitted
minions of the Controllers. He had lost everyone he loved
and vowed never to give his heart to another again. He
could not bear that pain.
Just weeks short of acquiring his new ship, his decrepit
junker breaks down on Risa, a planet which draws the most
degenerate beings in the quadrant. He finds himself in
Giza's, enjoying several drinks while his ship undergoes
repair. It is there that he first lays eyes on Moriah
Cameron who unbeknownst to him is one of the top smugglers
in the quadrant. Though not usually altruistic, Sabin
realizes that a beautiful and innocent woman such as Moriah
would be prey to every sicko on the planet. When he offers
to escort her away, her response insults his manhood.
Moriah is on a mission of great importance to her small
colony of women. Her ship has been stolen and she has come
to Giza's in hopes of winning enough at games of chance to
purchase transportation. Though she is successful, an
altercation ensues as her disgruntled victims don't take
kindly to being bested by a woman.
Sabin is reluctant to offer aid yet again, but when the
odds become too great for Moriah to manage, he removes her
unconscious form to his ship.
Moriah is surprisingly ungrateful. She has reason to
distrust men and Shadowers in particular. Her own father
had been a drunk who had sold his two young daughters in
slavery to pay a debt. His fellow Shadower had stolen
Moriah's innocence when she had barely begun to blossom. It
had taken her years to escape with her young sister - years
of mentally distancing herself from her plight. She had
formed a colony of nine women of varied race, who had also
suffered abuse at the hands of men. The smuggling operation
is their means of survival and the stolen ship has put her
current deal at risk. Her employer is not someone she
wishes to cross.
Moriah escapes Sabin, but later in desperation she stows
away aboard his ship, hiding out until it is underway.
Unfortunately his destination is one of the Shielder
colonies he is aiding. As the Shielders are the target of a
Controller extermination plan, her knowledge of the
colony's location would sign her death warrant. She must
make a desperate decision.
Though Sabin is angered when he discovers her, he is also
very attracted to Moriah. Though she had hoped never to be
touched by another man, Moriah attempts seduction, waiting
for the moment she can place a drug patch on his skin and
escape. Successful, she dumps him in a pleasure dome and
absconds with his ship. Naturally Sabin takes this
betrayal personally. He won't stop till he teaches Moriah a
lesson she'll never forget. But can he forget the way she
felt in his arms? Can he bear to take another into his
broken heart? Can she truly forsake the one man who has
shown her true kindness.
Another wonderful story by Ms. Spangler. Once again her
characters triumph over the nasty hand dealt to them,
overcoming hatred, loss, and abuse to find love. I highly
recommend this tale. Note: Though I like to read stories
in chronological order rather than as published, in this
case it truly isn't important. Both SHIELDER and
SHADOWER are complete in themselves, and though its
nice to see the recurring characters, their backgrounds
don't take away from the story if you aren't familiar with
them. I hope that Ms. Spangler has plans to continue with
this saga, perhaps with a story for Jarek, Sabin's friend
and Nessa's brother, who really deserves one of his own. I
also believe that these books will contribute positively to
the renewed interest the publishers are showing in
Reviewed by Leslie Tramposch
Posted August 20, 2001