Book Review: Lethal Game by Christine Feehan

July 1, 2020 Book Reviews 2

Book Review: Lethal Game by Christine FeehanLethal Game by Christine Feehan
Genres: Paranormal, Romance
Published by Berkley Books on March 3, 2020
Pages: 448
Format: Hardcover
Source: the library

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Also by this author: Air Bound, Rocky Mountain Miracle, Power Game, Earth Bound, Spider Game, "Dark Crime", Judgment Road, Toxic Game, Vengeance Road, Fire Bound, Bound Together, Shadow Warrior, Leopard's Wrath, Wild Cat, Cat's Lair, Vendetta Road, Desolation Road

Sixteenth in the GhostWalkers paranormal romance series revolving around soldiers who were experimented on and enhanced through DNA. The couple focus is on Amaryllis Johnson, a GhostWalker on the run, and Malichai Fortunes, a GhostWalker on vacation.

My Take

Whew, Feehan starts us off under intense pressure as the GhostWalker team wades in to rescue a badly wounded unit under heavy weapons-fire. It sets off the reason Malichai has to take that danged vacation.

It’s so like a GhostWalker to want to help, and the proud Mrs Stubbins is one lucky lady. The quiet Malichai is an amazing man, so very helpful, honorable, and respectful. Amaryllis is also quite honorable, even if she doesn’t see it. She has such compassion for Marie and her daughter.

Lol, yeahhh, Malichai and his team are the ones who rescue Rangers and SEALs.

While Feehan goes in for the melodramatic, Lethal Game feels impersonal, clumsy, and not very believable. Okay, I know the whole premise behind the series is fantastic, but elements of the individual stories can also be far out there. Sure, I love how amazing Malichai is and the home and love Amaryllis feels she’s found in Marie whom she sees a mother, sister, and friend, is a totally new experience for her. But must Feehan go on and on and onnnn about Amaryllis’ past and her agonizing over her choices? Oy. As for the care and support of the other GhostWalkers, well, I can only say hoo-ah.

All the info dumping was very annoying. As for Burnell and Jay breaking into Malichai’s room…WTF? How stupid is that. Why does it take Malichai so long to figure out that Amaryllis is probably his complement?

Jesus, the hypocrisy of Callendine and his people. What’s scary is that it’s probably way too real amongst haters and politicians.

There seems to be a theme in the books I’m reading right now, and it’s not on purpose. All that hate in John Sandford’s Masked Prey and Karin Slaughter’s The Last Widow. Scary that people really do think like this???

“I find people who don’t think the same way I do ridiculous. They’re morons and can’t see logic. How can you talk to that?”

Feehan uses primarily third person dual protagonist point-of-view between Amaryllis’ and Malichai’s perspectives, which is why we know too much about their worries. Occasionally third person global subjective point-of-view pops up, most notably at the end as we listen in on the thoughts the traitors have as they exit the conference. A wide range of thoughts that will make you sick.

It’s a slow pace, all that whining gets to ya as Amaryllis and Malichai meander along. There is quite a bit of action going on: what with scary overheard conversations, B&B guests being murdered, the horny divine sisters, the secrets Amaryllis is hiding, the White House’s complicity in the attack as well as that against the patriotic GhostWalkers, the hidden dangers of Zenith, and the worst is Malichai’s leg. It’s not healing. If anything, it’s getting worse. And we’ll learn what Malichai’s worst fear is.

Ooh, it is rather interesting with all the foreshadowing (that I missed) about the triplets planning out Malichai’s vacation. They should be on the payroll.

The Story

Leave it to a GhostWalker to fall into a plot to take out a convention center filled with ordinary people seeking peace.

The Characters

Amaryllis Johnson (jackal DNA), an orphan and a loner, is a psychic healer on the run, trying to stay one step ahead of her pursuers. Silver and Coral are the girls who managed to escape when she did.

Malichai Fortunes is an Air Force pararescue GhostWalker (cat and moth DNA) with all-around skills and a medic with a specialty in anesthesiology.

The GhostWalkers are…
…men whose original psychic abilities caused them to be chosen for experimentation. Major General Tennessee Milton is their commanding officer. Dr Lily Whitney is also a researcher and Peter Whitney’s “daughter” who married a GhostWalker from Team One and now works to combat her father (Shadow Game, 1). Team Two has banded together with Team One and they live in Montana. Team Three, which includes Javier Enderman, Gideon Carpenter, and Dr Paul Mangan, another psychic surgeon, is in San Francisco. Another GhostWalker is Avery, a surveillance tech.

Malichai’s GhostWalker teammates…
…specialize in hot zone rescues. Team Four lives in the Louisiana bayou around Wyatt’s widowed grandmother, Nonny, who is the nucleus of their new family. Berengere had been her beloved husband. Ezekiel “Zeke” (he married Bellisia in Power Game, 13) and Mordichai (he’s a doctor now) are Malichai’s brothers. The boys ran away when their drug-addicted mother wanted to rent them out to men for drug money.

Joe Spagnola is the team leader with psychic healing skills. Rubin Campo is a psychic surgeon. Diego Campo is Rubin’s brother, and they banded with the Fortunes as children on the streets of Chicago. Wyatt Fontenot, another genius, is married to Pepper (Viper Game, 11), who brought her viper triplets — Thym, Cannelle, and Ginger — and their new twin girls, Grace and Fleur. The dangerous Gino is married to Zara (Covert Game, 14), a researcher who had been tortured so badly she can’t walk very well anymore. Draden, a former hotshot model, is married to Shylah (Toxic Game, 15). I found myself wondering if the romance Amaryllis is reading, Toxic Game, is an inside joke. The web-weaving, pregnant Cayenne, who can’t cook, is Trap’s wife. Trap Dawkins has Asperger’s and is a genius billionaire, handy since he has his own plane. Sometimes he can “see” inside the human body.

The Montana team
Jack Norton is a SEAL GhostWalker (Conspiracy Game, 4). Ken Norton is his twin (Deadly Game, 5).

A B&B in San Diego
Marie Stubbins, a soldier’s, Carl‘s, widow, is carrying on with their joint dream of owning a B&B. Jacy is her daughter with a heart condition. Amaryllis is her hired help.

Guests include the very polite Bryon and Anna Cooper, who run a small press; the pushy Tania and Tommy Leven are brother and sister; Billy Leven is their equally pushy cousin and former Recon; Burnell Strathom and Jay Carpenter are life partners and own an art gallery in L.A.; Craig Williams of Georgia; Linda, Lorrie, and Lexie Montclair are the sinful, divine sisters out for men; and, Stefani Charles of Finland is here for the conference.

Dozer” is surfer boy. Miss Crystal owns a magic shop. Tess, a gray-haired cousin?, appears to be helping her out. Tag is Lorrie’s abusive husband.

Detectives Duncan and Brady are investigating the murders. John Mills claims to be a cop.

Lantern International is…
…a company with people all over the world whose mission is to bring together ideas to spread peace and understanding among all peoples. The emphasis is on people and not countries.

The team needing a hot rescue
Jerry Lannis will lose an arm and a leg; Denise is his wife, and they have two girls. Jack Torren has two bullets in him, one in his hip. Barry Clarke has a broken arm and hand, and not on the same arm. Tim Barrens was shot in the head. Braden O’Connell took a through-and-through on his thigh.

A military unit with…
…orders from the White House. Army Lieutenant Colonel Callendine is a base hypocrite. Major Roseland Salsberry follows him slavishly. Sergeant Mills, James Rodenburg, Carter Jorganson, the questioning Ray Valli, the sadistic John Sawyer and Nathan Treadway, and Sergeant Kolt Michigan are in Callendine’s command.

Dr Peter Whitney is…
…the epitome of the mad scientist, genetically altering soldiers without their permission. Luckily for the men, he buys orphan girls (or kills their parents) to experiment on them first. Ever resourceful, Whitney goes on to use the girls in a breeding program, which he further enhanced by introducing complementary animal DNA to pair each girl with a particular soldier.

The egotistical Owen Starks, who supposedly died six years ago, is one of the failed soldiers whom Whitney hired for his supersoldier army on whom he experiments even more. After all…they’re failed experiments. Douglas Hines is one of the girls’ trainers who was liked. Violet Smythe had been a traitorous GhostWalker.

Zenith is a drug Whitney developed that saves and kills; Zenith 2.0 was developed by Lily.

Henry Shevfield is a professional killer with a wife and three kids. He prefers to arrange accidents. Sounds like Rubin Edon is another hit man staying at the B&B. Liam Hamilton, Billy’s friend, is an advisor to the vice-president. Sergej Nowosilow is a scientist fascinated by regrowing limbs.

The Cover and Title

The cover appears more frosty in its blues than watery with balls of fire appearing behind the golden-eyed Malichai in his desert camos and rifle strapped over his shoulder. He knows we’re here, for he’s staring straight out at us. At the very top is an info blurb in black. The author’s name in a yellow-outlined royal blue is beneath it across Malichai’s head. The title is below his chin in a black outlined organically patterned yellow. Immediately below that is the series information in royal blue with a ghostly white shadow.

The title is the Lethal Game they all play at the B&B.

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2 Responses to “Book Review: Lethal Game by Christine Feehan”

  1. Kathy Davie

    Feehan’s getting too melodramatic for me. Unfortunately, I like the characters and just have to know what’s happening. And Nonny is such a sweetheart! Of course, I love that action as well… It’s definitely a book to get from the library and not waste money on.

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