|Cover Artist: Aaron Anderson|
The Planet Whisperer
by E E Montgomery
Length: 280 pages
Genres: M/M Romance, Science Fiction
Jonah Starovski, a Planet Whisperer, harnesses the energy surrounding dead planets and redirects it into new growth. Abandoned by the man who bought him from a brothel sixteen years ago, Jonah flounders in a world he’s ill equipped to deal with. He must accept the help of a stranger in order to rebuild his life.
First Lieutenant Marcus Davis volunteers as Jonah’s assistant without realizing the terraforming process requires Jonah’s sexual release. Balanced on the knife-edge of fear and ambition, Marcus is faced with his mother’s machinations and threats to his career. Marcus’s parents bring their illegal scientific experiments to the planets Jonah is terraforming just as Marcus learns to accept himself and his feelings for Jonah. At the same time, Jonah’s past catches up to him, putting them both in danger.
Jonah and Marcus must trust in each other to put a stop to the illegal activities, rescue an endangered animal, and create the future they both want—a future they can share.
2 of 5 stars
This simply did not work for me. The characters were interesting initially but weren't developed over the course of the story. Jonah and Marcus suffered from a critical failure to communicate. Every time they seemed to finally make a breakthrough, the crazy cycle of misunderstandings would reset and repeat. Jonah is a treasure. I wanted to wrap him up and love on him so badly. His childhood was a nightmare but it didn't break him. Jonah's innocence, wonder and tender heart are irresistible. Upon meeting Marcus, Jonah dares to hope for the very first time. Jonah cautiously opens up, offering Marcus small pieces of himself as he shares the pain of his past. Instead of cherishing Jonah's trust Marcus, comes across as callous bastard. I wanted to reach out and smack some sense into Marcus every time he focused on his insecurities, especially after he realized the tender care Jonah needed, prioritized other people over Jonah, or walked away from Jonah without any reassurances or explanations. Jonah's capacity to forgive is astounding, so I gave Marcus the stink-eye on his behalf.
The situation involving Marcus's mother is outrageous. The same mistakes are made repeatedly and nobody seems to notice... or care. The plot is one dimensional, the secondary characters are flaky at best and the most interesting personality amongst them isn't even human. I love science fiction and the synopsis was so promising that I was equally frustrated and disappointed with the outcome.
E E Montgomery wants the world to be a better place, with equality and acceptance for all. Her philosophy is: We can’t change the world but we can change our small part of it and, in that way, influence the whole. Writing stories that show people finding their own ‘better place’ is part of E E Montgomery’s own small contribution.
Thankfully, there’s never a shortage of inspiration for stories that show people growing in their acceptance and love of themselves and others. A dedicated people-watcher, E E finds stories everywhere. In a cafe, a cemetery, a book on space exploration or on the news, there’ll be a story of personal growth, love, and unconditional acceptance there somewhere.
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