Station Alpha by Aislinn Kearns (Soldiering On #1)
Released: August 2016
Reviewed by Mandi
I love a Twitter recommendation (my bank account does not) and when I saw Meka tweet that Station Alpha was a good read, featuring a hero with a disability, I bought it. She rec’d it because his disability was not the main storyline, and I agree with her. It plays a role in the story (he is wheelchair bound) but it’s not the main focus.
And – pigs starting flying – because I actually read it the same week I bought it. What??? It didn’t sit in my TBR pile for years? I’m just as shocked as you.
This book starts out with a very intense, suspenseful scene as our heroine, Christine gets a phone call in the middle of the night:
“There is a team of men, converging on your house right,” came the unexpected reply from a low male voice. Unfamiliar, urgent. “You need to run.”
Can you imagine waking up to that?? At first she thinks it’s a prank call – which I think we may all assume. Christine is a personal assistant with a new job, to an elderly man. She was hired to clean up some of his files, and transcribe his dictations – all harmless work. Unknown to Christine, someone else hired the hero’s company to watch over her for three weeks. To follow her, and report back all of her actions. Paul, our hero, was put on the case.
Paul works for a company called Soldering On, a security company who employs veterans that were injured in the line of duty. Having met the founder in a VA hospital, he was hired after rehabilitating his injury – he is paralyzed from the waist down. This has obviously been devastating to Paul, but surveillance work has given him something to keep his mind occupied. He has become somewhat of a recluse. Having all the technology he could dream of in front of him, he can keep tabs on Christine, without leaving his apartment.
Paul narrates to her over the phone, directions to a safe house. It’s the same apartment building he lives in, and eventually these two meet up and she has a lot of questions about why she is being targeted and why he has been watching her without her consent.
I found that Christine doesn’t really freak out all that much that men were converging on her house to kidnap or kill her – and they target her again later in the book. Her distress seemed – minimal. Otherwise this is a fun, action-packed book with well done suspense scenes.
I think Paul’s injury and recovery are presented well too. He has limitations being in a wheelchair, and his body has limitations on what he can feel, when it comes to romance. He also has scarring to his face and body so he has a lot to deal with. It’s a sexy book and I think his character is written very well.
I liked the end too – after a very action-filled sequence, there isn’t an automatic “I love you” – there is a, let’s go on a first date. Yay!! Realistic! We also get a nice epilogue.