Reviewed by: Amy
Rating (out of 5): 4 stars
Jim Schweitzer is a SEAL. He’s a professional, an artist in his mind, and knows how to get the job done. Despite his dedication to his job, nothing is more important to Jim than his wife Sarah and their young son Patrick. When on a covert mission, Jim stumbles upon some highly guarded secrets. Unfortunately, this makes Jim a target for elimination, and the attack is brought right to his front door. There’s nothing Jim wouldn’t do to protect those he loves, especially give his own life.
It is the age of “The Reawakening.” Magic is returning to the world, and those who can use that to gain power are trying to take full advantage. After the attack, Jim wakes to find he’s been brought back from the dead by a sorcerer. Jim has now been initiated into Gemini Cell a super-secret army of undead. So far, this experiment is in its very early stages and Jim is the most cognizant one to come back thus far. The goal is to have each soldier be just like Jim. They are stronger and nearly indestructible. Jim is put through a series of tests to see how stable his conscious mind is and how well he can perform the tasks at hand. At first, Jim is just trying to determine how to work with the ‘monster’ that now possesses his body. Does he lose himself completely and let the monster take control? Or does he try to keep some semblance of the person he once was?
Unlike in his human life where he just followed the orders, he was given and didn’t ask questions. Jim is not content to sit idly by. He wants to know the fates of his wife and son, but with each evasive answer he receives it becomes more apparent that maybe these people who brought him back are not truly the ‘good guys’ they claim to be.
Conspiracies abound in Gemini Cell. There’s a slow build up before we get to where Jim is revived, but I think it was essential to fully immerse the reader into this fictionalized world so we know what we’re dealing with. After Jim comes back, he goes through a lot of inner turmoil trying to figure out who he’s become. He’s no longer the same Jim Schweitzer at the beginning of the story, but it’s difficult for him to completely let that life go. I found this battle to be quite interesting even though a lot of it happens on a very surreal level.
I felt, and the romantic in me concurs, that the connection between Jim and Sarah was the driving force of this story. When I opened Gemini Cell I was prepared for a sci-fi/fantasy military read, but what I wasn’t prepared for was the lovely, often heartbreaking, love story that resided within. If you take all the other aspects away from the story, you still have a man and a woman fighting with everything they have to get back to each other. Readers are aware of the status of both Sarah and Jim throughout; we just have to watch all the excruciating obstacles that pop up along the way. I was so excited with Sarah’s conviction that her husband was still alive. She represents a wonderful, strong, determined female heroine who, as far as we know, is one hundred percent human. So do they get their happily ever after? You’ll just have to read the story to find out!
Gemini Cell is a prequel to Myke Cole’s already established Shadow Ops series. I have not read the main series; I felt no confusion picking this one up first. There’s no cliffhanger, but not everything at the end is sewed up nicely with a bow either. I hope Cole has plans to continue this particular story because I am very interested to see how deep the conspiracies run.
Sexual content: Sex